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William J. Copeland

  • Birth 22 Oct 1822 Madison County, Alabama, USA
  • Death 1872 Corinth, Alcorn County, Mississippi, USA
  • Burial Wayne County, Tennessee, USA
  • Memorial ID 96467082

My Great Great Grandfather~

When William Copeland was a child he moved to Wayne Co., TN. and was living with his parents in 1840. In the 1850 census he was living in the home of Archibald & Mary Munday Murphy.

The Murphy family ran a stagecoach inn at Cypress Inn, TN. The inn featured a large dining room set by the Murphy daughters where men cutting cross ties came to eat & board. One of them was William Copeland. One of the Murphy's daughters, Melissa, planned to elope with Tom Hinton, against her parents' wishes. William learned of the plan, rushed upstaires and begged Melissa to not marry Tom, he then confessed his own feelings for her. Melissa is said to have dropped her valise and called off the elopment. William and Melissa married about six months later in 1851.

William died in Corinth, MI. while on a buisness trip for his mother. His daughter, Ida Copeland McGee indicates he lived in Mississippi before the Civil War, he moved back to Wayne Co., near his family to avoid conscription and to hide his fine horses from soldiers. At the time of his death he was returning to check on land he once owned, but the courthouse had burned and he never reclaimed the title. Melissa went to Mississippi to claim his body. Family lore says he had chills and fell over, the true cause of death is unknown.


NO HEADSTONE found yet.

Gravesite Details William was buried in the field behind his home. This field may have been turned into a cemetery years later as more family and neighbors started being buried there. There are four Copeland Cemeteries in Wayne County, Tennessee. Still researching.

See more Copeland memorials in:

  • Created by: Donna Webster
  • Added: 3 Sep 2012
  • Find A Grave Memorial 96467082
  • Donna Webster
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for William J. Copeland (22 Oct 1822–1872), Find A Grave Memorial no. 96467082, citing Copeland Cemetery, Wayne County, Tennessee, USA ; Maintained by Donna Webster (contributor 46525461) .