Date Original



The collection contains correspondence of the W.L. (William Lawrence) Dewoody family of Pine Bluff, Jefferson County, Arkansas, including his wife, Mary Sorrells (Dewoody); their son Willie, who joined the American Expeditionary Force in 1916; and family friend Frank "Patch" Lieberman who served in the AEF in 1916-1918. Other materials include a scrapbook, legal documents, deeds, and trusts.

Biographical/Historical Note

W.L. (William Lawrence) was born December 30, 1847 in Athens, Alabama, the son of Samuel N. and Louisa Ann Coman Dewoody. His family moved to Eastport, Mississippi, and in 1862, to Iuka, Tishomingo County, Mississippi. During the Civil War, Will Dewoody joined the Confederate Army and served as a courier and scout for Henderson's Scouts, under General Nathan Bedford Forrest. W.L.'s brothers, James and Samuel, both joined the Confederate Army; James was killed in the war. W.L. Dewoody had studied as a druggist and started a partnership with his sister Marion's husband, John Nelson. In 1870 W.L. and his brother-in-law, John Nelson, opened a drug store, which they named Nelson, Dewoody and Company, in Pine Bluff, Jefferson County, Arkansas, later W.L. Dewoody and Company. A dean of Arkansas druggists, he was honorary president of the American Pharmaceutical Association. W.L. married Mary Sorrells, of Warren, Arkansas, May 5, 1875. Mary was born June 6, 1854, the daughter of Judge Theodric F. and Rebecca Mark Sorrells. She was a graduate of Hamilton Female College in Lexington, Kentucky. W.L. and Mary had 13 children, and eight grew to adulthood: Marion Louise Dewoody (Mrs. C.W.) Pettigrew, Rebecca Dewoody (Mrs. Earl W.) Phillips, Martha Alma Dewoody Brightwell, Emma Virginia Dewoody Sloss, Florence Antoinette Dewoody (Mrs. J.W.) Briley, William Lawrence Dewoody, Jr., T. Sorrells Dewoody, and Margaret Coman Dewoody (Mrs. Harry) Miller. W.L. Dewoody died June 30, 1918. Mary Sorrells Dewoody died November 20, 1934. The Dewoodys are buried in the Bellwood Cemetery, Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

Physical Description

Document, 8.5" x 11"

Geographical Area

Pine Bluff, Jefferson County (Ark.)





Resource Type



Dewoody family papers, MS.000346


Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

Dewoody family papers, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.


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United States History