McDaniel, Et Al
by Doris Threlkeld and Joe Richards

JOSEPH HOPKINS McDANIEL, son of John and Mary (Hopkins) McDaniel, was born in South Carolina and moved with his parents to Tennessee when a boy.  He married Phoebe Holland, daughter of James and Rebecca (Hammonds) Holland.

To this union were born four daughters: Diannah, Martelia Nelms, Elizabeth, Jane and five sons: James, John, William and two who died in infancy.  About 1843 they emigrated to Hamilton County, Illinois where the children grew to adulthood.  John died in the Civil War in Mississippi (Southern Army).  James, William and Jane emigrated to Texas and the other three daughters (Mrs. Diannah Richards, Mrs. Martelia Nelms Braden and Mrs. Elizabeth (Green) Redfearn lived the remainder of their lives and died in Illinois.

Phoebe Holland, wife of J. H. McDaniel, was born near Nashville, Tenn. and died in Hamilton County, Illinois.  (She was buried at Cherry Grove Cemetery, Hamilton Co., and the gravestone reads "died April 27, 1857, aged 47 yrs/3mos/21days. DBT).  Her mother, Rebecca Hammonds was born in Ireland, and Rebecca's father was an Irish weaver, born and died in Ireland.

Phoebe Holland's parents died in Tennessee.  She had five sisters: Mary, Sally, Betsey, Thursa and Rebecca (Rebecca lived to be 100 yrs. old), and three brothers: Moses in Alabama, Russell in Hopkinsville (when last heard from) and Thomas.

Joseph H. McDaniel had four sisters: Sally, Betsey, Mary and Hester; and five brothers: William, John, Hampton, Austin and Jesse.  He was married his second wife, Mississippi Cox, in Hamilton County.  [The marriage record in Hamilton County reads Arisippa Christian, September 24, 1857. DBT.]  To this union was born five daughters: Martha, Mary, Alice, Ada and Hattie.  He, with his second family, moved to Texas.  He died at Sherman, Texas and was buried there.  [I found his grave and the dates are November 7, 1813; d. July 29, 1901, husband of "Ara" McDaniel. DBT.]

Diannah, the oldest child of Joseph and Phoebe McDaniel was born near Sparta, Tennessee, White County, June 3, 1834.  She moved with her parents to Hamilton County, Ill. when about 9 years old.  She married James Jedithen Richards February 14, 1856.  To this union was born eight children: Joseph, Lewis, Sarah Ann, Harriet, Harrison, Albert, Phoebe Jane and Elizabeth.  Left a widow January 13, 1875, the last child was born about three months after the death of her husband.  Her eldest child Joseph died at the age of eight years.

John McDaniel and Mary (Hopkins) McDaniel, parents of Joseph H. McDaniel, were probably born in SC.  The McDaniels lived on or near the PeDee River. 

[Note: The foregoing information was given to her daughter Elizabeth by Diannah (McDaniel) Richards before her death in 1914.  Annotations by Doris B. Threlkeld.  The following information was given by Diannah to her grandson Joe Richards.]

GRANDFATHER McDANIEL lived on Caney Fork River near Sparta, White County, Tennessee.  He owned twenty slaves, and also a ferry that ferried the wayfarers across in their trek from Eastern Tennessee to West Tennessee, Illinois, and further west.

Grandpa had a dinner bell on the other side and when anyone wanted to cross they rang the bell, and one of the slaves would go and bring them across.  The charge was ten cents for a man of foot, and thirty-five cents for a wagon and team.

The had a large plantation, raising cotton, corn and sugar cane.  He didn't like the idea of owning slaves and treated his slaves with a great deal of kindness.  He and a number of his relatives decided in 1843 to sell or free their slaves and move to a free state, which they did, disposing of all slaves but two boys, 19 and 20 years old, who came to Illinois with them and stayed for two years, but soon wanted to go home to Tennessee and lived with a Moss family.

The caravan was made up of eight wagons, in which was feed for the oxen, food for the camp, plows and household equipment, which was small at that time.

A man by the name of Arnold Moss whom Grandma called "Uncle", was the scout and hunter to keep them in venison steaks during the trek of about eight weeks.  Grandma was nine years old and aunt Mart (Martelia) was about seven years old, so Grandma rode a horse most of the way.  They had five horses in addition to the two oxen for each wagon.

They went to Nashville, then through Hopkinsville, KY where grandma got behind the caravan by stopping at an apple orchard and asking the darkies for one or two apples to eat.  They gave her an apron full but it was getting late in the evening, almost dark, so she got a scolding.  Aunt Mart wanted to ride the horses too but they told her she was too little, since she was only seven.

They reached the Ohio River at Shawneetown and crossed the next day.  That was sometime in the latter part of October.  Then they hit what was called the Old Goshen Road to Cahokia (this was also called the Shawnee Trail), and thence north to McLeansboro, to a farm where they continued to live long years afterward.

The caravan was made up of the McDaniels, the Hollands, the Mosses, McColgins, and two other families whose names I have forgotten.  It would be an interesting story if I had the knack for a writing a book, but I don't, so it will only live in memory as Grandma told it!

 From: Goshen Trails, Vol. 16; No. 4; Oct. 1980
Reprinted by permission

Copyright 2000.  All rights Reserved


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