Early Pioneer Days in Texas
Lem Ramsey was born in old Virginia August 24, 1834. He remained in that country until he was eighteen and came with his father and family to Texas; they settled in Fannin County, near Allen's Chapel. He professed religion in 1854 or '55 and joined the M. E. Church at Allen's Chapel on March 16, 1862; he married Bettie Saunders, of Grayson County, Texas; they were playmates and schoolmates when they were children in Virginia. Soon after they married he joined the Confederate army, Sixteenth Texas Cavalry, Captain Wood's company, made up at Sherman, Texas. He made a good soldier, was in many hard-fought battles; he went through many hardships of cold, sleet, snow and rain; slept on the cold ground many nights with one blanket under and one over him many times he was thinly clothed. . Sometimes they would have to march for days and nights with but little to eat and hardly any sleep. Lem was taken prisoner in one battle and kept eleven days. The news came to his wife that he was killed, and she mourned his death during that time, but the eleventh day she received a letter written by him. You can only imagine the joy of that woman's heart when she got that letter. She felt like the dead was alive and the lost was found. In 1865 the war closed and Lem came home, sound and well. Times were hard then, and there was hardly any money in the country. He had forty acres of land with a log cabin, it having just one room with stick and dirt chimney. He took a saw and drawing knife and a few nails and made three chairs and a bedstead; they borrowed a frying pan, skillet and lid, with which they went to housekeeping in the little log cabin. I have heard them say they spent the happiest days of their lives in that cabin, as they were both strong and well and trying to live as Christians. They went to work and soon got a little start; in a few years they built a new house, and lived there until his father's and mother's deaths. Then he got possession of his father's old home, where they lived the remainder of his life. During this time they raised ten children, six boys and four girls. Jennie married Tom Johnson; they live near Roxton, Lamar County; have five children, all grown. Ella married Lige Cravens; she died, leaving two children, Overton and Edith, who were raised by Grandfather and Grandmother Ramsey; they are grown and still live with their grandmother. Walter married Tennie Crabb; they live at Farmersville, and have two little girls. Herbert married Ula Brown, who died, he then marrying Lizzie Roberts; they have six children, and live at Childress, Texas. Joe married Sally Cole; they have seven children, and live at Vernon, Texas. Tom married Hardin Watson; they have two children, and live at Bantam, Texas. Elmer married Effice Craddoc; they have one little girl, and live at Lone Oak, Texas. Annie married L. D. Terrell; they have one little girl, and live at Vernon, Texas. Susie married Sam B. Lock; they live near the old home. Nute is single and lives with his old mother.
Lem Ramsey was a good man, good citizen, a very devoted husband, a kind, loving father and a true Christian; he loved his church, in which he was steward and Sunday school superintendent a good part of his married life. He loved to do any kind of church work, and never failed to go to the quarterly conference as long as he was able; he would have his children take him to church and Sunday school when he was so feeble he could hardly sit up all day.
In the spring of 1910 his health began to fail; he gradually grew worse, and on September 1st he passed away. He was seventy-six years and seven days old. His wife is still living at the old home, but is very feeble.