Lola V Harris

The Death of her Grave

Lola V Harris grave marker before the arival of developers.

Grave was registered in 2004 with the State of Texas as a cemetary  including GPS coordinates.

The Lola V Harris grave marker in 2004

The stone reads; LOLA V HARRIS, DIED JAN 15, 1838, AGE 63 YEARS.

                      WHO IS SHE?

The tombstone is of soapstone and not of this area so it was expensive. Dilue Rose Harris wrote a ‘reminiscences’ of the location and time of the area. She married Ira Harris in 1839 one year after Lola died. Ira came to Texas in 1836 at age 20, two years before Lola died. Lola is buried on the Moses Shipman survey, as best I can tell. Moses Shipman is a native of North Carolina, received land in 1824 and died about 1838. Moses son Daniel was born in 1801 ‘after making crops in North Carolina and Tennessee the family left South CarolinaFrontier Life:58 Years in Texas Daniel says Gowen Harris was born in 1770 and came to Texas on 1821 from South Carolina. Gowen Harris is the Grandfather in law of Dilue Harris or Ira Harris Grandfather. Gowen Harris wife was _____________    Son was __________    Wife was __________________         Grandson was Ira  and wife was Dilue.Moses Shipman had ties with South Carolina. Gowen Harris had ties with South Carolina. Gowen was born in 1770,  Lola was born in 1775. Lola is buried on Moses Shipman’s land, and is about the same age as Gowen Harris and also from South Carolina. The match in time would be for Lola V Harris to be the wife of Gowen

An email reply from Daughters of the Republic of Texas

From: "Warren Stricker" <wstricker@drtl.org>   To: "JOHN WALKER" <jwwalker@wt.net>

Subject: Re: LOLA V HARRIS

Date: Friday, January 02, 2004 6:32 AM 

Mr. Walker:

I am afraid that no immediate sources provide information on Lola V. Harris.  If there is a connection with Dilue Rose Harris, it would be through her husband, Ira Harris, who she married in 1839.  I have not located a source with family information on Harris, who came to Texas in 1836 at age 20.   Perhaps the best avenue for research will be through local history sources in Fort Bend County. Local historical or genealogical groups have often conducted surveys of cemeteries and may have documented this site. Research in county land records might also provide some clue.  I'm sorry not to offer more, but if you have other questions, please let us know.

Warren Stricker

Hello drtl, 

The attatchment is a photo of a soapstone tomestone I found on the banks of  Long Point Creek, on the Moses Shipman survey [Original 300 of the Austin colony] in Fort Bend county, Texas. The closest town is Arcola, about 16mi south of Houston. The closest possible relation  is Mrs. DELUE ROSE HARRIS who gave a description of her part in the runaway scrape including the return to her home in this area. The closest to an address she gave was a description of the water level of the Brazos river and that she lived 15mi from Sims Bayou. DELUE was about 13 at the time of the runaway scrape. If she is related at all, LOLA V HARRIS would probably be her grandmother on her fathers side. Can you give me any solid evidence as to who LOLA V HARRIS is? The article can be found at http://www.tamu.edu/ccbn/dewitt/roseharris.htm

Warm regards

John Walker

    =========================================

Warren Stricker, Archivist                  

Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library          

P.O. Box 1401             

San Antonio, TX 78295-1401  

(210) 225-1071          Email: WStricker@drtl.org

Fax: (210) 212-8514     

    =========================================

OUR NEWS ran a series of articles on the tombstone with several local residence responding. None of the information provided by the residents or by records of Fort Bend County support the date 1838 carved on the tombstone. Instead all records indicate it should read 1938.

The Divoky family indicated the Harris family was one of the first Black familys to own land in the area and that there are 2 graves with the marker to the second being lost.

The trees are gone and Perry Homes shows no respect for the grave marker.

This photo indicates a lack of respect for the dead and prompted an investigation by the State of Texas via Fort Bend Co Sherrif Dept. The following is a string of conversations regarding the investigation.

From Perry Homes developer to Bob Crosser, head of the Historical commision's cemetery committee.

Email from Perry Homes claiming 'Lola V Harris' was a boat anchor.

Charter Title Co. reasons why this is not a grave marker.

Bob Crosser claims the evidence is inconclussive.

Perry Homes claims Lola V Harris is buried elsewhere.

A rush to prove the grave is elswhere.

Still no proof Lola V Harris is buried elsewhere.

International Archaeology intends to use a metal detector to find non-metalic bones.

No bones were found using this metal detecting method.

The dug only 3 feet, in the wrong location, and took photos with 'no anomaly'.

We appreciate the opportunity to be of service to Perry Homes.

Evans Library at Texas A&M offers assistance via Bill Page.

Bill Page on Freedmans Cemeteries.

Maybe the research is flawed and innacurate.

The report may me shoddy.

Mr. Jimmy Harris operated a dozier for Bill Wootton in the 60's and cleared the banks of Long Point Creek. He discovered the Lola V Harris grave by scrapping a layer of oyster shell. Oyster shell would discourage animals from digging.

James H Stokes was a friend of Albert [Scrap] Harris who was a brother to Lola Harris. The other grave with a lost marker was Lola Harris's mother, Margret Harris, who died in 1897.

The sheriff investigation caused an excavation [which used inacurate GPS coordinates]. Investigator Louis Hearn stopped the excavation at 3 feet because 'They didn't bury them any deeper back then'.

Edward Divoky took the following photos of the excavation 5/19/2006. Can you see anything that may indicate the ground has been disturbed buy digging a grave. Because the coordinates were wrong I believe they accidentally dug the Margret Harris or her son, Albert [Scrap] Harris grave.

A photo of the area with no anomalities.

 

A close shot of an area with no anomality.

This is Albert's [Scrap's] Death Certificate

A death certificate of the grave uncovered by digging at the wrong location.

The following is information from county records.

 

Wellington Harris      in 1887 wed       Margaret Harris

    Died 1902                                           Died 1897

There were 6 children; 

1. Tom Harris  Died in 1923  & was married to Julia Harris There were 3 children

         Albert L Harris

        George B. Harris Died 1942 was married to Beatrice Died 1950

                                                 No Children

        Girl, Unnamed died at childbirth

2. Shephard Harris died 1957 Married Leona  no children

3. Albert [Scrap] L Harris died May 31, 1958 wed Fannis died 1947 no children. His death certificate states he is buried at Arcola (rural) Texas in the Harris Family Cemetery.

4. Neddie Harris Died 1925 no children  never married           

5. Lola V. Harris wed Steps and divorced after 1 year Died Jan 15, 1938  Age 63   Born 1875    Raised Author Stacy

6. Bosia Harris died in 1957 wed Lucinda no children

Wellington Harris purchased 15 acres of land from D. O. Mason on October 18, 1881. The deed was registered with Fort Bend County.

The property the tombstone is located on was in the Wellington Harris family during a time that his wife Margret and daughter, Lola V Harris lived and died.

 F. W. Neuhaus  purchased land from the Albert L. Harris estate Februrary 13, 1957. The deed was registered with Fort Bend County.


Lola v Harris Death certificate

Lola V Harris lived in English and held gambling games at her brick house before she moved to Arcola. She was a 'large woman' probably over 300 lbs. This is in line with the cause of death of 'Congestive heart failure, acute.'


 I have found several people who knew Scrap {Albert} Harris. The are all in their eightys or older. They all say they remember him when they were children.

Joe Fenn [White man of the Fitzgerald Fenn family] says Scrap didn't associate too much with other Blacks. He came to town {Arcola} on Saturday's driving his buckboard.

O. G. Cooper is the Elder Deacon of the black- New St Phillips Baptist church in Arcola. He remembers Scrap had no teeth. One day Scrap was in town and was offered some peanut brittle candy. At first he turned it down, but a while later everybody heard this loud crunch as Scrap 'gummed' the candy.

Rosie Jones was a black lady that died in 2009. She never learned to read or write. She told me the location of the Mulberry Cemetery. She said Scrap was mean to the young [black] girls and liked to scare them. He called Rosie to his buckboard and surprised her with a Rattle Snake. It was a long time before he told her it was dead.



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