Martha Jane Tyler

by Mrs. Juanita Phipps Royal

Martha Jane Tyler (3 May 1863 -24 Feb 1934) was the daughter of Moses Tyler (1831-1864) born in Tabor City, Columbus Co., NC, and his wife Margaret King (1830-Mar 1970). She was the granddaughter of John Jackson Tyler (1810-1847) and his wife Elizabeth Soles (1808- c1871) and the great-granddaughter of Moses Tyler (1761-May 1836) born in Bladen Co, NC, a musician in the Revolutionary War, who served as a drummer boy, and his wife Mary Watts (1771-c1848). She was also the great-great granddaughter of Moses Tyler (d. 1762) and his wife Sarah (d. c1787) The last named was a prominent landowner and slave holder in New Hanover, Bladen and Duplin Counties in North Carolina, beginning as early as 1749.

Martha Jane was also the niece of Elisha Tyler (1843-1915). Her father Moses and his brother Elisha served in the Civil War. Her father died when she was a baby and her mother married (2d) Silas Tyler, but died when the little girl was almost seven years old. Thus orphaned as a child, she lived with her oldest sister, Mrs. Jerusha C. Tyler Allen and attended local school.

About 1877 she married Doctor (Dock) Phipps (1852-1938), a businessman whose enterprises included selling horses, buying and selling land, timber and timberland. Some records list him as a farmer, however, farming was not his occupation, except in the sense of landowner and landlord who had tenants or farm operators who worked his farm land on a share crop basis.

They enjoyed a life style typical of the old South with male and female household servants and nannies who helped take care of the children.

Their ten children were named Margaret Lucinda, John A., Callie, Memory, Hattie Jane, Julius M., Fernie, Mattie, Ulric Dock and Mamie. The youngest son, Ulric Dock, born at Louisville on 10 October 1899, was named for his father and the family physician, Dr. Ulric A. Dusenbury of Conway.

About 1901 they moved from Louisville to a farm on the Playcard Road about a half-mile north of Bayboro. This was a large place with a nice home for the landlord, adequate housing for the tenants and servants, and stalls for the horses.

With the purchase of property at the intersection of the Playcard and Gurley Roads the family moved to the heart of Bayboro about 1913. The main house stood at the intersection of these two roads. A row of giant oak trees dividing the front yard from the road provided beauty and shade. The house had a large front porch with banisters, an entrance foyer that led into a vestibule, which tied into a long breezeway with separate doors leading into a big dining room and kitchen which included a pantry. Other rooms opened into the foyer and vestibule. The house had a smooth, attractive flow from the entrance foyer to the breezeway, which had banisters on each side and steps on each side to the side yards. A path beginning at the left side yard went through the middle of the orchard and garden down to the stalls where the horses were kept.

Martha spent a lot of her time sitting on the front porch and breezeway, talking, laughing and giving friendly advice to her family, friends and neighbors who dropped by. A visit to "Aunt' Martha, as she was affectionately called, was good therapy. Household furnishing included a tall upright organ with mirrors, an organ stool that was adjustable with a spin, a velvet covered lounge with the pillow raised, and a beautiful mantel clock. Sometimes guests were invited to play the organ and sing hymms.

In addition to the main house this property had good housing to accommodate their servants and tenants.

When the railroad was built from Chadburn, NC, to Conway, SC, Dock hired two men, Simon Ray and Thomas Turner, who under his supervision manufactured crossties that were used in its construction. Family, friends and neighbors of the Bayboro community were very proud that Doctor Phipps and his employees took advantage of the opportunity to participate in this historical event in Horry County.

Doctor and Martha were Baptists. Their graves and the graves of seven of their ten children are in Bayboro Baptist Church cemetery. There is a Masonic emblem on his tombstone. He was a member of the Masonic lodge at Loris.

The late Honorable Judge U. D. Phipps (1899-1984), who held the office of Horry County magistrate in District #4 and District #8 for over 29 years was the youngest son of Martha and Doctor Phipp.


Horry County Vital statistics
1870 Mortality Schedule, Horry County, SC
Revolutionary War pension application of Moses Tyler,
   wife Mary, Bladen County, NC. National Archives Washington, DC
NC Wills, Bladen County, Will of Moses Tyler
   dated 27 Jun 1762, proven 9 Aug 1762, NC State Archives
NC Land Grant Office, Raleigh, NC
Register of Deeds, Sampson Co., Clinton, NC
State Census of North Carolina, 1794-1787
Compiled Service Records of the Civil War, National Archives
Regiger of Deeds, Horry County, Conway, SC
Federal Census Records, Bladen County, NC
Federal Census Records, Columbus County, NC Federal Census Records, Horry County, SC
Bayboro Baptist Church Cemetery
interviews with the late Mrs. Mamie Phipps Hamilton and other family members
Personal knowledge

The Independent Republic Quarterly
Vol.27 No.1; Winter 1993, pp 13-14

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