November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

A Prayer of Thanksgiving

Father of the Ages,
Thank You for providing everything we need. Thank You for grandparents who prayed for us before we were born as we pray for the grandchildren of our grandchildren. Thank You for teaching us to love by loving us, for all the love You give and we share. Thank You for surrounding us with the miracle of Your creation, for the heavens and the sparrows. Thank You for laughter and others to laugh with, for service and others to serve with. Thank You for health, sight, hearing, hands to work and hands to hold, holidays and beauty, books and music, children, food, rest, homes, and memories. My my, we are so blessed. Thank you for being here, watching, caring, helping. Glory to Your name! Thank You for who You are.

To this I add my thanks for our soldiers and their families whose great sacrifice over the years have made today possible.  We are so fortunate to be Americans!  I have traveled the world and lived in and visited many countries.  Even with all of our faults, there is no other country in the world where freedom is more abundant than here! 

There are however, some in our current government who seem determined to undermine our way of life. 

Be vigil!

November 24, 2009

Lorenzo and Eliza Corder Coffey

Lorenzo was born c1832 in North Carolina to Larkin and Catherine H. Wilson Coffey.  Not too much info has been found for Lorenzo.

Eliza Corder, born c1830 in Indiana, was a daughter of John Candler and Martha "Patsy" Allen Corder.  Patsy's parents were David and Elizabeth "Betsy" Coffey Allen.  Betsy was a daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Smith Coffey; Thomas being a son of John and Jane Graves Coffey.  Another son of David and Betsy, John Allen married Eliza Coffey, a daughter of John Franklin and Hannah Wilson Coffey.  John Franklin was also a son of Thomas and Elizabeth Smith Coffey.

Lorenzo and Eliza had at least two children; Wayland E. or Waland, born Dec., 1854 in Indiana and, Nora E., born 1878 in Indiana.

Wayland married Clara Risdon on Dec. 22, 1875 in Owen Co., IN.  Clara was the daughter of James and Ellen Risdon who emigrated to New York as a family from England on Jun. 3, 1858 aboard the Ocean Monarch.  Although Clara always claimed to have been born in England, and was born some two years before their arrival, she was not found on the passenger list with her parents.

Clara and Wayland had at least three children:  Norman L., born Apr., 1877, Nora E., born Nov., 1878 and, Iva A., born Jan., 1888. 

Norman married Estella M. Dowell on Feb. 3, 1900 in Owen Co., IN.  Their children were:  Lawrence, born c1902; Loyd F., born c1904; and Arthur, born c1906.  All were born in Indiana.

Nora married Alva Preston Christy c1903 in Indiana.  Alva was born in Nov., 1872 in Indiana and had been previously married to Essie Sharp c1892 in Indiana.  Essie gave birth to one son, Clyde Wallace Christie and apparently died at or shortly after his birth. On Jun. 9, 1900 Alva was a widower with one child, Clyde Wallace Christy, born Aug., 1893.  Both resided in the household with Essie's parents, George Parks and Martha S. Allen Sharp and was enumerated as their son-in-law and grandson, respectively.  With Nora, Alva fathered at least two additional children:  Corliss W., born c1904 and Clara Faye, born c1909, both in Indiana.

I have no information on the child Iva A.  She appeared with the family in the census of 1900 as a 12-yr old female, born in Jan., 1888.

Many of these families and their descendants are buried at the Presbyterian Church Cemetery in Ellettsville, Monroe Co., IN.

I would like to have more information about this family, and especially Lorenzo and his Corder wife. I need to know when and where they died, and perhaps where they are buried.

Please drop me a note if you can help!

November 22, 2009

Charles Finley Coffey

The following was contributed by Dave Engstrom, husband of a daughter of Charles Finley Coffey.

Charles Finley Coffey was born in St. Paul. His parents lived in St. Paul and also had a summer place they spent a lot of time at just north of St. Paul. Charles and Dorothy Danz were married in La Jolla California, I do not have the exact date but I believe it was about 1946. They were divorced after the fifth child was born in about 1961 or 1962. It was a bitter divorce and most of the kids had little contact with their Dad. The oldest daughter and my wife both kept in touch with him after he moved to Arizona and remarried. I was fortunate to get to know him and really enjoyed him. My mother in law really has little memory of the date of the marriage ( or does not want to remember.) Charles Finley Coffey is buried in Arizona. His second wife - Barabara Thurston - was a widow and originally from Anoka Minnesota. I believe she is still alive and would be in her late 80's. We have had little contact with her after my father in laws death. My wife was very upset when we recieved a Christmas card from her with a note that David Coffey, her son (and my wife's half brother) with Charles Finley Coffey had died in the past year. We never recieved any notice of his death other than that. As I mentioned in an earlier note David Coffey was a downs syndrome child.

I got to know Charles Finley Coffey pretty well. My wife and I enjoyed taking a winter vacation to Arizona and would stay with him and his wife Barbara and son David. I have many good stories about him. Charles Finleys father Daniel Sylvester was the Minnesota State Handball champion for several years. I guess that was quite the competitive sport back then. The Coffeys lived in a beautiful large brick home in a very nice area on Lexington Avenue in St. Paul. They also owned a large apartment building next door. In the 1930's when Charles Finley was about 12 or 13 there was a shootout in the aprtment building. The police and FBI found out that John Dillinger was living with a girlfriend in the building. Dillinger got away but the building had all kinds of bullets in the walls. Charles Finley Coffey dug out all the bullets and sold them for 5 bucks apiece as "Bullets fired at Dillinger". Not bad income during the depression. After he ran out of bullets he got ahold of one of his dad's hand guns and bought some amunition, went down to the cellar of the building and shot bullets into a post. After he dug them out he continued to sell "Bullets fired at Dillinger".

After Charles Finley's mother Daisy died Charles inherited the whole estate being an only child. His wife Dorothy thought this would be rather nice, they would be pretty well established and be able to help out their kids. But Charles had some other ideas and bought a cabin on a lake with several hundred acres, sports car and an airplane (he was an Army Air Corp pilot in WW2). He pretty much had fun with the money. That was 1959 and the divorce was in 1961 or 62.

Frank and Ethel (Herdlick) Danz were married in the Cathedral of St. Paul in St. Paul Minnesota. Once again I don't have the exact date but believe it was in May or June of 1917. The Danz family was a very prominent family in St. Paul. Frank was a long time attorney and the youngest of 9 children. His father, also Frank J. Danz, was the founder and first conductor of the Minnesota Orchestra. Both Frank and Ethel died and are buried in Riverside California.

Paul Danz, twin of Dorothy joined the Trappist Monestary upon his return from WW2. Paul Danz is buried at the Assumption Abbey in Ava, Missouri.

Coffey in Beckham Co., OK

Some children of Calvin and Serena White Coffey left NC in the late 1800's and moved into TX and OK.  Henry Milton Coffey was one of those. 

Henry, along with his wife Margaret Lucinda Pennell and five children left Catawba Co. between the middle of 1886 and the middle of 1888 and moved into St. Jo, Montague Co., TX.  From there the family moved into OK, finally settling in Buffalo Twp. in Beckham Co. Many of Henry's children and grand-children are buried in the Buffalo cemetery at Sayre.

Except for the following, I have identified most of the Coffeys buried in that cemetery, but need help in identifying the remaining.  If you can help, please contact me.

Cleta J. Price Coffey, wife of Harold W. Coffey, born 1916, died unknown
Cynthia Coffey, wife of H. M. Coffey, born 1851, died 1919
Harold W. Coffey, born Feb. 1, 1916, died Aug. 26, 1979
J. L. Coffey, born 1917, died Apr. 2, 1978
Ina Oletia Campbell Coffey, w/o J. L. Coffey, born/died unknown
J. W. Coffey, born May 23, 1925, died Sep. 1, 1925
Josie Coffey, born 1911, died 1913
Ora A. Coffey, w/o Joe L. Coffey, born Jun. 26, 1887, died Jul. 25, 1951
Orville A. Coffey, born Dec. 1914, died Mar 12, 1916, son of Thos. T. Coffey
Ruth B. Coffey, born Oct. 8, 1908, died Nov. 5, 1908
Thomas Clifford Coffey, born Jul. 22, 1927, died Jan. 12, 1975
Verlin Coffey, born 1920, died 1920
Rosetta Joy Coffey Dorsey, born May 17, 1938, died Mar 27, 1977 w/o Luther Conway Dorsey

Mystery Coffey Family Photographs - Update 11/26/09

These are some of the photos in my collection for which I have no information.  If you recognize them please drop me a note.

C.W. Coffee is Columbus Washington Coffee, born Jan. 20 1856 in Forsyth Co., GA, died 1936.  His wife was Mary Ellen Blackburn who died in 1945.  C. W. was a son of Starling or Sterling Coffey and his wife Nancy Tyler Cannon.  Starling is thought to be a son of Elijah and Polly Hull Coffey.  Nancy, born c1831 in GA is said to be the daughter of Hiram and Hannah Tyler Cannon.

Brenda Adams, a descendant of Starling/Sterling wrote to me way back in Jan. 2005 that this family has always and continues to spell their surname Coffee.

The ancestry of C.W. before Elijah is a bit cloudy.  I have Elijah as a son of Thomas and Sarah "Sally" Fields Coffey.  Brenda thinks he might be a son of Jesse Cleveland.  I don't believe either one of us is absolutely certain.

The family posing in front of the house has not yet been identified.  They are not believed to be part of C.W.'s family.

All of these photos are labeled C. W. Coffey with no additional information, except for the last one which indicates it is a 50th anniversary photo.

Rev. Berry Wisdom Lafette Coffey

The Rev. Berry Wisdom Lafette Coffey was born Oct. 15, 1857 in Grainger Co., TN to William Wesley and Gelina E. Shouse Coffey.  William was the son of Cleveland and Susan Hayes Coffey.  Cleveland was one of the Burke Co., NC Coffey families that moved into TN in the early 1830s.  Susan was from Ashe Co., NC and their first child, Andrew Jackson Coffey was born there in Dec., 1833.

Berry Coffey married his first wife, Harriet Dalton on May 15, 1879 in Grainger Co.  She gave him at least two children:  Dewitt, birthdate unknown, and Charles "Charlie" Edward, born in Grainger Co. in Jan., 1878, died Jul. 9, 1952 in TN.  Charlie married Susan McDaniel c1904 and they became the parents of at least four children: 

Verdia Alice, born Aug. 24, 1906, died Dec. 1, 1989, married George Nelson Shockley who was born Jul. 23, 1899 in TN, died in Claiborne Co., TN on Aug. 9, 1978.  Both are believed to be buried in the Shockley cemetery in Claiborne Co.  They were parents of at least 10 children.

Laura Bell, born Nov. 29, 1909, died Dec. 29, 1983.  She married the Rev. Gus Harville on Sep. 23, 1926 in Grainger Co.  They were parents of at least two children:  Roy R., born c1928, died Apr. 4, 2007 in Bean Station, Grainger Co., and Clora N. "Sis", born Jun. 5, 1933 in Grainger Co., died Nov. 18, 2006 in Thorn Hill, Grainger Co.  Clora married the Rev. Ira C. Dalton in Grainger Co. in Sep., 1965.

Cephus Henry, born Feb. 2, 1912, died Jun. 18, 1973 in Grainger Co.  He married Virgie Miller on Jun. 26, 1944 in Hamblen Co., TN.  Virgie was born Jun. 10, 1925 and died Oct. 11, 1999 in Knox Co., TN.  I know of only one child, Lonny Hugh, born Jan. 19, 1950 in Hamblen Co., died there on Dec. 30, 1966.

Enos Garfield, born Jul. 9, 1915 in Thorn Hill, died Aug., 19, 1988 in Franklin, Warren Co., OH.  He married Ophia Coffey, a daughter of Elijah and Martha Coffey Coffey and a distant cousin.  I know of no children born to this union.
I do not have a death date for Harriet but she apparently died before Nov. 5, 1887 because on that date Berry married Jincey Shockley.  Jincey was the daughter of Winright and Martha Emaline "Emily" Coffey Shockley and was born in May of 1864.

This marriage brought at least three more children to the family:

Cynthia, born in Aug., 1887

Nathaniel, born Sep. 8, 1893 in Grainger Co., died Apr. 22, 1970 in Bean Station.  Nathaniel married Pearley Dalton on Sep. 24, 1918 in Grainger Co., the daughter of Ira and Sarah Manerva Dalton Dalton.  They had at least six children: Dorsie Ellen, Stella May, Fannie Lucy, Berry, Albert and Kenneth.

George O., born Sep., 21, 1898, died Jan., 1981.  George married Buena Vista Collins on Mar 14, 1918 in Grainger Co.  Buena Vista was born c1900.  They had at least six children:  Lewis, Nelson G., J. D., Hobert, C. A., and Rufus N.
Jincey apparently died before Jan. 1, 1904 because on that date Berry took his third wife, Mary Jane Sheffield.  Mary Jane was born Aug., 25, 1870 to William and Nancy Coulson Sheffield.  She died on Jan. 17, 1956.  Their children were:

Mattie E., born Feb. 13, 1906, died Oct. 14, 1988.  Mattie married Hobart David Carpenter c1925 and had at least one child, Vina Mae, born c1926, died Nov. 3, 2005 in Bean Station.  Vina Mae married Roy Nelson Livesay who died on Sep. 11, 2001 in Grainger Co.

Berry Snyder, born c1909

Rufus Kyle, born May 14, 1912, died Oct. 5, 1994.  Rufus married Cecil Dalton in Sep., 1940.  She was born Jun. 9, 1924 to Simeon and Lula Dalton Dalton, and died Oct. 22, 2007 in Thorn Hill.

The Rev. Berry Wisdom Lafette Coffey died on Jan. 1, 1936.  The following is his obituary as it appeared in the Mulberry Gap Association minutes for that year:

Coffey, Berry W. was born October 15, 1857; d. January 1, 1936, age 78 years 2 months 16 days. He professed faith in Christ Feb 10, 1877 and joined the Methodist church later joined the Missionary Baptist at Oak Hill Baptist Church where he remained a member until death. He was ordained to ministry, April 4, 1893. He was a great lover of the church and Sunday School and great friend to the young ministers. He always told them to stand for the cause of Christ. He leaves to mourn his loss his , wife, 6 children 5 boys sons, 1 daughter, 3 half brothers, 19 grandchildren, 13 great grandchildren and a host of relatives and friends, but our is his eternal gain. When we will meet where will be no more sad parting. Written by Children.
He was buried in the Coffey Family cemetery in Thorn Hill along with Mary Jane.

Photo and most of this family information is courtesy of Bernice Mullins, Hancock Co., TN

November 17, 2009

Catherine Lawman Sandidge

Catherine Lawman Sandidge was the daughter of Samuel Lawman, born c1792 either in PA or VA.  Samuel often wavered between these two states in various census records.  Catherine was in the household with Samuel on Oct. 21, 1850 and again on July 12 1860 in Amherst Co.

We know that Catherine married Anderson Sandidge c1855.  She was named in the "Annual Report of the Department of Interior" 1926 as the wife of "Anderson Sandidge, first lieutenant, Tinsley's Company, Virginia Militia," and in the "Annual Report of the Commissioner of Pensions to the Secretary of the Interior" in 1924.

Another source, "Catalogue of the Officers and Alumni of The Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia, 1749-1888 named Anderson Sandidge of Amherst County as "Captain, War of 1812; Farmer, Teacher, died 1859."

Catherine was identified In subsequent Amherst county census records; namely for Mildred and Daniel Rufus Coffey on Aug. 22, 1870 and widower Daniel on Jun. 24, 1880, and with Virginia on May 16, 1910 and again on Jan. 20, 1920, as mother and/or mother-in-law.

Mildred, born c1850 and Virginia, born Nov. 11, 1851 named John and Catherine Scott as their parents when they married brothers Daniel Rufus and William Henry Coffey in Amherst Co., VA on Apr. 6, 1868.

It has been reported in some well researched genealogies that both girls were illegitimate daughters of Catherine Lawman.  Other researchers have questioned whether or not the Catherine named in the marriage record was Catherine Lawman.

Both girls were in the household with Samuel Lawman in 1860 Amherst Co. along with Catherine, then Catherine Sandidge and her 2-year old son, Aman Sandidge.  As stated above, they each were married before the 1870 census was enumerated.

Census records prove that a John Scott was in Amherst county and was, in fact, a near neighbor of the Lawman family.  In 1850 he resided at dwelling/family 476 while the Samuel Lawman family was in the same district at family 510.  John was not married.

In 1860 Scott was dwelling 110/family 108, which seems to be a bit more distant from the Lawman family which was at dwelling 319/family 316.  It's difficult to judge distances when enumeration district maps are not readily available.  John was still unmarried.

The 1870 census enumeration found John living alone at dwelling 571/family 559 at Amherst Court House while Catherine, a widow, was residing with her daughter Mildred Coffey, wife of Daniel Rufus.

A marriage record for Catherine to John Scott has never been found.  We know that John had been married, but prior to 1850.  In census records from 1850 thru 1870 there was not a wife in his household. 

The girls were young, 18 and 16 respectively when they married, but it is obvious that either they, or someone who was confident of their parentage reported that John Scott was their father.

The conclusion then has to be that the girls, Mildred and Virginia, were the illegitimate daughters of Catherine Lawman Sandidge, both born prior to her marriage to Anderson Sandidge and were fathered by John Scott. 

Comments and other evidence gratefully accepted.  Contact me at the above e-mail address.

A personal note: My Bride and me

On Nov. 6 my wife and I were treated to a surprise party by our children and grandchildren to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary.

Jack & Nelda Laurent Coffee
We were married on that date in 1959 while I was soldiering at Fort Sill, OK. My sister had introduced us to each other back in our hometown of Baton Rouge, LA a few weeks (yes, weeks!) earlier. I was on a list of soldiers scheduled to rotate to Germany and, because I had little hopes of getting home before that move, she came to see me.

I had already asked her to marry me at the first opportunity I had to get home and she had accepted. We just moved it up a bit - being under age 20, I had to get my mother's permission - and took our vows a few days later in the post chapel. It was a year later before I finally shipped out, not to Germany but to France. She followed about two months later and our first child was born there the following May.

Since that time we've lived in New Mexico - where our second child, a son - was born, Louisiana - where second son and last child was born - Germany, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore. After nearly nine years in the military we capped a 27-year career with Exxon Corp., in 1995 and finally got back to our roots in south Louisiana.

We are grandparents to seven; five boys and two girls. The oldest grandson is nearing 24 and a law student; the youngest will be four on Thanksgiving Day.

Anyone who says there's no such thing as love at first sight is either blind or short sited!

It's been a grand journey!

November 14, 2009

Thaddeus Warsaw & Rosa Etta Coffey Rollison

Rosa was a daughter of Shelton and Dicy Sanders Coffey.  She was born on Feb. 21, 1863 in Indiana and died on Jul. 9, 1920 somewhere in Arkansas.  She and Thaddeus married Oct. 26, 1879.  He was born to Charles Perry and Matilda Runser Rollison of Nov. 10, 1858 in Ada, Hardin Co., OH and died in DeWitt, Arkansas Co., AR on Aug. 29, 1953.

Both are buried at the DeWitt cemetery in DeWitt, Arkansas Co., AR.

There were at least 11 children born to this union:  Eva Alice; Alma Katel Nathan Jersey; Cora May; Ina Belle; Charlie Shelton; Pearl; Ralph Thaddeus; Nora; Estelle and Mabel.

I have no additional family info and would welcome any corrections or additions.

November 11, 2009

Zidner Coffey

Miscellaneous information for Zidner Coffey.

Son of Ananias "Nias" and Jane Hindman Coffey.  Married Marganna (Ann?) Keltner Jan. 20, 1831 in KY.  Died Jul. 23, 1869.  He is probably buried in Adair Co. where he lived most of his adult life.

Children, all born in Adair Co.:  Martha Jane, born c1831; William A., born 1832; Sarah Ann, born c1835; John Davis, born c1836; Ardena, born c1838; Thomas G., born c1841, died Jan. 7, 1878 in Adair Co.; Elizabeth, born c1842; Robert W., born c1843, married Sally C. Compt[i]on, had child William Zidner, born 1892 died 1961 in OH; Ellen, born c1845; Sophia, born c1846; Andrew Jackson "Jack", born Jan., 1848, died 1928, married Dorinda Frances "Drindy" Rogers.  Children were James Wesley, Dorather (?); Minnie, Bennie, Cassius Curl; George R., Lorzy (?), Gideon and Lula; Mary, born c1849.

Jun. 15, 1810, Zidner born in Wayne Co., KY; no other details.

1840 Adair Co., KY census, page 32.  Age and Sex:  21001/110001

1850 Adair Co., KY census, page 23, dwelling/family 323, 5 Aug 1850, 1st Dist. Coffey, Zinder 40 M KY Farmer; 500; Ann 41 F VA XY; William 17 M KY Farmer A; S.A. 15 F?KY A; John B. 14 M; KY A; Ardena 12 F KY A; Thomas 9 M KY A; Sophia 8 F KY A; Ellen 6 F KY;
Robert 7 M KY; A. J. 4 M KY; M. 1 F KY.
14 May 1853 in Adair Co., KY, bond Sarah Ann Coffey and Joseph Price.  Zidner was surety.

27 Apr. 1865, Adair Co., KY, Sophia Coffey married William R. Willis at the home of Zidner Coffey.

November 10, 2009

Veteran's Day

Originally called Armistice Day, tomorrow is the day set aside to honor Veterans of all branches of the military.  This date was chosen because "the war to end all wars" was concluded on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918.

More than 9 million soldiers of all nations died on the battlefields and it is estimated that an equal number of non-combatants died from, genocide, starvation, disease and other privations brought on by the conflict.

Please take time to remember those Veterans in your family, whether living or deceased.  These are just a few of the Veteran headstone photos that I have and are included here as a gentle reminder to make sure you have similar photos of your family heroes.

Thomas Bullen, husband of Cornelia Jane Coffey, a daughter of Elias Henry "Eli" and Hannah Bullen Coffey.  Buried at Scaffold Cane Cemetery in Roundstone, Rockcastle Co., KY.
Arnold "Red" Church, husband of Ola Coffey, a daughter of Fredrick Abner and Mary Octavia Loudermelt Coffey.  Buried Woodlawn Cemetery, Blowing Rock, Watauga Co., NC.
Aaron Coffey, son of Thomas Jefferson and Malinda Graves Haley Coffey; husband of Mary Summerville Smith.  Pecan Grove Cemetery, McKinney, Collin Co., TX
Carl Gwyn Coffey, son of Carl Sylvester and Margaret Tate Gwyn Coffey.  Buried at Greenwood Cemetery, North Wilkesboro, Wilkes Co., NC.
Charles Wilson Coffey, son of Dock Charles and Elizabeth Jane Turner Coffey.  Buried Evergreen Cemetery, Clermont Co., OH.
Cline Coffey, son of Thea and Stella May Coffey Coffey.  Buried at Woodside Cemetery, Middletown, Butler Co., OH.
Dock Charles Coffey, son of William and Sarah Saleney Womble Coffey.  Buried at Evergreen Cemetery, Miamiville, Clermont Co., OH.
Guy Woodson Coffey, son of John Woodson and Nevie Gertrude Clements Coffey.  Buried at Forest Lawn Cemetery, Richmond, VA.
Johnny Othel Coffey, son of Walter Othel and Mamie Matilda Baltimore Coffey.  Buried at Pine Knot Cemetery, McCreary Co., KY.

James & Alice Ann Coffey Stanley

Alice Ann Coffey was born Jun. 7, 1880 in Scott Co., TN to Joseph and Beth Ada Strunk Coffey.  Joseph, born Nov. 7, 1829 in Wayne Co., KY was a son of James and Sarah Emerline Sumpter Coffey.  Beth was born Feb. 28, 1835 in Kentucky and was a daughter of William and Charlotte Strunk.

Alice was the youngest of the thirteen known children of Joseph and Beth Ada.  She and James Stanley were married on Jan. 23, 1897 in Scott Co..  James was born Nov. 21, 1878 in KY and died in Scott Co. on Aug. 10, 1949.  Alice died May 15, 1948 in Scott Co.  Both are buried in the Coffey cemetery at Oneida in Scott Co.

I have very limited information on their children:

William Edgar, born Feb. 19, 1898 in Scott Co., died Oct. 13, 1940 in Oneida.  His wife was named Sallie, born Nov. 3, 1899, died Aug., 5, 1973.  After William died Sallie married a Mr. Crooks.  She and William are also buried in the Coffey cemetery at Oneida.

Noly, a daughter, born 1901.

Elizabeth Jane, born Aug., 24, 1905 in Scott Co., died Nov. 16, 1966 in Oneida.

George, born Feb. 18, 1909 in Scott Co., died Mar. 21, 2002 in Danville, Boyle Co., KY

Una Virginia, born Dec. 27, 1912 in Scott Co.

Thomas C., born Apr. 16, 1916 in Scott Co., and died there on Feb. 8, 1970.  He was a volunteer in the US Army during WW2.  He enlisted at Camp Shelby in MS on Mar. 28, 1944.  In addition to the Purple Heart for wounds received during the war, he was also awarded the Bronze Star.  This medal is typically awarded to members of the armed forces for acts of bravely, meritorious service or acts of merit.

See Descendants of Daniel Strunk for additional information.

James Lawson Coffey Family

Several blogs have been written about this family.  Readers can click on the title link to recall all of those earlier blogs.  I found this family photo in my files and believe it was submitted by Sandy Warde who provided me with most of the James Lawson family data.

The family is in order from left to right:  James, Leah, James Emerson, Charles Elmer, Nettie Elizabeth, Bertha Etta, Jesse Edward and Lulu Ethel.

November 7, 2009

Jacob Higgonbotham and Sarah Elizabeth Coffey Benson

Jacob was a son of Preston C. and Sarah Ann Lucas Benson. I have seen his middle name spelled various ways, the most common being Higgonbotham. According to his WW1 draft registration card he was born Apr. 15, 1875 in Rockbridge Co., VA. According to his headstone, he died in that county on Jan. 25, 1949.

Sarah Coffey was his first wife. She was the daughter of Alfred and Martha Ann Bradley [photo below] Coffey and was born Jan. 22, 1865 in Nelson Co., VA and died in Rockbridge Co. on Dec. 19, 1906.

From census records it appears that Jacob and Sarah only had two living children: Cornelia, born Dec., 1898 and Jacob Stuart, born c1906, both in Rockbridge Co. Given Sarah's death date and Jacob's apparent birth year, it appears that she may have died giving birth to him.

In about 1908 Jacob H. married Etta W., last name not known. Apparently no children were born to this union. They first appear together in the 1910 Rockbridge Co. census where they report a marriage of two years. Jacob was age 35 while "Eddie W." was 46 and had been married once before.

Jacob registered for the draft on Sep. 12, 1918 in Rockbridge Co. He was age 43 and reported his birthdate as Apr. 15, 1875. He worked as a farmer for Jas. W. Searly [?] near Brownsburg. He named "Mrs. Etter Benson" as his nearest relative and described himself as being of medium height and build with black hair and dark brown eyes.

I have not located them in 1920, but in 1930 they were in the Walkers Creek district of Rockbridge Co. Jacob was 54 and Eddie [sic] was 76 years old. Stewart [sic], age 24 was living with them. He gave his occupation as laborer at odd jobs.

Alfred Coffey was a son of Garland G. and Nancy Coffey Coffey. Garland was a son of William and Betsy Giles Coffey while Nancy was the daughter of Reuben, brother to William, and his wife Nancy Giles, sister to Betsy.

Martha Ann Bradley was a daughter of William Franklin and Elizabeth Wood Bradley of Nelson Co.

Please contact me if you can add to or correct any of this information.
Photos courtesy of Connie Coffey Dorsey

November 3, 2009

James Alexander and Josephine Andrews Coffey

In an earlier blog [click on title link to read] I wrote about the descendants of Patterson Vance and Nancy Martisha Estes Coffey from Caldwell Co., NC.  At the time I had no information about their second son, James Alexander. Since then I have discovered the following about him:

Patterson and his family moved to Douglas Co., OR sometime around 1900. Their second son, James Alexander, born Jul. 4, 1872 in Lenoir, died in Jamestown, Stutsman Co., ND on Nov. 27, 1957. A short biography of the professional life of James appears on the website of the North Dakota Supreme Court:

Judge Coffey was born in Lenoir, North Carolina, on July 4, 1872. He attended school at Lenoir, until moving to Portland, Oregon, where he graduated from high school. He received his B. A. degree from the University of Idaho, and L. L. B. degree from the University of Minnesota. He came to Courtenay, North Dakota in 1902, where he practiced law until 1910. In 1911 he was appointed Judge of the Fifth Judicial District by Governor John Burke, he served in that capacity until 1919, when the judicial districts were revised he became Judge of the Fourth Judicial District from 1919 until 1928. He returned to private practice, and was briefly associated with Alvin C. Strutz, and later headed the firm of Coffey, Mackenzie and Jungroth in Jamestown, North Dakota. Judge Coffey died on November 27, 1957.
James married Josephine Andrews, a Minnesota school teacher in about 1903.  Shortly after their marriage - as indicated by his arrival in ND in 1902 - the family settled into life and raised two children:  Robert Andrews, born c1904 and Eleanore, born c1906. 

The family appeared in the 1910 through 1930 census records in Jamestown, Stutsman Co., ND.  Josephine appeared as the head of household in the 1900 census for Fairbault, Rice Co., MN where she taught school and lived with her brother, Stanley, age 15.

I have been unable to find a death record for Josephine, or a burial site for her or James.  Neither have I found any record of Robert and Eleanore after 1920. 

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

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