OBJECTIVE: Find parents of Harriet Prince
BACKGROUND: Alex McGhee (my GG Grandfather) has always been a mystery. Growing up, I was told he was an only child of Harriet Prince and Robert McGhee. I have been working on this puzzle off and on since I’ve been a child. For years, I thought I was the only person researching this couple. Over the years, I have eliminated several possibilities. My research pointed to the fact that Harriet was probably a widow when she married Robert.
The biggest breakthrough was when I discovered a DNA match who was a descendant of a Harriet Prince and a John Dixon. I believe that “John” was a mistake and his name is actually “Alexander” The following is my current working theory. I am in the process of gathering information to prove OR disprove this theory.
WORKING THEORY: I am descended from the Harriet PRINCE who married Alexander DICKSON(DIXON) in 1841. Harriet (wife of A. Dixon) buried in Mount Olive Cemetery is my Harriet Prince.
|1818 (circa)||Alexander DICKSON born||Kentucky|
|1813 or 1821||Harriet PRINCE born||Tennessee|
|Unknown date||Harriet PRINCE on Hazel Creek Baptist Church rolls||Muhlenberg Co, KY|
|22 Aug 1841||Alexander DICKSON and Harriet PRINCE were married by J.B. Dunn||Muhlenberg Co, KY|
|1835-1845||J.B. Dunn was the pastor of the Hazel Creek Baptist Church||Muhlenberg Co, KY|
|1842 (circa)||Elizabeth DICKSON born||Kentucky|
|20 Nov 1843||Sarah A. DICKSON born||Illinois|
|1846 (circa)||James W DICKSON born||Illinois|
|1848 (circa)||John L DICKSON born||Illinois|
|1849 (circa)||Nancy DICKSON born||Illinois|
|1850 Census||Alexander DICKSON doesn’t own land. Harriet cannot read or write. |
William (18) & Eliza (15) MARTIN newlyweds are living with them (Eliza’s maiden name is Prince)
Thomas JONES (10) also living with them.
Hannah ADOCK (65) and James (19) and Polly A. (11) JONES listed in household below Dicksons.
|Williamson Co, IL|
|05 Jun 1856||Marriage Index Robert McGEHEE and Harriet DIXON |
County cannot locate original record.
|Gallatin Co, IL|
|01 Mar 1858||Alex McGHEE born (parents Robert McGhee & Harriet Prince)||Ridgeway, Gallatin Co, IL|
|1860 Census||Harriet DICKSON living with Sarah, James, Nancy and Alexander DICKSON (age 3).|
Did the Census taker make a mistake? Are they Harriet McGHEE and Alex McGHEE?
Need to find Elizabeth and John
Did Elizabeth marry?
Did John die?
|Ford’s Ferry, Crittenden Co, KY|
|1870 Census||Need to locate census|
|Index to death record – Harriet McGHEE (Need to request)||Gallatin Co, IL|
|1878||Harriet (wife of A. Dixon) headstone does not mention her last name.|
The cemetery index has her under Harriet Dixon.
I believe the indexer made assumptions based on the inscription.
Located in same cemetery as Nancy MITCHELL (Harriet’s daughter Nancy DIXON who died 1885)
|Mount Olive Cemetery, White Co, IL|
|1880 Census||Alex McGHEE and his divorced sister Nancy DIXON living together |
(perhaps the same Nancy listed above)
|Bear Creek, Gallatin Co, IL|
|14 Jan 1923||Alex McGHEE obituary. Parents and siblings are not listed.|
Rev. C.M. PRINCE conducted the funeral service
|Indian Creek, White Co, IL|
|Hazel Creek Baptist Church||No other PRINCEs listed in the Church rolls|
Family connections may be on the church rolls
Several ACOCKs are listed
|1870 Census||Want to know if Alex is listed as DICKSON/DIXON or McGHEE|
Want to know if Harriet is listed as DICKSON/DIXON or McGHEE
Want to know if Nancy is living in the household. Want to know when she got married
|Locate Nancy DIXON marriage||Who did she married?|
Create a list of Gallatin Co, IL and Crittenden Co, KY possibilities. Range 1860-1880
IF husband served in Civil War and had a widow. The widow would need to prove the divorce between Nancy and spouse.
Keep an eye on Civil War Widow’s Pensions on Fold3
|Locate Nancy DIXON divorce||Hopefully, family relationships will be established in the court records|
|ADCOCK and JONES connection||Who was Hannah ADCOCK? Any connection to the DICKSON or PRINCE family?|
Why was Thomas JONES living with Alexander DICKSON family in 1850?
|Eliza PRINCE MARTIN connection||Who was Eliza? |
How is she connected to Harriet?
|Alexander DICKSON death||When and where did Alexander DICKSON die? |
IF before marriage of Robert McGEHEE and Harriet DIXON, then this might be the correct family
IF after the marriage of Robert and Harriet, then this might be the incorrect family
A will index has an Alexander DICKSON in Williamson County, IL.
Need to request
|Robert McGHEE death||Did he die between 1856-1860?|
Did he leave Harriet?
Did Harriet and Robert divorce?
Further research needed on him.
|Harriet MCGHEE death||Gallatin County, IL has an index listing Harriet McGHEE|
When did that Harriet die?
Where was she buried?
Does the death/burial location match Harriet, wife of A. Dixon in Mount Olive Cemetery?
Does it list birth place, parent information, spouse information, etc.?
Need to request
|Alexander and Harriet DIXON children||Research each child|
Locate death certificates, marriage certificates, obituaries, etc.
Any connections to my Alex McGhee?
|Rev. C.M. PRINCE||Any connection to Harriet?|
|Emeline VICKERY||In James W DIXON probate, it mentions a life estate of widow Emeline VICKERY. |
Further research shows that her maiden name is JONES.
She buried in the same cemetery (JONES AKA KIRK Cemetery) as a James Jones (possibly the James in Hannah Adcock 1850 census)
However, the BEANs are also buried in that cemetery and James Dixon married a Louise BEAN.
James JONES married a Catherine BEAN.
To add to the confusion, Sarah Dixon’s first husband was a KIRK.
- My family matches descendants of Sarah Dixon (Harriet’s daughter)
- My family matches descendants of Eliza J Prince (Is this Harriet’s sister?)
- My family matches descendants of Hamilton Co, IL PRINCEs
Caution is needed in evaluating DNA as Gallatin County, IL and surrounding counties had a low population then and now. Many families are connected through marriage so DNA connections may actually be through different lines.
It is not unusual to discover records that conflict. However, I want to have a list of conflicting information as I’m proving/disproving information.
- During Alexander DICKSON life, he is consistently referred to as DICKSON not DIXON. Later records that I am using consistently use DIXON. Records of James W., Sarah, Nancy and Harriet. Are these the same people in records of Alexander DICKSON? Locating the death certificates and other other records of the children will help prove/disprove this.
- 1860 Census. The location is in Kentucky but it is across the river from where the family was living previously. Alexander Dickson age 3 matches the age that my Alex McGhee would have been. Did the census taker make a mistake on the last name of Harriet and Alex?
- An death certificate index lists Sarah Dixon’s parents as John Dixon and Harriet Prince