Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Fate Becham and his Sons

The men of the Fate Becham family got together for this photo about 1918.  The photo was taken as part of a Baptist Men's association, so Fate's wife Delia (Sarah Lodelia Mathews Becham) and his daughter Lucile were not included.

Franklin Lafayette "Fate" Becham, 1871-1958, is in the center.  Fate was a potter and farmer in Crawford County, GA.  One of his pots is in the Smithsonian American Art Museum as part of the folk art collection.  None of his sons followed him into the pottery business, but several of them were involved in construction.

On the far left is Edgar, 1908-1936, who died young of cancer.  In 1930, he is listed as a house painter, but not working.    Edgar married Verlin Hutto in April 1936, just prior to his death in September of the same year.  He had no children.

In the middle of the front row is Walker Becham, 1910-1987.  Walker served in the army from 1943-1945.  Prior to that he had been working as an "attendant" in Montgomery, Alabama, where he met and married Gladys Johnson.  Shortly after the war, they returned to Macon, GA where they remained and where he worked as a carpenter.  They had no children.

The man in the sailor uniform is Frank Jones Becham, 1897-1985.  The fact that he is in uniform dates the picture to 1918-1920.  He enlisted at the very tail end of WWI, serving out of Charleston.  After getting out, he married Ola Pauline Bryant, mother of his 5 oldest children.  They lived briefly in Charleston before settling back into Crawford County.  Ola died with the birth of the youngest child in 1929 and in 1932 he married Viola Elizabeth "Vicky" Wade, by whom he had three more children. He worked in construction his entire life.

Back row left:  Washington Perry Becham (1899-1974) never married and lived in the family home his entire life.  When I asked his niece, my mother, once what he did, her response was "as little as possible."   He was named after his two grandfathers, Washington Becham and John Perry.  On his father's death, he inherited all the property with the request (not stipulation) that he look after his mother.  He did in fact do that, living together with her until her death in 1965.   He never married and never had children.

Back Center is Henry Lafayette Becham (1901-1989)  twin brother to the missing Lucile.   He married Edith Williamson and they lived their entire life in Crawford County, raising two children there.  Henry started out as a house painter, but by 1930 and into 1940 was a truck driver for a gasoline company. 

Back row right is James Alfred Becham (1904-1971).  Jim joined the Navy and was sent out to California, where he married Cecelia Laing.  They had one son.   After probably divorcing, Jim returned briefly to Crawford county, but was then called back into the service in WWII.  Afterwards he again came back to Crawford County.

It's interesting that Fate had all these boys, but only had 4 Becham grandsons (Frank's two sons, Jim's son and Henry's son), two great grandsons and so far only has one known great great grandson with the name.

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