by Clayton Howell Heathcock Jr.
5235 Alhambra Valley Road
Martinez, CA 94553

March 18, 1997 Version

For a Reunion Database of the Heathcock family, click here.

Chapter 1. Clayton Howell Heathcock, Sr.

The following essays recount the origins of Clayton Howell Heathcock Sr., son of Will Heathcock and Mollie Hobbs of Wilson County, Texas. Clayton Heathcock was born in a four-room frame cabin on a farm near Sutherland Springs, Texas on 10 September 1910.[1] As a child he attended the Sutherland Springs school and, since it was some distance from the Heathcock farm, he rode a horse.[2] This earned him the nickname "Tex" which he carried all his life. The high school for the part of Wilson County where the Heathcocks lived was in Stockdale, about ten miles from Sutherland Springs. Clayton Heathcock attended this school, graduating in 1928. While in high school, he was a member of the track team. After graduating, he worked in the Stockdale area, and the family moved to a house in Stockdale in the early 1930s. Stockdale is the center of a watermelon-producing region and, among the jobs that Clayton held in the early 1930s was that of "watermelon-stacker" during the harvest season.

In 1935 he left home and moved to San Antonio, some 35 miles from Stockdale, and took a job as ward helper in the San Antonio State Hospital. It was there that he met Frances Elizabeth Lay, a twenty-year old native of Georgetown, who worked in the kitchen. Clayton and Frances developed a relationship and were married in Hondo, Texas on 10 September 1936, Clayton's twenty-sixth birthday. The young couple settled in San Antonio and Clayton took a job with the Plaza Hotel Laundry running a pickup and delivery route. However, these were still depression times and he was soon forced to abandon this job because so many of his customers were unable to pay their bills on time. In early 1937 he moved his wife and infant son to Dallas where he obtained a job selling home appliances on a commission basis. However, this enterprise was equally unfruitful and, after six months, he returned to his family home in Stockdale. For the next year, the young family survived on what money Clayton could earn doing odd jobs, including another stint as watermelon-stacker during the Fall harvest.

After the Fall harvest of 1938, the Heathcocks returned to San Antonio and Clayton obtained a job with a Texaco service station. This was the first of many similar jobs that he held over the next twelve years, including: night watchman for the San Antonio Gas and Electric Company, bus driver, manager of two laundries, a second (more successful) turn as route man for the Plaza Hotel Laundry, and salesman for Stille Auto Supply Store. In this period he acquired and drove one of the early version Model T Ford automobiles. Clayton Heathcock Sr. and Frances Lay had three children:[3]

1 Clayton Jr. b 21 July 1936 San Antonio
2 James Franklin b 7 August 1939 San Antonio
3 Peggy Frances b 24 September 1945 Georgetown

Beginning in the mid-1940s Clayton Heathcock developed a serious alcohol problem, which was brought about partly by the decade of frustration he had experienced in finding and keeping employment during the post-depression period. In 1947 the family moved to Georgetown, in Williamson County, Texas, where Clayton took the job of manager of the Harris Laundry, an establishment owned by Frances Heathcock's uncle Edward Harris. In the summer of 1948, the laundry burned to the ground. Clayton had been at the laundry on the Saturday when the fire occurred, and there was some suspicion that he had been drinking before the fire began. He was not charged with accidentally starting the fire, but there was considerable ill will among the Harris family and it was generally believed that, at the very least, the fire might not have got out of hand had he been sober. In any event, the fire marked the end of another job, and the Heathcocks returned to San Antonio.

On 28 February 1950 Clayton Heathcock was involved in an altercation in the Alta Mira bar, in West San Antonio. In the course of the incident, he was struck on the head with a blunt instrument and killed. His assailant, one Artimo G. Cantu, the bartender of the establishment, was arrested and booked for murder. Some twenty other persons in the bar at the time were also rounded up by the police as material witnesses. However, all testified to the police that they had not witnessed the affair. Cantu was subsequently released and never brought to trial.[4] Clayton Heathcock was buried in a family plot at the Sunset Memorial Cemetery, Austin Highway and Redmond Road, in San Antonio.

Figure 1 summarizes Clayton Heathcock's ancestors for three generations. Further ancestors can be seen in the genealogy charts for each of his eight great-grandparents, which are in the Appendix to these essays. The following two essays are centered about Clayton Heathcocks parents, Will Heathcock and Mollie Hobbs, both of whom were born and raised in Wilson County, Texas. The tales are necessarily complex, since there is an attempt to follow several of the family forebears who blended together and eventually resulted in John Heathcock, Mary Goodbread, Pleasant Hobbs, and Florence King, all of whom were born elsewhere and migrated west to settle in the new state of Texas in the mid-1800s. As will be seen, Clayton Heathcock's origins are deeply rooted in America. Many of the lines that have been traced extend back six or seven generations on American soil before an emigrant from Europe is found. For example, all of the eight great-grandparents enumerated were born in America. Furthermore, insofar as is known, so were all of their parents and grandparents.

Chapter 2. The Heathcock-Goodbread Branch[5]

Early Hathcocks: Thomas the Immigrant, Edward, Thomas the Long-lived

The first Hathcock emigrant to America appears to have been Thomas Hathcock, who departed London in the summer of 1635 and arrived in America on the ship Paule.[6] This first immigrant was an indentured servant to William Stone of Northampton County, Virginia. Little more is known of the Hathcock family until about 1730 when Thomas Hathcock's descendants were living in Brunswick County, Virginia. Brunswick County is on the southern border of Virginia, just north of Northampton County, North Carolina. Several Hathcocks lived in these two counties, including an Edward Hathcock, who was probably a grandson or great-grandson of the immigrant Thomas Hathcock.

Northampton County deed records show that in 1758 Edward Hathcock transferred land to his sons Thomas and John. The Thomas Hathcock mentioned in this early deed appears to be the same Thomas Hathcock who died in Richmond County, Virginia in 1818, allegedly at the age of 125. Thomas Hathcock's obituary was published in several Southern newspapers:

"LONGEVITY--Died in Richmond County, on the 13th instant, at the seat of Colonel Therogood Pate, Thomas Hathcock, age one hundred and twenty-five years! He left a numerous family of children settled in different parts of the country, two of whom lived in the State of Georgia, one aged ninety-three and the other eighty-seven, and one son in Richmond County, but little over sixteen years of age!"[7]

In the opinion of this writer, Thomas Hathcock was probably more like 100 years of age when he died. The obituary states that he had surviving sons aged 93 and 87 who lived in Georgia. The oldest Hathcock in Georgia in 1818 would have been Hosea Hathcock, who could not have been over 68, as evidenced by the 1830 and 1840 census records. The other son would have been James Hathcock (vide infra). It is likely that the family tradition correctly recorded Thomas as having been about 30 at Hosea's birth, and that an extra 25 years had been wrongly attributed to both men. Thomas is believed to have been the father of Hosea Hathcock, a veteran of the Revolutionary War, who was born in about 1755 in Virginia or North Carolina.

Hosea and John Hathcock, Sr.: North Carolina to Georgia

By the late 1700s, Hathcock families had established themselves in the Hillsboro District of central North Carolina. Sometime between 1790 and 1800 a part of the family migrated to Northeast Georgia and settled in Elbert and Franklin Counties. Early Elbert County land lotteries show that there were several Hathcocks there as early as 1800, including Hosiah (Hosea) Hathcock[8] and his son John Hathcock, Sr., who was born in North Carolina in about 1774.[9] A 1795 voters list of Elbert County shows that John Hathcock was there as early as 1795. The approximate time of the move is shown by the fact that many of the Hathcocks who appeared in Elbert County around 1800 had been enumerated in Chatham County, North Carolina in the 1790 census.[10] Hosea Hathcock lived in Elbert County until at least 1840.[11] He is thought to be a brother of James Hathcock, born in Northampton County, North Carolina in 1743, also a Revolutionary War veteran.

Hosea Hathcock's entire family is not known, but there were several Georgia Hathcocks who may have been his sons (William, Isaac, James). He also may have been the father of several other Hathcocks who lived in Elbert County in the early nineteenth century and who migrated shortly thereafter into northern Alabama (Denson, Dancy, Asboth, John, Sr.). One of these men, John Hathcock, Sr., was born in North Carolina in about 1774, and moved to Elbert County by at least 1795, when he voted in an election for a delegate to the Constitutional Convention of Georgia.[12] In 1800, John Hathcock married Sarah Jones, the daughter of Nathan Jones and Courtney Bell.[13] The Jones family were Quakers and belonged to the Cane Creek Monthly Meeting in Orange County, North Carolina in 1753. They went to Georgia in 1770 when the General Assembly of Georgia granted a tract of 40,000 acres to the Quakers for the purpose of establishing a community. The new town of Wrightsborough was located in Columbia County on Town Creek, sixteen miles from Appling. John Jones and his family attended the first meeting of the Wrightsborough Meeting on 3 December 1774.[14] Nathan Jones was a Revolutionary War soldier, serving with Colonel Greenberry Lee of Georgia.[15] He removed from the Wrightsborough community in 1782 and settled in Elbert County. Nathan Jones died in Elbert County in 1807.[16]

Courtney Bell, Descendent of the Immigrant Bells, 1635-37[17]

Courtney Bell was the daughter of Brittain Bell, who was born in about 1715 and who lived in Edgecombe County, North Carolina in about 1750. Brittain Bell was son of Thomas Bell (born about 1690, died in Edgecombe County in 1763) and his wife Martha. Thomas Bell appears to have been the son of George Bell, Jr., who died in Edgecombe County in 1752, and the grandson of George Bell, Sr., who died in Isle of Wight County, Virginia in 1702. Isle of Wight was the first place of residence of the Bells, several having arrived from England in 1635-37.

Migration to Madison County, Alabama; 1815-17

Returning to the Hathcocks of Elbert County, it appears that in 1815-17 there was a fairly large migration from Elbert County to Madison County, Alabama. Madison County lies in the northeastern part of the state, between the Tennessee River and the border with the state of Tennessee. Until Alabama became a state in 1817, it was part of the Mississippi Territory. Madison County was formed in 1808 from lands gained in the Cherokee and Chickasaw Cession of 1806-07. Settlement was exceedingly rapid. The first white settler was John Hunt, who built a cabin on a bluff overlooking Big Spring in 1804. By 1808 the population of the new county was 5000! A number of these new settlers appear to have come from northeastern Georgia, including Elbert County. It is reported that ...these parties came to the new settlement from Petersburg, Elbert County, Georgia, and it would seem, in coming, stripped that town of its vital forces, rendering it stagnant, for it ceased to exist for a number of years.[18]

John Hathcock, Sr.

Among the new arrivals in Madison County were John Hathcock, Denson Hathcock, Dancy Hathcock, and Asboth Hathcock. Asboth Hathcock is recorded in the 1815 Madison County census, but his name does not appear elsewhere in the records. Denson Hathcock was born in North Carolina in about 1788 and married Mary Jones, another daughter of Nathan Jones, in Elbert County in 1806.[19] Dancy Hathcock was also born in North Carolina in about 1795 and married Lucinda Lansen in Madison County in 1816;[20] he moved to St. Clair County, Alabama in 1820 and lived there until about 1870. Dancy may have been a son, rather than a brother of John Hathcock, Sr.

John Hathcock, Sr. was a Captain in the Madison County Militia[21] and was proprietor of the Buckhorn Tavern, near New Market, just north of Huntsville, Alabama.[22] He applied for land in Madison County through the Nashville Land Office in 1813,[23] but it appears that he did not actually emigrate from Elbert County to Alabama until 1816. John Hathcock and his wife Sarah had several children who were born in Elbert County (including Peyton Hathcock, b 1802; Alfred Hathcock, b about 1814; John Hathcock, Jr., b about 1815) and at least one who was born after they settled in Alabama (Asa Hathcock, b about 1817).[24] Sarah Jones Hathcock appears to have died about 1820.

The early court records of Madison County contain many references to John Hathcock, including numerous records of his having been sued for non-payment of debts.[25] His plantation was situated on the Hurricane Fork of Indian Creek, near New Market.[26] On 22 September 1826 he married Margaret (Peggy) Harrison, the widow of James Harrison, whom she had married in 1824.[27] John Hathcock was Margaret's third husband. Born Margaret Shackelford, her first husband was Major John Cook. Madison County records show that John Cook died in 1822 leaving heirs Clayton Cook, Mary Ann Cook, John Cook, Jr., Emily Shackelford Cook, Elizabeth Cook Hathcock, Isaac Cook, and Margaret Cook (widow).[28]

Margaret Shackelford's parents were Richard Shackelford and Mary Ann Roberts, who were married in about 1768, probably in Halifax County, Virginia.[29] In the 1780s, Richard and Mary Ann Shackelford moved their family from Virginia to South Carolina, where he was a prominent Baptist preacher in the Spartanburg and Laurens County area in the late 1700s and early 1800s. A history of the South Carolina Baptist church reports: "The largest and probably the most influential Baptist church of the back country in the quarter century following the revolution was located on the ridge between Enoree and Tyger Rivers and was known officially as Jamey's Creek Church until 1798, when the Bethel Association agreed, upon request, that it 'be hereafter called Bethel' Church. Its neighbors of that period know it as Shackelford's meeting or Richard Shackelford's church." The Bethel Association Minutes show that between 1790 and 1803 Richard Shackelford baptized 158 individuals, including 80 in 1802.[30]

The Shackelford family later moved to the Madison County Alabama area, where Richard was pastor of Enon Baptist Church. Enon Church and its pastor are described in another history of the Baptist church: "Enon Church was formerly known by the name of W. Fork, of Flint River. Their place of worship is situated about ten miles north of Huntsville, rather northeast, and about three miles from Meridianville, in a rich fertile region. It is one of the oldest churches in the state, but has never been very prosperous... It seems that they were without any regular (pastor) until June, 1815, when Z. W. Baker and R. Shackelford were requested to preach for them. Near the close of the year, Mr. Shackelford was chosen pastor... It appears that Mr. Shackelford died in 1823... With regard to Mr. Shackelford, ...frequently moderator in the Flint River Association, we were personally acquainted with him for some years; we think he was a native of Virginia, ordained in that state, or N. Carolina; resided many years in South Carolina, and was often chosen moderator of Bethel Association. He was highly esteemed as an active, good minister of Jesus Christ; but did not escape the fiery darts of the wicked one."[31]

Richard Shackelford died in 1823. His will mentions wife Mary Ann Shackelford, daughters Margaret Cook, Rebeckah Petty, Frances Landrum, sons-in-law Isaac Mitchell and Abner Pyle, and sons George, William, Richard, and James Shackelford.[32]

Richard Shackelford's lineal ancestors were his father Roger Shackelford (born about 1700 in Essex or Gloucester County, Virginia; married Carey Baker in about 1735; died about 1780), his grandfather Francis Shackelford (born about 1664 in Gloucester County, Virginia; married about 1695 Sarah Virginia Lewis; died about 1726), his great-grandfather Roger Shackelford (baptized April 23, 1629 in Old Alresford, Hampshire, England; married about 1655 Mary Palmer; died about 1710), and his great-great-grandfather John Shackelford, of Old Alresford, England.

John and Margaret Hathcock lived in Madison County until their deaths sometime in the 1860s.

Alfred Hathcock

John Hathcock's son Alfred married Elizabeth Cook, daughter of Major John Cook, apparently about 1825-28. On June 7, 1832 the Cook heirs, including Alfred Hathcock (in name of his wife Elizabeth) and John Hathcock (in name of his wife Margaret) sold 160 acres of land to Hezekiah Ford.[33] The 1830 Madison County census shows that they had a son and a daughter, both under five years of age. In the 1840 census they are recorded as having only two sons, one under five and one between five and ten years of age. The only other records of Alfred Hathcock in Madison County are numerous entries in the ledgers of the New Market General Store in May-July, 1831; similar entries for charges by John Hathcock and Peyton Hathcock are also found.[34] In 1831 the estate of Major John Cook was settled in the Madison County Court. Alfred Hathcock received in right of his wife Elizabeth Cook a slave valued at $325.00 and notes valued at $152.87 as his share of the estate.[35]

John Cook, the first husband of Margaret Hathcock and father of Alfred Hathcock's wife Elizabeth, was the son of James Cook, of Laurens County, South Carolina. The first record of James Cook that has been found is a report that in June-December, 1780, he marched with Major Patrick Cunningham's Little River Regiment, 96th District. This contingent marched to Orangeburg, South Carolina with Lt. Col. Cruger. Thus, it seems that James Cook was a Loyalist during the Revolutionary War.[36] In 1786, James Cook purchased a tract of land from George Anderson in Laurens County, South Carolina.[37] James Cook died in Laurens County, South Carolina and left a will dated February 28, 1815 with a codicil dated January, 1816.[38] The will mentions wife Ursula, sons John, Mitchall, Daniel, Tobias, William, and Clayton (deceased in 1816 but with a son named James Clayton), and a daughter deceased who had married a Teague and had daughters Emily, Matilda, Elizabeth, and Mary. The connection between this James Cook and the John Cook of Madison County Alabama is strengthened by the fact that all of the aforementioned sons of James Cook were living in Madison County in 1820.

Alfred and Elizabeth Hathcock remained in Madison County until about 1845 when they migrated west. It appears that they lived in Mississippi at least temporarily, since one of their daughters was born in that state in 1847. The 1850 census shows that they had settled by that date in Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana.[39] They continued their westward migration in the mid-1850s when they settled in Texas near Nockenut, in what was then Guadalupe County. Nockenut no longer exists, but was near Nixon, on the Cibolo Creek, in the northeast corner of present Wilson County. Nockenut was about 10 miles north of Stockdale.[40]

Although the complete family of Alfred and Elizabeth Hathcock is not known, the following children can be deduced from census records and Texas marriage records:

1 John b 14 August 1833 Madison County Alabama
2 Asa b 22 July 1837 Madison County Alabama
3 Columbus b 22 July 1837 Madison County Alabama
4 Amanda b 1842 Madison County Alabama
5 Margaret b 1847 Mississippi
6 Mary b 1853 Mississippi (1870 census, error?)[41]
7 Eliza b 1855 Texas
8 Martha b 1855 Texas

There were certainly other children, as shown by the 1830[42] and 1840[43] census records. It is not known what became of the son and daughter recorded in the 1830 census. However, the two sons on the 1840 census must have been John and Asa, so it is likely that the first two children died in their youth.

One minor problem in unravelling the Hathcock history is an uncertainty as to whether Alfred Hathcock had one or two wives. The 1830, 1840, and 1850 census records indicate that Alfred and his wife Elizabeth were about the same age (she is referred to as Betsey in 1850). However, the 1870 census of Guadalupe County Texas shows Alfred to be 65 and his wife Lizzie to be only 45.[44] The 20-year differential appears again in the 1880 census of Wilson County Texas, in which Alfred is listed as 79 and Elizabeth as 60.[45] It is possible that Elizabeth Cook Hathcock died and that Alfred married another Elizabeth. However, such discrepancies in early census records are common, and it may be that Elizabeth was merely shaving her age for the benefit of the census taker. The ages and dates of birth of the daughters are also a little uncertain. The 1850 Natchitoches Parish Louisiana census shows only two daughters, Amanda (6, b Ala) and Margaret (3, b Miss). The family has not been located in the 1860 census, but the 1870 census of Guadalupe County Texas shows daughters Mary (17, b Miss), Martha (17, b Tex), and Eliza (15, b Tex). The 1880 census of Wilson County Texas shows Martha (20, b Tex) and Elizabeth (20, b Tex). The author's best guess is that Alfred certainly did have twin daughters, Martha and Elizabeth, and that they were born in Texas shortly after the family's arrival from Louisiana, probably in the period 1855-1860.

As has just been discussed, it is not known exactly when Alfred and Elizabeth Hathcock actually arrived in Texas, but it was probably about the time twin daughters Elizabeth and Martha were born (1855-1860). The first mention of Alfred in the records is the 1864 Guadalupe County tax list.[46] He was also appointed as one of the appraisers of the estate of Joseph Hobbs in 1864.[47] In 1868, Alfred homesteaded 160 acres near Nockenut on the current Wilson-Guadalupe County line.[48] The patent states that Alfred "occupied and improved the land for three consecutive years beginning January 1, 1868." The survey was in Guadalupe County on the headwaters of the Ecleto Creek, about 13 3/4 miles south 15[[ring]] east from Seguin. The land was in Guadalupe County until 1869 when a relocation of the county lines occurred. Alfred signed the patent in a bold hand, along with witnesses W. H. Benton and Charles Walker.

Alfred Hathcock's Homestead

Alfred's homestead did not stay in the family for long. In 1878 the land was conveyed from H. S. Hastings, one of the original Nockenut settlers, to J. C. Birge of St. Louis, Missouri.[49] It is not known how or when Henry Hastings came into possession of the Alfred Hathcock land. Little more of Alfred Hathcock is to be found in the public record. He apparently died sometime after 1880, when he was last mentioned in the census. His burial place is not known with certainty, although family tradition is that he is buried in an unmarked grave in the Stockdale cemetery.

John C. Heathcock and Mary Goodbread

Alfred's eldest son John Heathcock[50] is much more conspicuous in the county records. John married Mary Goodbread, daughter of Thomas Goodbread and Malinda Brewer, in 1856,[51] very probably in Texas, although neither the date nor place of their marriage has been discovered.[52] Thomas Goodbread's eldest daughter Elizabeth married Jacob Degan in Bastrop County Texas in 1854, suggesting that the Goodbreads were in Texas prior to the marriage of John Heathcock and their daughter Mary. They were certainly in Texas by 1857, when their oldest daughter Elizabeth was born. They first appear on the Guadalupe County tax roll in 1859, when they had no property and were assessed a total tax of $ 0.75.[53] The 1860 tax roll shows John Hathcock to be the owner of two horses and 300 acres of land valued at $300. The original grantee of the land was M. Goodbread. It is not known whether this referred to Mary Goodbread, John's wife, or Malinda Goodbread, his mother-in-law. There is no record in the General Land Office in Austin of either woman ever having been the recipient of a land grant. However, Malinda Goodbread was somewhat of a wheeler-dealer in land. For example, she later (1873) sold Catherine Hobbs, wife of Pleasant Hobbs, 200 acres of land, part of a 1280 acre tract that she bought from Phil Clabbron in 1866.[54]

Malinda Brewer, Daughter of Matthew Brewer

It is necessary at this point to divert our attention temporarily from the Heathcocks and recount Mary Goodbread's origins. Her mother, Malinda Brewer, was a daughter of Matthew Brewer, one of the early settlers of the Mississippi Territory. Matthew Brewer participated in a petition to the President and Congress by the residents of Sims'es settlement on the Elk River in 1810.[55] The petition reveals that the petitioners had settled during the Winter and Spring of 1807 on land which they believed to have been ceded by the Indian Nations. They were subsequently informed that, although the Cherokee claim to the land had been negotiated, the Chickasaw Nation still laid claim. The petition implored the President and Congress to grant them title to the land they had occupied. It was asserted that they (the settlers) had but little land while "...they (the Chickasaws) have by estemation nearly 100,000 acres of land to each man Of their nation and of no more use to government or society than to saunter about upon like so many wolves or bares..." Matthew Brewer also signed a petition to Congress by "Purchasers of Public Lands East of Pearl River" in 1815.[56] In 1816 he was listed as an inhabitant of the Mississippi Territory;[57] in the same year, he purchased 160 acres of public land in Clarke County, Mississippi Territory. The purchase was registered at the St. Stephens Land Office.[58] Brewer sold the land in 1817.[59] The area in which Matthew Brewer settled became part of the new state of Alabama when it was admitted to the Union in 1817.

Marengo County Alabama was formed from territory acquired from the Choctaws by the treaty of October 24, 1816. The original boundaries were, on the north Tuscaloosa County, on the west the Tombigbee River, on the south the ridge dividing the waters of Chickasaw Bogue and Beaver Creek, and on the east the main ridge dividing the waters of Black Warrier and Cahaba Rivers. By legislative act February 12, 1818, all the tract lying west of Dallas County, north of Clark County, east of the Tombigbee was added. The 1830 census of Marengo County enumerates Matthew Brewer. He died in Marengo county on 28 August 1832. His nuncupative will mentions only his wife Polly (Mary) and his son George, to whom he left a negro woman by the name of Bat and Abram her son.[60] Other legatees are not specified by name, but the estate settlement mentions Ransom Brewer, Mary Brewer, and Malinda Brewer, who received a feather bed and a saddle.

The Goodbreads, from German Emigrant to Early Texas Patriots[61]

Another resident of Marengo County in 1830 was Phillip Goodbread. Phillip was born in Rowan County, North Carolina in 1786. The Goodbread line has been traced back to early 17th century Nordheim, Germany. Phillip's great-grandfather Johan Ludwig Gutbrot was born 10 April 1698 in Nordheim. He married Christina Barbara Schickner on 28 April 1722 in Nordheim, and they emigrated to America, landing in Philadelphia with the ship Samuel on 16 August 1731. Their son Phillipus Gutbrot, born in Nordheim 23 November 1726, accompanied them on the voyage.

The German ancestry, traced by by examination of the Protestant Church books of Nordheim, Germany, is shown in Figure 2. The fathers of Balthas Schückhner and Barbara Burckhardt were Jonas Schickner and Caspar Burckhardt.

After arriving in America, Ludwig Gutbrot and his family settled in Pennsylvania, eventually residing in York County. Ludwig died in 1776; his will was probated in York County in the name of Ludwick Goodbread.[62] It mentioned only his wife Turless and son Phillip.

This Phillip Goodbread (hereafter referred to as Phillip, Sr.) sired at least nine children.[63] Four sons, Joseph, John, Phillip Jr., and Thomas served, along with their father Phillip Sr., in Captain Robert Porter's Company G, Tyron County troops, from October through December, 1777.[64] John, Thomas, and Phillip Jr. changed their allegiance to Tory, whereupon they were charged with treason.[65] John relented and rejoined the Revolution,[66] but Phillip Jr. fled to Florida, never to return. Although Phillip Sr. had his property confiscated because his loyalty was in question, he was later vindicated and his lands were restored to him.[67] Phillip Sr. lived the rest of his life in Rutherford County, and died there in 1811.

John Goodbread married Mary Ledbetter Bradley, widow of John Bradley, on 28 April 1779 in Rutherford County. Mary Ledbetter's line can be traced back to Henry Ledbetter, Sr., who was born near Durham, England in about 1625.[68] He appears to have emigrated, along with other Ledbetters, settling in Charles City County, Virginia. John and Mary Goodbread had five children: Sarah, Catherine, Thomas, Phillip, and John Jr. John Goodbread, Sr. died in Rutherford County in 1814. His will shows that he was wealthy, as he bequeathed to his four living children a total of fourteen slaves and over 700 acres of land.[69]

Phillip Goodbread (son of John Goodbread, Sr.) appears to have had three wives. His first is counted in the 1810 census of Rutherford County, where his household is said to consist of one male 16-26 (Phillip himself), one female 26-45 (his wife), and a boy and girl under the age of 10.[70] However, the record shows that he married Nancy Webb on 19 December 1812 in Burke County NC. He married again, to Polly Goodbread, in Marengo County Alabama 1 July 1830.[71] Phillip Goodbread's known children are:

1 Joseph b before 1810 d 1840 Shelby County Texas
2 Minerva m Daniel Bird
3 Thomas b ca 1815 NC m Malinda Brewer 27 May 1833
4 John b ca 1818 d 1848 Grimes County Texas
5 Phillip R. b ca 1820 d in Civil War?
6 Sarah m Martin West
7 Nancy m Creed Taylor
8 Mary Louisa b 15 March 1830 m 1st James Gillespie; m 2nd Oliver Lightfoot

Phillip Goodbread appeared in Texas in December of 1834. Along with sons John and Joseph, he fought in the Texas War of Independence and was granted a headright of a League and a Labor of land (about 1800 acres).[72] He eventually settled in Wilson County and died in 1869.[73] He is buried in an unmarked grave in Bird Cemetery.

In his book Ten Texas Feuds, Dr. C. L. Sonnichsenn relates the murder of Joseph Goodbread by Charley Jackson. "Charley Jackson was embittered after losing an election to Congress. Jackson blamed the faction headed by Sam Todd, who according to Jackson were involved in fake land certificates. Joseph Goodbread's wife was kin to Sam Todd and Goodbread wrote Jackson a letter, telling him he ought to mind his own business. Goaded on by Eph Dagget, Jackson said he would kill Goodbread. He marched into Shelbyville and found Joseph Goodbread sitting on a hitching rack. He pulled the letter out of his pocket, aimed his rifle at Goodbread, and said 'here's your reply.' Goodbread said he wasn't armed and that he had been angry when he wrote the letter, but Charley Jackson fired away. Jackson was indicted and the trial was set in Harrison County in July, 1841. Jackson came into Court with 150 of his band of Regulators. The judge adjourned Court and Jackson was never tried." The incident set off the War of the Regulators and Moderators.

Thomas Goodbread and Malinda Brewer married in Marengo County Alabama on 27 May 1833.[74] They moved to Sumter County Alabama and were enumerated there in the 1850 census. They had three daughters:

1 Elizabeth b ca 1834 m Jacob Degan
2 Mary b ca 1838 m John Heathcock
3 Martha b ca 1836 m 1st a Van Dorn; m 2nd a Bird

They moved to Texas sometime in the 1850s and settled in Nockenut. In 1860, Thomas was listed as a laborer[75] and in 1870 Thomas and Malinda lived with John and Mary Hathcock.[76] Thomas died in 1872 and Malinda died in 1877, both in Guadalupe County Texas.[77]

In a conversation with Mr. J. W. Parish in San Antonio on September 1, 1978, Mr. Parish told the author that Mary Heathcock's mother (this would be Malinda Brewer Goodbread) told him that she was "full-blooded Dutch" and came over from Holland. Their house in Sutherland Springs burned down and they lost all of their records, pictures, and other belongings. This is probably confused, since there is evidence that Malinda's father had been in the United States since at least 1800. Furthermore, Malinda died in 1877, many years before J. W. Parish married Josephine Heathcock. It is more likely that this story refers to Mary Goodbread Heathcock herself, who was of German extraction. Indeed, "Dutch" may well have been used as synonymous with "German" and the voyage that brought the Gutbrodts to Philadelphia in 1731 could well have sailed from Holland. The story about their house burning down might explain why Thomas and Malinda Goodbread were living with John and Mary Heathcock in 1880.

John Heathcock's Land and Stock Dealing

John Heathcock and his bride Mary Goodbread settled in the Nockenut area in the period 1855-57. John Heathcock's name appears frequently in the records of both Wilson and Guadalupe Counties. He was a stock raiser and land speculator and often realized impressive profits in his dealings. For example, in 1875 he bought a 3 1/2 acre parcel for $35 in May and sold it for $450 in December. However, he also had a philanthropic side, and deeded land to the county for a school in 1880.[78] John Heathcock ran both cattle and quarter horses on his farm near Sutherland Springs. His brand, traced from his branding iron, is shown below:[79]

John Heathcock's brand

John and Mary Heathcock had a total of twelve children, several of whom apparently died while still young:

1 Elizabeth b 1857
m Frank Wiley 22 Sep 1878
2 John Jr. b 6 Aug 1863 d 7 Apr 1904 died of hemophelia
3 James J. b 1870
Sheriff of Wilson County 1902-04
4 Josephine b 1871
m J. W. Parish
5 Thomas b 11 Dec 1872 d 1955 m Mamie Clark 16 Apr 1907
6 Jack b 11 Dec 1872 d 1954 m Hattie Jobes 9 Jan 1904
7 William Henry b 7 Mar 1875 d 13 Oct 1944 m Mollie Hobbs 7 Dec 1904
8 Phillip b Apr 1880 d before 1900

In 1880, they lived in Wilson County, with the foregoing eight children all at home. John and Mary are recorded again in the 1900 Wilson County census, in Sutherland Springs.[80] John died 1 June 1904 and Mary died just over a year later, 26 October 1905.[81],[82]John is buried in the Stockdale cemetery under a tall granite stone inscribed "John Heathcock Sr., Son of Alford and Betty Heathcock."[83] Mary's grave site is unmarked.

Alfred's second son Asa first appears in the Texas records on November 14, 1860 when he married Elizabeth Callihan in Bee County.[84] He enlisted in the Confederate Army 13 February 1862 at Yorktown and served under Captain Cupples in the 24th Regimental Texas Cavalry until his capture at Fort Hindman in Arkansas on 11 January 1863. He was paroled 31 January 1863.[85] After the end of the war, Asa and his family appear to have lived in Atascosa County until they moved to Wilson County in the early 1870s. The known children of Asa and Betty Heathcock were:

1 John b 1867
2 William 'Ed') b 25 Oct 1869 d 8 Jul 1946 m Mary Bartlett 24 Dec 1891
3 Young b 1871
4 Carry b 1872
5 Mary b 1875

Asa died 3 September 1908[86] and his wife Betty died in 1911. They are buried in the Heathcock plot in the Stockdale cemetery. Asa's stone bears the inscription: Asa Heathcock; 22 July 1837-3 September 1908; Pvt. 24 Regt Texas Cav; Civil War. His wife's stone is inscribed: Betty C. Heathcock, 1846-1911. Also buried in this family plot are Clifford Heathcock, 10 April 1914-29 November 1937; son William Edward Heathcock, 25 October 1869-8 July 1946;[87] and daughter-in-law Mary A. Heathcock, 25 June 1874-3 April 1939; and a J. P. Bartlett, Pvt Co B 23 Regt Texas Cavalry, Confederate States Army. The latter individual is believed to have been Mary A. Heathcock's brother. Clifford Heathcock was killed in a gunfight with Deputy Sheriff C. F. Fuller. The fight resulted from a disagreement over a grand jury investigation into the burning of some buildings in Sutherland Springs.

Columbus Heathcock appears in the record for the first time in 1861 when he enlisted under Captain Arbuckle in the Texas Infantry.[88] The fortunate fact that his discharge papers state that he was born in Madison County Alabama provides definite evidence that the Alfred Heathcock of Wilson County was the same Alfred Hathcock who lived in Madison County in the 1830s and 1840s. On 6 January 1865 Columbus Heathcock married a woman named Elizabeth in Castroville, Texas. In 1868 he filed for a 160 acre homestead on the Ecleto Creek in Wilson County. The land was just to the south of his father's homestead.[89] There was a dispute over the boundaries of this claim, as the surveyor apparently included a part of the M. C. Wing claim. Columbus abandoned his claim and the land was later claimed and eventually patented by J. D. Fly (see map, page 14).

The children of Columbus and Elizabeth Heathcock can be deduced from the 1880 and 1900 census records as follows:

1 Mary b 1866 (1880 census)
2 Henry b 1868 (1880 census)
3 John b May (1870 1900 census)
4 Sarah b 1876 (1880 census)
5 William C. b 1879 (1880 census) or Dec 1881 (1900 census)
6 Leonia b Oct (1883 1900 census)
7 Margaret b Oct (1886 1900 census)
8 Alma b Jun (1890 1900 census)
9 Ethel b Oct (1893 1900 census)

Columbus died on 14 December 1895. In 1902 his widow Elizabeth, then a resident of Stockdale, Texas, applied for a Confederate widow's pension.[90]

Less is known about Alfred Heathcock's daughters. Margaret Heathcock married James Shelton in Seguin on 13 August 1867.[91] Mary Heathcock married Jenkins Sifford in Seguin on 10 August 1871; this wedding was witnessed by James Shelton and Columbus Heathcock.[92] Eliza Heathcock married Thomas Degan in Wilson County on 1 June 1884.[93] It is not known definitely who Amanda Heathcock married, but the 1880 census of Wilson County shows the following neighboring families: Alfred and Elizabeth Heathcock; Jenkins and Mary Sifford; Asa and Elizabeth Heathcock; Douglas and Louise Van Dorn; and two widows by the names of Manda and Ellen McFarland. Manda McFarland was said to have been born in 1846 in Arkansas. Although this would be the wrong birthplace, Manda McFarland reported that her father was born in Georgia and that her mother was born in Virginia, which would be consistent with the hypothesis that she was indeed Amanda Heathcock.

Heathcocks lived in Sutherland Springs and in Stockdale, both in Wilson County Texas, until about 1950. One who stayed in the area was William Henry Heathcock, son of John and Mary Heathcock. Will Heathcock and John Heathcock, Jr. were boarders in the home of Florence Hobbs, widow of Pleasant Hobbs, in 1900. On December 7, 1904, Will married Florence's daughter Mollie Hobbs in Sutherland Springs. The newly wed couple settled in a four-room frame cabin built by Will Heathcock near Sutherland Springs. In 1977, the long-abandoned cabin was still standing. A sketch of the floor plan is shown on the next page.

Will and Mollie Heathcock had four children:

1 Florence b Aug 30, 1907
2 Clayton Howell b Sept 10, 1910
3 Lilly Belle b Mar 25, 1914
4 Mary Ola b Sep 15, 1915

On September 12, 1916, Will was granted a military exemption card under the laws pertaining to World War I; his card gives his name as William Henry B. Heathcock, of Sutherland Springs:

His daughter, Lilly Belle, told the author in 1977 that Will's full name was William Henry Bunker Heathcock, and that the three given names came from the names of the owners of the first General Store in Stockdale, Williams, Henry & Bunker. The Heathcocks lived in the Sutherland Springs cabin until the 1930s, when they moved to a frame house in Stockdale. Will Heathcock did a little farming, a little quarter horse raising, and a lot of hanging out with his cronies on the porch of the general store in Stockdale. During the Second World War, Will and Mollie lived at least briefly in San Antonio, as their names appear in the 1942-43 San Antonio Directory, with the address 342 Chicago Blvd. Will died of heart failure in Stockdale on October 13, 1944.[94]

Mollie continued to live in Stockdale until the late 1950s, when her health began to seriously fail. She was placed in a nursing home by her surviving children. She died Nov 6, 1965 in the San Antonio State Hospital. Her death certificate states that she had been a resident of San Antonio for 7 years and 309 days, that her parents names were Howe Hobbs and Florence King, and that she died of congestive heart failure due to arteriosclerosis, heart disease, chronic brain syndrome associated with circulatory disturbance, and a cerebral accident.[95]

Floor Plan for Will and Mollie Heathcock's Cabin

Florence Heathcock died in her childhood, in April 1909.[96] As was recounted earlier, Clayton Heathcock married Frances Elizabeth Lay and died on February 28, 1950. Mary Ola Heathcock married Fred Jones, a red-headed house painter. The Jones family, which included a son, Randy, and a daughter, Mollie, lived in Stockdale until the late 1940s. Fred and Mary Ola Jones were great country music fans, and used to listen to the Grand Ole Opry on the radio every saturday night. Around 1950, they drove to Nashville for a vacation, primarily to see their favorite entertainers live. They liked Nashville so much that they stayed there. Mary Ola died of cancer on June 23, 1977. Lilly Belle married several times, and had a daughter, Marilyn, and a son, Jack, by her first husband, Bill Hall. She spent most of her life living in Houston or San Antonio.

Chapter 3. The Hobbs-King Branch

The progenitors of the Wilson County Hobbs family were Joseph and Anna Hobbs, who emigrated to Texas from Indiana in the middle 1830s with several of their large family. Joseph Hobbs was born in Maryland on November 29, 1789.[97] The exact place of his birth, as well as the names of his parents, is not known. He emigrated to the Indiana territory as a young man and settled in what is now Daviess County in about 1810. On July 12, 1811, Joseph Hobbs married Anna Jones, daughter of Ebenezer Jones.[98] Ebenezer was newly arrived from North Carolina with his wife Mary and several of their 15 children, including Anna.

Ebenezer Jones, Revolutionary War Veteran

Ebenezer Jones' father was Zacariah Jones, born in about 1735 in Wales.[99] He is said to have been a baptist preacher, who emigrated to the colonies from Wales in about 1760, settling in what is now North Carolina. His wife was Ellen Smith. Shortly after their arrival in the Carolinas, the Jones' homestead was destroyed by Indians, so the family migrated north to Delaware, where their first son, Ebenezer, was born January 21, 1763. Zacariah married second Sadie Vance and had three other sons, Seth, Jesse, and Robert.

Ebenezer enlisted at Dover, Delaware in the Continental Army on January 20, 1776, in Captain Nathan Adams' Company.[100] A family tradition, passed down by Ebenezer's grandson, Enoch Jones, is that "Ebenezer Jones was a husky lad, but wasn't quite tall enough to pass the lax requirements for the Continental Army. Being patriotic and resourceful, he just put padding in his shoes and was accepted. A boy of 13 was as expert with a gun in those days as any man. Ebenezer played a fife as part of his duties during the war. This battered instrument is still in existence somewhere among his descendants." Enoch Jones, son of Hullum Jones, lived to be nearly 99 and knew his grandfather Ebenezer Jones very well. The foregoing story, and others recounted in this essay, were told to Mrs. O. J. Smith. In a letter to the author, dated June 24, 1982, Mrs. Smith said "I knew my great uncle, Enoch Jones (b August 9, 1834 - d December 25, 1932) well, for he lived in Palmetto, Fla. with his daughter Bertha. I was in Palmetto in high school (1912-14) and I often talked with him. He was my favorite uncle! He told me about knowing and talking with his grandfather Ebenezer Jones (b January 21, 1763 - d March 9, 1862). These dates were from O. P. Estes' family bible. O. P. Estes was the grandson of "Gincy" O. Garten, Ebenezer's youngest child."[101]

After the Revolutionary War, Ebenezer moved to Rowan County, North Carolina,[102] where he married Mary Roten at a little town between the forks of the Yadkin River. Mary Roten was born April 8, 1762, in Maryland. She is said to have been of Irish descent, very small, and red-headed. Her father is not known, but her mother was said by family tradition to have been Sabea Vance.[103] The 1790 census of North Carolina shows that Ebenezer and Mary lived in Rowan County, near the forks of South Radkin and Horse Shoe Creeks (see 1790 map of North Carolina, next page). At this time they had four children, all under 10 years of age.

Ebenezer Jones became a minister of the Methodist Church at the age of 18, according to family tradition. According to Rowan County probate records, Minister Ebenezer Jones and the trustees of the Methodist Church bought one acre of land on Cedar Creek in Rowan County for the purpose of erecting a church building.[104] Ebenezer and Mary Jones had 15 children in the 26 years they lived in Rowan County. The entire family was recorded in a bible that was kept by the family in their early years in Indiana. The Bible is on display at the Washington Museum in Washington, Indiana. It was printed in 1816 and is five inches by seven inches in size. The writing in the Bible is very faded and its pages are brittle. Accompanying the Jones Bible is a letter that reads, in part, as follows:

"June 23, 1969

Columbus, Ohio

Dear Elva:

I received your letter this past week end, yes, I do have an old Bible that I am sure must have belonged to the Jones Family. Aunt Eula gave me the Bible sometime ago, it was with some things that have belonged to the Wallaces' for years. I imagine the old Bible came from the old Jones Fort which I think was also close to my grand-father Wallaces' house.

Sincerely, Anne Brown"

Another Jones bible was found by Marie W. McCormick.[105] This small Bible was printed in Philadelphia in 1813. Mrs. McCormick speculates that the Bible belonged to Ebenezer and was passed to his son Wiley when Ebenezer died. When Wiley died, the Bible must have gone to Laura Jones, Wiley's eldest daughter, as her name and date of birth are given following the birth records for Ebenezer and Mary Jones' children. An Anna Purcell, a granddaughter of Ebenezer Jones, placed the bible on sale in the Wallace Grocery store south of Washington, Indiana. The Bible now belongs to Mrs. Elva O'Brien Fisher, a great-great-granddaughter of Wiley R. Jones through his daughter Emily. In addition to the birth records for Ebenezer and Mary Jones' children, the following is written on the fly leaf:

"Daniel son of Nathaniel Roden (?) and

Sally his wife was born January 6th 1712.

this 19th of August 1816

Daniel Slinkard was born June the 24th 1819 (?)"

On the back of this fly leaf is written: "Bible (illegible) of E. and Mary Ro(illegible) Jones". The Daniel Roden referred to must have been an ancestor of Mary Roden Jones, possibly her father. Daniel Slinkard was presumably the son of Kattarine Slinkard, Ebenezer's second wife, whom he married in 1831 (vide infra).

The fifteen Jones children are enumerated as follows:

1 William b. June 10, 1784
2 Enoch b. October 23, 1785
3 Smith b. November 13, 1786
4 Vance b. April 23, 1788
5 Lewis[106] b. June 23, 1790
6 Anna b. March 21, 1792
7 Jesse b. October 7, 1793
8 Hullum b. April 17, 1797
9 Wiley b. November 5, 1798
10 Mary b. December 6, 1799
11 Nancy b. March 7, 1801
12 Vircan b. July 14, 1802
13 Sally b. January 14, 1804
14 Delora b. June 23, 1806
15 Jincy Owen b. November 17, 1808

In 1810, Ebenezer and his large family sold their 247 acres of land in North Carolina[107] and migrated to the Indiana Territory. The trip took about one year. The family started in the fall of 1810 and arrived in Indiana in 1811. Family tradition has it that they stopped on the way to raise a crop (in Kentucky, Virginia, or Tennessee).[108] However, this would seem unlikely, as their North Carolina land was not sold until August 22, 1810, and they appear to have arrived in Indiana early enough in 1811 for Anna Jones to meet and marry Joseph Hobbs in July.

When the Jones family reached the Indiana Territory, they settled about 25 miles east of Fort Sackville, later known as Fort Knox, at or near the present city of Vincennes, Indiana. In 1811, Ebenezer Jones and his son Vance Jones each obtained title to 160-acre parcels in what eventually became Daviess County.[109] These grants were in adjacent sections, and were near the future site of Washington. In 1816, Joseph Hobbs homesteaded his own farm, about a mile east of the Ebenezer Jones farm. A county map of Indiana for the year 1810 is shown on the next page; the Jones and Hobbs lands were in the southwest corner of present Daviess County, which was incorporated out of Knox County in 1817.

Early in 1811, the Indians in the Northwest Territory, prompted by British influences, became increasingly aggressive.[110] General William Henry Harrison, governor of the Indiana Territory sent a message to the Chief Tecumseh threatening him with arms if he did not control his braves. The message was received by Tecumseh and his brother, the Shawnee Prophet. Tecumseh brought a large force of Indians to visit Harrison at Vincennes on July 27, 1811. This show of force created alarm among the inhabitants of the Vincennes area. There was another conference between Harrison and the Indian Chiefs in Vincennes on September 25, 1811, at which the Indians declared their willingness to comply with the wishes of the Government. However, Harrison suspected them of duplicity and on September 26 he led 750 militia, which he had raised and armed during the summer, and two companies of dragoons on a march toward Prophetstown, the Indian village on the Wabash River, with the intention of dispersing the large Indian assemblage.

Harrison and his force marched in the direction of Prophetstown, stopping near Terre Haute on October 3 to build Fort Harrison, which was completed on October 28. Harrison continued on, arriving in the vicinity of Prophetstown the next day. There was a conference with the Indian Chiefs, in which the Prophet manifested surprise at Harrison's hostile appearance. Harrison and his troops made camp and the army settled in. At 4 am on November 7, the Indians attacked, initiating a pitched battle that resulted in 72 deaths or mortally wounded for the army and a similar number for the Indians. This action came to be known as the Battle of Tippecanoe, and played an eventual role in the election of Harrison as President of the United States.

Joseph Hobbs was a member of Captain Andrew Wilkins' company of infantry in the march that left Vincennes on September 26.[111] However, on October 30, after arrival at Prophetstown but before the battle, Hobbs became disabled and was allowed by General Harrison to employ a substitute to serve in his place, one Reuben Alsop, who served until the militia was disbanded in Vincennes on November 11.[112]

Because of the open warfare that existed with the Indians, the early settlers of the Vincennes area erected several forts. Although they normally lived in log cabins on their own farms, the settlers repaired to the forts for refuge during especially troubled times. Each of the forts was about 150 feet square and was constructed from timbers about twelve feet high with sharpened tops. There was a gateway for wagons in one wall. Within the enclosure was a two-story, hewed-log house, called a block house. Other block houses were built at the northeast and southwest corners of the fort. The block houses were about 25 by 18 feet in dimension and the second floors were reached by ladders. Some of the inhabitants lived in the three block houses, while others built huts of various size and form, according to their taste and means. In "forting times" the life was spartan, the settlers subsisting on stores of corn, potatoes, turnips, cabbage, pumpkins, and a little meat. One of the forts, called Comer's Fort, was on Ebenezer Jones' farm.[113]

In 1812, Jesse Jones, son of Ebenezer and Anna Jones, was killed in an altercation with Indians. The following account is abstracted from History of Knox and Daviess Counties.[114] "In September of 1812, General Samuel Hopkins was assigned the duty of destroying the Indian settlements along the Wabash and Illinois River. With 2000 volunteers, General Hopkins accomplished the destruction of the Kickapoo town at the head of Lake Peoria. He then returned to Vincennes with his mounted forces, most of whom he proceeded to discharge on the grounds they refused to obey their commander. He then assembled a new force, mostly infantry, and sallied forth with the intention of destroying Prophetstown, which had about 40 cabins and huts, and the large Kickapoo village adjoining it on the east side of the river. On September 21 the force discovered a band of Indians on Wild Cat Creek. The Indians fired upon a scouting party and killed a man by the name of Dunn. The next day a party of 60 horsemen went forth to bury their dead comrade and scout out the Indian force. Approaching the spot where the slain man lay, they discovered a mounted Indian. The troopers dropped their burying tools and started in tumultuous pursuit of the Indian. Their quarry at first kept a northeast course, but gradually inclined to the north, until he arrived at the head of a ravine, which was quite steep at the sides, and covered with timber and thick underbrush. When his pursuers had proceeded about 300 yards down the hollow, they received a very heavy fire on both flanks. A general route ensued. Those who escaped the ambush had to cut their way through the enemy lines. The next day the whole army went out to bury the dead, of which there were eighteen, and found the bodies to be 'much mutilated.' Some who were reported missing were never found. Two of those who were killed in this ambuscade were from the settlement at the forks of the White River--Samuel Culbertson and Jesse Jones, a son of Ebenezer Jones." Family tradition holds that Jesse Jones' saddle girth broke, causing him to fall from his horse. It is said that he was scalped by the Indians. Jesse Jones' estate was probated in 1813.[115] Ebenezer Jones' signature, taken from the security bond for the estate, is shown below.

The Indian troubles subsided and had virtually ended by the end of 1813. Indiana was granted statehood in 1816 and Daviess County was incorporated in 1817. Its population, which had been but 300 in 1811 when Ebenezer Jones and Joseph Hobbs settled there, had grown to 3432 by 1820. One of the first official activities of the new county was the election of officials. Ebenezer Jones was elected County Treasurer in June, 1817 at a temporary log Court House in the new town. His first report, filed in 1819 showed receipts of $1,126.43 and expenses of $1,064.68. Another of the early activities involved in the establishment of the new county was the creation of a County Seat. The town of Washington was officially established in 1817. Building lots were sold at public auction to raise money for construction of the necessary county buildings. Ebenezer Jones and Joseph Hobbs purchased two of these lots.[116]

Ebenezer's wife Mary died in 1829, at the age of 67, near Washington, Indiana. She was buried at Washington in the Old City Cemetery, which was abandoned in the late nineteenth century; in 1936 it was levelled by the WPA to build a public Park.[117] Two years later, on June 15, 1831, Ebenezer married the widow Kattarine Slinkard, of Green County, Indiana.[118] In addition to being a Methodist minister in Washington, Ebenezer was a cabinet maker. The 1850 and 1860 Daviess County Indiana census records show that Ebenezer lived his last quarter century with his son Wiley.[119] He died on March 9, 1862 at the age of 99, and was buried in the Old City Cemetery alongside Mary, his first wife.

Joseph and Anna Hobbs; from Indiana to Texas

Joseph and Anna Hobbs also raised a large family. Family tradition records at least the following 13 children. The birth dates were obtained from a list, in Joseph Hobbs hand, that was submitted to J. H. Baker, Commissioner of the Pension Office, Department of the Interior, January 18, 1873, as a part of Anna Hobbs' application for a pension.

1 Pollie b. September 16, 1812
2 Benedict b. January 5, 1814
3 Lawson b. March 10, 1815
4 Joseph b. December 9, 1816
5 William Preston b. June 17, 1818
6 Dudley Vance b. July 8, 1820
7 Emzy b. February 10, 1822
8 Corrilla b. December 27, 1823
9 Pleasant Howe b. December 13, 1825
10 Amory Oliver b. April 11, 1828
11 Rachel Josephine b. January 14, 1830
12 Frances Marion b. September 22, 1832
13 Talman Hugh b. May 27, 1834

In a contract dated July 25, 1834, apparently made when the Hobbs family still lived in Indiana, P. H. Hobbs and Joseph Hobbs agreed to locate on a one-third league tract on the Guinand Creen in Bexar County Texas. A copy of the contract is found in the Joseph Hobbs pension application file. The contract reads as follows: "Received of H. M. Crabb one certificate for one third of a league of land which we bind ourselves to locate on a certain tract of land on the Guinand Creek in Bexar County which land is now held by virtue of a location made by us by virtue of a certificate for one third of a league adjoining lands on which Peter Tumlinson now lives, we further bind ourselves to have surveyed and procure a patent to said lands for said Crabb and also to pay all the expenses on the same within three months from this date and in case of failure on our part to perform said contract as above specified we bind ourselves to return said certificate unto the said Crabb within said three months." It is not known where the Guinand Creek was. Peter Tumlinson was an early member of the Texas Rangers[120] and is listed as a member of the Texas Rangers stationed on the Medina River in the Texas census of 1850, in the same company with Pleasant and Francis Hobbs. He is also shown to have been the son-in-law of James West in an 1858 application for letters of administration in West's estate in Bexar County.

In 1839, Joseph Hobbs led a good part of his large family to the new Republic of Texas. The year the Hobbs family went to Texas from Indiana is known from a deposition filed in Guadalupe County Texas On March 14, 1860, aimed at establishing his right to a bounty warrant for his service in the War of 1812 (Battle of Tippecanoe), Joseph Hobbs swore that he had lived in Daviess County Indiana from 1811 until 1839 and had lived in Texas since that time.

The 1840 Texas census, which is brief, lists a Jas. Hobbs in Robertson County. It is likely that this entry referred to Joseph Hobbs and that the abbreviation was misinterpreted in transcription. It is certain that Preston, at least, was in Texas prior to 1840, as he was subsequently granted a bounty warrant for service to the Republic from November 6, 1836 to May 5, 1837, having been discharged for disability. It is not known which actions Preston Hobbs was involved in, but he was granted a total of 2560 acres in Bexar and Kinney Counties for his services.[121]

Whatever the disability for which Preston was discharged in 1837, it was not permanent, as Preston was again engaged in military service to the Republic in 1842. This time he was a mounted soldier in the Company of Captain Henry Wadkins and helped to repel the Mexican invasion led by General Vasquez.[122] In the Fall of the same year, Pleasant Howe Hobbs served as a mounted soldier in Captain Barrett's company in the Somervell campaign against the Mexican army under the leadership of General Adrian Woll.[123]

In September, 1842, Woll and a formidable army appeared in the neighborhood of Central Texas and occupied San Antonio. They captured the Judge of the District Court, which was in session, and a number of other officers and lawyers of the court, 54 persons in all. A large force of Texans collected nearby on the Salado Creek and a battle was fought between them and Woll's army on September 17. The Texans prevailed and drove Woll back to the city. On the way, the Mexican army met a smaller group of Texas volunteers from Fayette County who were just arriving, and killed or captured 48 out of the 50 individuals. The next day, Woll and his army left San Antonio for the border. Because of a disagreement about who should lead the pursuit, the Texans did not immediately follow. After two months of squabbling among themselves, Alexander Somervell, a personal friend of President Sam Houston and a soldier in the Texas Revolution, was appointed Brigadier General in command of a militia to pursue Woll and retrieve the prisoners he had taken in his occupation of San Antonio. Somervell dallied for some days, and on November 25 led a force of about 700 mounted men south, toward Laredo. They reached their destination and occupied the town on December 8. Although the militia was anxious to cross the Rio Grande and enjoin the Mexican force, Somervell instead led them southeast on the Texas side of the river. After two days, there was an outcry from the men because of their dissatisfaction that Somervell had been unwilling to cross into Mexico. Unaccountably, General Somervell announced that all who desired could return home; whereupon a total of 200 of the 700 men left.

Somervell continued to lead the remnant of his force southeast along the river and reached the town of Guerrero on December 14. The next day, the whold army crossed the river, whereupon the Mexican officer, Colonel Canalis, ordered a retreat. On December 17 Somervell led his army back across the Rio Grande into Texas and on December 19 announced that the force would immediately march to Gonzales, where it would be disbanded. This action astonished the men, who suspected Somervell of cowardice. The opinion has been voiced that Somervell had secret orders from Sam Houston not to pursue Woll deep into Mexico. Nevertheless, the incident had an unfortunate consequence. About 300 of the remnant of Somervell's army continued along the river and crossed at the town of Mier, which they successfully occupied. While they were waiting there for supplies, a large Mexican force arrived and, in the fight that ensued, 216 of the Texans were captured and carried away to Hacienda Salado, where they arrived on February 10. The next day 198 of the band managed to overcome their guards and escape, whereupon they immediately headed north for their homes. However, on February 18, most of the escapees (173) were recaptured and taken back to Salado; the other 21 were either killed in the recapture or lost and presumed dead in the mountainous country. Only four made their way back to Texas. On March 24, General Santa Anna issued an order to shoot every tenth man who had participated in the excape. The men were made to draw a bean out of a box containing 159 white beans and 17 black beans. Those unfortunate enough to draw black beans were tied and, with their backs to their excutioners, shot. One of those executed was M. C. Wing, whose land lay in the area that later became Nockenut.[124]

By 1850, the Hobbses were spread all over the new State.[125] Joseph and Anna lived in Walker County along with sons Talman (16), Frank (18), and Pleasant (24). Daughter Rachel lived next door with her husband Gabriel Helms and daughters Amanda and Adelia. Pleasant and Frank were also listed in the 1850 census with the Texas Rangers, stationed on the Medina River in Medina County. Daughter Corrilla lived in Lavaca County with her husband James Ridgeway and their seven-year old daughter Eliza; they shared a farm at this time with Lawson, who was unmarried, and Oliver and his wife Rosanna and their two-year old son William. For some reason, Oliver, Rosanna, and William are also recorded in Limestone County at the same time. Preston Hobbs was a Methodist minister in 1850, and he lived in Shelby county in the home of Lewis Jones.

Joseph and Anna Hobbs, along with sons Preston, Pleasant, and Oliver, settled in Guadalupe County in the small community of Nockenut in the early 1850s. Pleasant and Joseph filed homesteads on the Ecleto Creek about 16 miles from Seguin. Pleasant's 320-acre tract was patented to him in 1860.[126] Preston Hobbs also homesteaded land in this part of Guadalupe County (which later became part of Wilson County); see map on next page.

Location of Hobbs Homesteads in Wilson County Texas

Oliver Hobbs did not homestead his own land, apparently because he was not inclined toward farming. Instead, he earned his living by making chairs. Examples of his handiwork can still be found in Wilson County. Ollie served in the Mexican War for six months in 1846 and married Rhoda Ann Stringfield in Limestone county in 1847. Some time between 1867 and 1870, Ollie and his wife Ann (sometimes called Rosanna or Kesy Ann) split up. In a letter to the author dated June 24, 1985, Ollie's great granddaughter Ann Hobbs Allen said:

"Ollie was very harum-scarum and though he made a decent living, he was always looking for a non-work scheme to make money. My father was 19 when he died and of course knew him pretty well, but did not think highly of him. I don't know the reason for his split with Rhoda Ann, but less than a month after her father had died in Houston, she apparently told Ollie to go and he was living with Lawson in 1870. In 1870 she moved to Lometa (where her daughter Joanna and husband Jim Mauser lived) in Erath County, where she died in 1873. Ollie's second wife (whom he married in 1882)[127] was Mrs. Laura Elby Arnold from Erath County, so he may have followed Rhoda Ann."

In 1880, Ollie was back in Nockenut, living with daughter Syrinda, then eighteen years old. The same year that Ollie remarried (1882), his son Joseph filed a claim for a 160-acre homestead in the name of his deceased mother Rosanna Hobbs. In an affidavit that is part of the homestead file,[128] Joseph stated that his mother had settled on the land and cultivated it for three years beginning on June 15, 1870 (about the time Ollie disappeared). The affidavit alleged that Joseph Hobbs and the other heirs were entitled to the land "...because the said Rosanna Hobbs, deceased, had not and her heirs now have not a homestead other than the above." The Rosanna Hobbs homestead was adjacent to the T. J. Smith and Alfred Heathcock homesteads and was a tract originally surveyed for John Asbury and later for James Shelton. The case dragged on until the early 1890s when the Hobbs heirs sold their rights to the claim to Joseph Robinson, who applied for a patent. Henry S. Hastings, one of the original Nockenut settlers, wrote an indignant letter to Governor J. S. Hogg in 1894, pointing out that the land in question had been abandoned for some time and that he had assisted a widow named N. C. Robbins in filing the tract. Records show that the land was finally patented in 1896 to S. Gallagher.

Joseph Hobbs died at the age of 74. He was visiting daughter Josephine and her husband Gabriel Helms across the Sandies River in Gonzales County when he died on November 1, 1863. At the time of his death the creek was up and his body couldn't be brought back to Nockenut for burial, so he was buried in the Union Hill Cemetery in an unmarked grave.[129] His will, written October 19, 1863, was filed on November 25 of the same year. It refers to his wife Anna and his sons and daughters E. L. (Lawson), P. W., Emzy I. Camp, Corrilla A. Ridgeway, P. H., A. O., R. Josephine Helms, T. H., and Sara E. Jobs, daughter of his deceased son Benedict.[130] Anna Hobbs died on October 9, 1880. She is buried in Nockenut Cemetery. Anna's marker was discovered in 1983 by Karon Mac Smith while preparing her book. At that time, only a remnant was left, with the partial date " - Oct 9, 1880" visible. The stone was in the row with Otha King, Mary Jane King, and Adelia Hobbs in the Hobbs plot.

Nockenut and Environs

Nockenut was the small town that was the early home of the Hobbs, Heathcock, and Goodbread families. As shown in the map on page 14, Nockenut was North of Cibolo Creek, in an area that was part of Guadalupe County until 1869, when a relocation of county lines placed it in Wilson County. The unusual name of this early settlement was apparently bestowed when the post office was established in 1858 by Henry Solomon Hastings, one of the first inhabitants.[131] It is said that Henry made up the name from the names of two indigenous trees, the "nockeway" and the "hickernut" (correctly, the anaqua and the hickory).[132] One of the early postmasters, appointed in 1868, was Preston Hobbs. The total population of Nockenut in 1860, taken from the census record of that year, was: Tho. J. Smith,[133] W. W. Cockrum,[134] P. W. Hobbs, Jos. Hobbs, A. O. Hobbs, P. H. Hobbs, Jno. Russell,[135] J. W. Keys, H. S. Hastings, Jno. Heathcock, Jas. Degan,[136] Tho. Goodbread. In addition to his later duties as postmaster, Preston Hobbs also served as a minister for the Methodist Church and appears in the records as the pastor who performed many early Guadalupe County marriages.

The Cibolo Creek, mentioned often in early central Texas accounts, was a tributary of the San Antonio River. The Cibolo was mentioned by the explorer Josiah Gregg in his Diary & Letters of Josiah Gregg, Southwestern Enterprises, 1840-1847: "From Seguin to Cibolo creek about fifteen miles, thence to Salado creek fifteen miles, and five miles further to San Antonio de Bexar. The last two streams are of beautiful, clear water--nearly equal, being of small mill-power size."[137] As shown in the map on page 40, the Ecleto creek, a tributary of the Cibolo, ran roughly north and south through the area, and passed through the Preston, Pleasant, and Joseph Hobbs homesteads. In early parlance, this creek was often written phonetically, as "Clayto."[138] The author of this essay harbors the suspicion that this may, in fact, have been the genesis of his father's given name.

One of the first settlements in the area, and the first County Seat of Wilson County, was Sutherland Springs, now but a ghost town. Sutherland Springs lay 32 miles southeast of San Antonio on Cibolo creek and was once the largest and most famous spas in Texas. The springs were called in 1848 "the strongest sulphur springs in Texas" and described as "the famous Sulphur Springs of Bexar County, for which it is claimed that there are none better in the New World." The main spring was "a large basin, as it were, dug out of solid rock, 20 feet in diameter. The water boils up from the bottom of this basin in large quantities, and runs off in a bold stream."[139] The town of Sutherland Springs was established in 1831 by John Sutherland as his plantation headquarters. In 1854, Major Joseph H. Polley selected it as the site for his mansion, which still stands. At its apex, the population of Sutherland Springs was greater than 1000; its decline began at the time of the War between the States.[140] While Texas was under carpetbag rule, John W. Longworth served as the carpetbag judge of Wilson County and assumed authority as clerk and all other county offices. In 1868, Longworth told the people of Sutherland Springs that he was going to move the county seat unless they paid him a certain amount of money. The citizens refused and he moved the records to the nearby town of Lodi, where they remained until 1873, when the new town of Floresville was laid out as the official county seat.[141]

Stockdale, in eastern Wilson County, was named for Fletcher S. Stockdale, lieutenant governor of Texas when the town was established in 1863. Early settlers included two brothers-in-law of Thomas Goodbread, Daniel Bird and Creed Taylor (husbands to Thomas' sisters Minerva and Nancy, respectively). Daniel Bird, a participant in the Battle of San Jacinto, settled on his league and a labor headright three miles east of Stockdale and Creed Taylor, another veteran of the Texas Revolution lived in a log cabin on his farm next to Daniel Bird's. In 1869 the Indians made frequent raids in the Stockdale area.

Central Texas in these days was still rugged frontier country. On July 6, 1872, Preston Hobbs was shot in the back and killed while riding back to Nockenut from the County Seat in Seguin. Local legend has it that he recognized the horse being ridden by a young man as stolen, and was murdered to insure his silence. In a letter to P. H. Baker, Commissioner of the Pension Office, dated May 10, 1873, Lawson Hobbs stated that, in addition to Preston, Anna Hobbs had two other sons "waylaid and killed in the South." More insight into Preston's death is found in a letter from his father-in-law L. H. Dillard to one of his sons, dated July 28, 1872.[142] The letter is quoted herewith:

"Dear Son,

I herewith acknowledge the reception of yours bearing the sad intelligence of the death of Brother. Our loss no dout is his infinate gain for the has gon from the troubles to come, to set down at the right hand of the Father and to hear the welcom approbation come ye blessed of Father enter thou into the joys of thy Lord. I expect to follow in a few days more. O what a happy time it will be, if I should be permitted to meet him just over Jordan in that happy land where parting will be no more. Let us strive to make our calling and election shure. I often feal that it is my greatest desire to get well out of this land of the dying, into the land of the living. If you wish to write to Sister Maria in Tenn direct. Nashville Tennessee car of Rev. C. C. Mayhew. Waylaid him and shot him five times on his way from Segene home. We alre all in good health. Mary, Bob & Hence is gon up in Cook & Jack Counties so I have not seen them since I recd. your letter. Crops good but vary hot & dry. As ever your affectionate father.

L. H. Dillard"

Pleasant Howe Hobbs, Texas Ranger

As has already been told, Pleasant Hobbs was the ninth child of Joseph and Anna Hobbs, came to Texas with them in 1839, served in the Sommervell campaign against the Mexicans in 1842 (at the age of 17!), and was a 4th Corporal in the Texas Rangers stationed on the Medina River in 1850. In about 1854, Pleasant married Catherine Cotter, daughter of Steven and Hannah (Caler) Cotter, who came to Texas from Tennessee in 1845 and settled on 155 acres astride the Ecleto creek in 1855. Pleasant and Catherine had five daughters (two of whom died young) and two sons:

1 Dora b. March 8, 1855 d. July 17, 1869
2 Blanche b. December 21, 1856 d. July 7, 1861
3 Livonia b. April 4, 1859 d. ?
4 Rachel J. b. November 26, 1861 d. February 21, 1921
5 Edward W. b. June 2, 1864 d. 1937
6 Adelia b. December 10, 1867 d. January 11, 1950
7 Archie T. b. November 21, 1875 d. March 2, 1939

Pleasant and his family first lived in Nockenut on their farm on the Ecleto. The 1864 and 1865 Guadalupe County property assessments show that Pleasant owned, in addition to his farm, considerable livestock (mostly horses) and one negro slave, valued at $500 in 1864 and $400 in 1865 [the devaluation may have been a result of the impending resolution of the War between the States, with its concomitant abolishment of the institution of slavery.]

In 1867, Pleasant deeded to his wife Catherine all of his land on the Ecleto, his buggy, and all of his livestock, consisting of 80 horses, 30 cattle, 60 hogs, and three oxen.[143] While the motivation behind this unusual intra-family transfer of assets has been lost with time, it probably had something to do with the carpetbag government that ruled the area after the Civil War.

The 1870 census of Guadalupe County shows Pleasant and Catherine with their children Livonia, Josephine, Edward, and Adelia living on their farm in Nockenut. Their household also included twenty-one year old John Alston and a sixteen year old black farm hand named Bird Hobbs, who was probably the Hobbs slave previously listed on the tax roll, subsequently freed.

Catherine Hobbs died on March 15, 1879, and is buried in the Hobbs plot at the Steel Branch Cemetery, six miles east of Stockdale, near the site of old Nockenut.[144]

On October 26, 1886, Pleasant Hobbs married the widow Florence Dawson, daughter of Isaac King and Mary Jane Fisher, about whom I shall tell more in time. Pleasant and his new wife Florence had two daughters, Mollie (b August 5, 1887 when Pleasant was 61 years of age) and a second daughter who died in 1890 at the age of only six weeks.

It is interesting to note that Pleasant's daughter Adelia Hobbs married Florence's brother Otha King. Thus, Adelia's father became also her brother-in-law. Between 1978 and 1981, the author had the pleasure to make the acquaintance of Dora Hastings, widow of Walter Clyde Hastings and the last surviving child of Otha and Adelia. In one letter (July 9, 1980), Dora wrote about her grandfather, Pleasant Hobbs:

"Your letter brought back so many childhood memories. There's no one left for me to talk to about the long time ago. I'm glad I have lived to see so many changes and there will be so many in the next 25 years. Should you have asked my mother about Grandpa, it would have just been the best father a child ever had. My grandmother died when mama was 12 years old, so I think he was a real good father and took good care of them, as they all made good citizens. The grandchildren all loved him, so I know he was good to us. He was a nice, friendly person and had lots of friends. I think he spent most of his time doing for his stock and if he had any pets it was his pretty horses. I can't think of him being a farmer, but the red home place where my mother was born had a nice large field for those days, as they had to split rail to fence them. Neither of his boys could plow a straight row. I think he (Grandpa) must have kept hired hands to farm. They had someone named Monroe. I don't know if that was his given or surname, but mama was named Adelia Roe, so he must have thought a lot of him. I hadn't thought the old farm place in years until I got your letter. Arch Hobbs got that piece of land and it was next to our place on the south.

"The house was built right on the Ecleto creek. It was made of hewn logs, two big rooms with a hall (dogtrot) between them, and a shed room on the back of each, large front porch. There was a fireplace on the west room and I'm sure they did their cooking there when they first lived there. Arch lived with Grandpa & Aunt Florence until he married. We went there often when I was a child to visit. Uncles Arch and Amory moved there when they married. The yard was covered with huge trees, cottonwood, mulberry, and china trees, so some body took pride in the home.

"Aunt Florence was to good for her own good--a Christian shouldn't say that! She took in all the sick, homeless, down-and-outers that came along. To save my life I can't see how they fed them as Elias [Florence's son by her first husband] wasn't a worker as far as I could see. I'm sure Aunt Florence and Grandpa had a happy life together. They were both so good natured. Love, Dora"

Pleasant Howe Hobbs died in Nockenut on November 15, 1895 at age sixty-nine years and eleven months. He visited his granddaughter the day before his death, as recounted in her own words (June 30, 1980):

"I like to think of him where I saw him last. He drove up to hour house early one morning on the way from someplace and was in to big a hurry to get out for a visit. We, mama and some of the children, went out to the yard gate to visit a few minutes with him. He was in a bright new shiney buggy with pretty matched horses. I thought he looked so grand--we were still riding in a wagon. To a ten-year old that must have looked like the first Model T Ford to us when we came out. The next day after his visit he died suddenly right after lunch. So that's the way I think of him--in his pretty buggy."

Pleasant left a large estate, consisting of 1559 acres of land in Wilson, Guadalupe, and Kinney Counties. His estate was partitioned between the widow Florence and his children Livonia Bellgard, Adelia King, Archie Hobbs, Josephine Henry, Ed Hobbs, and Mollie Hobbs.[145]

Florence King Dawson Hobbs: Descendant of Elijah Fisher

In this section, I shall recount what is known of the origins of the mother of Mollie Hobbs, Pleasant's second wife Florence. This part of the story begins in the Natchez District of the Mississippi Territory before 1800. The Natchez District consisted of territory that now forms five Mississippi counties, Wilkinson, Adams, Jefferson, Claiborne and Warren. When the Thirteen Colonies revolted in 1776, the Natchez District remained loyal to the Crown and there was a wholesale migration of Tories from the seaboard colonies. Between 1779 and 1781, Spain took over the government of the district. By 1798, pro-American sentiment prevailed in the district and on April 7, 1798 the Mississippi Territory was created by an Act of Congress, with Natchez being the first Territorial Capital. The opening of the Mississippi River after the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 brought a land boom to the Mississippi Territory, and thousands of settlers flooded into the new lands.

The first record of Elijah (Elias) Fisher was in 1797, when he made an improvement on 640 acres on Buffalo Creek in the area that became Wilkinson County in 1802.[146] In December of 1800, Elijah signed a Memorial to Congress protesting the form of government that had been forced upon the inhabitants of the new Territory.[147] On August 13, 1801 he married Mary Lanehart in Adams County.[148] Between 1802 and 1804, Elijah lived in Adams County.[149] Elijah is listed in several census records[150] and on tax rolls.[151] These suggest that he lived in the part of the Old Natchez District that became Adams County in 1799 and Wilkinson County in 1802, moved from there to Claiborne County (in 1805-1816), thence to Lawrence County (in 1816-18), and finally to Hinds County (in 1820-22).

At least one of these moves might have been stimulated by one of the most spectacular natural events that has ever occurred in modern-day North America. At 2 a.m. on December 16, 1811 the largest earthquake ever recorded in North America occurred in the vicinity of New Madrid, Missouri. The shaker sent shocks as far East as Ohio and caused banks of the Mississippi river to topple in the neighborhood of Vicksburg. The first quake was followed by a strong series of aftershocks, lasting into February, 1812. The initial quake changed the course of the Mississippi in several places and created a great depression that was filled by waters from the Mississippi, which flowed North for four days while the huge new lake, now called "Reelfoot," was being formed. In 1979, Dora King Hastings told the author that she thought the family moved "in the year of the great earthquake that created a lake near the Mississippi River in the state of Mississippi." Surely such a dramatic event could have been passed down as a vivid family recollection.

Elijah Fisher died in Hinds County on December 14, 1838. His will, probated in March, 1839, mentions his wife Eliza Fisher, three youngest children, David D. Fisher, Ann Eliza Fisher, and Mary Jane Fisher, son Jacob F. Fisher, and son-in-law Almond Robbins.[152]

The foregoing records of Elijah Fisher suggest that his first wife, Mary Lanehart, died and that he remarried, to Elizabeth. It is not known with certainty whether Mary or Elizabeth was the mother of Elijah's children. After Elijah's death, Elizabeth Fisher continues to be listed in the census records. In 1840 she still lived in Hinds County, with two sons and two daughters.[153] Daughter Catherine and her husband Almond Robbins are listed as relatively near neighbors. In 1850, Elizabeth Fisher appears again, this time in Claiborne County.[154] The census record reads: "Elizabeth Fisher (52, F, Maryland), George (27, M, Miss), Wm (2, M, Miss), Lewis (1, M, Miss), John (24, M, Miss)". George Fisher and his sons William and Lewis are all listed as heads of households in the 1880 census of Hinds County.[155] George Fisher, b Claiborne County Mississippi July 15, 1823 d February 16, 1902, is also listed in the 1900 Hinds County census and in in Old Cemeteries of Southwestern Hinds County.

From the evidence at hand, we can construct the following partial family for Elijah Fisher:

1 Jacob F. (Elijah Fisher's will)
2 Penelope m Martin Stricklin August 1825
3 Catherine m Almond Robbins March 24, 1834
4 George b. July 15, 1823, d February 16, 1902
5 David D. m Margaret Graham November 25, 1846
6 Ann Eliza (Elijah Fisher's will)
7 Mary Jane b. June 7, 1827, d May 19, 1897
8 John b. 1826 (1880 census)

Her age in 1850 indicates that Elizabeth Fisher was born in 1798, only three years before Elijah's first marriage to Mary Lanehart. Since Mary Jane Fisher was born June 7, 1827, it is probable that her mother was Elizabeth, rather than Mary. Note also that Mary Jane's sister Ann Eliza appears to have been named after her mother.

On November 25, 1847, Mary Jane Fisher married Isaac King, born in Tennessee in 1824, in Hinds County Mississippi.[156] The couple lived in Jackson, Mississippi and are listed in the 1850 and 1860 census records.[157] The complete family was:

1 Elias b. 1849
2 Ellen b. 1850
3 Ann Medora b. March 2, 1853
4 Florence b. December 12, 1854
5 John Swept b. June 8, 1856
6 Will G. b. 1858
7 Saphronia b. 1859
8 Otha b. August 15, 1861

The 1860 census also shows that Isaac's seventy-five year old mother, E. King, lived with them at the time, and that young Ellen had died. Elias died sometime in the 1860s. Family tradition alleges that he was murdered by a negro.[158]

Isaac King was 6 feet 2 1/2 inches tall and had light complexion, dark hair, and blue eyes. On March 21, 1862, he enlisted in the Mississippi Light Artillery in Jackson and was made Corporal in Company A of Withers' Regiment. At the time, he described himself as a planter.[159] In late 1862, the North realized that the Mississippi River was crucial to the continued survival of the Confederacy. And yet nearly 250 miles of the river, from Vicksburg south to Port Hudson, Louisiana, remained in the hands of the South. The Confederate stronghold at Vicksburg was the key. Heavily fortified in the hilly terrain on the east bank of the river, it was impregnable to attack from the river itself. The Mississippi makes a great bend to the east at Vicksburg and for months the Northern forces tried to dig a north-south canal so as to divert the river and thus by-pass Vicksburg. However, the attempt failed. Finally, in April of 1863, Grant marched south on the western bank of the river and crossed well below Vicksburg. He then led his army north and captured Jackson on May 14, thus cutting the rail connection to the Confederate garrison at Vicksburg. The Confederates, under General Pemberton, fought two last stands against Grant's advancing troops, first at Champion's Hill and then at the crossing of the Big Black River, before retreating into Vicksburg, where they were besieged until they surrendered on July 4, 1863.[160] Isaac King fought with the Rebel army in the Battle of Big Black, then came down with diphtheria and died May 25, 1863, during the siege of Vicksburg.

Isaac's death left Mary Jane King as a thirty-six year old widow with seven young children. The deprivations which she endured in this period of her life molded her into an exceedingly strong-willed individual, and she is remembered by her family as a woman who ruled with an iron hand. In her later days she was crippled and used crutches to walk. One family legend says that she had a wooden leg, having had her leg shot off in the war. However, a more plausible if less romantic explanation of her infirmity is that she was kicked in the hip by a cow. Some time after the end of the war, Mary Jane King moved her remaining family to Ripley, in Lauderdale County, Tennessee. Although it is not known with certainty, this was probably the home of Isaac King's family.

In 1871 Florence King met and married William Calvin Dawson in Ripley. They had but two children, William Elias (b August 27, 1872) and Eva, before W. C. Dawson died in 1876. A granddaughter recalls a family story that "he died from pneumonia which he contracted while lying drunk out of doors in inclement weather."[161] After Dawson's death, Mary Jane King, her son Otha, her daughter Florence Dawson and young William Elias and Eva chartered a train car and, loading all their belongings in it, they came west to Texas. They settled first in Prarie Lea, where they rented a farm. Young Otha, only sixteen at the time, applied for and received credit from a merchant in Luling named Walker. They apparently migrated to Wilson County around 1880, although neither Mary Jane nor Florence Dawson can be found in the census record for that year. Otha was definitely in Nockenut in 1881, when he participated with Bascom Johnston in laying out the boundaries of the Nockenut cemetery. Of Mary Jane King no more is known, except that she lived in Wilson County until her death on May 19, 1897. She is buried in the Hobbs-King plot in the Nockenut Cemetery.


To find the father of a person, double that person's number. A man's wife is found by adding one to that man's number. Where a doubled number does not appear, this indicates the last known ancestor in that line. [Last revision 1986]

(1) Clayton Howell HEATHCOCK, Jr. b 21 Jul 1936 San Antonio Bexar Co TX


(2) Clayton Howell HEATHCOCK, Sr. b 10 Sep 1910 Sutherland Springs Wilson Co TX d 28 Feb 1950 San Antonio Bexar Co TX m 10 Sep 1935 Hondo TX

(3) Frances Elizabeth LAY b 23 Apr 1915 Georgetown Williamson Co TX


(4) William Henry HEATHCOCK b 7 Mar 1875 Wilson Co TX d 13 Oct 1944 Stockdale Wilson Co TX m 7 Dec 1904 Sutherland Springs Wilson Co TX

(5) Molly HOBBS b 5 Aug 1887 Wilson Co TX d 6 Nov 1965 San Antonio Bexar Co TX

(6) Jesse Lee LAY b 18 Oct 1887 La Vernia Wilson Co TX d 19 Dec 1935 San Antonio Bexar Co TX m 8 Sept 1909 Georgetown Williamson Co TX

(7) Mabel Coral HARRIS b 17 Dec 1891 Georgetown Williamson Co TX d 8 Oct 1968 San Antonio Bexar Co TX


(8) John HEATHCOCK b 14 Oct 1833 New Market Madison Co AL d 1 Jun 1904 Sutherland Springs Wilson Co TX m ca 1856

(9) Mary GOODBREAD b ca 1840 Marengo Co AL d 26 Oct 1905 Sutherland Springs Wilson Co TX

(10) Pleasant Howe HOBBS b 13 Dec 1825 Washington Daviess Co IN d 15 Nov 1895 Nockenut Wilson Co TX m (2nd) 12 Oct 1886 Wilson Co TX

(11) Florence KING (widow DAWSON) b 12 Dec 1854 Jackson Hinds Co MS d 13 Aug 1928 Wilson Co TX

(12) Francis Marion LAY b 1856 Wilson Co TX d 17 Jun 1918 La Vernia Wilson Co TX m 11 Nov 1880 La Vernia

(13) Nannie Jennie GREEN b 28 Feb 1861 MD d 26 Mar 1931 San Antonio Bexar Co TX

(14) Charles Morton HARRIS b 21 Sep 1861 MS d 12 May 1945 Georgetown Williamson Co TX m 24 Jan 1883 Thyatira Tate Co MS

(15) Cordelia Paralee ADAIR b 28 Jun 1861 MS d 12 Jan 1944 Georgetown Williamson Co TX


(16) Alfred HATHCOCK b ca 1810 Elbert Co GA d ca 1885 Wilson Co TX m ca1828 Madison Co AL

(17) Elizabeth COOK b ca 1815 New Market Madison Co AL

(18) Thomas GOODBREAD b ca 1805 Rutherford Co NC d 1872 Guadalupe Co TX m 27 May 1833 Marengo Co AL

(19) Malinda BREWER b ca 1810 AL d 1875 Guadalupe Co TX

(20) Joseph HOBBS b 29 Nov 1789 MD d Nov 1863 Guadalupe Co TX m 12 Jul1811 Knox Co IN

(21) Anna JONES b 21 Mar 1792 Rowan Co (?) NC d 9 Oct 1880 Nockenut Wilson Co TX

(22) Isaac KING b ca 1824 TN d 25 May 1863 Vicksburg MS m 25 Nov 1847 Hinds Co MS [CSA MS Light Artillery]

(23) Mary Jane FISHER b 7 Jun 1827 MD d 19 May 1897 Nockenut Wilson Co TX

(24) Daniel LAY b ca 1826 Pulaski Co KY d La Vernia Wilson Co TX m 1 May 1848 Pulaski Co KY

(25) Elizabeth DUCK b ca 1827 Pulaski Co KY d 21 Mar 1884 San Antonio Bexar Co TX

(26) J. F. GREEN b Mo

(27) M. M. HUFF b 16 Oct 1828 MD d 7 Dec 1915 La Vernia Wilson Co TX

(28) Felix HARRIS b 7 Jan 1832 GA d 2 Jan 1909 Georgetown Williamson Co TX

(29) Elizabeth WILBURN

(30) Andrew Jackson ADAIR b 13 May 1831 Henry Co GA d 18 Jul 1911 Goforth Hays Co TX m 1 Oct 1857 Marshall Co MS [CSA Co I 34th MS Inf, Co G 3rd Eng]

(31) Frances A. GANNT b 28 Oct 1839 TN d 7 Nov 1882 Tyro Tate Co MS


(32) John HATHCOCK, Sr. b ca 1774 NC d ca 1865 New Market Madison Co AL m ca 1900 Elbert Co GA

(33) Sarah JONES

(34) John COOK d 1822 Madison Co AL m 29 Mar 1804

(35) Margaret SHACKELFORD ca 1783 Halifax Co VA?

(36) Phillip GOODBREAD b ca 1786 Rutherford Co NC d 1870 Guadalupe Co TX

(38) Matthew BREWER d 28 Aug 1832 Marengo Co AL

(39) Mary (Polly) ----

(42) Ebenezer JONES b 21 Jan 1763 DL d 9 Mar 1862 Washington Daviess Co IN

(43) Mary ROTEN b 8 Apr 1762 MD

(46) Elijah FISHER d 14 Dec 1838 Hinds Co MS

(48) Burrell LAY b ca 1776 VA d ca 1851 Pulaski Co KY m 13 Nov 1804 Rockingham Co NC

(49) Leanna NEWELL b 1781 VA d ca 1851 Pulaski Co KY

(50) Josiah W. DUCK, Jr. b ca 1801 NC d 1855 Pulaski Co KY m 1 Oct 1817 Pulaski Co KY

(51) Ann COOK b ca 1799 d after 1860

(60) James ADAIR b 8 Jun 1790 SC d 22 Mar 1851 Shelby Co TN m 14 Feb1814 GA

(61) Ann SMITH b 17 May 1789 SC d 16 Oct 1852 Shelby Co TN


(64) Hosea HATHCOCK b ca 1755 d ca 1845 Elbert Co GA [Rev Sol]

(66) Nathan JONES b ca 1740 d 1807 Elbert Co GA m 1 Jan 1763 Edgecombe Co NC

(67) Courtney BELL

(70) Richard SHACKELFORD b 14 Dec 1751 Hanover Co VA? d 11 Jan 1823 Madison Co AL m ca 1771

(71) Mary Ann ROBERTS b ca 1748 Hanover or Halifax Co VA d 13 May 1832 AL

(72) John GOODBREAD, Sr) b ca 1753 d ca 1808 Rutherford Co NC m 28 Apr 1779

(73) Mary LEDBETTER (widow BRADLEY) b ca 1744

(84) Zachariah JONES b ca 1735 Wales immigrated ca 1760 to DL lv NC

(85) Ellen SMITH

(87) Sabea VANCE

(96) David LAY, Sr. b ca 1735 Eng(?) d ca 1815 Caswell Co NC m (2nd) ca1772 Pittsylvania Co VA

(97) Susanna GIBSON d 8 Dec 1832 Pulaski Co KY

(100) Josiah W. DUCK, Sr. d Pulaski Co KY m 2 Jan 1792 Isle of Wight Co VA

(101) Sarah HOUSE

(102) Phillip COOK b ca 1767 NC or VA d ca 1810 Garrard Co KY m 20 Dec1790 Surry Co NC

(103) Jane MEREDITH b 1769 VA d 1852 Stewart Co TN


(128) Thomas HATHCOCK b ca 1718 VA d 13 Apr 1818 Richmond Co NC

(132) John JONES, Sr. b before 1720 d 9 Jun 1781 Wrightsborough GA [Rev Sol]

(133) Mary ---- d 9 Oct 1802 Wrightsborough GA

(134) Brittain BELL b ca 1715 lv Edgecombe Co NC

(140) Roger SHACKELFORD b ca 1700 Essex or Gloucester Co VA d ca 1780 VA m ca 1735

(141) Carey BAKER b ca 1715 Hanover Co VA? d ca 1765 VA

(142) Phillipus GUTBRODT b 23 Nov 1726 Nordheim Ger d 24 Apr 1811 Tyron Rutherford Co NC

(143) Catherine ----

(146) Richard LEDBETTER II b 12 Aug 1700 Charles City Co VA d 1751 Brunswick VA

(147) Mary WALTON b 1706 King William Co VA d 17 Jul 1779 Brunswick Co VA

(194) John GIBSON, Sr.d ca 1777 Caswell Co NC

(195) Mary ---- d 1795 Caswell Co NC

(204) James COOK b ca 1740 Orange Co VA d Steward Co TN [Rev Sol]

(206) William MEREDITH b 1742 Louisa Co VA d ca 1824 Adair Co KY m ca1760

(207) Anne BOND d ca 1791 Stokes Co NC


(256) Edward HATHCOCK lv Northampton Co VA

(264) Richard JONES lv PN [Quaker]

(265) Miriam ----

(268) Thomas BELL b ca 1690 d 1763 Edgecombe Co NC

(269) Martha ----

(280) Francis SHACKELFORD b ca 1664 Gloucester Co VA? d ca 1726 m ca1695

(281) Sarah Virginia LEWIS b ca 1675 Gloucester Co VA?

(288) Johann Ludwig GUTBRODT b 10 Apr 1698 Nordheim Ger d Jan 1776 York Co PA m 22 Apr 1722 Nordheim

(289) Christina Barbara SCHICKNER b 24 Aug 1703 Nordheim d PN

(292) Richard LEDBETTER I b ca 1690 Charles City Co VA d 1767 Brunswick Co VA m ca 1715 Prince George Co VA

(293) Hannah ---- d ca 1775 Brunswick Co

(294) George WALTON d 1767 Brunswick Co VA

(295) Elizabeth ROWE (or SCOTT) d 1771 Brunswick Co VA

(408) John COOK d 1775 Cumberland Co VA

(409) Mary ----


(536) George BELL, Jr. d 1752 Edgecombe Co NC

(560) Roger SHACKELFORD bapt 23 Apr 1629 Old Alresford Hampshire Eng d ca 1710 m ca 1655

(561) Mary PALMER b ca 1635 Eng d VA

(576) Hans Phillip GUTBROD b 11 Dec 1655 Nordheim Ger d 7 Jul 1712 Nordheim m 3 May 1693 Nordheim

(577) Anna Barbara HOVELBAUER b 17 Aug 1662 Nordheim

(578) Hans Peter SCHUCKHNER b ca 1674 d after 1747 m 30 Oct 1701 Nordheim Ger

(579) Anna Barbara REMPOLTZ d 5 Feb 1716 Nordheim Ger

(584) John LEDBETTER, Sr. b before 1664 Charles City Co VA d after 1730 Bristol Parish Prince George Co VA m ca 1687

(585) Mary ---- d after 1727 Brunswick Co VA

(816) Giles COOK

(817) ---- BUCKNER


(1072) George BELL, Sr. d 1702 Isle of Wight Co VA

(1073) Joyce ----

(1120) John SHACKELFORD b ca 1600 lv New Alresford Hampshire Eng

(1122) Edward PALMER

(1152) Michel GUTBROD d 26 Jul 1673 Nordheim Ger

(1153) Christina ---- d 20 Dec 1670 Nordheim

(1154) Philipp HOFELBAUER m 10 Jul 1660 Nordheim Ger

(1155) Anna Maria ---- d 17 Jan 1696 Nordheim

(1156) Balthas SCHUCKHNER b 7 Jan 1642 Nordheim Ger d after 1701 m 15 Aug 1665 Nordheim

(1157) Barbara BURCKHARDT d 17 Oct 1689 Nordheim

(1158) Joseph REMPOLTZ lv Lauffen am Neckar Ger

(1170) Henry LEDBETTER, Sr. b ca 1625 Eng d before 1700 Charles City Co VA

(1632) Mordecai COOKE b Suffolk Co Eng d before 1667 m 1648 Glouchester Co VA

(1633) Susannah ----

(1634) John BUCKNER (?)


(2240) Lancelot SHACKELFORD b ca 1560 Old Arlesford Hampshire Eng

(2312) Jonas SCHICKNER lv Ger

(2314) Caspar BURCKHARDT locksmith in Nordheim or Stettin Ger

(2340) Thomas LEDBETTER b ca 1600 nr Durham Eng d ca 1655 Charles City Co VA

(3264) John COOKE lv Suffolk Co Eng