Surnames Beginning With 'W'
JOHN W. WAITE
John W. Waite was born near Georgetown, Brown County, Ohio on 5 December 1845. He was one of nine children born to Noah Jefferson Waits/Waite and Rebecca A. Parker. The Waits/Waite family was of Welsh descent and while the family lived in Ohio, their name was spelled Waits. Later the spelling became Waite and has remained so for many years.
The children of Noah Jefferson and Rebecca (Parker) Waite were: John Waite, David Waite, Lydia Jane (Waite) Bradford, Patience Waite, Thomas Waite, Lyman and William Waite (twins), Anne Waite, and Isaac Newton Waite.
During the Civil War, when only a teenager, John W. Waite enlisted in Company C of the 48th Ohio Volunteers Infantry and served at several battle scenes, including the famous battle of Shiloh.
On 15 January 1870, at the age of 25 years, John married Elizabeth Ellen Caroline Reed in Claremont County, Ohio. Always known as Ellen, she was born 24 April 1853. Ellen was a daughter of John K. Reed and his first wife, Sarah Burdsall. Her mother died when Ellen was a small child and she was reared by some of her kinfolk. She had a brother, George Hamilton Marcellus Reed, who was only a baby when their mother died. John K. Reed was married several times following the death of his first wife and fathered more children. He came to Miller County and stayed for a short while, but then moved on to southwest Missouri and lived near Ava, in Douglas County.
John W. and Ellen (Reed) Waite came to Miller County about 3 months after their marriage in 1870 and settled in Richwoods Township, north of Iberia, near the families of Burks, Aust, Fancher, bond, Denton, Shackelford, Forrester, Ponder, Short, Gardner, and Wheeler.
Their ten children were all born in Richwoods Township.
For 12 years, John W. Waite was county surveyor of Miller County. His terms of office were from 1889-1896 and then from 1905-1908. He was also a country schoolteacher for several years, teaching in many of the area schools of Richwoods Township. He proudly served as a member of the G.A.R. (Grand Army of the Republic) and took an active part in their encampments and parades in the Iberia area.
John Waite died at the age of 83 years on 22 November 1928. He was survived by his wife, Ellen, with whom he had spent 58 years of married life on their Richwoods farm. All ten children survived their father also. His services were conducted by Rev. E. H. Pontius of the Iberia Methodist Church and he was buried at Livingston Cemetery. Ellen Reed Waite lived until July 22, 1934 and was laid to rest beside her husband at Livingston.
NOTE: The above information was acquired from an obituary of John W. Waite and the private writings of his daughter, Ethel Waite Livingston. Ethel accomplished a goal that more people should try to accomplish.....she recorded a small history of her family and also one for her husband's family before her death. I am fortunate to have a copy of her family histories........they are priceless gems for her descendants.
JAMES E. WALKER, an overseer of Miller County's "POOR FARM"
James E. Walker was born in Wayne County. KY on April 10, 1849, a son of George W. Walker and Mary/Polly Coughron. He was one of three children born to his parents. His father was a painter by occupation and sometime during James' childhood, his father was among the thousands who went to California in the western movement. He was never heard from again. It is not known if he died somewhere along the way or in California. James' mother also died when the children were young, so they were left orphans and were reared among strangers back in Kentucky.
James was reared to farm labor which became his chief occupation in his lifetime. About 1869, at the age of 20 years, he left Kentucky and moved to Warren County, Illinois where he stayed for 3 years. In 1872, he came on to Miller County and located near Pleasant Mount (today called Mt. Pleasant).
On September 23, 1874, James married Mary Ellen Lawson in Miller County, the marriage performed by E. P. Belshe, minister. Mary Ellen, born c/1854, was a daughter of Lewis and Nancy Matthews, natives of Tennessee. The Lawsons were early settlers of. Equality township and reared several children in the Tuscumbia area.
In 1886, James E. Walker was appointed as overseer of the county's "poor farm" located south of the Osage river and downriver from Tuscumbia. He served for a few years as overseer of indigent persons who became 'inmates" of the poor farm (sometimes called "the poor house".
Evidently James and Mary Ellen Walker left Miller County before l900 because no record of them was found in the census taken that year. There is no record for a marriage of any of their children in Miller County records either, so I would suspect they left the county sometime between 1890 and 1900.
OBITUARY OF BIRD TAYLOR WATKINS
Bird Taylor Watkins was born on the old Watkins farm at Watkins, (Post Office), MO on May 7, 1858 and died at his home in Ulman on Aug. 3, 1934. He was 76 years old. Bird was a son of William Shelton Watkins and his wife, Mary Jane who came from Kentucky and settled on the old Watkins farm northwest of Iberia. On Dec. 14, 1879, he married Mary A. Hughes and they had 5 children, three who died in infancy. His surviving children were: Mrs. L.P. Pemberton, Mrs. A.B. Clark. His surviving grandchildren named were Phyllis Pemberton, Hilary Pemberton, Glennis Pemberton, and Rosemary Clark. He was also survived by a brother, P.M. Watkins and a sister, Mrs. Will Irwin. Two brothers, Bowline and Emmet, preceded him in death. His services were held at the Baptist Church in Ulman and his burial was at Hickory Point Cemetery.
PRIVATE FREMONT WATKINS, A CASULATY OF WORLD WAR I
Iberia American Legion Fremont Watkins Post #105 was named in honor of Private Fremont Watkins, a Miller County soldier who died during World War I.
Fremont Watkins was born 18 September 1887 at Brown Branch, Taney County, Missouri. He was a son of Emmett G. Watkins (1856-1921) and Luiza Jane Bradley (1852-1914). Fremont's paternal grandparents were William Shelton Watkins (who died in the Civil War) and Mary Jane (Livingston); his maternal grandparents were Seth Henry and Galletta Bradley. His parents moved to Miller County from Taney County when Fremont was about 2 years old (circa 1889).
In 1908 Fremont moved to Colorado and stayed for awhile. He then ventured on westward into Oregon and lived on the west coast until the first draft caught him in World War I. He left St. John, Washington about August 1917 for Camp Lewis, Washington. In December 1917, he sailed from New York to the European front. From July 1918 until November 11, 1918 (Armistice Day), Fremont was in several of the hardest battles the Americans took part in when the signal sounded the armistice, he was still hiding in shell/fox holes. He wrote home during this time and said he had come through the battles without a scratch, but his letter revealed the terrible strain he had undergone.
By the time his returning ship arrived back in the United States, he was in a feverish, delirious condition. He never knew he had gotten back home to America. He died in U.S. Army General Hospital #10 at Boston, Mass. on 20 April 1919 of pneumonia fever. That is such a sad epitaph to the story of this fighting American soldier.
Fremont Watkins was cited for bravery in the battle of Chateau Thierry where the American troops won their initial successes in the war. He was awarded the distinguished service medal. The following is the citation award he won: (written and sent to his father, E.G. Watkins, about a month before Fremont's death.
CITATION FOR BRAVERY
March 9, 1919
From: Commanding Officer, Co. M 101st U.S. Infantry
To: Commanding Officer 101st U.S. Infantry.
Private Fremont Watkins, 79964, Co. M 101st U.S. Infantry is recommended for the award of the Distinguished Service Medal by Capt. Valentine C. Jacob, Commanding. For exceptional mission while this company was engaged in repelling an enemy attack in the town of Aux, west of Chateau Thierry, July the 15, 1918. When the company's supply of rifle grenades was practically exhausted, and at a moment when the need of this ammunition was indispensable, Private Watkins volunteered to go back through an enemy barrage to an ammunition dump. Private Watkins made three trips to the dump, and returned with grenades, each time passing through an intense artillery barrage. The result of Private Watkins' heroic endeavors, contribute greatly to the success of the Company in repelling the enemy attack.
Signed: Valentine C. Jacob, Capt. 101st U.S. Inf.
Fremont Watkins, brave soldier of World War I, was brought home to Miller County and buried at Hickory Point Cemetery, Richwoods Township, beside his mother, 2 young brothers and infant sister.
WILLIAM SHELTON WATKINS
William Shelton Watkins was a Confederate soldier, born in Kentucky in 1829. As a young man, in his early 20s, he went to the state of California at the time of the Gold Rush about 1849-50. On his return home, he boarded a ship and sailed around Cape Horn and visited with relatives in Virginia when the ship docked. In 1853, he moved westward and settled in Miller County, Missouri. The same year he married Mary Jane Livingston in Kentucky (perhaps Hart County where the Livingston family lived) and they became parents of five children….four sons and one daughter.
During the early days of the Civil War, William joined a military company called "W. R. Wright's Company". This man was known throughout the county as Rankin Wright. William Watkins served in John Ray's regiment of the Wright Company and the men of this company were ready to defend southern institutions to the bitter end. William Rankin Wright was the leader of Confederate troops in the central Missouri area during the Civil War, but some family legends say that William Shelton Watkins fought for the Union Army.
William Shelton Watkins was killed in a skirmish on 13 October 1861. The skirmish took place near the source of the Tavern Creek just over the line in Pulaski County to the south. At the time of his death, he was 32 years old. William was a Mason and he was a member of the Baptist Church, which was probably the old Hickory Point Church because it was in that area that he settled and lived before the War.
NOTE: Once again, family records say William Watkins was killed at his home by bushwhackers. He was buried in the yard of his homestead and a marble slab was placed at his gravesite. This happened in the Hickory Point community and many years later, he was moved to the Hickory Point Cemetery and buried beside his wife, Mary Jane.
It is legend that William Watkins brought gold back from California and secretly buried it on his land before going off to fight in the Rebellion. He did not tell anyone where it was hidden, not even his wife. For years many people have searched for his treasure, but if it existed, it is still safe somewhere under our Miller County soil!
Tony/Antone Weitz was born near Tuscumbia on August 13, 1875, the oldest child of Nicholas Weitz (b. 1837 in Saxony, Germany) and Martha E. Birdsong of Miller County. Martha was a daughter of William Birdsong and Mary Stapp who married in Miller County in September 1853. Tony Weitz's father, Nicholas Weitz, came to America from Germany in 1865, accompanied by his sister, Elizabeth Catherine Weitz. Their older brother, John Weitz had come to Miller County about 10 years earlier.
He and his wife, Hannah, had become parents of two children when Hannah died at an early age. Tony and sister, Elizabeth, had first settled in New York when they came to America. I would imagine John contacted them after the death of his wife and asked them to venture on to central Missouri and help him rear the children. They came to the Tuscumbia area in 1866. Elizabeth/Lizzie took over the rearing of the children and did not marry until later in life. She married Ira T. Johnson in December 1876 when she was well into her 30's. They had two children (Ella and William Sherman) but both died when young.
NOTE: There may have been other children but these are the only ones I found on record. Tony Weitz married Angie Wyrick 23 May 1897, the marriage performed by Joel M. Topping, minister of the gospel. The consent for their marriage was given by Henry C. Wyrick, Angie's father. She was born in Miller County in 1882, a daughter of Henry C. and Brazonia (Gibson) Wyrick. Her Wyrick ancestors came to Miller County from Grainger County, Tennessee in the 1840s and settled in Equality and Glaize townships. The Wyrick family were natives of the Rhineland of Germany and when they came to America in the early 1700s first settled in Pennsylvania; later ventured on down the Shenadoah Valley to southwest Virginia; onward to East Tennessee, and finally to Central Missouri.
Tony and Angie became parents of only one child, a daughter Lura, who was born in December 1899. In the census of 1900, Tony and Angie lived in Equality Township, south of the river, near the families of McDonald, Wyrick, Clarke, Markle, Goodrich, Wickham, Coan, and Lupardus.
In 1897, Tony and Angie first joined the Hopewell Christian Church located in the vicinity where they lived. Later they attended the Tuscumbia Christian Church. Angie Wyrick Weitz died in May 1951 at the age of 69 years. She and Tony had been married for 54 years and had lived most of their lives in the same community. Her burial was at Tuscumbia Cemetery. Tony/Antone Weitz died January 31, 1953, at the age of 77 years. He was survived by his daughter, Lura (Mrs. Perry Hawkins); one sister, Mary Weitz Sisson of Bowling Green, MO; and one brother, Wesley Weitz of Tuscumbia. He was laid to rest beside his wife at Tuscumbia Cemetery.
ELIZABETH CATHERINE WEITZ
Elizabeth Catherine Weitz was born in Saxony, Germany on July 4, 1845. At the age of 20, in 1865, she accompanied her brother, Nicholas Weitz, to America and for a short while they lived in New York. They had an older brother, John Weitz, who had come to America about a decade earlier and settled in Miller County near Tuscumbia. John's wife, Hannah, died in late 1865 at the age of 31 years and left him with two young children, Jonathan age 7 and Josephine age 4. She was among the first to be buried in Jesse Hawken Cemetery, a short distance northeast of Tuscumbia.
John Weitz evidently sent word to his brother and sister in New York and informed them he needed help at his Tuscumbia home which was located half-way across the nation. They arrived in Miller County in early 1866 and for several years Elizabeth/Lizzie kept house and helped to rear John's children. He owned a blacksmith and wagon shop in Tuscumbia and was active in that trade for many years. Earlier, John Weitz had served in the Civil War in Company B of the 6th Missouri Infantry. When he died no stone was put at his gravesite but in later years a U.S. government military stone was placed on his grave which only indicated his military service.
Lizzie's other brother, Nicholas Weitz, continued to live in Miller County also. In November 1874, he married Martha E. Birdsong, daughter of William and Mary (Stapp) Birdsong. They were parents of at least 4 children: Tony born 1875 m. Angie Wyrick; Minnie born 1878 m. no record; Wesley born 1882 m. Emma Ellen DeMott; and Mary born 1891 m. Frank L. Sisson. When John Weitz's children grew older and could accept responsibility for themselves, Lizzie Weitz married Ira T. Johnson, a native of Ohio, born in September 1842. Both were in their 30's when they married in December 1876. They continued to live in the Tuscumbia area and reared their 2 children there. William Sherman Weitz was born in 1879 and Ella Weitz in 1880.
Ira Johnson died in December 1895 at the age of 53 years. He was buried at Tuscumbia Cemetery. The two children of Lizzie and Ira died young and unmarried...Ella in 1900 and William Sherman in 1910.
For many years Lizzie Weitz Johnson lived quietly and alone as Ira's widow. She died at the age of 85 years in December 1930 and was laid to rest beside her husband and two children in Tuscumbia Cemetery.
JOSHUA R. WELLS
Joshua R. Wells was born in Sistersville, West Virginia on December 31, 1852, a son of Charles V. Wells. His father had purchased a large farm (640 acres) in Miller County before the Civil War. It was located 3 miles downriver from Tuscumbia on the Osage River. About 1860, J. R./Joshua and his parents were visiting at Bowling Green, MO and they came on to Miller County by horse and buggy to see the land which had been purchased a few years earlier. Joshua immediately decided he liked this Osage River country.
J. R.'s father, Charles, was a steamboat captain on the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. During the Civil War, his boats were seized by the Confederate Army and he was never paid for them. He sustained a great loss when he lost his boats.
After the death of their father, J. R. and his brother, William, came to Miller County and began farming the land. In 1890, William returned to his West Virginia home and J. R. came into full ownership of the Miller County farm after some trades with his brother.
Joshua/J.R. became a very prominent man in Miller County. He was a stockholder of the Anchor Milling Company and also owned stock in the Bank of Tuscumbia. Back east, he had interests in several oil wells in his native West Virginia. Anchor Milling Company named one of their steamboats, the J.R. WELLS, in his honor and it plied the waters of the Osage for many years. A later boat was named for his daughter, the RUTH.
At the age of 38, on February 25, 1891, J.R. married Lucy Ellen Lawson, a daughter of Benjamin and Anna Lawson of Tuscumbia. Lucy was born in Miller County in January 1873 and was 21 years younger than her husband.
Joshua R. Wells died in November 1933 at the age of 83 years. He was survived by his wife, seven children, and his brother, William (who was living in Florida in 1933). Funeral services were conducted from his farm home by Rev. A. B. Jackson with burial in the Riverview Cemetery in Jefferson City. He and Lucy Ellen had maintained homes in both Jefferson City and Tuscumbia. Today, their Miller County home, a three-storied Victorian-style structure, still stands on the old Wells farmland downriver from Tuscumbia. After the flood of 1943, the house was moved farther up the hillside and is sitting on a grassy knoll overlooking the mighty Osage to the east.
PRISCILLA WEST STONE
Priscilla Jane West was born 31 January 1837 in Bond County, Illinois. She was a daughter of John W. West (1812-1890) and his first wife, Sarah/Sally Smith who married in Bond County in August 1832. Sally Smith West died before 1846 because on July 22, 1846, John West married his second wife, Cynthia M. Warrill. John W. West was a Primitive Baptist preacher in central Missouri. John and Sally West were parents of several children including Priscilla Jane West b. 1837; James M. West b. c/1840; Thomas W. West b. c/1841; and Mary E. West b. c/1843. John and his second wife, Cynthia, had at least 3 children (perhaps more) and they were: Sarah M. West b. c/1848; Alzada West b. c/1853; and John West b. c/1859.
In 1853, Priscilla Jane West married James Anderson Stone of Miller County. There is no record of their marriage in the county records so, at this time, I do not know where the marriage occurred. James Anderson Stone was a son of John B. Stone and Samantha Martha Bailey, both natives of Barren County, Kentucky. They married in Barren County in March 1830. Samantha was a daughter of Julius C. Bailey and Lucinda Anderson.
James Anderson Stone entered the Civil War as a Confederate soldier and fought in battles in Missouri and Arkansas. He was killed at the Battle of Helena, Arkansas on July 4, 1863 at the age of 29 years. He left Priscilla alone with 5 young children to rear and her life was a real hardship during those years. Some of their descendants have had family legends handed down that have been preserved. Because James was a Rebel soldier, his family had to undergo harassment at the hands of the Union troops. They came to Priscilla's farm home asking for food and made her fix meals for them. When they left, a cow or calf was taken along and they would also take anything else that was on hand. Later, the soldiers burned her barn and she was afraid they were going to burn her home (which they later did!).....She moved to another place, probably north to Cole County, near Russellville, where she spent the rest of her life.
Priscilla West Stone never remarried but spent the remainder of her life (53 years) as the widow of James Anderson Stone.
Priscilla West Stone died at the home of her oldest daughter, Elizabeth Stone Sone, in Jefferson City in August 1916 at the age of 79 years. She was survived by 4 of her 5 children. John William Stone had preceded her in death. Surviving were Mrs. Elizabeh J. Sone of Jefferson City; James T. Stone of Jefferson City; Mrs. Lucy Ellen Bragg of Hannibal; and Robert Price Stone of Eldon; 19 grandchildren and several great grandchildren. She was a member of the Big Rock Church in Morgan County at the time of her death and had earlier been a member of the Primitive Baptist Church. She was buried at Riverview Cemetery in Jefferson City.
NOTE: Robert Price Stone, the youngest son of James and Priscilla, was an attorney who practiced law in Joplin, MO and later came to Eldon, MO where he opened a law office. In the Democratic landslide election of 1932, Robert Price Stone became Miller County Prosecuting Attorney and served one term. He was 69 years old when elected as Prosecuting Attorney. Robert Price lived until 1941 when he died at the age of 78 years and was buried in the Eldon Cemetery.
ANNA M. WHITAKER
Anna M. Whitaker was born 10 Feb 1887, a daughter of Archelaus Whitaker (1848-1897) and Nancy Crismon (1853-1940). Her parents married in Miller County on January 1, 1871, the marriage performed by James Brown, minister of the gospel. She was one of 11 children born to Archelaus and Nancy (in the 1900 census, it states they were parents of 12 children).
Archelaus Whitaker was a son of Thomas Wilkerson Whitaker (b. c/1808 VA) and Susan West (1823-1875 of KY). They married in Miller County 19 Sept 1841, marriage performed by Peter Bilyeu, J.P. Nancy Crismon was the daughter of John Crismon and Flavilla Melcena Brashears. She was a sister to "Uncle Joe" Crismon.
NOTE: Peter Bilyeu, the J.P. who married Thomas and Susan, was my great-great-great grandfather. He moved to Linn Co., Oregon in 1850 and lived there the rest of his life. I visited his grave near Scio, OR in 1990…(Peggy Hake)
Anna M. Whitaker, the youngest daughter of Archelaus and Nancy, never married. She became a member of the Brays Advent Christian Church and her funeral services were held there after her death on 24 Sept 1970 at the age of 83 years. She is buried in Brays Union Cemetery, near the church. She was the last of her family, preceded in death by all her brothers and sisters.
WHITTLE & HENDERSON
Recently I was looking at an old day book of accounts from the Hauenstein Store dating back to May thru November of 1882. It was so interesting to read the names of people who were customers of the old store during that year. Some were familiar while others I had never heard of.....One of those customers caught my eye and I decided to try to learn more about them. Evidently two men, identified only as "Whittle & Henderson", had a business somewhere upriver from Tuscumbia and purchased many items from Hauenstein Store. Another clue I found concerned their selling railroad ties to Hauensteins.
In the early 1880s, the railroad tie business in Miller County was a flourishing industry. Bagnell had just been settled and a railroad spur was proposed to come to the town where railroad ties could be transported out. The river was used exclusively at the time to raft the ties downriver. One of the buyers of these rafted ties was George T. Hauenstein's store. I believe that is the reason Whittle & Henderson began their business somewhere along the Osage River.
I suspect the men may have been Joseph Whittle and Allen Henderson although I can not prove it. Joseph Whittle had married Leatha Jane Loveall in 1878 and her family lived in northern Glaize Township in the "Bear creek country" not far from the Osage river. Joseph's mother, Nancy Keeth Whittle, married Rev. Thomas Owen Workman after the death of Joseph's father and they moved to Glaize Township. That may be one reason why Joseph was in that area of northern Glaize when he married Leatha Jane Loveall. Allen Henderson lived nearby. Both were young men---Whittle about 26 years old and Henderson about 32 years of age. They may have seen the possibility of making some money from the "tie business" and decided to go into partnership.
In one transaction in the Hauenstein Day Book of Accounts, I found where Whittle & Henderson rafted ties down the Osage and places mentioned along the way were: "Blunts Banks", "Pogue Hollow", "Harbison Banks", "Atkinson Bluff", "Brockman Slough", "Jeffries", and "Caliman". I think the 'Jeffries' referred to Sanford and Hansford Jeffries and the 'Caliman' referred to Nelson
Caliman. The families lived near one another in Glaize Township.
NOTE: The "banks" referred to in a couple of names, probably meant "iron banks" where iron and other metals & minerals may have been plentiful.
I suspect the business of Whittle & Hendeson did not last long.....Allen Henderson and his family continued to live in Glaize Township while Joseph Whittle moved his family back to southwest Richwoods Township in the Pleasant Hill community. The Whittle family had settled there and homesteaded many acres in the 1840s. Joseph's father, John Levi Whittle, was killed in the Civil War leaving his wife with 3 young children and another on the way. Joseph eventually acquired most of the land that his father had homesteaded. He had 3 sisters-Ann Liza died young, Delilah was a deaf-mute who never married, and the 3rd sister, Elizabeth, married Seth Robinson of the Brumley area and lived there the rest of her life.
Once again, as so often in genealogical/historical research, I have to speculate on the identity of Whittle & Henderson. These transactions in 1882, found in Hauenstein's record books, sparked curiosity because Josephus/Joseph Whittle was my great grandfather and even though he died before I was born I have heard so many stories handed down through the family about him and my great grandmother, Leatha Jane (Loveall) Whittle. This would be another part of his life that no one may have known about since his children were reared in the Pleasant Hill community of the Big Richwoods.
JOHN L. (JACK) WHITTLE
From a book called EDMONSON COUNTY, KENTUCKY FAMILIES (published 1989)
John L. (Jack) Whittle (1796-1866) was the ancestor of the Edmonson County Whittles. He was born in East Tennessee (the land south of the Ohio River) to Robert and Susannah Whittle and at the age of 12 years came to Kentucky with his parents and brothers and sisters. His siblings were: JOSEPH, LEVI, WILLIAM, NANCY, and SARAH/SALLY.
He grew to young manhood on the banks of the Cumberland River south of Somerset, KY (Jabez Ridge), married Elizabeth Tarter (1803-1897) in Pulaski Co., KY on September 3, 1823. John L. (Jack) Whittle came to Edmonson County with his wife and six small children in the spring of 1837. They raised a crop of corn and tobacco on the south side of Green River near the mouth of Honey Creek in 1837. By the next season the family had settled permanently about one mile north of Cedar Springs on the south side of Cedar Sink Creek which runs underground from Rocky Hill to the Turnhole on Green River.
The John L. Whittle family had followed his brother's family, Joseph and Susan Kinser Whittle, to Edmonson County. The brother, Joseph, and his wife's family, the Kinsers, had already moved to Edmonson County in 1825. They had settled on the north side of Green River near the mouth of Honey Creek. The Joseph Whittle family and some of the Kinsers moved to Miller County, MO in 1842. The John L. (Jack) Whittle family remained in Edmonson County.....the children of John and Elizabeth (Tarter) Whittle helped to populate the section of Edmonson County from Rocky Hill to Cedar Springs to Silent Grove during the late 1800s.
John (Jack) Whittle died in 1866 at the age of 70 years, but his wife, Elizabeth/Betsy, better known as Granny Whittle, lived to the ripe old age of 94 years. She died in 1897. John/Jack and Elizabeth/Betsy are both buried under a grove of trees on a knoll on the old homeplace in the valley one mile north of Cedar Springs toward Chaumont.
JOHN WHITTLE INQUEST
COSTS FOR AN INQUEST INTO THE DEATH OF JOHN A. WHITTLE IN 1886 (MILLER COUNTY, MISSOURI)
In 1886, Squire John Ferguson of Iberia presented the Miller County Court a certified bill of costs that had accumulated in the matter of an inquest conducted on the body of John A. Whittle, born 1856, a son of Peter J. Whittle and Serilda (Hoskins) and husband of Martha (Keeth) Whittle. John was a victim of a gunfight that had occurred at the old Pleasant Hill church (once called Peakey Church) in southwest Richwoods Township. Charles D. Martin was the acting coroner and a justice of the peace in Richwoods Township.
NOTE: A paragraph about this murder case appears in the 1889 book, GOODSPEED'S HISTORY OF COLE, MONITEAU, MORGAN, BENTON, MILLER, MARIES, AND OSAGE COUNTIES, MISSOURI. According to the book, a fine of $500 was leveled against the accused, but was finally remitted by Missouri's governor.
JOHN LEVI WHITTLE
THE DEATH OF JOHN LEVI WHITTLE: CIVIL WAR SOLDIER KILLED
IN THE ELSEY FARM FIGHT IN THE BIG RICHWOODS OF MILLER COUNTY.
The date was August 29, 1862, early in the Civil War era, when a battle was fought in the Big Richwoods of eastern Miller County on the farm site of John and Rachel (Rowden) Elsey. The battlefield was located about 3 ½ miles east of present-day Iberia near the Big Tavern creek.
This battle was fought when the Rebels met the Union forces in a blazing confrontation on Elsey's Prairie. The Union troops were made up of men from the 47th Enrolled State Militia who were headquartered at Iberia. Early in the war, some of these same soldiers had served in the Osage Home Guards, serving with Capt. Martin's Company E. They were enrolled in this group from June 22 to December 20 of 1861. Among the soldiers were Col. Henry A. Massey, 2nd Lt. Zebedee Spearman, and Pvt. Levi Whittle. Zebedee Spearman was the husband of Mary (Gardner), a native of Barren County, Kentucky and a member of my ancestral Gardner family. Levi Whittle was my great, great grandfather, a native of Edmonson County, Kentucky.
In 1862, by an act of Congress, the Enrolled Missouri Militia was organized specifically for men in the state who were willing to enlist in the service but did not want to leave the state to fight the Confederates......Such was Company K of the 47th and it was in existence from August 1862 until July 1864. They were not in actual service all the time, but would be home a month or two in the wintertime and stationed at Iberia. There was a fort built in Iberia during those days of the 1860s where the old Farnham Store and Lumberyard was once located.
My great, great grandfather, John Levi Whittle, enlisted in Company K of the 47th E.M.M. on 21 August 1862, only 8 days before the Elsey Farm Fight. He was a Miller County farmer, 36 years old, with a young wife, Nancy Jane (Keeth), and three children including Josephus, Elizabeth, and Analiza. Another child was expected in February 1863. He and his family were no strangers to this war because he had spent 4 months of active duty in the Osage Home Guards less than a year earlier.
There were less than 7,000 people in Miller County at that time and very few really knew or understood what the fighting was all about. They were ready to protect their homes and families. As time went by, the county became divided and men's ideas changed and varied as they decided to take sides---some for the Northern cause while others were Southern sympathizers. Families and neighbors because enemies with brother sometime fighting brother. Bushwhacking became common throughout the countryside and no one was safe from the guerilla bands as they plundered the land with their burning, destroying, and killing anyone in their way.
As the Rebels and the Unionists met on the Elsey Prairie, the battle began on 29 August 1862 and evidently only lasted one day. From the book, THE TILLEY TREASURE, by Jas. B. King (page 38-39) it is written: "On August 29th (1862), a small skirmish occurred four miles east of Iberia, Missouri. A force of 42 Union men, under Capt. Long (William), Co. G Enrolled Militia, attacked a Confederate Company . The Southern force was thought to consist of 125 men under Col. Robert R. Lawther. His unit was the 10th Missouri Cavalry from Shelby's Brigade......The Union force routed the larger Confederate force, which dispersed and fled. The Confederate loss was one man killed and three men who were wounded and taken prisoner. The Union force had one man, Lee Whittle (Levi), severely wounded. His wound was thought to be mortal."
My ancestor, Levi Whittle, did indeed die from his 'mortal' wound suffered in that battle on Elsey's Prairie on August 29, 1862. Eight days after he enlisted in the Union army, he lay dead on that bloody battlefield which was about 7 or 8 miles from his home in southwest Richwoods Township.
Levi Whittle is buried near the spot where he died on Elsey's Prairie. The cemetery where he is buried is called Billingsley Cemetery and it is my assumption he was the first person buried there which was near the battleground. The old cemetery overlooks "Battleground Hollow" west of the Big Tavern creek. I have had to speculate why Levi Whittle was buried in that lonely spot so far from his wife and children who were living in the Pleasant Hill community. Why was he not returned to his home and family for proper burial?
For many years John Levi Whittle was in an unmarked grave, but about 1916, the U. S. Government issued the family a military grave marker. It was delivered to the Miles Carroll G.A. R. Hall at Iberia and was picked up by Levi's son, Josephus Whittle. Josephus and his youngest son, John Wilburn Whittle, and an old man whose name my Uncle Wilburn could not remember, placed the military stone at Levi's grave in Billingsley Cemetery about 54 years after his death........The stone still stands today in Billingsley Cemetery, permanently marking the final resting place of my Civil War ancestor.........
POCAHONTAS HAD DESCENDANTS NAMED WHITTLE ??
Pocahontas was an Indian princess whose father was the Chief of the Powhatans. His name was also Powhatan. They lived in the Tidewater area of Virginia in 1607 when the English first landed to settled in the new world. In this area, they established the first permanent English settlement and called it Jamestown. The famous early American, Captain John Smith, was a special friend to Pocahontas and because of their friendship she saved his life from the hands of her father, Chief Powhatan, who had planned to have him slain. How much of this is truth and how much is fiction is in the mind of the beholder! Any child who has been taught his American History knows this famous story of Capt. John Smith and Pocahontas.
Pocahontas was born circa 1596 and the age of 18 years, on April 5, 1614, she married an Englishman of noble birth named John Rolfe. He was living in the new settlement of Jamestown in the Tidewater region of eastern Virginia. John was 28 years old and was a widower when he first met Pocahontas. He was the grandson of Eustace Rolfe, who in 1587, contributed money to help build the ships that defeated the Spanish Armada. John Rolfe was a native of Norfolk County, England and a descendant of a family that had come to England from the Scandinavian countries long before William the Conqueror. His ancestral home was called Heacham Hall near King’s Lynn in England. John Rolfe was an important early Virginia planter, establishing a tobacco industry in Colonial America in the Jamestown area. He became very successful as a planter.
John Rolfe was a survivor of a shipwreck in Bermuda. He and his first wife, name unknown, had a child that was born while they lived in Bermuda and consequently, was given the name Bermuda. The child and its mother had both died before John Rolfe arrived at Jamestown, Virginia in 1610.
John had two younger brothers, Edward and Henry Rolfe, both whom remained in England. Edward settled in King’s Lynn at the ancestral home. Henry lived in London where he was a prosperous merchant and a member of the Virginia Company. After the death of John’s father, his mother married Robert Redmayne, Chancellor of the Diocese of Heachem. This information was found in the Rolfe family records compiled by A. E. Gunther.
After their marriage in 1614, Pocahontas and John Rolfe lived in a house on the shore of the James River between Henrico and Bermuda Hundred, about 40 miles northwest of Jamestown. Her father, Powhatan, gave the couple this land as a wedding gift and they named their new home ‘Varina’ after a variety of tobacco that Rolfe had imported from Spain.
In 1615, Pocahontas gave birth to a son named Thomas, her only child. In the spring of her 20th year, Pocahontas was called from her peaceful and contented life at her home on the James River to give her final and more colorful performance in American history.....she was whisked off to England to be presented to the Courts to meet many important and influential people of royalty, the clergy, and the wealthy merchants. Pocahontas, her husband John, and son Thomas spent 9 months in England where she was once again united with her old friend, Captain John Smith. In March 1617, the Rolfe’s were booked to return to her native homeland on the ship GEORGE, to set sail from Gravesend which was just outside London. While waiting to sail, Pocahontas became gravely ill with pneumonia (some authorities say she died of either smallpox or tuberculosis).
Before the ship set sail, Pocahontas had died in her 20th year far from her native soil and in an alien land. She was buried in Gravesend at a medieval churchyard called St. George’s parish church, standing near the Thames River. Her Christian name was Rebecca Rolfe and her burial was registered in the church’s records as:
“1616 March 21, Rebecca Wrolfe, Wyffe of Thomas (John) Wrolfe, Gentleman,
a Virginia Lady Borne, was buried in ye Chancell.”
Captain John Smith, in his writings, helped to make Pocahontas a true American heroine, famous beyond her time, and marked the beginning of her immortality.
John Rolfe returned to Virginia shortly after her death. He had entrusted the care of his young son, Thomas, into the hands of a physician, Dr. Manuouri, in England. He wanted to take young Thomas back to America, but was advised not to at that particular time. Later, Thomas was entrusted into the care of John’s youngest brother, Henry Rolfe, in London. John Rolfe never saw his only child again.....Upon returning to Virginia, he again began raising tobacco and worked it into a very profitable industry. He also served as a member of America’s first legislative assembly before his death in 1622 at the age of 37 years. That year he was killed, along with 300 other Colonists, in an Indian uprising led by one of Pocahontas’ uncles named Opechancanough.
In 1635, Thomas Rolfe son of Pocahontas and John, returned to his native land. He was 20 years old and when he got to the Tidewater region of Virginia, he found the plantation ‘Varina’ waiting for him, plus thousands of acres of land previously inherited by his grandfather, Chief Powhatan. He remained in Virginia for the rest of his life becoming a tobacco planter, as his father before him.
Thomas Rolfe married an English lady, Jane Polythress (later spelled Pierce). They produced only one child, a daughter named Jane. She was born circa 1635-40. I do not know what year Thomas Rolfe died nor the date of the death of his wife, Jane. In 1675, their daughter, Jane Rolfe, married Colonel Robert Bolling, the son of John and Mary Bolling of All Hollows, Barkin Parish, Tower Street, London. Robert Bolling came to America in 1660 when he was 16 years old and at an early age, acquired wealth and prominence. At the age of 29 years, in 1675, Robert married Jane Rolfe who was a few years older than Robert. They produced only one child, a son John Bolling. Jane Rolfe Bolling died a year later leaving Robert with a young son of one year. After Jane’s death, he married Anne Stith of nearby Petersburg, Virginia.
From the union of Pocahontas and John Rolfe descended seven successive generations of statesmen, educators, ministers, and lawmakers including the American names of Randolph, Blair, Lewis, and Bolling. One of the most famous descendants of Pocahontas and John Rolfe was John Randolph of Roanoke, Virginia, who served in Congress in the House of Representatives and the Senate alike. So, through her one son, Thomas Rolfe, and all his descendants, Pocahontas has lived on in our great American history.
Pocahontas had three different names during her lifetime. The first was known only among her own tribesmen and she was called ‘Matoax’ which in the Powhatan language was translated to mean “Little Snow Feather”. Her name Pocahontas was given by her father and was translated to mean “Bright Stream Between Two Hills”. Her third name, Rebecca, was given to her when she converted to Christianity.
I have prepared this short history because it is a known fact that a family named Whittle were descendants of Pocahontas. There is no definite proof that the Whittle family of Miller County were part of her ancestry. The Whittle connection is recorded in the following manner:
Mary Ann Davies, a great-great-great granddaughter of Pocahontas and John Rolfe, married Fortescue Whittle, a native of County Antrim, Ireland. He came to the United States in the late 1700s. He and Mary Ann had nine sons: William Conway WHITTLE, Fortescue WHITTLE Jr., James M. WHITTLE, Conway D. WHITTLE, John S. WHITTLE, Lewis Neale WHITTLE, Stephen Decatur WHITTLE, Francis McNeece WHITTLE, and Powhatan Bolling WHITTLE. This family of nine sons carried the name Whittle forward into new generations. I have not been successful in tying together the Miller County Whittle family with any of these nine sons, but will continue to search for clues. Many times a small clue will bring forth a great deal of new information. Most of the information about the Whittle family, descendants of Pocahontas, was found in a book written in 1887 entitled POCAHONTAS ALIAS MATOAKA AND HER DESCENDANTS.
The Whittle family of Miller County are descendants of Joseph Whittle and Susannah (Kinser), natives of Virginia. It is believed Joseph, born circa 1795 in Virginia, was a son of Robert Whittle who was born about 1770. His place of birth is not known. He may have been the immigrant ancestor of the Whittle family and may have been born in the British Isles. No one, to my knowledge, has been successful in connecting a direct lineage of the Whittle clan to their European background.
THE WHITTLE-KEETH FAMILIES
Missouri Territory was part of the vast tract of land President Jefferson purchased from Napoleon in 1803, called the Louisiana Purchase. It lay west of the Mississippi river and was new, open, free, and wild land. That was what inspired the Kentuckians onward to the unknown. I can almost visualize history being made before my eyes...men and women in wagons rolling on, the wilderness tamed, the rivers crossed, the homes being built, and the children being born to a new heritage...this was America's fantastic history.
The Whittle and Keeth families were part of this westward movement in the history of our nation. Joseph and Susanna (Kinser) Whittle were natives of the state of Virginia. He was born about 1790 and Susanna approximately in 1800. They moved into Kentucky as newlyweds. Susanna's father was Frederick Kinser, of German descent, who was a big landowner in Edmonson County, Kentucky having purchased many acres in the Green river valley in 1826. Frederick Kinser died in 1833 leaving his lands and holdings to his wife and children. Susan Kinser Whittle was one of his heirs and she was awarded 100 acres upon his death. She and Joseph Whittle lived on this land and most of their children were born there. I believe they left Kentucky and came to Miller County about 1845.
The children of Joseph and Susanna Whittle were: Nancy, born ca 1820 married Isaac Cross 1841; Lucinda born ca 1824 married John Allen 1840; John Levi born ca 1825 married Nancy Jane Keath 1849; Catherine born ca 1828 married John Keath; Ann Eliza born ca 1834 married 1) Jonathan Allen 2) Nicholas Long; Peter J. born ca 1834 married Serilda Hoskins. There may have been other children who died young.
John Levi Whittle, the oldest son of Joseph and Susanna (Kinser) Whittle, was my great, great grandfather. He was born circa 1825 in Edmonson Co., Kentucky. He was a young man when his family moved to Miller County. On January 2, 1850, he married Nancy Jane Keath in Miller County. She was a daughter of John and Ruhanna (Allen) Keath also of Edmonson Co., Kentucky. Nancy Jane was born in Kentucky circa 1832. In the 1850 census of Miller Co., the Keath and Whittle farms were adjoining. On October 6, 1847, Nancy's brother, John Keath, married Catherine Whittle, a sister to John Levi. The family name of Keeth has been spelled Keith, Keath, and Keeth in the various records I researched.
John and Ruhanna (Allen) Keeth, parents of Nancy Jane and John, were natives of Virginia. Ruhanna was the second wife of John and he was many years older than she. He first married her sister and had several children. After the death of his first wife, he then married Ruhanna and they had five children. I believe John Keath fathered at least 14 children by his two wives. John Keath and Ruhanna Allen (daughter of Stephen Allen and Sarah Radford) were married in Warren County, Kentucky on November 23, 1820. I believe John Keath died in Edmonson County, Kentucky and his wife, with several of the children, accompanied the Whittle family to Miller County in the mid 1840's.
The known children of John Keath/Keeth included: John Keeth who married Catherine Whittle; Nancy Jane Keeth married John Levi Whittle; Daniel Keeth married Susan Hoskins; Soloman Keeth married Mary Ellen Bourne/Boren; Francis Marion Keeth married Sarah Smith Shelton; Lucinda Keeth married Alexander Long; and Sarah Keeth married Joshua D. Cochran.
John Levi Whittle, son of Joseph and Susanna (Kinser) Whittle married Nancy Jane Keath, daughter of John and Ruhanna (Allen) Keeth, in Miller County on January 2, 1850. They homesteaded land in southern Richwoods Township. There they produced 4 children: Josephus born 8 Sep 1856 married Leatha Jane Loveall; Analize born 8 Mar 1858 (died young); Elizabeth born 29 Aug 1860 married Seth Robinson; and Delila T. born 15 Feb 1863 (she was a deaf-mute who never married). During the Civil War, John Levi Whittle was killed in what was called the 'Elsey farm fight' east of Iberia. It was the only recorded civil war battle in the county. He was buried near the spot where he died and today it is called the Billingsley cemetery. After his death, Nancy Jane married Thomas Owen Workman, a circuit-riding preacher who helped to establish several churches in central Missouri. She had 4 children by Owen including: Richard E. born ca 1869 married Sarah Cochran; James Melvin born 1872 married 1) Violet Stout 2) Elizabeth Steen Spearman; Theodore Benton born 1875 married Elizabeth Loveall; and Paradine born 1866 married Edward Stout.
Josephus Whittle, son of John Levi and Nancy Jane, married Leatha Jane Loveall, daughter of Silas and Amanda (Colvin) Loveall, on August 29, 1878. They continued to live on the Whittle land that his father homesteaded in 1850 and reared a large family. Their children were: James Levi born 1879-died young; Silas A., born ca 1880-died young; Lallah Brooks born 23 Nov 1883 married Frank Andrews; Carrie Gertrude born 18 Jan 1886 married Perry T. Wyrick; Olia Rayford born 6 Nov 1888 married Fannie Jane Luttrell; Arlie Everett born 1890 married Ida Johnson; Bertha Irene born 1894 married Nicholas Shelton; Amanda Elizabeth born 4 Sep 1896 married Chesley Sylvester Wyrick; Otto born 1900 married Sarah Stone; Sylvia Alice born 1904 married Ransome Alexander; and John Wilburn born 1907 married Lois Stites.
There are many descendants of the Whittle/Keeth families still living on land that was homesteaded by their ancestors almost 150 years ago.
Edmonson County, Kentucky is a beautiful land. The Green river valley is rich in corn and tobacco fields and beautiful Mammoth Cave is situated there. One might wonder why these ancestors left this beautiful land and moved on westward into the unknown. I once read a passage that said..."Every man is a modern-day Moses; he hopes to see the Promised Land in his own lifetime."
Perhaps this was the inspiration which drove our ancestors into these new lands in search of a greener valley or a clearer stream. An early Kentucky writer said in 1831..."I found a race of proud optimists, an ardent, boastful, and enthusiastic breed of people, who made a religion of their politics and a creed of their hospitality."....they did not hesitate to venture onward toward a new adventure!
PETER JOSEPHUS WHITTLE AND SERILDA A. HOSKINS
Peter Josephus Whittle was born in Edmonson County, KY in 1836, a son of Joseph Whittle and Susannah Kinser. His parents moved to Miller County from Edmonson County with the Keeth families and they settled in southern Richwoods Township in the community known today as Pleasant Hill.
NOTE: I have been told that none of the above children were given middle names, only initials.
Many members of this family are buried at Pleasant Hill Cemetery, southwest of Iberia. Robert A. Whittle and his wife, Lucinda Frances (Keeth) were living in Richwoods township in the Pleasant Hill community near other Whittle families and also the families of Thomas, Adams, Hendricks, Spearman, and Keeth.
NOTE: I am sure other children were born after 1900, but I do not know their names.
THE FAMILY OF WILLIAM 'WILL' WHITTLE - a nephew to Josephus/Joe Whittle
William 'Will' Whittle was the son of Delilah Thomas Whittle and Seth Robinson. Seth was Delilah's brother-in-law, married to her sister, Elizabeth/Betsy Whittle. Delilah never married and went through life as a deaf-mute. Will was reared by his grandmother, Nancy (Keeth) Whittle and her second husband, Thomas Owen Workman.
Will could remember that his mother would weave baskets and work with leather goods. The family often wondered if there was some Indian blood in her family lines...She was bedfast before her death. Will told his children that Delilah fell and ran a cornstalk through her breast. They tried to 'doctor' her as best as possible but eventually she died from the wounds.
Will Whittle first married Carrie Wright and they had only one child, Frank James Whittle. After Carrie's death, Will moved to Oklahoma with Charlie McClain, some of his kinfolk. It was in Oklahoma he met and married Marie Suit-Hazelip.
NOTE: The Whittle children also had a half-brother named Doris Claude Hazelip, son of Minda Marie Suit-Whittle and he first husband, Claude Hazelip. He was born in 1911 & died in a car accident in 1966. Marie Suit-Whittle also had a sister who married Oscar Robinson of Brumley in the 1950s.
JOSEPH MANNING WICKHAM
Joseph Manning Wickham was born in Pennsylvania on November 9, 1856. He was one of twelve children born to Halsey & Nancy Jane (Manning) Wickham who were natives of New Jersey and New York respectively. His Wickham ancestors have been traced back to England in 1624. The progenitor of this old English family was Thomas Wickham who came to America in 1643 and settled in Connecticut.
Halsey Wickham, father of Joseph, was a son of Noyce & Ann Cuykendall/Kuykendall Wickham and was born in Orange Co., New York 27 July 1810. In 1833, he married Nancy Jane Manning (1809-1904) in Orange Co, NY.
Jonathan Halsey Wickhan & Joseph Manning Wickham
About 1858-60, Halsey and Nancy Wickham left Pennsylvania and moved to Miller County, locating in Auglaize Township near Ulman's Ridge. Most of their children were born in Pennsylvania before they came to Missouri. Their neighbors in the 1860s included the families of Martin, Robinson, Riley, Wyrick, Witt, Myers, Casey, Willis, Lee and Renfrow. It is recorded that Halsey served in the Civil War as a private in Company B of the 12th Regiment of the Kansas Volunteer Infantry. If he actually was a soldier of that war, he would have been well past the age of 50 years as he served.
Halsey Wickham died in 1878 and was buried at Gott Cemetery. His widow, Nancy, continued to live on for many years and lived with some of her children in her advanced age. She died at the age of 86 years in 1904 and was buried beside Halsey at Gott Graveyard.
Joseph Manning Wickham & Mary Hix Wickham
Married 1 Sep. 1885
On September 1, 1885 Joseph Manning Wickham, son of Halsey & Nancy, married Mary Priscilla Hix (1859-1940) of the Ulman area. Mary was a daughter of John H. and Hattie Frances Hix.
Mary's father, John H. Hix, died in 1862 probably while serving in the Civil War. He was a Sgt. in Company D, Osage Regiment of the Missouri Home Guards. I do not have his military records so can only speculate he was a casualty of that war since his death occurred in 1862. Hattie Hix, widow of John, married Jesse Livingston in 1867 and then married a third time to John W. Cooper in 1874. Joseph and Mary (Hix) Wickham were parents of two sons, Oscar M.Wickham born in November 1886 and Ross H. Wickham born in October 1895.
Joseph Manning Wickham died at the home of his son, Oscar, near Ulman on January 21, 1935 at the age of 78 years. He was survived by his wife, Mary Priscilla, who lived until October 31, 1940. Joseph was also survived by his two sons, Oscar and Ross; two brothers, Nelson and Jobe Wickham; and one sister, Adeline Wickham Wyrick. His burial was in Gott Cemetery where other members of the Wickham family had been buried many years before.
OBITUARY OF JOSEPH M. WICKHAM
Joseph M. Wickham was born in Pennsylvania on Nov. 9, 1856, the son of Halsy and Nancy J. Wickham, natives of New Jersey and New York, respectively. Joseph's parents moved to Miller Co. circa 1857 when Joseph was a young boy and settled in Glaize Township. Some of their neighbors in the early 1860's included Moses T. Martin, Phillip Robinson, Josiah K. Howell, and David Reed. The brothers and sisters of Joseph, all born in Pennsylvania, were Mary Wickham, Morgan Wickham, Nelson Wickham, Ann Wickham, Halsey Wickham, and John Wickham. On Sept. 1, 1885, he married Mary P. Hix, daughter of John H. and Hettie Frances Hix of Glaize Township, who were natives of Missouri and Tennessee. The marriage was performed Manessah Catron, a minister who was a neighbor to the Wickham and Hix families. Joseph died at the age of 78 years in 1935 and was a well-known citizen in the Ulman community. He was survived by his wife, Mary, and 2 sons: Osacar and Ross Wickham. He was also survived by 2 brothers: Nelson and Jobe Wickham and a sister: Mary (Mrs. Tolbert Wyrick) of near Ulman. His funeral services were held at the home of his son, Oscar, near Ulman by Rev. Virgil Smith, with burial in the Gott Cemetery.
NELSON REUBEN WICKHAM FAMILY
Nelson Reuben Wickham was born in Pennslyvania on 3/28/1848., one of 12 children born to Halsey Wickham (1810-1878) and Nancy J. Manning (1816-1904). His father was born in New Jersey and his mother in New York. The Wickhams came to Missouri in the 1850s from Pennslyvania and settled in Glaize Township near the families of Martin, Robinson, Riley, Massey, Willis, Reed, Wyrick, Witt, Myers, Albertson and Winfrey.
The other children were Sanford, Prudence, Nancy and Agnes. All these children were born in Pennsylvania.
During the Civil War, Nelson Reuben Wickham, age 16, enlisted as a private in Company G. 16th Regiment, Kansas Volunteers. His father already in his 50s, enlisted in Company E. 12th Regiment, Kansas Volunteers. I do not know why they enlisted in a Kansas Regiment instead of one from Missouri, since both lived in Miller County. Both men returned from the war and came back to their Glaize Township farm.
On Oct. 26, 1873, Nelson married Sarah Ellen Boyd. Their marriage was performed by Nelson A. Davis, a minister of the gospel. Sarah Ellen was a daughter of Mary Ann Boyd of Osage Township. She was born 5/24/1855 and died 2/23/1883.
Nelson Reuben married his second wife, Marzilla Brazonia Grosvenor (1867-1946), on 2/26/1885.
Nelson Reuben Wickham died in February 1936, at age 88, at his Big Tavern Creek Farm located in Osage Township, a few miles southwest of St. Elizabeth. He had lived on this farm for 62 years after he left Glaize Township and married Mary Ellen Boyd in 1873. The farm is owned today by Floyd & Edith (Wickham) Johnson. Nelson is buried on the Wickham/Johnson farm in a family cemetery. He is buried beside his two wives. Marzilla (Grosvenor) Wickham lived until May 1946 when she died at age 79 years. Other members of the Wickham & Boyd families are buried in this old family burial ground.
The Osage River has served as the hub of activity for most of Miller County's history. The French explorers traveled her waters in the 18th century and Zebulon Pike, with his crew of frontiersmen in two crude riverboats, sailed upriver in 1806 to the headwaters on his trip to present day Colorado. We, who have lived most of our lives in Miller County, probably do not realize how much history is unknown and untold concerning our pioneer ancestors who settle the river country in the 1820s, 30s, and 40s.
All my life I have heard of Wilcox Bend, but knew nothing about it other than it was over in the Bear Creek area and south of the Osage River, making many twists and turns enroute. A few years ago I received a letter from a lady in Stroud, Oklahoma asking if I could write a story about Wilcox Bend. The inquiry ignited my curiosity, so I started researching.
Directly east of old Bagnell and across the river in Wilcox Bend is a small unkempt burial ground called Wilcox-Fitzgerald cemetery. Inside the cemetery is a child's grave, Mamie Wilcox, daughter of Christopher C. and Louisa (Grayum/Graham) Wilcox 1892-1893. There are 8 field stones in the small cemetery also, which may be the graves of other members of the Wilcox family.
L-R: Grady, Sylvia, Uncle Chris, Aunt Lou, Edgar, Floyd, Dora and Nath
Sitting – Lucille (Grady’s wife) and Mary (Gifford’s wife)
August 28, 1940
In 1840, among the early settlers living in Equality Township was Peyton and Sarah Wilcox, natives of Scott County, Virginia. In 1840, Peyton and Sarah sold some land to John and William Brockman in Section 10, Twp. 40, Range 15, downriver from present Bagnell. The Brockman family had a role in the Wilcox Bend saga. They married into the Wilcox family and in the same region, established Brockman's Ford which exists today as a landmark.
Sometime prior to 1847, Sarah Wilcox died and was buried in the Wilcox Bend area in an unknown spot. Peyton Wilcox, her husband, died in 1847 and his probate records were filed in the Miller County courthouse. The administrator of his estate was Daniel Cummings. A $500 bond was posted with Thomas W. Cotten and Metheldred Bass as securities. On 4 Sept 1847, a public auction was held at the Wilcox property. Some of the purchasers of items that day were William Cotten, J. B. Challes, Hugh Challes, John Rowe, William W. Martin, John Bradford, and several members of the Wilcox family.
William L. Wilcox, son of Peyton and Sarah, married Susan Mariah Brockman in 1839. He died in 1864 leaving as heirs....Mariah, his widow; daughters: Nancy E., Lucinda A., Susan A., Mary E. and son, John Wilcox. There is a legend remaining to this day that one of the Wilcox men was murdered near his home during the Civil War. He was a Union soldier and was killed by the notorious bushwhackers roaming the area. Legend states he was drinking from a fresh-water spring in Wilcox Bend when one of the outlaws crept up behind him and shot him in the back. I believe the man was William L. Wilcox who is known to have died in 1864 when the war was raging across our land.
In the Miller county census of 1860, three of the Wilcox brothers and their sister were enumerated by the census taker. The three brothers, John V. Wilcox, William L. Wilcox, and Peyton M. Wilcox, with their families, lived near each other in the Wilcox Bend of the river. Their sister, Eliza Wilcox Cotten and husband, William S. Cotten, were living quite some distance away in Jim Henry Township. Living on an adjoining property was Benjamin Cotten, age 75, of South Carolina and wife, Jane, age 73 years of Virginia, probably the parents of William S. Cotten. By 1870, Eliza and William Cotten were back in Equality Township, living south of the Osage once again. The only Wilcox family left in the county by 1870 was Peyton M. Wilcox, Jr. His brother, William, had died in 1864 and brother, John Wilcox, had moved on to a new prairie land farm in Wilson County, Kansas. Eliza Wilcox Cotten and Peyton M. Wilcox were the last of the Wilcox family to remain in Miller County and carry on the family name and tradition.
The Wilcox family was recorded as members of one of the oldest churches in Miller County, the Old Gilgal United Baptist Church of Christ on the Gravois creek. It was in existence from about 1835 to 1865. The Brockmans were early members of this church as well and the marriage of William L. Wilcox to Susan Brockman occurred in 1839, performed by a circuit-riding Baptist preacher named William Duvall.
Peyton M. Wilcox Jr. died in Miller County in 1880 shortly after the census was recorded that year. He and wife, Manerva (Duncan) were living in the Wilcox Bend region with their 3 youngest children-Christopher, age 19, Emily 15, and Eliza 13. Peyton died at the age of 54 years (born 30 April 1826 in Scott County, VA and died 12 Aug 1880 in Miller County). Manerva was left a widow at the age of 50 years with 9 children surviving; three still at home. She lived on their farm place until her death in 1891 (30 Mar 1830-21 Oct 1891). Both are buried at the Kemp Vaughan cemetery in Franklin Township, as is William and Eliza (Wilcox) Cotten and Mary Francis Victoria (Wilcox) Howser, another daughter of old Peyton and Sarah Wilcox.
The third generation of the Wilcox family in Miller County to carry on the name were the children of Peyton and Manerva (Duncan) Wilcox which included: Finnetta Elizabeth Jane (Vaughan), Victoria Mary Frances (Howser), Emanuel H. Wilcox, John L. Wilcox, Christopher C. Wilcox, Nancy Theodosia Jane (Burris), Emily Minerva (Shelton), and Eliza Caldona (Brockman). Some members of the Wilcox family married into other pioneer county families and were well established before the turn of the century and can be traced to the present families of the Wilcox Bend region.
I do not know if she is still living at this time but a few years ago I heard from a lady in Leavenworth, Kansas named Mary B. Starling (age 82 years). She was a granddaughter of Peyton and Manerva Wilcox and a great granddaughter of Peyton Sr. and Sarah Wilcox, the Scott County, Virginia settlers of Wilcox Bend. The following are Mary's words..."I have always believed that Wilcox Bend was named for my ancestors because it was where they lived all their lives. You can see their old farm from Bagnell Dam, which has been built to make the Lake of the Ozarks. The farm is just below the dam. Brockman Ford is just a little further down the Osage and the Brockman spring is also there....Wilcox Bend has been one of the best areas for farms on the river" ........She was a proud descendant of these pioneers from Virginia, the Old Dominion State.
JOSEPH FREDERIC WILDE
Joseph Frederic Wilde died at his home in St. Elizabeth on Jan. 12, 1927, at the age of 73. He was born on the Wilde Family farm in Osage County near Westphalia on Aug. 8, 1854. His parents were Arnold & Magdalena (Kemper) Wilde, who married in Westphalia in 1847. He was their only surviving child. A son, Joseph and a sister Mary Magnalena, both died in infancy. His mother died about 1854 and later Arnold married Elizabeth Kohr. His second wife died from childbirth complications in 1856. Arnold's third wife was Theresa Johannesmeyer of Westphalia. Arnold Wilde, father of Joseph Frederic, died at Westphalia on June 27, 1875.
The Wilde family originated from Wullen, Munster Diocese, Germany. No one seems to know the reason why, but in some German family and church records, the name is spelled Terhallewilde. Johann Bernard Terhallewilde married Margaretha Gelker about 1815 in Wullen Germany.
In October 1843, Margaretha Gelker Wilde and her children came to America. Evidently Johann/John had died by this time and she ventured on an ocean voyage with several children in tow. It is believed her father also came with them. They came to cenral Missouri and bought a farm from Dr. Bernhard Bruns in the Westphalia area in March 1844. Eight years later, on Aug. 11, 1852, Margaretha died at her farm home. She was 54 years old at death, so was born circa 1798.
Arnold Wilde, oldest son of Johann & Margaretha, married Magnalena Kemper in 1847. Joseph Frederic Wilde was their only child to survive beyond infancy. He had a half-brother, Bernard Wilde, born to his father's second wife, Elizabeth Kohr, in 1856. Bernard Wilde's family remained on the family farm near Westphalia while Joseph Frederic Wilde brought his family to Charlestown/St. Elizabeth about 1881.
Joseph Frederic Wilde (called Fred) married Margaret Strumpf/Streumph in 1879. She was born near the small community of Koeltztown. After marriage, they first settled in Westphalia where Fred learned the trade of Blacksmithing from Steve Bertels. He decided to move westward to Miller County to the new town of Charlestown, which was hardly settled at all when he arrived, Fred Wilde once stated, "There was no water within a half quarter of town and only one log cabin and part of a shack there when I started my blacksmith business. "Shortly thereafter, Joseph Sone, William Luetkemeyer and Fred Wilde built a new building for his blacksmith shop and he also built a new house, among the first in Charlestown/ St. Elizabeth.
Joseph Frederic Wilde died in 1927. His services were conducted by Rev. Frederick Bruch with burial in St. Lawrence Parish Cemetery. Margaret Wilde died in 1935 and was buried beside her husband. Joseph Frederic Wilde August 8, 1854 to Jan. 12. 1927 Margaret Streumph Wilde, April 24, 1857 to July 6. 1935
JOHN H. WILLIS
John H. Willis was born in Greenup County, Kentucky on May 1, 1849. He was a son of Joshua and Mary Willis who came to Miller County in 1858 when John was about 9 years old. They settled in eastern Richwoods Township and lived near the families of Jones, Alexander, Young, Sloan, Hanes, Morrow, Thompson, and Kinser.
Joshua and his wife are buried in Maries County at the Powers Family Cemetery, which is located near Hwy. BB, just a short distance east of the Miller County boundary line. It is a small cemetery with only 23 gravestones recorded in cemetery records of Maries County. There is an infant child, Marietta F. Willis, buried in this old cemetery and evidently she was the first person to be buried there (in 1869). I do not know if she was a child of Joshua & Mary or their granddaughter (perhaps a daughter of John & Rachel.)
John H. Willis (sometimes recorded Jonathan in census records) married Rachel S. Harris in Miller County on 3 March 1867. Their marriage was performed by Rev. Thomas Owen Workman, a circuit-riding preacher of Miller County.
During the census taken in 1880, John and Rachel Willis lived near the families of Morrow, Willis, Cross, Atwell, Forbis, Martin, Rowland, Thompson, and Slone.
John H. Willis died at his home in the Alder Springs community on December 22, 1912 at the age of 63 years. He had been ill for several months and his death, though a great shock to his family and friends, was not unexpected. His funeral was conducted with ceremonies held by the Iberia I.O.O.F. Lodge and he was buried at Alder Springs Cemetery...His death certificate gave the information he was buried in "Walker Cemetery" but it is my understanding that the Alder Springs cemetery once went by this name. It is rather strange that it was called by that name because there is no one with the name Walker buried at Alder Springs and no one by that name lived in the community.
JOHN A. (JACK) WILSON
John A. Wilson (as known as Jack) was born in Miller County on February 29 1860. He was a son of Nathaniel Wilson and his first wife, Matilda Lawson. Both his father and mother were natives of East Tennessee. Matilda's parents were James Matt Lawson and Susan Knox.
Evidently Matilda died after the birth of James and then Nathaniel/Nathan married her younger sister, Susan Lawson. They had at least one child: 5. William J. Wilson b. c/1869
In the census of 1880, John A./Jack Wilson was living in the home of James W. and Matilda (Whitaker) Rowden in Osage township. Also in their home was Emma J. Machon who married Jack in 1883. Some of their neighbors in 1880 included the families of Rowden, McKee, Lawson, Clark, Gosvenor, Clark, Messersmith, Shelton, and Duncan.
John/Jack Wilson and Emma Jane Machon were married in Miller County on November 27, 1883, the marriage performed by Granville B. Hickey, a minister of the gospel. She was a daughter of Thomas and Mary J. Machon. Thomas was born in England and Mary was a descendant of Kentucky pioneers. Most of their family members are buried at the Jim Matt Lawson Cemetery in neighboring Maries County.
John A./Jack Wilson died 5 December 1933 at the age of 73 years. He was buried at Jim Matt Lawson Cemetery. His wife, Emma Jane (Machon) died a year earlier on 5 January 1932 and is also at rest in Jim Matt Lawson Cemetery. They spent almost 50 years together as man and wife and reared their family in northeastern Richwoods Township. There have been many of their descendants living in the same area for several decades.
ELIZABETH WINFREY WILSON
Elizabeth W. (Winney) Winfrey was born circa 1830 in Kentucky. I am not sure, but I think she may have been a daughter of Thomas and Lucinda Winfrey who were living in Glaize Township of Miller County during the 1840 census. In the Miller County census records of 1850, 1860, and 1870, she was listed as born in Kentucky, but in 1880, the census recorded she was born in Tennessee, as well as her father and mother.
On February 19, 1846, Elizabeth Winney Winfrey married Andrew J. Wilson, the marriage performed by John M. Choudoin, a minister of the gospel. Her name was recorded as Winney E. Winfrey when she married Andrew J. Wilson in 1846. These old records can be very confusing when trying to establish an ancestor's correct name!
In 1880, the neighbors of Andrew J. and Winney E./Elizabeth Wilson were the families of Meredith, Gilliam, Pemberton, Pennington, Wilson, McComb, Gum, Schooley, and Martin.
About 1863, Winney Elizabeth became a member of the Baptist church and remained a faithful member until her death. In 1892, the Wilsons moved to Indian Territory in Oklahoma and one year later, on December 18, 1893, Elizabeth Winney died there. I could find no record of her burial in Miller County, so I have to presume she was buried in Oklahoma. There was a brief notice of her death in the January 4, 1893 issue of the Miller County Autogram, but it did not state where she was buried.
In late September 1994, I took a trip to some of our western states including Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and Nevada. As we traveled through some of the plains of Kansas and eastern Colorado, the great basin area of southern Wyoming, and then through the Wasatch Mountains and the Great Salt Lake of Utah, I could not help but wonder how in the world our ancestors ever made it to the west coast of California and Oregon in covered wagons in the mid 19th century! Today, there are some irrigations systems set up to provide water for the livestock and cultivated land, but they did not exist in the 1840s, 50s, 60s and onward into the 80s when so many of our ancestors moved west.
I was sent a copy of a story that was written by a pioneer lady as she accompanied her parents to Oregon in 1882. That was many years after the first pioneers set out for a new land that offered gold in California and prime virgin land in the Northwest. I would like to tell you a few things she wrote about as they traveled for several months to reach their destination.
James Riley WISEMAN and his wife, Julia Ann (GUMM), married in Miller County 22 Sept 1867. James was a son of Zachariah and Nancy Jane (Wade) Wiseman and was born near Brumley in August 1847. Julia Ann was a daughter of Elijah Gumm and his first wife (name not known). For awhile the Gumms lived in the same vicinity as the Wisemans in Glaize Township, but later moved to Pettis County, MO. Seven children were born to James Riley & Julia Ann before they moved to Oregon Territory. Later they would become parents of three more children.
On March 2, 1882 James & Julia loaded their seven children into the family wagon, along with necessary supplies, and joined a wagon train heading west at Prairie City, MO (Bates Co., MO near Rich Hill). In late June their wagon train reached Weiser, Idaho. At Weiser the Wiseman's wagon and four other families branched off onto the McKenzie Road that would take them over the mountains and down into the Willamette Valley of Oregon......they settled at a little town called Irving (then called 'Yellow Dog'), about 7 miles north of Eugene, Oregon. On July 24, only a few days after arriving in Oregon, Julia Ann gave birth to their 8th child!
The account of their trip west was written by daughter, Sarah WISEMAN Seeley, who was living in Caldwell, Idaho in later years when she wrote her story. Her memories were vivid and exciting...it took courage to reach their promised land. At first she said the trip was exciting and adventurous as they left the old foothills of central Missouri which were covered with hazel, oak, and ash trees. They stopped along the way at some kinfolks who lived near the route they would travel. She remembered playing with her cousins around the old loom and spinning wheel. They cracked walnuts and hickory nuts on the fireplace, which would be the last time. She stated..."A few days later we camped near the Osage River, which was out of its banks, a raging, muddy, whirling stream." I do not know exactly where they were at that time since the Osage River runs through Miller County and on westward toward Kansas. The next day they crossed this swollen, flooded river on a flat-boat "without railings, taking six teams one way...my mother (Julia Ann) held one of the teams and how they did snort and stomp...I never saw my mother's face any whiter."
She then stated they camped for a few days and then made ready to go...this was at Prairie City. Perhaps they left the Brumley area and forded the mighty Osage in its flood stage in Miller County and made their way northwest to Prairie City where they joined up with the wagon train that took them west. Along the way they saw sod houses and 'dugouts'...encountered Indians along their route...swam rivers in their wagon box...ran into some quicksand...watched a grizzly bear following the train hoping to catch a young calf...watched a run-away wagon with a mother and her two children inside...were warned of a 'bunch or band' of cougars in a canyon...got a ride on a railroad box car for three days along the trail...encountered deep snows in the mountains where they had to leave their wagon along the trail.
They used buffalo grass and chips to build a fire in their little sheet iron stove which was carried inside the wagon. She said they could make a quick fire for hot coffee...but never made a fire when Indians were near their camp. They often drove miles in a 'roundabout' way over hills and washouts to get past the Indians. She said they saw many 'teepee towns' along the way also. Water was so scarce in places they had to buy it and then haul it along for days at a time. The Indians would come to their camp and for fear of them, the pioneers would let the Indians drink their water.
Sarah said they had to make many sacrifices along the route and she saw many more perils and bad sights....graves beside the road with no marker except a rock placed there by loved ones who had to pass on, leaving them in the lonesome wilds of sagebrush and sand. They were almost 5 months traveling from Missouri to Oregon. Most of the families stopped at Weiser, Idaho but five wagons traveled on to the Willamette Valley of Oregon including the Wisemans, Mackeys, and Shockleys. Finally they reached the top of a mountain where they saw sunshine and no more snow...the children, with some grownups, finally laid down for a restful sleep. She saw a big brown bear nearby, but since they were so tired and had seen much worse, she said..."didn't trouble me any...just went off to sleep there after long days and weeks with tired, weary bodies." After reading Sarah Wiseman's story of crossing the plains, deserts, and mountains to reach the Pacific Northwest in 1882, I realized my trip in 1994 was really very uneventful some 112 years Later!!
THE WITT FAMILIES
There were several Witt families enumerated in Amherst County, Virginia during tax lists taken in 1783 and 1785. The heads of households included Abner, David, Elijah, George, Lewis, Littleberry, John, and William. Some familiar family names found in Amherst County records were Luttrell, Whittle, Shelton, Patterson, Phillips, and Gilliam.
By 1830, some of the Witt families had moved into East Tennessee and located in the counties of Rhea, Hamilton, Monroe, McMinn and Jefferson. Moving with them into East Tennessee were the Luttrells, Sheltons, Pattersons, and Gilliams. The Whittles went to central Kentucky.
John and Arthur Witt, probably brothers, were born in East Tennessee. They were sons of Jesse and Ruth Witt. John was born c/1804 and Arthur about 1808. Both men came to Miller County in the early 1840s after a short stay in Sangamon County, Illinois. This was the typical migration pattern of early pioneers.....the wanderlust drove these families from the Blue Ridge mountains of western Virginia, into the Cumberland region of East Tennessee, then on north and west into Indiana and Illinois, and finally to Missouri.
In Miller County's 1850 census, the two Witt families were living in the same area of Glaize Township. Back in Tennessee, Arthur Witt had married Mary Bilyeu and John Witt married Frances Coker. Both couples had large families. Some of the children were born in Illinois and some in Miller County.
Among their neighbors in Glaize Township in 1850 were the families of Bilyeu, Golden, Wyrick, Russell, Gum, Long, Dobson, Beard, Nicholds, Williams, and Scott.
Jesse Marion Witt
In Jenkins' History of Miller County is a paragraph, which states that near the close of the Civil War several families (mainly women and children) in the county were found destitute and near starvation due their husbands being away at war or else casualties of that war. Among them was Mary A. Witt, a widow of a Civil War soldier. I do not know who she was.....the only record I have of a Civil War soldier named Witt was Jesse Marion Witt, son of John and Frances. He survived the war and lived until 1932.
Most of the Witt families, who live in Miller County today, are descendants of Jesse Marion Witt (son of John Witt Sr.) and John Witt (son of Arthur Witt). The many daughters of these two families married into the families of Gum, Topping, Wyrick, Luttrell, Workman and Dobson. Their descendants are numerous and have scattered all over America. Over the years I have corresponded with Witt descendants who live in California, Utah, Oregon, Texas, and Colorado.
WILLIAM JASPER WITT
From: The Miller County Autogram, 26 Feb 1891......
"William Jasper Witt, one of Ira T. Johnson's assistants on the ferry boat, met with an accident about 3:30 Monday afternoon from which he died about 11 o'clock that night. The ferry boat is rigged with a windlass at either end of the boat for the purpose of heading the boat upstream. When the river is high, as at present (1891) these windlasses are very hard to work, requiring a strong man to handle them....The accident happened on the south bank of the river during preparations to return to this side. In turning the windlass, the iron handle slipped out of his hand and coming over, struck Mr. Witt almost on the top of the head, crushing his skull fearfully.....He was taken into Johnson's drug store where Dr. James B. McGee dressed the terrible wound. Before t his was completed, the injured man became unconscious and remained in that condition until death.....The remains were buried at the Scott Graveyard (upriver from Tuscumbia) on Wednesday. Witt leaves a wife and a large family of children."
Note: The only Scott Cemetery that I know about is upriver from Tuscumbia but there is no record of Wm. Jasper Witt being buried there. He may be in an unmarked grave with no tombstone.
William Jasper Witt was born in Missouri about 1846. He first married Forbia N. Nicholas on 13 May 1866 by Andrew Brockman, a justice of the peace. In 1870 he and his family lived in Glaize Township near the families of Wyrick, Wickham, Witt, Renfrow, Myers, Casey, and Winfrey.
Sometime prior to 1877, his wife, Forbia/Ferby, died and on February 22, 1877 he married Sarah J. Thornton. Their marriage was performed by Hezekiah Robinett, a justice of the peace in Glaize Township. In 1880, they were living in Osage township near the families of Wyrick, Patterson, Hill, Lupardus, McCummins, and Topping.
During the 1880 census of Miller County the following people were residents and business persons in the town of Tuscumbia:
Note: It was interesting to see that the small village of Tuscumbia had 4 attorneys in 1880!)
Ira T. Johnson, who employed William Jasper Witt on his ferry boat, was also the owner/operator of a drug store in the small town. Ira was born and reared in Ohio. His wife, Elizabeth (Weitz), a native of Germany, helped him in the drug business.
After the death of William Jasper, his wife Sarah Thornton Witt, married Edington Williams on 23 Sept 1893 and she had 2 more children by Mr. Williams.
HENRY TOLBERT WOOD
Henry Tolbert Wood (called Tol) was born in Scott County, Virginia 28 July l836, a son of Henry Wood Sr. (l805-l888) and his second wife, Hannah Vineyard (l805-l872). Henry and Hannah married in Scott Co., VA on May l, l83l. Henry's first wife was Sarah G. Wilcox whom he married in Virginia also. In the mid l840s, Henry, Hannah and several of their children came to Miller County and settled in Equality Township near the families of Vann, Cotten, Harrison, Burnett, McComb and Vaughan.
The children of Henry and Hannah included: Sarah/Sally Wood b. l832 m. Pascal Davenport l850; George Wood b. l834 m. (l) Charity Vina Vaughan l857 (2) Vrenna/Viana Starke l866; Henry Tolbert Wood b. l836 m. (l) Elvira J. Vaughan l854 (2) Eliza Jane Stark l87l (3) Mary______c/l886; Mary Smith Wood b. l838 m. Alvin Kemp Vaughan l862; Emily Wood b. l84l m. James Davenport l87l; and Margaret Wood b. l843 m. James Vaughan l863.
Hannah Vineyard Wood died in August l872 and Henry Wood married his third wife, Sarah Cornett, in October l876. Henry Sr. died in l888 and was buried at Tol Wood Cemetery in Franklin Township. Henry Tolbert Wood, son of Henry Sr. and Hannah, married Elvira J. Vaughan 27 August l854, the marriage performed by John Brockman, minister of the gospel. Elvira was a daughter of Elish and Martha (Johnson) Vaughan, natives of Virginia and Kentucky respectively. Henry Tolbert (called Tol) and Elvira were parents of several children including: Sarah J. Wood b. l855 m. Lewis Starke l87l; Tabitha C. Wood b. l858 m. Thomas C. Roe l883; Elisha Henry Wood b. l860 m. Frances A. Davenport l883; James Sterling Wood b. l862 m. Nancy/Nannie Barrons l893; Elizabeth E. Wood b. l864 m. James J. Arnold; Henrietta Wood (l866-l866); Anna M. Wood b. l867 m. Charles W. Harrison l89l; Wesley William Wood b. l868 m. Alice Varney l89l; and Marion L. Wood b. l870 m. Lillian Dobson l893.
I believe Elvira died at the birth of her son, Marion, in l870 and in l87l, Tolbert Wood married Eliza Jane Stark. She produced four children: Samuel P. Wood b. l87l m. Carrie May Herrington l901; Mary Manerva Wood b. l874 m. John W. Coffman l892; Rebecca Annie Wood b. l877 m. Edward D. Brown l896; and Rosa L. Wood (l878-l879). Eliza Jane (Stark) Wood died in l879 and then Tolbert took his third wife, Mary _______, whom he married about l886. Evidently he did not have children by Mary. In the census of l900, Tolbert and Mary were living in Franklin Township. In their household were two of his grandchildren (Mary G. Wood age l4 and William Wood age l3). In l900, their nearest neighbors were son, James Sterling Wood, his wife Nannie (Barrons) and their 3 children.
Henry Tolbert/Tol Wood died in l902 at the age of 66 years. It is my understanding that Tol Wood died when a steam engine turned over on him and caused is death. He was buried in the burial ground which carried his name...."Tol Wood Cemetery"., located in Franklin township just a short distance east of Highway 54.
NAPOLEON BONAPARTE WOOD
Napoleon Bonaparte Wood was born in Kentucky circa 1830 and came to Richwoods Township, Miller County, MO, about 1851-52. He and his wife, Lucy M. Wood, evidently had lived in Texas before coming to central Missouri.
Their first child, Mary A. Wood, was born in Texas c/1850. Their other children who were all born in Missouri included: George Wood b. c/1853; Louis A. Wood b. c/1862; and Jonathan A. Wood b. c/1866.
I haven't been able to find much about Napoleon Wood in county records but I believe they lived in western Richwoods Township before and during the Civil War. He was a veteran of that war, serving with the Union army in Company D of the 42nd Enrolled Missouri Militia. He was a 2nd Lt. under the command of Capt. William Long. Capt. Long was killed at his family's farm near Iberia during the Civil War.
In the census of 1860, there was a female, Nancy C. Wood, age 14, living in their household. I do not know if she was a daughter, sister, or niece to Napoleon. Nancy married James M. Lovell/Loveall in Miller County on 30 Dec 1869.
I do not know if the Wood family remained in Miller County. Napoleon is buried in a lone grave on land that was evidently their homesteaded property in Section 33 Township 39 Range 13. Since there are no dates on the military-issued Civil War tombstone, I do not know what year he died or if there are other members of his family also buried along side of him in unmarked graves. His stone is located a few miles west of Iberia behind the home of James Hall on Ambrose Road (the land was once owned by the Jim Huddleston family).....The stone is behind the Hall home on a hillside with a beautiful view of the Richwoods countryside. It is not fenced but has been reinforced around the stone. On the stone is the following information:
N. B. Wood - no dates - Co. D 42nd EN MO Mil
(Company D of the Enrolled Missouri Militia)
A few years ago, before his death, Barney Hustler of Iberia told me about the old grave of Napoleon Boneparte Wood, whom he called 'Boney' Wood. He told me he had accompanied Fred Spearman to the gravesite several times on the old hillside and watched as Fred would place a small American flag at the grave on several Memorial Days. Barney could not remember the old soldier and believed he had died prior to 1900. He believed that Fred Spearman, who was born prior to 1900, remembered stories of the old soldier since he lived and died in the same general area where Mr. Spearman had lived.
Many of our ancestors were given names of past heroes---presidents, statesmen, military figures, religious persons, etc. Very popular were the names George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, James Monroe, James Madison, William Henry Harrison, Ulysses S. Grant, Grover Cleveland, Lorenzo Dow, John Wesley, and the most unusual was Napoleon Boneparte!
Sophia Woolsey was born in Pulaski County, Kentucky 30 Oct 1833. On Nov 18, 1851, she married George Woolsey. Evidently they were married in KY before coming to Miller Co. I do not know her maiden name. The best I can determine they did not come to Miller County until after 1880. They settled in Glaize Township near Ulman and some of their neighbors included the families of Hawkins, Jackson, Payne, Pierce, Karr, Catron, Gott, and Ulman.
Sophie and George Woolsey had several children. The 1900 census states they had 7 of 12 children still alive in 1900.
Sophia and George had been married over 50 years when she died in November 1901. She was survived by George, as well as 7 of their 12 children. Elder E. J. Payne officiated at her services, and she was buried at Gott Cemetery. Also in Gott Cemetery is son, George W. Woolsey and his wife, Zora (Bell).
NOTE: Because of the lack of information given in her obituary, not much was found about the Woolsey family after they moved to Miller County in the 1880s.
GEORGE WASHINGTON WORKMAN
George Washington Workman was born in Miller County, Glaize Township, on November 14, 1848. He was a son of Benjamin Workman (1822-1883) and Salena Witt (born c/1825). The Workman family was in Tennessee in earlier generations and eventually migrated to the central Illinois counties of Sangamon and Christian where they lived for quite sometime. They were closely related to the Bilyeu families and all moved to central Illinois abut the same time. Today, descendants of both the Workman and Bilyeu families can be found in Christian and Sangamon counties.
I found a record where George W. Workman married Josephine Lilly in 1870. I do not know if this is George, son of Benjamin and Salena, or a different man. George W. Workman (the subject of this story) married Sarah Luttrell on May 9, 1877 in Miller County. They became parents of three children before she died at the age of 23 years in 1883. On March 29, 1884, George married Sarah's cousin, Mary Melvina Luttrell. She was 20 years younger than George and was only about 15 years of age when she married him.
In 1889, George was a member of the Liberty Church of Christ, which was located about 4 miles south of Tuscumbia. At that time they were holding services in a schoolhouse. I am not sure just which of the schools of Glaize Township served as a church for the Liberty congregation. Among its early preachers was Rev. Thomas Owen Workman, a cousin to George. Thomas was an early-day, circuit-riding preacher of central Missouri.
George W. Workman lived to the age of 85 years when he died at the home of his daughter, Jennie Workman Nichols, in Springfield, MO. He was survived by his second wife, Mary Melvina; 3 daughters and 7 sons; 2 sisters- Lydia Workman June of Eldon and Rutha Workman Duncan of Iberia. Mary Melvina (Luttrell) Workman remained his widow until her death in 1946. George and both his wives are buried at Mt. Union Cemetery in eastern Glaize Township. The Rev. Rufus Frank Moneymaker conducted George's burial services at Mt. Union.
NOTE: Per George's obituary, his first wife, Mary Luttrell Workman, was the first person buried at Mt. Union Cemetery (in 1883). According to inventoried cemetery records, there is no gravestone listed with her name on it.
JAMES MASTON WORNELL
James Maston Wornell was born in Miller County, near Brumley, on April 3, 1841. He was a son of John E. Wornell, born 25 Nov 1784 in Camden District, South Carolina, and Mary/Polly Hooper, born in Tennessee 14 Feb 1798. His parents were married in Nashville, Davidson Co., TN and before 1840, came to central Missouri. John E. Wornell was enumerated in Pulaski County in the census of 1840.
James Maston Wornell married Sarah Epps Robinson on 20 Aug 1862 in Miller County. She was a daughter of Phillip R. Robinson (1797-1875) and Margaret Moore (1801-1859). Her parents were early resident of Cape Girardeau County, MO and came to Miller County in the mid to late 1840s.
James M. Wornell was a veteran of the Civil War and was a member of the Brumley G.A.R. Post for many years. He and Sarah lived in the Brumley area and reared their children there.
James Wornell died at his home in Brumley on May 12, 1932 at the age of 89 years. He had been a member of the Brumley Christian Church since 1884 and was a deacon for 40 years. His funeral service was held at the Christian Church by Rev. J. C. Thompson, his life-long friend. James'wife, Sarah (Robinson) Wornell, had died 25 years earlier in 1907 and he was buried beside her in the Hawkins Cemetery, a short distance east of Brumley.
OBITUARY OF JOSEPH THOMPSON WRIGHT
Joseph Thompson Wright was born in Cole Co., MO on 9 Feb 1849 and moved with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James L. Wright, to Miller Co. where they bought on the Little Saline creek. His father built an old carding machine on this farm. On April 5, 1874, he married Mary Newell and they resided on the Newell farm one mile below Tuscumbia where he died. He and Mary had 5 children: Mrs. Louis Sears, C.E. Wright, Frank Wright, John Wright, and Samuel Wright. He was survived by 23 grandchildren, 5 great grandchildren and 3 brothers: J.P. Wright, G.L. Wright, and John Wright. Another brother, H.A. Wright, died a few years earlier.
WILLIAM RANKIN WRIGHT
William Rankin Wright was born 23 Dec 1830 in McMinn Co., TN near the town of Athens. He was the oldest son of Willis Wright & Tabitha (Martin) Martin. Tabitha was born in North Carolina and when young, she first married James Martin (perhaps a kinsman). At least one child came from that marriage---Charles D. Martin b. 1818, who was the half-brother to William Rankin Wright. Sometime about 1825/26 Tabitha Martin-Martin married Willis Wright.
Elizabeth Canzada Wright Shelton
William Rankin Wright & wife Lucy Moon
Sometime between 1840 and 1846, Tabitha died and Willis married his 2nd wife, Mahala Newton, in McMinn Co., TN in December 1846.
Sometime about 1852/53 Willis and Mahala and their young children moved to Grayson Co., TX and remained there the rest of their lives. Their 4 youngest children were born there. Willis Wright died in Sept. 1859 in Grayson Co., TX. About the same time era of the early 1850s, Willis' older children (Elizabeth, Louisa, William Rankin and their half-brother, Charles Martin who had married Malinda Shelton in TN in 1839) came to Miller Co., MO and settled near one another in southern Richwoods Township in the Madden/Pleasant Hill community.........
Charles Dather Martin
A biographical sketch of Charles Martin (half brother to William R. Wright, Elizabeth Wright-Shelton and Louisa Wright-Griffin) can be found in the 1889 book called GOODSPEED'S HISTORY OF BENTON, COLE, MARIES, MILLER, OSAGE, AND MORGAN COUNTIES OF CENTRAL MISSOURI. The book was re-printed a few years ago by Southern Press of Greenville, So. Carolina. Some of the information above can be found in the story of Charles Martin.
CYNTHIA WYCOFF TOPPING
Cynthia Wyckoff was born 25 April 1850 in the state of Illinois. She was the 4th of 9 children born to John and Hannah Wyckoff. Her father was born in Kentucky c/1819 and her mother was a native of Tennessee, born c/1824.
Only the youngest child was born in Missouri, so the Wyckoff family must have come to Miller County about 1859 from Illinois. They settled in Glaize Township near the families of Graham, Williams, Sullivan, Witt, Reed, Horton, and Martin.
After the 1860 census, no further record is found of the Wyckoff family in Miller County. I suspect they moved to neighboring Camden County because in May, 1881, Cynthia Wyckoff married Joel Miller Topping who lived with his parents in Equality Township, south of Tuscumbia.
Their marriage was performed by Rev. Thomas Owen Workman, a minister of the Church of Christ. In 1867, when the Liberty Church of Christ was organized (4 miles south of Tuscumbia), Thomas O. Workman was instrumental in getting the church established. Among the charter members were Ruth S. (Witt) Topping and her two sons, John and Joel Topping. Meetings were held in an old schoolhouse which may have later been the Topping/#4 School. Among the families who helped organize the church were the Bilyeus, Dials, Reinharts, Millers, Burks, Birminghams, Workmans, Witts, Wyricks, Davis', and Colvins.
Joel Miller Topping (1849-1930) was the second of three sons born to Gilbert and Ruth (Witt) Topping. His brothers were John C. Topping 1847-1923 m. Rhoda Davidson (dau. of John & Mahala (Lawson) Davidson); and Jesse M. Topping b. c/1851 m. (1) Tabitha F. McAnally (2) Ruth Kinder.
Joel and Cynthia (Wyckoff) Topping married when both were past 30 years of age. They did not have a large family as many pioneer couples often did in the 19th century. They had a son, William Joseph Topping b. 1882 m. Ida M. Helton 1903; and a daughter, Altha Joan Bertha Topping b. 1884 m. Richard A. Helton 1900. Ida Helton was a daughter of David and Roberta Helton, but I am not sure if Richard was a brother to Ida or a son of David and Roberta.
During the census of 1900, Joel and Cynthia lived in Equality Township with their two children. His mother, Ruth Witt Topping age 73, lived in the same community. Their neighbors included the families of Umstead, Wright, Nixdorf, Heldstab, Wyrick, Belden, Keyes, McDonald, Lamb, and Helton.
Cynthia Wyckoff Topping died 24 Jan 1924 of heart trouble (per her obituary). She was survived by her husband and two children. Cynthia had been a member of the Church of Christ for over 50 years and her services were held in the Ulman Christian Church. By her request, special Bible readings were given by Alfred Graves. She was buried at Jackson Cemetery, a short distance south of Ulman. Joel Miller Topping, her husband of 43 years, died 15 Jun 1930 and was buried beside Cynthia at Jackson.
CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS WYRICK
Christopher Columbus Wyrick was a casualty of the Civil War and I learned about him by chance. A few years, in a quarterly journal called Ozar'Kin, I saw an item that caught my interest. In a listing of soldiers buried at the National cemetery at Springfield, MO, was the following name: Soldier #308-Wyrick, C. C., Pvt. Co. A, 18th Iowa Regt---Section 9, Grave 110-died 12 Feb 1863. I knew this had to be a Miller County soldier named Christopher Columbus Wyrick who had also died in the Civil War in 1863. I had his probate records and there was no mention of his death in the war, nor his burial at a National Cemetery in southwest Missouri. I sent off for his military and pension records from the National Archives so I could prove one way or the other that he was the same person buried at Springfield in 1863.
After a few weeks, I received his pension records. His wife, Lavernia (Wyrick) Wyrick, had made application for their young daughter, Rosena, born in 1860, and also for herself. But she did not remain a widow for very long. In 1864, Lavernia married Andrew A. Wyrick, son of James and Martha (Connell) Wyrick. He was a grandson of Joseph and Nancy (Rook) Wyrick of Grainger County, Tennessee. Rosena, the only child of Christopher C. Wyrick, received $8.00 per month until she reached her 16th birthday in November 1876.
Christopher Columbus Wyrick was destined to die at the age of 24 years as a Union soldier in southwest Missouri. He was born in Grainger County, Tennessee circa 1839. I have not proven who his parents were because there were so many Wyrick families in Grainger County, TN during the era of 1810-1850. Two Wyrick brothers, Michael and Joseph, came to Miller County in the mid 1840s. Legend says some other Wyrick menfolk, nephews to Michael and Joseph, also came to Miller County about the same time. Christopher was probably one of those nephews. He married Lavernia Lodusta Wyrick, daughter of Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick, in Miller County in July 1859. Evidently they had only the one child, Rosena, who was born in 1860.
When the Civil War broke out many young men from Miller County went to war but what has me confused is why Christopher C. Wyrick joined an Iowa Regiment where he served as a Private. He enlisted 31 Jan 1863 and died 12 days later on 12 Feb 1863 of smallpox at Springfield. Why did he not join a local Missouri Regiment?
Evidently he was buried very quickly, after his death from smallpox, in a local burial ground that later became a National Cemetery in Greene County, MO. A smallpox plague was devastating in those years and could spread like wildfire. He was never brought back to Miller County. The site of the National Cemetery was his permanent resting place.
His widow, Lavernia, married another member of the Wyrick family (Andrew) in 1864. He was probably some kin to both Lavernia and Christopher. This marriage did not last very long because in 1867, she was married a third time to her brother-in-law, Jesse Gumm, widower of Thursa Wyrick, Lavernia's sister. When Lavernia's father, Michael Wyrick, died in Miller County in 1870, she and her third husband, Jesse Gumm, were living in Johnson County, Missouri. There may be descendants of Jesse and Lavernia in Johnson County today, perhaps in the Warrensburg area.
Christopher Columbus Wyrick may have been forgotten had I not become just a little bit curious to learn more about him. Now all you Wyrick folks of Miller County and surrounding area, know that Christopher is lying in the Springfield National Cemetery in Section 9 in Grave #110 and he is not just another statistic in a long row of identical military gravestones. Should you ever have the occasion to visit the National Cemetery, stop by and pay honor to a kinsman who lost his life in the Civil War.
WYRICK FAMILY HISTORY
The progenitor of our Wyrick/Wirick/Wyerich/Weirig family was Johann Georg Weirig who came to America in 1737 on the ship SAMUEL with a wife and 6 children. He and his wife, the former Anna Margaretha Theiss, were natives of Reichweiler, Rhineland, Germany and were German Lutherans by faith.
Johann Georg Weirig, son of Hans Nicklas and Margaret Weirig, was born 18 July 1702 in Reichweiler, Germany and was christened on 23 July 1702 at Pfeffelbach, Rhineland Pfalz (a parish). According to Baumholder records, Johann Georg married Anna Margaretha Theiss/Tice, daughter of Matheus and Maria Margaret Theiss of Reichweiler, Germany on 22 October 1722. Georg and Margaret arrived in America and settled in Philadelphia, PA on 30 Aug 1737. This information can be found in Rupp's "30,000 Names of Immigrants to Pennsylvania". They may have later lived near Lancaster, PA.
They had a large family of 10 children (six born in Germany and four in America).
Georg Werig/Weyrich died in Lancaster Co., PA c/1750. His will was proven and probated on April 9, 175l (Will Bk. J-1, page 343). By June 1751, his widow, Margaret, had married Rudolph Fry (per a petition in Orphans Court Records of Lancaster Co., PA--Volume 1 page 348). Some of the Weirig/Weirich sons and their families were listed in the 1790 census of Dauphin Co., PA including Christian, George Jr., Valentine, Nicholas, and the head of another household was Margaret Wirick (their mother--the name spelled somewhat different).
The oldest son, Johann Nicholas, grew to manhood in Pennsylvania, perhaps in Lancaster or Dauphin County in the Susquehanna valley near present-day Harrisburg. He married a girl named Anna Barbara Litchmere but I am not sure where their marriage occurred. Before the Revolutionary War, the Nicholas Weirich/Wirick family moved to Virginia. The trek from Pennsylvania was with other German settlers who ventured southward through the Shenandoah Valley into southern Virginia and settled in Wythe County near the town of Wytheville. Some of the other Weyrich/Wyricks migrated to the Ohio Valley and later became members of the Mormon Church. NOTE: The family name was recorded so many ways including Weirig, Weirich, Weyrich, Wirick and finally, after a period of illiteracy, the spelling became anglicized to the English version of Wyrick.
Eva Creagar, who married Henry Wirick, was a daughter of Michael Creagar, Sr., a native of Germany. Michael died in Wythe Co., VA in 1807 and left 6 heirs including: MICHAEL CREAGAR, JR: MARGARET CREAGAR: BARBARA CREAGAR REPASS: ELIZABETH CREAGAR CORVIN/COLVIN: EVA CREAGAR WYRICK: and MARY CREAGAR CLIVE.....from Will Bk. 1 page 301, Wythe Co., VA records. Michael Creagar, Sr. was my great-great-great-great-great grandfather.
During the Revolutionary War, Nicholas Wirick/Wyrick refused to swear allegiance to the Colonies and was declared a Tory, loyal to the King of Great Britian. This was an unusual situation for a German Lutheran who came to a new homeland but still felt loyalty to a European country which was not even his own! In May 1799, he was brought into a court in Montgomery Co., VA and the following charges were leveled against him....."Nicholas Weyrich and others have been maintaining the authority of the King of Great Britian and levying war against the people of the state of Virginia." A jury of 12 men found him guilty as charged and returned a verdict...he was fined 500 pounds and imprisoned for 18 months...(from THE ANNALS OF SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA).They later lowered his fine to 250 pounds and labeled his a "noted Tory'.
Evidently he carried the name of a traitor most of his life. It is interesting to learn on the other hand that he had 3 sons who served with the Colonial Army of Virginia during the same war! Nicholas died in Wythe Co., VA in 1792 and his probate estate is recorded in that county. A copy of his will has been found, written originally in German, later translated into English. (Will Bk. 1 page 21). Nicholas gave his son, William, 250 acres of land; his wife, Barbara, was given her choice of two cows and one horse and whatever could be raised on their 'plantation'. The remainder of the children would have an equal share of the estate. The name Nicholas appears to have been dropped from all future generations (with the exception of one grandchild). I suppose this ancestor may have shed shame on his family at that time and his name was not given to his descendants.
Henry Wirick, son of Nicholas and Anna Barbara, was my great, great, great, great grandfather, born in the mid 1700s in Pennsylvania. He married Eva Creagar, daughter of Michael Creagar, in Virginia c/1785-90.....NOTE: The name was also spelled Krieger in some records....Henry and Eva had five sons that are known of and perhaps other children as well. Henry and Eva, with their family, moved westward to Grainger Co., Tennessee before 1815. Several other Wirick/Wyrick families moved into East Tennessee as early as 1798. All were decendants of the German immigrants, Johann Georg and Anna Margaretha Weirig/Wyrick.
The Wyrick family had increased in numbers considerably in the 76 years since the day of their marriage in Germany. My ancestor, Michael Wyrick, son of Henry and Eva, and a grandson of the notorious Nicholas, was born in Wythe Co., VA c/1795 (per census records). He married Lucinda Jones in Grainger County on Feb. 13, 1817. They reared a large family of 15 children, perhaps more.
In 1824, Michael Wirick was granted 100 acres of land in Grainger Co., TN. This land was located north of Clinch Mountain on the waters of Big Flat creek. The land is nestled in the beautiful Clinch Mountains of northeastern Tennessee very near the headwaters of the Tennessee River. For over 20 years the Wiricks/Wyricks homesteaded and farmed this land. In October 1840, Michael sold his land to Lewis Collett for $300. Evidently Michael was illiterate because he signed his name with his mark (X) on the deed. The deed was recorded 2 Mar 1841 at the Grainger Co. courthouse in Rutledge.
It appears that Michael, his family, and other Wyrick families pulled up stakes and moved further west to Missouri, circa 1841-42.....it must have been a long, tedious, tiresome trip from East Tennessee to central Missouri in the 1840s which was probably made in a wagon train of Wyrick families. I believe they were all closely related---brothers, fathers, sons, cousins...all descendants of George Weirig/Wyrick, the 18th century immigrant from Germany.
In the 1850 census of Miller County there were several Wyrick families and I believe 2 brothers, Michael and Joseph Wyrick, are the head of households who moved from Grainger Co., TN to Missouri...by 1850, their families had expanded to other households. Some of the children of Michael who lived nearby were Mahala and her husband, Robert Wyrick; Lucinda and her husband, Chesley Nelson Wyrick; Henry and his wife, Mary---all lived in Equality Township south of the Osage River.
Other Wyrick families living in the same general area were Joseph & Nancy (Rook) Wyrick; Gainum & Altha (Witt) Wyrick; and Othaniel & Hannah Wyrick. Another group of Wyricks were living north of Tuscumbia in Saline Township including: Calloway and Caroline (Watson) Wyrick with her children from a former marriage; James M. and Martha (Connell) Wyrick; and Nathaniel & Elizabeth (Hix) Wyrick.
In the early 1840s, Michael and Lucinda homesteaded in Miller County 4 or 5 miles south of Tuscumbia. Some of their original land today is owned by the families of Robinett, Patterson, and Land. In 1856, they sold 40 acres to David Etter, a neighbor. Other land records can be found in the courthouse at Tuscumbia. He owned over 400 acres at his death. Lucinda preceded Michael in death. Her death was recorded in an old family bible as 5 July 187__. Michael died in April 1877 and since her death is recorded first in the old bible, it is presumed she died before 1877. A Wyrick descendant has been trying for years to locate the old bible but it hasn't been found yet.
The probate estate of Michael Wyrick Sr. is in the Miller Co. official records and is quite a large volume. Much can be learned from old probate records. The administrator of the estate was Michael Wyrick Jr. The notice of the probate was printed from May 17 to June 17, 1877 in an old newspaper in Tuscumbia called THE MILLER COUNTY VIDETTE. An account was paid to the Theron A. Folsom Mercantile & Produce store in Tuscumbia for Michael's burial expenses. The total bill was $27.65 which included a new suit of clothes, lumber, velvet, bleached material, lace, coffin nails, hinges, 2 pr. handles, screws, jacks, and labor for making the coffin........
A sale was held to settle the estate and much like today, many came to the auction to purchase items which included: sheep, lambs, wool, shoats, sows & pigs, cross-cut saw, augers, plows, many household items, 2 boxes of tobacco, 6 yards domestic, 3 yards jeans, and many more items. It would have been an antique collector's heaven! Some of the buyers were Peter B. Lupardus, Alexander Colvin, Ganum Wyrick, Mary Giffen, John W. Burton, John Workman, William Abbett, John Fancher, J. F.Turpin, J. B. Colvin, H. Tinsley, Henry Beldon, Harrison Waddle, and several other Wyrick family names. All the heirs and their places of residence were found in the old file, so it proved to be a storehouse of important genealogical information.
My great, great grandparents were Chesley Nelson and Lucinda (Wyrick) Wyrick. Lucinda was a daughter of Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick and I believe Chesley Nelson was a son of John and Margaret (Monroe) Wyrick who also lived in Grainger Co., Tennessee. I think Chesley and Lucinda were either 2nd or 3rd cousins. Chesley (always called Nelson) was born in Grainger Co.,TN in 1830 and Lucinda was born in 1828, also in East Tennessee. They married in Miller County on Christmas Day 1849. In researching past histories I found it was not uncommon for close kinfolks to marry. Nelson and Lucinda reared their children on land the Wyricks homesteaded when they came to Missouri and was located near other Wyrick families of Equality Township.
John Henry and Rachel (Kinder) Wyrick were my great grandparents, married in 1878 and were living on an adjoining farm to his parents, Nelson and Lucinda, during the census taken in 1880.
My grandfather, Chesley Sylvester Wyrick, was the youngest child of John Henry and Rachel-Betty (Kinder) Wyrick, born 26 January 1892. On October 20, 1912 he married Amanda Elizabeth Whittle of Miller County, a daughter of Josephus and Leatha (Loveall) Whittle.
Chesley died 3 March 1962 and Elizabeth/Lizzie died 21 April 1964. Both are buried at Iberia Cemetery
My mother, Verlie Alberta Wyrick, was born in Miller County 25 October 1914 and married Gene Oliver Smith 31 January 1935. He was born 11 November 1914, a son of Henry Franklin Smith and Sarah Eliza Boyd, both natives of Miller County. They were parents of two children: PEGGY LEE SMITH b. 10 Aug 1935 and BILLY GENE SMITH b. 15 Nov 1936........ The generations have multiplied over the past century......I have children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren who reach into the 13th generation of Wyrick descendants!
From the late 17th century in Old Germany, the Wyrick family has been recorded in history. In the early 18th century, a family of Weirigs/Wyricks sailed to a new homeland and settled in Colonial America. A wander lust possessed these pioneer fathers as they traveled through Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee, and finally, in the mid 19th century, they reached Miller County, Missouri. Here in our central Missouri region they put down permanent roots which have existed for over 150 years. Our ancestors were woven from a texture of strength that would be envied today. Every descendant of these families should feel a sense of pride because deep within each person is a touch of this pioneer spirit. Had they not ventured into an unknown land, then we may have never experienced the many blessings of this nation.
VIRGINIA WYRICK CURRY WYRICK
Virginia Wyrick was born in Miller County in 1859. She was a daughter of Henry and Mary Wyrick, natives of Grainger County, Tennessee. Her grandparents were Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick, also of Grainger Co., TN. The Wyrick families came from East Tennessee to Miller County in the early 1840s and settled in Equality Township. There were several branches of this family who came to Missouri and most settled south of the Osage River except for Nathaniel Wyrick , who lived in Saline Township and reared his family there.
Virginia (called Jennie) was the youngest of six children born to Henry and Mary and their only daughter.
Mary Wyrick, mother of Virginia/Jennie, died in 1864 and by 1870, Jennie was living with her Wyrick grandparents (Michael and Lucinda) in Osage Township near the present site of St. Anthony. I was surprised to find Michael and Lucinda living in that particular area of Osage Township because I had always presumed they lived in the western part of Osage Township near the area called Pleasant Farm.
In March 1878, Virginia/Jennie married Flavius Curry. Evidently they did not have any children since none were found in census records. Sometime between 1880 and 1888, Flavius must have died because on December 13, 1888, Jennie married her cousin, Daniel Malachi Wyrick. Daniel was a son of Michael Wyrick Jr. and Laura Ann Golden. Daniel M. Wyrick was born in Miller County 12 Feb 1858. He was one of four sons born to Michael Jr. and Laura Ann including: George W. Wyrick 1855-1932; Daniel Malachi Wyrick 1858-1934; Leo W. Wyrick b. 1865 died young; and David W. Wyrick b. 1868 died young.
Daniel had first married Parthenia Wyrick (daughter of John and Diana (Bilyeu) Wyrick) and they were parents of three children: Charles E. Wyrick, Dora Belle (Wyrick) Wickham, and Lola F. (Wyrick) Wyrick....................Jennie Wyrick, Daniel Wyrick, and Parthenia Wyrick were all cousins, descendants of Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick of Grainger County, Tennessee.
Jennie and Daniel Wyrick became parents of two children: W. Carroll Wyrick and Ina (Wyrick) Royster. They lived and reared their family on a farm south of the Osage River in Equality Township near Coon Creek.
In the early 1900s, Jennie Wyrick was hired by the Miller County Court to take care of the elderly and indigent people in her home. She did this service for several years until the county decided to purchase a farm and build a county home on the property. The people of Miller County voted in a tax levy in 1930 and the old County Home was built sometime within the next year. The County Home was a huge, spacious home constructed of brick and it was in existence until the Miller County Nursing Home was built a few years ago. The old structure was torn down and the present nursing home is located just a short distance north and on the same acreage.
Daniel Malachi Wyrick died 10 February 1934 and was buried at Old Mt. Zion Cemetery. Jennie lived until April, 1939 when she died at the age of 80 years. She was living with her daughter, Ina Wyrick Royster, in Parkville, MO at the time of her death. A few years earlier she had fallen and broken her hip and never fully recovered from the fall. She made her home with her daughter after her injury. She was brought back home from Parkville for her funeral services which were held at Mt. Zion church and she was then buried beside Daniel in the church's cemetery. She was survived by her two children, three stepchildren, many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Frances Wyrick was born in Miller County on 3 October 1851, the daughter of Gainum Wyrick (b. c/1828 Grainger Co, TN) and Altha Ann Witt (c. c/1831 in Illinois). She was a granddaughter of Michael R. Wyrick and Lucinda Jones, natives of Grainger County, TN. Her maternal grandparents were John and Frances/Fannie (Coker) Witt, also from East Tennessee.
Frances Wyrick, called Fannie, married George Thomas Stark in Miller County 29 Dec 1872. Their marriage was performed by Levi W. Albertson, a justice of the peace. George Stark was born in Miller County on 22 Oct 1847. Fannie and George became parents of ten children (4 boys and 6 girls). Two of their children died either in infancy or when young.
Fances/Fannie Wyrick-Stark died on January 30, 1924 at the age of 72 years. She was survived by her husband, George, to whom she had been married for 52 years; eight children; one brother, Hugh Wyrick; and three sisters: Mary/Mollie Wolf, Cordelia M. Wiser, and Lena L. Wyrick. She had been a member of the Church of Christ for many years. Her funeral services were held at the "old homestead", conduced by J. M. Lamb. She was buried in the Stark Family Cemetery in Osage township. George Thomas Stark died 22 Sept 1938 and was buried beside Fannie. The old cemetery is located today near Highway A on the Mt. Zion Road.
Arizona (called Zona) Wyrick was born in Miller County, near Tuscumbia, on September 3, 1877. She was a daughter of John Wyrick and Diana Bilyeu. Her Wyrick ancestors came to Missouri from Grainger County, Tennessee in the mid 1840s and her Bilyeu ancestors came from Christian County, Illinois. The Wyrick family originated in Germany in the Rhineland Province and her Bilyeu ancestors were of French origin, immigrating to America from the French Flanders in the late 17th century.
In the census of 1880, John and Diana lived in Osage township near the families of Martin, Bear, Bilyeu, Lamb, Giffin, Buster, Roberts, Rhoades, Perciville, Lupardus, and Wyrick.
On July 4, 1897, Arizona/Zona Wyrick married Cordial/Cordell C. Henley. Their marriage was performed by Nathaniel Wyrick, a minister of the gospel. Cordell was born on April 24, 1869 in Miller County. He was a son of Jasper Newton Henley and his first wife, Mary Jane Simpson, who married on February 8, 1858.
Mary Jane Simpson-Henley died after the birth of her 5th child and Jasper then married Julia A. Miller on April 1, 1874.
NOTE: These six children were mentioned in the obituary of Zona Wyrick Henley.
Zona Wyrick Henley died at her home in Eldon in 1965 at the age of 88 years. Her husband, Cordell, had preceded her in death. He died at the age of 87 years on April 14, 1959 and was buried at Spring Garden Cemetery. When Zona died in 1965, she was survived by her 3 sons and 3 daughters, 12 grandchildren, 22 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild. Her funeral services were held at the Eugene Christian Church and she was buried beside Cordell at Spring Garden Cemetery.
ISADORA HIX WYRICK - see under Hix
Perry Tolbert Wyrick was born in Miller County, near Ulman, on October 13, 1880. He was a son of John Henry Wyrick (1853-1923) and Rachel Elizabeth Kinder (1856-1932). His Wyrick ancestors came to Miller County in the 1840s from Grainger County, Tennessee and his mother's family, the Kinders, were from Shelby County, Kentucky. His grandparents were Chesley Nelson & Lucinda (Wyrick) Wyrick and John & Didama (Bilyeu) Kinder.
Perry Tolbert Wyrick married Carrie Gertrude Whittle on January 18, 1903. Carrie was a daughter of Josephus Whittle (1856-1928) and Leatha Jane Loveall (1864-1946) who married in Miller County 29 August 1878. The Whittle family was natives of Edmonson County, Kentucky and the Lovealls were from central Kentucky as well.
Perry Wyrick was educated in the public schools of Miller County and later attended the Miller County Institute at Spring Garden in the late 19th century. For about 15 years he taught schools in Miller, Pulaski, and Camden counties.
In 1914, he went into politics and won the office of Miller County Circuit Clerk and Recorder of Deeds on the Republican ticket. He later served two terms as County Judge of the Second District. From 1929 to 1933, he was supervisor of automobile funds in the State Treasurer's office in Jefferson City. From 1933 until his retirement in 1946, he served as a bank official with three Miller County banks---Bank of Iberia, Farmers and Traders Bank of Iberia, and Bank of Tuscumbia. The Wyricks were parents of two sons, Orville Oral Wyrick and Elmer Everett Wyrick. Both sons attended Iberia Academy. Orville graduated in 1922 and Elmer in 1924. Orville married Grace Martin of Iberia, a daughter of George and Laura (Ferguson) Martin. Elmer left Miller County as a young man and went to southeast Kansas where he met his wife, Margie.
Perry Tolbert Wyrick died in October 1958 and had almost reached his 78th birthday. His funeral was held at the Iberia First Christian Church. Rev. James Bade, pastor of the church, and Rev. Earl B. Brown, pastor of the Iberia Congregational Church, conducted the services. Perry was survived by his wife, Carrie; son Orville Wyrick of Webster Groves, MO; grandson, Kenneth Wyrick of Oswego, KS; granddaughter, Delores Wyrick Amos of Webster Groves, MO; and two brothers, Chesley S. Wyrick of Iberia and George E. Wyrick of Ft. Scott, KS. He was preceded in death by his son, Elmer, and granddaughter, Mary Catherine Wyrick. He was buried at the Iberia Cemetery......his wife, Carrie Whittle Wyrick, survived him by only 1 year when she died in 1959 and was buried beside Perry at Iberia Cemetery.
NOTE: Perry Tolbert Wyrick was an older brother to my grandfather, Chesley S. Wyrick. I remember Uncle Perry so well as I grew up in Iberia and visited many times in their home that displayed many pieces of unique antique furniture. One of my most pleasant memories was for almost 25 years he called me "Betty". His mother was named Rachel Elizabeth but was always called "Betty", so I have to believe that in some way I must have reminded him of his dear little mother!
FRANCES WYRICK STARK
Frances Wyrick was born in Miller County on 3 October 1851, a daughter of Gainum Wyrick (b. c/1828 Grainger Co., TN) and Altha Ann Witt (b. c/1831 in Illinois). She was a granddaughter of Michael R. Wyrick and Lucinda Jones, natives of Grainger County, TN. Her maternal grandparents were John and Frances/Fannie (Coker) Witt, also from East Tennessee.
Frances Wyrick, called Fannie, married George Thomas Stark in Miller County 29 Dec 1872. Their marriage was performed by Levi W. Albertson, a justice of the peace. George Stark was born in Miller County on 22 Oct 1847. Fannie and George became parents of 10 children (4 boys & 6 girls). Two of their children died either in infancy or when young.
Frances/Fannie Wyrick Stark died on January 30, 1924 at the age of 72 years. She was survived by her husband, George, to whom she had been married for 52 years; 8 children; one brother: Hugh Wyrick; and three sisters: Mary/Mollie Wolf, Cordelia M. Wiser, and Lena L. Wyrick. She had been a member of the Church of Christ for many years. Her funeral services were held at the 'old homestead', conducted by J. M. Lamb. She was buried in the Stark Family Cemetery in Osage township. George Thomas Stark died 22 Sept 1938 and was buried beside Fannie. The old cemetery is located today near Highway A and the Mt. Zion Road.
SUSAN/SUSANNAH WYRICK FAMILY
Susan Wyrick was born 1/28/1823 in east Tennessee, probably Grainger County, where other members of the Wyrick family lived. Her obituary stated that she came to Miller County when young, with her father. I have not been able to definitely identify who her father was. Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick and Joseph & Nancy (Rook) Wyrick came to Miller County in the mid-1840s. I know she was not a daughter of Michael & Lucinda because I have records of all their children. Perhaps she was a daughter of Joseph & Nancy. I can only speculate at this time.
Susannah married John F. Sandfort in Cole County, Missouri on 9/5/1844. He was a son of John C. & Wilhelmina Sandfort, natives of Germany. John was born in Germany about 1822.
According to family legend, John F. Sandfort left Miller County in the early 1850s and went to the California gold fields, but never returned. He must have died along the way or in California between 1850 and 1856. Susannah married Joshua Vaughan in Miller County on 11/11/1856, their marriage performed by Reuben Burnett, justice of the peace. Joshua was several years older than Susannah and had 10 children by his first wife.
Joshua Vaughan died in 1880 at age 75 and was buried at Tol Wood Cemetery in Franklin Township. Susan lived the rest of her life as his widow. Susan, affectionately called "Aunt Susey" by all who knew her, died 12/3/1913, almost reaching her 91st birthday. Her funeral services were by Elder J.M. Henderson and she was buried at Tol Wood Cemetery. Her Obituary, which appeared in the Miller County Autogram in 1913, stated she was the mother of seven children, step-mother of 10 children, grandmother of 40, and great-grandmother of 30. Her obituary also stated that she had been a devoted Christian woman for more than 75 years and a member of the Missionary Baptist Church. She often walked many miles to attend her church over the years.
NOTE: In the 1900 census of Franklin Township, Miller County, Susan (Wyrick) Sandfort-Vaughan was living in the home of her granddaughter, Rosa (Sandfort) Snyder and her husband Albert Lewis Snyder. Rosa/Rosie was the oldest child of William Thomas Sandfort and Sarah Ann Cotten. The step-children of Susan named in the probate record of Joshua Vaughan were James, Joseph, George, Wilson, Wm. Andrew, and Elias Vaughan, Martha Vaughan Harris, and Elizabeth Vaughan Fisher.
Tolbert Wyrick was born in Glaize Township, near Ulman, on January 7, 1857. He was a son of Henry Wyrick (born 1817 Grainger County, TN and died in Miller County between after 1880). Tolbert's mother was named Mary....some records give her maiden name as Nipper, but I haven't confirmed this. She was born in Tennessee in 1825 and died in Miller County in 1864. Henry and Mary married in East Tennessee before they came to Miller County with his parents, Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick in the early 1840s.
Tolbert married Mary Adeline Wickham in Miller County 17 July 1879. I also found his name spelled Tolbird in some records. The marriage for Tolbert and Mary Adeline was performed by Hezekiah Robinett, a justice of the peace in Glaize Township. Mary, born 26 July 1860, was a daughter of Halsey and Nancy Wickham, natives of New York, who settled in Glaize Township.
Tolbert Wyrick became a member of the Christian Church in 1883 and was a member of the Ulman Christian Church at the time of his death on December 7, 1929. His funeral services were held at Mt. Zion Church by Rev. Charles M. Sooter, with burial in the Old Mt. Zion Cemetery nearby. His wife, Mary Adeline, survived him until October 16, 1948 when she died at the age of 88 years. He was also survived by 7 children, 33 grandchildren, and 7 great grandchildren when he died in 1929.
Virginia Wyrick was born in Miller County in 1859. She was a daughter of Henry and Mary Wyrick, natives of Grainger County, Tennessee. Her grandparents were Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick, also of Grainger Co., TN. The Wyrick families came from East Tennessee to Miller County in the early 1840s and settled in Equality Township. There were several branches of this family who came to Missouri and most settled south of the Osage River except for Nathaniel Wyrick who lived in Saline Township and reared his family there. Virginia (called Jennie) was the youngest of six children born to Henry and Mary and their only daughter.
Mary Wyrick, mother of Virginia/Jennie, died in 1864 and by 1870, Jennie was living with her Wyrick grandparents (Michael and Lucinda) in Osage township near the present site of St. Anthony. I was surprised to find Michael and Lucinda living in that particular area of Osage Township because I had always presumed they lived in the western part of Osage Township near the area called Pleasant Farm.
In March 1878, Virginia/Jennie married Flavius Curry. Evidently they did not have any children since none were found in census records. Sometime between 1880 and 1888, Flavius must have died because on December 13, 1888, Jennie married her cousin, Daniel Malachi Wyrick. Daniel was a son of Michael Wyrick Jr. and Laura Ann Golden. Daniel M. Wyrick was born in Miller County 12 Feb 1858. He was one of four sons born to Michael Jr. and Laura Ann including: George W. Wyrick 1855-1932; Daniel Malachi Wyrick 1858-1934; Leo W. Wyrick b. 1865 died young; and David W. Wyrick b. 1868 died young.
Daniel had first married Parthenia Wyrick, daughter of John and Diana (Bilyeu) Wyrick, and they were parents of three children: Charles E. Wyrick, Dora Belle (Wyrick) Wickham, and Lola F. (Wyrick) Wyrick. Jennie Wyrick, Daniel Wyrick, and Parthenia Wyrick were all cousins, descendants of Michael and Lucinda (Jones) Wyrick of Grainger County, Tennessee.
Jennie and Daniel Wyrick became parents of two children: W. Carroll Wyrick and Ina (Wyrick) Royster. They lived and reared their family on a farm south of the Osage River in Equality Townhip near Coon Creek. In the early 1900s, Jennie Wyrick was hired by the Miller County Court to take care of the elderly and indigent people in her home. She did this service for several years until the county decided to purchase a farm and build a county home on the property. The people of Miller County voted in a tax levy in 1930 and the old County Home was built sometime within the next year. The County Home was a huge, spacious home constructed of brick and it was in existence until the Miller County Nursing Home was built a few years ago. The old structure was torn down and the present nursing home is located just a short distance north and on the same acreage.
Daniel Malachi Wyrick died 10 February 1934 and was buried at Old Mt. Zion Cemetery. Jennie lived until April, 1939 when she died at the age of 80 years. She was living with her daughter, Ina Wyrick Royster, in Parkville, MO at the time of her death. A few years earlier she had fallen and broken her hip and never fully recovered from the fall. She made her home with her daughter after her injury. She was brought back home from Parkville for her funeral services that were held at Mt. Zion Church and she was then buried beside Daniel in the church's cemetery. She was survived by her two children, three stepchildren, many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
WILLIAM NATHANIEL WYRICK
William Nathaniel Wyrick was born in Saline Township, Miller County, MO on June 4, 1866. He was the youngest son of Nathaniel Wyrick and Elizabeth (Hix). Nathaniel was born in Grainger Co., TN in 1818 and Elizabeth was born in TN in 1821. William Nathaniel was a descendant of the Wyrick families who came from Germany in the 1700s and first lived in Pennsylvania. They migrated down the Shenadoah Valley of western Virginia and settled in Wythe County for awhile. Later some of the families moved to Grainger County, TN and eventually some of these Wyrick families came to Missouri and have lived in the Miller County vicinity since the 1840s............William was one of 12 children born to Nathaniel and Elizabeth (Hix) Wyrick.
NOTE: There is the possibility that Nathaneil and Cordelia were twins. They were both 13 years of age in the census of 1880.
William Nathaniel Wyrick married Alveretta Templeton Hicks (widow of William Allen Hicks) on 6 May 1906, the marriage performed by his brother, John J. Wyrick, minister of the gospel. Alveretta/Vertie married Wm.Hicks 4 Aug 1892 and they had 3 children: Samuel B. Hicks b. 1893; Barney G. Hicks b. 1895; and Mary A. Hicks b. 1898.
William Nathaniel and Alveretta/Vertie were parents of two sons: Lester Wyrick (1906-1929) who died at the age of 23 years and William N. Wyrick.
According to his obituary, William Nathaniel was "afflicted from childhood" but it did not state what his affliction was. I believe his wife, Alveretta/Vertie (1873-1939), is buried beside her first husband at Allen Cemetery. There is a record of Vertie Hicks buried there near the burial spot of Wm. Allen Hicks. After the death of Vertie in 1939, William Nathaniel lived with his son, William and family, who cared for his father during a long illness.
William Nathaniel Wyrick died at the age of 76 years on 27 March 1943. His funeral services were conducted in the "Ben Allen"Cemetery by Rev. Ivy Hibdon of Eldon. He was survived by his son, William, daughter-in-law, and 3 grandchildren.
I had never heard of the Allen Cemetery referred to as the 'Ben Allen Cemetery' until I read this obituary. Benjamin F. Allen (1845-1916) and his wife, Mary Elizabeth Vernon (1845-1909) are buried at Allen Cemetery. I would presume the cemetery was located on their land and was called Ben Allen Cemetery for many years. They married in 1865 and became parents of 9 children. More than likely they reared their family on this same land during the 19th century. The cemetery is located about 3 ½ miles north of Mt. Pleasant and about 2 miles east of Olean (as the crow flies).