Just an update for you.I was contacted by the grandson of Martha Evada Gray, sister to Elizabeth "Bessie" Gray and Adolphus Gray the children of John Gray listed on the 1880 Census for Union Parish.
He has done extensive research on the John Gray family.His research does confirm the marriage to Sarah Phillips, however her maiden name is Matthews.Sarah Matthews first married Samuel Wood, 2nd Lewis Phillips and third John Gray.According the the information I recieved the child John Gray, born in Alabama is actually thought to be the son of Sarah Matthews Wood Phillips and Lewis Phillips and so his name would be John Phillips.It is not know whether he was adopted by John Gray, took on his step-father's surname or the enumerator included his with those other's in the family with the surname Gray.His grandmother, Martha's (sister to Elizabeth and Adolphus Gray)youngest daughter reported that her mother, Martha Gray Walkup had told her that her father, John Gray was of Irish descent and that her mother's name was Lydia Smith and of French descent.It was noted to me in the reports I received that the daughter of Martha Evada Gray Walkup had never seen her grandparents and that her grandparents had indeed died when Martha, Elizabeth and Adolphus were young children.Nevertheless I went back to the 1860 Union Parish Census and found a Smith family living 9 families away from John Gray and family.This Smith family had a daughter named Liddy, born in Alabama and about the age as the Lilley, born in Alabama found on the 1870 Union Parish Census with John Gray, Alexander, Julian and Ardonia.
I need to add that the reports I received did indicate that Alexander H. Gray was the son of John Gray and Sarah Matthews Wood Phillips Gray.I was sent a deed to John Gray's property in Union Parish which was deeded to his son Alexander H. Gray.The signature for Alexander H. Gray is A. H. Gray on all the land transaction he had.Mr. Walkup, my contact did not know of Alexander H. Gray every marrying and stated that the presumption is that John Gray died and the children migrated to Texas with Matthews/Reynolds relatives.Martha Gray married James Robert Walkup in Throckmorton County, Texas and Elizabeth "Bessie" Gray married Spencer Clifford Smith in Shackelford County, Texas.Adolphus Gray lived with his sister Martha and her husband until he was admitted to Austin State Hospital where he died.He is buried in the Austin State Hospital Cemetery.He never married and had a disability as well as tuberculosis.
I suggested to Mr. Walkup, my contact that the Lilley Gray (spelled Grey on the 1870 Census for Union Parish) could perhaps be the Liddy Smith who's family is on the 1860 Census for Union Parish.This is of course not proven since thus far neither he nor I have been able to find a marriage record for a John Gray to a Lilley/Lillie/Lydia in Union Parish.Though his first response was that Lilley Gray on the 1870 Census was of no relevance it might be by the ages of the birth of children Julian and Ardonia together with Martha's birth and those of Elizabeth and Adolphus that she might possibly be the mother of these children.This is not proven since the death certificates for Martha, Elizabeth "Bessie" and Adolphus all stipulate "unknown" for the mother's name.
The interest is in the facts of Martha's youngest daughter providing the name Lydia Smith, the 1870 Union Parish Census with the name of Lilley Gray in the household with John Gray and son Alexander and the 1860 Union Parish Census showing a Smith family with a daughter named Liddy on the following page from the Gray family and this daughter Liddy being born in Alamaba about the same year as the Lilley on the 1870 Census.All circumstantial, but interesting.
I have been meaning to get this update to you and apologize for my delay.Mr. Walkup has been to Farmersville and has photograph the very rural property which John Gray owned in Union Parish.His suggestion has been to search for birth and death notices in the newspapers of the time ranges for the death of John Gray, his wives and the births of the children.This is on my to do list.