The Sun News, Myrtle Beach, SC
Thursday, April 3, 2003
"Unmarked grave at MB's Galleria Center"
By C.B. Berry
Located in front of Garcia's Mexican Restaurant at the northeast corner of the Galleria Shopping Center, in the Restaurant Row section of Myrtle Beach, is a magnificent old oak more then 300 years old with a trunk 5 feet in diameter. The Huge limbs give a beauty reminiscent of Joyce Kilmer's poem, "I think that I shall never see, a poem lovely as a tree…"
It was here that William Boyd (Oct. 7, 1814-1880) brought the second of his four wives to live from across the Waccamaw River in Simpson Creek Township after their marriage Feb. 23, 1853. This wife was Eliza Lonzia Smith (Feb. 9, 1830-Jan. 28, 1867), a daughter of Richard D. Smith and his wife, Martha Gerrald. Their home was near the oak. They engaged in the evaporation of sea water from Singleton Swash to make salt.
Eliza admired this tree, a fine specimen a century and a half ago, and stated she wished to be buried there. Her wish was carried out and her bones repose in an unmarked grave in shadows of the tree.
The Chestnut family owned the property where the Galleria Shopping Center is located, and when the lease was negotiated May 9, 1983, an amendment was added to the specified the area, a 150 feet squire, would be used for the preservation of the tree. This stipulation was signed by Lloyd N. Chestnut.
A search for information about William and Eliza Boyd revealed that a grandson, Havy Boyd (Sept. 17, 1901-May 23, 1998) and his wife, Leath Cox (Oct.6, 1903-Nov. 27, 1993), were living near Beaulah Church on Highway 66 and were interviewed there Sept. 19, 1993. They were parents of two sons and a daughter – Paul Boyd, Whose wife Esther Bell, a daughter of the late Horry Bell of Wampee and who now resides in Plano, Texas; Henry W. Boyd of Loris; and Jamie B. Ward of Shallotte, N.C.
Havy recalled that his grandparents made salt near Singleton's Swash and that his grandmother, Eliza, was buried beneath the large oak.
William Boyd had nine children born to his first wife, Mary Ann Dorman. These included Delila Caroline (born Feb. 8, 1839, whose great-granddaughter, Patsy Simpson, resides in Livingston, Texas. William Boyd was a literate man, and three of his letters have been preserved by Patsy. One of these, dated Aug. 3, 1967, describes his life superintending a saltworks on the seashore and the death of his wife, Eliza, earlier that year. Some others with Boyd information include Tom Boyd, professor emeritus of psychology at Coastal Carolina University; Lois Boyd Jones, wife of George Jones of Loris; and Janet H. Woodward of Charleston.
Eliza Lonzia Boyd's grave is unmarked. It is hoped her descendents will start a movement to have a plaque mounted at the great oak to identify her resting place.
GPS Coordinates: 33.77623, -78.79139
- Added: 27 May 2009
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #2307294
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