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Joseph Hamilton Daviss Mckee / Martha Elizabeth Witherspoon-Lawrenceberg, Ky
Posted by: jane martin (ID *****6027) Date: October 14, 2005 at 21:03:02
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Kentucky: A History of the State, Battle, Perrin, & Kniffin, 5th ed., 1887, Anderson Co. JOSEPH H. D. McKEE. The McKee family is of Scotch-Irish lineage, and one of the early and prominent pioneer families of the valley of Virginia, western Pennsylvania and Kentucky, and it representatives are scattered throughout the Union. Passing from Scotland to Ireland during the civil wars of the period of William and Mary, strongly espousing the cause of the Protestant Irish, and assisting in settling affairs in that country, they remained and settled in the north of Ireland. In 1737, when a large migration of Scotch-Irish Presbyterians to Pennsylvania and the valley of Virginia took place, five brothers came with that colony. Two of them, John and Robert, settled on a portion of Burden's grant, on Carr's Creek, in what is now Rockbridge County, about eight miles northwest of Lexington. The other three brothers settled in and near Lancaster, Penn., remained at that place until 1760, when William, one of the brothers, moved to Augusta County, Va., from whence his family moved in 1788 to Kentucky, and settled in Mason and Montgomery Counties. The other two brothers moved from Lancaster about the same period to Pittsburgh and Wheeling respectively. Of these two brothers, John and Robert, who settled with the colony on Burden's grant, John, the great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch, had eight children: James, William, Robert, David, Mariam, Mary (the other's name not remembered), and John, by a second marriage. His first wife was killed by Indians in 1763, when a hostile band suddenly fell upon the settlers on Carr's Creek, and massacred twenty-three persons, many families being killed or taken prisoners by them. He died in Rockbridge about the year 1778, his farm still remaining in the possession of his descendants. His brother Robert had only two children: John and William. William married Mary McKee, mentioned above, daughter of John, moved with his family to Kentucky in 1788, and settled in the present county of Garrard, and raised a large family. Robert, the third son of John McKee, of Rockbridge, and grandfather of the subject of his sketch, took an active part in the defense of the western frontier of Virginia against Indians; he was in the battle of Point Pleasant, October 10, 1774, and did service in the Revolution, which soon followed. He married, in 1786, Margaret Hamilton, daughter of Robert Hamilton and Margaret (McKee) Hamilton. Margaret McKee was the daughter of Mariam Brown, who was granddaughter of Margaret Wallace, who claimed to be of the blood of Sir William Wallace. He had two sons by this marriage, John, born in 1787, and Samuel, born in 1789. It may be mentioned that Jean Hamilton, sister of Margaret, married Joseph Daviess, and was the mother of Col. Joseph Hamilton Daviess, who lost his life at the battle of Tippecanoe, November 7, 1811; and of the late Capt. Samuel Daviess, of Harrodsburg, Ky. Robert McKee moved with his family, accompanied by his brother David, to Kentucky in 1790, and settled on a farm a few miles north of Versailles, in Woodford County, while David settled in Jessamine. Having lost his wife three years after his settlement in Kentucky, he married, in 1795, Jane Jack, and by her had four children: Margaret, born in 1797; Mary, in 1799; James, in 1802, and Robert, in 1805. He died in 1812. John McKee, son of Robert and Margaret (Hamilton) McKee, and father of our subject, was born in Rockbridge County, Va., the 21st of October, 1787 (died February 25, 1875). He was brought to Kentucky in 1790, and with his brother Samuel settled in Franklin County in 1808, both opening up adjoining farms five miles south of the city of Frankfort. He took a prominent part in affairs; was in a campaign to Vincennes in 1812, served as captain of militia; was a justice of the peace eighteen years, and high sheriff. He was a Jeffersonian Democrat, fond of reading and study, and held in general respect and esteem. He married, in 1812, Elizabeth, daughter of Col. Anthony Crockett and Mary Robertson, daughter of James Robertson, of Augusta County, Va., and sister of Alexander Robertson, who settled in Mercer County, Ky.--father of Chief Justice George Robertson. By this marriage they had a family of five sons and two daughters: Mary, born in 1813, died young; Robert, in 1815; Anthony, in 1818; Joseph H. D., in 1820; John, in 1823; James, in 1825; and Sarah Margaret, in 1829. Robert resides on the homestead in Franklin; was at one time in charge of the Missouri penitentiary, and for many years a teacher. Anthony studied for a physician, and resides in Missouri. John (deceased) was a farmer. James is a farmer, and resides in Missouri. Sarah Margaret married Robert Julien Wood, of Frankfort, and subsequently moved to Missouri, where the family is now represented, her son, John M. Wood, recently being speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives. Joseph Hamilton Daviess McKee was born in Franklin County, December 13, 1820. His earliest instruction was imparted at the local schools of his neighborhood, and at the age of sixteen he entered Hanover College, Indiana, where he remained for one year, and then enjoyed private instruction under Rev. James Hoge, a highly educated gentleman, and formerly a student at Hanover. In 1840 he began teaching school in Franklin County, and subsequently taught in Trimble County and also in Missouri. In 1844 he commenced the study of law under Judge Thomas B. Monroe, then and for many years judge of the United District Court and founder of Montrose Law School at Frankfort. After attending this law school for two years, he was, on December 10, 1845, duly licensed to practice law by Judges Mason Brown and James Pryor. About this time the war with Mexico began, and he volunteered in the service of the United States, and on the 25th of May, 1846, was commissioned by Gov. Owsley as first lieutenant of the Tenth Company of the First Regiment of Kentucky Volunteer Cavalry, commanded by Col. Humphrey Marshall. He served one year in the army, participating in the battle of Buena Vista, and on returning, located at Lawrence, in 1847, and entered upon the practice of his profession. During that year he attended lectures at the law school of the Louisville University, and was duly graduated, receiving the degree of Bachelor of Laws on March 1, 1848, during the presidency of James Guthrie. He continued to engage in the practice of law until 1850, when he went to San Francisco, Cal., going overland with three companions, and was appointed inspector of customs at that port through the influence of Robert H. Crittenden, of Louisville, at that time deputy collector of the port. Although of opposite politics, he held this position during the administration of President Filmore, and retired on May 25, 1853, with testimonials from the collector certifying to the able, diligent and faithful manner in which he had discharged the various duties assigned him. Returning to Lawrenceburg in 1854, he resumed the practice of law, and represented Anderson County in the State Legislature in 1859-61, taking part in the stormy discussions in that body relating to the State in reference to the war. Finally, however, feeling a warm sympathy for the Southern cause, he repaired to Bowling Green in the fall of 1861, and served as a member of the convention at Russellville, and on the committee which framed the provisional constitution. After the provisional government was formed he became a candidate to represent the Sixth District in the Confederate Congress, but was defeated, having, however, received a very complimentary vote. In 1862 he went South into Georgia and Tennessee, and in the summer of 1863 received an appointment to a clerical position in the second auditor's office at Richmond, where he remained a year. He was then elected by the provisional council as auditor of the provisional government of Kentucky, and filled that office until the close of the war. For a short time in 1865 he operated a store at Natural Bridge, Va., in connection with three partners, but shortly afterward returned to Kentucky and was duly pardoned by President Johnson on July 11, 1865. After his return, Mr. McKee founded the Windsor Female Institute, at Lawrenceburg, with all the powers of a university, which he carried on for two years; but finding it too confining, he resumed the practice of his profession, in which he is still engaged. He was a Democratic candidate for the State Senate from his district in 1872, but there being another Democratic candidate, who divided the vote, a Republican was elected. Mr. McKee is one of the most highly respected and influential citizens of his county, and, besides his professional duties, is also engaged in farming pursuits. In 1854 he married Martha Elizabeth, only daughter of the late Dr. Lewis J. Witherspoon, of Lawrenceburg, and has the following children: Hon. Lewis Witherspoon McKee, formerly county judge of Anderson County, and present State senator from Anderson, Franklin and Mercer Counties, practicing law at Lawrenceburg; John Joseph and William Hamilton McKee, the former a practicing attorney at Jacksonville, Ill, and the latter at Lawrenceburg; Robert Alexander McKee, attending the Kentucky Military Institute; and Misses Mary Ellen, Elizabeth Crockett and Margaret Hawes McKee. McKee Hamilton Brown Wallace Daviess Jack Crockett Robertson Wood Monroe Pryor Witherspoon Pryor Crittenden = Versailles-Woodford-KY Jessamine-KY Frankfort-Franklin-KY Mason-KY Bowling_Green-Warren-KY Trimble-KY Louisville-Jefferson-KY Montgomery-KY Mercer-KY Garrard-KY San_Francisco-San_Francisco-CA Rockbridge-VA Augusta-VA PA GA TN MO IN IL Scotland Ireland

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