Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Braxton Mabry IV: Illinois and Missouri

Braxton Mabry and family did not settle in one place for long. The Mabrys and their three grown children left Tennessee for the west in about 1826, when Braxton was 76 . Their first stop was Chariton County, Missouri.

Chariton County, Missouri (1826-1829?)

According to Braxton Mabry's declaration in his Revolutionary War pension file, the first place the family settled after leaving Tennessee was Chariton County, in northern Missouri. They were apparently part of an early boom in the settlement of the area:
In 1820 the tide of migration was directed towards Chariton county and immigrants from the tobacco regions of Kentucky and Virginia came pouring in and other settlements rapidly followed. Farms were opened, mills and manufacturing establishments erected and the settlement of the county commenced in reality. Finding the soil and climate both well adapted to the grown of tobacco, it soon became the staple product and in fact still holds an important position in agriculture. (1896 history of Chariton County)
We know that the Mabrys stay in Chariton County was no more than a few years. By 1829 they had traved southeast, to Macoupin County, Illinois (northeast of St. Louis, Missouri).

Macoupin County, Illinois (1829-<1833)

In Macoupin County Braxton and Nancy, their sons Maximilian and James and daughter Sally (Mabry) Clevenger were founding members of the Concord Primitive Baptist Church in what is now Palmyra.
Pleasant View (formerly Concord) Church was organized June 13, 1829. Eight charter members came together, viz., Braxton Mabry, Christian Mabry, James Mabry, Maximilian Mabry, Nancy Mabry, Sally Mabry, Reuben Clevenger, and Sally Clevenger. Elders William Rodgers, Aaron Smith, and Thomas Lee formed the presbytery. The church was organized before the present town of Palmyra came into being; the town was surveyed and laid out in 1835 under the name of Newburg; the name was changed to Palmyra in 1855. (Primitive Baptist Churches of Macoupin County, Illinois)
The Mabrys were listed in the 1830 Census of the Otter Creek District of Macoupin County.

• "Joell Maybury" was listed as head of a household with one man and one woman age 18-20, and three boys, two under age 5 and one age 5-10.

• "Maxemillian Maybury" was listed as head of a household with one man and one woman age 30-40, one boy under age 5, two boys and three girls age 5-10, and two girls age 10-15.

• "James Maybery" was listed as head of a household with one man age 80-90, one woman age 60-70, one man and one woman age 30-40, and one girl age 5-10. The older couple are probably Braxton and Nancy.

• "Reuben Clevenger" was listed as head of a household with one man and one woman age 40-50, one boy and one girl under 5, one boy and one girl age 5-10, two boys age 10-15, one boy age 15-20, and one woman age 20-30.

Several of Braxton's grandchildren (or their husbands) also have households listed in the 1830 census of Macoupin county.

Reuben Clevenger purchased land in North Otter Township in 1833 and 1836 (T12N R7W Section 31). However, by that time Braxton had once again moved west, to Greene County in the southwestern corner of Missouri. (from the Illinois Public Land Sale Database)

1875 Map of Macoupin County (Reuben Clevenger's land was near the intersection of North and South Otter and North and South Palmyra districts).

Greene County, Missouri (1833-1836)

In his 1838 pension application, Braxton stated that he and his family had moved to Greene County in 1833, in the southwestern Missouri Ozarks. We find two of Braxton's sons on the 1833 Greene County Tax list:

• "James Mabery" had 4 cattle, 1 "poll".
• "Joel Maberry" had 1 cattle, 1 "poll".

Neither were taxed for slaves, horses or mules. Braxton, son Maximillian, and son-in-law Reuben Clevenger were not on this list.

Once again, they had settled in an "uncivilized" area with few resources:
Old timers have told me that one of the first tasks of the pioneer, after he had found a suitable place for a home, and had thrown together some sort of a rude shelter to protect his family from storm and cold, was to fashion a mortar wherein to reduce the grains of corn to particles small enough to serve as food. And this, we may be sure, was no small under-taking to a man whose only implement for the purpose was, in most cases his faithful axe. (Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri)
Taney County, Missouri (1836->1840)

In 1837 Greene County was split, with Taney County formed from the southern part that borders on Arkansas. Braxton Mabry applied for a pension for his service during the Revolutionary War in 1838 while living in Taney County. .

The 1840 census for Taney County places Braxton in Swan Township, living with his son James (see original census pages 115 and 115A and alternative transcription).

At that time, Maximillian Mabry was living in neighboring Barry County. Reuben Clevenger was living in Marion Township of Taney County.

It is not known when Braxton died. By 1840 he was almost 90 years old. When he submitted his pension application, he was infirm and blind. It is likely that he died in Taney County shortly after 1840. However, no record of his death has been found.

Note that I have seen no indication that Braxton even knew that his son from his first marriage, Robert S. Mabry, settled in Illinois in 1827. There was no apparent contact between Robert and Braxton's younger children.

1838 Map of Missouri (click to zoom)
Taney County Township Map (1990) (Taney County's current claim to fame is as the home of Branson, Missouri)

James, Maximillian and Joel

Maximillian Mabry eventually left Barry county (he may have lived breifly in Lawrence County and Jasper County), and joined his brothers in Taney county. Max, along with his brother James and Reuben Clevenger were all listed there in the 1850 census (Jasper and Swan townships).

James Mabry appears to have remained in Taney County until at least 1850. It is not known when he died. (Could he be the "Jimmie Maberry" who was a preacher in Marion County, Arkansas, just south of Taney County?)

Maximillian Mabry and family moved to Benton County, Arkansas during the Civil War. This was followed by several other moves, eventually ending up in Franklin County, Kansas. (read letters written during the 1860s for more of his family history)

Joel Mabry died in about 1846 (his estate was "issued to Maximillian Mabry" on 30 Mar 1846), probably in Taney County.

Reuben and Sally (Mabry) Clevenger continued living in Jasper Township in Taney County, until they both died, between 1860 and 1870. Their descendants lived in Taney County into the 20th century (and may still live there today).

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At 9:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this wonderful history with sources. I am wondering what this wording from your text (below) actually means? Please comment if you are able about his estate being issued to his brother--what about his family inheriting? Thanks, Athena Mayberry Butler
'Joel Mabry died in about 1846 (his estate was "issued to Maximillian Mabry" on 30 Mar 1846), probably in Taney County.'

At 1:07 PM, Blogger Peggy said...

That means that I don't know the exact date that Joel Mabry died.

What is known is that Joel's estate was issued to Maximillian on March 30th, 1846, so he must have died before that date.

It seems likely that Joel didn't die too long before his estate was dealt with, so he probably died in early 1846 or late 1845.

I say he probably died in Taney County because that's where he was living at the time - I have no evidence for that, but it's a likely assumption.

At 3:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for your response. I am having fun looking at your sources and all of your gen. work. I am directly related thru to Joel's line. If you have a moment sometime to take a fresh look at the 1840 census, I believe that Joel is listed directly under James Mabry and is still in Taney County at this time. What do you think? Athena Mayberry Butler


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