Saturday, May 10, 2014

Jessie Lenora (Jones) Rowe

I've told you before that I suffer from a lack of focus in all things...well, in all things.  I'm like a little kid; easily distracted by something new.  Or pretty.  Or the box it came in.  Anyway - things have been pretty busy around here lately and I haven't had a lot of time to work on my family tree. Actually - I haven't let myself work on it, because I know when I do, it's not going to end well. At least not for my family.  I get sidetracked and end up looking up from the computer two (or five) hours later and realize I need to check on supper.  And the kids.

So when I did find time recently to do a little research, I decided to mix it up a little.  I had spent a good bit of time lately working my patented (J.K.!) generational wave pattern.  I was getting a little bored with it, so I decided to just pick someone new and start working my way back.  Since I married a Jones, I thought it would be neat to work on the Jones line in my own family.  In an attempt to blog about 52 ancestors in 52 weeks, I thought I'd actually put my research into words.

So, today, I'd like to introduce you to my second greatgrandmother on my father's mother's side, Jessie Lenora (Jones) Rowe.  (D'ya get all that?)

Jessie Lenora Jones was born on 26 May 1868 in Alabama to William Jackson Jones and Nancy A. Wynn.  (I used to think she was a Wynn, then I thought she was a Summers, but now I'm back to Wynn.  I guess I kinda need to figure that out for sure.)  I'm not sure exactly where Jessie was born, but if I had to guess, it'd be Elmore County, since the 1870 census shows her living here.  In fact, just a very few miles from where I live. (Big genealogy smile.)
Jessie was the oldest child and had three siblings: William Rushing Jones (1872-1949), Mahlon Theophilus Jones (1873-1918) and Eben Charles Jones (1875-1920).
My first record of Jessie is in the (August 4th) 1870 U.S. federal census.  She is living with her parents, W.J. and Nancy.  He is listed as a farmer and Nancy is "keeping house".  They are living in Township 18, in Elmore County.  Tallassee is listed as their post office.
In the 1880 U.S. federal census, she is 12 years old and living in Kendalls in Montgomery County with her parents, William J. and Nancy A. and her brothers William (age 7), Mahlon (age 6) and Eben (age 4).  William is still listed as a farmer.
On 25 November 1888, Jessie marries James Henry Rowe in Elmore County.  The 1890 federal census was destroyed, so I'm not sure where they lived at first.
By 1900, they are living in Sandtuck in Elmore County.  They now have six children: William Henry (age 10), Viola Elender (age 9), Lovie Mae (my greatgrandmother, age 7), Ida Lee (age 4), James Grady (age 2) and Claude O. (age 1 month).  James is a farmer.
According to the 1910 census ten years later, they now have two more children: Altha Ola (mistakenly listed as a male named Alpha...Alpha male?  Really?) and Homer.  James's mother, Mattie (age 74) is listed as a widow and living with them in Precinct 5 in Elmore County.
The 1920 census is the last record I have for Jessie.  She is living in Precinct 8 (Wetumpka?) in Elmore County.  She is 52 years old, but still has a full house.  Her husband, James, is now hauling logs for a living.  They have four children still at home (Ida Lee, Claude, Altha and Homer) and their oldest son, William Henry has moved back in along with his wife, Mattie, and their three children; Wilbur, Gertrude and Verna.  William Henry is also driving a log truck.
Jessie died 3 January 1926 in Elmore County.  She is buried in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Eclectic, Elmore County, Alabama.  He husband, James, will live another 25 years before being buried next to his wife.
I wish I had a picture of Jessie.  I wish I knew more about her.  My grandmother was 14 when Jessie died, but I don't have any personal recollection of MawMaw ever talking about her with me.  She seems to have lived an ordinary life.  Nothing special.  But I like to imagine what life was like for her, especially since I live so close to where she lived.  Maybe one day, I'll learn more.  
Interestingly enough, I know more about her father and grandfather than I do about her, but that's not all that uncommon with women, especially of this era.  Regardless, she lived, and as I result, I do too!  She was pretty important after all!
PS - After a little more research last night, I think her mother, Nancy, may have actually been a Simmons.  Ahhhh!  I guess you know what I'm doing this weekend... 
I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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