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Welcome To The Genealogy World Of William Dale Barfield

John Henry LEWIS [Parents] was born on 01 Jul 1860 in near Livingston, Polk Co.Texas. He married Tula Mae WILSON on 02 Oct 1890 in Big Hill Limestone County Texas.

Tula Mae WILSON [Parents] was born on 14 Mar 1875 in Texas. She died on 29 Aug 1945 in Lufkin, Andelina County, Texas. She married John Henry LEWIS on 02 Oct 1890 in Big Hill Limestone County Texas.

They had the following children:

  M i Elmer Barman LEWIS was born on 09 Jul 1891. He died on 28 Jul 1977.
  F ii Addie Laura LEWIS was born on 25 Aug 1892. She died on 24 Dec 1987.
  M iii James Ira LEWIS was born on 30 Oct 1893. He died on 09 Jun 1975.
  M iv John Owen LEWIS was born on 25 Apr 1895. He died on 08 Jul 1973.
  F v Dora Jenny LEWIS
  F vi Lona Ivy LEWIS
  M vii Artie Calvin LEWIS was born on 11 Mar 1900. He died on 06 Jun 1983.
  F viii Tula Mae LEWIS was born on 20 May 1903. She died on 02 Mar 1960.
  M ix Henry Cecil LEWIS was born on 18 Nov 1904. He died on 14 Jan 1986.
  F x Lola Lillian LEWIS was born on 26 Sep 1906. She died on 12 Aug 1983.
  M xi Alvin Ike LEWIS
  F xii Minnie Ola LEWIS was born on 01 Jan 1910. She died on 27 Apr 1988.
  F xiii Elsie LEWIS was born on 07 Mar 1911. She died on 17 Mar 1992.
  F xiv Reba LEWIS was born on 15 Aug 1912. She died on 19 Sep 1988.
  M xv Joe Jarrell LEWIS was born on 01 Apr 1914. He died on 13 Sep 1975.
  M xvi Ada Nadine LEWIS was born on 11 Oct 1915. He died on 01 Sep 1982.

She had the following children:

  F i Cintha LEWIS was born in 1843. She had other parents.

REFN: 1388
  F ii Nancy LEWIS was born in 1846. She died Unknown. She had other parents.

REFN: 1389
  F iii Sarah LEWIS was born in 1850. She died Unknown. She had other parents.

REFN: 1391
  F iv Rachel Maranda LEWIS was born in 1851. She had other parents.

REFN: 1392
  F v Elizabeth LEWIS was born in 1856. She died Unknown. She had other parents.

REFN: 1393

William CROFT [Parents] was born on 09 Feb 1827 in Missouri or Alabama. He died on 20 Apr 1906. He was buried in Oakwood Cemetery Corsicana Navarro Co. Texas. He married Roxie ELLIOT Unknown.

Other marriages:
LOCKHART, Rebecca Ann

BIOGRAPHY: 1850 Navarro County Census
Page 199 Sept. 19, 1850
3-3 With other residents of hotel: Croft, Wm. 23 m Ala Atty-at-law

Navarro County Record of Marks & Brands (1854 - 1873)
Croft, Mrs. Rebecca A. - Oct 9, 1872
Croft, Wm - Dec 1, 1856; March 17, 1862; May 26, 1863

BIOGRAPHY: 1870 Census of Navarro Co TX
85 LAWYER 750/175
CROFT, WM. 43m Mo

BIOGRAPHY: Known Civil War Veterans Buried in Navarro Co TX
William Crofts 2/9/1827 - 4/20/1906 Buried in Oakwood Cemetery
Lockhart's Company
Company G. or H, 20th Texas Cavalry (Dismounted):
Croft, William Private, age 35. Enlisted March 10, 1862 at Navarro County.
Discharged July 16, 1862. Born Alabama, 5; 9" tall, light complexioned,
blue eyes, and light hair. Was a lawyer in civilian life.

C.L.Jester: Now, Aunt Jane I want you to tell me all you remember in reference to Hampton McKinney, your father, John McKinney, your grandfather, and my great-great-grand father.
Mrs. Beaton: The McKinney family as the name indicates is of Scotch Irish descent but the farthest I can go back is your great-great-grand father, my grand father, who I remember quite well, although I was quite young when he died.
John McKinney was born in North Carolina but what year I do not remember, and died in 1843 at my father's house in Macoupin County, Illinois. He married Catherine Eaves, who was related to General Wade Hampton, and their oldest child, my father, was named Hampton. John and Catherine McKinney had seven children: three boys, Hampton, Jefferson and Jubilee, and four girls, Susan, who married Mr. Otwell, Nancy who married Fenwick Kendall, Polly who married Mr. Gilliam, and Diana who married William Hadley. Hampton was their oldest child and Jubilee their Youngest.
I cannot state the year that my grandfather John McKinney moved from North Carolina to Illinois, but I know that it was after 1797, for my father, Hampton McKinney, was born in North Carolina in 1797. I know that he was in the Revolutionary War and I think he must have been associated in some way with General Francis Marion, for he had a pair of silver spurs that was given to him by General Marion and these spurs are still in the possession of one branch of the McKinney family, at Corsicana, Texas. As I remember, he was a small man, very quick and energetic in his manner, occupied with something all the time. His wife used to say that he would read if the house was burning down. I remember when he was on his death bed. His mind would wander and he seemed to be reading all the time or he would mumble and mutter as though he was reading something.
He is buried in a small private cemetery In Macoupin County, Illinois. I can remember going to his funeral, and while I was quite young at the time, it made a lasting impression on my mind. At the time I knew him, his hair was quit gray and I cannot say whether he had light or dark hair when he was young. His wife had very black hair and was not at all gray. During the last years of his life he had no settled home of his own but he and his wife lived around among the children and divided their time among them. While he had other children living in Madison County, he seemed to prefer my father's house to that of any of the other children and spent most of his time at our home and, as I have said, he died at our house in 1843, four years before my father moved to Texas. After my father moved to Texas, my grandmother McKinney remained in Illinois and lived with her daughters.
Hampton McKinney, my father and your great-grandfather, was born in North Carolina in 1797 and moved with his father to Madison County, Illinois. He married Mary Clark, whose family was of English descent. They had twelve children, eight girls and four boys as follows: Lucinda and Louisa, twins; (Lucinda died when about eight years old and Louisa lived to be twenty years of age and was engaged to be married when she died); Diadema, your grandmother, married Levi Jester (she was born in 1821, and would have been 100 years old this year); Monroe, a son who lived to be grown; John O. and Thomas, twin boys; Jefferson, who died when a small boy; Nancy, who married John Harlin; Jane, myself, who married Alexander Beaton; Kate, who married Hamilton Morrell (generally called Ham); and Mary and Martha, twins (Martha died in infancy and Mary lived to be grown, and married John L. Miller).
My father was a farmer and owned a large farm in Madison County, Illinois, just across the river from St. Louis. I was born on this farm in 1832, and lived there until I was about eight years old when father sold his farm and bought another in Macoupin Co., Illinois, and moved there. Madison County had begun to settle up with Germans and other foreigners and father did not like that, so he sold out and bought this farm in Macoupin County and lived there until we moved to Texas. This farm in Macoupin County was a very large farm, about four miles from the little town of Girard. On this farm we had a big two-story house surrounded by large trees and beautiful blue grass. At one side of the house there was a fine well of water, and at times it would rise in the well until we could dip it out with our hands. At the back of the house there was a large orchard and garden with rows of currants and gooseberry bushes. It was just such a home as a prosperous well to do farmer with a large family would have, and his children had every advantage that a man in comfortable circumstances could give them in those days. We did not have luxuries that we have now for they were not to be had. Father used to go to St. Louis every year to sell the products of his farm, and would bring back a year's supply of groceries, clothing, shoes etc. I know he always had plenty of everything. He seemed to be in better financial condition that any of the rest of the family and had more money than the rest of them.
Illinois was not a slave state, consequently we had no servants. What few Negroes there were around there were free. My mother and her girls did all of the house work and my father and the boys did all the farm work. The only means of transportation was wagons or horseback and young people always went on horseback to parties, visiting and to church. One thing we did have was fine horses and we could ride, and ride well. Churches and schools were few and far between. Church services were nearly always held in the school house or some private home. Besides my father being a farmer, he was a local Methodist preacher and belonged to the Methodist Church South. He never followed this profession as a means of livelihood for he never received any remuneration for his services as a minister, but loved to preach and gave his services for the simple love he had for the work. He was a fairly educated man and loved to read. He was a constant reader of the Bible. You might say a Bible student, and he always held family prayer in his home every morning as long as he lived. He was a quiet man and took no interest in politics. He was rather of the pioneer type, about medium height, neither blond or brunette, very positive in his manner, with a big voice for a man of his size. He was a good man and a pious man, and as a child I remember the big revivals he used to hold in those early days when I lived in Illinois.
My father's brother, Jubilee McKinney, came to Texas when a young man, looked over the country and was so well pleased with it he came back to Illinois and got my father interested in the idea of moving to Texas and taking up land, and finally persuaded him to move to Texas. So in the year 1846 father sold all his land in Macoupin County, and with all his family moved to Texas. Jubilee told him so much about the fine land in Texas that he decided that he wanted more land for his boys and decided to come. We left Illinois in the summer or early fall of 1846. I know the weather was not at all cold, and we made the trip in wagons. There was a big party of us that made the trip together. My father, his family, (a big family it was, too), we had three or four wagons and a large carryall drawn by two horses for mother and the younger children. My father's brother Jefferson McKinney, his family wife and five children, they had two large wagons.
Mrs. Nancy Kendall, my father's sister and her husband, Fenwick Kendall and their children, several of them, they had one big wagon that they called a Prairie Schooner. It was different shaped from the rest of the wagons and larger. And my sister, Nancy McKinney, who had just married John Harlin, and they came to Texas on their honeymoon. They had one wagon. All of these wagons came along together like a big procession and all camped together at night. There were several young men: Jubilee was a young man, John Gilliam, a cousin, son of Aunt Polly Gilliam, Jim Moore who was a cousin of the Kendalls. The young girls in the party were Kate McKinney (my sister) and Kate and Mary Kendall, cousins of myself. I was just 15 years old at the time. Just old enough to enjoy the whole trip, all the young folks in the crow had a good time. It took us two or three months to come from Illinois to Texas as we traveled slowly and did not hurry. We camped every night and when we came to a place we liked would stay until we got tired. I remember one time we camped for a week on the Piney River, I think it was, in the Indian Territory or Indian Nation as it was called then. We came through the Indian Nation and saw lots of Indians, but they were all friendly. My father had brought along a lot of dry goods, calicoes, trinkets, etc., of all kinds to trade to the Indians and he traded these goods for corn and food for the horses. When we were camping at night near there, there were Indians. The boys in the crowd would take us girls to the Indian dances and of course we would go on horseback. Just as we were getting into Ellis county there were some talk of unfriendly Indians and the children got very excited but nothing happened and we were not disturbed in any way. Before leaving Illinois, Father sold all of his property and converted it into money which he brought with him, carried it in a belt which he wore all the time. In fact they all brought their money with them as there was no other way of getting it here. The only things we brought along was just what we would need on the trip, tents and bedding and vessels to cook in and dishes to eat out of when we camped. At night some would sleep in the wagons and some in the tents. We always camped on Sundays and every morning before we would start father would hold family prayer. The trip was like one long picnic and the young folks enjoyed it to the utmost.
I will go back now to Illinois and tell you something about your grandfather and grandmother Jester, who were left behind when we moved to Texas.
Diadema McKinney was the oldest one of the daughters of Hampton McKinney who lived to be grown and married. She was born in Madison County, Illinois, in 1821 and was eleven years older than I. She married Levi Jester, I think about 1840. I know it was just at the time we were getting ready to move to Macoupin County. Father and Mother were very much opposed to her marrying him and they ran away and married. She went off to spend the night at some of the neighbors and went off from there. I don't know where they were married, but after they married they lived with Uncle William Hadley and I know they didn't come home for a long time. The reason Father didn't want her to marry Levi Jester was because he didn't know anything about him. He just drifted in there from Delaware. He said he was a young man out there away from his folks and nobody knew anything about him and he had nothing but he was an energetic industrious little fellow and was always working at something. He came out there to make a living at anything that came up, there was nothing against him except that he was a stranger and nothing was known of him or his family. I never heard that he was a Jew, if there had been any talk of that kind we would have heard of it at the time he ran away with my sister. I know he was a member of the Methodist Church, and he used to take my sister to church horseback and would take me along with them, and I would ride behind her. I was just a small child at that time and she was about 19 years old. He lived in Edwardsville and the first I knew of him was when he would come to our house to see my sister, Diadema. He was a little bit of a fellow, a small man, very small, a great deal smaller than any member of our family. I think he was more on the brunette order, not so very much either. Your father, Charlie Jester, favored him more than any of the boys but Levi has a prominent nose like his. He was a great trader and stayed on in Madison County until after the birth of their first child, your father, Charlie Jester, who was born April 3, 1841, while they were living on a farm in Madison County near Edwardsville. I used to go from Macoupin County to visit them. I don't remember how far it was but I used to ride horseback. They finally moved to Macoupin County near where we were living, close to where the town of Girard is now. They called the community the Head of the Creek, and they were living there when my father moved to Texas. Soon after we left Illinois they move to the town of Waverly and lived there until Levi Jester died, I think about 1850 or 1851. I know your father was 10 years old when Levi died. Levi Jester was away from home at the time of his death. He had accumulated some property at the time of his death, owned their home and some other property. At one time he ran a mill in Madison County, and it seems to me that he had a mill in Waverly. After Levi Jester's death, Diadema Jester and her children lived in Waverly until 1858 when they came to Texas. At that time her oldest child, Charlie Jester, was 17 years old and he and his mother made the living for the family. My brother, Monroe McKinney went back to Illinois and brought his sister and her children out here. Major Beaton gave them a lot 100/160 feet right where the telephone office is now and Diadema Jester built a house there.
Coming back now to the time we arrived in Texas, when we reached Navarro County we stopped at Dresden and stayed there until the next winter. I know we raised one crop of sweet potatoes there and everybody said we raised the largest Sweet potatoes that had ever been raised around there. We had a log cabin there of one room and a shed and there was another room off in the yard where the boys slept. While we were living in Dresden, there was a big camp meeting held over at the place where Bassett is now, and I went with my father to the meetings with other members of the family; we went in the big carry all that held six or eight of us. Coming back from this meeting we passed right through the place where the city of Corsicana is located. There was nothing here then but it was such a beautiful part of the country and my father was so charmed with it that he decided to locate his certificate on this land and make a home for his family which would be their permanent home. The character of the land around here was high rolling prairie with timber along the creeks, and plenty of large trees scattered along the streams, and was just the spot he was looking for, therefore he moved from Dresden, his first location and came up here, bought an empty cabin and moved it on what was afterwards the R. Q. Mills home and located his headright certificate. Like all Texas families that came to Texas to settle, he was issued a headright certificate for 640 acres and my two brothers John and Thomas McKinney each had a certificate for 320 acres issued to them as young unmarried men. Jubilee McKinney also had a headright certificate for 320 acres, which he located just north of town where the old Jubilee home now stands and settled right there. He was rather on the old bachelor list when he came to Texas, and he married after he came here to a Miss Story who lived up above the Mills place.
When my father, Hampton McKinney settled on the land where the Col. Mills place is now there was no town here at all, there were a few cabins scattered around on farms, but nothing like a settlement and my father was really the first settler In Corsicana, and had the first residence if you could call a one room log house a residence. Afterwards, when the early settlers decided to locate the town of Corsicana on this land they persuaded my father to lift his certificate and let them have this land, which he then owned for the town site, which he did and then laid his certificate in Johnson County; however he reserved a good part of the town property for his own use.
After the town was located he moved down to where the court house square is now and selected a spot between where the court house and jail are now and moved two little cabins there and built a hall between and a shed at the back and we lived there until he built the first hotel in Corsicana on the sight where the jail now stands. For many years this was the only hotel in Corsicana and was called the McKinney Tavern. My father and his three sons built this hotel of rough boards that were hewn out of logs by themselves, there was no saw mill here or any where near here then, and all of the houses were built of logs and riven boards. The McKinney tavern had two big rooms down stairs with a long gallery in front, two other rooms at one corner and a long ell back for a dining room and kitchen back of that. The upstairs was all one big room. At that time It was considered a good sized house. It was comfortable but you couldn't call it handsome. There was no paint on it, in fact paint was unknown in this country. There were big fireplaces in the rooms but no stoves except the cooking stove. In fact we had the first cooking stove ever brought into Corsicana, and probably the first stove in the county. Father ran the hotel as a means of livelihood and made a good living out of it for a number of years, he did not care particular about running a hotel but there was nobody else to do it and he was kind of forced into it. He kept the hotel for a number of years, until another hotel was built on the corner of the square where Mrs. Wilson now lives by a man by the name of Randall, and this Randall hotel was subsequently the old Starley Hotel. We were living at the McKinney Tavern when I met Major Alexander Beaton who I afterwards married in 1852. All of my father's daughters except my sister Mary were married while we were living at the Tavern.
Major Alexander Beaton was born in Scotland in 1820 and would have been 100 years old last year. He came to this country when quite a young man and was living in Independence, Missouri, at the beginning of the Mexican War, and enlisted and went from there to the war and served through the war; it was in the Mexican War that he won the title of Major. After the war he drifted South and for awhile he taught school at Chapel Hill in Washington County, Texas, and afterwards went to New Orleans. He came from New Orleans to Corsicana, I think in 1850. He came here with Col. Croft, and as young men they were always together. He studied law and got his license to practice law after he came to Corsicana and began to practice right here. He and Col. Mills were partners before the civil war and had their office on the square on the east side right where Mr. Stell now lives. I don't think he ever had any other partner except Col. Mills who was then a right young man. Major Beaton continued to practice law and trade in land until he became disgusted with the law and quit the practice and dealt altogether in land. While in this business he accumulated a great deal of property. When he was practicing law he made a specialty of land titles, and gradually got out of the practice of the law and devoted his time to dealing and trading in lands. He was a highly educated man and a man of very positive character quick talking and energetic in his manner. I was the third youngest child of Hampton McKinney, Kate who married Ham Morrell and Mary who married John L. Miller, being younger than myself. I was married to Major Beaton in 1852, while my father was keeping the McKinney Tavern, and about four months after we married we built a little home of our own on the corner of Fourth Ave. and Eleventh St. where Dr. S. W. Johnson afterwards built a house and now known as the Weiler place, we lived in this house for a year or two and finally moved the house just across the street where the laundry is now. We added to the house and lived there for years, my mother lived with us there after my father's death and died there in 1883 or 84. My father, Hampton McKinney died in 1857 of pneumonia at the age of sixty years. While he was living at the place he built on Third Ave. then called Jefferson St., about where the house of Richard Mays built now stands; at that time he owned all the land from where the Pace residence is now down to where Mr. Wm. Tatum now lives.
There were born to Major Beaton and myself three children, Ralph, who now lives in Corsicana, Kate who married Dr. S. W. Johnson, and Tom who has been dead a few years.
My father's two brothers, Jefferson and Jubilee McKinney, had both been out to Texas on a prospecting trip, had visited different sections and finally decided that Navarro County was the best place to locate, and when we left Illinois for Texas in 1846 my father had already decided to settle in Navarro County, relying on his brother description of it. His first stop was at Dresden which was a small village, with various settlements around it. Houston was the nearest railroad point and all supplies had to be hauled from there, all lumber had to be hauled from Houston and at that time a one room log cabin was as good as a mansion would be now and very much harder to get. It was hard on my mother who had given up a comfortable home and all the advantages of civilization to come to the wilds of Texas and live as the early pioneers had to live but she was a woman of strong character, brave and energetic good manager and really better fitted for a life of a pioneer than my father. My husband, Major Beaton, was a public spirited citizen and always interest in the growth and development of Corsicana and it was largely through his efforts that the railroad came here in 1871. When the new part of the town was laid off he gave the land for Beaton St., specifying that the street should be 100 feet wide and this street was named in his honor and is still in his name. Seventy four years ago when I first saw the spot on which this town is located, it was all open prairie not a house or building of any kind. There were some outlying farms around with small log cabins, but there were few. I have lived here continuously from that time and seen Corsicana grow and develop from the one room cabin my father built and occupied as the first dwelling house in the town to the beautiful little city with its many handsome homes and buildings. Those early days were happy days for me and I shall always look back on them with much pleasure for they were the days of my happy youth. Mrs. Jane Beaton, sworn to and subscribed before me this 10th day of February, 1921. Lucille Bonner,Notary Public for Navarro County, Texas

BIOGRAPHY: REMINISCENCES OF MRS. MARY MILLER C. L. Jester: Aunt Mary, I would like you to give me your early recollections of our families early days in Illinois before they came to Texas. and also after they settled in Navarro County.
Mrs. Mary Miller: I was only a small child about eight years old when my father came to Texas, but I have some very vivid recollections of the old home in Macoupin County, Illinois and also of the trip to Texas. I was born on a farm in Madison County, Illinois, near Edwardsville, but I was very young when my father sold that farm and bought a farm in Macoupin County where he lived until 1846 when we came to Texas. I can remember the comfortable two story house, the gardens and orchards and farm land that was our home. Your grandfather Jester and his wife, my sister Diadema Jester, lived near us in Madison County at that time, and when we moved to Texas we came by their home and I ran in to see them and can remember so well picking up your uncle George who was the baby then and playing with him. Your father, Charlie Jester, was then a little boy about five years old. I remember him well at that time. He was a very bright and smart little fellow. Cousin Helen Marshall taught school close to Girard, and Charlie went to school to her, and he was such a bright little fellow that she always had him making speeches for the school. I also went to school to her, my first school. At that time there were not many school in our part of the State and very few churches; the preaching was mostly done in schools and private houses. And those who did not go in wagons would ride horseback, except in the winter time when we had sleighs, as we always had plenty of snow. I enjoyed the sleigh rides more than anything else.
Mother was opposed to coming to Texas but the children, like all young folks were eager for change and adventure, and the long journey overland - it was just an extended pleasure trip to us. We came through St. Louis and crossed the Mississippi River on a ferry boat. St. Louis was a pretty big town at the time. We crossed the Red River at Fulton, Mo. and it was so red that it made a lasting impression on my childish mind. We came through the Indian Nation and saw plenty of Indians, but they were all friendly Indians and father would trade with them for feed for our horses. I remember when we would stop near the Indian camps the boys would take the girls to the Indian dances. Just before we reached Navarro County, we camped in Ellis County on Chambers creek, not far from Reager Springs. R. N. White, who afterwards move to Corsicana, he lived near there with his family; and mother was sick and they came to get her and took her to their house and took care of her; we have always known them. They moved down here soon after we did, and settled in Corsicana on what is now Fifth Avenue about a block from Beaton Street. Cyrus White was the first child born in Corsicana.
The first stop we made in Navarro County was at Dresden in which was about the center of the county, and the first people we got acquainted with was D. E. Hartzell's family who lived near there; and I always looked on him just like one of my brothers. He used to go with my sister; Kate, who afterwards married Ham Morrell. Dan Hartzell's sister waited on me when I was married. After we moved to Corsicana, Dan Hartzell, who was in business there, boarded with us for years and years, and was like one of our family. From Dresden we moved to Corsicana, only there was no Corsicana at that time, just an open prairie, and we lived for awhile in a little log cabin on what is now the R. Q. Mills place. From that place we moved into a big log house of two cabins with a small hall between, located on the square, between where the present court house is now and the jail, and lived there until father built the McKinney Tavern, on the right of the present jail. It was while we were living in this little house on the square that I first knew Col. Winkler. He came from the southern part of the state and was at that time, 1847 or 1848, judge of the first circuit court they had here. He boarded with us while we were living in this little two room house and went from our house to be married.
Mother got his clothes ready for him when he married his first wife, who was the widow of Thomas I. Smith, who was an Indian agent at that time. When the war came on he enlisted and became a distinguished soldier. It was during the Civil war that he married his second wife.
After father built the McKinney Tavern, we used to entertain all the lawyers who came to court. Col. Winkler was one of the first lawyers I remember. Some of the lawyers who were here in those days and stopped with us while we were keeping the tavern were Rob. S. Gould, who was district attorney and lived in Palestine; John H. Reagin; (and) A. H. Willis, who was afterward Judge of the Supreme Court. They used to come here to attend court. Some of the first lawyers that settled here were Maj. John L. Miller (and) Maj. A. Beaton. I afterwards married Maj. John L. Miller, and my sister married Maj. A. Beaton. Then there was Col. R. Q. Mills who was a law student at that time and was later a partner of Maj. Beaton. He was a gallant young man at that time, and very good looking and popular and used to go with our crowd of young folks all the time. We would get together and go to camp meetings. The young men would write the girls notes to go, and would get a wagon and we would all go together. Among the other lawyers here the were Col. Croft and Maj. L. T. Wheeler. Col. Croft married first Roxie Elliot, a daughter of Colonel Jacob Elliot. She only lived a short time, afterwards he married a Miss Lockhard, they are all dead now.
The first court house in Navarro County was situated on the corner of Fifth Avenue and 12th St., just across from where Mrs. Singletary now lives. It was a log house of one room and was used as a court house, a school house, a church and general assembly hall of the town for years. I used to go to school there to Mack Elliot. I think Col. Mills moved that house on his place years ago and it is there now somewhere. The next court house was a frame building erected on the present sight of the court house in 1851. This court house burned down in 1855. It was reported at the time that the court house was set on fire by parties that wanted to destroy certain indictments and papers that were in there but it was never proved. The court house was built in 1856, a brick building, on the same site and this was the same court house that your father, Chas. W. Jester, hauled the brick for, he had just come here from Illinois and had a good wagon and team and this was the first thing he found to do. This brick court house was used until it was torn down in 1880, and a new one built which was used until the present one was built.
The first church was built by the Cumberland Presbyterians, and was located about where Will Gordon's place on Third Avenue is now, then Main Street. All denominations held services in this church and used it time about until the Methodist Church was built. The next church built here was the Methodist church built in 1871. I think it was a frame building and was between where the Methodist church and parsonage now stand. That was the church on which the steeple fell down. There was no Methodist Church here before the war. I remember that was the only church here beforehand we used to go to the Cumberland Church to work for the soldiers during the war. I remember they had a big convention in this church when Mills was nominated for Congress. There was no regular Methodist preacher stationed here before the war. This was on a circuit and we had what was called "circuit riders." Among the first preachers who were circuit riders I remember was Old Brother Mose. I think he was here as far back as 1847 when we lived in Dresden; Brother Hardin was another circuit rider who had some very bad boys, who were called the first desperadoes of this section, one of the sons was named John Wesley Hardin and was a notorious desperado. Another circuit rider was Brother Manley, who married me and my sister, Mrs. Beaton. Brother Fly was one of the early Methodist preachers here. He was a very smart man. Brother Campbell who married Samentha Starley, was another of the early preachers, and Horace Bishop and Brother Wells, and there was a circuit rider named Fergerson. I remember the first preaching we had was in that old court house. They used it for years for services; afterwards there was a large hall built about where Tom Kerr now lives on Third Avenue and they used the lower part for a church and school and the upstairs for a Masonic Lodge; that was the first place outside of the Court they held public mectings. It was built by the community and all denominations held church there; and they used to have temperance meetings in the hall upstairs. This building was called Cedar Hall because it was built of Cedar logs; this hall was afterwards torn down.
The first school I remember in Corsicana was taught in the old courthouse by Mack Elliot. He was a surveyer, and a nephew of old Jacob Elliot and the father of Mrs. John D. Lee and Mrs. Ellen Cheney and the grandfather of Mrs. H. C. Johnson. The next school I went to was in Cedar Hall taught by Capt. Peek. He and his wife taught that school and boarded with us at the McKinney Tavern, and their first child was born there. Mrs. Peek used to lecture me about going with the boys. She said I looked like a little Pin Cushion Sock on the arm of a boy. The truth was the boys would come to see my older sisters and as there were more boys than girls here at that time some of them would fall back on me when they could not get one of the older girls. Mrs. Peeks health failed and they went back east somewhere and she died there and her child was burned to death. Afterwards he came back here and went into the mercantile business and kept a general merchandise store on the east side of the square. Afterwards he left here and went to Freestone Co. and settled at Fairfield and married again. Mack Elliot was quite a young man when he taught school here and boarded with us at the McKinney Tavern; he was afterwards a prominent surveyor here for years.
Among the early doctors here was D. Oakes, I think he went from here to Waco. His wife was a right young thing and she used to send for me to stay with her when he was called away. Then there was Dr. Leach, a very fine physician and Dr. Green Kerr, a brother of Uncle Jimmy Kerr, and Dr. Wootan and Dr. Tate, who was the husband of Mrs. Tate, a relative of Judge Frost. He was a high tempered man and fell out with my father because he sent for Dr. Dixson one time when he was sick. Dr. Dixson was a peculiar kind of doctor. He administered roots and herbs instead of regular medicines. He was my father's doctor at the time of his death. Then there was Dr. Love, one of the early physicians here, and Dr. McKie, the father of J. W. McKie who married Eve Elliott, a daughter of Col. Jacob Elliot. Col. Jacob Elliot has three girls, Eve who married Dr. McKie, Roxie who married Col. Croft and Lou who married H. P. Walker. Col. Elliot was a land trader here in the early days and first lived down near Richland and that is where his first wife died. He afterwards went back to Kentucky and married again and when he came back to Texas he lived in Corsicana.
The Loves were early settlers here. W. M. Love built the first house in this County down near Patterson Lake. Among the early settlers was R. H. White, who came here very soon after we did. Col. Henderson who came about the same time and built a house where the Third Ward School is now. He was a lawyer but he didn't practice much. He had a rich brother in New Orleans who sent him money all the time, and he didn't do much of anything but chess. The Van Hooks were also early comers and lived out here on the H&TC RR just north of town. Capt. E. E. Dunn was another. Buck Barry was sheriff about that time. S. H. Kerr came a little later. Jim Carytgers was another old settler. David R. Mitchell was one of the first settlers of Corsicana, and was the man who gave most of the land on which the old part of Corsicana is situated. He donated to the town the land the courthouse square is on, and also the lot for the Methodist Church. He and my father were good friends and father was instrumental in getting him to donate this land. He owned a lot of land and really was a very fine man.
I went to school with his daughter, Bema Mitchell, who afterwards married Dr. Seale. The business part of the town was on the square and all the stores were around the square, but after the railroad came here in 1871 the town moved down towards the railroad. Maj. Beaton took great interest in getting the railroad here, so much so that it never would have come here If it had not been for him. He took Capt. Harris, who was the locating engineer, to his home and entertained him and his bride, and got Capt. Harris interested in locating the railroad at this point He also gave 640 acres of land and money besides. Uncle Jimmie Kerr stood right by Maj. Beaton in this enterprise, they had some land below town where the cotton factory is now and they cut this land up into lots and blocks and sold it and raised some of the money in that way to get the road here.
The first post office was in the McKinney Tavern and father acted as postmaster. I can remember as a child how I liked to hand out the letters to the people. Also the first photograph gallery was in the McKinney Tavern, run by a man by the name of Isaac Cline. I was very fond of having my picture taken and he would practice on me. The pictures he took were of old fashioned daguerreotypes. The McKinney Tavern seemed to be the center of civilization for that part of the country in those early days. I don't think father was very anxious to keep the Tavern but there was no one else to do it and he was more or less forced into it. He didn't like the rough element that naturally congregated around a hotel in a frontier town so he finally sold out I think to David R. Mitchell and built a house right about where Richard Mays built his house and where Homer Pace now lives. We always speak of this place as the Pace Place, as Mr. Pace bought all this land afterwards. It was while I was living at this place that I married Maj. John Miller and the other girls married while we lived at the McKinney Tavern. Maj. Miller came out here from Tennessee in about 1852 an entered into the practice of law in Corsicana and lived here all his life. He was born in 1821 in Murry Co. Tennessee and died in Corsicana, Texas in 1907 in his 86 year. He was a member of the Tennessee Legislature at the time James K. Polk received notice of his nomination for President.
At the beginning of the Mexican war he organized a company and commanded this company as Major which was the origin of his title of Major. However there was another company organized that got in before his company. I was married to Maj. Miller in 1855 and to this marriage the following children were born: Mattie Miller, now living in Corsicana; Terry Miller, who died when he was 20 years old, unmarried; John Lanty Miller; Beaton Miller, and Ursula all living. After my marriage I lived at home for a while and then moved to the house which is now the servant house on the Nortie Kerr place, only then the house was north of the street and fronted west. I lived there a short while and then moved to the place where I am now living on the corner of 3rd Ave. and 15th St. In 1856 or 1857, we had a house on that lot of one room which was afterwards added to until it was a good sized house, and lived in that house until about two years ago when it was torn down and the present house was built in which I am living now. In about 1858 Maj. Miller and I moved up near Rice, and it was during this time that my brother, Monroe McKinney, went back to Illinois and brought my sister, Diadema Jester and her family to Corsicana. That was in 1858 and they lived in our house until her own house was finished. Maj. Beaton gave her a lot 100/160 feet right where the telephone exchange is now and she built a house there, and after she moved to her home she took boarders for a living.
Diadema and Levi had the following children, all born in Illinois: Charlie Wesley, your father; Martha, who married Jefferson Kendall; Geo. T. Jester, whose first wife was Alice Bates, and his second wife was Fannie Gorden; Mary D., who married James Hamilton; Vina, who married R. P. Bates, a drummer who drove a double team and carried his samples in the back of his buggy (they both died within the last few years); and L. L. Jester, who married a Miss Cain of Tyler, Texas. Your father was about 17 years old when he came to Texas and as he had. a good wagon and team, about the first work he got to do was hauling brick for the court house they were building at that time, the first brick court house here. He did first one thing and another to earn a living. He then got work with old Man Jornigan, who kept a saddle shop on the square, and worked with him until he went to the war. After the war he came back here and bought out old man Jornigan and ran the saddle shop for himself. He used to do a great deal with the cowboys and that class of people. His shop was on the square about where Col. Kerr's residence is now.
The Jesters brought with them to Texas the first painted or factory made wagon ever brought to the county and for years this wagon was used for a hearse in every funeral. It attracted a great deal of attention and the country people and children would gather around it and admire it as they do a circus wagon now. Your Father, Charlie Jester, married Eliza Rakestraw, a daughter of Geo. A. Rakestraw, who lived down near Patterson Lake, and after they married they lived right next to his mother. Monroe McKinney, my brother, married Lou Johnson. He went to the war and was killed at Yellow Bayou over in Louisiana; he left three children; his wife afterwards married a man named Allen. John O. McKinney, another brother, went up into Johnson County and laid his headright certificate and lived there a good while but he got sick and came back home and died at our house while we were living where the Mays place was afterwards built. He was 27 years old at the time of his death and unmarried. He was very handsome, quiet and reserved, not like any of the rest of us. He was very much like my father. My brother, Thomas McKinney, lived here with us until he married Jan Petty. He then moved into Ellis county and lived there until his death. Kate McKinney, who was the next youngest child to myself, married Hamilton Morrell, usually called Ham Morrell, who lived right where Judge Hardy's residence is now. Nancy McKinney, my sister, married John Harlin and came with us to Texas on their honeymoon trip. They settled right where the old Wereing place is now and had a mill there for a long time. John Harlin was a hustler and a very capable man, and could do anything. Could build a house better than anybody else. In fact, there wasn't anything he couldn't do. Everybody liked him and respected him and if anybody got into trouble and needed help they would go right to John Harlin, and he would always help them out. He certainly used his hood offices to see that the law was defeated in the case of Ham Merrell. He lived in Waxahachie for a while and then moved to Ennis and lived there until his death. His descendants are still living in Ennis and are very prosperous folk.
My father was very much opposed to slavery; he didn't believe in owning Negroes. But after we came to Texas he had to buy some in order to get servants. There was no other way to get help, so he bought a Negro woman we called Old Aunt Edie, paid $1,200.00 for her and her two children, but he never thought it was right to own slaves. He didn't approve of dancing and we never had dances at the McKinney Tavern but they used to have dances at the Randall Hotel. That was opened some time after we built the McKinney Tavern, and the boys would come after us girls and get father to let us go to the dances just to look on but we would always get to dance before we got back. We always told father we would just look on. Camp meetings were the principal amusement for the young folks that didn't dance. Father never objected to our going to camp meetings and the boys would get a two horse wagon and take a crowd of girls and boys and it was about as much fun as anything else. We also had an occasional circus to come here; the first circus I remember seeing was Robinson's circus that was traveling through the country. Of course it had to travel by wagons as there were no railroads here then, and the circus grounds were where the 3rd ward school is now. All the town was up around the courthouse on the square and didn't move down to Beaton Street until after the railroad came here in 1871. I remember the only herd of buffalo I ever saw was where the H & TC Railroad is now, that was all open prairie then. There was a grove down here across the street from where the Ideal Theater is now, where they used to have public meetings, and I remember Sam Houston coming here to speak and he spoke in that grove there, and Maj. Miller introduced him.
That was before the war. Houston was a union man and he was very much condemned for his union ideas. He said afterwards that he had made a mistake and regretted it after he knew the way our people felt about it. He and Col. Mills had a disagreement and I am sure that was the cause of it, for Mills was for the Confederacy good and strong.
The first newspaper published here before the war was a weekly paper called The Prairie Blade. Dan Donaldson was the editor and his wife is still living, that was the only paper here before the war.
Old Col. Riggs was another one of the early settlers when we moved out of the cabin on the courthouse lot and went to the McKinney Tavern. Col. Riggs rented this cabin and that is where Mrs. Ruth Teas was born. Dan Hartzel was one of the early settlers here and ran a store on the west side of the square. Just back of Mr. Dyers house now, Cap. Peck was in the mercantile business for a while after he came back and A. Fox had a dry good store here before the war. His store was on the east side of the square, north of the Stell property. Uncle Jimmie Kerr had a store on the square and Col. Kerr and then there was a Jew named Michael had a grocery store. Uncle Jimmie Kerr had his store on the corner just across from the 3rd Ave. church where Mrs. Gowen now lives, and about the middle of the block Bob Morrell, a brother of Ham Morrell, had a saloon. He always had a rough crowd around his place and every Saturday night they would come in from the country and get drunk and get up fights and generally go out of town whooping and yelling. Old man Byers was one of the earliest merchants here. I think Uncle Jimmie Kerr bought him out, all these merchants kept a stock of general merchandise, shoes and men's clothing. N. H. Butler and Sam Taylor were blacksmiths, and old man Burrow, who had a son that went to the war, and a man named Smith were also in the-blacksmith business at that time.
With the coming of the railroad after the war there were some new merchants; Sanger was here for awhile, and Padgett and Huey, and Schneider and Allyn, and Garity, all of that crowd followed the railroad on to Dallas, except Huey, Garity, and Allyn who stayed here. Sanger used to board with your grandmother Jester who made her living taking boarders, and your father used to help her until he married and went to keeping house right next door to her. Your grandmother lived right where the telephone exchange is now and kept boarders. Your Aunt Vina Bates was married from that house and your Aunt Mary Hamilton and your Uncle George married and brought his wife there, and there was where she died when her youngest child, Alice was an infant.
Your grandfather Rakestraw never lived in Corsicana. He was a farmer and lived near Patterson Lake near where Old Col. Elliot first settled. Just after the war closed he went with quite a party of others to South America because they said they would not live under a Yankee Government, but they didn't stay in South America long and soon were all back here again. I have lived in this town for nearly 75 years and am sure I could be called the oldest inhabitant in point of long residence but not in age, and in these reminiscences I have tried to recall the incidents in a long and happy life in relation in particular to our own family, the descendants of Hampton McKinney, my father, and your great-grandfather, who was the very first settler in Corsicana. Mrs. Mary Miller Sworn to and subscribed before me this the 10th day of Feb. A. D.1921-Lucille Bonner, Notary Public for Navarro County

BIOGRAPHY: THE STATE OF TEXAS COUNTY OF NAVARRO Before me. Elmo Jeffers, a Notary Public in and for Navarro County, Texas on this day personally appeared Mrs. Helen V. Marshall, who being duly sworn upon her oat to the truth, deposes and says: My name is Mrs. Helena V. Marshall, I reside in Venus, Johnson County, Texas. I live with my son, C. C. Marshall, who is cashier of the First National Bank Of Venus. I am over eighty one(81) years old. I am now visiting friends in Corsicana, Navarro County, Texas. I was born near Wheeling, West Virginia, in the year 1821 but immigrated with my father and his family to Morgan County, Illinois. In the year 1836 the county was subsequently divided, however, we then lived in Cass County, Illinois. I made frequent and long visits from Cass County, Illinois to Macoupin County, Illinois, during and subsequent to the year 1840. In the year 1876 I moved from the State of Iowa to the State of Texas, and remained one year. I returned to Texas again in 1880, and have since lived in Texas.
While visiting in Macoupin County, Illinois in the year 1841 I frequently met and conversed with one John McKinney then an elderly man. Before meeting John McKinney, however I met his wife Catherine Eaves McKinney, in the month of January 1841, and met John McKinney about Oct. 1841. I fix these dates at this late day to the election to the Presidency of the United States of William Henry Harrison recalling as I do that the presidential campaign was in progress when I was first visiting in Macoupin County and Harrison was seated in the spring of the next year. I met John McKinney and his wife both at the home of their son, Hampton McKinney and also at the home of their daughter, Mrs. Nancy McKinney Kendall. John McKinney, through his son’s wife, Mrs. Hampton McKinney (Nee Mary Banes Clark) was related to my family, and in this way I became quite intimate with he and his family.
John McKinney and his wife Catherine had seven children, as follows: Hampton McKinney, who married Mary Banes Clark; Jefferson McKinney, who married Lucinda Sams; Jubilee McKinney, who married a Miss Story; Susan McKinney, who married a Mr. Otwell; Diana McKinney, who married a Mr. William Hadley; Mary McKinney, who married who married a Mr. Glllam; and Nancy McKinney, who married a Mr. Fenwick Kendall.
To Hampton McKinney and Mary Clark McKinney were born the following children: Lucinda and Louisa, twins, both of whom died unmarried; Nancy McKinney, who married John Marlin; John and Thomas McKinney, were twins, John having died unmarried and Thomas having married Mary Jane Petty; Monroe McKinney, who married a Luisa Johnson; Jane McKinney, who married Major Alexander Beaton; Catherine McKinney, who married Ham Morrell; Mary and Martha, twins, Mary having married Major J. L. Miller, and Martha having died unmarried; and Diadema McKinney, born in Madison County Illinois in 1821 and died in Corsicana, Texas, married in 1840 in Illinois to Levi Jester, born in Delaware, died in 1850 in Waverly, Illinois. The following children were born: Charlie Jester, who married Eliza Rakestraw; Martha Louisa Jester, who married Thomas Jefferson Kendall; George T. Jester, whose first wife was Alice Bates and second wife was Fannie Gorden; Mary D. Jester, who married James Hamilton: Vina Jester, who married Robert Bates; and Levin Jester, who married Minnie Cain.
To Diana McKinney and her husband, William Hadley, were born the following children: Strage Hadley, Jestina Hadley, Cynthia Hadley, Wilbur C. Hadley and W. Flavius Hadley. Afflant has not been requested. and therefore does not undertake to give the names of the other grandchildren of the said John McKinney.
To Nancy McKinney Kendall and Fenwick Kendall were born the following children: Catherine or Kate, who married Mr. Cook; Mary, who married Mr. Dixson; Susan, who married Mr. Fred; Joseph Kendall. who died during the Civil War unmarried; Helen; Betty, who married Mr. O’Neal; Jennie, who married Mr. Ashford; Cyrus Kendall, who married Mandora House; and Emma, who married Mr. House. To Thomas Jefferson Kendall and wife Martha Louise Jester the following children were born: Edgar Jester Kendall born Nov. 22, 1865, married Willa Dean in 1890 (died 1944); and Charles Paul Kendall born Feb. 6, 1869, married Dec. 20, 1889 to Minnie Allen.
Now referring again to the said John McKinney; when I knew him I was a young woman, about twenty years of age and spent much of my time at the home of Hampton McKinney, where John McKinney and his wife lived about half of their time. John McKinney was a small man, being perhaps five feet six or seven inches high and weighing about one hundred and thirty pounds, fair complexion and had blue eyes; when I knew him his hair was perfectly white. He was an excellent conversationalist, was a great reader, had fine memory for historical dates, and was exceedingly tidy in his dress. Prior to the time I knew John McKinney he had lived on a farm in Madison County, Illinois but had broken up housekeeping and spent the remainder of his days with his children. I was accustomed during those days to talk with John McKinney for hours at a time. and he was to me, then a young woman, a most interesting character. I took a great deal of interest in hearing him tell of his services under General Francis Marion of South Carolina in the war of the American Revolution. I remember at the time we had a published volume of the life of General Francis Marion which I read aloud in his presence, and he added much to the book’s interest and instruction by supplementing it with explanatory remarks and illustrations in connection with the items of history upon which it touched. Many of the places referred to in the book, he said he had been over and was with General Marion and his men on many occasions to which it refers. In fact I heard John McKinney tell scores of times of his services under General Francis Marion. The following is a brief subsume as I now recollect it of Mr. McKinney’s statements to me as to his services in the Colonial forces, etc.
I will not be positive that he stated he was born in South Carolina, though the impression left upon me was that he was born there, and enlisted in there, and further evidence of the fact that he lived in South Carolina, or at least married there is this: as before stated, he married a Miss Catherine Eaves, whose mother was a sister of General Wade Hampton’s great grandfather and they, as I understand it were South Carolinians; they named their oldest son Hampton. I do not recall from what place he enlisted, nor do I remember in what place in South Carolina he lived, he always referred to it as simply South Carolina.
Jestina Hadley, Cynthia Hadley, Wilbur C. Hadley and W. Flavius Hadley. Affiant has not been requested. He stated at about the age of Sixteen he enlisted in the Colonial Army, and my impression is he served during the remainder of the war; he stated he served under General Francis Marion. He may have stated he served under other officers, but if so I do not recall now under whom else he stated he served. Near General Marion’s camp lived a certain influential and wealthy Tory family who made frequent calls at Marion’s camp and pretended great friendship for Marion and the Colonists. But Marion suspected him of duplicity, and of real sympathy and friendship for the British, whereupon he called for some one who would undertake the task of a spy in order that the true attitude of this suspected (Tory) might be ascertained. Young McKinney volunteered to act out the roll, and was chosen. He dressed in ragged citizens clothes and at night was carried to a creek bottom some twenty miles from camp, and was there left alone; by degrees he worked his way towards the Tory house and in the course of a few days reached his destination. There he begged something to eat, and a place to sleep, and finally procured a position as a hireling there on the place.
By pre-arrangement he was to communicate with Marion by means of an improvised secret post office system, and general Marion was thereby kept informed. After remaining for two weeks or more young McKinney learned for certain of the Tory’s disloyalty to the colonists, and was instrumental in bringing about the capture of the Tory farmer and quite a few British officers and soldiers who were at the Tory’s house enjoying a feed. It seems that the British were at the Tory’s house feasting at night preparing to attack Marion’s men the following day, but while yet feasting, and ill prepared for battle, Marion and his men made an attack on them and succeeded in capturing the entire force, officers and men. Young McKinney (had) succeeded in procuring a horse from the pasture, and (had) carried the news to General Marion. McKinney, under the pretext of watering the horses and doing other chores about the place, would go to the improvised post office agreed upon, and there communicate by writing such matters as were of importance, and at night a carrier from General Marion’s camp would come to the post office and get the latest bulletins and convey them to Marion.
In recognition of these services, I was told by Mr. McKinney (during the conversation referred to) that General Marion had presented to him a pair of silver spurs and had also afterwards written him a personal letter making mention among other things the spurs which he had presented him and of this services to his country, and in addition to this he told me he had his honorable discharge from the American Army.
Upon being-told of this by John McKinney, I expressed an intense desire to see the spurs and letter and discharge. He told me that they were at his old home in Madison County, Illinois but that he would have some of the boys, referring to his sons to get them the next time they went to Madison, and that I might examine and read them. Not long after this, Hampton McKinney (his eldest son) brought the spurs and letter and discharge to his home where his father was staying and I then had the privilege of examining and reading the letter and discharge, and discussing them with the said John McKinney. I distinctly recall that the spurs and letter and discharge were all brought together in a leather box.
It would be quite impossible at this late date to state even in substance the entire contents of the letter which purported to have been written by General Marion to John McKinney. I distinctly recall, however, that he addressed him "Dear Johnnie" and wrote to the following effect; that it was not the largest men that did the most to accomplish our liberty for you were one of the smallest men in my command and did more to trap the old Tory than any dozen men had done. You richly deserve the spurs I gave you. I wish they were gold. I also distinctly recall that he mentioned the recent death in Virginia of an officer who was a great friend of McKinney. It was a friendly kindly letter, and Mr. McKinney prized it very much. I cannot be positive as to the place from which the letter was written, though it seems to me Pee Dee was the place. I do positively recollect that frequent reference was made in the letter to Pee Dee.
The question asked to which of his sons to give the spurs seemed to worry John McKinney not a little. Hampton (the oldest)suggested in my presence to give them to Jubilee(the youngest)and his father replied that he knew Jefferson would not be pleased. It was apparent the father preferred Jubilee should have the spurs, but he did not care to offend Jefferson. It was thought by all that I(Affiant)was engaged to be married to Jubilee McKinney, and John McKinney placed the spurs in my keeping, exacting of me the promise that I would never part with them unless to give them to Jubilee. I took the spurs from him and left them at Hampton’s house for safe keeping, where John McKinney died a year or two afterwards. Hampton McKinney’s wife afterwards told me that a few hours before his death John McKinney asked her to bring him the spurs, and after looking upon them, fondly admonished her to tell Helen (the Affiant) to remember
her promise. The spurs remained there until the morning Jubilee, with several others, started for the first time to the then Republic of Texas, to inspect the new country. Desiring to escape the further responsibility, I presented the spurs to Jubilee as a parting gift. He took them with him, and I had not seen the spurs since until August 5th 1902, when one of the spurs was exhibited to me by Mr. C. Lee Jester, a son of C. W. Jester, and a great-great-grandson of John McKinney, and I readily recognized it as one of the same spurs(except that the rowel was missing) which John McKinney had shown me and placed with me more than sixty years before. The other spur I have heard was lost or stolen some fifteen years ago. This spur is now, I am told, kept in a time locked safe in the vault of the Corsicana National Bank, at Corsicana, Texas by C. W. and George T. Jester, great-great-great-grand children of the said John McKinney but the spur actually belongs to Mr. J. Preston McKinney, who lives near Corsicana, Texas, son of Jubilee McKinney.
Referring again to the letter and discharge mentioned, About the year 1846 I attended in Macoupin County, Illinois the wedding of Nancy McKinney and John Harlin at her father’s (Hampton McKinney) house. I remember on the day of the wedding (at which there was naturally something of a family reunion) that Jefferson McKinney was looking over his father’s papers and he came across the letter from General Marion and discharge which were at that time kept in an old leather pocketbook and he read them aloud and passed them around to the company for examination, after which he placed them back in the pocketbook and said he intended to keep them as long as he lived.
It has always been my impression that Jefferson McKinney brought these documents with him to Texas when he and his family, Hampton and his family, and Jubilee, who was at that time unmarried, immigrated to Texas in the year 1846, a few days after the marriage of Nancy McKinney to John Harlan.
As stated before, I came to Texas in the year 1876 and spent about a year, and here I frequently met and conversed with Nancy McKinney Kendall, a daughter of John McKinney, and I inquired about the letter and discharge her brother Jefferson McKinney had during his lifetime, he having died several years previous to this time. She told me that she had seen the letter and discharge after they came to Texas, but thought that possibly Clinton McKinney, a son of Jefferson, had them in his possession. Clinton McKinney is now dead. I am informed that up to this time the letter and discharge have not been located by these descendants of John McKinney in whose behalf this affidavit is being made. Witness my hand at Corsicana, Texas, this August 11,1902, (Signed) Mrs. Helena V. Marshall Sworn to and subscribed before me at Corsicana, Texas, this the 11th day of Aug. 1902 (Signed) Elmo Jeffers, Notary Public in and for Navarro County, Texas

BIOGRAPHY: Known Civil War Veterans Buried in Navarro Co TX
William Crofts 2/9/1827 - 4/20/1906 Buried in Oakwood Cemetery
Lockhart's Company
Company G. or H, 20th Texas Cavalry (Dismounted):
Croft, William Private, age 35. Enlisted March 10, 1862 at Navarro County.
Discharged July 16, 1862. Born Alabama, 5; 9" tall, light complexioned,

Roxie ELLIOT [Parents] was born Unknown. She died Unknown. She married William CROFT Unknown.

Thomas COPELAND [Parents] was born Unknown. He died Unknown. He married Elizabeth LAMB Unknown.

Paper documentation is not available for many individuals. Do not rely on all the information in this tree as "proven fact".

Elizabeth LAMB was born Unknown. She died Unknown. She married Thomas COPELAND Unknown.

Paper documentation is not available for many individuals. Do not rely on all the information in this tree as "proven fact".

They had the following children:

  M i Joseph Griffin COPELAND was born Unknown. He died Unknown.

Paper documentation is not available for many individuals. Do not rely on all the information in this tree as "proven fact".

Thomas RYALL was born about 1645 in England. He died on 26 May 1709 in of Isle of Wight,Va. He married Isabel UNKNOWN.


by Jerome Tew

The Royal road to Sampson begins in 1666 when Thomas Royal
immigrated to America and Isle of Wight County in Virginia. The
International Genealogical Index (IGI) does not identify where in
England he came from. Most likely Thomas was in his early-twenties
when he arrived, and 43 years later he died. The following is one of
the most unusual wills I have ever read. It is the 1709 will of Thomas
In the name of God Amen, I Thomas Ryall of the Upper Parish of the
Isle Of Wight County in Virginia, being sick and weak in body but of
sound and perfect memory thanks be to the Almighty God and rising
to remembrance the immortality state of this life on earth and being
desirous to settle things in order do make this my last will and testament
in manner and form following: That is to say, first and principally I
commend my soul to Almighty God my Creator and Redeemer. Assured
by believing that I shall receive full pardon and remission of my sins and
be saved by the precious death and merits of my blessed Savior and
Redeemer Christ Jesus and my body to earth from whence it was taken,
to be buried in a decent and Christian like manner as my executrix, hereafter
named, shall think fit and convenient and as something so worldly as an
estate, as the Lord in mercy is pleased to bestow on me. My Will and
meaning is the same and shall be employed and bestowed hereafter by
this my will as expressed and first I do revoke, forsake, renounce, and make
void all wills formerly by me. I make and ordain and appoint this to be taken
only for my last will and testament I give unto my son Thomas Ryall one
shilling. I give unto my grandson Lawrence Brown one shilling. I give all the
rest of my estate unto my well beloved wife Isabel Ryall during the time of
her widowhood but if she should remarry, then my will is that all the estate
be equally divided between her and my four children: George Ryall, Charles
Ryall, John Ryall and Isabel Ryall, and I do acknowledge, conscience and do
appoint my kind and loving wife Isabel Royall whole and sole executrix of
this my last will and testament.
Witness my hand and seal this 26th of May 1709. Signed Thomas "T" "R"
Ryall (seal), signed, sealed and delivered in the year of 1709. Proven in open
court held for the Isle of Wight County 1709. Probate granted for Executrix
herein named. Attested to by Charles Chapman, Clerk of Court. Witnesses:
John Carroll, Elizabeth E. Carroll and William Clark.
Note: The above George, Thomas Royal Jr. and Isobel Brown are not traced.
The above Charles Royall was I believe the youngest and was born about
1690. He married Ann ____. They lived in Bertie County, N.C. around 1730
but settled in Onslow County and had six children. Most of his children
moved to Georgia after the death of Charles Ryall in 1755. The above John
Royal had an Indian slave by the name of March. In 1717 he was granted
136 acres of land in northeast N.C. It also must be concluded that this John
Royal married _____ Hardy, since all the early Sampson County Royals like
the Hardy name. In 1719, Cornelius Royal wasgranted 300 acres of land in
Pasquotank County, N.C. In 1724 John lost his Indian slave and filed a
complaint in Edenton. The identity of this amily is further established by
a 1721 will in Pasquotank County. nne Barnsfeld wrote a will and listed
daughters Elizabeth Royal and Ann Cowles (Callis). Also listed was a grand
daughter named Elizabeth Royal. The executor of this will was Cornelius
Royal. Therewas in this area a William Barnsfeld in early records, likely the
husband of Anne and source of the name "William" Royall. In 1724, Cornelius
deeded his son Cornelius Jr. and daughter Elizabeth Ryall 300 acres of land to
be split between them. This appears to be his only family. The 300 acres had
been obtained in 1719 by patent. Therefore, Cornelius Ryall had married
Elizabeth Barnsfeld about 1710. His oldest children were Cornelius Ryall Jr.
and Elizabeth. In a 1752 Pasquotank County document two other children are
named as John and William Royall. This document lists all four children of this
family. Cornelius Royal Jr. had died young. There were three Royal families in
Colonial Sampson County, namely John, William and Owen. Since we know
that Owen was not the son of Cornelius, and he also had children named Hardy
Royal, he was connected. The connection must have been to Owen Royal in
1739 Bertie County. This Owen must have been the brother of Cornelius
Royall, the father of Owen Royal of Sampson County, and the son of John
Royall and a woman named Hardy. The Hardy name does not exist in the
Royal family of Onslow County. Therefore, neither Thomas Royal the
immigrant nor his son Charles married a Hardy ---- but son John Royall must
arrived in Surrey and Isle of Wight Co, Virginia on May 14, 1666. He died
there May 26, 1709, leaving a will which named his wife, Isabel (Hardy)
b ca 1648 d 26 May 1709 , and sons,

Isabel UNKNOWN was born about 1648. She died Unknown. She married Thomas RYALL.

I give all the rest of my estate unto my well beloved wife Isabel Ryall
during the time of her widowhood but if she should remarry, then my will is
that all the estate be equally divided between her and my four children:
George Ryall, Charles Ryall, John Ryall and Isabel Ryall, and I do
acknowledge, conscience and do appoint my kind and loving wife Isabel
Royall whole and sole executrix of this my last will and testament.

They had the following children:

  M i John RYALL
  M ii Thomas ROYALL.

I give unto my son Thomas Ryall one shilling.

I believe this Thomas and Charles above were sons of Thomas Royall who came to Virginia and this country in 1666. There was also an Edward Ryall that came to Virginia in 1651. I have no more information on Edward Ryall. Most of the Thomas Royal family moved on to Georgia.
  M iii George RYALL.
  F iv Isabel RYALL
  M v Charles RYALL

Howell LEWIS [Parents] was born in 1782 in Granville Co. Nc. He died in 1860 in Jones or Smith Co.Ms.(maybe Sc). He married Nancy COPELAND before 1809 in Salem Township Sumter District Sc.

REFN: 1395

BIOGRAPHY: Howell1 Lewis was born in North Carolina about 1782, according to Federal census. Family tradition says in Granville County. He died in Jones or Smith County, Mississippi some time after the 1860 Federal census for was taken. His ancestry is, however, difficult to prove. The reason for the difficulty with the Granville County Lewis family is that there were at least four different Howell Lewis in the county when our Howell was born.

BIOGRAPHY: Several Lewis’ moved from Virginia and settled in the county. They had sons and grandsons named Howell Lewis. They all descended from the Welshman, John Lewis, born in 1592, and who arrived in Virginia in 1653, and received 250 acres along Poroptanke Creek, called Lewis Creek, formerly Totopomoys Creek in Gloucester County, now King and Queen County. John died August 21, 1657, and was buried in the Lewis Cemetery next to the house.

BIOGRAPHY: The cemetery was abandon in 1717 and not rediscovered until 1945.

BIOGRAPHY: Councilor John Lewis of the book, Lewis of Warner Hall, The History of a Family, published in 1935 by Merrow Egerton Sorley, is the grandson of John Lewis (1592-1667)

BIOGRAPHY: Some other Lewis descendents claim Howell Lewis, III was the son of Howell Lewis, Jr., and Betsy Coleman, and grandson of Howell Lewis, Sr., and Mary Willis, who moved from Virginia to Granville County, North Carolina in1767. This is unproven, and there is a problem with that assumption. The 1790 Will of Howell’s assumed father does not mention any children, nor is there any record of any children.

BIOGRAPHY: In 1935 Mr. M. E. Sorley published an 887 page book, entitled, LEWIS OF WARNER HALL THE HISTORY OF A FAMILY. This monmouth effort traced thousands of Lewis descendents since the early 1600s. This book says about Howell and Betsy, ...may have left descendants, but no trace of them has been found.

BIOGRAPHY: Sorley made one major mistake in his book, saying our emigrant Lewis ancestor was a Robert Lewis, and he was the grandfather of "Councilor" John Lewis. This statement is interesting because Virginia records show that Robert only had daughters. Also, Sorley did not know about the Lewis cemetery that was abounded in 1717, which is where John the councilor’s father and grand father’s are buried.

BIOGRAPHY: In 1945 Dr. M. H. Harris re-discovered the Lewis cemetery which contained a tombstone of John Lewis (1592-1657) on which was a four panel family crest proving Welsh linage with connection to the Howell family in Wales. Dr. Harris published his work. In 1946 Sorley told Dr. Harris, “you have destroyed my work.” Mr. Sorley was working on an update to his 1935 book when he was killed in an automobile accident.

BIOGRAPHY: So far we have yet to prove that we are a part of that John Lewis line, even though that Lewis family is the only one in which the name Howell frequently occurs. Two other possibilities exist, based on dates and ages. One possibility is a large South Carolina land speculator named Christopher Lewis who had an unnamed son of the apparent age of our Howell Lewis in 1790 and 1800. Christopher’s ancestry is not known either, but he resided in 1790 Claremont County, South Carolina, the same county in which our Howell resided in 1810. After many years of research by a lot of people, it will take much more effort and time to find the proof of our Lewis ancestry, if it can be found.

Paper documentation is not available for many individuals. Do not rely on all the information in this tree as "proven fact".

Nancy COPELAND [Parents] was born on 15 May 1787 in Cheraw District Sc. She died in 1850/1860 in Jones Co.Ms.. She married Howell LEWIS before 1809 in Salem Township Sumter District Sc.

Paper documentation is not available for many individuals. Do not rely on all the information in this tree as "proven fact".

They had the following children:

  M i Isom (Isham) LEWIS
  F ii Martha LEWIS was born about 1811 in Sumter County, South Carolina. She died Unknown.

REFN: 1398
  M iii Moses LEWIS
  F iv Nancy LEWIS was born in 1817 in Sumter County, South Carolina. She was christened Sumter County, South Carolina. She died Unknown.

REFN: 1400
  M v John LEWIS was born about 1818 in Jones County, Ms. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1386
  M vi Howell LEWIS Jr
  F vii Mary LEWIS was born in 1823. She died Unknown.
  M viii Elley LEWIS
  M ix Henry LEWIS was born in 1826. He died Unknown. Henry was employed as in Teacher..

REFN: 1404
Listed in 1850 Smith County census.
  F x Sarah LEWIS was born in 1827. She died Unknown.
  M xi Elbert LEWIS

Howell LEWIS Jr [Parents] was born about 1820 in Mississippi. He died in 1868 in Alabama. He was married in 1846.

REFN: 1401

He had the following children:

  F i Mary LEWIS was born in 1848 in Jones County, Ms. She died in Jun 1920 in Martinville, Simpson Co., Ms. She was buried in Goodhope Cemetery, Martinville, Simpson Co., Ms..

REFN: 1390

REFN: 432
Martha Ann Lewis pedigree submitted by Jimmye Watson, great-granddaughter
of Ruben Copeland, brother of Nancy Copeland, wife of Howell Lewis.

REFN: 1423
  M ii Alfred LEWIS was born in 1852. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1424
  M iii John LEWIS was born in 1854. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1425

REFN: 1394
  M iv Thomas LEWIS was born in 1857. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1426

Elley LEWIS [Parents] was born on 30 Sep 1825 in Jones Co. Mississippi. He died in 1870 in Dutch Creek, Arkansas. He was married in 1848 in Jones County, Ms. Elley served in the military in Csa 1861-1865; Pvt; Yankee Terrors; 8th Inf., Smith Co., Ms.

REFN: 1403

He had the following children:

  M i Joseph LEWIS was born in 1849 in Jones County, Ms. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1428
  M ii Ruben LEWIS was born in 1851. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1430
  F iii Sermantha Martha LEWIS was born in 1854. She died Unknown.

REFN: 1431
  M iv Franklin LEWIS was born in 1855. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1433
  M v Addison LEWIS was born in 1858. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1434
  M vi Howell LEWIS was born in 1861. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1435
  F vii S. E. LEWIS was born in 1864. She died Unknown.

REFN: 1436

Living [Parents]


Isom (Isham) LEWIS [Parents] was born in 1809 in Sumter County, South Carolina. He died before 1853. He was married Unknown.

BIOGRAPHY: Isom (Isham) Lewis was born in about 1809 in South Carolina. He may have died before 1853 (if his wife was the former Mary McLemore, who married H. C. Woods in that year.) He married a lady named Mary, who was born in 1813 in Tennessee. Islam's time and place of death is yet to be determined. He was living in Wayne County, Mississippi in 1840, and in Jones County in 1850.

BIOGRAPHY: The children of Isham and Mary Ellen Lewis, all born in Mississippi, were:
i. John was born in 1831.
ii. William was born in 1842.
iii. Lavina was born in 1842.
iv. Elley was born in 1847.
v. Craven was born in 1850.
vi. Mary was born in 1852.
vii. Isom was born 1854.

REFN: 1397

He had the following children:

  F i Ellen LEWIS was born in 1831. She died Unknown.

REFN: 1410
  M ii John LEWIS was born in 1835. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1411
  M iii William LEWIS was born in 1842. He died Unknown.

REFN: 1412
  F iv Lavinia LEWIS was born in 1844. She died Unknown.

REFN: 1413
  U v M. Elley LEWIS was born in 1847. M. Elley LEWIS died Unknown.

REFN: 1414
  U vi Craven LEWIS was born in 1850. Craven died Unknown.

REFN: 1415

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