Family Histories

Family Histories for the Rose and Kirkpatrick Families

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.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Saturday, February 7, 2015

52 Ancestors #3 - Squire Samuel Stanfield III

Squire Samuel Stanfield III, my 7th great-grand uncle,  was born in Dukinfeld, Cheshire,  England in 1679.  The Stanfields were a somewhat prosperous family at the time and lived a fairly privileged life.  It seems that Samuel decided some time before 1711 to join the Society of Friends, probably an unpopular decision.  The movement was still relatively new at the time and faced opposition from more established religions and the government.  Samuel moved to Armegh County, Ireland in order to practice his faith more freely, and there he married Jane Andrews, also a Quaker, in Armegh in 1711.  They had four children over the next several years, and the family were members of the Lurgan Meetinghouse, but it seems that life in Ireland wasn't too much easier than it had been in England. 

In 1729, Samuel, Jane and their four children immigrated from Ireland to Pennsylvania, where they believed they would be free to practice their faith and raise their family in peace.  On January 28, 1730, they were received into the New Garden Monthly Meeting at Chester County, Pennsylvania. 

Samuel's farm was on the side of Pennsylvania that became the state of Delaware.  He and Jane had three more children after their arrival in America and they became a part of the Kennett Meetinghouse in Kennett, Pennsylvania.  Two of their children married there, and it's presumed that Samuel and Jane are both buried in the cemetery, although there are no stones that mark their graves.  Their death dates are estimated to have been some time in the 1740s.

Samuel and Jane's son William, and his wife Hannah Hadley Dixon, moved to Orange, North Carolina, where they were instrumental in forming the Cane Creek Meeting House at Snow Camp.  The donated land for the house to be built and remained active in the faith until their deaths. 

Samuel is not my direct ancestor; I descend from his older brother Robert, who also immigrated to the United States, however, with much less information available for him.  I don't know if he was also a Quaker; his name doesn't appear on any of the records for the Society of Friends at the time.   He may have simply been looking for a new life in a new place.  The last real record I find for him is his marriage to Esther Sandiford in England in 1696.  He is said to have died in Essex, Virginia, however, no death date or record is found for him or Esther.  His children remained in Virginia for two generations, then moving to North Carolina, then on through the Cumberland Gap into Kentucky and Tennessee.  I was able to visit the area of Tennessee/Kentucky where this generation lived until the late 1800s, when they moved on to the Ozarks of Arkansas, where my grandfather was born. 

Marriage record listing marriage of Robert Stanfield and Esther Sandiford in Cheshire, England in 1696 (left).  A record listing his sister Sarah's birth, baptism and death is on the right side of the page.