Our Jones Family Connection - Part 1

◄ In my generation's uncle DeRand Jones' archive is this photo. A note on the reverse side says, “Rosa Whitsett, Carleton’s [Jones] aunt”

I didn’t recognize the Whitsett name and hadn’t given the photo much thought until I came across a link to the publication cited below. It contains brief biographies of some of the early citizens of Belmont County, Ohio, in conjunction with the county’s centennial in 1903. Included was the info below, and suddenly I had an interesting story to go with her photo.

Rosa was born in 1863 (in the middle of the Civil War), married in 1884, and I suspect this portrait was taken around the time of her marriage. Her full name was Rosa Leona Jones Whitsett (1863-1892) and her husband’s full name was Dr. Charles Crawford Whitsett (1858 –1936). “My Family Tree” software tells us she’s the “great grand aunt” of my generation.

Married at age 21, and as discussed below, only one of her and Dr. Whitsett's four children, Bessie, survived for very long. Rosa died at age 28. This family endured a major amount of sadness in a short period.

This photo of Bessie is circa 1893


Here's the biographical sketch from the centennial book.

Dr. C. C. Whitsett
, a promin
ent physician and surgeon of Hendrysburg, Belmont County, was born in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, February 19, 1860, and is a son of Dr. J. E. and Clara B. (Martin) Whitsett, both natives of Pennsylvania.
Dr. J. E. Whitsett was born in May, 1826, prepared for the medical profession at the Ohio University, and began practice in 1852. He became a partner of Dr. John Keys at Bellsville, Washington County, Pennsylvania. Dr. Keys served as surgeon in the army, leaving the practice at home in charge of Dr. Whitsett. The latter practiced from 1852 until 1880, since which time he has lived in retirement at Bethany, West Virginia. He practiced there some years and was examiner for numerous insurance companies.

He recruited a company for service during the Civil War in Ballsville [Virginia], and has been a trustee of Bethany College for a number of years. He is a member and trustee in the Christian Church.

He was always a member of the Republican party after its organization. He married Clara B. Martin, who was born June 1, 1836, and is a daughter of John and Jane (Vail) Martin. She is also a devout member and a very active worker of the Christian Church.

Seven children blessed this union: Emma J., who died in December, 1894, aged 42 years, was the wife of M. M. Cochran, of Pennsylvania; C. C., subject of this sketch; Anna, who died at the age of three years; Ollie, who died at the age of three years; Kitty, who died at the age of 10 years; Ralph, who died at the age of two years; and John W., who resides in Bethany, West Virginia, a member of the class of 1903 in the Pittsburg Medical College.


Dr. C. C. Whitsett received his literary education at Bethany College and then entered the Ohio Medical College at Cincinnati in 1879, graduating therefrom with the class of 1882. He began practice at once and was in partnership with his father for two years. He practiced at Bethany until 1884, then removed to Hendrysburg, Ohio, where he has since continued with the exception of two years spent in New Philadelphia. He is a general practitioner and examiner for numerous insurance companies.

He is a man of sterling qualities, a close student and is abreast of the times in every branch of medical science. He has the esteem of the community, and has been a medical examiner for the U. S. pension board.

In 1884, Dr. Whitsett was united in marriage with Rosa L. Jones, a native of Hendrysburg, and a daughter of Dr. William and [Elizabeth] Betsy Ann (Goodman) Jones. Her mother still resides in Bethesda, Ohio. Four children were born to them: William E., who was born January 16, 1885, and died August 6, 1885 ; Percy B., born August 8, 1886, and died Oct-ober 12, 1886; Emma E., born October 27, 1889, and died October 3, 1890; and Bessie L., born May 2, 1892, who is attending school at Bethesda.

The mother of these children [Rosa], born November 27, 1863, died June 10, 1892. Dr. Whitsett formed a second union on April 18, 1899, with Lena L. McLaughlin, a native of Belmont County, and a daughter of John McLaughlin. The latter was born August 27, 1832, and died September 27, 1892; Mrs. McLaughlin now resides in Hendrysburg, and has been mother of the following children: William, who died at the age of three years; John, who died at the age of one year; Louisa, wife of Stanton White, lives in Hendrysburg; James A. resides in Wheeling; Clement L. resides in Oklahoma Territory; Albert G., who resides in Bridgeport, Ohio; Everett, who lives in Hendrysburg; and Lena L., wife of our subject.

Dr. Whitsett is a member of Kirkwood Lodge, No. 446, F. &  A. M. [Free and Accepted Masons]

Source: Centennial History of Belmont County, Ohio, and Representative Citizens
Edited and compiled by Hon. A. T. Mckelvey 1801 - 1901

The Whitsett name is of Scottish origin. Detailed information about the name can be found here.


Background of Our Branch of the Jones Family
Belmont County was one of the first counties settled in Ohio, was established in 1801 - two years before Ohio became a state - and was the site of many desperate Indian battles.

One of the townships in Belmont County is Kirkwood, and a publication called "History of Kirkwood Township" records the fact that Rev. John McPherson and Lewis Jones each settled in the township in 1816. Reading that history is interesting; it provides insight into the circumstances - and some events - that our ancestors would have experienced during those pioneer days.

Another publication called “History of Belmont and Jefferson Counties” reports that Lewis Jones married John Wesley McPherson's daughter, Rebecca McPherson, in 1817. This has been confirmed as having occurred on 8 October 1817.

According to DeRand's archive, Lewis’ history is a mystery, for he apparently never discussed it, and the family suspected that Jones may not have been his real name. In a report he wrote, DeRand said, “…He never spoke of the past nor explained himself. All that is known is that neighbors saw him swim ashore on the Ohio River across from Virginia (later called West Virginia) near Wheeling. Speculation was that he either swam across the river, or his boat sank, or maybe he fell off or was thrown off a boat. No one was sure that Jones was his real name.

His [Lewis’] great granddaughter Mary Jones Anderson said that in family conversations when she was a child the family seemed sure he came from Pittsburg and was one of two Zane brothers who left the Fort [Fort Pitt] when it was attacked by Indians.”

Regarding Lewis’ origins, “History of Belmont and Jefferson Counties”, reports that Lewis was born in Loudon, County, Virgina. The reality is that we may never know for sure about his background.

DeRand continued,”Lewis Jones became a farmer in Belmont County in southern Ohio and married Rebekah MacPherson (sic) Jones about 1830.” However, several sources report the marriage as taking place in 1817. Also, the correct spelling of her name is Rebecca McPherson rather than the spelling used above by DeRand.


Following is a simplified descendancy chart from Lewis to my generation:

Lewis Jones (1791-1871)

Dr. William M Jones (1831-1892) - Rosa's father

Fleetwood Churchill Jones (1857-1937) - Rosa's brother 

Rev. Carleton D Jones (1895-1967)

Fleeta Claire, Paul Wesley, DeRand and Virginia Lee (Ginger) Jones
(Claire, Paul and Ginger were/are the parents of my generation.)


Please refer to the disclaimer on the index page of this blog for a statement regarding the accuracy of - and documentation for - the information presented in this blog.

Last revised 8/27/2010

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