Saturday, February 13, 2010

Welcome Family!

Important Notice:

Since composing this article in February 2010, additional research has failed to identify John Holyman (1572 - 1650) of Tring as the father of Christopher Holyman, Sr., the believed first generation of Hollimans in America. My interpretation at this time is that Christopher Holyman, Sr. was born in Bedford, Bedfordshire, England in 1618. We have data that he arrived in Virginia in 1650 and died in 1691. (Last updated April 13, 2014)

This is the story of the Christopher Holyman families from Jamestown, Virginia to the present day. All family members, and those who have married into this family, are invited to join in the exploration.

Through this blog we plan to include interesting facts, family trees, lore, geographical information and first hand memories. This blog is a work in progress. Your comments, insights, corrections, articles, photographs, diaries and old letters are most welcome. In this format we plan to hand off our past, and present, to the future.

Glenn N. Holliman, Complier
Grace A. Hollilman, Editor

Family Lineage
What follows is a baseline genealogy of a Holliman paternal family tree through the life of John Thomas Holliman of Fayette County, Alabama and his sons. John Thomas is the father of six sons (photo below). Most of the persons receiving this email are descendents of two of the sons: James Monroe Holliman and Ulysses (usually spelled and pronounced Ulyss) Selman Holliman.

Jim Monroe Holliman, an attorney, and his wife Anna Elizabeth Baker, had two sons who grew to maturity: Cecil Rhodes and Charles Baker Holliman. Ulyss and his wife, Pearl Caine, had seven children: Melton, Vena Holliman Daly, Euhal, Loudelle Holliman Ferrell, Bishop, Virginia Holliman Cornelius and Ralph Holliman.

All the above, and most of you reading this, are descended from an immigrant from a Bedford, England immigrant with probable additional grandparents from Cuddington and Sherington, Buckinghamshire, England.

Christopher Hollyman (b 1618 Bedford, England – d 1691, Isle of Wight Co., Virginia)

Richard Holyman (b 1660 ca - d 1711)

Samuel Holliman - (b 1707 - 1781), Johnston County, NC.

James Grantson Holliman (b 1750, Johnston Co., North Carolina – d 1836, Mecklenburg Co., North Carolina). Wife was Elizabeth Bryant.

Cornelius Holliman (b 1792, Anson Co., North Carolina - d 1862, Fayette Co., Alabama) First wife and mother of Uriah, Mary Elizabeth Plyler (1793-1835).

Uriah Holliman ( b 1817, Lancaster, Co., South Carolina - d 1862, Okolona, Mississippi after the Battle of Corinth). Wife was Mary Polly Lucas (1819-1913).

John Thomas Holliman (b 1844, Fayette Co., Alabama – d 1930, Fayetteville, Alabama)
Of the marriage to Sarah Corbett, William Perry Holliman (1871-1941) was the surviving child. Of the marriage to Martha Jane Walker, five sons were born: Silas Green Holliman (1876-1943), James Monroe (1878-1938), Thomas Leland (1880-1970), Andrew Eckford (1882-1926) and Ulysses Selman Holliman (1884-1965).

Sons of John Thomas and Martha Jane Walker Holliman

Left to right are: Bill, Green, James Monroe, Leland and Ulysses. The vacant spot is for Eckford who died in 1926.

The photo was taken at Fayette Co., Alabama May 1934 by Cecil Rhodes Holliman with an old bellows Kodak on 120 film. Rhodes Holliman, his son, remembers the photo and observes the following:

I remember the sense of necessity that pervaded the crowd to get this historic family photo. It was made at the annual Holliman reunion and ‘eating on the grounds’. With Eck dead, everyone wanted to preserve the remaining family image. I used to play under this old church while services were in progress. I'm surprised that the building didn't collapse while full of people. The ferruginous rock pilings did not have any mortar! The building was literally balanced on these pilings! Uncle Bill’s son, Grady, played the guitar to accompany the singing. This is where I fell in love with the hymn, "Just a Little Talk with Jesus". 

I remember an over-weight lady whose name was Cousin Maggie Thornton. She came to the reunion in a wagon pulled by a team of mules. She had an old steamer trunk full of food: pies, fried chicken, potato salad, you name it. She was famous for her cooking. I think that she was a spinster. She was distantly related -- collateral family. I think that she is buried at Caine’s Ridge. Uncle Bill could walk to church; his old shack was across the road and a little south, back in the woods. I think that his house site still shows on the USGS Topo maps.

Bishop Holliman (b 1919), a son of Ulyss, was also present at this reunion, and remembers Maggie Thornton. Ulyss, Euhal and Bishop drove from Irondale (a suburb of Birmingham) to Fayette for the day, a major drive in 1934.

Mary Polly Lucas Holliman (1819-1913)
The Story of Her Father and Grandfather
Contributions from Glenda Norris, Rhodes Holliman and S. Emmett Lucas, Jr. Prepared by Glenn Holliman.

Mary Polly Lucas, was the daughter of Charles Daniel Lucas (1778- 1853) and Mary Hastings (9/10/1786 - 1/21/1867), all originally from South Carolina. Polly Lucas became the wife of Uriah Holliman on 8/29/1836 in Tuscaloosa, AL. Uriah and Polly had many children, one being John Thomas Holliman, the direct ancestor of most persons reading this information.

Charles Lucas Sr. (1755 - 1810?) was the grandfather of Polly Lucas. Charles was probably a tailor who lived in Marlboro County, SC, along the Pee Dee River near the North Carolina line. Glenda Norris reports that Charles was married to Dorcus (maiden name unknown) who is thought to have been an American Indian. One of their sons was Charles Daniel Lucas, Polly’s father.

Charles Daniel Lucas (1771-1853) stood six-foot-four and according to Polly, he once killed a panther with his bare hands. In 1819 Charles Daniel moved his family from South Carolina to the new state of Alabama (just as the Holliman family did in 1836).

Rhodes Holliman, a great great great grandson of Charles Daniel, reports that Charles had a fierce temper yet managed to serve as a deacon in the 1830s at the Springhill Baptist Church near Moore’s Bridge, Fayette County. Family lore states that Charles Daniel hit one of his sons causing his wife, Mary Hastings Lucas, to move herself and children from Newtonville to the Bluff Community northwest of Fayette.

Charles Daniel died in 1853 after having served as a Federal Indian agent. He is buried in an Indian burial site seven miles from Fayette toward Newtonville. In death, as in life, Charles Daniel Lucas was not completely at peace. In 1870 grave robbers attempted to disinter him but were scared off in the process.

Charles Daniel’s wife, Mary, is buried in an unmarked grave at the Springhill Baptist Church Cemetery in Fayette Co., along with their daughter, Mary Polly Lucas Holliman, and John Thomas Holliman’s first wife, Sarah E. Corbett.

In the picture below Glenda Norris (Alabaster, AL) and her uncle, Dr. Rhodes Holliman (Dublin, VA), visit the gravesite of Charles Daniel Lucas in Fayette Co., AL near Newtonville in 2007.

Glenda (b 1959), is the daughter of Cecile Eugenia Holliman Youngblood (b 1937), who is the daughter of Cecil Rhodes Holliman, (1902 – 1986), who is the son of James Monroe Holliman (1878 – 1938) who is the son of John Thomas Holliman (1844 – 1930) who is the son of Uriah and Mary Polly Lucas Holliman. Rhodes (b 1928) is the son of Cecil Holliman, the grandson of James Monroe Holliman, and great grandson of John Thomas Holliman.


  1. I have really enjoyed reading your articles on the Hollimans. Although they are not one of my direct lines, I appreciate the history of that family and the surrounding history that also seems to bring them to "life."

    Clinton Getzinger

  2. Hi, I find this pretty interesting since I come from a branch of the family that dropped one L. Maybe our family tree will match up on sometime as well.


    Stefanie Holiman

  3. I too am from the Holiman branch that dropped the second L. There are still many Holiman relatives in Texas that am reconnecting with and enjoy every bit of information I can read on our family tree. Thanks!

    Sandra Robin (Holiman) Wilson

  4. Hi,i come from the Holloman branch that originated from Isle of wight Co,Va. I have researchedc our family and we originally migrated from the Scotish descent in London,England in the early 1500-1600's. I don't doubt that we're related in some way because my great-great-great grandfather Isaac H. Holleman was a slave and he ran away with the slavemaster's daughter.We have a genealogical book on our ancestoral history and the name is spelled at least 6 different ways or more. Please email me if you have any additional Thanks!!!!! Tammy Lavell Holloman-Hunt.

  5. very nice story and info, i'm christopher w holliman and we range in the ky,oh area. was on here for an hour reading these facts. thnk you

  6. My grandmother was Jessie Mae (Jessie Helen) Holliman Moore.. so happy to be learning my roots!

  7. What a lovely Easter present my 3x? cousin Lindsay Holliman has just sent me an e.mail to tell me d.n.a. has told him we have a lot of Holliman "cousins" in the U.S.A. My paternal grandmother was an Ada Eleanor Holliman & one of her brothers was Lindsays grandfather they trace back to Glenn Hollimans line. We are thrilled tolearn more it is wonderful learning about those who have gone before us but it is lovely meeting new folk in this day & age, it makes the world seem a smaller & friendlier place.WQe look forwar to finding out more.Kind regards from Gill Casper u.k.

  8. I descend from Robert Bryan and Elizabeth their daughter Mary born about 1865 married William Freeman from Bertie Co NC, They were married by Col Nathan Mayo , Who was also married to a Bryan. The Freemans moved into Burke /Caldwell County about 1790. In 1835 William and Mary moved to what became Springfield Missouri, he dieing there in 1838 and Mary dieing in 1845. William is the only Rev War veteran buried in Springfield National Cemetery . He left children in Burke County and in Springfield also some lived in Indiana.
    I have searched for info on Robert for years and can find very little can you direct me to the right path? the Freeman lines forward from William and Mary are documented very well . I do believe we are also tied into the Boone /Bryan families as Morgan Bryan sold land in Burke County to Freeman and their move to Mo was very close to Nathan Boone less than 20 miles, Also family lore is that Daniel Boone advised Freeman to Move to Springfield. I know that Needham Bryan B 1698 was distantly related to the Bryans but havent been able to find the connection .

    1. My wife's mother is a Bryan from Meat Camp NC, near Boone. We have a lot of information on the Bryan side of the Bryan/Boone family. It might take me a bit to dig it up, but if you are interested in what we have email me at

  9. How lovely to read all these articles. My great great grandparents were James and Louisa Holliman, and I am the great grand daughter of their son William b1894. I am fascinated to learn more about the Holliman family history.

  10. In the NC State Archives building on the Mezzanine level there is a little blue book entitled The Hollyman Family. It has thousands of people starting from Christopher down to my father's generation, born 1937. If anyone is in Raleigh on Jones st and is interested, it might help complete some family lines for you. I have a copy of the book myself. Holliman, Holleman, Holoman spelled in several ways throughout the book. If anyone wants me to look something up let me know.

  11. My name is Lisa Denise Holliman, daughter of Cecil Walter Holliman and Sharon Larue Allen Holliman,gran daughter of Cecil W Holliman and Maurine Mayfield Holliman. Great uncles names: Ferrell and FJ Holliman. Don't know much more than that, but reading through this bit of history...I'm bound to be related here. Blessings from TX.

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