March 12, 2021

Pages 1841-1852
Whole Number 95

LEONARD SPARKS (born ca. 1822, DIED 1865)


(Editor's Note: The author of this article, Gerald H. Sparks, is a retired major in the United States Air Force. He now lives in Runge, Texas. Major Sparks has been a generous supporter of the Association for many years and has gathered a great deal of information for us on a variety of Sparks families. He has corresponded with many descendants of his great-great-grandfather, Leonard Sparks, and has compiled a remarkably complete record of the family. Because of space limitations, we are not able to publish his entire manuscript, but, with few exceptions, have carried the line no further than the great-grandchildren of Leonard Sparks. Major Sparks will welcome correspondence with other descendants of this branch of the family.)

Leonard Sparks, the subject of this sketch, was born in South Carolina ca. 1822. His parentage has not been established, but there can be little doubt that he descended from that branch of the Sparks family that moved from Maryland to Pittsylvania County, Virginia, in 1778. Several members of this family subsequently moved from Pittsylvania County to the Spartanburg and Union Counties area of South Carolina. (See the Quarterly of September, 1955, Whole No. 11, pp. 79-85; and the March 1956, Whole No. 13, pp. 109-121; these articles give all the information that we have found thus far on the family in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.)

The 1790 census of Spartanburg County, South Carolina, listed four Sparks families (Spartanburg County was then part of what was called the 96 District). (It will be recalled that the 1790 census gave only the name of the head of each household; the members of the household, including the head, were enumerated by sex, with the white males divided between those over 16 and those under 16.) These Sparks families were:

Josiah Sparks, 2 males over 16, no males under 16, and 2 females;
Matthew Sparks, 3 males over 16, 6 males under 16, and 3 females;
Samuel Sparks, one male over 16, 3 males under 16, and 3 females; and
Truelove Sparks, one male over 16, one male under 16, and 1 female.

It is believed that these four men were closely related to one another and that they had moved to Spartanburg County from Pittslyvania County, Virginia, shortly before the 1790 census was taken. From land records, it is apparent that these Sparks families lived very near the boundary line separating Spartanburg County from Union County and York County (now Cherokee County) on the east.

Shortly after the 1790 census was taken, another Sparks moved from Pittsylvania County, Virginia, to Spartanburg County, South Carolina - - this was 54.6 Leonard Sparks who had first appeared in the tax records of Pittsylvania County in 1783. He owned one horse and four cattle in 1783, but was not taxed himself as a "white male over 21," which must mean that he had not yet come of age. The next year, 1784, he was so taxed. This should mean that he was born in 1763. This Leonard Sparks first purchased land in Pittsylvania County on November 22, 1788, from Thomas Sparks for 100 pounds (Book 8, p. X05). Although we have found no record of Leonard Sparks selling this land, he was last taxed for it in 1790. We are sure that he was the same Leonard Sparks who later owned land in both Spartanburg and Union Counties, South Carolina.

Perhaps proof will be found eventually that the Leonard Sparks who is the subject of this sketch descends from this Leonard Sparks of Pittsylvania County, Virginia, and Spartanburg and Union Counties, South Carolina. There is also probably a family connection with the Leonard Sparks who married Patsey Beard on July 25, 1806 in Jefferson County, Tennessee. (See the Quarterly of December 1961, Whole No. 36, pp. 596-598.)

The given names of Leonard, Truelove, and Valentine seem to have been largely restricted to this branch of the Sparks family and were repeated for several generations. The grandchildren of Leonard Sparks (ca. 1822-1865), subject of this sketch, recalled the names Valentine Sparks and Truelove Sparks, but did not know their relationship. For example, Valentine C. Sparks, who married Mary Kennett in Gwinnett County, GA, on November 7, 1848, was somehow related to this family. It was also common knowledge among the grandchildren of Leonard Sparks (ca. 1822-1865) living in Calhoun County, Alabama, that they were blood kin to the Sparkses who lived in Cherokee County, Alabama, just to the north of Calhoun County. The Sparkses of Cherokee County are known to have descended from the Leonard Sparks who married Patsey Beard in 1806.

According to family tradition, Leonard Sparks (ca. 1822-1865) came from a large family, being one of 12 sons. Sometime between 1835 and 1839, Leonard Sparks married Zeriah Sparks, supposedly a distant cousin who was born ca. 1821 in South Carolina. She also, according to family tradition, came from a large family.

The earliest official record that has been found thus far pertaining to Leonard Sparks is the listing of his family on the 1850 census of Union County, South Carolina. He was shown as an "Overseer," age 28, born in South Carolina. His wife, Zeriah, was shown as 29 years old, born in South Carolina. Their first four children were listed as born in South Carolina. Also listed in the same household was an Elizabeth Sparks, age 17, who was probably a sister of either Leonard or Zeriah. A number of other Sparks families were listed on the 1850 census of Union County, South Carolina, who must have been closely related to Leonard and Zeriah; see the Quarterly of September, 1956, Whole No. 15, pp. 164-166) for this complete listing.

Between 1850 and 1854, Leonard Sparks and his family moved to Georgia. It is known that he purchased land in Gwinnett County, Georgia, in 1859, then sold it in 1861. The family has not, however, been located on the 1860 census.

With the start of the Civil War, Leonard Sparks's two oldest sons enlisted in the same company in Gwinnett County in 1861. Leonard Sparks, himself, according to his Civil War records at the National Archives in Washington, enlisted in Captain M. L. Brown's company on August 24, 1863, at Decator, Georgia. This company subsequently became Company E, 66th Regiment Georgia Infantry, Confederate' States Army. After the Battle of Atlanta, Leonard Sparks was granted leave to see his family, then living within the field of action. In returning to his unit, he was captured by Union forces on September 19, 1864, at Warsaw, Georgia. Warsaw is located in north-east Fulton County at the cross-roads where Georgia State Highway 120 crosses Georgia State Highway 141, about six miles east of Alpharetta, Georgia, and approximately 10 miles from his home. He was taken to Nashville, Tennessee, then to Louisville, Kentucky, and finally to Camp Douglas, Illinois, where he arrived on November 1, 1864. Leonard Sparks died of hepatitus at Camp Douglas, Illinois, on January 30, 1865. He was buried in Grave 627, Block 2, of the Chicago City Cemetery. His name is shown as "Sharp" rather that "Sparks" on at least one military record.

In 1870, Zeriah Sparks, widow of Leonard, and her unmarried children lived in Gwinnett County, Georgia, Lawrenceville Post Office area. by 1880, Zeriah had moved to Calhoun County, Alabama. She died sometime after 1884 and supposedly was buried in the family plot in the front yard of her daughter's home, called "the old Garrett Place."

Leonard and Zeriah Sparks were the parents of the following children:

54.6.1 Thomas Sparks, born October 6, 1836/39, died May 2, 1904.
54.6.2 George Washington Sparks, born March 6, 1844, died July 5, 1905.
54.6.3 Amanda Sparks, born ca. 1845.
54.6.4 Catherine Sparks, born ca. 1847.
54.6.5 John Sparks, born ca. 1849.
54.6.6 James Josiah Sparks, born July 26, 1855, died March 11, 1907.
54.6.7 Mary Sparks, born ca. 1856.
54.6.8 Hester Sparks, born ca. 1860.
54.6.9 Florence Hannah Sparks, born ca. 1863.

54.6.1 Thomas Sparks, son of Leonard and Zeriah Sparks, was born October 6, 1836 (tombstone) or 1839, in South Carolina. He died on May 2, 1904, and was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery, Calhoun County, Alabama. Upon his return from the Civil War, Thomas married Judith Winn Brown, daughter of Robert Brown (born ca. 1806, died 1874, South Carolina) and Nancy MNU (born ca. 1806, died 1890, South Carolina). She was born in Gwinnett County, Georgia, on October 4, 1844. She died on November 13, 1914, and was buried beside her husband.

Thomas Sparks was 5 feet 7 inches tall, according to the military records made when he was released from a prisoner of war camp, and had a fair complexion, dark hair, and gray eyes. He enlisted in Company F, 24th Regiment Georgia Infantry at Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, Georgia, on August 24, 1861. He was captured by Union forces on the first of June, 1864, at Cold Harbor, Virginia, and was sent to the prisoner of war camp at Elmira, New York. He was released on July 11, 1865, and walked home to Georgia. Between 1871 and 1873, Thomas Sparks started to Texas with his wife and children, but on the way he stopped in Calhoun County, Alabama, to visit his mother, sisters, and brothers. There his wife became ill, delaying their departure. He and his family never reached Texas, but settled at Golden Springs in Calhoun County, Alabama.

Thomas Sparks became a preacher after moving to Alabama. He built a church where the old Bunkum School later stood; the church burned and he rebuilt it. The old Union Grove Cemetery is adjacent to this site. Thomas Sparks contributed the land and built the first church to occupy the site of the present Golden Springs Church. The present church is at least the third to occupy the site. Thomas Sparks, his wife Judith Winn (Brown) Sparks, and all but one of their children and many of their other descendants are buried in the cemetery next to the church. To this day, many of Thomas Sparks's descendants are stalwart members of the church that he established so many years ago. Thomas Sparks had the secret of stopping blood as well as premonitions. There are thoughts that at least one of each generation of this family inherits this capability.

Thomas and Judith Winn (Brown) Sparks were the parents of the following children: Anna Cornella Sparks was born August 13, 1867, in Gwinnett County, Georgia. She died on March 14, 1941, and was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery, Calhoun County, Alabama. For many years she lived in the original log cabin that her father built when they first came to Alabama. She never married. James Monroe Sparks was born October 13, 1869, in Georgia. He died on June 6, 1923, and was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery, Calhoun County, Alabama. He married (first) LouAnn Coley, in 1890, daughter of Thomas H. and Lou (Limbaugh) Coley. LouAnn (Coley) Sparks was born August 3, 1876, we think in Eastaboga, Talladega County, Alabama, and died on April 29, 1902, in Shades Valley, Jefferson County, Alabama; she was buried in the Stand Pipe Mountain Cemetery near Cahaba Heights, south of Birmingham. He married (second) a first cousin of his first wife, Susan Jane Hulsey, daughter of James Hulsey; she was born November 7, 1880, and died January 13, 1939. She was buried beside her husband.

James M. Sparks went to Jefferson County, Alabama, two times between 1890 and 1902, each time to earn enough money to buy land in Calhoun County. The first time he worked as a fireman on a small railroad that was used to bring coal to the steam-driven pumps at the Cahaba River pumping station. The second time he worked in the pump station itself, operating the pumps that moved water from the Cahaba River to the city of Birmingham. It seems as if the operation of the pump station was nearly a family business, in that James M. Sparks's father-in-law, his sons, and other kin all worked at the station. It has only been in the last few years that there was not a member of the Coley family working at the water works.

After his first wife died, James M. Sparks was left with three small boys to rear. LouAnn (Coley) Sparks's first cousin, Susan Jane Hulsey's parents had just died of food poisoning, leaving her at 22 with several younger brothers and sisters to care for. She and James M. Sparks were married in 1903, moved to Calhoun County, Alabama, and there reared seven children of their own. Her three step-sons loved Suzy as if she were their own mother. Grandma Suzy is loved and remembered to this day by all who knew her, even though she has been dead for some thirty-six years.

James Monroe Sparks was the father of 12 children. He and his first wife, LouAnn (Coley) Sparks were the parents of: Arcus Lee Valentine Sparks, born March 11, 1891, died May 23, 1970. He married Ola Arwood. His brothers say that his full name was Arcus Lee Valentine Sparks, the "Valentine" after some unidentified grandfather or uncle; he never used the name if indeed it was his. Thomas Elihugh Sparks, born October 16, 1893, died August 12, 1965. Called "Hugh", he married Ila Elaine Waters who was born November 27, 1903; they were married on December 22, 1919, in Anniston, Ala. They had six children, their second son being Gerald Hugh Sparks, born April 16, 1923, who is the author of this article. Called "Gerry", his birth record shows his name as Waters Sparks. He was married on October 1, 1949, to Kittie Ethel Hook; they have two daughters. Delilah Sparks, born January 11, 1895, died September 9, 1898. She was buried beside her mother in Stand Pipe Mountain Cemetery. Norman E. Sparks, born February 25, 1897, died October 8, 1897. He is also buried beside his mother in Stand Pipe Mountain Cemetery. Emerson Troy Sparks, born in Jefferson County, Ala., on July 28, 1898. He was married in a double marriage with his his brother, Thomas Elihugh Sparks, on December 22, 1919, in Anniston, Ala., to Gladys Glazier Chitwood who was born January 2, 1902, in Birmingham, Jefferson Co., Ala. She was a daughter of John Bradford and Brizzee Ostine (Coins) Chitwood. They live in St. Petersburg, Fla. They are the parents of one son and three daughters.

by his second wife, Susan Jane (Hulsey) Sparks, James Monroe Sparks had the following children: Shada Winn Sparks, born October 3, 1903, in Ala., and died in 1940. She is buried in Golden Springs Cemetery, Calhoun Co., Ala. She married Fred Jobson. They had five children. John William Sparks was born March 7, 1905, at Golden Springs, Ala., and died June 26, 1966. He was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery. He married (first) Ruby Rollins and (second) to Ruth MNU He had no children. Uncle Johnnie owned the "old Garrett Place" near Oxford, Ala., which was once owned by his Great Aunt Mary Sparks who married Hill Garrett. Supposedly the unmarked graves in the front yard are those of Hill and Mary (Sparks) Garrett and Mary's mother, Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, wife of Leonard Sparks (ca. 1822-1865). Horace Theodore Sparks was born February 21, 1906, at Golden Springs and presently lives in Oxford, Ala. He married Ruby Inez Robertson. They had one son, Richard Wayne Sparks. Ruby Bell Sparks was born March 7, 1907, at Golden Springs. She married Noah Earl Garrett, Sr., son of John and FNU (Jobson) Garrett. They lived in Burlington, Iowa, for many years, and now live in Leeds, Ala. They have four children. James Josiah Sparks was born at Golden Springs in 1909. He married and had several children. They now live in Orlando, Florida. Evie Lois Sparks was born in 1911 at Golden Springs and died in 1965. She was buried in Golden Springs Cemetery. She married Bernard C. Garrett, who died in 1975, son of John and FNU (Jobson) Garrett. He is a brother of Noah Earl Garrett, Sr., and nephew of Fred Jobson, each of whom married one of his wife's sisters. They lived at Golden Springs. They were the parents of three children. Harold Edward Sparks was born November 7, 1913, at Golden Springs. He married Margaret Geraldine Harmon, born January 9, 1919, They live in Oxford. Ala., and are the parents of one son, Harold Jackson Sparks. William Anderson Sparks was born April 8, 1871, in Georgia. He died on August 19, 1936, in Lincoln, Calhoun County, Alabama, and was buried in Refuge Cemetery. He married Ella Odell, daughter of William Humphries and Nancy Odell, who was born July 18, 1882, and died September 9, 1925. She is buried next to her husband. William Anderson Sparks, who was known as "Dock" all of his life, and his wife were the parents of: Judith Ila Sparks, born February 26, 1900, in Alabama, died July 15, 1968, in Odenville, Ala. She married George Washington Crowe who died in September 1972. Both are buried in the Refuge Cemetery. They were the parents of four children. Isaac A. Sparks, born August 31, 1901, died in infancy. William Fred Sparks, born December 8, 1902, in Ala., died December 25, 1961; buried in Refuge Cemetery near Lincoln, Ala. He married Amzie Thomaston who died in 1975 in Birmingham, Ala. They had a daughter, Athryne Sparks. Eddie Jackson Sparks, born April 8, 1905, in Ala. He married Lillie Parish. In 1972 they lived in Birmingham, Ala. They had three children. Katie Belle Sparks, born May 3, 1906; died in infancy. Omary Tallant Sparks, born July 17, 1908, in Ala.; died June 13, 1956, and was buried in Refuge Cemetery near Lincoln, Ala. He married Lucy Ledbetter, a sister of his brother Hoyt's wife. They had four children. Howard Thomas Sparks, born May 30, 1911, in Ala. He married Maudie Oglesby and they had four children. They lived in Oxford, Ala., in 1971. Felix Foster Sparks, born March 3,.1913, in Ala.; his middle name derived from that of a former mayor of Anniston, Ala. for whom his father worked. He married (first) Elizabeth House and (second) Frances Sims. He is retired from the Southern Pacific Railroad and lives in Birmingham. He had one son, Travis Sparks. George Alton Sparks, born August 28, 1916; he was killed in action during World War II, in 1944. Jewell Christine Sparks, born April 15, 1918; she lives in Eulaton, Ala. Hoyt A. Sparks, born July 24, 1920. He married Mary Ledbetter, sister of his brother Omary's wife. They had two children; in 1970 they lived in Odenville, Sinclair Co., Ala. Robert Arthur Sparks was born at Golden Springs, Calhoun County, Alabama, on June 14, 1873, and died in Anniston, Alabama, on October 11, 1953. He was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery. In 1899, Robert A. Sparks married Allie (Lassie) Golden, daughter of the Rev. James H. and Nancy Mariah (Harrison) Golden. She was born January 26, 1882, and died January 11, 1950. She was buried beside her husband and parents. Robert Arthur and Allie (Golden) Sparks were the parents of the following seven children: Arthur Sparks, born 1900, died ca. 1923; killed by a train in Tennessee. He was called "Hoss". Alma Sparks, born 1903, died 1964; she married Melvin F. Davis of California. Agee Sparks, died 1953 in California. He married Ann MNU. Amyel Fred Sparks, born 1906; he moved to Chicago and married Dorothy Kay in 1941. He was vice-president of Walgreen Drugs. Allee Pearl Sparks, born 1915; she married Wallace O. Griffin and lives in Anniston, Ala. Helen Ophelia Sparks, born 1919; she married Dr. William Jack Vaughn; lived in Anniston, Ala., in 1971. Ruth Sparks, born 1923; she married Henry Hughes Mason and lives in Anniston, Ala. George Thomas Sparks was born at Golden Springs, Calhoun County, Alabama, January 29, 1876. He died January 26,1953, and was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery. He married Emma Carden who was born August 15, 1880, and died March 15, 1964; she was buried beside her husband. They had three children: Shafton Sparks. He had one son, Levon S. Sparks, who lives in Anniston, Ala. Leroy Sparks. He married FNU Haynes and lived near Lincoln, Ala. Lucille Sparks. She married Macon Johnson; they both died in 1975. They lived near Lincoln, Ala., and had one daughter. Ada B. Zeriah Sparks, daughter of Thomas and Judith Winn (Brown) Sparks, was born at Golden Springs, Calhoun County, Alabama, on March 13, 1878. She died on August 8, 1915, and was buried in the Golden Springs Cemetery. She married Bill Odell, the brother of her brother William's wife. Following the death of Ada, Bill Odell married (second) Ida MNU and (third) Unkown and lived at Lincoln, Alabama; he is buried in the Refuge Cemetery. The children of Bill and Ada B. Zeriah (Sparks) Odell were: Grady Odell. She married Roxie MNU and lived in Lincoln, Ala. Oliver Odell. He lived in Prattville, Ala, owned the Odell Construction Company 10 miles NW of Montgomery. He had at least one son, Bill Odell II. Clarence Odell. Bellma Odell. She lived in Birmingham, Ala., in 1973. Bertie Lee Odell. She married Clarence Whitter and lived in Lincoln, Ala., in 1973. Winnie Odell. She married FNU Mayfield and died in Lincoln, Ala., in 1975. Royce Odell, born after 1918. Leonard Valentine Sparks, son of Thomas and Judith Winn (Brown) Sparks, was born at Golden Springs, Alabama, on March 3, 1880. He died on Cheaha Mountain while hunting in November 1947. He was buried in Golden Springs Cemetery. He was married three times. He married (first) Carrie Poland of Cherokee County, Alabama; they were divorced. He married (second) Emma Alexander; she died. He married (third) Mary Giddings, a cousin of his second wife. Mary was born in 1888 in Anniston, Alabama, and died in 1963 in Anniston. She is buried next to her husband. Leonard was the father of twelve children. by his first wife he had: Lula Ella Sparks, born 1900 in Ala. She married (first) Ray Robinson and (second) Tom Banks. by her first husband she had one child, Tommie Catherine Robertson. Tommie J. Sparks, born September 10, 1902, at Golden Spings; he died in 1973 and was buried at Golden Springs. He married (first) Ruby Woodard who died in 1932, buried at Golden Springs. He married (second) Devada Grizzard, daughter of Clifford and Bertah (Walker) Grizzard. They lived on the Thomas Sparks old home place at Golden Springs. He had eight children.

by his second wife, Emma (Alexander) Sparks, Leonard Valentine Sparks had two children: Rolf Sparks. He was killed in Girard, Ohio, at the age of 15. Dennis Eliah Sparks. He married (first) Margery Payne, (second) Unice Paris, and (third) Sue MNU. He is known to have had a son.

by his third wife, Mary (Giddings) Sparks, Leonard Valentine Sparks had the following children: John Leonard Sparks, born February 6, 1915, in Anniston, Ala. He married (first)Evelyn Siska (no children); he married (second) Marlene Bush, born October 21, 1926, in Autaugaville, Autauga Co., Ala. They live in Mobile, Ala., and are the parents of three children. Judah Ann Sparks. She married Jesse Haines; they live in Orange Park, Florida. Geraldine Sparks. She married Gene Timmer and had three daughters. She died in 1972 in Orange Park, Florida. Baby Harry Sparks, born and died in Girard, Ohio; he was buried at Eulaton, Ala. William Zacharia Sparks, born December 21, 1923, in Girard, Ohio. He married Lois Iona Dean on November 5, 1945, in Anniston, Ala. She was born April 17, 1921, in Newberry, S.C., the daughter of Reese James and Lillia Mae (Fallon) Dean. (She married (first) Ivory Lee Earnest.) "Jack" or "Zack", as he is called, lives in Houston, Texas. They have six children. Mittie Belle Sparks. She married three times, first to FNU Knight by whom she had two children; (second) Thomas Denny, by whom she had two children; and (third) Ed Jacobs. She lives in Charleston, S.C. Jimy Ralph Sparks. He married Irene Phillips and lives in Oxford, Ala. Homer Giddings Sparks. He married Jean MNU and lives in Lebanon, Tenn. Nancy Elizabeth ["Lizzy"] Sparks, daughter of Thomas and Judith Winn (Brown) Sparks, was born April 4, 1884, in Golden Springs, Calhoun County, Alabama. She died in 1960 in Anniston, Alabama, and was buried in Golden Springs Cemetery. She married W. Eugene Wade as his second wife. He was born November 17, 1874, and died on March 16, 1957. He was buried beside his wife. (by his first wife, W. Eugene Wade was the father of Joel M. Wade, Nellie Wade who married Amon Grogan, and Minnie Wade who married Clifford Heitt.) W. Eugene and Nancy Elizabeth (Sparks) Wade were the parents of the following children: Eugene T. Wade. He married Jo MNU and lives in Anniston, Ala. Augrey Wade, never married. Lived in Anniston, Ala. Leonard D. Wade. He married FNU Welch. Judah Wade; married Jacob Krieser and lived in Middletown, Pa. Gloria Wade. Married Joseph Ferrara, lives in Rochester, NY

54.6.2 George Washington Sparks, son of Leonard and Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, was born in South Carolina on March 6, 1844, and died on July 5, 1905, in Clarksville, Arkansas. He was married ca. 1868, near Atlanta, Georgia, to Sarah Jane Turner who was born July 31, 1849, in Georgia and died on December 7, 1912, at Clarksville, Arkansas. She was buried beside her husband. Sarah Jane was the daughter of Stanton and Nancy (Christy) Turner. 54.6.2 George Washington Sparks enlisted on August 24, 1861, at Lawrenceville, Georgia. He was assigned to Company F, 24th Regiment Georgia Infantry, Confederate States Army. He and his brother Thomas served in the same unit during the Civil War.

It was shortly after his return home from the Civil War that 54.6.2 George Washington Sparks married Sarah Jane Turner. When the Turners chose to move west in an attempt to re-establish themselves, George W. and Sarah J. decided to accompany them. Their itinerary is not known, but we know that the Sparks's first child was born during the journey and that he was about one year old when they reached Russellville, Arkansas. Apparently they stopped occasionally, found work, replenished their larder, then moved on westward.

There is a persistent story on this side of the family that, upon George W. Sparks's return from the Civil War; he found that his father had not returned from the war and that his mother, Zeriah Sparks, had remarried and that he decided he and his wife would accompany his in-laws westward because he could not get along with his step-father, name unknown. If this is true, then it was a short-lived second marriage, because Zeriah Sparks was listed as a widow "Sparks" with her younger children on the Gwinnett County, Georgia, census of 1870.

The name McIntire or McIntosh keeps cropping up in this family, but thus far no connection has been established. George W. and Jane (Turner) Sparks were the parents of six sons. It is interesting to compare the names of George's children with those of his elder brother, Thomas Sparks. James Matthias Sparks, born October 14, 1869, on the road from Georgia to Arkansas. He died on March 19, 1947, and was buried in the Baptist Cemetery, Center Valley, near Russellville, Arkansas. He married Elizabeth Rebecca Simpson on March 20, 1892, in Russellville, Pope County, Arkansas. She was born January 23, 1874, in Florence, Lauderdale County, Ala., the daughter of Henry and Martha (Clark) Simpson. She died February 22, 1932, and is buried next to her husband. They had thirteen children, all born in the Russellville, Ark., area: Elmer Lee Sparks, born December 24, 1892, died July 24, 1965; buried in the Oakland Cemetery in Russellville. He married Hattie Ann Gilbreath and had one son and two daughters. Laudra Mae Sparks, born September 14, 1894, died June 5, 1967; buried in the Oakland Cemetery in Russellville. She married Joseph Daniel McAnulty. No children. Mattie Beula Sparks, born June 3, 1898. She lives with her brother, Herman Argie Sparks. She never married. Roma Belle Sparks, born October 11, 1900. She married John Joseph Jackson. They had one son, James Alvde Jackson. Elbert Haney Sparks, born October 23, 1902. He was married December 29, 1940, to Hattie Samantha Boen who died March l, 1964. He married (second) Esther Karnos. He had one son, Michael Lee Sparks. Archy Ellis Sparks, born March 20, 1905. He married Cora Singleton. They have no children; live in St. Charles, Missouri. Leonard Leslie Sparks, born October 8, 1908. He married Anna Kendrick. They had one child who died at birth. Emmett Dalton Sparks, born September 18, 1910. He married Angelina Spataford in Bristol, PA, on January 6, 1946. They live in Bristol and have two sons, Anthony E. Sparks and James L. Sparks. Viola Jewel Sparks, born July 19, 1913, died June 7, 1972, in Russellville and is buried in the Center Valley Cemetery. She married Clotus W. Craig and had two daughters. Ira Oran Sparks, born February 2, 1915. He married on February 22, 1941, in Russellville, Dixie Jewel Ross, daughter of George Lee and Ellie (Dickey) Ross. They live in Russellville and have two sons, James Ira Sparks, born September 16, 1942, and Billie Earl Sparks, born September 9, 1945. Ira and his wife, Dixie, furnished the information on the George Washington Sparks branch of this family. They opened their hearts and home to this wandering distant cousin when he passed through gathering family information. Vernon Paul Sparks, born and died April 10, 1916. Herman Argie Sparks, born April 18, 1918. He married Pearl Harris. They have three children. William Columbus Sparks was born March 13, 1872. He died as an infant and was buried in the Baptist Cemetery, Center Valley near Russellville, Pope Co., Ark. John Leonard Sparks was born September 10, 1873, died April 19, 1956, in Clarksville, Ark.; he was buried in Hayes Chapel Cemetery at Clarksville, Ark. He married Eliza Granvel Hayes, born August 12, 1877, died August 15, 1930. She is buried beside her husband. They were the parents of the following children: Delbert Sparks, married Ersa MNU; they lived near Clarksville, Ark., in 1972. Dyess Sparks, lived at Clarksville, Ark. Lillie Sparks, married FNU Gray. They lived in Garden City, Kansas, in 1972. Adopted daughter, Leroy Gash Sparks, married FNUTurner and lived in Dallas, Texas, in 1972.

****************the following section has been provided by ****************
**************** Please contact him if you have any additional information. **************************** Charlie Sparks Erma Sparks Levi Carnie "Dice" Sparks - who married Elsie Ford - They had 2 children: Sherman Sparks and his half sister (though we cannot recollect her name - will have to source that through Sherman)

************************************************************************************************** Thomas Levi Sparks, son of George Washington and Sarah Jane (Turner) Sparks, was born January 14, 1877, and died after 1956 in California. He married Nannie MNU They were divorced prior to 1941 (she lived in California). They had three sons. George Turner Sparks was born January 17, 1879, and died ca. 1880 as a child. He was buried in the Baptist Cemetery at Center Valley, Ark. Benjamin Claiborne Sparks, born January 16, 1882, died October 23, 1956, in Clarksville, Ark. He was buried in the Shady Grove Cemetery, Clarksville, Ark. He married Eva McCarley, born April 4, 1878, died December 17, 1967. She is buried beside her husband. They had two children.

54.6.3 Ammanda Sparks, daughter of Leonard and Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, was born ca. 1845 in South Carolina. Little is known of her and her family. She married Brack Massey who lived until the 1920's, probably in Gwinnett County, Georgia, between 1870 and 1880. She did not move to Alabama with the rest of her family. An old man whom I met on a country road in Gwinnett County, Georgia in 1972 knew the Masseys and gave me a list of the names shown here. The first two, Bell and Sylvester, are known to be children of Amanda. The others have not been proven to be her children. Ammanda and her husband are supposedly buried in the City Cemetery at Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, Georgia. "Brack" no doubt was a nickname, it is believed that his true name was Affanacios Massey, Jr., the son of Affanacios Massey born in 1810 in North Carolina. He enlisted in Company F, Ath Georgia Infantry ("The Independent Blues") and was captured at Farmville, Va., April 6, 1865. Also in this company were Thomas Sparks and George W. Sparks, as well as his brother, Sylvester Massey, who died of wounds at Richmond, Va., on June 26, 1864. Brack and Amanda (Sparks) Massey are believed to have had the following children: Bell Nancy Massey. She married FNU Turner. They had children and lived near Lineville, Rt. 3, Heflin, Alabama. She died ca. 1970. Sylvester ["Ves"] Massey was a preacher in Gwinnett County, Georgia. His children live in the Haines City, Florida, area. Gus Massey. No information. Whit Massey. No information. Eirel Massey. No information. Ida Massey. She married FNU Haywood. Cora Massey. No information.

54.6.4 Catherine Sparks was born ca. 1847 in South Carolina. She was listed on the census of 1850 for Union County, South Carolina, with the rest of the family. This is the only mention of her in the family. In 1954, a grandchild of Leonard and Zeriah, listed all of her grandparents' children as she remembered their names, but she did not list Catherine. She may have died as a child. The family has not been located on the 1860 census so it is not known if she was still at home at that time.

54.6.5 John Sparks was born ca. 1849 or 1850 in Union County, South Carolina. He died in Anniston, Alabama, and was buried in the New Bethel Cemetery. He married Mary Canada ca. 1872 in Calhoun County, Alabama, ca. 1872. She was born ca. 1850. John Sparks was a farmer and he and his wife were the parents of six children: Irene Sparks, born 1873 in Ala. She married FNU Bice and they lived near bynam, Ala., and had at least three children. It has been said that Irene and her husband died between 1913 and 1917. Their known children were: Marvin, or Marrin, Bice. John Bice. Grover Bice, born ca. 1900, died in 1919 in Oklahoma during World War II. Oscar Rolin Sparks, born in 1877 in Ala.; he married Cora Huston who died in 1958 and was buried in Edgemont Cemetery at Anniston, Ala. Their children were: John Hosey Sparks. He died March 7, 1972, and was buried at Eulaton, Ala. Edgar Sparks. No information. Garssee Sparks. No information. Willie R. Sparks. No information. Lilly Sparks. She married Tommy Dunaway. Dessie Sparks. She married Shalt McCurry. Edward Sparks born 1879 in Alabama. No information. Coley Sparks, believed to have been born in the 1880's; he married Emma MNU and died ca. 1952 in Rome, Georgia. No further information. Alice Sparks, believed to have been born in the 1880s; she married FNU Doss, and lived in Anniston, Ala., in 1970. No further information. John Sparks. No positive proof regarding him.

54.6.6 James Josiah ["Burk"] Sparks, son of Leonard and Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, was born July 26, 1855, in Georgia, probably in Gwinnett County, and died at Golden Springs, Calhoun County, Alabama, on March 11, 1907. He married Mary T. Garrett, "Aunt T" as she was called, who was born April 16, 1860, and died October 28, 1910. She and her husband were buried in Union Grove Cemetery at Bunkum, Calhoun County, Alabama. Apparently Uncle Burk had a premonition of approaching death. The story is told that he got up one morning, put on his best clothes, saddled his best horse, and spent the day visiting all of his kin in the Bunkum, Golden Springs, Oxford area, went home that afternoon, put up the horse, walked around the house, sat down on the front porch, and died.

James Josiah Sparks ["Burk"] was a farmer and rural mail carrier. He and his wife had no living children. Mary T. Garrett, his wife, was a sister of Hill Garrett and Robert Garrett, who married sisters of her husband. It is thought that they adopted Martha (Mattie) Thomas Garrett, who married Lee Helton and lived in Anniston, Alabama.

54.6.7 Mary Sparks, daughter of Leonard and Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, was born ca. 1856 in Georgia, probably in Gwinnett County. She was married after 1880 to Hill Garrett. She and her husband lived between Oxford and Golden Springs on the "Old Garrett Place." It is thought that Mary (Sparks) Garrett and her husband, Hill Garrett, as well as her mother, Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, are buried in the front yard cemetery of the old home place. Nothing is known of the children of Hill and Mary (Sparks) Garrett.

 54.6.8 Hester Sparks, daughter of Leonard and Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks, was born ca. 1858 or 1860. Little has been learned about her and her family, but she married Robert Garrett, brother of Hill and Mary T. Garrett, sometime after 1880 in Calhoun County, Alabama. It is known that they had at least two boys, but their names and families have not been established.

54.6.9 Florence Sparks, shown as "Hannah" on the 1870 census of Gwinnett County, Georgia. She was the youngest child of Leonard and Zeriah (Sparks) Sparks and was born ca. 1863 in Georgia, probably Gwinnett County. After 1888 she married James A. Dutton, Sr., in Alabama. They moved to Lehigh, Coal County, Oklahoma. It is known that they lived there until at least 1920. It is thought that they moved then to Oklahoma City. It is known that they were the parents of at least two girls and one son. Only the names of the oldest children have been discovered thus far. They were: Ellie Dutton. She married Noah Jordan. James A. Dutton, Jr., born 1890, married Myrtle Yeats on December 24, 1912, in Lehigh, Coal County, Oklahoma. Daughter--name not known.