This volume is written for
the purpose of preserving for members of the Ross family the history of
those who have made that history. It makes no pretense at completeness of
detail or elegance of presentation but is a simple, straightforward
account of the family since the time of coming to the New World to make
their home in the wilderness of this land and to progress through the
generations with the progress of this, their own, country.
Various of its members have
enjoyed prominence and popularity in their communities. Others have fought
the wars of the land during times of strife. And still others were among
those who first pushed forward toward the west to develop new provinces.
In the building of this nation as we know it, members of our family have
had their part along with others in building a country for themselves and
This history begins with Hugh Ross
and Margaret McDonald, the great-great-grandparents of the generation of
which I am a member. It was they, who, married in Southenland Shire,
Scotland, came to America and planted the Ross family here. While the
account is largely a genealogical recitation, incidents along the way are
set down when such seems fitting. While a much larger volume with greater
and perhaps more interesting detail could be written, the objective of
this account, as before stated, is primarily to preserve an outline of the
family for its members.
December 25, 1934.
SAM W. ROSS
To Hugh Ross and his wife, Margaret
McDonald, who, as pioneers in a new country, braved the dangers and
uncertainties of the new land to plant firmly the Ross family in the New
World, this volume is reverently dedicated.
SAM W. ROSS
Dedicated to the memory of Sam
Ross on the occasion of his 114th birthday.
February 15, 2003
THE ROSS FAMILY
Hugh Ross, with whom this account
opens, was born and lived to be a young man in Scotland. There, while
living in Southenland Shire, he met Margaret McDonald whom he later
Hugh Ross was left an orphan at five
or six years of age. His father, when on his death bed, put him in the
care of a nobleman in whom he had confidence. He lived with the nobleman
for some years; but the nobleman experiencing ill health and knowing that
he could not live to raise the boy, decided to apprentice the youth to a
tailor to learn a trade. This he did. After Hugh completed the
apprenticeship he practiced his trade in Edinborough and in Southenland
Shire, where he gained note for his fine workmanship.
It was while in Southenland Shire he
met the woman who was to become his wife. When they came to America, they
settled in Anson County, North Carolina, in 1771. Five children were born
to them, two boys, Donald and Hugh, and three daughters, Margaret, Jane
Three of the children, when grown,
married into the Lacy family of the same county. Hugh II was married to
Lucretia Lacy, Jane to Thomas Lacy, and Katherine to Stephen Lacy.
The Lacy family were of English and
Welsh origin. Thomas Lacy was of English descent, while his wife, Kiziah
Griffith, came with her family from Wales, England. They were married in
Virginia but soon afterward moved to Anson County, North Carolina, and
settled on what was known as Lanes Creek. They had four sons, Stephen,
Thomas, Jessie and Griffith, and four daughters, among whom were,
Elizabeth, Lucretia and Anna.
Thomas Lacy, the elder, was a
magistrate in North Carolina, and though starting in poor circumstances,
accumulated considerable property. He died at a comparatively early age.
His wife survived him many years, ending her days with her daughter and
husband, Hugh Campbell, who lived near Florence, Alabama.
Griffith, the youngest son, never
married. He spent his life in Anson County where he served as an official
of the county through appointment by the state legislature. He died about
the age of 32.
Jessie Lacy married Millie Rushing
and later moved to Decatur County, Tennessee, about 1814. They had three
sons, Calvin, Herman and William Carroll, and three daughters, Nancy,
Armia and Elizabeth. Calvin was married to Nancy Stephens. He prospered,
living first in Tennessee and later in Mississippi. He died about 1820 at
the age of 68 at Boonville.
Herman filled various offices and
was one of the most popular men in Decatur County. Wm. Carroll moved to
Mississippi where he lived in Lee County, a worthy and respected man.
Stephen Lacy and his wife, Katherine
Ross, Thomas Lacy and his wife, Jane Ross, and Hugh Ross II and his wife,
Lucretia Lacy, moved from North Carolina to Hickman County, Tennessee,
Donald Ross, the oldest son of Hugh
Ross and Margaret McDonald, was married to Nancy Hugh in Anson County,
N.C. They had three sons, Hezekiah, Hugh and William, and one daughter,
Nancy. Donald Ross achieved considerable distinction, being elected seven
times to the legislature of North Carolina, retiring of his own accord. He
was talented and a good speaker. He died about 1820, his wife surviving
him a number of years.
His oldest son, Hezekiah, was
married to Ede Henry and a few years later moved to Madison County,
Tennessee, and settled in what was called Coon District. Hugh Ross, the
second son, while still a young man, went to Georgia, marrying and
settling down in Crawford County. William also left North Carolina when a
young man, going to McNairy County, Tennessee, near Bethel Station, M. O.
R. R. He never married; died about 1894. Nancy, the only daughter, married
Joseph Allen. They prospered, living and raising a family in North
Margaret Ross married Charles
Campbell in North Carolina, raising a family of four sons and one
daughter. Hugh Campbell, the oldest son, married Anna Lacy, youngest
daughter of Thomas Lacy and his wife, Kiziah Griffith. She died a few
years later, leaving an infant daughter, Kiziah Griffith. Kiziah married
Dr. William Tap of Pulaski, Tenn., in 1826 or 27. They settled in
Columbus, Miss., and raised a family.
Hugh Ross II and Lucretia Lacy were
married in Anson County, N. C., in 1797 or 98. They had ten children,
five born in North Carolina and five in Hichman County, Tennessee. The
first child, a daughter, died at the age of three or four years. Hugh III
died at 28 years of age. Thomas L. died at the age of 45 years near
Granada, Yellowbush County, Mississippi. The next son, Donald, died Dec.
Donald married D. H. Ross. Their
first born were twins. One of them died the third day after birth; the
other, Stephen, lived to be five or six years old. The third son, Hugh,
died in infancy, about six months old. James B., the next son, lived in
Independence, Miss., where he married. There were three daughters, Lee,
Betty and Ada. Lee married John Ozar, while Betty entered the mercantile
business and Ada moved to Texas where she taught school.
Stephen L. Ross, twin brother to
William Ross, was married to Eliza Hart Nov. 7, 1844, in Henderson County,
Tennessee. Four children were born to them, two sons, John and Hugh, and
two daughters, Helen and Margaret. John, at the age of 16, was a member of
General Forrests command in the Confederate army. He was killed at
Harrisburg, Miss., and was buried in the family cemetery. Hugh VI married
Alice C. Cawshaw, Sept. 19, 1878, and had two children, Hugh VII and Mary.
Eliza Ross killed at Shiloh.
Anna Ross was married to John
Mc-Swine in 1821. Eleven children were born to the union, some in
Tennessee and others in Mississippi. They were Thomas, Hugh, Griffith,
William, John, Stephen, Robert, Lucretia, Margaret and Hester. Five of the
McSwines were in the Confederate army. John was killed at Fishing Creek,
East Tennessee, and Stephen was killed at Shiloh.
Thomas married and had two or three
children, living at Pine Bluff, Ark. William never married; he lived on
his fathers farm seven miles from Granada, being a prosperous farmer and
Lucretia married James Crenshaw.
Kiziah was married to Warren Ferrill, to whom were born five children,
three sons, Alexander, Warren and James, and two daughters, Anna and
Beatrice. Anna married Dr. John Talbott and raised a family of eight
children. Alexander, a physician, lived at Loves Station with his family.
Warren died at an early age; while James prospered as a farmer. Beatrice
was widowed with three children. She lived with her mother at Loves
Station, Mississippi & Tennessee R. R.
Margaret McSwine died at a
comparatively early age. Hester, the youngest daughter of the McSwines,
married John Stack, an attorney. They had one daughter; they lived in
Kiziah Ross married Isaac Lucas.
They had two children of their own, Hugh and Lee, and had the care of
Kiziahs brother Johns children, four girls and one son.
Margaret Ross, the youngest daughter
of that generation, married S. E. Wynne in 1842. She died in 1845, leaving
a daughter, named Margaret for her mother. The latter married Jacke Wynne.
They lived in Forrest City, Ark., raising a family of seven children
Helen Ross, daughter of Stephen
Ross, died in 1875 at Manitou, Colorado. Margaret, the younger daughter,
married and had two children, Minnie and Helen.
William Ross, twin brother of
Stephen L. Ross and son of Hugh Ross II and Lucretia Lacy, married Mary
Ann Gillespie. To them were born five children, Lucretia, Kiziah, Monnie,
William G., and Thomas Lacy. Lucretia married John Ray; two children, Hugh
and Annie, were born to them. Hugh died when a young man. Annie married
William Beddingfield and raised a family of four boys and one girl, Tobbie,
Kate, John, Bill and Joe.
Tobbie never married; he died in
Vivian, La., about 1910. Kate also remained single, teaching school at
Vivian, La. She died there, as did her mother and father. John married
Gladys Johnson. A boy and girl, John Ray and Wilda who are now about 12
and 14 years of age, were born to them. John is farm boss for the Sultana
Drilling Company and is doing well. He lives in Longview, Texas.
Bill married Esther Maynettre. To
the union were born four daughters, Nelwyn, Bernice, Elane, Esther
Margaret and Corral. Bill is doing well as farm boss for the Ray Drilling
Company. He drilled ten wells for Sam W. Ross in 1932. He lives in
Joe Beddingfield married Parmelia
Johnson. They live in Mender, La., and have one daughter, Ouida Zoe. Joe
is working for his brother, John, and is doing well.
Kiziah, second daughter of William
Ross and Mary Ann Gillespie, was married to John Norvell, who died about
1925. She is still living at Henderson, Texas, about 86 years of age and
one of the finest women to be known. To the union were born seven
children, five boys and two girls, Ross, Tom, Charlie, Sallie, Margaret,
John Abe and Bill. Ross married Gertrude Moss. They had no children; he is
now dead. Tom married Carrie Hendrix; they have two children, Eloise and
Caroline. Eloise married Bob Millner; Caroline married Mr. Nobles and
lives in Buffalo, N. Y.
Charlie Norvell married Nancy Adams.
He died about 1927 in San Angelo, Texas. They had one girl, Margaret. The
latter married Bobbie Kennedy and lives in San Angelo with Nancy. They
have two children, Nancy Ellen and Mary Ann.
John Abe Norvell married Angil
Alford. They had two children, John Abe and Charles, both of whom are
married. John Abe Norvell and Angie Alford and one of the sons, Charles,
live in Henderson, Tex.
Sallie Norvell was married to Robert
T. Brown. He is district judge of Rusk and Panola Counties. They live in
Henderson, Tex., and have five children, three sons and two daughters,
Ross, Margaret, Mack, Dick and Betsy. All of the children are at home
except Margaret who married Carl Henderly and lives in Birmingham, Ala.
Margaret Norvell, nicknamed Bargie,
married Edd Zorn, a railroad man. They live at Del Rio, Texas, and have
two boys, John and Bill, who are now about grown.
Bill Norvell married Anna Mae
Rogers, to them were born one girl, Mary. Bill died in 1930. Aunt Kizziah
now lives with Anna Mae.
Billie Ross was married to Dora Ray
and had five boys and two girls, Donald, Steve, Mary, Griff, Nellie,
Charlie and W. G. Billie Ross and Dora Ray are both dead. Donald, the
oldest son, married Bernice Still and lives at Mt. Enterprise, having a
general merchandise store there. They had two girls and one boy. Louise,
the oldest daughter, married Marvin Vaughn and lives at Level Land, Texas.
The other daughter, Mary, and the son died when children.
Steve, son of Billie Ross and Dora
Ray, died in 1934. He held office as commissioner at the time of his
death. He never married. Mary was married to Gnat Terry who was killed in
a train wreck in 1917. She later married John Irvin and lives at Cushing,
Dr. Griff Ross married Hazel Duke
and lives at Mt. Enterprise, Tex. They had two boys, Griff Terry and
William Ferdinand. Nellie Ross was married to G. Whitehead and lives at
Arlington, Tex. They have two girls, Steva and Dora Francis.
Charlie Ross married Ida Chaney and
lives at Mt. Enterprise. They have one boy, Charles. W. G. Ross married
Marie Whiteside and lives at Mt. Enterprise, Tex. W. G. succeeded Steve
Ross as county commissioner upon the death of the latter. They have no
Thomas Lacy Ross, my father, first
married Belle Barber. To them were born six children, four boys and two
girls. They were Lucretia, Sallie, Leroy, William, Phad and Sam W.
Lucretia married Champ Brown who
died in Kilgore, Tex., May 27, 1913. She still lives in Kilgore. Sallie
married H. J. Schuch and lives in San Angelo, Tex. They have no children.
Leroy married Monnie Ruark. They have two children, Leroy, Jr., and
Josephine, and live on their farm at Mt. Enterprise, Tex. William died
when only a child.
Phad was married to Rosa Strong and
they have one girl, Lucile. Phad is tax collector in Rusk County.
Sam W. married Ruth Florey and lives
in Kilgore, Tex. We have no children.
My mother died in November, 1889. In
March, 1896, my father married Lena Tinkle. To them were born four girls
and two boys, Nancy Bell, Kizziah, Elizabeth, Tom, Persis and Joe. Nancy
Bell, Elizabeth and Persis live with their mother at Waxahachie, Tex.
Kizziah married Gilbert Tyler who is auditor for the Grey Hound Bus
Company and lives at New Orleans, La. Tom lives in Dallas, Texas. Joe died
when only four years old.
My father died in 1914.
SAM W. ROSS
This is a reprint of a book that my
father, Sam White Ross, (b. 2/15/59 - d. 9/7/66) had printed in 1934. As
he states in his preface, the simple objective was to preserve an outline
of the family for its members. He wanted it to be sized to fit a pocket or
I started this project with the idea
of updating the descendants. However I soon saw that Id be better advised
to use my time to reprint the origional, adding only yours truly
Caroline Anne Ross
b. Dec 26, 1935
Youll notice I also added a few
pages from the net to whet your appetite for computer genealogy.
If youd like to send me your
descendants, Ill try to get all of them together for us.
I hope you enjoy this.
HISTORY OF THE ROSS FAMILY
gaelic word "ros" means a "headland" and is often used as part of place
names in Scotland. There was an ancient Celtic earldom of Ross in the
north-east of Scotland, in what is now the county of Ross and Cromarty,
between the Cromarty and Dornoch Firths, north of Inverness. The clan was
sometimes referred to as Clan Anrias or Gifie Andras/Gillanders, the old
Celtic Earls of Ross, who were said to have descended from Gillianrias,
the son of the hereditary abbot at the monastery of Applecross.
In 1214, when Alexander II led an
army to the north to repress a rebellion by Donald Bane, who was claiming
the throne, Clan Ross assisted the king and was rewarded with the title
Earl of Ross. The Rosses fought at the Battle of Largs against the Vikings
The clan and their chief served with
distinction in the Wars of Independence against the English. Their chief
was captured at the Battle of Dunbar in 1296 and was taken as a prisoner
to London. He was released but was captured again while protecting Robert
the Bruces wife and daughter at the shrine of St Duthac in Tain. The clan
fought bravely at Battle of Bannockburn in 1314 and the earl's seal is one
of those on the Declaration of Arbroath in 1320. Hugh Ross married a
sister of Robert the Bruce and fell at the Battle of Halidon Hill in 1333.
The earldom was forfeited when the
Lord of the Isles was defeated in 1476 but the surname survived and the
chieftainship devolved to the Rosses of Balnagowan near Tain. The 12th
chief led 1,000 of his clansmen against Oliver Cromwell at the Battle of
Worcester in 1651. However, many were captured and transported to the
colonies in New England.
After a long struggle with the
neighbouring clan MacKays, the clan Ross was defeated at a battle at
Strathcarron by the Mackays in 1486 and never recovered. Despite this,
Ross is still one of the five most frequent names in the northern
Highlands and the 16th most frequently registered in the whole of Scotland
A Norman family called de Ros
settled in south-west Scotland in the 11th century and some of their
descendants also became known as "Ross" or sometimes "Rose." At one time
they managed to convince the Lord Lyon that they were the chieftains of
the clan Ross but this was overturned in 1903 and David Ross of Ross and
Shandwick is the current chief.
Sir Farquhar Mac an t-Sagairt (son
of the priest), hereditary Abbot of Applecross, was made first Earl of
Ross in 1235 by King Alexander II, for military services. William, third
Earl, led the men of Ross and Sutherland at Bannockburn in 1314 under
Robert the Bruce. He signed the Declaration of Arbroath in 1320, marking
independence from England. Hugh, fourth Earl, died leading the Scots army
at Halidon Hill in 1333. As punishment for not supporting King David II,
the fifth Earl Williamss lands and title passed in 1372 to Sir Walter
Leslie and then, through the female line of the Countesses of Ross, to the
Lords of the Isle. John, tenth Earl and fourth Lord of the Isles,
forfeited the Earldom to the Scottish crown in 1476, after conviction for
Hugh of Rarichies took the surname
Ross, after the county, in 1357. Upon the death of his half-brother, the
fifth Earl William, in 1372 he became first Chief of Clan Ross and first
Laird/Baron of Balnagowan. For over three centuries the Rosses of
Balnagowan passed the title from father to son. The twelfth Laird, David,
incurred considerable debt raising a regiment of clansmen in support of
Charles II. Taken prisoner at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, he died in
the Tower of London. The thirteenth Chief and Laird of Balnagowan, David,
died childless and in debt in 1711. The estate and titles were purchased
by Frances Stewart, then by the Rosses of Hawkbead (an unrelated Lowland
family descended from the Norman de Ros) and on to the Lockhart Rosses.
In 1903, Miss Sarah Williamson Ross
of Pitcalnie, descended from the Celtic OBeolain Earls, was recognized by
the Lord Lyon as Chief. Her sister, Miss Rosa Ross, succeeded in 1957
until her death in 1968. The Chiefship and arms then transferred to the
House of Shandwick, also descended from the Earls of Ross, with David
Campbell Ross of Ross as twenty-ninth Chief of the Clan.
Arms: Gules, three lions rampant Argent,
armed and langued Azure.
Badge: A hand holding a garland of Juniper.
Motto: Spem successus alit (Success nourishes hope).
Tartans: Ross, Ross, hunting, Ross, dress.
Plant Badge: Juniper.
Septs: Anderson, Andison, Andrew/s, Corbet/t, Crow/e, Croy, Denoon,
Denune, Dingwall, Duthie, Fair, Gair, Gear, Gillanders, Hagart, Haggart,
MacAndrew, MacCullie, MacCulloch, MacLuffich, MacTaggart, MacTier, MacTire,
Taggart, Tullo, Tulloch, Tyre, Vass, Wass.
Music: "The Earl of Rosss March," by Donald Mor MacCrimmon.