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The Taulbee Family in the Early 1920's
& Their Home in Benavides, Texas
By: Vivian Adams Rudisill
"Some wise sage once said, 'You can't go home again.' That's not true with me. I
can't leave home." states Paul Taulbee, Jr., a resident of Schaumburg, Ill., with his wife,
Alma, and former resident of Benavides, Tex., from the early 1920's, or even earlier, until
1937, when his grandfather, Dr. James Menefee Taulbee, Sr., died. At that time, the family
split up, and the grandchildren returned to the East where they had originally lived as mere
babies to live with relatives.
It is difficult for his brother, Howard, to leave this same home too even after being
away 57 years. He has visited in nearby Corpus Christi with his children in the home of
Charles Adams, Jr., his childhood friend of Benavides in the 1930's. Howard and his family
have also visited the cemetery in Alice, Tex., where their grandmother and grandfather as well
as their younger brother, William, are buried. Howard states, "I really felt closer to the family
at the Benavides home where they had lived (the 87-year old home that the Charles Adams
family purchased when the Taulbee family left Benavides in 1937 and that the Adams family
still owns -- a period of 57 years) than at the Alice cemetery." Howard, now a resident of
Annville, Pa., with his wife Phyllis, continues, "We have all regarded that as home over all
these past 57 years after we had to leave."
Even Paul, a resident of Schaumburg, Ill., states, "That house really meant the best
time that my family was ever together."
Dr. James Taulbee, Sr., was a graduate of Jefferson Medical College, now the
University of Kentucky, and practiced medicine in eastern Kentucky and Russell Co., Va. He
came to Benavides in the early 1920's at the request of a number of local citizens among whom
were Mr. J. M. Momeny, the school superintendent; Mr. Calvin North, owner of the cotton
gin; Mr. Frank Brooks, a local rancher; and others who wanted a doctor in Benavides. The
only other doctor in the area at that time was in San Diego.
Judge Archie Parr had put an advertisement in a medical journal for a physician to
locate in Benavides, for there was no medical doctor between Hebbronville and San Diego at
that time. Dr. Taulbee, who was working for a large lumber company in White Sulphur
Springs, W. Va., with his wife, Maude Combs, answered the advertisement, were accepted,
and moved with their family to South Texas to get out of the cold winters of West Virginia.
Texas State Genealogical Society. Stirpes, Volume 34, Number 1, March 1994. San Antonio, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth39868/. Accessed February 6, 2016.