Reunions in Gregg County
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November 23, 1905
There was held a family reunion on the old Killingsworth homestead yesterday about 6 miles northeast of this place, at which 63 blood relatives were present. This family now consists of four generations making a total of 199, divided as follows:
John S Killingsworth's 13 children had 39 children, making a total of 52; the next generation of grandchildren are 93; great grandchildren 34; and great great granchildren 20.
Of the children born to this great family, Dr W L Marshall, 73 years old, attended the birth of 63. The doctor attended the reunion and is as spry as any man of 35 and doing an active practice today.
The following is a short summary of the life of the first Killingsworth: John S Killingsworth was born of English parents in Edgefield District, South Carolina. In May 1796, he left his home when a mere boy, going to Knoxville, Tenn., where he grew to manhood, often attending the divine service conducted by the celebrated Lorenzo Dow, who was greatly admired by him. When about 18 years of age he enlisted in the American Army and went into camp of Instruction about December, 1814, immediately prior to the Battle of New Orleans, which battle virtually ended the war so far as land fighting was concerned. He was never sworn into regular service, as the end came so soon after he enlisted. The soldiers being discharged, he returned to Knoxville, where he remained only a short time when he went to Lebanon, Tenn., where he learned the silversmith's trade, which he followed for some years at that place. He then went to Selma, Ala., when that place was a small village in an almost unsettled and uncivilized country. Here he purchased a tract of land, which is now almost within the city limits and began farming on a small scale. He constructed the first frame building that was erected in that city and was present and saw the first steamboat pass up the river to that point and witnessed the excitement and admiration of the people incident to the occasion.
While living here he married Emeline Abney of Irish parentage on the 18th day of January, 1820; soon after which he removed to Bibb County, Ala., where engaged in farming exclusively until November 1850 when he moved overland with all of his family except two sons to Texas, stopping near Pine Tree, then Upshur County, where he lived until his death which occurred at his old homestead, about 6 miles north of Longview, on the 21st day of October 1884. Of this union there were 13 children; four sons and nine daughters, all of whom grew to manhood and womanhood. Besides the 13 children, they reared three grandchildren of which three are now living near Longview.
James A Killingsworth, eldest son, born April 5, 1821, married
Frances Oden Feb. 20, 1848, of which union there were six children;
four sons, and two daughters, of whom five are now living, 26
grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
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