James Family Archives

 

•  Researching the Past

•  Education for the Present

•  Preservation for the Future

 

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Featured Photo Above: the family of William George James (1832-1908), elder man seated in center, of Bedford County, Virginia and the great, great, great grandson of David James (circa 1660-1739).  From left to right, William’s son Braxton Leftrich James (1864-1923) of Fannin County, Texas; daughter-in-law Flora Alice Johnson (1874-1960); granddaughter Flora Agnes James (1900-1982); granddaughter Vera Blanche James (1892-1989); grandson Manson Leon ”Cap” James (1902-1974); daughter Alice James (adult woman standing in back); granddaughter Elizabeth Alice James (1904-1972); grandson William Jackson “Bill” James (1894-1974); and, grandson Marvin Leftrich James (1895-1969) of Hunt County, Texas.  This photo was taken in 1906 in front of the James family home, a.ka., “the old rock house”, located near the town of Trent in Jones County, Texas between the towns of Abilene and Sweetwater

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Welcome to the James Family Archives - a repository of historical, archaeological and genealogical information pertaining to the family of David James (circa 1660-1739) and Margaret Jane Mortimer of Llandegley and Glascwm parishes in Radnorshire, Wales.  This particular James family left Bristol, England in August of 1682 on board the sailing ship Bristol Factor captained by Roger Drew and arrived in Upland, present day Philadelphia on October 28, 1682 with Sir William Penn.  In that same year this family settled lands in the Pennsylvania wilderness outside of Philadelphia forging William Penn’s vision of a Welsh barony known as the Welsh Tract. During America’s colonial period following the mass migration of Quakers between 1682 and 1684, the community settled by the James family would come to be known as Radnor Township, Pennsylvania. Under the inspiration and leadership of William Penn and his associate Richard Davies a Welsh colony was built.  This site is dedicated to the history of this James family and its descendants identified in the Genealogy Section.

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In James Family Archeology:  The Search for the Origins of the James Family of Llandegley and Glascwm ...

 

The James Family of Llandegley and Glascwm Parishes of Radnorshire, Wales (1582-1713) by Larry P. James - An in depth analysis of the work of Archivist R. Morgan of Llandrindod Wells, the Deeds from the Practice of Messieurs. Green and Nixson of Presteigne & Knighton; the Parish Registers of Glascwm, Radnorshire; the last will and testament of David ap Rees ap Jevan Athro; and the work of Joseph Besse’s “Sufferings.”  In this essay the James family is traced back five generations prior to the arrival of the immigrant David James in Pennsylvania in 1682.  Also explored are the direct paternal ties between the families James, Davies, Rees, Griffith, Lewis and John.  

Picture above is of the Welsh countryside in Radnorshire circa 1890 looking from the castle at New Radnor toward

Whimble Mountain (Elevation 1800 feet).

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Scientific Advances in James Family Historical Research:

 

Read -  What We Have Learned From A Y-DNA Surname Projectby Lee Allyn James of Olympia, Washington published in the July 2010 edition of the Olympia Genealogical Society Quarterly.  This is an outstanding essay, the culmination of many years research and scientific analysis.  Click on the link above or find Lee’s essay in the Library Section.  If you are interested in learning more from Lee about James family DNA research please contact our resident geneticist at: lajames@cco.net.

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Visit the James Family Virtual Cemetery:

 

Take a quiet stroll through  the well maintained grounds of our very own virtual family cemetery maintained by Marty Rutledge of Loveland, Colorado and hosted by Findagrave.com.  To enter, simply click on the image to the right. For internment of James family relatives please contact our sexton at: mottyrutt@hotmail.com and please, mind you step.

Retracing the Gozzaldi Expedition of 1890...

 

In 1890 Mary Isabella James de Gozzaldi (1852-1935) led the James family on its first documented return to Wales since the family’s arrival in North America in 1682.  An experienced traveler and devout family historian, Mary led a team of family members on an expedition back to the original homeland of the James family rooted deep within the inner recesses of rural Radnorshire, Wales.  The Gozzaldi Expedition took along with it the most advanced and sophisticated technology of the day and captured amazing images of pre-twentieth century rural Wales including some of the rarest photographs ever taken of pre-1900 Radnorshire. Her priceless collection of photographic images taken when the technology was in its infancy are now  safely kept at the Brinkler Library of the Cambridge Historical Society in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Now, for the first time ever, these priceless photographs taken more than 100 years ago have been assembled for review by the public and the James family at large with full historical analysis and pinpoint geographic descriptions thanks to Google Earth.  Prepare yourself for a leap back in time as the James Family Archives proudly presents, the Gozzaldi Expedition of 1890!

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James Family Archives News and Developments

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Friday, February 19, 2021:

The James Family Archives has scheduled its Virtual Winter Family Meeting via Zoom! This will be a nationwide gathering of the family over Zoom on Sunday, February 28, 2021, 4PM Pacific Time (7PM Eastern Time - U.S. & Canada). Special guests include Reverend Joseph DiPaolo, Senior Pastor of Wayne United Methodist Church in Pennsylvania and David Debelius, Inspector and Owner of AmeriSpec Inspection Services who will be providing us an update on our ongoing efforts toward the historic preservation of Radnor United Methodist Church. We will also have reports on fundraising efforts and special projects being pursued by the James Family Archives. If you wish to receive an invitation with an online address and passcode, send your request to info@jamesfamilyarchives.net. In the subject box enter, "Me Too." Instructions on how to join our nationwide meeting will then be sent to you!

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Monday, February 15, 2021:

We have been informed by Dr. Douglas B. Cook of Weatherford, Oklahoma of the passing of his maternal aunt, Deloris Sandra McCrary Merriman on February 8, 2021 in Ardmore, Oklahoma.  Deloris, or “Sandy” as she was known by her immediate family, was born on March 9, 1950 in Vinita, Craig County, Oklahoma and was the third of three children of Lola B. James (1918-1996) of Big Cabin, Craig County, Oklahoma and the only child from Lola’s union with William Clifford McCrary (1908-1962) of Eastland, Eastland County, Texas. Sandy graduated from Capitol Hill High School in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in 1968.  She married Andy Merriman on July 28, 1972.  She was a hairdresser for thirty-one years and then owned and operated her own flower shop in Newcastle, Oklahoma.  She was recently preceded in death by her sister Rebecca Suzanne Hicks Higgins (1937-2020), the mother of Dr. Cook, on December 8, 2020. Sandy is survived by her older brother Roy Leon Hicks of Grove, Oklahoma, many loved ones and friends. This side of the family descends from George Washington James (1812-1864) and Elizabeth West of Bedford County, Virginia through their grandson George Washington James (1869-1944) of Arcadia, Kansas and Emma M. Logston (1872–1919). The children of Lola B. James represent the side of the family that migrated from Pennsylvania to Virginia following the Revolutionary War and then onward to Kansas and Oklahoma during the great westward migrations of 1849. Thank you Dr. Cook for notifying us of your aunt and mother’s recent passing.  Much work was accomplished during 2020 on this side of the family with the help of Donna Hicks Williams of Mulvane, Kansas.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Friday, February 12, 2021:

Back on November 8, 2020, Janetrose Sue Frederick of Des Moines, Iowa sent us some very interesting photos of her great grandfather Lowen Lewis James (1875-1907).  We have finally been able to circle back around and follow-up with Janetrose concerning her generous contribution.  Lowen Lewis James was the second of five children of Israel B. James (1850-1924) of Hardin County, Ohio and Elizabeth Ann Capehart (1844-1933) of Harrison County, Ohio.  This side of the James family descends from  Evan James (1715-1794) and Margaret Jones (-1790) of Radnor Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania through their son Samuel James (1750-1812) and represents the side of the family that migrated from Pennsylvania into the Ohio Valley.  Thank you Janetrose for your contribution.  We look forward to learning more about your side of the family.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Tuesday, February 9, 2021:

We have been informed by Sean James of San Antonio, Texas of the passing of his mother, Laura Jane Lollar James on January 21, 2021. Laura, or “Jane” as she was known by her immediate family, was born November 25, 1941 in Abilene, Texas to Grover Loyal Lollar (1911-1977) and Ruth Pauline Merritt (1914-2011). She was also the wife of the late Carlton Dwayne James (1936-2011) of Trent, Taylor County, Texas.  Jane was a beloved wife and mother.  She was very active in her Church and is survived by her biological son Michael Sean James and her three adopted children, Tamara James Doty, Shara Joann James Ozuna and Christopher Johnathan James; by her siblings, Gene Lollar, David Lollar, Sallie O’Carroll and Paul Lollar; by her grandchildren, Ashlynn Long, Corey, Natalia, and Tiffany James; by her great-grandchildren, Claire, Piper, and Blake Long; and by her loving family members and friends. Jane’s husband, Carlton Dwayne James, was the son of Marvin Leftrich James (1895-1969) and Eula Georgia Maynard (1898-1959).  This James family’s genealogy can be located on Page 81 of the Genealogy Section, Children of Marvin Leftrich James (1895-1969) of Hunt County, Texas and Eula Georgia Maynard (1898-1959) of Forrester, Terry County, Texas.  Laura Jane James” virtual memorial can be located on the Find-A-Grave website at Memorial ID No. 222518462.  There, members of the family can pay their respects, read her obituary, place virtual flowers or leave a message.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Monday, February 8, 2021:

Thank you Steve for clearing up the error on Page 56 concerning the photo of Sarah (James) Tindle (1834-1913).  I am very grateful to Al McLemore of Edmond, Oklahoma for bringing this to our attention. I agree with you, it is always wonderful to meet another James family cousin who shares our passion for accurately recording our family’s history.  Over the weekend the following additions to our Library and Genealogy Sections were also made.  These are a tribute to our late cousin, Teddy "Ted" Edward Luke (1924-2013), formerly of Lafayette, California - a James family historian whom in the 1990’s was responsible for organizing the bi-annual James family reunion in Pleasant Hill, California for the descendants of George Washington James, Jr. (1846-1919) of Bedford County, Virginia and Alice Ann Burcham (1865-1944). In memory of all the incredible work of Ted Luke we have added the following pages to our James Family Archives website: Page 179 in the Library Section - George Washington James Family Reunion & Picnic, City Park, Pleasant Hill, California (June 29, 1996); and, Page 230 in the Genealogy Section - Children of Maggie Alma James (1893-1978) of Mulberry, Crawford County, Kansas and Edward “Ted” Luke (1882-1969) of Bayonne, Hudson County, New Jersey.

wpef3bae63_0f.jpg Steve James, Senior Research Historian - Friday, February 5, 2021:

The lady in the photo that is referred to [on Page 56] as the “mother of George, Jr. and Noah” is not correct.  She is Sarah (James) Tindle (1834-1913). She was the sister of George, Jr. and Noah. She died at Arcadia, Kansas but is buried with her husband in Andrew County, Missouri.  I am somewhat familiar with [Al McLemore], the person who has corresponded with you.  He is the cousin of Reba Ward whom I corresponded with many years ago .  I am glad we have another cousin who has located the Archives.  Hope everything in going well with you.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Friday, February 5, 2021:

Thank you for your letter Al.  We am familiar with your line and aware that your mother, Alice Ann James, was the daughter of Walter William James (1896-1963) of Mulberry, Crawford County, Kansas.  The picture you are referring to is believed to be that of George Washington James, Jr. (1846-1919), his wife Alice Ann Burcham (1865-1944) and brother Noah James (1850-1928) standing behind their mother Elizabeth West. This photo appears on Page 56 of the Genealogy Section in our website under the Children of George Washington James, Sr. (1812-1864); Elizabeth West of Bedford County, Virginia; and, Martha Patsy Whoberry (1829-1879) of Mercer County, Kentucky.  It was provided to us by Steve James of Fort Worth, Texas.  Based on the period clothing and the manner in which the four are groomed, we estimate the photo to have been taken between 1890 and 1900.  This means that George is likely to be between the ages of 44 and 54.  Alice is likely to be between the ages of 27 and 37; and Noah is likely to be between the ages of 40 and 50.  Elizabeth is estimated to be between the ages of 70 and 80.  You are correct there is a striking resemblance between this photo and the photo of Mary Susan (James) Claunch (1836-1905), the older sister of George Washington James, Jr., appearing on the same page.  You raise a very good question whether the photo of Elizabeth West with her children is, more likely than not, a photo of Mary Susan Claunch with her younger siblings.  You rightly point out that Elizabeth West is reported to have died circa 1850 before the family reached Missouri.  Furthermore, George Washington James, Sr. had already entered into his second marriage by 1855 to Martha Patsy Whoberry (1829-1879) of Mercer County, Kentucky.  It's highly unlikely that G.W., Sr. would have brought an ex-wife with him from Kentucky along with his second wife to Missouri.  I will forward your inquiry to Steve for his opinion.  Steve is much more knowledgeable about this side of the family and the photos in question.

wp9ffb260b.png Al McLemore - Edmond, Oklahoma - Thursday, February 4, 2021:

Hello. My mother was Alice Ann James, grandfather was Walter William James, great-grandfather was George Washington James Jr.  While researching my family history, I came across this photo [Genealogy Section, Page 56]  in the James Family Archives.  The picture identifies George Washington James Jr. and Alice Ann Burcham, my great-grandparents.  It also identifies the older woman seated as Elizabeth West, their mother.  This would make her my great-great grandmother.  However, my previous research led me to believe that Elizabeth West died in about 1854 during the family’s move from Virginia to Missouri.  So my question is “how sure are you that the woman pictured is, in fact, Elizabeth West? (the mother of George Washington James Jr. and the wife of George Washington James Sr.)  Thank you for any help that you can provide.  Regards, Al McLemore.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Wednesday, February 3, 2021:

Thank you Jean for sharing with us the passing of Dorothy Seibel Davidson (1923-2021), the daughter of Dorothy Dudley Seibel (1896-1989), and the granddaughter of Lena Thompson James Dudley (1871-1952).  Dorothy was born in Hannibal, Missouri on August 14, 1923 to Dorothy Dudley and Frank Seibel.  She served during World War II in the Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES) and lived a remarkable life following the war.  Dorothy died in Estero, Lee County, Florida on January 21, 2021 at the age of 97.  She was buried at Providence Cemetery in Marion County, Missouri.  Her virtual memorial can be located on the Find-A-Grave website at Memorial ID No. 221502081.  There, members of the family can pay their respects, read her obituary, see her grave and place virtual flowers or leave a message.  Dorothy was a descendant of Major Asa James (1821-1909), Confederate States Army, of Loudoun County, Virginia and Susan Virginia Clayton (1828-1908) of Marion County, Missouri.  She was also the niece of U.S. Navy Rear Admirals James Rogers Dudley (1898-1993) and Clayton Rodes Dudley (1904-1995).  Her James family genealogy can be traced beginning at Page 228 of the Genealogy Section of our website under Children of  Lena Thompson James (1871-1952) and Claudius Cabell Dudley (1870-1933) of Marion County, Missouri.

wp20e8bb45.png Jean Powers, Senior Research Historian - Sunday, January 31, 2021

Dear RUMGC members, It looks like our best source of written information is Phillip Manley and probably a trip to Pennsylvania if we can actually see the records. While I thought I’d have lots of computer time, it looks like it may be March before I can accomplish much. We lost another James descendant this past week. Dorothy Davidson, the niece of Rear Admiral James Dudley, passed away at age 97.  Due to covid restrictions, there was just a graveside burial service at a small rural Baptist church cemetery here in Marion County. In this day and age when families are so scattered, it was touching to see she was buried within feet of her parents, grandparents and great grandparents, Asa and Susan Virginia (Clayton) James. P.S. Your newsletter was impressive. You accomplished a tremendous amount this past year.

wpeb051b2a.png Philip Manley, Trustee, Radnor United Methodist Church - Friday, January 29, 2021:

That information exists in three forms: a map, a book, and an index card file.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Friday, January 29, 2021:

Thank you Lynn for inquiring with Pastor Jack whether he is aware of a written record at Radnor UMC of those buried in the graveyard surrounding the Church that corresponds to the numbered plots on the graveyard map you previously provided us.  It was very kind of Pastor Jack to respond so quickly.  From Pastor Jack's reply, it appears that Philip Manley is in charge of managing the graveyard.  If such a record exists, Philip may know where it is located.  I will reach out to Philip. Perhaps he may be of assistance.

wp881b5bde.png Lynn Ellis, Vice President, Radnor Historical Society - Thursday, January 28, 2021:

Hello, James Family!  I think former Pastor Jack Ross would be of great help [locating records of the graveyard at Radnor UMC] since he was there when there was an active congregation.  Let me know how you make out, Lynn.

wpdcc9b461_0f.jpg Randi Randolph, Senior Research Historian - Thursday, January 28, 2021:

The Gift Shop is well done and the links work perfectly!  Thank you for promoting our James family's creativity. I also would like to promote our family's talents.  I send out email campaigns of up to 200 people, two or three times a month which has increased my business. I was thinking of doing one email blast each month, just to promote a James family member and their creations.  Every cousin could ask to be promoted at anytime. I hope the musicians can promote their talents as well, perhaps with CDs. The interested buyer could be referred to our Gift Shop and to my website where they can order and pay online.  I know from years of experience, there are many talented people who have no way to market their great creations.  This idea began when our dear cousin, Kathleen Dooley Wolfe, promoted Connie's pies and others. Wishing you well, dear Cousin. Randi.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Thursday, January 28, 2021:

Thank you Natalie for your positive feedback concerning Page 210, recently added to the Genealogical Section, entitled, "Children of Mary Ann “Polly Ann” James (1843-1907) of Bedford County, Virginia & Jasper Newton Terry (1834-1908) of Illinois." The evidence appears to be mounting that the most likely cause of death of Mary Ann James and her daughter Marion Louise Terry, like her brother Robert James Terry, was Typhoid Fever.  This was very common during the early 1900’s. Thank you for providing Marion's death certificate. This record confirms her mother was Mary Ann James.

wp2cc57419.png Natalie Belotti - Madera, California - Thursday, January 28, 2021:

Oh my goodness! You have been busy! I read through all the updates in your latest email. I really appreciate the updated page which includes my great-grandmother, Marion. It's so fulfilling to see her name and her children's names. My travel plans just keep getting longer and longer. I also must travel to Radnor Township, Pennsylvania. This is going to be one amazing road trip! Thank you for all you've done. Your cousin, Natalie.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Wednesday, January 27, 2021:

Last Spring a collection of photos of the Children of Jesse K. James (1814-1896) were sent to us beginning on April 20, 2020 by David P. Curtis of Dousman, Wisconsin, the great, great grandson of Evan James (1842-1938) of Washington County, Pennsylvania and Rebecca Pickering (1789-1848).  He inherited a great collection of photographs, correspondence and documentation through his mother Anne E. (Landis) Curtis who passed away on March 11, 2020.  This material originates from the old Jesse K. James farm near Lincolnville, Indiana.  David has invited anyone in the family who would like to obtain copies of these old photos or to ask him questions to contact him.  Simply email us and we well forward his address to you.

wpdcc9b461_0f.jpg Randi Randolph, Senior Research Historian - Wednesday, January 27, 2021:

I was so interested in your last update.  So informative and I was excited to see the photo of the family of Jesse K. James.  From David and Margaret James, can you tell me this family's direct lineage?  I believe they are fairly close cousins. Thank you for all that you do. Cousin Randi.

wp881b5bde.png Lynn Ellis, Vice President, Radnor Historical Society - Tuesday, January 26, 2021:

Larry - It's always great to hear from you!  I'm so happy with your family's response. Lynn.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Tuesday, January 26, 2021:

Thank you for your positive feedback Steve. That means a lot coming from you. Yesterday we mailed out our Winter Newsletter & Report including a review of our work over the past year with some of our goals for 2021.  Our James Family Archives newsletters are free.  Anyone who would like to request a copy, simply drop us a line at info@jamesfamilyarchives.net.  In the subject box write “I would like a copy.”  It’s that simple.

wp2cb1e57b.png Steve Brannon, Senior Research Historian @ Carson Archives - Tuesday, January 26, 2021:

Larry: Thanks once again for your love for our family history and keeping us informed.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Monday, January 25, 2021:

We have just added the historic James Family Proposal for Radnor United Methodist Church Property In Conjunction with the GAR Museum and Library of Philadelphia dated October 28, 2020 to the Library Section of our website. This historic proposal for the preservation of Radnor United Methodist Church in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania was voted upon and signed by 63 members of the James family and submitted to the Board of Trustees of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of the United Methodist Church for their consideration. In response the James family was informed by District Superintendent for the Southern District, the Reverend Evelyn Kent-Clark that the historical landmark would not be put up for sale, rather the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference would seek a way to preserve the historic nature of the Church and the land upon which it rests that marks the location of the original James family homestead following the arrival of David and Margaret James with William Penn on October 28, 1682.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Saturday, January 23, 2021:

That sounds absolutely wonderful Barbie!  Kathleen can be reached by email at Kathleendwolfe@gmail.com.  She will provide you with instructions on how and where to mail in your check.  We will be announcing all contributors for the the month of January at the end of the month.  Thank you so much for your contribution.  I would also like to announce that with the help of Natalie Belotti of Madera, California whom we have been working with since this past summer, we have uncovered and added the genealogical information concerning the Children of Mary Ann “Polly Ann” James (1843-1907) of Bedford County, Virginia & Jasper Newton Terry (1834-1908) of Illinois. Natalie first made contact with us on July 25, 2020 and has provided the Archives with precious information and priceless photographs concerning the children of her great, great grandmother Mary Ann “Polly Ann” James.  During this past summer, the following pages were also added to the Genealogical Section of our family history website:

Children of Rebecca James & John Smith added to Genealogy Section, 4th Generation.

Children of Mary Susan James (1836-1905) & John J. Claunch (1836-1877) added to Genealogy Section, 7th Generation.

Children of Leroy Campbell “Leonard” James (1858-1937) & Minnie Lee Draper (1875-1953) added to Genealogy Section,

8th Generation.

Children of Melinda Alice James (1861-1934) & R.T. Lewis (1862-1946) added to Genealogy Section, 8th Generation.

Children of Richard M. James (1871-1899) & Dora May Allen (1879-1947) added to Genealogy Section, 8th Generation.

Children of Carey Cordelia James (1875-1972) & Benjamin Daniel (1871-1936) added to Genealogy Section, 8th Generation

wpf7948b48_0f.jpg Barbie James, Senior Research Historian / Archival Custodian - Saturday, January 23, 2021:

Hi Larry, I am trying to find an email for Kathleen who is collecting money for the Radnor church fundraiser. Hope you and you family are well. Best regards.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Friday, January 22, 2021:

That is terrific news Kathleen!  We raised $225 during the month of December towards our Friends of Radnor United Methodist Church Fundraiser. This Church marks the location where our family settled in 1682. It’s preservation as an historic landmark is absolutely essential to the family.  It looks like this month is off to a great start. Thank you so much cousin Jean Powers for your generous contribution.  We are still waiting on the appraisal of the cost to replace the wood shingle roof of the old historic Church building.  Please remember folks, we have two ways to contribute to the fundraiser.  You can either make an online donation to the fundraiser hosted by PayPal by clicking the link above, or by sending your check in to Kathleen, our Treasurer who will make sure in gets added to the pool of money we are assembling.

wp11c3b73f_0f.jpg Kathleen Dooley-Wolfe, Senior Research Historian / Treasurer - Friday, January 22, 2021:

Wanted to let you know I received a $100 check from Jean Ellis Powers for our Radnor UMC Fundraiser.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Tuesday, January 19, 2021:

So pleased to announce the Winter 2021 update to the James Family Archives website!  This is the largest update to the website since it’s inception in 2009. We have reformatted each page to improve readability and ease of access to supporting documents and resources.  Links have been coded in blue font for ease of location.  We have also expanded our partnership with the Find A Grave website with more links to memorials of James family ancestors in the Genealogical Section.  If you wish to have a message posted to our blog, simply e-mail your post to info@jamesfamilyarchives.net.  In the subject box write, “Post for J.F.A. Chat.”  You are also welcome to attach a photo of yourself and we will set up an icon next to your name.

wp311dfba0.png Larry James, Senior Research Historian - Sunday, January 17, 2021:

We are kicking off this year with the addition of three new generations of James family ancestors from the line of Phillip James of John Day, Oregon.  I had the chance to visit Phillip this past October and spent a few wonderful days with his family.  Philip is a descendant of David James (c1660-1739) through his grandson Enoch James (born 1739) and belongs to the Alabama Line in our particular James family.  The first additions made were children of Phillip’s grandfather, the Children of Robert James (1906-1968).  From there we worked up to the generation of Philip’s great grandfather with the Children of Elias Golden James (1885-1937) and the generation of his great, great grandfather, the Children of Robert David James (born 1862).  Below you will find links to these three new generational levels added to our genealogical database:

Children of Robert David James (born 1862) and Annie McMichens (1862-1913) added to Genealogy Section under Eighth Generation.

Children of Elias Golden “Goldzie” James (1885-1937) & Elizabeth “Libbie” Tanner (1877-1910) added to Genealogy Section under Ninth Generation.

Children of Robert Jacob James (1906- 1968) & Eva Lee Colley (1905-1994) added to the Genealogy Section under Tenth Generation.

 

Archived Posts from 2010-2020 found in Blog Section.

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Contact us by E-mail at:  info@jamesfamilyarchives.net

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Joel L. James of Bedford County, Virginia and the Generation that Headed “West”...

 

In 1849, Joel L. James (1811-1875), the son of the late Jonathan James (1785-1843) and Polly Bandy of Bedford County, Virginia led three brothers and their families by covered wagon out of the safety of rural Virginia for the vast and still largely unexplored North American interior.  By this time the James family had resided in North America six generations, the last four of which in the State of Virginia.  The journey “West” during the great North American migrations of 1849 marked the family’s first major exodus since leaving Wales in 1682.  The great, great grandson of David James (circa 1660-1739) of Radnorshire, Wales - Joel and the James brothers shared that same pioneering spirit that thrust their ancestors into the wilderness of Pennsylvania 167 years earlier.  Joel was accompanied by his younger brothers George Washington James (1812-1864) and John James (1814-1863) leaving the youngest brother Jonathan James to carry on the family’s interests in Bedford County and to look after their widowed mother.  For the next four years the James family wandered through the North American interior before planting their new roots in Texas.  Follow along as we explore the last great pioneering generation of the James family and its journey half way across a continent.  Joel L. James of Bedford County, Virginia and the Generation that Headed West.

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“A Measure of Grace - Quakers in Radnorshire” by Trevor Macpherson

 

An insightful look into the culture and history of the Quaker community of Radnorshire, Wales prior to and following the James family’s immigration to Pennsylvania in 1682.  Written in 1999 for Radnorshire Society Transactions, Trevor Mr. Macpherson’s essay identifies three separate James family ancestors including: David James of Llandegley - the Quaker uncle, founding member of the Radnor Meeting at Pales and likely focus of much of the James family’s religious persecution.  Also mentioned is David James of Glascwm, the “mariner” and nephew of David James of Llandegley, who crossed the Atlantic to Pennsylvania in August 1682.  Margaret James - the Quaker sister of David James the immigrant is also clearly identified.  Mr. Macpherson’s unbiased and exemplary description of the rise and subsequent decline of the Quaker movement in Radnorshire from the 17th century through the 19th century provides further insight into the circumstances and early history of the James family of Glascwm and Llandegley.  The James Family Archives is proud to present: A Measure of Grace - Quakers in Radnorshir by Trevor Macpherson.

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James Family Founding Documents:

 

In May of 2012 the James Family Archives made direct contact with Barbara James of Wilmington North Carolina, the wife of David Bushrod James, III, a direct patrilineal descendant of Evan James (1715-1794) of Radnor Township, Pennsylvania and David James (c1660-1739) of Radnorshire, Wales. Barbara revealed that the original James family founding documents, dating back more than 300 years and spoken of by Isabella Batchelder James in her 1874 work, “Memorial of Thomas Potts, Junior” were, in fact... still in existence!  Amazingly, these documents are still in the possession of the James family, handed down nine generations from David James (c1660-1739) to Evan James (1715-1794) to Griffith James (?-1812) to Isaac James (1777-1874) to David James (1805-1873) to William Henry James (1841-1893) to David Bushrod James, Sr. (1874-1933) to David Bushrod James, Jr. (1905-1960) to David Bushrod James, III.

 

These three historic documents consist of William Penn’s 1682 Grant of Land to Welsh Settlers including David James signed in July of 1682 in Welshpoole, Wales; the 1704 Confirmation of Land in Radnor Township, Pennsylvania to David Meredith by William Penn’s Land Commissioners in Philadelphia; and, the 1718 Indenture for Land in Radnor Township by David Meredith and Rees Prees to David James.  All three of these priceless historic documents predate the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America and formally memorialize the acquisition by David James (c1660-1739) of 100 acres of land in Radnor Township, Pennsylvania in 1682 and the acquisition of an adjoining 153 acres in 1718.  

 

After two years of formal transcription and analysis and nearly 300 years of total obscurity, the James Family Archives is proud to present the James Family Founding Documents.

1718 Indenture for Land in Radnor Township by David Meredith and Rees Prees to David James

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When examining the early history of David James (ca 1660-1739) and the James family of Pennsylvania between the years 1682 and 1718 one quickly encounters several questions concerning the family’s early years in the Welsh Tract.  For example, if David James acquired rights in 1682 to the 100 acres of land he would settle in Radnor Township, Pennsylvania through the purchase of an “indenture” from Richard Davies in Welshpool, Wales, why then was he compelled to re-purchase this same land in 1718 from David Meredith at the time he expanded his holdings to 253 acres?  Another interesting question is whether or not David James ever occupied the lands in Radnor Township his daughter Mary James, as his executrix, disposed of between 1695 and 1702.  And perhaps the most perplexing question of all is why William Penn’s land commissioners would report David James as dead in 1702?

 

         Although these questions are not specifically answered in the following essay written by Franklin L. Burns in 1982 for the benefit of the Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society, his analysis of the management and distribution of the lands within the Welsh Tract by William Penn’s land commissioners goes far to help us understand exactly what was going on in the early days of settlement within the Pennsylvania wilderness that came to be known as the Welsh Tract.  Mr. Burns analysis of the first three decades within this region clearly demonstrate that many of the first settlers within the colony, especially the Welsh Quakers, quickly found themselves at odds with Penn’s surveyors, land commissioners and the speculators who sought to use their influence to turn a quick profit.  Many early settlers found themselves intentionally and deliberately disenfranchised from their lands as well as the communities they sought to establish.  

 

          David James and his family were, undoubtedly, Welsh Quakers upon their arrival in Penn’s colony.  They were among the very first to settle the wilderness that would be known as the Welsh Tract and that portion later laid out and identified as Radnor Township.  As such they were required to contend with the evolving religious, political and financial aspirations of their fellow immigrants as they arrived.  The aspirations of David James and his fellow Welsh Quakers were not always the same as the land commissioners William Penn left behind to manage his colony after his departure in 1684.  As Mr. Burns’ article vividly describes, many of the prejudices and politics of the old world quickly crept into the life of the colonists in Penn’s grand experiment.  The James Family Archives is pleased to present: The Welsh Tract In Pennsylvania Especially in Regard to the Causal Inclusion Therein of Easttown and Tredyffrin by Franklin Burns.

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The Welsh Tract in Pennsylvania Considered Especially in Regard to

The Causal Inclusion Therein of Easttown and Tredyffrin

 

By Franklin L. Burns

 

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“Building America”

The Colonial History of David James (c.1660-1739) of Radnorshire, Wales

 

By Larry P. James

 

For the first time ever... the “story” of David James (c. 1660-1739) of Radnorshire, Wales is told all the way through, beginning with his arrival in Pennsylvania in 1682, and ending with his passing in 1739.  The Colonial History of David James represents more than thirty years of continuous research and the culmination of the combined research efforts of multiple James family historians.  Never before have all the obscure and archaic details of the life and times of David James been assembled in one place setting forth the mosaic of the James family’s first generation in North America.  The James Family Archives is proud to present “Building America” The Colonial History of David James of Radnorshire Wales.

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Coming soon!

 

The James-Alspaugh Expedition of 2001:

 

In the Spring of 2001 a team of James family researchers met in San Antonio, Texas for the purpose of retracing the line of Joel L. James (1811-1875) who departed Bedford County, Virginia  in 1849 along with his brothers George Washington James (1812-1864) and John James (1814-1863).  Two of those brothers, Joel and John would settle in north eastern Texas in 1852 while George Washington James would migrate further north to La Fayette County, Missouri.  This intrepid team of James family researchers consisted of Dwayne James of San Antonio, Texas; Larry James of Sacramento, California; George Alspaugh of Columbia, Tennessee; Ruth Alspaugh of Columbia, Tennessee; and, Eldon James of Madera, California.  The team crisscrossed the state of Texas working backwards in time tracing the migrations of the descendents of Joel L. James from their arrival in the 1850’s, their migration to Fannin County during the 1860’s, the turn south to Hunt County in the 1870’s and the family’s movement westward to Jones County at the turn of the century.  During the expedition, the team documented many important points of historical interest including homes and property occupied by the James family in Texas as well as the tombstones and final resting places of many James family ancestors.  Please join us now as the James Family Archives proudly presents:  

The James-Alspaugh Expedition of 2001.

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Photo Above: the Lost Line of Enoch,  the family of Elias Walter James (1836-1917) of Pogo, Franklin County, Alabama - Back Row left to right: Daniel Johnson James (1868-1998) holding rifle, Joe Guyton James (1878-1902), Nancy Catherine “Kate” James Grissom (1875-1938), Naomi Samantha “Dobe” James George (1880-1933), Marthie Melisey “Mattie” James Culligan, “Lula” James Thomas, Jennie Burton James (Enoch James’s daughter), Lula James (nee Grissom).

Front Row left to right: Modena Alice “Dena” James (1883-1969), Elias holding unidentified grandson, Cynthia Richardson, Cynthia (behind), Nannie, Amos James holding Elmer, Letha James (back), Mollie James (front), Elias “Shug” James, Thomas Enoch “Tom” James holding Floy James, Edna James, John James holding Myrtle James, Lillie James and Bertha James. People in the photograph were identified by Joe Clark James (1896-1985), son of “Ab” Alfred Clark James; son of Elias and Cynthia but not pictured in the photo.

 

Elias James fought as part of the valiant Company “E” of the 4th Alabama “Roddey’s” Calvary, CSA in the War of Northern Aggression. Elias James married Cynthia McGary Richardson, (b. 4 Mar 1847, d. 18 May 1915). They settled at Pogo, just West of Pleasant Site, where they resided in a log cabin that had a “beautiful cold water spring” and a “milk house where milk was kept cool in the running water”. This is at the base of the Freedom Hills, overlooking the beautiful valley.  The buildings are now gone but the James cemetery is still there, hidden in the woods above where the cabin once stood. The cabin is the backdrop for the family photograph.

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Coming soon!

 

The James Family in...

“Burning Kansas!”

When the James brothers left Bedford County, Virginia in 1849, the family of George Washington James (1812-1864) including his son James W. James (1837-1897), to the left,  headed west to the Missouri-Kansas border lands.  Little did they know that their arrival in 1852 would place them directly in the heart of the most brutal and bloody pre-Civil War conflict in American history.  Confronted with the Missouri-Kansas Border War of 1854, the James family was forced to contend with renegade Indians, Jayhawkers, Secessionists and Bushwhackers in a brutal fight for survival.  Dark legends swirl around this tumultuous period that became a precursor to the Civil War.  Tales of daring raids, betrayal and revenge abound.  Much of this dark history in the James family has been locked away for over 100 years, but dark takes refuse to die.  After many careful years of research, the historians at the James Family Archives have carefully sifted through the facts and the fiction to bring you this account.  Caution!  You may find what your are about to read very disturbing.  So be careful where you tread and whom you cross as you join the James Family in... “Burning Kansas!”

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In Search Of The Lost Line of Enoch

There is a legend in the James family of an orphaned son, a rebel, a misfit who was among the first of his family to depart the Colony of Pennsylvania following the family’s arrival in 1682.  Where he went has remained a mystery for over 200 years.  This orphaned boy, the first son of the first son, has remained something of an enigma in the annals of James family history. Not until the recent advent of genetic research has anyone been able to trace the path of this elusive James family ancestor or his progeny.  For more than two centuries our family has been searching for….

The Lost Line of “Enoch.”

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David James (c1660-1739)

Of Radnorshire, Wales

Who Arrived in Pennsylvania October 28, 1682

Thomas James

(1690-1753)

Evan James

(1715-1794)

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Enoch

James

(1739-?)

Daniel

James

(1750-1817)

Samuel

James

(1754-1812)

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Elias

James

(1775-1840)

Thomas

James

(1781-?)

Jonathan

James

(1785-1843)

Joshua

James

(1778-1823)

Evan

James

(1784-1844)

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Isaac

James

(1797-1880)

Thomas

James

(1803-1850

David

James

(1807-1889)

Otey

James

(1813-1907)

Joel

L. James

(1811-1875)

George

W. James

(1812-1864)

Oliver

James

(1819-1880)

Jonas

K. James

(1812-1905)

Joel

E. James

(1826-1904)

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William

E. James

(1823-1881)

Elias

W. James

(1836-1917)

Andrew

J. James

(1844-1902)

Isaac

T. James

(1844-1888)

David

S. James

(1850-1909)

William

G. James

(1832-1908)

La Fayette

James

(1864-1942)

William

W. James

(1866-1927)

Thomas

K. James

(1848-1926)

John

C. James

(1856-1939)

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Ralph

E. James

(1859-1937)

William

A. James

(1860-1923)

Alfred

C. James

(1870-1936)

Edward

N. James

(1901-1982)

Albert

L. James

(1871-1948)

David

B. James

(1879-1968)

Braxton

L. James

(1864-1923)

Joseph

A. James

(1899-1945)

Howard

W. James

(1906-1950)

Lester

W. James

(1893-1969)

James

O. James

(1911-2001)

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Harvey

M. James

(1884-1973)

Clarence

B. James

(1896-1955)

Joe

C. James

(1896-1985)

Malcolm

W. James

(1928-2017)

William

T. James

(1908-1974)

David

B. James

(1908-2004)

Marvin

L. James

(1895-1969)

Robert

J. James

(1925-2016)

Lee

A. James

#39245

Warren

K. James

#35874

James

O. James

#80909

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William

R. James

(1920-1982)

Truett

C. James

(1925-2011)

Joe

M. James

#40303

Edward

L. James

#750520

Wilbur

G. James

#37879

Richard

D. James

Eldon

L. James

(1940-2014)

Steven

B. James

#914135

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William

R. James

(1942-)

John

James

#656536

Timothy

D. James

#294214

Larry

P. James

#74812

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Jonathan

C. James

#108350

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R1B/R-1M269 Y-DNA Halogroup

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Found!  James Family’s Certificate of Removal from the Radnorshire Men’s Monthly Meeting dated July 20, 1683:

 

Following the arrival of David James (circa 1660-1739) and Margaret Jane Mortimer from Llandegley and Glascwm parishes of Radnorshire, Wales with Sir William Penn on October 28, 1682, the James family was in need of a letter of reference, a record of good standing from the community in Wales from where they had come.  This document was essential in order for the family to be officially accepted into the community of Quakers who settled Radnor Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania originally known as the “Welsh Tract.”

 

Because of their haste at the time of their departure, the James family was unable to secure their “certificate of removal” before their departure from Wales in the Fall of 1682.  After their arrival in Pennsylvania a request was made to the Men's Monthly Meeting of Quakers in Radnorshire, Wales to have a “Certificate of Removal” prepared and sent to them in the Colony of Pennsylvania.  It took eleven months for the request to reach Wales and for the certificate to be prepared and returned to David James in Pennsylvania.

 

The Certificate of Removal contained vital statistical information pinpointing where the James family came from, the date of their arrival in Pennsylvania and their membership in Religious Society of Friends.  An actual image of this record as recorded in the Records of the Haverford Monthly Meeting has finally been uncovered and can be found here: The James Family’s Certificate of Removal dated July 20, 1683.

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James Family Y-DNA Research

 

     In February 2008 James family historian Lee Allyn James of Olympia, Washington began tracking the results of the James Family Y-DNA Surname Project sponsored by Family Tree DNA Labs.  This research tracks the genetic patrilineal descendants of various men with the surname “James” from David James (circa 1660-1739) of Llandegley and Glascwm parishes of Radnorshire, Wales who immigrated to Pennsylvania in 1682.  In July 2010, Lee published his findings in the Olympia Genealogical Society Quarterly, Volume XXXVI, No. 3 at pages 6-13 in an article entitled, What We Have Learned From a Y-DNA Surname Project.  The chart below represents the fruit of this scientific research and those men, identified by their DNA Kit Number, who have been determined to be male genetic descendants of David James.  These men considered to be part of the R1B/R-1M269 Y-DNA Halogroup for purposes of tracking human migration over the centuries. These men also share the same Y-DNA chromosome inherited from their father with a difference of four or fewer “mutations” in their genetic markers. The interactive chart below includes a link to the genealogy of these men and represents the most up to date results of the ongoing James family Y-DNA research begun by Lee and documented within the James Family Archives.

JAMES FAMILY BIBLE DISCOVERED!:  On September 27, 2017 Family Historian Steve James of Fort Worth, Texas made contact with Jeffrey Negus of Blue Springs, Missouri.  Mr. Negus, provided Steve with information concerning our family’s ancestry that had been handed down to him by his mother Violet Nadine (Julian) Negus (1929-2013), who had received it from her mother Hazel Juanita (Claunch) Julian (1894-1968), who had received it from her father George Washington Claunch (1867-1929), who had received it from his mother Mary Susan James (1836-1905) of Bedford County, Virginia who married John J. Claunch (1836-1877) in Johnson County, Missouri.  According to Mr. Negus, the information in his possession was originally recorded in a “very old” James/Claunch family Bible. The following historic information was extracted from the James/Claunch family Bible:

 

· The father of David James was Thomas;

· David James married Margaret Jane Mortimer on November 27, 1680 at Radnorshire, Wales;

· Margaret Mortimer was the daughter of Edward Mortimer (1631-1704);

· Edward Mortimer was born in Fyfield, Witltshire, England near Mrlborogh;

· Edward Mortimer married Catherine Houston in 1658 in Yatesbury, Wiltshire, England.

· Edward Mortimer died on November 2, 1704 at Wiltshire;

· Catherine (Houston) Mortimer died in 1702 in Philadelphia at age 62;

· Sarah Henderson, the second wife of Thomas James (1690-1753) and the daughter of Alexander and Jane Henderson died on November 9, 1800 in Pennsylvania;

· Alexander Henderson was born in 1696 in Scotland and died in 1771 in Pennsylvania at age 75;

· Jane Henderson died November 25, 1775 at age 78;

· The parents of Alexander Henderson were John Henderson, born April 12, 1660 at Dunfemline, Fife, Scotland;

· John Henderson married Janet Bairdie in 1682.

· John Henderson died April 25, 1746 in Dunfemline, Fife, Scotland;

· The father of John Henderson was John Henderson born October 17, 1626 at Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Scotland.

· John Henderson, Sr. married Margaret Hamilton in 1653;

· Margaret Hamilton was born in 1635 in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland and died there on March 28, 1671;

· John Henderson, Sr. died January 26, 1683 at Fife, Scotland.

 

Here at the Archives we are tremendously excited about this treasure-trove of historical information provided to us by Jeffrey Negus.  Not only does the information expand our knowledge of the family prior to its immigration to Pennsylvania, it also independently confirms much of the research that has taken place over the past 30 years.  With these records we have confirmation that David James of Glascwm and Llandegley, Radnorshire, Wales was the son of Thomas ap James ap David of Llandegley Parish as previously identified in the Records of Mssrs. Green & Nixon.  We are also able to now trace the genealogy of David’s wife Margaret Mortimer back to Edward Mortimer (1631-1704) of Wiltshire, England.

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The James Family of Radnorshire, Wales

339 Years in North America!

October 28, 1682 - October 28, 2021

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Isaac

D. James

(1770-1853)

Elias

James

(1797-1870)

Thomas

M. James

(1861-1936)

Jesse

James, Sr.

(18921978)

Paul

James

(1927-2001)

Brian

R. James

#919098

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Elias

James

(1744-1789)

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Isaac James

(unknown)

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Spotlight on an Historical James Family Member...

 

Bushrod Washington James, A.M., M.D. (1836-1903) the great, great, great grandson of David James (circa 1660-1739) of Radnorshire, Wales was an American surgeon, writer and philanthropist who lived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Bushrod graduated from medical school in 1857 and served as president of the Homeopathic Medical Society of Pennsylvania.  He bequeathed properties in Philadelphia to establish the Washington James Eye and Ear Institute, a free hospital for the treatment of diseases of the eyes, throat, and lungs.  Bushrod was a volunteer surgeon at the battles of Antietam and Gettysburg during the Civil War.   He donated three houses, books, jewels and relics to the establishment of a library for children and the elderly that eventually became the Bushrod Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia.  Bushrod also donated land to the city of Oakland, California for the establishment of Bushrod Park and land in Coronado, California for the establishment of the Bushrod Washington James Institute.  See Bushrod’s life story in the Library Section under biographies.

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Uncovering The Ohio Line

The photograph below was presented to the James Family Archives during the Summer of 2020 by David P. Curtis of Dousman, Wisconsin.  It is believed to have been taken circa 1910 on the occasion of a reunion of the descendants of Jesse K. James (1814-1896) and Mary Elizabeth (Harvey) James (1813-1900) of Jefferson County, Ohio.  David Curtis is the great, great grandson of Evan James (1842-1938), the son of Jesse K. James.  Evan is the bearded elderly gentleman with his grandchild, Ruth E. Tweedy (1906-1970), seated on his lap appearing fourth row down and in the fourth position from the right. The elderly man seated directly to the right of Evan is his brother David Ridgeway James (1847-1930). The couple in the third row down, second and third position from the right appear to be Mary Pearl (James) Tweedy (1873-1961) and her husband Allen Luther Tweedy (1870-1942).  There are approximately 77 individuals in this photo.  Here at the Archives we are endeavoring to identify as many as possible.  If there is a family member in this photo you recognize, do not hesitate to contact us at info@jamesfamilyarchives.net.

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George

W. James

(1807-1880)

John

W. James

(1843-1914)

William

E. James

(1878-1933)

Glenn

P. James

(1919-1993)

Glenn

P. James

#419418

 

 

?

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David

James

(unkown)

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“NEW” - Friends of Radnor United Methodist Church Fundraiser

 

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     We are pleased to announce the James Family Archives has launched a fundraiser for the historic preservation of Radnor United Methodist Church in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.  “Radnor UMC” was originally founded in October of 1783 when the land upon which our ancestors David and Margaret James settled in 1682 was donated for the purpose of building a Methodist Church.  The current Church standing on the site was constructed in 1833. It is the second oldest Methodist Church in the United States and in need of repair to protect its historic integrity.  We are reaching out to members of the James family, friends, fellow supporters of the Church and historic preservationists everywhere to help us save this historic landmark.  Won’t you please consider partnering with us and making a donation. Simply click on our PayPal fundraiser link:  “Friends of Radnor United Methodist Church or, mail a check to our Treasurer, Kathleen Dooley-Wolfe, at 1055 Chinquapin Hill Road in Vinton, Virginia 24179.  If you choose to donate by check, please be sure to make your check payable to “Kathleen Dooley-Wolfe.”  In the memo line write “FRUMC Fundraiser.”  Radnor United Methodist Church represents the oldest and longest legacy (“238 years”) of the James family in North America. With everyone pitching in we can save this historic landmark for generations to come.

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