April 26, 2008

On the Road

Coffey Cousins from all around the country are preparing to leave for the 26th CC Reunion to be held at at Raphine, Virginia May 2-4, 2007.

This will probably be the last blog before I leave. If all goes well, we will spend the weekend there with all of the 60+ Coffey Cousins that have made reservations.

When I spoke to the Days Inn hotel manager yesterday (Friday) he told me there were eight rooms left in the 30-room block that had been set aside for us. He indicated that the weekend we will be there is going to be a busy one for them, and he needed to take some of the rooms. I agreed to let them have five, holding three for late arrivals.

If you plan to attend the reunion and have not yet made your room reservations, I suggest you do it today.

If you plan to attend the dinner on Saturday night, then be sure and contact me (e-mail address above) with your menu choice before 6PM central time Tuesday night. I am about to close out the menu and turn it over to the caterer. Do not send a check, but hold it until you see me at the reunion.

I'll see you there!

How to write an obituary!

The following appeared in the Memphis Commercial Appeal on Apr. 13, 2008. I think it is a good lesson on how to honor the deceased.

It begins...

IDA MAE RUSSELL SILLS began this world as Betty Jean Cherry, the daughter of Howard Cherry and Betty Thompson of Middle Tennessee. In the 1930s it was unthinkable for a child to be born to a single mother. The Thompsons contracted Georgia Tann at the Tennessee Children's Home. Georgia, now famous for selling babies, found a couple who was willing to purchase the child. Everett and Elsie Russell were chosen, who had already adopted one high profile Memphis baby. The Russells renamed their new baby Ida Mae.

Newspapers charge an 'arm and a leg' to publish an obituary I've never understood why, but I guess it's because they can. Personally, I believe that obits should be published free, as a public service. In any event, I've found that a number of funeral homes around the country now publish obituaries on their own website. It's a good idea, but the problem is longevity. How long can the funeral home keep those files on-line, and what happens to them in the future? At least with a newspaper they will be preserved somewhere. Adding photos of the deceased to their obituary is a great idea!

Most obits that I read devote more column inches to survivors than to the deceased! Very rarely have I find one that celebrates the life of the departed like this one!

You can read the rest of Ida's obituary here!

April 24, 2008

Andrew J. and Rebecca Campbell Coffey

I received e-mail on Dec. 5, 2009 from Paul Hill in Suffolk, Virginia in which he corrected an error.

Paul wrote that Andrew "...actually died in Lynchburg and his son H.D. had him shipped via train to Arrington Station, Nelson County and then by wagon to the H.B. Coffey cemetery on their old homeplace."

Paul also passed this along:

"Andrew J. Coffey was conscripted into the Confederate Army but deserted when Robert E. Lee entered Maryland before the battle of Antietam in September 1862. He went to Philadelphia and enlisted with the Union and fought the Confederacy for three years before being sent to N. Dakota in 1865 to fight Sioux and Cheyenne Indians. He was discharged in Iowa in 1865 and sent home to live amongst his kin all of whom fought for the south!"

Andrew J. (Jackson?) Coffey was born in Oct., 1836 in Nelson Co., VA. He was the eldest son of the Rev. Henry Benjamin Coffey and his wife Mary (Polly) Campbell.

In addition to Andrew, Henry and Polly were parents of Nancy Jane, born 1843, married her first cousin, Joseph C. Coffey, Jr.; and Benjamin Franklin, born 1847, died 1926, married Elizabeth Fitzgerald. Elizabeth was the daughter of Moses and Mary Ann (Polly) Coffey. Elizabeth Fitzgerald and Ben were likely cousins, but I have not yet made a connection between her mother and other Coffey families in that area of Virginia.

Andrew married Rebecca Feb. 5, 1861 in Nelson Co.1 Rebecca was born in Virginia c1841. She is very likely some relation to Henry's wife, Polly, but again, no connection has been made.

The couple lived their early life together in Nelson Co. They were married there and resided in the county until after 1880 when they relocated to Louisa Co., and later, in 1910, to Campbell Co. Andrew died in Nelson Co. in 1911 and was buried there in the Henry B. Coffey Family cemetery.

I have not yet found Rebecca's death date. At the time of the Feb., 1920 census, she was 79 yrs. old, and residing in the Brookville Dist., Campbell Co., VA. In the household with her then was Bessie Campbell, a grand-daughter, and Shelby H. Coffey, a grand-son.

The children of Andrew and Rebecca were:

Henry Davis, born Nov., 1861, died Sep. 6, 1947. He married Lydia Susan A. Campbell. She was born c1868 in Virginia and died Oct. 24, 1918 in Lynchburg, Campbell Co. Their children were: Leonard, Pearl, Ray, Lester, Clyde, Raymond and Shelby.

Minettei E., (Lettie) born c1867 in Nelson Co., married G. L. Campbell, born c1872, on Jan. 8, 1890. His parents were Francis Jefferson and Catherine Stover Campbell. I do not have any children for them.

Francis Marion, born c1869 in Nelson Co., died Mar. 26, 1956. He married Emma D. Campbell, born c1874, died Jan. 12, 1942. I do not have any children or them.

Mary M., born Oct. 12, 1871, Nelson Co., died Dec. 8, 1893, in Nelson Co. She married Joseph T. Campbell Jan. 22, 1885 in Nelson Co. He was born c1874 but date of death is not known. He is buried in the Henry B. Coffey Family Cemetery in Nelson Co.2

Arthur T., born Dec., 1873 in Nelson Co., married Essie Fitzgerald Jan. 27, 1895 in Nelson Co. Their children were Clement D., Warren L., Eugene K., and Luther. There may have been others. Luther is said to be buried in the Martin L. Fitzgerald Family Cemetery in Nelson Co.3

Edgar R., born 1874 in Nelson Co., married c1900 to a lady named Lucy, born c1880 in Virginia. No other information.

Charles C., born c1877 in Nelson Co., married c1909 to a lady named Mae, born c1891 in Virginia. No other information.

Annie L., born Sep., 1879. No other information.

Horace Justin, born Feb. 27, 1882 in Nelson Co., died Feb. 18, 1953 in Goochland Co., VA. He married Maggie M. Haden, born Jan. 6, 1882, died Dec. 17, 1961 in Goochland Co. Their children were: Adell Hallie, born Jan, 6, 1905, died Oct. 2, 1977; Virginia Rebecca, born Feb. 20, 1908; Jackson Nelson., born Oct. 26, 1909, died Apr. 15, 1976; Horace, Jr., born May 1, 1911; Teddie Rosevelt, born Oct. 4, 1912; Wilber Haden, born Nov. 22, 1913*; Madge, born Oct. 6, 1918; and Helen, born Jan. 27, 1920. Horace and Maggie are buried in the Sandy Hook Cemetery in Goochland Co.**

Gracy, born c1888. This may not be a child of this family. She is not found in any census record.

I have some additional information on this family. Please contact me with additions and corrections, or to get more information.

Update: Sep. 13, 2010

Reader Denise Risch recently forwarded this  scan of a page from a Bible that belonged to her great aunt Madge. The first five names are in one hand while six through eight are in another.  The entry for child nine was likely made by a third hand.

1 Marriage Reg, Nelson Co.; 5 Feb 1861, A. J. Coffey, age 24 yrs., to Rebecca Campbell, age 20 yrs.; parents of groom: Henry B. and Mary Coffey; parents of bride: Jesse C. and Polly Campbell
2 White Rock Rd. on left going towards Rt. 56, just before Evergreen Church, enclosed in a stone wall. [Description from Rootsweb]
3 This cemetery can be reached from Rt. 56 turn onto Fork Mt. Road, go about a mile take a right onto a logging road, 4X4 a must from here, go more than a mile around the mountain, when you can look across the mountain range and see directly into the head of Crabtree Falls you are close to this cemetery. Very well maintained and fenced, about 1/2 mile from Snead Cemetery. [Description from Rootsweb]
US Census Records

*Wilber had a twin that died at birth. 
**The name of this cemetery is questionable (12/01/2009)

April 21, 2008

America Florence Coffey

America Florence Coffey, born Mar. 11, 18891 in Wayne Co., KY, was a daughter of Benjamin Franklin and Martha Cecelia Dobbs Coffey. Benjamin belongs to the Nelson N. and Keziah (Kizzie) Watters Coffey family.

She first married Litten Keith on May 24, 1911 in Wayne Co. After his death in 1920 she married Sherman L. Corder in 1922. Sherman died on Dec. 25, 1981 and America died in Stearns, McCreary Co. on Nov. 29, 1993.

The following appeared in the McCreary County Record on Mar. 16, 1993.

America Corder is 103 and going strong!

By Paula Vann
Record Staff Writer

This week America Corder celebrated her birthday!
What's the big deal?
She is 103 years young and still going like some 30 years her junior.
"Aunt Merk," as many members of her family call her, was born March 11 "way up on Wolf Creek," in 1890, It would be 22 years before McCreary County was born. In fact, the railroad was just punching its way into the area.

Though hard of hearing and nearly blind, America remembers what it was like. Like the time they took a skiff to Monticello.

America, born to B. F. (Benjamin Franklin) and Martha Dobbs Coffey, married Litton Keith not long after McCreary County was born. After just a few years, America lost Litton when he was killed in Mine 10 along Wolf Creek in western McCreary County.

After a time, America remarried. Her second husband was Sherman Corder. America and her husband moved to Stearns around 1925, buying a "three-room box house" on the Stearns Tower Road.

America still lives in that house. Additions have been made, but it still contains the original three rooms.

"When we moved here it was winter," smiles America. "If it hadn't been winter we'd have probably torn down the original house and built a log cabin. I never spent such a cold winter in my life," says America.

People dropped in all day last Thursday to wish America the best on her birthday. "I love having company," smiled America.

America never had any children of her own, but she has all kinds of 'children' that have adopted her through the years. Numerous nieces and nephews, their children and their children are her children, too.

America is fairly independent, despite her age. Lifeline helps her some with daily chores in and around her home, as well as help from family members.

To help celebrate her birthday, America had a fried chicken dinner which really hit her spot. A sheet cake graced the dining room table to serve visitors on America's special day. One family member was keeping record of all the birthday visitors to read to America later.

1Social Security Death Index
The photo is credited to Paula Vann
The article was contributed by Ola Jackson

Benjamin Franklin and Louisa Caroline Coffey Green

Benjamin Franklin Green was born Mar. 14, 1857 in Missouri to Levi and Mary Elizabeth Russell Green. He was the fifth of at least seven children born to Levi and Mary. Mary was born Nov. 20, 1827 in Kentucky and died Jan. 13, 1854 in Camden Co., MO. Based on family information found in the 1860 census for that area, Levi likely married the widow Eliza Hart shortly after the death of Mary. Levi died Dec. 29, 1862 in Camden Co.

1860 Camden Co., Russell Twp., Greendale PO, Page 52, dwelling 353, family 347, Levi Green, age 34, male, farmer, $4000, $1020, born NC; Eliza A., age 34, female, born KY; William A., age 12, male, born MO; Susan E., age 10, female, born MO; Racheal, age 8, female, born MO; Mary E., age 6, female, born MO; George W., age 5, male, born MO; Franklin, age 3, male, born MO; Mathew D., age 1, male, born MO; Thomas M. Hart, age 14, male, born MO; Joseph W. Hart, age 11, male, born MO; Page 53: Joseph Hart, age 8, male, born MO; John A. Hart, age 6, male, born MO

Benjamin married Louisa Caroline Coffey, a daughter of Eli and Louisa Caroline Storie Coffey. Both Eli and Louisa were natives of North Carolina and can be found in the 1860 Caldwell Co. census.

1860 Caldwell Col, Buffalo Twp., Fort Defiance PO, Page 147, dwelling 1125, family 1055, Eli Coffey, age 47, male, farmer, $525, $400, born NC; Caroline, age 29, female, born NC; James, age 7, male, born NC; Joshua, age 6, male, born NC; Louisa, age 4, female, born NC; Milton, age 2, male, born NC

Louisa was born Sep. 12, 1856 in Caldwell Co., and died Feb. 19, 1942 in Russell Twp., Camden Co. Her death is recorded on Missouri Death Certificate No. 6149, showing that she died of kidney disease. Benjamin's death is recorded on Missouri Death Certificate No. 33694, showing that he died of liver cirrhosis.

Both are buried in the Green Cemetery at Climax Springs, Camden Co.

There are some differences of opinion about the exact number and names of children born to Ben and Louisa. The children that I found with the family in the 1900 census record are:

Millie, born Aug., 1881
Charles Edward, born Dec. 31, 1884, died Mar. 19, 1942 of acute gastritis. His death is recorded on Missouri Death Certificate 10421.
Sarah Jane, born May, 1887
Fred A., born Nov., 1889
Eliza R., born Aug., 1892
Chester Levi, born Jun., 1895
William M. (or, Mc), born Aug., 1897
Lula E., born Jun., 1900

I have seen one other genealogy that adds Delia Frances to the family. She was born Nov., 1883 and died in Jan., 1884. However, in 1900, Louisa reported that she was the mother of eight children, and that eight were living.

Please contact me at the above e-mail address to add to or correct any of this information.

I do not have a source for the photo. If you are the source, please let me know.

April 17, 2008

Name Change

I have noticed from time-to-time that some researchers believe that a few Coffey families "changed" their name to Coffee, or vise-versa.

A friend recently wrote asking what I thought about that. This was my response:

My personal opinion:

For the most part all of the descendants of Edward Coffey that I have researched in VA, NC, SC, TN, KY, et al, continue unto today to spell their surname COFFEY. Those few that have been found in records of those areas as COFFEE were mostly the result of clerical error, and not a conscious act by those families to change the spelling.

I have found some who were Coffey in NC but Coffee when they moved to IL, OH, etc., where the surname was not very common. Clerks, etc., thought it should be spelled Coffee and that's how the name was changed, but only in records, not in family tradition.

Because Coffey/Coffee is a translation of the Irish Gaelic O'Cobthaigh, I don't believe there is any "correct" way to spell the anglicized version. I believe current spelling in most families is by tradition. Some families who pronounce their surname as Coffee/ey actually spell their name Coffie, Caughey, Cowhey, Cowhig, etc.

I believe that the Peter Coffee family has pretty much retained the EE ending over the centuries. I have no idea whether or not he was literate, but I would suspect that he spelled his name as he was told it should be, or as it was spelled for him in his personal records created over the tenure of his life. As a result, his children and grandchildren continued to spell it that way out of tradition. I think the longer family descendants remained in a given area, the more a certain spelling predominated.

In my case, I belong to the Edward Coffey side, but from a Coffey female. I'm unsure why my ancestors spelled the name EE. That's the way it is spelled in what few records left by my earliest ancestor, and how it has come down to me over the last six generations. I have since passed it on to two additional generations.

I have found some of my personal records (school, church documents, etc.) that were created when I was a youngster in which my surname was spelled COFFIE. Because no one in my family checked those records - or perhaps were not even aware they had been created - a correction was never made. It is likely that a couple of hundred years from now someone researching my family will find those records and wonder why I changed my surname!

Edward Coffey Project

I removed the Edward Coffey Project from the Coffey Cousins website several weeks ago in order to update as well as remove certain families. Since then I have been working on updating sources as well as adding current information as I find it.

There is a bit of reluctance on my part to again place it on-line. At least two readers have used my server to download a few thousand pages!

I have identified the domain that they used to grab my files, and I am working on a way to prevent future downloads of that magnitude.

Hopefully, I will shortly be able to place the project back on-line. In the meantime, the files, including all photos, sources, and other documents (death certificates, etc) can still be obtained for $7.50 shipping and handling by contacting me at 110 Lydia Road, St. Joseph, LA 71366.

April 16, 2008

Sandy Coffey

Sandy, a son of Grover Conley and Elsie Matthews Coffey, was born Nov. 28, 1959, died Apr. 12, 2008. The blog entry prior to this one announced the death of his mother.

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

April 10, 2008

Elsie Matthews Coffey (Updated 4/13/08)

The death of Elsie Matthews Coffey of McCreary Co., KY was announced today in the McCreary County Record of Whitley City, KY.

She was born at Jones Hollow, Kentucky on March 3, 1928 the daughter of the late Marcus and Flonnie Phillips Matthews. Her husband was Grover Conley Coffey, who I believe was a son of Benjamin Franklin Coffey, Jr., and Sallie Belle Clark.

Please contact me at the above e-mail address if you can confirm Grover's parents.

Click on the title link to view Elsie's obituary, and to view her photograph.

Update Apr 13, 2008:

Nettie Coffey, a daughter of Benjamin Franklin Coffey and wife Martha Cecelia Dobbs, was born Jun. 10, 1881 in KY, and died Feb. 20, 1973 in McCreary Co., KY. She married George Phillips on Jan. 24, 1906 in KY. He was born c1884 in Wayne Co., KY and died Jul. 25, 1974 in McCreary Co.

They were parents of at least three children: Flonnie, born Oct. 22, 1906; Mattie, born Aug. 13, 1908; and Otto, born Jul. 3, 1910.

Flonnie married Marcus Matthews. They were the parents of Elsie.

Elsie married Grover Conley Coffey, son of Benjamin Franklin Coffey, Jr.

L-R: Sally Clark, w/o Ben'j Franklin Coffey, Jr.; Flonnie Phillips Matthews, d/o Geo. and Nettie Coffey Phillips (Nettie sister of Ben'j, Jr.); Adina Coffey, dau. of Sally and Ben'j; Mattie Phillips, sister to Flonnie; Lee Roy Coffey, s/o Sally and Bej'j; Dovie Coffey; and Dorothy Coffey, d/o Sally and Ben'j.

Not yet sure who Dovie belongs to.

Photo courtesy Ola Jackson 4/08

April 7, 2008

Charles Iomer and Mary Ann Hendricks Coffey

Charles Iomer [?] Coffey was born May 3, 1883 in Owen Co., IN to Cyrus V. and Elizabeth Ella Brown Coffey. He was one of at least nine children born to Cyrus and Elizabeth.

His siblings were:

Orpha May - no information

Flora Rachel (Rettie), born c1886, IN, married Victor Burch; children: Helen, born c1914 and Charles, born c1916.

Ada Florence, born c1887, IN, married Carl Von Burch Mar. 31, 1912, Owen Co.; children: Gladys, born c1915 and Hazel, born c1918

Jason Ray, born Mar. 17, 1888, IN, died Jul. 24, 1969, Owen Co., buried Riverside Cemetery, Washington Twp., Owen Co.

Nellie Mabel, married Charles Wyrick

Mary Esther, born Harry Coyal [sic]

Wendell Holmes, born Mar. 5, 1894

Charlotte Virgie, born c1897, married Ralph Sprague May 29, 1916 in Owen Co. One known child: Garland, born c1917
Charles was married to Mary Ann Hendricks on Feb. 24, 1904 in Greene Co., IN. The marriage is recorded in the Indiana index to marriage records compiled by the WPA from 1938-40.

Mary was born Nov. 4, 1885 in IN, and died Nov. 15, 1967 in Spencer, Owen Co. Charles' father died before the 1900 census. His mother was found residing in the household with her widower father, Lewis Brown, in Owen Co. The only children with her at that census were Flora, Ray, Wendell and Virgie. Charles was found in Greene Co., IN as a "boarder" in the household with the William Brown family, likely a relative of his mother. At the same time, there was a Willie E. Coffey, age 10, enumerated as a "servant" in the John Brown family, neighbors of William Brown. Willie remains a mystery to at this writing.

The WW1 draft record for Charles, dated Sep. 21, 1918, gives his residence at RR1, Spencer, Owen Co. where he lived with his wife. He described himself as a farmer of medium height and build with light blue eyes and black hair. The family appeared in the 1920 and 1930 Owen Co. census records.

Children born to him and Mary Ann were:

Edna May, born c1906

Stella M., born c1907

Dorothy M., born c1910

Bernice L., born c1912

Donald W., born c1915

Wallace L., born Aug., 12, 1917, died Feb. 11, 2000

Arthur E., born c1921

Verlin, a son, born c1924
Wallace enlisted in the US Army on Feb. 26, 1944 at Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN. He was captured and made prisoner of war on Feb. 21, 1945, confined at Stalag 7A in Moosburg, Bavaria, Germany. He was later freed or liberated; the record is not clear. Social Security records his death at age 82 on Feb. 11, 2000 in Spencer Co.

Please contact me at the above e-mail address to add to or, to correct any of this information.

April 6, 2008

George Washington and Mary Elizabeth Lewis Coffey

George Washington Coffey was born May 22, 18611 in Alexander Co., NC to Calvin and Serena White Coffey. He married Mary Elizabeth Lewis on Feb. 21, 18781, probably in Alexander Co. George died on May 12, 1918 in Raton, Colfax Co., NM.1 Mary died c1935 in Blaine Co., OK.

In the 1880 census George and Mary were in Alexander Co., NC, residing in the household with his widowed mother. In the 1900 Garfield Co., OK census, Mary gave her birth date as Nov., 1860. However, on Jul. 6, 1860 she was enumerated as a 5 year old child in the household with her parents, Jackson and Lucinda Maltba Lewis, making her birth year closer to 1855.

By 1910 George and Mary had relocated to Blaine Co.

If these dates are correct, George was 16 years old and Mary was 22 when they married on Feb. 21, 18781

There were at least nine children born to George and Mary, with at least eight of them born in North Carolina. One child was born in Texas.

1 - Lula Octavia, born Dec. 16, 1878

2 - Dovey Rosella, born Mar. 11, 1880

3 - James Avery, born Jun. 1, 1882, died Nov. 28, 1954. James married Ethel Mae Noah in Blaine Co., OK on Dec. 28, 1906.2

Their children numbered at least 13: Everett Lee, born 1908, died 1972; Mamie M., born c1909; Alva James, born 1911, died 1959; Amey [Amy] L., born c1912; Oscar G., born c1916; Clara, born c1918; Hazel L., born c1919; Frank, born c1922; Orville, born c1923; Erma, born c1924; Elza E.3, born c1926; Elmo, born c 1927; and Earl, born c1928. Ethel died in Jul., 1981 in Okeene, Blaine Co., OK. Both she and James are buried in the Canton Cemetery, Canton, Blaine Co., OK.

Her obituary as printed in the Watonga Republican, Thur., Jul. 23, 1981, Watonga, Blaine County, Oklahoma, U.S.A. - 73772.4

In Memory of Ethel May (Noah) Coffey 1890-1981

Ethel May Coffey died Wednesday, July 15th, 1981 in Okeene hospital at the age of 90, leaving 166 descendents. Funeral services were held Saturday, July 18th, 1981 in the First Christian Church at Canton, Oklahoma with Duane Cowan and David Derr as officiating ministers. Burial was in the Canton Cemetery, Canton, Oklahoma with arrangements under the direction of Haigler Funeral Home. Mrs. Coffey was born November 11th, 1890 in Beloit, Kansas. She and James Avery Coffey were married in 1906 in Watonga, Oklahoma. She was a member of the Woodward Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, the American Legion Auxiliary and the First Christian Church. Mrs. Coffey is survived by 11 childre: Mamie Wimer, Oscar Coffey and Clara Otwell of Fairview, Oklahoma; Frank Coffey of Blackwell, Oklahoma; Amy Sturgeon of Oakwood, Oklahoma; Elza Coffey, Earl Coffey, Hazel McDowell, and Erma Daugherty of Canton, Oklahoma; LaVonta Miller of Shawnee, Oklahoma and Burl Coffey of Springfield, Massachuesetts; three sisters: Gladys Grecian of Palco, Kansas, Inez MaDavitt of Akron, Colorado; and Lavina Logan of Wendell, Idaho; two brothers: Homer Noah of Orifina, Idaho; and Wilbur (Pat) Noah of Tulsa, Oklahoma; 49 grandchildren; 101 great-grandchildren and five great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband on November 28th, 1954; five sons; two daughters; four brothers; and two sisters.

4 - Texas, a daughter, born Oct. 12, 1883

5 - Harry Horton, born Nov. 15, 1884

6 - Smith Allen, born Mar. 16, 1886. Smith married Elizabeth A. (Lizzie) Carter c1910. Elizabeth was born c1892 in Kansas. Their children were Harley W., born 1911, died 1976; Rosa V., born c1914; Leonard Lee, born 1916, died 1994; Inez W., born c1918; Clarence, born c1920; Raymond, born c1923; Homer, born c1925; and Virgie, born c1928. This family and their children were in Blaine Co., OK through the 1930 census. However, Smith registered for the WW1 draft on Sep. 12, 1918 in Dead Man, Union Co., NM. He gave his birth date as above, and was a farmer who lived with his wife at Dead Man. He described himself as being short with medium build, gray eyes and light brown hair.

7 - George Washington (Wash), born Feb. 18, 1887

8 - William Crantford, born Aug., 17 18895, died Jun., 1973.5 "Crant" married Rosa c1909, probably in OK. She ws born c1890 in Arkansas. Their children were: Gladys, born c1915; Lue Vada, born c1921; Floyd, born c1924; and Sanford, born c1929. William registered for the WW1 draft on Jun. 5, 1917 in Blaine Co. He gave his age as 32, and birthdate as Aug. 15, 1888. He was a farmer in Carlton, OK where he resided with his wife and one child. He was described as being tall with medium built, blue eyes and brown hair.

9 - Bertha Viola Coffey, born in TX on Aug. 21, 1893.

Please contact me with corrections or, if you can fill in any of the blanks; e.g., spouses for the other six children. My e-mail address is above, right.

1 Coffey Family from Virginia to Oklahoma, Darlene Margaret Carignan Coffey online [http://familytreemaker.genealogy.com/users/c/o/f/Darlene-M-Coffey/], accessed Jan 18, 2005 (coffey@childresstx.com)
2 Obituary for Ethel Mae Noah Coffey
3 Elza E. Coffey was a Sergeant First Class assigned to the Infantry. He was a Light Weapons Infantry Leader in the 1st Inf Div. during the Korean War. He was wounded on Oct. 9, 1951 in the North Korean sector and, returned to duty on Dec. 3, 1951.
4 Rootsweb obituary contributed by Robert Nusz
5 Social Security Death Index, Master File
Other sources are the 1880-1930 Federal Census Records

April 5, 2008

Arizona Birth and Death Certificates Available On-line

The Arizona Department of Health Services offers on-line access to state birth certificates for years 1855-1932, and death certificates from 1844-1957. The files are presented for viewing in PDF, and can be downloaded and saved to your computer.

The service is fast and there are no costs for viewing or downloading the files.

Check it out at the Arizona Department of Health Services website.

'We're related in history'

The following is an excerpt from an article which appears in today's on-line edition of the News-Record in Greensboro, NC. It was authored by staff writer, Myla Barnhardt:

EIDSVILLE — They are two men whose only connection would seemingly be the name they share — David Wilson.

One is black. One is white.

One lives in New York City. The other lives in Reidsville.

One is 30. One is 65.

But venture back several generations and you'll find an intersection in their heritages: Sunrise Plantation in northern Caswell County.

In the 1800s, the tobacco farm was one of the largest in the region, stretching along the Dan River near the North Carolina state line, 10 miles into Virginia.

And it's there, on that once massive estate, that one David Wilson's great-great-granddaddy owned the other's great-great-granddaddy.

Click on the News-Record link above to read the entire article.

April 4, 2008

World Vital Records

I would like to hear from anyone who has a subscription to World Vital Records. I am particularly interested in hearing of your experiences and how well you like, or dislike the service.

Contact me at the above e-mail address.

Update May 16, 2008:

I tried World Vital Records for less than a month. I was not comfortable browsing the site. Census records were not easily viewed or navigated. Other records provided were somewhat less than I expected. Many searches on the site turned up results from Google book search, something I often do anyway, and for free!

All in all, I think WVR has a lot of work to do in providing more records, doing away with search results that can be found outside of their site, and making their service a bit easier to navigate.

Kentucky Military Registers & Land Records

The Kentucky Secretary of State Land Office website overview describes the site as "...the place to start when researching Kentucky land acquisitions. All chain of title in the Commonwealth traces back to Virginia land patents and Kentucky land patents."

Although other resources on this site may be of interest, the one most interesting to me are Military Registers & Land Records. Information on the site reads, in part, "The Military District for Virginia rested in southwestern Kentucky and south-central Ohio. The Military Registers and Land Records site includes information regarding Military Warrants issued to Virginia veterans prior to 1792, and all Kentucky patents authorized by those warrants." This link will allow searches to begin without wading through the website.

April 2, 2008

New book: Cleveland Monroe Coffee

Today I received an announcement from Juanita Cranfield reporting the completion and availability of her new book Cleveland Monroe Coffee, The Family Diamond. The hardbacked book will sell for $40 plus $10 shipping and handling. Those interested in learning more about the book may contact Juanita via e-mail, or by writing to her at 614 Shoemaker St., Athens, TN 37303.

Updated info:

This Cleveland is the son of Jesse and Elizabeth Thompson Coffey. Jesse is the son of Cleveland and Martha Brown Coffey.

My notes for this family:

I am not aware of any proof of the children of Edward and Grace. It is speculated that Cleveland, husband of Elizabeth Coffey, and who appears in Orange and Albemarle county records from 1762 to 1774, and perhaps also in 1791, is one of their sons. He may also be the Cleveland Coffey who had a land entry in 1778 on Zack's Fork of Lower Creek in Burke Co., NC

Benjamin is also another possible son. He was born in VA in 1763 and is on the Burke Co., NC census from 1790 to 1850 (Caldwell in 1850). His wife was Leah, born about 1760 in VA. The Leah Coffey who married Francis Hickman on Apr. 19, 1798 in Jefferson Co., TN may be their daughter.

The problem with this Benjamin being a son of Edward and Grace is that Grace would have been 47 when he was born, in that era somewhat late in life for a woman to have a child.

The other possible children of Edward are James, who is on the 1785 census for Botetourt Co., VA and William, found in a few records of Montgomery Co., VA from 1781 to 1785. The likelyhood also exists that these are children of Peter and Susannah Coffey of Prince Edward Co., VA. No proof of either being factual has been found.

The William Coffey of Buckingham Co. tax lists from 1783 to 1797 is probably Peter's son.

Other possible children of Edward is Jesse, in Wilkes Co., NC from 1779-1786, and Isaac or Isaia Zarrah, also in Wilkes Co. from 1782 to 1796. The Jesse in Wilkes Co. up to 1786 could well be the one in the Pendleton Co., SC census of 1790 and 1800. He was the father of six boys: Cleveland, Edward, Joel, Elijah, Elisha and John. The use of the names Cleveland and Edward adds to the possibility that Jesse was a son of Edward. In the 1800 census he was over 45 meaning that he would have been born in 1755 or before. He is not on the 1820 census of Pendleton Co., but a Nancy (over 45) is. This could have been his wife since Jesse died prior to 1810.

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