Thank you for visiting my blog!

Thank you for visiting my blog!

This blog is used to share information that I find about the families that I am researching. To see these family names click on the tab above. Please feel free to contribute your stories or research and make comments, corrections, and ask questions.

If we have a common ancestor, or if you have questions or comments that you don’t want to post, please go to the "About Me" tab to send me an e-mail.

Reading this Blog

My posts can be accessed by the date posted from the column on the right. Blog posts containing specific surnames can be found by clicking on the names in the left column.


Friday, November 28, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #44 James C. Chisum married Martha Elizabeth "Mattie Hairston

The solid lines indicate that the connection to the family is documented while
the dotted lines indicate that direct evidence has not yet been found to
make the connection. Click on the family tree to see a larger image.

My great-grandfather, Phillip Hairston, his wife, and daughter left Falls County,
Texas to live in Erath County in 1883. Phillip Hairston's sisters were said to come with him as well; widow Permelia Hairston Noah and her sons, sister, Sarah Jane and maybe the children of sister, Mary Hairston Gilbert. 

James C. Chisum married Martha Elizabeth "Mattie" Hairston on November 4, 1875 in Falls County, Texas. They had three children; Walter, Stella, and Philip. I know that Mattie and her children migrated to Erath County with her family, but I don't know if James C. accompanied her. 

James is said to be the son of Elijah Chisum and Delilah George who can be found in Limestone County, Texas on the 1860 census along with seven children. 

James can be found with his wife and two children on the 1880 United States census of Falls County. He is found again in the Falls County deed index as disposing of property in October 1882. James' trail grew cold as no other record mentioning his name can be found. Did he move to Erath County in 1883 along with the rest of the family? 

Unable to track down James, I moved on to collateral searches of his siblings. and found that at least three of his siblings relocated to Erath County about the same time that the Hairstons moved to Erath.  Sister, Judah, is said to have died in Erath County in 1883, while brothers William E. Chisum, and Hiram S. Chisum were paying taxes in Erath County by 1884. It certainly appears that James might have wanted to go to Erath County. 

So, what happened to James C. Chisum? On August 28, 1884, Martha Elizabeth "Mattie" Hairston Chisum married John A. Thompson. 

One story about James' death is that he and Mattie were in or going to Corpus Christi to sell hides when James was killed by a runaway horse. John A. Thompson, a family friend, went to Mattie's assistance. This story makes sense if James Chisum had moved to Erath County with the others. The Hairston/Chisum/Noah families settled in the Bethel Community very near John A. Thompson. In fact, Phillip Hairston purchased his Erath County land from John's brother, Robert, in late 1883. 

I have found no documents to indicate when and where James died and where he is buried. Some Public Family Trees at give him a death date of March 30, 1928 and a burial place of as Russell Cemetery in Greer County, Oklahoma. However, that is the death date and burial place of his said to be brother, Hiram S. Chisum. 

Falls County deed records for James C. Chisum and his said siblings need to be looked at. There are tax records for a James C. Chisum in Erath County, but those appear to be an older James C. Chisum. However, it wouldn't hurt to look at deed records as well as some court records in Erath County. 


© 2014

Friday, November 21, 2014

Friday's Photo: Baylor County, Texas

This photo is a scan of a paper copy of the photo made in the 1970s or 1980s. The copy was sent by my cousin Jackie to Bryan researcher, Marguerite Cook Clark.  Jackie wrote, "On the horse is either Floyd Thompson or Grandpa Hairston." 

The man could be Phillip Hairston, my great-grandfather. It is probably not Floyd Thompson. I believe that the boy is my uncle, Hairston Albritton "Buster" Bryan, at about age 4 which gives a date for the photo between 1909 and 1911. 

During this period, the Bryans and Hairstons lived in the Levelview community in Baylor County, Texas. Is that a church behind the tree? I don't believe that it is the courthouse in Seymour. 

I would love to find the original photo. Jackie's genealogy and copies of some of her photos are archived in the Denver Public Library. This photo was not part of that collection. 


© 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #43 Stella Rhoetta Chisum Gresham

The solid lines indicate that the connection to the family is documented while
the dotted lines indicate that direct evidence has not yet been found to
make the connection. Click on the family tree to see a larger image.

Stella Rhoetta Chisum Gresham was the daughter of Martha "Mattie" Elizabeth Hairston and James C. Chisum. She was born in Falls County, Texas on February 20, 1879. Before the age of five, her family moved to Erath County, Texas. Her father is said to have died and Stella's mother married John A. Thompson in 1884. 

Stella married William Barnett Gresham in Erath County and soon after, they were living in Hall County and later, in nearby Childress County where she remained until her death. 

Stella's obituary gives all of the important places and dates, but these quotes from those who knew Stella, tell us a little more. 

From her grandson, Bill:  

Stella was wonderful to me as we grew up 4 miles west of Cary. I used to eat lunch at her house and then came home to eat again. She raised turkeys so that we could have shoes and coats.

From her niece, Juanita: 

We had a Thompson reunion in Seymour Park once and there were several Thompson cousins there. I don't know if anyone took names down or not. Aunt Stella's family was there.

 Aunt Stella was a real tall woman, and really showed her Indian descent. Her daughter was named Frances Clifton; they lived in Childress, Texas. She sure favored the Thompsons. 

From her niece, Nadine: 

Aunt Stella came and stayed with us {in Erath County} almost every summer.  We visited her also but we never visited Uncle Floyd. 

From my notes written on April 17, 2001: 

Dad just told me that he was at the Gresham's home when he found out his mother died. It was probably Stella's home as he remembered someone who looked much like his mother. {Look at the Gresham family photo at Find a Grave. The young Stella does resemble photos of my grandmother.} 

Written on the back of this photo is
Stella Gresham's daughter. It is not
known if this is Frances or Hazel. 
At the time of Stella's death in 1962, only three of her six children were living. Her children are as follows:
  • Hugh Wiley Gresham (1899-1819)    
  • Rex William Gresham (1902-1964)
  • Millard "Jack" Gresham (1909-1992)
  • Hazel Illene Gresham (1910-1923)
  • Frances Jewel Gresham (1913-1997)
  • Lafayette "Fate" Gresham (1918-1960)
The photos below are scans of paper scans so the quality is poor. The first photo of Edd, Stella, and Floyd is on my website and Edd was mistakenly named as William Gresham. Edd's daughter and owner of the photos made the correction. By looking at the second photo, I realized that it was definitely Edd. 

Stella Chisum Gresham with half-brothers, Edgar Richard Thompson and Floyd William Thompson 

Mattie and Edd Thompson, Stella Chisum Gresham, Floyd and Ora Thompson


© 2014

Sources Texas, Death Certificates, 1903–1982 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. Texas, Marriage Collection, 1814-1909 and 1966-2011 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2005. U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2012. Original data: Find A Grave. Find A Grave.

Chisum, Stella Rhoetta, Certificate of Birth (1942), Texas Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics.

Chisum, J. C. and Hairston, M. E., Marriage Certificate, The State of Texas, County of Falls.

Clifton, Bill (Childress, Texas) to "Dear Diana" [Diana Quinn]. Letter. 26 October 2000. Bryan-Quinn Genealogy Papers. Virginia Beach, Virginia. 

Family photographs from the collection of Nadine Thompson Waugh. Accessed September 2001. Used with permission.

Gleghorn, Juanita Pearl Thompson. The Thompson Family, The Early Years. Duncan, Oklahoma. Print.

Waugh, Nadine Thompson (Stephenville, Texas) to "Dear Diana" [Diana Quinn]. Letter. 26 September 2000. Bryan-Quinn Genealogy Papers. Virginia Beach, Virginia. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Friday's Photo: Charles William Giddens

A photo of my great-uncle Charlie, Charles William Giddens, dated 1917. Charles was in the Army. He served through WWI and during WWII served in the Navy. I don't know where this was taken - maybe his hometown of Phillipsburg, New Jersey. 


© 2014

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #42 Sarah Jane Hairston McBurnett

The solid lines indicate that the connection to the family is documented while
the dotted lines indicate that direct evidence has not yet been found to
make the connection. Click on the family tree to see a larger image.

This is #42 of my 52 posts. Only 10 more to go.  I haven't found all of my answers, but have learned many new facts, organized my Hairston family research, and have been able to now see how the various families connect. 

Today, I am writing about Sarah Jane Hairston McBurnett.  Sarah and her twin, Mollie/Mary Elizabeth, were daughters of Samuel B. Hairston and Matilda Glasgow. 

If my great-great-grandfather, John L. Hairston and Samuel B. Hairston are found to be brothers and sons of Hugh Brown Hairston, then Sarah Jane Hairston McBurnett would have been first cousins to my great-grandfather, Phillip.  

Samuel B. and his family members often lived so close to my Hairston family in Texas. I still wonder if some of my unknown photos are those of Hairston cousins. 

John W. McBurnett applied for this patent in 1893.
Sarah Jane's fascinating family had me looking online for documents in Iowa, Florida, California, Alabama, Texas, and North Carolina.  Divorce, Hollywood, jewelers, a hotelier, a patent, a town site developer, an alias, and so much more had me searching and writing for much longer than expected.  

Sarah was born on March 10, 1854. Four of five census records indicate that she was born in Georgia.  Her parents were known to have lived in Troup County, Georgia in 1851 and 1867 so it is presumed that she was born in that county.  

Sarah married John Wesley McBurnett in the 1870s and by 1880 Sarah, John, and children Christoper C. and Carrie B. were living in Wedowee, Randolph County, Alabama. 

John, born about 1853, was a farmer in 1880, but later occupations included blacksmith and silversmith.

By 1900, Sarah and John were living separately. Sarah was in Mitchell County, Texas and John in Cooke County, Texas. Sarah and her younger children moved to Fort Worth, Texas before 1910 where Sarah remained until her death on February 13, 1926. Her place of burial is unknown. 

John Wesley McBurnett died at age 82 in Harlingen, Cameron County, Texas in 1935. At the time he was using an alas of Max and may also have been known as Dad Stephens. John is buried in an unmarked grave in the Roscoe Cemetery in Nolan County, Texas. 

Known Children of Sarah Jane Hairston and John Wesley McBurnett

Sarah and John had six known children; however the 1900 census record indicates that Sarah had 11 children born to her and only six were living. 

Carrie B. McBurnett, born in 1877 in Alabama, married lumberman, Theodore R. Glass in Davenport, Iowa on November 29, 1906. They moved to Burke, North Carolina where Theodore had family and a business.  The family moved between a home in Florida and a home in Burke, North Carolina.  In 1926, Theodore died while in Florida.  Carrie remained in Florida, starting a dressmaking business in Miami where she can be found until 1941.

The McBurnett Building owned by CC McBurnett
Abilene Reporter-News Dec. 16, 1928
Christopher Columbus McBurnett was born in 1879 in Alabama. As an adult, he went by the name Columbus and, in newspapers, was often referred to as C. C. McBurnett. In 1900, Columbus was living with his mother and siblings and working as a blacksmith.  Ten years later, he was married to Mary Elizabeth Henderson and worked as a watchmaker and jeweler at the Leffel Jewelry Store in San Angelo. He opened The McBurnett Jewelry Company and later sold it to concentrate on his hotel business. Throughout his life he appeared to be extremely prosperous. He owned numerous hotels and other real estate. In Texas newspapers, there were reports of lavish parties, travel, and purchases of race horses. He owned a ranch, appeared to be involved in the oil business and was an avid golfer. Christopher Columbus McBurnett died on December 19, 1959 in San Angelo, Texas and is buried at Fairmount Cemetery. 

Martin Van Buren McBurnett was born on May 28, 1883 in Mitchell County, Texas. In 1900, he was living with his mother and siblings in Mitchell County, Texas where he attended school. At 35 years old, he was found working as a jeweler for the McBurnett Jewelry Company, owned by his brother, in San Angelo, Texas. He was married to Cora Franklin. In 1920, he was manager of the Holland Jewelry Company (formerly McBurnett Jewelry Company). For more than 12 years, he owned his own jewelry shop on South Chadbourne in San Angelo. Robert died on December 18, 1961 in San Angelo, Texas. He is buried at Lawnhaven Memorial Gardens. 

Mary "Mollie" Elizabeth McBurnett was born on March 13, 1887 in Texas. Probably Mitchell County. I suspect that she was named for Sarah Jane's twin, also named Mary "Mollie" Elizabeth.  Sometime after 1900, Mollie moved to Fort Worth with her mother and two youngest brothers.  Mollie married James Homer Woodard in 1906. They had two children; James Homer Jr. and Willota May. Mollie's husband seemed to be an ambitious young man. He can be found in Makers of Fort Worth at The Portal to Texas History. James Homer Woodard was described, in 1914, as one of the youngest and most successful real estate salesmen and town site promoters in the Southwest. The marriage didn't last as from 1916 to 1923, Mollie could be found working as a sales clerk with marital status "widow."

Mollie McBurnett Woodard and sister, Carrie McBurnett Glass
The News-Herald, Morgantown, NC
Sept. 29, 1921
 In 1920, Mollie is living in Fort Worth along with her two children, her mother, and her brother, Robert. In 1930, James can be found with wife, Loretta C. Woodard and his son Homer; however, I did not find Mollie or Willota. I suspect that they were in California as 20 year old Willota, an actress, married Pat Mahan, a 26 year old director, on April 19, 1927. Mollie was a witness to the marriage. She lived in Hollywood. 

Mollie was found in Miami, Florida, not far from her sister, Carrie Glass, in 1935. Mollie was not found again until searching death certificates. She outlived both of her children and died at the age of 94 on June 3, 1981 in Fort Bend, Texas. 

Samuel Albert McBurnett was born in Colorado City in Mitchell County, Texas on March 15, 1890. He lived with his mother and siblings and by age 20, he was living with his mother and younger brother, Robert, in the city of Fort Worth. It was reported on the 1910 census that he worked odd jobs as a laborer.  By 1917, he was married to Ruth Jenkins and supporting his family by working as a traveling artist. The family home was in San Angelo. In 1920, they were living in Cisco, Eastland County, Texas where Samuel worked as driver. In 1930, he was found with his family in Los Angeles where he was working as a jewelry salesman and auctioneer. From 1935 until his death in, Samuel had his own jewelry and watch repair business in San Angelo, Texas. Samuel Albert McBurnett died on October 31, 1964 in San Angelo where he is buried in the Fairmount Cemetery. 

Carrie McBurnett Glass and brother, Robert McBurnett
The News-Herald, Morgantown, NC
Jan. 29, 1920
Robert Neal McBurnett was born on September 29, 1895 in Colorado City, Mitchell County, Texas. He can be found living with his mother, first in Mitchell County and later in Fort Worth through 1920. He worked as a clerk in a bank and reported on his 1917 draft record that he contributed to his mother's support. Robert married Ruby Lee Hanks in 1926 in San Angelo.  Robert and Ruby were living in Temple, Bell County, Texas in 1930 where Robert managed one of his brother's hotels. In 1935, the family was back in San Angelo where Robert managed another of his brother's properties, the Western Reserve Building. He later managed the McBurnett Building and continued to manage his brother's properties throughout most of the 1940s. He was found, in the late 1940s and early 1950s, working as a salesman for an insurance and real estate agency. Robert died on June 5, 1962 in San Angelo, Texas where he is buried in the Fairmont Cemetery.

This post was much longer than planned. I kept finding more and couldn't put it down. There was very little in the Public Trees at about this family so I hope that this will help many McBurnetts. If you are a descendant of Sarah Jane Hairston, I would love to hear from you as I have much more to share. 


© 2014 Florida Death Index, 1877-1998 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2004. Iowa, Select Marriages, 1809-1992 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc, 2014. Texas, Death Certificates, 1903–1982 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013. U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2011. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2005.

"California, County Marriages, 1850-1952," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 11 Nov 2014), 005698443 > image 1767 of 2528; county courthouses, California.

Newspaper Artists' Association, Forth Worth. Makers of Fort Worth. Fort Worth. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed November 11, 2014.
Quinn, Diana. "Moments in Time, A Genealogy Blog." : 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: #12 Samuel B. Hairston of Georgia and Alabama. 1 Jan. 2014. Web. 11 Nov. 2014. <>.

Year: 1880; Census Place: Wedowee, Randolph, Alabama; Roll: 29; Family History Film: 1254029; Page: 293C; Enumeration District: 110

Year: 1900; Census Place: Justice Precinct 1, Mitchell, Texas; Roll: 1659; Page: 6B; Enumeration District: 0115; FHL microfilm: 1241659

Year: 1900; Census Place: Justice Precinct 2, Cooke, Texas; Roll: 1623; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 0031; FHL microfilm: 1241623

Year: 1910; Census Place: Morganton, Burke, North Carolina; Roll: T624_1100; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 0007; FHL microfilm: 1375113

Year: 1910; Census Place: San Angelo, Tom Green, Texas; Roll: T624_1592; Page: 12A; Enumeration District: 0280; FHL microfilm: 1375605

Year: 1920; Census Place: Cisco, Eastland, Texas; Roll: T625_1797; Page: 40A; Enumeration District: 118; Image: 1183

Year: 1920; Census Place: Fort Worth Ward 10, Tarrant, Texas; Roll: T625_1850; Page: 38A; Enumeration District: 141; Image: 497

Year: 1930; Census Place: Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California; Roll: 154; Page: 7A; Enumeration District: 0570; Image: 557.0; FHL microfilm: 2339889

Honoring Our Veterans - 2014

Veterans Day Poster Gallery - 2014 Poster

Today is Veterans Day, a day that we honor our veterans. Veterans Day, originally Armistice Day,  began after WWI to honor those who fought in "The Great War." In 1954, November 11th became Veterans Day, an official United States holiday, honoring all armed service veterans. 

Today, I am posting a list veterans from the various branches of my family tree; many who did not serve in traditional U. S. armed forces. Most served during wars and some volunteered while others did not.  I have added to the list from last year's post and will add to the list for 2015 as I find more. If you know of others, please comment below or send me an e-mail. 

Whit Criswell Bryan, USN - WWII, Korea, Vietnam

Elizabeth Bryan, USN

William Joseph Quinn III, USA - Korea, Vietnam

James G. Richardson II, USA

John Joseph Quinn, USA - WWI

Charles Giddens, USA and USN - WWI, WWII

Mitchell Giddens, USA - WWI, WWII

Joseph Oscar Noah, USA - WWI

Terrell Bryan, CSA - Civil War*

Tilman Capers Bryan, CSA - Civil War*

Joseph B. Bryan, CSA - Civil War*

George Luellen Giddens, CSA - Civil War*

David Crockett Giddens, CSA (POW) - Civil War*

James Thomas Giddens, CSA - Civil War*

Henry Clay Giddens, CSA - Civil War*

John William Giddens, CSA - Civil War*

Seth H. Davis USA, Civil War

Simon Baker Bryan, Georgia Militia - Second Seminole War

James Bryan, Georgia Militia - Second Seminole War

John Regan, Georgia Militia - Second Seminole War

John Giddens, NC Minutemen - American Revolutionary War

Ralph Regan, NC Militia - American Revolutionary War

*I didn't know if I should include my ancestors who fought in the Confederate States Army, but found the following at the Sons of the Confederacy website: 

"First, and most significant is the fact that by Public Law 85-425, May 23, 1958 (H.R. 358) 72 Statute 133 states –“(3) (e) for the purpose of this section, and section 433, the term ‘veteran’includes a person who served in the military or naval forces of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War, and the term ‘active, military or naval service’ includes active service in such forces.”

"As a result of this law the last surviving Confederate Veteran received a U.S. Military pension until his death in 1959, and from that day until present, descendants of Confederate veterans have been able to receive military monuments to place on graves from the Veteran’s Administration for their ancestors. A Confederate Veteran should therefore be treated with the same honor and dignity of any other American veteran."


© 2014