The Second Son – Daniel Asbury Reaves

Rev. Daniel Asbury Reaves, the Second Son

Rev. Daniel Asbury Reaves, the Second Son

Company H of the Third Florida Infantry consisted of one hundred and thirty two (132) volunteers from Jefferson County, Florida.  The “H” company was called “The Jefferson Rifles” and would include three (3) Reaves brothers under the command of Captain William Girardeau.

Samuel J. Reaves, the third son of Rev. and Mrs. Rawlins Reaves would be the first of the three brothers to fall, Samuel died May 9, 1862, in Gainesville Florida.  Just over six months later, during the Battle of Stones River, which sometimes is called the Battle of Murfreesboro, James Alexander Reaves sustained serious injury. The bloody battle was fought from December 31, 1862, to January 2, 1863, in Middle Tennessee.  Of the major battles of the Civil War, Stones River had the highest percentage of casualties on both sides.  James was taken to Foard Hospital in Chattanooga, where he died from his wounds on January 12, 1863.  Soon, the family of Rev, Rawlins Reaves would hear the wretched news once more, this time of their eldest son’s death.

The only surviving Reaves brother of the Jefferson Rifles would continue with the Confederates through Tennessee.  Daniel Asbury Reaves was the second to eldest son of Rev. and Mrs. Rawlins Reaves, a twenty five year old ordained Methodist Minister, like his father.  He married Lucretia Ann Sledge, some three or so years before the war started and before his enlistment had seen his first son born, which was named after Daniel’s older brother James Alexander.   Daniel Asbury Reaves would be wounded on September 20 1863 at the Battle of Chickamauga.  He would be the only brother of the three that would return home to Monticello, in Jefferson County, Florida.  On April 15, 1865 he signed an order swearing to not bear arms against the United States of America.

After the war the clan of Rev. and Mrs. Rawlins Reaves along with their now adult children moved two-hundred miles south to establish Reaves Settlement, just outside of the small town of Winter Garden in Central Florida.  Daniel Asbury Reaves and Lucretia (Creasy) Ann Sledge would follow, just after the birth of their fourth child in 1869.

Daniel Asbury Reaves and Lucretia (Creasy) Ann Sledge would have a total of eight (8) children.

James Alexander Reaves – born May 4, 1861 in Monticello, Florida married Jimmie Tellula Donnie Letson in 1884.  He died in 1939, Winter Garden, Florida.

Sallie Crew Reaves– born October 23, 1864 in Monticello, Florida married Orville Leroy “Jeff” Mizelle in 1889.  Sallie died February 15, 1949 in Lake Butler, Union county, Florida.

Samuel Darius “Dee” Reaves– born 1867 in Monticello, Florida, married Martha “Mattie” Jane Clyatt in 1891.

Rollins Green Reaves– born in 1869, married Iva May Knight in 1911.

Hester Elizabeth (Hattie) Reaves– born 1872, Hattie married William Townsend McIntosh in 1890.

Richard Mathis Reaves– born 1874, Richard married Rosa Bell Carver in 1897.  In 1930, after his first wife’s death, he would marry Lou Dugger.  Richard died April 28, 1952.

Whitmel Tison Reaves – born 1876, married Hattie Vanola Blair about 1904, and later he would marry Rosa Crews.  Whitmel died November 25, 1954.

Edwin Bryan Reaves – born June 10, 1881, and  married Rita Jane Watson in 1930.  He died August 26 1941.

In 1887, Daniel Asbury and Creasy Ann Sledge would move all of their family except their oldest son James, who was already established in Winter Garden, north to an area west of Worthington Springs, in then Bradford County, Florida, where they would live out the rest of his life.

Rev. Daniel Asbury Reaves

Rawlins L. Reaves, a Florida Pioneer

 

Rev. Rawlins L Reaves, a traveling Methodist Minister

Rev. Rawlins L Reaves, a traveling Methodist Minister

Like many other pioneering  families in Florida, the Reaves family migrated south from the Carolinas.  Prior to the Revolutionary War the Reaves clan owned and operated Reaves Ferry in Horry County, South Carolina.  Mark Reaves and Spicy Ann Smith Reaves are both buried in the Reaves Family Cemetery in Horry County, South Carolina.  They had eleven (11) children.

Rawlins Lowndes Reaves was the youngest child of Mark Reaves and Spicy Ann Smith Reaves.  Rawlins married Delilah Ann Gilbert, in Thomasville Georgia after attending ministerial school in January of 1834.   They remained in Thomas, Georgia until 1843-44, when they moved their family to the town of Monticello, located in Jefferson County,  FL.  For over thirty-five years Rawlins preached the word of God, traveling throughout southern Georgia and parts of North and Central Florida.

Rawlins Lowndes Reaves and Delilah Ann Gilbert Reaves had eleven (11) children.

James Alexander Reaves – Born in Georgia in 1834.  James served in Company H, 3rd Florida Infantry Regiment, CSA, and died January 12, 1863 at Foard Hospital from wounds sustained in Chattanooga, TN.

Daniel Asbury Reaves – Born in Georgia in 1836, he married Lucretia (Creasy) Ann Sledge in 1858.   On April 25, 1862 he joined Company H, 3rd Florida Infantry Regiment, CSA, and was wounded at Chickamauga on September 20 1863. Daniel served in the war until April 15, 1865.  He died October 30, 1902, Worthington Springs, Union County, Florida.

Elizabeth “Bessy” Herd Reaves  – Born in Georgia in 1839 she married G W Jeffcoat and moved to St. Lucie County, Florida where she died in 1921.

Samuel Johnson Reaves – Born in Georgia in 1841, he served in Company H, 3rd Florida Infantry Regiment, CSA, until his death May 9, 1862, Gainesville Florida.

Richard Gilbert Reaves – Born 1844 in Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida.   He married Jane E. (Jenny) Taff, and died July 1, 1912, Bradford County, Florida.

Mark Bryan Reaves – Born 1846 in Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida,  he married Catherine F. Reams in 1870. He Died June 1, 1924, in Winter Garden, Orange County, Florida.

Joshua Thomas Reaves – Born 1848, Monticello, Jefferson County, Fl.  and died January 6, 1930, Kissimmee, Osceola County, Florida.

Solomon Reaves – Born 1850 in Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida.  Married Alice A. Speer in 1874.  His date and place of death is unknown at this time.

Spicy A. Reaves – Born 1852 in Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida.  She married E. Lewis Daniel Overstreet in 1872.  She died December 13 1910, Kissimmee, Osceola County, Florida.

Martha Matilda Reaves – Born in Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida in 1854.  She married William Pinkney Reams in 1874 and she died in 1910.

Rawlins Lowndes Reaves, Jr. – Born 1857, Monticello, Jefferson County, Florida   He married Emma Leticia Martin in 1879 and he died March 5, 1941, in Winter Garden, Orange County, Florida.

After the civil war, Rawlins Lowndes Reaves Sr. relocated his now mostly adult family from Monticello, Florida, in Jefferson County, some 220 miles south through unsettled territory to establish Reaves settlement located just west of Winter Garden, Florida in 1867.

After Delilah’s death in 1876, Rawlins Sr. married Augusta Ann Stanly in 1878.  They had two additional children.

John Lattimore Reaves – Born 1879, Winter Garden, FL

Rosabelle Reaves – Born 1882, Winter Garden, FL

Rawlins Lowndes Reaves died February 1, 1901, in Winter Garden, Florida, where many of his descendants still live today.  However, Reaves settlement is now known as Beulah and Reaves road remains a major road in the community.  Rawlins Lowndes Reaves was my gr. gr. gr. great-grandfather.

Sixth Grade Graduation Test of 1890

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Could you pass the 6th Grade Final Exam given in 1890?

It was a handwritten essay test using no notes or reference material. Everything must come out of your head in one sit down session in front of the teacher. There is a time limit of four hours. Many parents took education very seriously as they had to pay taxes for the schools whether their kids went or not. If you failed it as a twelve (12) year old you are considered unsuitable for school and must do hard work on the farm all day for the next six years without pay. Also if you fail it you will have a free trip to the woodshed where father will administer a thorough switching to your bare butt with a willow switch.

Instructions
Using correct spelling, grammar and good hand writing elaborate on the answers in essay form.

U.S. History
1. Name the parts of the Bill of Rights and explain which rights they protect.
2. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
3. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
4. Tell what you can of the history of Michigan.
5. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
6. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, and 1865?

Geography
1. Name each of the states in the USA and give its capital.
2. How do you account for the extremes of climate?
3. Describe the mountains of N.A.
4. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
5. Describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, and Orinoco.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
7. Name all the republics of Europe and give capital of each.
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10.Describe the movements of the earth. Give inclination of the earth.

Arithmetic
1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50 cents per bushel, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 1 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $.20 per inch?
8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?
10.Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

Grammar
1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.
2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no modifications.
3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.
4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb? Give Principal Parts of do, lie, lay and run.
5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.
6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principle marks of Punctuation.

Orthography
1. Give two rules for spelling words with final ‘e’. Name two exceptions under each rule.
2. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
3. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, and super.
4. Use the following correctly in sentences, Cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, and rays.
5. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

Did you pass?

DNA – the ultimate ancestry search

Could William Kirkland from Edgefield, SC be of North Carolina Cherokee descent?

Could William Kirkland from Edgefield, SC be of North Carolina Cherokee descent?

DNA results can even surprise a family historian and professional Genealogist.  DNA is a must if you want to discover your TRUE identity.  When the Kinfolk Detective receives unexpected DNA results a new search took flight.  Surnames which were believed to be English, Irish, and Scottish, are ultimately only Partially European with the balance being Jewish, African, Middle Eastern and Asian.

Hall, Blount, Baker, Davis, Brazel, Moore, Kirkland and Creed are my Paternal surnames and Graves, Witty, Davis, Roberts, Johnson, Erikson, Reaves, and Letson  are my Maternal.   Now, after receiving these DNA results I will begin a new journey to find the origin of each of the surnames in these four generations.  (By the fifth generation the amount of a specific strain would be non-reportable.)

I will begin with my Paternal gr. great grandparents Kirkland and Creed.    These surnames are in my fathers maternal line, and his mother’s maternal grandparents.    William Kirkland married Angeline Irine Creed in 1875.  According to an 1900 census, Born in South Carolina, William Kirkland was 52 years of age.  His wife of twenty-five years born in Georgia was 49 years of age and they were residing in Sawdust, Tattnall County, Georgia with ten of their children.  My grandmothers, mother was their youngest at the age of one.  Lucky for me, my 97-year-old grandmother is living and has a powerful memory.  After questioning her, I find she remembers her mother telling her that her grandmother was a North Carolina Cherokee.  Could this be a strain I’m looking for?

I search the internet, looking specifically for South Asian DNA with the population being Southeast Indian, North Indian and Middle Eastern DNA with the population being from Bedouin, and Mozabite.  I find there are several suggestions of North Carolina Cherokee Indian.  Could this be the link?  After a Google search with the keywords Kirkland and North Carolina Indian,  I find Nathan Kirkland “Cheesequire” who was a Cherokee Indian chief who lived to be 135 years of age reported to have descendants living in Edgefield, SC, where William Kirkland was born.  Could this be a clue?  Could William Kirkland be of North Carolina Cherokee descent?

Continue to follow  under my “exploring DNA” category.

message boards

When you hit a brick wall, chances are you are not the first one to hit the same bricks.   Check out the message boards at http://ancestry.com they can be quite useful.  Many family historians and genealogist use these message boards as a means of HELP, and we can all use a little help now and then.  Read, Read, Read! Each question asked and answered can be a clue.  It may not apply now, but read it anyway.  It might put two pieces of a puzzle together one day when your looking another direction.  You should check message boards for each and every surname in your family tree.  Sometimes you can find interesting information, maybe even a story  that was passed down and was lucky enough to find its way to pencil and paper.

Fold3.com a military website

If your searching for a male ancestor born 16-30 years prior to any war, check out http://FOLD3.com.  This is a military website that can provide immense information.  Looking for my husbands great-grandfather’s military records I made a HUGE discovery.  His name was Daniel Burnett Knight, born in 1833 and the oldest son of nine siblings.     From Fold3’s carded records much information can be learned.   Age, Rank-in/Rank-out, location enlisted, battles fought, injuries as well as all the other members enlisted in the same company.

On October 17, 1861, in Middleburg, Florida, at the age of 27, Daniel Burnett Knight enlisted under the command of Captain Summerlin to Florida’s First Calvary, Company C,  entering with the rank of 3rd Lieutenant.  As I explore the other members of Company C, I realize many are first and second cousins to Lt. D.B. Knight, all enlisting the same day, in Middleburg, FL.  The further I dig, I find the deaths of three brothers, Lt. Knight’s first cousins, who were killed under his command at Missionary Ridge where the confederates took serious casualties.  What a sobering letter he must have written to his Aunt and Uncle reporting the deaths of their three boys.  Then I find a father’s signature signing for his three son’s belongings and pay.   I can’t imagine the grief they withstood.

Looking through each card whether a receipt or a commission, injury, or illness a forgotten story emerges.  I find a letter that was written to the wife of a General who was captured along with Daniel Burnett Knight at Missionary Ridge.  The letter explains that Lt. Knight escaped the Unions grips and made if back to the Confederate camp without further issue, telling information of the captured officers condition to be passed on to their loved ones.  Riveting stuff!

Would I have found this information without FOLD3?  Maybe, maybe not, but its a great website to start with even with the minimal membership costs.  Its a great tool!

 

 

Colonial genealogy

For the last seven years my focus has been Colonial Genealogy and the first English settlement on the shores of James River which the English named Virginia.  Controlled by an English developmental company the Virginia Company of London, four shires were established.  They were James City, Charles City, Henrico and Kikotan (Elizabeth City). For the first fifteen years the Virginia settlement experienced ups and downs but continued to grow even though it was plagued by illness, dysentery, Indian attacks and starvation.  But, in 1622, the great Indian massacre killed a quarter of the population (347 settlers) with the surviving settlers convening in some eight plantations deemed capable of defending themselves.  The rest, some seventy or so plantations were abandoned.  The hardest hit areas were Martin’s Hundred where seventy eight colonist were killed and Bennett’s plantation on the south side of the James River, where some fifty plus colonist perished.  With the conditions of the colony and the inner fighting of the Virginia Company of London, the Crown revokes the companies patent and Virginia becomes an English Colony under the crown of King James I.

By 1634 the four original corporations were split to permit the creation of Warwick River (Warwick), Warrosquyoake (Isle of Wight) and Charles River (York), making a total of seven shires in the vicinity of the James River’s estuary.  Accawmack was added as an eighth shire encompassing the population of the Eastern Shore.  Most of these people lived near riverbanks because travel in most cases was limited to the boats, skiffs or ships in the rivers, the Chesapeake Bay or the Atlantic Ocean.

When beginning your work, you must recognize which counties were formed from or carved from which shire, parish or county, depending on your local.  Most colonial records are scarce due to the fires which  burned in Richmond during the American Civil War, so in the 1950s the Virginia Colonial Records Project was established by the Virginia Historical Society, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the University of Virginia Library, and Library of Virginia to reconstruct the archives of Virginia’s colonial history, making any of these a great place to begin.

A simple Google search

 

GOOGLE.com

With the Internet making such great strides, many Genealogists put their work on-line.  When you hit a brick wall, (not “if”, because you definitely will) sometimes a simple Google search can provide you with enough suggestion.  The reason I say suggestion, is you must verify all the information that you add to your family tree.  Don’t consider anything and everything to be factual.  Genealogists are humans too, and even the best can make mistakes.

As you Google make sure to check Google Books which is located on the far right side of your google.com task bar.  You may have to drop down the “More” icon to locate it.   Many historical books are on the internet and are fully accessible.

So, make sure to Google.  You never know what you might find!

“If you CAN prove it, it’s Genealogy, if you CAN’T, it’s Mythology!”

A statement that is frequently made among those who search the records of history looking for that all important clue is “If you can prove it, it’s Genealogy, if you can’t, it’s Mythology”.   When you begin your Genealogy be sure to document everything.  Therefore, a good filing system will be necessary.  There are many ways you can organize your files, and the Kinfolk Detective suggests Alphabetically. Starting with your master family files and continuing with the individual files within you master family file.

With each individual file you should have, if you can locate them, the following evidence:

Birth Certificate or equal –  (equivalent could be baptismal).

Immigration papers – if the individual is immigrating from another country.

Census records showing residence – A Federal census is completed every ten years.

Military records.

Marriage Certificate or equal.

Will or Probate records

Newspaper articles

Pictures

In the Kinfolk Detective’s perspective, a census is the easiest place to start.  A federal census can show a lot of good information including current location, name of every person in the household, a description of age, sex, and color, profession or occupation of each, value of estate owned- both real estate and personal,  place of birth, both parents place of birth, if they are able to read and write, and the last year of school they attended.

Now that you have all of this information, you can make some associations and assumptions.  Foremost where did they come from.  The names of brothers, sisters and parents.  When you can compare census’ you may see a brother that might have disappeared.  Did he marry?  Is he now the head of his own household? Did he die from an injury in a war?    Your dates are important as they can give you clues.  In the 1700’s and 1800’s many men married young.  If a seventeen or eighteen year old disappeared, its quite possible that he married or moved away with his wife’s family.  If there was a war within the ten years its possible he was killed in the war.   Sometimes you must think outside of the box to find your answers.

Many of the above documents can give you information and hints to your next subjects, their parents and siblings.

 

How it all began….

In the warmth of the morning sun I ride Peanut, my Shetland pony, down the winding dirt trail through the grove past my great-grandmothers house while dodging the occasional orange tree limb.   We trot across the open meadow where the garden was planted in the spring and around the corner where the briars are thick and the blackberries are sweet.  We turn back heading down to the boondocks, where either a small stream or a trickle of water can be flowing through the little ravine.  The hope is always for enough water for Peanut to jump across rather than trot right through.  We continue up the hill, past Granny Suggs rabbit pen, through the grapefruit grove and across the clay road.

I’m on my way to have a picnic.  I’m not alone, they are all there.  Aunts, Uncles, grandpas and grandmas at least seven generations back.  I know them all.  As I walk with my great-grandmother, she tells me stories of her favorite sister Creasy, her Uncle Asbury who was killed in the war, and the neighbor that caused her much distress letting food go bad instead of giving it to another in need.  Regardless of their relation, they all now lay resting in the small community cemetery, each  with a different headstone or a memorable symbol I use to remember their story.  As she places the flowers in the vase at the base of Papa Johnson’s grave, she reminds me that she just couldn’t hold on to her two boys, Olin and Paul, which her husband now rests  beside.  “Only the girls were strong enough to make it,” she says in a quiet voice.  Even at the young age of five, I know her heart is torn.

Fast forward forty (40) years; With my own children grown up and gone off on their own adventures, I turn to the stories of my childhood re-igniting an addictive passion within me.  “Genealogy”.

As I share my great-grandmothers stories with my husband, I realize that he never knew any of his ancestors.  How could this be?  How could he not know his Grandparents?   I now realize how lucky I was growing up surrounded by family. I had three of my four grandparents and one very healthy great-grandma, which I saw most every day.   It seems our family lived in the same small community forever.  I always knew where I came from or should I say who I came from  and the stories told by a great woman who wished to keep her ancestors memories alive.  Some died in a war, others from a disease that’s now been extinguished some five or six decades, and then there were those who died of old age, but they all had stories, great stories.