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Re: Frank James Said That Jesse James did Not Die In 1882
Posted by: Rollie Taylor (ID *****5237) Date: May 03, 2009 at 07:03:01
In Reply to: Re: Frank James Said That Jesse James did Not Die In 1882 by Betty Dorsett Duke of 46472

Betty, thanks for your prompt response.
I am quite familiar with the copyright laws and trust that you will respect those same copyright laws as well when including material in your new book. I can't imagine that there is anything in your book for which I would ever wish to copy or use.
1.       When and where did the real James Lafayette Courtney die?
MY REPLY; If I understand your response to my questions, “When and where did the real James Lafayette Courtney die, and where was he buried?”, after struggling though the verbose response, the short, concise answer is “Nobody knows.” The cited e-mail from David Hedgpeth begins with “I think”, which does not qualify as fact. All subsequent discussion of the Haun-Eubanks family is irrelevant.

We do agree that James Lafayette Courtney and James Haun were 2 different individuals. James Lafayette Courtney, born 31 October 1846 in Hamblen County, Tennessee, was the son of Stephen Courtney (a.k.a Andrew Jackson Haun). James Haun, born 25 May 1847, in Tennessee, was the son of Adam Haun, and, as Hedgpeth stated, died 18 October 1923 in Lincoln County, Oklahoma. There is no proof that James Haun ever used an alias. Speculation that James Haun changed his name appears to be based on the 1920 Oklahoma census of Lincoln County, where the enumerator listed him as John T. rather than James T. Haun. Census records are not notarized documents. Since you state that his descendant, Mary Purdin, was unaware that James Haun used an alias, it’s a big jump from a probable census error to conclude a Federal investigation is imminent and warrants the adoption of an alias.

"On March 29, 2000 David Hedgpeth sent me the following email explaining what may have become of the real James L. Courtney (written verbatim);
“I think that the identity question of James L. Courtney/James L. Haun may have an answer. Check this possibility:
James L. Haun (1847-1924) married in Illinois in 1871 to Susan Elizabeth Eubanks (1850-1924). They moved from Illinois in 1880 to Chautagua Co., KS. By 1900 they lived in Meeker, Lincoln Co., OK. Both are buried there. They had 7 children.
James L. Courtney (1846-1943) married in Texas in 1871 to Mary E. Barron, and had 8 children, all born in Texas.
James L. Courtney and James L. Haun are different people. For some unexplained reason James L. Haun was James L. in 1880, James Haun in 1900, Taylor S. Haun in 1910 and John T. Haun in 1920. I guess the name changes ran in the family, perhaps like father, like son. (David explains this statement in the following chapter.)
Also Harold Haun in his 1981 research paper titled, “What’s in a Name” identifies James Haun of Chautagua Co., KS and Lincoln Co., OK as the son of Stephen Courtney/Andrew Jackson Haun and Dianna D. Andruss. I can’t argue with a good point. More study is needed to fine-tune the details.
I find it intriguing that James Haun began assuming different aliases at about the same time my great-grandfather applied for a Federal Disability Pension. The real James L. Courtney was a Union soldier and suffered an injury during the Civil War. Did my great-grandfather obtain the information needed to apply for James L. Courtney’s pension? My great-grandfather, as James L. Courtney, was awarded the pension but since ample proof exists that he was wealthy and didn’t need it, did he forward the funds to the man it actually belonged to -- James L. Courtney aka James Haun? James Courtney aka James Haun may have even had the required physical because a doctor’s report included in James L. Courtney’s pension file said he was approximately 6’ tall.
From 1900 through 1923 James Haun, a blacksmith, lived in South Choctaw Township, Lincoln Co., Oklahoma. Why would a man stay in the same location yet assume different aliases? Those in the community knew him as James Haun which indicates that he wasn’t hiding from local law enforcement. He obviously did not want to receive U. S. mail under the name James Haun between 1900 and 1910. Was he hiding from the Federal Government because he didn’t want an investigation that may blow the name switches sky high?
Quantrill’s Guerrillas are known for their hatred of the Feds. Did my great-grandfather obtain that pension out of pure revenge? According to the pension papers he claimed to be physically incapacitated, but he wasn’t. Some who personally knew him, including Mae, saw him climbing a tall ladder at the age of ninety to retrieve a bee hive from a tall tree. One picture shows him in wheel chair, but according to Mae that was due to a bad ankle and he didn’t use it all the time. George Roming personally knew my great-grandfather and said that when he was well advanced in years, late eighties or nineties, he got down on his knees with a sledge hammer and drove stakes in place to hold a bridge over Deer Creek. The Feds obviously became aware of his ruse as evidenced by the following letter from field officer, G. M. Milburn of San Antonio, Texas (written verbatim):
“In compliance with the memorandum of the Solicitor, dated December 5, 1935, investigation was conducted in the above named cause (James “J.” Courtney, No. C-2 549 296, Subject: Civil War Pensioner) and the following report is submitted for consideration of the Chief Attorney, San Antonio, Texas.
The pensioner, his wife, and a son live on a farm, owned by the pensioner, located about 7 miles northwest of Troy, Texas. Apparently they are in comfortable financial circumstances. For several days, the pensioner has been confined to bed and under the care of a physician for an acute illness but, prior thereto, his general physical condition as been good considering his age. He is mentally bright and converses intelligently, and is able to read and write. He is frequently in town (Troy, Texas) where he transacts business and is able to walk about without a cane or any other support. He receives and personally cashes his pension checks and disburses the funds.”
I contacted one of James Haun’s descendants, the now deceased Mary Purdin of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and asked if she knew why James Haun had changed his names so many times. She said she was not aware that he had. I then asked if James Haun had served in the Civil War and she said that she didn’t believe he had, but wondered why since he was the right age to have served. She shared a copy of James Haun’s original marriage license with me showing that he was born in Washington County, (the state is illegible but looks like either MO or TN), and married Susan Eubanks from Illinois. Washington County caught my attention immediately because the Certificate of War service record for the real James L. Courtney shows that he was a native of Washington, Tennessee. Coincidence? I don’t think so.
I then requested photographs of James Haun and Ms. Purdin gladly obliged. Upon receiving them I was amazed at the strong resemblance between James Haun and my great-grandfather. (See Photo Comparison section.) However James Haun appears to have been smaller in both height and build than my great-grandfather. Ms. Purdin said James Haun was around 5’ 10” to 6’ -- the height of the real James L. Courtney according to his military records. James L. Courtney’s military record also shows that he had blue eyes and dark hair – just like James Haun. As stated earlier my great-grandfather was allegedly around 6’ 4’ and was well built until his later years. Those who knew him personally say he was fair complected with blue eyes and sandy-colored hair. It’s plain to see just by his physical description alone that my great-grandfather was not the real James L. Courtney.
Just as there was a real James L. Courtney there was probably a real James Haun--this name switching could be never ending. Genealogical information on James Haun follows, but please keep in mind all of his aliases:
Name: James Taylor Haun; Sex: Male; Birth: 25 MAY 1847 in Tennessee; Death: 18 OCT 1923;
Father: Adam Haun b: 13 MAR 1820 in Grainger County, Tennessee;
Mother: Mary Ann Elliot born: 13 AUG 1818 in Blount County, Tennessee;
Marriage: Susan Elizabeth Eubanks born: 18 OCT 1850; Married: 25 OCT 1871.
Children: Eunice Augusta Haun b: 27 JUL 1871; Norman Spencer Haun b: 11 FEB 1875; Clarence Adam Haun b: 24 MAR 1877; Jessica Maud Haun; James Samuel Haun b: 15 JUN 1882; Oda Gertrude Haun b: 5 AUG 1886; and Herbert Grover Haun b: 13 APR 1889."

2. See answer #1.

3. Why did James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James), write in his diary , in the event that his diary was lost, "James L Courtney this book bought June 28 1871 at Decator texas for 50 cents. If the oner should be found dead his unkle lives in cass co. mo. His address is as follows E. L. Andruss Brosley PO Cass Co Mo. If the oner should be found dead the person who finds this will please rite immediately to E. L. Andruss Brosley PO Cass Co Mo."?
MY REPLY: We agree that your great-grandfather was in Texas when he purchased that diary in Decatur, Wise County, Texas, but my question remains unanswered. Why would Jesse James have written in the diary the name and address of an uncle of James Lafayette Courtney? James Lafayette Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) had an infinite number of names, places, and addresses that he could have written in the diary, but the actual entry he chose, E. L. Andruss is the name of a brother of Diannah Darthulla Andruss, mother of James Lafayette Courtney.

This entry in the diary states that James L. Courtney bought the book June 18, 1871. The exploits of Jesse James include the following:
“Four members of the JJames-Younger Gang robbed the Ocobock Brothers' Bank of Corydon, Iowa taking $6,000 June 3, 1871. No one was injured.”
“In the infamous failed attempt to to rob the First National Bank of Northfield, Minnesota September 7, 1876, the James-Younger Gang was destroyed. Bank cashier Heyman refused to open the safe and ducked down. Angered, Jesse put a pistol to his head and shot him. The shot was heard beyond the bank and when the bank alarm began to go off the Northfield citizens opened fire upon the gang. Charley Pitts and Bill Chadwell were killed. Cole, Jim and Bob Younger were badly wounded but managed to escape. However, they were captured just two weeks later. Frank and Jesse escaped back to Missouri, unharmed.”
MY REPLY: Am I being asked to believe that James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) traveled over 1,000 miles from Texas to Minnesota to rob a bank, and over 1000 miles back to Texas, just a few months before his 3rd child, Lillie Jane Courtney, was born 2 December 1876 in Falls County, Texas?
My great-grandfather had left Missouri and was enroute to Texas when he purchased that diary. He did write the information you quoted, but he also signed this diary JWJ and J. James on different pages of this diary. I don't believe Jesse James would have signed his real name on the front page. A sheriff did come to his camp in Texas and my great-grandfather wrote "I let him have one of my pistols." I thought that was pretty cool--he "let him" have it. Now what if that sheriff had looked through his belongings and saw plainly written: "I'm really Jesse W. James even though I signed this diary James L. Courtney. If the owner should be found dead please contact my brother Frank James or my mother Zerelda James Samuel in Clay County, Missouri."

4. Why did James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) attend the funeral of Robert Wesley Haun, younger brother of James L. Courtney, in Pawnee County, Oklahoma in March 1928 (identified as J. L. of Troy, Texas in the obituary)?
MY REPLY; My question remains unanswered. Census records and other records indicate Robert Wesley Haun a.k.a. Courtney was a younger brother of James Lafayette Courtney, both of whom were sons of Stephen Courtney a.ka. Andrew Jackson Haun and Diannah Darthulla Andruss. Please cite verifiable sources that support your claim that both James L. Courtney and Jesse James were cousins of Robert Wesley Courtney a.k.a. Haun. Hedgepeth’s theory is hearsay and not credible.
Robert Wesley Courtney aka Robert Wesley Haun was not only the real James L. Courtney's cousin, he was Jesse James' cousin too. And if Dr. David Hedgpeth's theory is right, Robert W. Courtney aka Robert W. Haun may have been Jesse James' half-brother.

5. Why did James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) write in his diary, when Andrew Jackson Haun, a.k.a. Stephen Courtney died, “Paws Death November the 15 1882 Died in Kansas in Moras Co He was borned in East Tenesee and moved to Misouri in 1851 and he Professed Religion in 1852 and was Licensed to Preach and in 1864 he moved to Miami County Kansas and lived there until his death. His funeral preached fro 2 Timothy 4 Chapter and Vs 7, and 8. Preached January the 28, 1883. Hymn 568, Methodist hymn. I would not live always & ask not To Stay”
MY REPLY: As I understand the response, the answer is, “We don’t know”, since “may have been” and “theory” do not rise to the level of fact, no matter how strong the theory.
James aka James L. Courtney may have written that because Andrew Jackson Haun may have really been Rev. Robert Sallee James. Rev. James was Jesse James' father. (This is Dr. David Hedgpeth's theory but it is my copyright.) David presents a strong case for this theory.

6. Why did James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) receive an Easter card addressed to Mr. J. L. Courtney in Troy, Texas, from “Your mother”, mailed from Parkerville, Kansas?
-----------------------------------------------------------MY REPLY: My question remains unanswered. Although it cannot be proved that Zereda James Samuel never lived in Morris County, Kansas, it can be proved that Zerelda James Samuel died February 10, 1911, and could not have sent the Easter card in question in 1913.
"Because his mother, Zerelda James Samuel, probably sent him that card and signed it "Your mother". After all, Jesse was using the alias of James L. Courtney in Texas and she would not have addressed it to Jesse W. James.
Some claim that a postcard mailed to my great-grandfather signed “Mother” and mailed from Morris County, Kansas proves that he was the real James L. Courtney. It will interest them to know, if they don’t already know, that Jesse James’ mother, Zerelda James Samuel, is also said to have lived in Morris County, Kansas. Sure enough, Jesse James’ name is mentioned in both Courtney and Haun family stories. The following email dated 8-7-99 was sent to David Hegdpeth from Harold Haun’s aunt, Derexa Seth (written verbatim):
…After reading your post this morning, my husband Laryl and I were discussing the Courtney/Haun story. He reminded me that local family members have told the story of hearing about Jesse James, his brother, and his mother staying here for a period of time. They stayed in a house east of Parkerville, Morris County, Kansas where my sister-in-law now lives. What connection they had to the family, if any, I don't know. However, it would make one think they might have been doing more than just ‘passing through’. Could they have known the Courtney’s/Hauns? Also, people with the surname of Black reportedly owned most of the land east of Parkerville to the small town of Kelso, which is several miles, in the early days. Harriett married a Black, right? My sister-in-law’s farm probably was owned by the Blacks at one time. Then again, maybe there is no connection.”

7. Why was James L. Haun, age 71, identified as a son of Mrs. D. D. Haun in the Petition for Letters of Administration in Morris County, Kansas, when she died 8 January 1917? (James Lafayette Courtney was born 31 October 1846.)

My question has not been answered. I find no significance in the quote, "When stemm and tryst James L. Courtney is my heist.", especially in view of the literary and spelling skills exhibited by your great-grandfather in his record of ‘Paws death’ in his diary.
We agree that the real James Courtney, identified as James L. Haun in the Petition for Letters of Administration of Morris County, Kansas, was the son of Mrs. D. D. Haun. This proves that James L. Haun a.k.a. James L. Courtney, born in Tennessee in 1846 or 1847, was living. In fact, her son, James Lafayette Courtney was living in Falls County, Texas. If there was a James Haun living in 1917, he should be found in one or more census records, 1880 to 1910, inclusive. James T. Haun, son of Adam Haun, was living in Lincoln County, Oklahoma, in 1917, but was not the son of Mrs. D. D. Haun of Kansas.
Rootsweb World Connect has a posting for the families of Adam Haun. One of his several children by two wives was James Taylor Haun., born 25 May 1847 in Tennessee. The following seven census records document that fact.
1850 TN census, Jefferson Co, microfilm page 387a, line 33
Adam Haun, age 30, TN; Jane, age 24, TN; James T. Haun, age 3, TN
1860 IL census, Washington Co, microfilm page 865b, line 34
Adam Haun, age 40, TN; Jane, age 34, TN; Jas. T. Haun, age 13, TN
1870 IL census, Washington Co, microfilm page 378b, line 19.
Adam Haun, age 50, b. TN; Jane, age 45, b. TN; James T. Haun, age 23
1880 KS census, Chautauqua Co, microfilm page 302D, line 40
James T. Haun, age 33 TN TN TN Blacksmith
Susan E. age 29 IL GA IL Keeping house
1900 OK census, Lincoln Co, microfilm page 184A, line 4..
James T.(?) Haun age 53 May 1847 TN TN TN
Susan age 49 Oct 1850 IL GA GA
1910 OK census, Lincoln Co, microfilm page 246B, line 86
Taylor S. Haun age 62 TN TN TN
Susan E. age 59 IL GA IL
1920 OK census, Lincoln Co, microfilm page 234A, line 30.
John T. Haun age 72 TN TN TN
Susan B. age 69 IL GA IL


Because the real James Courtney aka James Haun was her son.

My great-grandfather apparently took the alias of James Courtney when the real James Courtney killed off his real name. That's why my gret-grandfather wrote this rhyme in his diary: "When stemm and tryst James L. Courtney is my heist."

8. Why did James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) save a collection of correspondence between James L. Courtney (a.k.a. Jesse James) and the Haun family of Kansas?
If true, that would be a reason to retain correspondence. Please cite verifiable sources that prove that Jesse James and the Andrew Jackson Haun family of Kansas were cousins.

They were his cousins and they may have been his real father, stepmother, and half-siblings.

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