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Samuel B. Jackson 1830-1909
Posted by: Jeff (ID *****1511) Date: May 01, 2011 at 11:41:30
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I'm attempting to trace the lineage of my GG Grandfather, Samuel B. Jackson. A great deal is known about Sam's descendants - yet we have very little information about his beginnings.

The Jackson family Bible record states that Samuel B. Jackson was born in Franklin County, Tennessee, but conflicting information exists as to his date of birth. He gave his age as forty and forty-nine in the 1870 and 1880 census records of Williamson County, Tx. respectively, indicating that he was born in 1830 or 1831. However, 1836 is the date engraved on his tombstone, which presumably was placed there by his children, all now deceased. We do not know which birth date is correct, but Samuel died April 2, 1909, and is buried at the Hawley Cemetery in Jones County, Texas. According to family tradition, the Jackson family migrated to Texas in the early 1850's and settled near Round Rock in Williamson County. However, at this writing, we have not been able to confirm the names of Samuel's parents.

Sam Jackson was a farmer and cattleman, like most men of his time. In 1858 he had rented, from Bate Berry, twenty acres of the Berry land, occupied it - and soon had it under cultivation. It was undoubtedly through this association that he met Catherine Berry, Bate's sister, and the young couple were soon married.

They lived for twenty-eight years on the Berry League among other members of her large family. There, all eleven of their children were born, seven boys and four girls. When Catherine's father died in 1866, she received 200 acres of the League as her part of his estate. Sam attended to this acreage with the help of his large family of boys. The mill and millpond stood on this portion of the League, as indicated by several transactions in the Deed Records of the county.

When the Civil War began in 1861, Sam enlisted in R. C. Hart's Militia Company, composed of Williamson County men, which was designated as the 27th Brigade, Texas Militia. As far as we have been able to determine, Sam spent about a year in the militia. According to his grandson, Marshall Jackson, Sam was also a freighter during the war, hauling supplies and ammunition for the army.

In 1887, Sam and Catherine decided to leave their old home and move on to a new frontier. Perhaps they were influenced by Catherine's desire to be nearer her mother, for Hannah Berry had moved to Callahan County in 1883. Most of Catherine's brothers and sisters had sold out and left Williamson County also. Consequently, the Jackson's chose a section of land in Jones County, Texas, a few miles north of what would become the city of Abilene. They were among the first settlers of that area. They granted right-of-way through their property to the Wichita Valley Railroad on the promise that the company would erect a station there. The railroad came through in 1906 and established the town of Hawley.

Sam and Catherine did not sell her portion of the Berry League until 1890, after the move to Jones County. By holding on to it for almost twenty-five years, they realized $4,000 on the 200 acres, a handsome profit in those days. Their oldest daughter, Anna Belle, had married before the Jacksons left Williamson County. The next decade saw the marriage of five more of the children, and the inevitable scattering of the family. The boys who stayed at home continued to work on the farm with their father, and life went on quietly in Jones County during the period elsewhere known as "The Gay Nineties".

Sam Jackson was a rather contentious man at times, and was considered somewhat eccentric in his later years. According to the recollection of his grandson, Archie D. Jackson, Sam set fire to Catherine's rocking chair. Hopefully, she wasn't sitting in it at the time. Their differences finally became so great that they were divorced in 1902, after forty-three years of marriage. Since the farm in Jones County was in Catherine's name, she gave Sam the income from seventy-five acres. He lived there alone until his death seven years later. Because of his peculiar habits, stories abounded that he was a wealthy man and that he had buried gold in the yard around his house. Curiosity seekers and treasure hunters came to try their luck at digging up Sam's "treasure"', but to the family's knowledge, nothing was ever found.

Sam's monument, a tall shaft in the center of the Hawley Cemetery, has the following inscription:

"The debt is paid, The dream is O'er... Life is but a shade.

In life, he stated that he was "from Tennessee," yet rarely, if ever spoke of his family. Much speculation has been made about the reasons behind his tendency to remain tight lipped about his family, and obviously he had his reasons. What those reasons might have been are very likely to have been buried with Sam.

It is believed that the earliest record we have showing Sam's family of origin is the 1850 Mine Creek, Hempstead County, Arkansas Census which lists the family of Samuel and Elisabeth Jackson. In this census, Samuel B. Jackson isn't named.

In the year 1850, Sam would have been about twenty years of age. While this is old enough to be out on one's own - we have few records of Sam until he began farming the acreage he rented from Bate Berry.

Recent research efforts have found living descendants of both Irvin and Andrew Jackson. Its believed that both Irvin and Andrew are brothers of Sam. In keeping with Sam's tight-lipped demeanor about his beginnings, neither Irvin (Hog) Jackson nor Andrew (Buck) Jackson told anyone - anything - other than they were "from Tennessee." Their descendants are as unaware of their family origins - as we are about Sam's.

It's also been confirmed that Sam had a sister named Huldah. She married a man named Hiram C. Slone/Sloan on 25 March 1845 in Hempstead County, Ar. The same 1850 census shows Huldah Slone - without a husband - living in close proximity to Samuel and Elisabeth Jackson - who are believed to be her parents. It also shows that Andrew Jackson was living with her in 1850. Speculation is that he was fulfilling some responsibilities of her deceased husband since she had small children to raise at the time.

Piecing together Sam Jackson's family of origin (in early years) - might look something like this:

DAD - Samuel Jackson, born about 1790 - South Carolina
MOM - Elisabeth Jackson, born about 1809 - Kentucky

SON - Andrew Jackson, born about 1822 - Tennessee
DAU - Huldah Jackson, born about 1823 - Tennessee
SON - Samuel B. Jackson, born about 1830 - Tennessee
SON - Irvin Jackson, born about 1834 - Tennessee

Speculation exists that this family may have been living in either the "Free State of Franklin" (1784-1789) or in Winchester, Tennessee (created 11-22-1809) BEFORE their migration to Mississippi. The family bible lists “Franklin County.” To date, no records have been located to confirm, however.

1850 Mine Creek (Hempstead County) Arkansas Census

.........taken on the 20th of December, 1850.

Dwelling 27

Samuel Jackson - HEAD - age 60, Male, Farmer, Born in South Carolina, about 1790.
Elisabeth Jackson - Wife - age 41, Female, Born in Kentucky, about 1809.
Daniel Jackson - Laborer - age 22, Male, Born in Tennessee, about 1828.
John Jackson - Laborer - age 19, Male, Born in Tennessee, about 1831.
Irvin Jackson - Laborer - age 16, Male, Born in Tennessee, about 1834.
(I believe this is probably "Hog" Jackson.)
Bl?? Jackson - Laborer - age 13, Female, Born in Mississippi, about 1837.
Elisabeth Jackson - age 12, Female, Born in Mississippi, about 1838.
Avery Jackson - age 10, Female, Born in Mississippi, about 1840.
Ami? Jackson - age 7, Female, Born in Arkansas, about 1843.
Mary Jackson - age 6, Female, Born in Arkansas, about 1844.

(If this is the family of Samuel B. Jackson - then in 1850, he was about 20 years of age. Clearly he would have been old enough to have been on his own by this time.

Records have confirmed the relationship between Samuel B. Jackson and Hulda (Jackson) Slone proving they were brother and sister.

This family's migrations are interesting:

*1822 ~ 1835: Tennessee
1837 ~ 1840: Mississippi
1843 ~ 1850: Arkansas

*Dates based upon birth dates listed in census and are not exact.

Dwelling 28

Huldah? C. Slone - age 27, Female, Born in Tennessee, about 1823
(This is a daughter of Sam and Elisabeth because she married Hiram C. Slone on 25 March 1845 in Hempstead County, Ar. Is he already deceased by 1850? If so, this may explain the presence of her brother, Andrew within this dwelling.)

George Slone - age 5, Male, Born in Arkansas, about 1855.
Ami Slone - age 4, Female, Born in Arkansas, about 1856.
Mary Slone - age 4, Female, Born in Arkansas, about 1858.
Andrew Jackson - Laborer, age 28, Male, Born in Tennessee, about 1822.
(I believe this is Andrew "Buck" Jackson, son of Samuel and Elisabeth.)

Carefully searching through the "Hempstead NY Jackson" family tree for linkage has yet to reveal a solid link between these families. Given the extensive research that's been done for this line, especially in/around the Tennessee area in the early 1800's – chances are good that Samuel B. Jackson's family or origin is indeed included there.

Samuel B. Jackson's descendants are well documented, and most of the information above can be found in the book, “John Berry and his Children,” published in 1985. Sam's 1859 marriage to Catherine Ann Berry, and the Berry family's extensive research efforts have provided today's researcher's with a starting point for additional research into his family origins.

I'd very much appreciate anyone – who may have additional information about this family line to contact me. This is an ongoing research effort that may take years to complete, and progress to date has been very slow. Always interested in hearing from other Jackson researchers to compare notes.

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