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Ira Christopher Starling was born on December 29, 1884, in Florida, his father, Roland, was 31 and his mother, Martha, was 32. He married Della Jones on December 10, 1914, in Sanford, Florida. They had seven children in 15 years. He died on April 21, 1945, in Miami, Florida, at the age of 60, and was buried in Holly Hill, Florida.
Della Jones was born on October 28, 1897, in Geneva, Florida. She married Ira Christopher Starling on December 10, 1914, in Sanford, Florida. They had seven children in 15 years. She died on February 29, 1972, in Huntsville, Alabama, at the age of 74.

Miami, Dade, Florida

Miami, Florida, Photo of Ira Christopher Starling watering the plants in his garden.

1934, Miami, Florida, Photo of Della Jones Starling, Ira Christopher Starling, Rose Ella Starling Bennett. 
No Marker, 1st row to the right of the gate.

Ira Christopher Starling

Birth: Dec. 29, 1884
Florida, USA

Death: Apr. 21, 1945
Florida, USA

Mr. Ira Christopher Starling, Pierson, Fla. 
b. Dec. 29, 1884 d. Apr. 21, 1945
Wife: Della Starling
Father: Rolland M. Starling
Mother: Martha E. Purdom
Shipped from Bess Fun. Home Miami, Fla.
Buried: Shady Rest Cem. Holly Hill, Fla

No Marker, 1st row to the right of the gate.
Family links: 
  Ira Carroll Starling (1916 - 1975)*
*Calculated relationship


Shady Rest Cemetery 
Holly Hill
Volusia County
Florida, USA

Created by: Lynda S. Wise
Record added: Oct 24, 2010 
Find A Grave Memorial# 60559077

Della died of cardic arrest on February 29, 1972 in Huntsville, Alabama, at the Huntsville Hospital, at the age of 74 years, 4 months, and 1 day. Services were handled by Brisson Funeral Home, 905 Laurel Avenue, Sanford, Florida. Her body was shipped by Laughlin Service in Huntsville, Alabama to Sanford, Florida on February 29, 1972.

Della Jones Starling was buried in the Geneva Cemetery on March 3, 1972 in Lot 60dd.

Della Jones Starling only had a small metal marker on her grave after she died until 2002. The Geneva Historical Society started putting granite markers on all the graves that did not have one. When Linda Crompton saw it she was so taken by the kind act, and sent the society the money to cover the cost. Because of what Della Jones Starling meant to Linda Crompton, she wanted to do that for her grand mother. The new marker says. "Della Jones Starling, 1897 - 1972".


Obit for Della Starling:

"Mrs. Della Starling. Mrs. Della Jones Starling, 74, of 1030 S. E. 9th Ave., Hialeah, dies Tuesday after a short illness in Huntsville, Ala. She was born in Geneva and moved to Hialeah in 1929. She was a member of Geneva Methodist Church.

She is survived by a son, I.C. Starling, Kissimmee; four daughters, Mrs. W. E. Russell, Mrs. Raymond Herring, Mrs. David E. Liebmann and Mrs. Margaret Chester, all of Miami; 16 grandchildren.

Brisson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements."

Funeral Notice:

"Starling, Mrs. Della Jones - Funeral services for Mrs. Della Jones Starling, 74, of 1030 S. E. 9th Ave., Hialeah, who died Tuesday, will be held at 2 p.m., Friday, at Geneva United Methodist Church with Rev. Lee Davidson officiating. Burial in Geneva Cemetery. Brisson Funeral Home in charge."

Della Jones Starling is remembered as a loving mother by her children an a loving grandmother by all of her grand children.

Della Jones Starling was the reason Linda Dianne Herring Crompton got interested in genealogy. After Della Jones Starling died Linda Crompton found some of Della's writtings about some of her life and was so taken by them that she started her research.

Jim Ledford

While living in Miami, Florida Della Jones Starling met Brother Jim Ledford through the Unity Center of Practical Christianity Church.

In 1969 they lived at 707 North Michigan Avenue in Plant City, Florida.

They lived at Post Office Box 62 in New Market, Alabama after moving from Plant City, Florida.

They had a dog named "Sooner".

Martha "Martie" Carolyn Starling Russell and William "Bill" Everett Russell went to visit Della and Jim in Alabama and stayed a day or two.

They never married.

They were together when Della died in Alabama.

Ira & Della Starling Marriage

Della Jones and Ira Christopher Starling met in Geneva, Florida. Ira Christopher Starling was a trainman on the Florida East Coast Railroad, that ran through Geneva at that time.

Linda Dianne Herring Crompton found a note from Della Jones' parents, James Franklin Jones and Carolyn "Carrie" Louise Harris Culpepper Jones to County Judge George G. Herring asking him to allow Della Jones to marry Ira Christopher Starling. It stated "Judge Herring, Please issue license to Mr. Ira C. Starling to marry our daughter Miss Della Jones. Both parents consent. J.F. Jones, Mrs. J. F. Jones."

Linda Crompton also found the application for marriage, registered #206. It states Ira C. Starling resided in Geneva, Florida, was age 28, white, and born in Florida. Miss Della Jones resided in Geneva, Florida, was age 17, white, and was born in Geneva, Florida.

Linda Crompton has a copy of their marriage license #65. They were married on December 10, 1914 in Seminole county, Florida. Witnessess to their marriage were Mr. & Mrs. C.M. Culpepper. They were married by E.D. Brownlee, Pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Sanford, Florida. The county judge was Geo. G. Herring.

Ira & Della Starling's Home in New Smyrna, Florida

Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling's house in New Symrna was at 202 Myrtle Avenue. The house was a little one story, frame, next to the corner, two bedrooms, with an open porch on the front and back. In those days it had a swing on the front porch. There was a faucet that you would pump to get water outside on the back porch. One of the bedrooms had two double beds in it. Around the corner was a big, two story, block building that had a double garage on the bottom with two apartments on top. Linda and Bud Crompton went by these buildings and took pictures, which are in the family book.

Ira Christopher Starling also owned a lot in New Smyrna, on the main drive, on the beach side.In order to build the garage apartments, to rent out, he had to mortgage the lot he had paid for, the 2 bedroom house, and the lot he was going to build on. Then Della left. In order to get Della to come back he had to transfer to Miami during the Christmas holidays of 1925. This was in the middle of the depression and he could not sell any of his properties at that time. Ira Christopher

 House at 202 South Myrtle Avenue, that Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling lived in with their children. 
Photo of gargage on bottom, apartments on top, that Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling owned at one time. Their house was next door. The house in the photograph did not exist at the time.

Starling just walked away from everything, giving up the house, the garage and the apartments and all the lots. Ira Christopher and Della Starling's next door neighbor, in New Smyrna, was named Fussell and he  was a policeman.

Ira & Della Starling's Move to Miami, Florida

Ira Christopher Starling had lay-overs in Jacksonville and Miami with the FEC Railroad, so Della and the children did not see Ira a lot. Ira decided to move the family to Miami, about 1928. This was so Ira Christopher Starling could see the familymore with his lay-over being in Miami. The FEC Railroad let im use one of the box cars to move their furniture and belongings, which wasn't much, down to Miami. Ira Christopher Starling picked Della up on the way to Miami, at her parents house in Geneva. The family started all over again in Miami.
When Ira picked up Della in Geneva to go to Miami they all got in the car to leave. James Franklin Jones, Della's father, walked around and around the car looking at all the children before they left for Miami. He would miss them greatly, as he was alone in his house in Geneva. James Franklin Jones died three months later.
Ira Christopher Starling had recently bought a Model A Ford car while living in New Symrna. They drove this car to Miami when they moved. After they got to Miami Ira Christopher Starling would not drive the Model A Ford any more, because he said there was too much traffic. They really didn't need a car in Miamibecause there were street cars, and buses, just blocks away from their house. So Ira Christopher Starling sold this Model A to Doctor Woods and Nurse Bedsole. Ira never owned a car again.
Della wasn't able to do much work when they first moved to Miami. Della was pregnant with their 6th child and but ended up losing the baby. The children had to do the laundry and cooking for the family.

Miami, Floirda

3700 North East Miani Court, Miami, Florida, Photo of the home of Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling. Linda Dianne Herring Crompton family photo.

Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling rented a two story house, in Buena Vista, near Ira's work at the FEC Railroad. Ira could walk to the railroad yard. They only lived there 2 or 3 months because Della could not walk up and down the stairsevery day because of her health. Then they moved down the street, about a block away and rented again. Wanda also lived here.
They lived at 15 North East 38 Street in Miami, Linda Crompton was not sure what years, but she did know they lived there during 1935 - 1939. Raymond and Ella Mary Herring lived here with them when Raymond Carroll Herring and Jeannette Herring were born in 1935 and 1937.
Ira Christopher Starling bought a house at 3700 North East Miami Court in Miami, Florida. It was a large, white, two story, poured concrete block, house, on the corner. Behind this house was a two story apartment, that Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling lived in, and they rented out the larger, front house. The people that rented the front house had a son that died from strep throat. When these people moved out of the front house, Ira Christopher Starling moved his family into the front house. Behind this property was a dance studio and on the side, across the street was the Biltmore Dry Cleaners. This house was torn down in the late 1960's I believe. Martha "Martie" Carolyn Starling Russell, rented a house down the street from Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling house.
Ira Christopher Starling had to sell their house, of many years, at 3700 North East Miami Court, because he was sick and couldn't afford to keepthe home. Ira Christopher Starling went into the hospital in Saint Augustine, Florida, where the FEC Railroad sent him for medical care. Ella Mary Starling Herring and her family had to move out, which IraChristopher Starling felt bad about.
Susan Douglas' father worked for the FEC Railroad with IraChristopher Starling. Susan Douglas lived in the house beside Ira's home. The two families were great friends for many years.
Some of the neighbors around Ira Christopher Starling and DellaJones Starling's house in Miami were: (1)Romana Pann, who married Don Wood - lived around the corner in Buenea Vista; (2)The Mabrys-on corner across the street on North East Miami Court in a big two story house; (3)Clara Stille - lived in neighborhood, used to embarrass the kids because she would hug and kiss them when she came over; (4) The Cutts - lived behind Mrs. Mabry in an upstairs apartment that they rented from Mrs. Mabry.

The Starling's Visit From Joe Matheaux

Joe Matheaux, who lived in Geneva, Florida and his best friend, Buddy, hitchhiked when they were young, from Geneva to Miami to see two of the Starling girls. Buddy, Joe's best friend, later killed him self in the school yard in Geneva. Joe Matheaux remembered one of the Starling girls was Margaret and he could not remember who the other girl was. Joe Matheaux said he should have been born earlier because he seemed to have more in common with Della Jones Starling, than Della's girls.

Joe Matheaux and Buddy wanted to travel by thumbing for their rides. They got to Titusville and no one had picked them up. They went to see their friends, the Bronson family, who were regular old, country people. Joe Matheaux and Buddy had not had anything to eat all day. The railroad ran right behind the Bronson house. Mr. Bronson told them he would jump the train and go to Miami quite often. Joe Matheaux and Buddy had never been on a train, but they decided to try jumping the train to get to Miami. So after dark, when the train stopped right there, they made a mad dash for the train. They knew nothing about a train and they ended up jumping into a gondolla car that was loaded with rocks. They rode all the way to Miami on top of these rocks. When the train would make stops they could hear the railroad men looking for hobo's, but the trainmen did not look in the car with rocks. Joe Matheaux said he guessed they thought no one would ever ride on top of rocks.

When Joe Matheaux and Buddy got to Fort Lauderdale, Buddy decided he had to go to church, because it was Sunday. Buddy was Catholic and knew where the church was in Fort Lauderdale. It was quite a long way from the train tracks. Buddy walked into the church, did the sign of the cross and walked out.

By the time Joe Matheaux and Buddy got to Miami they were full of black smut, dust, and dirt. They found a filling station and went into the bathroom and washed their hands and faces.

Joe Matheaux didn't remember how they got to the Starling house in Miami, because it was not right in down town. Joe Matheaux and Buddy spent the night with the Starling's and the next morning Della Jones Starling fixed them breakfast. Joe Matheaux was a country kid and did not know what honey dew melon was. Della Jones Starling had cut a honey dew melon in half and gave them each half, with ice cream on top. Joe Matheaux said it was the weirdest thing he had ever had for breakfast, but he did not waste any of it because he was hungry and it was delicious. At home Joe Matheaux said he always had the same thing for breakfast, fried eggs, grits, bacon, coffee, and toast. Sometimes they would have pancakes or waffles.

Bessie Frances Starling Liebmann's Letter About Her Parents

Linda Crompton received the following letter from Bessie Frances Starling Liebmann in 1999. Bessie tells of her memories of her parents and her family.

* Bessie Liebmann ---

"I always felt so much love and security. Our house was always filled with people during the depression. Daddy provided the money and mother provided the meals and laundry. She worked willingly and cheerfully for everyone. Your mother (Ella Mary Starling Herring) and Aunt Martie (Martha Carolyn Starling) were part of the household when things were so hard for them. Everyone was always welcome in our home. Aunt Margaret (Margaret Edna Starling Chester Peacock) had a rough life but she had a beauitful faith in the Lord and I know she is happy now.

Of course, Uncle Carroll (Ira Carroll Starling Sr.), Aunt Martie (Martha Carolyn Starling), your mother (Ella Mary Starling Herring) and your Auntie Bea (Bessie Frances Starling Liebmann) were always "wonderful"! Mother and daddy raised 5 loving and caring children. Through our parents bad times - we learned valuable lessons. We weredetermined to have happy marriages. So, God is always so good to teach us His right ways. If we went through some bad times we learned to have compassion for others who are enduring the same problems. Life is never perfect - we are thankful for the good times and we are thankful for the lessons learned through the bad times.You

(Linda Dianne Herring Crompton) came from good, kind people and all the grandchildren are precious individuals because each new generation has passed along these traits.Precious memories - big dinners at home - big picnics at Aunt Marties - gathering at Mary's (once we had a weight losing session - we didn't stick to that too long). I can still see your daddy in front of his television watching the news and sports, Uncle Bill amusing us all with his great personality - Christmas parties at my house - Uncle Carroll and Sug coming to visit with their "Super" kids. Let's put all these glorious times before the hard times. As Dolly House said, "Hold your head high, you are a descendant of George Washington's father". I stayed in her mansion when I went to Anniston, Alabama when Uncle David was in the service.

I am really "weepy" as I remember the acceptance given to eveyone who was in our home. Make no mistake about it, we had many, many happy times.

God has a reason for each time of our lives - as children, teens, adulthood, and our closing days. I will be 78 in January and, as I look back, I can clearly see that God leads His dear children along.

This is an inadequate thanks to my mother and father for their love and for their many deeds of kindness to their family and all who needed them."

Ira Christopher Starling & the Florida East Coast Railroad

About 1896 Ira Christopher Starling started working for the Florida East Coast Railroad. He was12 years old. His wages were 75 cents a day plus food and a tent.

In 1912 Ira joined the Miami station crew as a conductor. Linda Dianne Herring Crompton has a newspaper article, dated Sunday, October 25, 1942, with a picture of Ira Christopher Starling, as he recieves his orders at the Miami Train Station.

Ira Christopher Starling worked for the Florida East Coast Railroadfrom 1912 till 1942.

Linda Crompton contacted the Flagler Museum in West Palm Beach, Florida, concerning Ira Christopher Starling. They found two letters in their files dated September 16th and 18th, 1911. One was for Ira Christopher Starling to report to work on the Key West Extension, Engine #200, second crew, on September 19th, 1911. His wages were $3.75 for a 10 hour day and overtime. This pay rate included board. Linda Crompton asked for a copy of these two letters but they are not allowed to copy them.

Starling's Seeing President Roosevelt in Miami

One time Ira Christopher Starling took the kids down town to the railroad station in Miami to see President Roosevelt come in on the train. Ella Mary Starling couldremember the President sitting on the back end of the train, where there was a little caged area.


Ira Christopher Starling was upset when he saw the president because he could see how crippled the President was.

Ira Christopher Starling and his father:

Ira Christopher Starling sent money home while he was in the military. Ira wanted his father, Roland Rufus Starling, to keep the money for him until he got home. Roland spent the money instead of saving it for his son. When it was getting close to time for Ira to come home Roland went out into the woods hunting and did not come back. They finally found Roland, 2 miles West of Holly Hills, about 3 - 4 weeks later, in the woods. Roland had died from poisoning. Roland was all covered with leaves, etc. They don't know if he was bitten by a poisonous snake, ate a poisonous berry or committed suicide because he spent his son's money.

Roland Rufus Starling died on May 4, 1908 in Holly Hill, Florida. They did not find his body until June. Roland is buried at Pinewood Cemetery, lot #77, in the newer part. On his tombstone it reads "Found dead in woods". Services were at 4:00 P.M. on June 6, 1908,with Rev. Cooper.

Roland was living in Kingston at the time of his death.                          

Ira Christopher Starling's Illness

In Ira Christopher Starling's letters around the end of 1944 he stated he was in St. Augustine. Ira had TB and was in the hospital there because that is where the FEC Railroad sent him for treatment. He stayed there for awhile under the care of Dr. Walk. While Ira Christopher Starling was there they discovered he also had asthma.  


Ira Christopher Starling said in his letters that he had the best nurses in the world, they were very good to him, the food was good, and he did not want for anything. Ira Christopher Starling had to stay in bed all the time, which he did not like. He was only allowed to go to the toilet which was only about 10 steps.

Ira Christopher Starling came back to Miami after being in the hospital inSt. Augustine around December 1944. He went into Jackson Memorial Hospital. Jackson Memorial Hospital had the patient's that had TB in separate wooden building on the grounds of the hospital. There was no air conditioning in these buildings, but there were large screened windows.  


Jackson Memorial Hospital TB ward


Miami, Florida

1920's, Miami, Florida, Photo of the tuberculosis ward at Jackson Memorial Hosital.

When the family would come to visit Ira Christopher Starling at Jackson Memorial Hospital they would have to visit through the windows because they weren't allowed inside because they could catch the TB from the patients. Martha "Martie" Carolyn Starling Russell and Robert "Bobby" Alan Russell rode the bus to see Ira Christopher Starling at the hospital because they did not have a car during the war.

Ira Christopher Starling died at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida, from TB, at the age of 60, on April 21, 1945 at 1:25 A.M. Ira Christopher Starling had been at Jackson Memorial Hospital for 4 months. His wife, Della Jones Starling, was 47 at the time of his death. Bess Funeral Home handled the services. The funeral charges were $70.00. (Linda Crompton has a copy of the funeral home's bill). There was a service for Ira Christopher Starling in Miami, Florida and one in Holly Hill, Florida on April 23 at 3:00 P.M., with Rev. McGarvey.

Ira Christopher Starling is buried at Shady Rest Cemetery, in Holly Hill, Florida, in space 4, lot 153. Baggett Summer Funeral Home held the services. The informant at the time of death was Kenneth B. Bess of 1326 North West 7 Avenue, Miami, Florida. Ira's death certificate is #7244, Volume 1143. Linda Crompton has a copy of the death certificate for Ira Christopher Starling.

Miami, Florida, Family registery page from the bible of Della Jones Starling. 

May 1939

Miami, Florida

May 1939, Miami, Fla. Jeannette Herring Creech, Margaret Edna Starling Chester Peacock, Bessie Francis Starling Liebmann, Raymond Carroll Herring 

Della Jones was born on October 28, 1897 in Geneva, Seminole county, Florida to James Franklin Jones and Carolyn Louise Harris Culpepper Jones. She was born in a large, two story colonial home that was built by family.

Della was named for her father's first wife, Della Hines Jones, who died after child birth.

Della found a warm welcome with her father, mother and big 9 year old brother, Wesley Carroll Culpepper.

Della grew up in Geneva, Florida with her parents.

Miami, Florida

15 North East 38 Street, Miami, Florida, Photo of Rose Ella Starling Bennett with Della Jones Starling, sister-in-laws.

Miami, Florida

Miami, Florida, Photo of Ira Christopher Starling and Della Jones Starling in front of their home.

When Ella Mary Starling told Della Jones Starling that she was going to marry Raymond Stokes Herring, Della fainted and they had to put her to bed. But Della loved Raymond. Ella Mary Starling was living in the two story house with her parents at this time.


Miami, Florida

1967, Miami, Florida, Bessie Frances Starling Liebamnn, David Edwin Liebmann.

Photo of Della Jones Starling. 
David Edwin Liebmann.

November 16, 1942

Miami, Florida

November 16, 1942, Miami, Florida, Wedding Day, Bessie Frances Starling Liebmann & David Edwin Liebmann. 

About 1940

Miami, Florida

About 1940, Miami, Florida, Norma Marie Chester Cole Shipman, Margaret Edna Starling Chester Peacock, Reginald Grady Chester.


Miami, Florida

1947, Miami, Florida, Photo of Bessie Frances Starling Liebmann, Ella Mary Starling Herring, Della Jones Starling, Martha "Martie" Carolyn Starling Russell, Margaret Edna Starling Chester Peacock, together for Della's 50th birthday. 

October 1981

Hendersonville, North Carolina

October 1981, Hendersonville, North Carolina, Everett Robert Peacock & Margaret Edna Starling Chester Peacock.

Miami, Florida, Bessie Frances Starling Liebmann.
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