Elhannon1 “Jim” Rainwater was born in February 18502 to Miles Rainwater and Mary Blanschet Rainwater, the middle child of their nine children. He was a grandson of James Rainwater the Blacksmith and Apposely Cunningham. One presumes that Elhannon did not care for his unusual Biblical name, because he went by Jim throughout his life.
Born in Campbell County, Georgia, Jim would have been only 10 or 11 at the outbreak of the Civil War, and thus too young to enlist. His older brother, William B. served in Company K of the 30th Georgia Regiment. Many years later, Jim would provide a critical affidavit in his brother’s application for a CSA pension, verifying his brother’s service.
By 1870, Jim was not living in his parent’s home, and seems to have been entirely missed by the census. By 1872 he had married Rachel A. Hesterly, though again, the records are unclear as to when and where the marriage took place. They made their living farming and were the parents of seven children: John W. B., born ca 1872; George Latimer, born Apr 1874; Jesse Samuel, born Jul 1876; David Hannon, born Apr 1881; Franklin, born Sep 1888; William H., born Feb 1885; and Cora Lee, born Feb 1891.
Rachel died between 1891 and 1894. Jim remarried and is found in the 1900 census with a wife of 6 years named Mollie. Again, no obvious marriage record has been found to date. By 1910, Mollie had passed away and Jim is found living in his son William’s home in the Chestnut Log District of Douglas County, Georgia.
Elhannon “Jim” Rainwater died in 1916.
1 Records disagree on the spelling of his name – Elhannon or Elhanian. Elhanan is the original Biblical name.
2 Based on the 1900 census. Other sources say 1849.
Photo contributed by Jean Matthew
© 2018 Susan Chance-Rainwater
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License