Saturday, August 5, 2006

COLLINS/MURRAY - Long Fork, Johnson Co.,KY

The oldest picture I have from my family is this one. It was taken about 1930. You can see the schoolhouse in the background. It had clapboard on it at the time of this photo. I believe it was yellow and white when my grandfather (the younger man to the left in the picture shooting the gun) taught there. His name was Powel (one L) Jackson Collins. He was a business man and a school teacher. He married Adela "Murray" . The older man to the right in the picture is Great Granddad William Henry Murray.
I like this picture because of the school house and my grandfather and great grandfather. It is hard for me to call Powel Jackson, Papaw/Grandfather because he died so young. He died February 19, 1935, of what was probably a brain tumor. He died at the old Paintsville, Kentucky, Hospital.
My great grandfather W.H. "Billy" Murray was from Burning Springs, Clay County, Kentucky. He was born February 1, 1867 and died August 17, 1958, in Oxford, Ohio.
Look how parallel their guns are. There were at least two dead squirrel up on that hill across the creek when they lowered those weapons.

Long Fork, Johnson Co. KY Schoolhouse - 1950s

Here is the school house in about 1954-55. I am the one holding the bedraggled bunny rabbit. It was purple and the dogs got it and chewed it. My Daddy Bunt Billiter (Mom's dad) had gotten that for me for my birthday and I loved it no matter if the dogs did chew its face up. I am about 6 or 7 years old . My younger brother, Ron, is standing in the doorway in his snowsuit. He wasn't in school yet but visited at recess. He was about 4 or 5 at the time. This is the picture I took to Magoffin County for the Pioneer Village.

Friday, August 4, 2006

Long Fork, Johnson Co.,KY Schoolhouse

Here is a picture of the Long Fork, Johnson County, Kentucky, schoolhouse
when it was moved . It is in the Magoffin County Pioneer Village where Todd Preston was kind enough to take it and preserve it. I was so pleased that it didn't just fall down and rot away. They have made a few changes to it. There was never a steeple on it. But it was originally used as a United Baptist Church and a school house.
The porch was never on the school either. It was pretty much a box...but I loved that school more than I could was symbolic of Long Fork for me. I played it in the summer time and I was, of course, the teacher :-) and I went to school there in the fall and winter. When we moved away...I had a terrible time adjusting to larger schools with more kids than the few in the one room school. Whew...I really missed home.

Thursday, June 1, 2006

Nancy Lou Sparks

3 to 4 years of age, taken at my home in Charleston, WV


Senior Class Picture - 1956 Stonewall Jackson HS

Nancy Lou Sparks (I hate the name Lou!)

Look at my collar bones!! And you can see my Asian eyefolds! :-)


Nancy, Evelyn, Frank & Peggy Sparks

This picture was taken in 1948 at our home in Charleston, WV.

Nancy, Evelyn, Frank & Peggy Sparks

This picture was taken at my house in Roanoke, VA, prob in the late 1980's.


William FRANK Sparks

My father was called Frank. He may have been named William Francis but he never used that name and he didn't like William. Sometimes, teasing him, my mother would call him 'Franklin.' The third child of Alie Sparks and Mary Elizabeth Hager, Frank was a mild mannered, educated man who treasured his family.

He was a police officer in Kenova in the 1930s. There was a chief and 3
officers I think I remember daddy telling me. Bootlegging continued to flow from Catlettsburg, KY into and through Kenova and on to Huntington in those days. Daddy said he knew one man that was a bootlegger, was SURE he was doing it, but was never able to catch him. Daddy said the man's Ford was a souped-up one and capable of great speed but he never saw him speeding. He always came across the bridge into Kenova, usually on a Thursday night around 10:00pm each week. Daddy would turn on his lights, the guy would pull over, and daddy would search the car without any luck until ONE particular night.

He said that for whatever reason, instead of pulling up behind the guy, he did
a U-turn and pulled up with his lights on, facing him. He got out and
went to the side of the car while the guy proceeded to lazily get out of the
car. Daddy said he searched everywhere, looking for a stash of liquor to no avail.
Disgusted he told him to drive on and turned to walk back to his car. As
he did so, he KICKED the front tire of the man's car in disgust. It made a
funny clunking noise and daddy said the guy jumped in the car and started the
motor. Daddy reached through the window and grabbed the keys, turning the
motor off, and proceed to put the guy in cuffs. Then he jacked the car,
removed the tire, to find the inner tube filled with booze. All four tires
were full!! The guy went to jail, and the booze was disposed of in the Ohio
River - bet those fish swam funny for awhile!! LOL And daddy said the man
stopped bootlegging!!

I love this story and hope you enjoyed it too!!

One year during the big war - WWII - we were without a car. Daddy had had
one of those old Fords where the battery was located under the floorboards on
the driver's side. He went out one morning to go to work and the car wouldn't
start. He checked the engine, and then looked at the battery which was
MISSING!! Someone needing a battery worse than we did, hadtaken it during the

Daddy tried for two weeks to find another battery with no luck - all such
were for the war effort - and then just before Christmas our "ice box" which
was really a refrigerator broke. Daddy worked for an electrical appliance
wholesaler so getting a refrigerator wasn't a problem. Getting the money to get
one WAS!!

So Daddy sold the useless car to get the money to buy the brand new bigger,
sparkling white refrigerator!! It gleamed in our small kitchen and held the
Christmas ham and other Christmas goodies. And Daddy rode the bus to and from
work which fortunately stopped only one block from our house. But the time
came to get the Christmas tree and we had no car to haul it.

Daddy and I boarded the bus, wrapped to the 'gills' :-) in our heavy
coats/scarfs and hats. It was really cold, and the air had a snap to it as it curled
around our heads and nipped at our noses. The warm bus interior actually
felt stifling in its place. At the first sign of a Christmas tree lot, we pulled
the cord to stop the bus and got off to look for our tree. Now our tree was
always a huge one and sometimes Daddy even 'built' it using two trees,
nails/hammer and string to hold it together. This Christmas year at the first lot,
there seemed to be no big, tall trees, just little 5 foot ones and those were
sparse and spare!

We waited 15 min for another bus to come by, stamping our feet and blowing
on our gloved fingers to try to stay a little warm, and boarded with our
transfer slips in hand, requesting a new transfer from this bus driver. And we got
off at the second lot, and the third and the fourth and more. No Christmas
trees fit our preconceived idea of what a tree should be. Finally on the other
side of town at a lot near our state capitol building we found the tree. It
was huge, it had only one bare spot which Daddy said could be turned into the
corner where our tree sat, so we bought that tree. It cost $15.00, a lot of
money for that time period.

And so there we were on the lot with a tree and miles from home, and Daddy
walked across the street to a house whose occupants he did not know, while I
protected "THE TREE." He knocked on the door and when a woman answered, he
asked if she would call a taxi to come so we could get our tree home. The woman looked as though she were going to close the door and Daddy motioned toward me and the tree and the woman smiled.

She called a cab for us after wishing Daddy a Merry Christmas!

The taxi came and the driver and Daddy tied the tree into the trunk of the
car and Daddy tied his scarf to the top, sticking out behind in warning. We and
'the tree' arrived home. It was set on the porch and we went in with our
noses red and fingertips cold to warm cocoa and Christmas cookies.

Later Daddy built the crossbars to hold it and set the tree up in the corner
of the living room. I lay on the floor under the bare tree, dreaming of
Santa's visit and the joys to come, enjoying the pine scent of Christmas! No
artificial pine scent can ever replace that true smell of Christmas to come! No
artificial tree can ever hold such memories.

Descendants of William Frank Sparks

1 William Frank Sparks b: 31 Jan 1905 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 23 Jan 1999 in Charleston, Kanawha Co., WV Sex: Male
. +Shirley Evelyn Mayo b: 01 Nov 1916 in Ceredo, Wayne Co., WVa. m: 09 Feb 1935 in Beckley, WVa. d: 02 Oct 2004 in Heartland Nursing Home, Charleston, Kanawha Co., WV Sex: Female Father: James Glen Mayo Mother: Elizabeth Margaret Carey
... 2 Nancy Lou Sparks b: in Charleston, Kanawha, WV Sex: Female
....... +Richard Philbert Morrison b: in Richmond, Va. m: in Huntington, WVa. Sex: Male Father: Frederick Elmer Morrison Mother: Agnes Montgomery Butler
... 2 Peggy Joan Sparks b: in Charleston, W.Va. Sex: Female
....... +James Allen Hanshaw b: m: in Charleston, WVa. Sex: Male

Mary Elizabeth Hager and Alie Sparks w/ Edgar

My paternal grandmother with her husband Alie and first born child, James Edgar Sparks. I think she was beautiful and my sister Peggy looked a lot like her.
Lizzie Hager, as she was known, was a daughter of James Morgan Hager and Mary Arminta Musick. Minta's parents were Mary Collins and Abe Musick. I believe this Musick line and the Collins were of Melungeon descent.
Alie had the most beautiful ice blue eyes I think I have ever seen. Mary Elizabeth's eyes were so dark a brown that they looked black. My father said that as a child he watched his mother drying her hair in the sunshine and that it glistened like a raven's wing. Her skin tones were a medium olive color.
Descendants of James Morgan Hager

1 James Morgan Hager b: 17 Jul 1859 in Floyd Co., Ky. d: 06 May 1923 in Prestonsburg, Ky Sex: Male
.. +Mary Arminta Musick b: 16 Oct 1865 in Johnson Co. Ky m: 02 Dec 1878 in White House, Johnson, Ky. d: 16 Oct 1948 in Paintsville, Johnson Co. Ky. Sex: Female Father: Abraham Musick Mother: Mary Collins
. 2 Jeremiah Walter Hager b: 03 Oct 1879 Sex: Male
..... +Marcella Tygart Sex: Female
. 2 Mary Elizabeth Hager b: 12 Nov 1881 in Lawrence Co., Ky. d: 09 Dec 1963 in Ashland, Ky Sex: Female
..... +Alie Sparks b: 22 Feb 1879 in Pike Co., Ky. m: 01 Mar 1900 in Eliza, Johnson Co., Ky. d: 28 Apr 1957 in Huntington, Cabell, WVa. Sex: Male Father: William Greenville Sparks Mother: Pricie Smith
. 2 Sarah Catherine Hager b: 13 Jan 1884 in Whitehouse, Johnson Co., KY d: 14 May 1967 in Paintsville, Johnson County, KY Sex: Female
..... +Samuel M. Meade b: 21 Jul 1875 in Boyd Co., Ky m: 1899 in Lawrence County, Kentucky d: 02 May 1968 in Whitehouse, Johnson Co., KY Sex: Male Father: Thomas Frelon Meade Mother: Syrecia Davis
. 2 Lydia Margaret Hager b: 13 Nov 1885 d: 19 Feb 1977 Sex: Female
..... +Richard Aaron Salmons b: 1885 in Pidgeon Roost, KY d: 1933 in Pidgeon Roost, KY Sex: Male
. 2 Francis Marion Hager b: 29 Dec 1887 d: 1923 Sex: Male
..... +Lula Hale b: Sep 1894 d: 01 Jul 1927 Sex: Female Father: John Emery Hale Mother: Eliza Perry
. 2 J. Morgan Hager b: 25 Feb 1890 d: 04 Jun 1961 Sex: Male
..... +Myra b: 03 Jul 1898 Sex: Female
. 2 William Ira Hager b: 30 Sep 1892 in White House, Johnson Co., KY d: 17 Jan 1974 in McDowell, Johnson Co., KY Sex: Male
..... +Nora A Selvage Sex: Female
. *2nd Wife of William Ira Hager:
..... +Sadie Hall Sex: Female
. 2 Robert L. Hager b: 29 Oct 1896 d: 02 Dec 1983 Sex: Male
. 2 John S. Hager b: 13 Jun 1899 Sex: Male
..... +Emmajean Riggs Sex: Female

Alie Sparks & Mary Elizabeth Hager

This picture of my paternal grandparents was taken at Hawk's Nest State Park, WV in the late 1950s. Note that 'Lizzie' Sparks has on a hat and hose and a handbag!! :-) We were on a picnic!
Alie Sparks had no middle name. His name was pronounced Ay-lee with the accent on the first syllable.
According to my father, William Frank Sparks, Alie sometimes used the initials, A.L. Sparks. Information for this family was gathered from records held by Sarah Margaret Sparks Frazier and Mary Edna Sparks Childers, daughters of Alie.
I have a copy of the marriage license of Alie and Mary Elizabeth Hager.
Information on the marriages of the children of this family was taken from a family Bible in the possession of Walter Sparks, Scott Depot, W.Va. All are now deceased.
Descendants of Alie Sparks

1 Alie Sparks b: 22 Feb 1879 in Pike Co., Ky. d: 28 Apr 1957 in Huntington, Cabell, WVa. Sex: Male
. +Mary Elizabeth Hager b: 12 Nov 1881 in Lawrence Co., Ky. m: 01 Mar 1900 in Eliza, Johnson Co., Ky. d: 09 Dec 1963 in Ashland, Ky Sex: Female Father: James Morgan Hager Mother: Mary Arminta Musick
... 2 James Edgar Sparks b: 15 May 1901 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 07 Mar 1984 in Scioto Co. Ohio Sex: Male
....... +Anna Mae Stump m: 09 Oct 1924 in WVa. Sex: Female
... *2nd Wife of James Edgar Sparks:
....... +Lillian Ison b: 24 Feb 1899 in Elliot Co., Ky. m: 14 Apr 1928 in Cattletsburg, Ky d: 02 Jan 1984 in Scioto Co. Ohio Sex: Female
... 2 Mary Edna Sparks b: 03 Jan 1903 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 05 Jul 1959 in California Sex: Female
....... +Frank Brady Childers b: 24 Feb 1891 in Putnam Co., WVa. m: 03 Apr 1920 in WVa. d: 24 Sep 1957 in Charleston, WVa. Sex: Male
... 2 William Frank Sparks b: 31 Jan 1905 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 23 Jan 1999 in Charleston, Kanawha Co., WV Sex: Male
....... +Shirley Evelyn Mayo b: 01 Nov 1916 in Ceredo, Wayne Co., WVa. m: 09 Feb 1935 in Beckley, WVa. d: 02 Oct 2004 in Heartland Nursing Home, Charleston, Kanawha Co., WV Sex: Female Father: James Glen Mayo Mother: Elizabeth Margaret Carey
... 2 Joseph Walter Sparks b: 21 Aug 1906 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 17 Nov 1991 in Wayne Co., WVa. Sex: Male
....... +Inez Milard b: 27 Oct 1902 m: 28 Oct 1926 in WVa. d: 22 Feb 2001 in Nitro, WV Sex: Female Father: John Milard Mother: Rebecca Dailey
... 2 Thomas Frederick Sparks b: 11 Nov 1917 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 14 Oct 1987 in Ashland, Ky. Sex: Male
....... +Lillian (Lucille) Zornes b: 22 Mar 1924 in Catlettsburg, Ky. m: 06 May 1941 in Ironton, Ohio Sex: Female
... 2 Sara Margaret Sparks b: 11 Nov 1917 in Wayne Co., WVa. d: 20 Dec 2004 in Ashland, Ky Sex: Female
....... +Roy C. Frazier b: 06 Aug 1906 in Clifford, Lawrence Co., Ky. m: 07 Oct 1936 in Charleston, WVa. d: 23 Jul 1991 in Ashland, Ky. Sex: Male
Among other things Alie was a railroad worker, delivered the mail by horse and cart, and had a small grocery store. He also worked in a grocery warehouse, and in later years was a director of custodians at an arena of some sort.
Alie is buried at White's Creek, W.Va.
Death Certificate: 78 years of age at death, 443 April 28, 1957, Vol 05 5694
Marriage License
Bk. 2 - 1884
p. 186
Date: 1st day of March 1900
Alie Sparks
21 years
first marriage
birthplace: Johnson Co., KY
birthplace of groom's father: Greenup Co.,KY
birthplace of groom's mother: VA
Elizabeth Hager
Johnson Co., KY
18 years
first marriage
birthplace of bride Lawrence Co.,KY
birthplace of bride's father Floyd Co., KY
birthplace of bride's mother Floyd Co., KY
To be married at James Hagers on the 1st of March 1900
I certify that the above is correct to the best of my knowledge and belief. Witness my hand, this 1st day of March, 1900 Alie Sparks
Attest: M. L. K. Wells

William Greenville Sparks, Pricey Smith and brother

Green Sparks is my paternal great grandfather. My line follows his son Alie Sparks. Pricey Smith is a descendant of Jenny Wiley, the famous 'White Squaw' who was captured by the Indians in KY and found her way back home after escaping. Jenny Wiley State Park in KY is a memorial to her.

Descendants of William Greenville Sparks

1 William Greenville Sparks b: 01 Apr 1858 in Johnson Co., Ky. d: 16 Jul 1932 in Wayne Co., WVa. Sex: Male

.. +Pricie Smith b: 16 Aug 1852 in VA m: 25 Apr 1878 d: 17 Jul 1935 in Kenova, W.Va. Sex: Female Father: William Thomas Smith Mother: Marinda Williamson

. 2 Alie Sparks b: 22 Feb 1879 in Pike Co., Ky. d: 28 Apr 1957 in Huntington, Cabell, WVa. Sex: Male

..... +Mary Elizabeth Hager b: 12 Nov 1881 in Lawrence Co., Ky. m: 01 Mar 1900 in Eliza, Johnson Co., Ky. d: 09 Dec 1963 in Ashland, Ky Sex: Female Father: James Morgan Hager Mother: Mary Arminta Musick

. 2 Hensley Sparks b: 26 Apr 1881 d: 23 Mar 1918 Sex: Male

..... +Ida (Preston) Smith Sex: Female

. 2 Mary Sparks b: 21 Feb 1883 in Johnson County, Ky. d: 03 Apr 1961 in Kenova, W. Va. Sex: Female

..... +Elmer Stump Sex: Male

. 2 Daniel Joseph Sparks b: Abt. 1886 in prob. Pike Co., KY d: Abt. 1956 in Kenova, WVA Sex: Male

..... +Belle Perry b: 1890 in Argentina, KY (now Maloneton) m: in prob. KY d: 1956 in Wilmington, Delaware Sex: Female Father: James Perry Mother: Ruby Jane Bennett


Sandy Pressler Altman and James Altman

This is a picture of my husband and me, taken last summer at a wedding.

Me- Sandy Pressler Altman - born in Fort Wayne , IN.
Daughter of Dotsy Smith and John Pressler.

hubby - James Altman - born in Hollywood, FL. Son of James
Altman and Jane Gardin.


John Grills

John Grills (my great grandfather), was the son of Hiram Grills and Sally Jones.
However there is a family story that he was really the son of Dave Blevins
- but at age 6 months he was in the household of Hiram , listed as his

John was born in 1869 and died in 1948 in Harlan County, KY.

He was part Cherokee.
He married Fannie Crider. The child on his lap is Rose (Roosevelt was his
full name) - he was the son of John Grills and John's step-daughter, Mary.
What is interesting about this picture is that if you look to the right of
John's head and above the stone, there appears to be a ghostly Indian in
the picture. I had not seen this before I zoomed it bigger. It jumped out
at me and gave me chills all over. The place this was taken was near Jones
Creek in Harlan County was once a Cherokee Camp.


Flora Grills & Robert Smith

This is Flora Grills and her husband Robert Smith. I am blood kin to both
since Flora was my grandma's sister and Robert was my grandpa's brother.
Flora was the daughter of Fannie Crider and John Grills. Robert was the
son of Harrison Smith and Ella Collins. Flora was born 1892 in Harlan
County, KY and died in Bell County , KY in 1975. Robert was born in either
Campbell Co, KY or Claiborne Co, TN or Lee County , VA.


Fannie Crider Grills

Tintype of Fannie Crider Grills. She was part Cherokee. Daughter of George
Crider and Mary Farley. Born April 1864 in Kentucky and died 20 March1955 in
Harlan County, KY. Married John Grills 4 June 1892 in Harlan County ,
Kentucky. She was my great-grandmother.


Fannie Crider Grills

Fannie Crider Grills (my great-grandmother) is second from the left.
Daughter of George Crider and Mary Farley. Born April 1864 in Kentucky and
died 20 March1955 in Harlan County, KY. Married John Grills 4 June 1892 in
Harlan County , Kentucky. I have no clue as to the rest of the people in
the picture or the location of the picture.


Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Polly Beard #2

Polly Beard (photo taken ca. 1959). As far as I know, she never offered
any information on what the family history was, but she emphatically denied
any Indian heritage. Although she seemed to have Native American features,
she had brown hair and extraordinary green eyes


Perry Jackson Beard #2

This is a photo of Uncle Jack taken a few years before he passed away.
According to him. he thought he was Irish or something. Definitely not
Indian. You can't tell from the photo, but his eyes were almost aquamarine.


Perry Jackson Beard

This was my grandmother's younger brother, Perry Jackson "Jack" Beard. Born
1923 in Angelina Co, Tx and died abt 1996 in Lafayette, La. This was taken
when he was about 10-12 yrs. old. To paraphrase someone from the list, this
was a closed-mouth family. As far as I know, none of that family ever
shared with their children about where the family was "from". The only
thing that he and my grandmother were adament about was that they were NOT
part Indian.


Pauline Beard

My maternal grandmother, Alice Pauline "Polly" Beard was born June 6,
1917 and died Mar. 21, 1968. She was the daughter of Joseph Jeffries Beard
and Alice Thorne Hanks. This picture was taken shortly after her marriage
in 1933.

William L. Goins, Jr.

Terri's father

Charlie & Nancy Goin's family

This family picture
is of ten of the children of Charlie and Nancy Goins. From left- My Grandfather Lowery, Harry and Charlie Jr., Arnold, Gordon, Paul and Lloyd. Viola , Lassie and Almeda. Grandma Nancy is front and center.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Charlie (Samuel) and Nancy Goins

Charlie and Nancy Goins
are from Graysville,Tn. He was born there in 1875, and he died there in 1938.
He was the son of James L.Goins, who was the son of Granville Goins.
Nancy died in SanDiego, California after moving there next to my grandfather, Lowery, after my great-grandfather,Charlie, died. Terri

Monday, May 29, 2006

Gordon Goins

This is a picture of my great-uncle Gordon Goins. He was my Grandfather Lowery's brother. I lived with him and his family in Chattanooga for a little while when I was around twelve years old.


William Lowery Goins, SR

This is a picture of my grandfather, William L.Goins Sr. taken on one of the picture postcards they had available at that time.He was born Nov., 1900, and died May, 1974.


Cynthia McGill

Cynthia McGill was married to Carter Goins, Jr., son of Carter Goins, son of Laborn Goins of Virginia. Laborn was the son of Shadrack Going of Virginia.

She was the mother of Vandola, Jefferson, Francis Marion, Minerva and William Goins. Most of them were on the Guion roll. According to census records she would have been born around 1840.

Carter was supposedly the brother of Granville, my Great- Great Great grandfather.


Sunday, May 28, 2006

Eva Z. Laxton

My mother, Eva Z.Laxton b.7 Jan 1929 Asco WV

d. 27 Jan 1994 Welch WV.

married James J.Carter.

Mom is of Laxton, Collins, Fairchild, McComas lines.

Bessie COLLINS & Thomas Manley LAXTON

Bessie Collins and Thomas Manley Laxton were married in
March of 1925.

Thomas was b.17 April 1892 in Wyoming Co WV

He d.11 Oct 1951 in Davy WV, in a mining accident.

These are my grandparents.

Bessie Collins Laxton & Granny Sizemore, her friend

This picture was taken in the 1950's of My Gram (Bessie Collins Laxton) and her dear friend, Granny Sizmore, in Asco Hollow WV.

Bessie, Howard, Cuba COLLINS

Bessie-Howard-Cuba Collins
Bessie b.1908 d.1989-

Howard b.1915 d.1917-

Cuba b.28
Feb 1911 WV d.10 Nov 2004 Wilm.De.

Ann -

Vergie, Mae and Bessie COLLINS

Vergie Collins Grubb b.1925 WV...:

Mae Collins Wooten b.1920 d.Elkton Md....

Bessie Collins Laxton b.18 Dec 1908 Jhn Co Ky d.18 Nov 1989 McDowell Co WV.

Bessis is the Grandmother of Ann and her g-Aunts were Vergie and Mae.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

George COLLINS, b. 1887 & son Howard


b.25 Oct 1887 Flat Gap Jhn Co Ky
d.26 April 1953 McDowell Co WV

and son Howard b.19 July 1915 d.1917 Asco WV.

George married Maggie Fairchild

6 Feb 1908 Jhn Co Ky.

George is the great grandfather of Ann -