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Thomas Kinsey: Ties To Georgia

Presentation by Cathy Wood Osborn
at the Kinsey Genealogical Workshop
Gatesville, Texas, August 5, 2000

There is much evidence that Thomas Kinsey Sr. resided in Georgia. The earliest record we have found is where a Thomas Kinsey witnessed a deed of gift dated January 30, 1806 (Deed Book P, p. 109) in Franklin County, Georgia. In this deed, Obediah Jones, of the same county, gave all of his possessions to his daughters, Mary and Marget Jones.

A little over four years later, both Obediah Jones and Thomas Kinsey were in Madison County, Alabama, but at least one or two of Thomas's children were subsequently born in Georgia. In the 1850 Itawamba County, Mississippi census and the 1880 Coryell County, Texas census, Thomas's daughter, Martha Kinsey Cromeans, gives her place of birth as Georgia. Four of Martha's sons also indicate in census records that she was born in Georgia on January 1, 1818.

Thomas's son, Thomas Jr. who was born February 16, 1823, claims in the 1850 Milam County, Texas census that his birth occurred in Georgia about 1826, but he turns right around in the 1860 Coryell County census and says he was born in Alabama. This discrepancy and Martha's records leave open the possibility that Thomas Kinsey Sr. has returned to Georgia at least by sometime in 1817 until 1823 or 1826.

We know that Thomas Sr. had moved again to Alabama by 1828 or 1829 because his daughter, Margaret claims in the 1850 Van Zandt County, Texas census that she was born there. Thomas Sr. was certainly in Walker County, Alabama by the time the 1830 census was enumerated.

Our certainty that Thomas was closely associated with Georgia is strengthened by records created by the Cherokee Land Lottery of 1832. It is possible that Thomas Sr. returned briefly to Georgia when the opportunity came up to draw land in this lottery. A Thomas Kinsey drew successfully for Lot #11 in the Third Section of the 27th Dist., Jones's Militia District of Habersham County, Georgia. Several of the descendants of Peter Kinsey Jr. also participated in this lottery. If this was Thomas Sr., he did not stay long before returning to Walker County, Alabama where he bought land out of the Old Tuscaloosa Land Office on October 3, 1833. We should try to find a record of the sale of the Habersham County land. It is from this point that Thomas did not look back. His migration was ever westward.

Knowing that Thomas Sr. definitely lived in Georgia, it is very tempting to hop right over the Texas border and land with both feet solidly in Habersham County, Georgia where Peter Kinsey Jr. and his descendants left many records. With the evidence so far presented, it would seem that Thomas Sr. should be found in the 1820 census somewhere in Georgia. However, the census does not seem to show a man by that name.

To discover the ties to Georgia, perhaps we have to look elsewhere. One of the most valuable pieces genealogical advice is to start with what you know and work backwards. Another helpful approach is to try to discover a family's migration companions.

I would like to make a few recommendations. Some of these are probably already being pursued by some of you.

1. Try to identify all of the Kinseys who were in Texas before 1860. Not all of the unidentified ones are going to be related to our family, but some of them probably are. Some are more suspicious than others:

2. It would be a good idea to begin thorough research of the surname of McKinsey.

3. Another man worthy of research is the Peter Kinzey who came into Matagorda County, Texas in 1835. His daughter Sarah Ann married John Moore on May 26, 1845 in Matagorda County. Peter was possibly dead by this time because Sarah Ann's half brother R.H. Kuykendall gave the consent as her guardian. According to Dianne Wheeler Ladd, Moore and Kuykendall families are found near her Guest families throughout their travels. There is a Kuykendall in the 1830 Habersham County, Georgia census, but it is spelled phonetically, "Kurkindol." The fact that Peter Kinzey patented land in Bell Co. Texas at the same time that Thomas Kinsey Sr. resided there, combined with the likelihood that the Moores and Kuykendalls were associated with the Guests, points strongly toward a close connection such as brothers or cousins. Was this Peter Kinzey of Matagorda County and Bell County, Texas the one who had land near Roland Kinsey in Pontotoc County, Mississippi in 1838 to 1842 time and in Hempstead County, Arkansas in 1843 and 1845? Roland Kinzey, Peter Kinzey and our Thomas Kinzy Sr. were all in Pontotoc County, Mississippi in 1837 and 1838.

4. My last recommendation is that we should thoroughly research the following locations and families:

Familiar Surnames and Locations

Franklin Co., GA Habersham Co., GA Hall Co., GA Lumpkin Co., GA Madison Co., AL Monroe Co., AL (created from Madison Co. AL in 1815) Walker Co., AL Lawrence Co., AL Adams Co., MS Itawamba Co., MS Pontotoc Co., MS Hempstead Co., AR Independence Co., AR Red River, Fannin, and Grayson Cos., TX 1850 Milam Co., TX Census Hunt, Bell and Coryell Cos., TX

Maybe you know about others that could be added to this list. I think that if we all work on this and share new information as it is discovered, that we make more sense of the history of our Kinseys. There is still much that we can document of the family of Thomas Kinsey Sr. I am working on a new page for our web site that will include up-to-the-minute updates on our research, but I need your cooperation. As you send me new information, it will be added with the current date, your comments or recommendations, and credit to you as the contributor. Email alerts will accompany updates. Let's do this together and KNOCK DOWN SOME BRICK WALLS!

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This page maintained by Cathy Wood Osborn. Last updated 12 August 2000.