John Thompson Fraizer Gilmer (1832-1892). Thompson Gilmer was the son of Archibald and Peggy Stewart Gilmer. He married Eliza Ann Woods in 1858. She was the daughter of Thomas Wells Woods and Juda Terry Woods. Eliza Ann died in 1860 leaving a young baby, Mary Amanda. In 1861 Thompson went into the Confederate Army leaving his baby daughter in the care of her Woods grandparents. He served in Co. M Regiment 16 with rank of First Lieutenant.
In 1864 he married Frances Elvira Woods, sister to his first wife. They had three boys: Jimmie, George, and Archie. Frances died in 1870, leaving him with four children.
In 1872, Thompson married Judy Malinda Hankins, niece of his first two wives, and they had ten children. Thompson Gilmer had fourteen children in all. He moved to the Shiloh Community northeast of Vernon from the Blowhorn Community in the 1870’s.
Judy Hankins was very young when she married Thompson Gilmer, some of her step children were almost her age, but they were all first cousins and grew up together making a happy family. Judy had a merry heart, always smiling, lively and cheerful. She kept these qualities into old age. Often she played an Irish harp, singing old ballads. One of her favorites was “Barbara Allen”. Judy loved roses and one fragrant clear, red rose has been passed through the Gilmer family as “Grandma’s Rose. Several Gilmer relatives have this old rose today.
Thompson Gilmer died at the age of 68. He and his wives are buried in the Shiloh Cemetery in the Shiloh Community. Information for this article was taken from the research and family history of Mrs. Virginia Gilmer and Mrs. Mary Gilmer.
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