It seems that what you have on the family just adds credence to the stories that I have heard. I have a cousin that is in his late 70s that listened to his grandfather (my great grandfather) tell these stories about his mother's family. The story says that there was an indian massacre in the Georgia foothills and two little indian boys survived the attack and made their way to a German doctor's home and he took them in and adopted them. One of these boys was Melvina's father and he was called "Indian Jim". The family that took him in was a Holsomback family. Only a few days before finding your query I had located a James J. Holstenback on an Alabama census index and had intended to order that microfilm as Jim is short for James. I know from another family line with a lot of Cherokee in it that families often hid their indian heritage, choosing to identify themselves as 'Black dutch' instead. Another story told me by this cousin and a couple of great aunts who were in their 90s when interviewd says that Melvina's husband, Zillman Phillips was killed by horse thiefs. Melvina's brother hunted them down and killed them. I wonder if this could be the U.S. Marshall you speak of. There was an "Aunt Frank" who apparently was a courier during the civil war. She wore a bonnet and one day she was shot at and the bullet went through the top of her bonnet. I wonder if this was Frances. I feel fairly certain that your Melvina is my Melvina - too many coincidences - age, time and place and names. Melvina is buried near Florence, Ala. Her son, George Washington Phillips, lived in Wayne County, Tenn. and many of her descendents live there now.