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.
Jesse 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.