What I know about my 3rd great-grandfather, John Buckner, Sr., is limited, as is the case for most of my ancestors born in the 1700s. I found an obituary for John in the June 16, 1877 edition of the Nashville Christian Advocate. It was brief but gave some much wanted details:
“JOHN BUCKNER born east Tenn., Oct. 12, 1798, married Rachel Lindsy, 1818; about 1836 moved to Blount Co., Ala; died Dec. 16, 1876. He left a large family.”
Although that information provides the beginning and ending and even 3 brief pieces of information about everything between 1798 and 1876 [he married, he moved, he bore children], it’s still pretty limited. So, what else have I been able to discover about him?
The earliest Buckner record I found for a John Buckner in east Tennessee is for 1830 and there are two Buckners listed: John and what is likely a brother, Thomas, since they are neighbors and similar in age. There are no other Buckners in any of the surrounding pages and no Lindseys or any other surnames that have been proposed as possible parents for either John or Rachel Lindsey. An 1872 obituary for the oldest daughter, EmmaLisa, stated she was born in Sevier County, Tennessee [which is in east Tennessee] in 1818 and so finding John Buckner in the 1830 Sevier County census was reasonably expected. The ages of the household members for John generally fit the known children in the family [males on the left and females on the right]: William (1824), John (1798), EmmaLisa (1818), Elizabeth (1819), Nancy (1821), Rachel (1826). Martha (1828) and Rachel (1797). Supporting the information from the obituary, an 1840 census for Blount County, Alabama has the John Buckner family enumerated in that county. The ages of the children, again, are generally appropriate for the known children in the family – males [right to left] William (1824), John (1832), Thomas (1833) and Jessie (1839) and females [right to left] Elizabeth (1819), Nancy (1821), Rachel (1826), Martha (1828), Mary Ann ‘Polly’ (1830), and Angelina (1836). The 1850 census for Blount County finally gave names and ages of the household members; of course, several of the older children were already married and living in their own households. Two more children were added in the decade: Jesse Wilson (1841) and Levi (1842). New pieces of information include the North Carolina birth location for Rachel Lindsey Buckner and the birth location for Angelina supporting the move to Alabama in 1836. An 1855 state census and an 1857 land patent indicate John and his family were still in Blount County up to that point, while the 1860 census showed showed a move to Fayette County, Alabama. The three youngest children were still living in the household but several of their children had also moved with their families, including my 2nd great-grandparents, their son, John Buckner, Jr. The tick marks to the far right indicate neither John nor Rachel could read or write. Although no details have emerged, John’s wife, Rachel, must have died in Fayette County some time after this census was taken. John, Thomas, Jesse and Levi all joined the Confederate Army; Jesse got sick and died in June 1862 and John after marching to Tennessee got sick and died in September 1862. John, Sr. moved back to Blount County where he married Mrs. Mary Savage nee Golden on October 26, 1862.
John and Mary had five children together: C.J. Ransada (1863), James (1865), Sarah Ann (1868), Barnett (1871) and Alfred [or Abel] Pierce (1875). As stated in his obituary, John died December 16, 1876. I have not yet found where he was buried.
This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.