Descendants of William Lee Henderson and Eleanor Ann Selina Shelby
From the unpublished book written by Vivian Anderson Castleberry

Below: 1) Is this Libbie Taft? Or could it be the mysterious Lydia "Liddie"?   2) I believe this is Libbie in the picnic photo (abt. 1904), though she was not identified. I think she is a good match for the girl in the first pic.

Below: 1) Is this baby Alta Taft? Or was she not born yet?   2) Alta abt. 1904   3) Alta abt. 1914   4) Alta abt. 1919

Comparing Photos.

Below, some later photos of the Taft girls to compare. The photos from "about 1904" are from a picnic attended by the Hendersons, Tafts, and friends in 1903 or 1904. Click to enlarge.

Below: 1 and 2) Which one is Ruby Taft?   2) Ruby abt. 1904   3) Ruby as an adult

Same photo as above, but you can click thumbnail to enlarge:

The Taft-Henderson Family

Samantha Jane LaGrone Henderson (1854-1896) 2nd marriage to Julius Simpson Taft (1846-1923) in October 1886. Gray indicates this child is definitely not in the photo.

JULIUS'S STEPKIDS from previous marriage:
  • David Meredith Green abt 1871 (probably not living at home by 1890)

  • Frank Green abt 1873

JULIUS'S KIDS from previous marriage:

  • Libbie Taft 1880-1941 (married 1899)        

  • Julius Wellington “Jay” Taft 1883-1970 [1]

  • Lydia “Liddie” Taft 1884-__  [2]

  • Ettie Florence Taft ???  [3]

SAMANTHA'S KIDS from previous marriage to Joseph Asmon Henderson:

  • Effie Aletta Henderson 1873-1890

  • John Lee Henderson 1875-1930 (married 1895)

  • Etta Henderson 1876-1947 (married 1895)

  • Jennie Henderson 1878-1965 (married 1894)

  • Archie Henderson 1880-1888 (died age 8)

  • Franklin Smith Henderson II 1883-1936 (married 1915)


  • Ruby Anne Taft, Nov 1887-1956

  • Willie Della Taft, Oct 1889-1960

  • Alta Mae Taft, May 1892-1973

  • Julius Roy Taft, Jul 1895-1965

[1] Records vary between 1881, 1882, and 1883.

[2] I only find one record of Liddie: the 1900 census.

[3] I do not find any record of Ettie Florence. Perhaps she died young?

Taft-Henderson Photo Caption Mystery

By Kerin

The photo of the Henderson-Taft family is a bit of a puzzle. If you can help, please contact me.

The caption in the Henderson Book lists the kids as follows, with a date of 1896. I figured the kids’ ages based on an 1896 date, and it doesn’t work.

The problems with 1896 are:

1) Many of the kids look much younger than they would have been in 1896, for example, Jay and Franklin (bottom left) do not look 13.

2) John Lee, Etta, and Jennie Henderson were married by 1896, and probably would not have participated in such a family photo, or would have included their spouses. Plus, they look much younger here than in their wedding photos.

3) There are 2 people left out of this photo who would have been living at home in 1896—Libbie and Liddie Taft.

4) I have 2 other photos of Ruby Taft as a teen and adult, and she looks nothing like this girl. She looks more like the girl labeled as “Della” or “Alta.”

5) Etta, the 3rd one in back row, had a child in June 1896. She would have been 20 and pregnant here.

What’s correct:

The names are correct except for the youngest 4 girls, all Tafts. We can safely say the baby is not Roy. Instead, the options are:

1) The baby is Della, b. Oct 1889, making this 1890–1891.

2) OR the baby is Alta, b. May 1892, making this 1893.

Henderson Connections

Libbie was close to the family as an adult, which is why I think this is her in the 1904 photo. But Lydia/Liddie seems to disappear from the record after the 1900 census. I have not been able to find a married name, a death date, nothing. The only records I have that Lydia/Liddie existed are the Henderson book (one mention) and the 1900 census.

Below: 1 and 2) Which one is Della Taft?  2) Della abt. 1904

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