Sunday, September 28, 2014

52 Ancestors Challenge - Hansel Benton Coburn - b.1817 NC, d.after 1870 TX - Week 34

Hansel Benton Coburn was my 3rd great grandfather.  In April I wrote about his daughter, Hannah Jane Coburn.  I haven't been able to locate much on Hansel, so I'll just go over what I do know.

Hansel was born around 1817 in North Carolina.  Both the 1860 and 1870 Federal Censuses show this.  The first record we see with Hansel's name is his marriage record to Miss Mariam Hannah Barrett in Fayette County, Tennessee on 18 July of 1839.  Mariam was born April 25, 1821, in South Carolina and was the daughter of David Barrett and Elizabeth Whitten.  This marriage record is found on, and it is mentioned in a family bible that was owned by Albert Gallatin Barrett, Mariam's brother.  A copy of that bible can be found here.

The next mention of Hansel is on in their U.S. and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s.  Their information is cited from The First Settlers of Houston County, Texas, by Gifford White (St. Louis, MO.: Ingmire Pub., 1983. 35p.).  This states he arrived in Texas in 1840.

I found a Poll Tax List for Houston County for the year 1846, online at Rootsweb.  It isn't a pictured copy of the document, but a transcribed list.  Hansel "Cobern" is listed as one of the residents.

On there is a file called Texas, Index Card Collection, 1800-1900.  In the file, they show a card written for Hansel Coburn.  It states:
Coburn, Hansel
County Commissioner
May 29, 1847
2 - 1/3
Page 68
Houston County

What this exactly means, I'm not sure.  Was Hansel the County Commissioner of Houston County in 1847???  And what does 2 - 1/3 mean?  Could that be the book the information was found?  Something I need to look into when I get the chance.

I can't find Hansel in the 1850 Federal Census, however, I do believe he was living in Houston County.  On the 1860 Federal Census we see him living with his family in Beat 5, Houston County.  In the household was:

  • H. Coburn, 43 years, Farmer, born in North Carolina
  • Mariam Coburn, 39 years, Housewife, born in South Carolina
  • Harriet Coburn, 13 years, born in Texas
  • Jane Coburn, 10 years, born in Texas
  • Margaret Coburn, 3 years, born in Texas
  • Willie Coburn, 1/2 year, born in Texas
  • Louisa Parker, 3 years, born in Texas (not sure who Louisa Parker may be?)
The Non-Population Census of 1860 shows an H. Coburn living in Beat 4 of Houston County.  The census lists the following property for Hansel:

  • 30 Improved acres of land
  • 270 Unimproved acres of land
  • $1,000 Cash value of farm
  • $200 Value of farming implements and machinery
  • 3 Horses
  • 10 Milch Cows
  • 2 Working Oxen
  • 50 Other Cattle
  • 50 Swine
  • $995 Value of livestock
  • 400 Bushels of Indian Corn
  • 5 Bales of Cotton

On January 8, 1863, at the age of 46, Hansel enlisted as a Private in Company B, of the 11th Brigade, at Crockett in Houston County.  His commanding officer was Captain William Wortham.  I'm not an expert on the Civil War, but just a brief online search has led me to believe that the people in this Brigade were considered "Texas State Troopers."  From what I understand, they weren't part of the Confederate Army, but worked under the State of Texas.  Either way, he only enlisted for 3 months.  I'm not sure he ventured outside of Texas.  The info on Hansel can be found on in their Texas, Muster Roll Index Cards, 1838-1900, and in the remarks area it states:
"R&F 83; Enr. & Mus. off. Col. L.W. Cooper; 1 Rifle; Co. std. at Camp Shiloh, Houston Cty., Texas Jan. 8-63; 1 MR dtd. Jan. 8-63."
In June, I was contacted by someone who read my post on Hansel's daughter Hannah Jane Coburn.  They told me Hansel was mentioned 3 times in the journal of James Madison Hall.  The journal just mentions a "Mr. Coburn," but it might be him.  The first entry was dated February 9th, 1864, and mentions he was heading to Magnolia, which is about 100 miles south of Crockett, Houston County, where Hansel may have been living at the time.  On June 18th & 19th, J.M. Hall mentioned "Mr. Coburn" again, this time returning home from Magnolia.

November 20, 1869, Hansel is seen on a voter registration list found on (Texas, Voter Registration Lists, 1867-1869).  He is shown as living in Bell County, Texas at the time.  On this registration, it says he had been a resident of Texas for 29 years (which shows he moved to Texas in 1840), and he had been a resident of Bell County for 2 years.  So he must have moved around 1867.

1870 Federal Census shows Hansel in Beat 3 of Bell County now.  He is living with his wife and two children, Margaret (Maggie), and Willie.  This census also shows Hansel as born in 1817 in North Carolina.

In 1880 we can't find Hansel on the Federal Census, but his wife Mariam is shown as Mrs. M.H. Coburn living in Justice Precinct no. one of Bell County as a widow.  In her house is Wm. McCreary, her son-in-law, Mattie Bell McCreary, her daughter, a grand daughter Ada Bell McCreary, and a boarder named Ewing McCreary.  Hansel must have passed away between 1870 and 1880.

As always, if you have any questions, or concerns, about the information in this post, please leave me a message. I'd be happy to answer any questions or share what information I have on the individuals listed above. Thanks for reading!!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

52 Ancestors Challenge - Sara Jane Patterson 1841-1866 Missouri - Week 33

Copy from Gibson Family Bible.  Copy provided by
my Great Aunt Vicki (Sara Jane's great granddaughter).
This post is dedicated to Sara Jane Patterson, my 3rd great grandmother.  Sara Jane lived a very short life.  She was born August 7, 1841.  From census records, I believe she was the daughter of James Patterson and Sara Ann Thompson.  I haven't found a birth record, so I can't be sure.  But, in 1850, we find a Sara J M Patterson, age 9, living in the household of James Patterson.  The family was living in Madison, Missouri.

Sometime before 1860, Sara Jane's mother, Sara Ann, must have died.  Her father, James, is found remarrying Martha E. Morrow (or Morron) in Ste. Genevieve..

The Patterson family may have been in the Ste. Genevieve area for a while, because, August 15, 1858, Sara Jane Patterson married Herod Gibson.  Two years later, on the 1860 Federal Census, they are both living with Herod's parents, Alexander and Melinda Gibson, in Ste. Genevieve.  Here we see their first child "Francis" or William Francis, who was born February 7th 1860.  Also in the household was James Patterson, age 9.  I believe this might have been Sara Jane's younger brother.

Sara Jane's husband, Herod, is shown to have been on both sides of the Civil War.  First enlisting in the Confederate Army, and later drafted into the Union Army.  You can read more about Herod and his time in service on his post I wrote for Week 6.

Between his time in service with the Confederate and Union Armies, Herod and Sara had 2 more children: Ida Ann born December 17, 1863, and Mary Emma born March 20, 1864.  Unfortunately, Ida Ann died on July 5, 1865, just prior to Herod's discharge.  After he returned, the couple had one more child, Sara Jane born October 19, 1866. However, on October 19, 1866, Sara Jane Patterson Gibson passed away (possibly due to complications of the birth). She lived to be only 25 years old.

In 1980, in DeSoto, Missouri, there was a Gibson family reunion.  There was a wall with different stories posted, the following was one of those posts, by Olive Gibson (Sara Jane's granddaughter):
"Great Grandfather Herod Gibson was in the fields a working and one of the little Gibson children (a girl) was left to watch the baby.  She was sitting before the fireplace, holding the baby, and it tumbled from her lap and rolled into the fireplace and it died."
The infant that died was the youngest, Sara Jane Gibson.  She died November 5, 1867.  She would have been just over one year.  The girl watching her might have been Mary Emma, however, it could have been a Gibson cousin, we just aren't sure.  Mary Emma would have only been 3 years old, so I hesitate to believe she would have been watching her younger sister.

I'm not exactly sure where Sara Jane would have been buried.  The family was in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri before the Civil War, but were living in Central Township, Jefferson County, Missouri in 1870.  Herod, her husband, was buried in the City Cemetery in DeSoto, Jefferson County, but he lived until 1926, 60 years later!  As of today, I haven't found a death record for her.

If you have any questions, or concerns, about the information in this post, please leave me a comment. I'd be happy to answer any questions, or share what information I have on the individuals listed above. Thanks for reading!!

52 Ancestors Challenge - Malinda who married Alexander Gibson in South Carolina around 1830 - Week 32

I've had several posts on my Gibson line.  This week I'll continue this line as I discuss my 4th great grandmother Melinda (or Malinda).  I have been unsuccessful in locating a maiden name for Melinda.  The only name I have for her is her married name.

According to the death record I have for Melinda, she lived to be 79 years old.  She died November 12, 1889 at 11:30 am, in DeSoto, Missouri.  If this is correct, then we can determine that she was born in the year 1810.  The record also states that she was born in South Carolina.  Her husband, Alexander, was also believed to be from South Carolina. As of today, I am not able to find who her parents, or Alexander's, parents were.  Still looking into that.

We believe Alexander and Melinda had the following children:
  • William H. born 1832 in South Carolina
  • Margaret or Martha E. born 1834 in Tennessee
  • Herod born 1836 in Tennessee
  • John A. born 1839 in Tennessee
  • James J. born 1841 in Tennessee
  • Jefferson (or Green BJ) born 1843 in Tennessee
We believe Alexander and Melinda were probably married in South Carolina based on census records, and the state listed for the birth of their first child, William.  They must have moved to Tennessee sometime between 1832 and 1834.  They resided in Gibson County, Tennessee according to the 1840 census.

The 1850 Federal Census is the first time we see Melinda's name.  In 1850, the family is shown living in Carroll County, TN, which is next to Gibson County, TN.  But, by 1860, the family had moved about 200 miles to Ste. Genevieve, Missouri.  According to Melinda's death record, she had been a resident of the state of Missouri for 35 years.  So I'm guessing, the family must have moved around 1854.

Then 1870 Melinda and Alexander are living in Central Township, Jefferson County, Missouri.  Sometime before 1880, Alexander must have passed away.  Melinda is seen on the 1880 census living with Herod, their son, in De Soto, Jefferson County, MO, and listed as a widow.  The 1880 census gives us some additional information about her as well.  It shows where her parents were born.  Her father was born in Pennsylvania, and her mother was born in Maryland.

Melinda is said to be buried next to her son, Herod, in the De Soto City Cemetery.

As always, if you have any questions, or concerns, about the information in this post, please leave me a message. I'd be happy to answer any questions or share what information I have on the individuals listed above. Thanks for reading!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

52 Ancestors Challenge - Jean Michel Griffard - French and Indian Ancestor - From Ste. Genevieve, Missouri - Week 31

For my previous two posts, I discussed the Griffaw line of my family, my 3rd great grandmother, Mary Elizabeth Griffaw, and her mother, Anne Grissom.  I briefly touched on the fact that I believe the Griffaw name was originally Griffar/Griffard.  It is thought that Jean Michel Griffard is the father of Mary Elizabeth Griffaw and first husband of Anne Grissom.  He is the topic of this weeks post.

As in my previous posts I mentioned the Ste. Genevieve's Project Pioneer.  They honored the Griffard Family in 2001 during their "Jour de Fete," and compiled a genealogical book which showed the family arriving in Ste. Genevieve around the late 1700s from Quebec, Canada.  In this book, it states that Jean Michel Griffard was the son of Jean Alexis Griffard and Marie Madeline (or Magdaleine) Tirard dit St. Jean, and was born September 29, 1780.  Information on Jean Alexis Griffard from the Pioneer book mentioned above says the following (found on page 5):
"Jean Alexis was the only resident of Ste. Genevieve on the militia roster of 1779 listed as a salt maker ("sellier") by profession.  He was French Canadian and came to Ste. Genevieve during the mid 1770's.  In 1777 he married Marie Magdaleine Tirard, daughter of the illegitimate me-tis woman Marie Joseph Deguire Tirard, and took up salt making.  Most likely Alexis left Ste. Genevieve to settle near the Saline.  This is where the salt springs were located.  In 1797 there were only nine salt makers listed on the New Bourbon census, eight were Anglo-Americans, the ninth was the aging but still productive Jean Alexis Griffard.  Since salt was used extensively to cure meat and animal hides for export to New Orleans.  I'm assuming that Jean Alexis and his family traveled back and forth from Ste. Genevieve and New Orleans.  Since Jean Alexis oldest son Alexis was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  Elizabeth, another child of Jean Alexis, was born en route from New Orleans and Baptized the following year in Ste. Genevieve.  The spelling of the Griffard name was changed from Greffard to Griffard when Jean Alexis immigrated to Ste. Genevieve.  The spelling Greffard was kept by the Ancestors in Canada because there are Greffards all over Canada and the northern United States.  Jean could write his last name.  He wrote it as Griffar."
According to the book François Vallé and His World: Upper Louisiana Before Lewis and Clark, by Carl J. Ekberg, Jean Michel was baptised in October of 1780, and his godfather was said to be Jean Baptiste Deguire, "of the large and influential Deguire Family" (page 80-81).  The book states that the record shows Jean Baptist Deguire to be Jean Michel's grandfather, but it goes on to say that he is actually his great grandfather, the grandfather of Jean Michel's mother, Marie.  Jean Baptist Deguire was described in the Pioneer book as "a master tailor of Kaskaskia."

In 1810, there is a Michel Greffard listed on a memorial dated December 29, 1805, to the President by the citizens of the District of Ste. Genevieve "expressing their support and confidence in Govenor Wilkinson" (found on U.S. Census Reconstructed Records, 1660-1820).

There is an entry in the 1830 Federal Census for a Michel Grifford living in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri.  The census picture is very hard to read, but there is something written above his name, however, I can't make it out and it wasn't transcribed on the listing on  In his household Ancestry has it transcribed as one male under the age of 5, one male age 20-29, 2 females age 5-10, and one female age 20-29.  If you look at the actual document, even though it's hard to read, it looks like the older male is actually 50-59 years old.  This would make sense, especially if this is the same Jean Michel Griffard in the Pioneer book, who was born September 29, 1780.

The children I have listed for Jean Michel were mentioned in my previous posts, but here is a picture showing the names that were given to me:

I haven't been able to find any additional information on Jean Michel Griffard.  However, the Pioneer book states that he died January 1, 1836, almost a year after his youngest child, Anne, was born.

An Interesting Side Note About Jean Michel Griffard's Maternal Grandmother:

Although this post is about Jean Michel, I would like to highlight an interesting story about his mother, or actually his mother's mother, and there family line, since I don't plan on doing individual posts for them.  The information on Marie and her family was taken from the book François Vallé and His World: Upper Louisiana Before Lewis and Clark, by Carl J. Ekberg as well.  Marie's mother, Marie Joseph Deguire, was the illegitimate daughter of Jean Baptiste Deguire and an Indian slave who was owned by Joseph Buchet, a Notary at Fort de Charters.  The book cites the following on page 81:
Very rarely in the society of colonial Ste. Genevieve did a man live to serve as godfather to his great-grandson.  When Deguire died less than a year later, Father Gibault noted in his burial record that Jean-Baptiste had “always lived a most Christian life.”  Indeed, either out of Christian charity or from a moral compass aligned by some other code of values (probably the former), he had acknowledged paternity of his illegitimate métisse daughter and conveyed to her his name.  When he died without legitimate issue, Marie-Joseph inherited Deguir’s entire estate as sole heiress.
In another book, Dictionary of Missouri Biography, edited by Lawrence O. Christensen, William E. Foley, and Gary Kremer, (page 237), It goes on to state that in "1747 Deguire paid Buchet one hundred livres "to redeem" two of his natural children borne by one of Buchet's slaves."  Marie Joseph Deguire went on to marry 3 times before she died in 1788.  Not only did Marie Joseph Deguire, an "illegitimate metisse daugher" inherit her father's entire estate, but she also inherited the estates of 2 of her husbands who preceded her in death.

I felt that was something that should be mentioned, and interesting information about the ancestors of Jean Michel Griffard.

If you have any questions, or concerns, about the information above, please leave a comment.  I'd be happy to share any additional information I have.  Thanks for reading!!