Benjamin Sparks

The below is from the “Sparks Quarterly”, giving a fairly comprehensive profile on Benjamin Sparks, son of James Sparks and Mary Ellis Sparks, brother of Belle who married G. W. McKenney Jr. (this blog’s direct line). He was a puzzler to sort out for, as with all the Sparks, I began with zero information on him years ago, and along the way realized he’d had several marriages.

The first marriage was to Mary Curtis who was born about 1850 in Illinois. They married Dec 11 1867 in Moultrie Co., IL. They had two children, John (James) and Cora. The 1870 census has John but Benjamin later gives his name as James. By 1875 Ben and Mary were in Montgomery Kansas, and they divorced in 1876. Mary next married John Deshezer and was living in Jefferson Co. KS in 1880.

The second marriage was to Minerva Edmondson, daughter of Thomas Edmondson and Margaret Muse. They married Jan 10 1882 and she died Jan 23 1883.

The third marriage was to Emma Louis Mitchell, who was born July 31, 1850 in Illinois. She had first married John Blackford on 1868 Dec 27 in Pawhuska in Osage Indian Territory…which seems early to be marrying down there and so I’m not sure about that and have not checked on it myself. They had Laura, William and Norman. John Blackford died Dec 13 1882 and is buried at the Casement Cemetery in Chautauqua Co. KS. On Aug 15 1883 in Sedan, Chautauqua Co., KS, Emma married Benjamin Sparks. They are given as divorcing March 28 1884. Then on July 3, 1884, she married Lincoln Grant Hogan in Chautauqua County Kansas. She married as Emma L. Blackford rather than Emma Sparks.

I am finding several places on the internet giving Cora Sparks who married Ira Jett as the daughter of James Sparks and Mary Curtis, but I this would be Cora Sparks, daughter of Albert Cyrus Sparks who was born Oct 21 1871 in Boonesville, Missouri.

BENJAMIN SPARKS, son of James and Mary (Ellis) Sparks, was born at Bloomington, Indiana, on December 27, 1838. He was married three times: (1) Mary M. Curtis in December 1867; (2) Minerva Edmondson on January 10, 1882; and (3) Emma A. Blackford on August 15, 1883. He served in Company K, 54th Regiment Illinois Infantry. File Designation: Inv. Cert. No. 292,625.

Benjamin Sparks apparently had made application for an invalid pension sometime prior to May 11, 1883, for on that date the War Department confirmed his military service to the Bureau of Pensions. He had been enrolled in Company K, 54th Regiment Illinois Volunteers on December 10, 1861, at Paris, Illinois, for three years. He had reenlisted on December 26, 1863, and had served until he had been mustered out with his company on October 15, 1865. He held the rank of corporal. He had been hospitalized with intermittent fever from July 26, 1865, to August 1, 1865.

Invalid Certificate No. 292,625 was issued to Sparks, and he was placed upon the pension roll.

On August 4, 1898, he responded to a questionnaire from the Bureau of Pensions. He stated that he was not then married; however, he had been previously married three times. His first marriage had been to Mary M. Curtis in Moultrie County, Illinois, in December 1867. He and Mary had two children:

James Sparks, born in 1868, died on March 28, 1869; and Cora A. Sparks, born in July 1872 at Chanute, Kansas, and from whom he had not heard in ten years. He and Mary had been divorced in 1876, and on January 10, 1882, he had been married to Minerva Edmondson. She had died in January 1883, and on August 15, 1883, he was married to Emma L. Blackford, a widow. They had been divorced on March 28, 1884.

On May 23, 1912, Benjamin Sparks, aged 73 years, and a resident of the National Military Home, Leavenworth, Kansas, applied for increased pension benefits under the provisions of the 1912 Act of Congress. He stated in this application that he had been born at Bloomington, Indiana, on December 27, 1838. At the time of his enlistment he had been 5 feet, 10 inches tall; he had a dark complexion, grey eyes, and brown hair; and he was a farmer.

Benjamin Sparks died on October 30, 1915, at Chautauqua, Kansas. On June 23, 1917, George W. McKenney applied for reimbursement for Sparks’s last illness and funeral expenses in the amount of $20.45. McKenney stated that he was the administrator of Sparks’s estate, but that he was not related to him.

[Editor’s Note: The parents of Benjamin Sparks were James and Mary “Polly” (Ellis) Sparks, who were married in Nicholas County, Kentucky, on November 1, 1827. (See the December 1965 issue of the QUARTERLY, Whole No. 52, page 946.) This family was listed on the 1850 census of Martin County, Indiana, which was published in the December 1959 issue of the QUARTERLY, Whole No. 25.]

Benjamin D. Sparks


Husband: Benjamin D. Sparks


Born: 1838 Dec 27 – Bloomington, Monroe, Indiana
Christened:
Died: 1915 Oct 30 – , Chautauqua, Kansas
Buried: – Oak Hill Cemetery, Belleville, Chautauqua, Kansas (1)
Father: James + Sparks (1803- ) (2)
Mother: Mary + Ann Ellis (1806- ) (2)
Marriage: 1883 Aug 15 Place: Sedan, Chautauqua,
Kansas (3)
——————————————————————————–
Other Spouse: Mary Curtis (1850- ) (4)
Date: 1867 Dec 11 – , Moultrie, Illinois (Divorced)
——————————————————————————–
Other Spouse: Minerva Edmondson (1841-1883)
Date: 1882 Jan 10 – Sedan, Chautauqua, Kansas (3)
——————————————————————————–
Events
——————————————————————————–

1. Birth: 1840 , Monroe, Indiana. Benjamin was likely born in Monroe
Co. as that is where his family was located in 1840.

2. Name: Mary Ann had a brother, Benjamin D. ELLIS, and Benjamin D.
SPARKS is perhaps his namesake. Her father, James Mason, also had a
brother, Benjamin.

There is another Benjamin D. SPARKS who appears to be only distantly
related, if related at all (no connection is known). He is noted because
he ends up also in IL, Cumberland Co. in 1860, coming from IN, Vigo Co.,
Honey Creek where he was in 1850, and it can get confusing. He arrived in
1858, and his family settled and remained in Cumberland Co.

He is known to be Benjamin Duncan SPARKS, born 1819 in Spencer Co., KY,
dying in July 1909 in Zurich KS, son of a Benjamin SPARKS and an unknown
DUNCAN. He married in 1842 in Vigo Co. IN to a Nancy Anna MCCROSKEY.

1850 Honey Creek Twp, Vigo Co, IN Census 23 Oct 1850
SPARKS Benjamin 28 Farmer KY
Nancy 26 IN
John 5 IN
Rachel 4 IN
Mary 1 IN
1860 Clear Creek Precinct, Cumberland Co, IL Post Office: Majority Point
19 June 1860
SPARKS Benjamin D 38 Farmer KY 3000 val of R E 1000
Pers Prop
Nancy L 36 IN
John L 15 IN
Rachel 13 IN
Mary C 11 IN
Joseph S 9 IN
Margaret I 7 IN
Phebe 1 IL
1870 Neoga Twp, Cumberland Co, IL Census P #27 7 June 1870
SPARKS Benjamin 50 Farmer 4000 1200 KY
Nancy L 45 IN
Mary C 21 IN
Joseph S 19 Works on Farm IN
Phebe 10 IN
1880 Neoga Twp, Cumberland Co, IL Census ED #64 7 & 8 Jun 1880
SPARKS Benjamin 60 Farmer KY KY KY
Nancy 56 IN IN IN

3. Census: 1850 Perry, Martin, Indiana. (5)

4. Census: 1860 Spring Point, Cumberland, Illinois. (6)

74/74
James SPARKS 54 M Farmer personal value 200 b. KY
Mary 53 F b. KY
Benjamin D. 21 M b. IN
Mary E. 17 F b. IN
75/75
James SPARKS 26 m Farmer b. IN
Cary A. 24 F b. IN
John 7 M b. IN
Mary E. 3 F b. IN
Martha C. 1 F b. IN

5. Military: Corp., Co. K, 54 Ill. Inf.

6. He owned land in 1864. (7)

Illinois Public Land Purchase Records
Record
about SPARKS BENJAMIN D
Name: SPARKS BENJAMIN D
Section: SESE
Price: 1000
Total: 40000
Date: 22 October 1864
Volume: 791
Page: 202
Type: RR
Sect: 20
Township: 10N
Range: 08E
Meridian: 3
Acres: 4000
Corr-Tag: 0
ID: 464744
SocStat:
Blank:
Reside: 000

7. Matrimony 1: SPARKS, BENJAMIN – CURTIS, MARY 12/11/1867 A /35 MOULTRIE Illinois

8. Census: 1870 Mattoon, Coles, Illinois. (8) Benjamin SPARKS 32 b.
Indiana and Mary 20 b. Illinois are living in Mattoon, Coles County,
Illinois in 1870 with a son John 1 year of age

9. Census: 1875 , Montgomery, Kansas.

1875 State Census KS Montgomery
County
4/4 Alonzo HOPSON 33 farmer $2000 $595 Iowa from Iowa
Benjamin SPARKS 33 farmer IN from IL
Mary 24 IL from IL
Cora 3 KS
5/5 John RECORD 23 farmer IL from IL
Sarah 16 MO from MO
N. 5 KS
France ELDRIDGE 16 male MO

Alonzo HOPSON is from Scott Co. Iowa and in 1870 is in the Montgomery co.
KS census., Independence township

10. Census: 1880 Sedan, Chautauqua, Kansas. (9)

1880 SEDAN CHAUTAUQUA CO
KS CENSUS.
Benjamin SPARKS is living several household before his sister Mary SPARKS
and Samuel MCCORMICK:
pg. 382a
COPPLE John 36 b. NC parents b. NC and Sarah 44 b. MO parents b. TN and
SC and family
CALL Marquis 52 b. NY parents b. VT and OH and Nance E. 41 b. KY parents
b. IRE and KY (and family)
CASEMENT J. C. 41 b. ENG farmer and Mary 39 b. MI parents b. MI and NY
(and family)
FOGLE John 30 b. IN parents b. OH and Millie 25 b. IL parents b. OH and
IN (and family)
JOHNSON L. P. 26 b. IN and Rebecca 26 b. IN and parents b. KY (and
family)
HAMON Frank 36 b. OH parents b. VA and Nancy 39 b. KY and parents b. VA
and SC (and family)
KENDALL T. C. 38 b. IN parents b. VA and PA
KENDALL A. S. 27 b. IL parents b. VA and PA and Elizabeth 22 b. WI
parents b. IN and NC (and family)
NOTE: A March 8 1999 Chautauqua Co. KS genealogy posting by sjpbjp at
swbell.net gives the above T. C. as Tubal C. KENDALL. G. W. MCKINNEY Sr’s
daughter, Martha, married Marion CAMPBELL, son of a John CAMPBELL and
Nancy KENDALL. I don’t know if there’s any relation to these KENDALLs who
are living near Mary Sparks MCCORMICK and Benjamin SPARKS, both siblings
of Bell, G. W. MCKINNEY Jr’s wife.
pg. 382b
CHILL Zebulon 45 b. IN and Minnie 28 b. WI and father b. MD and mother b.
NC (and family)
COPPLE William 35 b. MO and parents b. NC and Ida 20 b. IL and father b.
OH and mother b. IL (and family)
COPPLE Millard 23 b. MO parents b. NC
COPPLE Addis 18 b. KS parents b. unk
Sylvester 2 months b. KS father b. MO mother b. KS
SPARKS Benjamin Divorced 40 b. IN farm laborer parents b. KY
FLOYD Martin V. 37 b. IL father b. IL and mother b. IN, and Nancy 32 b.
IL with parents b. IL (and family)
BUTLER J. H. 26 b. IA father b. OH and mother b. IN and Katie 28 b. NY
with parents b. IRE (and family)
MCCORMICK Sand (sic) 28 b. IN parents b. unk. farmer
Mary 23 b. IN parents b. IN
Guss 6 b. KS parents b. IN
James 4 b. KS parents b. IN
Carrie 1 b. KS parents b. IN
MCKNIGHT C. 63 b. IN father b. NC and mother b. IN and Rebecca 51 b. KY
with father b. VA and mother b. KY. Their children from the eldest (29)
all born in MO.
HOUSTON J. B. 59 b. TN parents b. NC and Mary 56 b. TN parents b. NC and
TN (and family)

11. He was contained in a pension record Civil War pension application 54
ILL. Inf. on 1881 Jan 17. (10)

12. Matrimony 2: 1882 Jan 10, Sedan, Chautauqua, Kansas. Benjamin SPARKS
married Minerva EDMONDSON. They were both 42 years of age.

Minerva’s brother Samuel EDMONDSON and his wife Louise are living next to
James K. and Millie CROCKETT in the 1880 Chautauqua Co. Belleville
census.

Minerva is in the 1880 KS ALLEN CO., DEEK CREEK census. She is living
with her brother Lewis.

1880 KS, ALLEN CO., DEEK CREEK
Louis EDMONDSON 48 Farmer b. PA parents b. PA
Alice M. 27 b. IN father b. NY mother b. IN
Nellie V. 7 b. KS
Eugene S. 4 b. KS
Nannie M. 2 b. KS
Minerva EDMONDSON single 39 b. PA parents b. PA
John VANCE single 21 b. PA farm laborer parents b. PA

13. Wife’s Death: 1883 Jan 23, , Chautauqua, Kansas. Minerva died a year
after she and Benjamin were married.

14. Matrimony 3: 1883 Aug 15, Sedan, Chautauqua, Kansas. 7 months after
the death of Minerva, Benjamin marries Emma L. BLACKFORD.

Emma BLACKFORD appears in the 1880 KS, Chautauqua Co. Salt Creek
census:

J. W. BLACKFORD Self M Male W 43 OH Farmer NY NY
Emma BLACKFORD Wife M Female W 30 IL Keeping House PA
PA
Laura BLACKFORD Dau S Female W 16 KS OH IL
William BLACKFORD Son S Male W 6 KS OH IL
Norman BLACKFORD Son S Male W 1 KS OH IL

Source Information:
Census Place Salt Creek, Chautauqua, Kansas
Family History Library Film 1254375
NA Film Number T9-0375
Page Number 378B

15. Census: State 1885 Sedan, Chautauqua, Kansas. OK, this one is
confusing. I’m unable to find anyone in the 1870, 1880 or 1900 census that matches this family. The information is far afield from Benjamin Sparks and Emma (besides which, they had divorced in 1884).

219/231 B E Sparks 36 b. OH from MO
Emma 33 b. IL from MO
Wiliam 15 b. MO
Ida 13
May 11 b. KS
John E. 9
Lizzie 7
Infant 3

16. Census: 1915 Chautauqua, Chautauqua, Kansas.

1915 State Census KS
Chautauqua Co Chautauqua
Benj SPARKS 76
Ray MAY (male)
Grace MAY 25
James S. REVELETT 38
Anna 38
Tressie 15
Minnie 9
Mary 9
Carlise ? 1

17. Death: 1915 Oct 30 in Chautauqua Co. Kansas

18. Cemetery: ? Oak Hill Cemetery, Belleville, Chautauqua, Kansas. (1)
SPARKS, Benjamin Corp., Co. K, 54 Ill. Inf.
SPARKS, James E. 1832 1927
SPARKS, Carrie E. 1834 1917
SPARKS, W. E. 26 Aug 1876 07 Jun 1904


Wife: Emma Louis Mitchell


AKA: Emma Blackford, Emma L. Sparks
Born: 1850 Jul 31 – , , Illinois
Christened:
Died: 1910 Jan 15
Buried: – Pawhuska Cemetery, Pawhuska, Osage, Oklahoma


Other Spouse: John W. Blackford (1837-1882)
Date: 1868 Dec 27 – Pawhuska, Osage Indian Reservation,
Oklahoma Indian Territory


Other Spouse: Lincoln Grant Hogan (1866-1932) Date: 1884 Jul 3 – ,
Chautauqua, Kansas


Events


1. Census: State 1875 Louisburg, Montgomery, Kansas.

28/28 J. BLACKFORD
38 300 300 b. OH from IA
E S 4 b. IL from IL
L 5 b. KS
A M 3
M D 1

51/51 R MAGERS? 25 b. IA and family
52/52 P. SHAFER 39 300 b. OH
S 31 b. IA
D. 13
B 10
S 5
L 1 b. KS
W. C. PIERSON 48 500 150 b. NY
S V 37 b. OH
H 14 b. MO
N 11
C 9
A 2 b. KS
54/54 S E DUTY 52 800 290 b. NC and family
W W? SEAHLE 17 b. PA
J CLARK 33 stock dealer 800 b. OH
M SNELL 20 1600 b. OH
M SNELL 20 stock dealer 1600 b. OH
D. W. DONT 30 farmer 1600 300 b. OH
Jos MAXWELL 35 farmer 400 400 b. PA
S 34 b. IA
M 3
S. 1 b. KS

124/124 J. S. STONG 40 700 400 b. PA
E. S. 28 b. OH
G 12 b. IA
M. 10
E. 8
C. 7
W. 6
S. 4
P. 1
125/125 J. KELLEY 28 1000 300 b. MD
E 34 b. IA
J. 6
E. 3 b. KS
H. ORR 38 b. IL
126/126 J. JESTER 46 b. KY and family
127/127 COX 54 b. OH and family

2. Census: 1880 Salt Creek, Chautauqua, Kansas. (9)

J. W. BLACKFORD
Self M Male W 43 OH Farmer NY NY
Emma BLACKFORD Wife M Female W 30 IL Keeping House PA
PA
Laura BLACKFORD Dau S Female W 16 KS OH IL
William BLACKFORD Son S Male W 6 KS OH IL
Norman BLACKFORD Son S Male W 1 KS OH IL

Source Information:
Census Place Salt Creek, Chautauqua, Kansas
Family History Library Film 1254375
NA Film Number T9-0375
Page Number 378B

3. Census: State 1885 Sedan, Chautauqua, Kansas. OK, this one is
confusing. I’m unable to find anyone in the 1870, 1880 or 1900 census that matches this family. The information is far afield from Benjamin Sparks and Emma (besides which, they had divorced in 1884).

219/231 B E Sparks 36 b. OH from MO
Emma 33 b. IL from MO
Wiliam 15 b. MO
Ida 13
May 11 b. KS
John E. 9
Lizzie 7
Infant 3

4. Census: 1900 Ponca City, Kay, Oklahoma.

HOGAN Lincoln Feb 1866 34 m
16 KS father KY, mother IN
Emma L. July 1850 49 m 16 6 of 8 children surviving b. IL father parents
b. PA
Anna May Dec 1884 15 b. KS father b. KS mother b. IL
Clarence Oct 1886 13
Blackford William stepson Oct 1872 27 b. KS father b. IN mother b. IL
Irvin stpson Jan 1874 26
Edgar stepson Dec 1882 17


Sources

1. G. Herman Guy’s, Cemeteries in Chautauqua County, Kansas (Transcribed from
Mr. G. Herman Guy’s Cemeteries in Chautauqua County, Kansas
http://skyways.lib.ks.us/genweb/chautauq/library/cemetery/okhilndx.html).
2. Joseph Jones (bahbd5 at orbitworld.net), Doty Genealogy Information. ….
Ioway Gene Database.
3. Marriage Records.
4. Illinois Marriage Index.
5. Indiana, Martin County, 1850 U.S. Population Schedule (Images at
Ancestry.com).
6. Illinois, Cumberland County, 1860 Population Schedule (Images at
Ancestry.com).
7. Illinois Public Land Purchase Records (Ancestry.com).
8. Illinois, Coles County, 1870 U.S. Population Schedule (Ancestry.com).
9. Kansas, Chautauqua County, 1880 U.S. Population Schedule – Kansas,
Chautauqua County (Images at Ancestry.com).
10. Civil War Pension Index (Ancestry.com).

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