Four Generations Before
Below, is a history of the Davis family's migration to the West and the trials and tribulations they encountered along the way. I have reproduced this document as it was typed, including the original spelling, punctuation, and grammar.  Only slight changes were made in the formatting.  msl






1. John Davis

--Great Great Grandfather


2. Samuel Davis

--Great Grandfather


3. John William Davis

--Grand father


4. William Bruce Davis



5. Jean Marshall (Davis) Crutcher





* Note: Error on third line on page 1, which is Great Great Grandfather, but should be Great Grandfather.

John Davis came from Ireland in 1700í to Amherst County, Virginia. He was Father of five children: John, James, Joe, Sam, and Mary. Sam our Great Great Grandfather married Jean Marshall. They with five children moved to Crab Orchard, Kentucky, in 1779. Crossed the Blue Ridge Mountains on horses. Their goods on packed horses. The 2 youngest children were carried in baskets slung over the saddle. My Grandfather John William generally called "Jockey" was one of the 2 thus carried. These pioneers with others lived for a while in a fort. The men would go each day with their guns to a spot selected by one of them for his future home cut and prepared logs for their houses. Next was the hewing and building. At last all had homes built. The land from which the trees were cut was for cultivation. Donít you know they had a time with stumps? Well everything was hard but they had stout hearts.

Great Grandfather had one son, James killed by Indians at the age of 20.

Jennie married Sam Blackburn moved to Little Rock, Arkansas.

Patsy married Billie Owsley, Lincoln County, Kentucky.

Betsy married James Logan.

Polly married John Walsh Key.

Sallie died young.

Sam Davis married Miss Price moved to Pike County, Missouri.

John William Davis moved to Monroe County, Missouri. My Grandfather.

Joe Davis the youngest child never married. He had whooping cough settled in his muscles. Always staggered as he walked. Very bright, he taught school, He would ride to school. The large boys would lift him off of his horse. He finally was unable to go so the large pupils came to his home to be instructed in mathematics. He became helpless. Grandfather with whom he lived, hired a free negro, George McRoberts to take care of him. Be weighed over 200 lbs. so it took a strong person to care for him. Grandfather with whom he lived brought him to Missouri. He died 1841. Great Grandfather Samual and Jean Marshall moved out to their log cabin when they thought it was safe from Indians. He traded a horse at Lexington for a bushel of corn. Planted the ground he had cleared. A little corn was left. They dug out a hole in a hard piece of wood and with a maul from more hard wood, pounded the corn into meal. That was the only bread stuff that they had till this patch of corn grew. They had all the wild game they could use. Deer, wild turkey, squirrel, prairie chicken, partridge and some buffalo. A part of buffalo meat could he dried and was a substitute for bread.

     One morning Great Grandfather went out to the deer lick to suprise a deer but none there. When he returned to the house there were Indians in war paint and feathers. He knew he could not cope with them so he ran for the fort 5 miles distant. He was not hampered by clothes as he had on only his shirt. Two of the Indians followed him a short distance stained their hands with poke berry and held them while Great Grandfather escaped. Great Grandmother knew what it was. There were only 4 of them but Great Grandmother thought there were more. They made Great Grandmother understand to get breakfast. She was as long about it as possible. They tore her feather beds shook them to see the feathers fly. Great Grandmother got out 2 silk dresses she had brought from Virginia. In those days every woman had a silk dress when she married Great Grandfather, she had 2 bright colors. The Indian tore them into ribbons and decorated themselves. One found a barrel of soft soap, scooped up a hand full thinking it was molasses and put it in his mouth. That was so funny to the others. Finally they decided to go take Great Grandmother and her children with them. She carried the baby 18 months old. She made the oldest boy carry his Grandfather. She was afraid if he give out walking they would kill him. She tore off pieces of her apron and dropped it so the men could easily follow. They saw her at it, threatened her so she broke limbs off that were in her way. Finally the men from the fort caught up with them, the Indians grabbed the baby, slained it against a tree. Threw a tomahawk at the mother and boy, but they were so close and didn't take good aim, so they missed. The baby got well lived to be 70 years old. Had something done to the fracture after she was grown.

     Aunt Hanah was 12 when Great Grandmother died and remember these stories that were told to her. She told us many, wish I could remember them all. These stories are real, just as they happened. Aunt Hanah remembered their coming to Missouri in 1832. Arrived 16th day of May. That year they had frost every month but July. That summer Grandfather had trees cut and hewed boards made. Two rooms built and moved into by November.

     Grandfather Davis married Elizabeth Helm in 1801, the couple were born 3 children: Jane Marshall Davis, Joe Helm Davis, and Samuel Fleming Davis. Jane married Miller. She had 3 sons, their decendents lived in Scotland.

     Joe went to Arizona.

     Samuel Fleming became a Baptist preacher. His mother died. Grandfather Davis married Kitty Bruce, their children were:

     Sarah Ann married Acuff. Other children were: William Bruce, Hanah Morgan Bryan, Kitty Ann Davis. Elizabeth Davis Goodrich married a Baptist preacher. Martha Susan Davis married a teacher. Both Elizabeth & Martha's family moved to Texas. Their children lived in Texas and Oklahoma.

     William Bruce married Sarah Katherine Threlkeld on June 9, 1850. Their children were: Rebecca, born March 21, 1851; John William (Jack) 1852; Kitty Frances, Nov. 16, 1854; George, 1856, lived 14 months; Henry Bruce, Sept. 7, 1858; Jean Marshall, August 16, 1860; William Bruce Davis (Father) died Sept. 15, 1861.

     Our Mother, Sarah Katherine Threlkeld Davis, came to Missouri when she was 9 years old, in l838. Father came in 1832. They were married on June 9, 1850. Went to Montgomery County on honey moon, went horse back. Mother married in white swiss dress. Second day dress was shades of lavender silk. I still have a piece of ribbon that was on her wedding bonnet canary color. I think life was very pleasant for them. There were about 11 or 12 Negroes. Everything was raised on the farm. Spinning, weaving and clothes made lots of work. Father died September, 1861, the year the Civil War began. The militia stoled what ever they wanted. Mother was left with 5 children. The oldest 10, the youngest 1. The Negroes stayed till 1865. The Negro men had gone to war, both died. Mary, the mother, hired out and the older children. She bought her a little home near the covered bridge in Paris. Mother told her she could live on in the cabin, but she could not furnish food and clothes. The estate was divided with Father's sisters. The stock brought very little. He had fat cattle and hogs, but people were afraid to buy. Mother had 80 a. and cows, horses and a yoke of oxen. She, with the children made a living. No help. We always had enough substantials to eat and warm c1othes spun and woven suits. All our neighbors were like that. Had a nice horse. Mother was afraid he would be stolen. She had Jack, the 9 year old boy, ride him and she rode another. Took him to Mexico and sold him. It was about 20 miles. Jack rode home behind her. The militia came, searched our house for men and armies, but found neither. It was very amazing.

By Jean Marshall Davis (Crutcher)


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