Family Histories

Family Histories for the Rose and Kirkpatrick Families

Monday, March 16, 2015

Military Monday - William Harrison Stanfill, 7th Tennesee Infantry Volunteers, Union

William H. Stanfill was born in 1841 in Campbell, Tennessee to Sampson Stanfill and Rhoda Ellison.  He  married Rachel Lay at the age of 16 in 1857 and became the father to three children, a son and two daughters.  William enlisted in the Union army at the start of the Civil War, as did his brothers.  In June 1862 he became ill at camp in Barbourville, Kentucky with  "camp fever."  The hospitals were full and he was sent to his brother Hiram's home, where he died.  He is presumed to be buried somewhere in Whitley County, Kentucky, near the homes of his family in Campbell County.

Monday, March 9, 2015

52 Ancestors #8 - Easie Mae Stroud 1904 - 1990

My maternal grandmother, Easie Mae Stroud was born 111 years ago today, March 10, 1904, to Farl and Sarah (Sparks) Stroud in Madison County, Arkansas.

Farl and Sarah Stroud with children Earl and Easie, about 1905

After high school, she was a teacher at the Alabam School in Madison County.  She married my grandfather, George Newton Stanfill, on November 20, 1925.

George and Easie Stanfill

She and George lived in Madison and tried farming, then moved to Elk, Kansas for a short time before finally settling in Nowata, Oklahoma, where they opened a grocery store.  Two more stores were later opened in nearby towns.  They had two children, Eugene, born in 1928, and my mother, Joyce Sue, in 1931.

Easie (left), employee Velma and Joyce Sue (front) at Stanfill Grocery in Nowata, Oklahoma

In August of 1941, George became ill with encephalitis and died at the age of 38.  A month later, the store in Nowata burned down.  Easie had the store, and a creamery, rebuilt and reopened several months later.  In 1949, she sold her businesses when she married Wesley Berry.

Wes and Easie Berry's wedding photo

She and Wes remained in Nowata for the rest of their lives.  She was active in church and several local civic organizations, and seemed to stay busy every day.   And she was an awesome cook. 

Easie Berry 1950s

Wes passed away in 1981 and Grandma continued to live in their house until her own death after a heart attack in November 1990.


Sunday, March 8, 2015

March 8, 2015 International Women's Day - The Women In My Family

Maternal grandmother (center), Easie Stroud Stanfill Berry

Paternal grandmother, Mary Herndon Fuller Rose

Maternal great-grandmother Drusie Dorsey Stanfill & family


Maternal great-grandmother Sarah Sparks Stroud & family

Paternal great-grandmother (center) Sarah Anna Sanders Rose & family

Paternal great-grandmother Mary Herndon Fuller
Maternal great-great-grandmother, Rachel Baird Stanfill

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Tombstone Tuesday - Quincy Jane Boyd McCoy

Jane, the wife of Wm. McCoy

Quincy "Jane" Boyd was the daughter of Robert Boyd and Elizabeth McDonald.  She was born in 1832 in Warren, Tennessee; died some time after 1900 in Madison, Arkansas.  She was married to William McCoy in 1850 and was the mother of seven children.  She is buried at the Martin Johnson Cemetery in Madison.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks - #4 - The Death of Bud Heaslet

Columbus Yell "Bud" Heaslet

Columbus "Bud" Heaslet was born in Talladega, Alabama in 1848, the eldest child of James Marion Heaslet and Polly Rogers.  James moved his family to Nacogdoches, Texas before the Civil War, quite possibly because in a family of slave-owning southerners, he was an abolitionist and Union sympathizer.  When the war began, James gathered some 125 men and went north to aid the Federal army, leaving his wife and seven children behind.  As the eldest son, Bud became the man of the house and took a great deal of abuse for his father's views.  When he was 14, a group of men captured him away from home, put a noose around his neck and threatened to hang him if he did not tell them where his father was.  Bud likely wasn't even aware of his father's whereabouts, but the men choked him until they gave up getting information; Bud crawled off to a nearby home where a widow cared for him until he was able to return home.

When James returned home, he appears to have been considered a doctor of sorts in Nacogdoches; he may have studied medicine, but was not an M.D.  Family stories say he removed a bullet from Jesse James and allowed James to stay at his home until his brother Frank could come for him.  Jesse and Bud were said to have become friends, and when Frank James arrived, he gave a horse to Bud's youngest brother, Ulysses S. Grant Heaslet, then about 10 years old.  (Another child was named Abraham Lincoln Heaslet, leaving no doubt about James Heaslet's sentiments regarding the Civil War.)

After the war had ended, Texas' Republican Governor Davis created a military police force and filled it with appointments; the state police, state guard and reserve militia were racially integrated and were perceived by Democrats as existing to enforce racial integration in the state, an unpopular sentiment at the time.  They were created in order to put down the lawlessness that was becoming rampant in Texas, but as is often the case, many began to abuse their power.   Bud Heaslet was one of the appointed officers in the state police.

In December 1871, David Harvell was killed in Linn Flat, a small town fourteen miles from Nacogdoches, by two state police officers:  William Grayson and Bud Heaslet.  According to an account published in 1880 by Richard Haltom, Grayson and Heaslet became upset with court proceedings being held by Justice of the Peace Dawson in Linn Flat.  They threatened to shoot the judge, who charged them with contempt of court and sent Constable John Birdwell, assisted by David Harvell, to arrest them.  Grayson and Heaslet resisted arrest, and threatened to shoot Birdwell and Harvell.  When Harvell told Heaslet to give up his gun, Heaslet shot him in the chest; Harvell managed to get his shotgun and fire a round of birdshot at Grayson and Heaslet, but then collapsed and died.  The two men got on their horses, gathered a group of "thirty or forty Negroes" to accompany them to Grayson's home four miles from town, and there refused to be taken in, claiming they had immunity from arrest.  The sheriff of Linn Flat persuaded Judge Dawson to issue arrest warrants for Grayson and Heaslet and rode out to Grayson's house with a posse of about 15 men.  They persuaded the blacks who were there to stand down and took them back to Nacogdoches, where they were released.  Grayson and Heaslet were nowhere to be found;  the posse returned to Nacogdoches.

Five days later, Constable John Birdwell, who had been sent to arrest Grayson and Heaslet, opened his front door and was shot dead.  The community of Linn Flat assumed that the two murderers were responsible.  New arrest warrants were issued and posses formed, but the two men could not be found; it was assumed they had gone to Austin, where Governor Davis could offer them protection.  However, a few days later, a state police officer brought them to Nacogdoches from Austin.   Grayson eventually stood trial and was sentenced to life in prison.  Heaslet escaped and fled to Scott County, Arkansas, where his father had moved.  He was found there by a bounty hunter and shot to death.  Bud Heaslet was survived by a wife and two small children, whom he had left in Texas.  He was 29 when he died.

Bud's father, James Heaslet, was committed to the state insane asylum in 1886 for unspecified reasons.  He was apparently released some time in the next few years and returned to his home in Scott County.  In 1891, he was sitting on a stump eating peanuts when a man approached him and shot him.  He died instantly.  No reason was ever found for his killing.