William Dearing Shirley
William Dearing Shirley born about 1800 TN (source: 1850 census, middle name found on BLM land warrant); He was sworn into service as a private (Capt Boone's Company) in Montgomery County IL on April 20, 1832 to fight in the Black Hawk war (also a Zeb Shirley in the list); Later listed as a 2nd Lt. in the regiment; The family left for Montgomery Co IL from Marion TN in 1828. He left for the gold fields of California in 1854 on the Gray Wagon Train. Lived Mud Flat, El Dorado CA; In 1862 the State of California passed legislation for the "relief of William D. Shirley" to relieve him from all liability entered into as surety for the appearance of John Brown who was held to answer a charge of assault with intent to commit murder, dated 1860. He is listed in El Dorado CA 1860 census with 2nd wife Jane and son Jack Breeze Shirley, and found later on the 1867 Great Register voter list for El Dorado Co as William Dearing Shirley, age 66, born South Carolina; Occupation: General Trader; Residence: Mud Springs. His son Jack Breeze Shirley, age 26, is enumerated next
Zebedee Shirley (supposedly a ?brother of William D. Shirley Sr) born about 1813 TN; He served as a private in the Black Hawk war in 1832 with William D. Shirley; Family lore says "returned to Parker Co. Texas, where he later died." Found in the 1860 (G.P Shirley) and 1870 (Z P Shirlie) census for Fort Worth, Parker Co TX.
Email received from Dale in Septermber 2010
I am connected to the Branch 51, William D. Shirley, b. 1800 either South Carolina or Tennessee. William & his son, Jack Breese, both on several occasions listed South Carolina as the birth state for William D. Shirley. I have never found any source evidence regarding either. Several other Shirley researchers have stated that William D. Shirley Sr. b. 1800 was born in Marion Co. Tennessee. They based this on less than convincing sources. Also, there seems much evidence that William Sr. father was definitely a Thomas. There are two to three Thomass that could be Williams father. The one most convincing to me, is Thomas, b. 1755 or 1865, married to Margaret. But I have swung back and forth between several other Thomass.
William Sr, married a Jane P. Moore in Marion Co. Tennessee sometime between 1823 & 1827. He left Marion Co. Tenn via covered wagon with Jane P. Moore, it states with family, (source a Pioneer article in the Montgomery Co. archives) for Hillsboro, Montgomery Co. Illinois in 1828. A Thomas S. Shirley b. 1828 had to accompanied them as a baby. I feel this is William & Janes first child and son. Numerous other sources list William and Jane P. as having only 4 children, Thomas S. and a William & Mary b. 1831-32, and a Jack Breese Shirley b. 1840, ( my great gr. Father) but, I feel I have found the following 3 other children. A Amanda Jane Shirley b. ? who married a Robert W. Davis in 1849, a Aliza L. Shirley b. ? who married a James M. Gray in 1842, a Julia Ann Shirley b. ? who married a William C. Richmond in 1857. Mary E. Shirley b. 1831 married a Benjamin F. McClain in 1851 & her twin brother William D. Shirley Jr. b. 1831 married a Louisa Boutwell in 1857, and Thomas S. Shirley b. 1828, married a Mary Frances Whitlege in 1860.
I have also found a brother of William D. Shirley Sr, whose name is Zebadee or Zebadiah. Zebadee accompanied them to Montgomery Co. Ill. Zebadee also served in the Blackhawk Wars of ____ with William D Sr. He returned to Parker Co. Texas, where he later died. I have another source stating that William D. Shirley Jr, visited his Uncle Zebadee down in Texas.
Jane P. Moore, died abt. 1853, and is buried on the family farm. There is a memorial grave stone for her in the Hillsboro, Ill cemetery. William D. Shirley left Hillsboro via Wagon Train(called the Gray Wagon Train) in 1854 for the Gold Fields of California. After Jane P. Shirley died, he married a Jane T. Gray in 1853. Together with Jane T. b 1808, his youngest son, Jack Breese Shirley, now 14 yrs old and two of his now married sisters settled in Mud Flat, CA. Later to become El Dorado, Ca. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find out what happened to William D. Sr, Jane T. Shirley, or the sisters of Jack Breese. They do not appear in the 1870 Federal Census, so, I am assuming they died between 1865-70 somewhere in California. Jack Breese, traveled around California alone for awhile, then finally settled in Benton Co. Oregon. He married a Mary Catherine(Cassie) Graves, they had two known children, Allie C, b. 1880, died in infancy in 1882 and my gr. Grandfather Claude (Grover Cleveland) born 1886 in Chehalis, WA. Guess, that is why this line of Shirleys ended up in the PNW.
My greatest genealogy wish, to find the Shirley English Ancestor forebear of mine who immigrated to the probably fledging colonies, and to discover a Shirley decendent from the Shirleys who remained or returned to Montgomery Co. or who remained in California and probably died there. William D.Shirley Jr., b 1831, who also moved to Oakland, CA, but returned to Hillsboro, died there in 1876 (he was just on a visit to settle land issues). He left two children, a Susan L Shirley Morris, died at 31, no known children, and a son, Frank B. Shirley, died young also. His wife, a Louisa F. Boutwell Shirley died in San Diego,CA, is buried there.
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