My Family Tree
I have been compiling and organizing the Neel-Williams and Lee-Johnson family trees for years. Mom was the keeper of this info, but, like Mon was apt to do, it was scribbled on pieces of paper, shoved in little notebooks, all kept in place by a rubber band.

There were names, tiny photographs, graduation cards, birthdays, photo Christmas cards, birth and death announcements, and addresses. It was a treasure trove for me, but hard to sift through.

Then, the spreadsheet came into my life and I can do anything with a spreadsheet.

Ancestry was a good research tool, but I hate paying for what should be free. I guess we're all paying for convenience. It is easy to exhaust their information so I join a month at a time and go back every couple of years to see what new things they have.  It is always good to be careful of what you find there; I havve discovered many mistakes and assumptions tat have proved to be wrong.

Find a Grave is a great  site, is crowd sourced, and free.

Family Search, The Mormon's site is a good, free site which I am beginning to search and input.

I've made a few trips to Alabama and Mississippi to visit libraries, cemeteries, and monuments, but most of my information comes from family.

My main problem is that I just can't find records on John Clayton Neel. Nothing. It is like he never existed before he married Carrie and, of course, if, like Family lore says, he died at Shiloh, he would be buried in a mass grave. Still, there is nothing about his Confederate Service. All of this is understandable, but he is a very frustrating man.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this, but I figure it is time for me to share what i have with family. This Page will probably just "develop" itself, but h
ere is what I have so far.

Family Input is always welcome.

"When you talk about linage and ancestry, you are talking about every person on earth." ~ Alex Haley





E
mmette Conwell was a farmer and Postmaster for the Geiger Alabama area. I think he and my grandmother once ran Neel Eats, a small restaurant in town owned by his brother Mal. His wife, Myrtle Wicks Williams was a housewife and raised five children.

Emmette died in 1949 of a heart attack at the young age of fifty-four, before I was born. Myrtle, continued to live in Geiger until 1981, dying at eighty-one.





Barnie Emmett was a farmer and store keeper for Yellow Front Stores in Havanna and Geiger Alabama. When those stores closed, he ran his own country store and farmed a small garden in Berry Alabama. He was married to Evie Leigh Johnson, who worked in the stores, and as a housewife, raising three children. Evie jarred all of the vegetables that Barnie grew in his garden.

Barnie died in 1972 of a heart attack at the age of seventy. Evie passed away in Birmingham, where she lived with her daughter, Juanita, in 1999, at the age of ninety.






All I know about Mr. Dennis is that he was the son of a Syrian immigrant and ran a venetian blind business in Fairfield, Birmingham. He may not have been the biological father of Bill, as, it seems, that Nell was a bit of a bad girl and had an affair and a baby by the other man.

I'm trying to gather more details about this from Kady's sister.

I just scanned a small package of negatives that Kady handed me, and low and behold, there were photos of Mr. and Mrs. Dennis among them. Pay Dirt!






All I
know about these folks, is that Mr. Bragg worked at US Steel most of his life and was some kind of engineering genius. I have asked
Syl's brother EB if he can send me all he has and he says working on it. K is also working with her sister on what she has.

The Bragg family has a very extensive library on-line, which I need to access, but that probably means Ancestry, again.

Just a photo would be nice; this is, of course, Romeo and Juliet--from the movie...just a place holder.




Emmette Williams grew up and lived in Geiger Alabama, until he joined the Army, close to the end of WWII, as he turned eighteen. He was trained in radio repair and repaired radios on Bombers in the 8th Air Force based close to Ipswich England.

He married Juanita Ann Lee upon his return to the States, earned his college degree in Chemistry and Physics, teaching high school and running his own radio repair shop for a while.

He was hired by Southern Railway as a signal maintainer and promoted to Supervisor of Communications for the company, retiring around 1977. He died of cancer at the young age of sixty-seven in 1991. He was a 33-degree Mason, former Worshipful Master, and Shriner.

Juanita was a housewife, raising three boys, and later worked for the University of Alabama in Birmingham's payroll department. She died from Alzheimer's Disease in 2016 at the age of eighty-seven. She was passionate Bird Watcher, active in the Methodist Church, sang in the choir, was a past president of the PTA, and Member of the Evening Star.









Emmette C. Neel







Emmette









Myrtle Williams






J



John



Donald










Barnie Lee







Juanita









Evie Johnson







William Edward was born and raised in Fairfield, until joining the Air Force, where he was a Mechanic and Crew Chief on the F84 jet fighter. After the service, he became a Real Estate Agent and worked for the Jefferson County Zoning Board. He married Sylvia Terry Bragg. Bill died in 2016 at the age of eighty-seven.

Sylvia was a house wife and raised three children. She and Bill were active and founding members of Doctrinal Studies Church in Roebuck. Sylvia died of Pancreatic Cancer in 2016 at the age of eighty-two.









Joseph Dennis







William Dennis







S
Nelly Thompson

Michael



K










Edwin Bragg







Sylvia Bragg



E




Margaret Terry









John was career military, working after retirement at Virginia Military Institute.
He married and had a daughter, then divorced in 1980. He doesn't talk about this.

He married Kady in 1981 and she saved him.

Kady raised two children, alone, while John played Army. She is amazing at everything she does, cooking, decorating, event planning and is adored by everyone who knows her. John is a lucky man.








Emmette W Neel


J



John



Donald




Juanita Lee

J



E





William Dennis


S



Michael



Kady




Sylvia Bragg