PENDLETON COUNTY'S AFRICAN - AMERICAN
by Eric C. Nagle
Source: Pendleton County Historical Society Newsletter
December 1995 issue. Volume II Issue 4
Generously Transcribed & Submitted by
Nancy Bray, thanks Nancy!
The Promise by Don Stivers
Emerson McGee, b. 29 December 1843, Harrison Co., Ky. d. 11 October 1899, Pendleton Co., Ky. His home was located between McKenneysburg in Pendleton County and Havilandsville in Harrison County. He Served as a Private, Company A, 109th U. S. Colored Infantry during the Civil War. He received a pension for his service. In his pension application he states: "incurred pneumonia and fever, July 1864, caused by exposure and sleeping on the ground while doing guard duty and I have been and am at this time suffering with misery in my side, breast and back causing lumbago." He suffered with rheumatism, disease of the heart, stomach disease and scurvy. He also suffered with Bright's disease, a kidney infection.
In 1869, he purchased 37 acres 2 rods and 9 poles of property from the heirs of Caleb T. Ramsey which lay on the Licking River and Mill Creek. The last heir to Caleb T. Ramsey who did not sign the deed of 1869, Eliza J. Elliott, wife of Dudley D. Elliott, sold her rights to the property in 1871. When he died in 1899, he owned two tracts of land in Pendleton County, one parcel containing 195 acres, 1 rod and one containing 8 acres, 3 rods. His heirs sold the said property to James N. McGee, their brother , on 28 September 1901.
Upon his death, his estate was appraised on 06 November 1899. In examining the appraisement record, it appears that Emerson McGee had done well for himself for that day and age. He raised tobacco as listed in his appraisement is two thousands of tobacco at five cents per lb. In addition, he owned a life insurance policy with New York Life Insurance Company for $5,000.00, a sum of considerable value in 1899. He also owned a lot in Bracken County which was valued at $50.00.
His wife was Martha E. Blackburn, b. 15 March 1833, Bracken County, Ky.: d. 02 March 1898, Pendleton County, Ky. No record of their marriage has been found in Harrison or Pendleton Counties. Many former slaves, after having lived together in common law, were recognized later by the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands as having been married. Such may be the case with this individual. They are both buried in the McGee Cemetery on Haley Ridge Road in southeastern Pendleton County.
1. Hannah McGee, md. 20 August 1890, Early Williams
2. Belle McGee, md. 03 June 1897, Perry Williams, res. Milford, Ohio. 1931.
3. Alice McGee, b. 29 December 1867, Pendleton Co.; d. 16 March 1917, McKenneysburg Pct. Pendleton Co. of a stroke, bur. family graveyard near her father, md. 28 December 1899, James Miller.
4. Mary Ellen McGee, b. 10 April 1870, Pendleton Co.; d. 21 March 1931 McKenneysburg Pct. Pendleton Co.; suffered a stroke while visiting her brother James Nelson McGee, bur. Hathman Graveyard, md. 17 November 1890, William Hathman. Her home near Browning's Corner, Pendleton County.
5. Eliza McGee, 1st. md. 5 March 1885, John Hitch, 2nd. md. 22 August 1888, Henry Pritchett.
6. Melinda McGee, md. 12 February 1902, George W. Winbush. Children from 1910 census of McKenneysburg Pct., Pendleton Co.:
Arta M., 4; Bessie E., 2; res. Milford, Ohio, 1931.
7. Clark McGee, d. 1905
8. James Nelson McGee, b. 28 July 1873; d. 19 March 1931, Falmouth of chronic myocarditis, bur. Crescent Hill Cemetery near Falmouth, md. 29 November 1899, Ida Mae Southgate, d/o William L. Southgate and Maria Bonar. Lived on N. Montjoy St., Falmouth.
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