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The Ross Family

The Ross FamilyPREFACE

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 their progeny.

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.



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.


Dedicated to the memory of Sam Ross on the occasion of his 114th birthday.

Caroline Ross
February 15, 2003


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 married.

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 and Katherine.

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 Lane’s 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, about 1810.

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 Carolina.

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. 25, 1875.

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 Forrest’s 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 father’s farm seven miles from Granada, being a prosperous farmer and physician.

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 McSwine’s, married John Stack, an attorney. They had one daughter; they lived in Grenada, Miss.

Kiziah Ross married Isaac Lucas. They had two children of their own, Hugh and Lee, and had the care of Kiziah’s brother John’s 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 there.

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 Longview, Texas.

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, Tex.

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 children.

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.



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 purse.

I started this project with the idea of updating the descendants. However I soon saw that I’d be better advised to use my time to reprint the origional, adding only yours truly—

Caroline Anne Ross
b. Dec 26, 1935
Kilgore, Texas

You’ll notice I also added a few pages from the ‘net to whet your appetite for computer genealogy.

If you’d like to send me your descendants, I’ll try to get all of them together for us.

I hope you enjoy this.



Balnagowan CastleThe 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 in 1263.

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 Bruce’s 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 in 1995.

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 Williams’s 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 treason.

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 O’Beolain 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.

TartanFor more information:

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 Ross’s March," by Donald Mor MacCrimmon.

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