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  • #18 Royal Descents, Notable Kin, and Printed Sources: The Border and Deep South

    Gary Boyd Roberts

    Published Date : April 24, 1987
    Today we shall consider the border and Deep South. The Bluegrass region of Kentucky, which includes Louisville and Lexington, is largely a western extension of the Virginia Tidewater; major national figures from this area have included W.C. Bullitt, R.C. and Thurston Ballard Morton, James Speed, the A.E. Stevensons, and William Wirt. The first references for Kentucky research should be the GPC journal consolidations --   Genealogies of Kentucky Families, 3 vols, Kentucky Marriage Returns, and Kentucky Tax Records.

    Tennessee divides into three sections: (1) Knoxville and western North Carolina (an extension of the Shenendoah Valley); (2) Nashville and central Tennessee - the northernmost "nouveau" Cotton Kingdom (presidents Jackson and Polk); (3) Memphis and the Mississippi River culture. Major sources include the pre-1861 marriages and will index by Byron Sistler, newspaper abstracts by S.E. Lucas and the Goodspeed mugbook reprints (collective county histories).

    Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and some of Georgia compose the Cotton Kingdom (with a large migration from Virginia and the Carolinas) and the Delta and Creole culture (French, Spanish, Anglo, and Black). Alabama Records by the Gandruds extends to 245 vols., over 50 I believe for Madison County (Huntsville) alone. The works of Winston de Ville and Gary and Elizabeth Shown Mills cover the Gulf Coast. The volumes by Reverend D.J. Hebert cover southern and southwest Louisiana, New Orleans Genesis is the major journal for this area and the major source for Arkansas is again a set of Goodspeed mugbook reprints.

    The Mississippi River culture has midwestern connections via St. Louis and extends to Memphis, Natchez, and New Orleans. For St. Louis see especially Cristy Bond's Gateway Families, probably the most lavish genealogy ever produced, which covers the families of explorer William Clark, St. Louis founder Réné Chouteau, and several brewing families (Busch and Pabst are both in the index).

    For Texas major regions or settlements include (1) the Mexican Rio Grande Valley and San Antonio; (2) New Englanders in Austin’s Colony and the Republic of Texas; (3) German New Braunfels; and (4) post-Civil War migration from the Deep South, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Missouri. The eastern half of Texas is spillover Delta and Cotton Kingdom (Galveston, Houston, Dallas, Ft. Worth) plus cattle (late 19th century) and oil (20th century) kingdoms centered in Ft. Worth and Houston. Since World War II industrial transfer and movement from small towns to county seats to suburbs has created the "Sun Belt," with major "capitals" in Miami, Houston, Phoenix, and Los Angeles. Major sources include W.P. Webb's Handbook of Texas, 3 vols. (both a geographical gazetteer and biographical dictionary), Debrett's Texas Peerage (with genealogical charts of several Spanish families, the King-Klebergs, Lyndon Johnson's kin, etc., Burnett's Yankees in the Republic of Texas, various Goodspeed mugbook reprints, and my own "New England in Texas" in NEXUS 4 (1987): 240-44. This last covers the New England derived Allen-W.M. Rice (born in Springfield, Mass.)-Howard Hughes-W.S. Farish clan of Houston, the H.L. Hunts of Dallas (with much Nantucket ancestry and a line from James Chilton of the Mayflower), the King-Klebergs of the King Ranch (with lines from William Bradford and Richard Warren of the Mayflower), S.F. Austin (of the Charlestown, Mass. family), Gail Borden (of the R.I. family), cattleman A.H. "Shanghai" Pierce (born in Little Compton, R.I.), Senator John Tower (of the Hingham, Mass. family), and the two George Bushes (president and governor).

    Once again I hope readers have enjoyed this excursion south of the Mason-Dixon Line. Next week we shall return to New England and I will comment on some general observations derived from perusing the charts of many Society members in tutorials and consultations.
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