July 31, 2006

Osborn and Mary (Polly) Nightingale Coffey

I've found reports on the internet by researchers who claim that many of the children of Osborn and Mary were born in Casey Co., KY. If birthdates found are accurate, all nine of their children were born between 1764 and 1796. Casey Co. was not formed until 1806, and then from Lincoln Co.

According to Kentucky historical marker, the county was named "For Colonel William Casey, early Ky. pioneer and great-grandfather of Samuel L. Clemens, "Mark Twain." Casey born in Va. Came to Ky. in 1779. Built Casey's Station on the Dix River in 1791. Member of Convention, 1799, to frame second Ky. Constitution. Trustee, town of Columbia, 1802. 1813, Presidential elector. Lived Adair Co., died, 1816. County formed from Lincoln."

Elizabeth, Osborn's (variously spelled) daughter was born c1764 and married Christopher Riffe in what was to be Casey Co. on May 9, 1806.

Another state historical marker provides this:

"Christopher Riffe accompanied Col. William Casey (Great-Grandfather of Mark Twain) to Kentucky in 1784. Riffe lived at Bryan's Station, Boonesborough, Logan's Station and Carpenter's Station. He bought 800 acres of land from the Grandfather of Abraham Lincoln. Riffe became the first white settler of Casey County in 1793. He was the first State Representative from Casey County, served seven terms. He fought in the Battle of the Thames (in which Tecumseh was killed) in the Kentucky Sixth Regiment. He was Lieutenant-General of the Kentucky State Militia."

Some Christopher and Elizabeth researchers believe that their children were Peter Bim Riffe and Lehannah Riffe.

Let's Say Thanks!

If you've been wanting to do something for our troops serving overseas but didn't know just what you could do, check out Let's Say Thanks! It is a website sponsored by Xerox that allows us at home to express our gratitude to the men and women who are serving our country.

The website displays a number of postcards created by children from across the country. After clicking on the design of your choice you can enter a personal message of support. Political or otherwise derogatory remarks are not allowed; neither is your e-mail address or other forms of identification other than your name and city.

After screening to assure that comments are appropriate, Xerox prints the cards on their presses. They are then mailed to GI's by military support groups.

Another military support website worthy of your visit is Give 2the Troops.

July 28, 2006

William Finley Coffey

William Finley Coffey, born Jan. 6, 1900 in Eadsville, Wayne Co., KY, was a son of Green Moore and Arvilla Gosser Coffey. William married Mary Esther Thornton in Eadsville c1922. She was born Apr. 3, 1905 in Eadsville, and died May. 27, 1948 in Russell Co., KY.

There were at least 14 children born to William and Mary Esther:

- Grideth Royal, born c1925
- Grideth Dimple, born c1926
- Elda Eudean, born c1929, dc1953
- Drave, born c1931
- Elmo Elton, born c1932
- Airi A., born c1934
- William Leon, born c1936
- Onis, born c1937
- Emma Lois, born c1939
- J. T., born c1941, dc1942
- Jimmie Dale, born c1943, dc1943
- Jerry D., born c1943, dc1943
- Shirley Ann, born c1944
- Ada Marie, born c1947, died 1984

1930 Census data: Russell Co., Dist. 3, ED8, Sheet 17A, dwelling/family 312, Coffey, William F., head, male, white, age 30, married at age 23, born KY, parents born KY, farmer; Mary E., wife, female, white, age 25, married at age 18, born KY, parents born KY; Grideth R., son, male, white, age 5, born KY, parents born KY; Royal D., dau., female, white, age 3 yrs, 5 mos., born KY, parents born KY; Eudene, dau., female, white, age 1 yr., 1 mo., born KY, parents born KY

Family Data Source: Holly Berry, "Green Moore Coffey," e-mail berryfarmer@_nospam_adelphia.net to Jack Coffee, 17 Dec 2005

Rose Etta Coffey

Rose Etta Coffey was the daughter of William Perry and Mary Ellen Wemple Roark Coffey. She was born Jan. 14, 1899 in Newport, Jackson Co., AR, and married Clarence Elwood Woods on Aug. 6, 1911 in Nowata Co., OK. Clarence was born Oct. 21, 1890 in Jaqua, CO, and died Mar. 2, 1948 in Los Angeles Co., CA.

There were at least 9 children born to Clarence and Rose Etta:

- Elmer Clarence, born Jun. 3, 1912, died Apr. 15, 1915
- Glen Walter, born Aug. 9, 1914
- Grace Margaret, born Aug. 27, 1916, died Feb. 20, 1987
- Bruce Howard, born Dec. 30, 1919
- Lula Ellen, born Jul. 7, 1922, died Oct. 20, 1977
- Donald Woodrow, born Jun. 9, 1924
- Elizabeth Ruth, born Sep. 1, 1926
- Bernard Vernon, born Jul. 18, 1929
- Barbara Rose, born Mar. 29, 1933

Rose Etta is said to have also married James Cook, but I have no information. She died Sep. 6, 1961 in Eureka, Humboldt Co., CA.

July 27, 2006

Jesse Edward Coffey Family

Jesse Edward Coffey Family
Front L-R: Bonnie, Velma and James W.; Rear R-L: Mattie and Jesse (c1920)

Jesse Edward Coffey, born Mar. 18, 1895, was the son of James Lawson and Leah Meadows Coffey. In about 1904 he married Martha J. Anderson, in Missouri probably, and died Sep. 30, 1960. He and Martha were the parents of at least three children:

- James W., born c1906; Bonnie, born Sep. 17, 1913, died Feb. 5, 1919 and Velma, date of birth unknown.

The only census in which I have found this family was the 1910, Gentry Co., MO:

1910 Gentry Co., Wilson Twp., ED92, Page 3, dwelling 24, family 25, Coffey, Jesse E., head, male, white, age 25, married once for 6 yrs., born MO, father born IN, mother born KY, farm laborer; Mattie J., wife, female, white, age 22, married once for 6 yrs., mother of 1, 1 living, born MO, parents born US; James W., son, male, white, age 4, born MO, parents born MO; Coffey, James E., brother, male, white, age 38, single, born MO, father born IN, mother born KY, laborer at odd jobs

Please contact me with additions and/or corrections.

July 20, 2006

Martin Coffey

This Martin is thought to be a son of Andrew Jackson and Martha J. Spann Coffey. He was born c1846 in Eadsville, Wayne Co., KY. In 1880 he is found in Melcalfe Co., KY, Edmonton precinct, ED142, page 27. With him was wife Lisabeth, age 29, son Walter, age 8, and brother George Coffey, age 22. The presence of George, born c1858 offers some evidence that they are sons of of Andrew.

There was another Martin Coffey in KY. He is believed to be a son of Chesley and Jane Cleveland Coffey. This Martin was born Dec. 15, 1762 in Essex Co., VA and died Nov. 27, 1867 in Wayne Co., KY and married Nancy Heriford Dec. 1, 1817 in Wayne Co. My data show only one child, James, born Sep. 7, 1818 in Russell Co., and died Jul 27, 1897 in Lincoln Co., KY.

James is said to have married Martha (Patsy) Tucker Jun. 30, 1836 in Wayne Co. She was born Dec. 7, 1818 in Wayne Co., and died Mar. 7, 1877 in Lincoln Co. They had at least one child, a son Francis Marion Coffey, born Mar. 27, 1840, died Jan. 13, 1933 in Jackson Co., KS. Francis married Permelia Jane Hughes on May 26, 1865 in Lincoln Co. Permelia was born May 11, 1846 in Lincoln Co., and died Oct. 28, 1950 in Jackson Co., KS.

Francis and Permelia had at least 10 children:

- Charles H., born Feb. 8,. 1867
- Annie C., born Aug. 13, 1869, died Dec. 3, 1962
- Belle, born Sep. 7, 1871, died 1933
- Margaret G., born Jan. 15, 1874
- Minnie E., born Jan. 17, 1876, died Jan. 15, 1974
- Francis Timothy, born Aug. 7, 1878, died Aug. 14, 1947
- Pearl D., born May 11, 1880
- Mary A., born c1882, died Jun. 16, 1968
- James Gabriel, born Aug. 23, 1895, died Aug. 20, 1974
- Arthur K., born Dec. 8, 1885

Other Martins found in the Edward Coffey line are:

- Martin, born 1866 in Grainger Co., TN, son of Elijah and Rebecca Shockley Coffey
- Martin, born c1906 in Missouri, son of Arthur E. and Nora B. Coffey
- Martin Dewitt, born Nov. 15, 1881 in Georgia, son of John Gordon and Mary Monroe Pettit Coffey
- Martin Marcellus, born c1857 in Nelson Co., VA (probably), son of Hezekiah and Mary Jane Fitzgerald Coffey
- Martin Van Buren, born Sep. 1834 in GA, son of Jesse and Winifred Comption Coffey
- Martin Van Buren, born c1854 in GA, son of Larkin D. and Temperance Elaine Gravitt

I have some additional information on these Martins. Anyone with, or needing additional data is invited to contact me.

July 17, 2006

Tillman Taylor (Bill) Coffey

Tillman Taylor Coffey was the son of John Taylor and Sarah Adeline (Sofie) Gates Coffey. Tillman was the eighth of 10 children born to that union. He was born Mar. 23, 18971 in Svenson, Clatsop Co., OR, and died Aug. 1, 19902 in Astoria, Clatsop Co., OR.

He married Gladys A. Morse, but a marriage date has not been found. It was likely in 1915 or 1916 because in the 1920 Clatsop Co. census he and Gladys had a child, June J., age 3 years, 11 months old. However, when Tillman registered for the draft in 1918 he did not indicate that he was married, and in fact named his father, J. T. Coffey as his nearest relative. Gladys was born Jul. 9, 1899 in Portland, Multnomah Co., OR and died 1965 in Astoria, Clatsop Co.

Some researchers list 11 children for Tillman and Gladys.

The 1920 census names their children as:

- Junes J., age 3 yrs. 11 mos [est. birth 1916]
- Gladys E., age 7 mos [est. birth 1919]

The 1930 census names their children as:

- Unice J., age 14 yrs. [est. 1916; probably the child named Junes in 1920]
- Gladys E., age 10 yrs. [est. birth 1919-20]
- Vera A., age 7 yrs. [est. birth 1922-23]
- Bernice L., age 5 yrs. [est. birth 1924-25]
- Mamie H. , age 3 yrs., 4 mos. [est. birth 1926-27]
- John T., age 9 mos. [est birth 1929]

Other children that I have found listed for Tillman and Gladys are David, Mae, Vernon, and William. If these were their children, they would have been born after 1930.

If anyone can confirm their children, please contact me.

1 WW1 Draft Registration Card [medium height and build with brown eyes and hair]
2 Oregon Death Index, 1903-1998 [Oregon State Archives and Records Center]

July 12, 2006


I have just updated the index to the Coffey Cousins' newsletter. This indexes all issues of the newsletter from issue 1 through 102.

Subscribers to the Coffey Cousins' newsletter are no doubt wondering where their June issue is. My wife and I keep in close contact with editor Bonnie Culley and her husband, Jim. Jim is still recovering from a fall and subsequent hip replacement this past winter. Additionally, he is scheduled to have knee replacement within the next week or so.

On top of all of that, they are in the process of preparing to sell their home of around 50 years. They will soon close on a new home without so many stairways for them to navigate.

So, please be patient. Bonnie assures me that she is working on the newsletter as time permits, but will likely be late July, or early August before it is mailed.

July 9, 2006

Mary Emma Jean Coffey

Edgar Smith Edgar Smith

Mary Emma Jean Coffey Mary Emma Jean Coffey

Mary Emma Jean Coffey Smith

Mary was the sixth of the eight children born to Beeler Ester and Sallie Elizabeth Cross Coffey, and a granddaughter of Henry Kelly (Caleb) and Sarah Jane Gragg Coffey. There were seven females and only one male born to Beeler and Sallie.

Mary was born Sep. 7, 1923 in Bristol, Washington Co., VA and died Dec. 2004 in Bristol.

Mary married Edgar (Ed) Smith Dec. 25, 1947. Ed was born Nov. 29, 1921 in Bristol and died Dec. 19, 1988 in the same place.

Ed was buried in the Glenwood Cemetery in Bristol, and Mary is thought to also be there.

There were at least two children born to this union: Terry Michael Smith, born Nov. 23, 1947, and Eddie Gene Smith, born Mar. 23, 1950.

Elijah and Mary Abby Dyer Coffey

Elijah Coffey, a son of Reuben and Sarah (Sally) Scott Coffey, was born Mar. 11, 1799 in Globe, Caldwell Co., NC. He married Mary Abby (Polly) Dyer on Sep. 23, 1803 in Ashe Co., NC. Abby was born May 17, 1787 in Ashe Co.

Click on the title link to read more about Elijah and Mary.

Additions and/or correction should be sent to me here.

July 7, 2006

Abram Tyree and Lula Edna Coffee Hardy

Lula Edna Coffee
Abram Tyree Hardy

Abram Tyree Hardy was born Jul. 17, 1870 in Columbus, Lowndes Co., MS to William W. and Sarah Frances Marshall Hardy. He married Lula Edna Coffee, daughter of Lilburn Warren and Margaret Goode Coffee on Jun. 7, 1899 in Colorado, Mitchell Co., TX. Lula was born Nov. 19, 1878 in Kyle, Hays Co., TX. Abram died Apr. 13, 1906 in Big Spring, Howard Co., TX and Lula died Feb. 16, 1945 in Big Spring. Both are buried in the Mount Olive Cemetery at Big Spring.

Abram and Lula had two children: Zou Margaret, born Apr. 28, 1900, died 1958, and William Tyree Hardy, born Jan. 26, 1903, died Sep. 13, 1985.

Zou Margaret married Robert M. Parks, son of James Robert and Rosa Ann Cardwell Parks Jun. 27, 1929. Robert was born Aug. 10, 1901 in Big Spring, and died there in 1957. At the time of his death Robert was only 55 yrs. old and a Conductor for the Texas and Pacific Railway. He was described as a "jovial man with a likeable personality..." Zou and Robert did not have children. Both are buried in the Trinity Memorial Park at Big Spring.

William Tyree married Alice Dawes on Jun. 2, 1932. Alice had been previously married in 1928 to a Mr. Tate Fry. There are no known children from that union. Together William and Alice had two children: Tyree Dawes, born Sep. 3, 1934, died Oct. 14, 1995, and Sarah Lu Hardy, born Jun. 11, 1943. Although both children married, neither of them produced children. William died Sep. 13, 1985 in Tom Green Co., TX, and Alice died Dec. 23, 1991 in Sonora, Sutton Co. Both are buried in Sonora.

Lula was my first cousin, twice removed. Her father and my great-grandfather James M. Coffee were brothers.

Corrections and additions can be sent to me here.

July 6, 2006

Claiborn Mayes Coffee

According to a website maintained by the Historical Foundation of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church and the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in America, Claiborn Mayes Coffee was a Presbyterian Minister. He was also a son of Richard Smith and Sarah D. Fielder Coffee, and a descendant of Peter Coffee.

Claiborn Mayes Coffee was born c1821 in Alabama, and died Apr. 11, 1892 in Arkansas. He was married to Cornelia E. Green on Dec. 17, 1840 in Lauderdale Co., AL.

According to his obituary, he and Cornelia had at least nine children.

In the 1850 Lauderdale Co. census for Div. 2, east of the Military Road, Claybourn , a shoemaker, was found with Caroline, age 25; Joshua, age 5; and Richard, age 2. All were born in Alabama. If this is Claiborn Mays Coffee, the information is contradictory to that found in the Gene Brewington book on Peter Coffee.

C. M. Coffee, age 41, a minister born in AL, and Cornelia, age 38, born VA, were found in the 1860 Lauderdale Co., AL census. The family included Miriam C., age 8; Minervous , and C.B., a male, aged 6 years.

The family is still in Lauderdale Co. in 1870. C. M. Coffee was aged 50, Cornelia, age 48; M.C.R., a male, age 14; H.C., a female, age 18, and John E., age 9. Claiborn gave his occupation as farmer.

In 1880 Claiborn was 59 years old, and listed his occupation as tanner. The census record is a little difficult to read, and the entry could possibly be R. Coffee. His wife was Caralian , age 58; daughter Miram , age 27 and single; John E., son, age 19 and single. This may or may not be the John and Caroline of interest.

Click on the title link to read Claiborn's obituary.

Contact me here with additional information or corrections.

July 5, 2006

Thomas Jefferson Coffey, son of Ambrose

I have previously written about a Thomas Jefferson Coffey, the son of McCaleb and Elizabeth Collett Coffey. This Thomas Jefferson Coffey was the son of Ambrose and Mildred (Millie) Moore Coffey.

Thomas was born Feb. 16, 1805 in Burke Co., NC and died Nov. 1, 1858 in Brazoria Co., TX. He married Malinda Graves, born c1811 in TN, on Jul. 17, 1827 in Hinds Co., MS. They were in Brazoria Co. by 1850 when they appeared in the census.*

I have the children of Thomas and Malinda as: America, Eugenia Elizabeth; Minerva Lavina; Aaron; Ellen; Ambrose; Henry and Rosanna. The only child for whom I have found any descendant information is Aaron. He first married Mary F. and later Mary Summerville Smith. He and Mary Smith were married Mar. 28, 1860 in Galveston Co., TX. He and Mary Smith had at least one child, a daughter named Julia Summerville Coffey, born Dec. 8,. 1864. They likely had more, but I have not yet found them.

I also found the following internet bio on Thomas Jefferson Coffey, but the source was not available.

Thomas Jefferson Coffey received only a common school education, but he rose to wealth and distinction as a lawyer and a politician. He served as a Whig in Mississippi as senator, representing the four counties of Rankin, Leake, Holmes and Smith in the Legislature. He became quite famous because he was the founder of the Mississippi Homestead law while in the Mississippi Legislature. S.S. Prentiss was asked by Judge William L. Sharkey, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the state, who he thought was the smartest man in the legislature. He at once replied: "Thomas Jefferson Coffey of Rankin County" . He ran against Henry L. Foote in a Whig nominating convention for Governor of Mississippi and was defeated by only one vote. Politics running high and being challenged to a duel in which the exchange shots were to be continued until blood was drawn, and not desiring to draw human blood, he took deliberate aim and shot his opponent through the arm and was carried off the field on the shoulders of his friends. At the earnest request of his wife, he retired from the political arena.

He acquired large planting interests and slaves and built a home in Brandon, Mississippi. He also owned lands in Bolivar County, Mississippi, near Prentiss, the then county seat, now caved into the Mississippi River. He owned other Bolivar County land and on this ground is classed as one of the Delta pioneers.

In 1837, Thoms Jefferson Coffey was appointed by President Andrew Jackson and commissioned as General to remove the Indians, the Cherokee and the Choctaws from northern Mississippi to the Indian Territory.

Some other links to Thomas Jefferson are:

- Coffey Family

- Descendants of Francis Graves of Gloucester Co. & Essex Co., VA

- Descendants of Benjamin (s/o John) Coffey

If anyone has additional information on this Thomas Jefferson please contact me.

*1850 Brazoria Co., dwelling/family 191, Thomas J. Coffee, age 44, male, farmer, $15000, born NC; Malinda G., age 39, female, born TN; Aaron Coffee, age 17, male, farmer, born MS; Ellen Coffee, age 15, female, born MS; Ambrose Coffee, age 12, male, born MS; Henry Coffee, age 10, male, born MS; Rosana Coffee, age 7, female, born MS; James Edmondson, age 18, male, born TN; Miles McInnis, age 40, male, overseer, born SC

July 1, 2006

Dead Fred

Have you discovered "Dead Fred?"

I think I might have been able to come up with a more appropriate name for this site which touts itself as a "genealogy photo archive." The site owners write: "Trace your roots for FREE with our searchable database containing thousands of identified and mystery photos for genealogy enthusiasts looking for long-lost family. Anyone who finds a photo of a direct ancestor that is owned by the archive will receive the photo for free."

A search from the main page for Coffee and Coffey returned several hits, but little to no genealogical information on the persons pictured.

Visit "Dead Fred" by clicking on the title link.

Some readers have asked me about the "caveat emptor" warning in the blog offering CD books and photos pertaining to the Edward Coffey family. That warning pertains to the GEDCOM offer. I just wanted to alert users to the fact that some data in my GEDCOM might not transfer properly to their genealogy program. Data will be properly imported into the Roots Magic program, my personal choice for recording genealogy information.

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