Fielden Reunion Newsletter7th Edition, December 2001
Entertainment was one of the highlights of this gathering. Following the Saturday evening meal and during the Sunday morning session we heard Gospel Music by Dominion. This is a quintet from Derbyshire Baptist Church in Richmond, VA. The bass singer in this group is Marvel's son, Joe Fielden. Sunday afternoon under the shade of the trees and the shelter, we were entertained by Rick Fielden's Bluegrass Band which we had enjoyed at a previous reunion.
There were exhibits of Fielden memorabilia and historical research and writings by some attendees. There was much exchanging of family information. Keith and Marvel were able to update their computer data files.
Attendance was widespread from some fourteen of the states. There were about 125 persons registered. Some of them were not able to attend all of the sessions. There were several attending a Fielden Reunion for the first time. This was a great time to meet new cousins and renew old acquaintances.
Deed and Charter have been finalized
The oldest known Fielden burial place in this country is what was originally known as the Fielden Cemetery and until recently was called Pleasant Grove Cemetery. It is now officially the Pleasant Grove-Fielden Cemetery, Inc. This historic place is located about two miles North of New Market, Tennessee.
A brief history of the cemetery and the efforts of the descendants of Richard Fielden to obtain a deed for this one-acre plot for the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church were given in the last issue of the Newsletter. The deed was obtained; however, the church chose to have the committee, which had successfully gotten the deed, assume the responsibility for administering the affairs of the cemetery.
This committee, headed by Robert Dinwiddie, has proceeded to obtain a Charter dated July 6, 2001 from the Secretary of State of Tennessee. Monies from the Pleasant Grove Church Cemetery Fund have been transferred to the new cemetery committee. They have also obtained a tax-exempt number from the IRS.
An endowment is being established to assure the continued maintenance of the cemetery. If you would care to contribute to this fund, make your check payable to Pleasant Grove-Fielden Cemetery, Inc. and mail to: 2108 Lynx Road, New Market, TN 37820.
Following the 1996 reunion in Todmorden, England, the committee which had planned this event organized The Fielden Society. They publish a quarterly newsletter for all members. Although this is primarily directed to Fieldens in England, a number of us in the USA are members. The annual membership fee is $8.00.
The Society has produced a Todmorden 2002 Picture Calendar which they are offering for sale. This contains pictures of the Todmorden area and includes some pictures from the 1996 reunion. The cost of the calendar is $12.00 including shipping and handling.
If you are interested in purchasing a calendar or joining the society, you may contact either Keith or Marvel.
After the immigration from North Carolina to Tennessee around 1820, the Fieldens followed typical migration patterns to the west. Between the late 1830's and the early 1860's they went to Missouri, Arkansas, Texas and Western Kentucky.
Five Fieldens, some with their families, came to Missouri. Four of these lived in Texas County. Allen Fielden was the first to arrive in Missouri and settled in the Springfield area in the early 1840's. He married Susanna Weaver in 1849 and they had 13 children. Many of their descendants now live in the Springfield area, including those serving on the Reunion Committee.
Allen's two younger half-brothers, John Wesley and Benjamin Ai Fielden, appeared in Texas County, MO around 1860. Both were positively identified in Jefferson County, TN, but we know little about their lives there.
John married Louisa Night in Jefferson County, TN in 1855. They had a son, Benjamin Lee, born in Missouri in 1862. Both John and Louisa apparently died before 1870. Their son married in Missouri but later settled in Marion County, AR. Benjamin Ai married in Missouri and served in the Confederate Army. Around 1880 he moved with his family to Hot Springs, AR.
Dempsey Fielden was the first of the family to arrive in Texas County about 1857 with his wife and 6 children. They had three more children born in Missouri. He was killed by unknown assailants on his farm in 1866. He, his wife and many of their descendants are buried in a cemetery on the farm where he died.
Dempsey's older brother James S. Fielden was born in North Carolina. He is known to have lived and owned land in both Jefferson and Anderson Counties, TN, and finally owned land, lived and died in Texas County, MO. He and his first wife came there between 1858 and 1860. The wife died shortly after they arrived at their new home, leaving no children. He remarried and had his only son, Benjamin F. Fielden, in December, 1862.
Taylor W. Early
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