Some Alexander Marriage Notices

Buncombe-Marriages-Alexande

Last week, I wrote about a book I found at the Family History Library called Marriage and Death Notices from Extant Asheville, N. C. Newspapers 1840-1870 An Index.

I took photos of 24 pages with surnames of interest to me.  I’m going through page by page and analyzing the information found.  Page 1 includes Alexanders.1  (Extracts from page 1 are in bold below.)

Extracts

“ALEXANDER, Alfred M., to Miss Susan Farnsworth, both of Buncombe County, Nov. 10, 1840 (H. M., Nov 13, 1840).”

Comment: “H.M.” refers to the Highland Messenger, “Asheville’s first known newspaper, published from June 5, 1840, until sometime between August 17, 1848 and September 27, 1849.”2  Alfred was the son of Colonel James Mitchell Alexander and Nancy Foster.3  He was the grandson of James Alexander and Rhoda Cunningham.4   Assertions regarding his wife’s name, marriage date, and residence are new findings.  I can also estimate birth years for both based on the age of consent in North Carolina at the time (although one hopes they did not get married as soon as legally allowed – age 14 for males and 12 for females).5

“ALEXANDER, Miss Catherine R., daughter of Col. J. M. Alexander, to G. W. Baxter of Rutherfordton, April 16, 1850, on French Broad (A. M., April 17, 1850).”

Comment: “A.M.” refers to the Asheville Messenger, the successor paper to the Highland Messenger.  It was “published from the 1848-1849 period noted above until at least as late as January, 1853.”6  New findings include Catherine as a daughter of Colonel James Mitchell Alexander (and the sister of Alfred from the previous entry), as well as her husband’s name and their marriage date. As stated above, I can estimate birth years for both based on the age of consent.

“ALEXANDER, Miss Harriet E., daughter of Robert S. Alexander, to William T. White, Feb 22, 1855, in Asheville (A. N., March 1, 1855).”

Comment:  “A. N.” refers to the Asheville News which “was founded in June, 1849, and published (with periodic interruptions during and after the Civil War) until at least as late as March 28, 1883.”7   Harriet’s father is likely the Robert S. Alexander who was a son of James Alexander and Rhoda Cunningham.8   Harriet’s identity, her husband, and marriage date and place are all new findings.

 “ALEXANDER, J. P. to Miss Harriet N. Hughey, both of Buncombe County, Nov. 15, 1856 (A. N., Nov. 20, 1856).”

Comment:  At this time, I don’t know the identity of J. P. Alexander.

“ALEXANDER, Miss Louisa, to Thomas D. Neill, Oct. 5, 1854, in Asheville (A. N., Oct. 12, 1854).

Comment: Louisa may turn out to be the daughter of Robert S. Alexander and Jane Wilson; a Louisa appeared in their household in 1850.9

 “ALEXANDER, P. B., to Miss Harriet L. C. Jones, Feb. 20, 1862, at the residence of James A. Webb near Asheville (A. N., Feb. 27, 1862).”

Comment: At this time, I don’t know the identity of P. B. Alexander.

“ALEXANDER, Miss R. E., daughter of J. C. Alexander, to James M. Padgett, all of Buncombe County, Aug. 13, 1840 (H. M., Aug. 21, 1840).”

Comment: The father, J. C. Alexander, could be John C. Alexander, son of James Alexander and Rhoda Cunningham.

 “ALEXANDER, Miss Rachel Adeline, daughter of Robert Alexander, to G. W. Shackelford, all of Buncombe County, Aug. 16, 1849 (A. M., Aug. 23, 1849).”

Comment: The father may be the Robert S. Alexander mentioned above.

Next Steps

  • Look for images from the original papers at the North Carolina Digital Collection.  http://digitalnc.org/collections/newspapers
  • Abstracts of wills, Buncombe County, NC, 1792 to 1904.  Look for an entry for Robert S. Alexander (son of James Alexander and Rhoda Cunningham) to see if he connects to the Harriet who married William T. White, the Louisa who married Thomas Neill, and the Rachel Adeline who married G. W. Shackelford.
  • Abstracts of wills, Buncombe County, NC, 1792 to 1904.  Look for an entry for John C. Alexander (son of James Alexander and Rhoda Cunningham) to see if he connects to the “Miss R. E.” who married James Padgett.
  • If entries are not found in the above book, then look in the North Carolina, Probate Records, 1735-1970 and/or North Carolina, Estate Files, 1663-1979 .
  • Cemetery Inscriptions of Buncombe County, N.C.: volume one and Cemetery Inscriptions of Buncombe County, N.C.: Volume Three.  Look for these brides now that I have their married names.
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  1. Robert M. Topkins, compiler, Marriage and Death Notices from Extant Asheville, N. C. Newspapers, 1840-1870: an index (Raleigh: North Carolina Genealogical Society, 1977), 1.
  2. Ibid, Introduction.
  3. John Preston Arthur, Western North Carolina: a history (1730-1913) (Raleigh, NC: National Society Daughters of the American Revolution of North Carolina. Edward Buncombe Chapter, Asheville, 1914), 153; digital images, Google Books (http://google.com/books : accessed 11 May 2011; this book includes footnotes, but none are offered for this item.
  4. Yates Snowden and Henry Gardner Cutler, ed, History of South Carolina, Volume IV (Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Co., 1920), 257; digital images, Google Books (http://google.com/books : accessed 11 May 2011; this book was co-authored by a historian, but does not include source citations.
  5. Raymond A. Winslow, Jr., “Marriage, Divorce, and Vital Records,” North Carolina Research: Genealogy and Local History, Helen F. M. Leary and Maurice R. Stirewalt (Raleigh, N. C. : North Carolina Genealogical Society, 1980) {enter page range, no p}, particularly 153.
  6. Topkins, Marriage and Death Notices. . .Asheville, N. C. Newspapers, Introduction.
  7. Ibid.
  8. Margaret Wallis Haile, Abstracts of wills, Buncombe County, NC, 1792 to 1904 (Asheville, N. C.: Old Buncombe County Genealogical Society, 2001), p. 34.
  9. 1850 U. S. census, Buncombe County, North Carolina, population schedule, p. 310 (stamped), p. 64 (penned), dwelling 1544, family 1544, R. S. Alexander household; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 28 Jul 2013), citing National Archives microfilm publication M432, roll 622.
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