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Volume 37 FEB 1, 2004

Christine Walters

Seems like its been forever since I did a Newsletter! I've listed my new address, phone number above - and the links to the two main websites that I have for the Kesterson Family - but there are also several families on Just put the name you are searching in the box and they will come up. Be sure and check out the Kesterson Website - (on angelfire above). Many additions/corrections have been made. I have redone the "Kesterson Deaths Page" - hopefully its easier to follow. I just can't find a good way to do this page because there are so many entries. The obituaries are linked to the Deaths. Other Recent additions on the website include the Pack/Kesterson Bible Records (Greene Co TN Family), contributed by Dorothy Pack.

I am now living in West Tennessee and the one good thing about this move is that I'm right here in the midst of a lot of Kesterson History. I've not had an opportunity to check anything out yet - but spring is coming and I'll be getting out then. Please update me on information you have in the Middle/West Tennessee/North Alabama area, so that I can make a list and go find the documents.

One of the 1st places I'm planning a trip to is Paris, Henry Co TN as its only about and hour or so from my house. John Washington Kesterson & wife Ida Melton Kesterson are buried there in the Palestine Cemetery. Does anyone have any information on who else might be in that area? I will also be going to Dyer Co & Crockett Co - home of the Joseph Kesterson/Emma Arnold family where several Kestersons are buried.

Lauderdale Co AL is just below me, and not a long drive at all - where we know Vincent Kesterson came from. I hope to do that on a day trip this year also, knowing full well that others have also looked there and found nothing. I still have to give it a try.

SO PLEASE - if you have information on anyone born/died/lived in West Tennessee/Northern AL and MS, the Booth Heel of MO - let me know who they are so I can get them on my list. I plan on taking pictures of headstones, family homes if I can find them, the towns they lived in. Things that will make the Kesterson Kollections Website even more interesting. As always - if you have any pictures of interest please email them to me - or send me copies by mail.

I really do want to make the trip to East TN as wel,l but I just don't think I can cram it into this years projects. I'm not happy driving through the mountains anyway - so I really have to psyche myself up for that trip. I'd be ever so happy if someone else were do it in my place, but I'd like to visit Greens County TN someday.

Iraq War Casualty:
We need to stop and take a moment to pray for the family of Erik C Kesterson:

Nov. 15, 2003 Chief Warrant Officer Erik C. Kesterson, 29, of Independence, Ore., was killed in Mosul, Iraq, when two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters collided. The crash is under investigation. He was assigned to 9th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, 101st Airborne Division.

News : Page Updated: Monday, November 17, 2003 2:59 PM PST Oregon soldier dies in collision PORTLAND (AP) - An Oregon soldier was among those killed when two Black Hawk helicopters collided in Iraq, the Department of Defense said Sunday. Chief Warrant Officer Erik C. Kesterson, 29, of Independence, was one of the 17 soldiers who died in Saturday's crash in the northern city of Mosul. Kesterson was a member of the 101st Airborne Division stationed in Fort Campbell, Ky. A statement by the U.S. command said one helicopter was carrying a quick reaction force and the other ferried soldiers on a transport mission in northern Iraq. Officials are still trying to determine the cause of the collision. Kesterson spent much of his youth in the northwest Oregon city of Vernonia. His parents said their son spent eight years in the U.S. Marine Corps and then re-enlisted in the Army to fly helicopters after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. "He was very patriotic and believed in this country. He's a good man," said his father, Clay Kesterson of Independence. "It's very tough to deal with. I'm hurting all over." M.J. Kesterson said her son inspired confidence: "This was a bright, ready-to-go young guy. I didn't have a thought this would go badly."

THE SOUTHWESTERN CHRISTIAN ADVOCATE 1838-1846 (unfortunately I checked this url and now its gone).
By Jonathan Kennon Thompson Smith Copyright, Jonathan K. T. Smith, 2003
CATHARINE KESTERSON wife of Rev. J. K. Kesterson died Oct. 20, 1842.

This is Catharine Graves w/o John Kesterson the Methodist Minister who was the brother of Vincent Kesterson. This little tidbit is important in the fact that it gives a middle initial of "K" for John Kesterson, which I don't believe any of us had before.

Check the Website for the story of James Kesterson and his encounter with Zeke Proctor who tried to kill him. James was the son of John & Nancy (Cadwell) Kesterson of Caldwell Co KY.

Cliff Bowlin found this interesting bit of information. I'm sure this article is about Mat Wheeler Kesterson 1892-1954 s/o Clinton Rice Kesterson & Mary Wheeler.

Southwestern Virginia game supervisor Wheeler Kesterson, announced Monday that 72 persons had been arrested in Russell county for game violations. 14 of the men are accused of dynamiting in Clinch River. More than 50 of those arrested failed to obtain bond and were held in the Lebanon jail. Supervisor Kesterson stated that a great deal of complaint had been made of game violations in the county on the Clinch River between Blackfoot and Cleveland. Undercover men were sent into the region to investigate.

An exciting new discovery for the descendants of Ollie Josephine Kesterson.

Vivian Glasscock a descendant, has "finally" found the 1870 Census which seems to show her Ollie. It's opened up a lot more questions for us - but thats what we are here for. Here is the Census and it was nearly impossible to read. John Rankin went to the Madison County Library and was able to determine for sure the name of Mary Kesterson added as an "afterthought" at the end of the census.

1870 Madison AL Gurleyville PO Twp 6 Range 1 Dist 50
David 55 TN 1815
Susan 54 TN 1816
Debby 24 TN 1846
Reuben 17 TN 1853
Stokley 14 TN 1856
Isabella 12 TN 1858
Joseph 10 TN 1860
Olla/Alla 04 TN 1866
Caledonia 01 AL 1869
Mary Kesterson 20 Insane

Ollie Josephine is shown here born in 1866 and we have her birthdate as 1 Sep 1871 so its nearly impossible for this to be the right Ollie plus the fact that she is not living with David & Susan in 1880 and she can't be found anywhere else either. Joseph is shown as being born in 1860 and we have his birth around 1864. There is one other difference in the census - Isabella is listed in 1870 but in 1860 she is listed as Elizabeth. Thee is a Docian age 43 d/o David in the 1880 census but which one is she here in 1870?The family researchers have information that Ollie was the d/o Victoria and Thomas Kesterson and we have always assumed that Thomas was the son of Reuben Kesterson who would be a brother of this David. So its reasonable that if they were the children of Thomas that they might be living with their Uncle and Aunt. We don't know what to think anymore. If you just looked at this census you would think that Joseph, Olla and Caledonia were the children of David and Susan, but at this time Susan is getting a bit old to have children in this age group. Its likely that Joseph would/could have been their child but then there is 6 years between him an Ollie/Olla/Alla. So perhaps we need to keep digging around for more info. Joseph did name a son Thomas which is not much help though.

Many thanks to Mark Comer for sending me a really great old picture. Mark is a descendant of Nancy Abernathy (Kesterson) Credille. As you might remember Nancy was 1st married to William Kesterson s/o John Kesterson (the Methodist Minister TN/AR) and Catherine Graves. William died in 1860 leaving Nancy a widow with 3 small children. She moved back in with her family and in December 1864 she married James Credille. The family had relocated to Texas during the Civil War because the War was much to close to home for them in Arkansas. They settled in Camp Co TX. Nancy had several more children with James Credille and Mark is one of those descendants. He sent me a picture of Nancy and James Credille with 3 daughters, who I believe are her children with James. The letters written by Augustus Cabot Abernathy (brother of Nancy) during the war are featured on the website and I've added this picture to that page.

Although Nancy isn't a Kesterson by blood, she was once married to one, and has certainly worked her way into our hearts.

David Kesterson is a Entertainer/Magician. His parents are Aubrey Vincent Kesterson & Francis Elizabeth Williamson. Aubrey is the son of Fred Jerome Kesterson born 24 Dec 1886 in AR. I think that Fred Jerome was the son of Willis Vincent & Susan (Prickett) Kesterson , s/o Jerome Bonepart Kesterson, s/o Vincent & Dolly (Chandler) Kesterson of Saline AR. David hasn't confirmed that his great grandfather was the son of Willis Vincent as yet!! So I'm not yet 100% sure of the lineage. David lives in Las Vegas. David suffers from Asthma and is wondering if this is a "Kesterson" condition. I don't remember anyone talking about Asthma running in this line - but maybe some of you know better. Be sure and let him know.

Now here is a surprise (at least to me). Divorce records for Pottawattamie Co. IA. You can see them here: Shows a divorce between Donelan Kesterson and Sarah Emma Utterback. They were apparently divorced 14 Jul 1920. His race is given as "Irish" (don't know where that came from). Her race is shown as "American". She filed, charging "Cruel and Inhuman Treatment.

David Kesterson of Cupertino CA - descendant of the Lafayette MO group is planning a trip to Washington DC this spring and he hopes to get through Northumberland VA and check look for some Kesterson Graves. Does anyone know of any Cemeteries in Northumerland County where our "OLD" Ancestors might be found? If so let Dave know immediately -

Sad - but interesting story. The circumstances might have made sense to the young man who committed suicide this day - but I doubt if they made any sense to Eva Kesterson. Eva would have been born around 1882 - the families involved were from Washington state. Anyone know who she might have been the daughter of ?

From the Atlanta Constitution October 19 1907


Seattle Wash; October 18, With the words "Goodbye, Eva," Edward Neill Kelly, a young workman, drew a revolver and fired a bullet through his head on the platform of the Apostolic Faith church here last night. The girl he referred to was sitting in the audience within ten feet of the young man when he fired the fatal shot. Kelly died at the hospital half an hour later.

Kelly, who was 19 years old, met Eva Kesterson, a 15-year-old, schoolgirl, at an evangeliastic revival held here in September, and a week ago they became engaged. They were to be married. Kelly arose with the words, "It is my turn next." He then started singing "The Fire of Heavenly Love is Burning in My Soul". As the last words were finished, he drew a gun, turned toward the girl, said "goodbye" and fired the fatal shot.

From the Chillicothe Constitution (Missouri) 1 April 1926

Glenn Ball, 37 years old, Mercer, MO, yesterday broke from the Mercer county jail at Princeton and "hired a taxi" driven by a constable to escape. Ball had been in jail three weeks awaiting trial on a charge of larceny. He is believed to have picked the lock of the cell door while Sheriff George Kesterson and family were absent. After escaping Ball went into the sheriff's residence, found the keys to the jail, and locked five other prisoners inside. He then ransacked the home and took $9 from a purse belonging to Mrs. Kesterson. He hired a taxi belonging to R C Foley, constable, who drove him to Ravanna about ten miles.

** I think this George Kesterson was born 8 Apr 1878 d 6 Feb 1953 in Mercer MO, the son of William Thomas & Phoebe (Speer) Kesterson and the grandaughter of Nancy (Tinsley) Kesterson the mystery ancester from Knox Co KY who moved with her 3 children to Mercer Co MO between 1850 & 1860. She was a widow in the 1840 Census and onward.

From the FT. Wayne Journal Gazette November 5 1915


LaPorte, Ind., Nov. 4. - Mrs. Lucinda Kesterson, aged 51 years, of Fort Wayne, the mother of ten children, whose husband was formerly connected with the Indiana School for the Feeble Minded Youth at Fort Wayne, and who later filled a position as deputy warden at the Michigan City prison, was granted a divorce to-day from George Kesterson, now a resident of Gary. The complaint of Mrs. Kesterson, which was highly sensational, charged her husband with intimacy with other women, naming three as co-respondents.

She related that at frequent intervals for twenty-five years Kesterson would not talk to her except through one of the children as intermediary, and that whenever she attempted to address him he flew into a passion. She said finally she went with her youngest son, Jennings, a boy of sixteen, to Valparaiso, that the son might attend the college there. She said Kesterson promised to contribute $35 a month to her support but failed to do so. Seven of the children are still living, the oldest being thirty-three, and all of age except Jennings.

Mrs. Kesterson is the mother of William F Kesterson, 2407 Euclid Avenue. She resides at 1402 1/2 East Creighton Avenue and left Fort Wayne for Laporte Wednesday. Mr. Kesterson was a supervisor at the state school eighteen years ago.

** This would be Lucinda (Nicholson) Kesterson born 13 November 1866 in Dubois Co IN, died 24 June 1924 in Ft Wayne. She was the daughter of Joseph H. and Elizabeth (Coonrad) Nicholson Lucinda married George Kesterson 9 March 1881 and apparently divorced him in 1915. Lucinda then married Grant Myer 21 April 1917 in Ft. Wayne, Allen Co IN Bk 45 Pg 201. George Washington Kesterson was born 6 August 1861 Dubois Co IN and died in February 1934 in Ft. Wayne. George was married the 2nd time to Alma Knight but I've found no record or date of the marriage yet. George was the only child of Alfred Kesterson/Martha (Beatty) Kesterson Simmons. Alfred was the son of Jonathan Kesterson/Mary Painter who I strongly suspect would have been the son Jonathan Kesterson, brother of Meriday Kesteson, or somehow closely related to him.


Terry Jean Hodgson Mother - Viola Kesterson 1928 WA / Thomas Jefferson 1898 Pike IL / George Washington 1871 Pike IL / Jeremiah Jefferson 1840 Caldwell KY / Peter 1800 Greene TN / George 1765 VA / William 1735 VA / John 1712 VA / Geore 1674 VA / Thomas

Milton "Al" Galbraith Jr./ Milton Galbraith Sr / Mary Elizabeth Casey 1916 KY / Hallie Brooks 1888 TN / Mary Jane Jones 1860 TN / Arthur B Jones 1829 TN / Nancy Kesterson 1802 TN/ David Chadwell Kesterson 1740 TN

Yvonne Kesterson Mines - Yvonne / Tommy Gerald Kestersson/ Thomas Owen Kesterson 1899 TN / Joseph Kesterson 1864 TN / Thomas Jefferson Kesterson 1846 TN / Reuben Kesterson 1820 TN / David Chadwell Kesterson 1740 TN

Genia Turner / Lola Eugenia Vance / Mary Ann Turner / Mary Bell Kesterson / George Delton Kesterson 1890 AR / William E Kesterson 1870 AR / William Kesterson 1834 TN / John & Malinda

Vicki Saeger Underwood / Rosa Anna Hale / Sarah Rogers / Jane Rogers 1843 KY / Perlina Arlene Pettit 1822 TN/ Jane Courtney 1797 VA / Sarah Kesterson 1758 VA / Wm Kesterson 1735 VA / John Kesterson 1712 VA / George / Thomas

Lynn Lovell Britt / Richard Lovell Jr 1919 TX / Richard Lovell Sr 1894 AR/ Sarah Malinda Tollett 1861 AR/ Rebecca Kesterson 1831 TN / John & Malinda Kesterson

Mary Linda Faye Conley / Iva Pearl Norris 1906 MO / Wm. Marshall Norris 1874 MO/ Mary Emily Johnson 1845 KY / Elizabeth Howell Pettit 1818 TN / Jane Courtney 1797 VA / Sarah Kesterosn 1758 VA / WM. Kesterson 1735 Va/ John/George and thomas

Kirsten Arms Arbo / Gary Arms / Elvin Nicholas Arms 1907 OK / Dona Pierce Stephens 1888 AR / Benjamin Lee Stepehens 1867 AR / Mary Kesterson 1830 / John & Malinda

Carolyn Hall Golden / Freda Lucille Marlowe/ John Franklin Marlowe 1895 IN / Selena Florence Sole 1866 WV / Margaret Jane Miller 1840 VA / Ellen Kesterson 1820 VA / Willis Kesterson 1792 VA/John Kesterson 1742 VA / John Kesterson 1712 VA/George Kesterson/Thomas Kesterson


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