Stephen Fowler (b.1799/1800; d. 1866)

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On April 12, 1861, the first shot of the American Civil War was fired just before sunrise at Fort Sumter, South Carolina.  Eight days later, Professor Thaddeus Lowe left Cincinnati Ohio in his hot air balloon, the Enterprise, bound for Washington, DC.  After traveling nine hours and eight hundred miles, he landed “slightly” off course in the Kelton farmlands of Union County, South Carolina.

There is much written about Professor Lowe’s balloon landing on April 20, 1861.  The locals erected a historical marker and there is still an occasional newspaper article printed more than one hundred and fifty years after the event.

One thing most interesting to me from that day so long ago is the “snapshot” of Professor Lowe’s observation that the gun toting men who met him in the field had long hair and beards, mostly of a reddish color, and rotund stomachs, and wore mostly blue jean clothing and slouch hats.

Even more interesting to me is the help Professor Lowe received during his brief stay among the Union County  locals.  Two women, Teresa Hames and Susie Palmer, helped pull him out of the sky once he dropped his rope to the earth.  Professor Lowe and his balloon were taken to Unionville in a wagon drawn by six mules and owned by Stephen Fowler.

Stephen Fowler was the son of Ephraim and Nancy Moseley Fowler.  Susie Palmer was their daughter who had married Jackson Palmer, and Teresa Hames may have been the daughter of Stephen’s sister Lydia Fowler Hames.  In the midst of the frightened spectators who witnessed the balloon’s descendent to the earth, half of whom hid, and half who wanted to shoot Professor Lowe, it is nice to know that our Fowler ancestors went to his rescue.

Stephen Fowler was born circa 1798/1800 and died without a will on June 13, 1866 in Union County, South Carolina.  Fortunately, we are able to learn the names of his two wives and children from the estate petition made by his second wife Letticia.

Stephen Fowler petition

From the above document, we see that Stephen’s first wife was named Sarah, and they had sons Moorman, Henry, Shelton and Bryant; daughters Cansady (married to Henry Wright) and Susan (married to Jackson Palmer).  Wife Sarah was deceased at the time of this petition.

Stephen’s second wife was Letticia, and they had daughter Louisa and son Marion.

Stephen Fowler died June 13, 1833, and his modest possessions had been appraised in September, and put up for auction on November 30, 1866.  His wife Letticia purchased most of the estate, buying 30 pounds of cotton, 12 bushels of corn, 1 bed and furniture, 1 cupboard, a spinning wheel, a slab and a box, a table and 3 chairs, 2 jars and some nails, a lot of irons and a plow, a vase, 3 earthen plates, 3 hogs, and a mule.

Son Morman Fowler purchased 2 iron wedges, fodder, and a mule.  Son Marion Fowler purchased a lot of irons, some hoops, farming tools, and “truck” wheels.

Dr. Robert Little walked away with some old irons, 3 hogs, and a wagon that sold for $30.25……perhaps the very wagon that Stephen Fowler used to transport Professor Lowe’s hot air balloon to Union in 1961!

The land that Stephen Fowler owned was 85 acres, more or less, bounded by land owned by David Gallman, the estate of A.F. Haney, and Thomas Whitesides.  Widow Letticia Fowler purchased the land at auction on November 4, 1867 for $110.

William Bevis was the executor of the estate.  I do not know how he was connected to Stephen Fowler, but his daughter Selina Bevis was married to William G. Fowler.  I have not confidently placed William G. Fowler into his proper family as of this writing.

Descendants of Stephen Fowler and Sarah

1) Henry Fowler: born circa 1816, and died after 1880; married Lucinda Wright (1821-after 1880).     

  • Sarah Ann Fowler 1840–1919 m. George Alexander Goforth 1832–1876
    • Sarah Jane Goforth 1859–1864 m. Johnson Foster 1865–
      • Sallie Ann Foster 1884–
      • Lily E Foster 1885–
      • George Washington Foster 1888– m. Hettie Belle Garner 1891–1961
      • Margaret Foster 1890–
      • Mildred Foster 1892–
      • Eva Foster 1895–
      • Mamie Foster 1895–
      • Willie Blanch Foster 1898–
      • Mary Foster 1899–
    • Nancy Georgianna “Nannie” Goforth 1861–1938
    • J. Wesley Goforth 1862–1864
    • Alexander Goforth 1865–1865
    • Susan Edwina Mills Goforth 1866–1947
    • Elizabeth Malicy “Lizzie” Goforth 1869–1962
    • Angeline Goforth 1875–1907
    • Mary Helen Goforth                                                                                               
  • John Fowler 1843-
  • Newton Fowler 1846–                                                                                                            
  • Wesley Fowler 1859–                                                                                                          
  • Mary J. Fowler 1864–                                                                                                              
  • James Edward Fowler 1866–1950 m. Sallie Owensby 1875–1958
    • Charles Henry Fowler 1898–1966
    • Lula Fowler 1900–1995
    • Joel Glenn Fowler 1902–1918
    • Mary Lee Fowler 1910–1994
    • Gladys Fowler 1916–

2) Shelton Fowler 1818–1880

3) Bryant Fowler 1824–1906 m. Elizabeth Wright 1824–1914
     

  • Gillman Fowler 1852–1924 m. Julia Wood 1864–/ m. Carrie Guyon 1877-1968
    • Mary E. Fowler 1876–
    • John W. Fowler 1878–
    • Nancy A. Fowler 1880–
    • Katie Fowler 1884–
    • Thompson Fowler 1886–
    • Athaelee Fowler 1888–
    • Lara Fowler 1895–
    • Benjamin Fowler 1897–
    • Sallie Fowler 1909–
    • Samual Fowler 1910–
    • Noah Fowler 1912–
    • Estell Fowler 1914–
    • Cole L Fowler 1917–
  • Isaac Fowler 1859–1924 m. Mary Emaline “Molly” Fowler 1863–1932
    • Hettie Rodoxxa Fowler 1877–
      • Stewart Isaac Fowler 1887–1968
        • Lillie Fowler 1888–1960
        • Maggie Fowler 1891–
        • Mamie Fowler 1894–
        • Nannie Rogenia Fowler 1894–1976
        • Willie Fowler 1897–
        • Carrie Fowler 1900–
        • Edward Fowler 1904–
  • Emma Fowler 1860–1927 m. H Clem Mabry 1859–1921/ Goodman Wilkins 1859-1916
    • John Bryant Mabry 1881–1947
    • Steadman Lee “Steady” Fowler 1884–1971
    • Eva A Wilkins 1888–1970 m. William Edward Osteen 1878–1943
      • Grady Lee Osteen 1909–
      • Roy / Ray Ostern 1912–
      • Sina E Ostern 1915–
      • Marion Ostern 1918–
      • Pierce Osteen 1918–
      • Virginia Osteen 1922–
      • Solomon Osteen 1928–
      • Herman/Harold Osteen 1930–
    • Bessie G Wilkins 1890–
    • Albert Horace Wilkins 1896–1947
  •  Harriet Fowler 1861– m. James Monroe Mize 1859–1926
    • Logan Mize 1881–1921
    • Ola Mize 1884–

     Joseph Fowler 1865–1930

4) Morman Fowler 1829-after 1870

  • Thomas Fowler 1854–1937 m. Sarah Sallie Moore 1869–1960
    • Infant Fowler 1889–1900
    • Clyde Thomas Fowler 1896–1989 m. Clara Austin 1902–1985
      • Curtis Ross Fowler 1921–2004 m. Dorothy Marie Vaughan 1928–2015
      • Marie Fowler 1925–1994
    • Jessie M Fowler 1897–1986 m. Wallace Thomas Alexander 1897–1958
      • Albert Alexander 1919–
      • Melvin Alexander 1919–1981
      • Francis Alexander 1922–2007 m. Ernest C. Lane 1920–1981
        • Larry A. Lane
        • Diane Lane
        • Ernestine Lane
      • Madeline Alexander 1925–1991
      • Thomas Alexander 1931–
      • Rosanse Alexander 1936–
      • Carrol Alexander 1940–
      • Rose Mae Fowler 1908–

5) Cansady Fowler 1830–1870 m. Henry Wright 1820–

  • Amanda Jane Wright 1846–
  • Augusta Wright 1848–
  • Gadbery (G.B.) Wright 1850–1918 m. Mary “Polly” Sanders 1854–1937
    • Jessie Gadberry Wright 1876–1935 m.Ila Talulah Stroup 1887–1958
      • James Lloyd Wright 1904–
      • Lula May Wright 1905–1992
      • William Frank Wright 1907–1937
      • Myrtle Louise Wright 1909–1985
      • Marie Wright 1911–
      • Otis P Wright 1913–
      • Mary Elizabeth Wright 1922–2010
    • Thomas Edward Wright 1878–1957
    • H Frank Wright 1884–1906
    • Carla Campbell Wright 1886–1983
    • Effie Wright 1892–1940
  • Joseph Wright 1852–
  • Gassaway Wright 1855–
  • Wade Wright 1859–

6) Mary Susan Fowler 1836–1918 m. Jackson P Palmer 1836–1907

  • Edward Palmer 1856–
  • Elizabeth “Lizzie” Palmer 1857–1931
  • Isaac P Palmer 1859–1933
  • Robert Palmer 1863– m. Ann Inman 1859–1920
    • Clough Palmer 1884–
    • Charles “Charlie” Palmer 1886–
    • Josey Palmer 1889–1978 m. Bentley
    • Julia Palmer 1890–
    • Nettie Palmer 1891–1979
    • Stella Belle Palmer 1896–1977
    • William Palmer 1899–
    • Joseph Palmer 1867–
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