dee_burris: (cat with lime)
2011-07-17 01:21 pm

Now I know where I get it...

I've been married and divorced five times.

Twice to the same guy, but hey, I did the time, so it counts.

Today, I may have found the origin of that trait...

Meet Tolbert G Balding, my third cousin, twice removed...
Tolbert moved faster than I did, collecting his four wives in nine years.

It took me 23 years to marry five times.

I wondered if he had just applied for that many licenses and then got cold feet on some of them, but nope...all were returned and filed.

Wife #1 was Evelyn Parks. She was 8 years younger than he. This seems to be the only marriage performed by a minister of the gospel. They were married on 8 Oct 1934.

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Number 2 was Zorene Plummer, nine years his junior. They were married on 21 Sep 1936 in Lonoke County.

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Third up was Pauline Cochran, 14 years younger than Tolbert. They were married on 16 Feb 1942.

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Tolbert's last wife was Miss Elvie Lea Sowell, whom he wed on 29 Jan 1943.

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She was three years younger than he. Maybe that's why they lived long enough together to share a gravestone at Apple Hill Cemetery, in Ward, Lonoke Co., AR.

They were married for 42 years before Elvie's death on 9 May 1985.

Tolbert died on 24 Apr 2005.
Don't know yet whether there were any children of any of these marriages, or if any of the first three ended in death rather than divorce.

Just one more reason I'm waiting so impatiently for the release of the 1940 census next year...
dee_burris: (Default)
2010-12-21 06:10 pm

Wedding Wednesday: Marriage Bonds

It was a friend of my son's, looking over my shoulder one afternoon, who asked the questions.

Why were there so many sections to the old marriage licenses? And what was a marriage bond? Did people really have to post a cash bond to get married back then?

I used my 2X great grandmother's second as an example.


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There were four parts to a marriage record in 1878 in Arkansas - the bond, the license, the certificate of marriage, and the certificate of record.

The bond required a principal and his security - the principal's back-up if he had to pay the $100 and couldn't. ($100 in 1878 had the same buying power as $2190.75 does today.)

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The bond was required in the event it was later found that one or both parties could not legally contract for marriage. It was a penal bond, essentially a punishment for lying.

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If, for example, one or the other parties was underage, was married to someone else, or had been coerced, the marriage could be set aside.

And someone had to pay the piper, as it were...