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Julia Murphy


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At a Glance

Julia Murphy belonged to a group of five Sampson County, NC girls attending the Burwell School who were all related to some degree [1].


Julia Murphy was the daughter and second child of Archibald Murphy, younger brother of Patrick Murphy, Esq., and his wife, Ann Meredith Murphy. Archibald Murphy and Ann Meredith Murphy appear to have remained on his father Robert Murphy's farm near Tomahawk, NC. Patrick Murphy had married the daughter of well-to-do William A. Faison (who was said to own 30,000 acres and 402 slaves), and it was a happy arrangement for Julia Murphy to accompany her first cousins, the twins Mary Bailey Murphy  and Susan Moseley Murphy , to Mrs. Burwell's (Anna Robertson Burwell ) school in Hillsborough, NC. There was only a few months' difference in the girls' ages, and their Sampson County, NC backgrounds were similar.

Julia's name is listed in the Burwell School Catalogue of 1848-51 [2], and she arrived with her cousins in mid-July 1848 to enroll for the autumn session, which opened July 17. The preserved letters of the twins mention Julia who  "sends her love"  or goes  "down street"  with Sallie Grice (Sarah Grice ) and Amelia Faison (Mary Amelia Faison ). Presumably Julia remained at the school for two years as the Murphy twins planned to do.

In 1852 Archibald Murphy and his family moved to Tennessee; Julia Murphy, not quite eighteen years old, died on September 7, 1852 [1].

Biographical Data

Important Dates

Julia Murphy was born on November 12, 1834. She died on September 7, 1852.

Places of Residence

Schools Attended



  1. Mary Claire Engstrom. The Book of Burwell Students: Lives of Educated Women in the Antebellum South. (Hillsborough: Hillsborough Historic Commission, 2007).
  2. Burwell School Catalogue of 1848-51.