Thursday, March 27, 2014

According to Buz ...

Those of you who follow this blog know that I have spent a lot of time researching Smithland, Kentucky and its residents. One of the town residents I enjoy most is Ben F. Egan, more commonly known as Buz. I've written about him Here and Here .

Buz was a steamboat captain on the Ohio and Cumberland rivers for many years and knew just about everyone in the business or connected to the business.  He also knew the men who reported the news of steamboats. So, when he was in a town, he visited the reporter who wrote the river news and talked. And talked and talked some more. He talked about old steamboat men in Smithland, calling them "old mariners." He talked about which ones were buried on "graveyard hill" in Smithland, which was often called "mouth of the Cumberland" or "mouth of Smithland."  Because of his talking, we get an inside look at people he knew in Smithland and on the rivers. Thank you, Buz!

Below are some of the news items found in the Evansville, Indiana Journal, which is available on microfilm at Willard Library in Evansville:

15 December 1884:  Speaking of his life-long friend, A.J. Duncan (deceased), Ben F. Egan says: Allen and I were boys together at that good old town at the mouth of the Cumberland river. When I first learned to know him well he and I were officers, in 1855, on the Nashville and St. Louis packet, Aleonia ... Capt. Duncan married  the niece of Capt. J.V. Scyster, of Smithland ... The widow of Wm. Mantz, a favorite engineer on the Cumberland river, is the niece of Capt. Duncan.

22 April 1885: [Speaking of J.W. Mills] His earthly voyage is ended, and he now sleeps on the graveyard hill down at the mouth of Smithland, and near him lie his old-time friends R.C. Weston, J.V. Throop, D.G. Fowler, N.F. Drew and Blount Hodge.

11 October 1886:  When a boy down at the mouth of Smithland, I played with the Matheny boys, Clem, Will, Tobe and Jim. Clem died at the pilot's wheel of the W.A. Johnson; Will committed suicide; Tobe was executed at Paducah by a military order issued by Gen. Payne, and now comes the intelligence from Evansville that Jim died there a few days ago, a victim of that dread disease, consumption. All of these boys were boatmen, and all, except poor Jim, died with their boots on. W.S. Gupton, a well known pilot, is their nephew.

3 December 1890:  Recalling ante-bellum days, Buz says: In the long ago Dixon Given drove a stage and kept a tavern on the point opposite the Mouth of Smithland. The old gentleman is dead and forgotten, and not a vestige of that house, nor of the ground on which it stood, remains. It has tumbled into the Ohio River. H.F., D.A., Mildred, Emily and Kate are dead. Judge W.P. Fowler married the oldest daughter. There [sic] sons are Dick, Joe, Whyte and Gus. Only Joe survives.

This is just a sample of what Buz had to say. I'll share more in the future.

Published 27 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday - Anna Lake Adams

Anna Lake
Daughter of
J.A. & Nellie Antrim Haynes
Wife of
Lynn D. Adams
1883 - 1925
Buried in Smithland Cemetery, Livingston County, Kentucky. Tombstone photographed 20 August 2012.
Anna Lake Antrim is found on the 1900 Alexander County, Illinois census living with her father in Cairo, Illinois. According to Kentucky death certificate #12520 (1925), Anna Lake was born in Illinois to John A. Haynes and Nellie Antrim, on 31 December 1883.  On the 1920 Livingston County census, she was living with her husband, Lynn, sons John and David, and daughter Marjorie. She died in Livingston County, Kentucky 27 April 1925.
Published 25 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Mills Cemetery Restoration

This winter a group of Livingston County, Kentucky residents has been clearing the old Mills Cemetery, just outside Salem on Hwy. 723S. Fallen branches, briars and brambles are being cut up and removed from the cemetery. Once again, tombstones are visible and eight previously unrecorded monuments have been located.

Mills Cemetery March 2010

The Mills Cemetery is the final resting place of some of the earliest business leaders and families of Salem, when it was the county seat of justice and afterward, when Smithland had become the county seat. Included among names of those buried are the following:  Watts, Ford, Foster, Phillips, McCrosky, Rutter, Summers, McJenkins, Haynes, Cobb, Gordon, West, Mills, Martin, Sherrell, Parker, Pringle, Padon, Caldwell, Knower, Duvall, Linley, Greer, Jones, Johnson, Dallam, Bass, Whyte, Campbell, Fowler and McCollum.  Each tombstone is being photographed and submitted to Find A Grave   The earliest burial dates on the tombstones date from the 1820s and run through 1933.

After debris is removed, it will be necessary to keep the brush and unwanted plants from returning. Native, small growing grass will be planted. This is an on-going project and will involve the continued cooperation of volunteers for some time.

The following photos were taken 15 March 2014 after the clean up was well underway.

Published 20 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

"After" photos by Jerry Bebout.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday - Ann and Marcus Murray

Wife of
Marcus Murray
Apr. 5, 1809
Nov. 24, 1885
Oct. 12, 1802
Dec. 13, 1884
Buried Smithland Cemetery, Livingston County, Kentucky. Tombstone photographed 27 September 2010.
Marcus and Ann S. Murray are found on the 1870 Ballard County, Kentucky census. That year he was listed as a preacher. Listed in their household were William, John, Caroline and Fannie Murray. By 1880, they were living in Smithland and he was listed as a lawyer.
Published 14 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Caldwell County Marriages (Colored) 1868

Prior to 14 February 1866, marriages between African Americans were not legal in Kentucky. Beginning on that date, couples who had lived together as husband and wife could have their marriages legalized by having their union recorded in the county clerk's office and paying a small fee. These marriages are found in Declarations of Marriages of Mullattoes and Negroes. Also, in 1866, African Americans could marry legally, if the officiate was a legally authorized person. These marriages are recorded in a separate book. The following marriage bonds have been transcribed from Caldwell County Marriage Book (Colored) 2 (1866-1875), Caldwell County Clerk's Office, Princeton, Kentucky.

John Edmunds and Sally Bennett,   4 February 1868. Surety: Ellen Pettit.

Jack Baker and Polly Stokes, 8 February 1868. Surety: Bob Stokes. Polly Stokes swears she is over the age of 21 years.

Henry Rice and Lucy Ann Byrd,  12 March 1868. Surety: Jerry Byrd. Consent 11 March 1868: "To the Clerk of the Caldwell County Court  This is to certify that I am willing for Marriage License to be issued between my Daughter Lucy Ann Byrd and Henry Rice said Lucy having no Father, and I am her mother." [signed] Lousa A. (X her mark) Byrd.

Wright Bruton and Mary E. Hughes,  14 March 1868. Surety: Dennis Hughes. Wright Bruton, being sworn, states each of them are over the age of 21 years.

Charles H. Hunter and Mary M. Harris, 9 April 1868. Surety: Jno. W. Blankenship. Charles Hunter states he is over 21. Consent 9 April 1868 by Mary Maria Harris for herself and Charles H. Hunter, she being over the age of 21 years.

William Fentis and Ann Baker,  6 June 1868. Surety: Wiley Baker. Consent by Ann Baker.

Clark Wilson and Permelia Rice,  6 June 1868. Surety: Calip Rice. Clark Wilson swears he is over 21.

Melton Wylie and Alecina Haynes,  9 June 1868. Surety: James S. Wylie. Consent for daughter Alecina by Adaline Haynes.

William Kevil and Rosetta Hollowell,  23 July 1868. Surety: Sam Parker. Kevil swears he is over 21.

Henry Miller and Mary Rucker,  9 August 1868. Surety: Jas. Wadlington.

Benjamin Ricketts and Nancy Ann Boyd,  15 August 1868. Surety: Bob Stokes.

Chesterfield Hughes and Mildred McGoodwin,  22 August 1868. Surety: Eli Hughes. Mildred swears she is over the age of 21 years.

Abram Wilson and Sarah E. Miller,  10 September 1868. Surety: Milt Wylie.

Wm. Machan and Lena Rice,  13 September 1868. Surety: Calip Rice.

Brandy Crumbaugh and Eliza J. Mitchusson, 24 October 1868. Surety: Jacob Mitchusson.

John Tyler and Jennet Waddill,  6 November 1868. Surety: Henry Stokes. Consent by Jennet, who swears she is over 21.

John Crider and Margaret Dobson,  13 December 1868. Surety: Milt Wylie.

Henry Perry and Mary Pool,  26 December 1868. Surety: Jack Quisenberry. Consent: "Mary Pool about 45 years of age, now in employment of L.B. Sims says she is willing to marry Henry Perry."

Daniel C. Hollowell and America Parker,  26 December 1868. Surety: Clark Mitchell. Daniel C. Hollowell states he is over 21. Clark Mitchell states he is father (brother?) of America Parker and she is over 21.

Published 13 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday James M. & Elisabeth J. Lamb

James M.
April 21, 1827
Nov. 29 1903

Elisabeth J.
March 22, 1828
Died Feb. 25, 1905
Gone But Not Forgotten

Buried Green's Chapel Cemetery, Crittenden County, Kentucky. Tombstone photographed 1998.

James M. Lamb and Elisabeth Jane Taylor married 23 September 1847 Crittenden County. Giving consent were their fathers, John Lamb and Timothy Taylor. The Lamb and Taylor families lived in the Bells Mines area of Crittenden County.

Published 11 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Livingston County Guardian Bonds 1866

A guardian was appointed when a person was unable to act for himself or was under the age of 21 years. At the age of 14, a minor could choose his own guardian. If under the age of 14, the county court appointed the guardian.  The following information has been abstracted from Livingston County, Kentucky Guardian Bonds Book C (1863-1878) and Livingston County Court Order Book M.

Thomas J. Mitchell and Phillip S. Mitchell chose Henry Mitchell as their guardian. Henry Mitchell was appointed guardian of Elbert P. Mitchell, Doctor W. Mitchell and Collin A. Mitchell, all under the age of 14.  1 January 1866

Davis Donakey, infant heir of W.D. Donakey, chose Abram Peck as his guardian.  5 March 1866

Caroline P. Rutter and William H. Rutter chose James Rutter as their guardian. The court appointed James Rutter the guardian Edmund Rutter, J.E.C. Rutter and Charles Rutter. All were the infant orphans of J.O. Rutter.  2 April 1866

J.T. Cochran was appointed guardian of John A. Hurley.  2 April 1866

Olive Morrison and J.H. Morrison chose Mrs. E.E. Morrison as there guardian. The court appointed Mrs. E.E. Morrison as the guardian of Edward Morrison. 2 April 1866

C. Haynes was appointed guardian of William H. Hodges, infant heir of Joseph E. Hodges. 4 September 1866

Irene Peterson, infant heir of C.S. Peterson, chose T.F. Gibson as her guardian. 4 October 1866

Ella Matilda Lantrip chose William Lantrip as her guardian. 5 November 1866

Samuel M. Leeper chose T.A. Leeper as his guardian. 5 November 1866

Published 6 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday - James Barnes

James Barnes
Was Born June 
5  1748 And Dec
June 17 1822

Buried on private property just off Highway 135 near Joy, Livingston County, Kentucky. Tombstone photographed 1998. No other tombstones were visible in the area.

In 1819, Newsom Barnes acquired several tracts of land in Livingston County. That same year James Barnes gave to his beloved son, Newsom Barnes, for natural love and affection, three slaves; all stock of cattle, sheep, hogs and horses and all household, kitchen and plantation utensils. [ Deed Book D, p. 253] Three years later, in 1822, Newsom Barnes and John Knight conveyed to their parents, James Barnes Sr. and Nancy Barnes, for natural love and affection, "a good and Jenteel maintenance so long as both shall live." [Deed Book E, p. 194] 

Published 4 March 2014, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog,