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Birdie Mae Henderson

1904 ~ 1986

Birdie was born March 1st, 1904 in St. Francois County, Missouri.  She was the third of ten children born to Martha "Mattie" Louella Briley & Rev. James Washington Monroe Henderson.  When a young girl Birdie was bitten just above her left ankle by a Brown Recluse spider.  It left a circular sore about an inch wide that never healed.  Birdie met Guy Thomas Martin in St. Francois County.  Their families got water from the same spring. Birdie & Guy would make arrangements to meet by leaving notes for each other in the fork of a tree by the spring. One time Birdie's mother found Birdie reading a note from Guy & ordered Birdie to give her the note.  Instead Birdie defiantly popped it in her mouth & ate it!  Birdie & Guy married 24 July 1921 & they eventually became the parents of eleven children:

James Thomas - 17 June 1922

Glenda Gertrude - 20 January 1924

Pearl Maethel - 25 December 1926, Irondale, WashCoMo - 13 December 2007

Gladys Irene - 17 February 1928

Robert Lee - 16 May 1930

Dorothy Ellen - 14 February 1932

William Charles - 3 December 1934 - born at Bonne Terre, Missouri.  Died October 16, 2003 at the age of 68 years, 10 months and 13 days as a result of a motor vehicle accident.  For complete obituary click here.

Arthur Eugene
- 10 February 1936 - died in infancy of Summer Complaint

Carl Edward - 14 February 1937

Cora Marie - 9 May 1938 - m: Robert Joseph (Bobby Joe) Zimmermann who was half-brother to Melvin Martin's wife Vivian.

Melvin Glenwood - 5 August 1941 - m: Vivian who was half-sister to Cora's husband Bobby Joe -


After Birdie's & Guy's separation Birdie became the head pastry chef at the well known Pope's Cafeteeria in St. Louis.  I remember eating there a few times & visiting grandma while she worked.  Later in life Birdie became blind from diabetes & also had heart trouble.  She loved to crochet & I am fortunate to have several items that she crocheted before she went blind & had to give it up.  Birdie died 28 July 1986 in Washington County, Missouri.  She is buried in Big River Cemetery in that same county.



Page Created: 7 Nov. 2002

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