Tuesday, March 11, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Archie's boy, James Sawyer (b. 1820)

I wrote two years ago about what I was told about my great-great grandfather Archie Sawyer when I started researching our family. I followed it up with a What I Know post a couple weeks ago.  Bless Amy Crow and her 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge for getting me back on track!

Archie is on my radar because of my focus on DNA research this year. (The idea that this project will last a year is laughable.) He is at the top of my most wanted list. I am on the hunt for male Sawyers descended from Archie to beg, borrow or bribe my way to a cheek swab for a yDNA test. Bounties will be paid to those who deliver a willing, living candidate. Cake, cookies, booze. Whatever works.


What I had been told was not entirely accurate. Two of the children my great-aunts ascribed to Archie and his wife, Sallie Killian, were children from earlier marriages. Each came with one. Archie may have had more. What is clear is these were the children who considered each other siblings. Together, Archie and Sallie had 7 children who survived to adulthood. I am descended from their youngest son, Jehu or Gee Sawyer. Gee, his brothers William and Jake have no known direct male descendants still living. But his brothers James (half-brother), Andrew and Crofford may well have direct male descendants.

Thirty plus years of research and I still cannot figure these guys out. I believe Archie was related to the other Sawyers appearing in the 1830 and 1840 US Federal Census in Cocke County. But at this point DNA is one of the last tools I have available.

So. I am on the hunt for ~

James Sawyer, Archie's eldest known son, does not appear in census records that I can identify before 1860, when he was enumerated in the household of John Bregman, across the mountains from Cocke County in Buncombe County, North Carolina. The next year he married John's widowed daughter Nancy. He and Nancy lived out their lives in Buncombe County. Theyare buried in Chambers Cemetery, near Weaverville. They had 5 children, including two sons.
    1. James Robert Sawyer (1862-1924) married Barbara Virginia Thrash in 1884 and had at least two sons, Horace (born about 1886) and Thomas (born about 1890). He spent his life in Buncombe County.
    2. Leroy/Lee Roy Sawyer (1868-1919) married Nina Jones and had at least 5 sons, Earl (born about 1901), Clifford (born about 1902), John B. (born about 1906), Leroy, Jr. (born about 1909), and Paul (born about 1914). He spent his life in Buncombe County.
I would dearly love just one or two minutes of time with any male descendant of James. It won't hurt a bit. Just a little swab. Promise.


Written for Amy Johnson Crow's blogger challenge 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.


Photo Credit Attribution Some rights reserved by nevil zaveri

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