The Reverend William Bates Family

William Bates was born in Jackson County, Georgia on February 15, 1816.  This part of Jackson County became part of Hall county in 1818.  He was the seventh of thirteen children of Julius Bates and Temperence West.  William Bates grew up in Hall County, Georgia, before moving with his parents and family after 1832 to Murray County, Georgia.  In Murray County, Georgia, he married Miss Rosa C. Keith on October 15, 1837. Rosa was the oldest child and daughter of Martin Keith and Jane Roper.

Reverend William Bates   1893   Rosa Keith Bates

William and Rosa Bates started their family here, and all 12 of their children were born in Murray County. William Bates was a Baptist Preacher and a farmer. William and Rosa were charter members of the Zion Hill Baptist Church in 1861. As the Civil War broke out in 1861, his oldest son Jasper Milton was one of the first to enlist. Three of his other sons soon followed. Five of William's younger brothers, six of Rosa's younger brothers, four sons, two sons in law, and countless cousins, relatives and friends were Confederate Soldiers in the "War Between the States." William and Rosa lost 2 sons in the Civil War. After the war, life was difficult to say the least. The Yankee Carpetbaggers and the militant rule of the Yankee Soldiers made life intolerable for the Southerners in those days. In the Spring of 1871, William and Rosa packed their belongings, gathered up their family, loaded a wagon, and went West in a Wagon Train with many other families. Some of the other families that went West were the Baghills, Dyers, Whites and Wetzel's. They went through Tennessee and Arkansas and settled in Coryell County, Texas.  William's brother Jefferson Bates had been living there since 1863.  By December of 1872, William Bates and some other families including the Wetzels, went to Comanche County, Texas, where they homesteaded land.  William Bates homesteaded 160 acres of land and was granted the first deed to this property on December 13, 1875 by the State of Texas, after living there for 3 years.  William Bates was known as "The Reverend Billy Bates" and was said to be a "Fire and Brimstone" type preacher.  He founded the Board Baptist Church in Comanche.  He also served as one of the Presbytery that founded the Proctor Baptist Church.  Rosa Bates died on October 12, 1894 in Comanche. Reverend William Bates died June 18, 1899 in Comanche, Texas. They are buried beside each other at the Board Church Cemetery in Comanche, Texas. The above photographs were reproduced from an old tin type taken in 1893 in Comanche, Texas, and provided by Gary E. Bates. The 13 Children of Reverend William and Rosa Bates are:

Amanda Jane Bates

Jasper Milton Bates

Martha Minerva Bates

William Martin Bates

Andrew Jackson Bates

Reuben Columbus Bates

Sarah Evaline Bates

MaryAnn Tempy Bates

Elizabeth Matilda Bates

Sabra Armenda Bates

Rosey Fannie Bates

John Julius Bates

Theodosia Earnest Bates



Richard Bates 2002 All Rights Reserved

Page last updated May 2, 2002