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James Devere Morris
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Birth: Mar. 25, 1813
Kent, England
Death: Sep. 30, 1873
Jefferson County
Florida, USA

James Devere Morris was born on Mar 25, 1813 in County Kent, England. He was the son of Jacques Michel Morris (de Devθre) and Elizabeth Godsmark Morris.

He emigrated at the age of 17 in 1831 with his parents and siblings from Le Havre, France to New York, and subsequently to Tallahassee, Leon County, Florida (via Savannah).

According to the memoirs of James' sister, Marie Louise Devere Morris (DeMilly), their father had received a title deed to land from Major General the Marquis de Lafayette on Lake Lafayette in northwestern Florida.

When the family reached Lake Lafayette in June 1831, his father learned that the deed had been destroyed, and his portion of the land sold. Almost immediately after their arrival, one of their children, ten-year-old Benjamin Franklin Morris, became ill and died. Jacques Michel's wife, Elizabeth, already weak because of the hardships that the family had endured, grieved over the death of her young son. She succumbed to a virulent fever; and died on October 13, 1831. Jacques Michel only lived three weeks after the death of Elizabeth. He died on November 5, 1831 in Tallahassee, Florida, less than a year after his arrival in America.

The seven children - the oldest of whom, James Devere Morris, was only 18 years old - were orphaned in a new land. They were left to the mercy of strangers, who were able to locate homes for the children, some of which were not happy homes. Over time six of the seven children became adults, acquired property, married, and eventually had homes and families of their own.

James moved to Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida about 1836, where he subsequently had a large farm and was a successful businessman. According to the History of Jefferson County by Jerold Shofner, an 1835 Tallahassee newspaper account indicated that he had planting interests in the northeast section of this county, and also that he and Samuel R. Sessions owned a country store in Asheville, about 13 miles from Monticello, later known as Rhodes Store.

Reverend Adam Wirick officiated at the wedding of James Devere Morris and Catherine Ann Mathers on October 02, 1838 at the First Methodist Church in Monticello. She was born on Sep 22, 1819 in St. Marys, Camden County, Georgia, the daughter of William Henry Mathers and Elizabeth Clark Mathers.

In 1861, after the Civil War started, James continued as tax collector. In 1867, he was one of three men who served as election officials at the Waukeenah polling place. By 1839, James was the collector of revenue for Jefferson County. By November 1839, James became the Collector of Revenue for Jefferson County.

The children of Catherine Mathers and James Devere Morris were:

• Rosa Elizabeth Morris, b. Dec 21, 1840, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Sep 12, 1905, Jefferson County.
• James Alfred Morris, b. Jul 20, 1843, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Apr 18, 1930, Jefferson County; m. (1) Georgia Ann Ritter, ca. 1866, Florida; b. Mar 24, 1847, Leon or Jefferson County; d. Jul 26, 1872, Jefferson County; m. (2) Mary Sue Martin, Jun 08, 1873, Jefferson County; b. Jul 25, 1842, Abbeville, South Carolina; d. Apr 25, 1929, Monticello, Jefferson County.
• Benjamin Augustus Morris, b. Dec 09, 1845, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Mar 18, 1934, Jefferson County; m. Mary "Mollie" Margaret Roach, Oct 06, 1876, Jefferson County; b. Aug 31, 1858, Jefferson County; d. Sep 16, 1939, Jefferson County.
• Walter Taylor Morris, b. circa 1847, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Jan 30, 1849, Jefferson County.
• Mary Louise Morris, b. Mar 10, 1851, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Dec 22, 1938, Jefferson County; m. Charles Sloan, Jefferson County; b. ca. 1851; d. Jefferson County.
• Catherine Ann Morris, b. Jan 15, 1854, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Sep 13, 1934, Lloyd, Jefferson County; m. James W. Edwards, ca. 1875, Jefferson County; b. Aug 23, 1844, Lloyd, Jefferson County; d. Aug 03, 1923, Lloyd, Jefferson County.
• William Michael Morris, b. Jul 16, 1856, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Apr 24, 1933, Jefferson County; m. Pearl Graham, 1896, Florida; b. Mar 05, 1877, Alabama; d. Dec 31, 1964, Tallahassee, Leon County, Florida.
• Louis Napoleon Morris, b. Apr 16, 1859, Jefferson County, Florida; d. Aug 28, 1911, Jefferson County; m. Josephine Eloise Gramling, Bef. 1889, Leon County, Florida; b. May 20, 1866, Leon County, Florida; d. Mar 13, 1945, Jefferson County.

James died on Sep 30, 1873 in Jefferson County, Florida. Catherine died Mar 17, 1893 in Jefferson County.

Submitted on March 13, 2013 by Sandra Johnson Witt, the wife of his second great grandson

Family links: 
  Catherine Ann Mathers Morris (1819 - 1893)*
  Benjamin Augustus Morris (1845 - 1934)*
  William Michael Morris (1856 - 1933)*
  Louis Napoleon Morris (1859 - 1911)*
*Calculated relationship
Roseland Cemetery
Jefferson County
Florida, USA
Created by: Sandra Johnson Witt
Record added: Mar 13, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 106628063
James Devere Morris
Added by: Sandra Johnson Witt
James Devere Morris
Added by: Sandra Johnson Witt
James Devere Morris
Added by: Sandra Johnson Witt
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