Family Histories

Family Histories for the Rose and Kirkpatrick Families

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Those Places Thursday: Stinking Creek, Tennessee

I've noticed a number of my ancestors from Campbell County, Tennessee lived in an area called "Stinking Creek."  Not a very appealing name in an area in the Cumberland Mountains that is incredibly beautiful.  I was curious as to how it earned this name; the Campbell County GenWeb page says that during a particularly cold winter in 1789-80, much of the wildlife in the area then called Sugar Creek, perished in the cold.  Their remains laid there until spring when the snow and ice melted, and -- you get the picture.  The Native Americans in the area began calling it Stinking Creek and the name remains -- without the stink.

If you're traveling on I-75 in northern Tennessee, you'll find Stinking Creek off of exit 144.  Don't let the name put you off.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Sunday's Obituary: Louisa Smith Baird, 1836 - 1898

Louisa Baird -- the death angel came on the 25th day of December, A.D., 1898, to the home of Elder Jesse Baird and wafted the spirit of his precious wife, Louisa, to that beautiful city not made with hands eternally in the heavens there to join, as we believe, one son and one daughter with all the ransomed throng sing that glad new song of Moses and the Lamb.

(The reason for this obituary coming in at this late hour, it was overlooked at our first association after her decease, and there seemed to be some dissatisfaction about it and the church now presents the obituary to this association.)

Louisa, the subject of this obituary, was the daughter of John and Helen Smith, born in Tennessee, Nov. the 9th, 1836, and in her 17th year, Aug. the 6th, she became the wife of Jesse Baird and they settled down at Elk Valley, Tenn. and unto them were born nine sons and four daughters, one son and one daughter preceded their mother to the eternal home, the other eleven with their father and great number of grandchildren with other friends and relatives are  left to mourn their loss.  She lived with her husband, Elder Jesse Baird, about 45 years at his present home in Elk Valley, Tenn.  She professed faith in Christ in her early womanhood and lived a pious member of Elk Fork United Baptist church until her death.  In her sickness she seemed to have no fears about her eternal felicity, but offered to her Heavenly Father strong prayers for her children and friends whom she was leaving behind.  Doubtless she is now waiting in happy anticipation of the resurrection morn when all the bloodwashed billions that inaumerable throng will engage in singing that glad immortal song.  May it be that all her children and friends will emulate her in this life and dwell with her above.  By order of the church. 

                                                                                       Jesse Baird, Moderator

J. J. Duncan, Clerk

 Presumably, this obituary was issued at the Elk Fork United Baptist Church after Louisa's death. 


Louisa Smith Baird's grave at the Baird Cemetery in Elk Valley, Campbell, Tennessee

Thursday, November 20, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: William Henderson Shoemake and Cyrena Allen Shoemake

William Henderson Shoemake, born 1824 in Crowton, Jackson, Alabama.  William was of Cherokee and white descent, born on the reservation possessed by his grandmother, Annie Bone Thorn, a Cherokee.   In 1883, William and his brother, John Wesley, moved to Porum, Oklahoma, and petitioned to be recognized as Cherokee in to gain land being distributed to the Cherokee at that time.  The court initially would not grant them recognition as Cherokee, however, they reversed their decision the following day.  In 1908, their claim was once again in dispute; testimony by one witness given at that time indicates the Shoemake brothers may have paid someone to have their earlier claim recognized.  His Dawes file is very large; some testimony indicates that he was actually on the white side during the Cherokee removal.  In spite of that, the Shoemakes were recognized by the Dawes Commission as Cherokee by blood.

William and some other family members had left Alabama and moved to Cass (then Davis) County, Texas in the 1840's.  He married Margaret Collins there and they had two sons; William Christopher Columbus, and George (who was born and died in 1860).  During the Civil War, William volunteered for the Confederate Army and worked as a sort of border patrol guard (at four times the normal pay rate!),  traveling along the Red River looking out for Union troops, while Margaret and their son William lived with her relatives in Davis County.  Around this time, William heard that an old friend, Will Cadell, had been killed in the war, and his widow, Cyrena (Allen), was alone on the prairie with two children.   William took it upon himself to "look after" Cyrena and married her, moving his new family to Arkansas, despite the fact that he already had a wife.  He later claimed in his Dawes testimony that Margaret had died; Margaret was actually declared "insane" and died in April 1870.  By then William and Cyrena had three sons, with seven more children to be born in the next 14 years.  They were living in Sebastian, Arkansas in 1880, along with her children from her first marriage, James and Rosetta, and their own seven children.  In 1900, they were living in Indian Territory (Oklahoma), where they remained for the rest of their lives. 

Wiliam and Cyrena continued to live in Muskcogee County, Oklahoma, until he died in 1908.  Cyrena lived in 1934.  They are buried at Fields Cemetery in Porum, Oklahoma.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday: Jellico Cemetery, Jellico, Campbell, Tennessee

Jellico Cemetery is in the little town of Jellico, Tennessee, just south of the Kentucky state line.  A number of my ancestors are buried here; many Stanfills, Perkins, Lays and Bairds were laid to rest here, including the unfortunate Squire Perkins, who was murdered by bushwackers during the Civil War for being a Union sympathizer.

Squire is buried next to Simon Snyder, his brother-in-law, who was also killed that day.  Squire's mother, Cintha Stanfill, and her husband William Perkins, are buried next to Squire.  Their stones are propped up against a tree next to his grave; presumably they had fallen and were left there. 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Military Monday: Jesse Asbury Duncan, Prisoner of War

Jesse Duncan was born in Henry, Georgia in 1830.  He married Caroline Kirkpatrick in Newton, Georgia in 1855; they eventually became parents to five children.  The family moved to Randolph, Georgia, near the Alabama state line, just prior to Civil War.  In 1862, Jesse volunteered with the 55th Georgia Regiment Infantry. 

The Battle of Cumberland Gap was fought in September 1863 as Union forces tried to make their way down into Knoxville, Tennessee.  The 55th Georgia Infantry was among those fighting here and Jesse was captured and sent to Camp Douglas in Chicago.  Camp Douglas was one of the largest prisoner of war camps in the Union, holding more than 26,000 prisoners at one time.   Conditions were bad, with no working sewage system when the camp opened, one hydrant to provide water for all prisoners and low-lying ground that flooded (and then froze in winter) with every rain.  More than 4,000 Confederate prisoners eventually died before the prison was closed at the end of the war.

Jesse was fortunate to survive and return home to Georgia after he was discharged in May 1865.  He and Caroline remained in Randolph county with their children through 1870, then joined most of her family in moving to Cass, Texas before 1880.   They raised their family (with the exception of one daughter who died at age 2) there until his death in 1900.  Caroline survived to the age of 91, dying in Gray, Texas, in 1931.  She had by then outlived all but one of her children, John, who had become one of the city of Pampa, Texas' most prominent citizens.

Jesse is buried at O'Farrell Cemetery in Cass, Texas, near his son George, who had passed away in 1899.  Caroline is buried in Gray, Texas.

Jesse A. Duncan, 1830 - 1900

Friday, November 14, 2014

Family Recipe Friday: Cleo Clemmon's Custard Pie


Since Thanksgiving is nearly upon us and that means pie, here is another recipe from Grandma Berry's cookbook.  I believe Cleo was a friend of hers. 


Cleo Clemmons’ Custard Pie


Make a pastry for a one crust pie, build up high fluted edge.

Filling for 9” Pie:

4 eggs
2/3 cup sugar
½ teasoon salt
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
2 2/3 cups milk, scalded*
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs slightly, then beat in the sugar, salt, nutmeg, milk and vanilla extract.  Pour into pie crust.  Bake for 15 minutes, then lower oven temperature to 350 degrees.  Bake for 15 minutes more or until done.


Check for doneness by inserting a metal knife 1 inch from the side of the crust.  If the knife cones out clean, pie is done.  The center may still be a bit soft, but will set later.  Baking too long makes the custard watery.

*You can use half milk and half cream to make the custard richer.