Note: It is a mystery as to why John C. Towles is buried here. His first wife and several children are buried in the LaFayette Cemetery. Also he had no affiliation with the LaFayette Baptist Church.
John C. Towles was an early settler of Chambers County. Here he established a successful plantation about two miles west of LaFayette. His first marriage was to Louisa Ann Darden, and after her death married Catharine W. Barber.
On June 27, 1835, he became a member and was appointed clerk of the newly formed Antioch Baptist Church. Two years later he was dismissed by letter and became a member of Enon Primitive Baptist Church. Enon Church dissolved in 1867, and on April 20 of that year he became a member of Macedonia Primitive Baptist Church, located seven miles NW of LaFayette on County Road 62 at Marcoot.
The following memorial to John C. Towles is found in the Minutes of Macedonia Church (Chambers County, AL), September 7, 1878:
"John C. Towles was born June 20th, 1813 in Edgefield District, South Carolina and died at his residence near LaFayette, Chambers Co., Ala, Feb. 11th, 1877. He joined the Baptist Church of Christ when he was nineteen years old and was baptized by Elder Jonathan Nichols in Meriwether County, GA. After his removal to this state, he united with the church at Enon, Chambers County, where he remained till that Church was dissolved. He then joined the church at Macedonia, Chambers Co., Ala., where he remained till his death. He was devotedly attached to his brethren and sisters at Macedonia, and, it was his intention to be with them the Sabbath on which he died, but instead of worshipping with them he was called (we trust) to join the Church triumphant, on high. He always spoke with much affection of his pastor, Elder A. B. Whatley, and his long tried brother, Elder Wm. M. Mitchell, of Opelika. He was an invalid for several years, but his death at last was sudden and unexpected, yet he expected himself willing and ready to depart. To his distressed family, he said "Trust in God. I have prayed for you." He was conscious to the last moment and shook hands with all who came to his bedside until too weak to move his fingers. When the clock struck he said, "It is three o'clock, and in a very few minutes after breathed his last without a struggle or agru on. So calmly, so peacefully, so sweetly, the soul took its exit to the climes of ultimate glory. Those who knew him best never distrusted the honesty and purity of motives. When he erred, it was not of the heart. His life was truly an exemplary one, characterized with the adorning characteristics of truth and integrity, love and good will to men and faithfulness to God and his cause. In him the church at Macedonia lost one of its most liberal and sincerely attached members. His family one of the kindest husbands and fathers and the family one of its most public spirited citizens."
Last Will & Testament of John C. Towles - 1876
Chambers County, AL
Will Book 3, Pages 445 - 448
The State of Alabama
The last Will and Testament of John C. Towles, of the County and State aforesaid.
I, John C. Towles, considering the uncertainty of this
mortal life, and being of sound mind and memory, do make and publish this my last will and testament, in manner and form following (that is to say).
First. I resign my soul into the hands of Almighty God, hoping and believing in a remission of my sins, by the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ; And my body I commit to the earth, to be buried at the discretion of my executrix hereinafter named; And my worldly estate I give and devise as follows:
First. I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife Catharine W. Towles, all that tract or parcel of land, situated, lying and being in the County of Chambers and State of Alabama, known as the NE 1/4 of Section 15, Township 22, Range 26, containing 160 acres more or less, together with all and everything thereon situate or thereunto pertaining. I further give and devise to my said wife, 40 acres of land with all the appurtenances thereunto belonging in the NW corner of the East 1/2 of Section 10, Township 22, Range 26, to be laid off in a square, said land situated in the County of Chambers and State of Alabama.
Second. I give and bequeath to my youngest son James Germany Towles, 170 acres of land, to wit: the West 1/2 of the West 1/2 of Section 11, containing 160 acres, and 10 acres to be laid off in a square in the SE corner of the East 1/2 of Section 10, all of said lands lying in Township 22, Range 26, situated in Chambers County, Alabama.
Third. I give and bequeath to my youngest daughter Susan Emily Towles, the East 1/2 of the East 1/2 of Section 10, Township 22, Range 26, excepting the 10 acres already given to James G. Towles, containing 150 acres, situated in Chambers County, State of Alabama.
Fourth. I give and bequeath to my daughter Louisa Ann Grimmett, the West 1/2 of the East 1/2 of Section 10,
Township 22, Range 26, excepting the 40 acres given by this will elsewhere to my wife Catharine W. Towles, containing 120 acres more or less, situated in Chambers County, Alabama.
Fifth. I give and bequeath to my son William Wallace Towles, the East 1/2 of the East 1/2 of the West 1/2 of Section 11, Township 22, Range 26, situated in Chambers County, State of Alabama, containing 80 acres more or less.
Sixth. I give and bequeath to my son John Stokely Towles, the West 1/2 of the East 1/2 of the West 1/2 of Section 11, Township 22, Range 26, situated in Chambers County, Alabama, containing 80 acres more or less.
Seventh. I give and bequeath to my son Oliver Darden Towles, the West 1/2 of the NE 1/4 of Section 17,
Township 23, Range 24, also Fraction (C.) on Section 20, same township and range, all lying and being situated in the County of Tallapoosa, in the State of Alabama, supposed to contain 120 acres.
Eighth. I give and bequeath to my daughters Elizabeth Frances Diamond, and Catharine Jane Wilkinson, the SE 1/4 of the NE 1/4 0f Section 18, Township 23, Range 24, also the NW 1/4 of the NW 1/4 of Section 20, Township 23, Range 24, all of said lands lying and being situated in the County of Tallapoosa and State of Alabama. Also, all my interest in certain gold lots in and around Goldville, Tallapoosa County, Alabama, held and owned jointly by the heirs at law of the late Britton Stamps of Butler County, Alabama, deceased (*Numbers and amount not known) and myself. I also further give and bequeath unto my said daughter Elizabeth Frances Diamond and Catharine Jane Wilkinson, my 1/4 interest, in and to a certain gold lot in
the county of Harris and in the State of Georgia, known and distinguished as lot No. 312, in the 20th District and 3rd Section, containing 40 acres.
*Note, The Will of the late Britton Stamps, deceased, sets forth the numbers and amount of acres of land.
Ninth. I give and bequeath unto my youngest son James G. Towles, one black mare mule called Gin, one cow and calf, one feather bed and furniture, one bedstead and mattress, one sow and pigs, one set plow gear, one axe, one plow stock, single tree and clevis, and one four horse waggon, also 3 acres of land out of the NW corner of Section 14, Township 22, Range 26.
Tenth. I give and bequeath unto my daughter Susan Emily Towles, my saddle pony Tom Thumb, one cow and calf, one feather bed and mattress, bedstead and furniture, one bureau, and one piano forte.
Eleventh. I give and bequeath unto my daughter Louisa Ann Grimmett, one set silver castor and silver spoons-large and small, (9 teaspoons and 5 large ones) marked with the letters L.A.T.
Twelfth. I give and bequeath to my son John Stokely Towles, my gold watch and fob chain (a gift from my Father)
which I hope he will prize as a token of a Father's love, and not to be parted with or allowed to depart out of the family, or be used as an article of merchandise, to raise money upon, to gratify some speculation fancy or otherwise.
Thirteenth. I give and bequeath all the rest and residue of my personal estate whatsoever and wheresoever of what nature, kind, and quality soever, the same may be and not herein given and disposed of (after payment of all my just debts, and funeral expenses) to my good and beloved wife Catharine W. Towles; And I do hereby constitute and appoint my said wife Catharine W. Towles, sole Executrix of this my last Will and Testament, without being required to enter into bond as such Executrix, for the faithful execution of said trust.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and seal, the fifteenth day of August, in the year of our Lord one thousand-eight hundred and seventy six (August 15, 1876).
John C. Towles L.S.
The above and forgoing instrument of six pages, was at the date thereof declared to us by the Testator John C. Towles, to be his last Will and Testament; and he then acknowledged to each of us, that he had subscribed the same, and we at his request, sign our names hereto as attesting witnesses.
F. A. Trammell
Jas. E. Scarbrough
1840 Chambers County, AL Census:
Name: John C. Towles
Free White Persons - Males - 5 thru 9: 1
Free White Persons - Males - 20 thru 29: 2
Free White Persons - Females - Under 5: 2
Free White Persons - Females - 5 thru 9: 1
Free White Persons - Females - 20 thru 29: 2
Slaves - Males - 10 thru 23: 1
Slaves - Males - 24 thru 35: 1
Slaves - Females - Under 10: 1
Slaves - Females - 24 thru 35: 1
Total - All Persons (Free White, Free Colored, Slaves): 12
Free White Persons - Under 20: 4
Free White Persons - 20 thru 49: 4
Total Free White Persons: 8
Total Slaves: 4
Total All Persons - Free White, Free Colored, Slaves: 12
1850 Chambers County, (Dist. 19) AL Census:
John C. Towles 37M Farmer R$2,500 (16-Slaves) Born SC
Louisa A Towles 32F Born GA
Oliver D. Towles 17M Student Born GA
Elizabeth F. Towles 15F Born AL
Catherine J. Towles 13F Born AL
Laura A. Towles 11F Born AL
John S. Towles 9M Born AL
George W. Towles 7M Born AL
William W. Towles 7M Born AL
Pink Towles 4F Born AL
Susan Towles 10/12F Born AL
1860 Chambers County, (Southern Div.) AL Census:
John C. Towles 46M Farmer R$5,000 P$40,000 (25-Slaves) Born SC
Louisa A. Towles 41F Born GA
Laura A. Towles 20F Born AL
William W. Towles 17M In School Born AL
George W. Towles 17M In School Born AL
Louisa A. Towles 15F In School Born AL
Susan E. Towles 10F In School Born AL
James G. Towles 3M Born AL
1870 Chambers County, AL Census:
Jno. C. Towles 56M Farmer R$4,000 P$1,000 Born SC
Catharine W. Towles 45F Keeping House Born Mass.
Susan Towles 19F Born AL
James G. Towles 13M At School Born AL
Catharine Wilkerson 32F Housekeeping R$500
John T. Wilkerson 12M At School Born AL
Henry Finlay 18M (Mulatto) Born AL
Alonza Finlay 14M (Mulatto) Born AL
Wm. Gresham 13M (Mulatto) Farmhand Born AL
"Hon. John C. Towles - Alas, my husband"
Oliver Darden Towles
Elizabeth Towles Diamond
1835 – unknown
Catherine Jane Towles Wilkinson
John Stokely Towles
George Washington Towles
William Wallace Towles
Louisa A. Towles Grimmett
Susan E. Towles Evans
James Germany Towles