Whole Number 158
[Editor's Note: From time to time we have been publishing abstracts of pension application files for Union soldiers who served in the Civil War. (Confederate soldiers could not qualify for federal pensions, although some received pensions from their respective states. ) These abstracts have been prepared by Dr.
Paul E. Sparks, president of our Association. They are based on copies of the "selected" pension papers provided to us by the National Archives in Washington, D.C., from the individual files. The National Archives charges $10.00 for each such file; the "non-selected papers" may be obtained for an additional fee, the amount depending upon the number of papers involved. For a more de- tailed description of these records, the reader is referred to page 3730 of the March 1991 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No.153.]
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52 WILLIAM SPARKS, son of Elisha and Susanna (Pridemore) Sparks, was born September 17, 1836, in Lawrence County, Kentucky. He died on October 18, 1913. He married Martha Salyer on December 14,1859. Be served in Company D, 14th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. File Designations: Inv. Cert.,No. 166,375; Wid. Cert. No. 769,506.
On June 3, 1865, William Sparks, age 27, a resident of Hoods Fork [now known as Hood Creek] in Johnson County, Kentucky, made application for an invalid pension. He said that he had enlisted in Company B, 14th Regiment Kentucky Infantry, commanded by Col. George W. Gallup, on October 6, 1861, at Catlettsburg, Kentucky, and had served until January 30, 1865. On August 3, 1864, his company had charged the skirmish line near Atlanta, Georgia, and he had received a musket ball in the upper part of his right foot which had shattered the bone and rendered him a cripple and unable to perform any work as a farmer. He appointed J. F. Stewart, Louisa, Kentucky, as his attorney, and E. H. Conley and Ira Hale, both residents of Louisa, witnessed his signature. Conley and Hale also made an affidavit that they knew Sparks's statements were true for they had been fellow-soldiers of his. Judge John M. Clayton and Clerk R. F. Vinson, Lawrence County, Kentucky, officials, certified the application. Sparks was issued a pension under Invalid Certificate No. 166,375.
On November 19, 1891, William Sparks made a request for increased pension benefits under the provisions of the 1890 Act of Congress. He was now 55 years of age and lived at Flat Gap, Kentucky. He stated that he was unable to earn his support because of sore eyes, kidney disease, rheumatism, and chronic bronchitis brought on by military service. He appointed B. H. Harris as his attorney, and M. H. Pack and R. M. Ross witnessed his signature.
On Apri110, 1895, the Bureau of Pensions asked the Adjutant-General to furnish Sparks's medical history. Verification was received on April 11, 1895. Sparks had served in Company D, 14th Regiment Kentucky Infantry from October 20, 1861, until January 31, 1865. He had entered the General Hospital at Knoxville, Tennessee, on August 31, 1864, with a musket wound in his right foot and had remained there until December 31, 1864, when he had been sent to the hospital in Ashland, Kentucky. Other periods of medical treatment were for camp fever, March 7-18, 1863, and for conjunctivitus, October 27-December 21, 1863. The Adjutant-General said the latter records had been found after an earlier report had been sent on September 25, 1871.
William Sparks responded to a questionnaire from the Bureau of Pensions on December 29, 1897. He stated that he had been married to Martha Salyer on December 14, 1859, and to this marriage twelve children had been born:
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.1 James J. Sparks, born October 20, 1861
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.2 Samantha Sparks, born November 22, 1865
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.3 Colesta Sparks, born November 22, 1867
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.4 Lafayette Sparks, born January 5, 1870
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.5 John Sparks, born June 7, 1872
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.6 Jesse Sparks, born November 26, 1875
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.7 Albert Sparks, born November 28, 1877
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.8 Allie Sparks, born December 9, 1881
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.9 Minnie Sparks, born April 9, 1883
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.10 Harry Sparks, born February 14, 1886
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.11 Julia Sparks, born January 31, 1888 [Webmaster note: Articles in Whole Number 156 say this daugter's name was Lola].
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.12 Powell Sparks, born February 29, 1892
William Sparks died on October 18, 1913, and his widow, Martha (Salyer) Sparks, made a declaration for a Widow's Pension under the 1908 Act of Congress. She was 66 years of age and lived at Flat Gap, Kentucky. She furnished evidence that she and Sparks had been married on December 14, 1859, by a minister of the Church of Christ. It had been the first marriage for both. Henry Daniel and John Borders witnessed her make her mark, and E. E. Crislip notarized the application. Martha Sparks was issued a pension under Widow's Certificate No. 769,506. When she died on December 15, 1915, she was receiving a pension of $12.00 per month.
On February 14, 1916, Samantha (Sparks) Murry, age 51, a resident of Flat Gap, Kentucky, and a daughter of William and Martha (Salyer) Sparks, applied for reimbursement for nursing care that she had provided for her mother. Four neighbors, Samuel Cordial, Garland Frazier, F. M. Lyon, and Rhoda Lyon, testified that the claim was true and just. Dr. P. O. Meade, the attending physician, also supported the claim. Whether she received payment is not known.
[Editor's Note: For further information regarding William Sparks and his family, see pages 3939-42 of the Quarterly. A photograph of William and Martha (Salyer) Sparks appears on page 3939.]
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11 ELISHA SPARKS, JR., son of Elisha and Susanna (Pridemore) Sparks, was born ca. 1841 in Lawrence County, Kentucky. He died on February 12,1863. He served in Company D, 14th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. File Designations : Mother Cert. No. 144,771; Father Cert. No. 275,403.
On September 3, 1866, Elisha Sparks, aged 55, a resident of Johnson County, Kentucky, made application for a "Father's Pension." He stated that he was the father of Elisha Sparks who had been a private in Company D, 14th Regi- ment Kentucky Volunteer Infantry Regiment commanded by Capt. --?--; the regiment had been commanded by Col. George W. Gallup. His son had died while in the service on February 12, 1863, at Ashland, Kentucky. Sparks said that he had been dependent upon his son for support. His son had never married and had no dependents. Sparks stated that he lived on the road between Flat Gap and Paintsville, about ten miles from the latter. He appointed W. D. B. Morrill, Louisville, Kentucky, as his attorney. B. F. Salyer and Tillman Craft, both of Hoods Fork [now Hood Creek], Kentucky, witnessed him make his mark, and the application was sworn to before Hiram C. Conley, Johnson County judge.
John W. Witten and G. W. Rice made a joint affidavit to support Sparks's application. They said that from about 1855 until his death in 1863, Elisha Sparks, Jr. had contributed about $10 per month to the support of his father by "working out from home for meat, bread and other necessaries. " They also stated that Elisha Sparks, Sr. lived on about five acres of land in a house which was worth no more than $250, including the household goods.
Apparently the claim of Elisha Sparks, Sr. was not allowed, for on July 5, 1870, Susanna Sparks, mother of Elisha Sparks, Jr., deceased, made an application for a "Mother's Pension. " She stated that she had been almost wholly dependent upon her deceased son to support her. Prior to his death in 1863, her son, Elisha Sparks, had given her about $100 per year. She appointed J. F. Stewart, Paintsville, Kentucky, as her attorney. John W. Wit ten and Samuel Murray witnessed her make her mark, and the application was sworn to before James Ramey, deputy clerk of Johnson County, Kentucky.
On September 2, 1870, Mother's Certificate No.275,403 was issued to Susanna Sparks, and she was placed upon the pension roll. She died on July 1, 1889, in Johnson County, Kentucky. On August 24,1889, Elisha Sparks, Sr. again applied for a "Father's Pension, " claiming dependency upon his deceased son. He stated that he had been married to the mother of Elisha Sparks, Jr. on December 25, 1833, by Walter Osborne. She had received a "Mother's Pension" until her death. He appointed B. H. Harris, Flat Gap, Kentucky, as his attorney. H. P. McKenzie and J. F. Pruit witnessed him make his mark.
In the spring of 1890, Franklin Salyer, Ben Stambaugh, Ephraim Salyer, Lavinia Pack, G. W. Rice, and Dr. N. pI Simmer made affidavits to support the claim of Elisha Sparks. Father Certificate No. 275,403 was issued to him, and he was placed upon the pension rolls. He died on December 26, 1893.
[Editor's Note: For information regarding Elisha Sparks, Jr. and how he fitted into his branch of the Sparks family, see the present issue of the Quarterly, page 3942. It is interesting to note that he served in the same company of the 14th Regiment Kentucky Infantry as did his brother, William Sparks (1838-1913), whose pension papers are abstracted on pages 3963-65 of the present issue of the Quarterly. ]
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124 WILLIAM SPARKS (ca. 1833-1879), son of Elijah and Sarah (Evans) Sparks, was born ca. 1833 in Lawrence County, Kentucky. On September 15,1855, he married Louisa Blevins in Johnson County, Kentucky. He died on May 16, 1879. He served in Company I, 47th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. File Designation: Wid. Appl. No. 489,680.
William Sparks died on May 16, 1879, at his home at Flatgap, Kentucky. His widow, Louisa (Blevins) Sparks, remained a widow until 1885 when she married FNU Hill. On January 21, 1896, Louisa Hill, aged 56, a resident of Bonanza, Kentucky, applied for a widow's pension, using as her claim the military service of her late (first) husband, William Sparks. She stated that Sparks had served in Company I, 47th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. She and Sparks had been married on September 15,1855, in Johnson County, Kentucky, by Hardy Williams, a Baptist minister. She and Sparks had had five children who had been under the age of sixteen years at the time of his death in 1879. These were:
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.3 Sarah Catherine Sparks, born May 15, 1865
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.4 Elijah Sparks, born March 5, 1867
18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.5 Eli Sparks, born November 29, 1871
126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.6 Merida (or Meredith) Green Sparks, born October 27, 1874
184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.7 Eddy Cornelius Sparks, born March 8, 1877
Mrs. Hill declared that she had remained a widow until 1885 when she had been married a second time. She appointed Edgar T. Gaddis, Washington, D.C., as her attorney. Wm. W. Anderson and W. H. Robinson witnessed her make her mark on her application.
On March 4, 1896, the War Department confirmed the military service of William Sparks. He had been enrolled on October 27, 1863, in Company I, 47th Regiment Kentucky Infantry, and he had served until he had been mustered out with his company on April 12, 1865, at Lexington, Kentucky. He had been hospitalized at Paris, Kentucky, on February 29, 1864, and had remained there until April 30, 1864, when he had been returned to duty.
Six affidavits were filed on July 27, 1896, to support Mrs.Hill's application. James A. McKinnon, 64, and Nancy J. McKinnon, 45, both of Flatgap, Kentucky, testified that William Sparks had left his widow without any means of support and with a family of small children. Lafayette McKenzie witnessed the McKinnons' signatures. Angeline Sparks, 44, and Jane Estep, 48, both of Flatgap, Kentucky, swore that they had been present at the birth of Meredith Green Sparks in October 1874. He was a son of William and Louisa Sparks. William M. Conley and Lafayette McKenzie witnessed these women make their marks on their affidavit.
May Ann McKenzie, 61, of Flatgap, Kentucky, testified that she had been pre- sent when her brother, William Sparks, had been married to Louisa Blevins about five years before the late war. She stated that they had been married at the home of old Billy Blevins, grandfather of Louisa. It had been the first marriage for each of them. Wm. M. Conley and Lafayette McKenzie witnessed her make her mark.
Nancy E. Sparks, 39, of Bonanza, Kentucky, testified that she knew the birthdates of the children of William and Louisa Sparks by being in the home when they were born. She said the children had all stayed at home until they were fifteen years old. She gave the dates of birth of Sarah Catherine Sparks, Elijah Sparks, Eli Sparks, Merida Green Sparks, and Eddy Cornelius Sparks just as they had been stated on the original application of Louisa Hill. William W. Anderson and C. T. Gillespie witnessed her signature on her affidavit.
On August 8, 1898, J. M. Preston, clerk of Johnson County, sent a copy of the marriage record of William Sparks and Louisa Blevins to the Pension Office. The license had been issued on September 19, 1855, by John Howes, clerk of Johnson County. Eli Blevins, father of Louisa Blevins, had given his permission to the marriage.
On March 5, 1900, the claim of Louisa Sparks, now Hill, was sent by the Bureau of Pensions to the chief of the Southern Division with the following notation: "The date of remarriage on the Claimant's declaration of January 21, 1896, is not very plainly written and 1895 may have been intended. Claimant seems to be neglecting both of her claims. It is suggested that final action be delayed to await such further evidence as she may furnish in regard to remarriage."
The final statement from this pension file was written on December 23, 1904. It stated: "Clmt. & Atty. notified in regard to Rejection."
[Editor's Note: For further information about William Sparks and his family, see the present issue of the Quarterly, page 3945.]
HENRY C. SPARKS (ca.1838-1862), son of Jonas and Paulina F. (Polleweight) Sparks, was born ca. 1838. He died on October 8, 1862. He served in Company A, 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. File Designation: Mother's Cert. No. 182,677.
On September 3, 1873, Paulina F. Sparks, age 68, a resident of Smithfield, Henry County, Kentucky, appeared before the clerk of Jefferson County, Kentucky, and made application for a "Mother's Army Pension." She said that she was the widow of Jonas Sparks, and the mother of Henry C. Sparks. Henry C. Sparks had been a private in Company A, 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry Volunteers, commanded by Capt. Marion C. Taylor. He had been killed in the Battle of Perryville on October 8, 1862. Mrs. Sparks stated further that her husband, Jonas Sparks, had died on January 11, 1843, and that she had been partly dependent upon her son for support. She appointed 0. M. Rood, of Louisville, Kentucky, as her attorney. Her signature on her application was witnessed by George W. Sparks and Edmonia Sparks.
The military service of Henry C. Sparks was confirmed by the War Department on November 8, 1873. He had been enrolled on October 10, 1861, at Camp Sherman fu Company A, 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry to serve for three years. He had been promoted to corporal in July 1862. He had been dropped from the rolls on the October 1862 return with the remark, "Killed October 8, 1862 at the Battle of Chaplin Hills, Kentucky. "
The application of Paulina F. Sparks apparently did not receive favorable consideration, and she was asked to present further proof to support her claim. Eight persons made undated supporting affidavits for her. Thomas S. Long of Beard Station, Oldham County, Kentucky, testified that she had no property after selling her interest in a small place in her father's estate for $200.00. He also said that before entering the service, Henry C. Sparks had worked for him (Long) for three years and had given a considerable portion of his wages ($150 per annum) to his mother for her support.
Anna L. Bland, 79 years of age and a resident of Louisville, Kentucky, stated that she was well acquainted with Jonas Sparks, father of Henry C. Sparks, and knew that he had died on January 11, 1843, and had been buried in the Western Cemetery in Louisville, Kentucky.
Christian Kiefer, a resident of Shelby County, Kentucky, stated that he had lived in the family of Mrs. Sparks "during the Rebellion and knew that her son who was in the army whenever he was paid off by the Government would send his mother either by private conveyance or Express from thirty to fifty dollars. " Kiefer also said that he had been in the army with Henry C. Sparks and knew him to be unmarried, and that he had left no wife or children at his death.
A joint affidavit was made by three residents of Shelby County, Kentucky, to support the claim of Mrs. Paulina Sparks. Lewis E. Stout stated that he had been a soldier in the same company as Henry C. Sparks and knew that he (Sparks) sent his mother money after each payday. J. S. Fullerwoider stated that Henry C. Sparks had worked for Fullerwoider's father in 1858 to help sup- port his (Sparks's) mother. James A. Weeks testified that he had seen Henry C. Sparks purchase merchandise from Anderson Logan, a Shelby County merchant, to give to his mother.
William P. Smith and J. W. Blakemore, residents of Jefferson County, Kentucky, stated that they had known Mrs. Paulina Sparks for several years prior to her husband's death, and that after his death in 1843, she had not remarried.
On August 25, 1878, Mrs. Sparks also made an affidavit. She stated that the members in her family in 1862 had been: Mrs. Mary Ellen [sic], age about 28 years; R. J. Sparks, age about 26 years, and George W. Sparks, age about 20 years. She said that she was not the housekeeper, but that she was living with her son, Richard J. Sparks, who was married. He died in 1864, however, and she had gone to live with her daughter, Mary Ellen, who had supported her since that time. She said that while her son, Henry C. Sparks, had been in the service, he had sent her money by letter for her support, but the let- ters had been misplaced or destroyed. W. C. Powers and S. T. Hieatt witnessed her signature, and the affidavit was sworn to before Wm. A. Perry, clerk of the Henry County Court.
Mrs. Sparks's application was marked with the notation: " Additional Evidence" and was sent to Attorney George E. Lemon, Washington, D.C. Here it received the following endorsement prior to being sent to the Bureau of Pensions : "The within application has been pending five or six years and as the proof is now all in, I will be much obliged if you will have it disposed of. Yours truly, Albert S. Willis, M. C. 5th Kentucky. " The application was approved and Paulina F. Sparks was granted a pension under Mother's Certificate No. 182, 677. Nothing was included among the "selected papers" from this file sent by the National Archives to show the date of approval nor the amount of the pension.
[Editor's Note: The parents of Henry C. Sparks, Jonas Sparks and Paulina F. Polleweight, were married in Shelby County, Kentucky, on April 5, 1827.
(See page 948 of the December 1965 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No. 52, in which the name of Jonas Sparks was erroneously published as James Sparks.) On the 1830 census of Shelby County, Jonas Sparks and his wife, both born between 1800 and 1810, had a son and a daughter born between 1825 and 1830. (See page 422 of the September 1959 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No.27.)
[As stated in the abstract above, Jonas Sparks died in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1843. He was a son of and Elenor Sparks. After the death of her husband, Paulina F. Sparks moved her family to Jessamine County, Kentucky, probably to be near the family of her husband, for he had two, possibly three, brothers there: Isaac Sparks, Jerome B. Sparks, and, perhaps, William Sparks. On the 1850 census of Jessamine County, Paulina Sparks was shown as heading her family of five children: Mary Ellen, Richard J., James, Henry C., and George W. (See pages 1222-23 of the March 1969 issue of the QUAR- TERLY, Whole No.65, in which Paulina Sparks was erroneously identified as the widow of William Sparks. There is also a brief biography of Jonas Sparks. )
[Based on census records and the information contained in Paulina's pension application, it appears that Jonas and Paulina F. (Polleweight) Sparks had the following children.
1. A daughter was born between 1827 and 1830. She may have been Mary Ellen Sparks.
2. A son was born between 1827 and 1830.
3. Richard J. Sparks was born August 7, 1832. He died on June 29, 1864, and was buried in the cemetery at Ballardsville, Kentucky. He married Mildred Ann Pearce on March 2, 1858, in Shelby County, Ken- tucky. She had been born ca. 1837 and was a daughter of John M. Pearce. Richard and Mildred had two children: John Sparks, born ca. 1861; and Emma Sparks, born in November 1863.
4. James Sparks was born ca. 1834.
5. Mary Ellen Sparks was born ca. 1836 (although her mother stated that she was the eldest child living in 1862. On March 14, 1857, she married John W. Wallace in Oldham County, Kentucky, and when the 1860 census was taken, they were shown as having a son, George Wallace, age 11 months. Mary Ellen's mother, Paulina Sparks, was also living in this household.
6. Henry C. Sparks, born ca. 1838, killed in the Civil War October 8, 1862. See the above abstract of his mother's pension application.
7. George W. Sparks was born ca. 1840. On November 3,1864, he married Edmonia Blakemore, daughter of Thomas S. and Ann Catherine (Railey) Blakemore. She had been born on December 20, 1844, and she died on July 2, 1878. George and Edmonia had no children. Like his brother, George W. Sparks served in the Union Army in the Civil War and in the same unit, i.e., Company A of the 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. In fact, had been enrolled on the same day, October 10, 1861. See the pension application of George W. Sparks which follows. ]
GEORGE W. SPARKS (ca.1842-1908).son of Jonas and Paulina (Polleweight) Sparks, was born ca. 1842 in Shelby County, Kentucky. He died on April 9, 1908. He married Edmonia Blakemore on November 3, 1864, in Oldham County, Kentucky. He served in Company A, 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry. File Designation: Inv. Cert. No. 666,635.
The earliest document among the "selected papers" sent us by the National Archives from the pension file of George W. Sparks is a Certificate of Discharge for Disability which was issued to him on February 21, 1863, at Louisville, Kentucky. W. A. Gordon, Assistant Surgeon, who was attached to Headquarters in Louisville, certified that Sparks was incapable of performing his duties as a soldier because of organic disease of the heart. He had enlisted on October 10, 1861, at Camp Sherman, Kentucky, in Company A, 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry for three years. He had been born in Shelbyville, Kentucky. He was 19 years of age; 5 feet, 11 inches tall; he had a light complexion, dark hair, and grey eyes; and he was a farmer by occupation. His address was Brownsboro, Oldham County, Kentucky.
Sparks applied for an invalid pension on September 14, 1889. He was 46 years of age, and a resident of Louisville, Kentucky. He stated that he had enlisted at Camp Pope, Jefferson County, on October 10, 1861, in Company A, 15th Regiment Kentucky Infantry, under the command of Capt. Marion C. Taylor, and had been discharged on February 21, 1863, by reason of disabilities contracted near Huntsville, Alabama, in April 1862. He said that, because of using impure water and eating improper food, he had contracted chronic diarrhea and piles. He had been sent to the General Hospital at Nashville, Tennessee, where he had stayed six weeks. He had then been given a sick furlough on November 1, 1862, but had finally been discharged because of these disabilities. After leaving the service, he became a carpenter, but he was now unable to perform any manual labor. He appointed Maring, Slusher & Company of Columbus, Indiana, as his attorneys. Joe Able and Charles H. Montz witnessed his signature, and the affidavit was sworn to before George H. Webb, clerk of Jefferson County.
Two affidavits were furnished to the Bureau of Pensions to support Sparks's claim. On June 6, 1890, Lige Arterburn, age 66, a resident of Westport, Old- ham County, Kentucky, testified that he had known Sparks for forty years and that prior to going into the service, he had been a stout, able-bodied man. When he was discharged, he was quite emaciated and weak, and he had never recovered from the plague of chronic diarrhea. At times, he was con- fined to his room for days. Coleman S. Daniel, age 48, a resident of Louis- ville, gave similar testimony on June 25, 1890. He said that he was Sparks's immediate commanding officer while in the service and knew how seriously affected he had been at Huntsville, Alabama. He had also stayed in touch him after leaving the service and knew that Sparks had gotten no better.
On September 27, 1890, Sparks appointed the firm of Merritt & Clapp of Louisville as his attorneys. At that time, he was living at 436 West Jefferson St., Louisville. Two more supporting affidavits were sent to the Bureau of Pensions. Joel H. Hardin, age 51, of Brownsboro, Kentucky, stated that he had been a fellow-soldier of Sparks and knew of his severe disabilities and that he had continued to suffer from them. F. M. Barbour, age 64, of Louisville, gave similar testimony.
On March 21, 1891, Sparks made a final application for a pension under the 1890 Act of Congress. He was now a resident of the National Military Home in Montgomery County, Ohio, where he was suffering from kidney disease, lung trouble, general debility, as well as the usual ailments of diarrhea and piles. He appointed John C. Truesdale of the National Military Home as his attorney. On October 8, 1891, the Bureau of Pensions approved a pension of $12.00 per month for Sparks under Invalid Certificate No. 666, 635.
On May 31, 1898, Sparks answered a questionnaire from the Bureau of pensions. He stated that he had been married to Edmonia Blakemore in 1864 in Oldham County, Kentucky. She had died on July 3, 1878. They had no living children. When Sparks died on April 9, 1908, he was still living in the National Military Home and was receiving a pension of $12.00 per month.
[Editor's Note: George W. Sparks was a brother of Henry C. Sparks who was killed in the Civil War; they had served in the same company. The reader is referred to the note following the abstract of the pension papers pertaining to the mother of George and Henry and her attempt to obtain a "Mother's Pension." See page 3969 of this issue of the Quarterly.]
FRANCIS MARION SPARKS (1831-1910), son of Warden Pope Sparks (mother's name not known), was born August 5, 1831, in Jackson County, Indiana. He was married (lst) to Elizabeth Holcombe about 1850 in Arkansas, and (second) to Easter E. Troutman on October 28, 1859, in Howell County, Missouri. He served in Companies B & K, 3rd Regiment Missouri Cavalry. File Designations: Inv. Cert. No. 589,854; Wid. Cert. No. 706,152.
Francis Marion Sparks apparently applied for an invalid pension prior to June 24, 1884, for on that day the Bureau of Pensions requested his military history from the War Department. On October 13,1884, the War Department complied with the request. Sparks had been enrolled on August 8, 1862, in Company K, 3rd Regiment Missouri Cavalry at Rolla, Missouri, to serve for three years. He had been present for duty (except for Detached Service) until November and December 1864 when he had been hospitalized in the General Hospital at Little Rock, Arkansas. He had been transferred to Company B of the same regiment in the spring of 1865 and had been mustered out with that company on June 14, 1865, at Little Rock, Arkansas.
The application for an invalid pension by Francis Sparks was apparently rejected, for on May 19,1891, he reapplied. He was now 61 years of age and a resident of Blandsville, Missouri. He stated that when he had served in the military he had been 5 feet, 9 inches tall; that he had alight complexion, brown hair and grey eyes; and he was a farmer. While stationed at Rolla, Missouri, he had contracted rheumatism from exposure and was now unable to obtain his subsistence by manual labor. He appointed George E. Lemon, Washington, D.C., as his attorney. Joseph M. Johnson and E. Jenkins witnessed him make his mark on this application.
Invalid Certificate No.589,854 was issued to Francis Sparks, and he was placed upon the pension roll. On August 4, 1898, he replied to a questionnaire from the Bureau of Pensions. He said that he had been married to Easter Elizabeth Troutman on October 28, 1859, by William Craws, a justice of the peace of Howell County, Missouri. Prior to that marriage, h~ had been married to Eliza- beth Holcome, who had died in 1855 in Fulton County, Arkansas. He had no living children.
Sparks applied for increased pension benefits on February 27, 1907, under the 1907 Act of Congress. He was now 75 years of age and a resident of Joplin, Missouri. He stated that he had been born on or about August 5, 1831, in Jackson County, Indiana. Alexander Webb and M. S. Bridges witnessed him make his mark on this application, and Invalid Certificate No. 589, 854 was re- issued to him, increasing his pension from $14.00 to $20.00 per month, commencing on March 2, 1907.
Francis M. Sparks died on February 28, 1910, and on March 5, 1910, his widow, Easter E. Sparks, aged 84, and a resident of Newton County, Missouri, applied for a widow's pension. The application was witnessed by J. R. Strother and P. H. McVay. Widow Certificate No. 706,152 was issued to her, and she was placed upon the pension roll. When she died on March 22, 1914, she was receiving a pension of $12.00 per month.
[Editor's Note: Francis Marion Sparks was a son of Warden Pope Sparks (ca. 1803-ca.1855); a grandson of Stephen Sparks (1775-1851); and a great-grandson of James Sparks (ca.1752-1834). Warden Pope Sparks was listed on the 1850 census of Fulton County, Arkansas. See page 2028 of the September 1978 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No.103. Stephen Sparks served in the War of 1812 and his bounty land warrant file was abstracted on pages 781-83 of the December 1963 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No.44. James Sparks was a soldier in the American Revolutionary War. See pages 40-45 of the September 1954 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No.7 ]
FRANKLIN J. SPARKS (1845-1919), was probably a son of Otho and Susan (Snap) Sparks. He was born July 1, 1845, in Nicholas County, Kentucky. He was married four times: (lst) to Virginia 0. Reed; (second) to Susan R. (Dalrymple) Bures; (third) to Carrie Chapman; and (4th) to Mary J. (King) Lamb. He served in Company G, 40th Regiment Kentucky Mounted Infantry. File Designation : Inv. Cert. No. 842,588.
Franklin J. Sparks filed an application for an invalid pension on January 18, 1892, and was issued Invalid Certificate No.842,588 ; however, the first docu- ment (in chronological order) included in the "selected papers" from his pension file sent to us by the National Archives is a copy of a questionnaire that he completed on May 4' 1898. He stated in this that he had been married to his wife, Susan R. Dalrymple, in 1893 in Fleming County, Kentucky. Prior to that marriage, he had been married to Virginia Reed who had died in Missouri in 1893. Two children had been born to his second marriage: Anna H. Sparks, born in September 1895, and Claud R. Sparks, born in March 1898.
On May 28, 1912, Franklin J. Sparks, a resident of the National Military Home in Grant County, Indiana, made application for an increase in his pension under the 1912 Act of Congress. He said that he had been enrolled in Company G, 40th Regiment Kentucky Mounted Infantry on September 5, 1863, to serve for one year, and that he had been discharged at Catlettsburg, Kentucky, on December 30, 1864. He said that he had been born July 1, 1845, and he requested that his pension be increased to $16.00 per month. His military service had been confirmed by the War Department on January 24, 1913. He had enlisted at the age of eighteen years.
Most of the records contained in the "selected papers" sent to us by the National Archives from this man's pension file relate to his third marriage. On November 28, 1906, he had been married (third) to Carrie ( ) Chapman in Grant County, Indiana, but after about six months of married life, he had left her, claiming that after the marriage, his wife had brought a daughter into their home who had disrupted their household. His wife, Carrie Sparks, aged 52, a resident of Marion, Indiana, made a counter-claim on April 13, 1908, in which she stated that her husband had persuaded her to use some money to open a boarding house for which he would reimburse her, first giving her a chattel mortgage. After she had made the investment, he left her without any income and had gone to Kentucky. She claimed to be entitled to half of his pension benefits.
On May 27, 1908, Sparks, now age 59, a resident of Wabash County, Indiana, responded to her accusation by stating that he was ready to make a home for her if she would leave her daughter, Clara Hinline, who was a married woman. He went on to say, however, that it was his intention to file action for a divorce unless she complied. Nothing was included in the "selected papers" to indicate how the dispute was settled.
On November 28, 1912, Sparks was married (4th) to Mary J. (King) Lamb in Mason County, Kentucky. The following Jan, he was back at the National Military Home where he now asked for increased pension benefits. He said that he had no birth record. He had been one year old when his mother died, and eleven years old when his father died, and he had always believed that he had been born on July 1, 1845.
On March 22, 1915, Franklin Sparks responded to a questionnaire from the Bureau of Pensions. He stated that he had enlisted in the 40th Regiment Kentucky Infantry at Boyd Station, Harrison County, Kentucky. He had been married (lst) to Virginia 0. Reed on November 16, 1868, by the Rev. Riggs at Mt. Olivet, Robertson County, Kentucky. He had been married (second) to Susan R. Bures on March 19, 1893. She had been married previously to George Bures under her maiden name of Susan R. Dalrymple. He had been married (third) to Carrie Jensen [sic] but did not remember the date. He had been married (4th) to Mary J. Lamb on November 28, 1912, at Maysville, Kentucky, by the Rev. Roger L. Clark, Disciples of Christ. Her maiden name had been Mary J. King before she married Robert Lamb.
Sparks went on to name all of his children, both living and dead. They were:
Rebecca Jane Sparks, born October 16, 1869, died November 20, 1889. William 0. Sparks, born November 26, 1873, died September 30, 1891. John Samuel Sparks, born March 29, 1876. Elizabeth Sparks, born October 13, 1877, died October 13, 1877. Mary Lee Sparks, born July 7, 1881. Robert Samuel Sparks, born November 12, 1886, died April 9, 1888. Annie Hines Sparks, born September 11, 1893, died February 19, 1900. Claud Rivas Sparks, born March 10, 1898.
When Franklin J. Sparks died on March 10, 1919, he was receiving a pension of $30.00 per month. On March 25, 1919, his widow, Mary J. Sparks, applied for a widow's pension. She said that she had been born on 5 February 1872, in Fleming County, Kentucky, and that she had been married to Sparks on November 28, 1912. It had been her second marriage. Her first marriage had ended in a divorce in the spring of 1888. She said her husband had been married twice before and that his wives had died, she did not know where or when. Apparently, the Bureau of Pensions did not approve a pension for Mary J. Sparks, or she may have died before the application could be considered. In either case, no Widow's Certificate was issued to her.
[Editor's Note: The parents of Franklin J. Sparks cannot be named with certainty; however, we believe that they were Otho and Susan (Snap) Sparks of Nicholas County, Kentucky. Otho Sparks was born ca. 1810 in Kentucky. He and Susan were married on February 7, 1833, in Nicholas County, and they appeared there on the 1840 census with three sons. When the 1850 census was taken of Nicholas County, this family had broken up, probably following the death of his wife. Otho was living with the family of Charles Sparks (probably his brother) in dwelling no.556 (as assigned by the census taker). With Otho was a son, Alfred, aged 13. Living in the adjacent house (dwelling no.557), with the family of Charles Craycraft, were three Sparks children: Granville Sparks, 9; Elizabeth Sparks, 6; and Franklin J. Sparks, 3. We believe these were the children of Otho and Susan. ]