“He who careth not from whence he came, careth little whither he goeth.” Daniel Webster

VOL.  III, NO. 2  JUNE, 1955

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(NOTE: Here appears a photograph, beneath which is the following caption:)

ELIJAH SPARKS, 1840-1862

Confederate Soldier

Son of William C. and Jane (Alexander) Sparks

(View Photograph)


THE SPARKS QUARTERLY, published by The Sparks Family Association
Paul E. Sparks, President, 155 N. Hite Ave., Louisville 6, Kentucky
Oral A. Sparks, Vice-President, R.F.D., Clio, Iowa
Melva (Sparks) Bidlack, Sec’y.-Treas., 1131 Granger Ave. Ann Arbor, Mich.
William Perry Johnson, Historian-Genealogist, Box 531, Raleigh, N.C.
Russell E. Bidlack, Editor, 1131 Granger Ave., Ann Arbor, Michigan.


[Editor's note: The following record has been compiled chiefly from data supplied by Mrs. Stella McKay Mewhinney, great-granddaughter of Colonel Sparks.]

William Crain Sparks was born in Tennessee on June 14, 1798. Little has been learned of his parentage, but it is known that his father’s name was Richard Sparks who, according to family tradition, was born in Scotland and settled first in Tennessee and later in Georgia. The maiden name of William’s mother was Mildred Cram.

In 1834 members of the Cram and Sparks families came to Texas, most of them settling near San Augustine and Nacogdoches. Future research will doubtless reveal the relationship between the various persons named Sparks who came to Texas in 1834, hut at present we can only speculate that they were close relatives, There was a Captain Dick Sparks of San Augustine in 1840 (see The West Texas Frontier by J. Carrill McConnell, p. 206) and in 1844 William C. Sparks deeded land to a James H. Sparks of Nacogdoches. There was also a Stephen Franklin Sparks, born April 7, 1319, in Mississippi, who emigrated to what is now San Augustine County with his parents in 1834 (see Heroes of San Jacinto by S. H, Dixon and L, W. Kemp, p, 350), and a William F. Sparks, born in Laurence County, Mississippi, in 1814, son of Richard and Elizabeth Sparks, joined his parents in 1834 and lived two miles south-west of Douglass, in Nacogdoches County (see The Handbook of Texas, 1952, Vol. 2, p, 649.)

William Cram Sparks did not settle near his relatives in Nacogdoches, but he and his wife made their home near Wheelock in what; is now Robertson County. On Oct, 20, 1834, he received title from the Mexican government to a league of land (about 4,439 acres) in “Robertson’s Colony” situated on the south side of what is now Little River some ten or fifteen miles below the present town of Belton in Bell County. This was located in the midst of hostile Indian territory and Mr. Sparks made no attempt to survey his land until Nov., 1835, when he loaded an ox wagon with corn and, with his Negro man Jack and his father-in-law, Michael Reed, set out to seek a camping site on the “Sparks League.” They chose a spot on the “Rio San Andres” (now Little River), and constructed a pen in which to place their corn. The entire country around them was a vast but beautiful solitude with but two other pioneers (named Welsh and Taylor) within a radius of many miles. After building their corn pen, Mr. Reed crossed the river to spend the night with John Welsh, leaving Sparks and Jack at the new camping site. During the night, Welsh and Reed heard shots from across the river and knew that Indians had attacked the camping party. When morning came they crossed the river and, finding no trace of Sparks and his man, assumed that they had been carried off by the savages. Actually Sparks and Jack had been able to hide in a thicket until the Indians left and at daybreak had set out for home. Before going many miles Sparks met two men, brothers named Riley, with two wagons, their effects, wives and children, destined for the same area where Sparks had been attacked. Undaunted by the account given by Sparks, the brothers continued on their journey. A few miles further on the Rileys encountered a war party which was on the trail of Sparks and Jack; a skirmish ensued during which one of the Riley brothers was killed along with five of the Indians. The remaining savages took to their heels and did not pursue Sparks and Jack any further. (This incident in the life of William C. Sparks is related by James T. De Shields in his Border Wars of Texas published in 1912. Mr. De Shields quotes John Henry Brown.)


In 1836 Texas proclaimed its independence from Mexico and, after considerable bloodshed, the Republic of Texas came into existence. William C. Sparks helped to win the military victories which made independence possible, for on Jan. 17, 1836, he joined the Ranger Company organized by Captain Sterling C. Robertson. He continued to serve the Republic during its infancy and by 1838 had advanced to the rank of Colonel. Mrs. Mewhinney owns a document signed by Col. Sparks on July 1, 1839, by which he acknowledged payment from the Republic for his services in the Texas Militia from Aug. 5 to Aug. 22, 1838. As a colonel he was not only entitled to a salary himself, but was also given monetary allowances for two servants. Following is a photograph of Col. Sparks’s signature on this document:

(Here appears a reproduction of the signature “Wm. C. Sparks“.)

Before coming to Texas, Col. Sparks had married, about 1823, Sarah Reed, born Sept. 13, 1807, daughter of Michael and Martha (Burnett) Reed. Two years after moving to Texas, Mrs. Sparks died at Wheelock (1836), leaving six small children. The following year, while visiting relatives in Nacogdoches, Col. Sparks met Mrs. Jane (Alexander) Skelton, born Jan, 28, 1807, widow of John Skelton. Col. Sparks and Mrs. Skelton were married on Sept. 4, 1837, and lived for several years thereafter in Nacogdoches County.

From Nov. 14, 1842, to Jan. 16, 1843, Col. Sparks was a member of the House of Representatives from Nacogdoches County in the Seventh Congress of the Texas Republic. By June, 1848, Col. Sparks had moved to Brazos County and in 1852 he settled near the present village of Sparks where he became a prominent farmer and stock raiser. This village was named after Col. Sparks and is located on land which he once owned. It is on the Missouri, Kansas, and Texas Railroad in the south central part of Bell County and was a post office in 1904. The office was later replaced by rural delivery from Holland. In 1949 the population was reported as sixty-one.

Col. William C. Sparks died on Oct. 10, 1857, and his wife Jane died Nov. 26, 1869. Both are buried in the Volo Cemetery, five miles north of Holland in Bell County.

Four days prior to his death, Col. Sparks made his will which reads as follows:

I, William C. Sparks, being of sound mind and memory do briefly make the following words and figures my last will and testament, and it is my wish and desire that Jane Sparks, my present wife, and Hiram Hanover of Robertson County and State of Texas, act as Executrix and Executor of this will.

Item first--I hereby give and bequeath to Martha Ann Spence, formerly Martha Ann Sparks (my daughter), Harriet Spencer, formerly Harriet Sparks (my daughter), Elizabeth Bryant, formerly Elizabeth Sparks (my daughter), and to the children of Sarah Hanover, decsd, formerly Sarah Sparks, my daughter, and also to Martha Ann Spencer, the daughter of Nancy Spencer, formerly Nancy Sparks, my daughter, the following described property, to wit: Three thousand acres (more or less) of land in Brazos County and State of Texas, and one thousand of land in Vanzandt County and State of Texas. The above mentioned tracts of land to be divided as follows to wit: Into five different or separate parcels of equal value. One parcel for my daughter, Martha Ann Spence, one parcel for my daughter, Harriet Spencer, one parcel for my daughter, Elizabeth Bryant, one parcel for the surviving children of my daughter (decsd) Sarah Hanover, and one parcel for the daughter of my decsd daughter, Nancy Spencer (viz) Martha Ann Spencer.

Item second--I also give and bequeath to the above mentioned Martha Ann Spencer, the following described property to wit: Three hundred acres of land out of a tract of twenty-eight hundred acres owned by me in Henderson County and State of Texas, and also a good horse, saddle and bridle and five cows and calves.

Item third--In regard to the balance of my property of every description, I hereby dispose of it as follows, subject to the provisions and conditions hereinafter mentioned. My league of land on which I now live, two labors of land on the waters of the Salado and Lampasas in Bell County, Texas, and one third of a league of land on the Brazos (supposed to be in Johnson County) Texas. My negroes, Liz and child, Evaline and Child, Manda, Emaline, Til, Alick, Joe and Jack, my stock of horses, cattle, hogs and cc., I give and bequeath to my children by my present wife, viz,, Clara Jane Cavitt, formerly Clara Jane Sparks, John A. Sparks, Elijah Sparks, William Sparks, Minerva Sparks, and Samuel Sparks, share and share alike or in other words, to be divided equally among them.

Item fourth--I hereby give and bequeath to my last mentioned children, the children of my present wife, the balance of the twenty-eight hundred acres of land (say 2500) in Henderson County and State of Texas, share and share alike, or in other words to be equally divided among them.

Item fifth--I hereby give and bequeath to my wife, Jane Sparks, for the term of her natural life, two hundred acres to include the dwelling house, farm and other improvements out of my league of land in Bell County on which I now reside.
[Witnesses] Isaac Casey [signed] Wm. C. Sparks
Frank Pendleton [dated] October 6th, 1857.

In January, 1858, an inventory was taken of Col. Sparks’s estate. From the list of his possessions it is obvious that he died a wealthy man:

4000 acres of H. R. land in Bell County-------------- $12,000
2 labors of land in Bell County------------------------ $2,124
1/3 league of land supposed to be in Johnson Co. $2,952
3000 acres of land H. R. League, Brazos Co.------ $6,000
1000 acres of land, Vanzandt Co.----------------------- $2,000
2800 acres of land, Henderson Co.-------------------- $2,800
Liz and child, Negroes-------------------------------------- $1,200
Evaline, negro------------------------------------------------- $900
Manda, negro-------------------------------------------------- $600
Emaline, negro------------------------------------------------ $500
Til, blind and worth nothing--------------------------------
Alick------------------------------------------------------------- $1,000
Joe, negro----------------------------------------------------- $600
Jack, negro---------------------------------------------------- $450
Sam Houston, horse---------------------------------------- $200
Romilus, horse------------------------------------------------ $200
Thirty head horses, $65 ------------------------------------ $1,950
525 head of cattle-------------------------------------------- $3,150
50 head of hogs---------------------------------------------- $20
6 yoke of oxen------------------------------------------------ $240
Farming utensils---------------------------------------------- $70
Household and Kitchen Furniture------------------------ $250
Crop of cotton, 12 bales, No. 35------------------------- $420
Corn and fodder---------------------------------------------- $210
One carriage-------------------------------------------------- $75


By his first wife, Sarah (Reed) Sparks, Col. Sparks had six children. The exact order of their birth is not known and little has been learned of their descendants. The only data which we have is as follows:

1. Stephen Sparks, born 1824, died, unmarried, in Bell County in 1857.
2. Martha Ann Sparks, married Isaac Spence.
3. Nancy Sparks, died before 1857; married Alex Spencer. She left a daughter
named Martha Ann Spencer who was mentioned in Col, Sparks’s will.
4. Harriet Sparks, married Alex Spencer.
5. Sarah Sparks, born 1833, died in Bell County in 1857; married Hiram Hanover.
6. Elizabeth Sparks, born l836; married (1st) LaFayette Bryant, by whom she had
children: Jesse, LaFayette, and John. She married (2nd) Joe Reveal, by whom she had: Minnie, Betty, and Frank. 

By his second wife, Jane (Alexander) Skelton Sparks, Col. Sparks had six more children, as follows,

7. Clara Jane Sparks, born 1837, died 1920 in Wheelock, Texas. She married
Volney Cavitt, son of Andrew and Ann Cavitt,born 1824 in Bolivar, Tenn., died 1903 in Wheelock.
8. John Alexander Sparks. born 1839, died 1863, buried at Vole, Texas, He married
Martha Reed, daughter of William and Emeline (Cobb) Reed, born 1844 in Bell County, died at Cameron, Texas, in 1933. They had one child, a daughter named Emma who was born about 1860 and died about. 1878 at Cameron, Texas.
9. Elijah Sparks, born 1840 (his photograph appears on the cover of this issue) He
was a Confederate soldier and died of brain fever at Camp Nelson near Little Rock, Arkansas, on Nov. 23, 1862. He married in Bell County in 1861, Sarah Atlas Reed, daughter of William and Emeline (Cobb) Reed, born in Bell County in 1847, died near Holland, Texas, in 1907. They had one child, a daughter, named Jane Sparks who was born in Bell County in 1863 and died near Holland, Texas, in 1907, Jane Sparks married in Bell County in 1852, Albert Johnston McKay, son of Daniel. and Jane (Bryant) McKay, born in Bell County in 1862 and died in Holland, Texas in 1920. Albert and Jane (Sparks) McKay had four children: (1) Stella McKay, born 1883, married Sam Mewhinney; (2) Sparks McKay, born 1885; (3) Seth Shepard McKay, born l888; and (4) Albert McKay, Jr., born 1890, died 1952.
10. Minerva Sparks, born in 1842, died near Holland, Texas, in 1918. She married
Michael Reed, son of John B. andElizabeth (Treevitt) Reed, born 1837. He was killed in the Civil War in 1865.
11. William Crain Sparks, Jr., born 1844, died 1921. He married (lst) Frances
Daniel, born 1848 and died in Bell County in 1888. He married (2nd) Lou Harmon Dallas. By his first wife, Frances (Daniel) Sparks, William Crain Sparks, Jr., had seven children, as follows:
(1) Clarence Sparks, born in Bell County in I873, died in Alpine, Texas in 1919. He married (1st) Fern Sumrall who died inCameron, Texas in 1894, He married (2nd) Mamie Carter.
(2) Nannie Sparks, born in Bell County in 1875 is living in Santa Anna, Texas. She married Roscoe Mailer who died several years ago. 
(3) Jennie Sparks, twin of Nannie, born in Bell County in 1875, is living in Santa Anna, Texas. She married John Whetstone.
(4) Wade Hampton Elijah Sparks, born in Bell County April 6, 1878, died at Rogers, Texas, Aug. 3, 1933. He  married in BellCounty on July 14, 1901, Minnie Pearl Clark who was born March 26, 1885. They had four chi1dren: 
     (1) John William Sparks, born April 2, 1902, married Maybelle Rae; they live in Rogers, Texas, and have two sons, J. W. Sparks, Jr. and Sgt. Wayne Clark Sparks 
     (2) Dora Sparks, born Aug. 9, 1904, married Melvin R. Cobb in l928; they live in Cayuga, Texas.
     (3) Barney Clark Sparks, born Dec. 9, 1909, married Mary LaWanda


Weaver in 1944; they live in Rogers, Texas and have a daughter, Carolyn Sue, and a son, William Barney;
(4) Clyde James Sparks, born Nov.29, 1913, married Vena Clinard James in 1947; they live in Rogers, Texas, and have a son, C. J. Sparks and a daughter, Dora Jean
(5)  Dora Sparks, fifth child of William Crain Sparks, Jr., ws born in Bell County in 1882 and is living in Houston, Texas.  She married Edward Stone in 1903 in Bell County;  he died several years ago.
(6) Clara Sparks, sixth child of William Cram Sparks, Jr., was born in Bell County in 1884 and is living in Houston, Texas.  She married Morey Beringer who died at Houston in 1946.
(7) Fred Sparks, seventh child of William Cram Sparks, Jr., was born in Bell County in 1886, died at Lampason, Texas, in 1909. He married Gertie Daniels.
11.  William Crain Sparks Jr. had two children by his second wife, Lou Harman
(Dallas) Sparks.
(8) Vera Sparks, born in Bell County in 1894, is living at Waco, Texas. She married Joe E. Warhol.
(9) Robert Sparks, born in Bell County in 1897, is living in the southern part of Texas.

12. Samuel Alexander Sparks, 12th child of Col. William C. Sparks, was born in
1846; died in Bell County, Texas, in 1897,  He married in 1865, Mary Fisher, daughter of King and Mary Fisher. He served four successive terms as Sheriff of Bell County, retired for one term and was elected to a fifth, being sheriff when he died. Samuel Alexander and Mary (Fisher) Sparks had nine children, as follows: 

(1) Elijah Sparks, born in Bell County in 1868, died in Eastland, Texas, in 1951, He married Betty Levy who died in 1947.
(2) George Sparks, a doctor of medicine, was born in Bell County about 1870. He died many years ago,
(3) Mary (Mollie) Sparks, was born in Bell County about 1872. She married Ed Graves and is living at Temple, Texas.
(4) Sam Sparks, born in Bell County on Feb, 5, 1873, died in Austin, Texas, on July 6, 1933. He married in Corsicana, Texas,on Nov. 15, 1906, Mrs. Bertha (Jones) Mulkey. Sam Sparks attended Benton Male Academy,  Wedemeyer School at Salado, and Belton Business College. He was City Secretary at Belton from 1894 to 1897 and Sheriff of Bell County from 1897 to 1903, when he was elected president of the Texas Sheriff’s Association. During the time Sam Sparks was Texas State Treasurer (1906-1912), he established residence in Austin where he later was organizer and president of the Texas Trust Company. He led drives for funds for building the stadium of the University of Texas and the University Methodist Church.
(5) Bess Sparks was born in Bell County and is living at Belton. She married Sam McElroy who died recently.
(6) Fannie Sparks was born in Bell County in 1877, died at Belton, Texas, in 1942, She married Newt Bigham.
(7) Crocket Sparks, died many years ago at Belton, He never married.
(8) Clara Sparks, born about 1884, died years ago.
(9) Annie Sparks is living at San Antonio. She married Herbert Morgan.



Mr. Derril Sparks of Idaho Falls, Idaho, has provided the Association with an interesting account of how the town of Sparks, Kansas, received its name, Mr. Sparks obtained this data from his grandfather, Charles Clair Sparks. who was born on Sept. 22, 1882, in Sparks, Kansas, although the town was then called Highland Station.

In the spring of 1865, John Green Sparks, great-great-grandfather of Derril Sparks moved from his home in St. Joseph, Missouri, to the new and promising state of Kansas, He settled in Doniphan County, just across the river from St. Joseph, in a community which came to be called Highland Station when the C. B. & Q. Railroad came through. A few miles to the west of Highland Station there was a town known as Highland. The two names were so nearly alike that mail was frequently sent to the wrong place and travelers were often confused. Eventually the citizens of Highland Station decided that they would change the name of their town and, after discussing various possibilities, it was agreed that they would use the surname of the town’s oldest resident, It was soon discovered that the citizen claiming the earliest birth date was John Green Sparks who had been born on March 11, 1826, and so the town was renamed Sparks. This rechristening took place in 1908. John Green Sparks died April 3, 1911.,

Derril Sparks has compiled some valuable data on John Green Sparks which will he of interest to our members,. The father of John Green Sparks was named William John Sparks and was born about 1773 in Virginia. He married Mary Jane Green who was born about 1783 in Kentucky. Very little is known of William John Sparks, but he must have migrated to Kentucky from Virginia before his marriage, which probably occurred in Kentucky about 1815. He was living in Greenup County, Kentucky, in 1825. William John and Mary Jane (Green) Sparks were the parents of the following children:
1. William Sparks, born in Kentucky about 1816.
2. Patsey Sparks, born in Kentucky about 1820.
3. Isaac Sparks, born in Kentucky about 1820. He married Lucinda Thomas, daughter of James Thomas, In Greenup County, Kentucky, in 1833 (marriage bond dated March 15, 1833)
4. John Green Sparks (after whom Sparks, Kansas, was named) was born in Grreenup County on March 11, 1826. He
married in Carter County, Kentucky, on Feb. 12, 1844, Emily Henderson, born March 18, 1827, in Greenup County, died Nov, 30, 1900, daughter of Robert William and Eliza (Klink) Henderson, Both John Green Sparks and his wife are buried in the Iola Cemetery in Sparks, Kansas. (Their children are given below.)
5. James L. Sparks, born in Kentucky about 1829. He married Melinda ------.

John Green Sparks (number 4 above) and his wife, Emily (Henderson) Sparks, had fourteen children as follows:
(1) Elizabeth Jane Sparks, born in Kentucky on Jan. 27, 1845; married E. R. Parker on April 12, 1864.
(2) Robert William Sparks, born in Buchanan County, Missouri, on Jan, 18. 1842, died in Sparks, Kansas, on Dec. 22, 1922.  He married in Doniphan County, Kansas, on Jan, 18, 1872, Minerva or Geneora Zenobia Thompson, born in Farming, Kansas, in July, 1854, died in Sparks, Kansas, on Aug. 6, 1894, daughter of Joshua Wilson and Katherine (Milbourne) Thompson. They had the following children: 
(1) William Sparks, born May 26, 1873; 
(2) Iva Mahzma Sparks, born Sept. 3, 1876;
(3) Silas Sparks, born Oct. 12, 1829; 
(4) and (5) twins, son and daughter, lived only a few hours, born Sept. 22, 1881; 
(6) Charles Clair Sparks, born Sept. 22, 1882; 
(7) Susie Elmira Sparks, born May 22, 1885; 
(8) Frank Floyd Sparks, born Dee. 25, 1887;
(9) Robert Ray Sparks, born Nov. 20, 1890; and 
(10) Elis Everet Sparks, born July 19, 1894, died May 23, 1955. All were born in what is now Sparks, Kansas.
(3) Sarah Ann Sparks, born probably in St. Joseph, Missouri, Feb. 2, l849; married Nelson Rawles on Feb. 5, 1867. (4) John Henry Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Feb, 11, 1851; married Cora Blair on May 16, 1889.
(5) James Harvey Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Feb. 3, 1853; married Lowinda Wood, on June 18, 1875.
(6) Ratcliff Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, April 3, 1855; married Eliza Frazer on Nov. 11, 1875.
(7) George Cassell Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Feb. 3, 1857; died Oct. 12, 1857.
(8) Pleasant Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Oct., 6, 1858; married Martha Ritchie on Jan, 24, 1880. He went to Texas to live.
(9) Isaac Edward Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Nov. 14, 1860; married Mary Kelley on April 10, 1888.
(10) Thomas Jefferson Sparks, born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Feb. 22, 1863; died 1937, He married Julia Frazee on March 13, 1886, who died March 26, 1954,
(11) Mary Catherine Sparks, born in what is now Sparks, Kansas, May 26, 1865; married George Miller on March 30, 1884. She died in April, 1954.
(12) Alexander Sparks, born in what is now Sparks, Kansas, Dec. 14, 1867; died Nov. 25, 1881.
(13) A son, born Aug. 30, 1874, and died the same day.
(14) Hattie Sparks, born in what is now Sparks, Kansas, Nov. 7, 1876. 



Miss Joy Sparks of Ash1and, Kentucky, has supplied the following valuable data on early Sparks emigrants to America from the port of London. Miss Sparks’s cousin, Colonel Harold Sparks, is stationed in London; his wife copied these records upon the request of Joy Sparks.

1. Edward Sparks departed April, 1635, servant of Tho. Page.
2. George Sparke, listed as living at. the plantation against James Cittie, Va. on February 16, 1623. (James Cittie was doubtless intended for Jamestown.)
3. James Sparks departed from the port of London for Virginia on July 24, 1635.
4. John Sparks died at Elizabeth Cittie [Virginia] between April last and February
5. John Sparks, servant, came [to Virginia] in 1621.
6. Madame Joye Sparks lived in Barbados, Parish of St. James, on December 20, 1679. She had 12 servants, 113 acres and 150 Negroes.
7. Samuel Sparks sailed for Boston May 20, 1679.
8. Thomas Sparke owned Land in Sommer Islands (Bermuda) in 1673.
9. Thomas Sparkes, age 24, sailed in the Susan, 1616.
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One of the most important sources of genealogical material is the records which many of our forefathers carefully entered in their Family Bibles, When families were large, birthdays and anniversaries were difficult to remember and, since in most pioneer communities there was no official attempt to keep vital statistics, it was incumbent upon each family to maintain its own records. Paper was usually scarce and, if available, loose sheets were easily lost, Gradually the custom arose of noting births, marriages and deaths on blank leaves in the Family Bible, which was frequently the only book owned by pioneer families. In the nineteenth century, Bible publishers took cognizance of this custom and began inserting special pages in their large Family Bibles on which to enter the family record. These pages were usually bound between the Old and New Testaments. Members of the Association who


own or know the whereabouts of Sparks Family Bibles are urged to copy these records so that we may publish them in the Quarterly. Many times these fragile and faded leaves contain our only record not only of birth, marriage and death, but family relationships as well.

Among those who have already sent Bible records to us is Mrs. Hazel A. Spraker of Buffalo, New York, great-great-granddaughter of David Sparks whose record appears below. David Sparks’s Bible was in the possession of Mrs. Ada McFarland Lienesch of O’Fallon, Illinois, in 1936 when Mrs. Spraker obtained a copy of the family record which it contains. It is now owned by Mrs. Lienesch’s heirs.

It is believed that David Sparks was born in Rowan County, North Carolina, and, according to family tradition, his father, Joseph Sparks, was killed at the Battle of King’s Mountain about thirty miles from Charlotte, North Carolina, on Oct. 7, 1780. David Sparks moved to Kentucky in the early 1800s and about 1815 moved to St. Clair County, Illinois. He died in St. Clair County on April 25, 1845. He did not leave a will, but in the papers settling his estate there appears a list of his children, giving their names as follows: Susannah Whitesides, Elizabeth Crane, Ruth McFarland, Noah Sparks, David Sparks, and Aarie Bowler. The children who do not appear on this list had probably died before 1845. Mrs. Spraker descends from David Sparks’s fifth child, Ruth, who was born in 1808, probably in Kentucky, and died Feb. 14, 1877, in St. Clair County, Illinois. She married in St. Clair County, May 1, l823, David McFarland who was born Sept. 30, 1794, in Salem, New York, and died near O’Fallon, Illinois, on Feb, 20, 1872. Following is David Sparks’s Bible record of his family:

David Sparks son to Joseph Sparks and Mary Sparks his wife was born August the 11th day 1770.
Minta Sparks wife to David Sparks and daughter to Edward Cox and Susie Cox his wife was born Dec. 18th day 1774. [Her real name was Minta]
David Sparks and Minta Cox his wife were married Jan. 2nd, 1798.
Susannah Sparks daughter to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 19th August 1799.
Elizabeth Sparks daughter to David Sparks and Minta his wife was horn 15th August 1801.
Joseph Sparks son to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 18th December 1803.
Noah Sparks son to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 19th March 18O6..
Ruth Sparks daughter to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 19th August 1808.
Isabella Sparks daughter to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 14th March 1811.
Jarrard Cox Sparks son to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 24th June 1813.
David Sparks son to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 18th May 1816.
Araminta Sparks daughter to David Sparks and Minta his wife was born 14th June 1818.

If anyone has records pertaining to members of this family or is able to connect. his’ family tree to the above, please write to the editor so that we may learn more about. the family of David Sparks.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

When The Sparks Family Association was organized in March, 1953, one of our most enthusiastic charter members was Dr. Proctor Sparks of 2828 Hampton Street, Ashland, Kentucky. At that time the founders of the Association were not at all certain that


enough Sparks descendants would be interested in the investigation of family history to make the organization a success, but Dr. Sparks was optimistic and predicted that within two or three years there would be a membership of at least three hundred. In order to encourage the officers, Dr. Sparks announced that he would donate one hundred dollars to the Association when that goal was reached. Early in 1955 the three hundredth member joined and our president, Paul E. Sparks, notified Dr. Sparks of our success. True to his promise, Dr. Sparks mailed his check for one hundred dollars to the Secretary-Treasurer. The officers, on behalf of every member of  The Sparks Family Association, extend to Dr. Sparks their sincere thanks, and they promise to do all in their power to make the Association and The Sparks Quarterly worthy of his confidence.

Those members of the Association who trace their ancestry ‘to persons living in North Carolina will be interested to learn that two of their officers, William Perry Johnson and Russell E. Bidlack, have launched a new publication called The North Carolinian, A Quarterly Journal of Genealogy and History. The first two issues (March and June, 1955) have been published and, judging from the many words of praise which subscribers have written to the editors, The North Carolinian is meeting a definite need. Each issue contains thirty-two pages (measuring 8 1/2 x 11 inches) and is attractively printed and bound. The purpose of The North Carolinian is to aid in the collection, preservation, and dissemination of prevously unpublished records which will facilitate genealogical and historical research in North Carolina. Among the records being published currently are the following: the 1800 census of North Carolina, Quaker marriage records including the names of witnesses to these marriages, abstracts of pension applications of North Carolina soldiers of the Revolution, abstracts of wills, deeds, and tax records, Bible records of North Carolina families, and reviews of new books and articles relating, to North Carolina genealogy. The subscription rates are $3.50 per year, or $1.00 for a single issue, The editorial and business address is Box 531, Raleigh, North Carolina.

Mrs. Florence K, Rode, 125 Wheeler Avenue, Los Gatos, California, would appreciate any information which members could give her regarding the family of her grandfather, Lemuel A. Sparks. He was born somewhere in Indiana on January 29, 1824, and died in Oakland, California, in 1893. He was a farmer by occupation and crossed the plains to Portland, Oregon, in 1850, On February 27, 1847, he married Catherine Swan Masten, a widow, Who was the daughter of George Swan; she was born in Lexington, Kentucky, in 1819. The marriage took place either in Missouri or in Illinois. Lemuel A. Sparks had two brothers, Frank Sparks and William Sparks. On the back of a photograph of William and his wife there is the stamp of a gallery in Rushville, Illinois.

Once more it is our duty to report the death of a member of the Association-a duty which is particularly painful since the deceased was the father of our President, Paul E. Sparks. On February 14, 1955, James B. Sparks, age 75, of Yatesville, Kentucky, died in the King’s Daughters’ Hospital at Ashland following an illness of several months. Funeral services were conducted at. the Bradley Gap Freewill Baptist Church at Yatesville and burial was in the Sparks Cemetery at Yatesvslle. Mr. Sparks was a retired farmer. He was born January 18, 1880, at Yatesville, a son of the late Colby and Martha (Chaffin) Sparks.  He married Sarah Elizabeth Conley, daughter of Isaac Redmond and Martha (Sexton) Conley, on November 2, 1905. Mrs. Sparks died February 9, 1922. Surviving are three daughters. Mrs. Fred Davis of Ashland; Mrs, Warren Murphy of Akron, Ohio; and Mrs. Roy Fields of Catlettshury, Kentucky; two sons, Paul E, Sparks of Louisville, and James E. Sparks of Yatesville; four sisters, Mrs. Nora Jobe and Mrs. Frank Graham. both of Akron; Mrs. Flora Williams of Louisa, Kentucky; end Miss Rosa Sparks of Louisa; and thirteen grandchildren.


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Scanned and Edited by James J. Sparks