A year or so ago I got in contact with a "new" cousin, Johnny. He had a lot of information on his grandmother, Amanda Barfield, who was my 3x Great-Aunt. His family knew that her maiden name was Barfield, her mother was Sarah, she had a sister, Emma S, and a brother, William L (my Great-Great Grandfather). He was able to provide information on Amanda that I didn't know, but he also had holes in his knowledge.
The confusion with Amanda is that when she married David Lee Rich in 1911, her surname was Benton. I was able to find a 1910 census record for Mandy Benton who worked as a servant for the Coleman family. By this time she was already a widow, so we still didn't know who Mr Benton was and I could not find their marriage record.
When we met for the first time at the Barfield Family Reunion this past Saturday, Johnny was able to tell me that the Rich family was connected to the Coleman family, which is probably how Amanda and David met. As he said, "David just brought Amanda home" after the death of his first wife, and no one really knew where she came from.
After the reunion, I started doing some more research. I don't know if it was luck or new records being online, but I've finally got Amanda figured out. Turns out, I couldn't find a marriage record between a Mr Benton and an Amanda Barfield because Benton was Amanda's second marriage! She had been married three times in quick succession.
I had seen a marriage between a JW Benton and a Mandy Wells in 1905, but I was looking for Barfield, so I moved on. But then I saw a record for Maud Barfield and a William Wells in 1904. Maud...? But the names Benton, Wells, and Barfield all together? And Amanda's sister had married a Wells.... It made me wonder. I clicked on the link for Maud Barfield and sure enough, someone had mis-transcribed Mandy to Maud (I don't know how, it was pretty clear)!
So here's Amanda's timeline:
• 1900 - living with mother, Sarah, in sister Emma Barfield Well's home in Glascock County, GA
• 1904 - marriage of Miss Mandy Barfield and William Wells in Glascock County, GA
• 1905 - marriage of Mrs Mandy Wells and J W Benton in Glascock County, GA
• 1910 - living with Coleman family as a widowed servant in Glascock County, GA
• 1911 - marriage of Amanda Benton to D L Rich
I still don't know who William Wells or J W Benton really were, but at least I have their names. There are no death records in Georgia for this time, so it might be difficult to learn more about them. I think it very likely that William Wells was related to Amanda's brother-in-law, John Wells, so that's a place to start. Yay!