The Reeves Family and the Ewing Family Genealogies
Charles Thompson Spears
(August 20, 1804 — 1871)
(August 4, 1835 — After 1880)
In 1803, Thomas Jefferson of Virginia, the third United States president of the United States was serving his first year. It was a very successful year, culminating in his engineering of the Louisiana Purchase, which doubled the size of the young United States. The very next year, on August 20, 1804, and in Jefferson’s home state, Charles Thompson Spears was born.
He was married twice, first to Elizabeth Dalton. Elizabeth was born on 1811 in Allen County, Kentucky to parents who had both been born in Virginia, and had moved to Allen County sometime before Elizabeth was born. We do not know for sure when Thompson moved to Allen County, but it is likely that is where he met and married Elizabeth. That is also where most, if not all of their children were born.
Thompson and Elizabeth had ten children, Sarah A. Spears, born in 1830, William R. Spears, born in 1832, Daniel W. Spears, born in 1837; Emily Francis Spears, born in 1837; Martha B. Spears, born in 1838; David R. Spears, born 1839; Elizabeth P. Spears, born in 1841; Isom Spears, born in 1845; James A. Spears, born in 1847; and Susan Caroline Spears, born in 1950.
Elizabeth died on February 20, 1852, when she was forty or forty-one and when her youngest child was just two.
Thompson was left a forty-eight years old widower, with
ten children, ranging in age from two to twenty-two.
Would anyone be surprised, then, that he quickly remarried?
Well, he did.
He married Melisa Ann Boucher on August 23, 1854, in Allen County. Melisa was born on August 4, 1835, and had just turned nineteen (three years younger than his oldest child) when she took on not only a new role as a wife to a fifty-year old man, but also as stepmother to eight children seventeen year old or younger.
You would think that would be enough responsibility for
the young wife, but she and Thompson would five children of their own.
The first of these was Mary A. Spears, who was born on March 28, 1851,
just eight months after their marriage. Mary
was followed by Charles Joseph Spears in 1855, Edward Franklin (Ned) Spears in
1857, Nancy C. Spears in 1860 and Lydia A. Virginia Spears in 1862.
Thompson was a farmer. According to the 1850 United States Census for Allen County, he could neither read nor write. Thompson was a farmer. According to the 1850 United States Census for Allen County, he could neither read nor write.
Real estate records showed that Thompson received a land grant of 25 acres on Ruff Creek. The survey was done on December 8, 1846. Though we cannot be sure it is the same land, the 1850 United States Census showed him owning property valued at $500. The 1860 United States Census showed land valued at $1,200 and personal property valued at $800. When he died, his will listed several parcels of real estate including “all the land I own on Waters of Rough Creek,” as well as “my Howell Tract” and “141 acres on Waters of Snake Creek.”
Thompson died on July 4, 1871 in Allen County, Kentucky,
leaving behind his 38-year old widow. A
copy of his will is recorded in the Allen County, Kentucky records.
It was written on January 4, 1871 and recorded (after his death) on July
10, 1871. It says as follows:
The reference to David being Thompson’s “unfortunate
son” is understandable when measured against a note in the 1860 United States
Census that David, then twenty-one, was “idiotic.”
Though we would use different language today, that
notation makes it obvious that David suffered some sort of serious mental
The 1860 census for Allen County shows his family unit as follows:
Nannie Maude Spears reported to Brian Reeves in July 1975
that Thompson Spears' first wife was named Elizabeth.
She added that Thompson Spears (or perhaps his father) came from Holland.
She said he drove a carriage with two white horses; that is how he
attracted his second wife.
There is a notation in a public record Allen County,
Kentucky that Thompson Spears, 60, was a widower born in Virginia and then
living in Allen County.
For a while, he lived in Sumner County, Tennessee.
Another Spears, W.W. Spears was there at the same time and also later
lived in Allen County, Kentucky. According
to him, his grandmother, Ree Spears, said her grandfather W.W. Spears came from
Palmyra, Fluvanna, Virginia.
The 1840 United States Census for Allen County showed Thompson Spears as the head of a household including:
The 1880 census for Allen County shows Maliesa(sic) Spears as a 45-year old widow, whose occupation was listed as "keeping house." She and her parents were shown as having been born in Kentucky. The next family unit consisted of 24-year old Joseph Spears and his family.
Contact Brian@BrianReeves.com with any suggestions corrections, etc.
Copyright Brian Reeves, 2005 — 2007.