Mary Louise Lefler was most likely born in Tennessee about 1902. People say it was 14 August, 1902 in Memphis, but I have found no records [yet] to prove that. Here she is with her second husband, Nagle Monroe Ethridge. 1

Nagle and Mary (Lefler) Ethridge

The first record I found is her marriage to Robert Roscoe Gipson on 4 Oct 1920.

Robert Roscoe and Mary (Lefler) Gipson Marriage Bond and License

Date of Marriage: Oct 4, 1920. By Whom Married: W. A. Taylor, J.P. Groom’s Name: Robert R Gibson, age 29 (written in error with a “b”, and also signed by Robert that way, altho his brother, Hollis’ name as witness was also incorrectly written, but he signed his with a ‘p’). Bride’s Name: Mary Lefler, age 18. 2

Sadly she filed for divorce less than 3 years later [23 May 1923], claiming he abandoned her. The petition for divorce paperwork was forwarded by a 2nd cousin, who obtained it from the courthouse in Shelby County, Tennessee. On 7 July 1923, the divorce was granted.

She doesn’t show up in records again until the 1940 census where it states she was a resident of Tyronza, Poinsett, Arkansas, USA in both 1935 and 1940.

Nagle and Mary (Lefler) Ethridge

Name: Mary Ethridge. Event Type: Census. Event Date: 1940. Event Place: Tyronza Township, Poinsett, Arkansas, United States. Gender: Female. Age: 37. Marital Status: Married. Race (Original): White. Relationship to Head of Household (Original): Wife. Birthplace: Tennessee. Birth Year (Estimated): 1903. Last Place of Residence: Same Place. 3

Nagle Ethridge is her husband, and she resides with him and his daughter, Minnie, age 16. They rent their house, and his occupation is listed as farmer.

The next record found is her death. She was living in Miami-Dade County when she died on 16 Dec 1965. Through a little detective work by my 2nd cousin, he found her burial place in Miami: Flagler Memorial Park: Section 10, Lot 78, Space 6E. She is not currently listed in Find-A-Grave or Billion Graves.

We have ordered her obituary but have not received it yet. Will shortly be ordering her Record of Death.

What is mysterious is the fact that she was born in the 20th century, yet she shows up on so few records, a Tennessee Marriage Record, and Divorce Record, the 1940 Census, and Florida Death Index. We can’t confirm for sure her residence in the 1910, 1920, or 1930 Census, so we have no clue who she was living with at that time or where. Living relatives and descendants have no idea who her parents are.

I am hopeful somewhere down the road, this will pop up in a search, and someone will have more information for us, perhaps more photos.

1 Photo courtesy of Nagle Ethridge’s grandson.

2 Register of Deeds, Shelby County. “Marriage Records 1820-1977.” Shelby County Register of Deeds. October 4, 1923. Accessed July 27, 2014.

3 “United States Census, 1940,” index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 11 Aug 2014), Arkansas > Poinsett > Tyronza Township > 56-21 Tyronza Township W of Range line between Ranges 6 and 7 Township 10 > image 9 of 45; citing NARA digital publication of T627.