|A PRELIMINARY HISTORY OF THE FAMILY OF JOHN R. JONES AND MARY MATIIDA BRANNON
Ancestry of John R. Jones
John R. Jones was born January 1, 1831 in Beaver Township, then located in Guernsey County, Ohio. He was the son of Thomas Jones and Sabrah Robinson Jones and grandson of William Jones, who apparently represented the first generation of the family in Ohio.1
William Jones, the grandfather of John R. Jones, was born in Maryland in 1770 and settled in Beaver Township, Guernsey County, Ohio between 1820 and 1830.2 In 1851, Noble County was created and Beaver Township was transferred to it from Guernsey County. On September 15, 1851, William Jones died and one of the earliest court cases in Noble County involved the partition of his real estate among his numerous heirs. He owned a total of 240 acres in Beaver Township and several town lots in Williamsburgh, now known as Batesville. The gravestone for William Jones is still standing in the old Batesville cemetery and indicates that he was 81 years and 5 months old when he died. Next to his stone is a stone for Sarah "consort of William Jones" who died August 19, 1851 at the age of 53. The age listed for Sarah is inconsistent with the census of 1850 in which her age was listed as 60.3
The petition in the partition case indicates that William Jones had at least nine children, seven of whom survived him and two of whom had died before him and left descendants. The children who survived him were Joseph Jones of Noble County, Thomas Jones of Noble County, Samuel Jones of Hocking Count Cassandria Jones of Noble County, Sarah Jones Watkins (wife 'of Wheeler Watkins) of Noble County, Mary Jones Alton (wife. of John Alton) of Noble County and Lucinda Jones Mummy (wife of Alexander Mummy) of Morgan County. A deceased son, Garrett Jones, was survived by children named Ann Maria Jones, William Jones, Lusetta Jones and Loretta Jones, all residents of Pike County, Ohio and Mary Jones Vest (wife of Tobiver Vest) of Illinois. A deceased daughter named Elizabeth Jones Delong (wife of John Delong) was survived by children named William Delong, Thomas Delong and Elizabeth Delong Turner (wife of John Turner), all of Noble County, Ohio.
Thomas Jones, son of William Jones and father of John R. Jones, was born in Pennsylvania on November 14, 1801 and died April 16, 1860. He is buried in the old Batesville cemetery next to his wife Sabrah Robinson Jones who died March 13, 1847. She probably was the daughter of James Robinson (May 13,1780-Cctober 7,1842), who was listed living near William Jones at the time of the 1830 census-and who is buried in the old Batesville cemetery next to markers for two boys named Thomas and George who died in 1842 and were described as sons of "T. & S. Jones" (presumably Thomas and Sabrah). In the census of 1850, Thomas Jones was listed as 49 years old and head of a household including Joseph age 21, Susannah (wife of Joseph), age 19, John, age 19, Sarah, age 17, Samuel, age 14 Elizabeth, age 10, Garrett, age 8 and Mary, age 6. He listed his birthplace as Pennsylvania and his property was valued at $3500-00. According to the original 1851 tax map of Noble County, he owned 151 acres in section 8 and 15 acres in section 7 of Beaver Township, including a small piece of land dedicated for use as a school. Most of this same land was later included in the 107 acre farm of John R. Jones.
After the death of Thomas Jones, his children and their spouses executed various deeds to parts of his farm in 1863 and 1864. The children involved were William, James, Sabrah, John, Sarah, Samuel, Elizabeth and Mary. William, James and Sabrah apparently were children no longer living with their father at the time of the 1850 census. Sabrah was probably the same Sabrah Jones who married a Joseph Paxton in 1863 in Noble County,, Either William or James was probably the brother of John R.' Jones who' is reputed to have engaged in the construction of covered bridges in Mississippi after the Civil War. Joseph and Garrett were apparently dead by 1863 since they did not sign deeds then with other children of Thomas Jones. There is a stone on the Jones lot in the old Batesville cemetery for a "Jarrett Jones" who died in 1862. Kate Bircher Brague, a granddaughter of John R. Jones, recalls having heard that there was a brother of John R. Jones who went to California by ship around the southern part of South America. It was said that the trip was very difficult and that he nearly starved to death. He died soon after arriving in California.
Sarah Jones Douglas (also spelled Douglass), daughter of Thomas Jones and sister of John R. Jones, was born in about 1833. She married Joshua Douglas and lived on a farm in Beaver Township near the John R. Jones farm. Her children included Thomas Douglas, Homer Douglas, Mary Ellen Douglas Starr and Mary Douglas Powelson. In 1899, she was a witness to the marriage of Sarah Martha (Sadie) Jones and John W. Bircher.
Samuel Jones, son of Thomas Jones and brother of John R. Jones, was born November 25, 1836. He was married to a woman named Elizabeth when he signed a deed in 1863. He moved to Oskaloosa, Iowa and acquired considerable property by the time he died on January 30, 1918. He was survived by a wife named Naomi but had no surviving children. There was a will contest over his estate, resulting in the will being set aside and his estate was divided among a long list of relatives, including the children of John R. Jones.5 Elizabeth Jones Finley, daughter of Thomas Jones and sister of John R. Jones, was born in about 1840. She married James Finley in Noble County in 1861 and later lived at Oskaloosa, Iowa. She was the only sibling (brother or sister) who was still living when Samuel Jones died in 1918.
The sons of Thomas Jones undoubtedly attended the school located on the Thomas Jones farm. The Guernsey County deed records include a copy of the 1833 agreement by which Thomas Jones provided for this school by a 99 year grant to school authorities. This agreement was followed in 1843 by a deed to the school directors from Thomas and Sabra (also spelled Sabrah) Jones. It is interesting to note that most women signed deeds "by mark" as late as the Civil War, indicating that few girls attended the pioneer schools.
II. Ancestry of Mary Matilda Brannon
Considerably less seems to have been known by later generations about the ancestry of Mary Matilda Brannon than about the ancestry of John R. Jones. The Noble County record of her death does not indicate when she was born, where she was born or the names of her parents. Her cemetery stone in the new Batesville cemetery and a list copied from an old family Bible indicate her date of birth as June 7, 1833. The census of 1870 listed her place of birth as Ohio.
Research in the old records of Guernsey County, indicates that she was the daughter
of a Jesse Brannon (1794-1843) and Ann Brannon (1791-1862), who are buried in the old Batesville cemetery. The will of Jesse Brannon (also spelled Branon), made a few days before his death in 1843, names his sons as Isaac Branon, John Branon, and Jesse Branon, and his daughters as Rachel Carey, Margaret McCane (or McCance, spelling unclear), Elizabeth Branon, Tobitha Branon and Matilda Branon. Jesse,.@lartha and Matilda were described as minors under 21 years old. Guernsey County deed records indicate that Jesse Branan had purchased 80 acres in section 23 of Beaver Township in 1&@0. His widow Ann and executor son Isaac Branon sold 31 acres off of this farm in 1,845. Guernsey County marriage records indicate Isaac Brannon married Harriet Farris in 1838. The census of 1850 lists them in Beaver Township with children named James age 11 William age 9, Lewis age 6, Mary age 4, Ann age 2 and Rachel age 1. Isaac was 32 years old and his place of birth was listed as Ohio.
Mary Matilda Brannon had a brother William J. Brannon of Richmond, Indiana. He was probably the "Jesse Branon" referred to in the will of Jesse Branon described above, apparently having been called by his middle name as a child or having later added the name William. He fought in the Civil War and later lived at Summerfield, working at one time as a tailor. He became very successful in the ice business in Richmond, Indiana and frequently visited Ohio in his old age. Cora Jones Martin, Beulah Martin, Sarah Martha (Sadie) Jones Bircher and Kate Bircher visited him in Indiana about 1915. He died July 12, 1916. The Indiana death certificate lists his age as 86, his place of birth as Maryland and his mother's maiden name as Anna Alexander. His father's first name was not known to the person providing information for the death certificate. He was survived sons John E. Brannon and William 0. Brannon, a daughter Nora B. Johnson, a son-in-law John Starr and grandchildren Willie E. Brannon and Maud Williams.6
Mary Matilda Brannon was often referred to by her middle name (even on her death record)'
III. John R. Jones and Mary Matilda Brannon Jones
John R. Jones and Mary Matilda Brannon were married Christmas Day, December 25, 1853They probably lived with John's father until his death, since they later came to own 107 acres of his farm. Consequently, John R. Jones probably spent his entire life living at the same location. It is said that he was drafted in the Civil War, but avoided actual military service by hiring a Negro as a substitute, a legal practice at that time. It is also said that he was a very religious man with considerable knowledge of the Bible, and that he attended services at both the Beaver Baptist-Church and the Palestine Church of Christ, which are located close together south of Batesville. There are still in existence pictures of John R. Jones with members of his family and also of his large brick house.
John R. Jones died on February 15, 1904 of "heart disease" and Mary Matilda Brannon Jones died on November 6, 1904 of "cancer". They were buried in the new Batesville cemetary where their marker is near the entrance. In 1905, their son Charles Jones purchased their farm from the other children for $4800.00. He sold it in 1909 to James Warner and it is now owned by Emerson Christman, according to the Noble County tax map. It is about two miles southeast of Batesville.
IV. Descendants of John R. Jones and Mary Matilda Brannon Jones
John R. Jones and Mary Matilda Brannon Jones had nine children between 1854 and 1875. Two of these children died before reaching a4ulthood, three moved to other states and
four lived and left descendants in Ohio.
Sabra A. was the oldest child. She was born November 3, 1854 and died of tuberculosis at the age of eighteen, on Christmas Day, December 25, 1872.7 She is buried in the old
Batesville cemetary near her grandparents.
William A. Jones was born February 12 , 1856.7 He married Ettie M. Gregg September 6, 1899 and lived on a farm near Belmont, Ohio. His oldest child was Walter Clifford Jones, who was born June 21, 1900. He married Mary A. Anderson on June 18, 1925 and they now live in Cleveland, Ohio, where he has been associated with the office of the state auditor. They do not have any children. The second child of William Jones, was Arthur Brannon Jones, who was born September 9, 1902 and died on September 18, 1921. The third child was Mary Etta Jones (Carman), who was born April 25, 1904. She married Fred Carman on December 14, 1951 and they have lived since then at the former William Jones farm near Belmont. They do nct have any children. The fourth child was Wilford Albert Jones born September 4,1908. He married Mary E. Cline in 1938 and has a son named Thomas Wilford Jones (born 1940) and grandchildren named Shawn Christopher (born 1971) and Elizabeth Ann (born 1972). The fifth child was Martha Alice Jones (Strawman) who married Edwin Strawman in 1931. They live at Kent, Ohio and have three children. The oldest, Walter Edwin Strawman was born in 1932, married Geraldine Lambert in 1953 and has children, Susan Linn, born 1954, Steven, born 1956, Jeffrey Alan, born 1957, Jay Edward, born 1960, and Amy Kristine, born 1967. The second child of Martha Jones Strawman and Edwin Strawman is Elizabeth Jean, who was born in 1933 and married Ray McRay in 1953. The third child is William James Strawman, who was born in 1940 and I married Lou Carpenter in 1961. They have three children: Janet Louise born 1963, Frank Lee born 1966 and Windy Jane born 1967.8 Mary E. Jones was born July 23, 1858.7 She died of tuberculosis as a child, about the same time as her sister Sabra. . Her date of death was April 16, 1874.9
Francis M. Jones (also called Frank) was born March 30, 1,61.7 He is said to have attended Antioch College. He later lived in Oakland, California and owned bicycle stores in Oakland and San Jose. His wife's first name was Mae and is said to have had a son named Donald. He died on June 27, 1937 in California.
Charles W. Jones was born November 20,1863.7 Like his brother Frank, he is said to -have attended Antioch College. He was very skillful in penmanship and made pen drawings. He lived in Brocton, Massachusetts, where he operated a business school. He wrote a short book on penmanship with examples of his writing style. The name of his wife is not known, nor are the names of any children.
Sarah Martha (Sadie) Jones (Bircher) was born September 14, 1866 and died April 1, 1941. She married John W. Bircher of Summerfield, Ohio on March 25, 1899 at the home of her parents. They lived in Summerfield and later on a farm north of Summerfield in Marion Township, Noble County, Ohio. At the time of their marriage, John W. Bircher was a widower with three sons, all three of whom later died of diphtheria in 1902. John W. Bircher and Sarah Martha (Sadie) Jones Bircher had three children. The oldest was Florence, who was born June 16, 1900 and died of whooping cough August 8, 1900. The second, Everett Thomas Bircher, was born November 6, 1903 and died March 8, 1975. He lived his entire life at Summerfield, Ohio, operating a cream station and later working at the Summerfield Post Office. He married Marie Bates in 10,24. They had no children. The third child, Kate Bircher (Brague) was born April 5, 1909 and married Clive L. Bra-ue of Monroe County, Ohio in 1945- She taught school in Summerfield, Woodsfield, Byesville, and Wadsworth. She now lives at Wadsworth, Ohio, where Clive L. Brague died in 1962. Their only son, Norman Everett Brague, was born at Marietta, Ohio on October 16, 1946. He is an attorney at Wadsworth, Ohio and holds the offices of city solicitor and assistant prosecuting attorney of Medina County.
Joseph H. Jones was born September 5, 1869.7 He married Emma Fagon and taught school most of his life in the Marietta area. His three children and their descendants are as follows: 10
(1) Mamie married James Wilson who was killed in World War I.
Child; Clarice Victory born November 11, 1918
Children: James Edward McGee born 1939
Children: Donna Ruth born 1958, James E. born 1963, Susan Rachelle born 1966 and Timothy Scott born 1966
Donald Deane McGee born 1940
Children: Timothy Scott born 1960, Priscilla Dawn born1962, John Fitzgerald born 1963 Wayne Steven born 1972
Patrick Dale McGee born 1941
Child: Becky S. born 1964
Richard Eugene McGee born 1943
Children: Debbie Jean born 1965, Joyce Ann born 1967, Jerry born 1968 and Kevin born 1970
Jerry David McGee
Child: Jerry David II born 1970
John A. McGee
(2) Lulu Clarice born November 27, 1899 died April 20, 1975, married October 2,1920 to Harry Theopolis Fitzgerald (1896-1953)
Children: Gerald James Fitzgerald born May 4, 1923 married Mary Margaret Potter Fitzgerald in 1948
Children: Janet Lou Fitzgerald Cotay born 1949, married to Fred Orlando Cotay in 1973.
Judy Gwen Fitzgerald born 1949
Teresa Ann Fitzgerald born 1952
Don Michael Fitzgerald born 1955, married to Debra Lynn Thomas in 1975.
Margaret Sue Fitzgerald born 1958
Gerald James Fitzgerald born 1962
Dorothy Fitzgerald Cernus born November 26, 1924 married to Joseph Cernus in 1945.
Children: Diane Kim Cernus Robinson born 1946, married 1972 to Douglas Robinson (Child: Ryan D. born 1976)
Dona Jean Cernus Smith born 1947, married in 1966 to John Howard Smith (Children: Jonna Jean born 1967, and Kimberly Dawn born 1971)
Joseph Cernus born 1949, married in 1972 to Karen Byfield Cernus (Children: Dawn Michelle born 1974 and Jennifer Lea born 1975)
Thomas Fitzgerald Cernus, born 1953.
Harry Joseph Fitzgerald born October 19, 1929, married on June 21, 1958 to Joan Duvall Fitzgerald
Children: David Joseph Fitzgerald born1959,
Mark Duvall Fitzgerald born1961 Sandra Lynn Fitzgerald born1964
(3) Carlos Albertis born May 2,1902, married April 5, 1927 to Bernice Etta Kehl
Children: Earl Alden Jones born November 10, 1928
Children: Earl Alden Jones Jr. born 1958
Etta Mae Jones born 1961
Beryl Carolyn Jones Wunderlich born November 10, 1928
Children: Carol Lynn Wunderlich born 1960
Charles Michael Wunderlich born 1962
Fay Loy Jones Propes born January 24, 1934 Children: Harold Dean Propes Jr. born 1956
Ricky Earl Propes born 1957
James Floyd Propes born 1958 John Fitzgerald Propes born 1965
Joyce Lynn Propes born 1967 Thomas Carl Propes born 1970 Charles Joseph born 1974
Cora Alice Jones (Martin) was born April 26, 1872. and died November 28, 1949. She married John Morris Martin on November 24, 1897. He was born February 25, 1875 and died April 12, 1952. They lived near Cumberland, Ohio. Their five children and descendants are as follows:9
(1) Victor Oliver Martin, born April 1, 1901, married 1927 to Wilma Leola Humphrey.
John William Martin, born December 26, 1929, died January 26, 1930
Dana Ray Martin, born July 9, 1937, married Rochelle George 1956
Children: Eric Lynden born 1957 Lisa Annette born 1961
Jill Elaine born 1969
Myron Eugene Martin, born April 17, 1944, married Jacquelyn Sue Harris in 1965. Children:
Lori Lynn born 1966
David Matthew born 1969
(2) Herman Donald Martin, born December 1, 1903, died November 3, 1974., married in 1930 to Luella Dorothy Paisley. Children:
George Lee Martin born November 20, 1936, married Vivian Eileen Paisley in 1956.
Elizabeth Ann born 1960
Susan Jeanette born 1963
John David born 1964
Eldon Dale Martin, born October 20, 1940, married Martha Louise
McCance in 1967.
Wayne Alan born 19?1
Glen Clifford born 1974
Sara Lou Martin (Stutes), born August 23, 1945, married David William Stutes in 1965. Children:
Gregory William born 1968
Michelle Ann born 1973
(3) Alva Morris Martin, born March 6, 1906, died June 28, 1961, married in 1931 to Eva Daisy Smith. Children:
Sarah Ann Martin, born December 14, 1942
Paul Edward Martin, born May 19, 1945, married Cheryl Langford
Beth Christine Martin (Neece), born May 23, 1949, married in
1971 to Vernon R. Neece.
(4) Alta May Martin (Hill), born March 6, 1906, died January 24, 1975
married in 1952 to Paul Edward Hill. died Jume 30, 1987
(5) Beulah Grace Martin, born March 6, 1914, died April 9, 1944.
Mar. 23, 1938 married in 1938 to Ivan Lee Wickham.
Alice Jean Wickham, born November 28, 1939, married Ashley Lynn Hall in 1960.
Children: Kimberly Susan Hall born 1962
Fred Duane Wickham, born October 29, 1942, married Karen Lorraine Boyd in 1964. Children:
Fred Duane Jr. born 1967
Leslie Lorraine born 1970
In 1945, Ivan Wickham married Pauline Schoeppner. Their children are:
Carl Lee Wickham, born July 21, 1946, married Sandra Bailey in 1968. Child., Craig Lee born 1972, Drew Lee born 1977
Stanley Ray Wickham, born May 26, 1949, married Rebecca Macenko in 1970. Child
Michael Ray born 1974- Nicole Ann born 1979
Emma Jones (Cushman) was born November 16, 1875. She married Asa T. Cushman,and lived in Brockton, Massachusetts, Plymouth, Massachusetts and North Tonawanda, New York. She had three children. Robert Cushman is said to have been born December 20, 1908 and to have died when he was about twenty years old. Elsie Maye Cushman is said to have been born July 16, 1911 and to have married John Brauer. Myles Foster Cushman is said to have been born in 1916.1 No information has been obtained on any descendants of Elsie or Myles, although there may be some in western New York.
The foregoing -Preliminary History of the Family of John R. Jones and Mary Matilda Brannon Jones was prepared by Norman Everett Brague of Wadsworth, Ohio for the Jones reunion at Marietta, Ohio scheduled for September 12, 1976. Information on their respective branches of the family was provided by Mary Jones Carman,-Dorothy Cernus and Karen Wickham.
1. The parents, date of birth and place of birth for John R. Jones are listed in the Noble County record of his death. The relationship with William Jones is based on the petition in the partition case and also on probate records for Joseph Jones (1803-1883), an uncle of John R. Jones.
2. The age and place of birth of William Jones were listed in the census of 1850. The date of his death appears both on his gravestone and in the petition in the partition case. He and Thomas Jones were both first listed in Beaver Township in the census of 1830- Prior to 1850, the census only listed heads of households by name.
3. The old Batesville cemetery referred to herein is in Batesville between route 147 and the school building. Some of the dates are no longer legible, but were copied a number of years ago as part of a list of Noble County grave markers at the library of the Ohio Historical Society in Columbus. The new Batesville cemetery is east of the town on the north side of route 147.
4, This Joseph Jones is buried in another old cemetery on the north side of Batesville. He was born in 1803 and died in 1883. He was married but was not survived by children. The Noble County probate records list John Jones, Sarah Douglass, Josephine Paxton, Elizabeth Paxton, Elizabeth Turner, Mary Alton and Lucinda Mummy as his next of kin who were Ohio residents (non-residents of Ohio were not required to be listed). 5. The list of heirs of Samuel Jones will probably eventually make it possible to trace the history and descendants of the "lost" brothers and sisters of John R. Jones, Copies of papers in the will contest case have been obtained from Iowa.
6o Copies of papers in the William J. Brannon estate file have been obtained from Indiana. Mrs Karen Wickham sent a picture of him and a woman taken by a photographer of Centerville, Iowa. It was inscribed on the back as follows: "This picture was taken August 20th, 1910" "W.J. Brannon Born Feb. 22nd, 1830 / Elizabeth Jones Born Feb. 17th, 1820". It seems probable that this woman was the older sister of Matilda Brannon who was mentioned in the will of Jesse Brannon. She probably would have been told to have been the wife of Samuel Jones but may have been married to some other relative of John R. Jones who settled in Iowa.
7. Information from list copied years ago from old Jones family Bible.
8. Information supplied by Mary Carman.
9. Information supplied by Karen Wickham.
10. Information supplied by Dorothy Cernus.