27. Nancy SHAWHAN (John4, Daniel3, Daniel2, Darby1). Nancy was born in Bourbon, County, Kentucky, on October 9, 1799. Nancy died in Bourbon County, Kentucky, on December 14, 1882; she was 83.44 Nancy was buried in Smith Family Burial Ground, Shawhan, Kentucky.
Journal Notes of Bob Francis:
On March 6, 1999, I visited the family plot of Nancy and Nicholas Smith. Until this time, I suspected but had no evidence that this site, located on the farm of Mr. Evans, Shawhan, Kentucky, was the actual site of my ancestors.
It was a cloudy cold day and the ground was soggy. I put my hiking boots on and walked from the barn eastward to the highest land elevation on the property (on the U. S. Geological Survey map--Shawhan quadrant--the site is located about .7 miles north of the village of Shawhan on the 860 ft. elevation point).
The burial ground itself was in the most terrible condition, with fallen trees and undergrowth. I had previously visited the site and drawn a schematic (refer to “Shawhan and Related Families,” Vol. III, p. 367).
I checked out the gravestone beneath the fallen tree and, after some digging, was able to uncover the name “Nicholas Smith.” After further scraping of the stone with my knife, I uncovered the following inscription:
Died November 24, 1834 This positively verified the location of the Smith family burial plot! I was truly elated at this point. However, I had yet to solve the mystery of where Nancy was buried. My gut told me that she was buried along side her husband--but where could I find her amidst this terrible wreckage of a family burial site? At that point, I took a moment and said a little prayer. I said, “Nancy, please help me. You have directed me thus far, I just need a little more help on knowing where to find you.” I then just let that prayer settle my mind and I began looking around. I noticed just to the left of Nicholas’s stone a small base stone. I thought, “where there’s a base stone there’s a head stone.” I ran back to the car and asked my friend, Jim Sellars, who had waited in the car because he was not dressed for the muddy trek to the burial ground, to take the car and get a shovel from Mr. Evans. He did so and I went back to the grave site and began digging near the base stone. About 5 or 6 inches down I heard a “clunk” sound of metal hitting stone and knew that I had found Nancy’s head stone. I dug the stone out and lifted it up and out of the shallow hole. The stone was broken in half diagonally. It was laying face down and when I turned it over I read the following:
Born Oct. 9, 1799
Died Dec. 14, 1882
There was no question that this was, indeed, my 3g grandmother, Nancy Shawhan Smith Reading’s gravestone! I was not able to continue the work of digging the second half of the stone because of time constraints; however, I now had undeniable positive proof that my grandparents Nancy and Nicholas Smith were, in fact, buried beneath the ground upon which I stood.
I again said a brief prayer, “thank you grandmother for leading me to your place of rest. I promise that I shall restore this sacred ground to its original condition. I will return next fall and dig up the second half of the stone and will place it in its proper place alongside grandfather.” With these words, I said my goodbyes and returned to the car.
--Bob Francis, March 6, 1999
Journal Notes of Bob Francis:
October 3, 1999
Tom and I drive to the small village of Shawhan. Named after our 5th great-grandfather Daniel Shawhan who came to Kentucky in the summer of 1788, the village is located about a mile east of state highway 27 and is just south of the Licking River on the northern border of Bourbon and Harrison Counties. The intersection of 27 and Shawhan road is of interest to me because it was at this juncture almost two hundred years ago that our 4th great grandfather, John Shawhan, helped establish the Mt. Carmel Christian church. The little church that currently stands in this spot was built in 1859. According to an early Bourbon County historian,
"John Shawhan was a large man with a tendency to be blonde; his personality such that he had followers of uncommon intelligence. He was a member of the Older Stoner Mouth Presbyterian Church and was one of the five men denounced from the pulpit by their pastor, Rev. Samuel Reynolds, for attending the revival of the Rev. Barton Stone at Cane Ridge in 1801 when the Christian Church was formed. A camp meeting was afterward held on John Shawhan's farm about 1818, and from the converts of that camp the present Mt. Carmel Church was formed." (Perrin's History of Bourbon, Scott, Harrison and Nicholas County, Kentucky--1882)
We drive along the narrow winding road named after our ancestors until after about a mile we arrive at the village of Shawhan. We see a beautiful little stone church on the left. It is the Shawhan Baptist Church, and it is now the only active "business" in this once thriving community. I reminisce on the history of this quaint church that was built in the last century on land given by William David, an early farmer in the region. In those days, it was a Presbyterian Church and was attended by many of our ancestors. Just past the church, we drive over a small bridge that crosses over a railroad track. The railroad track reminds me of the beginnings of this village. The village was originally named "Shawhan’s Station" because it served as a shipping point for the surrounding farm community. Also, when whiskey distilling was in full swing throughout the last century, the distinctly unique brand of "Bourbon" whiskey was shipped far and wide. Our 4th great uncle, Joseph Shawhan (1781-1871), and his son Henry Ewalt Shawhan, donated the land and invested heavily in this venture to bring a railroad through this part of Kentucky. Many barrels of Shawhan whiskey traveled down those tracks to parts .
Just across the bridge, we turn left onto a country road that parallels the track. As we make the turn, I notice that one of the oldest buildings in Shawhan has recently been torn down. The last time I visited this village an old country grocery store sat on the left about fifty yards or so beyond the railroad track along the Shawhan road. This old building had a history in our family. One of our ancestors, Daniel "Casher Dan" Shawhan (brother to our 3rd great-grandmother, Nancy Shawhan), and his partner Thomas E. Moore (who married a granddaughter of the above Joseph Shawhan) once used the building as a storehouse for Shawhan whiskey.
We drive up the road to the fourth house on the right. This is the home of the Evans family who now own the land upon which our Smith family burial ground sits. We stop and talk with the Evans’ and are greeted warmly. We tell them of our desire to restore the old burial ground and they say, "good luck!" and with that they tell us to feel free to come and go as we please—just remember to secure the cattle gates. We thank them and are on our way. We arrive at the Nicholas and Nancy Smith family burial ground about 8AM. We drive slowly back to the site, taking a video record as we go. The morning is very cool (about 45°) and sunny—a beautiful day to work! We drive through three farmer’s gates and pull up to the burial ground. Tom surveys the site and sees what needs to be done. The site itself is overgrown with briars, saplings, and several trees. A large oak tree, perhaps as old as the burial ground itself, died long ago and fell over graves of Nicholas and Nancy. Though uncertain of what other graves lay nearby, we are certain that others will be discovered as we uncover the years of clutter and overgrowth.
The Smith family cemetery sits on a high ground overlooking the Licking River about 90 yards to the north. The countryside is beautiful and very rural. Surrounding us for long distances in every direction are rolling hills and farmer’s fields. I can understand why our ancestors chose this spot for their final resting place.
We now begin to clean up the burial ground in earnest. Tom is using a chain saw to cut up the old fallen oak while I am using a grub hoe to cut out the briars. It is slow going all the way but we are steadily clearing away decades (perhaps even one hundred years) of neglect. I am amazed that within a couple of hours the weeds are giving way to some semblance of order. What satisfaction we feel! Both of us feel the presence of our ancestors in this place.
Tom finds a gravestone! It is shaped beautifully but is buried too far in the ground to make out a name.
Another curious stone lay beneath some underbrush near a tree on the northeast part of the burial ground. The stone is very small with the inscription "N.E.S." It looks like a footstone; so, where is the headstone and what does "N.E.S." stand for?
It’s almost noon and we find a large base stone just behind Nancy Shawhan’s stone. Where there’s a base stone, there’s a head stone; so we begin digging in "front" (our guess) of the base stone. After some probing, we hit paydirt. We carefully dig around the stone and pull it out. The stone is broken and what we pull out is the bottom section. The stone reads, "born July 1, 1823, died November 9, 1855, aged 32 years, 5 months, 1 day." This is Nicholas Smith III’s stone because I remember a Western Citizen, Paris, Kentucky, newspaper article obituary which reads: "Smith, Nicholas, at his residence in Bourbon County, on the 2d inst. aged 33 years, November 9, 1855."
While looking for the top half of the stone, Tom discovers a second stone just beneath the first. Thinking we had found the top section of Nicholas’s stone, we carefully pull out the second stone. To our surprise, we found the missing top section of Nancy Shawhan’s stone. How peculiar, Nancy’s stone lying beneath her son’s! We now have the complete stone of our 3rd great grandmother (with the exception of a very small piece). But where is the rest of Nicholas’s stone? As we discover, it is laying in several pieces in different locations in the burial ground. A piece shows up here and there throughout the afternoon. By the end of the day, we found about four pieces. Several pieces remained hidden.
By the end of the day, we are tired but feel very good about our efforts.
October 4, 1999
Great discoveries today. We continue to clean out the brush. At a break point, Tom got curious about a broken stone sitting to the left of Nicholas, Sr. He began digging around the stone and found a small field stone that said "___cholas Decd 1____" I came to help dig and after about fifteen minutes, I poke in front of the stone to the left and notice a smooth stone. We dig it up and read the inscription:
Died November the 18
1893, aged 79
Why is the name "Smit" on the stone? Perhaps this is a relation to Nicholas—a German relative? This does not make much sense to me since I have never run across any German relatives through my research. Besides, her age fits a child of Nicholas rather than a sister. It then hit me: they had a daughter named Kitty Ann. It makes sense that this could be her. I open my genealogy database and—BINGO—the dates fit Kitty Ann Smith (sort of)! So, Kitty Ann’s formal name is Catharine! We surmise that the "Smit" spelling is nothing other than a calculation mistake on the part of the engraver—he simply ran out of room and shortened the name to fit the stone.
A second curious discovery. Tom found a second small field stone with the words "KATH______
Now, what in the world does this mean?
Tom is taking out "stobs" (tiny stumps) when he finds an altogether different stone. It is small the following inscription:
Nancy E. Smith
Born April 19, 1852
Died October 6, 1854
Daughter of N & A Smith
This must be a child of Nicholas and Amanda (Allison) Smith who had, until now, has gone unrecorded in Smith family history. We now reclaim this child as part of our family history! This is the headstone of the mysterious footstone that had been found on the first day.
What a day of discovery! At the end of the day, Tom and I feel very tired but immensely satisfied that we have honored our ancestors by bringing their final resting place back into order. We also decide that this is the place where we want to be buried—among our ancestors on this beautiful hill overlooking the Licking River. We will talk with Mr. Evans sometime this week to see if we can purchase this family burial ground and legally bring the property back into our family.
October 5, 1999
More discoveries today as well as some corrections to earlier assumptions. We start the morning searching for Nicholas I’s headstone. We search and search but without success. During the morning I notice something we had missed on Catharine Smith’s stone. Her death date was 1825 rather than the 1893 we assumed earlier! This clearly eliminates Kitty Ann Smith as previously assumed. This Catharine must be Nicholas Smith’s wife. The field stone with Catharine Smith’s name and death date match that of the later stone.
Tom makes the discovery of the day when he comes across a huge stone of Joseph Smith, son of Nancy and Nicholas. This stone provides birth and death dates that have previously been missing. Joseph was born February 1827 and died November 27, 1850. His stone sits to the right of Catharine Smith’s stone. On an eerie note, Tom tells me that he had a dream last night telling him where to dig! Our ancestors even walk with us in our sleep!
It is late in the afternoon and I find Nancy E. Smith’s base stone almost adjacent to Nicholas III’s stone. It measures almost exactly 7 ft. from her foot stone.
We spend the rest of the afternoon measuring the burial ground and marking the exact locations of each of the stones. We also begin drawing each stone. We complete the stones for Nicholas Smith II, Nancy Reading, and Nicholas Smith III.
October 6, 1999
Today we are bound and determined to find what we feel is the last "treasure" remaining in this small family cemetery: the gravestone of Nicholas Smith I. We spent several hours yesterday digging all around the broken base—about a ten foot square consisting mostly of roots. The digging was a painfully slow and back-breaking process. This morning we begin again with a renewed determination. We both feel that Nicholas’ stone represents the last family stone.
After an hour or so of continued digging, we decide that we should dig up Nicholas II’s base stone. We know where it is because of the position of the headstone. Both of us had agreed to leave this stone until the last because it was surely not going anywhere. After about fifteen minutes, we find the top of the base stone. We dig and dig and dig, ever widening the hole to come at the buried stone from an angle.
In an effort to widen the hole, Tom begins digging about a foot or so to the left. About six inches down, he hears a familiar "clunk" sound. Gingerly, he clears away the dirt and discovers a stone with a smooth edge. "Bob, come here!" he says, "I think I found Nicholas I’s stone!" I run over and brush away the dirt and notice some writing. The word "SMIT" appears. We found our 4th great-grandfather’s stone! We can’t believe that it is located a full 8 feet from its base. We quickly dig it out and bring it to the surface. In order to be certain that the broken base match the head stone, Tom measures the width and thickness of each—a perfect match! The inscription on the stone reads:
Died April the 7th
1826 Aged 87 yrs
The only stone now remaining is Nicholas II’s base stone. We continue to dig. After about 35-40 minutes, we have dug about 3 ft. down and uncovered a full 10" of the stone, but it still does not budge! How far down does this stone go? We are a bit frustrated but continue to dig. Finally, Tom asks, "do we really have to dig this up?" We can do it, and you know me, I’ll keep digging until we get this sucker out of the ground, but why? This is a perfect marker for all of the other stones. Why don’t we fill the hole back and leave a marker identifying the spot? We can come back next spring, dig it up and go from there." I don’t like the idea. We have succeeded uncovering every stone but this one, why stop now? We banter back and forth for a while and finally I agree that we can leave it where it is. The rest of the morning is spent shoveling dirt back into place and smoothing the surface.
We take a lunch break then come back for a final wrap up. We carry brush and logs throughout the afternoon. Finally, about 5:30PM, we are finished! We agree that our job here is completed until the spring of next year. We have lined up all of the gravestones and ask our ancestors’ patience that they will have to wait until then before we can put their stones in place. Tom and I feel genuinely satisfied that we have honored our ancestors. We take our final leave by taking pictures and videotaping our efforts.
Nancy Shawhan is described in Isobel Madsen's genealogical account as "small and quick, and her hair was auburn." Her granddaughter, Nancy Smith (Hinkson, Vanarsdale) remembered her as wearing flowers in her hair, and once when she Nancy was milking, the cow's tail swished the blossom from her hair and she replaced it "just so," and continued milking.45 Nancy continued to live on the farm until she died, or as Isobel Chandler Madsen said "she (Nancy) just grew waxier and smaller and melted away."39 (Note: evidence suggests that she returned to Bourbon County, Kentucky, before her death. She is buried in the Smith Family Burial Ground on her dower land, Shawhan, Kentucky.--REF
Marriage Notice to Bourbon County Court, 9 January 181646
KNOW ALL MEN BY THESE PRESENTS, That we (signature of Nicholas Smith and John Shawhan) are held and firmly bound unto the Commonwealth of Kentucky, in the just and full sum of fifty pounds, current money, to the payment of which, well and truly to be made, to the said Commonwealth, we and each of us bind ourselves, and every of our heirs, executors, and administrators, jointly and severally, firmly by these presents, sealed with our seals, and dated this Ninth day of January one-thousand eight hundred and sixteen.
The condition of the above obligation is such, that whereas a MARRIAGE is shortly intended to be solemnized between the above bound (handwritten Nicholas Smith and Nancy Shawhan) of Bourbon County. Now, if there is no lawful cause to obstruct said MARRIAGE, then the above obligation to be void, otherwise to remain in full force.
Signed (hand written signatures) Nicholas Smith John Shawhan
Attest: (signature) Tho P. Smith
Bourbon County Court Deed Book 68, pp. 45-52 (transcribed by Robert E. Francis, November 23, 2000)
June 26th, 1884
Nicholas Smith Heirs to Smith Heirs, Deed Partition
Whereas the division of the lands of Nicholas Smith Sr. late of Bourbon Co. Ky. A certain tract of land in said county, on the waters of Licking river, in the vicinity of Shawhan’s Station on the Ky. Central Railroad containing containing as these supposed 98 A. 2 R 10 poles, but since unascertained by survey to be only 93 A. 1 R. 18 poles was allotted as dower for her life to his widow Nancy Smith, with remainder in for to said Nicholas Smith, Sr.’s four children John Smith, Nicholas Smith, & Margaret Pugh and Katherine A. Batterton and John T. Smith, sold his one fourth interest in reversion to his mother many years ago and Nicholas died leaving as his widow Amanda M. Smith & two children Margaret A. David and John Oscar Smith, & so John Oscar sold and conveyed his interest in sd. Nancy’s dower to his mother Amanda M. Smith, and whereas upon the death of said Nancy Smith her fourth interest in reversim(?), descended to her said children and grandchildren as follows: to John T. Smith, Margaret Pugh, Katherine Batterton and her daughter by another marriage by Georgia Ireland in the proportion of one-fifth each and to her grandchildren, John Oscar Smith and Margaret A. David, childfren of her dec’d son, Nicholas Smith, Jr., the remaining fifth jointly—And whereas since the said Nancy’s death, said dower tract, has by agreement among the owners been divided and allotted between them, according to their several interests by Wm Skinner, James T. Tate, and John C. May, Commissioners, agreed on for that purpose, as follows: Lot 4, containing 23 A. 1 R. 18 P., to Mrs. Margaret Pugh—wife of Gus Pugh as her original fourth interest in reversion in said dower tract. Lot No. 3 contains 30 A. to Margaret A. David wife of William David, and her mother Amanda Smith jointly being Nicholas Smith’s original fourth in sd. Land. Lot No. 2 containg 25 A. to Mrs. Catherine A. Batterton as her original fourth therein, and Lot No. 1 representing said Nancy’s original fourth purchased from her son John T. Smith was left undivided by said Commissioners. At the request of the owners to whom the same was allotted in the following proportions: Jno. T. Smith, Margaret Pugh, Katherine Batterton & George Ireland one-fifth each, and to Jno. Oscar Smith & Margaret David one tenth each, and whereas said owners for the purpose of dividing Lot No. 1 have sold and conveyed the same to Jno. T. Argo, and have also heretofore executed (illegible) of partitions for the remaining Lots 2, 3 & 4 to the parties entitled thereto, but which have been lost through the U.S. mail before the same were recorded. Now this indenture dated June 26, 1884, Witnesseth: first, that for & in consideration of the premises and of said partition of said Dower tract as aforesaid the undersigned Katherine A. Batterton, Amanda M. Smith, Margaret A. David & William David her husband, George A. Ireland & her husband Harvy C. Ireland, John Oscar Smith and his wife Elizabeth Smith and John T. Smith & his wife Mary Smith hereby grant and convey to Margaret Pugh, wife of Gus Pugh the aforementioned Lot No. 4, in the said subdivision of Nancy Smith’s Dower tract, containing 23 A. 1 R. 18 poles bounded as follows: (Beginning at a point in the Ruddell’s Mill’s pike corner to lot No. 2 thence N 41 1/2 E 37 poles to a point in said Road, corner to sd. Mrs. Margret Pugh, thence with her line N 37 1/2 W 90 1/2 poles to a stone on the south bank of Licking, thence down said Bank N 80 1/2 W 38 poles: thence N 63 W 11 poles to a stone corner to Lot No. 3 thence South 37 1/2 E 123 1/2 poles to the Beginning.) bring one-fourth in value of said Dower, the same to have to hold unto the said Margaret Pugh, & her heirs and assigns forever, with covenants of Special Warranty—and 2nd we the undersigned Margaret Pugh, & her husband Gus Pugh, Amanda M. Smith, Margaret A. David & her husband Wm David, Georgia Ireland & her husband Harvy C. Ireland, Jno. Oscar Smith and his wife (blank) Smith, and John T. Smith and his wife (blank) Smith, for and in consideration of the promises and of the partition of said Dower tract as aforesaid, hereby grant and convey unto Mrs. Katherine A. Batterton the aforementioned Lot No. 2 in the subdivision of Mrs. Nancy Smith’s dower tract containing 25 A. bounded as follows—Beginning at a point in the Ruddell’s Mill’s pike, corner to Lot No. 1, sold to John T. Argo, thence with said pike N 41 1/4 E. 47 poles to a point in said pike, corner to lot No. 4, allotted and conveyed as above to Mrs. Margaret Pugh, thence with the line of lot No. 4 N 37 1/2 W. 82 poles to a stone corner to Lot No. 3 of said subdivision allotted to Mrs. Amanda Smith & Mrs. Margaret David and in the line of lot No. 4 thence with the line of Lot No. 3 S. 53 1/2 W. 44 poles, thence S. 37 1/2 E. 92 poles to the beginning, being one fourth in value of said Dower, the same to have and to hold unto her the said Katherine A. Batterton her heirs and assigns forever, with covenant and special warranty. And 3rd we the undersigned Margaret Pugh and her husband Gus Pugh, Katherine Batterton, Georgia Ireland and her husband Harvy C. Ireland, John Oscar Smith and his wife (blank) Smith and John T. Smith and his wife (blank) Smith, for and in consideration of the promises and the partition of said Dower tract as aforesaid hereby grant and convey unto the said Amanda M. Smith and the said Margaret A. David jointly Lot No. 3 in the subdivision of the said Nancy Smith’s dower tract containing 30 acres of land and bounded as follows: Beginning at an Ash stump on the bluff overlooking Licking river, then South 4 W. 33 poles to the corner of Gus Pugh & Wm David, thence S 37 E 23 poles , thence S 41 E. 13 1/2 poles, thence S 38 1/2 East 30 1/2 poles to a stone corner to Lot No. 1 of said subdivision sold as aforesaid to Argo, thence with the line of Lot No. 1 N 53 1/2 E. 62 1/2 poles to a stone corner of Lot No. 2 in the line of Lot No. 4, thence with the line of Lot No. 4 N. 37 1/2 W. 41 1/2 poles to a stone on the South bank of Licking, thence down the South bank N. 80 1/2 w. 27 poles, thence N. 63 W. 38 poles to a small sycamore, thence leaving the river S 27 1/2 W 8 1/4 poles to the Beginning being one fourth in value of said Dower tract, the same to have and to hold unto the same Amanda M. Smith and Margrit A. David jointly, and their heirs aand assigns forever with covenant and special warranty. In testimony whereof the said sveral grantees in the foregoing three several conveyances respectively have hereunto set their hands the (illegible) first above written.
John O. Smith
John S. Smith
Mary M. Smith
Katherine A. Batterton
Wm H. David
Margaret A. David
Amanda M. Smith
Georgia A. Ireland
Harvy C. Ireland
State of Kentucky
County of Bourbon
I Jas. M. Hughes, clerk of the County Circuit of said County, do certify that the foregoing Deed was produced to me in my office and acknowledged by Katherine A. Batterton, Margaret Pugh & Gus Pugh her husband this 28th day of June 1884. Parties thereto, to be their act and deed, and said deed was on this day again produced to me in said office and acknowledged by William H. David and his wife & Amanda M. Smith, parties thereto, to be their act and deed. Given under my hand this 30th day of June 1884. J. M. Hughes, clerk
I L. H. Powell a Notery Public within and for the County of Clay and State of Missouri, do certify that this instrument of writing from John O. Smith and Elizabeth Smith his wife, was this day produced to me by the parties, which was acknowledged by the said John O. Smith and Elizabeth Smith his wife to be their act and deed, and the contents and effect of the instrument herein explained to the said John O. Smith and wife by me examined separate and apart from her husband, she thereupon declared that she did freely and voluntarily execute and deliver the same to be her act and deed and asserted that the same might be recorded. Given under my hand and official seal at my office in Smithville in said county of Clay the 16th day of July A. D. 1884. My official term as Notary Public expires January the 24th 1886.
L. N. Powell
State of Kentucky, County of Bourbon
I Jas. M. Hughes, clerk of the County Court of said County, do certify that the foregoing and was this day lodged for record, and the same
On January 12, 1816 Nancy first married Nicholas SMITH Jr., son of Nicholas SMIT Sr. (1739-April 7, 1826) & Catharine (Katharine) (1756-November 28, 1825), in Bourbon County, Kentucky.47,48 Officiated by Rev. John Moreland. Nicholas was born in Virginia? in 1787. Nicholas died in Bourbon County, Kentucky, on November 24, 1834; he was 47.44 Nicholas was buried in Smith Family Burial Ground, Shawhan, Kentucky.49 NICHOLAS SMITH II50 Nicholas Smith II, son of Nicholas I, was born around 1785 in Bourbon County, Kentucky. He was the second oldest of five children: Peter, Nicholas, Jacob, Joseph, and Elizabeth. He grew up on the homestead in the bends of the South Fork of the Licking River and Stoner Creek. It was located near the junction of the Shawhan-Ruddle's Mill Road near the settlement of Shawhan, originally called Shawhan Station. There was much interchange between the Smith and Shawhan families and later Nancy Shawhan married Nicholas II and a son of theirs married a Shawhan granddaughter. A moderate rise leading to the south bluff provided a view of the river valley. The homestead houses were very isolated and the approach roads were rough. The original locations were chosen for the prospect of excellent farm land and the availability of water.
A description of this land found in a collection of letters of the William David family who owned the adjoining property follows:
“The only outlet from our place was a narrow strip of land that lay along the river side of the Ewalt land, beginning at the foot of a rocky slope and later bending to the left to become a road with a straight corridor through the narrowest part of the Ewalt Estate...We found the dirt road level and dusty in warm weather, but in cold weather it was muddy or frozen in deep ruts. About half way between the pike and the river cliffs was a large depression on one side that became a pond in the spring and fall, a mud hole in the summer and in winter an icy menace...The road turned to the right and when we were past the bend, we could see the river far below the wooded cliff as the buggy crazily crept up a slope of rock shelves into level ground to face another menace. A tree had large roots growing into the road and a bend in the road around the tree made the road very close to the cliff edge...We dreaded the jolting dangers of the road ahead for its rock shelves were like uneven steps, the horse almost sliding down the gate which let us into our own place. Soon we were rolling smoothly across the woods, out the river gate onto the final stretch between the low river bank and our lower field. Then we reached the double gates and turned into the orchard gate for the horse and buggy were kept in the barn at the old stone house.”
Notes: The “Ewalt Land” referred to above was owned by Sarah, mother of Samuel Ewalt, who married Nicholas II’s sister Margaret. The old stone house...is the old David Family home, referred to above, which still stands.
Nicholas II and Nancy Shawhan were married January 12, 1816. Nancy was born October 10, 1799 in Bourbon County and her parents were John Shawhan and Margaret (Peggy) McCune. (see separate section on the Shawhans). Five children were born to this couple: Kitty Ann (Katherine, 1818), John S. Smith (1821), Nicholas III (1823), Joseph (1827), and Margaret (1834). The children were all born in Bourbon County, Kentucky.
Nicholas II died intestate around 1835 leaving Nancy a widow at the age of 36 with five minor children. He had survived his father by only seven years. An inventory of the estate of Nicholas Smith II was made on February 19, 1835 and signed by Nancy Smith. As appointed guardians to the children, witnesses signing the document were: Samuel Ewalt, a neighbor who later married Margaret, George Rush, who later married the widowed Nancy, and John Ivy. The value of the slaves was placed at $2425 to be split three ways, or $808.33 each portion. Part of the estate was "Dower property," the 98 acres that reverted to Nancy at the time of Nicholas' death. The family burial plot was on this piece of land. Partial settlement of the estate was made in January 1838 although final distribution of property was tied up in the courts and couldn't be completed until after Nancy's death. Due to her longevity, this wasn't until 1884. In the meantime, some of her children had sold off their share without valid deeds because of the lack of a will to establish a legal distribution. The property settlement of Nicholas I had been the subject of a legal squabble between Boone family heirs and the Smith family that went all the way to the U. S. Supreme Court and covered a period of over thirty years and was also involved in the final 1884 settlement.
The 1850 census indicates that the widow Nancy Smith was living with two sons: John, 29, and Joseph, 23. After her son John's first wife Malvina Hinkson died, he sold his property to his mother, who in turn lived with the bereaved family and kept house for them. They moved to Pike county, Missouri where he was remarried to Mary M.
Nancy died around 1884 at about the age of 78 and was buried on her family plot in the vicinity of Shawhan, Kentucky
Kitty A. married Elias Batterton May 13, 1834. In 1870, she was a widow at 36 with six children: Ben, William, Eliza, Frank, James, and Joseph.
John S. married Malvina Hinkson in 1851. They had three children: John T., Maggie M., and Emma R. Left a widower, he was remarried to a Mary M. and moved to Pike County, Missouri. They had a son, Charles T.
Nicholas III, (the author's GG-grandfather) follows in detail.
Joseph died March, 1852 at 25 years of age. He never married.
Margaret E. married Colonel Samuel Ewalt in 1848 at fourteen years of age. She was left a widow in 1868 with three children: Sallie, Samuel, and Eddie. The 1870 census indicates that she had remarried August Pugh, a farmer. They had several children.
Inventory of the appraisement of the estate of Nicholas Smith deceased. A true and perfect Inventory of all the personal Estate of Nicholas Smith deceased which was produced to us by Nancy Smith Administrator of the Estate of Nicholas Smith decd is as follows.
Sipit a Negro Boy $600.00
Nancy a Negro Girl 475.00
Henrietta a Negro do 450.00
Elizabeth a Negro do 325.00
Julia Ann a Negro do 275.00
Henry a Negro Boy 300.00
One brass clock 50.00
One bed stead and beding $25 25.00
One bed & do & do $10 10.00
One bed & stead & do $25 one bed & stead & do $12 37.00
One bed & stead & do $15 15.00
One bed & stead & do $12 One chest & sugar desk $1.50 13.50
One man’s saddle and bridle $8 One Bureau $4 12.00
One jug and keg 50 cents. One chest 50 cents 1.00
One big wheel and one small wheel & one recl 1.50
One small saddle $5. One woman’s saddle $5 10.00
One crop cut san(?) $00.12 One pair steelyards 50¢ .62
One smoothing iron and two hack___ .50
One pair of fire irons .50
One Conk 75¢ One tea kettle 37¢ 1.12
Two coffee pots and one pan .62
Large kettle $1 Five kettles $5 6.00
One large kettle $1 One dining room table $2 3.00
One small table 25¢ One bureau $6 6.25
Three candlestick snuffers and waiter .75
One tin box 25¢ Two tea canisters 12 1/2¢ .37 1/2
One flower pot 12 1/2 ¢ One large waiter 75¢ .87 1/2
One set of silver tablespoons 18.00
One set of teaspoons, two salt spoons & cream spoons 2.50
1 mason hammer 37 1/2¢
I do certify that the foregoing inventory contains all the personall Estate of Nicholas Smith deceased which hath come to my hands. Given under my hand this 19th day of February 1835.
Nancy Smith Admr.
We do certify that the foregoing appraisement was truly & justly made of all the personal property of Nicholas Smith decd which was produced to us by his Administrator to the best of our judgment. All of which we Respectfully report to the Bourbon County Court. Given under our hands this the 19th day of February 1835.
At the March Term of the Bourbon County Court Kentucky on the second day of March 1835.
This inventory and appraisement of the Estate of Nicholas Smith deceased was produced into Court approved of and (?) to record. Witness Thomas P. Smith of the said Court the date above.
Tho. P. Smith Clk
Inventory of property of Nicholas Smith:
An Inventory of the property of Nicholas Smith deceased taken by Nancy Smith his widow at the appraised value.
One Brass Clock $50
One Bedstead & bedding $25
1 Bedstead & bedding $10
1 Bedstead & bedding $15
1 Bedstead & bedding $12
1 Chest & Sugar $1.50
1 Means Saddle & Bridle $8
1 Bureau $4
1 Jug & Keg 50¢
1 Chest 50¢
Big ?? wheel & reel $1.50
1 Small Saddle $5
1 Woman's Saddle $5
1 Cross Cut Saw 121/2¢
1 pr Stubyards 50¢
Smoothing Iron and two hackles 50¢
1 pr Fire Irons 50¢
1 Conch 75¢
1 Tea Kettle 37 1/2¢
2 Coffee Pots & 1 Pan 62 1/2¢
5 Kettles $5
1 Dining Table $2
1 Small table 25¢
1 Bureau $6
Tin Base 25¢
Tea Canister 12 1/2¢
1 flower Pot 12 1/2¢
large Waiter 75¢
Silver Spoons $20
1 Cup Board & Ward $22.50
1 Chest 50¢
4 Counterpanes $6
13 tablecloths $9.75
2 Counterpanes $2.30
three quilts $1.50
9 Sheets $4.50
Shoemaking Tools 37 1/2¢
2 Looking Glasses 25¢
9 Windsor Chairs $4.50
2 Split Bottomed Chairs $1.25
1 Stove 50¢
1 Shovel & Porker 37 1/2¢
1 Lot of Books $2.25
1 Whetstone & slate 25¢
3 weaving reeds 62 1/2¢
1 Canopy $3.33
Table Pots & Ovens
2 Buckets 1 table & ware $1.25
1 Churn 37¢
40 Pot hooks 75¢
1 Wagon and _____ _____ Bed
1 Wheat fan $8
2 Shovel & Ploughs $2.50
2 Carcy's Ploughs $7
1 Spreader & Stretcher $1
2 Anes $1.75
1 Spreader & 2 single trees $1
2 pair of gees(e) $6
1 Roan Horse $20
3 Bay mares $56
1 Black Horse $50
1 Bay Horse $35
1 White Cow $8
1 White Backed Cow $7
1 Speckled Cow $7
1 Red Cow $7
1 Grindstone 25¢
14 Hogs $31.50
7 Pigs $4.30 1/2
1 Handsaw $5
At a County Court held for Bourbon County on the 6th day of November 1837. This Inventory of property taken by Nancy Smith, widow and select of Nicholas Smith died, at the appraised value being returned onto Court is approved of and ordered to record. Witness Thomas P. Smith clerk of the said Court the (above) date.
Tho P. Smith
by W. Smith
An account of Sales of the Estate of Nicholas Smith deceased made on February 1835 on a credit of 12 months
Robert Stewart 1 foot adz(e?)
Silas Sparks 1 Mason's hammer
James Rule 1 Lot of old (?)ans
Daniel Shawhan 1 do ("do" is the same as " " marks)
An Inventory of the Estate of Nicholas Smith decd.
Cash for note on George Rush 115.80
do Interest to 1st January 1835 26.27
Do for Do on Abraham Thean (spelling uncertain) 636.00
Int to 7 Oct 1835 to Jany 1835 201.00
Do for Do on Nicholas Brindley 200.00
Int to 1st Jany 1838 19.70
Do for Do on Michael Smith 15.00
Do for Do on Archibald King 138.42
Do for Do on James Houston 205.45
Do for Do on George Pugh 120.00
Interest to first January 1838 16.80
Do for Do on John Shawhan 230.00
Do for Do on Same 20.00
Int on 2 above 198.45
Do for Do on Same 212.00
Cr 100.00 112.00
Interest on above 224.60
Do for Do on Gustavies Pugh 300.00
Do for Do on John & Joshua Irwin 66.00
Do for Do Henry David 43.75
Int 1 Jany 1838 7.75
Do for int on James Crams? Sale Note 11.54
Do for Do on James Traben's (Trabue?) note 4.80
Given under my hand as _______ of Nicholas Smith decd this 1st day November 1836.
At a County Court held for Bourbon County on the 6th day of November 1837.
This additional inventory of the Estate of Nicholas Smith decd being returned into Court is approved of and ordered to record.
Bourbon County, Kentucky, Court Deed Book 43, pp. 383-384:
April 10, 1849 - Keziah Brown Heirs to Nicholas Smith Heirs (transcribed by Robert E. Francis November 22, 2000)
This Indenture made and entered into this 10th day of April in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty nine Between John Brown Eliza Brown Henry Brown Margaret Brown Edward Brown and Sally Brown Heirs of Kezia Brown dec’d Hez B. Flournoy Rowland Flournoy Lawrence Flournoy and Jones Flournoy Heirs of Thoedocia Flournoy dec’d Thomas Chiles William Chiles Thomas Flournoy child and heir of Solomon Flournoy dec’d who was a child and heir of the said Theodocia Flournoy dec’d by James M. Arnold a commissioner of the one and first part and John Smith Joseph Smith Nicholas Smith Margaret Elizabeth Smith Elias Batterton and Catherine Batterton his wife heirs of Nicholas Smith, Jr. dec’d a party of the other and second part witnesseth: that whereas in a suit in chancery depending in the Bourbon Court George Rush &c against James W. Ingels so it was at the October term 1848 of said court amongst other things decreed and ordered that the heirs of Keziah Brown dec’d and the heirs of Theodocia Flournoy dec’d and William and Thomas D. Chiles convey to the defendants and heirs of Smith by deed of (illegible) and quit claim all their right title and interest in and to the two hundred sixty one &c fraction acres of land mentioned in the surveyors report on or before the first day of the first day (sic) of the necst (sic) Term of this Court and upon their failure to do as James M. Arnold is appointed commissioner to make said conveyance for them and the said party of the first part having failed to comply with said (illegible) nor the said James M. Arnold as commissioner for the party of the first part in pursuance of said decree and of the statutes in such cases made and provided of the county of Bourbon and state of Kentucky as hereby (illegible) release and quit claim and by these presents have remisced released and quit claimed unto the said party of the second part all that certain tract or parcel of land situate lying and being in the county of Bourbon and described in the surveyors report as follows IEF 56732 represents the land now owned by the heirs of Nicholas Smith when extended so as to bind on the lines of Peter Smeltzer’s four hundred acres and Chiles eastern line of his seven hundred acres and contains two hundred and sixty one and a fourth acres and thirty one poles Together with all the premises rights and privileges thereunto belonging or in anywise appertaining to have and to hold the land premises and appertenances aforesaid unto the said party of the second part their heirs and assigns forever in testimony whereof the said party of the first part by their said commissioner have hereunto set their hands and seals the day and year first above written.
John Brown (seal)
Eliza Brown (seal)
Henry Brown (seal)
Margaret Brown (seal)
Edward Brown (seal)
Sally Brown (seal)
Hez B. Flournoy (seal)
Rowland Flournoy (seal)
Lawrence Flournoy (seal)
Jones Flournoy (seal)
Thomas Chiles (seal)
Thomas Flournoy (seal)
The unknown heirs of Solomon Flournoy (seal)
By J. M. Arnold commissioner
Bourbon Circuit court sct April Term 1849
J.M. Arnold as commissioner escibited the written deed of conveyance which was ecsami ned by the court approved of acknowledged by said commissioner and ordered to be certified by record.
Att J. M. Arnold
By J. Paton DC
Commonwealth of Kentucky and county of Kentucky Sct
I Thomas P. Smith clerk of the county court of said county do certify that this deed from Koziah Brown Heirs to Nicholas Smith Heirs was this day produced to me and was with the certificates endorsed duly recorded in my office. Given under my hand this 11th day April 1849.
Thomas P. Smith clerk
By Mat Howard DC
County Clerk Office in Bourbon county court House - INDEX NICHOLAS SMITH
Wills BOOK K - Pages 426 - 427 - 428.
Wills Book, Inv. 3. 426.427.428/ Sales 427. Est Sett 438. Guardns. 350
ORDER Book K - Adm 452. Gdn & Apps 453. Ord. Dav 453. L: Inv 13.387
Ord Sum. EXor. & Gdns. 348. Gdn..368. Ord. M Gdn 326.+0rd. N. 368
Ord. Q 268. Slaves
ORD K - Ordered that Nancy Smith be appointed guardian of Nicholas, Joseph and Margaret Eliza Smith, orphans of Nicholas Smith, dec'd. who executed Bond with John Shawhan Senr. and John Shawhan Jr. her securities in the penalty of three thousand dollars conditioned agreeably him.
On motion of Nancy Smith widow of Nicholas Smith dec'd ordered that Samuel Ewalt, John Fry, George Bush (Rush?), Wm. Bowen, being sworn to allots her dower on the land and slaves.
ORD L - Pg 387 - An additional Inventory of said Estate being returned into Court is ordered recorded. A settlement of said Estate being declared into court is ordered to be over November 6 1837.
ORD M Pg 3 December 4 1837
A Settlement of the estate of Nicholas Smith, deceased which was returned at the last court and ordered to lie over this day examined approved of and ordered to record.
ORD N - Pg 368 March 1 1841
Joseph Smith, orphan of Nichlas Smith, dec'd. came into court and chose Eliz Batterton his guardian who with Nathan Rule and Benjamin Batterton his security executed Bond in the penalty of two thousand dollars conditioned qgreeably to law.
ORD Q Pg 268 Division of Slaves among said heirs which being examined by the court is approved and ordered to record.
ORDER K - Pg 452 Administration of the estate of Nicholas Smith, dec'd. is granted to Nancy Shawhan Smith, his widow who made oath with John Shawhan Sr. and John Shawhan Jr. her securities executed on the penalty of fine of five thousand dollars conditioned agreeably to law. January 5 1835.
They had the following children:
110 i. Katharine “Kittie Ann” (1816-<1886)
111 ii. John Shawhan (1820-1885)
112 iii. Nicholas (1823-1855)
iv. Joseph. Joseph was born in Bourbon County, Kentucky, in February 1827.51 Joseph died in Bourbon County, Kentucky, on November 27, 1850; he was 23.52 Joseph was buried in Smith Family Burial Ground, Shawhan, Kentucky.
Research: Died unmarried53.
113 v. Margaret Elizabeth (1834-<1904)
On January 29, 1839 Nancy second married George RUSH, son of George RUSH (1755-February 11, 1831) & Mary Elizabeth "Mollie" BUSHONG (1758-November 12, 1799).54 George was born in Lincoln County, North Carolina, on September 16, 1796. George died in Bourbon County, Kentucky, on May 16, 1856; he was 59. George was buried in Old Stonermouth Presbyterian Church Graveyard, Bourbon County, Kentucky.
Deed Bk. 51, Part 2, pp. 553-554
Bourbon County Court Will Book G, pp. 529-533. Will of George Rush:
I George Rush of Bourbon County Kentucky do make the following as my last will and testament. First. I direct that so soon after my death as is convenient all my fat hogs and cattle that are fit for market be sold and the proceeds applied to the debts and escigances of my Estate.
2. I direct that my son Charles take care of and superintend the management of my farm negroes and stock until a sale is to be made, and for his services in so doing he is to be paid such compensation as three disininterested men shall consider just and reasonable.
3. So soon as the crop is laid by and the stock shall be fattened and fit for market in the Fall my executors shall sell at public auction to the highest bidder my farm of about 293 acres of land on which I now live, all my stock and personal property except such as is otherwise disposed of in this will, and all the crop remaining in hand on the following credits, The land in equal payments one in hand, one in one and one in two years from the day of sale--the personal Estate in six months from the day of sale for all sums over ten dollars, under that sum cash in hand. The proceeds of which sale shall be applied in the payment of my debts as fast as is practicable except such part thereof as may be herein otherwise directed.
4. Previous to my marriage with Nancy (Powell?) my present wife to wit; on the ninth day of October 1854, we entered into a marriage contract wherin I agreed with her that if she survived me, there should be paid to her out of my estate three thousand dollars in three equal annual payments from and after the date of my death, also our negro woman and her youngest child, two horses, two milck cows my Buggy or Barouch if I owned any at the time of my decease, one half of my household and kitchen furniture, one year’s provision for herself and family, and one year’s provend for her stock, but in case she died without leaving a child or children all said property was to return to my estate. But if Nancy removed from this state the negro woman and child and the increase of the woman was to return to my estate--and if the said Nancy should die leaving lawful heirs of her body all the property given except the Negroes was to go and be inherited by her body heirs. And said Nancy in said contract, agreed to take the property before specified in said Contract as her full portion of my Estate.
Now I hereby devise and bequeth to her the following______and property in lieu of the provision made for her by me in that contract, believing that it will be more acceptable to her and more to her advantage.
I direct that my Executors pay to her three thousand dollars as agreed in said contract also that they pay her in money at the time hereinafter directed, the appraised value of two of my best horses and milck cows, my Buggy and one half of my household and kitchen furniture, and the amount and value of one year’s provision for herself and family to be paid fixed by the appraisers of my Estate--and in lieu of the Negro woman and child provided in said contract I give to her absolutely one negro girl slave named Sally, to her and her heirs forever. But if the said Nancy dies without leaving lawful heirs of her body, all the Estate hereby devised to her except the slave, that remains at her death shall return to my estate. The said Nancy may remain in my mansion house and receive her support out of my Estate until it is sold, if she desires to do so--But as soon as she desires to leave if before the sale, my Executors shall pay to her two hundred dollars, in part of the valuation of the property above mentioned and the balance of that valuation shall be paid to her, the balance to be paid her when the sale money of my estate falls due.
5. I devise to my daughter Tabitha Shawhan wife of John Shawhan and to my daughter George Ann Rush my negro slaves Lavin and her three children Amanda, Ann, Maria and infant daughter and Mahala and her three children Charles, Mary Ann, and George. I wish the said slaves to be appraised by the appraisers of my Estate at their fair value, and then that my daughter draw lots for the choice of the two families, and the woman and her children I give to her my daughters as it may be thus determined by lot to each of them as and the heirs of their bodies living at their decease. But the said slaves are not to be sold out of the families of my daughters and their descendants. I also devise to my Daughter George Ann and her heirs forever the one half my household and kitchen furniture.
6. I devise to my son Charles for the use of himself and family my three Negro men, Sam, Levi and John, to be held and kept by him for the use and benefit of himself and family during his life and then to the use of his children. But no disposition shall be made of said slaves that will deprive the family of the benefit of their services.
7. My Boy Peter I wish to be placed in the lot with his mother Mahala and go to the daughter that draws his mother and her children.
9. (sic) I wish my son Charles and my daughter Tabitha to render up an account of the advancements made____me to them after their marriage and hope they will make out one that will be satisfactory to my children--with the amount of such advancements they are to be charged.
10. All the rest of my estate after payment of my debts and costs of minding up my Estate I devise to my said three children--each of whom are to be charged with the Estate hereby devised to them at the appraisement value, and also with the advancements before named they are then to be first made equal then the residue is to be equally divided between them. If my daughter George Ann dies without a child or children I direct that her Estate receive by from me return to my other children or their descendants.
11. I direct that all my slaves remain on the farm until the crop is completed Except Sal who I wish to go directly to my wife. If my wife shall be unwilling to accept the provisions made for her in this will and shall insist on receiving the property stipulated in said marriage contract, I wish her to have it--and as in that event one of my daughters will be deprived of a portion of the slaves devised to them--I direct that the portion of such daughter in my estate shall be made up to her out of my estate--so that the share of each of my children shall be equalized.
12. I appoint my son Charles Rush and my son-in-law John Shawhan my Executors and invest in them or either of them that may qualify full power to execute a Deed or Deeds for the conveyance of my land to the purchaser or purchasers. Should the exigences of my Estate in the judgement of my Executors or the one qualifying require it, I wish him or them to borrow money for the payment of my debts upon such interest as may be necessary to obtain it in order to pay my debts--and such debts so contracted by them him or them shall be paid out of my Estate together such usury as they may contract to pay for the use of such amount as they may borrow.
13. After my decease I wish my body to be interred in the Presbyterian burying ground at Ruddle’s Mills, and that the remains of my deceased wife be taken up and placed by the side of it--and that my Executors cause to be placed at the head and the foot of each grave a handsome and permanent stone well and solidly placed with our names, ages, &etc on the head stones, the cost of which and my funeral expenses to be paid out of my Estate.
In witness thereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this fifteenth day of April 1856.
George Rush (seal)
Tho. L. Arnold
Tho. P. Smith
At the June Term of the County Court of Bourbon County Ky on the 2nd day of June 1856. This last will and testament of Geo. Rush decd was this day produced and improved in open Court by the oath of Thomas D. Arnold, F.R. Wyatrt and Thomas P. Smith the attesting witness thereto and having been sworn to by John Shawhan one of the Executors therein named and ordered to record. Witness R.J. Bronn clerk of said court the date above. R.J. Bronn clk
They had one child:
114 i. George Ann (1840-)
On March 25, 1861 Nancy third married William READING, son of George READING Jr. (December 8, 1761-August 4, 1846) & Nancy McCUNE (November 25, 1770-October 20, 1843), in Bourbon County, Kentucky.55 William was born in Bourbon County, Kentucky, on October 9, 1792. William died in Pike County, MO, on September 2, 1868; he was 75. William was buried in Old Grassy Creek Cemetery, Pike County, Missouri. Just north of Louisiana, Missouri. William served in War Of 1812, in 1812; he was 19.
Notes on William READING:38
William Reading (deceased, whose portrait appears in this work). Among the pioneers of Pike county who by their own energy and strict attention to business won a high position in society, there are none more worthy of space in history than the subject of this sketch. He was born in Bourbon county, Kentucky, October 9, 1792, where he was reared on a farm and educated in the subscription schools of the time. He was married January 11, 1816, to Miss Margaret Shawhan, a native of Bourbon county, Kentucky, born February 11, 1787. In 1820 he immigrated to Pike County, Missouri, where he settled in Buffalo township, on the farm where his youngest son (Lafayette) now lives. He purchased the claim of a man by the name of Yedder, and afterwards entered the land. He, from time to time, purchased other lands until he became one of the largest land-owners in the county, having a landed estate of over 2,000 acres. He was a man of liberal views, and by honest and upright dealing won a large circle of warm and true friends. After living in Pike county about fourteen years he persuaded his father and mother to leave their home in Kentucky and come and settle in this new and prosperous young country. George Reading, his father, was born December 8, 1761, and Nancy, the mother, was born November 25, 1771. Settling on a part of our subject's farm, where he lived until the death of his wife, which occurred in 1842, he then went to Clark county, Missouri, where he died at a ripe old age. William and Margaret Reading were the parents of eight children, all of whom have grown up and held high positions in society. Probably no family in the county are held in higher esteem than the Reading family. He and his wife were members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. He always took an interest in educational matters, and gave his children all the advantages possible in that early day. His wife died in 1860, and our subject followed eight years later.
In 1820, the Reading family moved from Bourbon County, Kentucky to Pike County, Missouri. They traveled via keel boat, by way of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Before making the trip with his family, William had already scouted the land that he wished to purchase. William chose choice farm land and eventually became the largest land owner in Pike County, owning over two thousand acres of land. As with the custom of the day, he was a slave owner. He kept the land until his death and offered portions of it to his wife's family.39
William's will is dated May 25, 1864 and proved Sept. 9, 1868.40 Bowling Green
Bowling Green was laid out two years before Missouri became a state; and it was named the official
county seat of Pike County before the town itself was legally incorporated. John Walter Basye, a
native of Bowling Green, Kentucky, was the first white settler in this area. (Although there are
legends that Bowling Green was at one time an Indian reservation, more recent research claims that
the area was merely an Indian hunting ground abounding with buffalo.) Basye first settled in
Louisiana, Missouri, but purchased land in the Bowling Green area on December 23, 1818, only
nine days after the county was formed. In addition to Basye, other early settlers of the Bowling
Green area included the Thorntons, Culbertsons, McPikes and Readings, all of whom arrived from
Bowling Green, Kentucky. This group became known as the "Bowling Green crowd" and
therefore the town they helped form was eventually named Bowling Green. When these pioneers