Desc of Wm. Ashley puzzle pieces
PUZZLE PIECES REGARDING RELATIONSHIP OF ROBERT PERRIN ASHLEY, THOMAS
ASHLEY AND LADOVE ASHLEY et al
The following is a summary of the various emails I have received (or
received copies of) relating to the possible/probable relationship of
LaDove Ashley, Robert Perrin Ashley, and Thomas Ashley (and thereby to
the descendents of William Ashley). It is helpful to me to consider
such if I can lay them all "on the table at once". After 2/14/2000,
newest additions are at *top* of the listing, and are dated.
From "Some Ashley Marriage Records" (see main menu) you see:
Ashley, Moses spouse: Nancy A. Newley
Marriage date: April l8, l847
Benton Co., Al
[Could this have been "our" Moses, and could this have been the Nancy
shown as age 28 in his home in the Greene Co. AL census in 1850 (3 years
before his recorded marriage to Nancy Lay in Greene Co., following). If
so, she would have been the mother of Joseph rather Pamela. This is but
3 years before Delila, Sion and Samuel showed up on nearby Talladega Co.
Census. Wm. R's will showed Samuel as resident
of Benton (Calhoun) Co. in 1852. -jr]
It is really beginning to appear that Moses married (1)Pamela Mitchel,
(2)Nancy Newley (3)Nancy Lay (4)Ann R. Leigh(Perrin?)
[John Robertson 2/15/2000]
I also have some concerns about Nancy Lay. As you know, the 1850 Greene
County Census has a Nancy Ashley in the household of Moses Ashley.This
Nancy Ashley's birth date is listed as 28 years of age on this census.
Also on the l850 Greene County Census, there is a Nancy Lay listed, and
her age is listed as 18. Then there is a marriage record listed in l853
in Greene County for a Moses Ashley and a Nancy Lay. On the l860 Greene
County Census in Moses Ashley's household there is an N. R. Ashley
listed, and her age is listed as 28 years of age. If this was the same
Nancy Ashley that was listed on the l850 Greene County Census, her age
should be 38. Twenty Eight would be the correct age for the Nancy Lay
that was listed as l8 on the l850 Greene County Census. N. R. Ashley is
Rebecca M.'s mother. Perhaps the R. stands for
Rebecca. and she named Rebecca M. for her.
[Nettie Carl 2/14/2000]
NOTE: Comments listed below were gleaned from our various emails to
each other prior to 2/14/2000. From this point forward, newest comments
will be added at the top.
[Jackie] has a Thomas Ashley in her line. Her family is also from
Alabama. Thomas had a brother Robert Perrin Ashley. They lost contact
with him when he moved to Texas. He had a wife Elizabeth Ann and 5
other surnames. The last they heard of him he had 3 children. Guy, Dove
another girls name. All 3 names match 3 of mine. She said he had other
kids but they were living with someone else. There were similarities
between him and my gr grandfather. But my father believed there could
be a connection but his gut instinct told him that wasn't his
Here is why:
1. His grandmother was not married 5 times
2. He remembers having two great uncle's Tom and Bob
3. Even though he couldn't remember his grandfather's name he just knew
it wasn't Tom or Bob.
4. He remembers the name being unusal.
[In] my Kirby line [is]where I got the DAR application and when I found
out LaDove's and Moses name. ...
...Now when my father was a child he remembers an uncle Tom and uncle
Robert was said to have had tiff with his family and moved to Texas.
He took his wife and moved to Texas. The last the family heard was
those 3 names... His wife name was Elizabeth Ann and she had been
married 3 or 4 times before marrying Robert. This brings up a lot of
questions. Was LaDove married more than once? Guy was born last so why
would they know about him and not all the rest. I know at one time the
children weren't all together at once because my grandfather talked
about visiting his sisters when he was little and they weren't all full
...the "other ASHLEY" family tradition abt Robt Perrin's brother...
"...RP Ashley's mother was supposed to have been married 5 times. Her
family had a plantation in or near Mobile, Ala. RP had a brother named
Thomas 'Tom' Ashley;. Tom had a son named 'Guy', supposed to be
living in Pampas, TX, & maybe another son named 'Dove' & daughter named
'Ruby'" and the memory that his mother was a "LAY"...
Is there some confusion about which Ann was supposed to have had
multiple marriages (Ann R. Leigh/Elizabeth Ann Ashley)? See two
Another Robert Perrin' clan tradition:
Tradition, "Pink Ashley", from MARY A CHERRY, RR 1, Box 92, Gandao TX
& dau Marie Becker- 4/Mar/1993: "Robert Perry Ashley's body slave was
named Pinky Ashley. He left Anston, ALA with R.P. & was given
freedom in Liberty, TX. Last contact with him was in 1932 in Brazos
Bottom (close to Brazoria, TX)."
. Tradition, "Pink Ashley", from MARY A CHERRY, ... Mrs R.L.(Marie)
Becker, ... 4/Mar/1993: "Robert Perry Ashley's body slave was named
Pinky Ashley. He left Anston, ALA with R.P. and was gave freedom in
Liberty, TX. Last contact with him was in 1932 in Brazos Bottom (close
to Brazoria, TX)."
...Tradition, "Pinky Ashley" from Marie Becker:, "Pinky Ashley is the
black man in Brazoria. He was raised by Robert Perry's family. He & RP
were the same age. They came to TX together. He adopted the Ashley
name & was "unrelated" unless he was a half-breed, which could be
possible. They were both nursed by the same black nanny. Mother called
him a body slave, but it could have meant that he was just close
companion all their lives. It seems that someone knew that Pinky was
going to be born and would be gotten rid of, so they tied a quilt down
in the well that night. The next morning, when they looked, there was
the black baby down in the well on the quilt. From then on he was
raised with Robert Perry Ashley. When they got to Liberty they went
their separate ways and didn't see each other again until 1932 or so."
Note that RPA was born the last day of 1869. Slavery had ended in
Alabama. Since abolishing slavery did not abolish economic realities,
it was not uncommon for freed slaves to continue working where they had
worked all their lives, since it was the only life they knew and the
only way they had to make a living. I recall my mother discussing
resentment of blacks for those who were half-white and called them
"piano-keys" (half-black, half-white). Her era would have been the
1920s. I know of instances of white men having black children for whom
they provided support and education in the 1930s. In my own community
in mid-AL in the 1930s and 1940s, I know of a black child raised in a
white family. I know no circumstances, except that I do not recall him
as being very dark. I do remember seeing him with his white
"step-brother" and white friends and feeling empathy for him because,
although he enjoyed the benefits of living with the white family, he was
fully accepted by neither the whites nor the blacks. He looked black,
but he "talked white". For all these reasons, I would suggest the
*possibility* (theory, guess) that the name Pinky resulted from his
complexion, that he was mulatto, and the father was known to Ann R. and
Moses. It is not hard to imagine how two 20-year-olds, one black, one
white, brought together under such circumstances, could find themselves
in situations leading to fights. Since a death occurred, Pinky was the
one who would have had the greater need to get well away from the scene,
but RPA, only slightly less so.
If we were able to see an 1870 census listing for the Moses/Ann R.
Ashley family, it would solve so many mysteries about this family
(Mandy Becky, Thomas, Pinky, Robert P, Amanda M, etc.). Nettie tells me
that they do not appear *anywhere* on an Alabama census for any county
for 1870! Could they have gone to nearby MS, or were they simply missed
on the census? They next seem to reappear in Tuscaloosa Co. in 1876,
rather than in Greene Co. where they had previously been.
...Robert had a brother named Thomas. He had 3 kids named Guy, Dove,
Ruby. The last they saw of Thomas these are the kids he had.That is
why I have a problem with Thomas being La Dove. My grandfather Guy was
the last of 9. My G uncle Joe La Dove was 4th I believe and Ruby was
like 5th. ...The problem is why wouldn't they know all the kids
before them. ...I think he may be a
I don't really have much on Thomas. Except that he was born in Greene
Co. Had the 3 kids Guy, Dove, Ruby. They had circa birth for him which
was within 3 or 4 years of La Dove. Jackie believes Thomas and La Dove
are the same. I think she believes his name may have been Thomas La
Dove. If you look at the sources she has on the files I sent It could
tell you more. They are at the bottom. But like me she is willing to
keep a open mind. I lean one way she leans another. It's the name of
the 3 kids is why she feels strongly.
...My great uncle James William Ashley, was supposed to have a third
given name of Moses but he didn't like it so when he got copies of his
birth certificate in 1943, he dropped that name. This was told to me
before his wife passed away. He was born Feb. 12, 1909. Green Co.
Ala.He died Oct. 21, 1986 in Hearne, Robertson Co. TX. His Mother was
Alice Ann Elizabeth Barfield-Ashley b. Aug. 06, 1877 and Father was
Robert Perrin Ashley, b. Dec.31,1869. Both of his parents were still
living at this time. His father died in 1946, and his mother died in
1958. His mother signed the affidavit of his birth. My mother (Mary
Ricks-Cherry) always told me that her double first cousin, Robert
Dudley Ricks was named after a family member. His name was Dudley
Robeson or Robertson possibly on the Ashley side of the family because
two Ashley boys married two Ricks girls. This is true because I am the
ggrandaughter of one of those girls and I have proof of that. There
was also an Aunt Manda mentioned by my Mother, no proof of that. Also
the Ashleys were supposed to have lived in Anston, Ala.( Could be
Anniston) my Mother didn't spell very well. Her memory of the
pronunciation could have been wrong too. Robert Perrin had a brother
Thomas. Thomas had three children by the names of Guy, Dove and Ruby.
I have no proof of this either except what my g uncle James William
Ashley has said before he died.
Mandy Becky Ashley (m. John Thomas Robertson) had a son named John
Dudley Robertson. I am John Ashley Robertson and am named for him. He
was most often called Dudley. I also have other Robertson cousins
named Dudley for him. I have no idea where his name Dudley originated.
Mandy Becky Ashley Robertson and Ann R. Leigh Ashley both lived in
Anniston AL at the time of their deaths in 1908. John T. Robertson
either then or later owned the land on which Moses Ashley had been
buried in 1883. Mandy's oldest son Will (who would have been born the
year after Moses died and would have been about 25 when Mandy and Ann
R. died) had Moses remains exhumed and reburied at his own plot at
Hillside Cmty. in Anniston. At the Hillside site there is a gravestone
for Moses and a memorial stone for Ann R. Ashley. Pictures of both
these stones are on the "Desc. of Wm. Ashley" site under "Pictures".
It is obvious that these headstones are decades more recent than that
of Mandy Becky and were almost certainly commissioned by Will.
...I don't think that you will find much about my Robert Perrin Ashley.
My mother is dead now but she used to tell me that Robert had a brother
Tom. He was supposed to have lived in Pampas Texas at one time. Dove
, Guy, and Ruby was the only children she knew of that was supposed to
belong to Tom I guess there could have been more. At one time before
he passed away, Guy came and visited my Uncle James William Moses
Ashley. His wife now deceased told me that when her husband got his
birth certificate he dropped the Moses from it because he disliked the
name. I don't know any more than that. Roberts mother was supposed to
have been married five times. She owned a plantation in Mobile, AL.
One of her names was Lay, it may have been her maiden name. She also
could have married a man named Wood or Woods. My grandfather left AL.
under duress. He was supposed to have got into a brawl or fight with a
man and his manservant named Pinky tried to help him but the man was
killed. Robert's mother made them pack up what they could on horseback
and told him to go to Texas. Along the way, Pinky was let go at
Liberty TX. to make a life of his own. This could have been at the
time Robert "Bob" Perrin Ashley met Alice Ann Elizabeth Ashley. Her
father was also named Robert but he was called "Rob" .Her mother was a
Barfield. They already was living in Liberty when Robert got there.
Ann R. was not found among the LAYs or LEIGHs in the 1850 Greene Co.
Census (see under "Related Links" on the "Desc. of Wm. Ashley" webpage.
Witness to marriage documents for Mandy Becky Ashley and John Thomas
Robertson in Tuscaloosa Co. AL was William Henry Wood. William Henry
Wood and his wife Margaret are buried head-to-foot with J.T. Robertson
and Mandy Becky Ashley Robertson at Grants Creek Cmty about 12 miles
west of Tuscaloosa AL, near the community of Fosters. They died in the
1940s, some 30 years after MBAR and about 10 years after JTR. Margaret
was about a year younger than Mandy Becky. A picture of the Woods
gravestone is under "Pictures" on the "Desc. of Wm. Ashley" website.
...I haven't been able to prove with census or anything that Robert P.
and Thomas or "Tom" were brothers, but according to my great aunt, and
my mother, they say they were brothers. Guy , Dove, and Ruby were
Tom's children. He used to live at Pampas, Texas. Guy visited with
James William Moses Ashley sometime in the past. ...
If you will take a look at the ... 1850 Greene Co. census, you will note
that at the same property where the mysterious William Ashley, age 30,
was employed as an overseer, was a son of the owner named Robert Perrin,
age 13! I'll betcha that this William was well-known to Moses.
There is no 18 year-old Ann R. around but this may well be her family.
Did someone not point out that RPA was named such because that was her
family name. Why are we calling her Ann R. Leigh? Does anyone know all
the "many names" associated with this colorful person? I have heard:
Perrin (seemingly her maiden name)
...so it seems we are missing two (or perhaps just one).
Does anyone have any more info about this "plantation near Mobile" that
her family is supposed to have had and was visited by Texas cousins? At
this point, I am assuming that if it were her family, that would have
I have been talking to my dad [James C.]. I remember someone saying
something about Pampas. My dad doesn't recall his dad(Guy) living there.
But he says that we had relatives who lived there. My grandfather [Guy]
was always traveling. I remember he would always come with a suitcase
full of vitamins. He told me he was salesman. I remember my grandfather
had a wooden leg. He told me when he was younger he was hit by a train
and he lost his leg.He also told me about my great-grandma Ashley
[Nancy]. She smoked a corn cobb pipe. Loved to garden and can her fruits
and vegetables she grew. I also remember he said something about a lot
of trees could be seen when she sat on her porch. I believe he told me
my Great-grandpa [LaDove] love to whittle with wood on his porch.