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William Walker, 1824-1860, genealogy
Posted by: Jose Mejia (ID *****3452) Date: October 14, 2002 at 15:38:21
  of 880

Genealogy of Walker

Generation No. 1

1. ?1 WALKER
Children of ? WALKER are:
2.       i.       JAMES2 WALKER, d. 1874, Louisville, Kentucky.
       ii.       ROBERT WALKER, b. Glsgow, Scotland.

Robert Walker born in Glasgow, Scotland; emigrated to the United States in 1820; inherited a piece of property in Nashville at the dead of an uncle in 1815.

       iii.       JANET WALKER, m. WYATT COLLIER.

Janet Walker born in Glasgow, Scotland; emigrated to the United States in 1820; married Wyatt Collier

Generation No. 2

2. JAMES2 WALKER (?1) died 1874 in Louisville, Kentucky. He married MARY NORVELL August 07, 1823 in First Baptist Church of Nashville, Tennessee, daughter of LIPSCOMB NORVELL.

James Walker born in Glasgow, Scotland; emigrated to the United States in 1820, in company of his brother Robert and sister Janet. Two years after his arrival, James owned a 752-acre farm next to Indian Creek in Shelby County. He lived in Nashville. Tennessee until after the Civil War, but lived in Louisville, Kentucky until his dead in 1874.

Mary Norvell was also of Scot descent and a native of Glasgow, Kentucky; daughter of Lipscomb Norvell and grand-daughter of James Norvell from Albemarle county, Virginia.
Children of JAMES WALKER and MARY NORVELL are:
       i.       WILLIAM3 WALKER, b. May 08, 1824, Nashville, Tennessee; d. September 12, 1860, Trujillo, Honduras, executed by a firing squad.

In the mid-nineteenth century, adventurers known as filibusters participated in military actions aimed at obtaining control of Latin American nations with the intent of annexing them to the United States—an expression of Manifest Destiny, the idea that the United States was destined to control the continent. Only 5' 2" and weighing 120 pounds, Walker was a forceful and convincing speaker and a fearless fighter who commanded the respect of his men in battle.

Born in 1824 in Tennessee, Walker graduated from the University of Nashville at the age of 14 and by 19 had earned a medical degree. He practiced medicine in Philadelphia, studied law in New Orleans, and then became co-owner of a newspaper, the Crescent, where the young poet Walt Whitman worked. When the paper was sold, Walker moved on to California, where he worked as a reporter in San Francisco before setting up a law office in Marysville.

When he was 29, his freebooting nature led him to become the leader of a group plotting to detach parts of northern Mexico. Recruiting a small army, he sailed to Baja California and conquered La Paz, declaring himself president of Lower California. He then decided to extend his little empire to include Sonora, and renamed it "The Republic of Sonora". Marching on to the Colorado River, Walker found himself faced with harsh conditions and a high desertion rate, forcing him to retreat to California, where he surrendered to U.S. authorities on charges of violating U.S. neutrality laws.

Acquitted of criminal charges, Walker next turned his attention to Central America. In Nicaragua, chaos reigned, as forces known as Democrats and Legitimists fought each other. The leader of the Democratic faction in Nicaragua invited Walker to bring an army and join the struggle against the Legitimists. In 1855, with his army of 58 Americans, later called by stateside romantics, "The Immortals"” he landed in Nicaragua. Within a year, leading "The Immortals" and a native rebel force, he routed the Legitimists and captured Granada, their capital. His success roused concern in the other Central American countries, especially Costa Rica, which sent in a well-armed force to invade Nicaragua. Walker’s army repelled the invasion, but a poorly executed counter attack into Costa Rica failed, and a war of attrition continued, in which disease killed more soldiers on both sides than enemy bullets.

Other enemies plagued Walker. Cornelius Vanderbilt, the shipping magnate, seeking control of the San Juan River-Lake Nicaragua route from the Caribbean to the Pacific, armed Walker’s enemies, while the British navy, attempting to thwart American influences in the region, regularly harassed efforts to supply him. In spite of these factors, Walker had himself elected president of Nicaragua. The United States briefly recognized his government but never sent him aid. Soon the other countries of Central America formed an alliance against him, and in mid 1857 he surrendered once again to a U.S. naval officer and returned to the U.S.

Landing first in New Orleans, he was greeted as a hero. He visited President Buchanan, then went on to New York, all the time seeking support for a return to Nicaragua. But support waned as returning soldiers reported military blunders and poor management.

Nevertheless he succeeded in raising another army, and returned to Nicaragua in late 1857. Again thwarted by the British navy, he abandoned his third Latin American invasion.

Still undaunted and seeking support for yet another venture, Walker wrote a book, The War in Nicaragua. Knowing that his best prospects lay in the South, he assumed a strong pro-slavery stance. This strategy proved successful, and in 1860 he once again sailed south. Unable to land in Nicaragua due to the ever-present British, he landed in Honduras, planning to march overland, but the British soon captured him and turned him over to the Hondurans. Six days later, at the age of 36, he was executed by a firing squad. The Walker saga had ended. This enigmatic man had come close to altering the history of the continent. Had he been successful, he might have brought several Central American countries into the United States as pro-southern states, altering the balance in Congress and postponing The Civil War.

Burial: Trujillo, Honduras

       ii.       LIPSCOMB NORVELL WALKER, b. 1826; d. April 26, 1857, High seas, Empire City steamer.

Lipscomb Norvell Walker born in 1826; served a year in Mexico as lieutenant in the Third Regiment of Tennessee Volunteers; he joined his brother William in Nicaragua in 1856 where "when he is not drinking he is talking, and when not talking he is drinking. He has held the office of captain till reduced to the rank a few days ago for perpetual drunkenness." The official record reads "Captain L. Norval (sic) Walker Is dropped from the army on account of intemperance…by command of W. Walker, General Commander in Chief, on March 29, 1856."
L. Norvell, who had fallen "asleep" (drunk) in the church of Rivas, Nicaragua and woke up just in time to flee ahead of the enemy rushing in, was reinstalled Captain and appointed Aide-de-camp to the General-in-Chief in April 29, 1856. He died at high seas, on the Empire City steamer, between Havana and New Orleans on April 26, 1857

Burial: Between Havana, Cuba and New Orleans, USA

       iii.       JAMES WALKER, b. 1828, Nasville, Tennesee; d. May 15, 1856, Masaya, Nicaragua.

James Walker born in 1828 joined his brother Williams in Nicaragua; was appointed Captain of Company A; he died three week after his arrival of "inflammatory rheumatism" in Masaya, Nicaragua on May 15 and was buried in Granada, Nicaragua on Friday, May 16, 1856 as Capt. Walker.
Before his death, James confessed himself and received the holy sacrament administered by the Catholic Church.

Burial: May 16, 1856, Granada, Nicaragua

       iv.       ALICE WALKER, b. 1831; m. LAWRENCE RICHARDSON.

Alice Walker born in 1831; married to Lawrence Richardson; they had their children at Paducah, Kentucky.

       v.       JOSEPH WALKER, b. 1836.

Joseph Walker born in 1836, but died soon after birth

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