Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Stanford Cheek Family

In a previous post on my 3rd great grandfather John William Farthing I briefly mentioned his wife Louisa Cheek.  While researching John William and Louisa using Google, an interesting bit of information turned up from an unlikely source.  I had hoped to verify the information with copies of the original documents, but with the reduction in hours at the Georgia Archives, and a visit being unlikely this year, I’ll have to rely for a while longer on the transcription I discovered.  This is not a primary source for me, but it gave me pointers to and confirmation of connections that I found in other sources, mainly censuses and Civil War records.

First the bare outlines of the family pedigree.  Louisa Cheek was born about 1825 in Orange County, North Carolina, where on 7 July 1849 she married John William Farthing (born about 1820).  Louisa’s parents were Stanford Cheek (1796-after 1880) and Mary Polly Williams (1797-before 1880).  Stanford and Mary were married in Orange County, North Carolina, in 1819 and had four sons and one daughter that we know of.

  • John W Cheek (1821-?)
    married Emeline A Currie (1822-?) in 1846 in Orange County, North Carolina
  • Louisa Cheek (1825-before1900) – my 3rd great grandmother
    married John William Farthing in 1849 in Orange County, North Carolina
  • Archibald W "Archy" Cheek (1832-1862)
    never married
  • Walter N Cheek (1835-1870)
    married Amanda J Hardman, née Blackwell (1828-?) in 1866 in Jasper County, Georgia
  • Mallory Cheek (1840-1868)
    married Artexas C Allen (?-?) in 1862 in Jasper County, Georgia
Census images courtesy of
The first census I have found documenting Stanford Cheek’s family was the 1840 census in Orange County, North Carolina, but we’ll start here with 1850, the first census to show details of the names and ages of family members residing in the household.  In District 1 of Orange County, North Carolina, the census record shows John and Louisa Farthing, and further down the same sheet, so undoubtedly living nearby, are Louisa’s parents and siblings, Stanford and Mary Cheek, with Archy, Walter and Mallory.  Oldest son John Cheek had already moved to Jasper County, Georgia, with his wife Emeline and son Marion, plus on the following sheet we see “Nancy Curry”, most likely Emeline’s mother.  Note also that John Farthing is a blacksmith, and Stanford Cheek and John Cheek are carpenters.

Census images courtesy of
By 1860 the whole clan has followed John Cheek to Georgia.  Stanford, Mary, Walter and Mallory are living in Newton County, and John Farthing, John Cheek and Archy Cheek live in and around Monticello, in Jasper County.  Arch, who is now a carpenter like his father and older brother, lives in a boarding house run by Susan Fulton.  And “The War” is just a year away.  It doesn’t appear that either the Cheeks or the Farthings were slave owners, but their lives would be torn apart nonetheless.

Service record images courtesy of

Stanford Cheek was 65 when the War started, and John Cheek and John Farthing were both over 40, but the younger Cheeks all enlisted at the outset.  Their service records (which I found on the website) show that Archy, Walter and Mallory all enlisted in Company G, Georgia 4th Infantry Regiment on 25 Apr 1861, and mustered into service the next day at Augusta, under the command of Captain R. G. Cole. 

Walter served through nearly the end of the war.  He was captured at Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia, on 12 May 1864, and released from the prison camp at Elmira, New York, on 23 June 1865, “on taking the oath of allegiance” [to the United States].  Mallory enlisted as a drummer, was hospitalized with syphilis in October and November of 1861, and finally discharged on a certificate of disability on 12 August 1862. 

Archy was also diagnosed with syphilis and received a medical discharge 26 January 1862.  But on 10 May 1862 he re-enlisted, this time as a corporal in the 16th GA Partisan (Cavalry) Rangers Volunteers (also known later as 12th (Wright's) Cavalry (State Guards) and 13th Cavalry).  His regiment was part of the command of Morgan's Raiders.  While on extended campaign into Kentucky in July 1862 he was killed in or around Harrison County while the unit was encamped at Cynthiana, Kentucky.  In January 1863 his father Stanford filed a claim for a settlement for his deceased son.  The death claim bears out the fact that Arch never married, for his father explicitly states that he left behind no wife or children.  The claim was settled for two months’ pay plus a $50 bounty due from enlistment, plus $25 for his clothing allowance, but $2.50 was deducted for a pair of shoes he received from the army.  Interestingly (to me at least) the “acting justice of the peace” for Jasper County who witnessed several pages of Stanford’s claim was Robert C Barnes.  I don’t yet know what, if any, relationship he is to “my” Barnes family.

Service record images courtesy of

Next time I’ll give the details of my unexpected discovery.

That’s about it for now.

Later y’all,

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Children of Missouri Beasley and Green Berry Barnes

Last week I posted the Will of my great-great grandfather Green Berry Barnes, published in 1891 after his death.  Because his will essentially holds his estate in trust it is likely that Missouri left no will when she died in 1925.  There is nothing in the will books available on microfilm from the Family History Library so confirmation will have to wait until I can visit the Bulloch County Courthouse in person.  In the meantime, I have a few other documents that mention or prove facts about the children of Missouri and Green Berry Barnes.

Here are the basic facts I’ve uncovered about their offspring.  The names marked with an asterisk (Ella Barnes Jones, James Henry Barnes & Willis Remer Barnes) are mentioned by name Green Berry Barnes’ will.

·      Ella Carene Barnes* (1866-1927)
married John Jones (1861-1950) in 1886
Thanks to the marriage books available through the Georgia’s Virtual Vault website (Bulloch County Marriage Book 4A, 1877-1890, p 300; courtesy of the Georgia Archives; Marriage Books, Bulloch County Ordinary Court, Georgia Archives) I have a copy of their marriage license record, and their burial in the Brooklet Cemetery, Brooklet, Bulloch County, is recorded among other places on the Find A Grave website, which has pictures of their grave stones courtesy of nu2ga.

·      James Henry Barnes* (1868-1916)
married Rebecca Deal (1875-1973) in 1891
I have found their marriage license record (Bulloch County Marriage Book, 1875-1892, page 441; courtesy of the Georgia Archives; Marriage Books, Bulloch County Ordinary Court, Georgia Archives).  They are buried in the Ramah Cemetery, Mershon, Pierce County, Georgia, and memorialized on Find A Grave (pictures courtesy of Irisheyes).

·      Thomas Barnes (1869-?)
Thomas probably died before 1880 because he’s only listed in the 1870 census, and I’ve found no further mention of or documentation on him.

·      Willis Remer Barnes* (1870-1903)
married Mittie M Olliff (1873-1960) in 1891
I haven’t located their marriage record yet, but according to their 1900 census they were married about 1891.  Willis is buried in the plot set aside as a family burial ground in his father’s will (Barnes and Akins Family Cemetery Records, Bulloch County, Ga; Compiled by the Genealogical Committee; LDS Church; Filmed by the Genealogical Society, Salt Lake City, UT, 1956; FHL Film # 2105, Item 10).  The Remer Barnes mentioned in the will was Greens’ brother, who died in 1889.  That Remer was reburied in Eastside Cemetery, Statesboro, to rest beside his wife when she died in 1936.

·      Nancy Rosanna “Rosa” Barnes (1872-1948)
married Jacob Cuyler “Jake” Jones (1866-1950) in 1891
These were my great grandparents.  And, yes, Jacob Jones and Ella’s husband John Jones were brothers.  So their descendants are double-cousins of ours.  I’ve previously discussed Jake and Rosa in greater detail, and have a copy of their marriage record and have been to their grave site.

·      Mollie Ann Elizabeth Barnes (1874-)
married V H Morris (?-?) in 1900
I have found a marriage record that seems to be for “our” Mollie Barnes, but beyond that I have discovered nothing.

·      Missouri Maggie Barnes (1877-1959)
married Welcome Amos Akins (1877-1945) in 1901
The Akins family, both descendants of Maggie & Amos and other branches of the Akins tree still inhabit the regions of Bulloch County where our ancestors once farmed side by side.  The farm which hosts the Barnes & Akins cemetery is still in the Akins family.  For the younger Missouri Barnes and Amos Akins, I have found their marriage license record (Bulloch County Marriage Book, 1898-1904, page 275; courtesy of the Georgia Archives; Marriage Books, Bulloch County Ordinary Court, Georgia Archives).  They are buried in the Upper Mill Creek Cemetery, Statesboro, Bulloch County, and memorialized on Find A Grave (pictures courtesy of Craig & Tonya Banks).  Maggie’s youngest brother Robert is buried in the same plot.

·      John Green Barnes (1879-1951)
married Missouri Deal (1887-1984) in 1914?
I have nothing confirmed on John & Missouri, only two census records (1920 and 1930), and even they are conflicting.  The death dates are also presumptive until further information is obtained.  The 1920 census shows JG Barnes & wife Missouri, aged 39 & 35, with 4-year-old daughter Francis, but doesn’t indicate when they may have married; however they live next door to presumptive brother WB Barnes & his wife Alice (below).  The presumed 1930 census has John G & Missouri Barnes, with two daughters, J Francis (13) and Jonnie M (9).  But here John is 51 and Missouri is only 34 (or maybe 38, difficult to read).  In 1930 Column 15 gives the “Age at First Marriage”.  For John it is 35, and for Missouri it is 25.  This means he would have been first married about 1914, but her first marriage would have been about 1921 (or 1917, depending on which age you use).  Such a riddle!

·      William Benjamin Barnes (1881-1961)
married Alice Woodrum (1886-?) in 1908
With William I am a little luckier than with John.  I did find a marriage license record for Ben Barnes and Alice (Bulloch County Marriage Book, 1905-1912, p 169; courtesy of the Georgia Archives; Marriage Books, Bulloch County Ordinary Court, Georgia Archives).  I haven’t yet found cemetery or death records for them, though as with John there is some indication they may have settled in the Savannah area, and may be buried there.

·      Eli Whitney Barnes (1882-1920)
married Susie May Prosser (1889-?) in 1902; Susie married [?]Cannoles[?] abt 1924
Another of Green & Missouri’s children whose life was tragically cut short.  I found his marriage license record (Bulloch County Marriage Book, 1898-1904, page 382; courtesy of the Georgia Archives; Marriage Books, Bulloch County Ordinary Court, Georgia Archives).  I have found a copy of his death certificate online (Death Certificates, Vital Records, Public Health, RG 26-5-95, Georgia Archives) which states that he was buried at Friendship Church but so far I haven’t located a picture of his gravesite.  It appears there are at least three Friendship Churches in Bulloch County.  According to the 1930 census Susie remarried by 1924 or 1925, but was apparently twice-widowed by then.

·      Robert Calhoun Barnes (1886-1943)
Robert never married.  In my previous post I speculated on the possibility that he was blind and for that reason lived with his mother, then his sister.  Since then I was sent his obituary by the kind courtesy of Janice Strickland, Statesboro Regional Library.  From the Bulloch Times, Thursday, June 17, 1943, p 4, it states:


Funeral services for R. C. Barnes,
56, who died here yesterday, will be
held this (Thursday) afternoon at 6
o'clock at Upper Mill Creek church
with Elder A. E. Temples in charge
of the services. Burial will be in
the church cemetery.
Mr. Barnes, who has been in ill
health for some time, was blinded by
an accident 35 years ago. He was
well known throughout the county.
He is survived by two sisters, Mrs.
Amos Akins, of Statesboro, and Mrs.
Jacob Jones, of Statesboro; two broth-
ers, John C. Barnes, of Savannah, and
W. B. Barnes, of Hinesville. Pall-
bearers will be nephews, Doy Akins,
Ray Akins, Floyd Akins, Fred Akins,
Ernest Akins, Datus Akins, and In-
man Akins. Lanier's Mortuary is in
charge of funeral arrangements.

I also have a photo of his grave stone courtesy of the kind graces of Craig & Tonya Banks and the Find A Grave web site (  As I stated above, Robert is buried in the Akins plot at Upper Mill Creek Cemetery, Statesboro, with his sister and brother-in-law Missouri “Maggie” Akins and W. Amos Akins.

That’s about it for now.

Later y’all,

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Will of Green Berry Barnes

Bulloch County
     I Green B Barnes of said county and state being of sound a disposing mind and memory do make this my last will and Testament.
Item first
     I give derive and bequeath to my Wife Missouria Barnes during her widowhood on her natural life all of my estate both real and personal, the same to be kept together for the mantananceand support for my said wife and children.
Item Second.
     In case of the death or marraige of my said wife, it is my will that my said estate be kept together until my youngest child becomes of age.
Item Third
     It is my will that my two sons James H and Willis R Barnes have the priviledge of running all my mill machinery, that as compensation for this Services they are to receive Eighteen dollars each per month from the proceeds of the Gins, saw mill, planer and other machinery connected therewith, the ballance of the earnings of said machinery is to be turned over to my said wife, and out of this fund she is to keep the property in repair, first, and to equally divide whatever may be left between all my children annually.  It is also my will that the said JH & WR Barnes are to manage the Grist mill, and that the gross proceeds from the grist mill are to be turned over to my said wife to be used for the support and mantanance of my family
Item Fouth
     It is my will that my sister Sarah Barnes shall have the priviledge of living with my family and enjoying the same support as she has in the past.
In case she shall survivie until there is a distribution of my estate it is my will that she shall receive three Hundred Dollars ($300.00) in money or property to be selected by her, which shall be hers only for life, and on her death to be equally divided among my heirs at law.
Item Fifth
     I give bequeath and devise to A.R. Lanier Ordinary of said County and to his successors in office one and one half acres of Land to be staked off by my Two Eldest sons for a Grave Yard for my self and family, said Land lying about Two hundred yards south east from my Present residence, being the Land whereon the Body of Reamer Barnes is now interred.
Item Sixth
     It is my will that in the event my widow should marry, that she have a home for her life consistently of my present residence and provided with sufficient stock and farming utensils to run same, That in the event of the marriage of my widow, She Shall cause to controll the [blank space] from my will property, and that said shall go into the hand of my executor for distribution as aforesaid.
Item Seventh
     It is my will that the amounts I have advanced Ella C Jones wife of John Jones the $66.62 be accounted for in the final distribution of my estate.
Item Eighth
     I hereby constitute and appoint G.S. Johntson Executor of this my last will and Testament this the 11th day of Jany 1891
          Green B Barnes

Signed, declared and published by Green B Barnes as his last WWill and Testament, in presence of us the subscribers our names hereto, in the presence of said testator at his instance and request and of each other, he signing in our presence and we signing in his presence.
          B. T. Outland
          M. B. Marsh
          W. M. Warren

     Recorded in common form this June 2nd 1891.
          A. R. Lanier

Bulloch County Will Book Vol. 1, 1874-1927, pp 132-134. Transcribed from FHL Film #181902, 10 Dec 2011, by Timothy Jones.

That’s about it for now.

Later y’all,


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Missouri Beasley Barnes

In a previous post I discussed my great-great grandfather, Green Berry Barnes (1838-1891), and his wife Missouri Beasley Barnes (1843-1925).  Widowed at the age of 47, she led a long life full of challenges.  She died just a couple of months shy of her eighty-second birthday, in the process outliving at least four of her eleven children and caring for her blind youngest son* for decades.
Census images courtesy of
Missouri Beasley was born on 25 July 1843 in Bulloch County, Georgia, the eldest child of John R Beasley (1813-1899) and Nancy Parrish Beasley (1821-1860).  The 1850 and 1860 censuses show her living in Bulloch County with her parents and siblings.  In 1850, in an area identified only as “Subdivision 6” they are John R (37), Nancy (29), Missouri (6), America (4), Henry (3) and James (1).  In 1860, near the Bengal post office, they are John R (48), Nancy (39), Missouri (16), America (14), Henry (13), James (12), Mary (7) and Eli (4).  I can’t find definitive proof yet, but my belief is that John and Family didn’t move, and they were living in the area west of Statesboro, near the present-day border of or possibly in Candler County.  This is partially based on the 1890 Bulloch County Tax Digest, which places John Beasley in the Club House district (Militia District 45), which surrounds the modern town of Register.

As a side note, the 1850 census form lists the value of John’s real estate as $150.  By 1860 his real estate is worth $400, and his personal estate is valued at $716To Do Item: check property records to see if John purchased additional land, or possibly the increased value was strictly due to inflation. 

Pension Application image courtesy of
Missouri Beasley married Green Berry Barnes in March 1865.  This is according to her Widows Pension Applications of 1908 and 1910 (she appears to have been denied a pension both times).  Even though the pension application asks that the marriage license be attached to it, there is no indication that it ever was, or that it survives if it was.  So far, a search of the Marriage Books of Bulloch County for the marriage registration has proved fruitless (using the microfilms available through the Family History Library as well as the incomplete digital copies available through Georgia’s Virtual Vault).  The accepted date on seems to be 21 March 1865, but without further proof I can’t state that definitively.  Hopefully someone, somewhere, has the marriage license or family bible and will share it with the rest of us!

I covered the period of her marriage to Green in the previous post.  To summarize, in 1870 the family consisted of Green (27), Missouri (23), Ella (4), James (3) and Thomas (6/12).  In 1880 the household included Green B. (41), “Masoria” [sic] (37), Ellen C. (13), James H. (11), Willis R. (10), Rosa (7), Molly A. E. (5), Magga M. (4) and John G (1), plus Green's sister Sarah (44) and a white servant, John Jones (18).  Green B. Barnes also appears on the 1890 Bulloch County Tax Digest, owning 408 acres in the Court House District (1209th Military District), which is the area around Statesboro. 

Image courtesy of Family History Library (microfilm # 2105)
Green Berry Barnes died in 1891.  Since I wrote the above- mentioned post I’ve found a record of the so-called Barnes-Akins Family Cemetery in a film from the Family History Library (FHL US/CAN Film #2105, Item 103), which is a compilation of survey sheets from the 1950’s.  Filmed in 1956, the survey shows four burials at this plot: Sarah Barnes (d. 18 August 1900), Missouri Barnes (25 Jul 1843 - 31 May 1925), Green B. Barnes (18 Mar 1838 - 26 Mar 1891) and Willis R. Barnes (21 April 1870 - 4 January 1903).  Sarah Barnes is almost certainly Green’s sister, who lived with them.  Missouri and Green B. are designated as Wife and Husband, but there is no indication on the form as to how or if this is indicated on the gravestones.  Willis R. Barnes is probably their son Remer.  I’ve been told by a cousin that the grave site still exists, and is still in family hands – sort of.  The Akins are second cousins.  Missouri Maggie Barnes married Welcome Akins and her sister Rosa Barnes married my great-grandfather Jacob Jones.  Yet this means there is hope of obtaining photographs of the graves, or even visiting one day.

Census images courtesy of
In any case, the 1900 census shows Missouri as the widowed head of household with 5 of her 10 children, living in Blitch, Bulloch County, where she owned her own farm.  Blitch is the name for Georgia Military District 1575, situated north of Statesboro.  The residents of the farm are Missouri (56), Millie A (25), John G (21), William B (18), Eli W (16), Robert C (12) and her sister-in-law Sarah (65).  I can’t find her listed anywhere on the 1910 census, but in 1920 she appears to be living on the farm of her son-in-law Welcome Akins.  The census shows the family as Welcome A Akins (42), Maggie [Barnes, her daughter] (42), Floyd (17), Day (15), Fred (14), Clyde (12), Datus (10), Wilmur (8), Irene (7), Roy (5), Inmon (3) an Ernest (1) Akins, with Robert C Barnes (33) and Missouri Barnes (75).  I do not yet know if this Welcome Akins farm was the Barnes farm before.  The two Military Districts are adjacent, so the borders 
Image courtesy of Georgia Archives
Digital Collection (
Death Certificates,
Vital Records, Public Health, RG 26-5-95
could have shifted slightly, or 1575 (Blitch) could have been created after 1900.  And it could be a completely different farm.  More research is needed in the Bulloch County property records.  Unfortunately, the microfilmed records of deeds and mortgages available through the Family History Library only go through 1912, so I’ll have to plan an extended research trip, or else depend on the kindness of strangers!  :-)  To Do Item: also check records to find out when Military District # 1575 was formed.

Missouri died on 31 May 1925, at the age of 81.  This date is shown on her grave stone (at least according to the cemetery survey cited above) and on her death certificate, a digital copy of which I was able to obtain from the Georgia’sVirtual Vault web site

Draft card images courtesy of
*Missouri’s youngest son, Robert Calhoun Barnes, remained single throughout his life, and lived with his mother until her death, then with his sister Missouri “Maggie” and her husband Welcome A. Akins until his death on 6 June 1943.  I haven’t completed researching him, but based on his WWI draft registration, it appears that he was blind.  In fact, the draft registration card says he “lost both eyes.”  Since he was listed as a “farm helper” on the 1900 census, which means there was probably some sort of accident between 1900 and 1917.  In my imagination the romantic in me comes out, and I can imagine the reason they were missed on the 1910 census is that Missouri was firmly ensconced at Robert's bedside in a convalescent center or sanitarium as he slowly recovered physically and emotionally from the horrible farm accident which took both eyes and left him a near-invalid!  The facts, when discovered, will probably prove me wrong, but in the meantime it makes a good movie in my head!

That’s about it for now.

Later y’all,