November 26, 2007

Joshua and Mary Coffey Oatts of Wayne Co., KY

The first time I wrote about Joshua and Mary's children, I included a child Sophronia who was said to have first married Cleveland Coffey, then Alexander Bobbitt. Mary (Polly) Coffey was a daughter of Lewis and Biddy Moore Coffey.

After checking census records more closely I find that Sophronia Oatts was born in 1812 and died in 1877. She is buried at the Elk Spring Valley Cemetery in Wayne Co., and not their daughter.

The Sophronia born to Joshua and Polly was 14-yrs old in the 1850 census, indicating a birth year of 1835-36. She is also buried at Elk Spring Valley, and according to the cemetery compilation, she was born Oct. 3, 1839 and died Mar. 14, 1855. This Sophronia appears to not have been married.

So, that leaves me with an unidentified Sophronia Oatts!

The Sophronia Oatts who married Bobbitt can be found in the 1850, 1860 and 1870 census records of Monticello, Wayne Co.

The 1850 Wayne Co. census enumerated Alexander R. Bobbitt, age 38, blacksmith, with wife Sophrona, age 38 [born c1812], and children Jervis T. Coffey, age 17, Mary C. Coffey, age 16, Margaret E. Bobitt, age 12, John Bobbitt, age 9, James W. Bobbitt, age 8, Sarah A. Bobbitt, age 6, Thomas O. Bobbitt, age 1 and Tyre Samson, age 20.

In 1860 she was 46-yrs. old and apparently a widow with children James Bobbitt, age 15, Sallie Bobbitt, age 13, and Therissa [sic] Bobbitt, age 7 in the household. Her age indicates a birth year of c1814.

The Slave Schedule for that year shows Sophronia as owner of one male mulatto, age 12. Next door to her are Lewis Coffey, Jonathan Frisbie, John Frisbie and M.D. Hardin, also slave owners. These are also family names that some of Joshua and Mary's children married into. Nearby is Benjamin F. Coffey with 18 slaves, mostly children. This Benjamin appears to be the younger brother of Mary (Polly) Coffey Oatts and, was born Dec. 10, 1816 and died May 11, 1868 in Wayne Co.

She was enumerated in Wayne Co. in 1870 at age 56. This confirms her approximate birth year of c1814. The only child remaining with her was Theresa, age 18. Lucy Havens, a 20-yr. old black domestic with her child also named Lucy, age 1, were included in the household.

I have no proof other than "tradition" that she married Cleveland Coffey, brother of Mary (Polly) Coffey Oatts, Benjamin Franklin Coffey, and others. Lewis and Biddy Moore Coffey had at least 11 children.

Please contact me at the e-mail address above if you know who this Sophronia Oatts belongs to.

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