Thursday, June 30, 2016

New Mexico--First, Last, and Forever

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

The Franciscan Hotel opened in Albuquerque, New Mexico on December 8, 1923. It was paid for through community project funds raised by the Albuquerque Hotel Company. The Kiwanis Club and the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce led the fund raising, which began in 1920. The fund raising took the form of selling shares or a subscription. The idea was that through the sales of small groups of shares, the huge sum of $330,000 could be raised. That's $4,761,820 by 2016 standards. The citizens were willing to contribute to the cause because they felt the growth and development of Albuquerque depended on an additional hotel. Their goal was to push Albuquerque's population to 50,000.

By 1922, there were very really fears that they would not be able to sell enough shares to make the hotel a reality. Advertisements ran urging subscribers to pay for the shares they had pledged. Many of these resorted to shaming. Additional articles and advertisements regularly appeared in the Albuquerque newspapers to keep up the excitement and promote subscription sales.

Becoming a subscriber was as easy as clipping a form from the newspaper and mailing it in. Shares were $1 apiece. Subscribers often scrawled messages on their forms.

One of the subscribers was none other than Iley N. Selph. As of January 1922, he was evidently living in Monero, New Mexico and mailed in his order for 50 shares ($715 in 2016) with the "terse explanation. 'Reason--New Mexico First, Last and Forever."

The Franciscan was built by Henry C. Trost, who earned the attention of Europeans for his efforts. The hotel's furniture, interior, stationary, and china were designed Inez B. Westlake while the brochures were created by Carl Hertzog of El Paso.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Carrie Iredell Kelley, Daughter of Mansel P. Kelley

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

Carrie Iredell Kelley, daughter of Mansel Pinkney and Eliza Ann Rebecca (Thompson) Kelley, was born in 18 July 1890 in Kershaw Co., SC and died in 21 Aug 1922 in Paris, Lamar Co., TX. She is buried in Bridges Chapel Cemetery, Mt. Pleasant, Titus Co., TX. Carrie married Marvin Allen Gunn. He was born 18 November 1885 and died 16 November 1969. Marvin A. Gunn is buried in Sunset Memorial Park Cemetery in Gilmer, Upshur County, Texas with his second wife, Connie.

Marriage record:
Groom: Marvin Gunn, age 22, born Texas, of Bryan County, Oklahoma, resident of Robber’s Roost, Oklahoma. Father: Wade Gunn; Mothe: Eulia McCall.
Bride: Miss Carrie Kelley, age 18, born South Carolina, resident of Robber’s Roost, Oklahoma. Father: Pink Kelley; Mother: Eliza Thompson

Married 5 January 1917 at residence of J. G. Cunningham in Durant, Bryan Co. OK

Carrie Iredell Kelley and
husband, Marvin Gunn
Click on image to enlarge

Census records for Carrie I. (Kelley) and Marvin A. Gunn:

15 Apr 1900, West 1/2 of Bryson Twp., Coal Co., OK, p. 40:


GUNN, Marvin A.  Head   M W 24 M1-3  b. TX fb. IL  mb. IL
--, Carrie Wife    F W 19 M1-3  1 - 1  b. SC  mb. SC fb. SC
-- Haile  Son      M W 1 4/12 S b. OK mb. TX fb. SC

1910, Bryan, Coal Co., Oklahoma:

Olive St.
Gunn, Marvin A. Head M W 24 M-1 3 b. TX fb. IL mb. IL
--Carrie Wife F W 19 M-1 3 1-1 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
--Haile Son M W 1 4/12 S b. OK fb. TX mb. SC

WWI Registration Card, serial number 425:
Marvin Allen Gunn, resident of Mt. Pleasant
b. 18 November 1885
cement worker

Nearest relative: Mrs. Carrie Gunn

6 Jan 1920, Pct #1, Titus Co., TX, Mt Pleasant, p. 139:

119 - 171        

GUNN, Marvin  Head  M W 34 M b. TX fb. NC  mb. MS
--, Carrie Wife F W 29 M  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
--, Haile Son M W 11 S b. OK fb. TX mb.  SC
--, Fred Son M W  9 S b. OK fb. TX mb. SC
--, Irie  Son  M W  5 S  b. OK fb. TX mb. SC
--, Wade Bro  M W 27 S  b. TX  fb. SC mb. MS
KELLY, Eliza m-i-l F  W 74 W b. SC fb. SC mb. SC  

Carrie Iredell (Kelley) Gunn

WWII Regisration Card
Serial number: 142
Marvin Allen Gunn of Clark St., Gilmer, Upshur Co., TX
Age 56, b. 18 Nov 1885 in Gonzales, Texas
Contact: Mrs. J. W. Flynn of Harwood, Texas
Mrs. J.W. Flynn was his remarried mother, Eula Flynn

Death Certificate:
Marvin Allen Gunn of 814 First St., Gilmer
d. 16 Nov. 1969 Home for Aged Masons, Arlington, TX
b. 18 Nov. 1885, age 83
Occupation: Cement Contractor
Father: Wade H. Gunn
Mother: Eula McCall
Informant: Mrs. Connie Gunn
Burial: 16 Nov 1969
Cemetery: Sunset Memorial Park, Gilmer, TX          

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Nancy Missouri (Owens) Kelley

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

Nancy Missouri (Owens) Kelly, wife of John Kelly Jr., was the daughter of Richard and Elizabeth (Hood) Owens. Nancy was born 22 November 1819 in South Carolina, probably in Kershaw County. She died on 14 March 1912 in DeKalb, Kershaw County, South Carolina at the home of her son-in-law Capt. Lewis L. Clyburn.

Rebecca Gaskin Esteridge wrote at article entitled "Impressions of My Father," in which she recorded stories told to her by her father, James Ezekiel Gaskin. James's mother Elizabeth (Owen) Gaskin was the sister of Nancy Missouri (Owens) Kelly. The article includes two references to Nancy.

"I do know that Dicky [Nancy's father Richard Owens] was by no means delighted at his daughter Elizabeth's choice of husband. The old man was an eccentric cripple, as I have said, who loved his family passionately, but ruled them with an iron hand. An older sister Nancy had already been encouraged to marry a man much older than herself, uncle John Kelly, rich in Negroes, but rather poor in character. It was something of a come down, then, when Elizabeth chose a young fellow of thirty-one who had so little business sense that he had worked for his father ten years after becoming of age, with only a vague promise of reimbursement from his paternal employer, just as eccentric in his own way as his neighbor Richard Owens."

The exact date of Nancy Missouri Owens marriage to John Kelly is unknown, but her obituary states that she was 18 years old when they married. That would place their marriage in about 1838.  John Kelly was 33 years older than she. More notably, he was eight years older than her father, Richard Owen, and at least 14 years older than her mother, Elizabeth (Hood) Owens.

By the time the Civil War began, Nancy (Owens) Kelly was a widow, with at least one older son, M.P. Kelley, away fighting with Hampton's Legion. She appears on the 1860 census as head of household:

1860 First Division, Kershaw County, South Carolina:

Kelley, NM M 40 b. SC
-----, M.P. M 17 b. SC
-----, M.J. F 15 b. SC
-----, H.H. M 12 b. SC
-----, S F M 10 b. SC
-----, E.E. F 5 b. b. SC

Additionally, she appears as the head of household, on the 1860 slave schedule with 39 slaves.

Esteridge recounted this episode that occurred around the time of the war:

"Grandpa's submissive attitude toward the patrollers was in marked contrast to that of his wife's sister, Aunt Nancy Kelly. When a band appeared once at her house, announcing that they had come to whip one of her regulations for her, she spiritedly answered, "unless you want to get killed, you'll let my regulations alone." Her words, her determined manner, and an ugly looking musket, expertly held, convinced the unwelcome intruders."

By the time Nancy Missouri (Owens) Kelly died in 1912, less than one month before the sinking of the Titanic, she had witnessed nearly a century of major changes in this country. Lewis and Clark finished their expedition just thirteen years before her birth. The entire western expansion happened during her lifetime. Pioneers headed west on the Oregon and Santa Fe Trails. The Gold Rush happened. The railroads crossed the continent. The pony express gave way to the telegraph wires. The Mexican War was fought. The Civil War was fought. The Spanish American War was fought. The telephone was invented. And the automobile. The Wright Brothers had flown at Kitty Hawk.

In the photograph below, taken shortly before her death, I am struck by her hands and those incredibly long fingers.

At least three obituaries were published for Nancy Missouri (Owens) Kelly. The first appeared in The State and is the shortest:

The next obituary was published in the Camden Chronicle on 19 March 1912, and it is the one I've had the longest:

Aged Lady Dead
Probably the Oldest Woman In County 
Died Thursday Night

     Mrs. Nancy Missouri Kelly, relict of the late Mr. John Kelly, died at the residence of Capt. L.L. Clyburn, near DeKalb, last Thursday night, the 14th inst., about 11 o'clock. Mrs. Kelly was possibly the oldest white person in Kershaw County. She was born on the 22nd of November, 1819, and was therefore 92 years and nearly 4 mons. old. She was the oldest child of Mr. and Mrs. Richard Owens and was married when she was 18 years of age. She leaves surviving her 3 children--Messrs. M.P. and S.F. and Miss Edna E. Kelly.
     The burial took place at Bethany Baptist Church, of which she had long been a member, on Saturday aft. about 3 o'clock in the presence of a large concourse of surrounding relatives and friends, to whom we extend our deepest sympathy.
     The death of a Christian is only a happy change to a better life. So it is with our aged sister. Weary and worn she has lain down to gentle slumbers to awake in a better and brighter world where the broken links of life will be re-united.

This final obituary contains more interesting information: cause of death (broken hip), her place of residence with the Clyburns for 50 years, the locations of her three surviving children, and the names of her two surviving brothers. This is a loose newspaper clipping kept by the family, so the date and newspaper are unknown.

click image  to enlarge

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Mansel Pinkney Kelley Jr.

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

Mansel Pinkney Kelley Jr., son of Mansel Pinkney and Eliza (Thompson) Kelley, was born 18 February 1869 in Camden, Kershaw County, South Carolina. He married Laura E. Laing on 28 September 1913 in Gadsden County, Florida. They do not seem to have had any children. M. P. Kelley Jr. died 31 August 1936 in River Junction, Gadsden County, Florida and is buried there in Eastern Cemetery in Quincy, which he made his residence. His wife Laura E. (Laing) Kelley is buried beside him.

Census and Newspaper Records for Mansel Pinkney Kelley Jr.:

29 Apr 1910, Election Pct 28, Duval Co., FL:

303 - 307         
KELLY, M.P. Boarder  M W 41 M1  b. SC  fb. SC  mb. SC
[boarding in home of John P. Simpson with other railroaders]

On 7 June 1911, M.P. Kelley Jr. was involved in the shooting death of James Boyle:

He was tried and acquited a few months later. This article appeared in The State on 8 September 1911.

Click image to enlarge.

1925 Tallahassee, FL City Directory:

Kelley Mansel P (Laura) h288 (289) W. Pensacola

25 April 1930, Quincy, Gadsden Co., FL:

Kelly, Mancel P. head M W 60 M-44 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
Section foreman, rail road
--,Laura E. wife F W 39 M-23 b. FL fb. FL mb. FL
O’Bryan, Nellie s-i-l F W 29 M-18 b. FL fb. FL mb. FL
--, Marcia neice f W 10 S b. FL fb. FL mb. FL
--, Vera O. neice F W 7 S b. FL fb. FL mb. FL

1935, Quincy, Gadsden Co., FL:

Kelley, M. P. 65 W Head education – Grade [school] b. SC Section Foreman

--, Mrs. L.E. 43 W b. FL education – H.School

Death Certificate:
M.P. Kelley d. 31 Aug 1936, River Junction, Gadsden Co., FL
Male, white, 68 years
b. 18 Feb 1869, Camden, SC
spouse: Laura Kelley
father: M.P. Kelley b. SC
mother: Rebecca Thompson b. SC
occupation: Railway Foreman
Residence: Quincy, Florida
Cemetery: Eastern Cemetery, Quincy, FL

Florida Death Index:
Laura Laing Kelley
d. 25 April 1972, Leon, Florida
81 years

b. 4 Feb 1891

Monday, June 20, 2016

Rev. Duncan H. Selph, 1869 Envelope

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

The world is full of kind, wonderful people. John Poss is one of them. Last summer John contacted me. He is a collector of postal memorabilia, and he was thinning his collection. He had in his possession an envelope addressed by Rev. D.H. Selph that was postmarked 28 August 1869, Murfreesboro, Tennessee. John ran a google search to see if he could find out anything about Rev. D.H. Selph and found my blog. He contacted me and asked if I would like to have it. Needless to say, he did not have to ask twice.

The envelope is addressed by Rev. D.H. Selph, but the notation along the side with his name and date was probably written by the recipient. On the back flap is a notation for "3.00." My guess is that either Rev. D.H. Selph was paying a bill or requesting payment of a bill. This letter may have been filed vertically in some sort of billing system that allowed the recipient to see the notation.

The one thing that this sweet little envelope does is place Rev. Duncan Hyder Selph in Murfreesboro as of the latter part of August, 1869. One more piece to add to my timeline on him.

Rev. D.H. Selph
of Murfreesboro, Ten.  to Nashville, Ten.
28 August 1869
click on image to enlarge

Back of Envelope
click on image to enlarge

Thank you, John, for your generosity. I've finally mastered using my new computer and scanner.

Friday, June 17, 2016

William Haskell Kelley, son of M.P. Kelley

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

William Haskell Kelley, son of Mansel Pinkney and Eliza Ann Rebecca (Thompson) Kelley, was born 29 Oct 1866 in South Carolina and died on 25 Nov 1965 (in Greenville, Hunt Co., TX?). He is buried in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery near Naples in Cass Co., TX.  He married Louella Smith, daughter of John and Martha (Williams) Smith on 30 Nov 1902. She was born 26 May 1875 and died 4 Mar 1958. She is also buried in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery. They resided in Marion Co. and Cass Co., TX.  Louella was married previously to a Humphrey, and they had Dora, Guy, Johnny, and Harry.
Children of William Haskell and Louella (Smith) Kelley:

1.         Mancil P. Kelley
2.         Millard Kelley
3.         Annie Carrie Kelley
4.         Charlie L. Kelley
5.         Jessie P. Kelley
6.         Emma Kate Kelley

Obituary for William H. Kelley abstracted from the Greenville Banner, Fri. 26 Nov 1965:

Rites for W.H. Kelley, Sat (99 yr., 29 Oct 1866 - 25 Nov 1965), Baptist. Brother of Mrs. Bessie Brown, father of Mrs. Willie Cast, brother of Mrs. Tom Foster, Stepfather of Guy Humphrey, father of Mrs. Ira Joyce, father of Charlie Kelley, brother of Frank Kelley, father of Jessie P. Kelley, father of Manvil [sic] Kelley, father of Millard Kelley, son of William T. Kelley [sic], husband of Louella Smith (30 Nov 1902), son of Aliza Rebecah Thompson, Royse City Funeral Home, Pleasant Hills Baptist Church, near Naples. 

Census records for William Kelley:

23 Apr 1910, Pct #2, Marion Co., TX, p. 167:

82 - 83  
KELLY, William W. Head   42  M1-8  b. SC fb. AL mb. GA
--, Louella  Wife    35  M2-8   7 - 6 b.TX fb. AL mb. GA
HUMPHRY, Dora s-dau   15  S b. TX  fb. SC mb. TX
--, Guy  s-son    12 S b. TX fb. SC  mb. TX
--, Harry P.  s-son  9 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
--, Mason P. son 6 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
--, Willard  son 4 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
--, Annie C.  dau 2 S  b. TX fb. SC mb. TX

28 Jan 1920, J-Pct #3, Marietta, Cass Co., TX, p. 154
Ser. T625 Roll 1785:

Kelly, William H.  Head  M W 54 M b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Ella  Wife    F W 44 M b. TX fb. AL mb. AL
---Mansel P. Son  M W 16 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
---Millard Son  M W 14 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
---Anna C. Dau  F  W 11 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
---Charlie Son  M W   9 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
---Jesse  Son  M W   6 S b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
---Emma K. Dau  F  W 1 11/12 S b. TX fb. TX mb. TX

Humphry, Guy S-son  M W 21 S

14 Apr 1930, Pct #3, Cass Co., TX, p. 117:

80 - 84
KELLEY, W.H. Head  63 M 36 b.  SC  fb. SC mb. SC
--, Liwella  Wife 54 M 29 b. TX fb. AL mb. AL
--, Millard Son 19 S b. TX  fb. SC  mb. TX
--, Jesse Son 16 S b. TX  fb. SC  mb. TX
--, Kate Dau 12 S b. TX  fb. SC  mb. TX
SMITH, Mattie m-i-l 80 Wd  b. AL fb. US  mb. US

81 - 85 
KELLEY, Mancie  Head  26 M 25  b. TX fb. SC mb. TX
 --, Thelma Wife    19 M 18 f. TX mb. TX fb. TX 

2 April 1940, Pct. 3, Cass County, Texas:

Kelley, William H. Head M W 73 M b. SC 1935 res.-R
--, L. Ella Wife F W 65 M b. TX 1935 res.-R
Cast, Willie s-i-l M W 34 M b. AL 1935 res.-same place
--, E. Kate Dau F W 22 M b. TX 1935 res.-same place

--, James H. Son M W 3/12 S b. TX 1935 res. -same place

Parentage of Maria Victoria Tenorio

 © Kathy Duncan, 2016

My trip to the library confirmed the parentage of Maria Victoria Tenorio, mother of Maria Apolonia Martin, wife of Francisco Xavier Sanchez.

Thenorio, Maria Victoria bapt. 15 April 1759, daughter of Manuel Thenorio and Polonia Sandoval; gp/el Alferez Don Bartholome Fernandez and Dona Luisa Thenorio.
Frame 99 AASF#15 1747-1799
[Source: New Mexico Baptisms of Santa Fe Parish of Francis of Assisi vol. I 5 Sept. 1747-17 July 1791 by Margaret Windham]

Victoria's parents married two years before her birth:

26 July 1757 - Manuel Thenorio de Alba y Corona married Dona Polonia Sandoval, both single. Witnesses: Phelippe Tafoya and the Sargent Reformo Cristoval Martin
[Source: New Mexico Marriages Santa Fe - St. Francis Parish and Military Chapel of Out Lady of Light 1728 - 1857 compiled by Margaret Leonard Windham]

Regrettably, neither of these records reveals the parents of Manuel Thenorio or Apolonia Sandoval.

By 1760, Apolonia Sandoval was widowed and was remarrying. That record revealed her parentage:

1760, Nov. 29 (no. 5), Santa Fe or Santa Cruz. Jose Salvador Garcia (33) of Santa Cruz, widowed of Da. Maria Martin, son of Capt. Don Juan Esteban Garcia de Noriega and Da. Luisa Gomez del Castillo, and Da. Apolonia Sandoval of Santa Fe, widow of Manuel Tenorio, daughter of Don Antonio Sandoval and Da. Josefa Duran y Chaves.  Witnesses: Felipe Tafoya, Santa Fe notary. Manuel de Arteage, Santa Cruz notary; Antonio Dominguez (48), Jose Fresquis (49).
[Source: New Mexico LTC, vol. p. 595]

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Rachel Brown

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

In the early 1970s, my family went to Camden, South Carolina during a family vacation. While we were there, my mother managed to make the acquaintance of our cousin, Stephen Kelly. He drove us around to several family locations. After hearing my mother's account of our family's story of Pink Kelley's war time adventures, Steve arranged for us to meet English Brown, the son of the slave woman who saved Pink's life. 

English Brown regaled us with the story of how the Kelly's acquired his mother. It seems two brothers were working on the battery at Charleston. Each day they noticed a group of slave children at play in the evening. They determined to take one home to Camden with them. On the day they were leaving, they hung a red ribbon from a tree limb and then hid themselves nearby. The children came out to play like always. Then a woman called them in for the evening. One little girl, however, had spied the ribbon, but told no one about it. She was determined to have the ribbon for herself. She slipped back out, unnoticed, to get the ribbon. That's when the brothers nabbed her and took her back home with them. "And that's how they came to have my momma," said English.

I did not know it then, but that was the moment that would inspire me to conduct genealogy research. When we left Camden, we did not know the name of English's mother. Decades later, I was able to research English Brown through census records to learn the name of his mother: Rachel. That is when I realized that she was only a teenage girl when she saved Pink's life. In 1892, Rachel's son English was present with the group that was gathered to see Pink Kelley and others off to Texas. A little over 80 years later, English kept marveling that "Mr. Pink's children" had returned. And we were equally awestruck to meet him.

Census Records of Rachel Brown, former slave of the Kelley family:

13 July 1870, Flat Rock Twp., Kershaw Co., SC, p. 217:

Brown, Jeremiah 26 M B Farmer b. SC
---Rachel  22 F B Keeps house  b. SC
---Caroline 2 F B  b. SC

28 June 1880, West Flat Rock Twp., Kershaw Co., SC, Dist. 73:

Brown, Jerry B M 37  Farmer b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Rachel B F 35 Wife    Keeps house b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Sallie B F 15 Dau  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Cora B F 12 Dau b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Foster B M 10  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Minty B F  8 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---James  B M 6 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Louisa  B F 4  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---William  B M 2 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
 ---Rosa B F 2/12 Apr  Dau b. SC fb. SC mb. SC

21 June 1900, Flat Rock Twp., Kershaw Co., SC, p. 185:

334 - 334 
Brown, Jerry/Jessie?  Head B M Jan 1837 63 M  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Rachel  Wife  B  F Apr 1851 50 M b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Nancy Dau   B  F Mar 1875 25 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Louisa Dau   B  F Apr 1877 23 S  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Willie Son  B M Jan 1878  21 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Rosalie Dau  B  F Feb  1881 19 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---English Son  B M Jan  1883 17 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Kate Dau  B  F Jan  1885  15 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Hattie Dau  B  F Mar 1887  13 F b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Florence Dau  B F  Apr  1888 12 F b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Daisy Dau  B F  Jan  1891   9 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
???, Lilly Grd  B  F Apr  1893   7 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC

2 May 1910, Pleasant Hill Twp., Lancaster Co., SC, p. 233:

Brown, English Head M B 25 M-4 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Lizzie Wife  F  B 23 M-4   2-2 b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---Rachel Dau   F  B    2 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC  
---Oland Son  M B 1 6/12 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
 ---Estill Cou  F  B  10 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC

8 Jan 1920, Flat Rock, Kershaw Co., SC, p. 194:

9 - 10  
Brown, English Head M B 38 M b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, Lizzie Wife  F  B 33 M b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, Rachel Dau F  B 13 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, Nannie Dau F  B 11 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, William Son M B   6 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, Rosa Dau F  B   4 S  b. SC fb. SC mb. SC

14 Jan 1920, Flat Rock, Kershaw Co., SC, p. 196:

Brown, Rachel Head   F  B 80 Wd b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, Kate Dau F  B 30 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
Scott, Louise Grd F  B 10 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC
---, Annie May Grd  F  B   8 S b. SC fb. SC mb. SC  

Rachel Brown died in Kershaw Co.,SC on 21 May 1920. Her parents were Joseph Kennedy and Lucy Kelly. 
[Source: death certificate]

English Brown died May 1975 in Kershaw Co., SC. He was born 4 Jul 1881 and would have been about 8 or 9 years old when Pink Kelley and family left South Carolina.

M. P. Kelley's Furlough

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

Mansel Pinkney Kelley had a furlough in early 1865. He used it to return to his home in Kershaw County, South Carolina. This occurred at the same time that Sherman's troops were marching through South Carolina.

According to family tradition, Sherman and his men were headquartered at the Kelly home because they could not cross Lynches Creek which was swollen with flood water, so they had to build pontoons to move the troops across. According to the story, Sherman had taken over the house for three days. Research reveals that while Union officers were headquartered at Kelly's house during this period, Sherman was not one of them.

Click to enlarge.

According to the story, members of the family feared what would become of Pink if he returned to the house. One of the slave women picked up a bucket and told the soldiers that she was going to get water. Instead, she hid herself in the woods along the route that she thought Pink would take to the house and warned him to stay away. This action is credited with saving his life. Research revealed that the woman who saved his life was English Brown's mother Rachel.

Union soldiers, so the story goes, searched the Kelly's property looking for valuables. The family had placed their valuables in a trunk and buried it in the top of fresh grave. My grandmother's version of the story was that the soldiers took a rod from a wagon and ran it into the ground and hit the top of the trunk which was too close to the surface of the ground. Her sister Erma's version was that the soldiers forced the slaves to lay down on the ground and then fired at their feet until one of them agreed to show them were the valuables were. When the trunk was discovered and dug up, the soldiers rifled through it and threw what they did not want on the ground. Based on other accounts of the pillaging of homes in the area, notably Mary Chestnut's diary, these soldiers probably only wanted gold or silver.

These soldiers were probably some of the foragers who were pilfering food and valuables from all of the farms and homes in the area and in some instances burning buildings.

Unable to return to his home, Pink kept himself busy in other ways. Oscar J. Smyrl recounted his father Robert Love Smyrl's memory of events:

"Soldiers returning home were ready to fight. Two veterans of this area who actively expressed revenge against the enemy invaders were Pink Kelley, the great-uncle of Steve Kelly, (present Kershaw County Treasurer), and John Sessions, grandfather of E.L. "Shorty" Sessions (present member of the Kershaw County Council). These two men were on furlough in the area before the arrival of Sherman's troops. When they heard that some of Sherman's men were to cross the ferry above Liberty Hill, they rode to meet and spy upon the enemy troops. One of them was armed with a rifle and one with a shotgun loaded with buckshot, and each carried sidearms. They saw two advance soldiers quite a distance ahead of the main detachment. They decided to meet them face to face and planned that each was to shoot the man on his side of the road. The one carrying the rifle fired just before the one with the shotgun. The sound of the rifle, which killed its victim, caused the horse on the other side of the road to rear its head. The blast from the shotgun caught the horse in the nose. The rider gave up and was taken captive and brought to my grandfather's yard. My father state the injured horse had a long rope of clotted blood hanging from his nose. When asked what they planned to do with the captive, Kelly and Sessions said that they were taking him to Camden to put him in jail. To this the Yankee replied, "If you do, I will not be there very long because when my commanding officer reaches Camden, he will immediately release me." It was never known whether he was incarcerated or not.

Following this, Kelly and Sessions spent most of their time in the woods and swamps. At each opportunity they slipped up to the enemy camps at night, emptied their guns at them, and took off. People in the community supplied them with food and ammunition. During Potter's Raid, in the vicinity of Boykin, they visited his camp at night and once again emptied their guns and took off. On several occasions some of the Yankees left stationed there came by our home searching for men."

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

Potter's Raid in the vicinity Boykin, was the Battle of Boykin Mill, fought on April 18, 1865 after the war was officially over. It was the last battle fought in South Carolina, and it was where the last union officer lost his life.

Calvary Company and Democratic Club

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

In 1878, a cavalry company was organized by the citizens of Granny's Quarter, Kershaw County, South Carolina. L.L. Clyburn provided them with a place to meet at his store and was their Captain. M. P. Kelly was 1st Sergeant. 

The Camden Journal;
Camden, SC
2 April 1878

At the same time, they were "reorganizing" the Granny's Quarter Democratic Club. M.P. Kelly was chosen as a delegate.

M. P. Kelley's Arrest

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

In June 1868 Solomon G.W. Dill, a South Carolina legislator, was ambushed and killed by a person or persons unknown. Several residents of the Camden area were arrested and two were lynched. M.P. Kelley was among the men arrested. He was released in August of 1868. No one was ever charged and convicted for the death of Solomon G. W. Dill.

M.P. Kelley's Letter to Eliza from Charleston Prison, 1868

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

The following letters were a mystery to M.P. Kelley's descendants for decades. They were all written in the summer of 1868, and while they were written from what seemed to be a military prison, they could have nothing to do with his Civil War service because the war had been over for two years. They focus on his concern for his potato crop, the welfare of his family and the fact that he is not receiving any communication from them.

Eliza Ann Rebecca Thompson and husband Mansel Pinkney Kelley

Then the 21st century and the internet brought the startling information that he had been arrested along with several other men for the murder of Solomon G.W. Dill. He was released in August of 1868.

Charleston July 14th 1868
Mrs. Eliza A. R. Kelley
My Devoted wife I again assume the pleasure of writing you a few lines which will inform you that I am quite well  I have bin sorter puny a day or too but  am all wright again  I hope this will reach you in due time and find you and the children and all the rest in good health and doing well  I havent received but one letter from you since I have bin heare but I look for one tomorrow   I will not send this until the mail comes  I have nothing new to write  time seems quite dul with me and lonesome but I hope it will not be so long  I understand that Mr. B Allen & Gardner Kelley & A.A. Boykin has gon home & I hope I will get off soon for I cant see why they shoud keep me but I dont no what they have charged against me but I hope I will soon find out. I wish the matter was investigated at onst for I think it verry hard and unjust to keep a man in prison for something that he noes nothing about but I will be patient time will prove what I am and where I stand. I want you to see Col. Wm M. Shannon and tell him that I look to him for his assistance. Ask him to try and get a hand secured for me and as soon as he can relieve me from prison that is if that time will ever ? and I hope it will. Tell Johie he must bee a good Boy and I will bring him something nice when I come home write as often as you can fro I am always anxious to heare from you. You may expect at least two letters a week from me let me no how the potatoes looks I will drop in a few lines for Mr. Williamson no letter for me yet. So I will close this and send it off. I want to see you verry bad give my love to all and accept a full share for yourself I remain as ever your affectionate Husband
M.P. Kelley

Charleston July 17th 1868
Mrs. Eliza Kelley
My Devoted Wife I again write you a few lines which will inform you that I am quite well and I hope this will reach you and find you and the children and the next also in enjoyment of good health  My Dear I have not received but one letter from you since I have bin heare   no that something is not working wright I no you have wrote but I dont no why I dont get the letters unless they stop them at head quarters as they have to come that way  this is seven that I have wrote I want you to write as soon as you get this and put it in the envelope that I send directed to myself let me no how many letters you have wrote  I have moved one story hier up the other men are well  I wont write much as I am going to get a friend to put this in the office without going to head quarters  give my love to all and accept the same  I want see you but as I cant I want to heare from you
Your Loving Husband
Put a stamp on
the envelope I send

Charleston Prison
S.E. Corner 2nd Story
July 21th 1868
Mrs. Eliza Kelley
Dear Wife as this is the fourth I have endeavores to write you a few lines which will inform you that I am still in good health truly hoping that this may reach you in due time and find you and the children in the Enjoyment of good health I will expect a letter from you in a few days  this is the third one that I have written send my compliments to mother & family tell them I am doing verry well considering being in prison. Something never did I expect give my love to all inquiring friends & accept a good share for yourself. If you were only with me I would be perfectly happy. Write soon and often I am getting verry anxious to heare from you all & also to no how my crop is getting on dont let the potatoes bee neglected & also tell Sing that he must try and get my oats housed if he has not done so. Hoping to get home soon  I remain yours Devotedly
M.P. Kelley
Charleston prison
Care Commanding Officer

Charleston July 19th 1868
Mrs. Eliza Kelley
My Affectionate wife

It with unlimited pleasure that I write you a few lines which will inform you that I am well hoping that this may reach you and find you and the children and the rest also in good health. I have bin moved one story hier and my room is not quite as comfortable as the other was but  I am doing verry well I am very kindly treated  the Lutenant in charge calls to see me every day I begin to want to heare from you  I havent heard from you but onst since I cam heare write as soon as you get this and send it  write to the office let me no how many letters you have written & also how many you have received this is seven I have wrote. I have nothing new to write. My love to all. I am as ever your affectionate Husband MPKelley

M. P. Kelley's Civil War Letters to Jim Smyrl

© Kathy Duncan, 2016

Mansel Pinkney Kelley initially enlisted June 27, 1861 in the Flat Rock Guards, which was Co. G in the 2nd Palmetto Reg., serving under Capt. C.C. Haile. He evidently re-enlisted with Hampton's Legion Co. D, where he served out the rest of the war.

This photograph was probably made for his mother when he initially enlisted. He was about seventeen years old.

In the first months of his service he wrote letters to his friend James “Jim” R. Smyrl, who had not enlisted yet and was still at home in Kershaw County. The earliest letters urge Jim to hurry and enlist. That letter is followed by a letter written after the First Battle of Manassas [Bull Run]. Then letters stop and encouraging Jim to enlist and instead tell him that he would grow tired of army life.

James R. Smyrl did enlist in ­­­Co. E, 2nd SC Infantry and participated in battles in Virginia and Maryland. However, he became sick and died of pneumonia in an army hospital on 18 November 1862. His father went to Richmond, Virginia to bring his body home for burial. Jim Smyrl is buried in the Smyrl Cemetery in Kershaw County, South Carolina.

The letters Pink had written him were saved and eventually discovered in an old abandoned Smyrl home.

April 7th 1861
Mr. James R Symrl
Dear friend
I seat myself for the purpose of writing you a few lines to inform you that I am well and I hope that these few lines may fin you and all of the family enjoying the same blessings Jim I arrived here on Friday after I left you at Camden John Sessions landed here last Thursday Evining.

Jim I am very well pleased with Williamston and with the people also I am boarding with A very fine man I have nothing of any importance to write to you nothing more at present give my love to all of the family and accept a good share for your self you must write as soon, as you receive this letter. Direct your letters to Williamston Anderson District Sou Car

Give my love to S. A. Baskins and all inquiring friends.
Yours truly,
M.P. Kelley

July 4th 1861
Mr James R Smyrl
        My Dear friend it is with grate pleasure that I seat myself to write you a few lines to let you no that I am well and I hope that these few lines may find you enjoying the same good blessings Jim I wish that you was heare with me for we get A plenty to eat and nothing to do I haven’t been in duty but two or three times since I have bin heare I was out on picket guard last knight for the first time Jim I like it find and I don’t think thear is much chance of us getting into a fight inless we advance on them and we dont want to do that we are just acting on the defence Jim there has bin three little battles in hearing of us and we thrashed them out every time general Johnson of virginier had a little fight on yesterday morning in the potomuck river I never herd how many men he had any how there was four thousand of the northeners Johnson killed four hundred and he had got thirty killed two of our own men and wounded another by an accident I think that they will bee a little more particular next time well Jim I will close by telling you that you needn’t to believe one half that comes out in the papers nothing more … present but remain your old friend   Jim you must write to me and let me no how you all are write me as soon as you get this for I don’t know how soon we may move to some other point. Give my love to the entire family and accept the same for your self your truly
M. P. Kelley
Direct your letters to M. P. Kelley Minassus V.A.
2nd Regt S.C. V in care
of Capt C. Haile
write soon

Camp Gregg Aug 4 1861
Mr. J. R. Smyrl
Dear friend
I this lazy afternoon seat myself to write you a few lines to let you no that I am well with the exception of a verry sore throat and I hope that when you receive this letter it will find you and all of the family enjoying good health   Jim you old rascal you wont write to me and if you dont write I will allways think you ought to write to me and let me heare how you all are   I reckon you are getting on so well with the ladyes that you dont have time to think of a fellow that is so far from home   Jim I written to you about three or four weeks ago and I havent got no answer atall   Jim you mentioned to me one time any how and tell me how the rock spring girls and you are getting

Well Jim I will tell you some thing about the times   Jim I have been in two battles since I have been in Virginia  the first one was on Thursday   the ball opened at half past eleven A. M. and last until five P.M. when the enemy was repulsed and the Sunday following we met them again at stone bridge about six mile above where the one was fought on Thursday the ball was opened at eight oclock A.M. and last until six P.M. when they was a second time driven back  Jim I wish you could have walked over the battle ground you would have seen something that you never would forgot as long as you live  you could stand in one place and see hundreds of dead men lying in all directions and we captured a great many pieces of cannon and side arms lots and a great many other things such as waggons and horses and provisions ammunition knapsacks and blankets cloaths and there was Some of every thing that you could mention and they had several baskets of shampaign..

   Well Jim you must tell Mcdonald hardy for me and tell him that I havent forgotten him yet   I would like verry well to see you all and you must write to me and tell me if there is any chance of getting that pup   I will close as I havent got any thing more that is worth writing  I suppose Mr. Sessions has been out here a few days ago but I didnt see him. Give my best respect to mack also your pa s entire family and accept the same for your self  Jim you must write soon to your old friend.

M.P. Kelley
N.B. Direct your letters to manasses junction 2nd palmentto regt S.C. V
in care of Capt. C C. Haile V.A.
Give my love to all and
write soon

Camp Kershaw Viannah August 23 1861
Mr. James. R. Smyrl
Dear old friend  I
seat myself this afternoon to answer your kind letter that I received just a few minutes ago  Jim I was undoubtedly glad to heare from you and to heare that you are all well  I am well I have had verry good health Since I have been in verginia  the a great many of our men have had bad health and some of them are pritty ? at present  wee have lost six of our company since I have been heare I reckon you have heard of luit Thomas J. Clyburns death before you get this letter  Jim I would like verry much to see you all   at this time I done verry well when I first come out heare for all of the men was strangers most but I have got so use to them till I dont care for their company much   Jim you said that you was glad to heare that I and John got thru the battle so well  Jim I am verry thankful that I got thru without getting hirt and I would have been much better satisfied if you had have been with me and went thru without getting hurt  Jim I wish that you was heare with us to spend a few ? with us if nothing else  Jim wee have had some pretty tight times since I written to you before for wee have had to move some three or four different times and there hasent been more than a half dozen clear days the hole time—well Jim as I ast you to tell mee how you and The Rockspring girls was getting on you say that you fly around sometimes and I expect that you do fly around some time and I expect that sometimes comes pretty often and you say that you dont go in reach of them but you cant fool me for I know two much about you for that  I know you fly around pretty extensivaly and I don’t love you for it for I knew full well if I was I home and and all of the young men was gon I would allmost take posession of all the young ladies  Jim you say that you saw my old sweet hart S.A.B. and that she has a notion of volunteering and coming out heare  Jim when you see her again tell her for me that I would bee glad to see her and tell her—that if she want to volunteer to just come on she will bee verry acceptable as a soldier or cook or any thing that she wishes to drive at and tell for mee Jim that I think she might to wright to mee as I wrote to her last and tell all for the girls to wright to mee  I would bee ? to hear from any person that is in favor of the southern independence that is what I am in favor of and I intend to have my part while its ? if I live and keep well Jim you said that Mr. Thomas Sessions spend a week with John after the battle. I heard that he was out heare but ? get to see him  I was verry anxious to see him I havnt had the opportunity to see John since I parted from you and him at camden I heard from Jim the other day he is well or was when I heard from him  Jim. I know you would like to bee a soldier awhile but it is like everything else you would get tierd of it yet Jim I am glad that I can say that some ? our sick men are getting better two of them has just arrived from the hospital and I hope that some more of them will bee able to come in camp again before long for our company is quite small

Well Jim as I havent got any thing of any importance to write I will have to begin to come to a close  Jim you must write as soon as you get this letter  I began to think that you was knot going to write to mee but since I received this letter from you I see you have written to me before and I didnt receive you letter  well Jim I will close by asking you to  ? family and all enquiring friends also accept the same for your self  Jim give my love to all of the Rocksprings girls. Wright abought means to & answer this as soon as you read this.
Your old friend,
M.P. Kelley
Direct your letters to Fairfax C.H.   V.A.
N.B. Tell McDonald howdy for me when you see him again tell him I am well and in good health.
Good bye for this time
Write soon

Camp Kershaw Oct. 28th 1861
Mr. James. R. Smyrl.
My Dear Sir.
I seat myself this morning for the purpose of answering you kind letter which I received yesterday  if found mee verry unwell. I havent been well for the last week and I am just on a stan but I am in hopes that I will get on the mend before many more days. I am in hopes that these few lines may find you and all the rest of the family enjoying good health  Jim I havent got any thing that is of any importance to write we have fallen back from where wee was when I wrote to you before bout twelve miles but what it was done for I am knot able to say and wee moved again yesterday and I expect that if the enemy dont advance on us this will bee our winter quarters  well Jim you say that McDonald has left and that he taken my watch with him  if it will do him any good and he dont return it and he may have it and welcome. Well Jim, I will bring this uninteresting letter to a close by asking you to give my best love to the entire family and accept the same for yourself  Write soon to your old friend
M.P. Kelly