Wow!What goes around comes around; in attempting to help Jerry Witt, I have ended up helping my own genealogical cause.And Jerry has had a big hand in this, although he wouldn't have anticipated it at all.If you read the preceeding messages, you will note that I replied to Jerry from my notes without first checking his website.When I got more time, I went back to see what he had that might not have been mentioned in his query.As it turns out, Jerry is still building his site and -- what with his family and other responsibilities that we all have -- hadn't started on the Uzzell part of his posted genealogy.Fortunately, I didn't stop there but decided to "cruise" his site a bit.I saw that he had a weblinks area, and went to that part of it that pertains to genealogy.I saw that he had a link to the Tennessee rootsweb project, and decided that he must be using that to obtain some of his information.Since his UZZELLs were from Tenn., it made sense to check this out.The site has a search engine, and so I plugged in "Uzzell" and clicked forward.There were 17 matches, most of which related to either Sumner or Maury Counties.My first choice was the Sumner County record of taxable property and polls for 1816.
Imagine my surprise when I discovered two UZZELLs for 1816, Isom and Jourdan, with Isom being the big property owner at 640 acres!Now Isom's son Bennett is my ancestor, and Bennett got married in Christian County, KY, in 1820.So I've always assumed that I should be looking in KY for both Bennett and Isom, as Isom followed his son to St. Louis County, MO, in the 1830s.I think I may have had a hint that there was a possible Tennessee connection, but I never dreamed that Isom would own the equivalent of a section of land there.After all, the family legend had it that Isom had gambled away his N.C. lands.He raced horses and was a ruffian, not a "respectable land owner!"I guess I just assumed that, as a ne'er-do-well, he would naturally not be the sort to be leaving good records.Thus I'd always have to depend upon what had been passed down about him by others for my image of him.Boy, was I ever wrong!
I went to my regional genealogy library yesterday afternoon for a look at Sumner County.This is the North Independence Branch of Mid-Continent Library, on Hwy. 24 east of Kansas City, MO, and just across the road from the Truman Presidential Library.This "branch library" has so much genealogy material that they had to build a separate addition, and it's bigger than most branch libraries by themselves.I've heard it said that they rank #3 in print volumes and serials in the nation.They have the entire U.S. census right there for one's use.There were about a dozen books on Sumner Co., and the first one I opened was the index to loose records for the period 1786-1930, by Shirley Wilson.There was nothing on Jordan, but 10 separate listings for lawsuits involving (mostly against) Isom and/or his children!
Now I'm getting ahead of myself, because I know they are his children only by piecing things together after-the-fact.Isom's granddaughter, Mrs. L.H. Peery of Huntsville, MO, had written in 1915 that Isom had a son Bennett (her father) and two daughters, one marrying a Rice and the other a Simmons.Now in my early years of research I had never run across these two daughters.But here was an 1812 lawsuit by Allen & Polly Groves vs. Isham Uzzle and Anne, Bennett & Zilpha Uzzle.Then, in 1824, another lawsuit involving the three latter UZZELLs but without Isom: John Peyton, Sr. v. Ambrose L. Bennett -- a case that also involved Allen Groves.Then two more interesting cases (although they may be separately filed documents from the same case, according to the book's introduction):Isham Uzzle v. Allen Groves, in 1812, and Allen Groves v. Isham Uzzell, in 1813.Then another "matched set" of cases of Isom with Elisha Cheek, whom I take from other information to be a neighbor.Then a case of one Whitehead Joiner (Joyner?!) v. Isham, and three cases of the State against: Thos. Pulley & I. Uzzell (1806); Thos. Groves (1814); and Isham Uzzle (1815) -- all said to involve Isom.All very curious, and probably related to the earlier picture I had of Isom not being a gentleman.In fact, he wasn't a very nice guy, from all appearances, and he probably brought at least part of these lawsuits upon himself if my hunch is correct.
Next I went to a Sumner County marriages book, and found that Allen Groves and Polley Uzzell were married on 10 Feb. 1806, with bond provided by Thos. Groves, Jr.In the same book is the marriage of Jordan to Polly Dugger, 15 Jan. 1812, with Leonard Dugger as bondsman.Then the mysterious name of Benjamin appears, filed under "Ezell" and married to Rhodia Hampton on 9 April 1823.[Who is he?I had thought that a Benjamin could have been Isom's father!]
Then I turned to a book of will abstracts, and found that Thos. Groves died in 1814, leaving sons Allen and Thos., Jr. and 3 others.Leonard Dugger's estate is mentioned with a date of 25 September 1817, with the notation that "Family to move to Madison County in the Illinois Territory and estate to be divided there."He left 6 children including Polly, and Jordan Uzzell was an executor.
Two deed abstracts books seem to indicate that Jordan Uzzell ("Johan" ??) was on Cook's Branch of the Red River by 1806, when he is shown as a grantor.Then, in Dec. 1812, he is shown as acquiring 40 acres on Drake's Creek adjacent to Leonard Dugger.This is the same 40 acres for which he was taxed in 1816 and 1817.In 1815 Jordan is one of several involved in the deeding of a parcel of land for the building of an M.E. Church.
Isom, on the other hand, is mentioned in 1808 as a neighbor (along with Mr. Cheeks) to a parcel being sold.In 1809 he is recorded in three separate land sales totalling about 520 acres.In one transaction he is described as Isom Uzzle of Robertson Co., Tenn.One has him on Cook's branch of the Red River and another says he is on the Red River's north fork.In 1812 a Cook's branch parcel sells "that formerly belonged to Isom Uzzel, including the blue spring...."
The final book of interest is one dealing with inventories, settlements, and guardian accounts (Vol. A, for Mar. 1808 to Feb. 1821).Pg. 336 of Vol. A. contains a "record of the division and allotment of negroes between the divisees of William McKenne [listed as McKinne in the index, but probably the name is actually McKindrie], dec'd."The legatees were:Allen Groves, 5 slaves and receipt of $27.50 from each of the other three legatees; Nathanial Rice, 2 slaves; Thomas Lemmons, 2 slaves; and Bennet Uzzell, 3 slaves and payment of $29.66 to Nathaniel Rice and $66.66 to Thomas Lemmons.This would have been recorded in the late summer or the fall of 1816, based on dates in surrounding records.In 1814 a Wm. McKindrie granted a power of attorney to Thos. L. Douglass of Davidson Co., TN, to transfer land to James McKindrie, Francis McKindrie, and Nancy Dudly McKindrie.The land was on the Red River, where he was settled at least by 1812.One of the witnesses was one L. Blackman, whom I mention here because Isom Uzzell was married to Nancy Blackman, daughter of Wm. Blackman of Johnston Co., NC.And the name of DOUGLASS is interesting to me in that Bennett had a grandson named Douglass M. Uzzell.If Bennett's middle initial of "B" stood for BLACKMAN, could this grandson's name be significant, and honor the surnames of DOUGLASS and McKINDRIE as family?
Now, whoever this Wm. McKindrie was, he was splitting 11 slaves between Polly Uzzell Groves on the one hand, and the three children of Isom Uzzell on the other.Why was Isom left out?I think it would have been because Isom was a gambler, and this person wanted to see the "property" stay in the family with the kids and not disappear like the land in N. Carolina!Isom (and I have no reason to suspect that there was more than one Isom) d. in the 1840s while en route from Missouri to Illinois.Since Polly via her husband only received 5 of the 11 slaves, she was to be compensated in cash by the others to raise her share to half.In turn, Bennett received more than his share (3 vs. 2 each for his sisters), and so had to compensate his sisters.As Bennett was breeding and racing horses in St. Louis County, MO, some years later -- and using slaves but not much land to do it -- I am assuming that something similar was happening here in Tennessee, even though he still had 640 acres of land in 1816!And notice that I have concluded that Mrs. Peery's comment about Bennett's sisters, the lawsuits from the first book, and this record of estate settlement all work together to produce the names of Bennett's sisters."Simmons" was probably a misinterpretation of handwriting in a letter; it is clearly intended to be LEMMONS, as in old script the letters "S" and "L" were commonly confused, and vowells were often indistinct in any case....So one sister was Anne and the other was Zilpha; one was married to Nathaniel Rice and the other to Thomas Lemmons.Next I have to match the given names with the husbands; I may find my answer in the marriage records of Robertson County, Tenn., or elsewhere close by western Sumner County.
And, as usual, answers raise other questions.Previously there has been no mention of a Polly Uzzell closely associated with Isom, although Polly (like Zilpha) is a common UZZELL name for girls.Maybe the lawsuits will shed some light on this relationship.And why, if Jordan is closely related to Isom, was he not mentioned in McKindrie's will?And what of Benjamin -- was he an UZZELL or an EZELL?He doesn't show up other than in the marriage record.
But this is more progress than I've made in years, and all in one afternoon and evening.Jerry, I'm sure glad I took an interest in your query and website!Thanks!!!