Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Another Jones Goes to Arkansas

Postings have been slow this month. While work in my primary field is always busy, things are particularly busy right now. I've been writing on a major document, working on a budget, preparing for long distance travel. I am looking forward to seeing a new part of the world in the very near future, and looking ahead to Rootstech in March.

Last week I wrote about Conway Jones, son of Thomas Jones. Conway had an older brother named William Jones. Like Conway, William borrowed money from John Fain. On 14 March 1840, he borrowed $22.55. William appears in the 1840 US Census in Jefferson County, Tennessee.
By 1850, William, his wife Anna and family had moved to Marion County, Arkansas. William is shown as a blacksmith.
With a name like William Jones, how can I be certain I'm looking at the right one? William's oldest son is listed as Conway W. Jones, age 18 (he would have been born around 1832), named after his younger brother Conway. Two other children have the same name as William's parents, Thomas and Nancy.

The children of William and Anna appearing in the 1850 US Census were as follows:
1. Conway W. Jones, 18 (born in Tennessee around 1832)
2. Mary Elizabeth Jones, 17 (born in Tennessee around 1833)
3. Francis A. Jones, 16 (born in Tennessee around 1834)
4. Thomas, 12 (born in Arkansas around 1838)
5. Nancy C., 8 (born in Arkansas around 1842)
6. John M., 6 (born in Arkansas around 1844)

There's more research to be done, looking at records in Marion County, Arkansas. I haven't had time to do that. But maybe another Jones researcher will find this page and add some information to the story of William, Anna, and their children.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Conway Jones

In the beginning of January, I wrote about the settling of the estate in 1857 for my 5th great-grandfather, Thomas Jones. I have not spent much time covering his other children, as I am still researching these lines. This post is on one of Thomas' sons, Conway Jones. My assumption is that Conway was the fifth child of Thomas Jones and Nancy Tucker.

Conway Jones was born in 1812 in Jefferson County, Tennessee.

Conway appears as a witness in Gibbons v. Thornhill in 1839. One year later, he married Ruth Biggs on 10 November 1840 in Jefferson County, Tennessee. John Gass (later Thomas Jones' executor) was the justice of the peace who performed the marriage for the young couple.
He appears again in the accounting of notes due to the estate of John Fain. Conway (spelled Conaway on the record) borrowed $20 on 20 December 1843. His brothers Joshua and William Jones also borrowed money from John Fain (source: FamilySearch.org, https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-195-2130333-1-42?cc=1909088&wc=10930473). 
By October 1850, Conway and Ruth had moved their young family to Hamilton County, Tennessee (near Chattanooga). His occupation was listed as distiller.
In June 1860, Conway, Ruth and family were living in Snow Hill, Hamilton County, Tennessee.
Sometime prior to 1870, the family left Hamilton County for Driggs, Logan County, Arkansas.
According to Driggs, The People, The Memories, published in 1997 (pgs 48-49), Conway Jones died in Logan County, Arkansas about 1870. This history says that "he was the oldest known ancestor in this family, was buried in Liberty Cemetery about 1870." It also says that he came from Harrison, Tennessee by wagon. Harrison is located up the river from Chattanooga.

"At some point of the journey they loaded the wagon onto a barge and they traveled up the Mississippi River to the Arkansas River.  His wife (Ruth Biggs) died and was buried on the river bank at Pine Bluff, AR.  The family landed at Roseville where they found a two-story hotel to spend the night in.  The next day Conway rode one of the mules to Driggs to get the place ready for the family."
I need to look in Harrison and Hamilton Counties for records on Conway Jones, and also in Logan County, Arkansas.

Conway was not the only Jones son who went to Arkansas. His older brother William Jones had arrived in Marion County, Arkansas sometime before 1850. I'll pick up William's story next. 

Presidents' Day

Today is the Presidents' Day Federal holiday, which in the Washington DC area it means schools are closed. Alexandria hosts its annual parade in honor of George Washington's birthday, and city leaders are quick to tell you the day is for Washington, not all the other Presidents. Two photos below from the Library of Congress show historical celebration of this day.

The first photo is from 22 February 1861, showing Abraham Lincoln raising a flag at Independence Hall in Philadelphia in honor of Kansas joining the Union on Washington's birthday.
Library of Congress - Feb 1861
The second photo shows President William McKinley delivering an address for Presidents' Day, 1901.
Library of Congress - Feb 1901

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Catching Up

Free time for family history research has been a bit slow, although I certainly have enough existing documents and photos to sort through that I really don't need to add new ones right now. I've had a few diversions and distractions in my primary field - getting visas for some upcoming travel to Asia and Africa, building a budget and annual strategy document, following international developments. But I did take the step to become a member of the Tennessee Genealogical Society for 2013, so that is some news.

Almost Spring - Santa Monica, CA, 31 Jan 2013


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tech Tuesday - See you at Rootstech

I was planning to follow Rootstech remotely, but instead my tickets are booked and I'm registered to attend the conference at the end of March. I'm looking forward to attending and meeting many of the genealogy bloggers.

If you're interested in Internet standards and creating a multistakeholder community for family history research, I'll be part of the FHISO panel in the Friday Developer Day track. See you at Rootstech.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Gibbons v Thornhill, Pt 2

Picking up the case of Gibbons v Thornhill where I left off this morning, in December 1838 Thomas Jones had petitioned for counter security, after providing James Gibbons with the security to file the claim against Joseph Thornhill. The circuit court in Jefferson County next heard motions on the case in April 1839, and that's where the story continues:

Wednesday the 17th April 1839
James Gibbons vs Joseph Thornhill}
Upon motion of the plaintiff by attorney, a rule is given him to show cause why the plaintiff should be permitted to prosecute this suit as a pauper, and upon motion of the defendant a rule is given in this cause to the defendant to show cause why this suit should be dismissed because the rule requiring the plaintiff to give security on or before the second day of this term or the same would stand dismissed has not been complied with.

Thursday the 18th April 1839
James Gibbons vs Joseph Thornhill}
Upon the affidavit of Sarah Gibbons a rule is granted the plaintiff to show cause why the plaintiff should be permitted to prosecute his suit as a pauper, and after argument of said rule being heard on the premises fully seen and understood by the court. It is therefore considered by the court that said rule be discharged and that the rule heretofore granted the defendant to show cause why his suit should be dismissed, be made absolute.

James Gibbons vs Joseph Thornhill}
In this case it is considered by the court that the defendant recover of the plaintiff and Thomas Jones his security all costs in this behalf expended up to the time of the service of notice by the security upon the plaintiff to give him counter security and that he recover of the plaintiff all costs that have accrued since the delivery of said notice, from which judgment the said Gibbons by attorney prays an appeal in the nature of a writ of error to the most Supreme Court of errors and appeals, and upon affidavit the same is granted to be prosecuted in forma pauperis.

Joseph Thornhill vs James Gibbons} Bill of the Case
State Tax $2.25
Clerk for writ and bond .95
Docketing cause twenty-five cents .25
Recording bond fifty cents .50
Subpoenas for 13 witnesses 12 cents each 1.62
For 32 probates [?] cents each 2.00
Rule for plaintiff to give counter security .25
Same rule enforced .25
Entering appeal .25
Four affidavits .25
Judgment .75
Taxation on the case .25
Copy of the bill of the case .25
Four continuances 1.50
Transcript of the record 1.63

Theo. Bradford depositions for sum five witnesses 1.25
James Bradford Sheriff for serving summons (for summoning two witnesses) 1.50
Total $15.70

James Gibbons - Take notice that at the next circuit court held for the county of Jefferson at the court house in Dandridge on the 3rd Monday in December next and on Tuesday of said term, I shall move the court for a rule upon you to give counter security to indemnify me against all damages or liability that may arise from my being your security for the prosecution of a suit wherein you are plaintiff and Joseph Thornhill is defendant August 28th 1838 Thomas Jones endorsed thus James Gibbons to notice August 28th 1838 delivered a true copy of the within to James Gibbons 7 Dec 1838
George Newman [attorney for Thomas Jones]

James Gibbons vs Joseph Thornhill}
Sarah Gibbons who attends to this suit for her husband who is aged and confined to his room five miles from the place where this court sits - with a cancer in his face, rendering him wholly unable to attend to any business and is blind from the disease - maketh oath that her said husband is poor and unable to bear the expenses of suit he desires and is about to prosecute to the Supreme Court - that the plaintiff is advised there is good cause of action for the prosecution thereof - that the Supreme Court has jurisdiction of the cause if the same can be taken before that court.
Sarah Gibbons [her mark]

Sworn to in open court 18th April 1839
Theo J. Bradford Clrk

Bill of the Case continued
Amount brought over $15.70
Parry Talbott DJ. for sum six witnesses 1.50
William Bettis Dp. Sheriff sum one witness .25
George Newman for delivering notice .50
A. Thornburgh a witness as proved three days before service of notice for counter security $2.25
And eight days afterwards $1.00
Manning Summers six days before two days afterwards 1.50
Hugh Henry 3 days before 2.25
John Skeen 1 day before 4.50
eight days afterwards 1.00
Con. Jones [Conway Jones] 4 days before 3.00
8 days afterwards 1.00
Wm. Rankin 4 days before 3.00
7 days afterwards 5.25
Thomas Kimbrough before 1 day 4.50
John Whittington 3 before 2.25
4 days afterwards 3.00
John Gass 3 days before 2.25
5 days afterwards 3.75
Robert Jones 7 days before 5.25
5 days afterwards 3.75
Total $34.35 = Total Amount $85.95

State of Tennessee
I, Theo. J. Bradford Clerk of the Circuit Court in the county of Jefferson and State aforesaid do hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and perfect transcript of the record in the foregoing case James Gibbons against Joseph Thornhill and the bill of the costs in said case, as is now upon the record of my office.

In witness whereof I have hereunto set my name affixed my private seal having no seal of office at office in Dandridge the 4th day of June 1839.
Theo J. Bradford Clerk
The case was filed with the Supreme Court of Tennessee on 1 July 1839. It looks like the case was closed on 23 January 1840. James Gibbons does not appear in the 1840 US Census in Jefferson County, Tennessee, he likely died sometime after the case was filed with the Supreme Court. Joseph Thornhill died in 1842.

The bill of the case is interesting in that it shows how a local court broke down its costs.

The names of the witnesses match up as neighbors of Thomas Jones and Joseph Thornhill. It's also interesting to see Hugh Henry, son in law of Thomas Jones, and Conway Jones and Robert Jones as witnesses, both sons of Thomas Jones. John Gass was the brother of Mary Gass Thornhill (so he was the brother in law of Joseph Thornhill).

It was also interesting to see a reference to cancer in a document from 1839. 

I'm glad that I ordered the case from the State Archives, and it makes me wonder if other Jones or Thornhill family members appear as witnesses in early cases from Jefferson County.

Gibbons v Thornhill, Part 1

In January I wrote about searching Tennessee Supreme Court cases through the Tennessee State Library and Archives, and how there was a case Gibbons v Thornhill from Jefferson County in 1839. I wrote to the TSLA for a copy of the case in those hopes that perhaps it listed Thomas Jones in case file. The case file confirmed that Thomas Jones, and several of his sons, did play a role in the case. I'm very glad I ordered a copy.

The suit was filed as a summons against Joseph Thornhill on 16 May 1837 by James Gibbons. Thomas Jones acted as the surety and contributed to a $250 bond in filing the case against Thornhill. It is worth recalling that Thomas Jones had also acted as surety for Joseph Thornhill seven years earlier in 1830, and Thomas' son Robert (my 4th-great-grandfather) had married Joseph's sister Elizabeth Thornhill in 1824.

The Summons - 16 May 1837
State of Tennessee

To the Sheriff of Jefferson County, Summons Joseph Thornhill to be and appear before the Judge of our circuit court for said county (Jefferson) on the 3rd Monday in September next to answer James Gibbons of a plea of trespass on the case to his damage one hundred dollars. Herein fail not and have you then there this writ witness Theo J. Bradford clerk at office in Dandridge the 3rd Monday on May 1837.
Theo J. Bradford Clerk

Know all men by these presents that we James Gibbons and Thomas Jones are held and firmly bound to Joseph Thornhill in this penal sum of two hundred and fifty dollars to which payment will and truely to be made we bind our selves our [seal] to be void on condition the said James Gibbons doth prosecute a suit this day commenced against the said Joseph Thornhill, or pay and satisfy all costs on failure, then the above bond to be void.
Given under our hands and seals this 16th day of May 1837
James Gibbons [his signature]
by his other J. Peck
Thos. Jones his mark seal [x]

September 1837
Jefferson County Sept. Term - James Gibbons by attorney complains of Joseph Thornhill summoned of a plea of trespass on the case for that whereas the said defendant, on the __ day of __ 1836, in said county was in debted to the said plaintiff in the sum of one hundred dollars for goods, wares and merchandise and for money but to the said plaintiff and being so indebted as to wit in Jefferson County  aforesaid on the __ day of __ 1836 then and there promised whenever he should be thereunto requested that he said sum of one hundred dollars would well and truely pay satisfy end.

And whereas the said defendant for and in consideration that the said defendant was indebted to the said plaintiff in the sum of one other one hundred dollars [he owed a total of two hundred dollars] for goods, wares and merchandise and for money but and advanced as well for work and labor done and performed the said defendant on the  __ day of __ 1836 at to wit in said county in consideration thereof undertook and faithfully promised that when therein to afterwards requisted he the said defendant said sum of money would pay and satisfy - yet the said defendant, his promises and undertaking not regarding but intending craftily and subtilly said plaintiff on this to cheat and defraud - altho requested Do to do to wit on the __ day of __ 1836 said sum of money or either of them hath not paid but the same to pay hath failed and refused and still doth fail and refuse to the damage of plaintiff one hundred dollars wherefore he sues.

Peck attorney

January 1838
State of Tennessee}
Jefferson County} January Term 1838
Gibbons vs Thornhill}

And the defendant by attorney comes and defends the wrong and injury where [seal] where [seal] and for plea says he did not undertake and assume upon himself in manner and form as the plaintiff in his declaration hath alledged and of this he puts himself upon the county.

Hynds attorney

And plaintiff also Peck [attorney]

And for further plea in his behalf said defendant says said plaintiff his actions aforesaid should not have and maintain because he says he did not assume and undertake upon himself in manner and form as the plaintiff in his declaration has alledged, at any time within three years next before the issuance of the original writ in this cause and this he is ready to verify, wherefore he prays judgement [seal] Hynds attorney.

And the defendant hereby gives notice that in the trial of this cause he will claim a set off against plaintiff's demand as follows:
- For goods, wares and merchandise sold and delivered to said plaintiff $150.
- For money but to plaintiff $100.
- For money paid laid out and expended for plaintiff $100.
- For money had received by plaintiff for the use of defendant $100.
- For work and labor of defendant $150
Hynds attorney

And for replication of the 2nd plea in this behalf pleaded, plaintiff says that defendant did assume and undertake in the manner and form as the plaintiff against him hath declared within three years next before issuance of the writ in this cause and this the plaintiff prays may be inquired of the county.
Peck [attorney for Gibbons]

And defendant soth the like

May 1838
Friday the 11th May 1838
James Gibbons vs Joseph Thornhill}
This cause is continued by consent until the next term of this court.

December 1838
Tuesday the 18 Dec. 1838
James Gibbons v Joseph Thornhill}
This day came Thomas Jones prosecution bail in this case and moved the court for a rule, on the plaintiff to give him counter security to indemnify and same himself the said Thomas Jones against all damages or injury of his being security for the prosecution of this suit and there upon produced to the court a notice to the plaintiff James Gibbons informing him of his intention to move the court for said rule on this day, and thereupon came into court George Newman who being duly sworn saith that he delivered to the plaintiff in this suit James Gibbons a true copy of said notice more than ten days before this day.

Saturday Dec. 22 1838
James Gibbons v Joseph Thornhill}
In this case it is ordered by this court that the plaintiff give counter security for the prosecution of this suit on or before the second day of next term, or the same will stand dismissed and Thomas Jones the security for the prosecution of this suit is released from all further liability for this case.
So Thornhill and Gibbons had been trading together or at least working together for a period of time. The business relationship soured and Gibbons filed suit. Thornhill counter-sued. As Thomas Jones was the security in the case, he later asked to be indemnified by Gibbons. We'll see in part two what happened next, but it is clear Thomas Jones played a key role in the outcome. 

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Sepia Saturday - Wrangling the Farm Animals

The pictures below are probably from Thorntown, Boone County, Indiana. I am not certain of the date. Capturing a late fall or early winter day on the farm.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

On Judy's Answer to the Functions of a Magistrate

I recently sent a question to Judy Russell, Certified Genealogist and author of the fantastic blog TheLegalGenealogist, asking her what types of functions a county magistrate would have performed in the 1850s. After reading the War of 1812 pension file of my 4th-great-grandfather, Manuel Lamon, and learning of his 12 years of service as a magistrate in Harrison County, Indiana, I asked Judy for some ideas on the types of things a magistrate may have done to get better sense of Manuel's life during that time. A few weeks passed, and Judy not only answered the question but delivered some great ideas, as well as a copy of a Revolutionary War pension signed by Manuel in his magistrate role.

I can't thank Judy enough. Her blog is one of the best in the genealogy & family history space, and sets a high bar of others to follow. She didn't have to take the time to answer my question so thoroughly, but she did, and I am grateful. This is another example of the wonderful genealogy community.

I copied the image she found signed by Manuel Lamon from the Revolutionary War pension file of Catherine Acre, widow of Philip Acre (widow's pension application number W.9690).

Full citation to the image above, per Judy Russell: Affidavit of claimant, 16 April 1855; Catherine Acre, widow’s pension application no. W.9690, for service of Philip Acre (Pvt., Capt. Perry’s Co. (5th Va. Reg.); Revolutionary War Pensions and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, microfilm publication M804, 2670 rolls (Washington, D.C. : National Archives and Records Service, 1974); digital images, Fold3 (http://www.Fold3.com : accessed 6 Feb 2013), Philip Acre file, p. 14.

So now I have some additional ideas of where to look for information. Unfortunately, some of these will have to wait on my research wish list.

Those Places Thursday - The Outhouse or Privy

Here's another sketch from my Gumpy's book, Vanishing Landmarks (see my Travel Tuesday post from 29 January 2013 for an earlier sketch). Interesting description of 1920s rural Indiana, which I hadn't thought about, but lack of running water and electricity was quite common.
Art by Keith D. Jones, 1997
Keith D. Jones, Vanishing Landmarks, page 17

Monday, February 4, 2013

Military Monday - Widow's Pension of Lucinda McIntosh Smith, Pt1

Catching up from meetings in Los Angeles last week, here is Part 1 on the War of 1812 widow's pension application for my 4th-great-grandmother, Lucinda McIntosh Smith. She was born in Kentucky, sometime between 1798-1803, the daughter of John Og McIntosh and Sarah Bennett. Lucinda married Asa Putnam Smith in Mt. Carmel, Wabash County, Illinois, and they later settled in Crawford County, Indiana. Lucinda's widow's pension application was submitted in April 1879 from Leavenworth, Crawford County, Indiana and the claim was denied (although, as I have seen from other pension applications, that doesn't mean the soldier's service did not occur).

Lucinda stated that Asa served as a private in Col. Dudley's regiment in the New Jersey Militia in the War of 1812. The Pension Office could not locate a Col. Dudley in the list of field officers in the New Jersey Militia from the War of 1812 records.

Asa Putnam Smith died on 11 February 1865 in Crawford County, Indiana. Lucinda states that Asa volunteered at Jersey City, New Jersey, that he served for 2 and half years and was honorably discharged in 1815. She states that at the time of enlistment, Asa was twenty-nine years old, a ship carpenter born in Nova Scotia, Canada, 5 foot 8 inches tall, light hair, sandy complexion and light gray eyes.
Lucinda's file also contained an affidavit from her brother, Daniel McIntosh, who witnessed her wedding to Asa Smith in Mt. Carmel, Illinois.

I'm going to pause here and pick up the story by including census and other records from Illinois and Indiana. If Lucinda's claim is accurate, Asa would have been born about 1783-1784. The 1850 US Census shows his place of birth to be Massachusetts, not Nova Scotia.