Postscript on the Phipps/Boon(e) Connection

The Stanfield name appears several times in the Bryan Boon Bible record. Is it simply coincidence that Catherine Humphreys was a daughter of Elizabeth (Stanfield) Humphreys and that she married Richard C. Phipps of of Randolph County, Missouri?

The Bryant Boon family was (for a while) a Kentucky family. Richard C. Phipps was a son of J. W. and Anna (Crystal) Phipps, both born in Kentucky, according to an 1883 biography.

This Richard C. Phipps was supposed to have been a brother of Joshua Ray Phipps, both sons of James W. Phipps/Anna Crystal.

Claims have also been advanced that a Boone connection involves the Phipps family of Grayson County, North Carolina. An Osborne family page (they were closely connected with the Phipps family in the Ashe/Grayson area) says that “Some descendants of Squire Boone (Daniel Boone’s father) married into the Phipps family of Grayson County . . . . “

Regarding the Boon(e)/Bryant/Phipps connection in the last post, is there any relevance in the fact that Grayson County, Virginia cemeteries contain a number of Bryant burials, including a Phipps born in 1850 who married a Bryant, and a Phipps born in 1834 who married a Bryant? And another one born in 1828, and another one born in 1869? (See Find A Grave surname searches for Grayson County.)

Martha R. Phipps: Early Connections to VA, TN, and KY

A family Bible record housed at the Tennessee State Library and Archives records data of the family of Bryant Boon (Boone) and his wife Martha Phipps. Photos of the Bible record appear in the website of the Tennessee Secretary of State.

Although the photos aren’t the highest quality, there it’s clear that among the family information that’s recorded, the following is included:

. . .

Bryant Boon was born December 15th 1789

Martha Boon my wife was born May the 17th Day 1800 . . .

Bryant Boon and Martha R Phipps were married on the 22d of Feby 1818 . . .

Bryant Boon (his father) Died January 21st 1837 . . .

This Bryant Boon or Boone has been assumed to have been related to the well-known Daniel Boone, although no one appears to have proof. Various sources refer to the wife of Daniel Boone as having been Rebecca Bryant, while Wikipedia calls her Rebecca Bryan.

According to a 1922 source (below), Bryant Boon or Boone “moved from North Carolina to Davidson Co., Tenn., early in the 19th century, and in 1833 removed to Graves Co., Ky.” Bryant Boon married Martha R. Phipps in Davidson County, Tennessee in 1818. They then apparently moved to Graves County, Kentucky about 1833, where he died in 1837.

Someone posting to an online forum said that the writer has a sampler made by Bryant Boon’s daughter Mary Elizabeth, which she supposedly stitched before the family moved to Kentucky. That sampler says that she was a student at “Mrs. Ellis’s Female Academy.”

That same source refers to an 1885 History of Kentucky which includes a biography of A.R. Boone, b. 1831 Davidson Co., TN, son of Bryant and Martha (Phipps) Boone. A Listserv page in Rootsweb contains a biography of A. R. Graves which is likely the one cited in the forum. It’s by the same authors cited in the forum, but it’s taken from Kentucky Genealogy and Biography, Vol. 1 (1885).

There it’s said that A.R. Boone was born in 1831 in Davidson Co., TN, a son of Bryant and Martha (Phipps) Boone.

The father was born in North Carolina, emigrated to Tennessee and in 1833 came to Graves County, Ky., where he purchased and improved a farm, and where he died March, 1837. He was a plain farmer, mingled but little in politics, and neither sought nor held office, beyond that of a justice of the peace. The mother was a native of Tennessee, and was born in 1800; she died in this county in 1865.

The mother, of course, would have been Martha R. (Phipps) Boon.

Since the bio is taken out of context, it isn’t clear what’s meant by “this county.” Presumably that would be Graves County, Kentucky. A Find A Grave page includes a photo of the tombstone of Martha (Phipps) Boone in that county. There it’s said that she is buried in Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Water Valley, Graves County, Kentucky.

The tombstone photo is tiny, but the following inscription can be made out:

MARTHA R. BOON
BORN
May 17, 1800
DIED
Sept. 15, 1865

Information appended to the Find A Grave page, but without sources provided, says that she was the daughter of Richardson Phipps/Fannie Newsom. Further, it’s claimed that although her first husband was Bryant Boone, “Her second husband was Jonathan Wyatt.” Then why, however, does the tombstone give her surname as Boon?

Another Find A Grave page is devoted to Bryant Boon(e), who was buried in the same cemetery, Pleasant Hill Cemetery. Two tombstone photos are included. The inscription says the following:

BRYANT BOON
BORN
Dec. 15, 1789
Died
JAN. 21, 1837
Aged 47 Yrs. 1 Mo. & 6 d’s.

For the same county, Find A Grave also includes a page for Andrew Rechmond Boone, as his name is given there, who was presumably the A.R. Boone of the biography. Tombstone photos are included. They appear to show a modern sign mounted above an old moss-covered tombstone. Both photos are too small, low resolution, and distant to provide readable text.

Attempting to sort out all the undocumented claims found in web pages regarding the Boone family is far beyond the scope of this blog, and would be too time-consuming anyway. Here, however, are some items from earlier sources:

Regarding the Bryant name, from W. H. Bogart, Daniel Boone, and the Hunters of Kentucky, Boston: Lee and Shepard, 1875: In a section called “Life of Daniel Boone,” the author associates (for what it’s worth) a settlement called Bryant’s with Daniel Boone. That settlement, which the author calls a “station,” was in existence as early as 1779 and was established by William Bryant, not Bryan as in Wikipedia, according to this source. That source also asserts that William Bryant had married Daniel Boone’s sister (pp. 269-270).

From Hazel Atterbury Spraker, comp., The Boone Family: A Genealogical History of the Descendants of George and Mary Boone Who Came to America in 1717, Rutland, Vermont: The Tuttle Company, 1922: A section headed “Family of Bryant Boone” appears on pp. 474-475. The data is said to have come from a Mr. James A. Boone of Charles, Missouri, with the notation “Records from Bible of Bryant Boone.” That source has:

BRYANT BOONE, b. 15 Dec., 1789, in North Carolina; d. 21 Jan., 1837, in Graves Co., Ky.; m. 1st [blank], and 2nd, 22 July, 1818, Martha R. Phipps.

He moved from North Carolina to Davidson Co., Tenn., early in the 19th century, and in 1833 removed to Graves Co., Ky.

CHILDREN: -

(1st Marriage)

1 Louisa Boone, b. 8 Jan., 1809; m. – Rupard; lived in Mo.
2 Sallie Ann Boone, b. 10 Sept., 1811; m. Thomas Cox of Ky.
3 James Boone, b. 11 Jan., 1815, m. a Miss Latta. He was a pioneer school teacher and farmer.

(2nd Marriage)

4 Fanny Boone, b. 20 Jan., 1819; m. – Marshall. Their descendants live in Mo.
5 Mary E. Boone, b. 22 Mar., 1822; m. – Young. Their descendants live in Paducah, Ky.
6 Daniel R. Boone, b. 28 July, 1824; d. 20 Jan., 1833, accidentally killed during the journey of the family from Tenn. to Ky.
7 William F. Boone, b. 12 Nov., 1826, in Davidson Co., Tenn.; d. 1 Jan., 1901, at Charleston, Mo., at the home of his son, James A. Boone; m. in 1848, Agnes Alloway. He lived for fifty years at Clinton, Iowa, and moved from there to Charleston but a short time before his death. Children: – . . . .
8 Nancy C. Boone, eighth child of Bryant Boone, b. 12 Nov., 1828; m. William Stanfield. Descendants live at Mayfield, Ky. Child: – . . . .
9 Andrew R. Boone, b. 4 Apr., 1831; d. 1886. For many years he was Circuit Judge of his district to Kentucky, and was a member of Congress, 1870-1876.
10 Evangelina T. Boone, b. 20 Aug., 1833; d. 1869. Her descendants live in Tennessee.
11 Bryant V. Boone, b. 30 Jan., 1836; d. 2 Jan., 1863, at Vicksburg, Miss., of smallpox, while serving as a Confederate soldier.

Unfortunately, the Bryant Boone family section appears within a larger section of the book which is headed “Undetermined Connections.”

Again regarding the Bryant name, from Harry Clinton Green and Mary Wolcott Green, The Pioneer Mothers of America, New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1912: A section headed “Rebecca Bryant Boone” appears on pp. 440-444. This section refers to the wife of Daniel Boone as having been Rebecca Bryant. That source quotes from an earlier book by Mary Florence Taney, Kentucky Pioneer Women:

Rebecca Bryant, who married Daniel Boone about 1755, in the Yadkin settlement in Western North Carolina, and her daughter, Jemima, are said to have been the first white women to become residents of Kentucky . . . .

As to the claim that Martha who married Bryant Boon(e) was daughter of Richardson Phipps/Fannie or Fanney Newsom: Richardson Phipps was born about 1775 or earlier, assuming that he was the oldest in his household in the 1820 census.

His household appears in Wake County, North Carolina in the 1800 census. He appears in a list of unclaimed letters remaining in the post office at Raleigh on 30 June 1802. This often indicated that the individual involved had moved on. According to a web transcription, he was in a militia company in Davidson County, Tennessee in 1812. He then was listed there in the census in 1820, 1830, and 1840.

Richardson’s will is dated 7 Oct 1842 and is extant as a loose copy and in Davidson County Will Book 14. He died about 1842-7, according to Davidson County probate records.

Richardson is said to have married Frances (“Fannie”) in 1790 in Sussex County, Virginia.

Interestingly, the will refers to Martha, but refers to her as Martha R. Wiatt. Remember that an individual claimed in Find A Grave that she had remarried to a Wyatt. Could it be that she was only married to Wyatt for a short time and was buried by Boone family members who wished to remember her as a Boone?

The Bryant Boon family Bible records her name as Martha R. Phipps, and the name appears as Martha R., followed by “Wiatt,” in the will of Richardson Phipps. The Bryant Boon family Bible does include the Wyatt surname. One record in that Bible reads:

Francis [or Frances?] M. Wyatt Died January 21st 1846.

In Richardson Phipps’s will, he mentions the following:

It is my will and desire that the ballance of my estate be equally divided by sale or otherwise as my executor may think best between my beloved children Elizibeth Williamson, William R Phipps, Robert W Phipps, Martha R Wiatt, Sarah Townsend, [Aurline?] E Edwards and Francis C Pegram . . . .

We should also note that regarding the family’s apparent move from Davidson County, Tennessee to Graves County, Kentucky, a Martha R. Boon appears in the 1840 census in Graves County. Remember that her husband Bryant Boon died in 1837, but she didn’t die until 1865, according to their tombstone inscriptions.

Then, in 1850, the name Martha R. Boon appears in Hickman County, Kentucky, in the slave schedule. Hickman County is adjacent to Graves County. It could be noted that it’s also adjacent to the Tennessee state line, so they hadn’t moved very far from Tennessee.

In addition, we should note that the marriage of Bryant Boon to Martha Phipps is documented not only in the Boon family Bible, but in a Davidson County, Tennessee county marriage record for 1818, p. 193. The names are given as “Boon Bryant To Martha Phipps,” with license issued 17 Feb 1818. Further,

I solemnized the rite of matrimony between the within named parties on the 17th day of Febr 1818
Levin Edney
Minister

Earlier, the name Bryant Boon had appeared in the 1830 census in Carroll County, Tennessee. Carroll County is not adjacent to Davidson County, but is close.

Jonathan Wyatt is said to have been Martha’s second husband. That name appears in Graves County in the 1840 census.

We should also point out that Richardson Phipps is named as a son of Benjamin Phipps in the latter’s 1797 will (Sussex County, Virginia Will Book F, p. 219, according to a published abstract. That will, as abstracted, includes the names of sons Richardson and Jordan, both of whom were known to have moved to Tennessee.

This, then, appears to give us the following, in summary:

Martha R. Phipps, daughter of Richardson Phipps, married Bryant Boon. He may or may not have been connected with the Daniel Boone family, and he may or may not have been named Bryant after Daniel’s wife’s maiden name.

Richardson Phipps, Martha’s father, was a son of Benjamin Phipps of Sussex County, Virginia. Benjamin appears in various records there dated from 1768 until the time he died, which was around 1797-1801 according to probate record abstracts.

Benjamin, by the way, married twice, to Martha and to Ruth. A birth record abstract for Jordan, Richardson’s brother, refers to Martha as mother.

The Long and Phipps Gang: Oral History Recollections

Oral history recollections of the Long-Phipps-Fox outlaw gang centered in Owen County, Indiana were preserved in the form of an 1892 interview with Susan Sheppard. Although she was unsure of her exact age, she believed herself to be at least 105 years old at the time. Her interview was printed in The Brazil Democrat in Brazil, Clay County, Indiana on 15 Sep 1892. Clay County is adjacent to Owen County.

Aunt Susie, as she was known, spoke of John Long, “Shack” Phipps, and “old Mrs. Long.” “Shack” Phipps was John Meshack Phipps, born in 1812, a son of Jesse Phipps/Jennie Spurlin. Jesse was born about 1786-88 in Ashe County, North Carolina. John Meshack Phipps married Mary Elizabeth Long, daughter of the individual Aunt Susie called “old Mrs. Long.”

“Old Mrs. Long” was Levisa (Stamper) Long, wife of Jesse Long of Ashe County, North Carolina and later Owen County, Indiana. She became what was known in those days as a “grass widow,” in other words a divorced woman, by 1845 in Owen County.

Jesse Long’s brother Owen had two sons, John and Aaron. Both were prominent gang members in the outlaw gang in which John Meshack Phipps was a member.

Edward Bonney, the detective who apprehended John and Aaron Long, wrote of Levisa (Stamper) Long, the woman Aunt Susie called “old Mrs. Long,” in his book Banditti of the Prairie (1856 edition, p. 90):

“I learned from these gentlemen that Shack Phips, who was arrested with Fox, lived in Owen County, but a few miles distant in a sparsely settled country. Nearly all the settlers were connected in different ways with the banditti. Phips had married a daughter of widow Long, sister-in-law of old Owen Long, and mother of Aaron and Hiram; all whose names I had taken from Granville Young or old Birch. Phips lived in the house with old widow Long and her boys, and Fox had been arrested there.”

Bonney also noted that the gang had relatives in “Spice Valley” (located in Lawrence County, Indiana), which was true. Bonney mentioned the Burtons, who had come from the Ashe County, North Carolina area to Lawrence County, but there were Phippses from Ashe County there as well:

Hiram Long, cousin to John and Aaron Long. Shack Phips [i.e. John Meshack Phipps, son of Jesse], and John Singleton, all living in the same town, in Owen County, Indiana, south-east of Terrehaut, near Eel River. Jack Burton, in Spice Valley, Indiana, . . . .

Bonney quoted from a gang member,

They left old mother Long’s where I was arrested, a few hours before the posse got there, and went down through Spice Valley to New Albany on the Ohio river, at which place they intended to take steamboat for Cincinnati.

Aunt Susie’s recollections agree with newspaper accounts and other records that we’ve discussed earlier. One minor error is that she thought Shack Phipps was hung, which didn’t occur. A Clay County history says that his brother was hung, which also didn’t occur. Was this just a matter of local gossip getting out of hand, or was a Phipps hung in the area?

Here is how Aunt Susie remembered the outlaw gang:

When asked whether she did not have a personal recollection of the Long-Phipps-Fox gang of desperadoes who rendevoused [sic; rendezvoused] in that neighborhood and who were connected with the murder of Colonel Davenport near Rock Island, back in the ’40s, the details of whose crimes were exposed by Detective Bonney in a book entitled “Bandits [sic; Banditti] of the Prairie,” the old lady, as though revived by inspiration of the memories of former days, partially straightened up from her recumbency and replied: “Yes, indeed. I knew them well. They lived just a little piece below us. John Long and Shack Phipps were missing from home the day after my husband started to Kentucky and were gone about as long as he was. Many a time did old Mrs. Long tell, when asked where they were, that she did not know, but that they would come back with $850. This proved clear enough to my mind that they followed Sheppard to rob and kill him. They were a tough gang, always annoying us with their treachery and deviltry. When they were found out by the officers and search made for the goods which they were accused of stealing, all the hollow trees in the woods around about their cabins were found stuffed with cloths, muslins and other articles of which they had robbed the stores at Bowling Green and other surrounding towns. I tell you they were a hard lot. One morning I cut me a good hickory club and went down there to split old Mrs. Long’s head for milking my cow, but she got into the house and bolted the door before I could reach her. John Long and Shack Phipps were hung, but [not] any to [sic; too] soon.

An Illinois Estate & Lots of Persons Named Jesse

The estate of Mary E. Phipps was settled in 1919 in Hancock County, Illinois. Her estate was discussed in a column of a newspaper in Keokuk, Lee County, Iowa, with that column being devoted to covering nearby Carthage, Hancock County, Illinois.

The newspaper refers to her sons as including at least the following:

  • Charles L. Phipps
  • George T. Phipps
  • Joseph H. Phipps
  • Frank S. Phipps

1870 Census, Montebello Township, Hancock County, Illinois, P.O. Hamilton, IL, 14 June 1870, p. 11, 76/72:

  • Elijah G. Phipps, 35 [b. abt 1835], MW, farmer, real est. [blank], pers. est. $250, IN
  • Mary E. Phipps, 31 [b. abt 1839], FW, keeping house, OH
  • Charlie Phipps, 10 [b. abt 1860], MW, IL, attended school
  • George F. Phipps, 8 [b. abt 1862], MW, IL, attended school
  • Joseph Phipps, 4 [b. abt 1866], MW, IL
  • Nellie Phipps, 2 [b. abt 1868], FW, IL
  • Jessee Phipps, 3 mos. [b. 1870], MW, IL

Mary E. was born Mary Ellen Hart, according to a record abstract. The Hart family was closely associated with the Phipps family back in the Western Virginia and North Carolina area, but whether that is relevant in this case, so far from home, isn’t clear.

A Family Search abstract of an Illinois death certificate contains the following information. Note that George, assuming it’s the same person, is referred to as George T. in the newspaper material, but as George F. (as clearly written) in the 1870 census:

George Thomas Phipps

  • retired farmer, res. Prairie, Hancock, IL
  • b. 24 Sep 1861 Loraine, IL
  • d. 18 Feb 1945 Prairie, Hancock, IL, age 93
  • father: Elijah G. Phipps, b. Salem, IN
  • mother: Mary Ellen Hart, b. Hamilton, IL
  • spouse: Anna Phipps
  • burial: Carthage Mausoleum, Carthage, Hancock, IL

From The Daily Gate City and Constitution-Democrat, Keokuk, Lee County, Iowa, Wednesday, 10 Dec 1919, p. 7, under “Probate Court News:”

Order finding heirship in the estate of Mary E. Phipps, is as follows: Charles L. Phipps, son; George T. Phipps, son; Joseph H. Phipps, son and Frank S. Phipps, son, as her sole and only heirs at law. . . .

Inventory of the estate of Mary E. Phipps, is filed and approved, showing real estate consisting of lots 1, 2, 3 in block 6, lots 8 and 10, in block 4, all in Reeves, Durkee and Saffords Add., to Hamilton, Hancock county, Ill. Chattel property consisting of household furniture, cash on hand $24.75 and war saving stamps to the amount of $8.70. George T. Phipps, administrator. Petition of Joseph H. Phipps and Frank S. Phipps, for letters of administration, to issue to George T. Phipps, as administrator of the estate of Mary E. Phipps, deceased, is presented to the court. Upon his filing a bond in the penal sum of fifty dollars, letters of administration are issued to George T. Phipps as such administrator. . . .

According to unconfirmed secondary claims, Elijah G. Phipps was Elijah Green Phipps, son of Jesse Phipps/Rhoda Crotts. Pension records are said to indicate that he had died in Hancock County in 1891.

Jesse Phipps was born 11 Nov 1810 in Floyd County, Indiana, according to a biography of Jesse’s son John. He supposedly married Rhoda Crotts in 1830 in Washington County, Indiana. Jesse was living in Keene Township, Adams County, Illinois in the 1850, 1860, and 1870 censuses. Then he appeared in Polk Township, Nodaway County, Missouri in the 1880 census.

At times, researchers seems to have confused this Jesse with another individual, Jesse Franklin Phipps. Jesse Franklin Phipps was born 22 Jan 1873 at Pollock, Sullivan County, Missouri. He married Joanna Mills according to their death certificates. In 1918 he was living at Wheeling, Livingston County, Missouri, where he died in 1949 according to his death certificate.

Jesse Franklin Phipps was a son of yet another Jesse Phipps, who was born 19 Nov 1840 according to his tombstone. Other records indicate that he was born in Indiana. This earlier Jesse was living in Polk Township, Sullivan County, Missouri in the 1870 and 1880 censuses. He appears to have married Caroline Delilah Helms, and he died 22 Nov 1909. He’s buried at Avalon, Livingston County, Missouri.

This earlier Jesse would appear to somehow have been related to yet one more Jesse Phipps, that being the one who was a son of Samuel Phipps who died in 1854 in Ashe County, North Carolina. The relationship isn’t clear, however. It could conceivably be coincidence, but this last Jesse (born about 1786-1788 in North Carolina, died 1865 Putnam County, Missouri) also married a Helms as his second wife.

Actually, his second wife was Deborah Flora, born in Ohio, but she apparently had married Daniel Helms in Richland County, Ohio before marrying Jesse Phipps 12 May 1848 in Owen County, Indiana (according to a marriage record).

The Jesse Phipps who was born in 1840 married Caroline Delilah Helms who was born about 1837 in Ohio.

The Jesse who married Deborah (Flora) Helms had earlier been married to Jane (“Jennie”) Spurlin. That Jesse died in Putnam County, Missouri, or at least that’s where his probate records were found. (He actually could have died in adjacent in Sullivan County, since one little slip of paper in his probate file sounds like that could have been the case.)

One hypothesis is that the Jesse who married Rhoda Crotts was the son of the Jesse who married Jennie Spurlin and then Deborah (Flora) Helms.  That Jesse, however, appears to be the one who is buried in Henry Cemetery in Sullivan County, Missouri. He was born about 1811 and died 14 Aug 1885, according to his tombstone. The one who married Rhoda Crotts, on the other hand, appears to be buried in Cain Cemetery, also known as Shell Grove, in nearby Nodaway County.

William Phipps of Brunswick Co., VA, 1868

William Phipps of Lawrenceville, Virginia was mentioned in an 1868 newspaper as having applied for bankruptcy. Lawrenceville is in Brunswick County. From The Petersburg Index, Petersburg, Virginia, Tues., 31 Mar 1868, under “Local Department,” p. 2:

CASES IN BANKRUPTCY. – The petitions of the following individuals have been received and filed in the office of Judge H. G. Bond, since our last report.

. . . Wm. Phipps, Lawrenceville; . . . .

Who was this William? The following are some possibilities, from census abstracts. Of course, he could also have been someone who also went by another name (a given name with William as middle name, or vice-versa):

  • William Phipps, born about 1784 VA, m. Temperance, res. 1850 census Brunswick Co., VA
  • William Phipps, born about 1791 VA, m. Temperance, res. 1860 census Meherrin Parish, Brunswick Co., VA
  • William Phipps, slave owner, res. 1850 census slave schedule, Brunswick Co., VA
  • William C. Phipps, born about 1845 VA, son Winfield Phipps/Julia A., res. 1850 census Brunswick Co., VA
  • William C. Phipps, born about 1846 VA, son Julia J. Phipps, res. 1870 census Meherrin Twp., Brunswick Co., VA

Postscript to the Last Post: Isaiah Phipps

After further reflection and examination of the evidence, it appears perhaps far more questionable that the William Phipps of Warren County, Indiana, discussed in the last post, could have been the son of Isaiah of Grayson County, Virginia. If he was, then evidently the legal notice discussed about 3 posts back in connection with Isaiah must contain erroneous information about William, unless perhaps no one in the family knew anything about him.

That legal notice, as published in a newspaper in Grayson County in 1860, refers to a William Phipps has having been an heir of Isaiah. Later in the same document, however, a list appears of several heirs who were not living in Virginia. William’s name does not appear there.

Further, the William who was living in Warren County, Indiana died in 1854. The legal notice is dated 1860, yet still names William. Of course, if he had been living in Indiana then they might not have known that he had died, but then why does his name not appear among those heirs who were not living in Virginia?

One possibility, however, is that they simply knew nothing about him or his whereabouts and that this is why he wasn’t referred to as living outside of Virginia. It’s certainly also possible that the author of the legal notice simply made a mistake. We’ve noted other apparent errors, such as the appearance of two daughters named Betsy, and Nancy appearing as Mary.

As it is, however, three factors stand against the William Phipps of Warren County, Indiana being the son of Isaiah Phipps of Grayson County, Virginia:

  • William of Warren County, Indiana died in 1854. The legal notice is dated 1860, yet names William as though he was living.
  • William of Warren County, Indiana was obviously living outside of Virginia, but the legal notice does not list him as living outside of that state.
  • Since William was being sued, the suit would have to have some means of addressing him: either summoning him indirectly through the newspaper as a non-resident, or directly through a personal summons as a resident of Virginia.

Was there another William who possibly could have been the son of Isaiah, a William who was living somewhere in Virginia at the time?

If additional probate records are extant regarding this Isaiah, they could potentially help immeasurably in clearing up the mystery of the children and descendants of Isaiah. The legal notice suggests a probate issue; since this was the case, there were likely other records pertaining to this estate. In those days, probate records sometimes contained at least one single record – perhaps only a tiny slip of paper – not only listing heirs, but mentioning their whereabouts.

If anyone has easy access to such records and would like to share them with us, that would be appreciated.

William Phipps of Warren Co., IN: Son of Isaiah?

William Phipps of Warren County, Indiana has been discussed as possibly having been the William who was a son of Isaiah Phipps (about 1769 to 1857) of Grayson County, Virginia. While not definitive, here is more about that William and his family:

William Phipps was born about 1808 in Virginia according to the 1850 census. That census shows him as a farmer living in Warren Township, Warren County, Indiana. He could not read and write.

His wife was shown in that census as Susan, but in the 1860 census she is referred to as Susanna.

William died by the time of the administrator’s sale of his estate on 6 Oct 1854. The sale, advertised in a local paper on 4 Oct 1854, refers to him as “late of Warren county deceased.”

The sale disposed of “all his personal property (not taken by the widow.” This consisted of “Horses, Cattle Hogs, Corn in the Crib and field, Wheat in stack, Oats, Hay farming utensils, &c.” Reuben Warbritton was the administrator.

A notice of distribution to the heirs was advertised in a local newspaper from the 12th through the 21st of February in 1856 in Warren County. This announced that $683.26 was left over from his estate after final settlement, and that this amount would be distributed to the heirs.

Susan or Susanna, William’s wife, was born about 1808-1809 in Kentucky, according to the 1850 and 1860 censuses. She could not read and write according to those census reports, as well as the 1880 census.

After her husband’s death, she was listed on 10 July 1860 in Warren Township, Warren County, as a widow. She again appears in the census on 1 June 1880 in the same township as a widow. She’s called Susanna in 1860 and Susan in 1850 and 1880. Both her parents were born in Virginia according to the 1880 census.

According to a local paper, she died on the evening of Saturday, 16 May 1891. She had been living a mile east of Williamsport in Warren County. Susan was buried in Kester Cemetery on the following Monday, 18 May 1891.

The children of William and Susan Phipps were at least the following: (1) Samuel, (2) John, (3) Thomas, (4) David, and (5) James E.

Samuel was born about 1829 in Indiana according to the 1850 census, where he is shown with his parents. The same census listing shows John, born about 1835. His middle initial appears to be A., but perhaps U.

That same census listing also shows son Thomas. He was born about 1840-1841 in Indiana according to the 1850 and 1860 censuses, about 1842 according to the age in his death notice. His obituary gives his date of birth as 16 Oct 1841, and his tombstone as 16 Oct 1840. (Such discrepancies were common. Sometimes it was because the individual’s month and day of birth were known, and the year was miscalculated from the age.)

In the 1860 census, 39-year-old Thomas was single. He was living with his widowed mother in her household. He married Miss Sarah Warbritton in 1884, according to his obituary. The 1910 census shows Thomas with “Sarrah A.” who he married about 1885 as his wife. This was the first wife for both of them. His National Soldiers’ Home record calls her Sarah A.

Thomas’s household was on Washington Street in Williamsport on the census taken on 19 Apr 1910. His occupation was blank. In the same household was his daughter Anna and her husband, Roy Odle.

Thomas was presumably the same Thomas Phipps who injured his foot when swimming in 1916. A newspaper reported that about 7 weeks prior to 24 Aug 1916, he “thought he was a boy again” and went swimming in the creek. The bottom was rough and he snagged his foot. Afterward this caused increasing pain until finally he was unable to walk. At the time of the newspaper report, he had come to town with crutches.

Then on 12 July 1917, another newspaper article referred to Thomas Phipps of Williamsport, a “very old man,” who tried to commit suicide. He arose about 4 in the morning on the morning of Monday, 9 Jul 1917. He built a fire and went into the wood house.

When he didn’t appear back in the house after quite a while, his wife became concerned. She found him in the wood house with a huge wound in his throat and razor, covered with blood, lying beside him. He was taken to a doctor who found that Thomas had narrowly missed the jugular vein.

Thomas said later that the reason he attempted suicide was because, as the paper put it, he had “suffered unbearable pain from sickness,” and he believed that “he was unable to combat the disease longer.” At the time, his recovery from the suicide attempt was in doubt.

That was on the 9th of July. Thomas was moved into the National Soldiers’ Home at Danville, Vermilion County, Illinois on the 23rd. That’s where he lived the last 3 years of his life, according to his obituary.

The Soldiers’ Home register says of his health, “Arterio sclerosis[,] Prostatic hypertrophy[,] chr. Gastritis[,] Attempted Suicide by Cutting throat.” That source gives his age as 76 and describes him as 5’11” tall, with fair complexion, blue eyes, light colored hair, “Protestant,” and a farmer who could not read or write.

Thomas Phipps died in the Danville Soldiers’ Home hospital on 5 Apr 1920 according to the National Home register as well as his obituary, death notice, and tombstone inscription. The remains were taken to Williamsport in Warren County, Indiana for burial. He was buried in Highland Cemetery at Williamsport on 7 Apr 1920.

He had served as a Civil War soldier in Company H, 60th Regiment Indiana volunteers, according to his obituary and death notice. His obituary noted that he had been a member of the GAR post at Williamsport.

The National Home register says that he enlisted 17 Feb 1862 in Indianapolis as a private, but gives his company designation as “D” instead of “H.” He was discharged 21 Mar 1865 at Indianapolis.

Thomas’s wife Sarah was born about 1845 in Indiana according to the 1910 census. Her parents were born in Kentucky according to that census. An Illinois death record abstract refers to her as Sarah Ann Phipps, born 15 Sep 1845 Kramer, Indiana, died 6 Jan 1936 at age 90 at Hoopeston, Vermilion County, Illinois. Her parents are listed as Reuben Warbritton and Caroline Boggs, both born in Indiana. Sarah was buried, according to the same record, in Highland Cemetery in Williamsport, Warren County, Indiana, on 8 Jan 1936.

Thomas and Sarah had a daughter who married Wallace Kearst or Kerst according to her father’s death notice and obituary. The same sources mention Thomas’s daughter who married Roy Odle. The daughter was Anna R. Phipps, born 1886 and died 1978 according to her tombstone. She and her husband, Leroy R. Odle, share a tombstone in Highland Cemetery at Williamsport. Leroy was born in 1880 and died in 1954 according to his tombstone.

Another son of William and Susan Phipps was David. He shows up with these parents in the 1850 census, and with the widowed Susanna (Susan) in the 1860 census. David was born about 1842-1843 in Indiana.

The remaining son of William and Susan was James E. He was 6 months old on 23 Sep 1850 in the 1850 census. His son Thomas’s obituary says that James was born in Warren County. He is called James E. in both the 1850 and 1860 censuses. He married a Sarah according to the obituary of his son Thomas.

James E. Phipps had a daughter Susan who married Martin Landon. The obituary of her brother Thomas refers to the marriage of Susan to a Landon. A newspaper marriage notice records the marriage of Martin Landon to Susan H. Phipps on 22 Feb 1899 at Attica, Fountain County, Indiana.

James E. Phipps and wife Sarah had a son named Thomas according to Thomas’s obituary. He was born 11 Feb 1879 according to that source. This Thomas had health issues which he attempted to alleviate by going to Canon City, Fremont County, Colorado in late 1905 or early 1906, according to his obituary, and then to Phoenix, Arizona in 1906 just before his death.

Thomas died 20 Feb 1906 at the age of 27 years and 9 days, according to his obituary. The funeral was held 1 Mar 1906 in Kramer, Warren County, Indiana. His obituary calls him the “oldest of a family of five children.” His “boyhood days” had been spent in Liberty Township, and he worked in and around Kramer in the “latter years” of his life. He was nicknamed Tom.

Tom had been a charter member of the Order of Red Men at Kramer, according to his obituary.