Saturday, November 8, 2014

Ephraim Starnes

My interest in Ephraim Starnes began with the following census record, wherein Ephraim is shown as a farm laborer in the Byrum household where my 14 year old third Great-Grandmother, Mary Louise Byram Starnes, was living. This search leads my search for the next generation, the parents of Mary Louise Byram.

Name:Ephraim Starner
[Ephraim Starnes
Age:28Birth Year:abt 1822Birthplace:North CarolinaHome in 1850:Union, North CarolinaGender:MaleFamily Number:956Household Members:
Elizabeth Byrom33
Mary L Byrom14
Mary Byrom70
Ephraim Starner28

Ephraim would marry Nancy Holden, daughter of Samuel Holden who passed away in 1848. Her stepmother Sarah petitioned the court and named the property as adjoining that of William Byrom.

By 1860, Ephraim and Nancy are shown with two children. In 1850, Nancy was shown living next door to Frederick Starnes, Jr. , father of Mary L Byrum's future husband.

Name:Ephreim Starnes
Age in 1860:35
Birth Year:abt 1825
Home in 1860:Union, North Carolina
Post Office:Monroe
Value of real estate:View image
Household Members:
Ephreim Starnes35
Nancy Starnes35
John R Starnes4
Or Franklin Starnes1

Ephraim fought in the Civil War and perished at the POW camp known as "HELL-mira".

Name:Ephraim Starnes
Residence:Union County, North Carolina, North Carolina
Age at Enlistment:43
Enlistment Date:24 Sep 1863
Rank at enlistment:Private
Enlistment Place:Union County, North Carolina
State Served:North Carolina
Survived the War?:No
Service Record:Enlisted in Company H, North Carolina 30th Infantry Regiment on 24 Sep 1863.Mustered out on 12 Jan 1865 at Elmira, NY.
Birth Date:abt 1820
Sources:North Carolina Troops 1861-65, A RosterResearch by R. Ross Houston

Name:Pvt Ephraim Starnes
Birth Date:1820
Birth Place:Union County, North Carolina, United States of America
Death Date:12 Jan 1865
Death Place:Elmira, Chemung County, New York, United States of America
Cemetery:Woodlawn National Cemetery
Burial or Cremation Place:Elmira, Chemung County, New York, United States of America
Has Bio?:Y
Children:Sarah Denie Craig 
John Robert Starnes 
Susan J. Starnes

His widow, Nancy Holden Starnes did not remarry. In 1880, she is shown with oldest son, John Robertson Starnes, his wife Hannah Melton Starnes, their first daughter, Mary Almetta Starnes Knight, and Ephraim and Nancy's daughters, born after the 1860 census, Sarah and Susan. Other son, Doctor Franklin Starnes, had married Margaret Louise Plyler and was living in the Waxsaw community by 1880.

Name:Nancy Sterns
Birth Year:abt 1831
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1880:Buford, Union, North Carolina
Relation to Head of House:Self (Head)
Marital Status:Widowed
Father's Birthplace:North Carolina
Mother's Birthplace:North Carolina
Neighbors:View others on page
Occupation:Keeps House
Cannot read/write:


Deaf and Dumb:

Otherwise disabled:

Idiotic or insane:
Household Members:
Nancy Sterns49
Robertson Sterns23
Hannah Sterns22
Mary Sterns5m
Sarah A. Sterns16
Susan Sterns19

But it was in Deed Book #1, Abstracts by Brent Holcomb, that I found the following treasure, pertaining to Ephraim Starnes, that corroborated the connection with him and a William Byram. 

Item 495, Page 313  Date: March 7, 1846

Indenture made this 16th day of February, 1846 between Ephraim Starnes of the county of Union, State of North Carolina, of the one part and William Byram of the county and state aforesaid. Ephraim Starnes indebted to Thomas Richardson, Noah Broom, Hugh Wilson and Ruben Robinson, in the sum of $52.50, sold in trust to William Byram, two head of horses, four head of cattle, 14 head of hogs, 25 bushels of corn, 300 sheves of fodder. 

Signed by Ephraim Starnes, in the presence of Hiram Broom. 

The men listed above show up as neighbors in the 1850 census. Ephraim Starnes is in the only household of Byram's in Buford township. He had a close alliance with William Byram and his wife's father was a neighbor of William Byram. I think I need to look more closely at Mr. William Byram. He may very well be my missing ancestor. 


  1. Did you ever find out who Ephraim Starnes' parents were? Ephraim was my ancestor. John Starnes was my GG Grandfather. I can be reached at "". Thanks, Dale Starnes

  2. He was the son of Charles Starnes (1796-1879) and Elizabeth Thompson Starnes (1799-1856).

    1. Please tell me where you found this information. Thank you so much!!!! Dale Starnes