Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Tombstone Tuesday - Mary Catherine Wood

Mary Catherine
Aug. 7, 1871
Apr. 1, 1959

Our Mother's Resting Place is to Us 
the Most Sacred Place on Earth

Buried Smithland Cemetery, Smithland, Kentucky. Tombstone photographed 6 April 2013.

According to Kentucky death certificate #8310 (1959), Mary Catherine Wood, a widow, died in McCracken County. Her parents are listed as Peter Henry and Sarah Howton. The informant was Florence Edmonds, her daughter.

The 1880 Dyers Hill, Livingston County census lists the family of Peter H. Henry, age 53, and wife Sarah E. Henry, age 34 with their children Mary C., Lacy M., Augustus and Unice O.E. Henry.

Published 28 February 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Crittenden County Union Soldiers

Several years ago I came across a list of Civil War Union soldiers in the loose papers in the Crittenden  County Clerk's Office. Named were the soldiers and the regiments and companies  in which they served. The lists were arranged by district in Crittenden County. The information was published in Vol. VII, No. 1 (Winter 2000) issue of the Western Kentucky Journal. I have never seen such a list of Union soldiers in other western Kentucky counties, although it was ordered that a list be made in each county.

Resolutions for the purpose of correcting the returns of troops furnished from the different counties.  Whereas, there exists, in many counties of the State, a doubt as to whether or not the men furnished for the purpose of suppressing the present insurrection have been accurately credited to the proper counties, upon the rolls in the office of the Adjutant General of Kentucky - therefore be it Resolved by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky:

1.  That it is hereby recommended to the judges of the county courts to immediately appoint committees of two or more, in every precinct of their respective counties, who ... shall go through such precinct, carefully ascertain and report as many as possible of the following facts, viz: the name, date of enlistment, in what company and regiment, or other service, every soldier or marine entered from Kentucky, who has served in the State of Kentucky or elsewhere, under the authority of the United States, for the purpose set out in the above preamble. That all returns shall, as soon as practicable, be delivered to the judge of the county, who shall immediately transmit the same to the Adjutant General of Kentucky, and he shall, in all instances where the evidence is satisfactory, re-adjust the rolls in his office ... [1]

A later resolution stated the Adjutant General of Kentucky was required to procure descriptive rolls of every enlisted man in the service of the State or United States and include this information in his next annual report.[2]

In Crittenden County, T.L.R. Wilson (replaced by S. Hodge) was appointed to procure a descriptive list of the men who volunteered in the Federal Army which had been regularly enlisted since the first day of June last and report same to the county court so it could be certified to the Adjutant General of Kentucky. [3]  Taking lists in Crittenden County districts were W.C. Carnahan, H.C. Gilbert, J.A. Davidson, Wm. S. Williams, J.H. Travis, D.B. Cassidy and W.H. Franklin. [4]

Union soldiers from Crittenden County received a break from paying taxes. All soldiers who had been in the Federal services and had been discharged since the 10th day of January 1865, were released from paying poll tax for 1865 (laid in 1864) and, if they had already paid, the sum was to be refunded to them.   It is doubtful confederate soldiers received such a break.

[1] Resolution No. 10, Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, (Frankfort, KY: Wm. E. Hughes, State Printer, 1864)137-138, Approved December 22, 1863.
[2] Resolution No. 38, Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, (Frankfort, KY: Wm. E. Hughes, State Printer, 1864) 159-160, Approved February 12, 1864.
[3] Crittenden County Court Order Book 3:187, 10 October 1864.
[4] Crittenden County Court Order Book 3:189, 10 October 1864.

Published 22 February 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Land Rental Agreement 1819

Land rental agreements were not always recorded in early Kentucky and, thus, are sometimes hard to find. The following document between Edward Mitchusson Senr. and William M. Phelps affords us a look at the terms of a rental agreement in early Caldwell County .  It was located in the loose county court bundles of 1819. The original spelling and punctuation have been retained.

"Articles of agreement made & Entered into this 14th day of January 1819 between Edward Mitchusson Senr. of the one part & William M.  Phelps both of the county of Caldwell & State of Kentucky  Witnesseth that the Said Mitchusson hath this day Rented & let unto the said Phelps the farm on which he now lives together with all and Singular the priviledges & appurtenences thereunto belonging for & during the term of three years from & after the first day of february next on the following terms to wit  the Said Phelps binds himself to repair the fences and to leave the Same in good repair at the End of Said term, for which he is to have the Said farm & all the appurtences for the term of two years rent free and for the third year he is to pay Said Mitchusson two barrels of Corn or two dollars in Cash per acre for all the lands now under Cultivation and Should Said Phelps Clear any more ground on Said land he is to have it   two years rent free & pay rent the third year the same as or the lands now under Cultivation and leave the fences of the same in good repair, and Should Said Phelps make any improvements on the buildings on Said farm Said Mitchusson is to pay him a reasonable price for the Same at the End of Said term  Witness our hands Seals this date aforesd.  Teste: Reuben Rowland.  [signed] Edwd. Mitchusson, Wm. M. Phelps.

 Published 18 February 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Kentucky's Land Patenting Process

Acquiring land through the patenting process in Kentucky consists of the following steps:

1.  The Warrant - authorizes a survey. There are four types of warrants: Military Warrants, Pre-emption Warrants, Treasury Warrants and Exchange Warrants.  Warrants could be traded, sold or assigned.

2.  The Entry - signals the intention of filing for a patent and contains the name of the person wanting to patent the land, the type of warrant authorizing the survey and the date of the entry. The date can be very important, especially when there were conflicting claims on the same land.

3.  The Survey - describes the metes and bounds of the land and names the closest watercourse. The only exception to this surveying method is in the Jackson Purchase, which uses sections, townships, ranges in their surveys. The survey includes the names of the surveying party (chain carriers and markers).

4.  The Grant (Patent) - final step in the patenting process. The grant lists the name of the recipient of the land, date of the survey,  type of warrant, description of the land and date of the grant was issued. The grant could not be assigned.

"Land Distribution in Kentucky," Kentucky Dept. for Libraries and Archives leaflet, Dec. 1995.

"The Kentucky Land Grant System," Saddlebag Notes, Technical Leaflet, The Circuit Rider, Historical Confederation of Kentucky, Vol. 13, No. 3: May/June 1990.

"Non-Military Registers and Land Records," Kentucky Secretary of State Website , accessed 17 Jan 2017.

Published 15 Feb 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Emancipation of Slave 1819

Slaves in Kentucky were emancipated through the county court or through a provision in the last will and testament of the slave's owner. The following handwritten document provided for the emancipation of a slave woman, Mary, by Milintha Johnson. This paper was located in the loose county court papers, Emancipations, Caldwell County Clerk's Office.

"Caldwell County July 27  1819

                "Whereas for the many valuable servises rendered unto me  and my family by my negro woman Mary, who has assisted me through many of the hardships of life
                "I do hereby make known to all Persons that said black woman Mary is to be free at my death.  And I do by these presents emancipate and set free the said Negro woman Mary at my death hereby requesting the County Court of Caldwell to give this paper a place on their records together with her papers of freedom after my decease.
                "In Testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal the date above in Presence of                                                                             [signed] Milintha (X her mark) Johnson.
                Test  Thos. Beck   Joshua G. Church"


[Reverse: Bill of Emancipation  Negro Woman Mary  by}  Mrs. Johnson.  Proven by Beck & Church Augst 23d  1819.      1819  Emancipation]

Published 9 Feb 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Tombstone Tuesday - J.M. and Ettie Mitchell

Mar. 21, 1837
Jan. 19, 1919

Wife of
Feb. 26, 1917
74  yrs.

Buried Leeper Cemetery, Livingston County, Kentucky. Tombstones photographed 19 February 2014.

John M. and Etta Mitchell are last enumerated on the 1910 Livingston County census. They were living on Lower Smithland-Dycusburg Road. Also in their household were Henry Mitchell, age 32, and Mack Mitchell, age 30.

According to Kentucky death certificate #23937 (1919), John Mitchell was the son of John Mitchell, born Virginia,  and Elizabeth Bennett.

The 1917 Kentucky death certificate (#14909) of Etta Mitchell gives her birth date as 27 February 1841 and her parents as William Harp and Sallie Linley, both of whom were born in North Carolina.  Etta first married Reuben F. Marshall 24 December 1856 in Livingston County and then married John M. Mitchell 1 December 1878.

Published 7 February 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot./

Friday, February 3, 2017

Update on Capt. John Strother Chapman

This is an update on the death of Capt. John S. Chapman, who served under Col. Adam Rankin Johnson during the Civil War.  Even though it is nice to have some information on his burial, we still do not know for sure where he is buried. Tradition says he is buried at St. Ann's Cemetery in Morganfield, but no tombstone has been found there or any other cemetery..

The son of Thomas Strother Chapman and Prudence Huston of Morganfield,  John S. Chapman enlisted in 1861 in Co. B, 4th Kentucky Regt. Infantry, CSA.  During the battle of Fort Donelson, he was taken prisoner and sent to Camp Chase. After escaping, he served in Gen. William Preston's Brigade and later in Co. H. (later Co. F) of the 10th Kentucky  under Col. Adam Rankin Johnson.

After the war, John S. Strother returned to Union County, where he married Hettie Hite and five children were born to them. Hettie died in 1882 and John S. died in 1885. Below is the article[1] published after his death.

"The obsequies of Capt. John S. Chapman attracted a large crowd to town to-day, and his funeral is said to have been the largest seen in Morganfield for years. He was a son of one of the old pioneers of the county. He served in the Confederate army, first as a lieutenant of Company B, Fourth Kentucky infantry, and afterward, raising a company, he entered the Tenth Kentucky cavalry, under the command of Col. Adam Johnson. He went through Indiana with Morgan, and was present in many of the engagements in which that commander participated. His remains were followed to the grave by a large number of his former comrades in arms."

[1] "Death of Capt. Chapman," Evansville Daily Courier, Thurs., 27 August 1885, p. 1

Published 3 Feb 2017, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/