Wednesday, December 21, 2011

William Reeves of York County, South Carolina

William Reeves who died in York, SC in 1821 was believed to be William Reeves, Jr., son of William Reeves who died in Granville County, North Carolina in 1751. This appears to have been based upon the book The Reeves Review II but seems unrealistic since William Reeves, Jr. would have been approximately 110 years old when he died in 1821 in York County, South Carolina if that were the case. Although that is not impossible, it is certainly unlikely and extremely unusual.

William Reeves, Jr., son of William who died in Granville NC in 1751, is found in the deed records of Edgecombe County from around 1728 until 28 Jun 1758 along with his wife, Hardy. He is last mentioned there in a deed from Samuel Hardy to Thomas Jackson, both of Edgecombe (Halifax) County, which references land adjoining William Reeves and Persimmon Tree Creek. There is no further documentation regarding William Reeves, Jr. and certainly none that record him with any other wife than Hardy whose maiden name is unknown.

William Reeves, Jr. witnessed a Bertie County NC deed from Ralph Mason to his father, William Reeves circa 1728/29. The required age to witness a deed in North Carolina at that time was 14, accordingly William Reeves, Jr. would have been born before 1714. Additionally, in the 1782 tax lists of the Fishing Creek District of Granville County, his brother Malachi Reeves is noted as "Aged" or over 60, whereas William Reeves is not. It is far more likely that a generation was missed and the William Reeves with wife Elizabeth who died in York, South Carolina was a son or nephew of William Reeves, Jr., born circa 1710.

William Reeves, Jr. described as "of Edgecombe County" deeded land to his brother Malachi in 1753 which appears to be the last transaction that definitely pertains to him in Granville County.

The bulk of the documentation found in Granville County regarding this particular William Reeves indicates that he was the son of Malachi Reeves. Malachi was listed with 3 tithes in 1755 in Granville County - himself, William and the negro Jackson. Again in the 1762 tax lists of the Fishing Creek District, sons William and Jonathan are listed with Malachi.

William Reeves received pay for 12 days service in the Granville County Militia under Colonel Robert Harris on March 24, 1769. William Reeves, Jr. would have been approximately 60 years old at this time and it’s doubtful, although not impossible, that he would have served in the militia.

He was listed as a taxpayer in Granville County along with Malachi in 1769 and again in 1771. In 1788, William was a taxpayer in Tabb’s Creek District, Granville County. In August of that year, he and Joseph Hays were added to the hands of Avery Parham to oversee the Bankes Road in Granville County. Again, although not impossible, highly unlikely that an individual approximately 70 years old would be assigned the duties of maintenance on a road crew.

The eight children of William and Elizabeth Reeves as documented in York County Probate Records, Case Nbr. 45, File 1904 (William) and Will Book F, Pgs 225-226 (Elizabeth) are:

1. Hardy Reeves
2. Mary Reeves, m. William Thomasson
3. Willis Reeves
4. Wiley Reeves
5. Tabitha Reeves, m. James B. Glover
6. Elizabeth Reeves, m1. Unknown Glover, m2. James Gaulden, m3. James B. Glover
7. William Reeves, Jr.
8. Lucy Reeves, m. William Glover

Exhaustive research of the Granville County NC tax and deed records, only yield one individual named William Reeves during the years 1755 through 1800 and that person was William Reeves, the son of Malachi Reeves, and it was he who relocated to York County, South Carolina around 1800.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Hanging of a Loyalist Named Reeves

The History of Watauga County, North Carolina contains a story of a Reeves who was associated with the Tory band led by Captain William Riddle in the New River area of North Carolina and Virginia. Since the Reeves family of Grayson County, Virginia/Ashe County, North Carolina are closely related to my own Reeves based upon DNA evidence, whenever I happen upon this story, I have to wonder whether this Reeves belongs to my family.

Perkins house where Col. Cleveland was captured.The story goes as follows - Col. Benjamin Cleveland of the Wilkes County Militia was captured on the 22nd of April, 1781, while on a visit to his tenant, Jesse Duncan, at the lower end of the Old Fields by Captain William Riddle's Tories. They had stolen horses from Duncan's barn the night before and led them up the south fork of New River into a laurel thicket just above a house about a mile away. Cleveland was ambushed and captured, then taken up New River to the mouth of Elk Creek, and then to "what has since been known as Riddle's Knob", some fourteen miles from Old Fields and in Watauga County.

There they camped for the night but had been followed by young Daniel Cutbirth and a youth named Walters along with Jesse Duncan, John Shirley, William Calloway, Samuel McQueen and Benjamin Greer. Joseph Calloway mounted a horse and road to notify Benjamin Cleveland's brother, Captain Robert Cleveland, on Lewis' Fork of the Yadkin. Five of these in advance of Robert's party fired on Riddle's gang at the Wolf's Den early the next morning. With the arrival of Capt. Cleveland, one of the Tories was wounded and the rest escaped, including Riddle's wife Happy. There is still a tradition in the neighborhood of the Wolf's Den that Ben Greer killed or wounded Riddle at that place soon after Cleveland's rescue, one version saying that Riddle was only wounded and then taken to Wilkes and hanged.

Wolf's DenSoon after Cleveland's rescue, Riddle and his men made a night raid into the Yadkin Valley, where, on King's Creek, they captured two of Cleveland's soldiers, David and John Witherspoon taking them into the mountain region on the Watauga River in what is now Watauga County, There both were sentenced to be shot, when it was proposed that if they would take the oath of allegiance to the king, go to their home and return with "the O'Neal mare — a noble animal" and join Riddle's band, their lives would be spared. The Witherspoons agreed to this and returned with not only the mare, but with Col. Ben Herndon and a party also, when they captured Riddle, Reeves and Goss, "killing and dispersing the others."

The American Revolution in North Carolina also recounts another version of the rescue of Col. Cleveland as recorded in the 1832 pension statement of Ishmael Titus.

The captured Tories were taken to Wilkesboro, court-martialed and executed on the hill adjoining the village on an oak which was said to still be standing in 1881. Other reports indicate that the oak was behind the Wilkes County Courthouse. There are various stories recorded of those executed but most agree that it was Capt. Riddle, Reeves and Goss with some versions also including either one or two sons of Riddle.

I have yet to find any documentation of the identity of the Reeves individual who was hung with Capt. Riddle at Wilkesboro. If any records of the court martial held at Wilkesboro are extant it might be possible to someday know exactly to which Reeves' family he belongs.

Source: The History of Watauga County, North Carolina by John Preston Author, pub. 1915.

Photos from New River Notes

Friday, December 16, 2011

Yet Another George Reeves

I have no fewer than twenty-eight George Reeves’ and thirteen George Rives' in my ancestry tree, and most of them are related to me. However, other Reeves lines had their Georges too. You can imagine how difficult it is to sort them out, especially when multiple Georges from multiple Reeves lines are found living in the same location at the same time. I had hoped that there would be no more George discoveries. Alas, there were.

While researching ancestors in Wayne County, Tennessee, I ran across yet another George Reeves. He was grantor in an 1833 deed conveying land on Hardin’s Creek in Wayne County to James F Carr of Wayne County. The deed refers to him as “George Reeves of Hickman County, Kentucky.” He was present in Wayne County in the 1830 Federal Census with a wife, four sons, and three daughters, and next appears in the 1840 Federal census in Hickman County, Kentucky with five sons, five daughters, and no wife. He was in Ballard County, Kentucky in 1850 and died there in 1857. This George Reeves married Nancy Elizabeth McClure in 1817, probably in Tennessee; Nancy had died by 1840.

According to the 1850 census, George was born in Kentucky in 1793. Some researchers, for reasons unknown to me, believe he was born in South Carolina. Although I have no information about his origins, it is possible that he is connected to the Thomas Reeves who was a significant landowner in Wayne County before 1820; James Reeves, who settled on Green River in Wayne County by 1816; or John Reeves, a first preacher at the Primitive Baptist Church which was founded in 1820.

It seems likely that George, Thomas, James, and John are somehow connected, but I have found nothing to connect them at this time other than proximity which is a poor indicator of kinship.

DNA testing of descendants of this George Reeves would greatly help in determining his origins.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday - Peter M. Reeves


Oct. 19, 1810

April 4, 1882

Gone but not forgotten

Peter M. Reeves is buried in the Mt. Zion Church of Christ Cemetery in Richardsville, Warren County, Kentucky. The community is on a high ridge above the Barren River a few miles north of Bowling Green.

Peter was the son of George Reeves and Elizabeth Wilkerson whose families migrated from the Neuse River area of North Carolina to Kentucky. The Reeves came from the south side of the Neuse in Wake County and the Wilkersons were located on the north side in Granville County for many years before leaving for Fort Boonesborough in Madison County, Kentucky around 1800.

By 1820 George Reeves and his family had moved further west to Warren County along with the extended Wilkerson family. Peter remained in Warren County, married Sarah Hudnall in 1831 and raised his family there.

Decendants of Peter M. Reeves have participated in the Reeves DNA Project and been placed in DNA Group 6.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Reeves DNA Group 8 Part 2

See Reeves DNA Group 8 Part 1 post before reading the continuation of the story.

In the following narrative, the names of living DNA participants have been modified to use their initials only.

Group 8 researchers first unraveled the pedigrees of members E B Reeves, J M Reeves, and J F Reeves by learning they descend from George Reeves Sr. b 1716 in Virginia. After years of research, the team documented E B's line back to George Rives b. 1660. E B descends from John Reeves b 1787 SC, son of George Reeves Jr. b 1767 VA, son of George Reeves Sr. b 1716 VA, son of Thomas Rives b 1690, son of George Rives b 1660. Next, Group 8 tackled the lines of J F Reeves, a descendant of Jonathan Reeves b 1788 SC, and J M Reeves , a descendant of James Reeves b 1780 NC. Citing DNA results and additional documentary evidence, researchers concluded that James Reeves and Jonathan Reeves were likely sons of Jordan Reeves b 1747 NC, also son of George Reeves Sr. b 1716 VA, son of Thomas Rives b 1690 VA , son of George Rives b 1660 VA, son of Timothy Rives b 1625 Oxford, England.

Group 8 researchers then turned their attention to C R Rives. His pedigree is found in Herschel Edwin Rives' The Rives and Allied Families of Greene Territory, Illinois: An Account of Rev. James Rives and his Descendants of Greene County, Illinois, 1982. C R is also a descendant of Timothy's son George Rives b 1660 through his son Col. William Rives. As referenced by Reliques: George Rives b 1660, page 77; Col. William Rives, b 1683 VA, page 7; William Rives b 1712 VA, page 153; Thomas Henry Rives b 1735, page 154; William McGuffy Rives b 1767 VA, page 157. The Rives and Allied Families continues the line from William McGuffy Rives as follows: Rev. James Rives b 1807 NC, John Hood Rives b 1826 NC, Andrew J. Rives b 1849 IL, Edwin M. Rives b 1880 IL , Carman M. Rives b 1905 IL, C R Rives.

Group 8 learned that member J D Reeves descends from Timothy's son Timothy Rives b 1670 with most of his line being documented in Reliques. J D's line: Timothy Rives b 1670, page 425; William Rives b 1706, page 652; John Rives b 1736 VA, page 661; Edmund Harris Rives b 1783, page 674; John Harding Rives b 1809 TN, page 678; Capt. Thomas McCrory Rives b 1836 page 679; Guy Kenneth Rives b 1882, page 680; Thomas Hunter Reeves, b 1908, page 680; Larry Dean Reeves, and J D Reeves.

The newest member of Group 8 is K M Reaves. His pedigree is found in The Ryves-Rives-Reaves Families of Europe and America, 1999 by W. Patrick Reaves. W. Patrick is a first cousin of K M's father. They descend from Timothy's son John Rives b. 1667 VA. As referenced by Reliques, K M's line is as follows: John Rives b 1667 VA, page 411; Richard Rives b 1690 VA , page 412; William Rives b 1715 VA, page 415; William b 1748 NC, page 416; William's descendants, page 418. The Ryves-Rives-Reaves Families includes additional documentary evidence for the material in Reliques and continues the line from William b 1748 as follows: Edmond Reaves b 1776 NC, William Emery Reaves b 1798 NC, William McGuire Reaves b 1828 GA, William Patrick Reaves b 1857 AL, William Monroe Reaves b 1882 AL, William Leo Reaves b 1909 AL, K M Reaves.

Group 8 is trying to contact member G A Reeves to learn of his pedigree. Because he is a genetic match to members of Group 8, we know he is a descendant of either George, John or Timothy Rives, sons of Timothy b 1625.

Group 8 seeks participants in the Reeves DNA project

Group 8 is fortunate in that our members are connected genetically and genealogically. Our individual paper trails converge at Timothy, and our genetic relationship and our genealogies confirm and support J. Rives Childs' genealogy of the Rives. We are seeking more participants for the DNA project among Timothy's descendants. If you know a descendant of his sons George, John and Timothy, we hope you will urge him to join.

As described in Reliques, these participants will descend from the following:

George's sons 1) Col. William Rives b 1683, and his sons Benjamin, Timothy, William Foster , George and Robert , 2) Thomas Rives b 1690 and his sons Thomas, George, Joseph, Benjamin and William, and 3) Joseph Reeves b 1698 and his sons Daniel, Reuben, Joseph, Burwell, Frederick, and Isham ;

John's son Richard b 1690 and his sons William, John, Peter, and Richard;

Timothy's sons 1) George b 1698 and his sons John, George, Christopher, and Timothy, 2) Timothy b 1704 and his sons William and Timothy, and 3) William b 1706 and his sons William, John, and Timothy.

Reliques of the Rives is available online on Sometimes copies can be purchased on eBay or

The Reeves DNA Project results page is here.

Group 8 lines are also documented on the DNA Group 8 page on The Reeves Project Wiki.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A new trend toward posthumously bestowed middle names.

I keep noticing a recent trend toward adding middle names or initials to ancestors where there are no such “middle” names in any of the primary source documents regarding that person’s life.

"Among the British stock of the southern colonies middle names were rarely bestowed on children until after the Revolution and did not become customary until the mid-1800s.

During the 17th century, fewer than one in a thousand male Virginians of British stock carried a middle name. Studies of public records in several Virginia counties suggest that parents gave their children more than one name so rarely that the practice was essentially nonexistent."

Middle Names in the Southern Colonies from Bob’s Genealogical Filing Cabinet.
Here are just a few of the Reeves individuals’ that I have encountered with recently acquired middle names –

William Reeves who died in Granville County, North Carolina in 1751 appears in several places throughout the internet with the middle name “Cabell”. I spend an exorbitant amount of time researching North Carolina Reeves yet have never seen either William Reeves or his son William Reeves, Jr.’s names written with a middle initial or a middle name. Not in the tax, court and deed records of Granville, Edgecombe or Chowan counties of North Carolina. Is William Reeves of Granville, North Carolina being confused with William Cabell Rives of Albemarle, Virginia?
William Cabell Rives (May 4, 1793 – April 25, 1868) was an American lawyer, politician and diplomat from Albemarle County, Virginia. He represented Virginia in both the U.S. House and Senate and also served as the U.S. minister to France. See Wikipedia
My ggg grandfather, George Reves (Reeves) who died in Warren County, Kentucky in 1827 appears to have been given the name "George William Reeves" by several websites. Yet in none of the primary historical documents located these past thirty years has he been listed with that or any middle name. I also find it odd that if he did, in fact, have a middle name it would be William since he had a brother just a few years older by that name.

Mary Jordan, the wife of George Reeves, born 1716, has been referred to as Mary "Charlotte" Jordan in numerous websites. There are very few historical records naming Mary Jordan and in none of them does she have the name Charlotte or any other middle name. George and Mary Jordan were the parents of Charlotte Reeves Robertson of Nashville fame.

Peter Reves signature at age 83
Recently I noticed on that someone has given Peter Reves, the brother of my ggg grandfather George Reves of Warren County, Kentucky, mentioned above, the middle initial "T". Peter relocated from Wake County, North Carolina to Halifax County, Virginia where he was at one time the sheriff and in his later years chairman of the county court. In none of the extant documents that were executed by him does he include either a middle name or initial in his signature.

What's up with this? Why do we need to give them middle names?

Reeves DNA Group 8 Part I

Reeves DNA Group 8 researchers Gerald, Carolyn, and Sharland have concluded that all participants in Reeves DNA Group 8 descend from Robert Ryves of Dorset b 1490. This conclusion is based on DNA test results and research findings.

In determining the pedigrees of our members, Group 8 researchers found we share as our common ancestor the father of George Rives b 1660, John Rives b 1667 and Timothy Rives b 1670 in Virginia. We now believe that their father was Timothy Rives b 1625, son of Timothy Rives b 1588, of the family documented by James Rives Childs in the well-known Rives genealogy book, Reliques of the Rives.
In Reliques of the Rives, J. Rives Childs originally, and we believe erroneously, speculated that their father was William Rives b 1636 Oxford, England, the alleged emigrant ancestor documented as #1, page 73 of 'Part II The Virginia Family of Rives'.
Childs changed his thinking about William's identity 28 years after Reliques was published. In 1957, he published "Amendments to Reliques of the Rives" in “The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography.” In the opening paragraphs, he states "The basis for the birth of William to Timothy Ryves and his wife of Oxford (pp.74-75) was the slightest..." Childs then cites evidence in the Charles City County Order Book for 1687-1695 that points to Timothy Rives b 1625 Oxford, England as the emigrant ancestor:
"I suggest now the likelihood that this Timothy "Rieve" or Rives was the emigrant ancestor and that he was identical with 206, Timothy Ryves, born 1625, son of Timothy and Mary Ryves of Oxford (p.51), and that he was the father of George, Robert, John and Timothy Rives of Virginia."
Given the evidence, we accept Childs' conclusion that Timothy b 1625 was the emigrant ancestor and the father of George, John, Robert, and Timothy. Timothy Rives b 1625 was the son of Timothy b 1588, #204, page 49 of Reliques, a son of Richard #3, a son of John #2, a son of Robert Ryves #1.
Timothy's son Robert died without male issue. However, Group 8 participants are descendants of the other three sons of Timothy b 1625. Six of our nine members descend from the oldest son, George Rives #2, two members descend from son John Rives #4, and one member descends from son Timothy Rives #5, page 77. The lines of Group 8 can be found at these links to Carolyn's trees at and
The Reeves DNA Project Test Results page is here.
More information will be provided in Part II of this post.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

More mysterious Reeves

Thomas C. Reeves is listed on the Hart County, Kentucky tax lists as early as 1819 and appears the next year on the 1820 census. In that census, he and his wife are both 16-26 years old and have one female child under 10. Thomas' place of birth in each census is always listed as Virginia, but no information has ever been found to indicate a county of origin or a possible family connection.

His wife, Rachel, is listed in census as having been born in Tennessee and her death certificate of 26 Dec 1861 identifies her as Rachel W. Amos and her parents as Frank and Jane Amos.

Thomas and Rachel's children were Amanda (c1830) who married William J. Harper, George A. (c1832) who married Martha Amanda Dale, Elizabeth Frances (30 Mar 1833) married Jesse W. Laird, Tyria G. (c1836), Mary A. (c1837) who married William Perry and Sarah B. (c1839) who married Richard Warren Dale. The identities of the female child listed in the 1820 census or any others born prior to 1830 are unknown.

Thomas C. Reeves appears to have died before the 1880 census was taken and no death certificate has ever been located that might identify his parents.

By the time the 1870 census of Hart County, Kentucky was taken, another Reeves family had migrated into that county. Jesse Reeves with his wife Mary Anne Priddy Reeves and their children John Franklin, Sarah Elizabeth, Joseph "Joe", Mary Jane, Leander J. and Mahala Susan had left Tennessee and arrived in Hart County by 1870. Another daughter, Caldona, was born the next year in 1871 and died in 1975 along with her father, Jesse.

Copelin Cemetery in Hart County, KentuckyJesse Reeves was born in North Carolina on 12 Aug 1812 and he died in Hart County, Kentucky on 13 Apr 1875 of scarlet fever. It's unknown whether Jesse had been married prior to his marriage to Mary Anne around 1855 but it may be likely. Jesse was listed in the 1850 census of Washington County, Tennessee living in the household of Brookins and Mary S. Campbell. His occupation is given as "distiller". Mary Anne Priddy Reeves was the daughter of Joseph and Susannah Priddy who are said to have come from Stokes County, North Carolina. Mary Anne was born the 8th of Feb 1836 in Claiborne, Tennessee and died in Hart County on 27 Dec 1921.

There is no indication that these two Reeves' families were related so presumably the arrival of both families in Hart County, Kentucky was happenstance. Sadly, there is no historical information indicating the Reeves' lineages to which they belong.

Any comments from our readers regarding these families and their origins are welcome.

(Photo by Edith Bastin and Gaye Hill for USGWArchives)

See inventory of Copelin Cemetery in Hart County, Kentucky where members of the Jesse & Mary Anne Priddy Reeves' family are buried at USGW Archives.

Monday, December 5, 2011

William Reeves of Madison County, Kentucky

The internet abounds with various inaccurate allegations regarding my Reeves ancestor, William Reeves of Madison County, Kentucky. His parents, his wife and even his residence have been misrepresented in multiple websites. This mass of misinformation has been the motivating factor in my desire to seek out all the available historical documents regarding his life and create an accurate depiction of who he was, where he lived prior to his migration to Kentucky and from which Reeves family he was descended.

The LDS Family Resource Centers offer a wonderful service for genealogical researchers by providing microfilmed copies of the original records from a particular county which can be ordered and “rented” for a small fee. I found it was possible to stay at home in Texas and search all the records of Virginia, Kentucky and North Carolina counties to find the truth of William Reeves.

Crossing Ellerbe's Creek onto the land formerly owned by William ReevesHe has been alleged to have originated in Halifax County VA, Granville County NC and even Warren County NC – all of which are incorrect. The documents filed in Madison County, Kentucky settling his estate in 1821 name his daughters Sarah Geer and Mary Allen along with son John of Wake County, North Carolina. Two sons, Peter and Charles are recorded as being residents of Halifax County, Virginia at that time but Peter who lived until the 1850 census gives North Carolina as his birthplace. Youngest son, Jeremiah of Madison County, Kentucky, also gave North Carolina as his birthplace in the 1850 census which serves to disprove the theory of Halifax, Virginia origins. The colonial tax records of Halifax also have no record of this Reeves’ family. Wake County NC has countless deeds and court records which document his presence there from the county’s inception in 1771. He was, at various times, tax collector, tax assessor and justice of the Wake County Court over a 30 year period until his migration to Kentucky. He is recognized by the DAR as a Revolutionary War Patriot based upon his civil service as a tax assessor in Wake County during the revolution.

The Reeves Review listed William Reeves, the son of James Reeves of Guilford County as the William Reeves who died in Madison County, Kentucky. However, 3 descendants of William Reeves’ son George are placed in DNA Group 6 of the Reeves DNA Project matching descendants of George Reeves of Grayson County, Virginia, while descendants of James Reeves and his father William Reeves of Granville, North Carolina have been identified with DNA Group 3 proving that a close genetic connection between the two families is impossible. A Johnston County deed of 1763 wherein William Reeves conveyed 400 acres on the Neuse River to William Reeves, Jr. establishes the identify of his father but his mother is still unknown.

William Reeves of Wake County, North Carolina and later of Madison County, Kentucky always wrote his name as REVES, as did all of his sons. George Reeves of Grayson County, Virginia and his sons whose decendants DNA matches the descendants of William Reeves also wrote their name REVES. This was not the case with the Granville Reeves family who spelled their name REEVES.

The erroneous references to the wife of this William Reeves as Fortune Rhodes or Millicent are based upon the incorrect assertions of the Reeves Review that he was the son of James Reeves. The only documentation of William Reeves' wife is a Wake County Court Order of December 1791 regarding the removal of Penny Weaver's children from their apprenticeship to John Alston, and ordering that a summons issue for William Reeves and Any his Wife as witnesses for the orphans.

The internet may continue to be rife with the false allegations of the Reeves Review and the other copious sites repeating misinformation, but I have, thanks to the deeds and court records of Wake County compiled a relatively complete profile of my ancestor William Reeves of Madison County, Kentucky:
He lived most of his life before migrating to Kentucky on 400 acres on the south side of the Neuse River and east of Ellerbe’s Creek that his father, William Reeves, Sr. had been granted by Henry McCullough in 1746.

As the county in which that land was designated changed over the next 60 years - he lived in Orange, Johnston and finally Wake County when it was formed in 1771. The pilings of the I-85 bridge on the western side of Falls of the Neuse Lake stand on this property which is currently in Durham County.

He was prominent in the community, serving as a justice of the Wake County Court for approximately 20 years.

We still know little of his wife Anne (Any) except that she was not Fortune Rhodes or Millicent.

His children and the heirs of deceased children are all named in the Madison County, Kentucky deed by his heirs to the youngest son Jeremiah in 1822.

Other posts pertaining to this family:

The Cumberland Gap
George Reeves of Warren County, Kentucky
Peter Reves of Halifax County, Virginia
The Reves Family of Halifax County, Virginia
George Reeves of Grayson County, Virginia
More Reeves Signatures
A Reeves Fiction - Fortune Rhodes

Website - William Reeves from Wake County, North Carolina to Madison County, Kentucky

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Teressa Jane Reeves Henderson

Long ago, in Little Rock, I had the not so common privilege of actually knowing my great-grandmother. I called her Gambau; my mother and her siblings called her Mamau Henderson. She was born Teressa Jane Reeves in 1879 in Newark, Independence County, Arkansas, a great-granddaughter of Jordan Reeves Jr and Mary Magness, early settlers of that location.

Physically, Tressie was a tiny person. I surpassed her in height by the time I was ten years old. I was fascinated by her pierced earlobes, which hung nearly to her shoulders (or so I thought) from decades of wearing heavy earrings. She swept her long white hair up in a bun that she wore on top of her head. In every picture I've ever seen of her, starting with this one as a young mother, until she died at age 79, her hairstyle was the same, her hair color being the indicator of time passing. A sturdy farm woman, she wore throughout her life the same calico cotton dresses made of feedsacks with button front, inset midriff or belt, and flared skirt ending just above her ankles. I have no doubt that she made those dresses herself, the sewing gene being deeply ingrained in me and my maternal line.

In 1896, Tressie married Johnny C Henderson, a man of diminutive stature, only slightly taller than she was. and had five children, four of whom survived to adulthood. Breaking with tradition, none of her children bore family names: Eula, Opal (a boy), Maudie (my grandmother), Beuna, and Rene (a boy), all names not used (thankfully) before or since in the family.

In this five generation picture taken in 1939, Tressie is second from the left. Tressie died in Little Rock in 1959. The child is my cousin Johnny.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Yellow Cross

Last year, I read this book:

The Yellow Cross: The Story of the Last Cathars Rebellion Against the Inquisition: 1290-1329
by Rene Weis

I was motivated to read The Yellow Cross because a Rives family figured prominently in the narrative. The Rives of Montaillou (in what is now southern France) were among those who resisted the Inquisition, thus burning at the stake for their beliefs.

Here is a brief review of the book that I wrote on Goodreads:

" Fascinating narrative derived from 700 year old depositions taken by the Inquisition in their relentless pursuit of heretics. Although the detail is at times overwhelming, the author succeeded in vividly depicting the lives of ordinary people of Languedoc during the middle ages, most of whom died for their rebellion against the Catholic church."

It has been suggested that the Ryves of Dorsetshire descended from the Rives of Languedoc, but nobody knows whether that is true or not. Nevertheless, I was entranced by the depiction of lives of ordinary (and real) people of hundreds of years ago.

The Yellow Cross is a challenging read but well worth the effort if you want to understand life in medieval Languedoc and learn a little about how an early Rives family lived.