If you always do what interests you, then at least one person is pleased.
-Advice to Katherine Hepburn from her mother
Joe Brackin and his Ancestors
A very large branch of the BRACKIN family tree has its roots planted in Newville, Henry County, Alabama. Joe Brackin was part of this BRACKIN family. The first BRACKINs of this line migrated to Southeastern Alabama a few years after Alabama's statehood on 14 Dec 1819. At that time, Henry County included territory that is now considered Pike, Covington, Dale, Barbour, Geneva, and Houston counties. The BRACKINs were among the first settlers of what is now Newville. In fact, a few landmarks are named after the BRACKIN pioneers who originally settled the area. The Brackin Post office was built before the town was called Newville, giving authority to the claim that Newville was originally called Brackin. Several waterways, including Brackin Mill Creek, run thru Henry and neighboring counties.
Josiah "Joe" Brackin
Josiah "Joe" Brackin was born sometime in Nov 1882 in Alabama. He married Vela "Big Ma" Riley. Vela Riley was probably born in 1892. Her mother's name was Sara. Joe and Big Ma had six children, several are still living.
|On the 1930 Federal Census the family is listed in Newville, Henry County, Alabama as follows: Brackin, Jos., Vela, Fletcher, Edus, Nina Bell, Mary Joe, Willie Frank, Sarah Jim, Riley.
||All family members stated that they were born in Alabama, and that their parents were born in Alabama. Everyone over 10-years-old can read and write. Joe and Fletcher are working as Farmers. Nina Bell and Mary Joe are attending school. Joe and Vela stated their age at marriage as 27 and 18.
On the 1920 Federal Census the family is listed in Henry County, Alabama as follows: Brackin, Josiah
, head of household, white, male, age 36, married, able to read and write, Farmer. Vela,
wife, white, female, age 29, married, able to read and write. Fletcher
, son, white, male, age 11, attends school, able to read and write. Edus
, daughter, white, female, age 9, attends school. Nina Bell
, daughter, white, female, age 2.
- On the 1910 Federal Census (shown below), Joe is listed near his sister, Lydia Brackin Kirkland, and several other members of the Kirkland family, in Newville, Henry County, Alabama. Josiah "Joe" and Vela "Big Ma" Brackin are listed as follows:
- Brackin, Josiah, head of household, white, male, age 27, married, is able to read and write, born in Alabama, parents born in Alabama, Farmer.
- Vela, wife, white, female, age 19, married, is able to read and write, born in Alabama, parents born in Alabama.
- Fletcher, son, white, male, age 6/12, born in Alabama, parents born in Alabama.
(Josiah "Joe" Brackin's father)
Samuel was born on 17 Feb 1822 in Henry County, Alabama. On 18 Apr 1866, he married Frances A. White (b. 19 Feb 1837). Sometime in 1867 they had a daughter, Mary S. In 9 Nov 1869, Frances died and was buried in Kirkland Cemetery. On 30 Jun 1870, Samuel married Mary N. Stuckey (b. 18 Oct 1849). Together, they had eight children; Moses L. (b. 1873), Sarah A. (b. 1875), Ailsey V. (b. 1876), Isaac J. (b. Nov 1877), William M. (b. Apr 1879), Rosanna (b. Nov 1880), Josiah (see 1st generation), and Lydia (b. Dec 1889) When Samuel died on 25 Feb 1897 in Henry County, Alabama, Mary was become a single mother with several children. Lydia, her youngest child, was eight years old when her father died. Mary N Stuckey died on 24 May 1904. Samuel and Mary are both buried in Kirkland Cemetery.
- On the 1900 Federal Census Index Mary Brackin's household is listed as follows:
- Brackin, Mary, head of household, white, born Oct 1848, age 51, born in Tennessee.
- J. Isaac, son, born Nov 1877, age 22, born in Alabama.
- M. William, son, born Apr 1879, age 21, born in Alabama.
- Rosanna, daughter, born Nov 1880, age 19, born in Alabama.
- Josiah, son, born Nov 1882, age 17, born in Alabama.
- Lydia, daughter, born Dec 1889, age 11, born in Alabama.
- On the 1880 Federal Census Samuel Brackin's household is listed in Headland, Henry County, Alabama as follows:
- Brackin, Samuel, head of household, age 57, white, male, married, born in Alabama, parents born in South Carolina, Farmer.
- Mary, wife, age 30, white, female, married, born in Tennessee.
- Moses L., son, age 7, white, male, born in Alabama, mother born in Tennessee, father born in Alabama.
- Sarah A., daughter, age 5, white, female, born in Alabama, mother born in Tennessee, father born in Alabama.
- Ailsey ?, daughter, age 4, white, female, born in Alabama, mother born in Tennessee, father born in Alabama.
- Isaac J., son, age 2, white, male, born in Alabama, mother born in Tennessee, father born in Alabama.
- William M., son, age 1, born in Alabama, mother born in Tennessee, father born in Alabama.
- On the 1870 Federal Census Samuel Brackin's household is listed as follows:
- Brackin, Samuel, 47, male, white, farmer, born in Alabama.
- Mary, female, white, 21, keeping house, born in Tennessee.
- Andrew, male, white, 13, laborer farm, born in Alabama.
- Mary, female, white, 3, born in Alabama.
(Josiah "Joe" Brackin's grandfather)
Samuel Brackin?s parents were Matthew Brackin and Aucley Kirkland. Matthew Brackin was born in 1784 in Georgia. He married Aucley Kirkland on 14 Mar 1819 in Pulaski County, Georgia. Aucley Kirkland, a daughter of Moses Kirkland, was born on 16 Feb 1797. Together they moved to Henry County, Alabama and had 11 children; Henry (b. 1818), Samuel (see above), Moses (b. 1 Jan 1824), Rachel (b. 1826), Elizabeth (b. 1828), William H. (b. 1828), Isaac (b. 1831), Whitmore, Josiah (b. 23 Jun 1835), James (b. abt 1838), Lydia (b, abt 1840). Matthew died on 10 Mar 1856 in Henry County, Alabama. Aucley died on 25 Mar 1864 in Henry County, Alabama. They are both buried in Kirkland Cemetery.
(Josiah "Joe" Brackin's great-grandfather) Genealogists seem to agree on the Brackin family genealogy up to this point. Several have attempted to prove that Matthew Brackin was the son of a man named William Brackin.
The following passage is taken directly from The Brackin family in the Southeastern United States, by Henry B. Brackin, 1979:
"WILLIAM BRACKIN of Anson Co., N.C.; Washington Co., Ga.; Pulaski Co., Ga.; and Henry Co., Ala. is suspected to be a son of James Brackin and Rose (McLaughlin) Brackin if he belongs to this family at all.
According to an affidavit given in Dale Co., Ala. June 20, 1853 to M. A. Matthews (J. P.) by William A Brackin and Abel Nichols; William Brackin died in Henry Co., Ala. Aug. 13, 1833 leaving his second wife Lei who died 1 month later. No heirs by the second wife. He left two heirs by the first wife, Isaac and Matthew.
William Brackin received a pension for revolutionary War service, File R#1119. He was in Dale Co., Ala. On Nov. 17, 1832 when making the application and gave his age as 83 yrs. (making him born about 1749). He declared he served under Col. Love 1778 for 2 years as Captain and then enlisted under Gen. Green, 24th Reg. of the Continental Line under Major Rowan and Sergeant Hewitt, Anson Co., N.C. for 3 years. He was discharged from ? Marlborough. This declaration was witnessed by Wm. Harper and Asa Alexander. ?
William Jr. is assumed to be a son and to have died without issue before 1833. This comes from the fact that the 1805 land lottery in Washington Co., Ga. Lists a William Brackin Sr. and a bachelor over 21 named William Brackin Jr. On the other hand it is recognized that at that time Jr. was often used to denote a younger man, not necessarily a son. Further whereabouts of this William Brackin Jr. is not known.
The first record of William Brackin is his Revolutionary war service. He received a land grant in Anson Co., N.C. #4035 in 1779, land on Cribbs Creek. This land he sold to John Carpenter April 19, 1785. Apparently he moved to Washington Co., Ga. for Surveyor?s records of Washington Co., Ga. (the only records that survived Gen. Sherman?s burning of the Court House) reveal land surveyed for William Brackin in 1789 and for an Isaac Brackin in 1790. He may have lived in South Carolina briefly between 1785 and 1789 as children of Matthew Brackin (William?s son) gave in the 1880 census the birthplace of Matthew Brackin as South Carolina. However in the 1850 census, Matthew's birthplace is listed as Georgia.
The following Headright and County Grants are found in Washington Co., Ga. records.
Bracken, William ? 1791
Bracken, Isaac ? 1793
Bracken, William ? 1800
Since William's son Isaac would have been no more than 10 years old in 1790, it is suspected that this Isaac with land surveyed as early as 1790 is not William?s son Isaac but is some unidentified Isaac, possibly a brother of William. His later wherabouts are not known.
In the 1805 land lottery of Washington Co., Ga. the following draws for Brackin men were found.
James Bracken (B. B.)
William Brackin Sr. (B. B.)
William Brackin Jr. (B.)
B means no land received. P means received land. Those entitled to draw must have 1 year?s residence. A bachelor over 21 ? 1 draw, A married man ? 2 draws, A widow with child ? 2 draws, A minor orphan ? 1 draw
No marriages are found in Washington Co., Ga. but in Pulaski Co., Ga. there is a marriage of Matthew Bracking to Aulcey Kirkland Mar. 14, 1819. In the Kirkland Cemetery in Henry Co., Ala. is the grave of Matthew and Aulcey (Kirkland) Brackin.
Apparently William Brackin left Washington Co., Ga. very shortly after the 1805 land lottery (in which none of the Brackin men bought the land they drew) and moved to Pulaski Co., Ga. On Oct. 24, 1810 in the Superior Court of Pulaski Co. Ga., p. 59, he filed a lawsuit against John Jackson Ford for $300.00 damages, charging Ford with assaulting him in his own home Oct. 19, 1810. A few days later his wife Lei entered into the suit and the damages called for were increased to $2000 for ?calling Lei a whore, of being known carnally by Green Graham, of calling William Brackin a rascal and a liar and otherwise insinuating William unfit to be a Justice of the Peace.? The case was settled out of court.
On an iron tablet on the lawn of the Pulaski Co., Ga. Courthouse is a brief history of the County which was created by an Act of the Legislature Dec. 13, 1808. Among the first county officers was the Coroner, William Brocken. Since I find no name of Brocken among the deeds, wills and court records in the Courthouse, I suspect the coroner was William Brackin.
Among the deeds of Pulaski Co., Ga. are found deeds for Matthew and Isaac Brackin, the latter listed as living in Twiggs Co., Ga. A James Brackin witnessed one deed. The Twiggs Co., Ga. tax list of 1818 lists both James Brackin and Isaac Brackin. The Day Book of a Twiggs County merchant lists in 1826 and Andrew Brackin. Who the James and Andrew Brackin are is not known. James was a married man at the time of the 1805 land lottery in Washington Co., Ga. In 1830 in Dale Co., Ala. there was a Samuel Bracken and in Conecuh Co., Ala. a Mathias Brackin. A descendent of Matthew Brackin says Mack (or Mathias) Brackin was a cousin of Matthew Brackin. James Brackin seems to be the only Brackin in the area who may have been the father of Mathias and Samuel Brackin. If Mathias was a cousin of Matthew, then James and William probably were brothers. Andrew Brackin may have also been a son of James.
The origin of William Brackin is certainly unclear. Descendants in Henry Co., Ala. living in 1975 are inconsistent in their report of family tradition. None of them were aware who Matthew's father was and were unaware that his father William had lived and died in Henry Co., Ala. Mrs. Opal Brackin Hicks compiled a family history extending back to Matthew, stating he was born in Scotland. Mrs. Donna Pointer (born 1884 and a great granddaughter of Matthew Brackin) stated Matthew came from England. She is the one that stated Mack Brackin was a cousin. Lionel Brackin thought Matthew was born in America of English descent. A descendant of Mack Brackin, W. J. Brackin, was quoted by Thomas Baten, an attorney in Beaumont, Hardin Co., Texas in a letter in 1915 to Dr. H. M. Brackin, stated that the family came from Ireland. It is obvious that Matthew was born in America, either North Carolina, South Carolina or Georgia. Census records of 1850 and 1880 give all three states. I suspect he was born in Georgia, the state given in the 1850 census. It is not known if William Brackin immigrated and if so, from where; England, Scotland or Ireland. "
Dr. Henry B. Brackin concludes this passage by presenting two hypotheses on the origins of William Brackin.
Unless otherwise cited, this information is based on interviews with Sara Dunaway and Dr. Henry B. Brackin?s self-published genealogy, The Brackin family in the Southeastern United States, 1979. I have made several attempts to contact Dr. Brackin but I am unable to find him.
United States. Census Office. 1930 Federal Census, Population Schedule, Alabama, Henry County, Newville, District 11. National Archives Microfilm Publication. Washington, National Archives.
United States. Census Office. 1920 Federal Census, Population Schedule, Alabama, Henry County, Newville. National Archives Microfilm Publication. Washington, National Archives.
United States. Census Office. 1910 Federal Census, Population Schedule, Alabama, Henry County, Newville. National Archives Microfilm Publication M593, roll 1501. Washington, National Archives.
United States. Census Office. 1900 Federal Census, Index, Alabama, Henry County, Newville. National Archives Microfilm Publication. Washington, National Archives.
United States. Census Office. 1880 Federal Census, Index, Alabama, Henry County, Headland. National Archives Microfilm Publication. Washington, National Archives.
United States. Census Office. 1870 Federal Census, Population Schedule, Alabama, Henry County. National Archives Microfilm Publication, roll M593_19. Washington, National Archives.
Tips for continued research on the BRACKIN family
- The AlGenWeb project Henry County Website is a great place to start.
- The following print resource will also be helpful.
Warren, Hoyt M., Lois Kathryn Hodges Bachmann. Henry's Heritage: a History of Henry County, Alabama. Abbeville, Ala.: Henry County Historical Society, 1978-
This is a collection of genealogies, local histories, and antidotes. I have photocopied a section of the book, a KIRKLAND family history that lists Joe Brackin?s paternal grandmother, Aucley Kirkland
- The Soundex Code for Brackin is B625.
- Common spelling variations include; Bracken, Brackens, Brackon, Braking.
- The Kirkland-Brackin Cemetery is in Henry County, Alabama and is known as Kirkland Cemetery. It is located near Kirland's crossroads in Southwest Henry County near the Hale County line just North of CR 73. http://www.rootsweb.com/~alhenry/Cem/kirkland_brackin.htm
Page last updated 1/7/2008 10:52 PM