Caroline Guin grew up in Franklin County, Alabama, the sixth of at least eleven children of William and Marguerite Guin. She left her parents in Alabama and traveled perhaps with other family to North Louisiana. She is buried in Corinth Cemetery. Married August 4, 1864
Caroline’s grandfather, William Gwynn, immigrated to the United States from Ireland early in the 19th century. He first lived in Tennessee, then settled in Alabama. Her father, William Guin, was born in Tennessee. Her mother, Marguerite, was born in Alabama. In a letter dictated by Stella Era Brazzel Young to her granddaughter Debbie Young (from the Hensley Madison family), her maiden name was Gwinn. Her great granddaughter, Vyonnell Vining, said that her tombstone was incorrectly inscribed Wynn. (You will notice several spellings due to best efforts of census takers and court recorders of early America.) Caroline Brazzel has been described as a good woman with long flowing black hair that reached the floor when she was seated in her chair. Vyonnell Vining, the granddaughter of Caroline’s son, Fredrick, recalls stories that her grandfather told her. She said that her hair was so long that she had a Negro woman named Kizzie help comb her hair each day. Legend tells of her coming to Claiborne Parish (now Lincoln Parish) on a big black horse with a pistol strapped about her hip. Other Guin families lived in the Corinth area during this time and it is believed that she may have left her parents in Alabama to travel with her relatives in search of new opportunities.
Gordon was a widower at age 52 with possibly five children living in the home ranging from ages 11 to 18 when he married Caroline Guin. The 1850 U.S. census indicates her age as six years. On her tombstone her birth year is inscribed as 1846 (Some think Caroline did not know her exact age.) If the date of 1844 is accurate, she was 20 when she married. Caroline’s first born was Gordon J. He was born May 29, 1865 and died before 1870. Frederick was born Jan 5, 1867, Russell on November 6, 1868, James Francis on March 11, 1870, Mary E. on June 20, 1872. Another son was born Sep. 28, 1873. He was named Gordon after his father and possibly his brother who had died at an early age. Sinthia Susan “Susie” was born Aug. 28, 1875 and Marthia Jane “Molly” was born Feb. 4, 1877. Five of her children died at an early age and are likely buried in unmarked graves in Corinth Cemetery. James Francis was not listed in the home when the Census was taken June 25, 1870. Mary E. died after June 1880. It is believed that Marthia Jane married and died young leaving no children. Caroline had nine children in 12 years, however, only eight are recorded in the Family Bible. Caroline stated in the 1900 Federal Census that she had given birth to nine children with only four living. She could not write and signed her name with an X.
Gordon died at age 82, June 28, 1894. His youngest child, Susie, was nineteen. He and Caroline had been married 30 years. After Gordon’s death, Caroline’s son Russell took care of her. When her house burned, she lived with Russell. Frederick appreciated this and when Russell asked to buy 40 acres of land from Frederick, he deeded him the land. Fred’s wife, Denoda, said that the 40 acres should go to Russell’s daughters Ella and Jettie because they were the ones who really took care of Caroline.
The children born to Gordon Brazzel and Caroline Gwinn Brazzel:
Caroline stated in the 1890 Federal Census that she had given birth to nine children with only four living. She could not write and signed her name with an X.
From the Bible Record For the Methodist church, at the Conference Office 100 Mulberry Street, James Collard, Printer Published by G. Lane & P.O. Sandford 1841 (This Bible is now owned by Mr. Sidney Hood, Simsboro, La.)