Thursday, October 16, 2008

Dicey Chiles

Dicey (Dicy) Chiles was the widow of Dr. Henry Chiles, the first person to be hanged in the Great Hanging at Gainesville. (see previous post on Dr. Henry Chiles) Dicey had just recently given birth to a sweet baby girl when her husband was killed. She named her new daughter, Mary Henryetta, after her husband. Dicey also had six other children: Elizabeth, George, Sarah, Margaret, John and James. Sometime before 1870 she moved her young family to Mercer County, Illinois. Her oldest daughter, Elizabeth, was hired out as a domestic servant. Dicey later moved with her married children to Taylor County, Iowa. She is buried in Taylor County, Iowa next to her daughter.

An obituary for Dicy Chiles, with references to her husband and the Gainesville hanging, can be found in another post on this blog.

In 1891, Dicey, her children, sister-in-law and others brought suit against other Chiles family members over the execution of the will of Henry Chiles, Sr.

***IS Henry Chiles, Sr. who wrote the will, the father or uncle of Dr. Henry Chiles, Gainesville hanging victim and husband of Dicey??  (note: Henry was a popular name in the Chiles family. Every generation had several men named Henry.)

The following newspaper notice (below) was placed in the Knoxville Journal in March of 1891.
Whereas a bill has been filed in chancery court at Knoxville, Tenn., by Dicey A. Chiles, widow of Henry Chiles, Jr., dec'd; George W. Chiles, James F. Chiles, Elizabeth J. Powell and Robert M. Powell, her husband, Mary H. Powell and James E. Powell, her husband, Sarah A. Langley and James F. Langley, Mary Shafer (widow), Margaret Chiles (widow), James Chiles, son of Margaret; Martha Fleener and her husband Adam Fleener, and William Chiles,
AGAINST Henry Chiles, a resident of the state of Missouri, Francis M. Chiles, of Warren county, Iowa; William Chiles, jr., of Washington county, Virginia, H.H. Hamilton, of Mendota, Virginia, and the unknown heirs or specific legatees of Henry Chiles, sr., dec’d, and their heirs, all of whom their names and residences are unknown and cannot be ascertained after diligent inquiry except as they are described in the original bill formerly pending in this honorable court of the name and style of C. W. Karns, et at exrs vs. Mary I. Chiles, afterwards Sam’l Shields, admi’r, et al., wherein their names and residences are set forth as follows:
First: Children of Fanny Barker, sister of testator, as follows: Henry Barker, Charles Barker, Sarah who married James Sprowls, and another daughter whose christian name was stated to be unknown, but who married Pesquel White, all of whom resided in Lee county, Virginia; George Barker, Wm. Barker, Elizabeth Barker who resided in Washington county, Virginia; Phoebe, wife of Isaac Miller, whose residences were unknown; Polly, wife of George Clark, residents of Missouri, and Joel Parker who resided in Sullivan county, Tenn.
Second: Children of Katherine Barker, excepting William Code and wife, as follows: Thomas Barker and Joseph Barker of Washington county, Virginia; Charles Barker, of Lee county, Virginia; Henry Barker, Sam’l Barker, Paul Barker, and Polly Dowell, wife of Thomas Dowell, all of Know county, Tennessee.
Third: Children of Nancy Meek, to-wit: Sam’l Meek and four daughters whose christian names were unknown, the first of whom married John Chiles; the second, Henry Sullivan; the third, Elisha Bowers, and fourth, Anderson Thomas, and were residents of Indiana.
Fourth: Children of Polly Russell, to-wit – John Russell and Abraham Russell both of whom resided in Missouri, and the names of other children, if any, were unknown.
Fifth: Children of William Chiles, to-wit – William Chiles, Sally who married Wm. Sprawls, Martha wife of Adam Fleener, John Chiles, Almon Chiles, residents of Virginia; Nancy, wife of George Maloney, Anna wife of Logan Willis; James Chiles, Henry Chiles, William Chiles, Francis Chiles and Ephraim Chiles, who were alleged to be residents of the state of Missouri; and
Sixth: Children of Nolen Chiles, or Rolen Chiles, to-wit – James William, Henry G., John A. and George Chiles and two daughters, one of whom married Abram Smith and the other Sam’l Meek, but whose christen names were unknown, but the residents of the state of Indiana.
These and the unknown heirs of all of said specific legatees whether they are all mentioned or not, and their descendants whose names and residences are known after diligent inquiry are made defendants and said bill seeks to sell for partition a tract of land in Knox county, Tennessee, which was purchased at an execution sale on the 8th of February, 1873, by the specific legatees under the will of Henry Chiles, who died in Knox county, Tennessee, many years ago.
Now therefore, it is hereby ordered that all the parties named above as defendants and all the heirs-at-law of the specific legatees under the will of Henry Chiles, to-wit –
“The children of his sister, Fanny,”
“The children of his sister, Katherine Barker, excepting William Code and wife,”
“The children of his sister, Nancy Meek,”
“The children of his sister Polly Russell,”
“The children of his brother Rolen or Nolen Chiles,”
– whose names are not given above and whose names and residences are unknown and cannot be ascertained upon diligent enquiry, come forward and make themselves parties to this suit and make defense to said bill on or before the first Monday of May next or the same will be taken for confessed and set for hearing exparte.
This notice will be published in the Knoxville Journal for four consecutive weeks.
This 9th day of March, 1891.W. L. Trent, C.& M.By W. A. Galbraith, D.C. & M.J.W. Sneed and Cornick & Caldwell, Sols.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Bennet C. Barnes

Bennet C. Barnes Family

Bennet C. Barnes was born about 1824 in Alabama or Tennessee. (It appears that he was called Ben verbally and then assumptions made it be Benjamin. The initials B. C. was also used and all legal documents give his name as Bennet C. Barnes.)
He died on 13 Oct 1862 in Gainesville, Cooke, Texas. Bennet Barnes was one of the victims of "The Great Hanging at Gainesville, Texas, 1862".

Bennet married Sarah A. Rodgers about 1848.
Sarah was born in May 1831 in Alabama. She died after 1900 in Texas. She was sometimes called Sary. Sarah was blind before 1870. (Blind in both 1870 & 1880 census.) Her youngest child was born around 1862. Sarah was left a widow on the Texas Frontier with an infant, four other children and was blind by 1870. 

Bennet and Sarah had the following children:
i. Simeon Barnes was born in Sep 1848 in Texas.
Simeon married Nancy C Smith on 25 Feb 1868 in Hopkins, Texas. Nancy was born in Feb 1848 in Texas.
ii. John Barnes was born about 1853 in Texas.
John married Laura Boyd on 13 Jul 1884.
iii. Susan Olive Barnes was born in 4 Feb 1857 in Wise County, Texas and died 8 April 1923 in Stephens County, Texas and buried in the Shady Grove Cemetery in Stephens County. Called “Ollie”. Susan married John Green Littlepage . John was born on 16 Jun 1854 in Texas. He died on 22 Jun 1936.
iv. Joel Densmore Barnes was born in May 1859 in Texas. He died in 1929 in Wise County, Texas. He was buried in Chico Cemetery, Wise, Texas.
Joel married Rachel Ann Perkins . Rachel was born on 9 Dec 1859 in Texas. She died on 17 Dec 1919 in Wise County, Texas. She was buried in Chico Cemetery, Wise, Texas.
v. Mary Jane Barnes was born 12 Oct 1861 in Texas and died 1 Jul 1935 in Era, Cooke, Texas. She married J. B. Stevens in 1885 and then married ?Blair.

1.George Washington Diamond's Account of the Great Hanging at Gainesville, 1862, ManuscripteEdited by Sam Acheson and Julie, The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Vol. LXVI, January, 1963, No. 3, pages 331-414, pg .397.George W. Diamond was a brother of secessionists, John R. Diamond and James J. Diamond, who was a principal in the Great Hanging. After the hangings and the adjournment of the court, Diamond was given the records for the purpose of "preserving them and so disposing of them that the history of its (Citizen's Court) transactions might be perpetuated and justice done to those who participated in its deliberations. Diamond's compilation of "memoranda" was to be offered to the public as a just vindicaton of the conduct of those whose judgements were under national criticism. The members of the court examined Diamond's account and gave their unanimous and unqualified approval. " pg 397 The State vs. C. A. Jones("HumpBack"), James Powers ("Carpenter"), Eli M. Scott, Thomas Baker ("Old Man"), Geo W Anderson, Abraham McNeese, Henry Cochran ("30"), C.F. Anderson, Wm Wernell, B.F. Barnes ("35 or 40"), Wm Rodes, and N. M. Clark ("25"). Disloyalty & Treason. The testimony against the above mentioned conspirators corresponds with the testimony herein before produced on the trial of Childs, Fields, Harper, Lock, and others. They all acknowledged their connection with the organization, and made full confession of their guilt at the gallows.
pg 398
Witness in trial against Ramey Day; Ben F. Barnes sworn.(Witness)I was at the meeting at Richie's Mill. Dr. Foster said the object of the meeting was to resue Harper; and he wanted us to take our guns and go -- myself and Ramey Dye. The reason we did not go to rescue Harper was because a messenger (Essman) told us that there were a great many soldiers in Gainesville and we were then afraid."
2. 1850 U.S. Census, Texas, Hopkins, hh 227.
"1850 Census of Hopkins Co. Texas _227
Bennet BARNS 26 M Farmer $80 Alabama
Sary BARNS 19 F Alabama
Simon BARNS 1 M Texas."
3. 1860 U.S. Census, Texas, Wise County, pg 25/317, hh 116/168, 2 Jun 1860.
"Barnes, Bennet C., 36, m, Farmer, 320/700, Alabama
" , Sarah A., 30, f, Alabama
" , Simeon, 10, m, Texas
" , John, 6, m, Texas
" , Olive, 3, f, Texas
" , Joel, 1, m, Texas
" , Tennessee, 10, f, Texas (This is probably a niece, daughter of William & Rebecca Waits Barnes, who were killed by Indians in 1854.)
Source Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: , Wise, Texas; Roll: M653_1308; Page: 317;."
4. Land/Deed Records.
"WISE & DENTON Counties Texas_Texas General land Office in Austin.
Grantee: Bennet C. Barnes
Patentee: Bennet C. Barnes
Patent Date: 01 Jun 1859 _Acres: 160 _District: Fannin _County: Denton _File: 2727 Patent #: 330 Patent Volume: 24 Class: Fan. 3rd.
_District surveyors from Cooke County in the north and Denton County to the east mapped out the area, most of which was drawn from Cooke County. Wise County was officially established by legislative act on January 23, 1856, and was named in honor of Henry A. Wise, a United States Congressman from Virginia, who, during the 1840s, supported the annexation of Texas
Grantee: Bennet C. Barnes_
Patentee: Bennet C. Barnes_Patent Date: 01 Jun 1859_Acres: 160_District: Fannin This is in Denton County. _File: 2727_Patent #: 330_Patent Volume: 24_Class: Fan. 3rd.
Grantee: B. C. Barnes_Patentee: Hrs. of B. C. Barnes_Patent Date: 09 Apr 1873_Acres: 160
This correlates to:_District: Fannin B.C. Barnes Survey, A-124, Wise County, Texas_County: Wise This document is filed in Volume 6, Page 590,
File: 1597_Patent #: 78_Patent Volume: 20_Class: Fan. Scrip.
Grantee: B. C. Barnes_Patentee: Hrs. of B. C. Barnes Dec'd_Patent Date: 21 Jan 1960_Acres: 160 This is a Correction Patent pertaining to the above_District: Fannin
This document is filed in Volume 230, Page 372
County: Wise_File: 1597_Patent #: 474_Patent Volume: 29-B_Class: FAN. SCR.
General Warranty Deed dated November 3, 1874 from Sarah Barnes to G W Perkins recorded in Volume 6, Page 591
It appears to cover the entire 160 acre survey.
General Warranty Deed dated July 24, 1884 from S R Barnes to G W Perkins recorded in Volume 12, Page 114"
5. 1870 U.S. Census, Texas, Hopkins County.
"Name: Sarah A Barnes
Estimated Birth Year: abt 1829; Age in 1870: 41; Birthplace: Alabama
Home in 1870: Precinct 5, Hopkins, Texas; Post Office: Charleston
Race: White; Gender: Female Whether deaf & dumb, blind, insane/idiotic: BLIND
Value of real estate: none
Household Members: Name, Age
Sarah A Barnes, 41
John Barnes, 15
Ollie Barnes, 13
Jane Barnes, 8
Source Citation: Year: 1870; Census Place: Precinct 5, Hopkins, Texas; Roll: M593_1592; Page: 166;."
6. 1880 U.S. Census, Texas, Wise County.
"Name: Sarah A. Barnes;
Home in 1880: Precinct 2, Wise, Texas;
Age: 48 Estimated Birth Year: abt 1832 Birthplace: Alabama
Relation to Head of Household: Self (Head)
Father's birthplace: Alabama Mother's birthplace: Indiana;
Occupation: Keeping House; Marital Status: Widowed Race: White;
Gender: Female; Health: BLIND
Household Members: Name Age
Sarah A. Barnes 48
John B. Barnes 23
Joel D. Barnes 21
Mary J. Barnes 17
T. B. Emerson 22
Source Citation: Year: 1880; Census Place: Precinct 2, Wise, Texas; Roll: T9_1333; Family History Film: 1255333; Page: 121.1000; Enumeration District: 126; .
Source Information: and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 1880 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2005."
7. 1900 U.S. Census, Texas, Wise County.
"Name: Sarah A Barnes
Home in 1900: Justice Precinct 7, Wise, Texas Age: 65 Birthplace: Alabama
Relationship to head-of-house: Mother Race: White
Household Members: Name Age
Joel D Barnes 41 Racheal A Barnes 40 James D Barnes 12
John W Barnes 16 Jessie G Barnes 15 Ollie M Barnes 12
Sarah A Barnes 65
Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Justice Precinct 7, Wise, Texas; Roll: T623 1681; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 150."
8. Family Information.
"Simeon R. Barnes (b.Sep 1848-Texas; d.Aft 1900-Last seen Johnston County,Oklahoma)
spouse: Nancy C Smith (b.Feb 1848-Texas; m.25 Feb 1868, Hopkins County, TX; d.Aft 1900-Last seen Johnston County,Oklahoma)
Children: 1. Sara Jane "Jennie" Barnes (b.5 Aug 1869;d.7 Jan 1907-Charlie,Clay County,Texas) sp: George Henry Jones (b.12 Jan 1866-Delta County Texas;m.3 Mar 1887;d.27 Sep 1940-Charlie,Clay County,Texas) 2. Louis B Barnes (b.Feb 1871-Texas;d.Aft 1900-Last seen Johnston County,Oklahoma) 3. William J Barnes (b.1874-Texas) 4. John R Barnes (b.1876-Texas) 5. Samantha Barnes (b.1878-Texas) 6. Mary Barnes (b.Oct 1882-Texas)1900 Chickasaw territory with wife Nancy, son Louis and daughter Mary. His mother, Sarah A Barnes and children were in Hopkins co in 1870. Simeon and Nancy were in Wise Co in 1880 as was his mother, Sarah and family....."
9. 1900 U.S. Census, Texas, Wise County.
"Name: Sarah A Barnes Home in 1900: Justice Precinct 7, Wise, Texas Age: 65 Estimated Birth Year: abt 1835 Birthplace: Alabama Relationship to head-of-house: Mother Race: White Household Members: Name Age Joel D Barnes 41 Racheal A Barnes 40 James D Barnes 12 John W Barnes 16 Jessie G Barnes 15 Ollie M Barnes 12 Sarah A Barnes 65 Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Justice Precinct 7, Wise, Texas; Roll: T623 1681; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 150."
10. 1910 U.S. Census.
11. 1920 U.S. Census.
"Name: Joel D Barnes_Home in 1920: Chico, Wise, Texas Age: 60 years Estimated Birth Year: abt 1860 Birthplace: Texas Relation to Head of House: Head Father's Birth Place: Alabama Mother's Birth Place: Alabama Marital Status: Married Race: White Sex: Male Home owned: Own Occupation: Cobler at a shoe shopAble to read: Yes Able to Write: Yes Household Members: Joel D. Barnes, O, F, M, W, 60 yrs, M(?), Texas, Alabama, Alabama, cobler, shoe shop Source Citation: Year: 1920;Census Place: Chico, Wise, Texas; Roll: T625_1860; Page: 7A; Enumeration District: 163."
Texas Death CertificateName: Ollie Barnes Littlepage
Death date: 08 Apr 1923; Death place: 12 Mi. N.E. Moran, Stephens, Texas
Gender: Female; Race: White
Age at death: 67 years 2 months 4 days
Birth date: 04 Feb 1857; Birth place: Wise County, Tex.
Marital status: Married; Occupation: Housekeeper
Father name: Bennet Barnes; Father birth place: Tennessee
Mother name: Sarah Rodgers; Mother birth place: Alabama
Burial place: Shady Grove, Stephens Co.; Burial date: 09 Apr 1923
Film number: 2074802; Digital GS number: 4170539
Image number: 892; Reference number: cn 13372
Collection: Texas Deaths, 1890-1976;
13. Texas Death Certificate
Name: Mary Jane Blair
Death date: 01 Jul 1935
Death place: Era, Cooke, Texas
Gender: Female; Race or color (on document): White
Age at death: 73 years 8 months 19 days
Birth date: 12 Oct 1861 Birth place: Texas
Marital status: Widowed; Occupation: No Trade
Father name: Ben Barnes
Mother name: Sarah Rodgers
Burial place: Rosston; Burial date: 02 Jul 1935
Informant: G. B. Stevens of Era, Texas
Film number: 2116623; Digital GS number: 4030353
Image number: 198; Reference number: 32172
Collection: Texas Deaths, 1890-1976;

Please add any family stories or histories for this family.  How did Bennet's widow survive after his hanging?  She had five young children, the youngest just a toddler and she was going blind.

Monday, October 13, 2008

'Weeping Wives' Update

"Sadness and deep sorrow reigned supreme"

Many Thanks to those who left comments on the blog, and to for putting the Texas Death Certificates 1890-1976 online. (  hint: Death certificates can be a great place to find the maiden name of a mother.)

There are now several more spouses and maiden names added to our WEEPING WIVES list.
Below is a repeat of an earlier post with the additional information added.

Diamond refers to the Weeping Wives of the accused and also refers to the screaming women and children. Barret stated the following"while those (wives) who got news that the husband was to be hung, were following or before, weeping, while wailing and lamentations burst from their lips. In some houses, sadness and deep sorrow reigned supreme. None but those who experienced that dreadful night can fully realize the deep sorrow of loving and disconsolate hearts."

See "Why This Blog" post.

Below is the list of  those who died in the Hanging and their known spouses.
Please help us replace the question marks ??? with names.   There are far too many unknown spouses in the list! Corrections are welcomed!

Name of Victim, Name of Spouse(s)
1. C. F. > E. F. (Edward Frost) Anderson, Matilda Farris
2. George W. Anderson, ??
3. Richard J. Anderson, Lucinda ?
4. William B. Anderson, Lucinda Davis
5. Thomas O. Baker, ??
6. Bennet C. Barnes, Sarah A. Rodgers
7. Barnibus Burch, (1) May ?, (2)Mary McConnel
8. Samuel Carmichael, Anna ?
9. Ephraim Chiles, Margaret Kendrick
10. Henry Chiles, Dicy Kennedy
11. Nathaniel M. Clark, Mahuldah Hicklin
12. Henry Cockrum, Elizabeth Lackey Petell Jones
13. John Mansil Crisp, (1) Harriet Pittman, (2) Alixy Hawkins
14. Arphaxton R. Dawson, (1) Mary Horn, (2) Jane Caroline Stalcup
15. Rama Dye, (1) Sarah Jane Bradley, (2) Mary Ann Dawson
16. Hudson John Esman, (1) Rachel Meadows, (2) Mary Sullivant, (3) Elizabeth Crisp
17. Henry S. Field, (1) Jane Potter, (2) Mary Ann Bail
18. Thomas B. Floyd, Cloe Carter
19. James T. Foster, ??
20. Curd Goss, Mary Alexander
21. Edward D. Hampton, single
22. M. D. Harper, Eliza Dougherty
23. William W. Johnson, ??
24. C. A. Jones, ??
25. David Miller Leffel, Susan Evaline West
26. Leander W. P. Jacob Lock, Deannah ?, Evaline Dale
27. Abraham McNeese, Rebecca Price
28. Richard N. Martin, Cynthia Ann Neely
29. John M. Miller, Martha Jane Sandusky
30. John A. Morris, Marguerite ?
31. Wash Morris, Josephine Hornbuckle
32. M. Wesley Morris, Ann Carter
33. William W. Morris, Nancy ?
34. James A. Powers, Priscilla Barnett
35. William R. Rhodes, Amanda Lindsey
36. Alexander D. Scott, Mary Woolsey
37. Eli M. Scott, (1) Sarah Erwin, (2) Maria ?
38. Gilbert Smith, ??
39. William B. Taylor, Martha ?
40. Eli Sigler Thomas, Susan M. Hedenberg
41. James A. Ward, Nancy Muirheid
42. William Wilson Wornell, Elizabeth ?Wilkerson
43. William Boyles, Elizabeth T. West (Boyles not arrested but later shot & possibly died from wounds)
44. Hiram Kilborn, Delia Ann Knowles
William A. McCool (later hanged), Lydia Field
John M. Cottrell (later hanged), ??
A. N. Johnson (later hanged),  Armarylis Hawley

John Wiley, Eliza ?

**Updated Feb 2012

Gainesville's 'Great Hanging' Commemoration

Those of us who are descendants of the men who were hanged in the 'Great Hanging' would like to send a big thanks to Gainesville City for hosting a commemoration on Saturday, October 11, 2008, during their Depot Day Festival. For those of you who could not attend the 'Commemoration of the Great Hanging', here are some pictures of the event sent by one of the descendants.

The bell ringer would stand in front of a cross and ring the bell as each name was read.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Gainesville to Commemorate 'Great Hanging'

Tomorrow, on Saturday October 11, 2008, Gainesville will commemorate the 'Great Hanging' during their Depot Day Festival.

We are glad that Gainesville will remember the men who died in the 'Great Hanging', but it would be nice if there was enough of a notice so that the descendants of the victims of the 'Hanging' could arrange travel and attend the event. Many of the descendants live in different states all over the country.

Here are links to newspaper articles telling of the commemoration.

Stay tuned for a post telling about the actual commemoration service. Hopefully we will have pictures of the memorial service to post also.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

William & Elizabeth (West) Boyles Family

William Boyles was born about 1826 in Kentucky. William Boyles and his father, Joseph Boyles, came to Texas prior to 1848 and both received land as a part of Peter's Colony that settled North Central Texas. William died about 1863 in Collinsville, Grayson, Texas. It is believed that he died from a gunshot wound and exposure as he hid from the same group responsible for the hangings. Diamond stated that Boyles was "later killed at Collinsville." We have added him to the list of the victims of the Gainesville Hanging, since his death was a result of his participation in the Peace Party and resulting arrests, trials & Hangings. (See biography on previous post.)

  • THE FAMILY LEGEND OF WILLIAM BOYLES, March 2000 By Sammy Harrison: According to family legend, William Boyles did not want to fight in the Civil War. He hid out in the hills, contracted pneumonia, and died. Mother said the way she had heard it, he was a very kind hearted person and could not stand the thoughts of taking the life of another individual. At the time, I wondered what a person like that was doing on the Texas frontier where he was forced to defend his home and family.
  • From another descendant: My Great Great Great grandfather William boyles married an Elizabeth West May,19,1849. In the 1860 census it shows that an Ann West was living with William and Elizabeth. She was 18 at the time. I also know of a Susan Emeline. She married David Miller Leffel and moved from Ohio to Grayson Texas in the late 1850's. They may have traveled and settled there as a family because that is where William and Elizabeth (Boyles) and Ann West were also during the same time. David was hung during the great hanging in texas 1862 and William is believed to have been shot in the back when he tried to run and later died a month later from his wounds.
William married Elizabeth T. West daughter of Michael West and Susannah McKee West on 19 May 1849 in , Grayson, Texas. Elizabeth was born on 5 Dec 1831 in Champaign, Ohio. She died on 14 Mar 1898 in Erath, Texas. She was buried in Mar 1898 in Alexander Cemetery, Erath, Texas.
They had the following children:
1. Joseph McKee Boyles was born on 6 Dec 1852 in Sherman, Grayson, Texas. He died on 19 Mar 1933 in Portales, Curry, New Mexico. He was buried in Portales, Curry, New Mexico.
Joseph married (1) Mary Rose Auvenshire "Polly" on 5 Jul 1877 in Jonesboro, Coryell, Texas. Mary was born on 1 Jan 1860 in , Carroll, Tennessee. She died on 3 Apr 1879 in Aurora, Wise, Texas. She was buried in Old Bethel Cemetery, Rhome, Wise, Texas.
Joseph married (2) Sara Elizabeth Pennington in 1880 in . Sara was born on 14 Jun 1861.
2. Sarah L. Boyles was born about 1855 in , , Texas.
? IGI possible spouse: Sarah L Boyles; Female; Birth: 1855 , Texas married spouse: Thomas Grimes; Marriage: 14 APR 1872 , Coryell, TX
3. Martha S. Boyles was born on 2 Jun 1857 in , Crawford, Arkansas.
Your information on the Boyles is the same family as mine. My husbands Great Grandmother Martha Jane Boyles was born June,2 1857. She had 4 brothers, one who was Joseph McKee Boyles born 1853 according to our information. Elizabeth married a Issac Lee April 30, 1865 and Elizabeth died March 14, 1898 in Earth Co
Texas. We have been told that Martha Jane is part Cherokee Indian. I have a picture of her and Andrew Jackson Roberts her husband, and she looks Indian. But, so far I haven't been where I can check out the Indian information. My husband's niece has a Dawls Book and she showed a Martha Jane Bowles. But, her Dad's last name was Boyles. But, I need to study the book better if I ever get back to Abilene Texas where she lives. My husband's Dad always said his Grandmother was a Cherokee Indian
4. William Tomes Nelson Boyles was born in 8 Nov 1859 in , Cooke, Texas.
William preferred to spell his name as Boils. There was much discussion over the fact that he felt Boils was the proper spelling.
Marriage 1 Martha J. Pennington, 2 MAY 1881 in Coryell Co., TX

1. 1850 U.S. Census, Texas, Grayson, pg 674, 9 Dec 1950."Boils, William, 24, m, Kentucky, cannot read or write " , Elizabeth, 20, f, Ohio, cannot read or write, Boils, Jos, 64, 400, Virginia, cannot read or write (Next door to Father-in-law, Michael West)."
2. 1860 U.S. Census, Texas, Grayson, Sherman P.O., hh 148, pg 23/145. "Name: Wm B Boyl Age in 1860: 34 Birth Year: abt 1826 Birthplace: Kentucky Home in 1860: Grayson, Texas Post Office: Sherman Value of real estate: Household Members: Name Age Wm B Boyl, 34, m, farmer, 1600/900, Kentucky E S Boyl, 27, f, domestic, IllinoisJos Boyl, 7, m, TexasLouisa E Boyl, 5, TexasMartha S Boyl, 3, ArkansasWm F N Boyl, 5.12, TexasAnne West, 23, domestic, OhioSource Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: , Grayson, Texas; Roll: M653_1295; Page: 145; Image: 290 (**Note: Also listed in 1860 Cooke County Census)."
3. 1860 U.S. Census, Texas, Cooke County, Gainesville, pg 232-233, hh 178/184."Boyles, William, 34, m farmer, no real estate, $750 personal estate, Kentucky " , Elizabeth, 30, f, Ohio
" , Joseph, 7, m, Texas " , Sarah L., 5, f, Texas " , Martha S., 3, f, Arkansas " , Wm. T., 7/12, m, TexasWest, Ann, 18, f, Ohio (note: Not sure where Ann West fits into the family. She is most likely one of Elizabeth's nieces.) Source Citation: Year: 1860; Census Place: , Cooke, Texas; Roll: M653_1291; Page: 232; Image: 473.(**Note: Also listed in 1860 Grayson County Census)."
4. McCaslin, Richard B., Tainted Breeze, The Great Hanging at Gainesville, Texas, 1862 , Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press, 1993. xvi, 234 pp. Intro. App. Illus. Map. Index
"William Boyles came to Peters Colony as a single man before July 1, 1848. He served in ranger companies during 1846 and 1848, then married in May, 1849. The 1850 Grayson County census (F.N. 14) lists him as a farmer, age twenty-four, from Kentucky, and his wife, Elizabeth, as being from Ohio.The census taker in 1860 found him in Cooke County (F.N. 184) with $730 in personal property. He had three children -- ages seven years, five years, and seven months -- born in Texas, and a three-year-old born in Arkansas. His father died in October, 1857, and William, then in Crawford County, Arkansas, inherited his land in Cooke County. He paid taxes in Cooke County in 1861 on 311 acres of the "James" Boyles grant on the Red River, but in 1862 he was assessed for only a third of this grant, 4 horses, 20 cattle, and 4 sheep."
5. Land/Deed Records."William Boyles and his father came to Texas as a part of Peter's Colony that settled North Central Texas. He received from Thomas Wm Ward, commissioner for the colony agent, a single persons share as part of Peter's Colony, of 320 acres of land in Grayson County near the town of Dorchester. Today the survey is still known as the Wm Boyles Survey. 21 Oct 1854 -- William Boyles to Thomas A. Mounts -- bond for the sale of the Joseph Boyles land lying in Collin County, TX which was sold on the steps of the Grayson Co., TX courthouse. Grayson Co., TX Deed Records Vol G pg 80.26 Mar 1855 William Boyles sold his title and interest in his Head Right Certificate to John H. Wilson for $650.00. Grayson Co., TX Deed Records, Vol G pg 167."
6. George Washington Diamond's Account of the Great Hanging at Gainesville, 1862, ManuscripteEdited by Sam Acheson and Julie, The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Vol. LXVI, January, 1963, No. 3, pages 331-414. George W. Diamond was a brother of secessionists, John R. Diamond and James J. Diamond, who was a principal in the Great Hanging. After the hangings and the adjournment of the court, Diamond was given the records for the purpose of "preserving them and so disposing of them that the history of its (Citizen's Court) transactions might be perpetuated and justice done to those who participated in its deliberations. Diamond's compilation of "memoranda" was to be offered to the public as a just vindicaton of the conduct of those whose judgements were under national criticism. The members of the court examined Diamond's account and gave their unanimous and unqualified approval."
page 83
"Boyles was later killed at Collinsville."
7. Connor, Seymour V. , Peters Colony of Texas, A History and Biographical Sketches of the Early Settlers, Texas State Historical Association; Austin; 1959. "William Boyles migrated as a single man prior to July 1, 1848. He was issued a land certificate by Thomas William Ward in 1850, which was sold unlocated and was later patented in Grayson County (Fannin Third Class No. 1569). He is listed on the census of 1850 (Grayson County, family No. 14) as a 24-year-old farmer, born in Kentucky."
8. 1870 U.S. Census, Texas, Coryell, Prec. 2, pg 275."Lee, Isaac, 60, m, farmer, 500/500, NC " , Elizabeth, 40, f, keeping house, Ohio " , William, 18, m, Louisana " , David, 15, m, Texas " , Virginia, 14, f, TexasBoyles, Jos. M., 17, m, Texas " , Sarah L., 16, f, Texas " , Martha L., 13, f, Arkansas " , William F, 11, m, Texas."
9. 1880 U.S. Census, Texas, Coryell, Texas, pg 503A.Lee, Isaac A., self, m, marr, 69, NC, farmer " , Elizabeth, wife, f, marr, 49, keeping house, OH Boil, William, stepson, m, single, 20, farmer, Texas4 others in household.
10. Marriage Record, Grayson County, Texas Marriage Book A, pg 39.
11. Marriage Record, Grayson County, TX Marriage Book A, pg 39. "Name: Elizabeth West Marriage Date: 19 May 1849 Spouse: William Boyles Marriage County: Grayson Marriage State: Texas Source: County Court Records - FHL microfilm # 1290410 item 2."FHL # 1290410 item #2.

The Willam Boyles Story

It is believed that William Boyles died from a gunshot wound and exposure as he hid from the same group responsible for the hangings. Diamond stated that Boyles was "later killed at Collinsville." We have added him to the list of the victims of the Gainesville Hanging, since his death was a result of his participation in the Peace Party and the resulting arrests, trials & hangings that took place. Below is William's story by one of his descendants.

William Boyles
by S. H. Harrison 1997 Fort Worth, TX

William Boyles was the son of Joseph Boyles, his mother is still unknown. Joseph Boyles came to Texas from Illinois, I found him in Green County in 1830 and 1840 census records. According to these records he had other sons and a daughter (or perhaps extended family living with them), however, we only know the names of William and Sarah. According to the 1850 census records, Joseph was born in Virginia, William was born in Kentucky and Sarah in Illinois. Joseph Boyles arrived in Texas a widower and obtained land from Peters Colony in Collin and Cooke Counties. William served in ranger companies during 1846 and 1848. He obtained a Headright in Grayson County as a single man and married Elizabeth West in Grayson County, 19 May 1849. When his father, Joseph, died 19 May 1853, William was appointed the executor of the estate. It is unclear on what date he and Elizabeth went to Arkansas, however there are probate records indicating that the court had not heard from William Boyles. The court cost by the October 1857 term, amounted to over $500.00 and the decision was made to sell the property in Cooke County to cover court costs. It was at this time that William, from Crawford County, Arkansas, sold all of his interest in his father’s estate to his sister Sarah Gibson. He apparently thought he had taken care of his obligations of Joseph’s estate, or thought they would take care of themselves. They could have been in Arkansas the entire four years, census records show the birth of a daughter in Arkansas. At any rate, they were back in Texas in time for the 1860 census. (His family is listed in both Cooke & Grayson Counties in the 1860 Census.)
Sister, Sarah Boiles, age 19 was living with William Fitzhugh in Collin County in the 1850 census. I have wondered if there is a relationship with them since Fitzhugh’s wife, Mary, was also born in Illinois, however, nothing has been proven one way or the other. Sarah married Nelson Gibson from Pettis County, Missouri (Nelson’s name is recorded in deed records as her husband). In the 1860 census Sarah and Nelson Gibson are listed on the same census page as O.T. Mallow with other Mallows on the other census pages. For those who don’t recognize the name, Mother’s youngest sister, Dovie, married J.T. Mallow. I checked with their daughter, Jeanie, their Mallows were in Collin County at that time.

Back to William Boyles. Family tradition stated that "he did not want to fight in the Civil War, hid out in the hills, contracted pneumonia and died." Let’s take a look at the time period. Both the Boyles and West families moved to Texas from Illinois in the middle 1840's. They had both been subjected to "Texas Justice." William had served with the home rangers protecting the frontier families from Indian attacks, so he was not afraid of fighting. By the time they arrived, slave owners from the south manned most of the political offices. In 1862, Texas became embroiled in the question of secession and called for a vote. The vote in Cooke and Grayson Counties was overwhelmingly against secession. However, as a state, the vote was for secession. A large number of men in the Red River border counties joined a secret society that was loyal to the government of their fathers (Old Constitution and the Union).

This sets the stage for what later became known as "The Great Hangings of Gainesville." The West (Elizabeth West Boyles) sister, Susan and her husband David M. Leffel arrived in Texas in time to become embroiled in it too. September 1862 Union forces had advanced into the Oklahoma Territory and there was a good deal of unrest in the Red River area. The Confederate army in the area learned of the secret society and suspected treason. What ensued was mass hysteria and mass arrests. David Leffel was among them and William Boyles’ name came up during the so-called trial. David was one of the 42 men who were hanged in Gainesville the middle of October and William was one of the wanted. One report says that William was killed near Collinsville. The family tradition said pneumonia. Could they both have been right? It was October and he was hiding out in the Timbers. He could have suffered a gunshot wound and contracted pneumonia, too.

Elizabeth Boyles moved her family to Coryell County and Susan Leffel continued to live in the area until problems erupted after the return of the confederate veterans at the end of the Civil War.   A neighbor, Joel F. DeLemeron, tried to help Elizabeth and her children by giving her a horse and was charged with treason for aiding the families of suspected Unionists.

To read an updated version of this biography (Nov 2012) by Sammy Hynds Harrison, click here.