Robert C. Martin, owner of Albemarle plantation, in Assumption
parish, La., was born in Rapides parish, La., in the year 1839;
son of Robert Campbell and Mary Winnifred (Pugh) Martin, the
former of whom came to Louisiana in 1832 and made his home at
Alexandria. April 9, 1835, he was married to Mary Winifred Pugh,
daughter of Dr. W. H. Pugh, and a sister of Col. W. W. Pugh,
of Assumption parish, La.
In 1840 Robert Campbell Martin, Sr., bought the plantation in
Assumption parish that has since been known as "Albemarle,"
and which is now owned by the great-great-great grandson, Robert C. Martin VI. Robert Campbell Martin, the father, was a son of
Peter Boyd Martin, and was born in Bertie county, N. C., March
25, 1813. He was a grandson of Lieut. Peter Martin, of Capt.
Humpton's company, 2nd Pennsylvania regiment, of the Colonial
armies. Lieut. Peter Martin was killed Sept. 2, 1777, in the
battle of Brandywine. Peter Boyd Martin, father of Robert Campbell
Martin, was a native of Pennsylvania, from which he moved to
Bertie county, N. C., and there married Janet Smith Bryan.
From this latter locality he moved to Rapides parish, La., in
1818, where he passed the remainder of his life and died at
his plantation home, 18 miles below Alexandria, Jan. 13, 1838.
Robert Campbell Martin, Sr., came to Louisiana in the year 1832;
lived in Rapides parish until 1840, when he moved to Assumption
parish, and soon thereafter was a prominent figure in the public
and political affairs of that time. In 1846 he was elected as
one of 2 members of the Louisiana state senate from the Lafourche
district, his colleague being the Hon. James C. Allen. Again,
in 1857, he was elected to the senate.
He served, also, as a delegate to the convention of 1861, which
adopted the ordinance of secession. He was elected to this convention
as an opponent of the advocates of immediate secession, but
finding an overwhelming majority in favor of immediate withdrawal
from the Union, he cast his vote with the majority, saying in
a speech delivered on that memorable occasion that if the state
must go out it should have his moral and physical support. Subsequent
events proved that no citizen of the state was more loyal to
the cause of the Confederacy than was he, though the days were
dark and the trials were great. Throughout the days, months
and years of fiercest conflict, keen privation, bitter bereavement
and heartrending desolation, he stood shoulder to shoulder with
his neighbors even to the very end.
He was bereft of his wife Feb. 22, 1858, and his own life closed
peacefully July 4, 1881. Both were interred in Madewood Plantations
cemetery, which at that time was on property owned by the wife's
uncle, Thomas Pugh. Four children were born to their union,
as follows: Mary Janet, the first-born, died in infancy; Robert
C., the subject of this sketch, born in Rapides parish, 1839,
moved with his parents to Assumption parish in 1840, and now
owns Albemarle plantation; served during the war between the
states as lieutenant of Co. C, 26th Louisiana volunteer infantry,
C. S. A., and took part in the battle of Chickasaw Bayou and
the siege of Vicksburg. R. C. Martin was assessor of Assumption
parish 1892 to 1900, inclusive. William Whitmell, the second
son, was born at Albemarle plantation, in 1846.
At the beginning of the Civil war he enlisted in the Phoenix
Guards, commanded by Capt. Francis Tillon Nicholls, and which
company became a part of the 8th Louisiana volunteer infantry,
C. S. A. Some time later he was invalided and returned home,
by advice of Gov. Moore, who subsequently secured an extension
of his furlough. When he had sufficiently recovered his health,
on Jan. 1, 1863, he was elected captain of a new company raised
in the vicinity of his home, and which became Co. C, of the
26th Louisiana volunteer infantry. A short time later Capt.
Lagarde, senior captain of the regiment, declined promotion,
and Capt. Martin, then next in rank, was promoted to the rank
of major. He was in the reserve at the great battles of Manassas
or Bull Run. He took part, also in the battle of Chickasaw Bayou,
and was killed June 21, during the siege of Vicksburg. James
B., the third son, born at Albemarle plantation, attached himself
to Capt. Francis T. Nicholls' company and took part in the Virginia
campaign, at the age of 17 years. When his brother had organized
Co. C, of the 26th Louisiana, he was transferred to that command.
He participated at Chickasaw Bayou and Vicksburg, and afterward
served in the Trans-Mississippi department until the close of
the war. Thomas Pugh, 4th son, born at Albemarle plantation
in 1846, joined his brother's company at Vicksburg when only
a boy, and served during the siege of that place. Later, he
passed examination in the Trans-Mississippi department and was
appointed first lieutenant of ordnance, in which capacity he
served until the close of the war. He died in Mexico March 1,
1910, and was brought to Assumption parish for interment in
Robert C. Martin married, on April 24, 1861, Miss Maggie C.
Littlejohn, daughter of Rev. William and Eliza (Chisholm) Littlejohn.
She was born in Tennessee. Her parents purchased, in 1848, the
Melrose plantation, Assumption parish, La., where they resided,
until 1862, then moved to Texas. Mrs. R. C. Martin (née Littlejohn)
was the granddaughter of Willie and Mary (Montfort) Jones, whose
daughter, Mary, married Joseph B. Littlejohn. Willie Jones figured
largely in Colonial and Revolutionary times. R. C. Martin has
3 sons now living, viz.: Robert C. Martin, a sugar planter of
Assumption parish, La., on Albemarle plantation; William Littlejohn
Martin, cashier of the Marshall National bank of Texas, and
Whitmell P. Martin, now the presiding judge of the district
composed of the parishes of Lafourche and Terrebonne. R. C.
Martin 's second marriage was to Miss Marie R. Theriot, of Assumption
Robert C. Martin I & Robert C. Martin II: