Cathedral Caverns II: Isom Wright and Indian Joe Muhlkey

The Story of Isom Wright and Indian Joe

As told by Truman Wright

Added to Ancestry Family Genealogy Site  by lpat47 on 16 Feb 2009

The year was 1809. Isom Wright was a mere 16 years old, when he and his four brothers first came to Wright’s Cove from Kentucky, after a year of barely surviving the other brothers returned home. Isom stayed and made himself a permanent camp by what is now known as Wright’s Spring, just under the crest of the mountain northeast of “Bat Cave”. There were several families of Cherokees living in the cave we today know as Cathedral Caverns.

While trying to catch a squirrel in a January snow, Isom slipped on an icy patch and broke his hip. After lying in the snow for hours he crawled in between some rocks for protection from the wind. About noon of the second day Isom heard the Cherokees walking through the woods. He didn’t know if he should call to them or not. His movement made a noise and they took him to their cave.

For the next two years Isom lived in the cave with the Cherokees. The cave gave excellent protection winter and. summer with a year round temperature of 50 degrees. They used the creek running through the cave for storing meats and generally keeping food fresh, as well as a permanent water supply. Being a pioneer made Isom familiar with the lifestyle and foods of the Cherokee. During this time Isom became a “blood brother” to the Cherokees and best friends with Indian Joe.

Isom eventually settled two miles northeast of Bat Cave at Wright’s spring. He built a cabin, married and had two sons, John and James. Within in the next twenty years the settlers and the Cherokees lived side-by-side, giving and sharing information and food needed for living an everyday existence.

Until the final removal or Trail of Tears in 1837 Isom was a friend and champion of the Cherokees. Although his whole family was removed Indian Joe refused to leave his mountain. He disappeared into the woods. The only connection he had with anyone was a tree one-quarter mile from Isom’s cabin, in Wright’s Cove between his cabin and Bat Cave. It was here a flour sack of supplies was left every Friday. The list was very simple coffee, salt, tobacco, flour and in later years ammo. Isom presented Joe with his first rifle, until then he did all his hunting with bow and arrow. Life was not easy for Indian Joe. He was shot twice, and the government agents were always after him:  His woods were disappearing.

Eventually John and James moved out of the cove, James to Texas and John to Aspel over close to Woodville. John Wright had three children Isom, John, and Mattie. John’s son Isom moved back to his Grandfather Isom’s cabin to look after him and helped take care of Indian Joe. This was after his Grandfather took arthritis in his right hip and had difficulty walking.

During the Civil War the Government slacked off their search for Joe. He was then in his 70’s. Young Isom served in the southern army, fighting in several major battles. He returned home around 1866, as did most southerners.

In 1882 Young Isom moved to present day Babe Wright’s Road. He built a country store and accumulated a considerable tract of land, from Wright’s Cove to Birch Hollow. From the back of his store he could see one quarter mile south to Joe’s spring and stream, with a clear view of the tree where Joe picked up his supplies. On his way to and from the store Isom would watch for signals, the white sack in the tree other than a Friday would signal something wrong with Joe. Only once was this system used, on a Tuesday Joe hung his bag in the tree. Isom went quickly and found Joe one hundred feet from the tree partially conscious. Joe had pneumonia and was near death. Isom carried him home and nursed him back to health. Joe was now diminished from his average height and weight, looking old and wrinkled in the face. His right side was drawn and weak from age and weathering. Anyone seeing him could easily recognize his derby hat with a tail feather standing up. These were the only trademarks left.

Indian Joe settled in Birch Hollow for his later years. He would bring in food to Isom, pick-up corn from the barn, even milk the cows during the night. The Wrights were always proud of noises in the night, it was just Joe, the dogs wouldn’t even bark. Joe was even known to mend fences at the backside of the property, or remove fallen timber. Isom kept his word to his Grandfather, even becoming best of friends with Joe. The old smoke house on the Isom Wright place had a special room where Joe could come in and sleep in his later years.

Today Birch Hollow lies south of Truman Wright’s property line. The spring is only one half mile east of his home in Swearengin. There is a large gum tree by the spring, but Truman says he doesn’t think it’s the same tree. A cave with a water source nearby is about 500 feet south of Truman’s land line with a rock wall built up inside. You can still find arrowheads scattered in the fields around the spring. Some say it was a battlefield, some say it was just Joe hunting.

Misty Mountain News

Cherokee Tribe of Northeast Alabama
P.O. Box 66
Grant, Alabama 35747

The newsletter is undated but was postmarked from Birmingham 18 Oct 2004.

indian-joevaught-cem_indian-joe1

VAUGHT CEMETERY

Taken from The Arkansas Historical Quarterly, Autumn 1955

The site of the Vaught Cemetery, which is about five miles northeast of Mountainburg (Crawford Co., Arkansas) in the Big Frog Valley, will be covered with water when the dam above Lake Fort Smith is completed and its reservoir fills. This dam was authorized by the city of Fort Smith to create an additional water supply for the city. According to the contract for building the dam, it will be completed in early 1956.

This century-old cemetery has been used as their burial ground as long as the present generation can remember. A report from B. A. McConnell who had the contract for removing the graves, states that “488 graves were moved from the original Vaught Cemetery and 18 graves from an old cemetery on East – making 506 graves in the new Vaught Cemetery.” The site of the new Vaught Cemetery is three and a half miles south of the old location. It is on Highway 71 and near the Shepherd Springs road. This new cemetery was dedicated on Sunday, Aug. 28, 1955.

Many soldiers, one dating back to the War of 1812, are buried in this cemetery. It was started on land once owned by Samuel Caswell Vaught. He settled near Fayetteville in 1842 but removed to Crawford County in 1846 and established his home on the road between Mountainburg (the Narrows, then) and what is now known as Winfrey. About 1850 Caswell Vaught buried an old Cherokee Indian (Indian Joe Muhlkey/Mulkey) in one corner of his land down by the Big Frog Creek. This Indian had attached himself to the family and befriended them during their first days in the valley. Later Caswell gave the plot to the community to use as a burial ground.

vaught_cemetery_entrance1vaught_cemetery_1vaught-cem_view_from_cemetery_entrance_1

SHEPHERD WRIGHT, Mary

1810-1890

Isham Wright was early scout for wagon trains heading west. Son of James Bradford Wright and Mary “Polly” Smith. Older brother of Elmira (Mariah)Wright. Mary “Polly” Shepherd Wright was sister of John “Jack” Shepherd, daughter of Uriah Shepherd and Elizabeth Smith.

SHEPHERD WRIGHT, Mary - Crawford County, Arkansas

WRIGHT, Elizabeth R

Wife of J.B. Wright

Order of the Eastern Star symbol

Born Feb 05, 1838
Died Oct 14, 1880

WRIGHT, Elizabeth R. - Crawford County, Arkansas

WRIGHT, Isham

1811-1899

WRIGHT, Mary

1810-1890

WRIGHT, Mary - Crawford County, Arkansas

WRIGHT SHEPHERD, Elmira

Wife of John Shepherd and daughter of James Bradford Wright. Came to Crawford County with family from Jackson County AL. Grave located near water tower at south end of cemetery.

WRIGHT SHEPHERD, Elmira - Crawford County, Arkansas

WRIGHT, J.B.

Born Jan 17, 1[833?]
Died Apr ??, ????

“He is gone but not forgotten”

This stone had been broken, and roughly repaired, in two places. The death date was unrecognizable.

WRIGHT, J.B. - Crawford County, Arkansas

Genealogy of William Jackson “Jack” Wright

Genealogy gives us a little window into the past:  into “our past.”  The blood of these strong folks who came before us now runs through our veins.  For me, it’s fascinating to research the family tree and sometimes find information that provides a small glimpse into their lives… these sometimes very illusive, mysterious family members long since gone.

What were they like?  What did they do every day?  What were their struggles?  Due to the period of time they walked this earth, life was most likely much harder than it is for us.  Regardless, I know that they laughed, they cried and they loved much as we do now. They had their joys and their sorrows.

This post honors one of those families:  William Jackson (John) “Jack” Wright (son of Ardell Wright and Martha) and his beautiful bride, Sarah Frances Thomason (daughter of Montgomery L “Tobe” Thomason and Mary Mexico Harper).

This will be the first of many genealogy related posts.  And as I learn more about each of these individuals or families, I will return to that post to add the new information.  So check back from time to time!  Now, lets get to know Jack and Sarah!

William Jackson (John) “Jack” Wright

Birth:  09 Jan 1876 in Woodville, Jackson Co. Alabama
Death: 27 Jan 1949 in Memphis, Shelby Co., Tennessee

Sarah Frances Thomason

Birth: 17 Mar 1882 in Woodville, Jackson Co. Alabama
Death: Dec 03 1966 in Memphis, Shelby Co., Tennessee

jack_sarah_holy-bonds-cert

Jack & Sarah’s Children:

Verna G Wright     1900 –         

William Herbert “Hub” Wright     1902 – 1971

Nathan Delmar Wright     1902 – 1976

Gladys Marie Wright      1906 – 1945

Odie Milburn Wright     1907 – 1959

Verbon Robert Wright     1909 – 1988

Ruby Blanche Wright     1910 – 1965

Orville David Wright     1913 – 1965

Raybon Talmadge Wright     1915 – 1990

Wendell Clyde Wright     1915 – 1957

Mary Idell Wright   1922 – 1971

Kenneth Wright   1925 –        

(Jake Wright  –        ?)

~

Folks, We Have A Mystery… Help Us Solve It!

There are two pairs of Jack & Sarah Wright’s children whose birth dates seem unusually close together.  William, b. 27 Aug 1902, and Nathan, b. 20 Dec 1902. These dates are verified by the SS Death Index.  The second pair of children: Raybon (Abe), b. 16 Feb 1915, and Wendell, b. 15 Dec 1915.

Jack & Sarah were married on the 6th of March, 1898 in Jackson Co, Alabama by the Rev. David Derrick.

jackwright_sarah_cert1

Jack has been rather hard to find.  Below is the 1880 Census record which proves why genealogy research can be an extremely challenging experience. (Our very own Louis found this census record, using his master research skills!)

Name: John Might
[John Wright] 
[William Jack Wright] 
Home in 1880: Kinnemers and Kirbys, Marshall, Alabama
Age: 4
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1876
Birthplace: Alabama
Relation to Head of Household: Son
Father’s Name: Rdele (Ardell)
Father’s birthplace: Alabama
Mother’s Name: Martha
Mother’s birthplace: Alabama
Neighbors:
Marital Status: Single
Race: White
Gender: Male
Cannot read/write:                           Blind: 

Deaf and dumb:

Otherwise disabled:

Idiotic or insane:


Household Members:
Name Age
Rdele Might 45
Martha Might 34
David Might 8
Mary Might 6
John Might 4
Maragret Might 7M
 
                            

 


__________________________________________

BELOW:

William Jackson “Jack” Wright’s World War I Draft Registration Card

1917-1918  –  Jackson Co., Alabama Records

william-jack-wwi-draft

williamjackwright-family-pic(L to R) Gladys Marie, Sarah Frances Thomason, Verbon, Odie, William Jackson “Jack,” William “Hub” and Nathan Delmar Wright

sarah-frances-thomason-wrightSarah Frances Thomason Wright in her later years.

Still a very pretty lady!

~

William Jackson “Jack” Wright’s Certificate of Death

williamjwright_deathcert

Sarah’s Certificate of Death

sarah-frances_death-cert

The Wright Family

Added to Ancestry Family Genealogy Records
by lpat47 on 27 Jan 2009
The Wright Family

The Story of Woodville and Community AlbumBy John Robert Kennamer, Sr.

The Wrights came from South Carolina to East Tennessee to Southeast Kentucky, then came to Madison County before settling in Jackson County, Alabama. Old Isom Wright settled at Wright’s Spring in Wright’s Cove, about twenty years before the Indians were removed to the Indian Territory.

All his salt, ammunition and farming supplies were bought at Hunstsville[.] He had two brothers and a sister who settled near Aspel.

Children of Old Isom Wright: (1) John Wright m. Charlotty Hill, a granddaughter of Hans Kennamer. The Post Office records show John Wright was appointed Postmaster at Woodville, August 5, 1867, and served until the office was discontinued Feb. 14, 1870. He and wife “Lottie” lived in Wood’s Cove. Children: (a) Nancy Wright m. Asap Kennamer. (b) Martha Wright m. Wade Cline. They went to Texas in a wagon. (a) Isham A. Wright m. Margaret Susan Thomas. Children: John Will, Silas S., Martha, Joseph W., Robert I., Charles David (Dea), Nannie A., Emmer A. Ida Dellar and Bentley M. Wright.

(2) (Particular) James Wright m. Harriett Hill. He made guns for the pioneers. Fifteen children were born to this union. They emigrated to Texas before there were any railroads. Many of their children died on the road.

(3) Jacob Cline married a daughter of Old Isom Wright. They went to Texas.

(4) Martha Wright m. Sampson Wilder, Jr. They also went to Texas.

There were other Wrights in Marshall, Madison, and Jackson Counties. William (Bill) Wright m. Amanda Jane Manning. He lived to be 87 years old; died in Peter’s Cove where he is buried. One of his sons, Delbert Wright m. Ethel Ashburn. They live in Peter’s Cove. There is another family of Wrights only slightly related to William Wright. Jack Wright was a cripple—made shoes for my father and others. He worked in Woodville a few years. His brother, Andill Wright lived on my father’s farm many years. He married Martha Smith. Children (1) David Wright (1872-1946) m. Susie Paseur, (2) W. J. (Jack) Wright m. Sarah Thomason, (3) Margaret, (4) Eliza Wright m. George Woody.

Published by East Alabama Publishing Co., Inc.

Lanett, Alabama · West Point, Georgia

1950   –    pp. 298-9

~

The Wrights in North Alabama

Added to Ancestry Family Genealogy Records by lpat47 on 22 Jan 2009

JACKSON COUNTY SENTINEL, SCOTTSBORO, ALABAMA, DECEMBER 2, 1947

Gleanings of History and Genealogy

BY JOHN R. KENNAMER, SR.

The Wrights in North Alabama

The first record we have of any Wright in this part of the state is John Wright, Captain of the Militia in Madison County, Mississippi Territory, now Alabama, Dec. 4, 1816. John Wright married Sarah Moon, Sept. 20, 1820 in Madison County, Alabama. What relation he was, if any, to the three brothers and their sister who settled Wright’s Cove and Aspel before this county and state were organized December 13 and 14, 1819 respectively, I do not know. These Wrights came from South Carolina to East Tennessee to Southeast Kentucky, where they lived a few years near Sampson Wilder. St., then came to Madison County before settling in Jackson County.

Old Isom Wright settled at Wright’s Spring in Wright’s Cove, about twenty years before the Indians were removed to Indian Territory. All his salt, ammunition and farming supplies were bought at Huntsville.

His brother, “Old Bucky” Buchanan Wright settled just across the cedar ridge west of Aspel. Another brother whose name I do not have settled at a spring on the side of the mountain near the old stage road from Huntsville to Belletente, of between Woodville and Aspel. His home was burned when the Indians were being removed west 1836-38.

His daughter married John Giddeon. All this branch of the family moved west years ago.

Brooks Smith, Sr., married first a sister, whose name I do not have, of these Wright brothers. Children of Old Isom Wright: (1) James Wright married Harriet Hill born about 1809. James was called “Particular Jim”. He made guns for the pioneers. Fifteen children were born to this union. They moved west.

(2) John Wright married Charlotte Hill (called Lottie). They lived in Woods Cove.

Jacob Cline married a daughter. They went to Texas.

Sampson Wilder, Jr., married Martha Wright and they went to Texas.

“Old Bucky” Wright’s children: (1) Calvin Wright who married Ann Shook, daughter of Milburn Shook. Children were (a) Buchanan. (b) Minas, (c) Laura married Tom Huggins. They moved west. Minas Wright married Mary Woodall, youngest daughter of Dr. Presley Woodall and wife Demaris Busby. Buchanan Wright married Bell Lindsay. Children: Effie Wright married Moke Walls. Jane Wright married Porter Walls. Elmer Wright married Mamie Watson. Oakland Wright—single. Barton Wright died in 1944. Calvin or Cal Wright had two brothers; one went west years ago. The other brothers died young, leaving 3 children who were reared by Cal. One boy was named Wiley Wright, another one was named Cam Wright.

There are other Wrights in Jackson County. David Wright said: “My grandfather Wright came from Virginia and settled in Paint Rock bend in Madison County, Alabama. He had been married twice before his death.[”]

Elijah Whitaker later owned the homestead. Children were: (1) William or Bill Wright; (2) Jack or John Wright, (3) Ardil Wright, and (4) Elizabeth or Bettie who married Jeff Tate. Children of Bill Wright were Ardil, Joe, Pleas, and Jeff Wright. These all lived in Humpton, which is in Marshall County near Butler’s Mill.

Jack Wright was a crippled man, who was a shoe cobbler. He made shoes for my father’s family. He worked at Woodville a few years and was serving as Postmaster at Woodville when this office was discontinued early in 1870 for a few months.

Ardil married Martha Smith, daughter of Ambrose Smith. The latter lived at the place later known as the Joel Barclay place. He had two sons—Bud and Andy Smith. Ardil Wright lived on my father’s farm many years. His children were (1) David Wright, born June 9, 1872 and died Jan. 22, 1946 and married Susie Paseur. David was a true friend of the writer.

(2) Jack Wright married Sarah Thomason. They reside at Glen, Miss.

(3) Margaret Wright. (4) Eliza Wright married George Woody, now deceased. His widow lives in Chattanooga.

John Wright was related to those Wrights just mentioned as living in Marshall County. He could have been a son of John Wright who married Sarah Moon in Madison County. He married Martha Fletcher who was a sister to Amanda Fletcher, who was the wife of James Whitaker. John Wright and his family went north to escape the horrors of the Civil War; returned after this conflict was ended.

Children: (1) Governor Wright married Sis Finley. (2) Robert or Bob Wright married Laura Wallace, daughter of F. M. Wallace, minister of the Church of Christ. (3) David Wright. (4) William or Bill Wright married Amanda Jane Manning, sister of Mart and Joe Manning. William lived to be 87 years old—dying about 4 years ago—buried in Peter’s Cove. Children: (a) Ed Wright married Lillian Blanton. (b) Carrie Wright who married John Peters. (c) Mart Wright who married Della Brewer. (d) Delbert Wright married Ethel Ashburn. They reside in Peters Cove. (e) Daisy Wright married Jess Hall.

Sarah’s Parents:

tobe_mary_photo

Montgomery L “Tobe” Thomason and Mary Mexico Harper

Montgomery “Tobe” Thomason and his wife, Mary Mexico Harper Thomason pictured above with their grandchildren, Granville and Beatrice Lewis.

tobe-thomason_death

 

tobe-thomason_mary-harper-tombstone

New Photo of Sweet Ava

ava_1-09

A sweet, new photo of Lee’s beautiful granddaughter, Ava (daughter of Richard and Lacey).  What a precious baby girl!

Yes, indeed!  “Simply Perfect,

Our So Very Pink, Sweet, Little Pig-tailed Ava!”

Hey folks!  Post a note to Lee!

War Department Documents (1784 to 1800)

Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter
by Dick Eastman on 1/13/09

The following is an announcement of a new web site:

Between 1784 and 1800, the War Department of the United States was responsible for Indian affairs, veteran affairs, naval affairs (until 1798), as well as militia and army matters. For example, the War Department operated the nation’s only federal social welfare program, providing veterans’ benefits (including payments to widows and orphans) to more than 4,000 persons.

On the night of November 8, 1800, fire devastated the War Office, consuming the papers, records, and books stored there. Two weeks later, Secretary of War Samuel Dexter lamented in a letter that “All the papers in my office [have] been destroyed.”  For the past two centuries, the official records of the War Department effectively began with Dexter’s letter.

The project to reconstitute the War Department Papers was begun more than a dozen years ago, and it has involved years of painstaking work, including visits to more than 200 repositories and the consulting of more than 3,000 collections in the United States, Canada, England, France, and Scotland.

Papers of the War Department 1784-1800 will present this collection of more than 55,000 documents in a free, online format with extensive and searchable metadata linked to digitized images of each document, thereby insuring free access for a wide range of users.

The searchable Field List includes:

Persons/Groups — Search in the “persons/groups” field
Locations — Search in the “locations” field
Items/Things — Search in the “items/things” field
Summary — Search in the “summary” field
Phrases — Search in the “phrases” field

Because this collection of papers was reconstituted from archives scattered across the United States, oftentimes more than one copy of a document was recovered. Sometimes these documents may be slightly different. To preserve the archival record, and to allow access to multiple versions of these historically valuable documents, the archive has retained and posted all images of all versions in their possession.

You can see many interesting, historical documents relating to our Stockton ancestors such as Richard and John Stockton at:

http://wardepartmentpapers.org

Icy and Nathan’s Love Story

When Nathan first saw Icy, he knew he wanted to marry her.  Love at first sight.  She was singing in church.  He said she looked like an angel, standing up there singing in the choir!

wrights_as_young_couple-1

Left to right:  Gladys Hollaway (Nathan’s younger sister who died at a young age) with her husband Allen behind her (their children: Melvin, Bobby and Junior)  When Gladys died, Allen was a very gentle and sweet man.  He married again and lived in Buntyn, making a living by working on and selling sewing machines; center front is the beautiful, sweet Gladys, wife of Abe Wright with Abe standing behind her.  What a beautiful couple they were, both so handsome and stylish;  right front is Icy with Ken standing behind her.  No finer people were there than these two amazing people.

He was friends with her brother.  He discovered that she was ‘ornery’ and he like that about her!  He also thought she was the most beautiful girl he had ever seen.

Grandma Hall didn’t like him at first.  Actually, she despised him.  She forbid him from taking her daughter out.  She thought Icy was way too young to be dating.  He worked hard and finally won her over.

Their courtship was sometimes rocky.  They quarreled a bit when they were dating.  But nothing serious.

Nathan asked Icy to marry him while driving in his car.  Her first answer to his proposal was ‘NO!’

But… he obviously got her to say ‘YES’ at some point!

mamaw_papaw_wright

icy_nathan_anniv

Nathan and Icy were married for 55 years until Nathan’s death in 1976.   They had a wonderful, blessed life together.  Icy passed away on December 4th, 1997, the day before their wedding anniversary.  I guess she was just ready to celebrate their anniversary together once again!  But gosh, how we miss them!

Nathan… How much do you know about him?

nathan_studioNathan was born in Woodville, Alabama.  His mother was about 23 years old when she had him.  He looked like his father.

He recalled that his best birthday was when he was 23, just after getting married.

He said the tooth fairy never visited him when he was a kid.  Nor did he ever get an allowance.

It was his father who did the spanking when he needed it.  He said the naughtiest he ever was, was when he put his dirty feet on the churn to keep the lid down.  And yes, he got a spanking.

A man by the name of Mr. Thomas was very influential in his life, giving him a lot of advise.  And his advise to others was to always be honest and work hard.

He never had to go to the hospital for broken bones or stitches.  And he was never afraid of doctors.

He got around mostly traveling by horse, wagon and finally a car (right before he got married).  He never ran away from home but when he got frustrated at home, he would go visit his married sisters.

His favorite color was ‘blue.’  His favorite book was the ‘Holy Bible and mysteries.’  His favorite move was ‘Gone With the Wind’ and his favorite song was ‘John Henry.’   His favorite sport was ‘wrestling.’  His favorite hobby (…more of a passion, I would say) was ‘fishing.’   His favorite season was ‘spring.’  His favorite holiday was ‘Christmas.’  His pie of choice was ‘chocolate’ (must run in the family…)  His favorite candy was ‘peppermint’ and his favorite cookie was ‘sugar cookies.’  His favorite ice cream was ‘vanilla.’

His father had a bad temper and threw his plow in the river one day.

He rubbed a bee hive once with his brothers.  Notice he said it was only once….

He remembered that his dad got on to his brother one tiime for knocking his plate into the floor and his little brother looked up to his dad and asked him who was going to switch him!

Nathan said all the Wrights were happy, friendly people.

When he was growing up, they lived in a plain country house that had ‘no paint!’  They had a small yard.  The light in the house was oil lamps and they heated it with a wood stove.  They washed their clothese in a kettle over the fire.  It had 4 large rooms.

He said his mother and sister made one Christmas extra-special!  They bought him a lot of fishing equipment.

Nathan said the main thing he remembered about his mother was that she was always a thoughtful person.

Her cooking?  He fondly remembered her mixed vegetables.  He said she was a good cook.

When it snowed, they would make a snowman and of course, he had the duty of chopping wood.

He said the worst job he ever had was laying down railroad ties.  At one time, he also worked as a cook and had to mop floors for a living.

A funny story he recalled from the first year he was married was when he was going real fast in the car and ran off the road.  Icy said, “I guess you will stop NOW!”

They lived and had children in Burnsville, MS,  Corinth, MS,  Glenn, MS,  Winnasoga, MS,  and Memphis, TN.

He never made or handed out Valentines Day cards but said he did give candy and flowers to a girl.  (He didn’t name the girl!)

The Easter Bunny never came to see him but they would have a picnic on July 4th.  No firecrackers, though.

Nathan went to grade school at Mt. Olive, Alabama and went to high school in Glenn, MS.  He made good grades and his favorite subjects were History, Geography and Math.  He walked to school and he said the thing he thought about most was girls!

His family never went on vacations, so he didn’t travel when he was young.  When he was grown, he went to Washington State with his daughter, Teen and her husband, Dick.  They also traveled to Cleveland and Canada.  Nathan would go to the State Fair too.

When he started dating Icy, Nathan said his parents liked her right way!

Oh, one more thing.  They called him Nate sometimes… and sometimes they called him ‘Jelly Roll.’

Icy: How much do you know about her?

j-t-hall-family

hall-bunchIcy’s family

halls

Icy was born on a Sunday in Ittawamba, MS.  She weighed about 5 lbs., had blue eyes, golden blond hair and a ‘hot’ temperament.

She had 7 brothers and 3 sisters.  She said Harve was the nicest of the  brothers.  Doc was the youngest and was a bit spoiled.  They had to share everything.

hall-reunion-icyLeft to Right:  Doc, Sara, ___?, Icy, Cheryl (back), ___?  (Email me please on this!)

One of the fads she remembers from growing up was that they would look in the water on the first day of May to see who we were going to marry.  They told fortunes with a key in the Bible.  The key was supposed to turn to give them their answers.

She wanted to be a school teacher when she grew up.  They had an organ, and she said she always wanted to play it but never learned how.

Her favorite games were hide and seek and ball.  Her favorite toy was a china doll.  She didn’t like sports much, so she never sledded, went skiing or skating.

Her parents didn’t play with them much.  Her father died when she was 6 and her mother had no time to spare, due to taking care of the children and all.  She did teach Icy to cook though, when she was very young.  She learned first to cook corn bread and sugar cookies.  And she said she never had a cooking disaster!  Her favorite food was her grandma’s chocolate pies and also fried fish.

Her chores were pickin’ cotton, hoeing, drying apples and fruit, weaving cloth, and making homemade soap.

Candy was a penny a piece, so you could get 25 for a quarter.  When she earned a little money, she remembers buying a kelly green sweater, but it was hard to get ahold of any money in those days.

She had a pet sheep named Lee.  It was special to her because it minded her so well.

Her best friend was Earle Allred.  They always played well together.  The big bully was Stuart Benick.  He was mean to her.

She never had a room to herself growing up.  There were 13 people in their house.  They warmed the house with a fireplace in the Winter and they air conditioned the house by opening a window!

Santa would come to visit at Christmas and leave candy and fruit in their stockings.

Icy was 19 years old when she learned to drive.  Nathan taught her.  She never had her own car.

On weekends, her and her friend would go to ice cream suppers, candy breakings and singings.  She never had a pajama party!  She never teased her teachers or played jokes on them.  And she never played hooky!

She was on the school ball team.  Baseball.  She said they called it country and town.  In town when you batted and country when you were out in the field.

She said they had lots of homework.  She went to school from 8 to 4.

She said her wedding day was horrible!  They got their license at the wrong place.  They were married on the railroad tracks and she remembers they got stuck in the mud!  Her mother didn’t even get to see them because they had a lot of people waiting to see them.

For their honeymoon, they went to an Aunt’s house.  An Aunt she had never met!  And her Aunt had a lot of children.

Later, when Icy had her own kids:

She said Sara was a cute baby, but very stubborn (imagine that…)!  She said one time she took her shoes off and wouldn’t pick them up, so Icy had to take her hands and make her pick them up!

Stockton Geneology

Mary Ann Stockton

Mary Ann Stockton

Joseph Stockton Headstone

Joseph Stockton Headstone

Francis Stockton, Son of Joseph C. Stockton

Francis Stockton, Son of Jone Clayton Stockton

Polk Dallas Stockton's Headstone

Polk Dallas Stockton's Headstone

Tennie Vance Stockton

Tennie Vance Stockton, Wife of Joseph Stockton

Alice Bohannan Hall Geneology

alicebohannon-headstone

Bohannon Line, from Icy backward

Icy Hall Wright was born to James Thomas (Tee) Hall and Alice L. Bohannon in 1907 in Itawamba Co., MS.  Icy m. Nathan Delmar Wright, b. in 1902 in Woodville, Jackson Co., AL.  They married in 1925 in Alcorn, Claiborne Co., MS.  Nathan died in 1976 and Icy died in 1997 in Memphis, Shelby Co., TN

Alice L. Bohannon, b. Mar 16, 1867 in Burlson, AL, died ?, was married to James Thomas (Tee) Hall, b. Dec. 20, 1866 in Itawamba Co., MS, m. Nov. 25, 1999 in Franklin, Monroe Co., AL, d. Dec. 1915 or Jan 5, 1914 in Burnsville, MS, buried at Whitehurst Cem., MS.

Alice: dau. of:  Bohannon, Louis Alexander, b. May 9, 1845 in Henry Co., GA, d. May 30, 1928 in Maud, Seminole Co., OK, buried at Woff Cem., Seminole Co. OK.,  m. Mary Ann Grant, on Aug. 6, 1865, b.Nov. 16, 1846, GA, d. Jun 30, 1900 in Burlson, AL.

Louis:   son of:  Bohannon, Eli, b. 1815 in Henry Co, GA, d.in Henry Co. GA m.  Elizabeth Mercer, b. 1820 in GA.  Married on Mar. 4, 1841

Eli:          son of:  Bohannon, Beverly B., b. 1798 in Wilkes Co. NC, d. bef. 1860 in Newton, Baker Co. GA.m.  ?, Rachael, b. 1801, SC, d. bef. 1860 in Newton, Baker Co. GA.  m.?

(Bev?)    son of:  Bohannon, William, b. Abt 1775 in Wilkes Co., NC, d. 1815, Clark, GA. m.  ?, Barbara, b. abt. 1777

William: son of:  Bohannon, Duncan, b. Abt. 1752 in Orange Co., VA, d. 1811, Lincoln, GA

Duncan:  son of:  Bohannon, John, b. Abt. 1725 in Orange Co., VA, d. Dec. 1789, Surry, NC, m.  ?, Sarah, b. 1727

Duncan:  son of:  Bohanon, Dunkin (Jr. ?), b. Jan. 17, 1704 in Gloucester, VA, d. 1760 in Orange Co., VA

Son of:  Bohanon, Dunkan (Sr.?) b. Abt. 1675 in Gloucester, VA, d.  Feb/Mar, 1753 in Orange Co. VA, m. Sarah Elliott, b. abt. 1677

Son of:  Bohanon, Duncan, b. Abt. 1649
m. Dudley,  ? , b. abt. 1653

Johnny’s Family

jn-famLeft to Right:  Michael, Debbie (front), Johnny, Verna and Teresa.

The Declaration of Independence

declaration_of_independence

richard-stockton_signature1The Signature of Richard Stockton (above)

THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

In Congress, July 4, 1776,

THE UNANIMOUS DECLARATION OF THE THIRTEEN UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the Powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws of Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our People, and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from Punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the Lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attention to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

JOHN HANCOCK, President

Attested, CHARLES THOMSON, Secretary

New Hampshire
 JOSIAH BARTLETT	(My ancestor, a doctor and a curmudgeon to
			 be proud of, by all accounts)
 WILLIAM WHIPPLE
 MATTHEW THORNTON

Massachusetts-Bay
 SAMUEL ADAMS
 JOHN ADAMS
 ROBERT TREAT PAINE
 ELBRIDGE GERRY

Rhode Island
 STEPHEN HOPKINS
 WILLIAM ELLERY

Connecticut
 ROGER SHERMAN
 SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
 WILLIAM WILLIAMS
 OLIVER WOLCOTT

Georgia
 BUTTON GWINNETT
 LYMAN HALL
 GEO. WALTON

Maryland
 SAMUEL CHASE
 WILLIAM PACA
 THOMAS STONE
 CHARLES CARROLL
    OF CARROLLTON

Virginia
 GEORGE WYTHE
 RICHARD HENRY LEE
 THOMAS JEFFERSON
 BENJAMIN HARRISON
 THOMAS NELSON, JR.
 FRANCIS LIGHTFOOT LEE
 CARTER BRAXTON.

New York
 WILLIAM FLOYD
 PHILIP LIVINGSTON
 FRANCIS LEWIS
 LEWIS MORRIS

Pennsylvania
 ROBERT MORRIS
 BENJAMIN RUSH
 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
 JOHN MORTON
 GEORGE CLYMER
 JAMES SMITH
 GEORGE TAYLOR
 JAMES WILSON
 GEORGE ROSS

Delaware
 CAESAR RODNEY
 GEORGE READ
 THOMAS M'KEAN

North Carolina
 WILLIAM HOOPER
 JOSEPH HEWES
 JOHN PENN

South Carolina
 EDWARD RUTLEDGE
 THOMAS HEYWARD, JR.
 THOMAS LYNCH, JR.
 ARTHUR MIDDLETON

New Jersey
 RICHARD STOCKTON
 JOHN WITHERSPOON
 FRANCIS HOPKINS
 JOHN HART
 ABRAHAM CLARK

The Wife of Richard Stockton

Annis Boudinot Stockton

1736 – 1801

Wife of  Richard Stockton

annis-boudinot-stockton

Annis Boudinot, who became the wife of Richard Stockton, one of the most prominent young lawyers of New Jersey in 1762, was a woman of far more than ordinary intellectual ability and of a high character and patriotic spirit that made her a fitting companion for the man whose devotion to the cause of independ-ence brought him to his death before his time.

She was of French Huguenot descent, her family having come to America soon after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1686. Her father, Elias Boudinot, was for a time a silversmith in Princeton and her brother, who bore the same name as their father, studied law in the office of Richard Stockton and married his sister, Hannah Stockton.

Richard Stockton was highly successful in the practice of his profession and had added mate-rially to the large estate he inherited from his father, when he married Annis Boudinot and took her to “Morven,” his handsome Colonial home, near Princeton. “Morven” was known for its hospitality and as a gathering place for some of the brightest minds of the day. They were living here, when Mr. Stockton was elected a delegate to the Continental Congress, and it was here that she performed a service which was made historic. When the British under Cornwallis came to Princeton in 1776, Mrs. Stockton secured and secreted a number of important state papers as well as the rolls and records of the American Whig Society of Prince-ton College, an act for which her name was added as an honorary member of the Society. Congress was then sitting in Baltimore and Mr. Stockton hastened home to conduct his family to a place of safety. He hurried them out of Princeton to Monmouth County, about thirty miles away, and then returning, went to spend the night with a friend, a patriot named Cowenhoven. That night a party of Tories came and arrested the two men. They were dragged from their bed at a late hour and half clad carried away and thrown into prison. Mr. Stockton was first taken to Amboy where he was confined in the common jail, suffering greatly from the cold. From there he was carried to the prison in New York, where he was most inhumanly treated. All the comforts and many of the necessities of life were withheld from him, notwithstanding the delicate condition of his health, and his high and honorable standing as a man. At one time he was left for twenty-four hours without food and then supplied only with the coarsest and not enough of that. Through the efforts of Mrs. Stockton, Congress was informed of these facts, and General Howe was given to understand that unless Mr. Stockton received better treatment in the future, retaliation would be taken on British prisoners. His condition was somewhat improved after that, but it was too late. The seeds had been sown of the dis-ease that was eventually to carry him to his grave. The British plundered his beautiful home, burned his splendid library and papers, and drove off his stock, much of which was blooded and highly valuable. The devastation of his estate, especially all that portion that could in any way be productive, taken together with the depreciation in value of the Continental cur-rency, so embarrassed Mr. Stockton financially that he was obliged to apply to friends for temporary assistance in order to supply his family with the necessaries of life. This caused a depression of spirits from which he never rallied and hastened the ravages of the disease that brought him to an untimely death in 178I, in the fifty-first year of his age.

richard-stockton_home2

Mrs. Stockton, who was three years younger than her husband, continued to live at “Morven” until her son Richard was married, when she relinquished her home to him and took up her residence in a house at the comer of Washington and Nassau streets, Princeton. Her youngest daughter, Abigail, lived with her until her own marriage to Robert Field of Whitehill, Burlington County, a brother of the wife of her brother Richard.

Richard Stockton left two sons and four daughters. Richard, the eldest son, born April 17, 1764, became one of the most eminent lawyers of the day. He left a number of children of whom the late Robert P. Stockton was one. The other son was Lucius Horatio, who also became a prominent lawyer and was appointed Secretary of War in 1801, by President Adams.

Richard Stockton’s eldest daughter, Julia, mar-ried Dr. Benjamin Rush of Philadelphia, also a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Susan Stockton, the second daughter married Alexander Cutbert of Canada. Mary married Rev. Andrew Hunter, D.D., who was a chaplain in the Con-tinental Army and a professor in Princeton.

Annis Boudinot was well known throughout the Revolution for her patriotic verse. One of her poems drew a courtly acknowledgment from General Washington to whom it was addressed. Another, Welcome, Mighty Chief, Once More! was sung by the young women of Trenton while Washington was passing through Princeton on his way to his first inauguration.

Mrs. Stockton wrote the following upon the announcement of peace in 1783:

“With all thy country’s blessings on thy head,
And all the glory that encircles man,
Thy deathless fame to distant nations spread,
And realms unblest by Freedom’s genial plan;
Addressed by statesmen, legislators, kings,
Revered by thousands as you pass along,
While every muse with ardour spreads her wings
To our hero in immortal song;
Say, can a woman’s voice an audience gain;
And stop a moment thy triumphal car?
And wilt thou listen to a peaceful strain,
Unskilled to paint the horrid wrack of war?
For what is glory–what are martial deeds–
Unpurified at Virtue’s awful shrine?
Full oft remorse a glorious day succeeds,
The motive only stamps the deed divine.
But thy last legacy, renowned chief,
Hath decked thy brow with honors more sublime,
Twined in thy wreath the Christian’s firm belief,
And nobly owned thy faith to future time.”

Washington sent an answer to this ode and the letter which she wrote enclosing it. Her letter is lost, but we have the ode given above and his reply which is as follows:

ROCKY HILL, Sept. 24th, 1783.
You apply to me, my dear madam, for abso-lution, as though you had committed a crime, great in itself yet of the venial class. You have reasoned good, for I find myself strongly dis-posed to be a very indulgent ghostly adviser on this occasion, and notwithstanding you are the most offending soul alive (that is if it is a crime to write elegant poetry), yet if you will come and dine with me on Thursday, and go through the proper course of penitence which shall be pre-scribed, I will strive hard to assist you in expiating these poetical trespasses on this side of purgatory. Nay, more, if it rests with me to direct your future lucubrations, I shall certainly urge you to a repetition of the same conduct–on purpose to show what an admirable knack you have at confession and reformation; and so without more hesitation I shall venture to recommend the muse not to be restrained by ill grounded timidity, but to go on and prosper. You see, madam, when once the woman has tempted us and we have tasted the forbidden fruit, there is no such thing as checking our appetite, whatever the consequences may be. You will, I dare say, recognise our being genuine descendants of those who are reputed to be our progenitors. Before I come to a more serious conclusion of my letter I must beg leave to say a word or two about these fine things you have been telling in such harmonious and beautiful numbers. Fiction is to be sure the very life and soul of poetry. All poets and poetesses have been indulged in the free and indisputable use of it–time out of mind, and to oblige you to make such an excellent poem on such a subject with-out any materials but those of simple reality would be as cruel as the edicts of Pharaoh, which compelled the Children of Israel to manufacture bricks without the necessary ingredients. Thus are you sheltered under the authority of prescription, and I will not dare to charge you with an intentional breach of the rules of the decalogue in giving so bright a co louring to the service I have been enabled to render my country, though I am not conscious of deserving more at your hands than what the poorest and most disinterested friendship has a right to claim: actuated by which you will permit me to thank you in a most affectionate manner for the kind wishes you have so happily expressed for me and the partner of all my domestic enjoyments. Be assured we can never forget our friend at Morven and that I am, my dear madam, your most obedient and obliged servant,
GO. WASHINGTON.

Source: Wives of the Signers: The Women Behind the Declaration of Independence, by Harry Clinton Green and Mary Wolcott Green, A.B. (Aledo, TX: Wallbuilder Press, 1997). Orignaly Published in 1912 as volume 3 of The Pioneer Mothers of America: A Record of the More Notable Women of the Early Days of the Country, and Particularly of the Colonial and Revolutionary Periods (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons). Pages 132-139. (Some minor spelling changes may have been made.)

Morvan at Princeton NJ

Morvan at Princeton NJ by Dan Beards.

Richard Stockton and his wife Annis Boudinor Stockton built Morven
during the 1750’s in Princeton, New Jersey. Mr. Stockton was a signer of the
Declaration of Independence and his wife Annis was an accomplished poet.
Welcome to Morvan in Princeton by Dan Beards.

Morven is listed as a National Historic Landmark. It was the home of the Stockton family for 5 generations as well as the home of General Robert
Wood Johnson.

Annis Boudinot Stockton

annis

Birth: Jul. 1, 1736 – Death: Feb. 6, 1801

Fieldsboro, Burlington County, New Jersey, USA

A Poet. One of the most prolific and widely published women writers in 18th Century America, Stockton’s poems in the English Neoclassical style remain the best known of her works, which also include a play, and numerous articles written for the leading newspapers and magazines of her day. A friend and correspondent of George Washington, and the wife of Richard Stockton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, she was the only woman to be admitted to the American Whig Society, a tribute, in part, to her safekeeping of vital political documents during the Revolutionary War. Born Annis Boudinot in Darby, Pennsylvania, she was the daughter of Elias Boudinot (d.1770), a wealthy merchant and silversmith of Huguenot descent, who later moved his family to Princeton, New Jersey. There the young Annis thrived in the town’s stimulating academic atmosphere, published her first poem at age 16, and in 1757 married the brilliant young lawyer Richard Stockton, a friend of her brother Elias, who would also distinguish himself in American politics. The Stocktons made a strikingly attractive couple, and their marriage was a happy one which produced 6 children. Their elegant Princeton home, which Annis named “Morven”, became a gathering place for the nation’s founders, and still later, a residence of the governors of New Jersey. The Stocktons paid dearly for their revolutionary activities, however. Forced to flee from the British, who had captured her husband and destroyed both his health and estate, Annis was widowed by his untimely death in 1781. Despite grief and impoverishment, she continued to devote her pen and her energies to the American cause. Her final years were spent at “White Hill”, a mansion overlooking the Delaware River in present day Fieldsboro, New Jersey, where she had resided with her daughter Abigail Stockton Field. After her death at age 64, her body was taken across the river to Philadelphia and laid in the plot of Dr. Benjamin Rush, who had married another Stockton daughter, Julia, in 1776. Among other distinctions, Mrs. Stockton was the mother-in-law as well as the wife of a signer of the Declaration of Independence. (Bio by: Nikita Barlow)

annis_morvenpoem3

annis_morvenpoem2

Biography of a Founding Father and Relative: Richard Stockton

Statesmen with Declaration of Independence

http://colonialhall.com/biodoi.php

The following biographical sketches of America’s founding fathers are taken from the 1829 book, Lives of the Signers to the Declaration of Independence, by the Rev. Charles A. Goodrich.

July 4th

The Signers of the Declaration of Independence

Massachusetts
John Hancock
Samuel Adams
John Adams
Robert Treat Paine
Elbridge Gerry

New Hampshire
Josiah Bartlett
William Whipple
Matthew Thornton

Rhode Island
Stephen Hopkins
William Ellery

Connecticut
Roger Sherman
Samuel Huntington
William Williams
Oliver Wolcott

New York
William Floyd
Philip Livingston
Francis Lewis
Lewis Morris

New Jersey
Richard Stockton
John Witherspoon
Francis Hopkinson
John Hart
Abraham Clark

Pennsylvania
Robert Morris
Benjamin Rush
Benjamin Franklin
John Morton
George Clymer
James Smith
George Taylor
James Wilson
George Ross

Delaware
Caesar Rodney
George Read
Thomas M’ Kean

Maryland
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carrol

Virginia
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton

North Carolina
William Hooper
Joseph Hewes
John Penn

South Carolina
Edward Rutledge
Thomas Heyward
Thomas Lynch
Arthur Middleton

Georgia
Button Gwinnett
Lyman Hall
George Walton

trumbull-large

Family history tells us that we are related to Richard Stockton, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, one the the greatest documents of our Nation. Here is some very interesting information on one of our own.  Notice in the post on his wife (that follows this post):  as a poet, she has addressed a poem to a “Mary Stockton!”

richard_stockton

Richard Stockton

1730-1781

Richard Stockton
Richard Stockton: From the National Statuary Hall Collection at the U.S. Capitol

The first of the New-Jersey delegation, who signed the Declaration of Independence, was Richard Stockton. He was born near Princeton, on the 1st day of October, 1730. His family was ancient and respectable. His great grandfather, who bore the same name, came from England, about the year 1670, and after residing a few years on Long Island, removed with a number of associates to an extensive tract of land, of which the present village of Princeton is nearly the center. This tract consisted of six thousand and four hundred acres. This gentleman died in the year 1705, leaving handsome legacies to his several children; but the chief portion of his landed estate to his son, Richard. The death of Richard followed in 1720. He was succeeded in the family seat by his youngest son, John; a man distinguished for his moral and religious character, for his liberality to the college of New-Jersey, and for great fidelity in the discharge of the duties of public and private life.

Richard Stockton, the subject of the present memoir, was the eldest son of the last mentioned gentleman. His early education was highly respectable, being superintended by that accomplished scholar, Rev. Dr. Samuel Finley, in a celebrated academy at West-Nottingham. His preliminary studies being finished, he entered the college of New-Jersey, whose honors he received in 1748. He was even at this time greatly distinguished for intellectual superiority; giving promise of future eminence in any profession he might choose.

On leaving college, he commenced the study of law with the honorable David Ogden, of Newark, at that time at the head of the legal profession in the province. At length, Mr. Stockton was admitted to the bar, and soon rose, as had been anticipated, to great distinction, both as a counselor and an advocate. He was an able reasoner, and equally distinguished for an easy, and, at the same time, impressive eloquence.

In 1766 and 1767, he relinquished his professional business, for the purpose of visiting England, Scotland, and Ireland. During his tour through those countries, he was received with that attention to which he was eminently entitled, by the estimable character which he had sustained at home, and his high professional reputation. He was presented at court, by administer of the king, and had the honor of being consulted on American affairs, by the Marquis of Rockingham, by the Earl of Chatham, and many other distinguished personages.

On visiting Edinburgh, he was received with still greater attention. He was complimented with a public dinner, by the authorities of that city, the freedom of which was unanimously conferred upon him, as a testimony of respect for his distinguished character.

A short time previous, the presidency of New-Jersey college had been conferred upon the Reverend Dr. Witherspoon, a distinguished divine, of the town of Paisley, in the vicinity of Glasgow. This appointment Dr. Witherspoon had been induced to decline, by reason of the reluctance of the female members of his family to emigrate to America. At the request of the trustees of the College, Mr. Stockton visited Dr. Witherspoon, and was so fortunate in removing objections, that not long after the latter gentleman accepted the appointment, and removed to America, where he became a distinguished supporter of the college over which he presided, a friend to religion and science in the country, and one of the strong pillars in the temple of American freedom.

The following instances in which Mr. Stockton narrowly escaped death,. during his absence, deserve notice. While he was in the city of Edinburgh, he was waylaid one night by a furious robber. He defended himself, however, by means of a small sword, and even succeeded in wounding the desperado. He was not materially injured himself, but was not so fortunate as to prevent the escape of his assailant. In the other case, he was designing to cross the Irish channel, and had actually engaged a passage in a packet for that purpose. The unseasonable arrival of his baggage, however, detained him, and fortunate it was that he was thus detained, for the packet, on her voyage, was shipwrecked during a storm, and both passengers and crew found a watery grave.

The following year he was appointed one of the royal .In judges of the province, and a member of the executive council. At that time he was high in the royal favor, and his domestic felicity seemed without alloy. He possessed an ample fortune, was surrounded by a family whom he greatly loved, and held a high and honorable station under the king of Great Britain.

But the time at length arrived, when the question arose, whether he should renounce his allegiance to his sovereign, and encounter the sacrifices which such a step must bring upon him, or continue that allegiance, and forfeit his character as a friend to his country.

Situated as was Mr. Stockton, the above question could not long remain unsettled; nor was it for any length of time doubtful into which scale he would throw the weight of his influence and character. The sacrifices which he was called upon to make, were cheerfully endured. He separated himself from the, royal council, of which be was a member in New-Jersey, and joyfully concurred in all those measures of the day, which had for their object the establishment of American rights, in opposition to the arbitrary and oppressive acts of the British ministry.

On the twenty-first of June, 1776, he was elected by the provincial congress of New-Jersey a delegate to the general congress, then sitting in the city of Philadelphia. On the occurrence of the question relating to a declaration of independence, it is understood that he had some doubts as to the expediency of the measure. These doubts, however, were soon dissipated by the powerful and impressive eloquence of John Adams, the great Colossus on this subject on the floor of congress. Mr. Stockton was not only convinced of the importance of the measure, but even addressed the house in its behalf, before the close of the debate. It is needless to detain the reader by a particular mention of the many important services which Mr. Stockton rendered his country, while a member of congress. In all the duties assigned to him, which were numerous and often arduous, he acted with an energy and fidelity alike honorable to him as a man and a patriot.

richard-stockton_signature

On the thirtieth of November he was unfortunately taken prisoner by a party of refugee royalists. He was dragged from his bed by night, and carried to New-York. During his removal to the latter place he was treated with great indignity, and in New-York he was placed in the common prison, where he was in want of even the necessaries of life. The news of his capture and sufferings being made known to congress, that body unanimously passed the following resolution:

“Whereas congress hath received information that the Honorable Richard Stockton, of New-Jersey, and a member of this congress, hath been made a prisoner by the enemy, and that he hath been ignominiously thrown into a common goal, and there detained-Resolved, that General Washington be directed to make immediate inquiry into the truth of this report, and if he finds reason to believe it well founded, that he send a flag to General Howe, remonstrating against this departure from that humane procedure which has marked the conduct of these states to prisoners who have fallen into their hands; and to know of General Howe whether he chooses this shall be the future rule for treating all such, on both sides, as the fortune of war may place in the hands of either party.”

Mr. Stockton was at length released; but his confinement had been so strict, and his sufferings so severe, that his constitution could never after recover the shock. Besides this, his fortune, which had been ample, was now greatly reduced. His lands were devastated; his papers and library were burnt; his implements of husbandry destroyed; and his stock seized and driven away. He was now obliged to depend, for a season, upon the assistance of friends, for even the necessaries of life. From the time of his imprisonment his health began to fail him; nor was it particularly benefited by his release, and a restoration to the society of his friends. He continued to languish for several years, and at length died at his residence, at Princeton, on the 28th of February, 1781, in the fifty-third year of his age.

His death made a wide chasm among the circle of his friends and acquaintance. He was, in every respect, a distinguished man ; an honor to his country, and a friend to the cause of science, freedom, and religion, throughout the world. The following extract from the discourse delivered on the occasion of his interment, by the Rev. Dr. Samuel S. Smith, will convey to the reader a just account of this distinguished man:

“Behold, my brethren, before your eyes, a most sensible and affecting picture of the transitory nature of mortal things, in the remains of a man who hath been long among the foremost of his country for power, for wisdom, and for fortune; whose eloquence only wanted a theatre like Athens, to have rivaled the Greek and the Roman fame; and who, if what honors this young country can bestow, if many and great personal talents, could save man from the grave, would not thus have been lamented here by you. Behold there ‘the end of all perfection.’

“Young gentlemen, (the students of the college,) another of the fathers of learning and eloquence is gone. He went before in the same path in which you are now treading, and hath since long presided over, and helped to confirm the footsteps of those who were here laboring up the hill of science and virtue. While you feel and deplore his loss as a guardian of your studies, and as a model upon which you might form yourselves for public life, let the memory of what he was excite you to emulate his fame; let the sight of what he is, teach you that every thing human is marked with imperfection.

“At the bar he practiced for many years with unrivaled reputation and success. Strictly upright in his profession, be scorned to defend a cause that he knew to be unjust. A friend to peace and to the happiness of mankind, be has often with great pains and attention reconciled contending parties, while he might fairly, by the rules of his profession, have drawn from their litigation no inconsiderable profit to himself. Compassionate to the injured and distressed, he hath often protected the poor and helpless widow unrighteously robbed of her dower, hath heard her with patience, when many wealthier clients were waiting, and hath zealously promoted her interest, without the prospect of reward, unless he could prevail to have right done to her, and to provide her an easy competence for the rest of her days.

“Early in his life, his merits recommended him to his prince and to his country, under the late constitution, who called him to the first honors and trusts of the government. In council be was wise and firm, but always prudent and moderate. Of this be gave a public and conspicuous instance, almost under your own observation, when a dangerous insurrection in a neighboring county had driven the attorneys from the bar, and seemed to set the laws at defiance. Whilst all men were divided betwixt rash and timid counsels, he only, with wisdom and firmness, seized the prudent mean, appeased the rioters, punished the ringleaders, and restored the laws to their regular course.

“The office of a judge of the province, was never filled with more integrity and learning than it was by him, for several years before the revolution. Since that period, he hath represented New-Jersey in the congress of the United States. But a declining health, and a constitution worn out with application and with service, obliged him, shortly after, to retire from the line of public duty, and hath at length dismissed him from the world.

“In his private life, he was easy and graceful in his manners; in his conversation, affable and entertaining, and master of a smooth and elegant style even in his ordinary discourse. As a man of letters, be possessed a superior genius, highly cultivated by long and assiduous application. His researches into the principles of morals and religion were deep and accurate, and his knowledge of the laws of his country extensive and profound. He was well acquainted with all the branches of polite learning; but he was particularly admired for a flowing and persuasive eloquence, by which lie long governed in the courts of justice.

“As a Christian, you know that, many years a member of this church, he was not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. Nor could the ridicule of licentious wits, nor the example of vice in power, tempt him to disguise the profession of it, or to decline from the practice of its virtues. He was, however, liberal in his religious principles. Sensible, as became a philosopher, of the rights of private judgment, and of the difference in opinion that must necessarily arise from the variety of human intellects; he was candid, as became a Christian, to those who differed from him, where he observed their practice marked with virtue and piety. But if we follow him to the last scene of his life, and consider him under that severe and tedious disorder which put a period to it, there the sincerity of his piety, and the force of religion to support the mind in the most terrible conflicts, was chiefly visible. For nearly two years be bore with the utmost constancy and patience, a disorder that makes us tremble only to think of it. With most exquisite pain it preyed upon him, until it reached the passages by which life is sustained: yet, in the midst of as much as human nature could endure, he always discovered a submission to the will of heaven, and a resignation to his fate, that could only flow from the expectation of a better life.

“Such was the man, whose remains now lie before us, to teach us the most interesting lessons that mortals have to learn, the vanity of human things; the importance of eternity; the holiness of the divine law; the value of religion; and the certainty and rapid approach of death.”

committee

Marker in Cemetery of the

Quaker Church, Princeton, NJ

Marker in Cemetery of Quaker Church, Princeton, NJ by Ken Kuhl.
Grave marker of Richard Stockton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence in the cemetery of  the Princeton Society of Friends (aka Quakers) church built in 1726.
Quaker Church, Princeton, NJ by Ken Kuhl.Cemetery of the Princeton Society of Friends (aka Quakers) church built in 1726.
Cemetery of Quaker Church, Princeton, NJ by Ken Kuhl.Cemetery of the Princeton Society of Friends (aka Quakers) church built in 1726.

https://i1.wp.com/www.presidentialgraves.com/images/192.jpg

See also:

The biography of Annis Boudinot Stockton, Richard Stockton’s wife

The Religious Affiliation of Richard Stockton

Source: Rev. Charles A. Goodrich Lives of the Signers to the Declaration of Independence. New York: William Reed & Co., 1856. Pages 204-211. (Some minor spelling changes may have been made.)

Wikipedia on Richard Stockton

WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM?

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?

NOTE:  If you have ever received an e-mail describing what really happened to the signers of the Declaration of Independence that describes their many tales of woe, don’t believe it! The “how the signers suffered” or “the price they paid” spiel contains numerous errors. (SOURCES: Click here for the full story that debunks the Internet e-mail hoax. Need more proof?  Click here.)

For the record, here’s a portrait of the men who pledged “our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor” for liberty many years ago.

Note:  Snopes on Richard Stockton

Richard Stockton of New Jersey was the only signer taken prisoner specifically because of his status as a signatory to the Declaration, “dragged from his bed by night” by local Tories after he had evacuated his family from New Jersey, and imprisoned in New York City’s infamous Provost Jail like a common criminal. However, Stockton was also the only one of the fifty-six signers who violated the pledge to support the Declaration of Independence and each other with “our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor,” securing a pardon and his release from imprisonment by recanting his signature on the Declaration and signing an oath swearing his allegiance to George III.

Fifty-six men from each of the original 13 colonies signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. Nine of the signers were immigrants, two were brothers and two were cousins. One was an orphan. The average age of a signer was 45. Benjamin Franklin was the oldest delegate at 70. The youngest was Thomas Lynch Jr. of South Carolina at 27.

Eighteen of the signers were merchants or businessmen, 14 were farmers, and four were doctors. Twenty-two were lawyers – although William Hooper of North Carolina was “disbarred” when he spoke out against the king – and nine were judges. Stephen Hopkins had been governor of Rhode Island. Forty-two signers had served in their colonial legislatures.

John Witherspoon of New Jersey was the only active clergyman to attend. (Indeed, he wore his pontificals to the sessions.) Almost all were Protestants. Charles Carroll of Maryland was the lone Roman Catholic.

Seven of the signers were educated at Harvard, four at Yale, four at William & Mary, and three at Princeton. Witherspoon was the president of Princeton, and George Wythe was a professor at William & Mary. His students included Declaration scribe Thomas Jefferson.

Seventeen signers fought in the American Revolution. Thomas Nelson was a colonel in the Second Virginia Regiment and then commanded Virginia military forces at the Battle of Yorktown. William Whipple served with the New Hampshire militia and was a commanding officer in the decisive Saratoga campaign. Oliver Wolcott led the Connecticut regiments sent for the defense of New York and commanded a brigade of militia that took part in the defeat of General Burgoyne. Caesar Rodney was a major general in the Delaware militia; John Hancock held the same rank in the Massachusetts militia.

The British captured five signers during the war. Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, and Arthur Middleton were captured at the Battle of Charleston in 1780. George Walton was wounded and captured at the Battle of Savannah. Richard Stockton of New Jersey never recovered from his incarceration at the hands of British Loyalists. He died in 1781.

Thomas McKean of Delaware wrote John Adams that he was “hunted like a fox by the enemy – compelled to remove my family five times in a few months.” Abraham Clark of New Jersey had two of his sons captured by the British during the war.

Eleven signers had their homes and property destroyed. Francis Lewis’s New York home was razed and his wife taken prisoner. John Hart’s farm and mills were destroyed when the British invaded New Jersey, and he died while fleeing capture. Carter Braxton and Nelson, both of Virginia, lent large sums of their personal fortunes to support the war effort but were never repaid.

Fifteen of the signers participated in their states’ constitutional conventions, and six – Roger Sherman, Robert Morris, Franklin, George Clymer, James Wilson, and George Reed – signed the U.S. Constitution.

After the Revolution, 13 signers went on to become governors. Eighteen served in their state legislatures. Sixteen became state and federal judges. Seven became members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Six became U.S. senators. James Wilson and Samuel Chase became Supreme Court justices. Jefferson, Adams, and Elbridge Gerry each became vice president. Adams and Jefferson later became president.

Five signers played major roles in the establishment of colleges and universities: Franklin and the University of Pennsylvania; Jefferson and the University of Virginia; Benjamin Rush and Dickinson College; Lewis Morris and New York University; and George Walton and the University of Georgia.

Adams, Jefferson, and Carroll were the longest surviving signers. Adams and Jefferson both died on July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. Carroll was the last signer to die in 1832 at the age of 95.

Sources: Robert Lincoln, Lives of the Presidents of the United States, with Biographical Notices of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence (Brattleboro Typographical Company, 1839); John and Katherine Bakeless, Signers of the Declaration (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1969); Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774-1989 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1989).

Our Dear Uncle Abe

Nathan had a brother named Abe. No, his name wasn’t Abraham, and he had a hard time in the service convincing them of that.  They just couldn’t accept that it was just “Abe.”  Actually, he was born in a place called Paint Rock, Alabama and given the name of “Raybon Talmage Wright.”  He legally changed his name to just “Abe” and that is how we all knew him.

 

He was a bread man after service. He wore a uniform much like the one Jackie Gleason wore as a bus driver. He would bring us fresh bread from the bakery: “yum yum.” 

 

abe

“Abe, sporting the uniform we remember so well.”

Uncle Abe and his brother, Nathan, could never finish their sentences before the other would answer. It was like Birmingham Brown in the movies (loved that routine). We went to a dime store one day to get a toy sword for our youngest son, Brian.  As we came out with the plastic sword we ran into Uncle Abe.  Using a favorite nickname he had for his brother, he said, “Nate, what are you…” and before he could finish his line, daddy said, “Abe, you spoiled my surprise for your Christmas.”  Then they both just broke into a big laugh.  Not to be outdone, Uncle Abe said  “Well, I got you the same thing.”

 

The Wrights enjoyed each other every time they were together. There was never a time that they met that there wasn’t lots of laughter and happiness from just being together. What a family!

abe_nathan

Abe (center left) and Nathan (center right) were both “sharp dressed men.”

 

Abe’s paternal grandfather, Ardill, fought in the famous Battle of Chickamauga during the Civil War.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Chickamauga