THE
SPARKS QUARTERLY

THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE SPARKS FAMILY ASSOCIATION

“He who careth not from whence he came, careth little whither he goeth.” Daniel Webster


VOL. XXI, NO. 3 SEPTEMBER, 1973
WHOLE NO. 83a

 
Index Next Page Previous Page Previous Whole No.

WHISTLE

(A correspondent added a note to a recent letter lamenting the lost art of whistling. “I remember when most every man I knew whistled. We need some historic preservation on whistling.” She sent along the following piece by H. E. Zimmerman.)

 “The fellow who knows how to whistle and still has his front teeth, and whistles, is a benefactor of mankind. Just pucker up your lips and whistle. Whistle the poison out of your soul.

 “Whistle hope. Whistle cheer. Have you ever heard an unhappy man whistle? You never have, because unhappiness, anger, and discouragement, and all other unpleasant things blow right out with the first breath of a gentle whistle.

 “When you feel failure in your bones, whistle. At the moment you start to scold, whistle. Before you begin to burden anyone with your troubles, whistle. Keep your mouth moist and ready all the time. Whistling is contagious. As soon as your whistle starts, the other fellow is apt to begin. Whistling makes difficult things easier and the big things possible. It oils up the world and makes folks happier.

***************
-1578-

THE SPARKS QUARTERLY, published by The Sparks Family Association.

Paul E. Sparks, President, 155 North Hite Avenue, Louisville, Kentucky (40206)
William P. Johnson, Historian-Genealogist, Box 1770, Raleigh, North Carolina (27602)
Russell E. Bidlack, Secretary-Treasurer & Editor, 1709 Cherokee Road, Ann Arbor, Michigan (48104)

 
The Sparks Family Association was founded in March, 1953, as a nonprofit organi- zation devoted to the assembling and preserving of genealogical and historical materials pertaining to the Sparks family in America.  Membership in the Asso- ciation is open to all persons connected with the Sparks family, whether by blood, marriage, or adoption, and to persons interested in genealogical research. Membership falls into three classes: Active, Contributing, and Sustaining.  Active membership dues are three dollars per year;  Contributing membership dues are four dollars per year; and Sustaining membership dues are any amount over four dollars which the member wishes to contribute for the support of the Association. All members receive THE SPARKS QUARTERLY as it is published in March, June, September, and December.  Back issues are kept in print and are available for seventy-five cents per issue. The first issue of the QUARTERLY was published in March, 1953. Four indexes have been published for the years 1953 -1957, 1958- 1962, 1963 -1967 and 1968 -72.  Each is available for $1.00. A complete file of all issues of the QUARTERLY (1953-1972) with the four indexes may be purchased for $48.00.
The editor of the QUARTERLY from March 1953 to September 1954 was Dr. Paul E. Sparks; since September 1954 the editor has been Dr. Russell E. Bidlack, 1709 Cherokee Road, Ann Arbor, Michigan (48104). Back issues and applications for membership are available from Dr. Bidlack. The QUARTERLY is printed by off-set at the Edwards Letter Shop, 711 North University Ave., Ann Arbor, Michigan.

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY

    by Paul E. Sparks

Data relative to Sparkses of the Estill County area of Kentucky have been published earlier and should be referred to by our readers.  These can be found as follows:
 

     
Whole
Subject 
Page 
Volume No. Number
Date
    CLARK COUNTY:
1800 Census               63       III   1       9  March 1955
Marriages (1793 -1868)             722       XI   1      41  March 1963
    ESTILL COUNTY:
1810 Census               65       III   1        9  March 1955
1820 Census             891     XIII    1     49  March 1965
1830 Census           1324   XVIII   2     70  June 1970
1840 Census           1027     XIV   4     56  December 1966
1850 Census       219-220       V   2     18  June 1957
Marriages (1810 -1851)             746      XI   2     42  June 1963
Births (1852 -1862)             330      VI   3     23 September 1958
William Harrison Sparks
   (1834 -1906)   1393-1401     XIX   2     74 June 1971

***************
-1579-

Data relative to Sparkses of the Estill County area of Kentucky published earlier, continued:
 

Whole
Subject
Page
Volume
No.
Number
Date
   FAYETTE COUNTY:  
1790 Census       4         I      1       1 March 1953
1790 Census     63       III      1       9 March 1955
1800 Census     63       III      1       9 March 1955
 
   JACKSON COUNTY:
Births (1852 -1852    331      VI      3      23 September 1958
   LEE COUNTY:
Marriages (1875 -1885)    934     XIII      3      51 September 1965
   MADISON COUNTY:
1800 Census      63       III      1       9 March 1955
1810 Census      65       III      1       9 March 1955
1820 Census    892     XIII      1     49 March 1955
1830 Census    421     VII      3      27 September 1959
Marriages (1830-1900)    935    XIII      3      51 September 1959
   OWSLEY COUNTY
1850 Census 1011-12    XIV      3      55 September 1966
Births (1852-1862)    348     VI      4      24 December 1958

(Editor’s Note: The area of Kentucky which we are considering in this article, and which we are designating as the “Estill County area” includes present-day Estill, Owsley, Jackson, and Lee Counties; however, these counties at one time were parts of either Fayette, Clark, or Madison Counties, thus records from seven counties will be under consideration.)

The first official record of a Sparks family in this section of Kentucky is found on the 1787 tax roll of Fayette County, Virginia (later Fayette County, Kentucky) when Isaac Sparks paid taxes on himself, one male above 16 years of age, one horse, and six cattle. We believe this Isaac Sparks to be the progenitor of the Sparks clan in this section of Kentucky.

Fayette County, Virginia, was created in 1780 when the Kentucky District was divided into three counties: Fayette, Jefferson, and Lincoln. Isaac Sparks continued to pay taxes in Fayette County until 1792, at which time the part of the county in which he was living became a part of Clark County. (On June 1, 1792, Kentucky became the fifteenth state admitted into the Union.)  Isaac Sparks paid taxes in Clark County, Kentucky, from 1793 to 1806 when the portion of Clark County in which he lived was taken away to become a part of Estill County. Then, for the next thirty-five years, the Sparks families in that area were identified with Estill County. Not until 1843 was Estill County’s boundaries changed, at which time Owsley County was formed. Two more portions of Estill County were to be taken: Jackson County took part in 1858, and Lee County took a final bite in 1870. As each new county was formed, persons named Sparks went with it.

Isaac Sparks was probably in Kentucky earlier than 1787. In 1777, Isaac Sparks (believed to be the same man who paid taxes in Fayette County in 1787) had claimed a preempt of 1,000 acres of land in Kentucky. As reported on page 2147 of the Register of the Kentucky State Historical Society, Vol. 21, the following certificate was issued by the Commissioners of Kentucky District at a court held at Harrodsburg on February 25, 1780: “Isaac Sparks by George Smith this day claimed a preempt of 1000 acres of land at the state price in the District of

***************
-1580-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued;

Kentucky on account of marking and improving the same in the year 1777 lying on Brasheirs Creek on the west waters of the same adjoining the Harrodsburg Trace to include any improvements made by George Smith satisfactory proof being made to the Court they are of the opinion that the said Sparks had a right to preempt on 1000 acres of land to include the above location and that a Certificate issue accordingly.” (Brashears Creek has its source in southern Shelby County, and flows south-westwardly until it empties into Salt River at Taylorsville, the county seat of Spencer County.) It has not been determined what happened to this claim. Disputes and litigation over land were quite common in early Kentucky, and it was probably much easier to give up a claim than to undergo the time and expense of a trial.

In 1789, Isaac Sparks signed a petition which was presented to the General Assembly of Virginia to create a new county from portions of Fayette and Bourbon Counties The petition, as publisheçl on page 130, Filson Club Publication, No. 27, 1914, was as follows:  “The petition of us the Subscribers of the Counties of Fayette and Bourbon ... that the upper parts of Fayette and Bourbon Counties be struck off, for the purpose of forming a new County ... beginning at the mouth of Boone’s Creek and up said creek to the mouth of Boggs Fork thence in a direct line to Blue Licks on the main Licking River then follow the Mason County line to Madison County. November 6, 1789.” Among the signers were Isaac Sparks and Elijah Sparks. In many respects, the proposed county would have resembled the area which became Clark County in 1792, but apparently the petition was not effective at that time.

In 1791, Isaac Sparks purchased land in Fayette County from John and Elizabeth Niblack. Unfortunately, when the Fayette County courthouse burned about 1802, many records were damaged or completely destroyed. Among the damaged documents was the deed from the Niblacks to Isaac Sparks, dated July 12, 1791, which was so badly damaged that neither the location, the acreage, nor the price can be determined. (See Fayette County “Burnt” Records.)

A suit was filed in the Fayette County Circuit Court in 1803 against Isaac Sparks. The records show that on January 19, 1803, John Smith brought suit against Isaac Sparks and Peter Gosey. In dispute were 1,000 acres at the head of a branch running into the Kentucky River on the dividing ridge between the Red River and Upper Howards Creek which had been surveyed by William Suddith of Clark County on August 24, 1802. The outcome of this suit is not known. (Upper Howards Creek is in south-eastern Clark County, while the Red River empties into the Kentucky River where Clark, Estill, and Madison Counties join.)

The data which follow include other early records copied from official sources in the Estill County area of Kentucky and which pertain to persons named Sparks. No attempt will be made in this article to tie these families together; however, in a future article, we wifl try to arrange the relationships.

Persons named Sparks Who Paid Taxes in Fayette County, Virginia,
1787 -1792, and Fayette County, Kentucky, 1793-1816

White White
Males Males
Date Taxpayer Acres Over 21 Over 16  Horses   Cattle Slaves
7 July 1787 Isaac Sparks      -      1      1      1      6      -
19 Nov 1788 Isaac Sparks      -      2      -      2      -      -
1789 & 1790 (No Sparkses)  
1791 Isaac Sparks      -      1      1      2      -      -
Elijah Sparks      -      1      1      -      -      -

***************
-1581-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued:

Persons named Sparks Who Paid Taxes in Fayette County, Virginia,
1787 -1792, and Fayette County, Kentucky, 1793-1816 , continued:


White White
Males Males
Date Taxpayer Acres Over 21 Over 16 Horses Cattle Slaves
11 Oct 1792 Isaac Sparks 130      1      -      -      8      -
26 Aug1793 Isaac Sparks     -      1     1      2      7      -
 "     "        " Elijah Sparks   70      1       -       1      -       -
1794 (No Sparkses,    Clark County formed 1792)
17 Jun 1795 William Sparks      -      1      -      1      -       -
1796-99 (No Sparkses;        No  tax book for 1798)
2 May 1800 William Sparks      -      1      -      1      -      -
24 Apr 1801 William Sparks      -      1      -      1       -      -
1802 -1807 William Sparks      -      1      -      1      -      -
1808 - 1813 (No Sparkses)
1814 James Sparks(Samuel Ayers, agent)      2
William Sparks      -      1      -      2      -      2
1815 William Sparks      -      1       -       2      -       2
1816 James Sparks(Samuel Ayers, agent)      2
William Sparks      -      1      -      2      -      2

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

Persons named Sparks Who Paid Taxes in Clark County, Kentucky,
1793 -1822


   White  White
Water-  Males  Males
Date Taxpayer Acres  shed Over 21 Over 16 Horses Cattle
1793 Isaac Sparks    70      1      -      2      7
Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      -      2
6 Jun 1794 Isaac Sparks    70      1      -      2    10
"     "     " Elijah Sparks       -      1      -      -      2
24 Jun 1795  Isaac Sparks    100  Bull Run      1      -      -      3
 "     "     " Elijah Sparks      -        1      -      -      -
7 Dec 1796 Isaac Sparks      -      1      -      -      7
 "     "     " Elijah      -        1      -      -      2
 "     "     " William Sparks      -      1      -      2      -
11 June 1796 David Sparks      -        1      -      1      -
24 June 1797 William Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
17 June1797 Isaac Sparks      -      2      -      1      -
1798 (No tax book)
12 Apr 1799 William Sparks      -      1      -       1      -
Isaac Sparks 100 Red Riv      1      -      1      -
Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      2      -

**********
-1582-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued:

Persons named Sparks Who Paid Taxes in Clark County, Kentucky,
1793 -1822, continued:


White White
Water- Males Males
Date Taxpayer Acres   shed Over 21 Over 16  Horses   Cattle
10 May 1800 George Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
22 May 1800 Isaac Sparks    100 Red Riv.      1      1      1      -
22 May 1800 William Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
15 Apr 1801 William Sparks      -      1      -      2      -
15 Apr 1801 Isaac Sparks    100 Red Riv.      1      1      2      -
17 Apr 1801 Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
 
28 June 1802 Isaac Sparks    100 Bull Run      1      -      1      -
28 June 1802 Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
28 June 1802 William Sparks      -      1      -      3      -
28 June 1802 John Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
28 June 1802 George Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
16 Mar 1803 Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
22 Mar 1803 John Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
22 Mar 1803 William Sparks      -      1      -      4      -
22 Mar 1803 Isaac Sparks    100 Bull Run      1      -      1      -
23 Aug 1804 Isaac Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
23 Aug 1804 Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
20 Mar 1804 John Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
20 Mar 1804 Isaac Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
20 Mar 1804 William Sparks    100 Ky. Riv.      1      -      1      -
20 Mar 1804 George Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
 
13 Apr 1805 William Sparks    100 Ken. Riv.      1      -      1      -
13 Apr 1805 John Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
17 June 1805 George Sparks      -      1      -      2      -
17 June1805 Isaac Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
30 Mar 1806 William Sparks    100 Ken. Riv.      1      -      3      -
26 May 1806 John Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
26 May 1806 George Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
26 May 1806 Isaac Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
1807 (No Sparkses)
13 May 1808 Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
1809-1813 (No Sparkses)
1814 & 1815 Elijah Sparks      -      1      -      1      -
1816 Rutha Sparks      -      0      -      1      -
1817 (No Sparkses)
1818 Isaac Sparks      -      1      -      -      -
1819 -1822 (No Sparkses)

***************
-1583-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued:

Taxpayers named Sparks in Estill County, Kentucky, 1808 -1851:


Person
White
White
Person named Water-
Entered
Males
Males
Date Sparks Acres course
By
Over 21
Over 16
 Horses   Value
1808
  May 16 Isaac      1      1
     "     "  William  300 Whiteoak Austen      1      3 
     "     " Isaac, Seigner   50 Whiteoak White      1      2      1 
  June 17 John      1      2
1809
  Apr. 10 Isaac   50 Whiteoak      1      1 
     "     "  William  300 Whiteoak Danl Boone      1      2
     "     "  George      1      2
  Jul 4 Elijah      1      1
1810 (No tax bk found)
1811
  June 8 James      1
   "     "  Isaac, Jr.      1      3
   "     " William      1      3
   "     " Isaac, Sr.   78 Whiteoak White      -      1
1812
  May 20 Elijah      -      -
   "     " Isaac      1       2
   "     " Thomas      1      1 
   "     " George      1      2
   "     " Catherine    78 Whiteoak McKinney      -      1 
   "     " William  300 Whiteoak Osten      1      3
1813
  Jun 12 John      1      4
   "     " William  300 Whiteoak Austin      1      4
   "     " George      1      2
   "     " Isaac      1      2
   "     " Thomas      1      1
   "     " Catherine   78 Whiteoak White      -      1
   "     " James      1      1      -
1814
  No date William      1      4
   "     " James      1      - 
   "     " John      1      4
   "     " George      1      4
   "     " Thomas      1      1
   "     " Isaac      1      2
   "     " Catherine   78 Whiteoak McKinney      -      1
1815
  No date Isaac      1      3  $  50 
   "     " William      1      5     100
   "     " John      1      3     60
   "     " James      1      1     60
   "     " George      1      2     10
   "     " Thomas      1      1     15

***************
    -1584-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued:

Taxpayers named Sparks in Estill County, Kentucky, 1808 -1851:


Person
Person
White
Persons Named
Water-
Entered
Surveyed
Males
Year
Sparks
Acres
course
By
For
Over 21
 Horses   Value
1816 James       1       - $
   " Thomas       1       1    10
   " George    78  Whiteoak Holder same       1       1  110
   " Isaac       1       3    40
   " John  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       3  130
   " William  300  Whiteoak Boon Austin       1       4  400
1817 James       1       2    10
   " Thomas       1       1    12
   " George    78  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  280
   " John  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       3  280
   " Isaac       1       2    50
   " Willam  300  Whiteoak D. Boone Austin       1       3  250
 
1818 Isaac       1       3    40
   " George    78  Whiteoak White same       1       3  274
   " James       1       -    -
   " Thomas       1       1     5
   " William  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       1  250
   " John       1       4  100
1819 Will  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  250
   " Jno.         1       2    50
   " Geo.    78  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  365
   " Tho.       1       1    20
   " Isaac       1       1    30
1820 William  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  240
   " Thomas       1       1    15
   " George    78  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  365
1821 William J. (sic)       1       2  100
   " George    78  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  300
   " Thomas       1       1    10
   " James       1       -      -
   " William, Jr.  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  240
   " Isaac       1       -      -
1822 James       1       -      -
   " William  100  Whiteoak Taylor same       1       2  250
   " William, Jr.         1       -      -
   " Geo.    78  Whiteoak McKinney same       1       1  410
   " Thomas       1       1    30
1823 James       1       -      -
   " Thomas       1       1    10
   " Polly  100  Whiteoak Holder same       1       2  360 
   " George    78  Whiteoak Holder same       1       1  375
   " Isaac       1       -      -
   " Isaac, Sr.       1       1    30

***************
-1585-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued:

Taxpayers named Sparks in Estill County, Kentucky, 1808 -1851:


Person
White
Person Named
Water-
who
Males
Year
Sparks
Acres
  course
Entered
Above 21
 Horses   Value
1824 William        1        1
   " Isaac        1        1
   " Thomas        1        1
1825 Polly    150 Whiteoak Holder        -        -
   " Isaac        1        -
   " George     78 Whiteoak Holder        1        1
   " Isaac        1        1
   " Thomas, Jr.        1        -
   " James        -        -
   " Thomas, Sr.        1        -
1826 Isaac        1
   " James        1
   " Thomas        1
   " Thomas        1
   " Isaac        1
1827 Thomas        1
   " Isaac        1
   " Isaac        1
1828 (No tax book found)
1829 Thos.        1
   " John        1
   " Thomas        1
   " Isaac        1
1830 Isaac        1
   " Thomas, Sr.        1
   " Thomas, Jr.        1
1831 Thomas, Sr.        1
   " Thomas, Jr.    60 Whiteoak Holder        1
   " Isaac        1
1832 (No tax book found)
1833 Isaac        1
   " Thomas    60 Whiteoak Graham        1
   " Isaac        1
   " Thomas, Sr.        1
   " John        1
1834 William, Jr.    50 Sta. Camp Cain        1
   " Isaac        1
   " Isaac, Sen.    50 Rockcassel Unknown        1
   " Thomas        1
   " John        1
   " Thomas    60 Whiteoak Simpson        1

***************
-1586-

SPARKS FAMILIES OF THE ESTILL COUNTY AREA OF KENTUCKY, continued:
 
Person
White
Person Named
Water-
who
Males
Year
Sparks
Acres
  course
Entered
Above 21
 Horses
Value
1835 Isaac         1       1    $ 30
Thomas     60 Taylor       1       1     100
John       1       -        -
Thomas       1       -       -
Isaac     50 Sta. Camp Cr.       1       1     200
William       1       1       50
1836 Isaac of War Fork       1       2     100
Isaac of Middle Fork       1       2     100
Thomas     60 Whiteoak Graham       1       2     200
Isaac       1       -       -
1837 Isaac   100       1       3     200
William       1       1      50 
John       1       -       -
Thomas, Jr.   100       1       -     150
Thomas, Sr.       1       -       -
James        1       1      25
Ephriam       1       -       -
James       1       -       -
1838 (No tax book found)
1839 (No tax book found)
1840 John       1       -       -
Isaac   200 Hell Cr.       1       3     325
William   110 Sta. Camp Cr.       1       1     170
Isaac   100 Sta. Camp Cr.      1       1     330
Thomas, Sr.       1       -       -
Samuel       1       1      50
Thomas     60 Whiteoak       1       1     150
1841 Samuel       1       1      30
Thomas     60 Whiteoak       1       1     250
Isaac   200  Ky. River       1        2     230
Thomas, Sr.       1       -       -
Isaac     54 Sta. Camp Crk.       1       2     170
Barnete     50 Sta. Camp Crk.       1       1     130
William   100 War Fork       1       2     350
John       1       -       -
1842 Samuel Hell Creek       1       1      35
Isaac   200 White Oak       1       2     350
Thomas     40 War Fork       1       2     355
William   100 War Fork       1       3     355
Isaac   100 War Fork       1       2     165
Barnet     50 War Fork       1       1      75
Robert     50 War Fork       1       1     175
John       1       -       -

Index Next Page Previous Page Previous Whole No.

Scanned and Edited by James J. Sparks