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Francis Marion

BIRTH 17 DEC 1844 • Copiah County, Mississippi

DEATH 23 SEP 1878 • Santa Bárbara d'Oeste,

Sao Paulo, Brazil

Married 8 Nov 1866 • Copiah Co., Mississippi

Sarah Rebecca Ellis

BIRTH 1849 • Copiah County, Mississippi

DEATH 1905 • Santa Barbara, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Both buried at Campo, Santa Bárbara d'Oeste,

Sao Paulo, Brazil

CSA Recod:

Name         Francis Marion Bankston

Side            Confederate

Regiment State/Origin     Mississippi

Regiment     Roberts' Company, Mississippi


(Seven Stars Artillery)

Rank In        Private

Rank Out     Private


An excerpt from

SOUTHERN IMMIGRANTS TO BRAZIL by Maria E. B. Byington letter about some love letters found in a little straw suitcase from B. T. (Tom) ATKINS, a Confederate soldier, to MissSally STRONG, who immigrated to Brazil with her father after the Civil War appeared in MISSING LINKS 4:41 on 6 October 1999. Sally sent her photo, taken in New Orleans just before she sailed to Brazil, to her sister, Mrs. ELLIS, and to dear friends in Brookhaven (Lincoln County created in 1870, from parts of Franklin, Lawrence, Copiah, Pike, and Amite counties), Mississippi. Her sister gave the photo to Tom, who placed it in Amy HOOKER's album, for if it had been sent directly to him "no one's album could have presented an array of pictures brilliant enough to have ever held it." All this Tom describes in one of the letters to Sally in Brazil. I needed a photo of Sally to place in the book I was preparing with Tom's letters, so I wrote to MISSING LINKS to inquire if by any chance some of these photos sent to her friends in Brookhaven might have turned up in some family's album or some old photographs exhibit [SOMEBODY'S LINKS 2:1, 7 January 2000]. I received several letters from people giving me suggestions about where I should look, such as universities, collections of old photographs, private collections, etc. I had almost given up having a photo of young "Aunt Sally," who inspired such strong feelings in at least three gentlemen, but who would not think of marrying for "her heart was buried in a battlefield," (so goes the story collected by Judith Mac KnightJones, historian of the descendants of Southern immigrants to Brazil). Then one day I found the photo right under my nose.


Judith had published in her book about the descendants a picture of a young girl immigrant with the following caption: "member of Dunn's group," but unidentified. However, as I turned the pages I had gone over more than 100 times, I saw a picture of the same girl with the same dress between a young couple, and this time with the following caption: "The BANKSTONs and Sally STRONG."The BANKSTONs were relatives of Sally who had gone to Brazil together with Sally and her father. The story of how the house in which the STRONGs formerly lived in Brookhaven was found captured the interest of Megan Smolenyak, who published it in her book IN SEARCH OF OUR ANCESTORS: 101 Inspiring Stories of Serendipity and Connection in Rediscovering Our Family History (Holbrook, Massachusetts: Adams Media Corporation, 2000), companion to the PBS series (see my letter in MISSING LINKS 5:46, 15 November 2000). The story also aroused the interest of Martha Strong, who published it on her Web site "Welcome to my World" at So, now the book is finally ready and in April 2001 I will be visiting New Orleans, Louisiana for the first time. Then I will take the train to Brookhaven, Mississippi, making the trip back to the place my family left more than 130 years ago. My book will be presented at the local library, and on 21 April 2001.  I will take part in the Tour of Homes in Brookhaven and visit the Old Strong House, which belongs to Dr. Natalie Herndon.


It is located at the intersection of Interstate 55 and Exit 42. The many success stories published in MISSING LINKS and ROOTSWEBREVIEW inspired me to continue with my searches. I am most thankful to librarians Mary Sanders and Rebecca Nations of the Lincoln County(Mississippi) Regional Library, who helped me with this project, and to all who have written sending me suggestions on where to search for Sally's photo. * * *

Editors' Notes: Cynthia Forde in a 27 February 2001 message to quotes the work of Anne Martin Haigler, of St. Louis, Missouri, on the BANKSTON line that went to Brazil. On page 404 of BANKSTON COUSINS, Anne Haigler stated that Francis Marion Bankston, son of Jacob Marberry Bankston and Nancy Tuombs, was born circa 1845 in Copiah County, Mississippi, and on 9 October 1872 gave power of attorney to his mother, at which time he was living in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Forde continues: "Campo: A North American Cemetery in Brazil," by Cyrus B. Dawsey and Betty de Oliveira, printed in TAPROOTS, Vol. 36, #3, Jan. 1999, by the Genealogical Society of East Alabama, gives further information regarding the American settlement in this area. A list of burials in the Campo Cemetery includes ANDERSON; AYERS; BAIRD; BANKSTON, Francis Marion -- 17-12-1844 to 23-09-1878, spouse Sarah ELLIS died Sao Paulo City; Henry M. BANKSTON, 28-09-1867 to 07-09-1869, son of Francis M.; Nancy S. BANKSTON, 25-08-1872 to 08-08-1875, daughter of Francis Marion; BARNSLEY; BOOKWALTER; . . .]

Frances Bankston.jpg

Francis M. and Sarah R. Ellis with Sally Strong

1.  Henry M Bankston
2.  Nancy S. Bankston
3.  Mary Lucille Bankston
4.  Mollie Nellie Bankston
5.  Lillian Elizabeth Bankston



Henry M Bankston


BIRTH 28 SEP 1867 • Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, San Paulo, Brazil

DEATH 07 SEP 1869 • Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, San Paulo, Brazil

Died young, Buried: Cemitério dos Americanos, • Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, San Paulo, Brazil


Nancy S Bankston


BIRTH 25 AUG 1869 • sao paulo, brazil

DEATH 03 DEC 1875 • Cemiterio do Campo, Santa Barbara, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Died young, Buried: Cemitério dos Americanos, • Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, San Paulo, Brazil


Mary Lucille Bankston


BIRTH 11-15-1871 • Brazil

DEATH JAN. 19, 1940 • Newark, New Castle County, Delaware, USA

Married:   Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, San Paulo, Brazil

Rev. Dr. Reynold Price Baird
BIRTH 1857 • Yorkville, York County, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 10 MAR 1909 • Jesup, Wayne, Georgia, USA (On a train between Atlanta and Jesup, Georgia, USA - Cerebral Hemorrhage)

Buried in  Fredricksburg, Spotsylvania County, Virginia, USA



Middle of 3 sons (John C., Ezekiel) of Eliza C. & James Robinson Baird, who were 2 of the 13 founders of the Presbyterian Church in Santa Bárbara, CA.  His parents were missionaries to Brazil, arriving there with the boys in 1868.  Reynauld returned to the States to study medicine and theology, later returning to Brazil to help his parents.

He accompanied them upon their transfer to Santa Barbara, where he met his future wife, Mary Lucille Bankston (b. 1872). They were married on Sept. 29, 1887. They later went to work in the Presbyterian mission in Ceará, Brazil from 1896-1900, then returning to the States.

They had 1 daughter, Geraldine, who married James Barnes.

When younger brother Ezekiel died before 1897, his widow and daughter, Lilie, moved to Fredericksburg, VA., joining Reynauld's family there.

Dr. R.P. Baird Passes Away In Jessups, Ga.
A telegram received here Wednesday brought Intelligence of the sudden death of Rev. Dr. R.P. Baird at Jessups, Ga.  Dr. Baird was a prominent missionary of the Southern Presbyterian church to Brazil.

He was 55 years old and with his wife and daughter was spending his furlough in Fredericksburg, and representing mission work wherever called In the South.

He left here In seemingly excellent health on Friday last and had made several addresses in the mission cause. The announcement of his death was a shock not only to his family but to the many friends he has made while residing here.

Dr. Baird was a Mason and the telegram sent came from the Master of the Lodge in Jessups, Ga.

It is thought his body will be brought here. The Daily Star - March 10, 1909.
The funeral of Rev. Dr. R.P. Baird will take place at the Presbyterian Church Saturday at 2:30 p.m., conducted by Rev. J.H. Henderlite. The interment will be in City Cemetery.
The pallbearers - Messrs. J.W. Adams, J.E. Timberlake, M.L. Latbram, Dr. J.N. Barney, Paul Karsten, Jr., Mayo Smith, P.V. Daniel, Dr. J.P. Stiff. Pallbearers are requested to meet at Scotia Saturday afternoon at 2 o'clock. The Daily Star - March 12, 1909.

(The following is loosely translated from Portuguese)

Rev. Dr. Reynold Price Baird

Pastor in Fortaleza and in the interior of Ceará

Reynold Baird was born on February 2, 1857, near Yorkville (now York), in the state of South Carolina. He was the third child of Rev. James Robinson Baird and Eliza Price Baird, of the same state. He was baptized by the well-known theologian and professor of Columbia Rev. James Henley Thornwell (1812-1862), who was a friend of his father's. 

Rev. James Baird resided in Santa Barbara, Province of São Paulo, from 1868 to 1878, working with the Rev. William C. Emerson among the emigrant American settlers of the War of the Secession. Reginald studied at the International College of Campinas and São Paulo and professed the faith in the  Presby-terian Church of St. Paul on April 4, 1886.

He married on September 30, 1887, with Mary Lucille Bankston, born in 1872 and in the Church of St. Paul on January 13, 1884. The marriage was officiated by the Rev. Edward Lane. Lucille was the daughter of Frank M. and Sarah Ellis Bankston of Brookhaven, Mississippi, who emigrated to Brazil in 1867. Lucille had two sisters, Mallie and Lilian.

Reynold went to the United States, where he studied theology, graduating from the Seminary Columbia Theological Society, in South Carolina, in 1892. In the same year, he was ordered on September 30 by the Cherokee Presbytery. For four years, shepherded the Churches of Acworth, Mars Hill, and Smyrna, Georgia (1892-1896). He and his wife were appointed missionaries by the Foreign Missions Committee on 10 December of 1894. They went as missionaries to Ceará in July 1896, in order to assist the Rev. De-Lacey Wardlaw and his wife, who were not in good health. Before permanently to the Northeast, it seems that they were in Santa Bárbara, State of São Paulo, and took Lucille's sister, Lilian Bankston, who was also a teacher, and Charles, a nephew of Reynold. When they arrived in Recife, Charles died of yellow fever, and Lilian died of the same disease in Ceará. Just after of his arrival in Fortaleza, the missionary was affected by smallpox, reestablishing then.

Rev. Baird preached in many places in the interior of the state, including Quixadá, where, despite threats, received a whole family by profession of faith. It was also in Senator Pompeu, where he organized a con-gregation with about 40 members most of them from the Varela and Cortez families, who had been evangelized in Mossoró by Rev. Wardlaw. Baird left the congregation in the care of the worker Raimundo Ferreira da Silva, a young man from the Fortaleza Church who had taken a class in Bible and had already served in the Congregation of Baturité. In 1897, the Wardlaw couple  left the mission after eighteen years of fruitful work and the entire responsibility of the field fell on the Rev. Baird. In his pastorate was inaugurated the temple of Fortaleza, which was built by the efforts of the presbyter Dr. Albino de Faria. The cornerstone was launched on October 12, 1898. At that time, Baird received by profession of faith and baptism Mr. Joaquim Cândido de Sena, the paternal grandfather of the future Rev. Alcides Nogueira. Sena resided on the "Winner" farm, in the municipality of Cachoeira, in central Ceará, and was converted by reading the Bible and visiting a distant relative, a member of the Church of Fortaleza.

After four years of intense work, the missionary's health was shaken, and in September of 1900, he had to return to the United States. After a brief rest, he attended the College of Medicine and Surgery, in Atlanta, graduating in 1902. Having declined several attractive invitations in his country, wanted to continue his work in Brazil, returning to Ceará in June of that year. Although you have never qualified formally to practice medicine in Brazil, the new profession was very useful for its missionary activities. The work was growing rapidly and new fields were being opened. Baird was untiring as a preacher and physician and obtained many fruits in his despite the opposition. Around 1906, Baird wanted to pay a visit to Humaita, where there was a small group of believers. He was stopped by friends who feared for his life. Events have

the wisdom of this attitude, for on the day it was expected there an armed mob awaited the arrival of the train. The evangelist Raimundo Ferreira da Silva had moved to Humaitá and there had done good evangelistic work, despite tenacious opposition. This evangelist was of Dr. Baird's influence on the small-town he had needed the missionary's medical services. Baird always supported Raymond, encouraging him and instructing him through letters, and giving him some financial assistance. After all, Baird went to Humaitá in December 1906, accompanied by two believers from Fortaleza and one from Baturité. It was welcomed by believers and visited by local authorities. Like this, even the opponents threw some stones. Seventeen people professed the faith and there was a collection in favor of the national missions.

Rev. Baird attended the Synod meeting in 1903, in which he declared many years, having always preached in the shops, without challenge, the mediation of Christ. Said that every good man is a Mason because the institution is the essence of the basic principles of love, charity, and fraternity. According to him, the apostles and Jesus Christ themselves had principles. Freemasonry was widespread among the American Southerners - in the Campo Cemetery, in Santa Bárbara, there are many tombs with Masonic symbols.

Baird was a good speaker, endowed with a strong voice that dominated and pleased the audience.


His friends described him as an efficient, godly, and cultivated pastor, gifted with a kind and hospitable character, and a dedicated father and husband. It enjoyed a very good concept in the society of Ceará. In March 1907, the active missionary was suffering from a serious illness and, with great difficulty, arrived in the United States in September. His sheep in Brazil greatly felt their departure and prayed greatly for their recovery. The family set residence in Fredericksburg, Va., and Baird improved enough to several trips by the south divulging the cause of the foreign missions. On the evening of 9 March 1909, when he was traveling to make some lectures at the invitation of the Executive Director of the Florida Synod, died suddenly on the train in the town of Jesup, Georgia, at 52 years of age. He was buried in Fredericksburg on the 13th. The Baird couple had only one daughter, Geraldine P. Barnes.


• Lessa, Annaes , 172, 257s, 509s, 669.

• Ferreira, History of IPB , I: 453, 577; II: 103.

• The Missionary (April 1907), Calvin Porter Collection.

• Ministerial Directory, PCUS / PCUSA (1898).

• Christian Observer , Louisville, Kentucky (17-03-1909), 1.

• "Rev. Reginald Price Baird, MD, " Christian Observer (06-30-1909), 15.

• Bear, Mission to Brazil , 47s, 224.

• Jones, Rest Soldiers , 183, 235, 242, 328.

• Ribeiro, Evangelical Church and Brazilian Republic , 155-159.


Mollie Nellie Bankston


BIRTH 11 JUN 1874 • , , Sao Paulo, Brazil

DEATH 13 APR 1924 • , , Sao Paulo, Brazil

Buried: Cemiterio do Campo, Santa Barbara, Sao Paulo, Brazil


Arthur Frederico Hawthorne


BIRTH 7-25-1872 • Santa Barbara d'Oeste, Sao Paulo, Brazil

DEATH 9-12-1964 • Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Son of Michael Charles Hawthorne and Frances Miriam Alston 




Francis B. Hawthorne


BIRTH 9 APR 1908 • Sao Paulo, Brazil

DEATH 27 FEB 1916 • São Paulo, Brazil

Died young, Buried: Cemitério dos Americanos, • Santa Bárbara d'Oeste, San Paulo, Brazil


Alston Ellis Hawthorne


BIRTH 18 JUN 1909 • Americana, São Paulo, Brasil

DEATH 6 NOV 1994 • Americana, São Paulo, Brasil


Lillian Elizabeth Bankston


BIRTH 1876 • Botucatu, Sao Paulo, Brazil

DEATH Botucatu, Sao Paulo, Brazil

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