Children of Dennis Lindsey (1794-1836) and Jane Brooks: Mark Jefferson Lindsey (1820-1878) — The Louisiana Years

According to these stories, Mark and Mary Ann traveled to Louisiana from Alabama with Mark’s sisters Margaret and her husband William Hunter and Frances Rebecca and husband Samuel Hiram Kellogg, settling very soon after their move to Louisiana in a part of Natchitoches Parish near Coushatta Chute that became Red River Parish in 1871. But factual information shows that this story simplifies the actual history of Mark’s arrival and settling in Louisiana.

Margaret Lindsey and William Hunter did not marry until 1851, after Mark and Mary Ann had moved to Louisiana. In 1850, Margaret was still living at home with her mother at Oakville in Lawrence County, Alabama. William and Margaret Lindsey Hunter did not come to Louisiana until 1859-1860, and when they did so, they settled at first at Homer in Claiborne Parish. Samuel and Frances Rebecca Lindsey Kellogg were in Itawamba County, Mississippi, in 1850, when Mark and Mary Ann were arriving or had already arrived in Louisiana. They moved to Louisiana from Mississippi in 1853, also settling in Claiborne Parish initially. Following the death of wife Mary Jane Hunter, a sister to Margaret’s spouse William Hunter in Lawrence County, Alabama, in 1858, another sibling of Mark, Margaret, and Frances Rebecca — their brother Samuel Asbury Lindsey — also moved to Homer in Claiborne Parish, Louisiana.

Mark and Mary Ann preceded these three siblings to Louisiana, and, as I stated in my last posting, there are strong indicators that they moved to Louisiana not with Mark’s siblings but with Mary Ann’s brother John Wesley Harrison and his wife Permelia Caroline Harper, who were in Homer by 1850. The following year, John and Mary Ann’s brother Benjamin Dorsey Harrison joined his brother John in Homer, and soon after this, another brother, Richard Thomas Harrison then moved to Homer, too. Mark and Mary Ann had been raising her youngest brother Abraham Anderson Harrison from the time the couple married in 1839, and they brought him to Louisiana and continued raising him until he married Emily A. Foster, daughter of George Washington Foster and Martha Ann Moorman, in Homer on 15 May 1856.[1]

Where Mark and Mary Ann and their family lived in any given year before they moved to Natchitoches Parish in the 1860s is not easy to ascertain. Various documents place them in a number of different locations from 1850, when they are enumerated on the federal census in Bossier Parish, until 1870, when they are at Coushatta Chute in Natchitoches Parish. Bossier had been created from Claiborne in 1843 and in this period, it bordered Claiborne directly on the west. In 1871, Webster Parish was formed and now sits between Bossier and Claiborne Parishes.

As we’ll see in a moment, a number of documents also indicate that Mark and Mary Ann lived in Claiborne Parish at points in the 1850s. They also bought land in Union Parish, to the east of Claiborne, and the biography of their son Benjamin Dennis Lindsey in Texas Under Many Flags states that he was born in Union Parish on 21 January 1856, which indicates that the family was living in that parish when Benjamin D. was born.[2]

The biography goes on to state that Benjamin D. was schooled at Springville. Springville was a now defunct village just east of Coushatta in what is now Red River Parish, but was Natchitoches Parish until 1871.[3] Benjamin Dennis Lindsey’s oldest brother Michael Dorsey Lindsey married Sarah A. Myers, daughter of Thomas Massey Myers and Jane Catherine Owens, at Springville on 12 June 1864, and died at Springville in December 1867.[4] This suggests that the Lindsey family may have already moved down to Natchitoches Parish by 1864.

Settling in Claiborne, Bossier, and Union Parishes

The first document I find of Mark and his family in Louisiana is their listing on the 1850 federal census in ward 3, township 23 of Bossier Parish.[5] The census doesn’t provide clear markers of precisely where in Bossier Parish the family was living, but since they are enumerated on the same page with Joseph Graham, a wealthy planter born in Georgia in 1779 who lived at Rocky Mount in Bossier Parish, it seems to me likely the Lindseys were living in that vicinity in 1850.[6]

Rocky Mount is some thirteen miles northeast of Benton, the parish seat of Bossier Parish. Homer is a bit less than 40 miles due east of Rocky Mount.

As the previous posting notes, the 1850 federal census lists Mark J. Lindsey as a planter with $300 real worth. I have not found any records showing Mark purchasing land in Bossier Parish. 

By 1852, Mark’s brothers-in-law John Wesley and Benjamin D. Harrison had joined Taylor Masonic lodge in Homer, with John the lodge tyler and Benjamin D. its secretary.[7] The following year, Mark appears as a member of the same lodge, with his brother-in-law Benjamin D. Harrison remaining secretary and John W. Harrison now deacon.[8] The minutes of this year list Mark as an “affiliated” member of the lodge, which makes me think that he lived at some distance from Homer and could not regularly attend meetings .

While the Lindsey family was living in Claiborne Parish in 1853, Mark’s wife Mary Ann gave birth to their daughter Emma, the only daughter the couple had. Emma was born 4 August 1853, according to her tombstone in Provencal cemetery in Natchitoches Parish, where she’s buried with husband Daniel Campbell Wester.

Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Louisiana, At Its Annual Communication Held at New Orleans, Jan. 16th, 1854 (New Orleans: Sherman & Wharton, 1854), pp. 150-1
Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Louisiana, At Its Annual Communication Held at New Orleans, Jan. 16th, 1854 (New Orleans: Sherman & Wharton, 1854), p. 169

In 1854, Mark appears in records of the Taylor Masonic lodge in Homer as a “demitted” member who was now in a newly formed lodge at Lisbon in Claiborne Parish, where he’s listed as lodge tyler and an “affiliated” member.[9] This listing shows John W. Harrison as Taylor lodge’s senior warden and Benjamin D. Harrison as its secretary.[10] Mark continues to be in the members’ list of the Lisbon lodge in 1855 and 1856, with the latter list showing him being demitted from the Lisbon lodge in that year, an indicator that it was in this year that he made his move to Union Parish.[11]

Lisbon is some 11 miles east of Homer near the Union Parish line. On 1 January 1853 and 25 April 1856, Mark J. Lindsey appears in the sale of property of the late firm of James H. Carson and John H. Bayless, merchants of Farmerville, the parish seat of Union Parish. An estate account for the firm dated 28 November 1859 shows M.J. Lindsey owing notes for $66.12 and $9.91 to the estate with the dates given above.[12] An account dated 27 February 1861 shows Mark continuing to owe the estate for the two notes.[13]

On 25 October 1854, Mark J. Lindsey filed for 275.50 acres in Union Parish at the federal land office in Monroe, Louisiana.[14] The land was the west ½ of section 5, township 22 north, range 3 west. Mark paid $136.75 on the same day for the land. He signed his application as Mark J. Lindsey. The receipt, also in the land file, states that he was living in Claiborne Parish when he bought the land. Mark was issued a certificate for this land on 15 January 1858, with the certificate noting that Mark lived in Claiborne Parish.[15]

But it appears that Mark had definitely moved his family to Union Parish by 21 January 1856, when Mark and Mary Ann’s fourth son, Benjamin Dennis Lindsey, was born in that parish, according to his 1927 biography for which it’s clear he supplied biographical information.[16] Mark and Mary Ann gave this son the names of his two grandfathers Benjamin Harrison and Dennis Lindsey. 

Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office, Louisiana State Volume Patent Bk. 1130, p. 1, #14026
Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office, Louisiana State Volume Patent Bk. 1160, p. 197, #1694

On 13 August 1858, Mark had a certificate from the federal land office in Monroe for another piece of land in Union Parish. The land was 33.66 acres, the southeast ¼ southeast ¼ section 6, township 22 north, range 3 west. The certificate for this tract states that Mark J. Lindsey was of Union Parish, Louisiana.[17]

Mark appears to have sold both of the preceding tracts in Union Parish to Thomas Mercer Smith of the same parish on 31 January 1857 — that is, before he even had in hand the certificate for the second tract. Union Parish conveyance records show Mark on that date selling Smith both pieces of land for $460, with the deed stating that Mark lived in Union Parish.[18] At some point during his sojourn in Claiborne and Union Parish, Mark also apparently tried to patent land in section 6, township 14 north, range 5 west, with the patent being cancelled.[19]

Plat map of Union Parish, Louisiana, in Gregory A. Boyd, Family Maps of Union Parish, Louisiana (Norman, Oklahoma: Arphax, 2007), pp. 13, 130

As the plat maps above show us, the tracts Mark patented and then sold in Union Parish were on the western side of the parish near the Claiborne Parish border, some twenty miles north of Lisbon, where Mark had appeared as a member of a Masonic lodge in 1854-1856. They’re also about ten miles west of Spearsville in Union Parish, where in 1857-8, Mark appears as a member of Thomas Jefferson Masonic lodge at Spears’s Store.[20] Spears’s store was the father-and-son firm of Alexander and William Lemuel Spears, who founded Spearsville. On 1 October 1856, Thomas M. Smith sold thirteen enslaved people to William Lemuel Spears.[21] The plat map above shows that Thomas M. Smith already owned land next to Mark’s at the time Mark bought his federal land in Union Parish.

Thomas M. Smith’s wife Margaret Kinkead Smith (a widow Clark when he married her) is buried in Farmerville cemetery. Thomas and Margaret married 3 October 1843 in Union Parish and she died 24 April 1847 in the same parish.[22] Union Parish succession records show that Thomas had brought his family to Union Parish from Perry County, Alabama, after he had moved there from Randolph County, Georgia. The Perry County residence is stated in a file of documents regarding Thomas M. Smith’s appeal for guardianship of Thomas Smith Heard in July 1844 in Union Parish.[23]

Louisiana Serial Patent #870379

One patent that Mark received in Union Parish under the provisions of the military bounty land act of March 1855 was not officially recorded until 28 June 1922, some four decades after mark died. This was a patent for 67.81 acres, the east ½ northeast ¼ of section 6, township 22 north, range 3 west in Union Parish. The certificate notes that the land had been granted by warrant 42746 to Thomas Harper, a private in Capt. Carter’s company of the Georgia militia, for his service in the War of 1812 following the 1855 act.[24]

While the Lindsey family was living in Union Parish, Mark’s wife Mary Ann gave birth on 10 March 1858 to two more sons, twins whom the couple named Carry Samuel and Alexander Cobb. As I noted in a previous posting, the bible of Mark’s sister Frances Kellogg records the birth of Samuel Asbury Lindsey Jr., son of their brother Samuel Asbury Lindsey, on 30 September 1863 in Homer, Louisiana, giving Samuel the name Samuel Cary Lindsey, though all other records show this son of Samuel and Leonora Bickley Lindsey as Samuel Asbury Jr. Leonora’s father was William Cary Bickley. I think it’s likely that Mark and Mary Ann named their son Carry Samuel Lindsey for Mark’s brother Samuel, borrowing the Cary/Carry name from the family of Samuel’s second wife.

The Thomas Jefferson Masonic lodge to which Mark belonged at Spearsville in 1858 had six Cobb men in it, and I can only assume that Mark and Mary Ann chose the name Alexander Cobb for one of their twins due to some connection to Mark’s Masonic brothers named Cobb, though none of those Cobb men had the name Alexander. A Cobb family that did use the name Alexander, the family of Levi Banks Cobb (1819-1883), arrived in Union Parish from Bibb County, Alabama, a few years following the Civil War. Perhaps there was some connection between these two Cobb families and that accounts for Mark and Mary Ann’s choice to name a son Alexander Cobb Lindsey.

Though Mark continues to appear as a member of the Masonic lodge at Spearsville in Union Parish in 1859,[25] by 1860, Mark and his family were living back in Bossier Parish at Orchard Grove, according to the 1860 federal census.[26] As on the 1850 federal census in Bossier Parish, Mark J. Linsey [sic] is listed as a planter. The census states that he’s living “on RL” — that is, he’s renting land. His age is 39, he was born in Alabama, and he has a figure of real worth that’s not easy to read: it appears to be $2,165, but may be $465, an amount that matches fairly well what he had taken in by selling his Union Parish land three years earlier to Thomas M. Smith. 

The 1860 census shows Mark’s wife M.A. as 38, born in Alabama. In the household are children M.D. (Michael Dorsey), 18; M.T. (Thomas Madison), 14; J.J.J. (Jeremiah J.J.), 9; E.C. (Emma C.), 7; B.D. (Benjamin Dennis), 4; A.C. (Alexander Cobb), 2; S.C. (Samuel Carry), 2 (twins); and Charles H. (Charles Henry), 6 months. All children are listed as males, though E.C. is Mark and Mary Ann’s daughter Emma. The census states that the first two sons, who are listed as farm hands, were born in Alabama and the other children in Louisiana. Note that the 1850 and 1860 census listings confirm that Mark and Mary Ann moved their family from Alabama to Louisiana between 1846 and 1851 — by 1849, in fact, if the former census is correct, since it has their son Jeremiah born in that year in Louisiana. Jeremiah’s tombstone in Old Armistead Chapel Methodist cemetery at Coushatta, Louisiana, gives his date of birth as 24 February 1850.

Mark J. Lindsey is also on the 1860 Bossier Parish agricultural census.[27] This shows him renting his land, with tools valued at $120. He has a horse, 3 milk cows, 2 oxen, 20 swine, all valued at $137. He has raised 50 bushels of corn, 80 bales of cotton, and 5 bushels of sweet potatoes during the year, and made 20 pounds of butter. He has slaughtered animals worth $60. 

The annual Masonic minutes for the state of Louisiana in 1860 show Mark continuing to be a member of Thomas Jefferson lodge at Spears’s Store in Union Parish in that year, but they also list him as a demitted member of that lodge in the same year, an indicator that he did, in fact, move his family back to Bossier Parish in 1860.[28]

As I have noted previously, I have found no records indicating that Mark owned land at any point in Bossier Parish, though his brothers-in-law John W. and Richard T. Harrison both acquired federal land there. On 5 June 1858, both bought tracts from the U.S. land office at Natchitoches. John acquired 163.91 acres assigned to him by Hardy Carter, who had gotten the land as bounty land under the bounty act of 1855 for War of 1812 service.[29] On the same day, his brother Richard bought land in the same coordinates as John’s.[30] The Harrison brothers were living in Claiborne Parish at the time, buying and selling land there. Given Mark’s sale of his land in Union Parish in 1857 and his move back to Bossier Parish right after this, one has to wonder if he was renting his Bossier Parish land in 1860 from his brother-in-law John W. Harrison.

According to Clifton D. Cardin’s history of Bossier Parish, Orchard Grove, where Mark’s family was enumerated on the 1860 census, was twenty-five miles northeast of Bellevue, the seat of Bossier Parish from 1843-1890.[31] Cardin transcribes a letter of J.W. Door written on 14 July 1860 from Bellevue, which gives the distance between the two communities and indicates that Orchard Grove was not a settlement of any sort, having no store. According to Cardin, Orchard Grove became a post office on 27 May 1856, and the post office was discontinued on 28 June 1866.[32]

Though this locale was in Bossier Parish in 1860, it would be in Webster Parish today. It’s about five miles east of Minden, the parish seat of Webster Parish, and a little over ten miles southwest of Homer, where Mark’s Harrison brothers-in-law were living in 1860, as well as his siblings Samuel, Margaret, and Frances Rebecca with their families.

Either shortly before the Lindsey family moved from Union to Bossier Parish or shortly after the move, Mary Ann gave birth to another son, Charles Henry Lindsey, on 4 April 1860. Mary Ann’s brother Benjamin D. Harrison had sons Charles and Henry by this point, born in 1850-1, and it seems possible that Mark and Mary Ann borrowed the names of those two nephews for their seventh son. Charles Henry would be followed by a last son (and last child) of Mark and Mary Ann, their son Mark Jefferson Jr., who was born 10 December 1862.

The Move to Natchitoches (Later Red River) Parish

As I stated above, if Mark and Mary Ann had moved their family to Natchitoches Parish by the time their oldest son Michael married Sarah A. Myers in that parish on 12 June 1864, they were already there by that date and probably living at Springville just east of Coushatta Chute, where Michael and Sarah married and where he died in December 1867. Michael had enlisted in Company B of the 11th Louisiana Battalion (CSA) at Natchitoches on 6 May 1862. Michael’s uncle William Hunter enlisted at Natchitoches (he was conscripted) in Company E of Louisiana’s 1st Heavy Artillery Unit on 20 August 1862, and it’s possible William and Margaret Hunter had moved their family to Natchitoches Parish from Homer by that date: they were definitely in Natchitoches Parish by 1865, when William Hunter is taxed for land there.

Portion of 1856 map of Louisiana published by J.H. Colton & Co., New York, showing location of Coushatta Chute, Natchitoches Parish; online at Wikimedia Commons

There are a number of reasons families seeking better economic prospects were moving to the Red River Valley area of northwest Louisiana during this period. As historian James David Miller notes, as early as the 1830s, cotton planters in the older states of the Southeast were eyeing the fertile Red River Valley as the land they had been farming was depleted by exploitative agricultural practices.[33] Miller cites letters written by Henry Marshall, who left Society Hill, South Carolina, for north Louisiana in 1836 along with his wife Maria, speaking of the lure of the good land to be found in northwest Louisiana at this period. The drawback of this area was, of course, that it was still an untamed frontier in comparison with the settled states of the Southeast, so that, as Miller’s correspondence notes, where he saw rich land and new prospects, his mother-in-law Mary Taylor found “the end of the land.”[34]

A 15 May 1838 letter by Andrew J. Lawson from Claiborne Parish to his sister Alice in Marion, Twiggs County, Georgia, further illustrates the attraction of this new frontier area with fertile cotton-growing land.[35] Lawson, who had been elected the first parish attorney of Bossier Parish in 1843, told his sister that if she and their siblings still in Georgia would move to northwest Louisiana, they could “do ten times better than in our native State.” The letter notes that Andrew and Alice’s sister Lucy, who had moved with husband William Wimberly to Bienville Parish from Twiggs County, Georgia, in 1837, was very satisfied with this new country and was making as much butter as her family and enslaved people could eat, the butter being “as yellow as Goshen.” As an enticement, Lawson also told Alice that “ladies can hold separate estates here and there is some excellent lands that can be entered about here yet.”  

In their book Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, Ricky and Annette Pierce Sherrod focus on a network of families who moved from the states of the old Southeast to northwest Louisiana in the first half of the 1800s, settling in the Red River Valley parishes — especially Natchitoches and its daughter parish Red River — and surrounding parishes. As the Sherrods point out, the Red River Valley appealed in particular to planters and those aspiring to be planters who hoped to make money growing cotton, since the valley was one of the most prolific cotton-producing regions in the U.S. in the antebellum period.[36] Cotton was fetching a higher price in the Louisiana market than in eastern markets after the economic downturn of the late 1830s, and the Red River region of Louisiana was particularly appealing because it allowed for easy marketing of cotton downriver to New Orleans, with visits to the city by planters for both business and recreation, and for face-to-face meetings with cotton factors.[37]

A primary motivation of those moving from the states of the old Southeast to northwest Louisiana in this period was to replicate the social and economic structure of the older Southeastern states in the new frontier of northwest Louisiana. Raw though it was in the 1830s and 1840s, it provided hope on the part of the new settlers that, in a few years’ time, they could rise to the status of planters if they had arrived in Louisiana as farmers, or if they were already of the planter class, they could further expand their holdings by growing cotton when cotton growing was so lucrative.[38] The removal of the great raft of debris on the Red River by Henry Miller Shreve, a process he completed in 1838, served further to spur the influx of new settlers to the Red River Valley after that year, since the river was now more navigable than ever for those growing and marketing cotton in the region.

There was also this: as the Sherrods note, by 1840, there was, in addition to agricultural expansion, incipient industrial development in the Red River Valley and the upland parishes around it.[39] For instance, gristmills and sawmills were being erected in the area, often by planters seeking to increase their economic reach via ventures supplementing their agriculture. For enterprising settlers, money was to be made both by growing cotton and by investing in some of the new industrial enterprises like milling or ginning cotton.

Ginning cotton was especially lucrative for cotton planters. As the Sherrods explain, farmers often lacked the economic means to process and market their cotton crops, so they sold their cotton to nearby planters who then ginned and marketed it for them at a fee: “Gin ownership conferred power and control. It set planter apart from the plain folk.”[40]

Finally, as the Sherrods also point out, some of the farmers and planters moving to Natchitoches Parish in the 1850s came there after having spent time living and farming in Louisiana parishes north and east of Natchitoches Parish, following their initial move to Louisiana from states to the east. They study, for instance, the family of Raleigh Williams, who moved from Muscogee County, Georgia, to Union Parish, Louisiana, by 1845, and then by the 1850s to Natchitoches Parish.[41] This migration pattern parallels that of Mark J. Lindsey in roughly the same time frame.

As the previous posting noted, an article entitled “Early Settlement of the Area” in the volume Red River Parish: Our Heritage indicates that the 1850s saw the greatest influx of settlers to the portion of Natchitoches Parish that would become Red River in 1871. This source also notes that some of the early settlers of the area came there seeking bounty land for service in the Mexican-American war in the 1840s.[42]

Establishing the Family and a Farm in Natchitoches Parish

Though the first definite record I have found of Mark J. Lindsey in Natchitoches Parish is his listing on an 1869 mortgage record in the parish, it seems likely to me, as I’ve already noted, that the family was already in this parish by the time that Mark’s son Michael married Sarah Myers at Springville in June 1864. As an article entitled “Red River Parish” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, states, “Springville, east of Coushatta, was the most important trading point in this section at that time [i.e., the late 1850s].”[43] Coushatta at this time was “only a shipping point with a plank warehouse for storage purposes.” Springville, by contrast, was “a thriving village with several general merchandise stores of the type of that day: a bakery, post office, churches, the Springville Academy and substantial homes.”[44]

Louisiana Masonic records, which are helpful in pinpointing where Mark and his family were living and moving year by year in the 1850s, offer little help in that regard during the 1860s, largely because the annual Masonic reports for that decade in Louisiana were sketchy, often not providing lists of members year by year, as had been the practice in the 1850s and would continue to be the practice in the 1870s. The disruption of a civil war in which the slave states chose not only to shatter the national union but to sunder churches and split national organizations like the Masons caused internal disruption in divided organizations like the Masonic Brotherhood. 

The 1863 state Masonic minutes note a request of the Natchitoches Parish Silent Brotherhood lodge to move its monthly meetings from Coushatta Chute to Springville, perhaps because of growing dangers for riverside settlements during the Red River campaign.[45]  And as the war ended, Masonic minutes note that the Homer lodge to which Mark J. Lindsey had first belonged after moving to Louisiana was experiencing financial difficulties because of its choice to rely on Confederate currency and bonds. 

The choice of the Homer lodge to use Confederate currency during the Civil War is one that lodge member Benjamin D. Harrison, Mark’s brother-in-law, would likely have opposed. When a Congressional act on 20 April 1867 called for registration of voters in the former rebel states to begin 1 May and end 30 June, boards of registrars were appointed for each parish. Due to his support of the Union, Benjamin D. Harrison was one of three board members appointed in Claiborne Parish.[46] On 8 November 1868, Benjamin D. Harrison took the oath of amnesty to the U.S. government in Homer, asserting that he had aided the U.S. government during the war.[47]

On 14 April 1863, tragedy struck Mark and Mary Ann and their family as their second son Thomas died when the captured federal gunboat that his Confederate unit was operating during the Red River campaign, the Queen of the West, was set afire by Union troops. The boat had been in the possession of the Crescent Regiment, of which Thomas’s older brother Michael Dorsey Lindsey was first lieutenant. Family stories say that Thomas was last seen floating down the Atchafalaya River on a bale of cotton after the boat was fired on and caught fire.[48]

As noted previously, Thomas’s brother Michael, who married at Springville in June 1864, died in December 1867, with his widow Sarah’s pension application stating that he never recovered from the exposure he suffered while he, too, was clinging to a cotton bale and waiting for rescue following the sinking of the Queen of the West.[49] The pension application contains a 7 March 1901 affidavit by T.H. Alexander, who served under Michael, stating that he was a “galant [sic] Soldier [and] a good officer.”[50]

On 11 October 1868, Mark and Mary Ann’s third son Jeremiah married in Natchitoches Parish. His wife Mary Elizabeth Latham was a widow Campbell at the time of the marriage. Her parents were Samuel and Nancy/Agnes Latham.[51]

In 1869, Mark appears on the Natchitoches Parish mortgage list owing delinquent taxes on 480 acres in township 13, range 9, that he had mortgaged to Isaac Webb.[52] I have not found a conveyance record showing that Mark had purchased this piece of land prior to 1869. As I’ll indicate in a moment, it appears he owned and lived on the land when the 1870 federal agricultural census for Natchitoches Parish was taken, and the following year he had an official deed from Isaac Webb, though he seems to have deeded (or mortgaged?) the 480 acres immediately on his purchase of it to merchants Abney and Love. 

Plat maps of Red River Parish, Louisiana, in Gregory A. Boyd, Family Maps of Red River Parish, Louisiana (Norman, Oklahoma: Arphax, 2010), pp. 16, 98, 100

As the plat maps above show, this land was northeast of Coushatta, with the old Ringgold Road (now highway 371, as I’ll discuss in a moment) running through it. It is in the direction of Liberty (later Martin), where Mark’s sister Margaret and husband William Hunter initially settled when they moved down to Natchitoches Parish, though it’s closer to Coushatta and east of Liberty-Martin. It’s, in fact, not far from where the now-defunct village of Springville was located at the time Mark brought his family to Natchitoches Parish.

Isaac Hill Webb (1795-1869), a North Carolina native, was patenting land in Natchitoches Parish as early as 10 November 1851, when he had a military warrant for 80 acres in section 1, township 14, range 10 due to his War of 1812 service in Georgia.[53] The family had definitely moved from Muscogee County, Georgia, to Natchitoches Parish sometime between 1850 and 1 October 1858, when he claimed at the land office at Natchitoches 380 acres in section 4, township 13, range 9.[54] After 1860, the family moved to Bienville Parish, where Isaac and wife Palatiah Greer Webb died. 

In a note he compiled in the 1980s, Henry C. Lindsey says that when Mark J. Lindsey first settled in Natchitoches (later Red River) Parish, he bought what eventually became known as the “old Bill Smith place” east of Coushatta on the Coushatta-Ringgold road. This is present-day highway 371, and was previously part of the old Military Road that ran as a stagecoach and mail route from Washington in southwest Arkansas to Natchitoches, through Ringgold.[55] The earliest known resident of Ringgold, Simon Manning, established a tavern in 1836 at the intersection of the military road and an east-west road running from Lake Bistineau to Black Lake, and the site grew into the town of Ringgold. The 1838 letter of Andrew Lawson to his sister Alice discussed above notes that their brother Roger was teaching school at the time and residing at Squire Manning’s, “a very fine family,” in Bienville Parish.[56] The Sherrods think that Manning and Raleigh Williams knew each other in Georgia before coming to Louisiana — an indicator that many of the early settlers of this region were following each others’ footsteps as they migrated.[57]

Bill Smith was William Riley Smith (1864-1931), so Henry C. Lindsey’s note about the old Bill Smith place cannot mean that Mark bought land from Bill Smith. What it’s indicating is that Bill Smith eventually lived on land that Mark had previously owned.[58] William Riley Smith’s daughter Elizabeth married Mark’s grandson Edward Eugene Lindsey, a son of Alexander Cobb Lindsey and Mary Ann Green. Henry C. Lindsey’s Mark Lindsey Heritage has a photograph of the “old Bill Smith place.”[59] According to Lois Kitchings, the house in the photograph was built by William Riley Smith in 1907, and is on highway 371 northeast of Coushatta.[60] Kitchings’s article about William Riley Smith in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, has a photo of the house appended to it.[61]

On 18 November 1869 in Natchitoches Parish, Mark and Mary Ann’s daughter Emma married John M. Koin, a captain in Co. C of Louisiana’s 5th Cavalry, who was paroled at Natchitoches on 6 June 1865 while residing in Morehouse Parish, according to his CSA service packet.[62]

The Final Decade in Red River Parish: 1870s

Mark J. Lindsey and his family appear on the 1870 federal census at Coushatta Chute post office in Natchitoches Parish.[63] Mark is listed as M. Jeff Lindsay, 50, a farmer with $2,000 real worth and $400 personal worth, born in Alabama. He is listed as unable to read and write.  Wife Mary Anne is 48, born in Tennessee also listed as illiterate. In the household are children Dennis B. (Benjamin Dennis), 14, also illiterate; Samuel C. (Samuel Carry), 11; Alex Cobb (Alexander Cobb), 11; Charles H. (Charles Henry), 9; and Mark Jeff (Mark Jefferson), 8. These sons were all born in Louisiana, and the three oldest are listed as farm laborers — e.g., on their father’s farm.

As I’ve noted previously in discussing this census, there’s abundant documentation showing that Mark was literate, and that his son Benjamin Dennis, who became a banker and sheriff of Bexar County, Texas, was also literate. I suspect that Mary Ann was also literate. I’ve found other citizens of both Bienville and Natchitoches Parishes listed as illiterate on the1870 federal census, when I know from other sources that they were literate.

Note that Mark’s widowed sister Frances Kellogg is living with her family next door to Mark’s family in 1870, an indicator to me that the two families were relying on each other for mutual assistance at a time of great difficulty in the lives of both families — something their sister Sarah Speake alluded to in a letter she sent their sister Margaret Hunter on 1 May 1877, in which she states that she felt closer to Frances and Mark among her siblings, because of all of her siblings, those two had had the hardest time of things.

Mark J. Lindsey also appears on the 1870 federal agricultural census in Natchitoches Parish at Coushatta Chute post office, ward 13.[64] He’s listed with 40 acres of improved land and 400 acres unimproved. His farm is valued at $2,000, with his tools and machinery worth $150. He pays $100 in wages per year. He has 3 horses, 8 milk cows, 2 working oxen, 15 other cattle, and 20 swine, all valued at $400. His yearly output is 150 bushels of corn, 2 bales of cotton, and 30 bushels of sweet potatoes, with farm products and improvements valued at $320 yearly.

On 30 December 1870, Mark made a promissory note to W.A. Perry in Natchitoches Parish.[65] The note was for $800 value received in land and stock from Perry, with Mark promising to pay Perry in crops raised in 1871 at 8% interest. The indenture was recorded on 17 June 1871. Perry was a member of the Silent Brotherhood Masonic Lodge at Coushatta Chute in Natchitoches Parish in 1867.[66]

On 8 April 1871, Mark bought 480 acres from the succession of Isaac Hill Webb in section 9, township 13, range 9 in Natchitoches Parish from I.H. Webb.[67] The conveyance record suggests that the land had a house and other buildings on it. The land sold for $1,200. The conveyance record notes that Webb was of Bienville Parish and Lindsey of Natchitoches Parish, and it specifies that Isaac Hill Webb’s son Isaac P. Webb was selling the land on behalf of his father’s succession. Witnesses were W.J. Pearce, Henry A. Boone, and Mark J. Lindsey. The deed was recorded 19 July 1871.  

It’s clear that this is the same 480 acres on which Mark had been residing as early as 1869. The day prior to this, Mark had apparently mortgaged the property to merchants Abney and Love of Coushatta, the parish seat of Red River, the parish formed from Natchitoches Parish in 1871.[68]

By 1871, Mark had resumed his Masonic life. He was now an affiliated member of Silent Brotherhood lodge of Springville, which had relocated to that village from Coushatta Chute during the war.[69] It’s possible he was an active Mason during the 1860s, but if so, the disrupted records for Louisiana Masonry during those turbulent years do not indicate that he was a member of any Masonic lodge from 1860, when he left the Spearsville lodge to move to Bossier Parish, until 1871. It’s also possible that the trauma of the war years, which took a toll on his own family, coupled with his evident intent to set up a new life in Natchitoches Parish, had kept him from involvement in the Masons.

On 13 November 1871, Mark deeded to Mary D. Rawls 121.38 acres in Red River Parish, in section 15, township 13, range 8 west.[70] Mary was Mary Delilah Dupree, daughter of pioneer northwest Louisiana Baptist missionary John Dupree, who founded Liberty Baptist church in northeast Red River Parish, which was pastored by Mark’s nephew William Marshall Hunter. Mary Delilah Dupree and Alexander Rawls married 16 November 1845 in Wilkinson County, Georgia, and Alexander died on 26 November 1865 in Natchitoches Parish. How and when Mark acquired the land he sold to Mary Rawls, I have not discovered. This is yet another indicator that he may have owned pieces of land I have not been able to track.

In an audiotape made by Henry C. Lindsey at a Lindsey family reunion in Coushatta in the early 1960s, a grandson of Mark, Aaron Bloomer Lindsey, states that he had been told his grandfather Mark J. Lindsey had a cotton gin on his farm. The gin was operated by mule power, and it took an entire day to gin a bale of cotton. According to Henry C. Lindsey, family stories indicate that during the Civil War, Union soldiers confiscated the gin for their own use.

Louisiana Masonic minutes show Mark continuing his membership in the Silent Brotherhood Lodge, now at Coushatta, in 1872 and 1873.[71] On 20 September 1873, when John W. Watts and wife Selah Latham Watts conveyed 80 acres to Lorenzo Wingo with a lot for the Methodist Episcopal church excepted from the conveyance, Mark was a witness to the conveyance along with Edwin Friend. When the conveyance was eventually recorded on 9 April 1888, the recording notation states that M.J. Lindsey had died.[72] 

When Ezekiel S. Green married Hannah Birdwell, widow of Hardin Harville, in Natchitoches Parish on 11 December 1867, Edwin Thomas Friend and his son Henry Row Friend witnessed the marriage.[73] Ezekiel’s first wife Camilla was Hannah’s sister; their daughter Mary Ann Green married Mark J. Lindsey’s son Alexander Cobb Lindsey on 2 November 1876 in Red River Parish. A sister of Camilla and Hannah, Mary Ann Birdwell, married George Adolphus Friend, son of Edwin Thomas Friend and wife Martha Feriby Row.[74]

The Methodist Episcopal church mentioned in this conveyance record is likely the Old Armistead chapel church that Mark J. Lindsey and his family attended. John W. and Selah Watts are buried in this church’s cemetery along with Mark and his wife Mary Ann and other Lindsey family members. I think it’s likely that Selah Latham Watts is related to the Mary Elizabeth Latham (Campbell) who married Mark and Mary Ann’s son Jeremiah, but I am not sure how the two connect. Jeremiah and Mary Elizabeth are also buried in the Old Armistead Chapel cemetery. They named a daughter Celia/Selah; she and husband Robert Hosea Bamburg, who was a Methodist pastor, are also buried in the Old Armistead Chapel cemetery.

In 1873, his two oldest brothers Thomas and Michael having died and the next brother in the family, Jeremiah, having married, Mark and Mary Ann’s son Benjamin Dennis Lindsey decided to head out to Texas for a life of adventure that began with a year in which he worked on his uncle Thomas Madison Lindsey’s farm in McLennan County, then tried the life of a cowboy for a year and after that joined the Texas Rangers. This left Mark operating his farm with the labor of teenaged sons Carry, Alec, Charlie, and Mark Jr. 

Louisiana Masonic records continue showing Mark as a member of the Silent Brotherhood Lodge, which had now returned from Springville to Coushatta, in 1874-8 up to his death.[75] The 1878 state minutes, the year in which Mark died, do not contain a full list of members of this lodge for that year. 

By 14 November 1875, the first husband of Mark and Mary Ann’s daughter Emma — John M. Koin — had died. On that date in Red River Parish, Emma married a second time, to Daniel Campbell Wester, son of William Wester and Jane Edna Bryant. The following year on 2 November 1876, Mark and Mary Ann’s son Alexander Cobb Lindsey married in Red River Parish to Mary Ann Green, daughter of Ezekiel Samuel Green and Camilla Birdwell.

In her 1 May 1877 letter to her sister Margaret Hunter, Sarah Speake makes several references to her brother Mark. She states that she had recently heard from Mark (another indicator that the 1870 census is incorrect in listing him as illiterate), who told her that their sister Frances’s children had all left her, save for two sons, and that Frances wanted to move to Alabama and live with her siblings there. As previously noted, the letter also notes that Sarah felt closer to Mark and Frances because their lives had been harder than those of the other siblings.  

Death notice of Mary Ann Harrison Lindsey, Claiborne Guardian newspaper (Homer, Louisiana), 29 Aug. 1877, p. 3, col. 2

On 13 August 1877, Mark’s wife Mary Ann Harrison Lindsey died. Her brother Benjamin, who had founded Homer’s first newspaper the Claiborne Advocate, printed a death notice in the  Claiborne Guardian, of which he was publisher at the time. It states, 

Died on the 13th instant in Red River Parish of bilious fever, Mrs. Mary Ann LINDSEY, wife of Mark J. LINDSEY, aged 55 years and 5 months.

Bilious fever is a term no longer in use. It was formerly used to describe fevers that might have been of various etiologies, all accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and strong diarrhea. Mary Ann was buried in the Old Armistead Chapel Methodist cemetery east of Coushatta where Mark would be buried when he died the following year. Mary Ann’s obituary implies a birthdate of 22 March 1822 for her.

According to Lois Kitchings, the Old Armistead Chapel church, which was also sometimes known by the name Carroll Creek Methodist church, was an offshoot of a Providence Methodist church attended by the family of William Riley Smith, who settled on Mark and Mary Ann’s land after the couple died.[76] My uncle Henry C. Lindsey told me in 1985 that after Mark arrived in Natchitoches Parish, he built a Methodist chapel on his land for the use of African-American families. Henry C. Lindsey’s father Benjamin D. Lindsey (named for the uncle who went to Texas), once took Carlton back into the woods behind the old Bill Smith place when Henry C. was a boy to show him the then abandoned chapel. I have found no evidence that Mark and Mary Ann owned enslaved people, so this chapel would not have been built for enslaved people but — I suspect — for the use of people freed from slavery following the Civil War.

I can recall hearing stories at the annual Lindsey family reunion in Red River Parish as I was growing up, recounting that Mark was in the habit of inviting his entire Methodist church to Sunday dinner at his house, following Sunday services. As I listened to those stories, I wondered what Mary Ann thought about that habit.

Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana for the Year 1879, Sixty-Seventh Annual Grand Communication (New Orleans: A.W. Hyatt, 1879), p. 162

Mark’s tombstone in Old Armistead Chapel cemetery, a photo of which is in the last posting, gives only his year of death — 1878. Masonic minutes confirm that he died in the year 1878; he is listed in 1879 state minutes as a member of the Silent Brotherhood lodge at Coushatta who had died in the year 1878.[77] It’s tempting to think that Mark may have died in the yellow fever epidemic of 1878. On 29 August 1878, the New Orleans paper Times-Picayune reports that Coushatta had had to establish a quarantine since yellow fever had reached nearby Campti in Natchitoches Parish.[78]  

On 7 August, the Claiborne Guardian reported that yellow fever was showing up in various places and had become epidemic in New Orleans. Mobile, Galveston, Vicksburg, and Shreveport had announced quarantines for citizens arriving from New Orleans. The issue for 28 August notes that the fever had continued to spread, and by 4 September, the Claiborne Guardian was reporting that it had reached Memphis and was becoming epidemic in Mississippi.

I suspect that Mark had died by 15 December 1878 when his oldest brother John Wesley Lindsey married Mary Ann Nobles (Wester) in Red River Parish on that date. Mary Ann Nobles’s previous husband, Daniel Campbell Wester, was the uncle of the Daniel Campbell Wester whom Mark and Mary Ann Harrison Lindsey’s daughter Emma married in 1875. 

The tombstone of Mark and his wife Mary Ann in Old Armistead Chapel cemetery, which his children placed to mark their grave some years following their parents’ deaths, is inscribed, 

A loving father, a mother dear,

Two faithful friends lie buried here.

The tombstone of Mark’s first cousin James Dennis Lindsey, son of Fielding Wesley Lindsey, in the Lindsey cemetery near Speake in Lawrence County, Alabama, reads, “A loving husband and father dear / A faithful husband is buried here.”

As noted previously, the biography of Mark’s son Benjamin Dennis Lindsey in Texas Under Many Flags states that Mark J. Lindsey was a native of Lawrence County, Alabama. The biography goes on to state,[79]

The Lindseys came from England and were early settlers in the South. Mark J. Lindsey was a planter in Alabama, moved to Louisiana, and during the Civil war his service was required in Louisiana, attending the widows and orphans.

This biography provides erroneous dates of death for both Mark and Mary Ann, stating that Mark died in 1876 and Mary Ann in 1875.

Henry C. Lindsey’s Mark Lindsey Heritage reproduces the photo of Mark J. Lindsey at the head of this posting. It was taken when he was an elderly man sitting in a rocking chair outside a house with an open window that has curtains billowing out.[80] He’s holding a book in his hands whose pages are blurred by motion. The photo suggests that, like his father Dennis and grandfather Mark, Mark J. Lindsey was tall and thin. In a note that Henry C. Lindsey sent me with a copy of this photograph, he says that he obtained the picture on 2 July 1980 from John Ewan and Barbara Morgan Kellogg. As the last posting notes, John Ewan Kellogg was a grandson of Mark’s sisters Frances and Margaret. His parents were first cousins, Samuel Hiram Kellogg and Louvisa Frances Hunter.

[1] Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, Marriage Bk. 1, p. 131.

[2] Clarence R. Wharton, ed., Texas Under Many Flags, vol. 4 (Chicago: American Hist. Soc., 1930), p. 221.

[3] See “Red River Parish,” in Red River Parish, Our Heritage, ed. Red River Parish Heritage Society (Bossier City: Everett, 1989), p. 16.

[4] See the Confederate pension application of Michael’s widow Sallie A. Lindsey, file 3503, held by Louisiana State Archives, Baton Rouge, and digitized at Family Search website. She filed the application 20 March 1901 in Lincoln Parish, Louisiana.

[5] 1850 federal census, Bossier Parish, Louisiana, ward 3, township 23, p. 299 (family and dwelling 1003; 4 November).

[6] On Joseph Graham, see Carin Peller-Semmens, “Unreconstructed: Slavery and Emancipation on Louisiana’s Red River, 1820–1880,” unpubl. Ph.D. dissertation, Department of History, University of Sussex, Brighton, England (April 2016), pp. 32-3. She notes that Graham came with his family and twenty enslaved persons to Bossier Parish in 1843. The Grahams came to Louisiana with another slaveholding family, the Hutchinsons, one of whom, Robert Hutchinson, is enumerated next to Joseph Graham in 1850. Peller-Semmens cites Margaret Hutchinson McClellan, William Joseph Hutchinson and Family of Caspiana Plantation (Bossier City: Tipton Printing & Publishing Co, 1975). Joseph and wife Icy Josephine are buried in the Graham cemetery at Rocky Mount in Bossier Parish.

[7] See Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Louisiana, At Its Annual Communication Held at New Orleans, Jan. 19th, 1852 (New Orleans: Crescent, 1852), pp. 169-170. This incorrectly gives the town’s name as Houma (another place in south Louisiana) rather than Homer.

[8] Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Louisiana, At Its Annual Communication Held at New Orleans, Jan. 17th, 1853 (New Orleans: Crescent, 1853), pp. 157-8. Mark’s name is given as Mark J. Lindsay.

[9] Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Louisiana, At Its Annual Communication Held at New OrleansJan. 16th, 1854 (New Orleans: Sherman & Wharton, 1854), pp. 151, 169. This gives Mark’s name as Mark J. Lindsay.

[10] Ibid., pp. 150-1, giving Mark’s name as M.J. Lindsay and again spelling Homer as “Houma.”

[11] Proceedings of the Annual Grand Communication of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, of Free and Accepted Masons, Commencing at New Orleans, February 12th 1855 (New Orleans: Sherman, Wharton & Co., 1855), p. 149; Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Louisiana, At Its Annual Communication Held at New OrleansFebruary 11th, 1856 (New Orleans: Bulletin, 1856), p. 187.

[12] Union Parish, Louisiana, Succession Book E, pp. 138-144.

[13] Ibid., pp. 187-195.

[14] I have a copy of the documents from the file of original papers in the National Archives (vol. 28, p. 1, #14026).

[15] Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office, Louisiana State Volume Patent Bk. 1130, p. 1, #14026.

[16] Wharton, Texas Under Many Flags, p. 221.

[17] Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office, Louisiana State Volume Patent Bk. 1160, p. 197, #16945.

[18] Union Parish, Louisiana, Deed Bk. H, p. 251. 

[19] U.S. Tract Bk. 27, #27110.

[20] Proceedings of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of F. and A. Masons of the State of Louisiana, at its Forty-Fifth Annual Communication, Held at New Orleans, February 8, 1857 (New Orleans: Bulletin, 1857), p. 173; Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge, F. and A. Masons of the State of Louisiana, at its Forty-Sixth Annual Communication, Held at New Orleans, February 8, 1858 (New Orleans: Bulletin, 1858), p. 180, listed as M.J. Lindsay. In 1857, Mark is an affiliated member of the Spearsville lodge.

[21] Union Parish, Louisiana, Deed Bk H, pp. 152-4.

[22] In addition to her tombstone (her Find a Grave memorial page is linked above), see her obituary in Nashville Christian Advocate, 11 June 1847, p. 14, stating that she was the wife of Major Thomas M. Smith and had died in Union Parish, Louisiana, on 24 April 1847 in the 36th year of her age, a native of Woodford County, Kentucky, who left a bereaved husband and four children.

[23] Union Parish, Louisiana, Succession Bk. A, pp. 102-114.

[24] Louisiana Serial Patent #870379.

[25] Proceedings of the M. W. Grand Lodge of F. and A. Masons of the State of Louisiana, at its Forty-Seventh Annual Communication, Held at New Orleans, Feb. 14, 1859 (New Orleans: Bulletin, 1859), p. 170.

[26] 1860 federal census, Bossier Parish, Louisiana, Orchard Grove post office, ward 6, p. 729 (dwelling and family 291; 13 August). 

[27] 1860 federal agricultural census, Bossier Parish, Louisiana, p. 7.

[28] Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of F. and A. Masons of the State of Louisiana, at its Forty-Eighth Annual Communication, Held at New Orleans, Feb. 13, 1860 (New Orleans: Bulletin, 1860), pp. 198-9.

[29] U.S. Tract Bk. 60, military warrant 49627, Natchitoches land office. The patent for the land was granted to John posthumously in 1875.

[30] U.S. Tract Bk. 60, p. 74, certif. 12553; Patent Bk. 22, p. 215.

[31] Clifton D. Cardin, Bossier Parish History, 1843-1993: The First 100 Years (Shreveport: Image, 1993), p. 33. The letter was apparently published originally in the New Orleans Crescent newspaper.  

[32] Ibid., p. 124.

[33] James David Miller, South by Southwest: Planter Emigration and Identity in the South and Southwest (Charlottesville: Univ. of VA, 2002), p. 103. 

[34] Ibid., p. 104, citing Henry Marshall to Maria Marshall, 1 November 1836, in Marshall-Furman Papers, Louisiana State University Library.

[35] The letter is transcribed in Vera Meek Wimberly, Wimberly Family History: Ancestors, Relatives, and Descendants of William Wimberly, Pioneer from Georgia to Louisiana, 1837 (Houston: D. Armstrong, 1979), pp. 100-1. In 1979, the letter was in the possession of descendants of Andrew J. Lawson’s sister Lucy, who married William Wimberly. The letter is also discussed in Ricky L. Sherrod and Annette Pierce Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society: A Case Study of the Browns, Sherrods, Mannings, Sprowls, and Williamses of Nineteenth-Century Northwest Louisiana (Nacogdoches: Stephen F. Austin UP, 2014), pp. 129, 169.

[36] Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, p. 85.

[37] Ibid., p. 57.

[38] Ibid., p. 112, citing Philip C. Cook, “Bienville Parish: A History of Progress,” as cited in Sharon O. Kleinpeter, “Bienville Parish History.” 

[39] Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, p. 122.

[40] Ibid., pp. 90-1, citing Samuel C. Hyde, Pistols and Politics: Feuds, Factions, and the Struggle for Order in Louisiana’s Florida Parishes, 1810–1935 (Baton Rouge: LSU Press, 2018), p. 35.

[41] Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, pp. 204-5.

[42] “Early Settlement of the Area,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, ed. Red River Parish Heritage Society (Bossier City: Everett, 1989), pp. 8-10.

[43] “Red River Parish,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, p. 16. 

[44] Ibid.

[45] Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of F. and A. Masons, of the State of Louisiana, at its Fifty-First Annual Communication, Held at New Orleans February 9, 1863 (New Orleans: Bulletin, 1863), p. 14.

[46] U.S. Congress, Senate Documents, Otherwise Published as Public Documents and Executive Documents: 14th Congress, 1st Session-48th Congress, 2nd Session and Special Session (Washington, D.C., 1868), p. 244). 

[47] Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, Amnesty Oaths, Bk. 1, p. 37.

[48] Thomas’s CSA service packet, which gives his name as Thomas L. Lindsey, states that he enlisted at Natchitoches on 8 March 1863 and was lost on Queen of the West on 14 April 1863: see NARA, Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of Louisiana, 11th Louisiana Infantry Battalion, M230, RG 109; online at Fold3. The biography of Thomas’s brother Benjamin in Wharton, Texas Under Many Flags, p. 221, also states that Benjamin’s brother died in the sinking of the Queen of the West.

[49] See supra, n. 4.

[50] A brief history of the Queen of the West is in War Vessels of the U.S. Navy, vol. 3 (U.S. Navy, 1912), p. 56. This notes that she was attacked on the Atchafalaya by Union ships Estrella, Calhoun, and Arizona on 14 April 1863. A shell from the Calhoun set the Queen‘s cotton afire, and her burning wreck drifted down the river for several hours before she grounded and exploded. In an 18 August 1987 letter to me, Larry W. Broussard, who dives for sunken Civil War vessels, told me that the Queen was disabled at the entrance of Grand Lake but drifted 2-3 miles before sinking. Further information on the Queen of the West is in Philip Van Doren Stern, The Confederate Navy: A Pictorial History (New York: Doubleday, 1962), pp. 132-9, which says a shell from the Estrella set the cotton on the Queen afire, and that 90 crew members were rescued while 20-30 perished.

[51] See Dorris L. Adams Brogan, “Samuel Moore Morgan and Family,” Red River Parish: Our Heritage, pp. 394-5.

[52]Natchitoches Parish Mortgage Record 66, p. 205, #6001.

[53] Military Warrants, Louisiana, vol. 600, p. 247, #1055.

[54] U.S. Land Patents, Louisiana, vol. 740, p. 135, #16338. See also Beatrice Webb Davis, “Isaac Hill Webb,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, p. 533.

[55] See Scott Akridge, “Southwest Trail,” and Mark K. Christ, “Memphis to Little Rock Road,” both in Encyclopedia of Arkansas, online at website of Central Arkansas Library System. See also Lila Lee Jones, “The Old Military Post Road,” True West Magazine (2 May 2006). Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, p. 33, quotes a 13 December 1841 letter Methodist bishop Thomas Asbury Morris wrote from Allen’s Settlement in Natchitoches Parish (now in Claiborne Parish), in which he states that he had spent the preceding two days at Brother Manning’s, and that he had taken the military road, which ran as a horse-mail route from Natchitoches to Washington, Arkansas, as he traveled from Manning’s to Allen’s Settlement. See also pp. 118-9 on Manning’s establishment of an inn at the junction of the military road and the east-west road at the point that then became Ringgold in Bienville Parish.

[56] See Philip C. Cook, “Early History of the Ringgold Area,” in Billie Gene Poland, comp., History of Bienville Parish Louisiana, ed. Bienville Parish Historical Society (Bienville Parish Historical Society, 1984), p. 103; and supra, n. 35.

[57] Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, p. 13.

[58] See Lois Kitchings, “Smith-Kitchings Family,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, pp. 457-8.

[59] Henry C. Lindsey, The Mark Lindsey Heritage (Brownwood, Texas, 1982), p. 46.

[60] Lois Kitchings, “Smith-Kitchings Family,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, pp. 457-8. 

[61] Ibid., p. 460.

[62] NARA, Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of Louisiana, Louisiana 5th Cavalry, M230, RG 109, online at Fold3. According to Mary Lou Lindsey Prothro, “Lindseys of Red River Parish,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, p. 308, James M. Koin (whose name Prothro gives as Cone) had died by the time Emma remarried in August 1875 to Daniel Campbell Wester.

[63] 1870 federal census, Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, Coushatta Chute, ward 13, p. 531 (dwelling 22, family 19; 24 June).

[64] 1870 federal census, Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, Coushatta Chute, p. 30 (29 June).  

[65] Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, Conveyance Bk. 3, p. 377.  

[66] Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of F. & A. Masons of the State of Louisiana, at Its Fifty-Fifth Annual Communication Held at New Orleans, February 11, 1867 (New Orleans: Bouvain and Lewis, 1867), pp. 246-7.

[67] Red River Parish, Louisiana, Conveyance Bk. A, p. 6, 9.

[68] Ibid., p. 171. On the firm of Abney and Love of Coushatta, see Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northwest Louisiana (Nashville: Southern Publishing Company, 1890), p. 215, noting that in 1890, Abney and Love owned a hotel in the town as well as a building on Front Street. Thomas W. Abney, who moved to Coushatta from Bossier Parish after having migrated from Alabama to Louisiana, was one of the chief movers of the infamous Coushatta Massacre of 1874: see Ted Tunnell, Edge of the Sword: The Ordeal of Carpetbagger Marshall H. Twitchell in the Civil War and Reconstruction (Baton Rouge: LSU Press, 2001), pp. 43f. In 1866, Abney had opened a store in Springville with Leander E. Love, and by the 1870s, their Abney and Love firm was the richest business in Coushatta.

[69] Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Fifty-Ninth Annual Communication (New Orleans: C.W. Clark, 1871), p. 168.

[70] Red River Parish Conveyance Bk. A, pp. 19, 30. 

[71] Proceedings of the Grand Lodge, State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Sixtieth Annual Grand Communication, February 12, 14, 15, and 16, 1872 (New Orleans: A.W. Hyatt, 1872), p. 187; Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Sixty-First Annual Grand Communication, February 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th, 1873 (New Orleans: Clark & Hofeline, 1873), p. 186. 

[72] I seem to have lost the citation record for this conveyance in Red River Parish conveyance records. 

[73] Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, Marriage Bk. 5, p. 76.

[74] On the Friends, who moved to Bell County, Texas, in 1875, being joined in Texas by the Raleigh Williams family and the Sherrod family, see Sherrod, Plain Folk, Planters, and the Complexities of Southern Society, pp. 285-6.

[75] Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Sixty-Second Annual Grand Communication, February 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, and 14th, 1873 New Orleans: Clark & Hofeline, 1874), p. 220 (now at Coushatta); Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Sixty-Third Annual Grand Communication, February 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th, 1875 (New Orleans: Clark & Hofeline, 1875), p. 186; Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Sixty-Fourth Annual Grand Communication, February 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19, 1876 (New Orleans: A.W. Hyatt, 1876), p. 210; Proceedings of the M.W. Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana, Free and Accepted Masons, Sixty-Fifth Annual Grand Communication, February 12th, 14th, 15th, 16th and 17th, 1877 (New Orleans: A.W. Hyatt, 1877), p. 164. See also “More 1876 Masonic Records of Northwest Louisiana,” The Genie (first quarter, 1988), p. 32.

[76] Kitchings, “Smith-Kitchings Family,” in Red River Parish: Our Heritage, pp. 457-8.

[77] Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of the State of Louisiana for the Year 1879, Sixty-Seventh Annual Grand Communication (New Orleans: A.W. Hyatt, 1879), p. 162.

[78] “Southern States,” Times-Picayune (29 August 1878), p. 12, col. 2.

[79] Wharton, Texas Under Many Flags, p. 221.

[80] Henry C. Lindsey, Mark Lindsey Heritage, p. 46.

One thought on “Children of Dennis Lindsey (1794-1836) and Jane Brooks: Mark Jefferson Lindsey (1820-1878) — The Louisiana Years

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