Sunday, June 28, 2015

William C. Burnett - Murdered in Beaumont

Several of Alfred and Julia Burnett’s grandchildren suffered tragic deaths.  There was a work related fatality, an accidental drowning and murders to name a few.
One of the murdered grandchildren was Sherrod Burnett’s son William C. Burnett, born 18-Mar-1876.  William was murdered in Beaumont, Texas on 10-Feb-1914.
The story goes that William, a carpenter by trade and resident of Lake Charles, LA, was in Beaumont working with his brother in law, C.F. Myers.  He was shot and killed by Harvey F. Myers at 10 O’clock at the intersection of College and Park Street.   Harvey F. Myers was a brother to C.F Meyers.  A newspaper account of the murder can be found below.[1]   The newspaper article does not state a motive for the slaying.  A better image of the article can be found by clicking here.
William left behind a wife name Mattie and three children.  William is buried next to his parents in Orange Grove Cemetery in Lake Charles.   

Newspaper account of murder
William C. Burnett's Death Certificate
William C. Burnett's Tombstone, photo by Michael Burnett on 17-May-2014

[1] Lake Charles Man Shot Dead By Relative On Beaumont Street”, Lake Charles Weekly American Press,   13-Feb-1914, Page 8.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Ancestry DNA - On Sale Through Father's Day

For those interested in genetic genealogy, Ancestry has their autosomal DNA kit on sale through 21-Jun-15.  The sale price is $89, which is $10 off the normal price.  Click here for more information.  All that is needed to take the Ancestry DNA test is a saliva sample.

Currently we have autosomal DNA from 15 of Alfred and Julia Burnett’s descendants.   Additionally, there is autosomal DNA from six of William C. Seaman’s descendants and eight descendants of Ignatius Grantham and Catherine Sheffield.

The DNA results are interesting - to say the least. I will be blogging about them in the near future.  If anyone has questions about autosomal DNA please contact me and I will do my best to answer.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

William C. Seaman and Catherine Sheffield Marriage

William Christopher Seaman was married to Catherine Sheffield.  Record of the marriage can be found in the probate court records of Wayne County, Georgia.   Wayne County is where Catherine’s father, West Sheffield’s will was probated.  The marriage record can be found in the book, “Estates 1822-1855” page 202. 
 The following is as it is recorded in Wayne County.

State of Mississippi
Jackson County

I  Allen McLendon Clerk of the County Court of said county do certify that the rites of Matrimony was duly Solemnized between William C. Seaman and Catharine Grantham on the Second day of November in the year of our Lord on Thousand eight hundred and twenty eight as certified to this office by A. McLendon justice of the Peace. Given under my hand and private Seal there being no seal of office this 11th day of January 1832.

A. McLendon Clk Cty[1]
It is possible the original letter from the Jackson County Clerk is filed with the West Sheffield estate loose papers.  Catherine was previously married to Ignatius Grantham, so at the time of her marriage to William Seaman her last name was Grantham.

The Jackson County, Mississippi court house burned in 1875 taking all of the records with it.  Unless a descendant has the original marriage license or certificate the recorded information in Wayne County, GA is the best proof we have of the marriage.

Wayne County, GA Estates 1822-1855, p. 202

[1] "Georgia Probate Records, 1742-1990," images, FamilySearch (,267841001 : accessed 14 June 2015), Wayne > Estates 1822-1855 > image 103 of 174; county probate courthouses, Georgia.