Monday, November 16, 2015

On this Day – The Marriage of Dempsey P. Welch and Ann Jemima Coor

On 16 November 1847, Dempsey P. Welch and Ann Jemima Coor were married.[1] 

Two days earlier, Dempsey, along with D.K. Coor, his surety, applied for the marriage bond. D.K. Coor was probably Daniel K. Coor, Ann’s older brother. Their ages were not listed, nor the part for parents to give permission was filled out, so the couple was of age to marry. The clerk probably filled out the complete form as the signature line for DP Welch and DK Coor looks alike. Dempsey’s name was listed as BP Welch all through the document.
Bond. Copiah Co., Mississippi, Welch-Coor, 1847
On the next day, the marriage license was issued by the Probate Court Clerk.
License. Copiah Co., Mississippi, Welch-Coor, 1847
Finally on the 16th, the Justice of the Peace, James A. Sturgis, married the couple.
Certificate of Marriage. Copiah Co., Mississippi, Welch-Coor, 1847
Dempsey P. was born 11 May 1822 in Mississippi to Dempsey Welch and Elizabeth Rebecca Young. Ann Jemima was born 29 Feb 1828 in Copiah County, Mississippi to John Coor and Ann Kethley.

Ann and Dempsey are my third great aunt and uncle. Ann was the sister of James Madison Coor, my third great-grandfather, and Dempsey was the brother of Melissa Ann Welch, my third great-grandmother.

Ten years later, Melissa and James Madison would also marry, making their offspring double-cousins to Ann and Dempsey’s offspring. I wrote about Melissa and James here.

Dempsey and Ann had 11 children, with nine living to adulthood. Dempsey was a farmer who owned real property valued at $7000 and personal property valued at $11,500 in 1860.[2]  After the Civil War, his property was valued at $1200 and personal property at $700.[3] This large decrease in value was due to the slaves being freed.

Sometime in the 1880’s, Dempsey brought his family to Texas where they settled in Erath County.[4] 
He continued to farm.

Dempsey and Ann died within days of each other, Dempsey on 23 January 1902 and Ann following him five days later on 28 January. They were buried in Huckaby Cemetery.[5]
Tombstone photo for Dempsey P & Ann J Welch, Huckaby Cemetery,
Erath County, Texas; Taken by Ken Jones, used by permission.

[1] Mississippi, Copiah County, Bk B, p 422, 1847, Welch-Coor; FHL film 876488.
[2] Mississippi, Copiah, 1860 U.S. census, p. 135, (907 corner), dwelling 940, family 946, D.P. Welch, Digital images,  ( accessed 21 Mar 2011), citing National Archives and Records Administration M653, roll 580.
[3] Mississippi, Copiah, 1870 U.S. census, Twp. 1 & 2 East of RR, p. 18, 129b (stamped), dwelling 129, family 123, Dempsey Welch, Digital images, ( accessed 16 Mar 2011), citing National Archives and Records Administration M593, roll 727.
[4] Texas, Erath, 1900 U.S. census, Prec 1, enumeration district (ED) 64, sheet 21 A, p. 21 (stamped), dwelling 357, Dempsey P. Welch, Digital images, ( accessed 7 Mar 2011), citing National Archives and Records Administration T623.
[5] "Find A Grave," database and digital images, Find A Grave (, Memorial# 24126487, Dempsey Perry Welch, IV.  Tombstone photo taken by Ken Jones.

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Sunday, November 15, 2015

On this Day: Thomas W. Jones born 15 November 1883

This is a story of a short life.

Thomas W. Jones was born probably in Hill County, Texas on 15 November 1883.[1] His parents were Thomas W. Jones and Nancy A. Huff. His grandparents were Benjamin W. Jones and Amanda A. Haley, my third great-grandparents. So that would make Thomas my first cousin three times removed.

Thomas had a sister, Amanda E. Jones who was born just a few years earlier in March 1880.[2]

The only record of little Thomas is a tombstone in Vaughan Cemetery in Hill County, Texas.[3]
Vaughan Cemetery in Hill County, Texas, showing Thomas W. Jones, son of T.W. and N.A.
Jones;, photo taken by Doreen Morelli.
This poor tombstone is broken and the death date cannot be made out clearly from the photo. However, on the Hill County, Texas webpage, someone had made a transcription of the cemetery and the death date was listed as 1 February 1885.[4] Perhaps the recording was done before the stone was broken.

His mother, Nancy would go on to have 5 children with two dying young.[5]

Such sadness to lose a child so young.

Happy Birthday, Thomas.

[1] Vaughan Cemetery Listing, “J,” Thomas W. Jones, 1885, Hill County, ( : accessed 13 Nov 2015).
[2] Texas, Comanche Co, 1880 U.S. census, pop. sched, ED 30, p 95a, fam 169, W. Thomas Jones, digital image,  ( accessed 28 Jul 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration, T9 roll 1297.
[3] "Find A Grave," database and digital image, Find A Grave ( : accessed 13 Nov 2015), Vaughan Cemetery, Vaughan, Hill Co TX, Memorial# 6946612, Thomas W Jones.
[4] Vaughan Cemetery, Thomas W. Jones.
[5] Texas, Erath County, 1900 U.S. census, pop. sched., Dublin City, ED 69, sht 15a, p. 123 (stamped), dwelling 287, family 296, Tom W. Jones, digital image,  ( accessed 13 Nov 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration, T623 roll 1631.

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Thursday, November 12, 2015

On This Day – Birth of Eliza Kirby 12 Nov 1876

Eliza Kirby was born in Faulkner County, Arkansas on 12 November 1876 to Robert R. Kirby and Sarah Cathrine Howard.[1] She had two brothers and four sisters; all four sisters died in infancy. In 1880, the family was living in Hardin Township in Faulkner County.[2] Their household included her grandmother, Francis Howard and an aunt, Eliza Hinsley. Is it possible she was named after this aunt?

When Eliza was just seven years old, her father died in 1883.[3]  Her mother remarried 23 Oct 1887 to James J. Robinson.[4]

Eliza married George Alonzo “Lon” Loveless on 20 Jan 1898.[5] They were both of 21 years of age and living in Linder, a community in Faulkner County. P.H. Glover, the minister at the Greenbrier Baptist Church married them.
Faulkner County, Arkansas, marriage between GL Loveless and Eliza Kirby 
Lon and Eliza had three children, all who grew to adulthood and married:
  • Doyle Elbin Loveless
  • Meda Orthal Lovelss
  • Gladys Loveless
Lon purchased land from his brother-in-law John Lee Kirby on 11 February 1903[6] and spent his life as a farmer.

Three years later, Eliza died 18 April 1906 of consumption,[7] which today is called tuberculosis, and she was buried in Needs Creek Cemetery.[8]
Eliza Kirby Loveless, Needs Creek Cemetery, taken by author
There were three children under ten left with their father, with Gladys just barely a year old. Lon remarried 30 Dec 1906 to Nancy “Nannie” MacPherson. They had two children between them, Virtle E. Loveless and James Ebbie Loveless.

[1] "Find A Grave," database and digital images, Find A Grave (, Memorial# 18315354, Needs Creek Cemetery, Faulkner Co AR, Eliza Kirby Loveless. For parents: Faulkner (Arkansas) County Deeds, Bk 24, p 474, warranty deed Cathrine Robinson et al to J.A. Lea.
[2] Arkansas, Faulkner Co, 1880 U.S. census,, Digital images (, Hardin township, ED 57, sht 30b, p 683b, dwelling 239, family 242, Robert Kerby, roll 44.
[3] "Find A Grave," database and digital images, Find A Grave (, Memorial# 18315033, Needs Creek Cemetery, Faulkner Co AR, R R Kirby.
[4] Arkansas, Faulkner Co, Marriage Records, index and images, "Arkansas, County Marriages, 1837-1957," (, J J Robinson and S C Kirby, 23 Oct 1887, Bk C, p 562; citing , Faulkner, Arkansas, county offices, FHL microfilm 1,033,396.
[5] Arkansas, Faulkner Co, Marriage Records, index and images, "Arkansas, County Marriages, 1837-1957," (, film 1033397, Bk G, p 358, Loveless-Kirby, 1898.
[6] Arkansas, Faulkner County, Circuit Clerk records, Conway, Bk 29, p 157, J.L. Kirby to G.L. Loveless, 1903.
[7] Desmond Walls Allen, Pence Funeral Home Conway, Arkansas 1904-1926 Vol II , (Rapid Rabbit Copy Co, Conway, AR), p 51, Eliza Loveless.
[8] "Find A Grave," database and digital images, Find A Grave (, Memorial# 18315354, Needs Creek Cemetery, Faulkner Co AR, Eliza Kirby Loveless. Also photo of tombstone taken by author, 7 Apr 2015.

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Thursday, November 5, 2015

A Piece of Bad Luck

Daniel Matt Coor, oldest son of Rufus K. Coor and Mary J. Sones, died 17 Sep 1881, when the steam engine at his grinding mill blew up.[1] Daniel is not in my direct line. He is my first cousin four times removed. His grandfather, John Coor (1785-1838) was my fourth great-grandfather and his father, Rufus K. Coor (1825-1877) was the brother of my third great-grandfather, James Madison Coor (1833-1890).

Rufus K. Coor’s family remained in Copiah County, Mississippi while Rufus’ brother, James Madison took his family to Texas. So finding two newspaper articles about Rufus’ son, Daniel Matt Coor in the Daily Commercial, a newspaper from Vicksburg, Mississippi, was a nice find. This paper reprinted news from another newspaper called, Hazlehurst Copiahan.

This was not Daniel Matt’s first piece of bad luck. The previous month on 20 August, his gin and mill that was located near Copiah Creek on the Georgetown Road was destroyed by fire.[2]
Copiah Creek between Hazlehurst & Georgetown in Copiah Co.
The exact location of mill is not known.
He also lost two bales of cotton. He stated in the newspaper that he thought “the fire originated from friction.”
“Mississippi News,” Daily Commercial (Vicksburg, Mississippi), 2 September 1881, p. 2, col. 3
At this time, Dan Matt was just 24 years old, probably still living with his mother and four younger brothers, as he had been in 1880.[3] His father had died 1 March 1877.[4]

So on this day when the steam engine blew up, Dan Matt, knew something was wrong. The grinding mill was not operating quite right, so he shut down the engine by letting off the steam and putting out the fire. He examined the engine closely and then started it up again. According to the newspaper account:
“In a very short time after this his steam gauge registered one hundred pounds. This increased his anxiety so he watched every point and movement with greater vigilance and very justly too, for in a short time the crisis came … when in a moment’s time the whole machinery was blown into atoms, and two souls were launched into eternity.”
A total of twelve people were present at the accident and two people died, Dan Matt and Jack Wilson. Dan had been thrown some forty feet from the boiler and was found lifeless, but Hunter Garth resuscitated him. But after being taken to the house and the medical treatment given, his injuries were too severe and he died later that night. He had a compound fracture of the skull in three different places. Poor Jack Wilson, who had been right in front of the engine, was “mutilated beyond description.”  Though the newspaper did manage to describe it.

The force of the explosion was massive. Further description of the accident:
“…The shaft with one box and part of bed plate, hub of main wheel and excentric [eccentric axle], supposed weight five hundred pounds, were thrown a distance of one hundred and twenty feet. The remainder of bed plate, steam chest, cylinder, cross head and piston, weighing about eight hundred pounds, were thrown eighty-five feet. The hull of the boiler, wheel and running gear were literally torn into atoms. One piece of the boiler was driven through the limb of a tree at a distance of one hundred feet from the explosion. Other portions of the boiler were torn into strips and rolled up; the dome was found at a distance of four hundred feet, the ground was covered with the debris for two hundred yards around.”
Dan Matt Coor was buried in the Coor Cemetery, probably not far from his father. There may not be a tombstone for him.[5]

“Death Dealing Steam,” Daily Commercial (Vicksburg, Mississippi),
27 September 1881, p. 2, col. 3

[1] “Death Dealing Steam,” Daily Commercial (Vicksburg, Mississippi), 27 September 1881, p. 2, col. 3; digital image, : accessed 5 November 2015.
[2] “Mississippi News,” Daily Commercial (Vicksburg, Mississippi), 2 September 1881, p. 2, col. 3; digital image, : accessed 5 November 2015.
[3] Mississippi, Copiah, 1880 U.S. census, pop. sched., Browns Store, ED 27, p. 15, 282b (stamped), family 183, Mary P. Coor, Digital images, ( accessed 16 Mar 2011); citing National Archives and Records Administration, T9, roll 646.
[4] Mississippi Genealogical Society, editor, Cemetery & Bible Records Vol 1 (Mississippi: n.p., 1954.), p. 1, Rufus K. Coor.
[5] "Find A Grave," database and digital images, Find A Grave (, Memorial# 70127715, Coor Springs Cemetery, Copiah Co MS, Daniel M Coor; no tombstone photo.

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Small County Courthouses & Records: Researching My Loveless Family in Faulkner County, Arkansas

I just love visiting and researching in small towns and counties.

This past month I had the chance to conduct research in Conway, which is the county seat for Faulkner County in Arkansas. The total population for the county is 113,237 and Conway is the largest city at about 60,000.[1]  It is not far from Little Rock but had a very small-town feel.

Research opportunities abounded in town. I first visited the Faulkner County Museum, where director, Lynita Langley-Ware, assisted me. I found county maps, funeral home records, and more. One great find was a history of the Needs Creek Baptist Church which mentioned my great-great grandfather as a minister.

I also visited the two county offices: County Clerk in the Courthouse where the probate and vital records were stored, and the CountyCircuit Clerk where the land and court records were stored. We checked both offices, looking for the book which had the filed credentials of my minister gg-grandfather. It had been filed in the land records.

These land records were in great condition. They had been placed in newer binding that was removable and the pages in protective sheets. 

The books were heavy and my husband helped me remove them from the shelves. 

It was a cinch to remove the needed page(s) and photograph them with my digital camera. There was also a photocopy machine but it did not have 11 x 18 paper.

I was able to pick up quite a few land records for my Loveless family that had not been filmed by the LDS.

I visited the library archives at the University of CentralArkansas in Conway. They had the loose papers of my ggg-grandfather’s estate and I was allowed to photograph those papers, too.

Our trip also included visited five cemeteries where we searched for the burials from lists I had created. At Springhill Cemetery, located next to Springhill Baptist Church, a gentleman stopped by and asked if we needed help. He had the cemetery census book for the cemetery and helped us locate the various gravestones. At Oak Grove Cemetery, we had a tour guide, Chris Odom, who had my names all mapped out. The other cemeteries we managed on our own. I truly regret not taking photos of our helpers.

Researching on-site at our ancestor’s home is very rewarding and I had such wonderful success.

[1] “Faulkner County, Arkansas,” article, Wikipedia ( : accessed 19 Apr 2015). “Conway, Arkansas,” article, Wikipedia ( : accessed 19 Apr 2015).

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Road Trip to Arkansas

I'm planning a road trip to Arkansas, specifically Faulkner County and Little Rock, to do some genealogy research on my grandmother's Loveless line. Places I plan to visit:

Ouachita Baptist University, Special Collections, in the Riley-Hickingbotham Library. Here I hope to learn more about my great-great-grandfather, Ebenezer Loveless, who was a Baptist minister. They're open 8 to 5 and an archivist will be there to help me.

University of Central Arkansas where the Faulkner County Historical Society has their holdings. Not only did the Loveless family move to Arkansas from Georgia, but so did the Rodgers and Nixon families.

Hendrix College has a genealogy library and the Faulkner County Library has a genealogy section.

The Faulkner County Museum will also be a great place to stop to learn about local history. This museum is open Monday through Thursday from 9 to 4. I contacted the director of the museum and she plans to be there the day I arrive to help me.

I will also visit several cemeteries in central Faulkner County to take photos of many tombstones. Even though most are on Find-a-Grave, I want to have my own for use in publishing on the blog or in a book.

In Little Rock, I plan to visit the state archives at the Arkansas History Commission where I have a nice list of things to check out:
  • Loose probate papers for Jesse Loveless
  • Confederate pension papers for William A Loveless & Thomas J. Loveless
  • Leonardo Andrea collection which has genealogical papers, possibly for the Loveless family
  • Newspapers
I am looking forward to the side trips to Hot Springs, the Ozarks, and a visit of my husband's cousins. It's going to be a great trip. Wish me luck with my research!
Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - The Date Your Grandmother Was Born

Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing blog, has challenged us again. For this week's mission, we were challenged to:
  • What day of the week was your Grandmother born (either one)? Tell us how you found out.
  • What event was a headline in the newspapers on that date?  Tell us how you found out.
  • What has happened in recorded history on your Grandmother's birth date (day and month)? Tell us how you found out, and list five events.
  • What famous people have been born on your Grandmother's birth date?  Tell us how you found out, and list five of them.

My maternal grandmother, the namesake of this blog, Pansy Louise Lancaster, was born 19 November 1913. According to the website, What Day of the Week, November 13 was a Wednesday.

I went to Chronicling America website for newspapers published on that day. Headlines in the Washington Herald included 
  • “Garranza Makes Demand of Hale for Credentials,” and 
  • “Barnes Says Teddy Would Be President.”  
Because she was born in Texas, I looked at a newspaper from Texas, the El Paso Herald, had these headlines:
  • “Four Regiments to be Held at Ft. Bliss: More Troops Ordered to the Border,” and 
  • “Pinchot Leads Water Power Fight.”

For historical events on November 19, I checked Wikipedia.

Famous people born on her birthday include (from the same Wikipedia  article):

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Four Degrees of Ancestral Separation

This theme from Randy Seaver at Genea-Musings has a weekly fun post we can all join in. This week we're to find:
"Using your ancestral lines, how far back in time can you go with four degrees of separation? That means "you knew an ancestor, who knew another ancestor, who knew another ancestor, who knew another ancestor." When was that fourth ancestor born?"
This is an interesting project. As you can see, this gets me back to an ancestor who was born in 1734 or maybe even earlier!

My maternal mother’s line:
1.    Me. I was born in 1954 and knew my grandmother, Pansy Louise Lancaster (1913-2013).

2.    Pansy Louise Lancaster (1913-2013) certainly knew her grandfather, William Carlton Lancaster (1873-1946) and probably her great grandfather, George Wilson Lancaster (1839-1919).

3.    George Wilson Lancaster (1839-1919) knew his father, Ellis Wilson Lancaster (1808-1866) and possibly his grandfather, Robert Lancaster (1784-1840) though he’d only be one years old, but they lived in the same place.

4.    Robert Lancaster (1784-1840) would have known his father, Nathaniel Lancaster (1734-1809) but I don’t know enough about his grandfather, John Lancaster (??-1770) to know whether they ever lived in the same place.

Note to self: Need to find when John Lancaster was born!

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family; updated 28 Jan 2017. Birth & death years for Robert Lancaster were wrong.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

4th Anniversary!

I have been busy in Salt Lake City this week attending a course called "From Confusion to Conclusion," given by Harold Henderson and Kimberly Powell. It's a course about writing proof summaries and proof arguments. It's been a great class so far with lots of in-class exercises and discussions.

I nearly forgot about the anniversary of this blog until I saw Dick Eastman's post on his 19 year anniversary. I remembered our anniversaries were on the same day!

I've been lax in writing in this blog on my grandmother's family but plan to write about the Lancaster Family soon. I'm currently doing some land research and will write something soon.

So Happy Blogiversary to "Mam-ma's Southern Family!"

Copyright © 2015 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, Mam-ma's Southern Family