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Looking for Mrs Bayard Hand

Looking for Mrs Bayard Hand

After reading the article about Lieutenant Bayard E Hand in the History of Rome and Floyd County, I confess I was dissatisfied that his wife’s name was not included. I was curious to find out who she was and what had happened to her.

At the first it was difficult to come up with her name, mainly because of the incorrect details in the article. Searches beginning with his name, tied to the state of Virginia as the place of marriage, coupled with an 1853 date (his Academy graduation date) proved fruitless. When I eliminated those secondary datums and concentrated on Bayard Hand I got several hits with marriage data for him – indexes, posted bonds and licenses – all with the 1858 date. And the name of his bride was Alice Whitfield.

To learn more about her it would be crucial to find her parents, and with that knowledge locate her in the federal censuses – 1850 the one before their marriage and 1860 the one after Bayard’s death. A family tree revealed that Alice’s father was William Thomas Whitfield (1819-1909) and her mother was Mary Elizabeth Crump Squiggins (1812-1880). The extra names listed for her mother proved very helpful in verifying the correct William Whitfield, for there was more than one possibility in each of those census years. Crump was her maiden name and Squiggins was the name of her first husband. So, the innkeeper “Wm. Whitfield” and his wife “Mary” in the 1850 census for Halifax County, NC are the correct ones – besides the three younger Whitfield children, four older “Squigings” children are noted.  But an “Alice” is not listed. Since she was born in 1842 she would have been eight years old at this census. There is an eight year old Whitfield daughter in this household, however her name is listed as “Temp.” I suspected they were one and the same, and was able to confirm it when a search on the Squiggins name turned up a family Bible in which her name is listed as T. Allice Whitfield. (Her marriage to Hand is also recorded in this same Bible, so a double confirmation). This coupled with the knowledge that her paternal grandmother’s name was Temperance, led me to conclude that her full given name was Temperance Allice Whitfield. From her marriage records forward she must have dropped Temperance and in some cases the second “L” from Allice.

All of this information made it easy to isolate the correct 1860 census record. Her father W T Whitfield was still a Hotel Keeper in Halifax County NC. Her mother M E Whitfield is there with her brother and sister; and Alice herself is listed as Allice Hand. Of note, Allice had a personal estate of 4000 dollars, forty times what her father possessed. I know from probate records that Bayard died intestate, and that Bayard’s stepfather must have seen to it that she was cared for out of her husband’s holdings.

So, what then happened to her after this?

The only record for Alice Hand after this date is the marriage bond that lists Alice W Hand marrying Julius Burton Timberlake in Halifax County, NC on November 5th 1863. Together they had five children, a son and four daughters. They named the first daughter Annie Bayard Timberlake, a touching tribute to her first husband. And Alice’s grandson Julian Burton Timberlake Sr. attended the Naval Academy and served in the First World War, rising to the rank of lieutenant commander by the time of his retirement in 1934.

One other search result led to a Facebook page and a surprising discovery. The family of Alice Whitfield Hand has donated her letters to the University of the South in Sewanee TN. They posted a scan of a letter that she had received from Bayard’s brother-in-law the Rev. Charles Todd Quintard, (later the first vice-chancellor of this same college). This letter from November 1858 is a warm “welcome to the family” to Alice and a humorous attempt to press her for news about the “scamp” naval lieutenant Bayard E Hand.

[Aside – I have ordered scans of some of her letters to hopefully answer some other questions I have, like did they meet at her father’s inn when he traveled between Rome GA and either Norfolk VA or Annapolis MD. Or was it at Beaufort at a later time. I will follow up with a post at a later date with what I learn.]


About rwoz2

Poet, historian, writer for stage and screen. Responder to Jesus (Romans 5:8)

6 responses to “Looking for Mrs Bayard Hand

  1. carrotislander ⋅

    For rwoz2,
    I found your blog: Finding Mrs. Bayard Hand very interesting. I am a great granddaughter of Alice Whitfield Hand Timberlake.

    • rwoz2

      Thanks for stopping by and introducing yourself. There was a follow up post to this one entitled Filling in the Gaps about Bayard and Alice Hand. I placed the link to it here:

      I assume you saw the other two posts on Bayard before these two (they should come up with another search on Bayard Hand’s name)

      • carrotislander ⋅

        Thank you for the link. I did not find the previous two that you referenced. I have Bayard Hand’s hat and epaulets in their original cases. Do you mind sharing where you are located?
        Best regards,

      • rwoz2

        Hi SPS – I live in the Great Pacific Northwest, in Vancouver Washington specifically (hence the time difference in my replies – your other comments came during our dinner). As to the other two Bayard Hand posts, they may more easily be found by scrolling to the bottom of the blog, and there were you can choose a month from the archives, select November of 2015 and scroll down until you find them. RWOz2
        P.S. my wife and I were out in your lovely area in 2019. We flew into Raleigh, NC, then drove down to Charleston, SC. Then followed the coast from there up to the Outer Banks, seeing the sights along the way. We were following in the footsteps of my Civil War ancestor – in reverse. He was a sergeant in the 23rd Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry which was part of the Burnside Expedition.

      • carrotislander ⋅

        Rzwo2 (for lack of a real name), Thank you for your reply. Following your directions, I found the entries. You have done excellent research on this subject and I’m curious to know how you got interested in Bayard Hand in the first place.

        I lived in Tacoma, Washington for a few years when I was stationed at Madigan Army Medical Center and traveled the Pacific Northwest pretty thoroughly. You live in a beautiful area. I’m sorry we did not meet before your family’s trip to the East coast because you probably visited Beaufort and you could have seen a portrait of Bayard Hand’s mother and his hat and epaulets. Please let me know if you plan to come this way again and if we are not traveling, I’d enjoy meeting you and your traveling companions. Best regards, SPS


      • rwoz2

        Checking in with you to ask if you received the email I sent to you. I believe it may have been an iCloud mail address, so I’m not sure if it transits to your regular one. Perhaps check your spam filter. Either way let me know.

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