Abstract. A summary covering four generations of the descendants of Elisha Gentry of South Carolina and Georgia, son of David and Sarah Gentry.
The present article is an abbreviated version of one published in 1989 by James Bryant Gentry in "Gentry Family Gazette and Genealogy Exchange". The original article has been formatted to clarify the relationships in the line of descent from Elisha Gentry. Some of the original text has been relocated within the article and edited modestly to make it easier for the reader to follow. Two additional generations of descendants have been omitted from this presentation, but otherwise, the document has been left as originally presented by the author. [Elisha's Last Will and Testament is presented at the end of this article. In addition, some of the fragmentary Georgia references to Elisha and his family are included.]
Elisha and Naomi are known to have had the following children:
Elisha Gentry [Jr.], born ca 1774 in South Carolina: married Elizabeth _____?, who was born in South Carolina ca 1772. Elisha was in the War of 1812 and was living in Walton County, Georgia in 1820 and in Fayette County, Georgia in 1827 and had died prior to the 1850 Census, but his widow was still living there in 1850. They are known to have had the following children:
Micajah and Elizabeth later settled on the Pomme de Terre, four miles South of Fairfield, Benton County, Missouri in about 1831. At that time they were the only white people in the area and the Indians lived in the forest by them. Their nearest white neighbors were in a settlement near Springfield, near what was later called Dry Glaze. The following spring, they went to Boonville for their seed corn.
It is believed that Cain and Micajah Gentry may have been teamsters and hauled freight. On the Census records of 1840 Cain is listed as head of household in Benton County, Arkansas, but owned no land; however, he did own six head of horses and six head of "neat animals" (oxen). There is also listed in Cain's household an older man, and since we know that Cain's father was dead, we believe this to be Cain's older brother, David Gentry. Micajah is listed on the 1840 Census of Benton County, Missouri with his wife and son, but we do not find any record of him owning any land either. Between the time of the Census in October of 1840 and the tax and estate records of April 1841, Cain, Micajah and David (?) were all dead. The Administrators Bond for Micajah's estate was filed 26 April 1841, and a special Tax Roll in June of 1841 in Benton County, Arkansas does not list Cain or David, but does list Cain's widow, Martha, as head of household. It is assumed that the three died or were killed together.
From the available records we find that Micajah and Elizabeth Gentry had only one child:
Cain Gentry was a son of Elisha and Neomy Gentry and was born in Georgia between 1792 and 1797. There is a record of Mrs. Gentry, Cain Gentry and an Allen Gentry being listed as "taxables" in Capt. Jackson's Company in 1823 in Rhea County, Tennessee. Cain Gentry was married to Patsey Philpot in Rhea County on 16 January 1823 by Thomas Cox, J.P. They were living in Lincoln County, Tennessee in June of 1823 and are listed in the 1830 Census of McNairy County, Tennessee.
Martha "Patsey" (Philpot) Gentry was born in Tennessee ca 1800 and died in Grayson County, Texas in 1876. Cain and Martha migrated from Tennessee to Missouri in about 1831. A tavern keeper's record lists Cain Gentry as living in Arrow Rock, Saline County, Missouri in 1832. In about 1836, Cain Gentry and his family migrated to Benton County, Arkansas and are listed there in the 1840 Census as living in Sugar Creek Township. It appears that Cain Gentry died between the time of the Census of 7 October 1840 and the 15 June 1841 Tax Roll, on which only his widow and children are listed. Martha Gentry and some of their children are listed in the 1850 and 1860 Census records of Benton County, Arkansas and in the 1870 Census record of Grayson County, Texas.
It is a family tradition that Cain Gentry and his family had trouble with some Indians, and that two of Cain's young sons were killed by them. The Indians covered themselves with bear skins and crawled up to the house, grunting like hogs and caught the family by surprise. We do not know when or where this happened.
There is a record of Martha Gentry buying 105.73 acres of land for $105.73 on 19 October 1854, that she had resided on it on or before 1 January 1850. This land was located about 2-1/2 miles South-South East of Garfield, Benton County, Arkansas and near "Pea Ridge", where one of the decisive battles of the Civil War was fought. Martha and some of her children lived here for several years. Her sons, Martin W. and Jonathan Gentry and their families moved to Grayson County, Texas in about 1856. John F. and Bethany (Gentry) Ford appear to have moved back and forth between Texas and Arkansas during the next several years. Andrew Jackson Gentry and his family continued to live in Benton County until his death during the Civil War, then his widow and children moved to Grayson County, Texas.
From the Court House records we find that Martha Gentry sold 145.7 acres of land in Benton County to Mr. Ransom Baswell for $300 on 3 October 1865, and made her mark on the deed signing it over to him. It appears that Martha, her widowed daughter and widowed daughter-in-law all moved to Grayson County, Texas in 1865 and are all listed in the 1870 Census of that county. Martha Gentry is listed as living with Bethany (Gentry) Ford.
From the Census records, tombstones and the many descendants of the family, we have determined the following to be the known children of Cain and Martha (Philpot) Gentry:
Martin Gentry and Susanna Washburn are believed to have had thirteen children:
Martin W. Gentry was born 28 June 1823 in Lincoln County, Tennessee. He was a son of Cain and Martha (Philpot) Gentry. The family was living in McNairy County, Tennessee in 1830 and moved to Missouri in 1831 and then to Benton County, Sugar Creek Township, Arkansas in 1836 and is listed on the 1840 Census records of that county.
Martin married Susannah Washburn in about 1842. Susannah was born 23 January 1823 in Arkansas and died ca 1864 in Grayson County, Texas. She was a daughter of Samuel S. and Mary Elizabeth Washburn. Samuel Washburn and his family had lived in Benton County, Arkansas until about 1832 when they moved just a few miles north to Barry County, Missouri and then to Fannin County, Texas in 1836. Samuel was killed by Indians there in 1838. There is a town in Barry County, Missouri that is named Washburn.
Very little is known of the early married life of Martin and Susannah Gentry. However, from the Court House records of Benton County, Arkansas we find that Martin Gentry was made a Baptist Minister by The Bethlehem Baptist Church of Christ in Bentonville, on the 27th of August 1848. Martin was 25 years of age at that time. It is not known what church or churches he ministered to during these years in Arkansas. In Texas, he rode horseback on a wide circuit preaching in churches at Shady Grove, Pike, Desert, Pilot Grove, Kentucky Town and Porter's Church, in Fannin, Collin and Grayson Counties. Martin was always very interested in the establishment of more churches. He was known throughout the Red River Valley as "Parson" Gentry.
The Court House records also show that Martin and Susannah Gentry purchased 80 acres of land in Benton County, Arkansas, on 24 January 1852, from John C. and Cyrena Stycla for $100. The records also show that Martin's brother, Jonathan Gentry purchased 40 acres of land from Jo Holcomb for $46 on 15 December 1852. Then the records show that on 18 December 1855, Martin and Susannah sold 120 acres of land to Josiah Burrows for $900. It is not known if this included the 40 acres that Jonathan had bought in 1852 or if this additional land came from his father's estate. (Cain Gentry had died between 1840 and 1850.)
Martin and Susannah decided to leave Arkansas and move to the Grayson and Fannin County area of Texas, and this appears to have been their reason for selling the farm. Several of their "kin" had either already moved or moved with them to this area. John P. Washburn, brother to Susannah, had married Hannah S. Ford; Jonathan Gentry, brother to Martin, had married Elmira Catherine Ford; Bethany Gentry, sister to Martin and Jonathan, had married John F. Ford; and from the records it appears that all of these families were living in the Grayson County area of Texas in 1856. Susannah's widowed mother was also living in this area.
It is the tradition of our fathers that when Martin Gentry and his family left Arkansas on their way to Texas, they encountered a band of Indian braves on the trail. The Indians stopped them and one of the braves came forward and asked if they had any flour. Martin told them that they did. About this time another brave came forward and asked them their name and where they had lived; upon learning that their name was Gentry and that they had been living near Sugar Creek, the second Indian called all the other braves to one side and had a long conference with them. There was a lot of discussion and a lot of arguing among the band of Indians, but the second Indian finally got them to agree with him and they went back to the Gentry wagon and traded Martin some buffalo meat for some flour and allowed the Gentry family to proceed on the trail, unharmed. It seems that this second Indian brave, in his youth, had lived with Cain Gentry and his family for a time. The young Indian's father had wanted his son to learn the white man's ways and had worked out an arrangement for the boy to live with the Gentry family for a number of months. The Indian boy had been very expert with a bow and arrow and it is told that he was able to shoot two arrows into a tree trunk, side by side, so close that their points would touch, and then shoot a third arrow between the two, knocking them both to the ground. It is also related that during the cold winter months the Indian lad would get up of a morning and put on his moccasins, which had become frozen stiff during the night and would then proceed to do a lively dance which would make the leather pliable again and comfortable for the rest of the day. On the trail, this Indian brave had recognized Martin and had evidently convinced the other braves not to kill and rob the Gentry family, as was being done at that time to so many other white travelers. So the Indians traded with them and allowed them to pass in safety, because of the favors that the Gentrys had shown to this one Indian brave during his youth.
Martin and his family continued on the trail in their covered wagon drawn by a team of oxen, until they reached Grayson County, Texas, a distance of some 400 miles from Sugar Creek Township in Benton County, Arkansas. Martin's brother, Jonathan Gentry, and his family made the move from Benton County, Arkansas to Grayson County, Texas with Martin and his family, and it is believed that their sister, Bethany, and her husband, John F. Ford and their children also made the move with them. However, Bethany and her family returned to Benton County, Arkansas prior to 1860 and are listed on the Census there for that year. Jonathan is listed as living with his brother Martin and with an occupation of "Teamster" on the 1860 Grayson County, Texas census. Martin's other brother, Andrew J. Gentry, continued to live in Benton County, Arkansas and he and his family are listed on the 1860 Census. Andrew and his family were very close to his mother, Susannah Gentry, and after his death during the Civil War, his widow and children moved to Grayson County with Susannah who died there in 1864.
In Grayson County, Martin homesteaded on 160 acres of wilderness land that was public domain on Desert Creek, near a spring that flowed into the creek. This land was in the very southeast corner of Grayson County. Martin and his family cleared the first 50 acres of land with the team of oxen that had brought them from Arkansas, and built a log cabin. During the next few years Martin cleared the rest of the land, planted his crops, gathered his harvests or stored them for the future. Later, after Martin remarried, he built a much better house for his increasingly large family and used the log cabin as a barn. He did not become wealthy, but there was always enough to support his large family. He is listed on the 1870 Census as having Real Estate valued at $725 and Personal Property valued at $2,000. Martin died 4 May 1890 in Grayson County, Texas and is buried in Mt. Carmel Cemetery in Collin County, Texas beside his second wife.
Although Martin W. Gentry was a Baptist minister, his son, John, came home from the Civil War as a very heavy drinker. While fighting for the Confederate Army, John stuck his head out from behind a tree and a Yankee soldier shot him through the neck. About the only medical help that could be given him was to pour whiskey on the wound and have him drink some to ease the pain. Although the bullet did not hit any vital organs and passed on through his neck, John enjoyed "easing the pain" for a long time. John got married after he came home from the war, but quite often he would ride into Nobility, Texas to a saloon run by Lee Holcomb where he would proceed to "ease the pain" for several hours. On one such occasion during the spring of the year, he was trying to stay on his horse and get home, but the horse slowed down and stopped in order to nibble on some grass. It was near the small community of Desert, and near an old colored man's home. The colored man, not realizing that there was anyone around, was out on his front porch and was praying out loud for his own son, who was not a Christian. John had sobered just enough to hear that prayer and his life was changed that very moment. From that night forward, John never touched another drop of liquor.
John was responsible for establishing the West Shady Grove Baptist Church, giving the land for the church and cemetery. Thirty-two people met at the Gentry School House on 24 August 1891 for the purpose of organizing a Baptist Church. The Church still exists today and celebrated its 80th Anniversary on 22 August 1971. Eight Gentrys are listed as charter members. John and his wife are buried in the cemetery which joins that Church. John loved to relate the story of his conversion to others and at the end would always say "the Lord was shootin' at a Negro and hit a white man". John became a very devout Christian and always gave forth with plenty of loud "Amen's" during the services. His wife, Harriet, was a great one for shouting, and would walk up and down the aisle of the church shouting until she could have been heard at a great distance. This was simply her way of expressing the happiness and joy of the Lord that was in her heart.
John Gentry bought a small farm that adjoined his father's homestead and lived there most of his life. Harriet suffered from diabetes which resulted in her two children being stillborn. But John and Harriet enjoyed good food, and anytime they noticed that their neighbor "Lum" Gentry (Christopher Columbus Gentry, John's half-brother) and his wife Cleo had guests, John would get Harriet and walk down the road to Lum's to enjoy a good meal and good conversation, "cause Cleo always sets a good table."
John was gravely ill for most of the 12 years after he retired, but he remained alert and keenly perceptive of mind. Altho bedfast and almost deaf and blind, he continued to recognize friends by their hand shake or the sound of their voice, even though they had to shout to be heard. Illness left him haggard and drawn, gray and tired with the long suffering; but lying in state at death, the lines had fallen away and he looked as fresh and young as he had over 20 years before. Long before he passed away he planned his own funeral and his instructions were followed. There were no sad eulogies, no mournful songs. To him, the finish of his journey on this earth and the end of his life's work was not a grievous parting, but a time when he would enter into the presence of his Master and there in the radiance of His glory await the reunion of loved ones. Mae, his devoted and faithful companion for over 60 years, was not left behind for very long. She did not dwell in sadness and sorrow after his passing, but no longer held her zest for living as she traveled slowly down the road into twilight.
Jonathan Gentry was born 12 November 1829 in McNairy County, Tennessee. He married Elmira Catherine Ford on 2 November 1851. Late in 1855 or in early 1856, Jonathan moved his wife and three children from Benton County, Arkansas to Grayson County, Texas, travelling with his brother Martin Gentry and his sister Bethany Ford and their families. He is listed on the 1860 Grayson County Census as being a Teamster, with Personal Property valued at $300. He rented a farm and worked hard to build up his capital so that he might purchase a farm of his own. This he soon did and lived in Grayson County until about 1875. He then sold this farm and became a prosperous farmer and landowner in Erath County, Texas. As a side-light to Jonathan's teamster and farming career, he was left-handed and could throw with great accuracy. It is the tradition of the family that he seldom took a gun when he went hunting for game, but would pick up stones along the way and would usually come back home with a "good mess of squirrels" for the dinner table.
While Jonathan was living in Grayson County, the Civil War broke out and he enlisted into the Confederate service at White Mound, Grayson County, on 15 July 1862 in Capt. D. W. Baker's Company, 1st Regiment Arizona Brigade of Mounted Volunteers. This company subsequently became Company A, Hardeman's Regiment Texas Cavalry. His service record shows that he was ill and was in Grayson County in July of 1863. He served with the Western Army and participated in the Battle of Reed's Grove, also the attack on Fort Smith, and continued at the front until the close of the war.
In about 1875 Jonathan took some of his sons to Erath County, Texas and purchased 195 acres of wilderness land. After he had purchased the land he then had to return to Grayson County to harvest his crops on the land that he had there and also to prepare to move the rest of his family and possessions to their new home. It took Jonathan some time to close out his affairs in Grayson County and move his family to Erath County. His sons, Henry and "Jim" (James Price) remained at the new land to build fences and make ready for the family to move to it. Henry was about 23 years old and Jim was only 12 years of age. In the evenings around the camp fire, Henry would teach his young brother math, using the ashes from the camp fire to write in and a stick as a marker. Henry must have done a good job, because Jim was always sharp with figures. Through arduous labor, great energy and good business ability, Jonathan transformed this unimproved prairie into rich and fertile fields and extended the boundary of his farm until it contained 450 acres of fine farm.
Jonathan and his family were members of the Missionary Baptist Church and their excellencies of character commanded the respect of all with whom they came in contact. In politics Mr. Gentry was a stalwart Democrat, unswerving in support of the principles of the party. He died on 21 October 1913 and is buried at Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Erath County, Texas beside his wife who died 11 September 1919.
Samuel Cain Gentry was born 17 March 1850 in Sugar Creek Township, Benton County, Arkansas, a son of Martin W. Gentry and Susannah Washburn. The family moved from there to Grayson County, Texas in about 1856 and lived there throughout the Civil War. A story is told of young Samuel Cane.
"At the close of the Civil War there were a lot of trials, troubles and tribulation in the area of Texas that was known as the "Four Corners" (this was where Grayson, Collin, Fannin and Hunt Counties joined). Federal Troops, Union Leaguers, "Jay-Hawkers" and "Red Legs", as well as common thieves came into the area and took what they pleased from any and everyone. It had reached such epidemic proportions that the local people were having to hide all of their food and livestock.
One day while the "Parson" (Sam's father, Martin) was out making his pastoral calls, a group of Union Leaguers rode up to the Gentry homestead looking for food and horses. Finding no food they took young Sam out to the barn and questioned him about the whereabouts of the horses. Sam would tell them nothing, so they strung him up by his ankles with a rope from one of the rafters in the barn and then threatened him with his life, if he didn't tell them. Finally Sam had had enough and consented to lead them to a place where he had hidden one of the horses, if they would let him go and leave the family in peace. They agreed and Sam led them into a thicket where this fine looking animal was hidden. When they saw the horse, they allowed Sam to go. But Sam did not return home just then; he hid from them so he could see the fun that was to follow.
Sam had led the Union Leaguers to a horse that was blind in his left eye and this horse could only be mounted from the right side instead of the customary left side. The Union Leaguers were overjoyed to find such a fine looking horse and each one of them wanted it for their own. After a lot of arguing they finally agreed to draw straws to see who would be the new owner. The winner wasted no time in mounting his new steed. The horse wasted no time in bucking and throwing him off and then gave him a very sound kick. After the third attempt, with the same results, the new owner gave the horse to one of the other men. One by one they all attempted to mount the horse and all had the same results. Finally, after an hour or so, they all gave up in great disdain.
After they had left, Sam came out of his hiding place, promptly mounted the horse on the RIGHT-HAND side and rode home in glee. He felt that this horse had done his part in the Confederate cause."
Prior to his marriage in 1880 Samuel lived with his oldest brother, William, and his family in Nobility, Fannin County, Texas, only a mile or two from his father's place. Samuel is listed with William on the 1880 Census. His occupation is given as being a carpenter.
On 12 December 1880, at the age of 30, Samuel Cain Gentry married Malindy Elizabeth "Betsey" Sims, who was age 16. The ceremony was performed by the Reverend Readman at the home of the bride's mother, Rachel Sims, near Nobility, Texas, (her father, Littleton Sims, was deceased at that time.) Betsey's father, Littleton Sims and family migrated from Marion County, Tennessee to Carter County, Missouri in about 1852 and then to Grayson County, Texas in about 1867, settling first near Kentucky Town, and then moving a mile or so east into Fannin County.
There is little information about Samuel (or "Uncle Sam", as he was nicknamed by his friends and neighbors) and his bride, Elizabeth, during their first twenty years of marriage. It is believed that they lived in Fannin County in the area of their families, where Samuel farmed and worked as a carpenter. At some time during this period of Samuel's life, Samuel moved his family to a farm located on the Brazos River. We assume that this is the property listed in his father's will as being in Young County, Texas, known as "Samuel Washburn League". Samuel had inherited this from his mother, Susannah (Washburn) Gentry, who in turn had inherited it from her mother. "Uncle Sam" and his family repaired the two story house on the farm and prepared the land to raise their crops. There came a hard rain one night with very heavy rain up-river and when they awoke the next morning they found the lower floor of the house flooded and the water still rising. As they watched, suddenly the "wood-pile" began to float away. A few moments later Uncle Sam saw his wagon begin to float. At once he raised the second story window and dove into the water and swam out to the wagon and tied it to a tree, swam back to the house and made up his mind to leave the area as soon as possible. As soon as they could get things dried out and the roads became passable, Samuel loaded up his family and moved them back to Fannin County. He never spoke of this experience again and never wanted anyone to know that he had ever lived there.
In 1899 at the age of 49, Samuel Cain Gentry set out on foot and walked from Fannin County to Jones County, Texas, a distance in excess of 200 miles. We have never known or understood why he did not make the trip on horseback; perhaps he had not planned in the beginning to travel this far. Before leaving home he had "Betsey" sew $400 in gold coins in the seams and waistband of his pants. He planned to use this money to purchase a farm, when he was able to locate one that pleased him. He would build a fire and camp out at night, unless he found a friendly settler along the way. One afternoon he did find a young family that had started raising goats. They invited him to spend the night and in talking with the man he learned that this man had not learned how to butcher a goat. Sam promptly taught him how this was done and a fine meal was enjoyed by all.
Samuel had always been very close to his older brother, William. The latter had moved his family to Jones County, near the town of Anson a year or two prior and we assume had written to Sam and convinced him to move westward. William's son, Elmer, was now a grown man and had married and also settled on a farm near Anson, which made Sam feel that this would be a fine place to raise his family. When Samuel arrived in Anson, he did find a farm to his liking. It consisted of 160 acres, and was located one and a half miles northwest of Anson and had a five room box house on it. He purchased the farm from Mr. Maxwell and an agreement was made for Samuel to take possession of it on 1 January 1900. Samuel then started the long walk back to Fannin County and his family.
Samuel and his family loaded all of their belongings into a covered wagon and prepared to move to their new home. His wife "Betsey" was now expecting their tenth child (Meredith P.) within three or four months. Another family by the name of Moody was also moving West, and the two families with their two wagons and their livestock made the long trip together. Mr. Moody and Mr. Gentry would take turns each night watching over the livestock to see that none were stolen or strayed, as they camped out on the trail.
On the journey to Jones County, for some reason they passed through Knox County and here Samuel found 200 acres of fine prairie land that was for sale. He purchased the land, but for some reason decided not to remain there and continued on to Jones County. Samuel rented a two story house in Anson to live in until he was to get possession of his newly purchased farm and until his son was born on 7 January 1900. Soon after this they moved out to the farm and drove their livestock there. The Maxwell place had a water well on it, but no windmill, so all of the water had to be hand drawn. This made it necessary for them to drive all of the livestock to the town square in Anson each day and water them.
In 1904, "Uncle Sam" decided to trade for a farm that was further from town. He traded the Maxwell Place and the 200 acres that he had purchased in Knox County to Mr. George Winter for a 525 acre stock farm that was located about eleven miles southwest of Anson near the community of Truby, just south of the Clear Fork of the Brazos River.
"Uncle Sam" was elected Commissioner of Precinct 4, Jones County, in 1908 and served in that capacity for many years. Samuel Cain and his son, John, owned and operated the Truby Cotton Gin from 1911 to 1920, when they sold it to Mr. B. C. Townsend. In the winter of 1925-26, "Uncle Sam" retired and he and his wife, "Betsey" moved back into Anson in a house in the south part of the town.
In 1926, John Jasper Gentry, who was a fine Baptist minister and a nephew to Samuel Cain, was very, very ill with a heart condition. Uncle Sam would go to visit him every week. After one of these visits, as he was leaving, Sam told some of the family, "I don't see why the Lord doesn't take me and let John live and preach, he is so young and could preach for many more years yet". Two weeks later Samuel Cain Gentry was dead and John Jasper Gentry recovered and did preach for another twenty years. Sam's prayer was answered. He died on 18 May 1926 and was buried near Truby in Jones County, Texas.
In the name of God, Amen.
I, ELISHA GENTRY, of Clarke County and State of Georgia, being very sick and weak but of perfect mind and memory, Thanks Be To God; AND as touching such worldly estate wherewith it has pleased God to bless me with in this life, I give, demise and dispose of the agency in the following manner and form: FIRST, I lend my beloved wife NEOMY GENTRY during her life all my land lying on the waters of the Apalatiha River and after her death I give the said land to my two youngest boys CAIN GENTRY AND MICAJAH GENTRY and lend my Negro Man PHILLIP to my beloved wife during her life or widowhood and after her death or marriage I give said negro to my beloved daughter PATIENCE GENTRY: AND again I give to my eldest son ELISHA GENTRY a ewe and lamb and also to ELIJAH GENTRY(two others) a ewe and lamb and to MARTIN GENTRY a ewe and lamb and to DAVID GENTRY my son I give my gray filley and the rest of my property I leave with my beloved wife NEOMY GENTRY all the rest of my stock and household furniture to dispose of as she sees best among them that she has to raise after all lawful dets is paid and the plantation whereon I now live I leave to my beloved wife to dispose of as she may think best:- AND also I leave my beloved son ELISHA GENTRY and my beloved friend JACOB MARTIN Joint Executors and Managers of all my affairs:- AND to take as much of my property, my Negro Man excepted, as shall settle and pay off all my debts: AND this is my last Will and Testament signed and delivered in the presents of us this 3rd day of September in the year of Our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred and Three.
ELISHA (x) GENTRY
| Witness Present:
Daniel T. Pinkston
|* * * * *|
STATE OF GEORGIA
|Personaly [sic] appeared before me in open court, Isaac Luker and Jesse Sample two of the subscribing witnesses to the above Will and being by me duly sworn on the Holy Gospel of God deposeth and saith that they saw the above ELISHA GENTRY sign, seal, publish and declare the within Instrument to be his last Will and Testament and at the time of his so doing he was of sound mind and memory to the best of their knowledge and belief. June 4th 1804|
|Signed * */ J. N. Smith, C.C.O.CC.|
|Recorded the 7th day of June 1804 in Ledger B.A. Folio 9|
(Author's Note. This was typed from a photocopy from the Georgia Department of Archives and History; Clarke County Ordinary Court Wills, "A" Book 1802-1822; page No. 9.)
|1790||Wilkes Co.||Elisha||Taxed for 100A + 1 slave|
|1799||Jackson Co.||Elisha||Tax list|
|1799||Jackson Co.||Elisha||Tax list|
|1800||Colombia Co.||Elisha||Land grant|
|1801||Jackson Co.||Elisha||Tax list|
Jackson Co., 1801)
|Elisha||Tax list (2)|
|1801||Clarke Co.||Elisha||Taxed for 1 slave|
|1803||Clarke Co.||Elisha||Poll tax and taxed for 1 slave|
|1804||Clarke Co.||"Naomi"||Poll tax|
|1805||Jackson Co.||"Naomi"||Taxed for 325A + 1 slave|
|1805||Clarke Co.||Elisha [Jr.?]||Poll tax|
|1806||Clarke Co.||Martin||Poll tax|
|1806||Jackson Co.||"Naome"||Taxed for 105A|
|1806||Clarke Co.||Elisha||Poll tax|
|1810||Morgan Co.||Martin||Tax list|
|1805||Morgan Co.||Cain||Tax list|
THE STATE OF TEXAS
| ) |
I, M. Gentry of the said county of Grayson, being of sound and disposing mind and memory, and being desirous to settle my worldly affairs while I have strength so to do, do make this my last will and testament hereby revoking all others by me made.
I desire and direct that my body be burried in a decent and christain like manner suitable to my circumstances and condition in life.
I give and bequeath to my first wife's children, William Gentry, Jno. Gentry, Samuel Gentry, Sylvanias Gentry, Martha Rigsby, Mary A. Neal, Elizabeth Leonard, Bethenia J. Tomlinson, Susannah Holcomb, Matilda Withrow, & Francis E. Gentry my undivided intrest in the undivided tract of land known as the Samuel Washburn League situated on the Brazos river in Young Co. Texas. Said intrest to be equally divided among them. I also give each of them one horse, cow and calf which they have received, all except Francis E. Gentry, to whom I bequeath one horse, cow and calf, feather bed and bed clothes to be paid when she shall come of age or married without delay by my executrix to be hereafter appointed.
I desire and direct that my just debts be paid by my executrix without delay.
I give, bequeath and demise to my beloved wife, Elizabeth Gentry my homestead including 139 1/2 acres, also 50 1/2 acres of W. C. Herst survey joing me on the east in Fannin County, Texas.
I also give and bequeath to my beloved wife all my personal property of whatsoever name or kind to have and to hold during her natural lifetime. Then to revert to my sons Robert Lee Gentry, George Washington Gentry, Martin Luther Gentry, Columbus Gentry and my daughter Effy May Gentry, the same to be equally divided among them.
I hereby constitute and appoint my beloved wife Elizabeth Gentry my sole executrix of this my Last will and testament.
In testimony whereof I here to set my hand this November the 27th, 1884.
Signed, declared and published by Martin Gentry as his last will and testament in the presence of us the attesting witnesses, who have hereto subscribed our names in the presence of each other and the said Martin Gentry at his special instance and request.
This November the 27th 1884
Residence of Martin Gentry
Witness J. E. Wallace
Witness N. A. Rogers
(Author's Note: THE ENTIRE WILL IS IN MARTIN GENTRY'S OWN HANDWRITING)
William Gentry enlisted on October 14, 1861 at Camp Reeves, Grayson County, Texas. He was 18 years and 9 days old at the time of enlistment. He was Ist Corporal of Capt. Jackson E. McCoole's Co., of Sims' Regiment Volunteers. This company subsequently became Company C, 9th Regiment Texas Cavalry. The 9th (also known as the 4th and as Sims') Regiment Texas Cavalry was accepted into the service of the Confederate States on 14 October 1861 and was reorganized in May 1862. At the time of his enlistment, William Gentry had a horse valued at $85 and equipment valued at $20. William Gentry is listed as being absent on special duty, taking horses to Texas on April 16, 1862. It appears that he remained on this special duty until November or December 1862. On 17 December 1862 he was given the rank of 4th Sergeant of Company C. On the March-April Muster Roll of 1863, he is listed as being absent and sick. On October 20th 1863 he was mounted on a Government horse.
William Gentry was captured and taken prisoner near Columbia, Tennessee on 28 November 1864 by forces under Maj. Gen. Thomas, commanding Dept. of the Cumberland. He was taken to Nashville, Tennessee and then to Louisville, Kentucky. On December 3, 1864 he was transferred to Camp Douglas, Chicago, Illinois. He was discharged at Camp Douglas on 18 June 1865, having been a prisoner of war for 6 months and 21 days.
John Gentry, brother to William Gentry, enlisted on 26 September 1862 at Pilot Grove, Grayson County, Texas. He was seventeen years of age and was enlisted by Capt. J. E. Berry. He is listed as a Private in Company C, 9th Regiment Texas Cavalry (the same company as his older brother). John Gentry was wounded on 24 June 1864 in the neck. His military record does not show the date that he was discharged.
Compiled 1971 - 1985 by J. Bryant Gentry. [At the time of original publication, Bryant resided in Edmond, Oklahoma. He has since died.]
Note. The material republished here is provided as a service to readers. The Gentry Journal believes the facts to be substantially correct as presented by the author but provides no assurance as to the sources or accuracy of details of his research.
© 2002, W.M. Gentry - All rights reserved. This article may be reproduced in whole or in part for non-commercial purposes provided that proper attribution (including author and journal name) is included.