Looking into the backgrounds of Dewey's parents has been no easier. I have made some progress. But these are the sorts of ancestors whose supporting records only lead to more questions than answers. Their names are John A. Dunaway and Mary Savilla Rayburn (sometimes spelled Rayborn, Raiborn or Raborn). Dewey's death certificate seems to confirm their names as well as their home state of Mississippi (See my first post on Dewey.)
The 1910 census record places them in Pike County, Mississippi with one of their sons Sidney.
John and Mary had a daughter named Dolly (1886-1963). According to the 1910 census, Dolly was married to James Clifton Owens. The very next year they are listed in a town directory for Palestine, Texas.
Both Sidney and Dewey were clearly in Palestine by 1917/1918 based on their World War I registration cards. They were also both married.
Also, I have had no success in locating their names in the 1900 census records. The truth is, that whole part of Pike County, Mississippi was (still is) flooded with Dunaways and Rayburns (as well as another relevant surname, Boyd). There are instances of members of one nuclear family being adopted into other nuclear families, and they all seem to have been neighbors of sorts. Then, there is the issue of my grandmother's line migrating to Texas. It will be a major undertaking to sift through and piece together accurate relationships under these circumstances. Not impossible, though. Dear reader, perhaps you could offer some insight?
Lastly, I'll close today's post by sharing the obituaries for both John and Mary. They are supposed to be interred in the New Addition section of the Palestine City Cemetery, but I have yet to locate their plots.
John passed away on November 11, 1921 in Palestine. The Palestine Daily Herald says he was 56. Depending on the accuracy of that number, that would suggest his birth year to be about 1865. Even with this helpful source, we are left with more questions. As you can see, John left behind three children. Sidney and Mrs. J. C. Owens we recognize. But who is this "Julian"? Is this an error pertaining to Dewey? Other records suggest there was a son named Hardy, born in 1888. And where is his wife Mary, who outlived John by 30 years?
As for Mary's obituary printed in the Palestine Herald Press (February 1953), the details make a bit more sense, though I'm not entirely convinced on the accuracy of certain points. It states that her birth year is 1868, but her death certificate says she was born in 1866. You'll also notice the name C. O. White being one of the pallbearers. This was my grandfather Clarence Otho White. The article lists him as one of her grandsons. In reality, he was the husband of Mary's granddaughter Margaret Virginia (Dunaway) White.
**John A. Dunaway and Mary Savilla Rayburn were my 2nd great grandparents on the Dunaway branch.
More information on Mary's parents (Isaac Rayburn and Susan Moore) to come in a future post.