Genealogy Education Plan

With traveling and focusing on training to improve my genealogy research and writing skills, I haven’t posted on the blog for awhile.

In April, I finished the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Genealogy Education Programs (GEP I, II and III). The on-line courses covered DAR applications, plus information useful for other genealogical research. Topics in the twenty-seven lessons included vital records, evaluation of evidence, federal, state, and local records, finding alternative sources, using indirect evidence, creating an analysis, and resolving complex service problems. The last two lessons required submitting an written analysis. I’m now a DAR Genealogy Consultant and feel better prepared to research Revolutionary War patriots for myself and others in our local chapter.

The National Genealogical Society Family History Conference was held in Richmond, Virginia, 7-10 May 2014. I flew in for pre-conference workshops on the probate process and on writing. From Wednesday through Saturday, attendees could choose from dozens of lectures from 8:30 AM to 8:30 PM. When not attending lectures, I was in the Library of Virginia pulling records on Holders and Piggs from Pittsylvania County, perhaps the native home of my Virginia-borne Holder ancestors.

After a week back home, my husband and I flew to Scotland for a tour with a group from our Presbyterian church. Visits to Iona, Stirling Castle of Braveheart fame, Edinburgh, Holy Island-site of the first Viking landing, Rosslyn Chapel-featured in the Da Vinci Code, Cambridge, and several places in and around London were included. During twelve days in Scotland and England, I saw many family surnames-the tomb of Archbishop Musgrave at York Minister, very near where our possible Musgrave ancestors lived; Medcalf in northern England; Knox, Craig, McIntyre and other familiar surnames in Scotland; Archbishop Davidson in southern England and many more. I wish I had ancestors traced back across the pond-maybe a later trip. A wonderful experience, with great scenery and traveling companions.  In the meantime, 500 pictures are awaiting processing.

A week after the overseas trip, I headed to Birmingham, Alabama, for the week-long Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University. I was one of twenty five people taking the Writing and Publishing Course taught by Thomas Jones, PhD, one of the most highly regarded genealogy authors and editors in the field and editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ). In addition to pre-work, homework was assigned most nights. On Monday night, after attending an optional evening lecture, I finished my homework at midnight. No more evening lectures for me. During our lunch breaks and long afternoon break, I was in the library researching Alabama ancestors, including Isaac Oaks, a Revolutionary War soldier who fought in Virginia, moved to Georgia, then onto Alabama where he is buried. If I can document this lineage, Isaac Oaks will be my first DAR patriot in our Holder line. A highlight of this trip was meeting a Vickers cousin; we connected through my blog post on Daisy McIntire Vickers.

A genealogy education goal is to participate in a study group based on Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers and Librarians, edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills, the previous editor of NGSQ. The twenty nine chapters of ProGen, as it is called, cover Ethical Standards, Problem Analysis and Research Plans, Evidence Analysis and more. ProGen study groups work together on-line over about eighteen months covering the 600+ page book. Successful completion of ProGen is sometimes a precursor of genealogy certification. After Richmond, I applied for an upcoming ProGen class. I hoped for a fall class, but knew some people where waitlisted up to a year. While in Scotland, the ProGen coordinator sent me an email about an open spot for a study group starting June 1st. So in the week between the Scotland/England trip and IGHR, I finished my IGHR pre-work and did the reading for my first ProGen study group session held that same week.

Over the next eighteen months, my time will be balanced between genealogy research and training, focusing on the ProGen study group while still allowing time for an on-line NGSQ study group, which reviews one article from that periodical each month. For more details on NGSQ study groups, see Michele Simmons Lewis’s excellent description on her Ancestoring blog.  I’ve followed Michele’s blog and was especially pleased to meet her in the IGHR writing class.

With any luck, I’ll get back on track with weekly blogs, probably not posting 52 ancestors this year, but posting a few more as my research allows.

 Copyright © 2014 Andrea Musgrove Perisho

Knox Craig Eoff Families after the Revolutionary War

By 1783, James Knox Sr., at the age of seventy, was made Justice of the Peace in Chester County, South Carolina, four years before he died. A copy of his signature, with JP for Justice of the Peace after his signature, is in the Petersen/Lyle book, so he was literate.

 With the disruptions of the moves from Scotland to Ireland, then to the frontier, James and Elizabeth’s  children were probably not literate; their pension applications were signed with their mark. Illiteracy was almost the norm in Scots-Irish, as people moved west ahead of schools and churches. This lack of education led to a distrust of bankers, lawyers, politicians, even preachers who could read, since, in their experience, most of the educated people just tried to take advantage of them, still leading to a distrust of education in some parts of the county. By the Civil War, more people could read and write.

In October 1786, James and Elizabeth sold their Royal Grant and divided the proceeds among their heirs. The 450 acres sold for the 2012 equivalent of $90 US dollars. Sometime 1787, James Sr. died.

In 1788, Elizabeth Craig Knox moved to Crab Orchard, Madison County, Kentucky with some of her childrens’ families (Samuel Morrow, Robert Knox, Samuel Knox, Isaac Eoff and Jacob Sutton) in a train of six wagons. The families of John Gaston Jr., Jannet Miller Knox and William Knox stayed in South Carolina.  The Robert Knox and Jacob Sutton families stayed at Crab Orchard. John Knox with his mother Elizabeth, along with the Samuel Knox and Samuel Morrow families, moved to the southern part of Lincoln County which is now Pulaski County. The Isaac Eoff family moved northward into Madison County.

Sometime in 1809, Robert Knox when back to South Carolina to settle his wife’s estate. Upon his return, he invited Nellie, his niece, to return home with him on the extra horse. With the arrangement made, Nellie rode side-saddle all the way to Frankfort. While in Kentucky, she also visited her uncle Samuel Knox. There she met her cousin William. In October, they were married with another uncle Samuel Morrow as bondsman. At the time of their marriage, William was almost 21 and Eleanor (Nellie) was 24.

In 1812, at the age of 93, Elizabeth Craig Knox, traveled with her daughter Ann’s family again, moving to Puncheon Camp Creek, Garrison Fork, Duck River, Bedford County, Tennessee in another wagon train. Included in the caravan were her daughters’ families – Elizabeth Morrow, Margaret and Ann Sutton and most of the others who had left South Carolina. John, at sixty seven, and Robert stayed in Crab Orchard.

In 1822, at the age of 103, Elizabeth Craig Knox died in Puncheon Camp Creek, Tennessee. She was probably living in a log cabin, with Ann and Jacob Sutton, at the time of her death. She is thought to be buried in Stevenson Cemetery, in an unmarked grave, as was the custom in that day. She was a very long way from her comfortable place of birth, probably as an educated Lady in sophisticated Edinburgh, Scotland to the frontier of a county which didn’t even exist at the time of her birth.

In December 1826, Isaac Eoff had surveyed 25 acres in Warren County, Tennessee warrant #2031 and 50 acres surveyed on warrant #1233, adding to land already owned. The new land may have been land grants for his Revolutionary War service.

On Aug 7, 1832 while living in Rutherford County, Tennessee, Isaac applied for a Revolutionary War pension in the courts of Bedford County, Tennessee. The pension was approved and he drew $60.00 per year. He and Margaret had eight children. One of their sons, John W. (Go Back) Eoff, is our direct ancestor.

John W. (Go Back) Eoff was born on March 15, 1795, in Madison County, Kentucky and  died about 1867 in Carroll County, Arkansas. First, John may have been married to Mary Jane last name unknown but perhaps Knox, who died after the birth of her first or second child. Shortly afterwards, he married Lucy Shaw, born March 10, 1804; she died between 1867 and 1870 in Boone County, Arkansas.   John became known as “Go Back” Eoff because he couldn’t seem to decide just where he wanted to live. It is said that he returned to Tennessee after the move to Arkansas, then returned to Izard County, Arkansas and was there when his mother Margaret died in 1849, then back to Carroll or Boone County. He is said to even moved to Texas for awhile!

Lucy Shaw’s parents haven’t been proven. It is thought by some genealogists that Lucy was the daughter of Christopher Shaw of South Carolina and Bedford County, Tennessee, where there are no courthouse records before 1850 due to a fire. Christopher Shaw deeded land to his three surviving sons. On the deed of land in Bedford County, Tennessee from Christopher Shaw to John Eoff no mention is made of any relationship. Lucy is believed to have been borne in Kentucky, but there is no proof. Christopher Shaw is a proven DAR patriot through his three sons. The three sons’ names are spelled out in full detail in the deeds from their father and mother. No daughters are listed in the deeds for him, although on the 1800 Edgefield District, South Carolina census there was a young female in his household at the time. More research needs to be done in Edgefield District, South Carolina to see just when Christopher Shaw sold his holding there. If he sold out between 1800-1804 then it is quite possible he did go to Kentucky before making the final move to Bedford County, Tennessee. (Details in this paragraph by Pauline Mitchell Pierce.)

In 1841, a wagon train comprising the families of John, Samuel, William and Alexander Eoff made their way through Tennessee, across the Mississippi, into Northwest Arkansas. John dropped from the train in Izard County, with the rest of the family settling in Carroll County, where Margaret Knox Eoff passed away on Sept 26, 1848 at the age of 85. Her remains are buried in the Eoff Cemetery near Harrison, (now) Boone County, Arkansas. Her husband, Isaac, the 3rd generation of Revolutionary War patriots died 1841. (See his headstone and details in the previous Revolutionary War section.)


  • “Knox, James Knox, Sr. and Elizabeth Craig Knox and their Descendants,” compiled by Lorene K. Petersen and Jennie Bell Lyle, 1984 for much of the material in this Knox section.
  • “The McIntires and the Elliotts of Bickle’s Cove, Stone County, Arkansas and the descendents of John McIntire of Maury County, Tennessee,” by Pauline Mitchell Pierce, January 1997.


Since before Roman times in 200 A.D., the border between England and Scotland was in almost constant warfare.  The people, whether English (like the Musgrave’s) or Scottish (like the Knox’s, McIntire’s), were living in a war zone. The men were warrior-like and often away at battle. With the men away, the women raised the many children and took care of the household and farm, as soldiers trampled crops and rustlers stole livestock. The extended family or clan was the only unit worth any loyalty.

Each family had a few acres where they raised their own food and grazed livestock. Families moved often. Their home was a simple building, built in a day, with few household possessions. As rents increased in the borderlands, Scots-Irish were encouraged to migrate to northern Ireland. Soon rents increased in Ireland and their farming/ grazing lifestyle was no longer economically feasible in Ireland.

When the first Scots-Irish first arrived in Pennsylvania about 1717, their behavior, provocative dress, and speech were very different from the Quakers, so they were rejected, ridiculed, and called “Scots-Irish”. In spite of their poverty, they were a proud people, which further irritated the Quakers. The Scots-Irish settled on the frontier of Pennsylvania and; when the roads south opened, they went down into the Shenandoah Valley to the Carolinas. Later migrations to America in 1760-1775 were directly to the Carolinas. The Scot-Irish families continued the old patterns of life first on the frontier, then to Tennessee,  and further west to Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma.  Since the Scots-Irish way of life was successful on the frontier, other frontier immigrants took on those characteristics, still seen today.

Weddings were wild affairs, full of ritual, and expensive. Sometimes brides were abducted, usually (but not always) willingly. First cousins often married to “keep it in the clan”. There was a shortage of clergy  and sometimes couples got tired of waiting. Premarital pregnancies were common and not scandalous. Most of the original Scots-Irish were Presbyterian, but became Baptists and Methodists as their population and migration outgrew the Presbyterian seminaries capacity to provide ministers.

Families were male dominant; women and children were to obey. Children, especially boys, were taught to exercise their wills. The Scots-Irish doted on their male children, reared to have pride, independence, and courage. Girls were taught the virtues of patience, industry, sacrifice, and devotion to others. Men shared in the care of their children from infancy. Corporal punishment was often used.

Formal education wasn’t important to the Scots-Irish, the most illiterate group. The main occupation was farming combined with herd grazing. There was no class system with everyone seen as equal. As in Scotland, this group moved often, creating scattered, isolated settlements, along creeks and streams.


  • “Albion’s Seed, Four British Folkways in America,” David Hackett Fischer, 1989.
  • “Born Fighting – How the Scots-Irish Shaped America,” James Webb, 2004.

Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.