TSGS Cruiser Blog

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

"It Can't Be This Easy!"


As a kid of about 12...

I started asking relatives about our family. Who were they, where did they live, where did they come from, what did they do in their lives? Dad knew his great grandfather William Ellis West and Cincinnati, his wife - plus several of William's brothers. This would prove very helpful many years later. It was well known that the courthouse in Christian County, Kentucky was burnt down during the Civil War. He assumed all of the records were lost forever. A few years after Dad died his Aunt Eva died intestate (without a will) in Christian Co., KY. A legal problem surfaced concerning the estate that led me to an attorney in Hopkinsville for advice. As I left his office across the street was the courthouse with a large Historical Plaque. I decided to read it. The courthouse was burnt down during the Civil War, but the townspeople knew in advance... all records were saved back to the forming of the county in 1797 and still intact today! I checked records for William Ellis West using the index. In the first book he was listed with all of his siblings (several I knew from Dad) as heirs of their deceased father's interest in his father's share of the estate of his father! So, this one document stated that William Ellis West (with wife Cincinnati & his siblings and spouses) were the children of Jesse West, their father, who was the son of Charles H. West (Jesse's father) whose share of his father's (Thomas West) estate was the subject of this document. I thought this can not be this easy! I told the clerk of my discovery. A lady overheard me and told me about Shirley West Cain - a Christian County WEST expert! I called Shirley and gave my descent from William Ellis West to my grandfather Warner West. She asked that since Warner only had one son, Gaither, which of his kids was I... Glen, John or Don? She confirmed my whole line back to Thomas West and that I was qualified for Sons of the American Revolution (SAR)!

-Submitted by JGWest

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