Ervin - Foreman Pioneer Family

by Paul Ervin (contributed by Robert Ervin)
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Walker C. Ervin
Walker C. Ervin
Ervin Home
Walker C. Ervin Home and Family
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The following, written in the first person, is what Paul Ervin believed but was never really able to prove. I have found this union of John and Mary Bellows but are they the parents of James?

John Ervin (Erwin) married Mary Bellows at Gloucester, New Jersey May 1, 1746.

(2) James I was born 1750. As a young man he swore allegiance to the Colonies and denounced the King of England. He also spent several years in the Continental Army. He married Sarah Green and moved into southeastern Pennsylvania near Lancaster, later moving to southwestern Pennsylvania near Fredericktown in Washington County. They were the parents of seven sons: James II, Isaac, Jacob, Henry, William, Andrew and John. There must have been a daughter or two as I have heard my father mention cousins that had names other than Ervin. I remember he said he helped move a cousin to Schuyler County (Illinois) that wasn't an Ervin. Charles Nelson was his cousin. His mother was an Ervin. John Wesley Whitten was a cousin. I do not know the connection other than through the females of Ervins.

(3) James II born 1775 near Fredericktown, Washington County, Pennsylvania, southwest of Pittsburgh. Married 1797 to Elizabeth Barnes born October, 1777 They were the parents of two sons and two daughters: James III, Isaac, Phoebe and Mary. NOTE: The number enclosed in parenthesis denotes the number of generations, starting with the first known progenitor (1) John. The Roman numerals after the names of the James Ervins were not part of their name and only used for clarification.

(1)James III served in the northern army during the Civil War. He married a Dutch woman that never learned to speak the English language very well. She smoked a pipe. My sister Pearl remembered her. They had no children. Both are buried in Swiggett Cemetery.

(4) Isaac Barnes Ervin born July 24, 1818 near Smithfield, Jefferson County, Ohio. Died February 17, 1895. He married Catherine McCarty born May 4, 1817 one mile west of Leesburg, Hamilton County, Ohio. They were married October 24, 1841 in Carrollton, Carroll County, Ohio by a minister by the name of Thomas Smith. They set up residency near Deersville, Harrison County, Ohio.

(4) After the death of his father, Isaac with his wife and son Segesman, two years old, came to Illinois by river boat, leaving Wheaton on the Ohio River April 2, 1845, landing at Griggsville Landing (later Valley City) April 10. They settled in Adams County for about four years near Beverly or Richfield. In 1849 Isaac's mother, Elizabeth, a widow, her son James III, and two married daughters, Mary Bliss and Phoebe McClenagen, came to Illinois from Ohio by river boat taking ten days to make the trip, landing at Griggsville Landing as the others had done. Buried in Swiggett Cemetery. They settled on land they had acquired about one and a half mile northwest of Maysville. Some of this land was later acquired by Walker, my father, and lived on it for several years.

The children of James Ervin II and Elizabeth Barnes Ervin were: Mary, Phoebe, James III and Isaac.

(4) Mary born April 19, 1822 in Deersville, Ohio, died March 1, 1901. Married Ralph Bliss, a widower with four children. They had three children of their own: Mary Martha, Phoebe and a son, Thompson.

(5) Mary Martha born March 4, 1855, died June 10, 1945. Married John Carnes, born March 13, 1860 in New Salem Township, Pike County, Illinois, died February 13, 1911. Their children were:

(6) Asa Ralph Carnes born October 26, 1885, died November 15, 1950. His children, two daughters, are:

(7) Hallie Maynota Carnes married Ben A. Gillespie and resides in Harrisonville, Missouri.

(7) Ada L. Carnes married a Yoes and resided in Blue Springs, Missouri.

(6) Nettie Carnes, born May 31, 1880, died May 31, 1944. Married a Baldwin, had one son and two daughters.

(6) Nannie born August 29, 1882, died February 13, 1966. Married a Kaser. No children.

(6) Stella born March 5, 1888. Married a Baldwin.

(6) Verna born February 21, 1894, died July 3, 1926. Married a Thomas.

(4) Phoebe Ervin born c1820, died 1895. Married Josiah (Cy) McClenagen who died in 1859. Their children were all born in Ohio. Buried in Swiggett.

(5) Elizabeth married George Rutman. He was general foreman at M.K.T. locomotive shops in Sedalia, Missouri.

(5) Martin married Jane Oliphant.

(2) In 1849 Isaac and his family moved from Adams County, Illinois to land about one and a half miles east of New Salem in New Salem Township, Pike County. They constructed a log house. It was here Walker was born April 5, 1850. Locating here put all the Ervins back together again. All three families, in fact, were less than one mile apart. Isaac and Catherine lived an this farm until about 1890 when they sold their farm and built a house in Baylis. Isaac died February 17, 1895 and Catherine died October 24, 1898. I have heard my father say his father worked the land with oxen. He said he never worked them, but his brother, who was seven years older, did. (Segesman)

(5) Walker Cree Ervin was born April 5, 1850. He was named after a businessman and family friend in Griggsville. I visited the site of his birthplace with him when I was ten or twelve years old. He explained to me about their home being destroyed by fire. The fire occurred while no one was home. Had there been someone home, there was, a possibility that the house could have been saved as most, likely it caught fire in the fireplace chimney. The fireplace chimney was constructed with some wedges near the bottom that could be knocked out in case of fire, letting the chimney fall away from the house. Every old house I've seen I have checked for this feature described above but found very few. My father told me the Hannibal and Naples Railroad was started before the Civil War, but construction stopped soon after the war started. However, it was quite some time after the war ended that construction resumed. In fact, it was 1871 when completed. My father said the first day's work for pay he ever did was making ties for this railroad. He received fifty cents in paper money which he had the misfortune to lose. My father was a good horseman and a good farmer. He always kept things neat and took excellent care '' of his livestock, the buildings, tools and everything in his possession. My father traveled over land in a covered wagon with his first wife, Sadie Gayer, to McPherson, Kansas in the year of 1881 when their daughter Pearl was less than a year old. He had two brothers-in-law, Henry and Loren Gayer, who had homesteaded land in the vicinity of McPherson. I have heard my father laugh and tell about Henry "breaking prairie" in his bare feet among rattlesnakes. My father said he couldn't get up enough nerve to do that.

They had lived near McPherson about a year when Sadie died. My father and Pearl returned to New Salem. He bought a farm from his uncle, Ralph Bliss, about two miles northwest of Maysville, Pike County. After a few years he sold this farm and bought another about one mile east of New Salem (Pike County) that had a log house on it where father and mother "set up housekeeping" after their marriage November 20, 1889. Here their first child, Ray, was born, November 21, 1890, died July 7, 1894. Buried in Swiggett Cemetery. In 1891 he sold this farm and bought one a mile west of Baylis. Here Lucy was born February 4, 1894. Clay was born March 10, 1896 and Paul on March 14, 1901.

Of the six sons of James Ervin I, I can, to some extent, give a slight account.

William married Mary Dunham and they were the parents of James D. Ervin born October 8, 1827 in Deersville, Ohio. He died at Little Rock, Arkansas three days before being mustered out of service, having served in Company 5, 18 Regiment of Illinois Volunteers during the Civil War. His grave is in Section 1 5th row, National Cemetery, Little Rock, Arkansas. As a young man he drove a stagecoach from Valley City to Quincy, prospected for gold in California in.1849, ran a general store in San Francisco, became wealthy and lost everything he owned in another venture related to gold mining. In 1847 James D. Ervin married Rachel Jackson Watts, born February 1, 1830, Deersville, Ohio. They were the parents of two daughters and one son. Amanda born February 1, 1848 married Henry Walker, a Canadian. Mahala, born April 20, 1850, married Samuel Law. Albert W. Ervin, born October 30, 1852, married (9 May 1975) Mary Isabel Carroll(or Carrel). They were the parents of eight children: Roy, Clarence, Abner, Robert, Alma, Leah, Laura and Marshal.

Marshal, born March 3, 1880, died December 30, 1938, married Katy May Ervin, born February 11, 1879, died May 17, 1953. They had the following children:

Winfred, born August 25, 1904, married Freda Butler, born January 16, 1911; James Avery, born July 26, 1912, married Iris Shaw, born December 17, 1917; and Leon Custer married Florence Irene Shaw. A daughter, Leta Pearl, born March 4, 1924, died February 4, 1946, married George Whittaker. They had one son, John Marshal Whittaker; Cecil Ervin, born September 18, 1908, married Mildred Butler. They had two children, Richard and Dorothy.

While living in Ohio Isaac, James III and "Cy" McClenagen belonged to the Deersville Blues, a militia organization in Harrison County, Ohio. "Cy" McClenagen was killed in 1859 by the explosion of a boiler furnishing steam to power a sawmill. He is buried in Maysville Cemetery.

The Ralph Bliss family and the widow of "Cy" McClenagen, Phoebe, and her children moved to Cass County, Missouri, about thirty miles south of Kansas City. One family settled near East Lynn and the other family near Pleasant Hill.

There was a John Ervin in the vicinity of Maysville that was a cousin to Walker, Segesman and Albert Ervin. He had to be a second cousin, I presume a son of one of the six sons of James I. He served in the CivilWar, was married, had no children. Both are buried in Swiggett Cemetery.

Andrew, one of the seven sons of James I, lived near Miamitown, sixteen miles West of Cincinnati, Ohio.

This is compiled from several sources, family papers, bibles, interviews with older family members. The earlier years of James I and James II were verified with the book, "Ohio Genealogies", by Hannah.Paul Ervin, 1985

Joseph Mink was my Uncle Oney Mink's (b 1882) brother and I knew him back in the W.W.II years. His son, Joe was a little older than me and was one hell of a pool player. They hung out in Barry back then. In fact, Joseph Clyde Mink worked for my father on the farm from time to time as his son did when you could catch him sober. My uncle Oney was one really fun guy. Back during the depression he and Old Joe they called him, made a living trapping animals for the fur and guess what they caught the most? Mink, believe it or not. Oney worked Hadley Creek and Old Joe worked McCraney, I think, the one that ran south from the rail road. Oney drowned in his fish pond trying to get his line out of a submerged fence.

I gotta tell you "the Rest of the Story!" My Grandfather Walker C. Ervin passed away in 1918 and was buried in Swigget. When his wife, Abigail, passed in '49, she was buried in Baylis. Now this bothered Uncle Oney to no end. So, one fine Sunday, he and some of his drinking buddies in Baylis, got his Ford tractor, hooked it to a flat bed hay wagon, grabed some shovels and a couple cases of beer and made the 4 or 5 mile treck down to Swigget Cemetery. You guessed it! They dug the old boy up, took him up to Baylis and buried him next to his wife. By the time they got this little chore accomplished they had had quit a lot to drink. They got him in the grave but had dug it a little out of square. His feet are out in someone else's grave site. When my dad found out about it he tried to buy that plot and was never able to locate the present owners. So Walker lays at a slight angle to true east. I figure someplace between East of ese and ese. Say somewhere between 100 degrees and 120! Oney was a lot of laughs even when he was sober which wasn't often! If you ever met aunt Lucy you'd sure be sympathetic to his problem!

The Ervin Name

The purpose of this document is to introduce the reader to a list of identified research material involving the origin of the Ervin name, provide a general overview of its ancestry, and introduce the relationship to over two hundred fifty other spellings. The following information was gathered from several sources. "The Original of the Family of the Irvines or Erinvines," written in 1678 by Dr. Christopher Irvine, M.D., Historiographer Royal of Scotland. Second, "The Book of Irvings," by John Beaufin Irving of Bonshaw, Chief of the Clan Irving. This book includes the first book, and published in 1907, was written as an update to the original. Alastair M.T. Maxwell-Irving, B.Sc., F.S.A. Scot, in 1968 published "The Irvings of Bonshaw". Another publication, that I have not been able to locate is, "The Irvines and their Kin," by Lucinda Boyd of Chicago, 1908.

Prior to written history, this very large family of Scots were known as Erinfines, Erinvines or Erivinus. In the tenth century, when royalty first started taking second names, King Duncan of Scotland took the name of "Eryvine". His grandson Crinan, became Abthane of Dule and lay Abbot of Dunkeld and, as such, was second in command to King Malcolm II. Crinan was the husband of Princess Beatrix and father of King Duncan I of Scotland as King Malcom II left no male heirs. (This King Duncan is the one who was killed by his cousin MacBeth, a nephew of Beatrix.) According to the above mentioned publications, Crinan Eryvine was the progenitor of the male line of all the kings of Scotland down to Alexander III, who died in 1286, and the female line of all the sovereigns of Scotland down to the present day. The Irvings of Bonshaw are descended from Duncan Eryvine, also known as Duncan of Eskdale, who was the younger brother of Crinan. Duncan of Eskdale was appointed Governor of Cumbria, went to the border between England and Scotland, married an heiress of the ancient British royal line of Coel Hen, (Old King Cole) and founded the great estate known as "Bonshaw". This was in 1020 and Bonshaw tower is still in the family, presently owned by Dr. Bruce Irving. In the 11th century, when the parish system was introduced by King Malcom Cainmore, the Irving lands became known as "Irving Parish".

The most common spellings seems to have been Eryvine, Erivine or Erevine until the 11th century and after the Norman invasion, the dominant spelling became "de Irwyn." (The "de" was in vogue at the time). In 1124 King David granted the feudal superiority of Annandale to the Norman family of de Brus and for the first time in history, the Irvings, being part of the Royal Family, were not directly responsible to the king for their lands but had to suffer the indignity of being subjects of suzerainty. They were vassels for four centuries, first under the Bruces and finally achieving independence under the Johnsons. Robert de Bruce descended from a daughter of David Erevine, Earl of Huntingdon, brother to William, King of Scotland. Robert de Bruce, during his struggle to become King, befriended William de Irwyn of Bonshaw. William became a close confidant and armor bearer for Robert and for his twenty years of faithful service was awarded 10,000 acres in the "Forest of Oakes" and the Castle of Drum. Granted in 1323 and made a free barony the following year, Drum castle remained in the Irvine family until 1975 when it was deeded to the National Trust of Scotland for its preservation. This is thoroughly documented in "Burkes Landed Gentry" and readily available at any good library.

In the 14th century the name changed from de Irwyn to Irving in the south of Scotland, Irving Parish, and to Irvine in Aberdeenshire in the north. Shortly thereafter a branch of the Irving family took the spelling of Irwin and by the end of the 16th century, there were at least seven names, Ervin being the sixth most common. These new names are believed to have all been generated in the southern part of Scotland, in and around Irving Parish. The Clan Irwin Association has now identified over two hundred fifty spellings of the name. These seven names are usually pronounced Ervin, unless there is a "w" involved. The "g" is usually silent. Irvine is also pronounced Ervin in Scotland. In Ireland, Irvine is pronounced with a long "i", as in Irvine California, although they are of the same family.

There are members of this clan scattered all over the world. Many of them date back to the fifth century when they fought the Romans in Eastern Europe under the great Fergus. One ancient family in Hungary is called Ervin and readily admit that their origin in that country is as stated. By the 16th century, the Irvings owned over 26,000 acres in Irving Parish, about twenty miles southeast of Lockerbie, and had a fighting force of over 600 armed men. In Aberdeenshire, the Irvines owned over 15,000 acres and other Irvines owned a large part of the Orkney Islands. During the reign of King James VI, the Irving Clan territory comprised about 46,500 acres. It is estimated that they owned approximately 1/400 of the entire country at that time. Many members of the clan have been Members of Parliament, many have been knighted and over fifty coats of arms are listed in Nisbet's "Heraldry," 1804; Burkes "General Armory," 1844; and "Scottish Arms"", 1370-1678, by David Lindsay. There are several "Clan Crests" and the clan flower is the Holly.

No official tartan existed until about one hundred fifty years ago. Until then, the Lairds of Drum wore the Forbes tartan as there were several important marriages between the two families. The Irvine tartan is very similar to the Forbes and was worn by the Laird of Drum for the first time in the year 2000 at the Alma Michigan Highland Games. Throughout Scottish History the Irvings, Irvines, Irwins, Irvins, Ervines, Ervins, Erwins, et al have played a significant role. Several times they have fought against each other due to religions or differences in loyalties to a King, but never stayed enemies. In the seventeenth century, they were numerous and settled in Ireland where they played vital roles at the sieges of Derry and later Roscommon. In the eighteenth century, they migrated to North America, the Indies and Later Australia/New Zealand. Members of the clan were prominent in the Revolutionary War and have fought for their country in every war since.

The original Ervin, in this line, to emigrate to North America is believed to have been John, the father of James Ervin who married Sarah Green. This has not been proven but there is a record of marriage between John Ervin and Mary Bellows in 1745 at Gloucester, NJ. Charles E. Hanna in his "Ohio Valley Genealogies" lists the early Ayrshire Scotch settlers in Harrison County, Ohio and Ervin is among those listed. There was only one Ervin in the county at that time and that was James Ervin who married Elizabeth Barnes and moved from Maryland about 1812 to settle in Short Creek Township. In my travels to Scotland, I have not been able to locate even one Ervin. I believe that many of them left during the "Plantation of Ulster" which began in 1603 and ended in 1624, and continued to emigrate during the "flood" of emigrants in the eighteenth century. Not well understood, these "Plantations" were strictly Scottish as they did not mingle with the Irish population at all. When the great emigration to the colonies started from Ulster and other Northern Ireland counties, these people were known as "Scotch-Irish" and were mistakenly identified as a mixture of the two. C.A. Hanna, in his book, "Ohio Valley Genealogies," states that they were not a mixture, but they had remained completely Scottish, even though they were located in Ireland for one hundred years or more. In 2004 another book was published about the Scots-Irish by James Webb. Born Fighting, is a well written historical account of this great group of Scots. Webb was elected to the Senate from Virginia in the last election. Not one Ervin left in Scotland but, there are over 9000 in the U.S.!


David Foreman is the crossing ancestor or progenitor in the United States of the Foremans of Pike County. Mildred Foreman Gage and other researchers have concluded that David von Furhman born in Hesse-Kessel Germany, 1756, was a Hessian soldier who was mustered out of the service at the end of the Revolution. David Von Furhman did obtain a land grant in Kentucky in the early 1780's, married Elizabeth Horine in 1788 and raised nine children in Lincoln County. After the land grant was issued to him, his name was changed to David Foreman. My grandmother Abigail Sloan (Foreman) Ervin knew that the name had been changed and von was part of the old name.

Mercer County was later carved out of Lincoln County and David was buried there about 1811. In 1815, Elizabeth moved the entire family to Highland County Ohio and rented a farm. They remained there until after 1833 as all of the younger children married there and that was the last date for a marriage. All of the children but one daughter moved west with them about 1840 to Pike County, Detroit Twp. All of the boys are buried in Illinois, many at Blue River and a couple at Time Cemetery. I have a rather complete genealogy of this line.

At the conclusion of the Revolution, 17,313 Hessians returned to their homelands after the war ended in 1783. Of the 12,526 who did not return, about 7,700 had died: some 1,200 were killed in action and 6,354 died from illness or accidents. Approximately 5,000 Hessians settled in North America both in the United States and Canada, some because their commanders refused to take them back to Germany because they were criminals or physically unfit. Most of them married and settled amongst the population of the newly-formed United States. Many of them became farmers or craftsmen. The number of their direct descendants living in the U.S. and Canada today is still debated. Many changed their names as the Hessians were not very popular among the frontiersmen who were their neighbors.

In 1786, the British Government paid the Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel a total of £471,000 in compensation for the loss of Hessian troops.

Dr. Abner Foreman's Letter of 1924 concerning genealogy contains the following paragraph:

Now the great obstacle that is in the way of getting at the truth about our ancestors is that in those early days no records were kept, either of births or deaths. The making and keeping of these records began long after I began the practice of medicine, and you can see that if the Doctor did not make and keep these records, there was nowhere else that they could be had. For instance, my father was buried in the timber about a half mile north of the wagon road leading directly past where we lived, the old Stagg farm. But later, Brother George had the remains of both my mother and father taken up and reentered in the old Blue River graveyard a mile south of Detroit. Now there never was any record of my parents being buried up in the woods nor any record of their having been taken up and reentered in the Blue River Cemetery if it suits these people to spend their money in that way, I guess it is nobody's business.

His grandfather was the original David Foreman.(von Furhman)
His father was David Nicholas Foreman b 1790 Ky d 1856 buried in Blue River
His mother was Elizabeth Purcell b 1901 in Ky d 1864 buried in Blue River

Abner Foreman's son Grant Foreman was born in Detroit IL 3 June 1869. He died in Muskegoe OK 4 April 1953. Grant was a leading expert on the American Indian, the five civilized tribes in particular, and wrote 26 books on the subject. Grant Foreman's home has been converted to a Museum in honor of him, his wife and his work. His wife was a devoted partner in his eff0orts to preserve the history of the American Indian and they both died childless

1 Samuel G. Foreman b: Abt. 1797 in KY d: Abt. 1871 in Greene, IL married Sarah (Sally) Florence b: Abt. 1801 in White Oak Twp, Highland, OH d: August 29, 1873 in Newville, Colusa, CA

..2 Elizabeth Foreman b: Abt. 1822 in Highland, OH married Columbus Johnston b: Abt. 1821 in MO

...3 Sylvester F. Johnston b: Abt. 1847 in IL

..2 Lucinda Foreman b: Abt. 1826 in Highland, OH

..2 Helen Foreman b: Abt. 1828 in Highland, OH

..2 John R. Foreman b: Abt. 1829 in Highland, OH married Polly Ann Burbridge b: Abt. 1826 in KY

...3 Zelda H. Foreman b: May 01, 1865 d: April 17, 1882 married Elias Parker Logan b: November 03, 1859 d: February 15, 1940

..2 Mary (Polly) Cumberland Foreman b: June 11, 1832 in Highland, OH d: March 20, 1906 in Paskenta, Tehama, CA married Zaddock Woods Hoag b: February 04, 1826 in Rising Sun, Dearborn, IN d: July 12, 1909 in Paskenta, Tehama, CA

...3 Sarah H.Hoag b:July O5, 1855 d:Ju1y 23, 1940 married Francisco R. Millsap b: January 29, 1854 d: November 09, 1939

....4 Theodore Millsaps b: 1877 in CA d: 1946

....4 Jessie Millsaps b: 1879 d: 1949

...3 Lawrence Gay Hoag b: December 26, 1858 in IL d: July 24, 1944 in CA married Fannie E. Davis b: June 08, 1865 in IL d: August 13, 1935 in Corning, Tehama, CA

....4 Gay Ellsworth Hoag b: December 1899 in Paskenta, Tehama, CA

....4 Rolland E. Hoag b: Abt. 1901 in Paskenta, Teharna, CA

...3 Mary Elizabeth Hoag b: September 23, 1865 in Carroilton, Greene, IL d: February 01, 1955 in Santa Ana, Orange, CA married David Russell Williams b: October 20, 1860 in Dayton, Butte, CA d: September 06, 1906 in Paskenta, Tehama, CA

....4 Harriet Evelene Williams b: December 03, 1881 in Tehama, CA d: January 21, 1970 in Red Bluff, Tehama, CA married John Jackson Osborn b: June 11, 1869 in Newville, Colusa, CA d: June 14, 1938 in Red Bluff, Tehama, CA

.....5 Hattie June Osborn b: June 08, 1900 in Lowrey, Tehama, CA married Ira Eugene Cramer b: Abt. 1894 in CA

......6 Eugene Osborn (Cramer) Burrill b: June 09, 1921 in Red Bluff, Tehama, CA married Dorothy Mae Richardson b: August 21, 1922 in Twin Falls, Twin Falls, ID d: July 10, 1992 in Red Bluff, Tehama, CA

Henry Clay Foreman
Henry Clay Foreman son of George A. Foreman
George A. Foreman was a brother of Samuel Foreman