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'Doc Jerry,' noted country physician among those in my family tree with birthdays week of Ju


Birthdays from my family tree for the week of June 29:

June 29

Joseph Harrison Coyle (father-in-law of James Edmund Hall, my 4G uncle on my father's side), b. 1814 in Bath County, Ky.; d. Sept. 6, 1875, in Robertson County, Ky. James Edmund Hall married Joseph's daughter, Elizabeth Jane Coyle, in 1870. James and Elizabeth gave Joseph nine grandchildren.

Surena Katherine Hall (my 2G aunt on my mother's side), b. 1891; d. Sept. 1, 1981, in Morehead, Rowan County, Ky. Surena Hall, 89, died at the Glenway Lodge in Winchester after a brief illness, according to her obituary in the Morehead News of Thursday, Sept. 3, 1981. She was a daughter of George W. and Nancy A. Quesinberry Hall, my 2G grandparents, and the sister of Mahala Susan Hall, one of my maternal great-grandmothers. She was survived by three daughters, Audra Marcus of Morehead, Thelma Stevens of Flatwood, Ky., and Mae Gilkison of Winchester, Ky.; brothers, Oliver and Howard Hall, both of Clearfield, Ky., Emmitt Hall of Morehead, and Harlan Hall of Muncie, Ind.

Surena was a cook at the Midland Trail Hotel in Morehead for more than 25 years. Pallbearers at her funeral included my grandfather, Oliver Wilson, Mahala's son.

Norman Kidd (my second cousin once removed on my father's side), b. 1902 in Elliott County, Ky.; d. Feb. 6, 1973, in Morehead, Rowan County, Ky. Norman was one of five children of Saul Kidd and Allie Fair Winkleman Kidd. Saul was the first cousin of my paternal grandfather, Elmer Kidd.

John R. Hall (my second cousin twice removed on my mother's side), b.1936 in Rowan County, Ky.; d. March 9, 2002, in Lexington, Fayette County, Ky. John was a first cousin once removed of Mahala Susan Hall Wilson, who was my great-grandmother.

June 30

Dr. Jeremiah Wilson (my 3G uncle on my mother's side), b. 1852 in the Narrows, Rowan County (then Morgan County), Ky.; d. April 24, 1917, in Morehead, Rowan County, Ky. "Doc Jerry" was the brother of my 2G grandfather Abijiah Wilson. He had 15 children by two women. (He is pictured at left with his second wife, Virginia Lee Crawford.) Among them were Bunyan Spratt Wilson, Morehead's first mayor; Homer Lee Wilson, a dentist; and Cora Wilson Stewart, who traveled the world as an adult-literacy advocate.

But the country doctor was notable in his own right.

Early in his adult life, while still living in the home of his parents, Isaiah and Sarah Jane Wilson, he was a school teacher. In 1870, he married Anna Halley, mother of 13 of Jeremiah's children, including each of the aforementioned. Several of his children were born during the Martin-Tolliver mountain feud that became known as the Rowan County War. He knew people on both sides of the conflict. Craig Tolliver leader of one faction, was said in some accounts to be a relative, although I've not been able to confirm that. D.B. Logan, whose raid killed Tolliver and knocked his forces from Morehead, was Cora's first school teacher.

The record is mixed as to the extent of Jeremiah's involvement in the fued. Some of Cora Wilson's biographical information indicates the doctor steered a neutral course. However, the book about the feud, "Days of Anger, Days of Tears" by Fred Brown Jr. and Juanita Blair, suggests he was an active partisan of the Democrat-affiliated Tollivers. He was in a party that went to Louisville with Craig Tolliver to negotiate a peace with the Martin faction. (The peace didn't hold long, however.) The book also describes a few instances in which Doc Jerry went on armed patrols with Tolliver, although the only shot he is reported to have squeezed off was an accidental discharge of his Spencer rifle, shooting himself in the right foot. After that incident, early in the feud, he seems to fade from the scene, according to the Brown/Blair book and is not mentioned prominently again.

Jerimiah's family might have had divided loyalties. Two of his children married Careys, who were Republican-affiliated backers of the Martin faction, though both marriages took place after the feud had ended. The Careys were related to the Brains. Their matriarch, Pamela, was the daughter of James M. Brain, who had sold land to the Tollivers but then had a falling out with them.

Doc Jerry also sold or bought land to and from both Martins and Tollivers after the feud, county records indicate.

The family moved several times between 1880 and 1885 — years just before and during the Rowan County War (1884-1887). Jeremiah had medical practices in Farmers and Elliottville and also ran general stores in each town. Jeremiah studied medicine with Dr. Bunyan Spratt, a well-known Montgomery County physician, for whom he named one of his sons.

In late 1880s, Jeremiah had to leave his family to go to Louisville to get his diploma in medicine. Anna ran the farm in his absence. Jeremiah returned in 1890 and moved the family to Morehead, where, at the turn of 20th century, he was one of three doctors, according to the Morehead News centennial edition, published in 1956. He had an office at Galt House but later moved to Main Street. Later, a street in Morehead was named for him.

Anna died in 1900 at age 51. Wilson married Virginia Lee Crawford in 1901 and had two more children by her.

Jeremiah died in 1917 of kidney disease.

Sarah Ann Wilson Kidd (my 2G aunt in law on my father's side), b. 1857 in Elliott County, Ky.; d. March 31, 1928. Although Sarah Ann shares my mother's maiden name, she is not related by blood. Rather, she married Peter Fannin-Kidd, a son of Mary Fannin who was adopted by her second husband, Edmund Kidd, my 2G grandfather. (Edmund's son, also named Edmund, was my great-grandfather.)

Virginia Louise Kidd (my first cousin once removed on my father's side), b. 1931 in Kentucky; d. Jan. 31, 1932. Virginia died before her first birthday. She was the niece of my grandfather Elmer Kidd and the daughter of Elmer's brother Albert and his wife, Ludy Atlas Baker Kidd.

July 2

Lina Thorpe (wife of Albert David Quesenberry, my first cousin three times removed on my mother's side), b. 1892 in Elliott County, Ky.; d. June 1984 in Rushville, Rush County, Ind. Lina married Albert in 1911.

July 3

Willie Lee Slusher (my second cousin twice removed on my father's side), b. 1889 in Rowan County, Ky.; d. July 1, 1973, in Morehead, Rowan County, Ky. Willie Lee married Laura Belle Kidd, my dad's first cousin once removed.

Silas Jennings, second from left, is flanked by brothers Willie and Jesse. Brother Aaron is in front.

Silas Jennings (my second cousin once removed on my father's side), b. 1919 in Rowan County, Ky.; d. March 6, 1946, in Farmers, Rowan County, Ky. Silas was the child of John Milt Jennings and Sarah Elizabeth Slusher and a nephew of Willie Lee Slusher, with whom he shared a July 3 birthday. Silas was also the brother of Jesse Franklin Jennings, who married my maternal great aunt, Vada Mae Wilson, making Silas both a cousin and an in-law. I've never heard any stories about Silas' death, but according to his death certificate, he drove a bread delivery truck and died when he was struck by a train. The certificate is not clear on whether he was driving when he was struck.

Ryan Thomas Brunson (my wife Deborah Ray Kidd's first cousin once removed on her father's side), b. 2009. Happy birthday, Ryan.

July 4

Lucinda Lewis (my 4G aunt on my mother's side), b. 1813 in Morgan County, Ky.; d. Dec. 4, 1898, in Morgan County, Ky. Lucinda was the daughter of Francis Hopkins Lewis and Elanore Perry. She also was the sister of Isaac Lewis, my 3G grandfather.

Abijiah B. Wilson (my 2G grandfather), b. 1857 in Triplett, Rowan County, Ky.; d. Dec. 31, 1928. Abijiah was a younger brother of Doc Jerry, who celebrated a birthday on June 30. He married Martha Royse in 1883, but at some point, the couple was divorced.

I don't know much about Abijiah's life, but I know he spent his final days on property originally consolidated by his son Lee, then sold to another of his son's Burl Wilson, my great-grandfather. According to his great grandson, Kenny Wilson, he died on that property but was buried on land where he used to live. That cemetery just off Christie Creek Road, where Homer Lee Wilson — infant son of Burl and Mahala Wilson, also is said to be buried — has been grown over. When Kenny and I searched for it in 2012, we could not find it.

Abijiah was born on Independence Day and died on New Year's Eve — he came in and went out with fireworks.

William Henry Hall (my first cousin three times removed on my mother's side), b. 1896 in Rowan County, Ky.; d. Nov. 27, 1966, in Rowan County, Ky. One of eight children of the Rev. James Henry Hall and Clara Johnson Hall. He was the first cousin of my great-grandmother Mahala Susan Hall Wilson.

Lucille Ray Bradley (my wife Deborah Ray Kidd's great aunt on her father's side), b. 1920 in Kershaw County, S.C. Lucille was the sister of my wife's grandfather, Clarence Richard Ray. I'm not sure when she died but am confident she did — during a recent trip to the cemetery where she is presumably buried, there were flowers on her grave, but no dates of death on the tombstone for her or her husband, Ernest Bradley.

Inez Brinson Tiller (my wife Deborah Ray Kidd's first cousin twice removed), b. 1925; d. Nov. 14, 2003, in McBee, Chesterfield County, S.C. The daughter of George and Susie Brinson and the neice of James Ernest Brinson, my wife's great grandfather.

Mary Gladys Ray Baker (my wife Deborah Ray Kidd's great aunt on her father's side), d. 1930 in Kershaw County, S.C.; d. Sept. 25, 1963. Mary married Thornwell K. Baker and had two children. She died at age 33. I do not know the cause.

Walter Thomas Fisher (husband of Lynn Ellen Dickerson, my second cousin on my mother's side), b. 1956.

July 5

Nancy Abigail Quesenbery Hall (my 2G grandmother on my mother's side), b. 1867 in Rowan County, Ky.; d. Oct. 16, 1954, in Rowan County, Ky. Nancy was known to all as "Sis" or Aunt Sis, to the younger generation. She and husband George Washington Hall had 12 children, including by great-grandmother, Mahala Susan Hall. Another of her daughters, Florence Hall, said that her mother moved from Carroll County, Va., to Kentucky in a covered wagon when she was about 9 years old. If her father Oliver's pension application is correct, Nancy would really have been 12 years old at the time. One story has it that Oliver walked from Virginia to Kentucky to prepare a home, on land about a half mile northeast of the present Old Oak Grove Church. Then, he walked back to Virginia and retrieved his family, in 1878 or 1879.

Maxine Brinson (my wife Deborah Ray Kidd's first cousin twice removed on her father's side), b. 1931 in Summerville, Dorchester County, S.C.; d. Feb. 15, 2008, in Summerville, Dorchester County, S.C. Maxine was the daughter of George Brinson and the niece of James Ernest Brinson, my wife's great grandfather.

Kayley Harper (my first cousin once removed on my mother's side), b. 1999. Happy birthday, Kayley. Hope you have a great day.

#Coyle #hall #wilson #kidd #Slusher #Jennings #Brunson #Lewis #Quesenberry

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