James Patterson and Sarah Powers Caulk

Using information from the Ancestry website, here is a time line for James Patterson and Sarah Powers Caulk.

1794

James Patterson Caulk was born about 1794 in Kentucky. His parents were Jacob and Abigail Patterson Caulk. No birth records have been found to document this information.

1802

Sarah Powers was born April 5, 1802 in North Carolina. Her parents were Ephraim and Christiana Cahoon Powers. No birth records have been found to document this information.

1820

Sometime before 1820, James Patterson Caulk and Sarah Powers met and married, probably in Tennessee. When the 1820 United States Federal Census was enumerated on August 7, 1820, James was listed (only the name of the head of household was given) and living in Rutherford County, Tennessee. Data given was one male under the age of 10, one male between ages of 16-25, and one female between ages of 16-25. The child would have been William Henderson Caulk. James was engaged in agriculture.

“From Tennessee, in 1821, came Ephraim Powers and his family, with his sons-in-law James Caulk and Joshua Perkins. The discomfitures of frontier life and the prevalence of disease caused dissatisfaction and they returned to their old home in the south, but in 1824 were back in Macoupin County Powers first settled on the place improved by Richard Wilhelm.” (History of Macoupin County, Illinois)

1822-1829

Between 1822 and 1829, James and Sarah had five more children – Benjamin Franklin, Martha, James Nathaniel, Narcissa Christianna, and Sarah Jane. All were born in Rutherford County, Tennessee.

1830

When the 1830 United States Federal Census was taken, James, Sarah and their family were living in Macoupin County, Illinois. Again the census only gave the name of the head of household. Data on the census indicates there were five children, two boys and three girls. Evidently, one of their children was deceased. I think it may have been Benjamin Franklin.

1831-1842

Between 1831 and 1842, the Patterson family grew. Five more children were born – Allen Monroe, Hardena Sofrony, Mary Abigail, Jacob Harry, and John Lafayette.

1836

A land record from the Illinois Public Land Purchase Records (found on the Ancestry website) indicates that James P. Caulk purchased 8000 acres of land in Illinois on March 7, 1836.

1840

James Caulk and family appear on the 1840 United States Federal Census living in Macoupin County, Illinois. Only head of household is listed by name. Household included 1 male between 5-9; 1 male between 10-14; 1 male between 15-19; 1 male between 40-49; 2 females under 5; 2 females 10-14; 2 females 30-39. James was employed in agriculture.

A land record from the U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 (found on the Ancestry website) indicates that James P. Caulk purchased land in Illinois on January 1, 1840.

 1842

James Patterson Caulk died on November 30, 1842 in Macoupin County, Illinois. At this time, I do not have a death or burial record for James P. Caulk. His wife, Sarah, was buried in the Kirkland Cemetery in Montgomery County. I contacted the Montgomery County Genealogical Society in 2009 and was told that it is possible he was buried in this cemetery but there was no stone present for James P. Caulk when the cemetery was “read” in 2000.

1850

Sarah Caulk was located on the 1850 United States Federal Census. She was living in Macoupin County, Illinois. Two of her children, Jacob and Hardena, were included in the listing.

1870

Sarah Caulk was located on the 1870 United States Federal Census in the residence of her son, Jacob H., and his wife, Mary Jane. They lived in Madison County, Illinois. I was not able to find Sarah on the 1860 or 1870 censes. It is likely she lived with one of her children.

1878

Sarah Caulk died on April 7, 1878 in Sorento, Montgomery, Illinois. She was buried in the Kirkland Cemetery.

Sarah Caulk Grave Marker

Sources

Ancestry.com. 1820 United States Federal Census [database online]. Provo, UT: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2004.

Ancestry.com. 1830 United States Federal Census [database online]. Provo, UT; The Generations Network, Inc., 2004.

Ancestry.com. 1840 United States Federal Census [database online]. Provo, UT: MyFamily.com, Inc., 2004.

Ancestry.com. 1850 United States Federal Census [database online]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generation Network, Inc., 2005.

Ancestry.com. 1870 United States Federal Census [database online]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2003.

Ancestry.com. U.S. General Land Office Records, 1796-1907 [database online]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2008.

Ancestry.com. Web: Illinois, Find A Grave Index, 1809-2012 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.

State of Illinois, Illinois Land Records. [database online] Orem, UT: Ancestry, Inc., 1999.

U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current, http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=35268680&ref=acom

Walker, Hon. Charles A., History of Macoupin County, Illinois, S.J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1911.

James P. Caulk Family Group Sheet (click link) James P. Caulk FGS

Allen Monroe and Cansada Jones Caulk

Allen Monroe Caulk was born November 11, 1831 in Macoupin County Illinois. He was the sixth child of James Patterson and Sarah Powers Caulk. This large pioneer family migrated from Tennessee to Illinois about 1829.

I first located Allen Monroe Caulk on a marriage record showing that he and Racheal Sackett wed on September 5, 1850 in Montgomery County, Illinois (adjacent to Macaupin County). A son, George Washington, was born October 13, 1835, but their marriage must have broken up after that. The 1860 United States Federal Census shows Allen living in the household of James Kykendoll and working as a farm laborer. Also, when he enlists in the Union army, July 25, 1861, he states he is single. I have found no divorce record.

As previously stated, Allen enlisted in the Union army July 25, 1861. He was in the 7th Regiment, Illinois Infantry, Company D and was ranked as private. He served three years and was discharged July 29, 1864 when his term of service had expired.

Military record for Allen M. Caulk. Caulk was a private in the Union army from July 25, 1861 until his term of service expired July 29, 1864.

ALLEN MARRIES WIDOW CANSADA JONES CISCO

After his time in the military, Allen remained in Montgomery County, and during that time, he met a widow named Cansada Jones Cisco. She had been widowed twice, once in 1861, and again, in 1865. Her first husband was Samuel Stokes and her second was William Cisco. She had one son with each husband, Jasper Stokes and Joseph Cisco. Allen and Cansada married on September 6, 1866.

Marriage record for Allen M. Caulk and Causada Cisco.

Cansada Jones was born October 12, 1842 in Tennessee and was the daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth Sneed Jones. Like the Caulk family, they migrated to Illinois, probably in the 1850’s.

When the 1870 United States Federal Census was taken, Allen and Cansada are living in Bear Creek, Montgomery County, Illinois. Along with Cansada’s two sons, Jasper and Joseph, they have two more children, Alice (5) and Albert (2). Allen’s mother, Sarah, was also living with them.

During the following ten years, the Caulk family expanded “its ranks.” By 1880 the census shows they have five more children. The name on the census is mistakenly recorded as “Cork.” Listed are: A.M. Cork (48), Cansada (37), Joseph W. (16), Alice (13), Albert (11), Theodosia (9), Arthur (7), Rosette (4), Lillie (2) and Sarah (8m). The family resided in Seminary, Fayette County, Illinois, northwest of Montgomery County.

THE CAULK FAMILY MOVES TO NEBRASKA

Sometime before 1885, Allen and Cansada left Illinois and moved west to Nebraska. He was located on the Nebraska State Census, 1885, in Lone Tree, Clay County. Lone Tree was a prairie town located in the south central part of the state. I do not know their reasons for the move with their large family, but it could not have been an easy journey. Following is a bit of information that lends some insight into the reasons people were drawn to Nebraska.

During the 1870s to the 1880s, Nebraska experienced a large growth in population. Several factors contributed to attracting new residents. The first was that the vast prairie land was perfect for cattle grazing. This helped settlers to learn the unfamiliar geography of the area. The second factor was the invention of several farming technologies. Agricultural inventions such as barbed wire, wind mills, and the steel plow, combined with good weather, enabled settlers to make use of Nebraska as prime farming land. By the 1880s, Nebraska’s populations had soared to more than 450,000 people. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nebraska) By 1900, Allen and Cansada’s household had greatly diminished. The census record shows they have only two children living with them, a son, Henry (19), and a daughter, Bertha (15). However, I think the ages are incorrectly recorded. Later census records for them give their birthdates as – Henry, 1881 and Bertha, 1884. Evidently, the ages on the 1900 census should be Henry, 9 and Bertha, 5. All of the older children had married and established homes of their own.

Note: On the 1900 census, Cansada gives information that she was mother of twelve children and only eleven were living. I was not able to determine who the twelfth child was or when he or she was born. There was an Edna Pearly Caulk, born November 23, 1886 in Fairfield, Nebraska and died October 20, 1895 in Benton County, Arkansas. Her grave marker in the Decatur, Arkansas Cemetery has the inscription which says she was the daughter of A.M. . and C. Caulk. Could this be the unidentified daughter? If so, what was she doing in Arkansas?

Allen farmed for many years, but by 1910, he was retired, and he and Cansada lived in the town of Lone Tree. The 1910 United States Federal Census shows they were living in a house with two boarders, John and Jamas Bell, and a servant, Ena Jones. At this time, several of their children were also living in Clay County, so they had family to keep them company. Their daughter, Alice, and her husband, William, had thirteen children, so there were many grandchildren nearby.

Allen Monroe Caulk died on December 3, 1913 in Fairfield, Clay County, Nebraska. His death certificate gives the cause of death was acute bronchitis. He was survived by his wife of 47 years, Cansada, ten children and one stepson. Allen was buried in the Fairfield Cemetery.

Following Allen’s death, Cansada remained in Fairfield. The next year she married for the fourth time to a widower named Michael Sweeley. He also had a number of children; so undoubtedly, they enjoyed and shared their sixteen years of marriage surrounded by their large families. Cansada died December 24, 1930 in Fairfield, Clay County, Nebraska and was buried beside Allen Monroe Caulk.

Grave marker for Allen and Cansada Caulk.
Grave marker for Allen and Cansada Caulk.

Sources

Allen Monroe Caulk, death certificate no. 10509, Nebraska Health and Human Services System, Lincoln, Nebraska.

Ancestry.com. 1860 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009.

Ancestry.com. 1870 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009.

Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.

Ancestry.com and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 1880 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2010.

Ancestry.com. Nebraska, State Census, 1885 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2002.

Ancestry.com. Web: Nebraska, Find A Grave Index, 1854-2012 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.

Dodd, Jordan, Liahona Research, comp. Illinois Marriages, 1790-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

Jordan Dodd and Liahona Research, comp.. Illinois, Marriages, 1851-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005.

Historical Data Systems, comp. American Civil War Soldiers [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 1999.

Montgomery County, marriage license, Montgomery County Clerk’s Office, Hillsboro, Illinois.

“Macoupin County, Illinois,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macoupin_County_Illinois

“Nebraska,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nebraska

Written by Lucy Ann Nance Croft, 2015

Allen M. Caulk Pedigree Chart (click link) Allen M. Caulk Pedigree Chart Scan0001

Allen M. Caulk Family Group Sheet (click link) Allen M. Caulk FGS – Document

 

Alice Madora Caulk Croft

William and Alice Croft
William and Alice Croft

Alice Madora Caulk’s life story began July 26, 1867 in Litchfield, Montgomery County, Illinois. Her parents, Allen Monroe and Cansada Caulk, had children from previous marriages, but Alice was their first child together. The country was still recovering from the Civil War; so undoubtedly, folks in this small farming community were continuing to put their lives back together.

The first record I found for Alice was on the 1870 United States Federal Census. Along with her parents, Allen and Canzada (misspelled name) are her step-brothers, Jasper and Joseph, younger brother, Albert, and Allen’s mother, Sarah. The family is living in Bear Creek, Montgomery County, Illinois.

During the following ten years, the Caulk family expanded “its ranks.” By 1880 the census shows they have five more children. The name on the census is mistakenly recorded as “Cork.” Listed are: A.M. Cork (48), Cansada (37), Joseph W. (16), Alice (13), Albert (11), Theodosia (9), Arthur (7), Rosette (4), Lillie (2) and Sarah (8m). The family resided in Seminary, Fayette County, Illinois, northwest of Montgomery County.

Sometime before 1885, Allen and Cansada left Illinois and moved west to Nebraska. He was located on the Nebraska State Census, 1885, in Lone Tree, Clay County. Lone Tree was a prairie town located in the south central part of the state. I do not know their reasons for the move with their large family, but it could not have been an easy journey. Following is a bit of information that lends some insight into the reasons people were drawn to Nebraska.

During the 1870s to the 1880s, Nebraska experienced a large growth in population. Several factors contributed to attracting new residents. The first was that the vast prairie land was perfect for cattle grazing. This helped settlers to learn the unfamiliar geography of the area. The second factor was the invention of several farming technologies. Agricultural inventions such as barbed wire, wind mills, and the steel plow, combined with good weather, enabled settlers to make use of Nebraska as prime farming land. By the 1880s, Nebraska’s population had soared to more than 450,000 people. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nebraska)

ALICE AND WILLIAM CROFT MARRY

Shortly after arriving in Lone Tree, Alice met a young man by the name of William Teeter Croft, the son of John and Elizabeth Croft. They were a large family who were also farmers in the Lone Tree Township area. William and Alice courted and then married on November 12, 1885.

Marriage record for William T. Croft and Alice Caulk
Marriage record for William T. Croft and Alice Caulk

There is not an 1890 Federal census available, but from family records we know that William and Alice started their family in 1887. Their first child, Oscar Cameron, was born on June 19 in Fairfield, Nebraska. During the next thirteen years Alice would give birth to six more children – Paul Harold, Vede Weaver, George Allen, Edna Ruth, Elmer Glenn, and Fred Dewey. Along with Oscar, all except Elmer, were recorded on the 1900 United States Federal Census. Shortly after the census was taken, their eighth child was born and named Frank Monroe. Elmer was the only child of these eight who died within his first year. We know that Croft family would continue to grow, so they were certainly on their way to becoming a dynasty!

William and Alice with sons, Oscar, Paul and Vede
William and Alice with sons, Oscar, Paul and Vede

By 1910, William and Alice Croft were parents of twelve living children. During the years since the last census Floyd, Grace, Blanche, Hope, and Russell were added to the fold. All were recorded on the 1910 United States Federal Census. The five oldest sons ranging in ages 11 to 22 were assisting their father, William, on the family farm.

Croft Nebraska farm.
Croft Nebraska farm.

During the years between 1914 and 1918, all the world’s great powers were engaged in the First World War, sometimes called “The Great War.” In 1917 and 1918 all men who between the ages of 18 and 45 were required to register for the draft. Several of William and Alice’s sons fell in that category and their World War I Draft Registration Cards are provided on Ancestry.com. I do not think any of them served in the military. Nevertheless, with America engaged in a world war it must have affected their lives and the farming industry.

When the 1920 United States Federal Census was taken William, Alice, and seven of their children were still living in Lone Tree Township. Fred D., Frank M., Floyd M., Grace X., Blanche M., Hafe (Hope) and Russel W. were listed with their parents.

Several names and initials are incorrect, but as mentioned, this often occurred. The sons were working on the farm with their father.

HARD TIMES HIT NEBRASKA DURING 1920’2 AND 1930’S

History tells us that many folks began to experience hard times in Nebraska during the 1920’s. A reason is stated in this excerpt from an article entitled “Nebraska – History” found at www.city-data.com/states/Nebraska-Hist.html.

Tilling of marginal land to take advantage of farm prices that had been inflated during World War I caused economic distress during the 1920’s. Nebraska’s farm economy was already in peril when the dust storms of the 1930’s began.

It was quite likely that the farming Croft family was impacted by these circumstances. Family sources indicate that beginning in the latter part of the 1920’s and into the 1930’s the large Croft family began to disperse with each family group moving in different directions. Some traveled northwest, others east, some to the southwest, and a few to Kansas. It is surmised that the reason for the dispersion was the combination of the terrible drought and the historical United States depression. We know that Nebraska was one of the states that felt the brunt of the Dust Bowl that occurred in the early 1930’s, so it is entirely possible the Crofts felt the early effects of it in their area. If that was the case, we can understand their need to seek “greener pastures.”

The 1930 United States Federal Census tells us that William and Alice were still living in Lone Tree Township, Nebraska. The household included only William, Alice, Russell and his wife, Mary. Several of the Croft children and their families were still living in the area but began leaving in 1930’s. Some traveled to Washington and others to Kansas, Oregon, Texas, and New York. Family stories indicate it took a while from them to reach their destinations. As we know, the nation was in the midst of the Great Depression.

Even though we have no records or written stories to guide our thinking, William and Alice must have endured some terrible experiences when Nebraska and other plains states were being besieged by the horrendous Dust Bowl. The description written by Dorothy Creigh gives us a glimpse of what people experienced.

Some of the beginning of the Dust Bowl went back to the time of World War I, when marginal land was plowed to produce $2 wheat, for in years to come when the rains stopped, that land lay bare, despoiled, and eroded. But most of the origins of the Dust Bowl years came from the geological and climatically characteristics of the vast inland area bounded by the Gulf of Mexico on the south, the Rocky Mountains on the west, and what geographic barriers existed on the east and north. The land of high winds and sun, intense temperature extremes, and cyclical patterns of rainfall had known dust storms before; archeological excavations show that almost 500 years earlier, a heavy mantle of dust had driven off the semi-nomadic people who then populated the area. In the early 1930’s, drought, heat, and high winds combined in such a way as to produce a similar dramatic natural catastrophe. Although the semi-arid region had known drought and heat before, when seeds could not germinate or develop, and had known wind for most of its existence, it was the coming together of several forces that created the incessant dust storms of the 1930’s.

William and Alice, Nebraska, 1935
William and Alice, Nebraska, 1935

William Teeter and Alice Croft lived on their Nebraska farm through many very tough years. Their pioneer stock was tested mightily when the country went through war and depression and the land was crippled by drought, and dust storms. As a mother myself I cannot help but wonder how Alice endured the birthing of thirteen children; dealt with the grief of losing a child; and managed during the children’s growing up years! She must have been a woman of incredible strength.

Nevertheless, through the years William and Alice were able to witness their children develop successful livelihoods. It is likely they were well acquainted with many of their grandchildren and great grandchildren, so that must have brought them great satisfaction and pride.

When the 1940 United States Federal Census was taken, William and Alice were retired and living on South Railroad Street in Port Isabel, Cameron County, Texas. Perhaps the cold Nebraska weather or ill health was the reason for their move to a warmer climate. Their oldest son, Oscar, and grandson, Lloyd, lived in San Antonio, so they had family for occasional visits.

In 1942 Alice lost her husband of 57 years on January 11, 1942. We do not know the circumstances, but they were in San Antonio, Texas when he died. Their oldest son, Oscar, lived there, so perhaps William and Alice were there for a visit. He was buried at the Mission Burial Park, South in San Antonio.

Following William’s death Alice moved to Kansas City, Missouri to be near her son George and his wife, Lena. She died on October 8, 1947 in Kansas City, Missouri and was buried beside her husband in the Mission Burial Park, South in San Antonio, Texas.

Grave Marker for Alice M. Croft
Grave Marker for Alice M. Croft

 Sources

Alice C. Croft, death certificate no. 34427, State Board of Health of Missouri. Kansas City, Missouri.

Ancestry.com. 1870 United States Federal Census [database online] Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009.

Ancestry.com.1900 United States Federal Census [database online] Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2004.

Ancestry.com.1910 United States Federal Census [database online] Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2000.

Ancestry.com.1920 United States Federal Census [database online] Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009.

Ancestry.com.1930 United States Federal Census [database online] Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2002.

Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.

Clay County, marriage license, Clay County Clerk’s Office, Clay Center, Nebraska.

Creigh, Dorothy, “Dust Bowl Years,” Adam County (Nebraska) Historical Society.

“History – Nebraska,” www.city-data.com/states/Nebraska-Hist.html

Written by Lucy Ann Nance Croft, 2011

Alice M. Caulk Pedigree Chart (click link) alice-m-caulk-pedigree-chart-scan0001