Geo. B. Pool's signature.

George B. Pool & Mary Frances Farrow

George B. Pool was born to Berry and Mary Blackstock Pool on 3 October 18381. He married Mary Farrow on 7 October 18572. Mary Farrow was the daughter of Thomas Farrow (1793- 1855). Her brother Woodberry H. Farrow was for a time the court appointed trustee during one of George and Mary's financial problems. 15 After the death of Mary Farrow on 31 August, 18853, George married Sarah A. Horton (1843- 1907)4.

George was at times a farmer, a distiller and a saloon owner. Laurens of 1887, A Review of our Business Firms September 1, 1887 includes the entry

Geo. B. Pool who is engaged in selling wines, liquors, cigars, tobacco, etc. He opened out in January '87.

He soon improved his facilities:

Mr. George Pool has purchased the site of his old saloon and erected a new building. The old house was pulled down on Monday and on Saturday he was conveniently quartered in his new saloon.

The Laurens Advertiser, 30 November 1887

George suffered a severe injury while engaged in distilling activities. During the third week of September 1885:

Last week while Mr. George Pool was sealing a keg of whiskey, on the premises of Martin B. Pool, in this County, the burning wax caused it to explode and injured him severely. He was blown some ten or twelve feet and also severely burned, but is now out of danger and will probably be up in a short time.

The Laurens Advertiser, 23 September, 1885.16

George B. had a number of legal troubles, some relating to violations of the Federal Liquor laws. A tax on distillers had been put in place as a temporary means of raising revenue to pay for the cost of the Civil War, but these liquor laws soon became permanent, with a Federal Bureaucracy and agents to enforce them. George's February 1887 conviction for selling liquor without a licence was announced in the March 2, 1887 edition of The Laurens Advertiser.18

George and Mary were members of Upper Duncan's Creek Baptist church, now named Langston Baptist church. However in 1866, over the course of several regular Saturday church business meetings he was publically accused of theft and operating a still, and was excluded from the church. His membership was not restored until September, 1877.

George apparently remained on good terms with the church thereafter. On at least two occasions- August 8, 1879 and October 18, 1881- he was appointed as a delegate to regional Baptist meetings.6 At his death on 25 May 1900 he was buried in the church cemetery.

Financial difficulties seemed to plague George for many years, including a Federal Bankruptcy filing in 1877. 5 George was able to retain his land through the bankruptcy, and on 13 January, 1896 he transferred the 58 acre property to his son Thomas P.7

Mary F. Poole
Wife of
George B Pool
And dau of
Col. Thomas Farrow
Aug 22 1836
Aug 31 1885
Dear mother we do miss thee
From this world of sorrow here
But we do hope to greet thee
In that blessed land so dear
Erected by
Her son Thomas P. Pool

A Fatal Accident

On Sunday morning Mrs. George POOL, of this place, met with a fatal accident from using kerosene oil in kindling a fire. It seems that after breakfast Mrs. Pool, desiring to start a fire in the stove and thinking the coals left from the morning had entirely died out, placed wood in the stove and poured kerosene oil upon it, when the can exploded and the burning oil was scattered in every direction. With the assistance of her daughter and a few neighbors, who happened to see the explosion, she escaped with severe burns on the face, arms and other parts of the body. Medical assistance was immediately called to her aid, but the skill of the physician was baffled, and she died Monday afternoon about 4 o'clock. The physician thinks that she breathed the flames. She was a consistent member of the Baptist Church and leaves a sorrow stricken family, her husband, four sons and one daughter. 14

The Laurens Advertiser., September 02, 1885

Sallie Horton

George's second wife was Sarah Horton, born 13 March, 1843. She married George B. Pool on 21 June, 1888. 9 From surviving records, it appears that she was generally called "Sallie".

On 27 September, 1899, Thomas Pitts Poole conveyed to Mrs. Sallie Poole

... all that lot or parcel of land situated within...the City of Laurens and on the west side fronting on North Harper Street... containing one and 45/100 acres more or less... 10

This transaction was recorded on 21 February, 1902, and on the same day there was a conveyance from Sallie A. Pool to M. V. Hazel for the same property. 11

Sallie died on 27 May, 1907, 12 and is buried beside George B. in Langston Baptist Church cemetery.

The Later Years

George was apparently a resident of the city of Laurens during the last years of his life, based upon an examination of the Laurens Tax Assessor's records.

Geo. B. Poole
Oct. 3, 1838
May 8, 1900
T'is hard to break the tender cord
When love has bound the heart
T'is hard so hard to speak the words
We must forever part
Dearest loved one we must lay thee
In the peaceful grave's embrace
But thy memory will be cherished
Till we see thy heavenly face

Mr. Robert Farrow, a native of Laurens County but now of Missouri, is visiting his uncle, Mr. George B. Poole and other relatives and friends here and in the county." Laurensville Herald, 12 January, 1900. 13

George Berry Pool died on Tuesday, May 8, 1900, and is buried between his two wives at Langston Baptist Church cemetery.


There is some confusion about the children of George and Mary. Lamb & Ezell have a different list than is derived from the Census and headstone evidence. The Lamb list is: Thomas Pitts, , Harvey, Luke, Ora.

The list derived from Census and headstone evidence is:

In the Lamb & Ezell account, "Ora" is a female married to John Powers, so she is probably the "Mary L" of the Census. The 1900 Federal Census records a John H. Powers with children Roy P. (age 8) and Mary L. (age 2). Lamb says that "Ora" had a son Roy Poole Powers.8

I suspect that Luke and Farrow are the same person. The 1880 Census records a "Farrow" Pool, age 1.17 In Mary's obituary there is a reference to "four sons", so apparently Farrow/Luke was still alive in 1885. No further reference to either name has been found.

For more information...

The document George Berry Pool and Family of Laurens County, South Carolina contains the results of my research into this family. Please view the pdf.

1. The birth and death dates are from his tombstone at Langston Baptist Church, Laurens, SC.

2. Georgia Genealogical Magazine No. 47.

3. Marriage and Death Records from Laurens County, SC Newspapers Vol. 7.

4. Headstone, Langston Baptist Church.

5. Federal Bankruptcy Filing, Charleston Court, Case 1730, 3 April 1877.

6. Upper Duncan's Creek Baptist Church Records, privately held papers.

7. RMC (Deeds) Grantor Direct Index to Conveyances 1885-1939, Vol. 7, p. 251.

8. A Genealogical History of the Poole, Langston, Mason Families and Kindred Lines of Upper South Carolina by Bessie Poole Lamb and Mary-Mack Poole Ezell, page 59.

9. Marriage and Death Records from Laurens County, SC Newspapers, Vol. 7.

10. Conveyances of Real Estate, Laurens, Book 12, page 245.

11. Direct or Grantor Index- Conveyances of Real Estate- Laurens County, S. C.. p. 81..

12. Birth and death dates taken from gravestone at Langston Church cemetery.

13. Mildred Brownlee, "Abstracts From The Laurensville Herald 1900".

14. The Laurens Advertiser, September 02, 1885

15. Laurens County Court of Equity Minute Book, page 79.

16. The Laurens Advertiser, 23 September 1885

17. Year: 1880; Census Place: Scuffletown, Laurens, South Carolina; Roll: 1233; Family History Film: 1255233; Page: 197C; Enumeration District: 104;

18. Laurens County Clerk of Court (General Sessions) General Sessions Journal 1800-1810 1810-1824 1825-1840, February Term, 1887. The Laurens Advertiser, March 2, 1887