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William Thomas Shields

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Version: 3 Jan 2020

Identification of William Thomas Shields (1859-1899)

By Richard L. Tolman, Ph. D.

     There are five William Shields in the 1880 census all born about the same time in and around Georgia. The object of this essay is to identify William Thomas Shields, father of Annie Margaret (Shields) Arrington, and his family situation. In the 1910 census[simple_tooltip content=’1.’]1[/simple_tooltip] of Mangan, Comanche, Oklahoma, his dau Annie Margaret Shields (then 17 years) was living with her mother and step-father Louis B. Wells (mother Mary (Jemeyson) Shields re-married[simple_tooltip content=’2. Wells/Shields marriage: 18 Feb 1900, Texas, County Marriage Index, 1837-1977, Williamson County, Texas; online at FamilySearch (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]2[/simple_tooltip] in 1900) and Annie indicated that her father was born in Georgia. This was echoed in the 1900 census[simple_tooltip content=’3. 1900 census of Granger, Williamson, Texas, Roll T624_1248, Page 6, E. D. 124, FHL Film 1241679; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]3[/simple_tooltip] of Granger, Williamson, Texas. So…Annie’s father William Shields was born in Georgia, married to Mary, and died before 1900—we shall start there.

     From the 1880 census the five are:

        (1) Wm Shields of La Fayette, Walker, Georgia (b. 1859 in Georgia, married to Mary, b. 1858;

        (2) Wm Shields of Alaculsa, Murray, Georgia (b. 1857 in Georgia, married to Malinda;

        (3) Wm Shields of Wilsons, Walker, Georgia (b. 1856, unmarried son of Romal and Jane Shields);

        (4) Wm J. Shields of Lamar, Alabama (b. 1854 in Georgia, unmarried son of Mary); and

        (5) Wm H. H. Shields of Caldwell and Mobile, Fannin, Georgia (b. 1854 in Georgia and married to Caroline, b. 1856).

     Number 2 and number 5 are probably already out as their spouses are Malinda and Caroline, not Mary. However, in the 1900 census there are six William Shields born in Georgia. As suspected the William Shields (2) of Murray, Georgia is still there and is still married to Malinda—so he is out. Number 5 (b. 1854) is living in Polk County, Georgia with a bunch of kids (no Annie) and is married to Permelia C. (= Caroline?) b. 1856)—so he is out. Number 3 (b. 1856) is identifiable in 1900: still in Walker County, married to Leah, b. 1855 and his mother Jane is living with them—so he is out. Number 4 is out because he has middle initial ‘J’ and we know that our William was ‘William Thomas’. Number 1 fits all parameters plus he is not findable in 1900 (because he had died in 1899). But as we shall see, extra caution must be taken when investigating a common name for this area such as William Shields.

     William Thomas Shields married[simple_tooltip content=’4. Shields/Jemeyson marriage: Texas, County Marriage Index, 1837-1977 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QK8B-XDZF); online at FamilySearch (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]4[/simple_tooltip] 24 Dec 1888 at Williamson County, Texas Mary M. Jemeyson dau of W. J. Jemyson (b. Mississippi) and Margaret Allison (b. Texas). Mary Jemeyson was born 15 Apr 1868 and died at Fort Worth, Texas at age 81 in 18 May 1950.[simple_tooltip content=’5. Mary Wells death: Texas, Death Certificates 1903-1982; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]5[/simple_tooltip] This is consistent with the 1900 and 1910 censuses where she is 30 and 40 yrs respectively. Annie was born 1892 in Williamson County, Texas and her father William Thomas Shields died seven years later and was buried[simple_tooltip content=’6. Findagrave #19531747.’]6[/simple_tooltip] in the Allison Old Friendship Cemetery, Friendship, Williamson, Texas. His death date was 17 Feb 1899, ‘aged 44-45’ making him born in 1854. This is inconsistent with other records. He is findable in the 1860 census,[simple_tooltip content=’7. 1860 census of Watters, Floyd, Georgia, Roll M653_121, Page 290, Dwelling 1091, FHL Film 803121, online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]7[/simple_tooltip] son of David and Elizabeth Shields, but he is age 1 not age 6 (therefore b. 1859); this is also consistent with other records, specifically records of his proven brother Robert James. There are suspicious things about the cemetery record—his survivors knew his death date (cemetery records are a primary source for death), but not exactly how old he was—‘44-45 yrs’? and no exact date on his birth? This is a perfect secondary source for birth and is obviously unreliable. The 1859 birthdate from the 1860 census is more reliable. Annie was born 1892 in Williamson County, Texas and her father William Thomas Shields died seven years later and was buried7 in the Allison Old Friendship Cemetery, Friendship, Williamson, Texas. His death date was 17 Feb 1899, ‘aged 44-45’ making him born in 1854. This is inconsistent with the 1880 census. He is findable in the 1860 census, son of David and Elizabeth Shields, but he is age 1 not age 5; this is also consistent with other records. There are suspicious things about the cemetery record—his survivors knew his death date (cemetery is a primary source for death), but not exactly how old he was—‘44-45 yrs’? and no exact date on his birth? This is a perfect secondary source for birth and is obviously pretty unreliable. The 1859 birthdate from the 1860 census is more reliable.

     In the 1870 census[simple_tooltip content=’8. 1870 census of Subdivision 128, Walker, Georgia, Roll M593_180, Page 212A, FHL Film 545679; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]8[/simple_tooltip] a William Shields is found of the right age with two sibs, James and Martha. It is tempting to believe this is our William Thomas, but there are suspicious circumstances. The three sibs are living on the Tucker farm: Anderson Tucker, head, 2nd husband of wife Jane (Morgan) Shields, with a small dau Margaret Tucker and the three Shields children James Shields (b. 1857), William Shields (b. 1859) and a younger sib Martha (b. 1861).  Jane’s 1st husband was William P. Shields,[simple_tooltip content=’9. 1850 census of Chattanooga Valley, Walker, Georgia, Roll 453_85, Page 424A, Image 287; online at Ancestry (accessed 14 Jan 2019).’]9[/simple_tooltip] son of John Samuel Shields, b. 1800 Georgia—no apparent close relation to David Nelson Shields. The 1860 census of Wilson, Walker, Georgia[simple_tooltip content=’10. 1860 U. S. census of Wilson, Walker, Georgia, Roll M653_139, Page 706, FHL Film 803139; W. P. Shields with wife Jane A. Shields and two sons: James L. B. Shields (age 3) and Phelps S. Shields (age 1)—they must have changed his name to Wm P. Jr.; online at Ancestry (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]10[/simple_tooltip] proves the three Shields children are actually the children of William and Jane (Morgan) Shields and not David Nelson Shields.  Consistent with this, the 1880 census of LaFayette, Walker, Georgia[simple_tooltip content=’11. 1880 census of La Fayette, Walker, Georgia, Roll 169, Page 372D, E. D. 186; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]11[/simple_tooltip] shows the eldest son James, age 23, still with the Tucker family and essentially next door to (#1) William and Mary Shields—this is undoubtedly James’ younger brother William and not our William, son of David Nelson Shields of Floyd County, Georgia.

      Further confirmation of this comes from the obituaries of these two brothers reproduced in their Findagrave citations: James L. B. Shields, died[simple_tooltip content=’12. James L. B. Shields Death Certificate, Georgia Deaths Index 1914-1940, 17 Apr 1938 at LaFayette, Walker, Georgia; names parents (William Shields and Jane Morgan) and birth 17 Dec 1856; online at Ancestry (accessed 14 Jan 2019).’]12[/simple_tooltip] 17 Apr 1938 and was buried[simple_tooltip content=’13. Findagrave #97881634, bio w/obituary names surviving Tucker half-sibs.’]13[/simple_tooltip] at Fairview Cemetery, Walker County and William P. Shields, Jr. died 30 Jul 1939 and was buried[simple_tooltip content=’14. Findagrave #137648112, bio w/obituary names surviving Tucker half-sibs.’]14[/simple_tooltip] at Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, Walker County. James L. B. (Little Berry) Shields married 1885 Millicent D. Bradley.[simple_tooltip content=’15. Findagrave #97881634.’]15[/simple_tooltip] William Park Shields, Jr. married[simple_tooltip content=’16. Shields/White marriage: Georgia, Mcduffie County marriages 1785-1950, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KXJK-17C, online at Family Search (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]16[/simple_tooltip] (1) 18 Dec 1886 at McDuffie County Mary Ann White and (2)[simple_tooltip content=’17. Shields/McCline marriage: Georgia, Walker County marriages 1785-1950, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KXVH-C5R, online at Family Search (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]17[/simple_tooltip] 5 Nov 1902 at Walker County, Georgia Mrs. Mary E. McCline; they had two daus.[simple_tooltip content=’18. 1900 U. S. Census of LaFayette, Walker, Georgia, Page 12, E. D. 94, FHL Film 1240226; online at Ancestry (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]18[/simple_tooltip]  Ironically, we have now shown that our chosen Wm Shields (#1) is not the Wm Shields we are seeking—he is not findable in the 1880 census and was not caught in our survey.

     Our William’s brother Robert James Shields (see 1860 census) was born 23 Mar 1856 at Rome, Floyd, Georgia and died 27 Apr 1944 (aged 88) at Santa Ana, Orange, California; buried[simple_tooltip content=’19. Findagrave #59317530, mother listed as Elizabeth Selena Trapp Shields.’]19[/simple_tooltip] at Fairhaven Memorial Park, Orange County.  He used the name Robert, but more often James in the California period. He married twice (1) 28 Dec 1875[simple_tooltip content=’20. ‘Shealds/Cullins’ marriage: Georgia, Floyd County marriages 1785-1950, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KXJ5-5FL, online at FamilySearch (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]20[/simple_tooltip] at Floyd County, Georgia to Martha Jane Cullen (twelve children) and (2) in 3 Apr 1921 at Orange County, California to Nancy J. (Martin) Geis.[simple_tooltip content=’21. Shields/Geis marriage: California, County Birth, Marriage, Death Records, Santa Ana, Orange County and Findagrave #59317530.’]21[/simple_tooltip] Robert and Martha moved first to Fannin County, Texas[simple_tooltip content=’22. 1900 U. S. census of Justice Precinct 8, Fannin, Texas, Page 10, E. D. 0083, FHL Film 1241634; online at Ancestry (accessed 14 Jan 2019).’]22[/simple_tooltip] and then in 1906 to Orange County, California.

      So…let’s see where we are.  We are certain of William Thomas’ parentage: David Nelson and Elizabeth (Trapp) Shields—from the 1860 and 1900 censuses with confirmation from the death notice of his brother Robert James.  But the 1880 census exercise was a waste as we have now not found Wm Thomas or his brother Robert James in 1880 or in 1870; in this time period the boys were probably somewhere in Floyd County, Georgia as Robert James married there in 1875 at age 19. Perhaps these records will be discovered in the course of time.

     Wm Thomas’ father David Shields fought in the Civil War in the Georgia Infantry, Company C, 40th Regiment.  He was captured 4 Jul 1863 at Vicksburg, Mississippi, paroled in Aug 1863 at Mobile Harbor, Alabama and died of sickness shortly thereafter.[simple_tooltip content=’23. Findagrave #57036123, nice bio.’]23[/simple_tooltip]  He was married to Elizabeth Selena ‘Lena’ Trapp; she married[simple_tooltip content=’24. Cumming/Trapp marriage: Georgia marriages, 1699-1944, online at Ancestry.com (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]24[/simple_tooltip] (1) 8 Jun 1847 at Floyd County, Georgia James F. C. Cummings and when he died, then[simple_tooltip content=’25. Shields/Cummings marriage: Georgia marriages 1699-1944, Bartow County; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]25[/simple_tooltip] (2) David Nelson Shields in 24 Sep 1854 at Bartow County, Georgia. She is the dau of Jeremiah and Mary (Richards) Trapp.[simple_tooltip content=’26. Findagrave #57036123, nice bio.’]26[/simple_tooltip],[simple_tooltip content=’27. 1850 U. S. Census of Subdivision 30, Floyd, Georgia, Roll M432_69, Page 135A, Image 276; indexed as ‘Trass’, Lena is 21, sister Mary is 7; online at Ancestry (accessed 15 Jan 2019).’]27[/simple_tooltip]  She is not findable in the 1870 census.  In the 1880 census she was in Floyd County, Georgia with Mary F. Littlejohn (a niece) and next door to her relative J. W. Trapp (b. 1877).[simple_tooltip content=’28. 1880 census of Flat Woods, Floyd, Georgia, Roll 146, Page 225A, E. D. 67; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]28[/simple_tooltip]  She was still living with this niece in 1900 (age 70)[simple_tooltip content=’29. 1900 census of Rome Ward 4, Floyd, Georgia, Page 13, E. D. 121, FHL Film 1240196, ‘Selina E. Shields’; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]29[/simple_tooltip] and died there in 1916. In the 1900 census she stated she had ‘2 children, 1 still alive’; this is consistent with the record (William died in 1899) and provides further confirmation of our genealogical search so far.  Lena filed for Confederate pension benefits from the state of Georgia in 1894 for her husband David.[simple_tooltip content=’30. Widow’s Pension, E. S. Shields of Floyd County: Georgia, Confederate Pension Applications, 1879-1960, Company C of the 40th Georgia Regiment, died near Mobile, Alabama on 19 Aug 1863; Elizabeth was illiterate; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).’]30[/simple_tooltip]

     David N. Shields (b. 1838) appears in the 1850 census[simple_tooltip content=’31. 1850 census of West Chickamauga, Walker, Georgia, Roll M432_85, Page 447A, Image 339; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]31[/simple_tooltip] of West Chickamauga, Walker, Georgia in the Preston and Lucinda Shields family (nine children); he was born in Tennessee. The Tennessee family moved first to Georgia after 1840 and then abt 1861 to Dade County, Missouri.[simple_tooltip content=’32. 1860 census of Polk Township, Dade, Missouri, Roll M653_653, Image 63, Dwelling 385 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MHZY-7YZ) online at FamilySearch (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]32[/simple_tooltip]  In the 1840 census[simple_tooltip content=’33. 1840 census of Blount County, Tennessee, Page 80, FHL Film 24542; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]33[/simple_tooltip] Preston Shields was in Blount County, Tennessee, but in 1836 he paid taxes[simple_tooltip content=’34. Tennessee, Early Tax List Records 1783-1895, Greene County; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]34[/simple_tooltip] in Greene County, Tennessee. According to the 1840 census the family had three children under 5 yrs (that would be William, Jackson, and David) and one age 5-9 yrs. (Joseph).  It is important to note that all these events in Tennessee occurred in adjacent counties in the far northeastern corner of Tennessee: Washington, Green, Blount counties.

     David’s mother was Margaret Lucinda Nelson; she and Preston were married[simple_tooltip content=’35. Shields/Nelson marriage: Tennessee County marriages, 1790-1950; (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QKH3-N4BJ) online at FamilySearch (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]35[/simple_tooltip] 8 May 1832 at Washington County, Tennessee.  Preston was born 1812 and Lucinda in 1811, both in Tennessee.  She is mentioned in her father’s will[simple_tooltip content=’36. Thomas Nelson will: Tennessee, Wills and Probate Records 1779-2008, Washington County Will Books, #241; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]36[/simple_tooltip] (dated 3 Mar 1835) and received 200 dollars from his estate.  She is the dau of Thomas and Elizabeth (McLin) Nelson of Washington County, Tennessee.  They had six children: Robert B., Andrew, George W., Lucinda, Julianna, and Mary Jane Nelson.

     Preston’s father: FamilySearch has his father Robert Richard Shields (1794-1865) with absolutely no credible sources. He married 1818 Elizabeth (Betsy) Lewis Walker as her second husband.[simple_tooltip content=’37. Findagrave #124122667 w/bio.’]37[/simple_tooltip] We HAVE to reject this guy as Preston’s dad…let me count the ways.  Reason #1: he comes from Giles County in middle Tennessee not from northeastern Tennessee where Preston comes from.  Reason #2: there is no birth record and in the Findagrave summary, there is no acknowledgment from sibs; he is just penciled in by another well-meaning contributor; Shields children began being born to Robert and Betsy in 1818 right after their marriage, but Preston was born in 1812!  Reason #3: Elizabeth (Betty) Lewis married Charles Walker in 1812 and had a dau (Mary Walker Gilbert) 20 May 1812 (do you see the problem?). It is VERY unlikely that Betty had two children in 1812 by different fathers. It could happen; we don’t have an exact birthdate for Preston; he could have been born in late 1811—but it is highly unlikely. If you’re not yet convinced, there is always Reason #4: perusal of Valene Crockett’s at-DNA results (she is a gggdau of Preston) identifies two fourth cousins: ‘R. R.’ (36 cMs in two segments) and ‘Weston Lewis’(21 cMs in one segment)—both are descendants of Jane Ann Shields (b. 1800, Greene County, Tennessee); she married 27 Dec 1825 at Greene County John Matthews and they raised a large family in Greene County[simple_tooltip content=’38. 1850 census of Division 9, Greene, Tennessee, Roll M432_880, Page 264A, Image 533, living with them in 1850 was Jane’s mother Elizabeth Shields, age 83, b. VA; online at Ancestry (accessed 4 Dec 2018).’]38[/simple_tooltip] (the 1850 record also noted the presence in the household of Jane’s mother Elizabeth). Jane would be Preston’s sister; she does not appear in the Robert Richard Shields family.

     It is likely that four of Valene Crockett’s matches (these four are likely close relatives) are descendants of sibs of Preston or perhaps children of an as yet unidentified brother who also would have to be living in Greene County, Tennessee: (1) ‘Benjamin Nisson’ (17.4 cM across 1 segment), (2) ‘Dawn Ingram’ (16.6 cM across 1 segment), (3) ‘P. N.’ (15.3 cM across 1 segnent), and (4) ‘arn1968’ (17.3 cM across 1 segment). All four are descended from Jennie Shields, b. 1797 at Greene County, Tennessee (died[simple_tooltip content=’39. 1860 census of District 6, Greene, Tennessee, Roll M653_1252, Page 251, FHL Film 805252; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]39[/simple_tooltip] after 1860, md.[simple_tooltip content=’40. Laughner/Shields marriage: Tennessee Marriage Records 17880-2002, Greene County; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).’]40[/simple_tooltip] 27 Feb 1822 at Greene County, Tennessee Daniel Laughner).  Jennie is probably another sister of Preston’s; Jennie is a nickname for Jane, but also for Mary Jane and Margaret Jane.[simple_tooltip content=’41. FamilySearch wiki, online at FamilySearch.’]41[/simple_tooltip] She could also be an aunt or cousin.  A useful piece of freeware (DNApainter: shared cM tool) indicates that 17 cM shared could be either 5th or 6th cousins 1 or 2 removed. Another match ‘caroll chavez’ (19.8 cM across 2 segments) is a descendant of another of Preston’s probable sibs, his brother William Shields, b. 1806 in Greene County, Tennessee. In the 1850 census[simple_tooltip content=’42. 1850 census of Subdivision 10, Greene, Tennessee, Roll M432_880, Page 309, Image 624, Dwelling 240 (William Shields family) and Dwelling 237 (Daniel Laughner family); online at Ancestry (accessed 4 Dec 2018).’]42[/simple_tooltip]  William Shields is a neighbor of Daniel and Jennie (Shields) Laughner in Greene County, Tennessee reinforcing the idea that Jennie and William are related (brother and sister).

     Let’s see if we can identify Preston’s parents. We already know his and Jane’s mother’s name was Elizabeth and she was 83 in 1850 therefore 63 in 1830. If you search the 1830 census[simple_tooltip content=’43. Search: Shields—1830 census of Tennessee; online at Ancestry.com (accessed 4 Dec 2018).’]43[/simple_tooltip] for Shields in Tennessee you get more than 32 hits. Eliminating any not in the northeastern counties, the list is still 11 hits. Preston married in 8 May 1832 in Washington County so he would have been 18 and probably still at home in 1830. Checking the 11 hits for the presence of an 18 yr old, we find two possible fathers: James Shields of Greene County and Joseph Shields of neighboring Washington County. Jane’s mother Elizabeth was 63 in 1830 and she had Preston at age 45 so he had to be pretty much the youngest in the family. Inputting this information into our exercise eliminates Joseph Shields of Washington County as his wife was (40-49yrs) and they had two children at home less than 10 years. However, James Shields of Greene County fits perfectly: James is (70-79yrs), ‘Elizabeth’ is (60-69yrs) and ‘Preston’ (15-19yrs) is the only child at home. They owned one male slave. Since Preston paid the taxes in Greene County in 1836, that probably means his dad died between 1830 and 1836. It would be lovely to follow the family back through the earlier censuses, but the federal census records in Tennessee have been lost for 1800—1820 and are only partially reconstructed.[simple_tooltip content=’44. Thorndale, William and William Dollarhide Map Guide to the U. S. Federal Censuses, 1790-1920 (Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Publ. Co., 1987).’]44[/simple_tooltip]

     You probably think we are now done with the Shields since we have exhausted the records of early Tennessee—not necessarily so. We still have some clues about James and Elizabeth Shields. We know that Elizabeth was born in Virginia which is probably where she met James. And we have the Valene Crockett cousins; they are trying to help but they know less about the Shields than we do. We can say as an absolute certainty that the Shields came from Ireland, we just don’t know when (there are two 4th-6th cousins that have their line traced back to Ireland in the 19th century). DNA doesn’t lie—just because we don’t understand the connection, doesn’t mean we have the option of not dealing with it. It is real and must be accepted whether we like it or not. But the common ancestor with these cousins may not be in Virginia; the common ancestor could be a century earlier in Ireland.

     A quick update to your DNA primer: there are 4 bases in DNA—A, G, T, C—and each of these bases has a front and back end (AT is not the same as TA). If you consider a 2-base piece of DNA, there are 16 possibilities (42). So…for a 5-mer, there are 45 possibilities (1024) and for a 10-mer there are already more than a million possibilities. For a 20-mer there are well more than a trillion possibilities (1,099,511,627,776). CentiMorgans (cM) are a measure of distance, but the measurement is in gene segments, which are variable in length—but they can average easily more than a hundred bases each. If you share a 5 centiMorgan sequence with someone it cannot be an accident. If two people share significant cM’s, it means they have a common ancestor from whom this DNA was passed down. The rule of thumb for 23andMe and Ancestry is not to consider any match seriously unless it is 7 cM or more, but I have personal evidence/experience of a distant cousin in the Tolman/Toulmin line (common ancestor b. 1560) where only 5 cM are shared.

     The two Valene Crockett matches ‘B. F.’28.3 cM across 1 segment and ‘jfickley1964’ 25.6 cM across 1 segment (Fickley Family Tree on Ancestry, owner: jfickely1964) descend from Mary F. Shields, b. abt 1770 at Williamsburg, York, Virginia and d. 23 Sep 1853 at Jonesboro, Clayton, Georgia, md John Fuller (1758-1857)—this could be James’ sister.

     Another match ‘Debra LaTour’ 16.7 cM across 1 segment (Debra Jenkins Family Tree, owner: Debra LaTour) has traced her Shields line to Janet Shields (1762-1827 of Virginia) dau of Robert Shields of Harrisonburg, Rockingham, Virginia. The Robert Shields line[simple_tooltip content=’45. Shields, John A. The Shields Family: particularly the oldest and most numerous branch of that family in our America; an account of the ancestor and descendents {sic} of The ten brothers of Sevier County, in Tennessee (unk: unk , 1917). Nobody has a copy of this book except Allen County Library in Fort Wayne, IN; there is a poor OCD copy on the web (almost unreadable); Google Books offers an eBook for $2.99 (I bought this). This is the major source book for all the refs in the following footnote (#34). I can find none of your proven ancestors in the book. I have ruled out Robert’s son James (of Sevier County, Tennessee) as b’dates and spouse do not fit our data.’]45[/simple_tooltip] (Figure 1) goes back to 1585 County Antrim and later County Armagh, Northern Ireland.

     Figure 1. Excerpt from John A. Shields The Shields Family:…

     Robert Shields is likely your common ancestor with Debra LaTour as he settled Sevier County, Tennessee and had ten sons plus Janet who married Robert Tipton the bitter enemy of John Sevier, a governor of Tennessee and namesake of Sevier County. They were political opponents and argued over the formation of the State of Franklin, which would have included all of eastern Tennessee. The above copy from John A. Shields The Shields Family… illustrates that there is a lot of stuff in the book, but it is highly selective. There is plenty of room for your descendants to fit in here, if we had the records or more DNA data. The ‘5. Robert Shields’ is the one of Sevier County, Tennessee. I still like him as ‘common ancestor’ of Valene Crockett and Debra LaTour as Robert is such a popular name in the Shields family.[simple_tooltip content=’46. Some interesting reading here:’]46[/simple_tooltip]

     For clarity, these results from this discussion are summarized below.

GENEALOGICAL SUMMARY

Generation 1

     1. James Shields was born abt 1760 of Greene County, Tennessee and died about 1834. Robert Shields (b. 9 Nov 1740 at Rockingham, Virginia and d. 18 Jan 1802 at Sevier County, Tennessee) was either his father or his uncle. He married before 1799 Elizabeth ____ and they may have had more than four children. She was born 1767 at Virginia and died after 1850 at Tennessee.

     James and Elizabeth had at least two children (3 and 5).

    2 i. MARY JANE or MARGARET JANE ‘Jennie’ SHIELDS 2 i. born 1797 at Greene County, Tennessee and died after 1860. She married 27 Feb 1822 at Greene County, Tennessee Daniel Laughner. They had at least five children.

    3 ii. JANE SHIELDS born 29 Apr 1800 at Greene County, Tennessee and died 6 Aug 1851; buried at Cheekville Cemetery, Marion, Tennessee. She married 27 Dec 1825 at Greene County John Matthews and they raised a large family in Greene County (seven children). Her mother Elizabeth was living with them in 1850 (83 yrs.).

    4 iii. WILLIAM SHIELDS born 1806 at Greene County, Tennessee and died 6 Aug 1851; buried at Cheekville Cemetery, Marion, Tennessee. He married UNKNOWN. They had at least two girls. William and Jennie are sibs and could be children of James’ unnamed brother; ‘Easter’ (Esther) Shields (age 81) was living with William in 1850 (his mother?); she is also in the 1840 census of Greene County as head of a family of seven.

+ 5 iv. PRESTON SHIELDS born 1812 of Greene County, Tennessee and died after 1860 probably in Dade County, Missouri.

Generation 2

     5. Preston Shields (James1)was born 1812 of Greene County, Tennessee and died after 1860 at Dade County, Missouri. He married 8 May 1832 at Washington County, Tennessee Margaret Lucinda Nelson dau of Thomas and Elizabeth (McLin) Nelson of Washington County, Tennessee. Lucinda was born 1837 at Washington County, Tennessee and died after 1860 at Dade County, Missouri.

     Preston and Lucinda (Nelson) Shields had ten children.

    6 i. JOSEPH SHIELDS born 1833 of Greene County, Tennessee. He fought in the Civil War in the Tennessee 8th Cavalry (Union).[simple_tooltip content=’47. Tennessee, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, M395, Film 77; (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JWRY-6V8: 4 December 2014); online at FamilySearch (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]47[/simple_tooltip]

    7 ii. WILLIAM MATTHEW ‘Matt’ SHIELDS born 1835 of Greene County, Tennessee. He married Mary Cloud;[simple_tooltip content=’48. Donie Shields Shearin Death Certificate: Tennessee Death Records, Nashville, TN, Roll 2 online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]48[/simple_tooltip] she was born 1842 at North Carolina.[simple_tooltip content=’49. 1880 census of District 11, Hardemon County, Tennessee, Roll 1260, Page 506C, E. D. 060; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]49[/simple_tooltip]

    8 iii. JACKSON L. SHIELDS born 1836 of Greene County, Tennessee. He was a 2nd Lieutenant in the Tennessee 53rd Infantry (Confederate)[simple_tooltip content=’50. U.S. Civil War Soldiers Records and Profiles 1861-1865, Index to Compiled Confederate Military Service Records; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]50[/simple_tooltip] and probably died in the war.[simple_tooltip content=’51. United States General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934, (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QJDP-HBJC: 13 March 2018); pension file from 1880 filed by Lucinda Shields ‘his mother? ’; online at FamilySearch (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]51[/simple_tooltip]

+ 9 iv. DAVID NELSON SHIELDS born 1838 of Greene County, Tennessee.

    10 v. RACHEL S. SHIELDS born 1840 of Greene County, Tennessee.

    11. vi.ELBERT LAFAYETTE SHIELDS vi. born 1842 of Greene County, Tennessee.

    12 vii. NANCY A. SHIELDS born 1844 of Greene County, Tennessee.

    13 viii. MARTHA EMALINE ‘Emma’ SHIELDS born 20 Oct 1846 of Greene County, Tennessee and died 11 May 1909 at Garfield, Oregon, Missouri; buried[simple_tooltip content=’52. Findagrave #24779953.’]52[/simple_tooltip] at Garfield Cemetery. She married[simple_tooltip content=’53. Stogsdill/Shields marriage: Missouri Compiled Marriage Index 1766-1983; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]53[/simple_tooltip] 2 Aug 1865 at Dade County, Missouri John W. Stogsdill.

    14 ix. PRESTON TAYLOR SHIELDS born Nov 1848 at Walker County, Georgia and died Jan 1929 at Many Springs, Oregon, Missouri; buried[simple_tooltip content=’54. Findagrave #16143805.’]54[/simple_tooltip] at Myrtle Cemetery, Oregon County. He married[simple_tooltip content=’55. Shield/Taylor marriage: Arkansas County Marriages Index 1837-1957; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]55[/simple_tooltip] 20 Sep 1876 at Randolph County, Arkansas Sarah Frances Taylor.

    15 x. ROBERT M. SHIELDS born 1851 at Walker County, Georgia.[simple_tooltip content=’56. 1860 census of Polk, Dade, Missouri, Roll M653_617, Page 59, FHL Film 803617; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Jan 2019).’]56[/simple_tooltip] He married[simple_tooltip content=’57. Shields/Couch marriage: Oregon County, Missouri Marriages Index 1837-1957 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V28Y-V29: 11 February 2018); online at FamilySearch (accessed 31 Dec 2018).’]57[/simple_tooltip] 5 Feb 1871 Oregon County, Missouri Martha June Couch.

Generation 3

     9. David Nelson Shields (Preston2 James1)was born 1838 of Greene County, Tennessee and died 19 Aug 1863 at Mobile, Alabama as a consequence of sickness acquired at the Battle of Vicksburg. He married 24 Sep 1854 at Bartow County, Georgia Elizabeth Selena ‘Lena’ Trapp as her 2nd husband. She married (1) 8 Jun 1847 at Floyd County, Georgia James F. C. Cummings (no issue). Lena was born 1828 at South Carolina, dau of Jeremiah and Mary (Richards) Trapp; she died 9 Jul 1916 at Rome, Floyd, Georgia.

     David and Lena (Trapp) Shields had two children.

    16 i. ROBERT JAMES SHIELDS born 23 Mar 1856 at Rome, Floyd, Georgia and died 27 Apr 1944 (aged 88) at Santa Ana, Orange, California. He married twice (1) 28 Dec 1875 to Martha Jane Cullen and (2) in 1921 to Nancy J. Martin Geis (he had twelve children by Martha).

    17 ii. WILLIAM THOMAS SHIELDS born 1859 of Floyd County, Georgia and died 17 Feb 1899 at Williamson County, Texas; buried in the Allison Old Friendship Cemetery, Friendship, Williamson, Texas. He married 24 Dec 1888 at Granger, Williamson, Texas Mary M. Jemeyson dau of W. J. Jemyson (b. Mississippi) and Margaret Allison (b. Texas). Mary was born 15 Apr 1868 and died at Fort Worth at age 81 in 18 May 1950. Four children.

NOTES

1. 1910 census of Mangan, Comanche, Oklahoma, Roll T624_1248, Page 15A, E. D. 57, FHL Film 1375261; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

2. Wells/Shields marriage: 18 Feb 1900, Texas, County Marriage Index, 1837-1977, Williamson County, Texas; online at FamilySearch (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

3. 1900 census of Granger, Williamson, Texas, Roll T624_1248, Page 6, E. D. 124, FHL Film 1241679; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

4. Shields/Jemeyson marriage: Texas, County Marriage Index, 1837-1977 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QK8B-XDZF); online at FamilySearch (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

5. Mary Wells death: Texas, Death Certificates 1903-1982; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

6. Findagrave #19531747.

7. 1860 census of Watters, Floyd, Georgia, Roll M653_121, Page 290, Dwelling 1091, FHL Film 803121, online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

8. 1870 census of Subdivision 128, Walker, Georgia, Roll M593_180, Page 212A, FHL Film 545679; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

9. 1850 census of Chattanooga Valley, Walker, Georgia, Roll 453_85, Page 424A, Image 287; online at Ancestry (accessed 14 Jan 2019).

10. 1860 U. S. census of Wilson, Walker, Georgia, Roll M653_139, Page 706, FHL Film 803139; W. P. Shields with wife Jane A. Shields and two sons: James L. B. Shields (age 3) and Phelps S. Shields (age 1)—they must have changed his name to Wm P. Jr.; online at Ancestry (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

11. 1880 census of La Fayette, Walker, Georgia, Roll 169, Page 372D, E. D. 186; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

12.

12. James L. B. Shields Death Certificate, Georgia Deaths Index 1914-1940, 17 Apr 1938 at LaFayette, Walker, Georgia; names parents (William Shields and Jane Morgan) and birth 17 Dec 1856; online at Ancestry (accessed 14 Jan 2019).

13. Findagrave #97881634, bio w/obituary names surviving Tucker half-sibs.

14. Findagrave #137648112, bio w/obituary names surviving Tucker half-sibs.

15. Findagrave #97881634.

16. Shields/White marriage: Georgia, Mcduffie County marriages 1785-1950, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KXJK-17C, online at Family Search (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

17. Shields/McCline marriage: Georgia, Walker County marriages 1785-1950, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KXVH-C5R, online at Family Search (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

18. 1900 U. S. Census of LaFayette, Walker, Georgia, Page 12, E. D. 94, FHL Film 1240226; online at Ancestry (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

19. Findagrave #59317530, mother listed as Elizabeth Selena Trapp Shields.

20. ‘Shealds/Cullins’ marriage: Georgia, Floyd County marriages 1785-1950, https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KXJ5-5FL, online at FamilySearch (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

21. Shields/Geis marriage: California, County Birth, Marriage, Death Records, Santa Ana, Orange County and Findagrave #59317530.

22. 1900 U. S. census of Justice Precinct 8, Fannin, Texas, Page 10, E. D. 0083, FHL Film 1241634; online at Ancestry (accessed 14 Jan 2019).

23. Findagrave #57036123, nice bio.

24. Cumming/Trapp marriage: Georgia marriages, 1699-1944, online at Ancestry.com (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

25. Shields/Cummings marriage: Georgia marriages 1699-1944, Bartow County; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

26. Findagrave #57036123, nice bio.

27. 1850 U. S. Census of Subdivision 30, Floyd, Georgia, Roll M432_69, Page 135A, Image 276; indexed as ‘Trass’, Lena is 21, sister Mary is 7; online at Ancestry (accessed 15 Jan 2019).

28. 1880 census of Flat Woods, Floyd, Georgia, Roll 146, Page 225A, E. D. 67; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

29. 1900 census of Rome Ward 4, Floyd, Georgia, Page 13, E. D. 121, FHL Film 1240196, ‘Selina E. Shields’; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

30. Widow’s Pension, E. S. Shields of Floyd County: Georgia, Confederate Pension Applications, 1879-1960, Company C of the 40th Georgia Regiment, died near Mobile, Alabama on 19 Aug 1863; Elizabeth was illiterate; online at Ancestry (accessed 2 Dec 2018).

31. 1850 census of West Chickamauga, Walker, Georgia, Roll M432_85, Page 447A, Image 339; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

32. 1860 census of Polk Township, Dade, Missouri, Roll M653_653, Image 63, Dwelling 385 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MHZY-7YZ) online at FamilySearch (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

33. 1840 census of Blount County, Tennessee, Page 80, FHL Film 24542; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

34. Tennessee, Early Tax List Records 1783-1895, Greene County; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

35. Shields/Nelson marriage: Tennessee County marriages, 1790-1950; (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QKH3-N4BJ) online at FamilySearch (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

36. Thomas Nelson will: Tennessee, Wills and Probate Records 1779-2008, Washington County Will Books, #241; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

37. Findagrave #124122667 w/bio.

38. 1850 census of Division 9, Greene, Tennessee, Roll M432_880, Page 264A, Image 533, living with them in 1850 was Jane’s mother Elizabeth Shields, age 83, b. VA; online at Ancestry (accessed 4 Dec 2018).

39. 1860 census of District 6, Greene, Tennessee, Roll M653_1252, Page 251, FHL Film 805252; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

40. Laughner/Shields marriage: Tennessee Marriage Records 17880-2002, Greene County; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Dec 2018).

41. FamilySearch wiki, online at FamilySearch.

42. 1850 census of Subdivision 10, Greene, Tennessee, Roll M432_880, Page 309, Image 624, Dwelling 240 (William Shields family) and Dwelling 237 (Daniel Laughner family); online at Ancestry (accessed 4 Dec 2018).

43. Search: Shields—1830 census of Tennessee; online at Ancestry.com (accessed 4 Dec 2018).

44. Thorndale, William and William Dollarhide Map Guide to the U. S. Federal Censuses, 1790-1920 (Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Publ. Co., 1987).

45. Shields, John A. The Shields Family: particularly the oldest and most numerous branch of that family in our America; an account of the ancestor and descendents [sic] of The ten brothers of Sevier County, in Tennessee (unk: unk , 1917). Nobody has a copy of this book except Allen County Library in Fort Wayne, IN; there is a poor OCD copy on the web (almost unreadable); Google Books offers an eBook for $2.99 (I bought this). This is the major source book for all the refs in the following footnote (#34). I can find none of your proven ancestors in the book. I have ruled out Robert’s son James (of Sevier County, Tennessee) as b’dates and spouse do not fit our data.

46. Some interesting reading here:

(a) Skubinna, Dr. Martin L. ‘Selected History of the Shields Family’ Emmitsburg Area Historical Society; online at www.emmitburg.net/archive_list/articles/history/shields.

(b) Various ‘Shields’ on WikiTree; online at www.wikitree.com/wiki/Shields (particularly William b.1600 and 1728.

(c) ‘Re:William Shields (Ireland)’; online at www.genealogy.com/forum/surnames/topics/shields/3461.

(d) Armstrong, Zella and Janie Preston Collup French ‘Shields Family’ Notable Southern Families, Vol. 1 (Chattanooga, Tennessee: Lookout Publishing Co., 1918) pp. 207-216. (online at Ancestry.com).

47. Tennessee, Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, M395, Film 77; (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JWRY-6V8: 4 December 2014); online at FamilySearch (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

48. Donie Shields Shearin Death Certificate: Tennessee Death Records, Nashville, TN, Roll 2 online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

49. 1880 census of District 11, Hardemon County, Tennessee, Roll 1260, Page 506C, E. D. 060; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

50. U.S. Civil War Soldiers Records and Profiles 1861-1865, Index to Compiled Confederate Military Service Records; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

51. United States General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934, (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QJDP-HBJC: 13 March 2018); pension file from 1880 filed by Lucinda Shields ‘his mother? ’; online at FamilySearch (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

52. Findagrave #24779953.

53. Stogsdill/Shields marriage: Missouri Compiled Marriage Index 1766-1983; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

54. Findagrave #16143805.

55. Shield/Taylor marriage: Arkansas County Marriages Index 1837-1957; online at Ancestry (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

56. 1860 census of Polk, Dade, Missouri, Roll M653_617, Page 59, FHL Film 803617; online at Ancestry (accessed 3 Jan 2019).

57. Shields/Couch marriage: Oregon County, Missouri Marriages Index 1837-1957 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:V28Y-V29: 11 February 2018); online at FamilySearch (accessed 31 Dec 2018).

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