Ernestine "Kitty" (Bland) Bennett Coxe (1914-2005)

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Ernestine "Kitty" Bennett Coxe (Bland)

Also Known As: "Kitty"
Birthplace: Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia, United States
Death: Died in Miami, Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States
Place of Burial: Englewood, Sarasota County, Florida, United States
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Aden B. Bland (1881-1927) and Margaret "Maggie" Jane (Jones) Bland (1880-1957)
Wife of Russell "Russ" Dewey Coxe, Jr (1914-1984)
Ex-wife of Robert "Bob" William Bennett (1908-1991)
Mother of <private> Semple (Bennett)
Sister of Hansell Elizabeth Bland (1907-1909); Anna Mae "Ann" (Bland) Donaldson Mitchell (1911-1982) and Earl Bland (1914-1943)

Managed by: Jim Semple, Jr
Last Updated:

About Ernestine "Kitty" (Bland) Bennett Coxe (1914-2005)

SEE "Timeline" for chronological order of life events including any photos and documents as available; SEE "Media" for any documents and photos included from "Timeline" as available.


Ernestine Bland was born on April 20, 1914, in Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia, a daughter of Aden B. Bland (1881-1927) and Margaret "Maggie" Jane (Jones) Bland (1880-1957). She is the sister of Hansell Elizabeth Bland (1907-1909); Anna Mae (Bland) Donaldson Mitchell (1911-1982); and twin brother, Earl Bland (1914-1943).

In 1920 and at the time her father, Aden Bland, died in 1927, she was living with her family at 605 West 44th St in Savannah, next door to her aunt Mattie Brunson, her mother's sister. By 1930, they had moved again to 20 West Hall St in Savannah.

She married Robert W. "Bob" Bennett on April 19, 1931 (the day before she turned 17 years old) in Ridgeland, Jasper County, South Carolina. They had one daughter, Betty Jane Bennett, in Savannah, GA. They divorced on November 1, 1933. Ernestine or Bob were not known or verified to have any more children after their divorce.

Around 1935, Ernestine with her daughter, Betty, moved to Miami, FL with her mother, sister and brother. In 1939, Maggie, Ann, Ernestine, Betty, and Earl lived at 515 NW 50th St, Miami, Dade County, FL. Ernestine was a saleswoman for Miramar Bakery. At 29, she married Russell "Russ" Dewey Coxe, Jr. on November 23, 1943 in Miami, FL. Ernestine was called "Kitty".

In 1971, Ernestine was honored for 18 years of Employee Service at Shelborne Hotel beachfront resort in Miami, FL. At that time, she was the longest employed staff member of the Hotel.

When Ernestine was 78 and daughter, Betty, was age 60, in a photo of them together, Betty commented of her mother, "sweet, cute, kind and funny lil' lady". Remembering her years later, Betty also noted, "She was always of the Baptist religion and a beautiful, petite, and vivacious woman. Two of her favorite songs were 'Blue Skies' and 'Amazing Grace'."

On Sunday, Sept. 4, 2005, Ernestine Coxe, age 91, died at Villa Maria Nursing Center in Miami, FL. Her cremated ashes were scattered by her daughter near Englewood, FL.

References: Articles, photos and comments of daughter Betty (Bennett) Semple, U.S. Census Records; Marriage Certificate document; SEE Documents if available under “Media” or “Timeline” events

Note: Overview arranged by family researcher and grandson, Jim Semple, Jr., subject to additions & corrections.

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Ernestine "Kitty" (Bland) Bennett Coxe (1914-2005)'s Timeline

April 20, 1914
Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia, United States

SEE "Documents"

Age 5
Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia, USA

In the 1920 Census and later, at the time Aden Bland died, they are living at 605 West 44th Street, next door to Maggie Bland’s sister, Mattie Brunson. Aden Bland’s occupation is still listed as a collector for a furniture company in Savannah, but his death certificate indicates he was retired at the time he died at age 46.

December 1927
Age 13

Rev. John Wilder of Calvary Baptist Temple led the service at Corinth Baptist Church cemetery in Brooklet in Bulloch County, Georgia.

Age 15
Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia, United States

Margaret J H Bland, Head of Household, Event Type: Census, Event Year: 1930, Event Place: Savannah, Chatham, Georgia, United States, District: 0023, Gender: Female, Age: 48, Marital Status: Widowed, Race: White, Birth Year (Estimated): 1882, Birthplace: Georgia, Father's Birthplace: Georgia, Mother's Birthplace: Georgia

Household Gender Age Birthplace
Head Margaret J H Bland F 48 Georgia
Daughter Anna M Bland F 19 Georgia
Daughter Ernestine Bland F 16 Georgia
Son Earl Bland M 16 Georgia

United States Census, 1930, Margaret J H Bland, Savannah, Chatham, Georgia, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 0023, sheet 5B, family 82, NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 344, Sheet Number and Letter: 5B, Household ID: 82, Line Number: 59, Affiliate Name: The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), Affiliate Publication Number: T626, Affiliate Film Number: 344, GS Film number: 2340079, Digital Folder Number: 004531965, Image Number: 00285

April 19, 1931
Age 16
Ridgeland, Jasper County, SC, USA

SEE "Documents" for Marriage Certificate (Top & Bottom Parts)

Their Marriage Certificate shows Robert W. Bennett and Ernestine Bland, both of Savannah, GA, are the ages of 22 (Robert) and 18 (Ernestine) with the marriage date of April 19, 1931. Actually, Ernestine Bland was age 16, born April 20, 1914. So she was to turn age 17 the day after her wedding.

November 1932
Age 18
Savannah, Chatham, Georgia, United States

SEE photo, age 8 mos, included

Tue, Dec. 2, 2003 Jim Semple, Jr. email shows "Grandmother Betty Jane Bennett (Semple) at 8 months old"

1-30-2013 Betty Semple recalls something told to her when she was just a little baby in 1932 around 6 months old or older (around Sept 1932 or so). When she was crawling and managed to find a clothes hanger and had it in her mouth as she crawled, unknown to her mother, to the top of the stairs of their apt where they lived. She ended up falling down the long stairway with the hanger in her mouth. It ended up causing damage inside of her mouth and cheek.

November 1, 1933
Age 19
Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia, United States

SEE "Documents" for copy of 1933 Divorce Decree in Savannah, GA

Nov 1, 1933 divorce of Robert W Bennett and Ernestine Bennett

Age 20
Savannah, Chatham, Georgia, United States

Betty Semple recalled the incident told her of nearly being killed in the street. She was in the early stages of walking, had a little dog and followed the dog out of the front of the Apt. Building where they lived. She followed him to the street where the dog ran out and was immediately killed by a car. This stopped little toddler, Betty, from proceeding out into the danger of the street. The little dog really saved her life.

Tue, Dec. 2, 2003, James H. Semple commented in email sent to his son, Jim Semple, Jr.: "Betty Jane Bennett (Grandmother Semple) at 3 years old probably in Savannah, Georgia"

James referred to wife, Betty, as "Grandmother" as she was to a large family.

April 1939
Age 24
Miami, Dade County, FL, USA

Betty Jane Bennett (Semple) wrote: "My back yard, my favorite ducks (use to chase and peck at me), I was 7 yrs old, I love this picture! Brings back so many wonderful memories. Key Lime Tree (lower left corner), Banana Trees, Chickens, Blue Fantail Pigeons, Pineapples we planted, Papaya Tree - Yum! Pink Flamingos (not real) in Rock Garden, Towels on chair used for Earl's (Bland) swollen legs (heart trouble)"

This house was the residence of Margaret "Maggie" Bland, grandmother to Betty Jane Bennett (Semple). Address: 515 NW 50th St, Miami, FL. Towels in chair were, for Earl Bland, used for heart therapy. Tree on bottom left is a key lime tree. Ducks would chase Betty and peck her. Car in garage was their Studebaker. Room extended in back was Betty's bedroom. Banana tree near the ducks. Pineapple top was planted and would grow. Would have garden. 1st window on left was dining room, 2nd window was kitchen sink, then 3rd window was only bathroom. Notice storm shutter for storms or hurricane weather. Pine tree in front on left. Phone number was 75004. (As recounted from Betty Semple, she was 7). All that lived there were Margaret Jane "Maggie" Bland (Ernestine & Anna's mother), Anna 'Ann' Mae (Bland) Donaldson (later became Ann Mitchell), Ernestine (Bland) Bennett (Betty's mother) & Earl Bland (Ernestine & Earl were twins) and Betty Bennett (Semple).