Reading for the Dedication of the Caudle Cemetery
Erath County, TX

October 20, 2001
Bill Caudle

My great great grandmother, Rebecca, my great grandmother Celia Jane, my grand aunt Fannie, and my grand uncle Edward are all buried here. The wife of James Hatley Caudle and a granddaughter are buried here. I'm honored to provide this brief history of the Caudle Cemetery, the James Caudle family, and how his descendants came to live here.

James is the patriarch of our Caudle family. He was born by 1775 in North Carolina or Virginia. He is my great great great grandfather and was great grandfather of James Robert who owned the farm where we are standing.

In 1800 Chatham County, North Carolina there was a James Caudle under the age of 26 having a wife under 26, but no children. At that age James probably would have lived close to family. Living near James was a Jesse Caudle, several Poe families and several Hatley families. The Clayton family name first appeared in the Chatham County census in 1810.

In 1817, James Caudle bought 100 acres in Robertson County, Tennessee. It was there that four of his sons were married. John married Lydia Poe, James Green married Mary Poe, Bennett married Cynthia Clayton, and Mark married Rebecca Clayton. John and James Green and families later moved to Arkansas settling in Pope County.

Robertson County is next to Logan County, Kentucky where the Daniel Clayton Will naming Cynthia and Rebecca as daughters was probated in August 1841.

Moving with some of his family, James next bought land 60 to 80 miles west of Robertson County in Henry County in 1828 and again in 1831. Records from Henry County also show that a James Caudle married a Mary Pertis in September of 1840.

By November 1841, the James Caudle family with sons William, Mark, and Bennett and their families moved to the Red River District of the Republic of Texas. By March of 1842, these Caudle families all had filed for 4th class land grants.

The next great event in our Caudle family history was surely the Civil War. Several of Mark's kin served with him for the Confederacy during the Civil War. These include sons John Wesley, James Daniel, Joseph Harrison, Marcus Newton, William James and nephew James Hatley Caudle, son of Mark's brother Bennett. Mark was really too old for the war and was returned home ill less than a year after signing up.

After skirmishes with local Comanche Indian bands ended in Erath County, some of James' descendants from the Red River District and some from Arkansas migrated to Erath county, neighboring Bosque county, and other counties in Texas.

James Robert Caudle came to Erath County from Hopkins County with his wife Tennessee Petty Caudle. They purchased land here in 1877 and again in 1883 including land enclosing this cemetery. The family lived in a farmhouse just to the south of the cemetery. At that time the cemetery was known as South Bolton. The Hancock Cemetery just to the north of here near the dam on Little Green's Creek was called North Bolton.

Other families, including my great grandfather Joseph Harrison and his brother Marcus Newton, came to Erath County with their families about the same time as their nephew James Robert. Marcus Newton sold his farm to my great grandfather in 1883. Not long after moving to that farm, my great grandmother Celia Jane died and was buried here in the Caudle Cemetery. Some time after Marcus Newton sold his farm to my great grandfather, he moved to Oklahoma.

The South Bolton cemetery became known as the Caudle Cemetery when John Robert and Tennessee's young child J. T. was buried in it. My great grandmother Celia Jane had been buried there a year earlier.

James Robert and Tennessee lived at this farm until James Robert died in 1915. Tennessee continued living here until the early 1920s. She died in 1927 and is buried alongside James Robert at the Alexander Cemetery.

Descendants of James Caudle located the Caudle Cemetery on Memorial Day of 1997. At a reunion in Dublin that October, a plan began which is completing today.

[Return to Caudle Cemetery Home]