Friday, April 27, 2012

Marriage Record of Tabitha House and Robert King of Oregon and Howell Counties, Missouri

So far in 2012 I have been working on trying to break down my PETERS brick wall. Part of that process has been going “outside the box.” One of the ways in which I’m trying to do that is to gain exposure of this family by putting more documents and stories on my blog. So far my PETERS line has branched into my KING line and today I would like to further branch into my HOUSE line.

Last week I wrote about Fletcher King who was the brother of my 2nd great-grandmother, Dora King Peters. He married Mary French in Alton, Oregon County, Missouri on December 3, 1893 at the home of Mary French’s father, John French. My 2nd great-grandmother, Dora King, married William Edward Peters in November 1900 at the age of 26.

Dora and Fletcher KING were the children of Robert KING and Tabitha HOUSE. Robert KING and Tabitha HOUSE were married July 28, 1870 in Howell County, Missouri in probably what is now known as West Plains Missouri. I have actually been to West Plains and to the courthouse. In fact, to this date, this is the only courthouse I have ever been in!

Unfortunately, it was early on in my research when I visited the courthouse and I did not know what I was looking for at the time, so I did not find this marriage record there. I did, however, pull it off of on March 7, 2012 from the “Missouri Marriage Records, 1805-2002” online database.  Tabitha House was indexed as Tabitha “Course.” The record cited the Missouri Marriage Records, Jefferson City, MO, USA: Missouri State Archives - Microfim as the source for the database entry.

Here is a copy of the page entry. The entry for Robert KING and Tabitha HOUSE marriage is the very light print in the lower left:

This is what it looks like zoomed in and cropped:

The transcription is as follows:

This is to certify that the rites of
matrimony were solemnized by the
undersigned minister of the gospel
between Robert King of Oregon
county and Tabitha House of Howell
County both of the State of Missouri on
the 28th day of July 1870
                                                by Wm _______
                                                Minister of the Gospel
Recorded this 1st day of August 1870
                                                by _______ Rec

The 1870 census was taken in August in West Plains, Howell County, Missouri, where Tabitha HOUSE was from, so she was not enumerated with her family, Holensworth [sic] HOUSE because she was probably already moved out of the house and living with her new husband, Robert KING by then. The 1870 census was taken July 10 in Oak Grove, Oregon County, Missouri, where Robert KING’s family was from, so he WAS enumerated with his family (presumed to be Wilzey KING).  They were married July 28, 1870 in Howell County, Missouri, so they should have been caught on one of the census reports, but I have yet to find them on any. Unfortunately, Robert KING died in 1876, leaving Tabitha with two young children.

I don’t have a very big window with which to find much information. I got Robert’s date of death from Tabitha’s obituary. I would like to find a marriage announcement for Robert and Tabitha (27 July 1870) and an obituary for Robert KING (1876). Tabitha remarried to Samuel Watson in 1879. You can view their marriage record and see a photo of the young couple here

Monday, April 23, 2012

Today is my 5th Blogiversary! Yes, that's right, I have been blogging for 5 years now! Wow, it is hard to believe sometimes. The time goes by so fast.

So what have I accomplished in these 5 years? I have managed to get photos, stories, and research problems out there for all to read about. I have met tons of cousins and other researchers interested in the same surnames and family lines. And geekily speaking, my page now ranks #1 on the Google search engine for the "Godwin" keyword search query!

And the best part of it all is that I still have so much more to write about! I am still amazed at how much exposure we bloggers get on our family lines just by writing about them. Whether it be a photo of a headstone or our grandparents' wedding, or just a census image shared and talked about. So if you are considering starting a blog or wondering what or how it would benefit you or your research, do not hesitate! Do it now! As you can see from experience, I'm on 5 years and still going!

I would like to thank all of you, my readers, for taking the time to stop by and check out my photos, read my stories, leave suggestions in my comment boxes and for all around supporting me and my efforts. Blogging has opened up a whole new world for me and because of it I have made so many new friends and learned so much.

And here's a cute little photo to highlight what I do when I'm not blogging and the weather is nice ....

Ginger Smith, Kayak Trip, 21Apr2012, Rhodes Pond, Godwin, North Carolina; Copyright Ginger R. Smith , 2012

Photo of 5 year anniversary sign from the Greeting Card Universe website.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Marriage of William Fletcher King and Mary French (Oregon Co., Missouri)

Here is the marriage license between William Fletcher King and Mary French that was emailed to me by Wanda Watson in March 2012. She obtained a copy of it from the Alton Courthouse in Alton, Missouri.

Fletcher King was my 2nd great-grandmother, Dora King's brother. Dora and Fletcher King were the children of Tabitha House and Robert King. Information and a photo of Fletcher King can be found here.

This license was issued to solemnize marriage between William F King of Alton [the license says "Attie" but it should be Alton since there is no such place as Attie], County of Oregon and state of Missouri; It states that William is over the age of 21 years and Miss Mary A French, also from Attie [sic], County of Oregon and state of Missouri; Miss Mary A French is over the age of 18. Permission was granted by verbal assent of J F French for his daughter Mary A French.

The license was signed by J. Felix Normand, Circuit Clerk, Alton, MO, 29 Nov 1893;

With certification that the "Local Elder" at the residence of J F French in Oregon Co., MO on the 3rd of Dec 1893, united in marriage the above named persons, signed by Joseph M Willards.

The license was filed for record 26 Dec 1893 by W. A. Norman Deputy and J. F. Norman, Circuit Clerk.


From this marriage license I learned that William King's wife's name was Mary French and that she was the daughter of J F French. Other records have indicated that Mary's father's name is John Frederick French. I also learned that they received their marriage license on November 29th, 1893 and were married on December 3rd, 1893 at the home of Mary's Father, John.

I am not the best at reading local records, so I am wondering if Joseph Willards was the man who married this couple or did he just witness the marriage? I checked the 1900 census report and there was a Joseph M Willard living next door to John French, but he was only 34 years old, certainly no "elder." He would have only been about 27 years old at the time of William and Mary's marriage. He was listed as a farmer on the census, not a minister.

What do you think? Was Joseph a witness or a minister?

Update: You can read my later post, "My Introduction to a Methodist Circuit Rider" for more information about Joseph Martin Willard, the man who married Fletcher and Mary King and who was a 2nd cousin of Fletcher's. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

William Herbert Peters, my Great-Grandmother’s Half Brother

Herbert & Emma (Dodd) Peters, 1978, Texarkana, TX sent to me by Pam, a 3rd great-granddaughter of Posey Willard, March 2012. 

In a previous post entitled “The Mystery of William Herbert Peters’ Birth” we learned that Herbert’s parents were my 2nd great-grandmother Dora King and Posey Willard. Herbert was born March 25, 1900 in Rover, Oregon County, Missouri. He and his mother, Dora, have not yet been found on the 1900 census which was taken around June of 1900. I looked in both Missouri and Arkansas in case they might have been staying with family. I also looked under Dora’s birth name, Dora King, and her step-father’s name, Dora Watson, but found trace of neither on the 1900 census report.

In November 1900, Dora married William Edward Peters, my 2nd great-grandfather. Herbert’s father, Posey Willard, married Matilda Judd, June 5, 1901 in Brady, Oregon County, Missouri. Herbert must have been “adopted” by William Peters because he took the Peters surname on all official documents. It was only after released a scanned image of Herbert’s death certificate did I realize his father was Posey Willard.

In 1918, Herbert had registered for the draft in Oregon County, Missouri. By 1920, he was enumerated on the 1920 US Federal Census under the Military and Naval Forces in Germany, Montabaur District, overseas Military. He was listed as a 20 year old Private from Rover, Missouri.

On July 12, 1924, Herbert married Emily Dodd in Minturn, Lawrence County, Arkansas. Lawrence County, Arkansas is just over the Missouri-Arkansas line, bordering Oregon County, Missouri so it wasn’t too far away. Many people lived on one side of the border and worked on the other.

By 1930, Herbert and Emily were living in Moore Township (Thomasville), Oregon County, Missouri. Herbert was a farmer on a general farm and a WWI vet.  When the 1940 census comes out and gets indexed, I will be able to learn where they were living in 1940. By 1943, I know they were living in Bowie County, Texas because that’s where one of their daughters was born. Another daughter, Mildred Alice Peters, had been born January 27, 1931; however she died March 5, 1931 and was buried in Joliff Cemetery in Rover, Missouri. Two of Mildred’s cousins were also buried in Joliff Cemetery: Alvy and Charley King, children of Herbert’s uncle William Fletcher King.

Herbert was mentioned in his father’s obituary in 1948. He was listed as living in Texas. Herbert and Emily eventually settled for good in Texas. Herbert died in Texarkana, Bowie County, Texas on April 20, 1979. I have a copy of his death certificate, but would love to get a copy of his obituary. He is buried in Chapelwood Cemetery in Texarkana, Texas.

I found a Findagrave memorial for him from 2011 and contacted the person who created it. Pam is the granddaughter of Posey Willard, Herbert’s father. She sent me a photo of Herbert and Emma, his wife (see above), that she received from one of his half siblings’ grandchildren on the Willard side. She also confirmed the story of a relationship between Dora King and Posey Willard prior to Herbert’s birth.

I submitted a request for a headstone photo to FAG. It told me there were 54 volunteers within a 50 mile radius of this cemetery. And the FAG volunteer who created his memorial told me I could probably get a copy of his obituary from the local genealogy society, Texarkana USA Genealogical Society, so I will try to contact them and see if I can get an obituary from them.

Stay tuned for more documents to be posted!