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More on the Handley family of Monroe and Greenbrier Counties, WV

Sarah Handley KEYES of Monroe Co WV, 1776-1846
(married Humphrey KEYES, 1803)

"Sarah died in Kansas in 1846 ... she was the first to die on the ill-fated Donner Trip. Her daughter Margret married James Reed and he is sometimes given credit for forming the group. Margret, James and family were surviviors (non flesh eating). Sarah wanted to go on the trip even though she was in bad health - she wanted to see her only living son before she died. Margret's daughter was born by her 1st husband, but James Reed adopted her." George W Carr

More information about the Donner party: People of the American West, Blue Rapids, KS (where Sarah died), and "New Light on the Donner Party"


Sarah Hanley, born: 1776 in Monroe Co Va; died: 29 May 1846 at Alcove Spring near Blue Rapids, KS.
Sarah married Humphrey KEYES, born: 13 Nov 1764 in Keyes Ferry VA; died: 11 Oct 1833 in Springfield IL.

Children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren:

  1. Gersham KEYES b: 16 Feb 1804
    1st wife: Amanda NICHOLS d: 23 Apr 1832
    2nd wife: Matilda MATHENY d: 18 Sep 1840 in IL
    3rd wife: Priscilla E. NORRIS b: 19 Aug 1820
    1. Isaac P. KEYES (son of Amanda)
    2. Dow KEYES (son of Matilda) b: 11 May 1837
      married Elizabeth WILSON
    3. C. Humphrey KEYES (son of Matilda) b: 4 Feb 1840
      1st wife: Hattie BURT
      2nd wife: Mary SMITH d: 1867
      1. Gertie KEYES (daughter of Hattie)
    4. Ella KEYES (daughter of Priscilla)
    5. Maggie KEYES married Samuel RAY
      1. Gersham RAY
    6. Noah C. KEYES
    7. S. Roberta KEYES
    8. Mary Ann KEYES b: 1844
    9. James W. KEYES b: 1846 married Nancy GARDNER
      1. Ida KEYES b: 21 Oct 1863 married Edward Walden PAYNE
    10. Robert Caden KEYES b: 1848
    11. Arnold KEYES b: 1850
  2. James W. KEYES, b: 1 Nov 1805
    married Lydia SPICKARD b: 27 Jun 1807 in Botefourt Co Va
    1. Baby KEYES
    2. Charles A. KEYES, b: 4 Dec 1831 in Springfield IL
      married Elizabeth LANMEN
      1. Lillian KEYES
      2. Mary E. KEYES
    3. Mary C. KEYES b: 1 Aug 1833 in Springfield IL
      married William VAN DOREN
      1. Virginia VAN DOREN
      2. Susan VAN DOREN
      3. James VAN DOREN
    4. Edward L. KEYES, b: 26 Aug 1835 in Springfield IL
      married Ann DILLARD
      1. Cora KEYES
      2. Oscar KEYES
      3. Marcus KEYES
      4. Annie KEYES
    5. Henrietta KEYES b: 29 Jul 1839 in Springfield IL
      married Henson ROBINSON
      1. Lydia M. ROBINSON
      2. Margaret H. ROBINSON
      3. Charles H. ROBINSON
    6. Thomas KEYES b: 29 Jul 1839 in Springfield IL
    7. Susan F. KEYES b: 1 Nov 1841 in Springfield IL
      married Silas HICKOX
      1. Walter HICKOX
      2. Ella HICKOX
      3. Clara HICKOX
      4. Margaret E. KEYES b: 17 Jul 1846
        married William DAY
      5. Virginia KEYES b: 6 Sep 1848 married Douglas HICKOX
  3. Alexander KEYES, b: 1811 d: 1831 in Springfield IL
  4. Margret Wilson KEYES, b: 31 Mar 1814 d: 25 Nov 1861 in San Jose CA
    married Lloyd C. BACKINSTOE
    married 2nd James Frazier REED b: Abt. 1800 in Ireland d: 24 Jul 1874 in San Jose CA
    1. Virginia (Backinstoe to) REED, b: Abt. 1834 in Sangamon Co IL d: 1931 in San Jose CA
      married John M. MURPHY
      1. Mary M. MURPHY, married P. McARAN
      2. Lloyd M. MURPHY
      3. Mattie H. MURPHY
      4. John M. Jr. MURPHY, married Hattie E. WATKINS
      5. Virginia B. MURPHY
      6. J. Ada MURPHY
      7. Dan James MURPHY
      8. Annie Mabel MURPHY
      9. T. Stanley MURPHY
    2. Martha E. REED b: Abt. 1838 in Sangamon Co IL
      married Frank LEWIS d: 18 Jun 1876
      1. Kate LEWIS, b: 6 Oct 1857
      2. Margaret B. LEWIS, b: 6 Jun 1860
      3. Frank LEWIS, b: 22 Mar 1862
      4. Mattie J. LEWIS, b: 6 Apr 1864
      5. James Frazier LEWIS, b: 3 Aug 1866
      6. baby LEWIS, b: 30 May 1868
      7. Carrie E. LEWIS b: 15 Sep 1870
      8. Susan A. LEWIS b: 31 Dec 1873
    3. James Frazier Jr. REED, b: Abt. 1841 in Sangamon Co IL
      married Sarah ADAMS
    4. Thomas REED, b: Abt. 1843 in Sangamon Co IL
  5. Robert Caden KEYES b: 1815 d: 4 Sep 1865 in San Jose, CA
    married Mrs. Elizabeth ROBERTS
  6. Elizabeth KEYES b: 1816 in Monroe Co VA d: 1832 in Sangamon Co IL