Thursday, June 27, 2013

James’ Children - Susa,1st Child

I plan to blog what I’ve found on the known children of James Turpen.  This is a first post on his children.

From the website, Nancy Jane Carter -- is this Jim and Janey?

Susa was the first child of James and Janey (Carter).   Susa was probably born about 1838 and is indicated in the 1840 census records of Owen County, Indiana as a daughter less than five years of age.  She is a 12-year-old in the 1850 census.  Since James and Janey cannot be found in an 1860 census, when Susa would have been 22, she drops from sight in that big time gap of 20 years.  That presents a research challenge.

Her name appears once, on a single census so it could be misspelled or shortened by the census taker.  Susa could have died.  She might have gotten married in Owen County, Indiana or Greene County, Iowa but there doesn’t seem to be any clues in the marriage records.  We don’t know where the family lived in Arkansas but we might find traces of her there someday.  It's an open project!

James of course had a son before he married Janey Carter.  When he was married to Jane Mills in Virginia, they had a son.  Both Jane and son are gone from records after 1830.  The most likely explanation is death but this is another open project. 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

James Turpen Summary

James was born about 1806 and could definitely be a child of John Turpin and brother to Newt Turpin.  He moved from Virginia to Indiana with John’s family, then from Indiana to Iowa with Newt’s family.  He and his children sometimes spelled their name with an “e” and sometimes with an “i” but it’s the same family.  Some descendants of this Turpen branch still live in the Rippey, Iowa area.

Jim’s tombstone says he was born in 1790 and died 6 Dec 1886.  It’s doubtful that James was born before 1800.  John and Elizabeth were married 1797.  Also, various census records estimate James’ birth in a number of different years but very likely he was born about 1806 in Halifax County, Virginia.  

Jim can be detected in the John Turpin household in Marseilles, Halifax County, Virginia in the 1820 census by his age – there is a son listed who is 10-16 years old.  In 1827, he married Jane Mills.  By 1830, he is listed as living next to John Turpin with his wife and a son under five years old.  At this point, Jim is 20-30 years old.  Within a few years, his wife Jane and his son appear to have died. I’ve found no death or cemetery records for Jane or the son. Then Jim and others in the family leave Virginia to settle in Owen County, Indiana sometime in the 1830s. 

In Owen County, Indiana, Jim met Jane Carter and they marry in 1837.  Nancy Jane Carter was born 10 Mar 1813 in Virginia. (I'm guessing that she ties into all the other Carters in the family.)  The 1840 census lists him as 30-40 years old, with his wife who is 20-30 years old, and a daughter under five years old.  By the time of the 1850 census, Jim’s family had grown with children Susa, William, Luke and Isaac N.  Janey’s mother, Sucky Carter also is living with them.  (Sookie, Suky is a nickname for Susan or Susanna.)

Now is when the Turpins begin to drift out of Owen County.  Newt Turpin goes to McLean County, Illinois and then on to Iowa.  Newt is in Greene County, Iowa in 1860 but Jim is not.  He isn’t on a census in 1860 (that I can find).  It’s said that around 1864 Jim and Janie moved from Indiana to Iowa, then to Arkansas in about 1869.  Three years later they returned to Rippey in Greene County, Iowa. However, Jim is listed in Greene County, Iowa in the 1870 census.  It seems the estimated years of James’ travels may be off by a few years but the details of where he went are probably accurate.  

Jim stayed in Greene County the rest of his life.  He and Janey added Henry, Samuel, George, and John to their family.   Jim died 6 Dec 1886  and Janey died 23 May 1910.  Both are buried in Greene County, Iowa.  Janey’s tombstone has her name engraved as Nancy J. Turpen.

State v George (More About John Epps, Step-father to James R. Carter)

Paul Zimmerli pointed out some history about John Epps, husband to Charlotte Temple Evans Carter Epps who was James R. Carter's mother.   John Epps ran a barbershop and occasionally referred to himself as Dr. Epps.  He then became involved in a sordid series of events that culminated in his murder at the hands of F. W. George.  Yes, it was the wild, wild west...even in Des Moines, Iowa.  We sometimes forget.  

For the background on this, see my May blog post and Paul's comments:

Paul refers to The Northwestern Reporter: Volume 18 which is available through Google Books for free.  Google Books has been a great resource for me but I had not looked for court reports.  Here is a synopsis of the crime that is described in the report of State v George:

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Who is James Turpin/Turpen of Owen County, Indiana?

The Turpin family members were the ultimate recyclers.  Few names were used only once, but rather they keep coming back over and over, used sometimes in multiples.  James is one of those names.  The Turpins loved their Jameses.  If you mix that with unreliable dates in documents, it’s the perfect recipe for a genealogist’s headache.

Early Setters of Tidewater Virginia, Volume 3 compiled by Elise Greenup Jourdan shows that Michael and Edith Turpin had sons named Obediah, John, and James.  And we have Turpins in Owen County, Indiana named Obediah, John, and James who hailed from Virginia.  That would appear to be a good fit.  But the Indiana James does not usually match the Virginia James profile.  He is on the edges of the age range for being a brother of Obediah and John and a son of Edith.  

Obediah was probably born about 1761.  John was born about 1770.  James was born 1792 or 1798 or 1806 or 1820 depending on which record you are reading.  Here is the James information formatted into a timeline. 

Does he look like a brother to Obediah and John or a son of John?   I am tempted to split this timeline.  The events before 1820 are the James who is Michael’s son.  The events starting in 1820 could be a son of John who is Michael’s son.  I’ve found no direct evidence to support this idea but this timeline sort of points that way.  Thoughts?

Monday, June 17, 2013

Michael Turpin

I will be posting some of the information I've collected on James Turpen and his family.  But to start with, I wanted to share some information from Early Settlers of Tidewater Virginia, Volume 3 by Elise Greenup Jourdan.  It will serve as a preface to James' family stories.

In a previous post I mentioned that Obediah, John, and James were sons of Michael Turpin:  Here is that information:

Michael Turpin d. 1794 Halifax Co; m. Edith ?.  His children were:

   Obediah Turpin
   James Turpin m. 12 Nov 1794 Halifax Co. Polly Smith; daughter of James Smith
   John Turpin; m. 8 Mar 1797 Elizabeth Carter
   Mary (Polly) Turpin; m. 16 June 1788 Halifax Co. James Powell; 
                                                                                    sur. Obediah Turpin

The James listed in the Jourdan book only loosely fits the profile of James who was born in Halifax County and moved to Owen County, Indiana with our branch of the Turpins. It is entirely possible that (Robert Newton Turpin's father) John Turpin had a brother AND a son named James.  At this point, I have not made up my mind as there are good arguments for both scenarios.   

More to come...

Saturday, June 15, 2013

A List of Fathers for the Bell Family (Happy Father's Day!)

New information on the Bell family came into the blog this week, so I’ll add it.

Two of Newt Turpin’s daughters married Bell brothers, Joe and Douglas.  See blog entries:  #8 – Nancy the Adventurous Daughter  and #9 - Hannah Catherine Turpin - Another Adventurer

The Bell family arrived in northern Nebraska before 1880, about the same time as the Turpins.  Jacob Bell, father of Joe and Douglas, was born in Ohio in 1815. The censuses show that he and his family were in Webster County, Iowa in 1856 and Polk County, Iowa in 1860. In 1870, before coming to Nebraska, they lived on the East James River in Yankton, Dakota Territory. The family consisted of:

  Parents: Jacob Bell, 1815-1880 and Lourissa (various spellings), 1833-?
  Joseph H. "Joe" Bell b. Nov 1856 IA 
  Stephen A. Douglas Bell b. May 1861 IA
  Thomas Benton "Bent" Bell b. Oct 1862 IA
  C. Enfield Bell b. Aug 1864 IA

Additional information included (I have not verified the information below):

Records show the Bells went back to early times in this country and originated in England. 

 Jacob Bell (1815-1880) b. OH
 Isaac Bell (1795-1871) b. PA
 Benjamin Bell (1751-1853) b. VA 
 Nathaniel Bell (1725-1800) b. VA 
 Nathaniel Bell Sr. (1689-1745) b. VA
 Robert Bell (1655-1724) b. VA
 Thomas Bell (1618-1678) b. Kent, England
 Robert Bell (1588-1639) b. Norfolk, England
 Edmund Bell (1562-1608) b. Norfolk, England
 Sir Robert Bell (~1520-1577) b. Hertford, England

Sir Robert Bell was Lord (Chief) Baron of the Exchequer in the court of Queen Elizabeth I and the subject of the book "Sir Robert Bell and His Early Virginia Colony Descendants" by James Elton Bell and Frances Jean Bell.

I hope this information is helpful to researchers on that part of the family!