THE PRAIRIE HISTORIANS
Volume 21, September 1990, Issue 2
James Jewett Baker Family
Submitted by Fred Russell Baker
Front Row L-R:
1. James Garfield Baker 1877-1958 mar. Nara Russell dau. of George Washington
Russell & Caroline Warford.
ch. Jewell died inf; Wm. Athen died age14; Lt. Co. Julius Gee; Fred
Russell; Earl Warford; Rex Harding.
2. Thomas Edward (Bud) Baker b. 1870 mar. Collista Shelton dau. of Sam P. Shelton &
Elizabeth J. Peterson.
a farmer, blacksmith, and ran a grist mill at Dareville.
ch. Samuel Paul m. Blanch Barrow 2d - Helen Osborn
Baron mar. Delena Dial
Eula mar. Fred Spiller
3. John Vernon 1886- went to Aurora, Illinois married there.
4. James Jewett Baker (Father) b. 1834 Tenn. -d. 1905 (Co F 44 Ill Inf C War)
holding grandson Paul Baker, son of Bud and Black-Eye.
& wife mar. Jefferson Co., IL 1865.
5. Mary Fleener Baker (Mother) dau of Isaac J. Fleener (1824-1906) & Sarah P. Clampet
6. Collista Shelton Baker (Black-Eye) wife of Bud Baker.
Back Row L-R:
1 Susie died age 26 unmarried b. 1881.
2. Charles Jefferies b. 1874 mar. Fannie Lingle, ran a bakery on Waltonville east side and
worked in bakery at Anna State Hosp.
3. Lulu mar. Earl Irby
went to Waukegan
4 Estella 1874-1936 mar. George Wright, son of W.J. Wright
ch.- Jewell m. Ralph Ewing from Aurora, IL
Opal m. Raleigh Taylor
Pearl m. Clyde Hester
Georgia m. Irvin Beadle, to Aurora
Lloyd, to Aurora, IL
Marietta 1867- mar. 1889 John N. Allen, son of R.J.D.W. Allen
James Jewett Baker
buried South Hickory Hill
James Jewett Baker Was born in White County, Middle Tennessee, the 2nd
of 13 children (10 to maturity) of William D. Baker 1811-1877, a Mexican War
Veteran also buried at South Hickory Hill, and his wife Melissa Twitty 1815-18 ,
who were married in 1830 in White County Tennessee.
Melissa Twitty was born in Smith County Tennessee, the daughter of Sarah
E. Mackey and William Twitty, a Cherokee Indian. Sarah's sister, Elizabeth
Mackey married Isaac Casey, son of Randolph Casey, also early settlers in
Jefferson County Illinois.
William and Melissa moved up into what is now McClellan Township where
he entered 40 acres, ajoining that of Melissa's mother, Sarah Twitty, on August
8,1839 at the Shawneetown Land Office. Sarah had entered 40 acres 11-22-1837.
Sarah, after she married James Bodine also entered 40 acres 2-1-1839.
In 1838, here in Jefferson County, Sarah Mackey Twitty married James Bodine
1804-1884, who had come to Jefferson County in 1826 from Jackson County Tennessee
Sarah was his second wife. He already had 6 or 7 children by his first wife.
They then had one of their own, a daughter name Euphemia who married Dallas
McCann. James married third, Nancy Garrison Dale 1821-1909 and they had 8
more children. James is buried with Nancy at South Hickory Hill Cemetery.
Following Melissa's death in 1849, William D. Baker married Susan Spearman
Bean, widow of Asbury Bean who died in the Civil War. Of Susan's 10 Bean
children, 6 reached maturity. William and Susan had three more children.
The two who grew to maturity are still well remembered here, Joseph C who
married Minerva Emeline Martin and Alonzo (Lon) who married Grace Mendenhall.
Note- James V. Bean, son of Asbury Bean and Susan Spearman married Harriet
Samantha Martin, a sister to Minerva Emeline Martin mentioned above, they
were the children of Robert B. Martin and Miranda S. Greenwood.
A Shoot-Out At Dareville, 1887
Information supplied by
Russell Baker, Grandson
Many of our early settlers made their way here from the hills of Kentucky &
Tennesse. This story, concerning James J. Baker, one such settlers, brings
to mind the legendary "Hatfields and McCoys, those fightin' mountain boys,"
or a "Shoot-Out at the O K Corall" in the days of the Old West, but, even as
late at 1887, this area was in many ways almost as lawless.
On July 5, 1887, a complaint was filed by James D. Quinn before Joe Quinn,
a Justice of The Peace, that James J. Baker, his brother Andrew Bodine Baker
(Bode), and David Baker (Bode's son who became a Dr. and practiced medicine
at Waltonville) on July 1st, 1887, shot James Mason who did languish and die
on July 2, 1887. Andrew and David were later discharged from the case.
It is said that Jim's son Charlie ran home from the Dareville Store and told
his Dad some things that James Mason Had been saying about his sister Susan.
Jim loaded his squirrel rifle and started for the store. Mason ran to Pink
Sheltons and borrowed a gun. They met near the house where Opal Hughes
Peterson lives now (1990) at the Southwest corner at Dareville crossing.
Mason was behind a big tree. Jim told him to draw a good bead because that's
that was what he intended to do, They both fired and Mason was hit in the
side of the belly and died the next day of gangrene.
At the trial, when asked by the judge to describe what happened, Baker
replied, "I drew a bead on him just like I was going to shoot a squirrel."
On December 24, 1887 James J was sentenced to 10 years in the pentitentiary
for shooting James Mason, a resident of Elk Prairie.
Editors note-- ------------
James Mason is buried at Mason Cemetery located about a mile east and 1/4
mile north on the east side of the road in a pasture from Dareville crossing
Ididn't know such a cemetery existed until a few years ago when Russell Baker,
Lydia Belle Byard and I went there. I was interested because when my Hesters
first came here in 1839 one of the sisters was married to a Mason, but I don't
know much about them except that the cemetery is located where they settled.
As I recall there were only four or five marked graves but evidence of
several others having been buried there.
James J. must have been quite a character because in May, 1880 he had been
charged with criminal assault for threatening to murder his brother-in-law,
Samuel Quinn, with an axe. The case was dismissed 5-9-1881.
Sam Quinn was married to Sarah Emmaline Fleener, a sister To James' wife
Mary Fleener. They were the daughters of Isaac Fleener and Sarah Clampet.
Submitted by: Stacey Jones