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Bill Morgan - Newt Knight Jones Co. MS
Posted by: Ken Slade Date: April 14, 2001 at 21:33:27
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Which Bill Morgan was allegedly murdered by Newt Knight?

Some of the Knight, Morgan, Carter, and Yawn researchers say that Newt Knight allegedly murdered Bill Morgan about 1863. Most have said that the Bill Morgan who was killed was William Newt Morgan, born abt 1845, who married Newt’s sister, Martha Ann Knight.

I believe that the Bill Morgan who was allegedly murdered by Newt Knight was not the William Morgan who married Newt’s sister. I believe it was William Morgan’s father. His father’s name was also William Morgan, and he was born in LA abt 1820. Some say that the Bill Morgan who was murdered was a Louisiana man with a “checkered past.” The William Morgan, born abt 1820 LA was my great-great grandfather.

Here is the family as I see it. Some of the information was sent to me by Pam Mann.

..1 William Morgan, b. abt 1820 LA; d. bef 1870
.....+Elizabeth Rayborn, b. 3 Sep 1808 TN; d. 12 Apr 1900 MS
.......2 Sarah Ann Morgan, b. abt 1839
.......2 Vinson Morgan, b. abt 1841
.......2 William Newt Morgan, b. 1845; d. 1926
..........+Martha Ann Knight, b. 1846
..........+Mary E. Carter, b. 19 May 1847; d. 1 Dec 1914
............3 Lucy Morgan, b. abt 1868
..............+Solomon Prentiss Carter (m. 26 Dec 1885)
............3 William Vinson Morgan, b. 1871; d. 1942
..............+Mattie Crosby, b. 1871; d. 1911
............3 Sarah Isabelle Morgan, b. 1873; d. 1911
..............+Lowery Crosby (m. 20 Dec 1896)
............3 Mary Jane Morgan, b. 17 Oct 1874; d. 6 Jun 1955
..............+Asa Benjamin Morgan, b. 26 Dec 1871; d. 19 Aug 1949 (m. 13 Dec 1894)
............3 John Prentiss Morgan, b. 14 Oct 1879; d. 1953
..............+Sarah Sadie Morgan, b. 22 Sep 1883; d. 3 Nov 1964 (m. 11/24/1897)
.......2 Francis Marion Morgan, b. 8 Jan 1848; d. 31 Jan 1930
..........+Martha J. Carter; b. 14 Jun 1851; d. 27 Jun 1905
.......2 Milly Morgan, b. abt 1849
.......2 Johnny Morgan, b. 31 Dec 1851; 7 Mar 1931 (my great grandfather)
..........+Emily Quick, b. 22 Jan 1852; 9 Apr 1944

Bethel Baptist Church Cemetery (Covington Co. near Jones Co. line)
Morgan, Francis Marion Jan 08 1848 - Jan 31 1930
Morgan, Martha J. Jun 14 1851 - Jun 27 1905 Wife of F. M. Morgan
Morgan, Mary E. May 19 1847 - Dec 01 1914 Beloved Wife of W. N. Morgan


William Morgan, born LA, is in the 1860 census below, but he does not appear in the 1870 census which follows. This indicates he died sometime in the 1860s.

1860 Perry Co. Census: Enon Post Office
William Morgan 40 LA
Elizabeth (Rayborn) 48 TN
Sarahann Morgan 21 MS
Vinson Morgan 19 MS
William Morgan 18 MS
Francis Morgan 16 MS
Milly Morgan 11 MS
Johnny Morgan 09 MS

1870 Jones Co. Census: Page 14 Township 6 Ellisville PO 7/9/1870 Household 89
Morgan, Elizabeth age 52 b TN
Milly A age 21 b MS
John age 19 b MS (married Emily Quick)
?Burlis O age 4 male b MS

William Newt Morgan, who some claim was killed about 1863, appears in the 1880, 1900, 1910 Jones Co. MS Census records.

1880 Census Jones Co. MS
Household #261
Morgan, W. N. 36
Morgan, M. E. 36
Morgan, Lucy S. S. 12
Morgan, W. V. 09
Morgan, M. J. 05
Morgan, S. I. 04
Morgan, J. P. 7/12

1900 Census Jones Co. MS:
household 139:
Morgan, William N. age 55 (Dec 1844)
Morgan, Mary 55 (May 1845) wife
Morgan, Prentis J. 20 (Oct 1879) son
Morgan, Sarah S. 11 (Sep 1888) dau-in-law
Morgan, Pellie O. 01 (Oct 1898) granddaughter

1910 Census Jones Co. MS:
family # 191
Morgan, William N. 67
Morgan, Mary E. 63 wife
Crosby, Bessie 12 granddaughter
Crosby, Leroy 09 grandson
Crosby, Pearlie 07 granddaughter
Crosby, Travis 06 grandson


These marriage records also indicate that William Newt Morgan was still living 1885-1897:

12/26/1885 S P Carter-Lucy L Morgan Sur. W N Morgan m 1/7/1886 by A P Cox, MG
11/24/1897 J P Morgan-Sarah Morgan Applicant W N Morgan m 11/24/1897 by Wm Smith, JP p 110
"Who Married Whom in Jones Co. MS" (page 102):

Morgan, William N. - born 1844, married Martha Ann Knight 1867 (Martha Knight born 1846)
Their children:
1. Lucy - born 1868; married Solomon Prentiss Carter
2. William V. - born 1871; married Mattie Crosby
3. Mary Jane - born 1875; married Asa S. Morgan
4. Sarah Isabella - born 1876; married Lowery Crosby
5. J. Prentiss - born 1880; married Sarah S. Morgan
(I think “Who Married Whom” made a mistake on the wife of William N. Morgan).

I believe William Newt Morgan married Martha Ann Knight abt 1861. I believe they divorced/separated about 1863. Then they both married a second spouse about 1865. William N. Morgan married Mary E. Carter and Martha Ann Knight married Joseph Richard Yawn.

The following information from Tresa Tatyrek supports this claim:

1 Joseph Richard Yawn b: 1844 d: WFT Est. 1870-1934
+ Martha Ann Knight b: ABT. 1846 d: 1926
2 Isaac Newton Yawn b: 24 MAY 1866 d: 15 DEC 1943
+ Mary Melinda b: 4 AUG 1876 d: 22 MAR 1946

Martha Ann Knight data:
Father: Albert Knight , Sr. b: 5 NOV 1799
Mother: Mary Mason Rainey b: ABT. 1805 in NC

Marriage 1 William N. Morgan b: WFT Est. 1829-1849 (Married: 1861)
Marriage 2 Joseph Richard Yawn b: 1844 (Married: ABT. 1865)

1. Isaac Newton Yawn b: 24 MAY 1866

Speed Cemetery Covington Co.

Yawn, Martha
born: Jun 10 1840
died: May 30 1928

Yawn, J. Richard
born: 1843
died: Jun 30 1913

I received this note from Vikki Bynum:
This is a tough one. I had not done any systematic research on the Bill Morgan who married Martha Knight because the Knight genealogies so clearly state that he was murdered during the Civil War, AND that Martha Knight Morgan quickly remarried, to Joseph Richard Yawn by whom she allegedly had twelve children. (This is from Jan Sumrall and Kennth Welch's KNIGHTS AND RELATED FAMILIES; also see Winnie Thomas et al., THE FAMILY OF JOHN "JACKIE" KNIGHT AND KEZIAH DAVIS KNIGHT). The story of Bill Morgan's murder is told by Thomas Jefferson Knight in his 1947 history of the Newton Knight (his father) and the Free State of Jones; also in Ethel Knight, THE ECHO OF THE BLACK HORN, another history of the same. If you look in the Who Married Whom, Jones County, under the name "Yawn," you will see Martha A. Knight-Morgan listed as the wife of Joseph Richard Yawn in 1866, which fits the stories of Morgan's death. Also, the 1870 Jones County census lists Joseph Yawn, Martha, and two children, Isaac, age 3, and John W. age 1.

Well, I hope this is not too confusing. Please let me know what you think. I am anxious to solve this murder mystery and find out for sure what happened to my great-great grandfather, William Morgan, born about 1820 LA.

Ken Slade


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