December 30, 2014

Celia "Sealy" "Cela" Coffey Coffey

NOTE:  After further review the call on the field is reversed.

This Cela, recorded by researchers as a daughter of Joel and Jane Coffey Coffey, was never married.  The will is hers and the siblings listed therein are (so far) thought to be children of Joel and Jane.  Sister Elizabeth likewise never married and also left a will in Russell Co., KY.  It remains now to determine who was Celia/Cela that married Fielding M. Coffey and, who was James Coffey alluded to as her father in this Cela's will.

Clues welcomed!

For years Coffey researchers have claimed that Joel and Jane Coffey Coffey were the parents of at least six children:
  • James, born c1800, NC, died between Mar. 2 and Mar. 20, 1857 in Russell Co., KY; married Mahala Coffey, daughter of Fielding M. and Celia "Sealy" Coffey Coffey. Fielding¹ and Joel were brothers, sons of Nebuzaradan and Elizabeth Hayes Coffey.
  • Celia, born NC, died Sep. 24, 1857 in Russell Co., KY; married Fielding M. Coffey, 
  • Jane, born c1815 in KY 
  • Joel, born Jun. 10, 1818 in Russell Co., died Mar. 21, 1901 in Kentucky; married Permilia Haynes on Jul. 31, 1836 in Russell Co. Permilia was born c1818 in Russell Co., died there on Jan. 19,1853. 
  • Cynthia, married a Mr. Southwood. 
  • Elizabeth
A will for Cely [sic] Coffey has been found in Russell Co. that seems to belie the wide spread assumption that her father was named Joel.

The will was made Sept. 2, 1857 and names nephews Quintice (var.) and Logan Coffey, sons of "my brother Joel Coffey..."  She names her brother Wilborn, sister Cyntha [sic] Southerland, sister Elizabeth, who apparently never married and also left a will in Russell Co. naming essentially the same people,

She willed "Quinties and his brother Logan Coffey my interest in the tract of land on which I now reside which was deeded to me by my father or from James Coffey to be held and enjoyed by them forever after my death equally."

She willed (but does not name) her mother a "coverlet."  If her children with Fielding were born beginning c1797 and ended in c1825 as reported in several genealogies, she was likely born sometime c1780.  If that is close to being accurate, she was near 77 when she died.  Her mother is said to have been born c1774, meaning at Celia's death in 1857 the mother was about 83 years old, a difference of only 6 years!

I'm beginning to believe that too many assumptions have been made by earlier researchers.

Celia or Cely, is said to have married Fielding M. Coffey on Mar. 13, 1800 in Madison Co., KY.*  In his will, Fielding, who died in Russell Co., in either Nov., 1833 or Jan., 1834, named his children in this order: Mahala, Elizabeth, Sealy, Fieldin, Louis, Alice and Thomas H., who apparently was already deceased. Thomas' inheritance was left to his children. Hays Coffey, brother to Fielding was named Executor. Thomas was apparently deceased at the time because Fielding names "the children of my son Thomas H. Coffey as one [sic] of my legal heirs,..."

There were a lot of daughters named Celia, nicknamed Sealy, etc.  There were several Coffey men named Fielding.  A few mostly accurate genealogies name Celia as a daughter of Joel and Jane Coffey Coffey and give her the death date of 1857 in Russell Co,, yet I'm skeptical!

So, did the clerk recording the will for her mistake James for Joel?  If not, who was James?

¹Fielding and Joel, among others, are said to be but not proven sons of Nebuzaradan and Elizabeth Hayes Coffey.

*“Kentucky County Marriages, 1797-1954", index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 13 Feb 2013), Fielden Coffy and Sealy Coffy, 1800.

Contact Form


Email *

Message *