Eliza P. Cockrell - James' Second Wife
James C. Reagan, my great-great-grandfather, when he was 40, married
Eliza P. Cockrell, age 25, on May 30, 1860, in Navarro County, Texas.
Even though I am not descended through Eliza, James' second wife, I
actually know quite a bit about her, thanks to some web research and a
document I received from the Texas State Archives.
Eliza P. (probably Pridgen after her grandmother) Cockrell was born in
1834 in Tennessee to Archibald "Arch" Cockrell and Mary Minerva Hittson.
"Arch" and Mary had a few kids, but when she died, he moved the family
to Texas and married Van (Vannie) Burena Rush. According to one
researcher, "Arch" and "Vannie" had 17 children.
I'm not sure of dates, but supposedly the parents of "Arch" were Archibald "Baldy" Cockrell and Selah Pridgen, and "Baldy's" parents were John Cockrell (b. 1756) and Nancy Anne Winstead.
Thomas Bruce Green, III (TBGreen@aol.com) is the leading authority on this Cockrell branch. Also, there is a listserv: Cockrell-L@rootsweb.com.
My great-great-grandfather and Eliza had 5 children in their almost 10 years of marriage before he died in 1870.
On Aug. 8, 1899, Eliza filed an "APPLICATION of Indigent widow of Soldier or Sailor of the late Confederacy for pension under the Act of May 12, 1899." I have copies of the original documents. At age 65, her recollections are fuzzy, however.
She put down June 1, 1860, as her marriage date to James. It was two days before that. Also, she has him dying on June 3, 1871. It was actually in 1870, because he's not in the census taken in August of that year, and his mortality statement shows 1870.
She was approved for the pension in January 1900, and obviously lived on it until her death of "senility" on Dec. 23, 1925, in Navarro County. Her daughter, Laura Patterson, one of the twins, made the application for the mortuary warrant.
Eliza was only 36 when James died, but she never remarried, and lived to the ripe old age of 91.