This is a different obituary for Jesse Hunnicutt Graham, published on Tuesday, 24 October 1939 in The Montgomery Advertiser newspaper of Montgomery, Alabama. This article related Jesse’s death from the point of view of his daughter, Willie Graham, who was then about 51 years old and residing in Selma, Alabama.

Jesse’s obituary, The Montgomery Advertiser, 1939.

“Miss Willie Graham…” Willie was the daughter of Jesse Hunnicutt Graham and his first wife Matilda Edmonds.

“…Selma Pilot Club member…” Pilot International is a community organization based upon the principles of friendship and service, first chartered in Macon, Georgia in 1921. I found a few references to Selma’s Pilot Club being active as recently as 2013, however Pilot’s Alabama District web site does not list a club in Selma so it may now be defunct.

“…an employee of the Tisser Department Store…” I found an advertisement in a December 1904 issue of The Selma Times newspaper for a Tissier Hardware Company. The ad listed many of the products sold by Tissier’s, including firearms, fireworks, vases, plates, stoves, candies, and toys. Though it may have been formally called a hardware company, it certainly sounds like a department store. It was established around 1850 and lasted as late as the mid-1990s. It no longer appears to be in business.

“…Union Church, DeKalb County…” This location is wrong. Jesse’s obituary from the Sumter County Journal stated correctly that Union Church was in Kemper County, Mississippi. However, it is located just off of DeKalb-Porterville Road, so maybe that’s where the mistake originated.

“… Koster of Demopolis, in charge…” Demopolis is a city in Marengo County, Alabama. It’s more than 60 miles from Union Church cemetery in Mississippi. Koster was the name of the funeral home, also mentioned in the Sumter County Journal‘s obituary.

“…his widow, Mrs. Vance Graham…” Jesse’s second wife, Mary Katherine Vance.

“…and four other children.” Three from Jesse’s first marriage: Virgil Graham, Roland Graham, and Annie Graham Sparrowgrove. One from the second marriage: John William Graham.

bibliography – The Montgomery Advertiser – 1939-10-24 – Page 7,, Obituary for Jesse H. Graham (Aged 78) 1939-10-24.

Pilot staff. “Our History.” Pilot International, 5 May 2021,

Pilot staff. “District Directory.” Alabama District Pilot, 2020,