The Shirley Association has been a member of the Guild of One-Name Studies since 1988

John Shirley
b. ca 1790. Lived Henry Co. Alabama 


DNA Haplogroup R1b  (DNA matches the old colonial Shirley family of Spotsylvania Co VA, Branch #12)


John Shirley b. ca. 1790 SC according to the 1850 Henry Co AL census [see also email below for family tradition] This family is possibly related to Branch #90 of Edgefield SC

Sep 31, 1887 Henry County Daniel Shirley to Elizabeth Shirley, wife of late John Shirley, deceased for love and affection NW one fourth of NW one fourth of Section 1 and north half of NE one fourth of Section 2, Township 8, Range 27, except 2 acres in NE one fourth of NE one fourth, Section 2 for a grave yard. Signed 1 March 1883 Daniel Shirley, W. M. Shirley, Martha Smith, James W. Shirley, Delila Barrantine, J. Z. Hendley for Sarah Free, Jas W. Crawford F. H. Crawford For Jane Smith and Elizabeth Stokes

m. Elizabeth ____. Some say her surname is Shumate


1(i). William M. Shirley born May 1824. He is listed as a 1879 signer of land to Elizabeth Shirley from her children; Living in Lawrenceville, Henry Co AL in 1880 census. Farmer; He died Nov 11 1905; Buried Mount Zion Free Will Baptist Cem, Henry Co AL

married Zylphia Smith; She was born 1822; She died Jun 6 1886; Buried Mount Zion Free Will Baptist Cem, Henry Co AL


2(i). Nancy E. Shirley born about 1848; she died 20 Sep 1915 at Columbus, Henry Co GA, age 67; widowed (death cert)

2(ii). Needham Shirley born Feb 18 1850 AL; Listed in 1870 parents' census; Living in Lawrenceville, Henry Co AL in 1900 census; He died 2 Oct 1916 at Abbeville, Henry Co AL; Buried Mount Zion Free Will Baptist Cem, Henry Co AL

married Martha V. Corbitt on 28 Feb 1871 at Henry Co AL (William Shirley bondsman) She was born Apr 21 1854 died Sep 31 1918; Buried Mount Zion Free Will Baptist Cem, Henry Co AL

children: (1900 Henry Co census)

3(i). C Walter Shirley

3(ii). W George Shirley

3(iii). E Maggie Shirley

3(iv). K Joseph Shirley

3(v). Jesse Shirley born about 1870; she died 30 Jul 1925, age 55, at Abbeville, Henry Co AL; married Will Stanley

3(vi). Alma Shirley

3(vii). Ruby Shirley

2(iii). William Wiley Shirley born about 1854 AL; Listed in 1870 parents' census

married Zilpha Lee 4 Jun 1874 at Henry Co AL

2(iv). Robert Shirley born about 1858 AL; Listed in 1870 parents' census

2(v). George W. Shirley born Jan. 9, 1857; Listed in 1870 parents' census; Living with parents in 1880 census; Living with his brother Needham Shirley in the 1900 census; died Nov. 18, 1911; Buried Mount Zion Free Will Baptist Cem, Henry Co AL

2(vi). Daniel E. Shirley born 22 Mar 1863 at Baker Hill Henry Co AL; Listed in 1870 parents' census; He died 25 Oct 1937 at Baker Hill; Buried Mount Zion Free Will Baptist Cem, Henry Co AL

2(vii). Thomas Jefferson Shirley born 3 Sep 1866 at Abbieville, Henry Co AL; Listed in 1870 parents' census; He died 16 Jun 1950 at Liberty, TX

1(ii). Absolem Shirley b abt 1826; Listed in 1850 Henry Co AL census; He died before 1880 census

married 1) Nancy Gilmore born about 1830 AL; She is widowed and living in Waverly, Walker Co TX in 1880 census


2(i). William H. Shirley 1847 GA; living in parents' 1850 census HH; formerly posted: living in 1850 census in HH of John Smith age 82 in Talbot Co GA (Note: this last statement is puzzling. There is no Shirley in this Smith census HH); moved to Waverly Walker Co TX by 1880 census;

married Georgia Ann Smith, 9 Aug 1867 at Wm. Barrentine’s House in Henry Co AL; She is living with son W. A. Shirley in 1910 Walker Co TX census; d 1926 buried Pine Valley Cemetery, Coldspring, San Jacinto Co TX


3(i). William Apperson Shirley b. 1882, Texas; He married Jennie Isaacks 8 Dec 1906 at Walker Co TX

3(ii). Nancy Florence Shirley

3(iii). James A. Shirley b. June 13, 1869.

3(iv). Hetty Shirley b. 1886. married B. Pursely 14 Oct 1903 in Walker Co TX

3(v). Mary Bell Shirley b. 1884. married L. S. Colburn 20 Apr 1901 in Walker Co TX

2(ii). James Shirley 1849 GA; living in parents' 1850 census HH

2(iii). M. E. Shirley born about 1859 AL; living in mother's HH in 1880 census

2(iv). Dilly Shirley born about 1860 AL; living in mother's HH in 1880 census

Note: the following marriage of Absolem was linked to the above person. But several records indicate Absolem, the husband of Alcey Anderson was born about 1848

married 2) Alcey Anderson at residence of Sarah Trawick, 11 Feb 1866 in Henry Co AL; She was born about May 1848; She is living in Lawrenceville Henry Co AL, widow with children. She died 7 Apr 1914 at Enterprise, Coffee Co AL ("Mrs A. A. Shirley", nee Anderson)

2(i). Elizabeth Shirley born about 1870 AL; She died 20 Mar 1913 at Tuscaloosa Co AL, age 43 (death cert)

2(ii). Lonnie Shirley (f) born Aug 1878 AL; 1900 Henry Co census of mother's HH

2(iii). Bertie Shirley born Jan 1881 AL; 1900 Henry Co census of mother's HH

2(iv). Marion Shirley born Oct 1883 AL; 1900 Henry Co census of mother's HH

2(v). Dora Shirley born Aug 1886 AL; 1900 Henry Co census of mother's HH


1(iii). John Shirley was called "Shug" (Like Sugar) b. Aug 6, 1829; Listed in 1850 parents' census; d. Sept 9 1907 at Clayton, Barbour County AL;John and wife are buried in a small cemetery on a dirt road near the Sardis Freewill Baptist Church near Eufaula

married Natala "Nancy" Parthenia Stokes on 30 October 1853 in Henry County AL; She was b April 16 1832 in AL. 


2(i). Charles A. Shirley, born 7 Mar 1871 Henry Co AL; He died 21 Feb 1940, age 68y 11m at Eufaula, Barbour Co AL; He was a manager of a plantation. He never married (death cert)

2(ii). Fannie Shirley, born 9 Aug [about 1869]; She died 27 Aug 1931 at Eufaula, Barbour Co AL, age 62; She never married

2(iii). Mary Elizabeth "Molly" Shirley, born about 1862; She died 15 May 1939 at Ariton, Dale Co AL, age 77; She married D. Clayton Nolan

2(iv). James Monroe Shirley b. April 13,1859, 

married Mary Lee Spann; m 2) Epsey Gilchrist


3(i). James Alford Shirley b: 12 Aug 1903 in Clayhatchee, AL

2(v). Robert Agustus (Augustus?) Shirley b Nov 15 1866; died April 11 1910

2(vi). Marion Shirley, m. Ella Glass

2(vii). Eddie Columbus Shirley b March 7 1871 - d March 16, 1962

married Nettie Malissie Lavender on Jan 23, 1906;

2(viii). As (?is this Absolom?) Shirley, never married

1(iv). Delilah Shirley b abt 1831 AL; Listed in 1850 parents' census; married Judge C. Barrentine

1(v). Elizabeth Shirley b abt 1832 AL; Listed in 1850 parents' census; married H. Z Stokes

13 April 1885 Book T, page 373 Received of Willis Smith $130 full payment and satisfaction for my interst in and distributive share in estate of John Shirley, my deceased father. Elizabeth Stokes, H. Z. Stokes

1(vi). Nancy Shirley b. May 15, 1836, Alabama; d. March 07, 1909, Montgomery CO, TX; She married George Washington Smith in Henry Co AL

1(vii). Sarah A. Shirley b abt 1835 AL; Listed in 1850 parents' census; married Alexander Free 17 JAN 1869 in Henry Co, AL

1(viii). Robert Shirley b abt 1844 AL; Listed in 1850 parents' census

1(ix). James Shirley b abt 1846 AL; Listed in 1850 parents' census; living Henry Co AL in 1880

possibly the James Shirley who married Ellen Barrentine Oct 1, 1868 in Henry Co AL

1(x). Daniel Shirley b abt 1848 AL; Listed in 1850 parents' census; living Lawrenceville, Henry Co AL in 1880

married Tempey Dykes Sept 3, 1868 in Barbour Co AL


2(i). Sarah Shirley b 1870 AL

2(ii). Thomas Shirley b 1872 AL

2(iii). W. Eddie Shirley born 27 Sep 1872 at Barbour Co., Ala; He died 3 Sep 1932 at Eufaula, Barbour (death cert)

married Ella ______

2(iv). Lavonia Shirley b 1875 AL

2(v). Bascom Shirley b 1878

2(vi). Lizzie Shirley b 1879


John "Shug" Shirley's father John (according to what was told to me many times by James Alfred) came from South Carolina (once James Alfred said SC or NC) directly to Barbour County (near Eufaula, AL) on Henry Co. border.  "After his first wife died he followed a logging crew to Geneva, AL and married second wife.  His father was from Ireland and his mother was from England.  They came by boat to SC.   They had 2 boys.  The boys decided to explore the country and find someplace to settle.  They went in different directions and were to meet back with their parents in SC, but the parents died and they had no way to find each other again."  About 6 years ago, Grandaddy (James Alfred) told me that he " met a man from Missouri who lives in the Dothan area now, somehow connected with Fort Rucker and his name is Charles and he has a son named Charles."  Grandaddy and Charles compared notes and they have this SAME story in their family.  They compared photos and they think they have pictures of the same person, or men that favor so much they have to be kin.  I reached by telephone the wife of that Charles Shirley.  She said he had been a civilian worker at Fort Rucker and died 4 years ago.  She remembered going with him to visit grandaddy, but she didn't know much about it or his family history.  I talked with her daughter-in-law, too. 

Anyway, this John (father of John "shug") is buried in a graveyard on or near the county line of Henry/Barbour Counties in AL (near Eufaula).  Take the road from Abbeville to Eufaula (is this a clue that his father may have come from Abbeville SC?   there were several Shirleys there at the right time)  hwy 431.  There is a white church across from a graveyard.  Turn left on paved road to Old Barntyne (Barrentine, I think) Cemetery.  He was the first one put there.   He didn't want to be buried (accidently) on someone else's grave. He didn't go to church much but was the first one to help people out.  He helped dig a grave by a church once and they found someone else's body there (no headstone) and had to dig another hole, so he made his own graveyard on his land.  It is called the Barntyne cemetery because so many of the sons married Barntyne (Barrentine I think, see Henry Co. marriage listing below) girls (and probably the girls married Barntyne boys, too). 

Grandaddy always chuckled telling this one:  "It didn't matter what corn cost, Shug's daddy, John sold his for $1 a bushel.  Except one time he drove his oxen to Eufaula and went to everyone buying corn.  They had made up between themselves to pay up close but below $1 a bushel.  He went about his business and started home with his corn.  They sent a rider on a horse to get him.  He said he had already started home and to turn back they would have to pay $1.25 a bushel.  They did. "grandaddy first told me this story in 1985, but told it for years because he knew I loved to hear it.

Info from Virginia Shirley


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