Heathcock Genealogy Database - Person Sheet
Heathcock Genealogy Database - Person Sheet
NameIsaac King , GG Grandfather
Birthca 1824, TN
Death21 May 1863, Vicksburg, Hinds Co MS Age: 39
FatherElias King Sr. (1786->1860)
MotherElizabeth (Unknown) (1785->1860)
1Mary Jane Fisher , GG Grandmother
Birth7 Jun 1827, MS
Death19 May 1897, Nockenut, Wilson Co TX Age: 69
BurialNockenut Cemetery256
FatherElijah Fisher (ca1785-1838)
MotherElizabeth Dees (1793->1840)
Marriage25 Nov 1847, Hinds Co MS257,258,259
ChildrenElias E. (1849->1870)
 Mary Ellen (1850-ca1855)
 Ann Medora (Dodie) (1853-1936)
 Florence (1854-1928)
 John Swept (1856-1886)
 William Patrick (1858-1930)
 Saphronia (1859-1940)
 Otho (1861-1939)
Notes for Isaac King
On November 25, 1847, Mary Jane Fisher married Isaac King, born in Tennessee in 1824, in Hinds County Mississippi. The couple lived in Jackson, Mississippi and are listed in the 1850 and 1860 census records. 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. Isaac is described in both the 1850 and 1860 census as a “planter” and he is reported to have owned three slaves in 1850 and five in 1860.

According to a story told by a descendant (Floy Akin Garner), about 1861 or 1862 the King family moved went to Haywood Co TN because they had been told that a battle between the Confederates and Yankees was going to take place near where they lived. They left for Tennessee where some of Isaac’s brothers lived. When they left there was a Confederate sentry posted at their front gate. A battle was fought near their Mississippi home but not on their land. The Yankees ransacked their home. They took the dresser drawers and used them for feed troughs for their horses. Floy recalled that there was a little town 10 or 12 miles from their home in Tennessee called Brownsville. There was a store and probably a post office called Rudolph near them also. There was a big cedar tree at the side of the walk of the old King house in Tennessee. The house was brick and the foundations are all that is left today.260

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.261 At the time, he described himself as a planter.262 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, 1863.263 Isaac King fought with the Rebel army in the Battle of Big Black. According to a family story told by Floy Medora Akin Garner, Isaac’s granddaughter, Isaac was a “swabber” with a canon crew. It was reported to the family that Isaac had been killed, but they later learned that he had been promoted to Corporal and it was his replacement who was killed. However, soon after, Isaac became ill with dysentery and died on 25 May 1863, during the siege of Vicksburg.

The official cause of death as given in his compiled service record was diptheria. However, the form reporting his interment in the Vicksburg National Cemetery, the date of death was recorded as 2 July 1863 and the following Remarks are given: “Orig. bur. near 4 mi. Bridge near Vicksburg. There was a grand charge made May 22, 1863 on Ft. Hill by Gen’l Logan’s div. 17th Army Corps & many of those following were killed in here & by hand grenades thrown over works.” The interment form may be seen on the multimedia page for this record.

Isaac was apparently a man of some means. He was described in the 1850 census as a Planter, so he had his own land. He owned 3 slaves in 1850 and 5 in 1860.

1850 Census of Hinds Co MS:

Isaac King, 26, m, Planter, b Tenn
Mary J. King, 23, f, b MS
Elias E. King, 1, m, b MS
Mary E. King, 3/12, f, b MS

1850 Slave Schedule, Hinds Co MS:

Name of Slave Owner: Isaac King
Male, aged 22
Male, aged 16
Male, aged 40

1860 Census of Hinds Co MS:

Isaac King, 35, m, Farmer, b Ala
M.J. King, 33, f, b MS (attended school in last year)
E. King, 11, m, b MS (attended school in last year)
Ann M. King, 7, f, b MS
Florence King, 5, f, b MS
J. S. King, 4, m, b MS
W. G. King, 2, m, b MS
S. King, 7/12, f, b MS
E. King, 75, f, b NC

1860 Slave Schedule, Hinds Co MS:

Name of Slave Owner, Isaac King.
Aged 32 Male
Aged 25 Male
Aged 21 Female
Aged 13 Female
Aged 3 Female

I believe that Isaac's father was Elias King Sr,, a prosperous planter who lived in Brownsville, Haywood Co TN. I have only been able to locate Elias King in the census once--1860. He was 74 and was listed as head of household that included his son Elias King Jr. and his son-in-law J. H. Smith, and their families. Elias Sr. and Elias Jr., between them, owned 33 slaves, so they must have had a very substantial plantation. Their real estate was valued at $56,000, which was a lot in those days! In the town of Wellwood, which is about 10 1/2 miles from Brownsville, lived Rufus King and his family, including his wife Elisa and his eldest daughter Elizabeth.

Now, according to a story told to my cousin Ronald Ray Akin by Floy Medora Akin Garner, after Isaac died in the siege of Vicksburg, about 1862, the King family went to Haywood Co., Tennessee. This would have been Isaac's widow Mary Jane and all of the seven surviving children, from Elias (age 13) down to Otho (age 1) [Mary Ellen had already died as a child.] Floy said that the King family moved from Mississippi to Tennessee because they had been told that a battle between the Confederates and Yankees was going to take place near where they lived in Mississippi.

[Note added 7 Mar 2012. This story is probably true but it is likely that Mary Jane and her children went to Tennessee before the Siege of Vicksburg began, which was in March 1863. Isaac died of disease during the siege, 21 May 1863.]

According to Floy, they went to Haywood County, Tennessee where some of Isaac’s brothers lived. She also said that there was a store and probably a post office called Rudolph near them. There was a big cedar tree at the side of the walk of the old King house in Tennessee. The house was brick and the foundations are all that is left today. Finally, she told Ronald Ray that there was a little town about 10 or 12 miles away from their home named Brownsville."

This agrees pretty well with what the census records about Haywood Co TN in 1860 (see records on page of Elias King Sr.) I think that Rufus and Elias King Jr. were the brothers that Floy was talking about and that Elias King Sr. was his father. It would appear that Mary Jane and the children went to Wellwood to live with Rufus King and it is true that Brownsville is only 10 miles away.

Further circumstantial evidence is in the names:

(1) Isaac's father and brother were named Elias. Isaac and Mary Jane named their first son Elias. The name was used again by Florence King, who named her son William Elias (but he always went by Elias).

(2) Elias King Sr. had a son named Otho King, who died in Haywood Co TN in 1853 at the age of 23. Isaac and Mary Jane named their last son, born in 1861, Otho.

In 1869 Florence King married William Calvin Dawson in Ripley, which is about 20 miles from Brownsville. They had two children, William Elias (b August 27, 1872) and John Eva, before W. C. Dawson died in 1876 (according to two different descendants, he got drunk and spent the night laying on the ground in the winter and died of pneumonia). 
Notes for Mary Jane (Spouse 1)
Isaac's death left Mary Jane King as a 36-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.

In about 1862, Mary Jane King moved her remaining family to Haywood County, Tennessee, the home of Isaac King's family. [See notes with circumstantial case for the parentage of Isaac King under the page for Elias King.] She lived there for about 20 years and is listed in the Haywood Co census in 1870 and 1880.

1870 Census of District 8, Haywood Co TN (Brownsville)

King, M. J. 34 F W Keeping house MS
–––, J H 14 M W Farm hand MS
–––, W F 12 M W Farm hand MS
–––, Safroni 10 F W At home MS
–––, Otho 8 M W At home MS
Hunt, W H 24 M W Farm hand VA
---, M A 18 F W At home MS (Mary Jane’s daughter Medora Ann King Hurt)
King, Edman 17 M B Farm hand TN

King, E E 21 M W Farming MS
–––, A E 19 F W Farm hand TN

1880 Census of District 8, Haywood, TN:

King, Mary J., w, f, 55, Farming, MS, NC, NC
King, Otho, w, m, 18, son, MS, Tenn, MS
Dawson, Florence, w, f, 25, daughter, MS, Tenn, MS
Dawson, Eliza, w, f, 7, gr daughter, Tenn, Tenn, Tenn
Dawson, John, w,m. 6, gr son, Tenn, Tenn, Tenn

It is known from family tradition that Mary Jane King and her daughter Florence Dawson, both widows, brought their families to Texas by renting a railroad boxcar. They must have been there by 1885 because Leslie King, oldest son of Otho and Adelia King, was born in Texas.
Notes for Mary Jane (Spouse 1)
The Case for Assigning Elizabeth Dees as Mother of Mary Jane Fisher

by Clayton Heathcock, 7 April 2008

I have known for some time that Mary Jane's father was named Elijah Fisher, who died in Hinds Co MS in 1838, Elijah's will mentioned his wife Eliza Fisher and "three youngest children, David D. Fisher, Ann Eliza Fisher, and Mary Jane Fisher." The will also mentions his son Jacob F. Fisher and son-in-law Almond Robbins, who were the executors. Almond Robbins was the husband of Elijah's daughter Catherine Fisher (married in 1834). Mary Jane Fisher was 7 years old when her father died. After Elijah's death, Elizabeth Fisher continued to live in Hinds Co MS and was listed there as head-of-household in 1840, along with two sons and two daughters (probably David, Jacob, Anna Elizabeth and Mary Jane). Son-in-law Almond Robbins and his wife Catherine are listed as neighbors. Mary Jane Fisher married Isaac King in Hinds Co MS in 1847. There were probably other children as the 1830 census of the Elijah Fisher family in Hinds Co MS enumerated 7 males and 4 females. One possibility is a Hiram G. Fisher; Hinds Co MS documents pertaining to him were witnessed by a David D. Fisher. This Hiram G. Fisher married Penicia Perkins in Hinds Co MS on 30 March 1845.264

The mystery has been: 1. who was Elijah Fisher and 2. who was Elizabeth, his wife?

Almond Robbins was a blacksmith in Hinds Co MS and was born in New York. About a year ago I found a book about the New York Robbins family, written by a man named Lawrence Robbins.265,266 In the book Lawrence gave the parents of Catherine Fisher as Elijah Fisher and Elizabeth Deeds. Unfortunately, he did not have a source for Elizabeth's name, and he did not have any information about the parents of either Elijah or Elizabeth.

I also found Ann Eliza Fisher in the 1880 census and this gave me a very valuable clue. It turns out that her full name was Anna Elizabeth Fisher. She married George Nicholson Langford, Jr., who was later to be a member of the Mississippi State House of Representatives. In the 1880 census, she gave the state of birth of her father (Elijah) as Kentucky and of her mother (Elizabeth) as North Carolina. Now often you have to take census records with a grain of salt because in the early days many were not well educated and just made mistakes. But I figured that the wife of a public official was probably pretty literate and these states of birth were probably right.

So I began to look for families named Fisher (b in KY) and Deeds (b in VA) who lived close together. I found in the 1810 census records for a Sampson Dees and Elijah Fisher, relatively close neighbors in Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky. In 1810 the Elijah Fisher family included a woman the right age to be Elizabeth.

Sampson Dees was first found in the census in 1790, in Sampson Co NC, but here is the silver bullet -- Sampson Dees died in Warren Co Mississippi in 1817 and here is his estate probate:

Dees, Sampson.
Probated Sept. 23, 1817. Of Christian County, Kentucky.
Wife: Ruth, to have household goods and 2 negroes.
Children: son Samuel (youngest) to have negro, horse, saddle and bridle, feather bed and household furniture; dau. Polly Dees, to have negro, horse and saddle; dau. Altezes Woolf, to have negro, horse and saddle; sons William, Danson (Denson), Luke; daus. Elizabeth Fisher and Sally Jones. Exr: wife
Wit: John Clark, John Polls, John Mancy, David Mancy.

There is a healthy group working on the Dees (Deas) family and the line has been traced back to Scotland in 1660.
Last Modified 12 Dec 2019Created 21 Aug 2021 using Reunion for Macintosh
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