52 Ancestors: #14 Alexander CLONCH Known as “The one who killed the beef at 200 paces”

“The challenge: have one blog post each week devoted to a specific ancestor. It could be a story, a biography, a photograph, an outline of a research problem — anything that focuses on one ancestor.”

We are starting the 2nd quarter of the challenge! This is my 14th entry in Amy Johnson Crow’s Challenge: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

#14 Alexander CLONCH Known as “The one who killed the beef at 200 paces”

This photo of the portrait stored in the Clonch home at Mount Olive was taken by Lynn Elliott and sent to me per email by Susan Jane Clonch Ryan. (18 September 2020)

Daniel CLONCH (deceased father of Susan Ryan), a 2nd cousin once removed, shared this story told to him about 1941 by his grandfather Joe CLONCH:1

My Grandfather, Joe, told about the BEEF at 200 Paces to us when I was about 10.  We were shooting a rifle and he said we were as good as his dad that killed the beef at 200 paces.
Apparently they had some cattle in camp to provide meat and one swam a river or deep creek and was escaping.  Grandpa Alex shot it and killed it across the stream with his muzzle loader (musket?).  From that point on until Alex was put in the hospital, the Captain would yell “Send the man that killed the beef at 200 paces, to the front” anytime they were firing at the enemy.

Alex During the American Civil War 1861-1865

Alexander CLONCH was mustered into service as a private in Company C of the 13th West Virginia Volunteer Infantry on 8 October 1862 at the age of 21.2 The regiment, organized in October 1862, served in the Kanawha Valley during the first year of the war, mostly doing guard duty and scouting by detachments of companies. Alex was present until 31 October 1862.

alexcw2
Company Muster Roll card for Alexander Clonch

Records show that Alex was sick and absent from duty in November and December 1862. It does not give any detail as to what the illness was. His father was suffering from typhoid fever at this time and died on 20 January 1863.3

Alex was once again present for duty in January and February 1863. He appeared on a Special Muster Roll as present on 10 April 1863 and then on a Company Muster Roll dated 30 April 1863 as sick in Post Hospital at Point Pleasant. His stay in the hospital continued from May 1863 until February 1864 and each time it was noted that he had been there since 12 Feb 1863. After a year of being sick in the Post Hospital, he appears to have been transferred to the army’s General Hospital in Gallipolis, Ohio, on 3 March 1864.

alexcw1
Company Muster Roll card for Alexander Clonch

The government erected a general hospital near the site of Camp Carrington, a wheat field on the Barlow farm “at the upper end” of Gallipolis in 1862, and maintained it until the close of the war. At its greatest capacity, the hospital had 4,000 patients tended by military staff and people from Gallipolis.4

This might be a bit exaggerated as another source indicates that the hospital was “equipped with 350 beds, at its peak, the hospital treated 769 soldiers at a single time.”5 A historical marker has been erected for the “U.S. Army General Hospital” in Gallipolis, Gallia County, Ohio.6

alexcw3
Company Muster Roll card for Alexander Clonch

Alex remained in General Hospital until the end of October 1864. Apparently, he had been drawing pay the entire time that he was hospitalized as he was last paid on 31 October 1864. From November 1864 until April 1865 he was once again listed as present and, I assume, fit for duty. He was mustered out on 22 June 1865. His clothing account was “last settled on 30 June 1864; drawn since $39.10.” He had been paid $25 of his bounty and $75 was due him.

A federal bounty of $100.00 was paid for all volunteers or regulars enlisting for three years and serving at least two years or to the end of the war. This $100.00 bonus was paid at discharge only.

Back to the Beginning ~ Alex’s Childhood

William CLONCH (1807-1863) and Mary E. “Polly” DOSS (1816-1890) were the parents of my great-great-grandfather Alexander DOSS a.k.a. Alexander CLONCH born on 2 March 1842 in Mason County, West Virginia (then Virginia).7 Alex was their second child.

William and Polly, although never married, had eight known children including John William (1840-1919), Alex (1842-1910), Lavina Ann (1846-1945), Jeremiah (1847-bef. 1860), Elizabeth Jane “Betsy” (1851-aft. 1899), Joel (1852-aft. 1910), Thomas Eli (1852-1913), and Charles Henry (1855-1925).

1850censusclonch
1850 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Mason > 38th District > Sheet No. 422A HH#842-853

On the 1850 census, we see Alex DOSS with his parents William CLONCH and Polly DOSS, older brother John W. DOSS, and younger siblings Lavina DOSS and Jeremiah DOSS. Relationships of the persons in the household are not included in 1850. The enumerator used the ditto mark (“) to show a repeat of the surname DOSS.8 This is not an error as we will see later.

1860censusclonch
1860 U.S. Federal Census > VA > Mason > District 2 > Page 46 > HH#345-316

On the 1860 census, Alex, his 6 siblings, and both of his parents are seen with the CLAUNCH (sic, CLONCH) surname.9 Note: The surname has been seen spelled/transcribed as Claunch, Clounch, Clonch, Clouch, and even Clanuch which makes the search for records a bit more difficult.

Alex’s Father Made His Will Before Dying

As mentioned Alex’s father William CLONCH died on 20 January 1863 of typhoid fever. He left a will written on 17 January 1863 in which he stated, “I do wish to will my Land to Mary Doss and her Children John William Doss, Alexander Doss, Loving Ann Doss, Elizabeth Jane Doss, Thomas Eli Doss, Joel Doss and Charles Henry Doss.”10 William did not write “my” or “our” when he named the children in his will.

will
A snippet of the Last Will and Testament of William Clonch

The boys used the CLONCH surname after their father’s death. Mary DOSS also used the CLONCH name after William’s death. She had not been able to marry William CLONCH as he was still married to another woman. This has been discussed in A Little “Peyton Place” (Part 1) and will be looked into again when I write up William CLONCH’s story for the 52 Ancestors Challenge.

Alex’s sister Lavina Ann DOSS married James William PATTERSON (1836-1911) on 16 July 1863 in Point Pleasant, Mason County, West Virginia. Her parents were listed as Wm CLONCH and Mary DOSS. However, Wm CLONCH was struck out on the marriage license.11 Lavina married less than 6 months after her father’s death. Why Wm CLONCH was marked out on the license is unknown.

A Little “Peyton Place” (Part II)

Alex’s brother John W. CLONCH married Sarah Jane FOSTER on 20 February 1862.12 Alexander CLONCH married Mary Ellen LEMASTER on 10 November 1863.13 This was when, according to the military records, Alex was sick in Post Hospital in Point Pleasant. He must have been too sick to serve in the army but well enough to leave the hospital to get married. Both of these marriages took place in Gallia County, Ohio, and neither marriage lasted.

On 18 July 1864 Sarah J. CLONCH, wife of John W. CLONCH, sued by her next friend, John W. FOSTER, for divorce. Three years before at the age of 21, she left her father’s house and married John CLONCH.

“Since that time [she] has been to him a constant, faithful and dutiful wife and has borne him two children to wit: William A. now two years old and an infant daughter three months old. Her husband on the other hand has been negligent and insufferably abusive and violent to her within the last two years frequently beating and choking her for no cause whatever on her part. He has left his house and home taking with him her oldest child and living in adultry with another woman… further alledges that he has been seen in bed with his own brother’s wife and has failed to furnish support to your oratrix and her child which she is oblige to labor for their entire support, or they would come to starvation. The only property owned by your oratrix and her husband is the household and kitchen furniture and one house the most of which your oratrix bought from her father.”

Sarah called three witnesses including John’s own sister and they told it like it was. They testified that John and Rebecca LEMASTER spent the night together in each other’s arms while the light in the fireplace went out.

Peter DEWITT testified that “I saw Rebecca Lemaster sitting in his lap mighty close together and he was hugging her, and this happened after dark.”

Lavina Ann PATTERSON, John’s sister, testified that John and Mary Ellen LEMASTER CLONCH had been in bed together. Mary Ellen was married to John’s brother, Alexander CLONCH.14

“Now wasn’t that a little Peyton’s Place?” wrote Ralph L. Hayes who I credit for researching the divorce. About the time that John and Sarah got their divorce in 1864, Alexander and Mary Ellen, who did not have children, called it quits but were not divorced until 1880. John and Mary Ellen were expecting their first child and “shacked up together” for over 30 years until 7 May 1895 when they finally were legally married – after 13 children were born.15

Alex Has Children With His Wife’s Sister

On 7 November 1865 Rebecca LEMASTER, Mary Ellen’s sister, had an illegitimate son Austin Richard LEMASTER.16 The father of the child was listed as unknown. Later this son went by the name Oscar R. CLONCH. His 1943 death record also shows that he was the son of Rebecca LEMASTER and an unknown father.17 Family tradition is that Alexander CLONCH had a son named Austin and it has been assumed that the child died young as he was not mentioned in Alex’s Civil War pension records. Most likely Alexander took on the father role for  Rebecca’s illegitimate child in the early years and Oscar chose to use the CLONCH surname. Alex did not acknowledge him in a questionnaire he returned to the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Pensions in 1898.18

Alex’s daughter Emma Sidosa “Emily” was born 5 March 1866 per the 1898 questionnaire. No birth record has been found. On her death record, her birth date is listed as 1 March 1868.19. When she married for the first time in 1892 her name was seen as Emma LAMASTICE (sic, LEMASTER). Unfortunately, the Ohio marriage record does not list the names of the parents of the bride and groom.20

The birth record of Alex’s son Joseph E. “Joe” CLONCH born on 18 December 1874 shows the mother as Rebecca CLONCH and most likely this is the reason it has been believed that the parents were married.21

The next child born and acknowledged by Alex in the 1898 questionnaire was Barbara Elizabeth born on 5 March 1875. No birth record has been found for this child. Unfortunately, this date cannot be trusted as it is too close to the birth of son Joe. It is more likely that she was born in 1876 as she was later seen as age 4 on the 1880 census.

Last-minute find (less than 3 hours before the scheduled publishing time of this article): 1900 census was finally located for Barbara, her husband, three sons (previously only two sons were known), and her husband’s nephew. She was enumerated as Lizzie and her month and year of birth were March 1876! What made me look again was that her youngest son William J.’s 1943 death record showed that he was born on 2 November 1900. Gallia county birth records 1894-1903, however, show that he was born on 2 November 1899. I searched for this child in the 1900 census and found the family!22

Neither the 1870 census listing for Alexander CLONCH and/or Rebecca LEMASTER nor a marriage record for them has not been found. At one time someone came up with the 13 May 1864 date of marriage for Alex and Rebecca, however, I have not found documentation, i.e. West Virginia or Ohio marriage records, to prove it. I do not believe that Alex actually married Rebecca with whom he raised four children: Oscar, Emma, Joseph, and Barbara. Rebecca may have died before 1880.

Alex is Finally Divorced from his First Wife

The divorce of Alexander CLONCH and Mary Ellen LEMASTER was found in Mason County Chancery records. The marriage was dissolved. Mary did not appear, did not get her dower, and had to pay costs. Alexander had at least three children (most likely all with Mary Ellen’s sister Rebecca LEMASTER as seen above) and Mary Ellen had eight children by John CLONCH, Alexander’s brother, by the time their divorce was final.23

I suspect, as no record has been found, that Rebecca may have died before 1880. Having such young children, Alex may have found it necessary to get a divorce from his estranged wife so that he could legally marry. He was listed as divorced in the 1880 census. His children Emily, Joe, and Barbara were in his household.24 Austin/Oscar has not been located.

1880censusclonch
1880 U.S. Federal Census > WV > Mason > Clendenin > ED 93 Page 22 Sheet 245B > HH#197-202

1880 U.S. Federal Census
Mason County, West Virginia
Clendennin Township, Page No. 22
ED No. 93, Sheet No. 245B
Enumerated by me on the day of June, 1880. R. J. Neale, enumerator.
HH #197-202
Claunch, Alex W M 38 divorced Farm Labor WV VA VA
Claunch, Emily W F 13 daughter single At Home WV WV WV
Claunch, Joel E. W M son single 6 WV WV WV
Claunch, Barbara W F 4 daughter single WV WV WV

Alexander Marries a Second Time

Alexander CLONCH married my great-great-grandmother Tabitha Ann “Tobitha” COOLEY (1861-1913) on 19 August 1880 in Gallipolis, Gallia County, Ohio.25

Birth records for six of the nine children born to this marriage have been found. The dates for Fanny, Rebecca, and Sallie were seen in Alex’s 1898 replies to the Bureau of Pensions’ questionnaire. Children of this marriage were:

Ch 1: Timothy CLONCH born on 20 December 1881 in Arbuckle District, Mason County, West Virginia.26 He died before 1898.
Ch 2: Lorena Ellen CLONCH (1883-1961) born on 10 March 1883 in Arbuckle District, Mason County, West Virginia27
Ch 3: Frances “Fanny” CLONCH (1885-1943) born on 30 April 1885 in Mason County, West Virginia
Ch 4: Bertha CLONCH (1887-1898) born on 9 December 1887 in Arbuckle District, Mason County, West Virginia.28 She died before 1898.
Ch 5: Rebecca Jane CLONCH (1888-1950) born on 6 January 1888 in Mason County, West Virginia
Ch 6: Sarah Ann “Sallie” CLONCH (1890-1979) born on 20 June 1890 in Mason County, West Virginia
Ch 7: Harrison S. CLONCH (1893-1970) born on 11 February 1893 in Beech Hill, Mason County, West Virginia29,30
Ch 8: ___ (unnamed) CLONCH (1894-1894) born on 6 October 189431 and died on 13 October 1894,32 both in Clay County, West Virginia
Ch 9: Ida Bell CLONCH (1896-1981) born on 5 March 1896 in Smithers Creek, Fayette County, West Virginia.33

On 9 March 1887, an article appeared in the Point Pleasant (Mason County, West Virginia) Weekly Register under Five Mile Items:34

MRIN00038 1887-03-09 Alex Clonch
The Weekly register. (Point Pleasant, Va. [W. Va.]), 09 March 1887. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress.
“Mr. Alex Clounch, the sole proprietor of the Swisher corn mill, can grind a bushel of corn per day, that is as much as a man can eat in a week, and says if he gets an early start he can grind two bushels after deducting the toll.”

This is the first time I’ve heard that Alex owned a corn mill. More research is needed to determine if this is our Alex CLONCH. It is possible that his cousin John Alexander CLONCH 1842-1889 or his nephew/son-in-law William Alexander CLONCH 1862-1925 may have used their middle names in business matters although both have only been seen as farm laborers or farmers.

Alex Applies for his Civil War Pension

The following month, on 14 April 1887,  Alexander CLONCH applied for his Civil War pension.35

MRIN00038 1888-05-30 Alex Clonch
Alexander Clounch of Beech Hill issued a pension of $12 per month.

In May 1888 the Weekly Register published a list of veterans of the Civil War who were living in the neighborhood and had been recently issued a pension. Alexander CLOUNCH of Beech Hill was listed with a pension of $12 per month.36

MRIN00038 1890-04-23 Alex Clonch
West Virginia pension increase for Alex Clouch (sic)

The Wheeling Daily Intelligencer published a Special Dispatch concerning West Virginia pensions on 23 April 1890. In this dispatch, we see that Alex Clouch (sic) of Beech Hill was granted an increase in pension.37

Alexander CLONCH was enumerated on the 1890 Veterans Schedule for Arbuckle District of Mason County, West Virginia. This confirms that he was a private in Company C of the 13th West Virginia Infantry from 8 May 1862 (sic) to 22 June 1865 and that he had a disability that affected his heart and lung.38

Alex’s mother Mary E. “Polly” DOSS died in Mason County, West Virginia. This event took place after the 1880 census and before 29 April 1892 when her children sold the land left to her in William CLONCH’s will.39

Alex Moves From Mason County to Bell Creek, Clay County…

By 1893 Alex and his young family had moved to Bell Creek, Clay County, West Virginia. Although his son Harrison was born in Beech Hill, Alex had the birth recorded in Clay County which leads me to believe that the move took place soon after Tabitha gave birth. They were in residence in Clay County as the marriage of Alex’s son Joe took place on 29 August 1894 at the home of the groom’s parents in that county.40 Also while living there Alex and his wife had a daughter who lived only a week in October 1894.

….and then to Fayette County

They then moved to Fayette County where their youngest daughter Ida Bell was born at Smithers Creek in 1896. Civil War papers show that he was living in Dixie, Fayette County, West Virginia, in 1898.

In the genealogy work of Ralph L. Hayes, a CLONCH family researcher, I kept seeing references to Civil War papers and events taking place before or after 1898. In June 2004 I emailed Ralph about the Civil War records for Alex CLONCH and the 1898 date. He wrote:

The date 1898 came from Alexander’s Civil War record which reads in part:
“Department of the Interior, Bureau of Pensions, 15 Jan 1898, reply dated 4 Jun 1898. Alexander Clonch of Dixie, WV provided the following info: He was married to Tabitha Clonch, maiden name Cooley; m. in Gallipolis, OH on 19 Aug 1880; has a marriage certificate; married previously to Rebecca Lemasters (deceased) on 13 May 187_  (cannot read); living children: Emila born 5 Mar 1866; Joseph born 20 Dec 18__(cannot read); Barbara born 5 Mar 1875; Lorena born 10 Mar 1882; Frances born 30 Apr 1884; Rebecca born 6 Jan 1886; Sarah Ann born 20 Jun 1890; Harrison born 11 Feb 189_(cannot read); and Ida born 5 Mar 1896.”
Info from Mrs. W.F. Machir, Anne Christy, and Kara McWilliams. Kara McWilliams received a copy of his records.

I requested more information from Kara McWilliams, a niece of Daniel CLONCH, concerning her copy of Alex’s Civil War records. She will be getting back to me as soon as she has time to access her genealogy papers. I am hoping that there may be information that was missed. If she sends me images of the papers I might be able to read the information she was not able to decipher. It must be noted that not all of the dates given by Alex for the children match the birth records found.

Update: I received the papers on 31 May 2014. See footnote #18 concerning the pension file.

Was Alex Clonch a Bigamist?

This is the most important detail that I noticed in Alexander’s pension records (transcript seen above): married previously to Rebecca Lemasters (deceased) on 13 May 187_  (cannot read). This must be where the marriage date of 13 May 1864 came from. So many questions and no way to ask the person who could answer them! Why would Alex marry Rebecca when he was already married to her sister? Why would he get a divorce from Mary Ellen in 1880 when (if) he married Rebecca in the 1870s?

Although Alex left a nice paper trail up until 1898, I have not been able to locate him in the 1900 or 1910 census. This is really frustrating as it means that I have no census listing showing Alex with his wife Tabitha and their children! As with the census, I’ve tried all variations of his name in order to find his death record on WVCulture.org but to no avail. Finally, I found a database on FamilySearch that includes Alexander CLONCH’s pension payment card.41

These cards have information missing in earlier documents and, best of all, his date of death. Alex’s disability was a disease of the heart, resulting from measles. Did he have the measles while he was serving during the Civil War? His widow Tabitha continued to receive his pension following his death and their youngest daughter Ida, being a minor, brought in an additional $2 per month until 4 March 1912, the day before her 16th birthday.

Alexander CLONCH died 9 June 1910 and was buried in Clonch Family Cemetery, Mount Olive, Fayette County, West Virginia. His wife of 30 years, Tabitha Ann “Tobitha” COOLEY, followed him on 16 December 1913.

This Post Was Updated on 3 April 2022: Missing source citations were added, a new watermarked photo was added, and some corrections were made to the text and format.

© 2014-2022, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.


  1. Daniel Clonch, in an email written 20 May 2000 to my 2nd cousin Robert BAKER. 
  2. “West Virginia Civil War Service Records of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865,” database, Fold3, citing “Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of West Virginia,” NARA microfilm publication M508, roll 245, Alexander Clonch, 1862-1864, military unit miscellaneous card abstracts of records. (http://www.fold3.com : accessed 12 Feb 2014). 
  3. West Virginia Vital Research Records Project (database and images), West Virginia Division of Culture and History citing county records in county courthouses, West Virginia (A collaborative venture between the West Virginia State Archives and the Genealogical Society of Utah to place vital records online via the West Virginia Archives and History Web site accessible at https://archive.wvculture.org/vrr), West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 567384, image 168, Mason County Register of Deaths, 1862-1863, line 24, William Clonch, 20 Jan 1863, typhoid fever, parents not known, born Kanawha County, Va., gunsmith, consort of Mary Clonch. (http://images.wvculture.org/567384/00168.jpg : accessed 15 December 2009). 
  4. History of Gallia County, Ohio; Containing a Condensed History of the County; Biographical Sketches; General Statistics; Miscellaneous Matters; Map of Gallia County, author Gallia County, Ohio, published by H.H. Hardesty & Company, 1882. 
  5. “U.S. Army General Hospital at Gallipolis,” Ohio Civil War Central, 2022, Ohio Civil War Central. http://www.www.ohiocivilwarcentral.com/entry.php?rec=446 : accessed 31 March 2022. 
  6. Ohio History Connection – Remarkable Ohio, Gallia County, Marker 12-27, U.S. Army General Hospital [3 images], https://remarkableohio.org/index.php?/category/435 : accessed 31 March 2022. 
  7. Clonch Family Cemetery, Mount Olive, Fayette County, West Virginia (photos of gravemarkers taken by Heather Manley-Duncan), gravemarker of Alex Clonch Mar 2, 1842 – June 3, 1910 and Tobitha Cooley His Wife Feb 11, 1861 – Dec. 16, 1913, photographed 31 May 2014. 
  8. 1850 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/8054/), citing Seventh Census of the United States, 1850 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M432, 1009 rolls, Roll: M432_959, West Virginia, Mason County, District 38, Sheet No. 422A, lines 18-23, household 842-853, William Clonch (accessed 13 January 2019). 
  9. 1860 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7667/), citing Eighth Census of the United States, 1860 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication M653, 1,438 rolls, Roll: M653_1361, FHL Film: 805361, West Virginia, Mason County, District 2, Page No. 46, lines 21-30, household 345-316, Wm Claunch (accessed 13 January 2019). 
  10. “West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971,” database with images, FamilySearch, (digital images of originals housed at the local county courthouses in West Virginia), FHL Film #567420, Item 2; DGS 4715359; Mason Will book, v. 01A 1833-1875, image 104 of 165, page 166-167, Last will and testament of William Clonch. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-18256-40179-14?cc=1909099&wc=10916722 : accessed 12 January 2019). 
  11. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 567389, image 218, West Virginia, Mason County Register of Marriages, page 120, James Wm Patterson and Lavina Ann Doss, 16 July 1863 at the Virginia House in Point Pleasant. (http://images.wvculture.org/567389/00218.jpg : accessed 25 January 2019). 
  12. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016,” index and images, FamilySearch (citing digital images of originals housed at the county courthouses in Ohio), Gallia > Marriage records 1862-1874 vol 3 > image 14 of 276. John W. Clonch and Jane Foster, 20 Feb 1862. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33SQ-GRMD-SKRT?cc=1614804&wc=Q6SP-7R2%3A121350101%2C121498701 : accessed 18 Dec 2013). 
  13. Ibid., Gallia > Marriage records 1862-1874 vol 3 > image 19 of 276. Alexander Clonch and Mary Ellen Lemaster, 10 November 1863. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9RMD-SVR3?cc=1614804&wc=Q6SP-7R2%3A121350101%2C121498701 : accessed 19 February 2019). 
  14. “Mason County, West Virginia, Circuit Court, Chancery orders, 1831-1929,” database with images, FamilySearch (Microfilm of originals at the county courthouse, Point Pleasant, West Virginia.), Film 1861961, DGS 7615568, Chancery orders, Vols. 1-2 1843-1877 (1 from 469 & 4 to 401 – Back of v. 1 has separate pages of land records), Image 286 of 949, Folio 386, September Term 1864. 1864 Divorce of John Clonch from Sarah Ann Foster. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89VP-7KDF?i=285&cat=660659 : accessed 6 January 2019) and Image 303 of 949, Folio 421, March Term 1865. 1864 Divorce of John Clonch from Sarah Ann Foster.(https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89VP-7KDF?i=285&cat=660659 : accessed 6 January 2019). 
  15. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016,” Gallia > Marriage records and index 1895-1899 vol 8. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-22447-41148-85?cc=1614804&wc=M94Q-VH7:315901437 : accessed 13 Nov 2013). 
  16. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 1855007, image 183, Mason County Register of Births 1865, page 11 (double-page spread), line 11, Austin Richard, 7 Nov, father not known, mother Rebecca Lemasters, illegitimate. (http://images.wvculture.org/1855007/00183.jpg : accessed 31 March 2022). 
  17. “Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” index and images, FamilySearch, index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City, citing digital images of originals housed at the Ohio Historical Society, Columbus, Ohio, Film 2024132, DGS 4121852, Deaths, file no. 29401-32300, 1943, image 1677 of 3232, Certificate of Death #30842, Oscar R. Clonch. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33SQ-GPK5-KK9?cc=1307272&wc=MD9X-N68%3A287602701%2C294432701 : accessed 1 February 2008). 
  18. Re: Civil War pension file of Alexander Clonch, received 31 May 2014 per email from Heather Manley-Duncan.
    In May 2014 while having a Facebook conversation with a distant Clonch cousin about photographs she was sharing, I mentioned wanting to obtain a copy of Alex Clonch’s civil war pension file. Pamela Manley Garza, the 3rd great-granddaughter of Alex, had been following the conversation. She sent her digital copy to her niece Heather Manley-Duncan on 30 May 2014. The following day, Heather forwarded the Word document with four images to me. The copies included the original certificate 395689 for the pension beginning on 14 April 1887, a brief from the War Department with his service dated 4 October 1887, a questionnaire the pensioner replied to on 4 June 1898, a drop order and report for the 9 June 1910 death of Alexander Clonch dated 1 July 1910, and a pensioner dropped card for the 10 December 1913 death of Tabitha Clonch dated 2 April 1914. 
  19. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 1953908, image 140, Certificate of Death 17332, Emma Sidosa Moodespaugh. (http://images.wvculture.org/1953908/0002140.gif : accessed 16 January 2007). 
  20. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016,” Gallia > Marriage records 1890-1895 vol 7 > image 159 of 339 > page 235, entry 2, William E Claunch and Emma LaMastice. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9RMD-3J1F?cc=1614804&wc=ZRQ2-RM9%3A121350101%2C121580101 : accessed 23 March 2019). 
  21. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 1855007, image 552, Mason County Register of Births, page 549-550 (double-page spread), line 41, Joseph E., 18 Dec 1874, parents Alexander Clonch and Rebecca, informant Rebecca Clonch. (http://images.wvculture.org/1855007/00552.jpg : accessed 31 March 2022). 
  22. 1900 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7602/), citing Twelfth Census of the United States, 1900 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T623, 1854 rolls, Roll T623_1271, FHL microfilm: 1241271, Ohio, Gallia County, Gallipolis, Enumeration District 27, page 2A, line 43-48, household 33-33, John Glispie (accessed 7 April 2014). 
  23. “Mason County, West Virginia, Circuit Court, Chancery orders, 1831-1929,” database with images, FamilySearch (Microfilm of originals at the county courthouse, Point Pleasant, West Virginia.), Film 1861962 Item 1, DGS 7615569, Chancery orders, Vols. 4 1877-1880, image 321 of 899, Folio 274 and 275, March Term 1880. 1880 Divorce of Alexander Clonch from Mary Ellen Lemaster. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99VP-2SNQ?i=320&cat=659762 : accessed 6 January 2019). 
  24. 1880 U.S. Federal Census (index and images), Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/6742/), citing Tenth Census of the United States, 1880 population schedule, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C., NARA microfilm publication T9, 1,454 rolls, Roll: 1408, West Virginia, Mason County, Clendennin, enumeration district 93, sheet 245B, lines 11-14, household 197-202, Alex Clonch (accessed 21 February 2019). 
  25. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016,” Marriage records (Gallia County, Ohio), 1803-1955 ; index, 1803-1950 > Marriages, v. 5 1878-1884 > image 132 of 352 > page 193 > no. 576 > Alexander Clonch and Tabitha Cooley, 19 August 1880. (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9RMD-SV3N?cc=1614804&wc=M94Q-V7T%3A390869322 : accessed 18 December 2013). 
  26. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 1855008, image 449, West Virginia, Mason County, Register of Births 1881, line 7, 20 Dec 1881, Timothy Clonch, citing Arbuckle district, Mason County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/1855008/00449.jpg : accessed 1 February 2022). 
  27. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 1855008, image 462, West Virginia, Mason County, Register of Births 1883, page 560-561 (stamped), line 10, 10 Mar 1883, Rena E. Clonch, citing Arbuckle district, Mason County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/1855008/00462.jpg : accessed 4 February 2022). 
  28. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 1855008, image 496, West Virginia, Mason County, Register of Births 1887, page 676-675 (stamped), line 14, Bertha Clonch, 9 Dec 1887, citing Arbuckle District, Mason County, West Virginia. http://images.wvculture.org/1855008/00496.jpg : accessed 4 February 2022. 
  29. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 567453, image 225, West Virginia, Clay County Register of Births 1893, line 25, H. S. Clonch, 11 February 1893, citing Mason County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/567453/00225.jpg : accessed 5 February 2022). 
  30. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 4017226, image 3078, 1940 Delayed Certificate of Birth 5793, Harrison Sanders Clonch, 11 February 1893, citing Mason County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/4017226/03078.jpg : accessed 9 March 2013). 
  31. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 567453, image 236, West Virginia, Clay County Register of Births 1894, line 32, 6 Oct 1894, unnamed female child, citing Bell Creek, Clay County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/567453/00236.jpg : accessed 5 February 2022). 
  32. Ibid., West Virginia Deaths, 1804-1999, FHL microfilm 567453, image 242, West Virginia, Clay County Register of Death, line 13, unnamed female Clonch, 13 October 1894, citing Clay County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/567453/00242.jpg : accessed 5 February 2022). 
  33. Ibid., West Virginia Births, 1853-1930, FHL microfilm 584762, image 37, West Virginia, Fayette County Register of Births, page 57-58 (stamped), line 63, 5 Mar 1896, Ida B. Clonch, citing Smithers Creek, Fayette County, West Virginia. (http://images.wvculture.org/584762/00037.jpg : accessed 5 February 2022). 
  34. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers, The Library of Congress, https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/, The Weekly register (Point Pleasant, Va. [W. Va.]), 09 March 1887, page 1, column 2, “Five Mile Items”. (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84026817/1887-03-09/ed-1/seq-3/ : accessed 24 March 2014). 
  35. Alexander Clonch (Pvt. Co. C, 13th WV Vol. Inf., Civil War), pension no. S.C. 395.689, copies of case file records received 31 May 2014 per email from Pamela Manley Garza via Heather Manley-Duncan including original certificate 395.689 for the pension beginning on 14 April 1887. 
  36. Chronicling America, The Weekly register (Point Pleasant, Va. [W. Va.]), 30 May 1888, page 3, column 1, “Pensions”. (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84026817/1888-05-30/ed-1/seq-3/ : accessed 24 March 2014). 
  37. Ibid., The Wheeling daily intelligencer (Wheeling, W. Va.), 23 April 1890, page 1, column 2, “West Virginia Pensions”. (http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84026844/1890-04-23/ed-1/seq-1/ : accessed 24 March 2014). 
  38. “United States Census of Union Veterans and Widows of the Civil War, 1890,” database with images, FamilySearch, citing NARA microfilm publication M123 (National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.), West Virginia > Mason > All > image 2 of 66 > line 23 (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939V-51GL-J?cc=1877095&wc=M628-3MH%3A174322901%2C174384801%2C174320903 : accessed 7 June 2005). 
  39. “Mason County, West Virginia, County Clerk, Deed books, 1803-1901,” database with images, FamilySearch (Microfilm of original records at the Mason County Courthouse), Film 567360, DGS 8292992, Deed book, v. 38-39 1883-1885, image 563 of 706, Folio 359 and 360. 1885 Land Sale Clonch to Doss. (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSR7-CWGT-B?i=562&cat=76718 : accessed 4 February 2019). 
  40. WVCulture.org, West Virginia Marriages, 1780-1970, FHL microfilm 567443, image 271, West Virginia, Clay County Register of Marriages, page 100, Joseph Clonch and Jane Nutter, 29 August 1894 at the home of the groom’s father. (http://images.wvculture.org/567443/00271.jpg : accessed 1 April 2022). 
  41. United States. Veterans Administration, “United States Veterans Administration Pension Payment Cards, 1907-1933,” index and images, FamilySearch, NARA, RG 15, M850, citing microfilm of original records in The National Archives, Washington, District of Columbia, Roll 418, Film 1634453, DGS 4694973, Clinebell, William L. – Clore, Nancy J. > images 579-582 of 681, Alexander Clonch and Tabitha Clonch pension payment cards. (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-17556-56413-13?cc=1832324&wc=M9WY-MC3:881461769 : accessed 13 Nov 2013). 

Author: Cathy Meder-Dempsey

When I’m not doing genealogy and blogging, I spend time riding my racing bike with my husband through the wonderful Luxembourg countryside.

13 thoughts on “52 Ancestors: #14 Alexander CLONCH Known as “The one who killed the beef at 200 paces””

  1. Wow, that’s some story. A little bit of every scandal I can think of! All kinds of children born out of wedlock, bigamy, divorce, an affair with your spouse’s sibling (on both sides). And it all seemed right out in the open with no shame!

    West Virginia must have been some wild place!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wouldn’t say West Virginia was a wild place. I was going to say, maybe it was a Mason County thing… but it is more likely only this particular family line. Alex’s mother not only didn’t marry his father, she was one of five illegitimate children of an unmarried lady from Pittsylvania County, Virginia. Thank you, Amy.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Your updated story does a good job of not judging your ancestors by modern standards. As we know, sometimes in the old country poor couples could not legally get married until they could afford the costs involved, but they may have lived together as man and wife and even had kids. It’s certainly interesting to wonder what all the women thought about the situation. Your current project of updating stories is a good reminder that we can all do the same as we continue to discover! Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Kathy. I’m not changing the content, only adding sources and doing cleanup work. However, as I review where the information came from, I am discovering new things that I hope to blog about. For lots of my early work on my American families the sources are referenced in my notes. A work in progress for the source citations. Many records that were not available when I wrote these in 2014 are now online and will have to be written up over time.

      Like

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