Saturday, October 30, 2010

SNGF: What's Your Halloween Personality?

Randy Seaver at Genea-Musings has given us our mission for some Saturday Night Genealogy Fun.  Obviously, I have decided to accept the mission.  If you'd like to take the quiz too, just pop on over to
According to this quiz, I See Halloween as Scary.  Here's what it said about me: 
You're a friendly person, but not the life of the party. You like making someone else's day - and you'll dress up if you think of a really fun costume.
You definitely think of yourself as someone who has a dark side. And part of having that dark side means not showing it.
Your inner child is open minded, playful, and adventurous.
You fear people taking advantage for you. You are always worried about protecting your own interests.
You're prone to be quite emotional and over dramatic. Deep down, you enjoy being scared out of your mind... even if you don't admit it.
You are a total overachiever and workaholic. You're the type of person who plans their elaborate Halloween costume weeks in advance.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Amanuensis Monday: A Letter to A. J. Doran from Ora Gubler

July 26, 1960

Dear Mr Doran,
I was so delighted to receive your fine letter and the excellent information on your mother’s family.
I shall give you a little of the information I have obtained and perhaps it will be of interest to you if you don’t have it among your records.  From the Patterson cemetery I got the following dates when I was a young girl.

William B. McCroskey b. 13 Nov 1805 – died 18 Feb63
Matthew McCroskey born 1 Jan 1808 – died 12 Jan 1869
James Madison McCroskey born 13 Feb 1810 – died 19 Feb 1861 or 1864

The stones are old but I managed to copy several dates.  These three men were brothers and I have been trying to find out who their parents were, but I’m not successful so far.
Recently Mrs. Agnes McCauley of Nixa, Missouri sent me the birth and death dates of her husband’s grandfather and Grandmother which is as follows.
Margaret McCroskey born Oct 9, 1817, died Jan 26, 1894 wife of Frederic Hamilton McCauley who was born Nov 10, 1815. He died Jan 5 1894.
Mrs. McCauley thinks this Margaret McCroskey is the daughter of your grandfather Matthew McCroskey who was born 1 January 1808.  Now I think she was a sister to your grandfather instead of his daughter because your grandfather would have been only 9 years old when your this Margaret was born.  According to the 1860 Census of Christian Co Missouri, your Aunt Margaret was born in or about 1835 and according to your letter your Aunt Margaret married Joe Meritt.
I appreciated so much the names of your Mother’s brothers and sisters and the names of whom they married.  I would love to have the names of the children of your parents and children of your Aunts and Uncles if you can give them to me.  Also it is very important to have the name of the county and the state in which each was born.
I am also going to include a copy of a Will of Matthew C. McCroskey of Sullivan, Co, Tennessee.  His will was proven or probated August 5, 1867.  It is on a separate sheet.  Will you please read it and tell me if you have ever heard of him?  Do you think he might be the father of your ancestor grandfather Matthew?  Please note that he gave his sister Mary G Myers, all his personal and Real Estate and that William M. McCroskey was appointed executor of his will.
Do you know the names of any other brothers or sisters of your grandfather Matthew McCroskey besides, William B. and James Madison McCroskey?
Do you have any pictures, old Bibles or any stories which have been handed down through the family which might give any clue as to who were the parents of William B., Matthew and James Madison McCroskey?
I would appreciate any names and addresses of other McCroskeys who might give me any additional information.
Can you tell me if your grandfather Matthew was a minister?  I’ve always heard of him as Reverend Matthew.  But I have not been able to find any church records of his ministry.
I’ll try to show below how I fit into the McCroskey picture.
Brothers {William B. McCroskey – Matthew McCroskey – James M. McCroskey
                                                                                                        ↓                                              ↓
                                                                                Charlotta McCroskey        Matthew C. McCroskey
                                                                                                       ↓                                              ↓
                                                                                                 A. J. Doran     ←→     Pearl McCroskey
                                                                                                                                         Ora Etta Hoffman
Notice that you are a second cousin to my mother Pearl McCroskey. You may remember her brothers Rudy, Eddie, and Felix McCroskey. My mother married Warren E. Hoffman who was my father. I married Darwin Gubler. We have seven children.
I’m afraid my letter is too long. But I do appreciate your letter and hope to hear from you again.
                                                                                              Sincerely your cousin,
                                                                                                         Ora Etta Gubler

Sullivan Co. Tenn. Wills 1830 – 1870
Will of Mathew C. McCroskey1
In the name of God Amen.  – I Mathew C. McCroskey, being of Sound and disposing mind and memory, but weak in body, and knowing that it is appointed unto all men to die, to make, ordain and establish this as my last will and testament hereby revoking all former wills by me made.
First – I give my soul to God to be disposed of according to his own pleasure – touching the worldly goods with which it has pleased God to bless me – I dispose of them as follows.
First – I request my executors herein named, to pay all my just debts and funeral expenses out of any money I have on hand or that may be due me or that may come from the sale of my property, -- I require my said executor to see that I am buried in decent Christian like manner.
Second – after the payments of my debts, I give and bequeath to my sister Mary G. Myers all my personal and real estate of every kind and description whatever.  I hereby nominate, constitute and appoint William M. McCroskey my executor of this my last will and testament.
In testimony whereof I have set my hand and seal this 2nd day of Feb. 1867
Mathew C. McCroskey
Attest S. F. Johnson
          John Keys
          H. M. Targler
Proven Aug. 5, 1867

1 Page 68

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wednesday's Child: Roy E Rosa

Photo taken by Jami L. Berthiaume at the Indian Creek Cemetery in Hamburg, IL 

Roy Eldon Rosa, had he lived, would have been my Grandfather's oldest brother.  He was the first-born of George Westly and Eva Jane (Hallett) Rosa.  He was born Nov. 5, 1891 and died Jan. 30, 1892 at the tender age of two months and 25 days.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Amanuensis Monday: Family Letters, Part Five

April 10, 1936
Dear Bro;
I am sending you some material which I got from Mrs. Gibson of Emporia, Kan. about our ancestors.  I am going to Wichita Falls, Texas to-morrow to visit Albert Crenshaw.  Will stay over Sunday and come back Monday.
We have had a very dry and cold spring.  No rain to amount to anything since Jan. 1.  We have an Easter vacation of five days.  I am writing a few letters this morning and going to wash my car this afternoon.  Let me hear from you when any news breaks loose in the old stamping ground.  I got the young check.
                                                                                        your Bro.
                                                                                             Uncle Fuller
Hutchinson, Kansas
Feb. 29, 1932
Dear Mrs. Gibson
Isn't your husband head of the English Department at the State Normal?  I believe I studied English under professor Gibson during the summer of 1916, preparatory to securing my teachers certificate.
Would surely enjoy meeting you in person.  If nothing unforseen takes place, I hope to attend the conference  at Abilene.
I am decended from Alexander Doran, son of Robert Doran a native of Dublin Ireland.  The former born June 2, 1760 in Pennsylvania, moving to Rockingham County, Virginia, then to North Caroline and later to Carter County now Johnson County, Tennessee.  He married Elizabeth Lowry born 1757 in Washington county, Virginia, in 1781 -- (I know nothing further of her, but will try to get more information.  My cousin, Mrs. E. L. McDade is historian for Tennessee, and National Committee of some kind and regent of Tennessee chapter in Mountain City, Tennessee.  She can probably give me some information.)  Continuing with Alexander Doran's history.  He was an ensign in Battle of King's Mountain in Virginia line in 1780, died in 1814 in Carter county now Johnson county, Tennessee.  Their daughter, Rebecca Doran born 1796 died 1870, was married in 1817 to Richard Donnelly, born in 1790, died 1870.  Their daughter, Emoline Donnelly (my great grandmother) was born 1825, died 1900, married Roderick Randons Butler, born 1827, died 1902, Lieut. Colonel in Civil was in Federal Army from Tennessee (cousin of General Ben. H. Butler and U.S. Senator M.C. Butler of South Carolina.)  The former was U.S. Congressman for years in the legislature for ten years all together.  His father was George Butler, mother a Leach of Virginia.  He was born in Wythe County, Virginia 1827, died 1902.  Wish I could trace his history enough to get bar on that side.  Their son, my grandfather, Richard Hugh Butler, born 1847 died 1929, married Anna Ingrahm, born 1849, is still living, in 1868.  Their son, my father, Dr. James Clyde Butler, born 1871, died 1912, in 1895.  Her mother, Florence Leoitia Wills was a Wills.  I am in line for a bar on that side through Lewis Winsell, several of my cousins have joined through him.  Don't know the national numbers at present.
The history or war record of Alex. Doran will be found in Summers History of Southwest Virginia, page 854 - 857.
Quite a number of my relatives in Tennessee have descended from Alexander Doran.  Two of my Aunts, Inez and Dua Butler, national members 104171 and 160382 and I don't know the other numbers.
If any of this information helps you, I shall be glad, and if I can help you any further I will be glad to do so, as I was born and reared in Mountain City and know all these people quite well.
                                                  Sincerely yours,
                                                       Bonnie Lon Butler Fry
                                                       (Mrs. Fry)
Tulsa, Oklahoma
March 29, 1934
Dear Mrs. Gibson;
I am trying to trace my husbands ancestors, and he is a descendant of Alexander Doran born in 1760.  I am wondering if this is your ancestor also.
Here is what information and data I have gathered concerning this Alexander Doran.  He was born in 1760 January 28, in Morris County, N.J.  He enlisted as private in Captain Thomas Reading's company in March 1776.  In 1781 he and his father moved to Hampshire County, Virginia.  In 1836 he resided in neighborhood of Hanging Rock, Va.  He married Sarah Reed in 1791, but I can find no records for her, and believe she died soon after their marriage.  He had a son Joseph Doran who married Luce Fry in 1827.  Joseph and Lucy Fry Doran had son Benjamin Franklin Doran who married Lucy Daniels.  Their daughter Lula Doran is my husband's mother.  I notice in my record's where Elizabeth Doran, daughter of Alexander Doran married a Joseph Smith, and you have in your record that Elizabeth Doran married a Caleb Smith.  I feel sure these lines are the same.  I do not know where Alexander Doran was buried.  There is a possibility that this Alexander married Sarah Reed first, then your Elizabeth Lowry.
I would be very happy to learn who the father of Alexander was and more about his ancestors.  We have in our family and old Bible from which I have dates of all Alexander's children and marriages which followed.
I myself am a DeHaven descendant, and if you are a descendant of Updegraft there is an all probability a mutual relationship between you and as well as my husband.  Do you have any DeHavens records?  I am only able to trace back to Edward DeHaven born 1757 in Montgomery City, Pa.  He married Rebecca Johnson of Breckenridge County, Ky.  I have a wealth of material concerning the first two generations of DeHavens, Inderhaven, Updegrave and Updegraft; but am unable to connect my Edward DeHaven.  He was probably the grandson of Peter and Sidonia Levering DeHaven, making Jacob Updegraft his uncle.
I could go on indefinately about my lines, but it is the Doran lineage I am anxious to establish.
Hoping to hear from you in the near future, I am
                                                              yours sincerely,
                                                                    Mrs. E. F. James
P.S.  There is a William Doran still living in Bunceton, Missouri,
4147 South Norfolk
Tusa, Oklahoma

Emporia, Kansas
March 19, 1936
My dear Mr. Doran;
You were kind and considerate to write me, not to send you duplicate data.  I am, however, enclosing some letters and should like to have you read them and see whether you can straighten the Alexanders out.  I felt that they must be two different menmen but it is surely confusing the way facts pertaining to our Alexander are a part of the life of the other.  I do not see how our Alexander could have served in Washington's staff, or lived in W. Va.  Several years ago I wrote again to Paul Doran asking him to give his version of the truths of the matter, but had no reply.
I am hoping to have a chance to spend time enough in Topeka to copy all the Lowry and Doran data in the Annals of Southwest Virginia, -- I had so little time before, just enough to get a part of the Doran data.  I found that it is very inadaquately indexed and that means going through all of it and spending much time.
Some years ago I had the complete text of John Lowry's will copied by the clerk in Staunton and am enclosing a typed copy since you may not have it.  I have tried to copy it exactly as sent to me but wonder if some of the spelling is not due to mistakes in typing.  In a note accompanying the copy of the will, the clerk stared that the land mentioned in the will was part of the great Borden tract and was situated in the present Rockbridge county -- taken from Augusta Co. in 1778.
If you ever pass through here, I hope that you will arrange to stop.  We should have some interesting subjects in discussion.
Please return the letters at your leisure.  Keep the copy of the will.  I have had inquiries of a Peter Doran, of Shirkshinny, Luzeren County, Penn. abt 1840 to 1845, but know nothing of him.
                                                                         Lula Gibson

Friday, October 15, 2010

Funeral Card Friday: Mr. & Mrs. (& Mrs.) A. J. Doran

Alexander Judd Doran (my great grandfather):

His first wife, Lillian Francis Stroud:

His second wife, Virginia Vandalia McCroskey:

All of whom I've written about before... so this will be a fairly silent Friday.  Have a great week-end!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Amanuensis Monday: Family Letters, Part Four

Sparta Tenn
Aug 11, 1932
My Dear Mrs. Gibson,

Your letter of August 6 is very interesting to me.  It seems very probable that we have a common ancestor, though some of the dates and facts given in your letter are bit hard to reconcile with the records, partly traditions which I have.  I am a descendant from Robert Alexander Doran who settled in Hampshire County Va. in 1742 or 43.  He came from County Donegal, Ireland, in 1741 and lived for a year or two in New Jersey near Englishtown.  Not liking life there, he came to Va. and settled in Hampshire Co. now West Va.  There he reared a family and died there.  His wife, according to the record I have, was Sarah Elizabeth Reed.  To this union was born among others William and Alexander.  I mention Alexander because this is the one in whom you are interested.  I am a decendant from William.  This Alexander was born about 1760-5.  At 14 or 15 he entered the Revolutionary army under general washington as a teamster, drawing a munitions wagon.  He was cited for bravery under fire was personally commended by Washington.  After the war closed he was an overseer of part of the fairfax estates and after Washington's death he came into posession of part of the land.  Robert Alexander Doran was a man about 50 when the war started and served on Washingtons staff; it is easy to see how his son should attract the attention of the General.

Alexander married Elizabeth daughter of John Lowry.  Ther children were William, Joseph, John, James, Peter, Elizabeth, Alexander.  Joseph settled at Sedan Va. and reared a family and afterwards moved to Ohio.  John settled at Blacklick, Ohio where some of his descendants still live.  James also went to Ohio but I know nothing of him.  Peter never married.  Elizabeth married Joseph Caleb Smith and reared a family in Va. where many of her descendants still live.  Alexander was drowned in north River when he was just a young man not married.  William married Hannah Guard and rered a large family some of whom went to Ohio while Dave & Sam went to Cloud County Kansas.  I know nothing further about the children Alexander and I suppose you would not be interested in the family of William.  I might tell you however, that William also Served through the Revolution and was given a grant of land.  1,000 acres in the Cherokee nation in what is now Overton County Tenn.  He reared a family of twelve and two daughters Mary and Elizabeth.  Mary married firs a man named Carter after whom Carter County Tenn. was named.  He died leaving one son and later she married a man named Lawry Silas and Ambrose.  twins the youngest children of William Doran were the first to use steam in industry west of the mountains.  My father, Marrion, was the oldest son of Silas and will be 93 next birth day.  He is living now in retirement.  He was a doctor by profession and was also an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church, the ancestral church of the Dorans.

A few years ago I spent five weeks in Ireland and while there I saw Sir Henry Doran who ownes the large ancestral estate of the Dorans in Donegal.  He was at that time a member of the Irish senate and one of the most influential men in Ireland.  You probably know that the house of Doran is one of the oldest of irish nobility.  The Dorans reigned in Donegal when there were petty kings in Ireland, in the eighth century.  While I was in Ireland I was shown much respect every where as soon as my name was known.  At Belfast at the assembly where I spoke the clerk told me that nothing had happened in Ireland in more than a thousand years in which the Dorans had not had part.  The reigning Earl in Donegal at the time of the Reformation was the first to sign the Irish Covenant in his blood since which time Dorans have been Presbyterian, except for a few strays in this country who have joined other churches.

It sees very improbable that the name Doran has any connection with Drogheada.  It is a common in all the Gallic lands, in Ireland, Scotland, North Emgland, France, and even in the Gallic parts of Spain.  But our family is Irish.

I trust I have given you some information that will be helpful to you.

Paul E. Doran

Personally, I think we have two different Alexander's being mixed up with one another... too many names etc just don't match up.  My Alexander did marry Elizabeth Lowry, but his parents were James Doran and Margaret Gordon and they stayed in Washington Co., Virginia untill they moved to Johnson Co., Tennessee.  Different parents, different kids... different Alexanders. 

Monday, October 4, 2010

Amanuensis Monday: Family Letters, Part Three

Dec. 7, 1935
Dear Mr. Morris,

I have your letter of the 4th and in this letter you say that what you want to know is the parents of Robert Lowery Doran and Betsy Doran, who was a daughter of Robert Lowry.

Robert Lowery Doran was the son of Alexander Doran and Elizabeth Lowry.  Robert Lowery Doran was married on May 19th 1812 to Betsy Lowry, a daughter of John Lowry (I believe).  He was an officer in the Revolution, a decendant of Col. John Lowry of Cromwells army.  Alexander Doran was born presumably in Virginia in 1760 and died in 1814 in Johnson County Tennessee.  Alexander was an ensign in the Continental Army and was at the battle of Kings Mountain, 1780.  Alexander Doran was the son of James Doran Revolutionary soldier whose will was probated in our court on the 17th of December 1799, and James Doran left the following Children Peggy Doran, William Doran, James Doran and Alexander Doran.

Robert Lowery in the Revolution from Virginia.  Robert Lowery Doran and his wife on the last day of September 1853 sold and conveyed the last of their lands in this county and I suppose emigrated.  No finer people ever lived in this part of the world than the Doran Lowry people.  Miss Rebecca Hope of Abingdon Va. can give you much information.  She is of this family.

Yours truly,
L.P. Summers

You can tell from this that the old reprobate is satisfied that we have two Doran Revolutors, one of them an ensign -- no less -- which in them days in army service rated along second looeys of today.  That battle of Kings Mountain was fit by a motley horde of frontiersmen who went horsing over the hill.  Just for the occasion one might say, and went on home when the job was done.

Well, I am writing Miss Rebecca Hope forwith and hoping she is not ascrewy as her fellow townsman.  I don't believe there would be room even in New York City for two like him.  There is no doubt in my mind that we are simply putrid with ancestors.  Pat ok again. 

Much love,
     Your Royal Kinsman the Sultan of Goulash.

I shall let you know when Mr. Summers of Abingdon finds more.  Yours truly,
     B.M. Morris, Springfield Newspaper Inc.
     Springfield, Mo.

B.M. Morris is a son of Laura Doran.  Robert Doran was her father.  Corner of Maine & Center St Springfield Mo