A Tribute to Raymond Timmerman

– By Tonya Guy –

Edgefield lost one of her finest native sons last week. Mr. Raymond Tidwell Timmmerman, Jr. passed away on Monday, May 18, and he will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved him. Raymond was one of the best men we ever met. He was already a volunteer at the Tompkins Library and serving as treasurer of the Old Edgefield District Genealogical Society when we started there in November 1998. He was always kind, had a sharp wit, and was very devoted to his work. The genealogical society has flourished these past twenty years because of his time, effort, and dedication. He loved Edgefield, especially its history and genealogy. He never failed to try to help people find their ancestors. He would even come in after hours and try to assist out-of-town visitors. We even remember him taking people out to see where their family members were buried in rural cemeteries that were difficult to find.

Raymond’s greatest love was his family. He adored his wife, Mary Elizabeth, and doted on his children and grandchildren. He also loved his family history. He was proud of his rich heritage that has deep roots in the Old Edgefield District. He could trace his line back to some of the oldest and most well known families in the area, especially around the Meeting Street section. It is because of Raymond’s love of his genealogy that we wish to honor and pay tribute to him by sharing some information about just one of his family lines—the Timmermans.

Raymond Tidwell Timmerman, Jr., who was born on born on 15 December 1928, was the son of Raymond and Emily Alberta Ouzts Timmerman, Sr. He had one brother, Richard Hodges “Doodle” Timmerman, Sr., who was born on 27 July 1931 and died on 5 December 2006, in Greenwood County, SC. Raymond used to brag about the fact that both he and his brother were born in an apartment in the Dr. E. J. Mims house on Main Street in Edgefield.

Raymond’s mother, Emily Alberta Ouzts Timmerman, was born on 29 December 1905 and died on 9 December 2003 at the age of 97 years. She was born in the McKendree section of Edgefield County and was the daughter of Albert Gaines and Emily Zeleme Kemp Ouzts. At the time of her death, she was the oldest member of McKendree Methodist Church.

Raymond’s father, Raymond Tidwell Timmerman, Sr., was born on 11 April 1905 and died on 28 August 1967. He and his brother, William Tidwell, were the sons of John Thomas Tidwell and Florence Boland (Bolan) or Florence Jarrald (Jarrell) Tidwell of Lee County, SC. John Thomas Tidwell died in 1907, leaving behind a wife and two children. She left home and the children shortly after the death of her husband and the children were adopted by Washington Hodges “Doc” and Estelle Roosevelt “Stella” Dorn Timmerman. Raymond Tidwell and Emily Alberta Ouzts Timmerman, Sr. are buried in McKendree United Methodist Church Cemetery, Edgefield County, SC.

Washington Hodges “Doc” Timmerman was the son of Noah Douglas and Elizabeth Pope Abney Timmerman. W. H. Timmerman was born on 26 December 1879 and died on 15 March 1967, both in the Pleasant Lane section of Edgefield County. According to his obituary in The State, dated 16 March 1967, W. H. “was born in Edgefield County, and had lived here his entire life, where he was a retired farmer and merchant.” His wife, Estelle Roosevelt “Stella” Dorn Timmerman, was born on 1 July 1884 and died on 31 December 1969. She was the daughter of Mouzon (1852-1916) and Lucinda J. Timmerman Dorn (1860-1927). W. H. and Stella are buried in Berea Baptist Church Cemetery, Edgefield County, SC.

Washington Hodges Timmerman’s father, Noah Douglas Timmerman, was born on 18 March 1836 and died on 7 January 1898. He was the son of Ransom L. and Lydia Judy Bledsoe Timmerman. Noah married Elizabeth Pope “Betsy” Abney, who was born on 21 March 1843 and died on 13 November 1898. She was the daughter of Mark Madson and Permelia Williams Abney.

In addition to Washington Hodges Timmerman, Noah Douglas and Elizabeth Pope “Betsy” Abney Timmerman had eight additional children, namely Mark Abney Timmerman, born on 16 April 1860 and died on 2 July 1861; Arthur Douglas Timmerman, born on 2 November 1861, married 1st Eva Elizabeth Aull (1867-1923) and 2nd Annie Florence Culbreath (1856-1897), and died on 16 November 1937; Mary Estelle Timmerman Hagood, born on 18 April 1863, married J. E. Hagood, and died in 1911; Felix Lake Timmerman, born on 13 June 1865, married Anna Mae Watson Timmerman (1873-1950), and died on 11 March 1947; Jerome Pope Timmerman, born on 13 June 1875, married 1st Ida B. Watson (1887-1908) and 2nd Olivia Pickell (1886-1975), and died on 19 October 1956; Bernard E. Timmerman, born on 31 May 1877, married Olena Pattison (1883-1966), and died on 30 April 1933; Jeff Lewis Timmerman, born on 7 December 1881 and died on 23 October 1952; and Pierce Timmerman, born on 8 May 1885, married Elizabeth Hamilton (1882-1965), and died on 12 December 1968. All of these children, except for Arthur Douglas Timmerman (who is buried in the Timmerman Family Cemetery, Edgefield County, SC) are buried in Berea Baptist Church Cemetery, Edgefield County, SC.

Noah Douglas Timmerman was the son of Ransom L. and Lydia Judy Bledsoe Timmerman. Ransom was born on 1 February 1806 and died on 13 December 1876. He was the son of Johann Jacob Timmerman and Elizabeth Clegg. Ransom married Lydia Judy Bledsoe, who was born on 28 December 1805 and died on 2 April 1862. According to the book, Cyclopedia of Eminent Men of the Carolinas of the 19th Century, page 310, Ransom was “educated in the schools of the state. He followed planting until his death in 1877, and was a successful and well-to-do planter. He was twice married, and the father of nine children by his first wife and two by his second. Seven of these reached maturity, and two sons were killed in the war of 1861. He took an active interest in politics but never sought office of any kind, but held several appointive officers prior to the war.”

Ransom’s father, Johann Jacob Timmerman, a native of Germany, was born in circa 1760. He was the son of Frederick Wilhelm and Anna Margaretha Elizabetha Hahn Zimmerman. Johann Jacob married Elizabeth Clegg, who was born in 1778, in Edgefield County, SC and died on 10 August 1860, in Edgefield County, SC. She was the daughter of Samuel Campbell and Barbara Maria Flick Clegg.

Johann Jacob immigrated with his parents, Frederick Wilhelm and Anna Margaretha Elizabeth Hahn Zimmerman. Frederick was born in circa 1729, in Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany and died on 29 October 1779, in Edgefield County, SC. He served as a Loyalist during the American Revolution and died in service. His wife, Anna, was born on 29 September 1736 in Bennhausen, Bayern, Germany and died in 1800, in Edgefield County, SC. Frederick and his family arrived in Charleston in December, 1764. They were a part of the “Palatines of Londonborough,” who had endured unusual hardships on their journey to America.

These poor Germans, around 400 in number, had given a man named de Stumpel all of their money with the hopes that he would give them safe passage to Nova Scotia. Their guide took them as far as London and abandoned them, taking all of their money with him. They were completely destitute and living in the streets of London when several of the noblemen heard of their plight. They pleaded with the king for aid and he granted them land and provisions. The citizens of London provided them with three ships, the Dragon, the Union, and the Planter’s Adventure. These ships took the palatines to a section in Old Edgefield District known as Londonborough. There and in the surrounding area these brave souls carved out their place to live, work, and thrive. Their descendants, like Raymond Tidwell Timmerman, Jr., are evidence of their endurance and stout-heartedness. It is hoped that Raymond’s children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren will continue to carry on this 250-year-old family history and remain one of the greatest legacies in Edgefield County.