Seven Ancestors Ago–Absalom Caudle (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

 

The Facts:

  • Born in Halifax County, Virginia 17591
  • Died in Stanly County in March 7, 18462
  • Married Elizabeth Maness3
  • He is my 5th great-grandfather via
    • His son, Sampson
    • His son, John Calvin
    • His daughter, Rosa Ann
    • Her daughter, Virginia
    • Her son
    • His daughter

There is quite a record concerning Absalom Caudle’s Revolutionary Pension.  He appeared in court to apply for a pension in October 1832.  He was approved.  The Stanly County court record clearly shows Caudle and his signature shows Caudel.  It’s pretty cool to have an ancestor who could sign his own name.  I don’t have too many of those this far back. However, on Fold3.com, his Revolutionary Pension papers have been annotated and indexed as Candel.

In his pension application, he states he was born in Halifax County, Virginia in 1759 and that he was living in Bladen County, NC when he enlisted and for a few years after the war.  He didn’t try to avoid serving, in fact, he substituted for others after his first enlistment. In 1779, he signed a petition against forming a new county from Bladen, Duplin, and New Hanover counties.  Sometime after this, he moved his family to Anson County, NC.

I haven’t been able to find him on the 1790 or 1800 census, however by 1810, he’s living in Anson County.  According to his pension application, he probably moved to Anson in the early 1780’s. There is at least one family bible that was sent to the war pension office to help prove that Elizabeth was indeed Absalom’s wife.  This bible remained there for nearly 50 years before being returned to Stanly County.  I’m not sure where this bible is now, but there images of a handwritten transcription of what was included in that bible (labeled Bible A) and a second (labeled Bible B).

This is where things get interesting for me.  When you look at the Bible A, Absalom and Elizabeth are married March 22, 1787 and have nine children over a 22 year span.  Their first being born in 1788.  Then, written in Bible B, there’s three children listed from 1818 to 1822.  While there’s no other information given regarding the mother, I found the dates to really be pressed for these children to belong to Elizabeth.  In my research, I started to find the following or similar statements:

Elizabeth was insane by 1815 and Absalom had children by another woman.  However, Elizabeth stayed on and they were never divorced.

Also, in a few places, I find the name Martha Parrish as the mother of the last three children.  Where did this name originate?  After Absalom’s death, Elizabeth filed for widow’s pension.  By this time in the 1840’s, it is documented that she’s insane.  It’s also documented that a Martha Parrish had filed for widow’s benefits.  What an interesting twist.  I haven’t found Martha Parrish’s application, but Elizabeth was finally proven to be Absalom’s wife and received his pension after his death.3

I would like to know where the theory about Elizabeth being deranged by 1815 and would love to see Martha’s pension application.  I do believe he had those three children by another woman.  Why didn’t she put herself in the second bible?  Since Martha applied for his pension, it makes sense that she would be the mother, but I have nothing concrete to base this upon.

Absalom Caudle died at the home of his son, Jesse, on the 7th of March, 1846.

-Died: At the residence of Capt. Jesse CAUDELL in Anson, on the 7th, Absalom CAUDELL, aged 89, a revolutionary soldier2

Sources:

  1. Caudel, Absalom Revolutionary War Pension Application
  2. Fayetteville Observer, Fayetteville, NC.  March 24, 1846
  3. Caudel, Elizabeth Widow’s Pension Application

Seven Ancestors Ago–George Shankle (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

  • Born:  1754 in Anson County, NC
  • Died:  26 Sep 1841
  • He is my 5th great-grandfather via:
    • His daughter Oney
    • Her son, William Allen
    • His son, David Jones Allen
    • His daughter, Virginia Allen
    • Her son
    • His daughter

According to George Shankle’s Revolutionary War Pension Application of 1832, he was born in North Carolina in 1754.  According to the application, he lived

in North Carolina in that part of Anson county which was later Montgomery County on the southwest side of PeeDee river between Rocky River and PeeDee, two and on half miles from PeeDee on Jacobs Creek and the same distance from where he was born.  George Shankle enlisted in 1777 and served three months as private in Captain John Randle’s North Carolina Company.  After remaining at home a short while he enlisted and served three months as private in Captain Jesse McLendon’s North Carolina Company.  Soon afterward he again enlisted and served two months as private in Captain Buckner Kimbol’s North Carolina Company.  He also served various short tours as minuteman during the Revolution. (Source:  Letter from Veteran’s Administration dated June 22, 1940)

George Shankle was evidently married twice as the only wife I know of, Oney, was married previously to a James Raiford who died before 1830.  I haven’t found any evidence of who the mother of George Shankle’s children are.

On the 1840 census, he was living on the West Pee Dee River, listed himself as aged 60-69, a female as 50-59, and 10 slaves.

George Shankle was also a clergyman as he testifies on the behalf of other solders applying for pensions as well as in a statement of his death in the Carolina Observer dated 13 Oct 1841.

Another Revolutionary War soldier gone! 26th ult., at his residence in Stanly County, NC–Rev. George Shankle aged 90 years. For the last forty years, he was a preacher of the M.E. Church.

His wife, Oney, lived on in Anson County until after 1850.  She went west with a son and on the way back, perhaps, stopped in Camden, Alabama to visit her sister and died there 24 Feb 1855.  Proof of her marriages and parents are in her obituary posted in the Southern Christian Advocate.

Died in Camden, Wilcox Co., AL., Feb. 24, Mrs. Oney Shankle, born in Montgomery Co., about the year 1781. Her parents were Zedekiah and Tabitha Ledbetter. She was married successively to James Rayford and George Shankle. In 1851, she went to AR with her son, where she remained a couple of years in April last, stopped to see her sister in Camden

Children of George Shankle as listed in his will are:

  • Levi
  • Margaret
  • Tabitha
  • Barbary
  • Mary
  • Abia
  • Oney
  • Susannah
  • Eli
  • Henry

Sources:

  • Shankle, George, Revolutionary War Pension Application
  • Shankle, George, Federal Census 1790, 1800, 1830, 1840
  • Raiford, Oney, 1830 Federal Census
  • Allen Family History
  • Death Notices, Carolina Observer, 13 Oct 1841.
  • Southern Christian Advocate, Vol. I, 1837-1860
  • Will of George Shankle Sr

 

Four Ancestors Ago–John “Sutt” Morris (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

John Thomas “John Sutt” Morris is my 2nd great-grandfather via

  • his son, Charlie Ardell Morris
  • his son, Fred Hoyt Morris
  • his son

The facts:

  • Born:  22 November 1856 to William Morris and Martha Lewis Morris
  • Married:  Susanah Carolina Hall in 1881
  • Died: 4 March 1840 of Pneumonia and heart failure caused by influenza

The following was written by my mother in about 1990.

 

John T. “Sutt” Morris

There were so many John Morris’s in the Moratock, Eldorado, and Ophir communities in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s that they had nicknames.  it was believed that there was Indian heritage in the background of this particular John.  He had sharp facial features and a dark olive complexion,  thus the nickname “Sutt” was given him.  If only we had written down some of the things he said about his Indian Heritage.  We are having a hard time tracing it today.

John “Sutt” was the son of William and Margaret Lewis Morris.  He had brothers named William F. and George, and a sister named Nancy.

He was born 22 November 1859 and died 4 March 1940.  He married Susanah Caroline Hall on 1 January 1882.  She died on 4 June 1948.  She was the daughter of R. Clark and Lea Hall.

John “Sutt” was out horseback riding one day and saw Caroline riding horses with another man.  He thought she was so pretty that he rode up beside her and took her off the horse.  He knew that day that he wanted to marry her.

He lived in various places along the Uwharrie River.  the most time was spent in what is now called the Reservation on several acres of land at the mouth of the Uwharrie River.  In the 1900’s, he and his family lived in the old Moratock Inn on the river road.  At the time of his death he was living in Uwharrie.  After he died, Caroline spent most of her time with their children.

A daughter remembers her father talking about he and his daddy “Billy” digging gold in the hills.

Their children are Charlie Ardale born 1883 died in 1975 and married Annie Cranford.  Minnie D. born December 1885 married W. Reid Harris; Alicia A. born May 1881, married John Thompson; Stella M. born February 1891 married Jessie Mullinix; Myrtle Lucy “Lou” born April 1892, married Tom Hardister; Henry B. “Peck” born March 1894 married Eunice Correll; Sherrill L. Morris born 18 March 1896 and died 3 August 1915, buried at Prospect Baptist Church Cemetery; and Alanta G. born 13 December 1899.  She married Denny Biles and had three children, divorced and married George Chandler.  They too were divorced.  She is now 93 years old and still resides by herself in Albemarle, NC.  Walter was born on 13 February 1904 and died 4 January 1989.  He married Catherine Ballard of Wadeville and they had no children.  Alanta remembers so well that Walt nursed until he was almost ready to go to school.  He would call it is pie and ask for it.  They bribed him to stop by giving him a little beagle dog.

John “Sutt” and Caroline are buried in the Bethany Cemetery now known as Uwharrie Methodist Church Cemetery.

 

Sources:  Census Records, marriage and death certificates, deeds and will recorded at Montgomery County Courthouse, Alanta Morris Chandler.

John Sutt Morris Family circa 1910?

John Sutt Morris Family
circa 1910?

Top left is Charlie Ardell Morris. The middle boy is Peck Morris (Henry), the boy on the far right in the dark suit is Sherrill Morris. The youngest male is Walt Morris (on mother’s knee). Between John “Sutt” and Caroline is Lanta.  I think the girls from left to right are Minnie, Alice, Stella, and Lou.

John Sutt Morris Family before 1940

John Sutt Morris Family
before 1940

Squatting are Peck (Henry), Charlie, & Walt Standing from left are Alice, Minnie, Stella, John Sutt Morris, Lanta Morris, Caroline Hall Morris, Myrtle Lou.

P is for Preacher aka Five Ancestors Ago–LeeRoy Whitson Harris (52 Ancestors Week 16)

P

 

 

 

 

is for Preacher.

 

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

Rev. LeeRoy Whitson Harris is my 2nd great-grandfather via

  • his daughter, Alice Virgillia Harris
  • her daughter, Racie Elmira Harris
  • her son

The facts:

  • Born:  20 March 1853 to William Alexander & Ruth Holland Harris
  • Married:  Sarah Russell before 1874
  • Married:  Nancy Russell 6 Jan 1885
  • Died: 2 Jan 1840 of Mitral Insufficiency with contributing causes of hypertension and influenza

He was a shoemaker according to the 1880, 1900, and 1920 census.  In 1910, he was listed as a farmer.  Was this just the recorder listing everyone as a farmer, or did he actually give up shoe-making for a while?  By 1930, he was a clergyman of Baptist faith.

Here’s LeeRoy, second wife Nancy, and family.

Front: William, Travis, Oscar, Sylvia

Middle:  Nancy Russell & LeeRoy Whitson Harris

Back:  Georgia, Alice, Jessie

LeeRoy Harris Family--After

After
Harris, Lee Roy and family
before 1912

A memorial sketch given at the Harris Reunion after his death said this of his time as a Baptist preacher (transcribed verbatim):

By profession:  Lee was a local Baptist preacher, serving as such in the churches of this and adjoining counties, until ill health compelled him to superanuate, but his superanuation did not prevent him from preaching occasionally, when circumstances were favorable, and his outstanding usefulness in this community was to conduct burial services for the dead, in which his remarks and admonition to the living were most impressive and effective.  He was usually the leader in singing, and was generally known as the leader not only in the Baptist churches, but in Methodist as well.

 

Sources:

  • Harris, LeeRoy Whitson US Federal Census Records 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930.
  • Rev. Lee W. Harris tribute
  • Harris, Lee W death certificate

Six Ancestors Ago–Alfred Elder (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

I haven’t proven most of this myself, so take it with a grain of salt.  However, it does all make sense to me, when looking at names, ages, etc.  I do plan on taking a trip this summer to see what I can dig up.

I believe Alfred Elder is my husband’s 3rd great-grandfather via:

  • his son, John
  • his son, Edd
  • his daughter, Annie
  • his son

The facts..as I know them:

  • Born:  about 1806 in Virginia
  • Married: 13 Jan 1831 in Campbell County, Virginia
  • Died:  after 1880

If census data is correct and I’m attributing it to the correct Alfred Elder, he and Elizabeth had fourth son born between 1835 and 1840 who was dead (or at least not living with Elizabeth) by 1850.

In 1850, Alfred Elder is living in the Richmond Penitentiary having been convicted of manslaughter.  By 1860, he’s served his time and living back with his family.  He’s listed on the census as a “convict.”

In September of 1864, Alfred appeared in Campbell County, Virginia inquiring about his son, Alfred C’s wages.  Alfred Jr was a private in the CSA was killed at Chancellorsville by a horse on or about 3 May, 1863.  He wished to be paid what was left owed to Alfred Jr (approx. $100) as he left neither wife or child.

In 1880, he’s divorced but still living in Campbell County.

I’ve searched Chronicling America for newspaper articles that explain what he did, why he was convicted, but have found nothing so far.  Hopefully, my trip will be fruitful and proving!

D is for Death Certificate aka Three Ancestors Ago–William Christopher Harris (52 Ancestors)

D

 

 

 

is for Death Certificate

In addition to the A to Z Challenge,  this post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

William Christopher Harris

harris, wm

  • Born:   December 25, 1871
  • Died April 27, 1924
  • Parents:  James Austin & Luscitta Harris
  • He is my direct ancestor via
  • his daughter, Racie E. Harris
  • her son

I never realized my great-grandfather lived for 12 years after my grandmother was born; after his wife died.  I mean, the children scattered, going to live with relatives or simply to be adopted by someone.  To my young mind, he wouldn’t have lived long after his wife died, leaving the children to grow up not even knowing each other.  My grandmother remembered seeing him a few times, but she was nearly 13 years old when he died.  I actually thought he went to the asylum (the crazy one) after his wife died and pretty much stayed there until he died.

Don’t get me wrong, he didn’t die there.  No, he was on his way home and got hit by a car.  Again, I thought, ‘how sad, to finally be on the way home and to die like that.”  Ironic, huh?

Not once I found this…

harris_william_christopher_deathcertificate

Clearly he stepped out in front of a truck, on purpose.  He’d only been there, at the State Hospital in Morganton, for three months.  I’ve requested any records they have on two different occasions with no answer.  I’m going to try again.  Then, if I get no answer, I’ll be making a road trip over the summer.  They could at least tell me, perhaps, if he’d spent more than one bout there.  There’s more to this story, I’m sure.  Evidence from the 1920 census indicates this.  I surely hope I can find out at least part of it.

Sources:

  • Racie E. Morris
  • Harris, William C.  North Carolina State Board of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics.North Carolina Death Certificates. Microfilm S.123. Rolls 19-242, 280, 313-682, 1040-1297. North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, North Carolina.

Three Ancestors Ago–Dillard Jones (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

Dillard is husband’s direct ancestor.  First, the facts:

  • Born 1884
  • Died after 1942
  • Parents:  Fillmore Jones and Lucy T. Mitchell
  • Married Mary Wells then Reba Matherly
  • My husband is descended from him, Dillard, through
  • his son, John Robertson Jones
  • his son

I really don’t know a lot about Dillard other than what shows up in a few historical records.  Dillard was born about 1884 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia to Fillmore and Lucy T. Mitchell Jones.

In 1904, he married Mary Wells and widowed in 1917.  They had three children; Martha, John, and Annie.  Minnie died at about 12-13 years of age.  Mary died at age 37.  Both Mary and Minnie(as well as second wife Reba) are buried in the Matthew Wells Family Cemetery in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.

On September 12, 1918, he filled out his WWI registration card.  Dillard Jones is a short stout, blue eyed, light haired fellow working for Jack Slaydan? in Callands, Virginia.  His nearest relative is Minnie Jones.  He’s not able to sign his name, instead simply leaving his mark.

In 1920, Dillard is living in Pittsylvania County with wife Reba (age 14) and children John and Annie.  His second, very young wife, is only a few years older than his son.  They’re renting in Fransisco Buckingham County, Virginia and he’s a laborer on a general farm.

In 1930, he’s living in Southside, Appomattox County, Virginia with with Reba and eight children, 4 sons and 4 daughters.  John and Annie are listed at the end of the list, instead of being in order by age.  They’re renting a place on William Marshall Road and he’s a farm laborer on a farm.

In 1940, he’s living in the Dan River District in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.  He’s listed as a widower lodger living with Jessie Gosney.  He’s a farmer.

The last evidence I have on Dillard Jones is in 1942 on his WWII registration card.  His nearest relative is Annie Jones of RFD 5, Danville Virginia.  He lives on RFD 5, near Mt. Olivet Church.  He works for Mr. BM Williams at Marshall Terrace in Danville.  By this time, he has at least learned to sign his name.  This card says he has no middle name.

I don’t know what happened to Dillard Jones after this.  I have a couple of pictures I think are of him beyond the one of him, Reba, and seven little children.  I have yet to find where those seven children went after Reba died.  Some were clearly too young to be on their own.  I wonder why they weren’t with him.

I wonder if he’s buried in the same cemetery as his two wives and oldest daughter.  The cemetery which was his first wife’s family cemetery.

Sources:

  • Jones, Dillard.  US Federal Census, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940
  • Jones, Dillard.  WWI Draft Registration Card
  • Jones, Dillard.  WWII Draft Registration Card
Dillard Jones Family

Dillard Jones Family

 

Three Ancestors Ago–Reba Matherly Jones (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

Reba isn’t my husband’s direct ancestor.  She was his great-grandfather’s, Dillard, second wife.  But there’s something tragic about her.  First, the facts:

  • Born 1905
  • Died 1935
  • I think her parents are Christopher Jack and Florense Matherly
  • My husband is descended from her husband, Dillard, through
  • his son, John Robertson Jones
  • his son

She was right at the same age as Dillard’s prior children.  My husband’s grandfather was only a couple of years older than her.  She was very young when she married Dillard.  In 1910, she’s living with Chris and Florense Matherly.  In 1920, she’s 14, living with, and married to Dillard Jones.  By 1930, she and Dillard have six children.  She’s 24.

By 1935, she’s dead.  You can see a picture of her tombstone here.  I have a photo somewhere.  I’ll add it when I find it.

 

edited to add:  Found the picture.  Reba Matherly Jones with husband Dillard and seven children.   Wow.  I think this is not too long before she died as there are three boys and three girls standing.  This fits the 1930 census.  One more child after 1930 who seems to be about a year old or less.  I wonder if she was pregnant with an 8th child and died due to complications.  Now to find out where all the children went!

Dillard Jones Family

Dillard Jones Family

Five Ancestors Ago–Nancy McSwain Allen (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

Nancy McSwain Allen was my 3rd great grandmother via

  • her son David Jones Allen
  • his daughter Virginia Allen Smith
  • her son
  • his daughter

According to her gravestone, she was born August 22, 1828 and died May 10, 1806.  The year of her birth was fairly close to what was reported on each census I’ve seen.

I’ve found a Nancy McSwain (age 21) living with Sarah McSwain (age 36) and Thomas McSwain (age 1) in Centre, Stanly County, NC.  This could be my Nancy living with a sister or sister-in-law.

Nancy and William were married with two children by 1860.  My mother’s notes indicate 1852 but I haven’t found anything to correlate that yet.

I don’t know a lot about Nancy other than she lost her husband during the Civil War and was left with two small children to raise on her own.  In 1880 she and son, David, are living in Stanly County.  In 1900, she is living with son David and his family, again in Stanly County, NC.

Her will leaves all property to her son and names him as executor.  It does not mention her daughter Sarah nor any children of Sarah.

According to my mother’s notes, her parents were Charles and Lurana Washburn McSwain perhaps of Rutherford County, NC.  However, I haven’t found the proof of this as of yet, either.

 

Sources:

  • Allen, Nancy.  US Federal Census.  1880 & 1900.
  • McSwain, Nancy.  US Federal Census.  1850.
  • Stanly County Wills.

Three Ancestors Ago–John Ed Robertson (52 Ancestors)

This post is a part of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge by Amy Johnson Crow at www.nostorytoosmall.com.

I chose John Ed today because it’s the anniversary of the Spanish Flu epidemic.  Whenever I think of a flu epidemic, I think of John Ed.  Our families were lucky in that we didn’t have a lot of deaths caused by the flu, at least not during the epidemic years.  John Ed Robertson isn’t exactly my husband’s ancestor.  He was married to my husband’s great-grandmother.  Mary Thomas was my husband’s great-grandmother via:

  • her daughter, Ruby Robertson
  • her daughter

John Ed was born June 19, 1888 in Pulaski County, Virginia.  The best I can tell, he lived all of his years in Pulaski county.  He was 30 when he died.  According to my mother-in-law, it was the flu that brought his demise.

According to his WWI draft record, as of June 5, 1917, he worked for H.W. Bird as a farm laborer.  He was tall, with a medium build, with brown hair and blue eyes.  Also, according to the draft record, he was born on June 19, 1888.

Interestingly enough, his tombstone lists he was born in 1885 and died in 1919 but he appears on the 1920 census as a 34-year-old farm laborer.

Did someone put the tombstone up later?  Someone whose memory was perhaps off a year?  I haven’t been successful in finding any more information about John Ed.

John and Mary had no children together in the few years they were married.  They were married some time after 1920, if census data is to be believed.

Sources:

  • Robertson, John E.  US Federal Census, 1900, 1910, 1920
  • Personal Stories
  • Robertson, John E.  World War I Draft Registration Card