Thursday, May 24, 2018

The Reports of his death may have been exaggerated

When I first started looking at Tilman Gooch, all that was known of his death was that he had been one of the militia on the Trail of Tears and reports had come back that he had died en route.  That was accepted in the family for a century or so, then modern genealogy came along and a woman discovered that a Tilman Gooch of about the right age appeared in Mississippi, near Tilman's brother William, in the 1840 census.  There was also a Tilman, possibly the same one, who died in San Francisco in 1850.  None of these men overlap with each other so they easily could be the same person.  

His daughter's bounty land application adds to the interest.  She was only tiny when he died so on her first go says that he came home from the wars and died.  Then, after talking to her older siblings, she amends that to say that Moses Justice had been with him in the militia and brought home the report that when he (Moses) left him, he was on the verge of death.  Which is a very different matter altogether. 

Adding to the interest here is that Moses is probably a relative by marriage since Tilman's wife was Elizabeth Justice.  No way to tell across this much time but Moses could have been reporting factually or could have been sparing his sister/cousin's feelings by not telling her that her husband had just decided to not come back to her. 

Monday, April 23, 2018

Nancy and Turner Cates administrative Bond

[Administrator's Bond]
Georgia, Crawford County
Know all men by these presents
that we, Nancy Cates & Turner Cates & Joseph Wilder & Isaac Mills securities, are held and firmly bound unto their Honors the Justices of the Inferior Court, sitting for Ordinary Purposes for said County, and their successors in office, and assigns, in the just and full sum of two thousand Dollars for the payment of which sum to the said court of justice and their successors in office we  bind ourselves, our heirs, Executors and Administrators, in the whole and for the whole sum jointly and severally, and firmly by these presents, sealed with our seals and dated this 7th Day of November 1842

The condition of the above obligation is such, that if the above bound Nancy Cates & Turner Cates admors of the goods, chattel, and credits of Thomas Cates, late of said county, deceased which have, or shall come into the hands, possession, or knowledge of the said Nancy Cates & Turner Cates or the hands or possession of any person or persons for ?them? and the same, so made do exhibit unto the said Inferior Court, when sitting as a Court of Ordinary, when they shall be thereunto required; and such goods, chattel, and credit do well and truly administor according to law, and do make a just and true account of their actings and doings therein, when they shall thereunto be required by the Court:  Shall deliver and pay to such person or persons respectively, as they may be entitled to the same by law: And if it shall hereafter appear that any last Will and Testament was made by the deceased, and the same be proven before the said Court, and Executor obtain a certificate of the probate thereof, and Nancy Cates & Turner Cates in such case, if required, render and deliver up of the said Letters of Administration, then this obligation to be void, else to remain in full force. 

Signed, sealed and acknowledged in open Court

Test E. W. Dennis ?C C D?

Nancy X Cates
      her mark
Turner Cates
Joseph X Wilder
   his mark
Isaac Mills


Nancy Cates was the widow of Thomas Cates and Turner his son.   Joseph Wilder and Isaac Mills were neighbors.  Joseph's son Jonathan would marry Turner's granddaughter Feraby Lewis, daughter of Nimrod. 

The other item of interest is that in the legal notices in the Macon Telegraph of August 30, 1842, so several months before this, Nancy Cates, Turner Cates and Nimrod Lewis had applied for letters of Administration on the estate of Thomas Cates.   There is no indication why he was removed nor why no apparent action was taken between August and November.  The assessment of the estate and estate sale occurred in late November and early December of 1842. 

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Women's History Month and the ABCs of Women in the family.

I am copying a friend here, seeing how many letters of the alphabet I can fill with women from the family, as many as possible from memory because we're so much more likely to forget the women.  Most of the names (except Q, U, X, and Z) were from memory but I have gone back and doublechecked dates and places. 

A is for Agnes Petley, born about 1496 in County Kent, England.  One of 4 daughters (and no sons), she brought a portion of the Petley estate into the Manning family when she married John Manning.

B is for Betty Jean Becham my mother and most loved of my female ancestors.  She fought her family to go to college and ensured that her daughters knew that they could do anything they set their minds to.

C is for Catherine Chauser (or LeChauser).  She was born about 1342 in London.  Three hundred years later her descendants claimed she was the sister of Geoffrey Chaucer but that is highly unlikely.

D is for Delia (Sarah Lodelia) Mathews Becham, born 1870 in Brooks County, Georgia to T.F. Mathews and Kate Peterman.  She married Fate Becham and was the mother of 6 boys and 1 girl.

E is for Elizabeth Duggan 1 and 2.  Elizabeth 1 was born about 1795 to John Duggan and Mary Jane Joyce.  She married Samuel Gheesling in 1817 in Washington County, GA.  Elizabeth 2 was her niece, the daughter of Asa Madison Duggan and Susie Lord.  Elizabeth 2 also married Samuel Gheesling, in this case her cousin and the son of Elizabeth 1.  They married in 1851, again in Washington County.  Sorting these two out was a challenge.

F is for Feraby, the wife of Nimrod Lewis.  She may (emphasis on may) have been a Cates by birth.  She only appears in one record that I have found so far, the 1850 census in Crawford County, GA. However, her name and that of her husband helped me make the connection to her daughter Martha, who named her 2nd daughter and 2nd son Feraby and Nimrod respectively.

G is for Elvira Grizzle Gooch.  How can you not love that name?  The daughter of John and Sally Taylor Grizzle, the wife of James Gooch, and the mother of (among others) Lucinda Jane Gooch Hendrix.  A mountain farm wife who probably never had it easy.

H is for Harriet (Hattie) Gheesling, daughter of Sam and Elizabeth Duggan the younger, married Green Lee Garner as his second wife.  Raised 4 sons and a stepdaughter, who loved her enough to name her own daughter after her.

I is for Irene Moore Wade.  She went back and forth between Irene and Arena as her first name, doubly confusing because in that part of Georgia they would be pronounced much the same.  Married and had 14 children with Moses Thomas Wade, before finally kicking him out.  The descendant of several strong women and apparently one herself.  Born in 1855 to John Moore and Peggy Powers.

J is for Judith Knowles or Noles, known as Judia, a name which has lead some folks to transcribe her as Julia.   She was born abt 1801 in Georgia and married Timothy Johnson in Hancock County in 1817.

K is for Kate (Susan Catherine) Peterman, mother of Delia above.  Born and raised in Georgia, 1849-1933, she married T.F. Mathews in 1866.  Although both of them were from Taylor County, GA, the disruption of the war meant that they actually married in Madison County, Florida.  They stayed in southern GA for some years but finally settled back in Crawford County, GA.

L is for Lucinda Jane Gooch.  I fell in love with her name at a young age.  She was the daughter and James and Elvira Gooch, the wife of Warren Hendricks, and the mother of many children, 9 of whom lived to adulthood.  She and her husband also raised at least one foster child.  She was known in later life as Jane but I like the Lucinda too much to leave it out.

M is for Mattie Hendrix Garner.  Daughter of Lucinda Jane and Warren David Hendricks, she married Charles Gordon Garner.  She was a graduate of North Georgia Agricultural College, as it was known at the time, and worked for several years as a teacher and home extension agent in Emanuel County, GA, until forced to give up that job after her 1921 marriage to Gordon Garner.  She was very proud of her education and career.

N is for Nancy Whitaker Horne.  Born in Georgia about 1806, she married Nathan Horne in Wilkinson county in 1821.  Her parents and her life before that point are a complete mystery.   She was left a widow with at least 7 kids in 1840 but made a success of the farm and had considerably enlarged it by her death about 1870.   She was unusual among my earlier Georgia female ancestors in that she could read and write.

O is for Ola Pauline Bryant Becham, my grandfather's first wife and mother of his 5 oldest children.  Like so many women historically and even some today, she died from complications of childbirth.

P is for Peggy (Margaret) Powers Moore.  Peggy was born to a white father John Powers and (free) black mother Sarah Turner Powers in South Carolina about 1816.   Her husband John G. Moore is the only ancestor I have who emigrated to the United States rather than the colonies, being an Irishman who settled for some unknown reason in central Georgia.   She and her full siblings successfully sued her younger half-siblings over their father's estate after his death in 1868.

Q is for Queen Victoria Pyles who is actually a cousin rather than an ancestor, born in 1860 to William Piles and Susan Becham. 

R is for Rebecca Douthit Keith, born abt in Pickens County, SC in 1799  to Solomon Douthit and his wife Mary.  She lived her entire life in Pickens County, marrying Allen Keith and raising 7 children.  Her youngest daughter Jane (Jenny) married George Washington Hendricks.

S is for Sarah Turner Powers although there are many, many Sarahs in the family to choose from.  Sarah (Sally) Turner was the daughter of a former slave, John Turner, and his freeborn wife Patience and was born in Marion County, SC.  She married a white man, John Powers, by whom she had 4 children before she kicked him out for wasting away her inheritance.  She later moved with her children first to Alabama and then to Georgia.

T is for Trenilla Patrick Becham - my aunt by marriage.  Another loved memory.

U is for Ursula Thompson, born about 1745 in Virginia, she is the sister to my ancestor Patience Thompson Glenn, so my 7X great-aunt.  Not that she was memorable but it turns out that she is the only woman in the family I can find whose first, last or nickname starts with U.  She married Thomas Ray.

V is for Viola Wade Becham, my grandmother and mother to my grandfather's youngest 3 children.

W is for Sarah Wooten, who was born about 1729 in Somerset County, MD.  She married John Lord in 1745 in Sussex County, DE, which was at the time a neighboring county.  Her parents were John Wooten and Margaret Davis.

X - Stretching this one but the only person in the tree who starts with X is a Xavier.  Next best is EXie Dickson Carr, who was a cousin by her marriage to my grandfather Garner's 2nd cousin Linton Stephens Carr.

Y is for Eva Lou Young Ward, since the only woman I have with a name beginning in Y is still living so does not qualify.  Eva Lou was not really my family, but she is the grandmother of many of my cousins, so she goes here.  She died in 2009 at the age of 94, having survived her husband Fletcher Claude Ward by 25 years.

Z is for Zelma Evans, a cousin.  Born in 1919 in Irwin county, GA to Carrie Morris and Robert Evans, making her my 2nd cousin 2x removed.  She died in 1967 and is buried near her parents. She is like so many unmarried women in the records.  I know when she was born, when she died and where she was buried but find nothing in between.   She was listed in 1940 as not having attended school and being unable work, so it is likely that she lived at home her entire life. 

Monday, February 19, 2018

Dorothy Bird Lord

I have thought about doing some blog posts on my favorite female ancestors since so much research is centered on the men.  While that is not the point of this post, if it were, Dorothy would definitely be on the list.  She is surprisingly well documented for someone who lived at her time - or at least surprising when most of your family is in the South.   She could not have had an easy life, immigrating to the early colonies, but she survived.

Dorothy was born about 1588 in England, baptised on May 25th of that year in the St. Laurence church, Towcester, Northhamptonshire.  Her parents were Robert Bird and Amy Hill.

In February 1610/11, she married Thomas Lord in the same place.  Between 1612 and 1629, they had at least 8 children, including our probable ancestor John.  In 1635, their oldest son Richard, then about 22, went to the new world.   Thomas, Dorothy, and their younger children left from London in April 1635, aboard the ship "Elizabeth and Ann".  At this point, Dorothy was 46, which was not elderly but unusually old still to leave everything behind for such an uncertain adventure and to risk her own life and those of her family on the North Atlantic voyage.   The trip back then averaged 60 days. 

The family joined son Richard in Newtown, now Cambridge, Massachusetts, but they did not stay there long.  In 1637 they joined a group of approximately 100 men, women, and children, lead by Puritan minister Thomas Hooker and marched overland to the present-day site of Hartford, Connecticut.  This was yet another strenuous journey for a woman who was approaching 50.  

Dorothy died in 1676 at the age of 87, having survived numerous childbirths, an Atlantic crossing, a trek through the wilderness, and the general hardship of setting up a brand new community.  Her husband and at least two of her children predeceased her.  Her will survives and shows that she had considerable property as well as personal goods worth about $187. 

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Laura and Grace

At one point I looked at the estate of Thomas Cates, the possible father-in-law of Nimrod Lewis, and noted that the two slaves he owned were not accounted for in the estate settlement.   In the 7 March 1843 Macon Messenger, there is a notice that the young girls Larey (Laura), age 9, and Grace, age 7, had been levied on as the property of Thomas Cates to satisfy several Fi Fas issued by the court in favor of H. B. Troutman. 

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Grandma and Pa Mathews

This is a photograph discovered a while back by a cousin in a box left at his father's house by our grandmother.  It is labeled as "Grandma and Pa Mathews", indicating that it is probably Thomas Franklin (T.F.) Mathews and his wife Susan Katherine (Kate) Peterman.   T.F. lived from 1841 to 1922, while Kate was 1849 to 1933.  Considering her dress and the fact that they are older but not old, I would make a preliminary guess that this was taken around 1900, but that's speculation at this point.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Nimrod Lewis property tax lists

The published property tax lists of Crawford County list Nimrod Lewis six times.

In 1840 he is in Captain Hortman's district.  He payed one poll, and payed taxes on two lots.  One, in district 2, Crawford county was 101.5 acres.  The other, lot 46, District 16, section 2 in Habersham County, was 125 acres.  He had no luxury items listed.  This tax form is not alphabetized, from which it can be inferred that the lots are listed in at least partial neighborhood order, although the lot numbers are not sequential.  Those closest to him, therefore, were probably Jeremiah Hatcher, William Dickson, Joseph Wilder, Robert Martin, William Causey, James M. Sanders and Turner Cates on one side and David Worsham, Simpson Walker, Simon Johnson, Thomas Barran, and Martin Cloud on the other.  Thomas Cates also appears on the same page, though further down.  Thomas also paid taxes on land in Habersham although the lot and district nr were not listed on his property to compare their locations.

In 1845, Nimrod was in Capt Jones district and paid one poll and owned 2 slaves.  He claimed 101 acres in Crawford county and 125 in Habersham.  For this he paid $1.56 in state tax, 19.5 cents in poor tax, and 39.25 cents to the Poor school.  This is the only tax list that breaks out the payments. 

In 1851, Nimrod was listed as being in district 497, Osent's district.   This tax list is semi-alphabetical in that the names beginning with the same letter are grouped together.  Nimrod did not pay a poll, presumably too old, but his son Thomas did.   Nimrod is listed as having 2 slaves, 50 acres of 3rd quality oak and hickory upland, 101.5 acres of pine land in Crawford County, and 125 acres of the same in Habersham County.  All told he paid $1.08 in taxes plus Thomas' .25 poll tax.

In 1854, he is in still in district 497, now Castlebury's area.   He again is not responsible for a poll tax but Thomas is.   He does claim to have two children between the ages of 8 and 14.  This would have been Marsena and Almira.  This time he asserts 125 acres of 2nd quality land and 150 acres of 3rd quality for a total value of $700.   He has two slaves valued at $800 and other personal property valued at 106, for a total taxable amount of $1606.

1856 is still Castlebury's district.  Nimrod's son Jeremiah is now old enough to pay the poll tax as well as son Thomas.  Neither son shows property of their own.   Nimrod has 227 acres of pine land, in Crawford only, worth $700.   He now has 1 slave worth $400, $250 worth of other personal property, so $1350 worth of taxable property in total. 

In 1857, still in Castlebury's, his land is again split by county with 100 acres in Crawford ($600) and 125 in Habersham ($200).   He does not list any children between 6 and 18 although Marsena definitely qualified and Almira possibly did.  Son Thomas lists one child in that range although his oldest known child Feraby was only 4.  It is possible that their two entries were confused.  Nimrod still had one slave, worth  $500, and personal property worth $175.  Interestingly, Jeremiah is shown as having cash or solvent debts of $110.