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Home: Regional: U.S. States: Missouri: Christian County

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Davis family (1850-1900)
Posted by: Eddie Davis Date: February 23, 2000 at 23:25:49
  of 959

George Washington DAVIS was born February 16, 1826 in Claiborne County, TN. While still living in TN, he married a Jane LAWSON and in 1852 they had a daughter, Mary. Some time between 1852 and 1859 Wash (that is the name he went by) and Jane divorced.

Jane remarried in TN to a John PARKEY or PERKEY and raised at least one other daughter, Vesta.

Wash came to Christian County, Missouri. He first shows up on a deed from Dec. 27, 1859 from Joseph Davis and wife to him. On the 1860 Christian County Census he is shown with a H. Devault, a peddler, living with him. H. may have been a cousin from back in TN.

George Washington Davis married Anne Eliza HART on May 2nd 1861 in Christian County, MO. Anne was the youngest daughter of Henry HART and Barabra (LAMBETH) Hart. They had 6 children that lived past childhood:

1. Leiatitia Davis (1862-1908) married John COX

2. Sarah Frances Davis (1863-1926) married Columbus Jacob PALLETT

3. Edmond L. Davis (1866-1916) married Mae BINGHAM

4. John Thomas Davis (1867-1946) married 1. Mary HAWKINS 2. Ella WILSON

5. Albert Davis (1869-1940) married 1. Katie CULBERSON 2. Dovie PRICE

6. George Washington Davis Jr. (1873-1945) married Nora BINGHAM

Wash's daughter by his first wife came to Missouri and lived with her Dad from at least 1861 until she was married in late 1870. Mary Davis (1852-1945) married John Wiley ESTES.

Wash lived just south of Clever and farmed. Joseph Davis who married Nancy Jane FRAIZER in Christian County, MO was Wash Davis' brother. Joseph was born May 10, 1831 in TN. Joseph married Nancy Jane Frazier on May 24th, 1857. Joseph died on Nov. 17th, 1864, Nancy died on Jan. 11th, 1897. Seeking anything on this family. I just learned he was Wash Davis' brother, so I'm trying to find out all I can about Joseph. This Joseph may have served in the 14th Missouri Cavalry and later in the 8th, in the same company as his brother, Wash.

He is said to have had another brother or cousin who shows up on the 1860 census. This was H. Joshua Davis, who went by the name Jefferson, because he was a Confederate Sympathizer. H. Joshua married Margaret STEELE and they had a son Walter Jefferson, in 1861. H. Joshua, after the birth of his son was planning to head south to join Alf Bolin's outlaw band, and when his cousin or brother Wash Davis heard about it, he killed him in April of 1861. Wash left the area for a while but was soon back.

Wash served in the Union Army during the Civil War in the 14th Missouri State Militia Cavalry Volunteers which later became the 8th Missouri State Militia Cavalry Volunteers. One source wrongly lists him as being in the same regiment that his brother-in-law Roswell Hart was an officer in. Roswell and Wash didn't get along, and I'veheard two versions as why: One that Wash mistreated Anne and Anne would run to her older brother and tell him, which angered Roswell. The other, from a newspaper account of the trial of one of the men that murdered Wash Davis states that Roswell Hart killed a man while an officer in the Enrolled Missouri Militia for that man's money. Wash knew about it and tried to blackmail Roswell to give him a share of the man's money. This story was never proven. In the summer of 1872 or 1873, Roswell and Wash got into a fight, and Roswell went to the state pen for the attempt on Wash's life. Wash was going to be tried for felonious assault in March of 1874, but hewas killed before then.

On December 11th, 1873, two men came to Wash's farm about sunset and asked Anne up at the house if her husband had any feed for their horses that he would sell them. Anne sent them to the barn lot where Wash was feeding the pigs along with one of his sons. The two men walked toward the barn with Wash, and one man pulled out a pistol and shot Wash 3 times in the back of the head, killing him. They escaped, and after a long story that would make a very good western, Sam Orr and Allen Cox were arrested for his murder, tried and executed. Orr was the first man executed in Lawrence County (they had a change of venue). Roswell was tried as an accomplice and acquitted, though most people in Christian County thought he was involved. He went to Texas for a while to escape the controversy. My Grandpa Albert and his brothers carried guns for many years after that, just in case they ever ran into Roswell on a country road. Fortunately, they never did.

Anne remarried very briefly to a Thomas Stowe, about 1876, but by 1880 she was divorced and had taken the name Davis again. She died in 1899 and is buried beside Wash Davis at Wise Hill Cemetery. Wash and Joseph were sons of Alexander and Mary (Gouger) Davis of Claiborne County, Tennessee. A lot of eastern TN people settled in and around Christian County. Wash's daughter Mary claimed she was born in "Jerome" County, Tennessee. There are no counties, nor ever has there been ever named Jerome. In fact, there is no towns, townships, rivers, mountains, ect. named Jerome. Some think she meant Rhone, but the census records don't jive with this theory.

So I'm seeking anyone who knows of this line or any of the related lines. I live in Springfield, Missouri and know all about the Harts and Lambeths. But I'm seeking any information on any old family stories about Wash Davis, the Hart family, the Estes family or the others mentioned in this query. I'm especially interested in finding a photo of Wash Davis. My Davis family is having a family reunion in July, and I'd love to show all my cousins a picture of Wash Davis and/or Anne Hart.

I have a much more detailed outline of Wash Davis and related lines, including pictures of some of Wash's kids and relatives, and scanned newspaper accounts of the trial of Sam Orr at my webpage below. The URL is

Wash was rumored to be related to Jefferson Davis, the Confederate President, but this was a common claim of Davis families after the Civil War. Some have suggested that he might be related to Arkansas Governor Jeff Davis instead of the Confederate President. I've researched both lines and honestly don't know.


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