Naricissus Mahuldah <I>Lewis</I> Bagwell

Naricissus Mahuldah Lewis Bagwell

Georgia, USA
Death 1 Mar 1930 (aged 92)
Downsville, Union Parish, Louisiana, USA
Burial Downsville, Union Parish, Louisiana, USA
Memorial ID 5741872 View Source
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Parents - Samuel Lewis, Sr. and Harriet E. Mathis.
Married Andrew Jackson Bagwell, Sr. 01-18-1855, 6 children.
Married William McKenzie 05-19-1880

*Thank you to Scout Finch for the obit.

The Ruston Leader.
Ruston, Lincoln Parish, Louisiana
March 12, 1930
Page 1; Column 2


Largest Family of Descendants In This Section of State Attend Funeral.

(From Wednesday's Daily)

With the passing of Mrs. Narcissus Mahuldy McKenzie last Saturday at the home of her son, Mr. Jack Bagwell, at the home of her son, Mr. Jack Bagwell, at Choudrant, there is closed the life chapter of another Lincoln parish pioneer mother, of whom it can be said.

"Her eyes hath seen much history
Of parish and of State -
Linked well in countless changes,
For a Nation growing great."

"Grandma," as she was affectionately known throughout several parishes, was probably the oldest woman in the parish, having reached her ninety-fifth year of life. Her health up to the hour of death was remarkably good for one of her age, and the end came just as she had oftentimes wished - soft and sudden, leaving no pain to be remembered by those who tenderly watched beside her couch.

Having for several hours previous to her call been growing weaker, she asked for a bowl of soup, and as she drank it, was cheerfully recounting to those about her, some of her experiences when this country was young and which only a pioneer woman is capable of doing, when she remarked that she was so tired and would like to rest a little while, promising to tell the sequel of her story when she was stronger. When the pillows at her head had been lowered, her breath came quick in one short gasp and her face relaxed in a smile and life was ended for one of this section's most remarkable characters in private life.

"Grandma" had this formula for long life and health: Quit work before exhaustion comes; quit eating before hunger is quite appeased; think of others first and of yourself last and keep up a firm white faith that looks to the Cross whereon was hung the burdens of the world. A beautiful philosophy that [copy skips a line] home since early childhood. During the War Between the States she was married to Andrew Jackson Bagwell, prominent in his community, and a good soldier. Then came her widowhood with six small children to rear alone. A wilderness cabin and a few acres of land and a determination to keep her little ones with her, whatever betide, represented her sum total, backed by excellent health.

"Grandma's" struggles were hard like those of some other pioneer mothers bereft of the family's head, but with a heart that was strong, looking upward with a faith she knew would hear her is more than religion!

Mrs. McKenzie was a native of Georgia, but Louisiana had been her [copy skips a line]on, her little family hung together, in spite of the advise of relatives and friends to give the children away for their board and keep. And these children tell that while they slept to the music of their mother's spinning wheel, they also awoke to it, and grew to wonder if she ever slept at all, or even went to bed.

"I'd like to die on a Saturday and be buried on Sunday." Mrs. McKenzie had been heard to remark. And it was on Sunday at Downsville, that a host of loving friends and relatives assembled at the cemetery of that little town to pay their tribute with flowers and with tears. Narcissus had been part of the name given to the little girl born in 1835, and in her hand last Sunday as she lay in her last repose, she held a narcissus blossom and her grave was heaped high with narcissi and other fragrant offerings of early Springtime.

Five of the six children of "Grandma" McKenzie are living: Mr. jack Bagwell, Miss Ellen Bagwell, Mrs. George Aulds and Mrs. Allen Lee of Choudrant, and Mr. Mallory Bagwell of the Douglas community.

One hundred and ninety children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and great, great grandchildren make up the family of descendants, a large portion of this number being present at the burial at Downsville when the body was consigned to a grave besides that of her first husband. Rev. Rockett of the Downsville Baptist church, spoke the words of the ceremony with great feeling, emphasizing the depth of the beautiful religion which Mrs. McKenzie had always lived and of the blessing she had been to her community.

It was in 1881 that Mrs. McKenzie made a second marriage, her husband being W. M. McKenzie, father of the late J. M. McKenzie of Ruston, Mr. McKenzie dying several years afterward.

Family Members


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