Adair Co KY to Carroll Co IL


Adair County, KY July 6th 1851

Dear Sir,

I take this opportunity of addressing you a line by way of inquiry. I recd a letter from my Nephew William Lockett dated April the 1st 1850 he informed me that himself and his brother James would start the next morning to California and if he lived to reach his place of destination he would instantly write to me and inform me where they were and also request me to write to him as soon as should receive a letter from him. I have not recd a line nor heard a word from them since that time. I therefore make this request of you that you write to me immediately on the receipt of this letter and give me some information Respecting them whether they went and whether James took his family and whether you have heard from them where they are and all the information you can about them. Also inform me how you are all coming on in that country. I should be truly glad to see my connections in that country if there are any of them still remaining there. Brother David felt near and dear to me so does his children and grand children - my self and family are in common health at this time. During last fall and winter seven of us had Typhoid fever we lost our second daughter Martha Frances. She departed this life on 2nd day of March last in the 14th day after taken. Myself and wife and three of our little boys had long and sever spells. My Self and wife were confined to our beds forty days the children not quite so long. Our oldest son had a light attack in the fall - Daniel Lockett lost his wife and five children during the fall and Early part of the winter only leaving him one child David Thomas he is about 25 years old. He lay about two months he was given up by Physicians and friends but finally recovered. - The health of our country is rather better this summer thus far than it has been for 2 or 3 summers past. Our country is in a prosperous condition at this time produce and stock sells readly at good prices - wheat crops is tolerable good corn and tobacco crops look promising at this time. Nothing more at present give my love to all my connections in that country and your daughter in particular. Write to me immediately for I am very anxious to hear from you all - Direct your letter to graidville Post office Adair County Ky. Accept my best wishes while I remain yours

- Solomon Lockett

To - Mr Hiram Mc Neamer

Nanette White - nlywhite@comcast.net - has given us the background for this letter.
Through her efforts we can now read the "story" (April 28, 2012)

I continue to find family information for my family in Carroll County . This letter is to my gg grandfather Hiram McNamer from Solomon Lockett. My grandfather Hiram McNamer was married twice; his first wife was Emeline Lockett. Hiram and Emeline were married in Daviess County , Ky in 1833. Shortly after marrying, Hiram and Emeline move to Carroll County , IL between 1834-1835. My great grand aunt Martha (Mattie) McNamer is the only child to survive from that marriage. Family legend has a story that Emeline died during childbirth along with the twins she was carrying in 1843. After Emeline died, my grandfather married Maria Elizabeth Stewart from whom all of us are descended.

Last year I came across your interesting obituary for James Howard Lockett in the Carroll County Genealogy site. Since I wasn't sure how he might be related to Emeline Lockett, I just kept the info in the back of my mind. The discovery of the letter explains the full story of James Lockett and the rest of the Lockett family. James Lockett married Juliamiah Webster in Carroll County in 1845. I located an 1850 Census for Elkhorn Grove that lists his wife and three children (Elvira, Isabella and James William) and a William Lockett age 22. I decided to work backwards and try to locate birth records for Emeline and James Howard. Early records in Kentucky are very hard to locate. The state and Daviess County in particular have been plagued by numerous fires in their county court buildings so I used the letter and the Carroll County probate records to piece together the family history.

David Lockett is the father of Emeline, James Howard, Martha,Susan and William Lockett. David Lockett, Solomon, and Daniel Lockett are brothers and were born in Virginia or what may be modern day West Virginia . David Lockett moved his family to Carroll County about the same time that my grandfather Hiram McNamer came to the county. The Carroll County Probate records have David Lockett's will which lists the children and his "beloved wife".

David Lockett died in 1844 and his will is probated in December 1844. I can't locate any information on his "beloved wife" or daughters Martha and Susan.

So what happened to the rest of the people in the story?

Solomon Lockett moves his family from Adair County , KY to Lavaca County , TX sometime between 1853-1860. I located the family in an 1860 Census minus Solomon. His sons David, William and Joseph join the Texas militia and later the CSA. There are no further letters that I could find between Solomon Lockett and my grandfather Hiram McNamer. I don’t think James Howard returned to Kentucky before Solomon moved his family to Texas .

Daniel Lockett and his remaining son David Thomas disappear after the 1850 Adair County Census records.

William and James Lockett do leave for the Gold Rush in Colusa County , Ca. And they do arrive there alive. But by the time Solomon Lockett writes the letter to my grandfather Hiram McNamer, William Lockett is dead. The Carroll County probate records discover that he died in November 1850 in Colusa County , Ca. It's not until 1856 that Carroll County officially declares him dead. The Carroll County Probate records indicated that William Lockett’s Estate took care of the needs of James children ( Elvira, Isabella and James William).