Clifton Eugene Mills,
Coffee County, Alabama

Submiited by: Yvonne Smith-Callaway
AUG 2006

Clifton Eugene Mills -------------------------------------Newspaper article from frontpage of The Elba Clipper 6-12-1941

WHY he took his life ? My grandfather Clifton Eugene Mills had 4 sons, 3 of whom were old enough to go to war. He made the remark to my grandmother Mattie Ophelia Beck-Mills around June 4th, 1941 that he would take his own life before he would see his sons go to war and get killed. He bought himself a new outfit and my grandmother saw him when he put the clothes in a trunk. On June 6, 1941 he did exactly what she feared. My mother Beunah Inez Mills and her sister Mary Kate Mills found him with his head almost cut off, from a straight razor. My mother wrapped her skirt around her finger to wipe away the blow flies that were already on his body. The newspaper spelled some of their children's names wrong, it should have read: Bobby Lawrence Mills, Girstel Glen Mills, James Gafford Mills, Delton Conrye Mills, Beunah Inez Mills, Mary Kate Mills, Cassie Wayne Mills, Myrna Loy Mills. Clifton Eugene and Mattie Ophelia Mills grandchildren were: Bobby Mills, Cabert Mills, Robert Mills, Yvonne Smith-Callaway, Dwain Smith Sr, Dusty Griffin, Stanley Griffin, Susan Griffin, Joan Griffin, Kim Griffin, Mary Ann Griffin, Sandy Cole & Jeffery Cole. Clifton Eugene Mills is buried at Friendship Cemetary. Below is a pic of where Clifton was living at the time he took his life. This pic was taken years after my grandmother moved away. By the time this pic was taken, the house was in pretty bad shape. The tall trees to the left of the house, my mother ( Beunah Inez Mills ) planted when the trees were no bigger than 2 feet tall.
This was known as "The Sheely Place".

1930 Coffee County, AL Census:

1900 Crenshaw County, AL Census (with parents Columbus "Lum" & Katie Mills:

Yvonne Smith-Callaway yvonne_31217

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