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August 3, 2013 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Mystery: The Norvell House, Part II


Norvell Family Photo, c. 1897, Courtesy Carole Jensen

This wonderful photo was given to Carole Jensen by Stanley Baber Andrews, daughter of Lily Norvell.  It captures not only the beauty of the Norvell home, but also the era and family relations.  The photograph may have been taken upon the death of Thomas B. Norvell (d. 22 January 1897), which was his wife’s birthday.  When the photograph was made, this house was the home of Thomas B. and Mary “Molly” Evelina Miller Norvell, located on today’s Spreading Oak Road, post office, Well Water or Tucker, Buckingham County, Virginia.

In front of fence, left to right:

Bernard Miller Norvell, 5, 1892-1981, m. Bessie Bransford, Grace V. Moore

John Harold Norvell, 7, 1890-1958, m. Eva Booth Baber

Gracie Norvell, 12, 1884-1965, m. Robert E. Lee Stinson

Lily Leigh Norvell, 10, 1886-1972, m. Clinton Timothy Baber

Mary Elizabeth Tapscott, 6, 1890-1976, m. James Benson Tindall

Behind fence, left to right:

Unknown man

Frances M. Norvell, 18, 1878-1936, m. Fletcher Tindall

Mary Gertrude Norvell, 24, 1874-1956, m. William Reginald Walker

Hay Booth Norvell, 17, 1880-1952, m. Emma Blackwell

Alice Walker Norvell, 24, 1872-1937, m. Nelson Tindall

Mary Evelina Miller, 51, 1846-1919, widow of Thomas B. Norvell

Kate Elizabeth Norvell, 26, 1870-1928, m. George Allen Tapscott

Unknown man

On porch:

Catharine Neighbours, 76, 1821-1900, m. William T. Miller, mother of Mary Evelina Miller Norvell

 In front of brick chimney:

Unknown servants


If anyone can help identify the unknown individuals in the photo, please comment.

A Buckingham mystery no longer, click here for more about the Norvell House.


Leave a Comment
  1. C Conrow / Sep 1 2021 2:21 pm

    HI there, I am researching the Norvell family (my father is Dr. Douglass Norvell, b 1938. I’m trying to see which of these I may be related to. In the meantime, I would like to visit some of the cemetaries — do you know where the Norvells are buried in Buckingham County?

  2. Joanne Yeck / Oct 17 2020 1:35 pm


    Many thanks for adding this new information about the Norvell family, especially your discovery at Bruton Parish Church. I plan to include some of it in an upcoming post in the 2020 series about the Norvell House so more Slate River Ramblings followers will see it.


  3. Bernard Norvell / Oct 15 2020 8:21 am

    Bernard Miller Norvell, age 5, in the photo was my paternal grandfather. He dies at his son’s house in Milford, Connecticut in 1981. Son (my father) was Bernard Miller Norvell, Jr. Also, I met my Mary Gertrude Norvell when she lived in Richmond in the early 1950s. Family called her “Park” instead of her given names. Mr. Walker, her husband, had already died by then.

    • Joanne Yeck / Oct 15 2020 9:38 am


      Many thanks for the comment. Readers always appreciate more information.


      • Carole Jensen / Oct 17 2020 9:56 am

        In 1972, my husband and I visited Historic Williamsburg. A plaque in Bruton Parish Church included vestryman, Capt. Hugh Norvell (1669-1719). It sparked my interest in family history as my grandmother, Lily, was a Norvell. I discovered that Hugh is my 7th great-grandfather. In the 1880 and 1900 Census record for Buckingham County, Hay Booth Norvell is listed as Robert H. Norvell. In the 1900 Census Bernard M. Norvell is listed as Vincent B. Norvell. The 1910 Census indicates that Mary Miller Norvell had 12 children. It also includes Hay B. Norvell and Bernard M. Norvell. So it confirms that a woman has the right to change her mind.

  4. Elizabeth Fortune / Aug 3 2013 9:34 pm

    Catherine Neighbors (on the porch) is my third great grandmother (descended through another daughter, Sarah “Sallie” Ann Elizabeth Miller, who married William T Payne)

    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 4 2013 3:30 am

      Elizabeth, it is completely coincidental that my Payne’s Pond post was followed by the photo of Catherine Neighbors, proving the amazing interconnections in Buckingham County!

  5. onestitchatatime / Aug 3 2013 2:19 pm

    Wonderful photo!

    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 3 2013 2:59 pm

      Isn’t it !

  6. Carole Jensen / Aug 3 2013 2:13 pm

    I spoke at length to my Aunt Stanley this morning before I saw this. She asked about our visit to this home two weeks ago. The owner was not at home but has kindly offered to show us the inside on our next visit. His family has owned the property for 50 years. We believe it was built around 1830.


    • Joanne Yeck / Aug 3 2013 3:00 pm

      Carole, Thank you for the update and the approximate date of the house.


  1. Buckingham County’s Norvell House Revisited, Part IV | slate river ramblings . . . .
  2. Buckingham County’s Norvell House Revisited, Part I | slate river ramblings . . . .

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