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Children’s Cemetery at Lakeport Plantation

Just behind the Lakeport house is a small children’s cemetery with post-Civil War burials of Lycurgus and Lydia Johnson’s children and grandchildren. Unprotected for many years, markers had been lost–some apparently drug into the field by tractors.  Before restoration, the small crypt was the only for sure burial. Parts of four small markers were eventually discovered  and ground penetrating radar revealed that there are at least two other burials and likely a third.  

Of the four markers, only two have initials: “C.J.” for Cable Johnson (b. March 15, 1865; d. August 5, 1867) and “L.J.S.” for Lydia J. Starling (b. October 19, 1879; d. 1882). The third and fourth markers do not have any visible initials. Those markers are likely for Julia J. Johnson (b. July 12, 1860; d. November 1, 1869) and Lucie C. Worthington (b. January 8, 1880; d. June 5, 1881).

Parts of four markers were found around the children’s cemetery. Only two had any identifiable marks.

However, a recently discovered record suggests there is a fifth child buried in the cemetery.

Emma Peak and Walter Johnson married at Grand Lake, Chicot County on January 7, 1886. Emma, writing in 1937 in an unpublished memoir, stated, “Shortly afterwards we moved north to Wilton [Iowa] to be near Mr. Johnson’s business.”  In a chapter titled, “Baby John,” she writes about the loss of her first child:  “My first baby was a plump little boy with lovely large light blue eyes and red curls. A baby with lovely disposition. He loved people and would go to everybody who held out their arms to him….Little John stayed with us for fourteen months a baby loved by everyone.”

Wedding of Walter Johnson and Miss Emma Peak, Greenville Times, January 16, 1886

This ca. 1890 photograph of Emma Peak Johnson, taken in Wilton, Iowa, was found behind the drawing room mantel during restoration.

According to Iowa, County death records, 1880-1992, John P. Johnson, 13 months old, died on July 25, 1888 in Wilton Junction, Iowa. The record shows he was buried at Lakeport, Arkansas, very likely with his cousins behind the Lakeport family home.

Lycurgus and Lydia chose to bury their children who died before the Civil War in Frankfort, Kentucky and would eventually join them in 1876 and 1898.  Unlike their parents, the Johnson daughters, Annie Starling and May Worthington, as well as Emma and Walter Johnson and chose their childhood home, Lakeport, as the place to bury their children–even sending little John Peak Johnson all the way from Iowa.

Notes:

The cast iron fence was added around the cemetery was added in 2008. A gift of Annie Paden, a descendant of Mary (May) Johnson Worthington, it came from one of the family’s Glen Allen, Mississippi plantations.

Lydia Starling (1879-1882) was the daughter of Annie Johnson Starling (daughter of Lycurgus and Lydia Johnson) and Charles Hensley Starling. Nine-year-old Julia J. Johnson died in November 1869 about eight months after her brother, Cable.  Lucie Worthington (1880-1881) was the daughter of Mary (May) Johnson and Isaac M. Worthington, Jr.

A copy of Emma Peak Johnson’s unpublished 1937 memoir, Growing Pains are Heaven, is on file at the Lakeport Plantation.

John P. Johnson’s death is indexed as “John P. Jackson,”https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XVQR-BM4 but it is clear in the original that it is “Johnson.”

Also see this post from 2012 —

Courthouse Records: Lycurgus Johnson to Lydia Taylor



Home for the Holidays – Lakeport Plantation Open House

Visit Lakeport Plantation for free during the Thanksgiving Holiday. The house will be open to explore with toys and games, Christmas tree decorating, and gift shop sale!
Bring your family for a visit!

November 23-25

Gift Shop Discounts and Explore the History at Lakeport

  • Thanksgiving, November 22– Closed
  • Friday & Saturday — Open House — 10 am – 3 pm
  • Sunday — Open House — 12 pm – 4 pm

See updates on Facebook event page

 



Lakeport Legacies · September 27 · Casqui and Hernando de Soto’s Cross: Is Parkin the Place? · Dr. Jeffrey Mitchem (Arkansas Archeological Survey)

Casqui and Hernando de Soto’s Cross: Is Parkin the Place?

Dr. Jeffrey Mitchem

(Arkansas Archeological Survey-Parkin Research Station)

Thursday, September 27

Refreshments & Conversation @ 5:30 pm
Program @ 6:00 pm

All four de Soto narratives describe the erection of a cross on the main ceremonial mound at Casqui. The site has been a National Historic Landmark since 1964 and an Arkansas State Park since 1994. Photo courtesy The Archaeological Conservancy.

 

On July 5, 1541, the Hernando de Soto expedition erected a large wooden cross atop the main ceremonial mound at Casqui. That site is believed by archeologists to be the Parkin Site in Cross County, Arkansas.

In 1966, archeologists discovered the remains wooden post atop in the main ceremonial mound. While samples taken in 1966 dated to the post to between (1515-1663). A new excavation of the post in 2016 holds the promise of precision and a date closer to de Soto’s arrival in what is now eastern Arkansas.

 

Please Register for this FREE event.

(by phone, email or online)
870.265.6031 · lakeport.ar@gmail.com

601 Hwy 142 · Lake Village, AR 71653

 



Lakeport Legacies · August 23 · Fixed and Fleeting: Some Arkansas State Symbols and Why they Matter · Dr. David Ware (Capitol Historian at Arkansas Secretary of State)

Fixed and Fleeting: Some Arkansas State Symbols and Why they Matter

Dr. David Ware (Capitol Historian at Arkansas Secretary of State)

Thursday, August 23

Refreshments & Conversation @ 5:30 pm
Program @ 6:00 pm

 

Dr. David War, Arkansas Capitol Historian, is the author of It’s Official!: The Real Stories behind Arkansas’s State Symbols, now in its 2nd edition.

Arkansas’s Capitol Historian, Dr. David Ware, will discuss the utility of symbols, the significance of Arkansas’s earliest adopted symbols and will conclude with some observations on the potential for using the state symbols in interpreting the state’s history, geography and even its economic profile.  And tell a couple of sea stories along the way.

 

Copies of It’s Official!: The Real Stories behind Arkansas’s State Symbols will be available for purchase for $24 each.

Please Register for this FREE event.

(by phone, email or online)
870.265.6031 · lakeport.ar@gmail.com

601 Hwy 142 · Lake Village, AR 71653

 



Lakeport Legacies · July 19 [Encore July 26] · Old Houses of Blanton Park: Greenville’s Lost Downtown Neighborhood

Old Houses of Blanton Park: Greenville’s Lost Downtown Neighborhood

Princella Nowell (Washington County, MS)

Thursday, July 19 — Encore Presentation on Thursday, July 26

Refreshments & Conversation @ 5:30 pm
Program @ 6:00 pm

Blanton Park, Greenville, Miss. looking North, ca 1911. Image courtesy of Ann Rayburn Paper Americana Collection, Special Collections, University of Mississippi Libraries

Blanton Park emerged as a downtown neighborhood in 1886 from Harriet (Blanton) Theobald’s old homeplace. In 1865, Theobald donated part of her plantation for the town of “New Greenville” just behind Island No. 83 on the Mississippi River. After her death, her surviving son, Orville M. Blanton, subdivided her personal property into Blanton Park. Blanton Park became a residential subdivision with homes of family members, professionals, and politicians. On its corners and edges were churches, businesses, clubs, and the Greenville Sanitarium. Washington County Historian Princella Nowell will explain how the “Park” was subdivided, who lived there, and what eventually happened to the homes and churches as they were abandoned to fire, flood, and neglect.

Register for this FREE Event (Registration is closed for July 19)  Register for July 26
(by phone, email or online)
870.265.6031 · lakeport.ar@gmail.com

601 Hwy 142 · Lake Village, AR 71653



Lakeport Legacies · June 21 · Yankee Mistress of the Old South: Plantation Life in the Arkansas Delta, 1847-1866

Yankee Mistress of the Old South: Plantation Life in the Arkansas Delta, 1847-1866

 Dr. Gary Edwards (Arkansas State University-Jonesboro)

Thursday, June 21

Refreshments & Conversation @ 5:30 pm
Program @ 6:00 pm

http://www.civilwar.si.edu/slavery_visit.html

Winslow Homer’s A Visit from Mistress (1876) exemplifies the tensions between former slaveholders and their former slaves in the years after the Civil War. Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of William T. Evans, 1909.7.28

Lakeport Legacies for June 21 will feature Dr. Gary T. Edwards. Edwards, associate professor of history at Arkansas State University, will examine the life of Amanda Trulock (1811-1891). Born and raised in Connecticut, Trulock was widowed in 1849 and found herself the mistress to 62 enslaved laborers on a plantation in Jefferson County. Letters and plantation records reveal a complicated relationship with slaves as she managed her plantation near Pine Bluff.  Edwards’ chapter on Trulock was recently published in Arkansas Women: Their Lives and Times (University of Georgia Press, 2018). A limited number of copies will be available for purchase.

Arkansas Women: Their Lives and Times — $35

Register for this FREE Event
(by phone, email or online)
870.265.6031 · lakeport.ar@gmail.com

601 Hwy 142 · Lake Village, AR 71653



African American Fraternal Headstone Symbols in Arkansas: A Guide

 

[spiderpowa-pdf src=”http://lakeport.astate.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Arkansas-Fraternal-Headstone-handout-June-2018.pdf”]Arkansas Fraternal Headstone handout June 2018

pdf link



Lakeport Legacies · Growing Up on Yellow Bayou Plantation: A Conversation with Mr. Robert Fulford

Growing Up on Yellow Bayou Plantation: A Conversation with Mr. Robert Fulford

Mr. Robert Fulford (Dermott, AR)

Thursday, May 24

Refreshments & Conversation @ 5:30 pm
Program @ 6:00 pm

Robert Fulford, in addition to writing, photographs places and things that remind him of his childhood on Yellow Bayou in the 1950s and 1960s

Lakeport Legacies for May 24 features Mr. Robert Fulford of Dermott with “Growing Up on Yellow Bayou Plantation: A Conversation with Mr. Robert Fulford.” Fulford grew up on Yellow Bayou Plantation, just north of Lake Village, in the 1950s and 1960s. He has written three self-published books about his childhood and experiences on the plantation

Both of Mr. Fulford’s books will be available for purchase (cash or check only):

A Collection of Anecdotes During my Childhood While Living on Yellow Bayou Plantation: Book 1 — $12

A Collection of Anecdotes During my Childhood While Living on Yellow Bayou Plantation: Book 2 — $12

Dark Days of the South: Before & After Segregation — $12

 

Register for this FREE Event
(by phone, email or online)
870.265.6031 · lakeport.ar@gmail.com

601 Hwy 142 · Lake Village, AR 71653



Lakeport Legacies · Rev. Green Hill Jones: From Slavery to the State House · Blake Wintory (Lakeport Plantation)

Rev. Green Hill Jones: From Slavery to the State House

presented by

Blake Wintory (Lakeport Plantation)

Thursday, April 26

Refreshments & Conversation @ 5:30 pm
Program @ 6:00 pm

 

Rev. G. H. Jones served in the Arkansas General Assembly in 1885 and 1889. Courtesy of the Old State House Museum.

Rev. Green Hill Jones was one of over a dozen African-American men from southeast Arkansas who served in the Arkansas General Assembly between 1868 and 1893. Born a slave in Maury County, Tennessee in 1842, Jones was brought four years later to Kenneth Rayner’s Grand Lake cotton plantation in Chicot County, Arkansas. A young man when the Civil War began, Jones joined the Union Army at Memphis in 1863. After the Civil War, he became an ordained minister and received an education in the North. He returned to Chicot County in 1873 and was soon elected county treasurer (1874-1876), county assessor (1876-1878), and to two terms in the Arkansas House (1885, 1889).

Wintory will tell his story from church and school records, and interviews with Jones and others contained in his Civil War-era pension file.

Wintory’s talk is based on his research on Jones and Arkansas’s eighty-six other 19th century African-American legislators. His essay on the subject will be published in May 2018 in A Confused and Confusing Affair: Arkansas and Reconstruction. Edited by Mark Christ, the book will be published by Butler Center Books, a project of the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies at the Central Arkansas Library System.

Read more on Green Hill Jones: here and here

 

Register for this FREE Event
(by phone, email or online)
870.265.6031 · lakeport.ar@gmail.com

601 Hwy 142 · Lake Village, AR 71653



Lakeport Legacies Schedule for 2018

April 26 · Rev. Green Hill Jones: From Slavery to the State House  · Dr. Blake Wintory (Lakeport Plantation, Arkansas State University Heritage Sites)

May 24 ·  Growing Up on Yellow Bayou Plantation: A Conversation with Mr. Robert Fulford · Robert Fulford (Dermott, AR)

June 21 · Yankee Mistress of the Old South:  Plantation Life in the Arkansas Delta, 1847-1866 · Dr. Gary Edwards (Arkansas State University-Jonesboro)

July 26 19 · Old Houses of Blanton Park: Greenville’s Lost Downtown Neighborhood · Princella Nowell (Washington County, MS)

August 23 · Fixed and Fleeting: Some Arkansas State Symbols and Why they Matter · Dr. David Ware (Capitol Historian at Arkansas Secretary of State)

September 27 · Casqui and Hernando de Soto’s Cross: Is Parkin the Place? · Dr. Jeffrey Mitchem (Parkin Archeological State Park/Arkansas Archeological Survey)

Lakeport Legacies is a monthly history talk held at the Lakeport Plantation focusing on history in the Delta. Lakeport Legacies meets on the last Thursday from March through October at 5:30 p.m. Note exceptions in the schedule. All events are free and open to the public. Guests are asked to RSVP. The Lakeport Plantation is located at 601 Hwy 142, Lake Village, Arkansas. For more information call 870.265.6031 or visit http://lakeport.astate.edu.


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