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Frances “Fanny” (Gray) Cavener
By Ray Gold

     Frances “Fanny” Gray was born October 18, 1820 in Tennessee, to Austin Gray, born February 10, 1788, and Mary Barnett “Polly” [Smiley] Gray, born April 22, 1792, [taken from the bible of Samuel Gray, in possession of Mrs. William Medearis Smith, Fayetteville, TN.  On June 23, 1842 she married James Cavener in Marshall County, Tennessee. He was the son of Patrick and Keziah [Tucker] Cavener. In the 1850 census of Marshall County, TN., they are listed with their children; James Cavener 28, VA., Frances 30, TN., Timothy 5, TN., Adaline 4, TN., Mary “Polly” 2, TN., Sarah E. 8/12, TN..  This same family is shown on the 1860 census of Christian County, Missouri. House #412, Fanny Cavener [WD] 37, TN., Real Estate taxes $120.00, Timothy 16, TN., Adaline 14, TN., Polly 12, TN., Clementine 4, TN., Josephine 3, TN., and Martha R., 1, born in Missouri. This census shows their youngest child to be one year old, and Fanny to be a widow. So James Cavener died in about 1859. The story has been handed down that he died en route to Missouri from Tennessee, and it is not known where he is buried.
     Fanny [Gray] Cavener re-married in 1860, to Thomas Maples.  Her oldest son, T.O. “Timothy” Cavener, married Martha Fugitt and lived all of his life at Union City, in Stone County. He was known as Uncle Tim Cavener. However, my father [Clarence Gold] told me that there were 2 Timothy Caveners at Union City, at the same time. During the Civil War, T.O. Cavener enlisted as T.O. Cavener from Crank, Missouri.   It was called Crank, MO., then School, MO. and still later it was called Union City.  A man named L.P. Crank, had a store and postoffice about one mile south and about one hundred yards west down the valley.  That is where my  grandparents; James Harvey Gold and Rozella Minerva Garouotte were married by L.P. Crank, in that grocery store in 1890.    He later moved his postoffice and store to what was called Crank, MO. Then they built a schoolhouse, so it was called School, Missouri. Around the turn of the century the school was called the “Reynolds School”.   And finally it was called Union City, that stuck until this day. My dad told me that Uncle Tim Cavener walked with sort of a leaned back limp, and everyone liked him. He also said that Tim Cavener was a tall skinny man.  Uncle Tim Cavener and his wife Martha are both buried at the Wise Hill Cemetery, one mile north of Clever, in Christian County, MO.. Their children were;[1] Nancy Elvaline Cavener, born Oct. 2, 1872, Stone County, Mo. and died Oct. 9, 1951 at Springfield, Missouri.  [2] Sarah F. Cavener, born March 1873, and died in 1959 at Halltown, MO., and buried at Wise Hill, Cemetery, [3] George Wm. Cavener, born Oct. 22, 1874 Stone County, MO., and died December 1, 1897, buried at Wise Hill, Cemetery. [4] Malinda Idella Cavener, born Sept. 23, 1876, Stone County, MO., and died October 19, 1966, Springfield, Greene County, MO. She married George W. Wilson.  [5] Albert Cavener, born 1879 and died at about one year of age.
     Lucinda Adaline Cavener, was born April 18, 1844 in Marshall County, TN., and died October 29, 1898 in Stone County, MO. She married W.W. White and they are buried in the White Cemetery, 2 miles southeast of Union City, in Stone County, MO.  They were the parents of 18 children, including 2 sets of twins. There are many descendants in this area.
     Clementine Cavener was born in about 1852 and died in 1950, she is buried in the Crane Cemetery, in Stone county, MO.. She married Jake Saltkill and they have many descendants in this area.
     Josephine Cavener, was born December 25, 1855, and died January 6, 1913, and she is buried in Wise Hill Cemetery , in Christian County, MO.  She married Berry Damrill, and they had several children.
     Rhoda Angeline Cavener, was born in 1859 in Missouri and died August 12, 1942, in Stone County, MO. She married Samuel Saltkill and they also had several children.
     By her second marriage, Fanny [Gray] Cavener Maples and her husband Thomas Maples had two children; James S. Maples, and Curtis Maples.
     James S. Maples was born in about 1862. He married Sarah E. Ellingsworth of Highlandville, MO. on December 29, 1887. And they had several children.
     Curtis Maples was the youngest of the their children of  Fanny [Cavener] Maples, he was born in about 1863 he was staying with his mother in the 1900 census of Christian County, and apparently stayed single until his mother died On July 7, 1901. Then he married Rhoda Webb, They are listed in the census of 1910 with several children. James S., and Curtis Maples were half- brothers to the children of Fanny and James Cavener.

NOTE—Just a few days before Jack King died, I was at his place, about one mile southeast of Clever. Jack had an old house beside the road, it looked very old, so I asked him who was the last person to live in that old house, he said, Fanny Cavener was the last person to live there, so that is probably where she died., but no trace of her grave in the local cemeteries. She is the grandmother of many descendants in this area.


Copyright 2001