Sunday, June 30, 2013

Martha Ingram Letsinger

The following is an obituary for Martha Ingram Letsinger. Mrs. Letsinger was a descendant of Job Davis.

May 28, 2006
KENEDY - Martha Ingram Letsinger, 88, of Kenedy died Thursday, May 25, 2006.
She was born Feb. 28, 1918, in Kenedy to the late Van S. and Ruth Butler Ingram. She was a rancher and a member of First United Methodist Church.
Survivors: son, Ralph W. Letsinger of Victoria; two grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Preceded in death by: husband, Ralph W. Letsinger Sr.; sister, Elizabeth Sutton; brother, Pleas Van Butler.
Visitation will be 6-8 p.m. tonight at Eckols Funeral Home Chapel.
Graveside services will be 10 a.m. Monday at Kenedy Cemetery, the Rev. Bard Letsinger officiating. Eckols Funeral Home Inc., 830-583-2533.

Memorials: Kenedy Cemetery Association.

Martha I. Letsinger

This is her direct line from Job and Sarah:

Job Davis born 10 April, 1773 Mecklenburg County, Virginia
 married Sarah Elizabeth Winfield Howell b June 1773, Mecklenburg County, Virginia 

    married 1803 in Marlboro County, South Carolina by Ordinary Joel Winfield
    Resided along the banks of the Rocky River, Stanly County, North Carolina, owning land on the Anson side as well. Summered in townhouse on Hay Street in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Members of the 
Methodist Episcopal Church. Job died in 1852. Sarah died in 1856. Both buried at the Job Davis cemetery on Old Davis Road near Cottonville, Stanly County, North Carolina
Henry Davis, son of Job and Sarah, born in April of 1806, served in Civil War, died June 7, 1862
and second wife, Martha Palmer Davis, born June 1, 1815 in Stanly County and died July 16, 1879

Henry and Martha lived along Cloverfork Creek, north of Albemarle, North Carolina.

Henry had two known sons by his first wife, Sarah Kendall, daughter of Reuben Kendall.
He and Martha Palmer, daughter of James Palmer, had 9 known children.

Their 5th child was Martha J Davis, born December 27, 1844 in Stanly County, North Carolina.

Sometime soon after the Civil War, Martha J Davis married Josesph Alexander Ingram, of Anson County, son of Jeremiah Ingram and Mary "Polly" Crump Ingram.

Joseph A Ingram was a member of the PeeDee Wildcats. The following link traces the movements of this prestigious group.

Story of the PeeDee Wildcats

Mentioned in the article on the PeeDee Wildcats is the death of John P Winfield, a cousin of Martha J Davis. John Peter Winfield was the son of Peter Winfield and Mary Goldston Winfield. His father died about 1835 and his mother remarried a Rev. Barber. Peter was a middle son of Edward Winfield, brother of Sarah Winfield Davis, Henry's mother.

                                        Jeremiah's application for Conferderate Service Pension

                                 Request for records by daughter Josephine Ingram Lauterbach

                  Letter from the Mayor of Mt Gilead, North Carolina testifying to the fact of Joseph A. Ingrams
and his brother W. S. Ingram's service in the Civil War as Confederate Soldiers and members of the PeeDee Wildcats.

Joseph Alexander Ingram was born in Cedar Hill, Anson County, North Carolina. By the time he was in his early teens, his family had moved to the bustling town of Wadesboro, County Seat of Anson. He returned to North Carolina from Virginia in 1865. His marriage to Martha J. Davis took place shortly afterwards.

In his 1929 statement applying for his pension, he stated that he had lived in Texas for 60 years. That would put the young families arrival there at 1869.

Joseph A. Ingram and Martha Davis Ingram had 6 children:

1) Nannie Stephen Ingram b Jul 3, 1867 d April 2, 1946 Married Howell Blanton

2) William Henry Ingram b Nov 1869 d Nov 21 1902 m Annie Elizabeth Parker

3) John Alexander Ingram b Jul 1870 d Nov 22 1952 m Tennie H Owen

4) Van Swearingen Ingram b Nov 20 1874 d Jan 3 1921 m  Ruth Ellen Butler

5) Josephine E "Jodie" Ingram b Nov 1880 d 1966 Louisiana m Frederick A. Lauderbach, Sr.

6) Wincie T Ingram b Jul 7, 1875 d Jan 31, 1874 m Thomas Benton Greenwood.

The youngest son of Joseph A. and Martha Davis Ingram was Van Swearingen Ingram. He carried on his shoulders the name of a thick Southern Stanly County, NC family, the Swearingen's, who had heavily married into the enormous Hudson family along Ugly Creek, a long trail of tributary water that poured soon into the Rocky. Somewhere in his mother or father's family tree, among the Crumps, Easley's and Ingrams perhaps was a Swearingen.

The death certificate of Van Swearingen Ingram indicates that he was a Planter and a Rancher involved in the Merchantile industry. Van Swearingen Ingram died at the relatively young age of 46 of Tuberculosis.

Van S. Ingram selected a bride from one of the top ranching families of Karnes County, the Butlers.
Butler Family Mansion in ruins, Karnes County, Texas
Ruth Ellen Butler was the daughter of Pleasant Burnell Butler and Sarah Jane Elizabeth Ammons. The following link is to memories of Cattleman and Gentleman, P. B. Butler.

Van S. Ingram and Ruth Butler Ingram became the parents of 3 children, two daughters, Elizabeth and Martha and one son named Pleas Van Ingram, for his father Van and his grandfather, Pleas Butler.

Pleas Ingram lived a shorter life than his father. He died of Tuberculosis of the throat at the age of 31 and had not yet married.

Daughter Elizabeth would marry a member of another reknown Karnes County family, Oklahoma Territory Sutton, a farmer and fiddler.

The Sutton-Taylor feud was so reknowned, they wrote a book about it.

Front Cover

So Van Ingram and his children were thoroughly embedded in the ranching and wild western lifestyle of turn-of-the-century Texas.

The youngest daughter of Van and Ruth was one of several granddaughters named for Martha Davis Ingram.

Martha Davis Ingram II was born on Feb 18, 1918, ten years after her sister Elizabeth and 13 years after her brother Pleas.
Karnes County TX Courthouse / Helena School 1900s
First Karnes County Courthouse, located in Helena and also used as a school.

The Ingram girls were strong, independent ranchers daughters. Both married later than normal for the times.
Elizabeth married at age 46 and had no children of her own, but had step-children.

Martha Davis Ingram married Ralph William Letsinger, Sr. on an Army base in Greenville, South Carolina. She was 29.

Ingram, Martha DavisLetsinger, Ralph William07/17/1943

Ralph William Letsinger was born in 1918 into a typical Texas family, son of John William and Mary Eliza Telford Letsinger of Lubbock, Texas. He enlisted in the Army on January 19, 1942 and after being released on March 6, 1943, he re-upped the next day on March 7, 1943. A few months later on July 17, 1943, he would marry Martha Davis Ingram at Donaldson Air Force Base in Greenville County, SC. 

He was released from service on November 8, 1945.

Ralph and Martha would settle in her hometown of Kenedy, Texas. They would continue in the Ingram family business of ranching and farming. A subsidy list names their farm business as Escondido Creek, Ltd. 


Ralph and Martha would have one son, Ralph William Letsinger, Jr. born a year after their marriage. 

Ralph Jr. would grow up on the ranch and enter into the Farm Insurance industry, eventually founding his own business, B. F. Ram Inc. of Victoria, Texas, a Tire Manufacturing Company. He and his wife Carol Bard Letsinger would have 2 sons, the Rev. Bard Ingram Letsinger and Brek William Letsinger, who would follow Ralph into the family business of B. F. Ram, Inc. 

Martha Davis Ingram Letsinger died on May 25, 2006, survived by her son Ralph and his wife, his two sons and 4 great-grandchildren. 

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Oklahoma Territory Sutton, Fiddler ExtraOrdinaire

Oklahoma Territory Sutton, or O. T. was the husband of a descendant of Job Davis, Elizabeth Ingram. The following is his obituary:

O.T. Sutton
Funeral services were held on Wednesday, September 28, 1988 at Eckols Chapel in Kenedy for O.T. Sutton. The Rev. W.R. Menke Nad Robert L. Wimpee officiated. Interment was in the City Cemetery.
Pallbearers were Jimmy Sutton, Roxie Robinson, Ralph Sutton, Glen Sutton, Mark David and Douglas Wood. Arrangements were by Eckols Funeral Home of Kenedy.
O.T. was born in Sayre, Oklahoma on April 21, 1902 to LaFayette Fate and Abida Hawkins Walton Sutton and died on September 26, 1988 in Kenedy. He was 86 years, 5 months and 5 days of age.
O.T. had lived in Kenedy since 1954. He was married to Elizabeth Ingram on September 21, 1954 in Kerrville, Texas. He was a retired gauger and welder. He was active in Lone Star Fiddler Association, Old Time Fiddler Association, and United Fiddlers.
Survivors include his wife, Elizabeth Sutton of Kenedy; two sons, Russell W. Sutton of Brazoria, and Dell Sutton of Seguin; a sister, Oma Curl of Jourdanton; 6 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents, 12 brothers and sisters, a wife, Ruby Sutton and a daughter, Virginia Reed Sutton. 
  LaFayatte Fatie Sutton (1861 - 1948)
  Abida Hawkins Walton Sutton (1862 - 1956)

  Elizabeth Ingram Sutton (1908 - 1993)
  Ruby Reed Sutton (1901 - 1954)*

Whomever thinks that Genealogy is boring was not an apple that fell off the Davis tree. In researching the descendants of Job Davis, I have came across a wide-range of characters, and possibly none more colorful or charismatic than Mr. O. T. Sutton. Beginning with his name. 

Every family tree is full of stayers and goers. America was founded by "Goers", persons with enough derring-do, desperation or hope to make the long journey from whatever their country of origin over to a new and unknown land. Even those sent against their own will, whether children kidnapped and sold off the streets of London, poor Irish, convicts, or enslaved Africans, the survivors of which were the strong, the hopeful, the adventurous. The ones who had enough inner continence to persevere, to believe in a better future, the will to survive, are the ones today's Americans are descended from.

Their children were also born divided between those who were divided between those who were satisfied right where they were....the conservatives, and the adventurers: those who dreamed of something bigger, better, different, more exciting, than where they were. And it was that group who tamed the wild west and migrated off the east coast to the lands beyond. 

One trait I've noticed about our Western cousins were the unique and descriptive names they gave their children. Place names were very common. I've came across many girls named Missouri, or Florida, or Louisiana or Texie or Texanna. But "O. T. Sutton" was the only fella named Oklahoma Territory I've ever came across. 

His unique moniker also fit his personality well. He was such a warm person, his descendants decided to convey this message on his tombstone. 

"A Man Who Never Met A Stranger", what better statement could anyone ask to leave this world with?

Job Davis of Mecklenburg County, Virginia and Stanly County, NC, had a son named Henry. 

Henry and his second wife Martha Palmer Davis had a daughter named Martha J. Davis. 

Martha J. Davis and her husband Joseph Alexander Ingram migrated to Kenedy, Texas and had a son named Van Swearingen Ingram. 

Van Swearingen Ingram married a Texas born girl of Mississippi born parents named Ruth Ellen Butler. They had a daughter named Elizabeth Ingram.

Elizabeth Ingram married O. T. Sutton. 

Old Bottle

Oklahoma Territory Sutton, born to be a character, was born on April 21, 1902 in Beckham County, Oklahoma. He was the son of Lafayette "Fatie" Sutton and his wife Abida Hawkins Walton Sutton.

Fate and Abida Sutton

An 1892 Interview with "Fount" Sutton, grandfather of O. T. and father of Lafayette Sutton, told of how he left Texas with his family when he had heard of the free grassland in Oklahoma. He brought a wife, 6 children and 40 head of cattle with him. He made the run, planted his stake and was the first man with a family on Timber Creek. They lived from a tent and wagon until he was able to build a dugout. Two more children were born on the claim until 1898, when he would bury his wife, with another infant, in the first factory made casket in the town cemetery. His children were educated in a dugout school. 

Fate, one of the older children, would marry one of a set of twins, Abida Walton, and have 8 children. Okalahoma Territory would be the youngest son, and 7th child. 

By 1910, Fate and Abida had moved their now complete family to Chaves County, New Mexico, were he farmed.
Fate and Abida with their greyhounds.

1920 would find the family on the move again and coming full circle from Founts trip from Oklahoma, back into Texas.

In 1921, in Pleasantville, Atacosta County, Texas, O. T. would marry a Texas girl and start a family of his own. The couple would have three children together, Russel Warren in 1923, Virginia Louise in 1925, and Rutherford Dale in 1928. Sadly, young Virginia would die of bronchial pneumonia at the age of 18.

O. T. would loose his first wife, Ruby, to cancer in  February, 1954. The family had settled in Bee, Texas.
Later that same year on September 21, 1954, he married Elizabeth Ingram. 
Location of Kenedy, Texas. The Devil's Box available for purchase here!

O. T. Sutton was known as a kind-hearted, larger-than-life and very talented man. Everyone who met him instantly took to this old-time Western musician. Oklahoma Territory would pass away in 1988 at the age of 86 and Elizabeth Ingram Sutton would pass away in 1993 at the age of 85.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Sixth Descendant

My second grandson arrived yesterday, June 25, at about 7:45 pm. His name is Tach Owen and he came in weighing 7lbs 12 oz and 22 1/4 inches long.

He is my 6th descendant as his father, my firstborn, was the first, followed by a brother and two sisters. My oldest daughter's son Eli was number 5 and now, 4 years later, Tach is the sixth.

He weighed approximately the same as his Dad and aunts and uncle, as they ranged from 7 lb 10 oz to 7 lb 13 oz. He is longer than any of them. He should grow to be a tall man. His paternal grandfather was 6 foot 2 and his maternal grandfather is 6 foot 3. I am told that his maternal great-grandfather, Settle Burris, was 6 foot 6 inches tall, so he gets it honest.

He is a cousin to the many hundreds of people in Stanly County and beyond who are descended from the prodigious Revolutionary War Soldier, Solomon Burris.

He is also a descendant of Job Davis, for whom this blog is named, and of noted Trapper and trader "Cherokee Jack Johnson" who migrated from Tennessee to Florida, making Tach 1/64 Cherokee as Cherokee Jack was half, his daughter Mittie, one quarter, his grandson one eighth, my first husband 1/16 and my son 1/32nd.

Happy Birthday Tach. Your Nanny loves immensely.

Monday, June 24, 2013

The Mystery of Eliza Ann Davis

Looking through the early deeds of Stanly County, I came across this interesting document:

This document was interesting in many ways. I knew that "Eleazer Jane" had to be a member of our set of 'Davis's' due to the witness of Edward Winfield Davis. Also, John Lee and other members of his family were closely involved with our Davis's. Edward Winfield, uncle of E. W. Davis, had married Susanna Lee and James M. Davis, brother of E.W., had married Rowena Lee.

This document was a transfer of a 7 year old girl from the possession of John Lee to that of Eliza Jane Davis. (Eleazer was likely how her name was pronounced in the old Southern syncopation). The fee involved was $1.00. A dollar was, even in 1845, a nominal fee, meaning, the transaction was more of a gift, and that the dollar involved was merely nominal, as in when one family member sells a house, or car, for $1.00, just to show a change of hands with the money and property. The 'property' in this case was a little girl named Clementine.

I have already done a post on Clementine Barringer who was found living with great, great grandfather H. H. "Hawk" Davis in 1880 with her 3 young daughters. Clementine Barringer was born a slave. The age given for Clementine in 1880 was 35, meaning she was born around 1845. In the document, the child is 7. The ages in census records can be far off, as census takers guessed an age, or was speaking to an individual who guessed an age. Could Clementine actually have been several years older than 35 in 1880? Could she have been the Clementine involved in this document? I've found that she had married a James Barringer. Could this have been her beginning with the involvement with the Davis family? Clementine "Tiny" Barringer is buried in the Old Davis cemetery on Old Davis Road in southern Stanly County, along with Job and Sarah and other members of the Davis family.
Horton Hampton "Haut" Davis

But who was Eliza Jane, exactly. I thought the best place to look would be the branch who had married a Lee, the family of James "Jim" Davis, second born son of Job.

Jim and Rowena had 13 children. Their oldest daughter was Elizabeth Jane. She was born July 12, 1829. Her first husband was Steven Crump, Jr. The Davis girls were much involved with the Crump family. Elizabeth's cousin Sarah "Sallie" Davis would marry Steven's brother, Woodson Crump and Sallie's younger sister, Margaret Victoria Davis, would marry Woodson's son William D Crump, a stepson to her sister.

Elizabeth Jane and Steven Crump, Jr. would have only one daughter, Charlotte Sophronia Crump and the Elizabeth would marry a widower, Ephraim Mauney, brother-in-law of her younger sister, Wincy Catherine Davis, or "W. C."  She and Ephraim Mauney would have one daughter, Tallulah. They would move to Gold Hill, just up the road a short distance from Stanly County in southern Rowan. Gold Hill was a gold mining community.

But was Elizabeth Jane Davis and Eliza Jane Davis, the same?

Then I found this history of the Crump family.

) (Source: 1850 U S Census NC, Stanley
County.) was born Abt. 1823 in North Carolina, and died Bef. 1858 in North Carolina. He married ELIZA JANE
DAVIS (Source: 1850 U S Census NC, Stanley County.) Abt. 1849 in Stanley County, NC, daughter of JAMES
DAVIS and ROWENE. She was born 12 Jul 1829 in North Carolina, and died 01 Jan 1880.
Stephen, Jr. is in the household of his uncle James Crump just two doors away from his father, Stephen in the
1850 Stanley County census. ELC 4/2004

 CRUMP (Source: 1850 U S Census NC, Stanley County.), b. May 1850.

The Crump family history has Elizabeth as "Eliza Jane" and not Elizabeth. This is most likely what she was known by. As others with this name were not born or not old enough in 1845 to have recieved such a gift, this has to be the case. in 1845, Eliza Jane herself was only 16 years old. Clementine was possibly a 'coming of age gift' from John Lee.

The following is the inscription on the headstone of Eliza Jane:
The pain of life is past.
warefare now is o'er
For God & sun & song
Triumphing in Paradice.
wife of
Daughter of J & R Davis
Died Jan 1, 1880,
50 yrs. 5 mos. & 19 dys.

Ther e is a simple Footstone bearing the initials E.J.M.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

A Great American Lady: Frances E. Goff

Frances E. Goff was one of Job's Children. The following is the train of descent:

Job Davis (1773-1852) and Sarah Winfield Davis (1773-1856) both born in Mecklenburg County, Virginia and died in Stanly County, North Carolina.

Henry Davis (1806-1862) and Martha Palmer Davis (1815-1877) Stanly County, North Carolina. 

Martha J. Davis Ingram (Dec 27 1844 Stanly County, North Carolina to March 20, 1885 Rusk County, Texas and Joseph Alexander Ingram (1846 Anson County, North Carolina to January 3, 1933, Kenedy, Karnes County, Texas).

William Henry Ingram (Nov 1869 to 1910 Kenedy, Karnes, Texas) and Annie Elizabeth Parker Ingram (1874 - November 19 1954, Karnes County, Texas)
Annie E. Ingram

Henry Ingram and Annie Parker were married in 1893. They had 2 children before Henry passed away in 1902. They may have had 3. An infant grave for a Wincy Ingram, born in 1901 and died in 1902 is in the Kenedy Cemetery in Kenedy, Karnes, Texas along with Henry, his father Joseph A. Ingram and other members of the Ingram family. She may have been his daughter. 
Joseph A. Ingram

William Henry Ingram, Jr. was born May 18, 1894 in Karnes County and died Oct 12 1942. He married Hazel David Alexander and had one daughter, Madelyn, born in 1926.

Grace Elizabeth Ingram was born February 12, 1898 in Karnes County, Texas. She also had one daughter, Frances Elizabeth Goff. 
Grace Ingram
[Grace Ingham] 
Birth Date:Feb 1896
Home in 1900:Justice Precinct 4, Karnes, Texas
Relation to Head of House:Daughter
Marital Status:Single
Father's Name:William H Ingram
Father's Birthplace:Texas
Mother's Name:Annie E Ingram
Mother's Birthplace:Texas
Occupation:View on Image
Neighbors:View others on page
Household Members:
William H Ingram30
Annie E Ingram26
William H Ingram6
Grace Ingram4
Sarah H Parker18

Gracie Ingram
Age in 1910:14
Birth Year:abt 1896
Home in 1910:Kenedy, Karnes, Texas
Relation to Head of House:Daughter
Marital Status:Single
Parent's Name:Annie Ingram
Father's Birthplace:Texas
Mother's Birthplace:Texas
Neighbors:View others on page
Household Members:
Annie Ingram34
Willie Ingram16
Gracie Ingram14
Gracie is shown with both parents, brother Henry and Aunt Sarah in 1900. In 1910, Annie is a single parent. 

Grace married Alfred T. Goff, sometime before 1917 and was divorced from him by 1920, and living back with her mother and brother, with her young daughter, Francis. 

Grace Ingram
[Grace Sageman] 
Birth Year:abt 1897
Home in 1920:Kenedy, Karnes, Texas
Relation to Head of House:Daughter
Marital Status:Divorced
Parent's Name:Annie E Ingram
Father's Birthplace:North Carolina
Mother's Birthplace:Texas
Able to Read:Yes
Able to Write:Yes
Neighbors:View others on page
Household Members:
Annie E Ingram45
Willie H Ingram25
Grace Ingram23
Francis Goff3
Sometime, shortly afterward, Grace married Graddis Grover Stripling. She passed away on June 28, 1929 at the age of 31.

Alfred T Goff would go on to marry Elizabeth Nave in 1923. He and his second wife would live in San Antonio, Texas. City Directories had him listed as an agent at the Magnolia Pet Company and later as a Traffic Manager. The 1940 census has Alfred and his wife Elizabeth living alone, and his occupation as Retail Sales Manager. 

Alfred lived a long life, and passed away in 1971 at the age of 78 . He was divorced again by then, and the reason became clear in the papers of his daughter. 

Alfred Goff
Death Date:21 Apr 1971
Death County:Bexar
Marital Status:Separ/divorced (Divorced)
Frances Goff
[Frances Gaff] 
Birth Year:abt 1917
Home in 1930:Kenedy, Karnes, Texas
View Map
Marital Status:Single
Relation to Head of House:Granddaughter
Father's Birthplace:Texas
Mother's Birthplace:Texas


Military service:

Rent/home value:

Age at first marriage:

Parents' birthplace:
Neighbors:View others on page
Household Members:
Annie Ingram56
Frances Goff13
Charles Crouch45
But what about young Frances. In 1930, she was living with her maternal grandmother, Annie. Her mother had died the previous year. 
Frances Goff
Estimated Birth Year:abt 1917
Marital Status:Single
Relation to Head of House:Granddaughter
Home in 1940:San Antonio, Bexar, Texas
View Map
Street:Rigsby Avenue
House Number:720
Inferred Residence in 1935:Kenedy, Kansas, Texas
Residence in 1935:Kenedy, Kansas, Texas
Resident on farm in 1935:No
Sheet Number:6B
Occupation:Private Secretary
Attended School or College:No
Highest Grade Completed:High School, 4th year
Hours Worked Week Prior to Census:44
Class of Worker:Wage or salary worker in private work
Weeks Worked in 1939:44
Income Other Sources:No
Neighbors:View others on page
Household Members:
P R Goff73
Ida Goff69
Frances Goff23
By 1940, Frances is residing with her paternal grandparents and is working as a private secretary for an attorney. And shortly after, she joined the Armed Services, as a stenographer. WWII had began and this outstanding young lady went to serve. 

Frances E Goff
Birth Year:1916
Race:White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country:Texas
State of Residence:Texas
County or City:Tarrant
Enlistment Date:22 Jun 1944
Enlistment State:Texas
Enlistment City:Camp Swift Bastrop
Branch:Womens Army Corps
Branch Code:Womens Army Corps
Grade Code:Private
Term of Enlistment:Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component:Womens Army Corps
Education:1 year of college
Civil Occupation:Stenographers and typists
Marital Status:Single, without dependents

On June 22, 1944, Frances Goff enlisted in the Women's Army Corps (WAC) as a private... By early September 1944, she was assigned to the WAC detachment at the Fifth Ferrying Group of the Air Transport Command at Love Field in Dallas... Her duties included a brief stint in Washington, D.C. at the headquarters of the Transport Command in the months before she left the military... Her discharge from the WACs was dated July 2, 1946... For the patriotic Goff, her years in the Army Air Corps were some of the most rewarding of her life. (From Texas, Her Texas: The Life and Times of Frances Goff by Nancy Beck Young adn Lewis L. Gould)

Frances Elizabeth Goff served her country in more ways than one. She took on 3 careers during her lifetime and made great strides in each one. She had a book written about her, 
Texas, Her Texas: The Life and Times of Frances Goff dust jacket
The Life and Times of Frances Goff
By Nancy Beck Young and Lewis L. Gould
Forward by Ann Richards
Barker Texas History Center Series, no. 6
Don E. Carleton, editor
Texas State Historical Association
240 pages, 6 x 9 inches
75 illustrations, index
ISBN 0-87611-159-2, cloth

Texas, Her Texas is the fascinating story of Frances Goff and her three remarkable careers: in Texas government as legislative aide and state budget director; at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center; and as director of the Bluebonnet Girls State Program of the American Legion Auxilliary. Based on Goff’s personal papers and interviews with those who knew her, the book provides inside glimpses of such leaders in state politics as Coke Stevenson, Allan Shivers, and Ann Richards. The fast-paced narrative also describes the founding and early years of M. D. Anderson and Goff’s key role as an aide to Dr. R. Lee Clark in building this world-renowned cancer treatment facility.
At the core of the book is the Bluebonnet Girls State Program, an annual citizenship session for young Texas women that Goff directed for four decades. More than twenty-thousand high school girls experienced Goff’s charismatic leadership and took to heart her message of public service and involvement. Texas, Her Texas makes a major contribution to a better understanding of how this voluntary women’s group is shaping present-day Texas.
Frances Goff knew the movers and shakers of Texas and became one herself. Goff’s biography will inspire those who knew her and those who are learning about her for the first time. She was, says Ann Richards, a "grand lioness of a woman."
Nancy Beck Young is a professor of history at the University of Houston.
Lewis L. Gould is the Eugene C. Barker Centennial Professor Emeritus in American History at the University of Texas at Austin.
She is listed in the Texas Hall of Fame:

What in the life of this great-granddaughter of Stanly County Justice and rogue Methodist, Henry Davis, brought about this quest for public service and led from a child of divorce, during the early part of the twentieth century, when divorce was rare and shameful, this girl who was raised by her various grandparents and became a member of  The Greatest Generation, to join the military at a time when women were kept out of most areas, and to become the honored friend of polictical movers and shakers, to have a book written about her, and foundations established in her name?

Frances graduated from the San Antonio business college in 1937. This was just before she was shown in the 1940 census living with her paternal grandparents, Percy Robert Goff, who was born in England, and his wife Ida Riedel, a Texas native. She was shown as being a secretery for an attorney. Records show that before joining the Service, where she obtained the rank of Sergeant Major, she had worked in the Texas House of Representatives, the State Senate, the Office of the Governor and also on the Texas Railroad Commission. 

Then came the World War II. As a young woman with a rising career, she left all of that behind and served for two years, between 1944 and 1946. She used her office skills for the Commander of Love Field in Dallas, Texas and also worked in Washington, DC in the Air Transport Command HeadQuarters. 

After the war, she went back to work for the Governors Office. At the suggestion of then Governor Allan Shivers, she changed careers and became an Assistant to Dr. R. Lee Clark at the Univeristy of Texas. Dr. Clark was the President and Director of Special Projects for Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, one the foremost centers for cancer research at the time. 

Frances was over planning, development and fundraising. In such a capacity, she encountered many families for whom hope was slim and faith was strong. A year after beginning this career, she took on a lifelong volunteer activity. 

The American Legion Auxiliary was established in 1919 to administer many volunteer programs and aid the American Legion. It's the world's largest women's volunteer organization. 

The Bluebonnet Girls is a program of the American Legion Auxiliary. From 1952 to 1994, Frances was the director of this program. She planned and promoted the "Model Citizenship Program" for the Bluebonnet Girls State. 

Among the honors bestowed upon Frances were the Ameican Legion National Commendation Award, she was inducted into the Texas Hall of Fame for outstanding volunteerism, the Valley Forge Freedom Foundation Award, a scholarship was established in her name at the University of Texas in Austin. Also, 
Governor Ann Richards named her as State Chair of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial Foundation Inc. 

A Collection of her papers are stored at the Brisco Center for American History at the University of Texas at Austin. 

A Guide to the Frances Goff Papers, 1914-1994

These papers are extensive. While they are informative and have mention of many of the political players of her day, they also give a glimpse into the personal life of this incredible lady, that the book does not. 

The following is the Biographical prequel to the collection. 

Frances Goff of Kenedy, Texas, began her career in 1937 as secretary to a Texas state legislator, became secretary to Governor W. Lee O'Daniel after his re-election in 1940, worked for the House Appropriations Committee in 1941, and was appointed the first personnel director of the Texas Railroad Commission. In 1944 she enlisted in the United States Army Air Corps, rising to the rank of sergeant major before her release and return to Austin in 1946, when she was named State Budget Director and assisted in writing the bill creating the Legislative Budget Board. In 1951 she was hired by Dr. R. Lee Clark, director of the newly-created M. D. Anderson Hospital and Tumor Institute in Houston as his assistant and soon became director of special projects, overseeing the hospital's construction and supervising every expansion from 1951-1978. During the same period Goff became involved with the American Legion Auxiliary's education program, Texas Bluebonnet Girls' State and became the program's director in 1952. She retired from M. D. Anderson in 1982 and died in 1994.

Among the more interesting parts of the papers are letters written to and from Robert Barnnett, wherein she takes exception to his inquiring of her whereabouts and also some revealing information and interesting closings to the letters. 

Her personal documents include a copy of her parents October, 1915 marriage license, with her July 1916 birth certificate, personal letters from a "Bill", a copy of an inspiring speech that her mother Grace gave at Frances's High School graduation, a 1924 letter from Frances to her mother Grace, and stepfather, G. G. Stripling, where she would have been only 8 years old, childhood letters from Frances to mother Grace, and grandmother Annie, whom she called "Big Momma" and from Grace to Annie. 

Box 2 contains, among other things, letters written between Frances and her grandmother Annie after the death of Grace in 1929, and a telegram of condolence from her father. There is also the funeral program of her uncle William Henry Ingram, Jr. in  1943. One letter is described as "a wonderfully vivid account of why Frances preferred to live in Center over Kenedy", 

There are scrapbook of her war days and of friends in the American Legion. 

Box 3 is of particular interest. While there are records of the estate of her father, who passed away in 1971, and other business items of her father, one description was of particular interest. 

Material, chronologically ordered, that pertains to property held by A.T. Goff and his Mr. G. Garcia; Mr. Goff's share of this property passed to Frances upon his death in 1971; this folder also contains Mr. Goff's health insurance records; land deeds for property Mr. Goff owned in Kenedy, as well as correspondence between lawyers and interested persons, 1928-1940.

Alfred Thomas Goff had married Gracie Elizabeth Ingram in October of 1915. They had divorced shortly aferward, by 1920, both are listed as divorced. 
Alfred T Goff
Birth Year:abt 1894
Home in 1920:Alice, Jim Wells, Texas
Relation to Head of House:Boarder
Marital Status:Divorced
Father's Birthplace:England
Mother's Birthplace:Texas
Able to Read:Yes
Able to Write:Yes
Neighbors:View others on page
Household Members:
Parks Childress52
Lottie Childress38
Schuman Childress4
[4 11/12] 
John East35
Alfred T Goff26
J P Murphy28
Alfred is listed as age 26 and working as a clerk at a Railroad Office. 

He married Elizabeth Nave in 1923 at the age of 30. There would be no children. Apparently, Alfreds "Mr. Garcia" held a close personal spot in Alfred's life and may be the reason for his brief marriages and lack of other children. The era in which Alfred Goff lived in was far less than accepting. 

Frances, despite never marrying, had many relationships over the years and her correspondence collection verifies that. She was beloved. Most of her records have to do the the American Legion and the girls in her program. 

One such folder is described as "

12. Loose leaf ring binder entitled, "A Tribute to Miss Goff." Material includes: newspaper tributes; short biographies, listing Frances's many accomplishments; 1986 material pertaining to Frances's nomination to the Texas Women's Hall of Fame, with many letters of recommend- ations, including one from Ann Richards; 1985 letters of recommendation for Frances to be chosen for a Freedoms Foundation Award; pictures of Frances in action; a copy of Goff's Prayer; a copy of Frances's honorable discharge from the U.S. Army, 1946; 1985 letter from Governor Mark White, recommending Frances for Freedoms Foundation Award; similar letters (often very revealing) from graduates of Girls State; 1985 letter of recommendation from Charles A. LeMaistre, President of The University of Texas System Cancer Center; copy of Toby Lynn Crockett's tribute to Frances, a ninth grade essay entitled "A Living Texas Woman I Admire;" undated tribute to Frances Goff, written by Girls State Graduate Linda Roper Sease, who named her daughter after Frances; photos of Frances in action at Girls State; copies of the Girls State Daily Program; brown envelope containing many of the letters and materials just described.

When Frances died in 1994, her funeral was attended by many of the persons whose lives she touched. What a great lady and proud descendant of Job Davis.