January 28, 2011

David Franklin & Elizabeth Conner Coffey

 David was a son of Nathaniel and Sarah Meredith Coffey.  Nathaniel (Nathan) was a son of Joel and Martha Stepp/Step Coffey.  Joel is said to be a son of the oft-labeled "mysterious" Chesley and Jane Cleveland Coffey.

As described below, Nathan came to Pike Co., IL in 1829 with his parents and other siblings.  He married Elizabeth Conner there on Aug. 6, 1842  and in 1850 was elected Justice of the Peace for Pike Co.  The family farmed and raised children throughout the 1850s and early 1860s, but in June of 1862 David entered the Civil War on the side of the Union when he became commander of Co. B, 68th Ill Regt.  He was 45-years old.

The 68th was organized for 3-months service in June, 1862 and most of the men were from the northern part of the state.  During the second Battle of Manassas (Bull Run to us Rebels) he was detailed to "hospital service."  The record does not say if he was wounded, sick or had special talents needed in the hospital.  In any event, he died on Sep. 22, 1867 in Griggsville, Pike Co.
"David F. Coffey, deceased, one of the pioneers, was born in Simpson county, Ky., May 18, 1817, and was a son of Nathan Coffey, deceased, well known in this county, who brought his family here in 1829 and settled on sec. 3, Griggsville township, at the summit of the hill which was afterward christened "Coffey Hill," and is still called by that name.  He was the father of 13 children, of whom David F. was the 6th.  The latter was married in 1842 to Elizabeth Conner, daughter of Francis Conner, deceased, who came to Franklin Co., Ill., in 1832.  Mr. and Mrs. Coffey had 10 children, of whom 9 are living, - Sarah E., Nathan F., J. Hardin, Delitha M., Daniel F., Burton B., Thomas M., Mary J., and Grace L.  Mr. Coffey was Captain of Co. B, 68th Regt. Ill. Inf., in the Rebellion, but was detailed to hospital service during the second battle of Manassas.  He died Sept. 22, 1867, at the age of 50 years; had been a member of the Baptist Church for about twenty-seven years."¹
He and Elizabeth had nine children, all born in Pike Co.:

Sarah E., born c1843, Nathan F., born c1845; John Hardin, born Aug. 31, 1847, died Apr. 29, 1917 in Oklahoma; Delitha M., born c1849; Daniel Franklin, born Mar., 1851; Burton B., born c1853; Thomas M., born 1856; Mary J., born c1857; and Grace L., born c1861.  Grace died of pneumonia on May 19, 1914 in Kansas City, Kaw Twp., Jackson Co., MO.  She is buried at St. Joseph in Buchanan Co., MO.  She had been a teacher at the Garfield School in Jackson Co.  Delitha was also a school teacher in Griggsville in the 1880s.

John Hardin married Ellen Martin on Oct. 14, 1875 in West Grove, Davis Co., IA.  Ellen was born in 1855 - probably in IA - and died in OK in 1938.  Both are buried at Fairlawn Cemetery in Oklahoma City.

Daniel Franklin married Nancy Margaret "Maggie" Hill on Oct. 14, 1874 in Scott Co., IL.  Maggie was born in Mar. 1856 in IL.  This family moved around quite a bit.  In the 1880s they lived in Chambersburg, Pike Co.; in 1900 they lived in  Brunswick, Chanton Co., MO; 1910 in Dodge City, Ford Co., KS and in 1920 in Kansas City, Jackson Co., MO.  Their children were:  Russell J., born Feb., 1877, IL; Burton B., born Feb., 1880 in Chambersburg, Pike Co.; Elizabeth, born May, 1883 in IL; Florence, born Mar., 1888 in MO; Flossie, born Apr., 1891 in MO; Lola, born Jan., 1898 in MO and Marie, born Mar., 1899 in MO.

Thomas M., born 1856 in IL, married Lillian M. Hathaway on Jul. 5, 1883 in that state.  He was a Minister of the Gospel.  Sometime between their marriage and 1894 the family moved to Iowa where five of their six children were born:  Grace H., born Aug. 30, 1884; Allen, born May, 1886; Inez C., born Sep., 1888; Maud M., born Feb., 1890; Myrna M., born Feb., 1894.  Their last child was Paul I., and he was born Jan., 1899 in Union Co., South Dakota.  By 1910 they were in Alva, Crook Co., WY where they apparently remained, at least through the 1920 census.

Grace married Victor M. French (not the Little House on the Prairie character) on Oct. 2, 1907 in Crook Co.  Victor was born in Egan, Moody Co., SD and died in Rapid City, Pennington Co., SD in Oct., 1967.  Grace died in Alva in 1917, apparently during, or right after the birth of their third child.  Victor later married Delia Foley, but I have not found a marriage record or list of their children.  His children with Grace, all born in Crook Co., were:  Russell E., born c1909; Celia M., born c1910 and Geraldine B., born c1917.  The two girls were enumerated with Grace's parents in 1920; Russel with his father.  Victor, Grace and Delia are buried at the Alma Cemetery in Crook Co.

Maud M., also school teacher (as was her sister Inez in 1910) married Leslie Browning Hopper on Feb. 17, 1913 in Crook Co.  I have not found them in any census.

¹Charles C. Chapman & Co., Compilers/Publishers, History of Pike County Illinois;: Together With Sketches of its Cities, Villages and Townships, Educational, Religious, Civil, Military and Political History; Portraits of Prominet Persons and Biographies of Representative Citizens (Chicago, IL: Chas. C. Chapman & Co., 1880), Pages 515 & 516.

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