Saturday, March 29, 2014

52 Ancestors #12: John Young Houston (Jr)

Roxie Jane Lindsey Houston,
date unknown
This will be kind of a continuation of the week before last week's post, mainly because this week, I managed to locate the marriage record of my father's maternal great grandparents, John Young Houston (Jr) & Roxie Jane Lindsey. Finding that has left me with a question. My paternal great uncle Hubert Houston's basic research on the Houston line has been the basis of my understanding & research of this line. His research stated that John Young Houston was born on 9 May 1849 in AL (I figured out he was the son of John Young Houston (Sr) & Ann Bailey Tegner by finding him on the 1850 census & calling the Milam County, Texas county clerk & nicely asking her who is parents were shown as on his death certificate. Usually, doing that doesn't work because you can get some crabby people out there, but when I explained I was calling long distance, she was nice enough & kind enough to give me this information over the phone) & died on 28 Oct 1918 in Buck-holtz, Milam Co., TX, USA. Uncle Hubert recorded that he married Roxie Jane Lindsey on 15 May 1877 in Rockford, Coosa County, AL, which is where a question now comes up.

This week, I was on looking through their databases of image files for family marriages in AL. I knew that the Houstons had lived in Shelby County, AL for a long time. FamilySearch has been making more & more images of the actual documents available for awhile now & I have just finally clued in on the best way to locate the actual images of supporting documentation by looking for the folder number in the index & then going to the county database of images & looking for that particular folder number & then the image number, etc that references that particular document. FamilySearch had my great great grandparents John Y. Houston (Jr) & R. J. Lindsey listed as married in Shelby Co., AL on the date that Uncle Hubert had recorded which leads me to the question of where did they actually get married. In Coosa Co., AL where Roxie's family lived as Uncle Hubert claimed (he used to claim we were related to General Sam Houston but never provided any evidence to support it, nor have I ever found any, although (at least to me any way), I see a bit of resemblance between photos of him & my great uncle Sam B. Houston) or did they get married in Shelby Co., AL where John's family lived?

Shelby Co., AL marriage record of John Y. Houston & R. J. Lindsey
In the Great State of Texas where I was born & raised, the law states that you can apply for a marriage license in any one of Texas' 254 counties as long as the two parties on the license get married anywhere within the time period specified (90 days) that the license is valid. An example of this is: my parents picked up their marriage license in Bell Co., Texas where my paternal grandmother lived because my father was considered under age (under 21 years of age) at the time my parents got married (although he was somehow considered more than old enough to fight for his country) & he had to have her sign in consent for him (there's a family story that goes along with this). My parents lived up in Dallas, Texas which is in Dallas County four or five hours from Temple, Texas where Dad's mother lived. They had their wedding in Dallas, not Temple. This leaves me wondering if Alabama marriage law is not unlike Texas' marriage laws in this regard or if Uncle Hubert made a mistake when he recorded their having been married in Coosa County, AL. I've heard it said that sometimes a couple got married in the bride's county rather than the groom's, although I'm not sure of the reason for this (maybe it has to do with her family being the ones who are supposed to pay for the wedding back then).

In the Lindsey Book of Remembrance Vol 1, it is recorded that Roxy & John lived near her parents for awhile after they were married in Coosa Co., AL; however, the 1880 census shows them as Shelby Co., AL residents. I think the reason for this is that John's mother & sisters lived nearby. They left AL in the early 1880's for Texas. I think John's mother had probably passed away by then as I cannot see him leaving AL with her still living there. John & Roxie farmed & raised nine children together: Will, Della, James, Walton, Minnie, my great grandfather Luther aka "Duke", Viola aka "Ola", Sam & Charley. They were known to be good upstanding God fearing people & good neighbors. Although the official cause listed on his death certificate was leakage of heart, John died in the Great Influenza Epidemic of 1918 that took three other members of his family & so many others around the country with it. He is buried along side his wife Roxie (who died twelve years later) in the North Elm Cemetery in Cameron, Milam County, Texas. I was fortunate to recently find his obituary on page 12 in the Halloween 1918 edition of The Cameron Herald. There's still more to come on this family!

Obituary of John Young Houston (Jr).

"Texas, Deaths, 1890-1976," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Mar 2014), J L Houston, 28 Oct 1918; citing certificate number 43862, State Registrar Office, Austin; FHL microfilm 2073349.
"Alabama, Marriages, 1816-1957," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 29 Mar 2014), John Y. Houston and R. G. Lindsey, 15 Mar 1877; citing reference ; FHL microfilm 1571845.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

52 Ancestors #11 Bevlie Anderson Cook

Bevlie Anderson Cook & an
unidentified friend, Sunny Lane
Race Team, Sunny Lane,
Burnet Co., TX
 Sorry that I'm a bit late this week posting. They say a picture is worth a thousand words & for this photo, at least, those thousand words form a story about this one that has been passed down in my family.

The photo to the left is of my mother's maternal grandfather when he was a young man. Bevlie (or Beverly) Anderson Cook was the first born of four sons of William Melvin Cook & Lucendia Temperance Berry. He was born in Burnet Co., Texas on 11 Aug 1878. His younger brothers were Robert, William & John. His parents' marriage was not a very happy one (his father William was a good deal younger than his mother & if you consider their date of marriage with Bev's date of birth, they were probably forced to marry. They eventually separated). William has been reputed, in family lore, to have been a mean individual & as a consequence, Bev spent most of his time with various members of the McCoy family who lived nearby.

When Bev was 22, he married one of those McCoy neighbors, Dora Lee McCoy, daughter of William Riley McCoy & Martha/Mariah Elizabeth "Betty" Holland. Dora was only 15 years old when she said yes to the
Wedding photo of Bev Cook
& Dora Lee McCoy, Burnet Co.,
Texas-4 Nov 1900
farmer boy who spent so much time around her family members. They married on 4 Nov 1900 in Burnet Co., Texas. Their first son Leslie was born three years later, but only lived a month. A year later, they would be blessed with a little girl. It was during these years that Bevlie liked to take his bicycle & race it against the other young men in the area on the dirt roads of Sunny Lane on Sunday afternoons. The story goes that he would leave Dora to her own devices on those occasions to go off & race.

Dora prayed that something would break on Bev's bike so that he would be forced to quit racing & stay home with her. Eventually, the bike broke down & she got her wish. Bev farmed for a living & he & Dora raised six daughters (Bessie, my maternal grandmother Vera, Maggie, Goldia, Ruth & Maybelle) & a son (Melvin). Growing things was a talent he passed down to his children (I myself missed inheriting the green thumb they were blessed with). The family mostly lived in Burnet & San Saba County, Texas. The children eventually found spouses. They pretty much all stayed fairly close to home as young adults, farmed the land & started their own families. The Cook family continued the tradition of a yearly family reunion that Dora's McCoy family had started which continues on to this day each July. Bev & Dora enjoyed their grandchildren & great grandchildren, of which they were blessed with a seeming multitude. Of their children, only one, Maybelle Cook Ray, is still living.

Bevlie died on 28 July 1963 in San Saba, San Saba Co., Texas. A little over a year later, his wife Dora joined him in death. Both were laid to rest at Chappel Cemetery, San Saba, San Saba Co., TX, USA.

Friday, March 14, 2014

52 Ancestors #10 John Young Houston

I had a hard time this week trying to decide who to write on. In fact, I still hadn't really totally made up my mind even as time was running out to come up with a new post. I've spent this week mostly doing research on different lines, mainly my father's maternal Houston line, so I guess I'm going to write a little bit about them. The line originally starts with John Young Houston who was one of four sons born before 1800 to Scotch-Irish immigrants to South Carolina. Family lore has it his parents were John & Mary Young Houston of County Down, Ireland, although little is known about them. I don't know alot about him. He doesn't appear in the historical record for very long. At some point in his young life, John

Marriage record of John Young Houston
& Elizabeth "Betsey" Rodgers
migrated from South Carolina to MorganCo., GA where he met & married Elizabeth "Betsy" Rodgers (daughter of James & Sarah - Rodgers) on 25 Nov 1809. Before that, he was supposed to have been married to a Miss Bradford with whom he had a son Alfred & a daughter Patsy, but it is believed that they all three died & he moved on.

He should have appeared in the 1830 & 1840 census, but to be honest, I don't usually research the pre-1850 censuses because, especially with very common names, there is no sure way to determine whether or not you have the right person since they are by head of household only & don't list anyone by name & only give general ages for the members of the household (most times, they don't even give a general age for the head of the household themselves). The first & only census John Young Houston appears in is the 1850 census in Dallas Co., AL, but a great deal happened to John in the years after he married Betsey & the time he appears in Dallas Co.

Between, 1810 & 1818, John & Betsey had & raised seven children (the first two of whom are believed to have died young). They had four sons: John Young Jr (who died), William (who also died), Ruben Rodgers & James Russell. They also had three daughters: Caroline, Lucy Ann & Clementine. Nothing is known about where or when Betsey was born, but by 1841, she had died, although it is not known exactly when or where. The children were mostly grown & married off by then. On 2 Feb 1841, we find John marrying Ann Tegner (nee Bailey) in Lowndes Co., AL.

Marriage record of John Young Houston
with third wife Ann Bailey Tegner
Ann was the widow of Lewis Charles Tegner Sr who died before 1840 (Ann is listed as head of household in Lowndes Co., AL on the 1840 census). She is known to have had two sons, Lewis Charles (Jr) & William F., as well as one daughter, Nancy, who never married. Together, John & Ann had six more children: Mary Ann, Elizabeth "Betty", Martha, Margaret (who never married), my 2nd great grandfather John Young (Jr), & Sarah. In 1850, the only child not shown in their household is Sarah who had not been born yet. John Jr, my father's maternal great grandfather, is only a year old. Ann's older daughter Nancy is shown living with them, while her sons are grown & out living on their own in Lowndes County, AL in the Maria Campbell household.

John is believed to have died in 1854 in Prattville, Autauga Co., AL. It is not known where either he or Ann are buried. Ann continued on raising her children after his death. The family was skipped on the census in 1860 as far as can be told, but in 1866, we find Ann having moved & living in Shelby Co., AL where she would live for the rest of her life (presumably, as evidenced by the fact she is still living there in 1870 & 1880). Her sons & all but two of her daughters married & started their own families. The 1890 census was destroyed by fire & by 1900, all traces of this particular branch of the Houston family in AL are gone. It is thought that Ann died by the mid 1880's because her son, John Young Houston (Jr) moved to Milam County, Texas around that time. And that is a story for another time.

"Georgia, County Marriages, 1785-1950," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 15 Mar 2014), John Hughston and Betsey Rodgers, 25 Nov 1809; citing Morgan, Georgia, United States; FHL microfilm 158906.
"Alabama, Marriages, 1816-1957," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 15 Mar 2014), John Haston and Ann Peegner, 02 Feb 1841; citing reference ; FHL microfilm 1293892.
"United States Census, 1850," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 15 Mar 2014), John Houston, Dallas county, Dallas, Alabama, United States; citing family 160, NARA microfilm publication M432.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

52 Ancestors #9 Jose de Jesus Quinteros

Jose de Jesus "Jesse"
Quinteros, Apr 1941,
age 31,Temple, TX
This week's post is kind of a follow up to last week's post about my Tia Barbarita. While I was going over what I knew about her, I found some new information about my Tio Jesse I had never seen before. It was his alien statement in regards to the selective service. It was both an interesting & an enlight-
ening document he filed in 1943 in order to claim exemption from military service in the US Armed Forces during WWII.

Tio Jesse was the second of three surviving sons of Rafael & Domitila Mendez de Quinteros. He was born in Sept 1910 in El Fuerte, Rio Grande, Zacatecas, Mexico (there have been various dates in September given for his birth date). His family moved to Texas when he was ten years old. He married a widow, Barbarita Pedroza de Garcia, & had six children. He adopted & raised as his own her children by her previous two marriages. He spent his entire adult life working for the Santa Fe Railroad doing track maintenance as an assistant foreman of one of the many rail crews in Temple. Tio Jesse's family lived in one of the Santa Fe Section Houses in Temple (their particular house is no longer standing) which were provided for members of the rail crews & their families.

1940 Temple, Bell Co., Texas Census showing the family of Jesse & Barbara Pedroza de Quintero
The 1940 census found Tio Jesse & his family living in Temple on 17th Street. This was one of the section houses & the home his parents would die in within the next year. Tio is indicated as the person who gave the census taker the information for that year's census. Living in the household is his wife Barbara & children Jonita, Augstina, Faustina, Margaret, Erlinda, Tilta & Jose (some of these names are wrong & two children are missing because they hadn't been born yet). War broke out in Dec 1941. His younger brother Rafael was drafted briefly in 1943 & in Dec 1943, Jesse filed the following paperwork to gain exemption from military service.

Page one is just a brief basic information page. Page two goes more in depth, asking for date & place of birth, his alien registration number, citizenship, marital status, employment & residence information. Most notably, it details where all Jesse has lived since his family moved to the US from Mexico in Dec 1920. I had heard that the Quinteros family had lived in Coleman, Coleman Co., Texas briefly before moving to Belton, Bell Co., Texas from my paternal grandfather & it was gratifying to see it documented here. The bottom of page two asks where Tio Jesse entered the US (Eagle Pass, Texas) & when. Page three covers Tio Jesse's employment with the Santa Fe Railroad & the kind of work he did for them. It states that he has received no education while in the US, nor has he served in the military. It states he is a perm-
anent resident & intends to remain in the US (Apparently things were a lot easier in the age before green cards & visa applications. I know that Tio made atleast one trip back home to Zacatecas, Mexico during the 1940's because he is documented as having crossed the border at Laredo when he was returning home). The bottom of page three gave some information about my paternal grandfather Rafael that I had heard before but not known the specifics about. Tio Jesse stated that the only member of his family to serve in the military was his younger brother Rafael. He entered the service in 1943, exited in 1943 & attained the rank of private during his brief period of military service (I had heard my grandfather was drafted & served briefly, but I didn't know when or where or how long. I have seen only one photo of him in uniform & only knew his service wasn't long enough to earn him an american flag or military honors at his death). The final page, page 4, covers his family & political ideals. It lists the names of his mother & father & that they are deceased (it also gave their occupations). His wife Barbara is listed as well as his children. At one time or another, Tio Jesse was a member of the Red Cross (which is news to me). He indicates he understands & upholds the government of the US & has no affiliation with any type of subversive organization, nor believes in anarchy. Page four ends with his statement that he objects to serving in the military & that he fully understands the nature of the document & statements he is making & that they were read to him & understood by him in English. The page is notarized by W.S. McGregor, a licensed notary public of Bell Co., Texas & bears his signature. It was filed with Local Selective Service Board on 17 Dec 1943 in Temple, Texas.

I would love to find something like this on my grandfather or Tio Pancho but have not. Tio Jesse was my favorite of my father's uncles when I was growing up & finding this document both validated some of things I had heard & gave me better insight to him as a person. I close this week's post with Tio's baptism & birth documents from Rio Grande, Mexico & the border crossing document that was filled out when he returned to Texas in 1944.


Mexico, Zacatecas, Civil Registration, 1860-2000, Río Grande, Nacimientos 1909-1911, Img #322, pg #32
Mexico, Catholic Church Records, Zacatecas, Río Grande, Santa Elena de la Cruz,
Bautismos L. 24-31 1909-1915, Img #226, Record #100, pg 53
"Texas, Marriages, 1837-1973," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Mar 2014), Jesus Quintras and Barbareta Pedroza, 01 May 1933, Bk 30, Pg 26, 848.
"United States Census, 1940," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 08 Mar 2014), Jessie Quentero, Temple, Justice Precinct 5, Bell, Texas, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 14-28, sheet 6B, family 125, NARA digital publication of T627, roll 3984. U.S., Alien Draft Registrations, Selected States, 1940-1946 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013.
Original data: Alien Registration Forms, compiled 1940–1946. Selective Service System, Arkansas State Headquarters. ARC ID: 576612. Records of the Selective Service System, 1926–1975, Record Group 147. The National Archives at Fort Worth. Fort Worth, Texas, U.S.A.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

52 Ancestors #8 Barbara Pedroza Franco de Quintero

Barbara Pedroza de Quinteros,
estimate photo was probably
taken sometime during the
Mexican Revolution
Tia Barbarita was un-
doubtedly my favorite of all my father's paternal aunts. When I finally decided to write about her in my blog this week, I took a moment to review what I knew about her. I knew her parents & that she came from Jalisco, Mexico; I knew she had been married multiple times & I knew she had at least one child by each spouse. She only spoke Spanish (at the time, none of us spoke the language), so my family often had to pantomime in order to get her to understand what we were trying to get across to her. She spent the majority of her life as a wife, mother & homemaker, but her life was not always an easy one.

Baptismal record of Barbara Pedroza de Quinteros,
Sta Thereza, Union de San Antonio, Jalisco, Mexico
She was born on 4 December 1901 in Santa Thereza, Union de San Antonio, Jalisco, Mexico to Francisco & Panfila Franco de Pedroza. Her baptismal record in the parish of Senor de la Ascension records that her grandparents were Silvestre & Anastacia Vasquez de Pedroza & Silvero & Mauricia Rodriguez de Franco.

The Pedrozas had lived in Jalisco for many generations, but around 1915 or 1916, they decided to move their family to Texas. It seems that they wound up in Bell or Milam Counties, Texas because on 30 Nov 1916, Barbara was married at the age of 15 to Marcos Pacheco in Buckholts. They had one son, Jose, together about 1918. At some point during all this, they must have returned to live in Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico where Marcos was from. In April 1919, she, her parents, her son & her husband Marcos returned to Texas via Laredo. The Manifests of Statistical and Some Nonstatistical Alien Arrivals at Laredo, Texas records that she can neither read nor write & that she is entering the US for the purpose of accompanying her husband who is looking for work.

Border crossing card of Barbara
Pedroza de Pacheco,
Laredo, Texas
They must only have been back in Texas for a year or so when some-
thing happened to change their life together as a family. It is not known whether Marcos died or simply left, but on 17 Nov 1921, in Bell Co., Texas, she was remarried to Basilio Garcia. They lived next door to her parents in temple & had four more children: Felipe, Ascension, Angelina & Faustino (aka "Frosty"). Basilio worked as a laborer on the Santa Fe railroad there in Temple. On July 4 1931, he was injured in a work related accident & died of internal hemorrhaging on 5 July 1931. He was laid to rest at Hillcrest Cemetery, one of the best known cemeteries in Temple.

Two years passed & eventually she met Jose de Jesus (Jesse) Quintero, son of Rafael & Domitila Mendez de Quinteros (there is a long standing family debate among some in the family about whether our family name is supposed to have the s or not. I suspect that the s was added at some point & our name originally did not have it. I have seen our name spelled both ways, sometimes even within the same document; although, I have seen it spelled most often with the s rather than without it). Tio Jesse worked for the Santa Fe Railroad also & later retired from there. They married on 1 May 1933 in Bell Co., Texas & had six more children together: Margarita (Margaret), Herlinda (Linda), Domitila (Tila), Amelia (Molly), Daniel & Jesse.

Marriage certificate of Jesse Quinteros & Barbarita Pedroza
My memories of Tia Barbarita are of visiting her & Tio Jesse as a child. When I was little, I thought she lived in the kitchen (& maybe that is not far from the truth) because I never recall seeing her anywhere else. She made her flour tortillas by hand (I enjoyed scarfing them as fast as she could make them). She & Tio Jesse made the best tamales (according to my mother since I don't remember them) in great big canning pots. She kept a couple of pet parakeets in a cage that sat on a chair in the kitchen. I took Spanish in junior high & high school & I recall one trip to Temple when I wanted to impress her with what I had learned in class (which wasn't very much). I asked her for a glass of milk in Spanish & her eyes lit up to hear me speaking the language. She said something I didn't understand (this would have been in the fall, so we hadn't been in class long enough to learn more than the basics) & she was disappointed to learn that what I had said was the extent of my comprehension of the Spanish language. It would be a few more years until I would be fluent enough in Spanish to carry on an actual conversation. =(

I didn't see either Tio Jesse or Tia Barbarita for many years after that. I last saw Tio Jesse when he was at a Temple Nursing Home in December 1992. Tia Barbarita was living with one of her children by then. Tio Jesse passed away on 3 Dec 1993. Tia Barbarita survived him by four more years & passed away at the age of 96 on 16 Dec 1997. Both were laid to rest side by side at Bellwood Cemetery in Temple.

Mexico, Jalisco, Catholic Church Records, Unión de San Antonio, Señor de la Ascensión, Bautismos 1899-1905, pg 141, Img #300
"Texas, Marriages, 1837-1973," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Mar 2014), Marcus Pacheco and Barbarita Pedrozo, 30 Sep 1916, vol V, pg 110. Border Crossings: From Mexico to U.S., 1895-1964 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2006.
"Texas, Marriages, 1837-1973," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Mar 2014), Bassilia Garcia and Barbarita Pedrosa, 17 Nov 1921, certificate #1826, pg 480.
"Texas, Deaths, 1890-1976," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Mar 2014), Basilio Garcia, 05 Jul 1931; citing certificate number 142, State Registrar Office, Austin; FHL microfilm 2135603.
"Texas, Marriages, 1837-1973," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 01 Mar 2014), Jesus Quintras and Barbareta Pedroza, 01 May 1933, Bk 30, Pg 26, 848.