A genealogy blog about the migration generation of my McKee Family line, including bios, transcribed obituaries, photographs, and research notes.



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Monday, July 20, 2015

Update to McKee Family Tree book...Download updated copy

I've updated the McKee Family Tree book. Click the link below to download a PDF from my OneDrive account.

Updated McKee Family Tree book

Updates were made to the following people:
  • Driver, Vallie Lucille (Booth) Obit
  • Hansen, Priscilla (Baillargeon) Anderson Obit 
  • Linenfeiser, Cynthia Sue (Lenau) Obit FAG 148448448
  • McKinley, Dorothy Pearl (Mulholland) Obit 
  • Wilkes, Sarah E. (Massey) McKee Obit FAG 139454771
  • Nieto, Ramon John Obit FAG 148677504
  • Steele, Clara Ruth (Cross) Obit FAG 144187180

In addition, note the following, which is not in the tree book.

  • Raymond Eugene Hager (s/o Lewis Ebbert Hager + Hellen Berdelle McGuire)
    b. 3 Feb 1837 Colorado Springs, El Paso, Colorado
    d. 15 Jun 2015 Fort Collilns, Larimer, Colorado
    Click here to see his obit. FAG 149454190
  • Patricia Ann Anderson (d/o Edward Michael G. Anderson + Elsie M. Beane)
    m. abt 1961
    Joseph Omer Norman Fontaine
    b. 3 Nov 1936 Chicopee, Hampden, Massachusetts
    d. 13 Jul 2002 Palmer, Hampden, Massachusetts
    Click here to see his obit. FAG 149461397
  • Laura Lynette (Burns) Ratzlaff (d/o Woodrow Leonard Burns + Doris Nell Terral)
    b. 21 Sep 1962 Wasco, Kern, California
    d. 18 Feb 2014 Bakersfield, Kern, California
    Click here to see her obit. FAG 126528954
  • Wilma Darlene Uptergrove (d/o Mount Vernon Uptergrove + Edna Idell Cook)
    m. 28 Mar 1972
    Jerry Ronald Dickerman
    b. 10 Sep 1934 Sherman, Grayson, Texas
    d. 25 Jun 2014 Phoenix, Maricopa, Arizona
    Click here to see his obit. FAG 132124210
  • Sherry Lynn (Bacak) Duffey
    m. 18 Jan 1957 Dallas, Texas to Max Wayne Duffey
    (s/o William Edward Duffey + Luna Beatrice Covington)
    b. 10 Oct 1941 Dallas, Dallas, Texas
    d. 18 May 2014 Granbury, Hood, Texas
    Click here to see her obit. FAG 130079814

Saturday, July 4, 2015

A Scots-Irish Boy Comes to America

Boys don’t hesitate. Alexander scampers up the gangplank, the vanguard of his family boarding the Republic, which is bound for the New World. While the grownups fret over a dangerous sea passage, Alexander steps onto the deck, deeply breathing the sea air while contemplating the adventure unfolding before him.

Boys don’t obsess. Whatever apprehensions the grownups might be feeling about leaving everyone and everything they know behind for a new reality, 10-year-old boys like Alexander live in the here and now. For Alexander, the reality of this moment bursts with new possibilities.

Boys don’t wait. Alexander takes advantage of the time he has when distracted grownups ignore him. He surveys the busy deck, and dodging seamen, luggage, and cargo, Alexander makes his way to the seaside railing and looks west. His first voyage—from Northern Ireland to England—had been short. This voyage would take many weeks. In that time, a boy could come to know many things about sailing, sailors, and life at sea.

Boys don’t obey. As seamen go about getting the vessel under way, billowing and cracking sails snap in Alexander’s inexperienced ears along with the orders to get below. Dragging his hand along the rail, Alexander prolongs his time on deck as the Republic bobs into the Irish Sea. He nips behind some rigging on deck and watches as the Irish Sea turns into the Atlantic, a vast expanse of nothing but cold blue water.

Many weeks later, when the Republic lands at New York[1] and Alexander first sets foot on American soil, he takes his first steady step toward becoming an American. As the boy and his family navigate New York City and work their way west to Illinois, Alexander moves farther and farther away from his Northern Irish home and his Northern Irish roots.

By the 1840 census, thirteen-year-old Alexander McKee is living with his father and his older brother Joseph’s family in Randolph County, Illinois. During the time Alexander is growing up, he most likely does so in a log cabin. Frame housing comes to the prairies later.

The world Alexander grows up in must be similar to that described by his contemporary Dr. J. B. Gordon in his book Early History of the Flack School District Randolph County Illinois. Based on descriptions in that book, Alexander grows up working on the family farm just like any other pioneer boy. He most likely hunts and fishes out of necessity and for entertainment. Alexander is uneducated. Subsequent census entries note that Alexander cannot read or write. He attends Presbyterian services with his staunchly religious family.

Boys Become Men

The purchase of land is the first concrete evidence of Alexander’s presence in Randolph County, Illinois. On 27 December 1848, twenty-one-year-old Alexander purchases 40 acres in Randolph County. The description is the southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of section 13 in township 5 south range 5 west in Randolph County. The land is located just on the border with Perry County, Illinois.

As the 1850’s begin, Alexander does another very grownup thing. On 12 December 1850, he marries Miss Susan Bowerman.

Susan is born in Steelville, Randolph County, Illinois on 28 August 1829, the third child of Jesse and Margaret Bowerman. Jesse along with his parents and siblings migrated from Tennessee, arriving in Randolph County, Illinois in 1808. The Bowerman homestead near Steel’s Mill is a well-documented Randolph County landmark. Susan is born on the family farm and grows up in the area—not far from the McKee family farms.

Susan and Alexander share their teenage years living in proximity to each other. When you add the probability that they attended church services together, one can speculate that religion plus proximity equals marriage.

Alexander and Susan settle into the typical farm life of the 1850’s and begin having children. Robert John McKee is born in 1852. Two years later Mary Margaret McKee arrives 1 December 1854 but dies a short 8 months and 20 days later (21 August 1855). Mary is buried in Cutler Cemetery in Perry County, Illinois. Jesse Alexander McKee arrives 25 July 1858 followed by Lemuel M. McKee on 15 April 1859.

In addition, Alexander’s success as a farmer necessitates the purchase of an additional 40 acres of land.

The 1860’s

With the start of the 1860’s, the Civil War becomes a factor in the McKee family. However, like the majority of his extended family, Alexander does not serve. He registers for the draft in 1863 when he is 36 years old. The Civil War is well underway; however, I can find no evidence that Alexander was ever called upon to serve. In addition, his children are minors who are too young for service.

Two additional daughters arrive in the 1860’s: Margaret Mary is born 7 June 1861 and Jennie Elizabeth is born 4 March 1866. All through this time, Alexander and his family’s lives follow the rhythm of the seasons and farm life.

The 1870’s

For the Alexander McKee family, the 1870’s brings losses. A new child—Cora Bratten McKee—is born in June of 1873 but dies quickly on 2 August 1873. Cora is placed in the family grave site in Cutler Cemetery. In November, twelve year old Margaret Mary joins Cora when she dies 2 November 1873. With Cora’s death, the McKee family has only one daughter—Jennie Elizabeth—along with their three sons, Robert John, Jesse Alexander, and Lemuel.

The 1880’s

As happens with all families, the McKee children grow up, marry, and set about making lives for themselves. Two happy events occur early in the 1880’s:


 On 2 November 1882, Robert John McKee marries Mary Ann Livingston.
(The family lives in Sparta, Randolph County, Illinois.)

On 14 May 1884 Lemuel M. McKee marries Mary Elizabeth Blair.
The family lives in Decatur, Macon County, Illinois and later in Maplewood, St. Louis County, Missouri.)

The mid 1880’s brings another unexpected death in the family when Alexander McKee dies 10 Jan 1886. At the time of his death, Alexander is being cared for in the home of his nephew‑in‑law, Joseph Thompson, husband of Mary Jane McKee Thompson. Mary Jane precedes Alexander in death, dying 1 January 1886. Perhaps the McKee family was trying to gather sick members of the family in one place to make caring for them easier. The Thompson family has a few unmarried children in their late teens and early twenties. Perhaps the Thompson family makeup made caring for sick family members easier. The local newspaper, The Plaindealer, includes the following obituary for Alexander in their Friday, 15 January 1886, issue. 
Mr. Alex McKee died at the residence of Joseph Thompson on Saturday, Jan 9, of pneumonia. His funeral was held at Cutler on Monday. We are told that Mr. McKee was about 58 years at the time of his death. He has a great many friends in Sparta and vicinity who mourn his departure. 

After Alexander’s Death

Life goes on after death as surely as the sun rises. As the end of the 1880’s approaches, the Alexander McKee household is much reduced.

Mrs. Alexander McKee (Susan Bowerman)
Mr. Jesse Alexander McKee
Miss Jennie Elizabeth McKee

In 1887, Jennie’s presence on the farm is confirmed by a piece the Sparta newspaper, The Plaindealer, in their Friday, 25 Nov 1887, issue:


One Shot, Two Turkeys
Miss Lizzie McKee, of Six Mile, should be voted the blue ribbon by the sportsmen of this section. One day last week a drove of wild turkeys made their appearance on the McKee farm and there being no men folks about the premises, she took down the old shotgun and went forth to do battle with the invaders. She fired one barrel and killed two, then the other barrel and killed one. Is there a better record in the Sparta Gun Club this season?
In 1889, Jesse’s absence is confirmed when he marries in Southern Missouri.

28 February 1889 to Rosa Ann Noble in Carter County, Missouri
(Rosa dies 3 March 1890 in Williamsville, Wayne County, Missouri.)

4 December 1890 Celia Adeline Skief in Butler County, Missouri

In the search for land, Jesse Alexander McKee looks in Southern Missouri and eventually settles in Williamsville, Wayne County, Missouri where he lives out his life.

By 1901, Jennie is married and living in St. Louis, Missouri. She is Mrs. John William Knierim. She lives out her life in the St. Louis area, dying 25 January 1942 in Kirkwood, St. Louis County, Missouri.

On 27 August 1907, Susan Bowerman McKee is living on her own when she dies at age 77. The death certificate lists her home as Coulterville, Randolph County, Illinois and states that she died from the heat.

The McKee Name

Alexander is the youngest of four male McKee siblings. Of the siblings, Alexander is the most responsible for carrying on the McKee name. He has three male children who survive, marry and have children of their own—many of whom are sons.

Additional Family Information

For more information on all lines of the McKee family visit this weblog: http://alexandermckee.blogspot.com/

At the weblog, you can download a free printable PDF book, which is a 200 plus page index to the McKee family and their descendants (five generations, including vital statistics for each person listed in the index). 

References

Ship Arrival (Republic 12 July 1837 Liverpool to New York, New York)

Year: 1837; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: M237, 1820-1897; Microfilm Roll: Roll 034; Line: 45; List Number: 566.

Marriage (McKee/Bowerman)

Dodd, Jordan. Illinois Marriages to 1850 [database online]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 1997. Original data: Electronic transcription of marriage records held by the individual counties in Illinois.

Census Entries

United States Census, 1840," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/XHBD-KZ9 : accessed 26 Aug 2014), Joseph G Mckee, Not Stated, Randolph, Illinois; citing "1840 United States Federal Census," Ancestry.com; p. 234, NARA microfilm publication M704, roll 68, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.; FHL microfilm 0007645.

United States Census, 1850," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M8P1-DVM : accessed 26 Aug 2014), Alexander Mckee, Randolph county, part of, Randolph, Illinois, United States; citing family 71, NARA microfilm publication M432.

Census Year: 1850; Census Place: Township 5 Range 5, Randolph, Illinois; Archive Collection Number: T1133; Roll: 3; Page: 459; Line: 39; Schedule Type: Agriculture.

Illinois State Census, 1855," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/612B-1N2 : accessed 26 Aug 2014), Alex Mc Kee, Township 4S Range 5W-Township 8S Range 5W, Randolph, Illinois; citing p. , State Archives, Springville; FHL microfilm.

llinois State Census, 1865," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/XCKZ-SH6 : accessed 26 Aug 2014), Alex Mckee, , Sparta, Randolph, Illinois; citing p. , State Library, Springville; FHL microfilm.

United States Census, 1870," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M6HB-DC1 : accessed 26 Aug 2014), Alexander Mckee, Illinois, United States; citing p. 16, family 123, NARA microfilm publication M593, FHL microfilm 000545771.

United States Census, 1880," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MXKC-QP3: accessed 26 Aug 2014), Alex Mc Kee, Sparta, Randolph, Illinois, United States; citing sheet 578C, NARA microfilm publication T9.

Civil War (Alexander “Alex” McKee)

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, D.C.; Consolidated Lists of Civil War Draft Registration Records (Provost Marshal General's Bureau; Consolidated Enrollment Lists, 1863-1865); Record Group: 110, Records of the Provost Marshal General's Bureau (Civil War); Collection Name: Consolidated Enrollment Lists, 1863-1865 (Civil War Union Draft Records); ARC Identifier: 4213514; Archive Volume Number: 4 of 6.

Find A Grave Memorials 

Memorial 45409478 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=mckee&GSfn=alexander&GSbyrel=all&GSdy=1886&GSdyrel=in&GSob=n&GRid=45409478: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Alexander McKee

Memorial 45409613 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=45409613: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Susan Bowerman McKee

Memorial 7907331 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=7907331: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Robert John McKee

Memorial 65600643 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=65600643: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Mary Margaret McKee

Memorial 44807500 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=44807500: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Jesse Alexander McKee

Memorial 52718172 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=52718172: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Lemuel M. McKee

Memorial 65601028 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=65601028: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Margaret Mary McKee

Memorial 67267620 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=67267620: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Jennie Elizabeth (McKee) Knierim

Memorial 65600801 (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=65600801: accessed 26 Aug 2014) Cora Bratten McKee

Land Purchases

United States Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, “Land Patent Search,” digital images, General Land Office Records (http://www.glorecords.blm.gov/details/patent/default.aspx?accession=IL1510__.098&docClass=STA&sid=aqu5wtob.h15: accessed 26 August 2014)

United States Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management, “Land Patent Search,” digital images, General Land Office Records (http://www.glorecords.blm.gov/details/patent/default.aspx?accession=IL1560__.104&docClass=STA&sid=aqu5wtob.h15: accessed 26 August 2014)



[1] Alexander McKee entry: SS Republic Passenger Manifest, 12 July 1837, page 3A, line 45; in Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: M237, 1820-1897; Microfilm Roll: Roll 034; Line: 45; List Number: 566.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Updated McKee Family Tree Book...Download New Copy

Updated the book with following:

  • Added info for Lillian Joyce Anderson (2 marriages: Gerow; Norris)
  • Added Living Female Akin to Living Male Burns
  • Updated marriages for Lucy Jane Booth (funky formatting)
  • Updated marriage info for Leland C. N. McKinley
  • Added info for Marie Kathryn Steele
  • Added info for Evertt Whisenhunt
Click here to download a PDF copy.

Here's the actual address:
https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=E8AA5BE5FEB18E27!2011&authkey=!AMrgWk2d6G20n50&ithint=file%2cpdf

As always, if you have something to correct or add, please add a comment. I'm always looking for new cousins.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Updated McKee Family Tree Book...Download new copy

I've updated the McKee Family Tree book. Click the link below to download a PDF from my OneDrive account.
  • Added Eakins family details
  • Added Boulton family details
Also, made other additions/corrections.


https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=E8AA5BE5FEB18E27!518&authkey=!APJblRz5Agkp9eg&ithint=file%2cpdf

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Ina Faye Minyard McGinnis and the State of Texas

I've had some interesting ways of establishing a date of death; however, I've never had one like what I found for Ina.

The State of Texas, House Resolution 1809, addresses Ina's life and notes her passing as part of its records. The details of the resolution read like an obituary. The gesture is a lovely one.

Ina is part of the Booth line via her mother, Joy Faye Booth Minyard.

Friday, August 22, 2014

McKee Family Tree...a Printable PDF

I've had some concentrated time recently and I've completed something I've been working on on and off for a few years. I've constructed a 250ist page PDF of the McKee family tree. The tree is in book form with each person's name and vitals only.

Please understand that there are no citations in the work. In constructing this book, I followed a model that is similar to the method used by Mrs. Frank S. Torrens and her daughter, Louise M. Torrens, in their genealogy series Family Genealogies of Sparta, Illinois. I located copies of the various volumes of these books at the Salt Lake City Family History Center and found that the information in these books jump started my research on many lines. I hope you have the same experience while using my McKee book. If you have questions or corrections/additional information, please post a comment. Since this is a family blog, I'm sure that more than one person will be interested in updating their information too.

I'm planning on publishing this book so that if someone wants a printed copy they can get one without involving me...printing, binding, and mailing copies.

As more information becomes available, I'll be updating this book. In the meantime, I hope you find this book helpful.

I have another book in the works, a manuscript that is a family saga covering Alexander McKee and his children. I'm not sure when that book will be completed. As time allows I'll be working on it.

Click the following link to download a copy of the PDF from my Microsoft OneDrive account:

https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=E8AA5BE5FEB18E27!508&authkey=!AL3cZrGHnARNua8&ithint=file%2cpdf




Sunday, March 16, 2014

My Custom IDs...or Lack There of...to the Rescue

When I started using RootsMagic, I decided that I needed to start with a new wing of my family so that I would really learn to use the software well. I started from scratch with my Murphy family. As is my usual practice, I added a user-defined fact (LDOF) so that I could use my custom IDs:

Here's the breakdown of the custom ID:
Living = Living people
Lurk = People born 1940 or earlier (I set up Google alerts looking for obits.)
D = Dead but I don't have an obit or a Find A Grave memorial
O = Dead and I have an obit but no Find A Grave memorial
F = Dead and I have found a Find A Grave memorial but I have no obit

FO is the ideal state. Every entry in the database has a custom ID added. I use the ID to figure out what I should be searching for when looking at a given entry in the database. Click here to see more about how I create and use custom IDs.

As happens to all researchers from time to time, I went down a false path. The family name was Littlejohn. In my usual overachieving manner, I had managed to track down obits and added additional spouses names. By the time I figured out that I had the wrong name, I had added quite a few people. I thought, "Ugh, how am I gonna find them all?" I flipped to my list view (People tab in RootsMagic) and voila...I was missing a custom ID for every person I had added! I usually add the custom IDs as one of my last steps when I add people to my database.

In this instance, I could click the LDOF column heading to sort database entries by custom ID and get everybody in the Littlejohn group in one part of the list...because they had no custom IDs. As I deleted based on family heads, I could look at the list and watch as the Littlejohn group got smaller and smaller.

Using the custom IDs have always allowed me to focus my research efforts but I never envisioned the opposite holding true; that is, the lack of IDs could be used to make changes--in this case, a correction--too.