Monday, January 20, 2014

Who was NOT the 'right' Temperance Russell

When looking for a lady named Temperance or "Tempy" Russell in a certain limited location during the sparse population of the Civil War era, you would think it would not be that difficult when finding a person of that name, but in the 1800's of the Yadkin River Valley and Uwharrie Mountain area of North Carolina, there were a great number of Tempie Russell's, apparently, within two or three generations of them. So many, in fact, it is very very likely that an older ancestress, could be to blame, a Matriarchal Tempy whom multiple grand-daughters and great-grand-daughters were named for.

Researchers who have the Temperance Russell, who lived in Albemarle and had a son named John who married Sallie Carter, and a son named William Henry, who moved to Georgia, have her linked to two other Tempie's that she could not have possibly been. I will attempt in this post, to weed out the other Tempies, to show who she could not have possibly been, in hopes that might lead us to where she may have actually came from. It takes a little look into the Russell family tree.

Names like Mary and Martha were pretty insignificant during the 1800's as far as every family had one, but Tempy, Tempie or Temperance, the Quaker origined-name it sprang from, was less popular, but well-represented among the Russell's and families related to the Russells.

For instance:
1) Tempie Caroline Russell. This Tempie was born December 29, 1863 and died August 11, 1941. She was the daughter of Emmanuel Russell and Elizabeth Rowland Hearne Russell. Her father Emmanuel was one of the Montgomery County Russell's. Seems the Russell's pretty much migrated to Stanly from the Montgomery side of the river and into surrounding counties like Randolph as well.  This Tempie married Leonard Franklin Russell, son of Newton John Russell and Ruthie Jane Hearne. Repetition in surnames. Things that make you go hmmm. Leonard Franklin Russell was the son of John Russell and  Alice Elizabeth Cranford and the grandson of Leonard and Ann Russell and Nathan Christopher "Kidd" Cranford and his wife Sarah Elizabeth Lackey Coggins. These all had Montgomery County origins and these families were all involved in early mining operations. Ruthie Jane Hearne was the daughter of William Hearne and Rutha Skein. Rowan County citizens who had relocated to Montgomery.

2) There was a Temperance Russell , daughter of  Eli H. Russell and his wife Elizabeth. She seems to disappear, or does she? They have her birthdate as around 1837 and her death as November 11, 1850.

3) There was a Temperance Louisa Russell, daughter of David Manson Russell and Elizabeth Brown of Haywood County, NC, who married Edward Clayton Kenyon. These Russells seem to have a common origin with our Montgomery County Russell's.

4) There was Temperance Caroline Hearne Russell, born May 12, 1843 and married to Leonard Whitson Russell. Again, another intermarriage between the Russell and Hearne families. This was probably who the younger Tempie Caroline was named after. This Tempie was the daughter of  Joel Hearne and Nancy Harris Hearne. She also had a son named Eli. Leonard Whitson Russell was the son of Leonard Russell and Polly Brewer. He floated around between Randolph, Montgomery and Stanly Counties, and Tempie was his second wife.

5) Temperance Adeline Clodfelter Russell, born Feb. 13, 1854  wife of  Lemuel Russell and daughter of  Phillip (or Philemon) Clodfelter and Rachel Sanders.

6) In Davidson County, there was a Temperance Corneliuson Russell, who married John Q. Russell. She was born in 1874.

7) There was a Tempie Davis Russell b 1884 who married Cicero Artie Russell, son of Julian Russell and Adeline Bean. This family lived in the southern part of Davidson County, near Denton, not far from the Montgomery County and Randolph County borders.

The next two are a little more interesting, in reference.

8) There was a Temperance Cranford Russell who married Brantley R Russell. She was born in 1829 and died in 1901, daughter of Claiborne Crandford and Martha Patsy Russell, Patsy being daughter of Leonard and Ann Russell, mentioned above. Her husband Brantley R. Russell, b 1830 in Randolph County and died in 1903 in Montgomery County, was the son of Ransom Russell and Elizabeth Jones and and the grandson of Capt. John Russell and Elizabeth Hobbs. This Brantley Russell not to be confused with William Brantley Russell, circa 1855, son of Elias Russell and Elizabeth Betsy Bean Russell.
Miners from the Coggins Mine in Montgomery County, NC
9) Now, this next Tempy Russell is the one that many people seem to connect our Albemarle seamstress and mother of William Henry and John Russell to. Tempy Russell, born about 1803.
ame:Tempy Russell
Birth Year:abt 1803
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1850:Montgomery, North Carolina
Family Number:791
Household Members:
Davis Russell50
Tempy Russell47
Hillary Russell22
Joel Russell19
Elisha Russell13
Williams Russell12
John H Russell6
Ann Russell86
She also had a son named John and a son named William, who would have been in at least a 5 year range of William Henry and John A Russell. She was married to Davis Russell, who was not the only Davis Russell around either, by the way. The above census shows that she was also the mother of a Joel, Hillary and Elisha, and they had an elderly Ann living with them. This family lived in the El Dorado community of Montgomery County. The problem is, in 1860, when our Tempy is solidly in Albemarle with 13 year old John, Tempie, wife of Davis (who the transcriber had wrong as David), is home in Montgomery with her husband, her John and her William and her Elisha.

Name:Tempy Russell
Age in 1860:58
Birth Year:abt 1802
Home in 1860:Fork, Montgomery, North Carolina
Value of real estate:View Image
Household Members:
David Russell60
Tempy Russell58
William Russell20
Elisha Russell22
John H Russell16
Davis was the son of Gabriel Russell and Candis (perhaps last name Bell, this is unverified). His wife Tempie was born a Russell. Her father was Leonard Russell, mentioned above several times.

The following is the will of Leonard Russell, mentioning Tempie.
No Carolina, Montgomery county, In Equity, Fall Term 1853

To the honorable, the Judge of the Court of Equity of said County, the Bill of complaint of Hillory Russell, John Russell, Davis Russell & wife Tempe, Clavy Cranford & wife Patsey, John Wasinger & wife Polly against Curtis Russell, John D. Wasinger, Curtis Wasinger, Wm. J. Howell & wife Letitia, Eliza J. Wasinger and David W. Wasinger, the last two named are infants of Tender years (see note 1 below), under the age of twenty one, humbly complaining, yours orators & oratrices shew unto your Honor that Leonard Russell late (already dead) of Montgomery county, by his last will & testament, which was duly executed to pass both Real & personal Estate, devised among other things, that a certain tract of land hereinafter described, after the death of his wife Anna, should be equally divided among his children. They shew unto your Honor, that said last will & testament was duly admitted to probate at (no date, see note 2 below) Term of the Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions of Montgomery County. The said Anna, wife of testator survived him and departed this life in (no date of the month) June AD 1853. Your orators and oratrices further complaining, shew unto your Honor that Testator left him surviving the following children, Hillory Russell, John Russell, Tempe Russell, who intermarried with Davis Russell, Patsey who intermarried with Clavy Cranford, Polly who intermarried John Wasinger and Elizabeth who intermarried with David Wasinger, and Curtis Russell, each of whom were entitled to one undivided seventh part of the remainder in said land after the life Estate of Anna Russell Expired (Note: word "Expired" is lined through). They shew your Honor that Elizabeth Wasinger departed this life about 1849 and her interest has descended to her children John D. Wasinger, Curtis Wasinger, Letitia who intermarried with W. J. Howell, Eliza J. and David W. Wasinger and who are defendants in this suit.
They shew your Honor that the tract of land above referred to, lies in Montgomery County on the wates (waters)of McLean & Buffaloe creeks, adjoining the land of John Wasinger & Wm. Russell and contains about 200 acres.
They shey shew your Honor that said land cannot be partitioned (divided in 7 parts) among the tenants in common without material injury. That gold has been discovered on said tract and if a vein exists, it would be impossible to make an equal division among tenants in common. Your orators & oratrices believe that it would be beneficial to all parties interested to have said land sold and it's proceeds divided among the said tenants in Common. To All which acting's & doings are contrary to Equity, & good conscious & tend to the manifest injury of petitioners. Plaintiffs Forinas? muclius? (Possibly Latin), Plaintiffs are seniei? lep? by the strict rules of Common Law, and only achievable in this honorable Court where matters of this nature are properly cognizable (means recognizable in the law- as in by a Court of equity) to the end therefore that defendants may upon their several corporal oaths, full true and perfect answer make to all singular the premises as much as if the same were here again repeated and they thereunto especially interrogated. May it please unto your Honor to grant unto your orators & oratrices, your states writ of subpoena, directed to the Sheriff of Mecklenburg county conisv?. and authorize him to summon A John D Wasinger, Curtis Wasinger, W.J. Howell & wife Letitia, Eliza J. & David W. Wasinger, and that publication (see note 3 below) be made as to Curtis Russell, who is an inhabitant of another state, that said defendants may appear at the next Court of Equity to be held for Montgomery, and demur (see note 4 below) plead to, or answer this Bill of complaint and they pray your Honor to order & decree a sale of said land, upon such terms as to your Honor may seem meet & right, and they pray your Honor to grant unto them such other & further relief as the nature of their case may require or unto your Honor, may seem meet & right. and as duty bound they will ever pray (There is a principle in Equity that he who seeks equity must be willing to do equity -- this language says the plaintiffs invoke the Court's equitable powers and they bind themselves to the Court to do equity, i.e., what is fair and reasonable).

A. H. Caldwell Solr for Plaintiff 

This is the 1850 census for the family of Eli Russell, with daughter Tempie. The age here is 13, but on the actual form, it looks like it could be 18.

Name:Temply Russel
[Temply Russell
Birth Year:abt 1837
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1850:Albemarle, StanlyNorth Carolina
Family Number:941
Household Members:
Eli Russel46
Elizabeth Russel39
Alxe Russel24
Henry Russel21
Caroline Russel18
Isiah Russel15
Temply Russel13
Elizabeth Russel8
Gabriel Russel5
Catharine Russel3
 Then there were several families from North Carolina, who took the naming trends to Tennesee:
Name:Pompey Russell
[Tempey Russell
[Tempey Russell
Birth Year:abt 1813
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1850:District 21, Wilson, Tennessee
Family Number:632
Household Members:
Elijah Russell38
Pompey Russell37
Wilie Russell15
John Russell13
Stephen Russell12
Candis Russell10
Sarah Russell2
Name:Tempe Russell
[Temperance "Tempy"Russell
Birth Year:abt 1813
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1850:District 11, Gibson, Tennessee
Family Number:2234
Household Members:
Elijah Russell38
Tempe Russell37
Pinkney Russell15
John Russell14
Stephen Russell13
Candis Russell10
Sarah Russell3
Notice the almost identical family in two different counties. Census takers made errors. They were also slow. Many folks were missed, others were counted twice. Sometimes in two different places as they moved around. Some young men in Stanly County, were counted with their families, and then counted again in the households of people they worked for.

Then there was this little Temperance, born around 1863, daughter of E. Manuel Russell. Much too young, of course, to be our Tempy, but still, another Temperance in the Russell realm.

Name:Temperance Russell
Age in 1870:7
Birth Year:abt 1863
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1870:Eldorado, MontgomeryNorth Carolina
Post Office:Wind Hill
Value of real estate:View Image
Household Members:
E M Russell43
Elisabeth Russell41
William Russell17
Martin Russell16
Linsay Russell14
Minna Russell12
Temperance Russell7
Elisabeth Russell2
Nancy Hearn65
Notice a Hearne in the household. Probably a grandmother, I have not looked into it.

Tempy bought her little acre in Albemarle from Davidson Hearne, and her neighbor, Henry W. Spinks, married Lucy J. Hearne, daughter of Davdison Hearne. There seemed to be a great deal of intermarriage in Mother Montgomery between the Hearne and Russell families. Were Davidson Hearne and Tempy Russell related? Cousins perhaps?

Then there is this Temperance Russell. They were living in southern Davidson County and some of them definately were found later in Montgomery and Stanly Counties. This Tempy, daughter of James and Rebecca, is within the correct age range for our Tempy, as she had a different age in each census, that averages to about 1826. This Tempy shows up in no other census, or married to anyone else, unless she is our Tempy. The William below shows up in no other census with the rest of the family, although at his age, he should, and none of the family trees has him listed as a sibling, although he is clearly living with the family in 1850. But there is no John. Perhaps John was actually born after the 1850 census. There was a tendency to never get the years right. This might take some more investigation.

Researchers into the early origins of the Russell family in this area claim they came from Ireland, via England, via Maryland, four brothers who escaped, or opposed, Lord Baltimore. If this can be discovered, certainly we can discover the origins of Temperance Russell of early Albemarle, NC.

Will we find the true Tempie? Only time will tell.


  1. TJ, this is very interesting, indeed! My cousin and I are descendants of William Alexander Russell, who was the father of Eli Russell, who was the father of William A. Russell (1909-1993) who was our great-grandfather. We both remember going to the Russell Reunions in Eldorado as small children. Would you be interested in "comparing notes" and seeing if we can connect some dots and discover more about our great-grandfather's extended family. You can reach me via qaesar1_at_gmail_dot_com. (Sorry for using that format, but it cuts down on SpamBots sending me junk) Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. :-)

    Jonathan Upright (that's me) and Chris Troutman.

  2. Just discovered your blog and LOVE it! I'm a native of Randolph County, returning after 40 years in the Midwest and wondering why the hell it took me so long. Our Mom's family goes back in Randolph County to the early 1800s - I'm happy to find others who value their roots and heritage. Our maternal family history includes these names: Kennedy/Latham/Freeman/Dowdy (from the Seagrove area - our gggg Kennedy grandfather was Alexander Kennedy, manufacturer of the Kennedy Rifle. Our Randolph County roots include: Wood/St. Julian/Julian (the town of Julian was settled by our Julian/St. Julian ancestors) /Trogdon/Pugh and Hardin. Who knows - we may be cousins!

  3. I enjoyed reading this entry in your blog. I have a
    Temperance Russell in my family tree from Randolph
    County. Here's another Temperance to add to your list:

    1860 US Census - Randolph County - Western Division

    John Russell 68
    Temp (Temperance) 58
    Calislia 28
    Ann 26
    Noah 24
    Harris 22
    Franses 20
    Julian 18
    Adiline 16

    My Temperance was a Russell when she married John
    Russell, son of Gabriel Russell. John was the son
    of Gabriel's first wife who may be a Margaret Hearne.
    He was born in 1792. His wife Temperance was born around 1800. It is a mystery to me which Russell family she was related to. I would love to figure out who these Temperance Russells are and their relationship to one another.

    James Farmer, Jr.

  4. Thank you for this post. I am also looking for a Temperance Kimsey Russell married to (Nathan) Alexander Russell b. 1808. This common sir name has made it quite difficult. Have you run across such a pair? I think they started life in this TN/NC region, then to MO and KS and then to OR? Still trying to make sense of it. Would love any feedback you might have. Regards< Mary Beth

  5. Thanks to DNA testing and some detective work, I have discovered who my Temperance is. She is Temperance Steed and I have traced her back to her grandparents who were members of one of the first families to settle in the area that is known as Montgomery County, North Carolina today.

  6. Temperance Steed has ties to the Hearne family that was mentioned in the original post. Her mother was Sarah Hearne (1779-1850) the daughter of Stephen Hearne (1748-1844) who migrated to Montgomery County from Maryland. Temperance's father was Hilikiah Steed (1780-1830) the son of Moses Steed who settled in a community in Montgomery County still known as Steed to this day.