Joseph Asa Jenkins Family Notes
Son of Joseph Sanford Jenkins, father of Orville Lee Jenkins
Notes from the memory of Orville Boyd Jenkins
son of Orville Lee Jenkins, son of Joseph Asa and Julia Virginia (Terry) Jenkins
and other family sources
Family Names: Boyd, Callaway, Christian, Curry, Gregory, Green, Grubbs, Hill, Jenkins, Lynch, McSwain, Park, Smith, Stinson, Taylor, Terry, Wall, Willadson, Winans, Yates
My father was Orville Lee Jenkins, who was born in Mountain View, Oklahoma in 1912. He was the son of Joseph Asa Jenkins (1866-1962) and Julia Virginia (Terry) Jenkins (1880-1966). We grandkids called them Mama Jenny and Pappa Joe. My parents told us that it was Aunt Eyline (Lynch) Jenkins, wife of Arthur Carthal (Bud), an older brother of my father, who had gotten those nicknames started with her kids, who were older than me.
Joseph Asa was a son of Joseph Sanford Jenkins and Lucinda Amanda Taylor. Joseph Asa was born in or near Dalton, Cass County, Texas, in June 1866. One of Lucinda's uncles was President Zachary Taylor.
I remember hearing from my father about his two older half-brothers, Joseph Benjamin (Ben) and James Everett (Everett). They were the first two children and sons of Joseph Asa and his first wife Hester Ann Smith. These brothers were much older and he never knew them well.
Joseph Asa and Hester Ann had married in Cass County, Texas in 1887. In 1890 Joseph Asa moved his family to Healdton, Indian Territory (later Oklahoma). After a short time, perhaps a year, they moved to Marlow, Chickasaw Nation. There Hester died in 1899 (or 1900 in one source). Two years later (1901), Joseph Asa married a local woman, Julia Virginia Terry. Julia's family had also recently settled there, moving from Georgia, where Julia Virginia had grown up (though she had been born in Texas when her parents lived there briefly). Her parents were Thomas Duncan Terry and Martha (Mattie) Wiley Wall.
James Everett Jenkins
Everett (James Everett) was the first child of Joseph Asa Jenkins and Hester Ann Smith. I do not have a definite memory of ever meeting Uncle Everett Jenkins. I remember knowing that I met Ben at my grandfather's funeral. Possibly Everett was there also, but do not recall any details.
Joseph Benjamin Jenkins
Joseph Benjamin Jenkins was the second child of Joseph Asa Jenkins and Hester Ann Smith. I have only minimal childhood memories of my Uncle Ben. Ben lived in the US Northwest, so we never got to know their family. I remember my Dad, Orville Lee Jenkins, telling us that one of his brothers had a drinking problem and his family suffered.
In 2006, a distant cousin from California, Rich Jenkins, got in touch with me and we have been exchanging information and family memories to clarify some of the details. Rich is a great-grandson of Ben Jenkins. In discussing this recently with Rich and other family members, I have confirmed that Both Ben and his younger brother Everett both were heavy drinkers. It was hard on their families at times.
Ben had an early failed marriage that produced one child. At about age 18, in 1907 or 1908, he married Bessie Amanda Ann Winans. Her parents were Frank Grant Winans and Florence Anne Curry. They were another of the many migrant families who had recently settled in Indian territory around Marlow, Chickasaw Nation.
Ben and Bessie had one daughter, named Florence Jean (Joean) Jenkins. They divorced not long after, but the date is uncertain. It seems they were married a little more than a year.
Ben did not remarry until 1917, when he was 27 1/2 years old. He married Lena Fairy Stinson.
After his first wife, Hester Ann Smith, passed away, my grandfather Joseph Asa married Julia Virginia Terry, who became my father's mother. They had a second family. My father, Orville Lee, was born among the last of 15 total children of Joseph Asa. There was such an age range among the two families of Joseph Asa Jenkins that it is hard to correlate the generations.
Meeting Ben and Everett
When I was 12, Pappa Joe (Joseph Asa) died in 1962. At the funeral there were many members of my father's family whom I had never met before. I can't remember any actual exchanges, but remember that was the only time I had seen some others of my dad's siblings and other relatives. Before that time, my father had told me about his other brothers and sisters, but I never saw most of them.
There was some older man at the funeral who was crippled. He walked on dual arm-brace crutches. I remember being told he had had polio as a child. I remember talking to my father about him, but cannot clearly remember how he was kin to us. After comparing notes with other family members, we have ruled out that it was Ben; we are not sure about Everett.
Sallie (Sally) Hester Jenkins Christian
We would visit Dad's older half-sister Sallie Christian in Chickasha. Her name appears in various family sources spelled in two ways: Sallie and Sally. Sallie was born in 1893. Her husband, Grover Cleveland Christian, had died before I remember. One of her sons, Harold, along with his wife Ruth, conducted some family research about our immediate family. Some of their information has helped me clarify memories and provided information I did not know.
Mary Nettie Jenkins Yates
I remember knowing my dad's older sister Mary Nettie Yates. Aunt Mary and Uncle Neil Yates lived in Chickasha, Oklahoma, or nearby, and we would see them when we would go to visit Dad's parents, Julia Virginia and Joseph Asa Jenkins. They had a son named O'Neill, whom I saw on occasion, but he was much older and lived away, so I never really knew him.
Two other children of Joseph Asa and Hester Ann, Orland Frederic (or Orlando Frederick) (third child) and Ocy Bell (fifth child), died at an early age.
Martha Netheline Jenkins Callaway
I knew Dad's youngest sister, Aunt Nan (Netheline) well and remember when she married Uncle Lenard Callaway. They lived in Midwest City, Oklahoma, for as long as I remember after their marriage. Aunt Nan visited us in Texas on occasion before she married.
Lenard made contact again in October 2010. I learned they had moved to Richardson wehre Nan could get better care as her health deteriorated. She needed dialysis, and actually died in a hospital in Plano, Texas, next door to Richardson. Lenard now lives in a nearby senior living center in Dallas.
I remember she visited us in Quanah, Texas. This was at some time before she was married, after 1955, when we moved from the farm to a house in town.
We have continued seeing Nan and Lenard in recent years. But the last time I saw them was in 2004, I think. In October 2005, my sisters, Julia Mabel [Jenkins] Willadson, from Wichita Falls, Texas, and Beverly Michele [Jenkins] Park, from Vilonia, Arkansas, told me they had visited the Callaways in a new assisted living centre in Norman, Oklahoma, where they have moved since we were last in the US. Nan died on 30 Mar 2007 in Richardson, Texas.
Rhonda Faye Jenkins Boyd
I also remember Aunt Rhonda, who lived in Amarillo. She was married to Russell Hugh Boyd. I have also seen his name spelled Russel, but think that is an error. We visited her and Uncle Russ there at would see them on occasion at Chickasha also when the family could get together. I was named after them (Orville Boyd), because they were unable to have children of their own.
Rhonda died of cancer in a Dallas Hospital 9 August 1963. She was buried in Russell's home area of Chllicothe, Livingston County, Missouri.
My cousin, LaRhonda Jenkins was named after Aunt Rhonda. She was the only daughter of my dad's brother Arthur Carthal (Bud) and Eyline Lynch, of Chickasha, Oklahoma. LaRhonda was born in 1945.
Arthur Carthal (Bud) Jenkins
The other brother of my Dad that I remember well was Bud (Arthur Carthal) who was three years older than my father. He died also of a heart problem related to childhood Rheumatic fever, in 1955. His wife Eyline Lynch later remarried and, after some years, moved to Oklahoma City. I have not seen her or her children since I was about 16, at the funeral of my grandfather Joseph Asa Jenkins in 1965.
Mabel Claire Jenkins Hill
I also remember well Dad's sister Mabel Claire, who continued to live in Chickasha. She had married Oscar Hill, whom I never met. They were divorced before my memory. Her son Charles Kerwyn (spelled in some sources as Kerwin), was originally called by his second name Kerwyn. In later life he preferred to be addressed as Charles.
Aunt Mabel established the Home Furniture Company in Chickasha, after her divorce. Charles continued in the furniture business in Chickasha till retirement. I remember knowing his wife Lois when I was a child. I believe they lived in California for some time, then we visited them in Chickasha, Oklahoma, his hometown. I have no further information about his wife or children, except that some family members know of a son called Mark.
My wife (Edith Marie McSwain) and I would visit him in Chickasha on occasion. Family members remember he had one son named Mark, but I have no information on Mark. Charles Kerwyn was married early. I do not remember ever meeting his wife or children.
Thomas Asa Jenkins
We also spent some time in Anadarko, Oklahoma, with Dad's brother Asa and his wife Nova Bernice Grubbs. They had two sons Ronald (Ronnie) and Asa Lee. My Dad called him "Acy." Asa was born in Grady County, near the town of Bradley. Joseph Asa moved his family there after December 1901, when Mabel was born in Marlow.
The frontier settlement was only a few years old. Joe worked a farm near the town, then served as the postmaster and managed the general store there. The origins and history of Bradley can be read online. They moved back to Marlow before September 1906.
Asa ran an appliance business throughout his life, first in Fort Cobb, then in Anadarko. Asa continued the appliance business but expanded to a full furniture store. Asa's son Asa Lee was also in business in Anadarko. Asa Lee's son Randy is a doctor in Chickasha.
I saw Ronnie and his wife Sue in Durant, Oklahoma, on some visits in later years with my wife and children. On one visit we skied on Lake Texoma, on the border of Texas and Oklahoma. Ronnie owned a pharmacy in Durant, and a couple in nearby towns in Southern Oklahoma.
Ronnie died prematurely in the mid-1980s due to heart problems, resulting from a birth abnormality. Ronnie was what was then called a "blue baby" with defective heart valves. I remember Ronnie had a series of operations to repair his heart.
Asa Lee opened his own furniture business in 1962, which he ran till he himself retired. Asa Lee's son Randy is a doctor in Chickasha. We learned about it when my mother saw a newspaper article. In May 2007, through my genealogy information on the Internet, one of Randy's sons, James, contacted me by email. We got to visit with the family in Chickasha, while on a trip to the US from South Africa for a son's wedding in Texas. Asa Lee has another son Travis, but I do not remember him from my childhood, and have not met him as an adult.
My mother Lou Ila (Gregory) Jenkins lives in Lindsay, Oklahoma, about 25 miles east of Chickasha. She is the daughter of Andy Gregory (no second name) and Alpharetta Mae Green. She grew up in Garvin County, before meeting my father in Chickasha, where she was working at the local hospital kitchen. They were married in Chickasha in September 1946. I was born in Chickasha in July 1948. Many of my mother's family still live there, and we see most of them on visits there when we are in the US.
For more information on Orville Lee Jenkins and his family, see his entry in my genealogy.
Read more about the Jenkinses see my family research on Ancestry.com or here on my personal genealogy site.
Orville Boyd Jenkins
Originally written 18 August 2006
Last edited 26 May 2016