Mary was ten years old in 1860 when the Civil War broke out. James was 16 when he enlisted in Company A of the Georgia 13th Infantry Regiment of the Confederate Soldiers of Georgia. He enlisted in July 1861, a few months after his cousins William and George Pittman, brothers of Mary Eugenia.
James, William and George served from the beginning to the end of the Civil War and lived to come home to the aftermath and desolation the war left on their homes and families. Three years after returning home George married James' sister Emma June. Mary was eighteen and James was twenty-four.
Eighteen years passed before Mary and James were married. Census records, marriage certificates, tax records, Last Will and Testaments and other factual documents unfortunately are lacking in information regarding personal relationships. Therefore, one can only speculate about the circumstances of marriages that already have close family ties.
By the 1900 Census James and Mary were listed in Cobb County, Howell District of Georgia, a rural farming district. James was fifty-six, Mary fifty and daughters Ruby and Gussie were ten and seven. Although James had listed his occupation in earlier census and documents as farmer, his occupation in the 1900 Census was left blank. The reason possibly was stated in his Obituary in the Marietta Journal newspaper, June 17, 1909.
Hon. James H. Howell Claimed by Death...Hon James Hampton Howell, a prominent citizen of Cobb county, died at his home, in Austell, Thursday night a 12 o'clock, of heart failure. Mr. Howell had been a resident of Cobb county all his life. On account of ill health, he moved from his farm on the Chattahoochee river about six months ago to Austell, Ga., but his health grew worse until the final end came.
After James' death, Mary Eugenia and daughters continued to live in the home she owned on Church Street in Austell. 1909 had been a hard year for Mary with the death of James and the death of her brother William who had migrated to Texas in the late 1890's. In 1910 Mary's sister Lizzie Elizabeth age fifty-two resided with her, Ruby and Gussie. Ruby married in 1911 and Gussie in 1925.
By 1920, Mary was 71 years old and resided with daughter Ruby and her husband in Austell. Ruby was working as a stenographer for a furniture company and her husband Claude was a traveling salesman. The next year, 1921, Mary lost two more of her siblings, Lizzy and Albert. Another brother James Allison died in 1928. In the 1930 Census Mary was still living with her daughter Ruby and husband Claude. Also listed was her daughter Gussie, now a widow after a short five years of marriage. Gussie was employed as a bank clerk.
Mary Eugenia Pittman Howell died April 19, 1934 at 84 years of age. As the fifth child and first daughter of Rene Marion and Mary Anne Howell Pittman, Mary outlived all but one of her siblings...George Washington Pittman, her seven years older brother. George and William were the only two of the ten children who migrated to Texas. All the others remained close to their 'Roots' and 'Family Ties' in Cobb County, Georgia.
Isaac Howell, grandfather of Mary and James was the first person buried there on November 9,1860.
The story of his death was perhaps an omen to the end of the Antebellum Era and the beginning of the Civil War and Reconstruction Era of the South.
It is told/written in the family history thusly.....
....Isaac, upon hearing the November 6, 1860 election of Abraham Lincoln,
went into a rant, cursed and dropped dead.
Photo Disclaimer...Photo from the Vintage Photo Collection of CollectInTexas Gal. Used here as a representative of the period. Not intended to depict persons named in this post. Howell Cemetery Photo from Find A Grave.