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A special thanks to Mel Oakes, great-grandson of David Christian Dose
for submitting this interesting family history and photographs of Issaquena County.

David Christian Dose came to Issaquena County during the late 1870s. He was from Kielerkamp, Germany, near Kiel. The Bremen Germany Ships Crew List shows him as a “kohlener,” likely a coal tender, on the steamship Amerika during 1873. He was 29 years of age and mustered in on April 18, 1873. The ship's destination was New York and his pay was 40 marks for the trip. A Bremen Sailor's Desertion List states he deserted after this voyage on May 19, 1873, in New York. His whereabouts between this date and his arrival in Issaquena County are unknown. On December 10, 1879, he married Josephine Bellinger Smith (1858-1906) in Yazoo County, Mississippi, the earliest record of him in the area. This was Josephine's second marriage. The Bellingers originally came from Herkimer, New York, but some members of the family settled in Vicksburg. Land records in the Issaquena County Courthouse in Mayersville show Chris Dose purchased 259.95 acres for the sum of $73.29 in 1880. This purchase consisted of three lots - 5, 6, & 7 along the south side of the Yazoo River. He apparently had his house on Lot 6, since this was referred to as the "Old Home Place."

It was here that Chris raised his family - sons Jacob Christian (1882-1961) and Walter Samuel (1894-1925) and daughters Mary Sophie (1882-1940, the twin of Jacob Christian), and Carrie Mae (1886-1965). Walter was gassed during World War I in France. Though not fatal, it did lead to his early demise from respiratory problems. He served with the Red Diamond Gun Division and is buried in the National Cemetery in Vicksburg.

Carrie Dose married Bud Hopkins and Jacob married Moyzelle (Mosey) Tindol of Mechanicsburg, Mississippi. Walter Dose never married. Following Josephine's death, Chris Dose married Mollie Ransom. All continued to live in the area until the 1920s when the regular flooding finally convinced most to move to the Vicksburg area. Ultimately the land was returned to the state in lieu of taxes.

Mary Sophie Dose married Charles Franklin Oakes and raised a family, probably on Lot 5. The high water line on the Oakes house recorded the regular battles with flooding. Son Fred Oakes reported that they would seek temporary housing with relatives or friends (once in the Tindol barn near Mechanicsburg, Mississippi). Clearly the house was not anchored securely and was vulnerable to floating away. Farming, fishing, hunting and trapping made up their livelihood. Charles Franklin also repaired shoes. Many children of the families mentioned in this article appear in the “Educable Children” School Records at the Issaquena County Courthouse in Mayersville.

The sister of Chris Dose's wife Josephine, Adeline M., married Sam Leist, Sr. (Adeline's first marriage was to Bartley Tucker). Sam's family had emigrated from Switzerland in 1846, and he owned a plantation, “Mound View,” at the intersection of the Little Sunflower and Yazoo Rivers. In 1908, Adeline slipped on the bank of the Yazoo River and drowned. Leist Landing was well known along the river and is often included on early maps. In 1908, Clarence Bloomfield Moore, an archeologist from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, tied his boat up at the Leist Plantation to study several Indian mounds on the property. The results of this work later appeared in his books. Josephine Dose is thought to be buried in one of the Indian mounds.

Chris Dose was reported to read German newspapers when available. He also fired shots at noisy steamboats on the river. This included the Morning Star, the boat of Seventh Day Adventist evangelist James Edson White. White came to the area to preach his message to black families. Chris' daughter, Sophie however, was converted and became an Adventist.

The families all reported that they came from the town of Harworth, Mississippi. Old maps suggest there were two locations - an early one north and west of the Dose place (more of a sawmill town), and a later site at the intersection of the Big Sunflower and the Yazoo. A satellite map seems to indicate its location. The discoloration, faint lines and rectangles may reveal what were once the town structures.

The Harworth Post Office was originally established as Lapanto in Yazoo County on Sep. 17, 1904, the name being changed to Harworth on November 21, 1904, and moved to Sharkey County. It was discontinued on Oct. 18, 1924, with mail service to Satartia. It was re-opened on October 20, 1924, and closed for the final time on July 1, 1927, with mail service to Satartia. James A Barret is listed as the first postmaster (post office information courtesy of Gary Anderson). I would appreciate any help with locating the town or receiving any associated pictures.


Acknowledgements: Many thanks are extended to the friendly and helpful staff at the Chancery and Circuit Court Clerk's office at Mayersville, Mississippi. My brothers Donald and Floyd Oakes helped collect some of this information. Thanks also to Bob Franks who agreed to include this information in his very useful
Issaquena History and Genealogy Project.

Additional pictures, information and more complete acknowledgements can be found at Anyone with corrections, questions, information or pictures pertaining to this article are encouraged to email Mel Oakes at

Click Thumbnail Image for Full Size Image
Adeline M. Bellinger Leist (1848-1908)
Front: David Christian Dose, Josephine Bellinger Smith Dose, Walter Samuel Dose. Back: Sophie, Jacob and Carrie Dose.
Oakes Home. On the porch L to R: Fred, Laura, Charles Franklin, Sophie, Grantham and Christian Oakes.
Sam Leist Sr. (1831-1920)
Possible Location of Harworth, Mississippi. Yazoo River running horizontally, Big Sunflower extending northerly.
Extreme Northeast Portion of Issaquena County, Lots 5, 6, and 7 of David Christian Dose

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Entire Contents Copyright © 2009 Bob Franks.
Some of the photographs on this page are courtesy of the Library of
Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.
Submitted material is the property of the submitter.