Sunday, March 18, 2018

John Calvin Galttana My Great Grandfather #7

John Calvin Galttana
52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks

John was born Christmas day in 1870. He was a twin to M.B. according to the Galttana family bible. No information is known about the twin, only that her initials are listed on the family bible. If her death date was listed it is gone forever as that piece is missing from the bible page. Some family trees have M.B. listed as male so I am unsure which is correct.

John was the oldest of seven children, which only four survived to adulthood.

His parents were Curtis Alexander Galttana and Synthia Ann Alverson Galttana. In the 1870 census dated November 1870, Curtis and Synthia are living in Besleys Creek in Shackelford County, Texas. John was born late the next month so I would guess he was born here at home. 

Curtis and Synthia lived on the land owned by Synthia's sister and brother-in-law and Curtis worked at the salt works. Curtis is listed as a saltmaker in the 1870 census. Only a few months before John was born his nine year old cousin John Calvin Ledbetter, son of William and Margaret Alverson Ledbetter (Synthia's sister on which they were living on their land) disappeared. He had been living at a ranch for school with his older brother when he disappeared. There are many stories that he was taken by the Indians and search parties searched for 20 days and never found a trace of  him. (A great story for another time.) It is possible that John Calvin Galttana was named after his cousin. 

Sadly, at age 7 John became an orphan. I believe his mother died in May of 1878, only three months after giving birth to her seventh child who did not survive. I do not know when his father died, but by 1880 John and his youngest sister Louisa are living with their maternal Grandfather, Henderson B. Alverson in Tarrant County Texas and the middle two children Margaret and Louis are living with their cousin Harvey Ledbetter and his wife in Shackelford County Texas. In the 1880 census they are listed with the last name of Ledbetter and it states they are the adopted son and daughter. Later in life they used the Galttana name. 

An interesting story - The 1880 census is dated June 20, 1880 which shows H.B. Alverson and two of his daughters, Julia Alverson age 16 and M. Ballard (Mary Martha Alverson) age 38 and the two Galttana children, John age 9 and Louisa age 4 living in Tarrant County Texas.  Another record I have shows H.B. Alverson married Drucy Roberts in Fayette County, Alabama on December 25, 1880. (Another record lists it as Lamar County which is the next county over.)  Drucy was 20-30 years younger then H.B. I know that in 1840 H.B. and  his first wife lived in Fayette County Alabama and their first five children were born in Alabama. I have no idea how H.B. and Drucy met and married. He had ties to Fayette County since he live there and I can only guess he kept in touch with people from that area. I also don't know if H.B. Alverson went to Alabama by himself or if he took all or part of the family. Possible he took his grandson John Galttana to help him out as H.B was 64 years old in 1880.

Now the interesting part - Eight years later on March 11, 1888 John Calvin Galttana married Mary Jane Corbell in Fort Worth, Tarrant County Texas. The oral history is that Mary's family was killed by Indians and she was raised by the King family. I have not found any records for her family being killed by Indians but I did find M.J. Corbel age 11 in the 1870 census living with a King family in Fayette County Alabama. John and Fannie King also listed in their house Drucy Roberts. No relations are listed in the 1870 census, but in the 1880 census Drucy Roberts is listed as a widow and daughter and Mary Corberell (sic) is listed as no relation to the head of household Fama (Fannie) King.

It took me years to figure all this out. I was able to tie everything together when my cousin gave me a copy of H.B. and Drucy's marriage license. In that record it lists that they were married at the house of Fanny King. I didn't know who that was, but with that information I was able to find them on the 1870 and 1880 census.

So the question is how did John and Mary meet and marry? Did John meet Mary Corbel/King when he went to Alabama with his Grandfather H.B in 1880- if he did go on that trip, or did Mary travel to Texas to visit Drucy whom she grew up with and meet John that way? Did H.B. and Drucy play matchmaker. We may never know, but I find it very interesting.

John was only 17 when they married and Mary was 28. In the 1880's Mary was past the age most women got married. I would love to have a time machine to see how all this played out.
John and Mary Galttana - Date unknown
 From the stories I have been told, it seems John and Mary traveled to the areas that needed farm work. Like migrant workers. In 1900 they are living in Chickasaw County, Indian Territory - IT (Now Oklahoma.) He is listed as a farmer and age 29. Mary is 37 and she had six children and four are living. Maggie is eight and born in Texas, Elmer is five, Ella is 3 and Baby (yes that is how she is listed) is 3 months. Baby is Ora Faye. the last three were all born  in IT.

In a book titled "Newark, It's Heritage and Landmarks" it states:

"So, in 1905 he [H.B. Alverson] bought three-fourth acre of land that had been the home place of Dr. Stewart about one-half mile north of Newark, and built a cotton gin. It was operated by Charley Duke and the engine fired by John Gaultney. The gin was destroyed by fire and never rebuilt."

There are many errors in this book so I am not sure if this is true. I will note here that the name Galttana is pronounced Galtney. Almost every record I have has the name spelled differently.

But, I believe the Galttana family was back in Texas. The 1907 Fort Worth Star-Telegram Newspaper states:
John Galltna and family spent Sunday with Grandpa and Grandma Alverson.

In 1910 they are living in Precinct 5, North Decatur Road, Tarrant County, Texas. John is 39 years old and works as a farmer and cannot read or write.  Mary is 46 years old and a mother of seven but five are living. The children are listed as:
M.L. Golttana [Maggie Lee] age 17 born in IT
L.E. Golttana [Louis Elmer] age 15 born in IT
B.L. Golttana [Bertha Lou Ellen "Doll"] age 13 born in Texas
O.F. Golttana [Ora Fay] age 10 born in Texas
D.P. Golttana [Dessie Pearl] age 7 born in Texas - My Grandmother

Front: John, Bertha "Doll", Ora Faye, Dessie, Mary Galttana. Back: Louis Elmer, Maggie, ?Wm Columbus Davis?

 I have oral histories that says the whole Galttana family would travel by wagon into Fort Worth to purchase supplies and it was an all day trip. Once there they would purchase their supplies and then Mary and the children would sleep in the wagon while John would go out dancing and having fun. I have no proof of this but just the stories people have told me.

In 1920 John and Mary rent a house in Tarrant County, Texas. John is 49 years old and listed as a laborer as a general farmer and in this census it says he is able to read and write. Mary is 59. Also living in the household is daughter Bertha Galttana who is 22 and single. Daughter Dessie who is 16 and Willie B. age 5 and Bertie age 1 who are Bertha's two children.

I found a very interesting article in the Fort Worth Star Telegram dated January 22, 1922. It states:

Thirty Gallons of Liquor and Still Captured
Thirty gallons of corn whisky (sic) loaded on a wagon which S.E. Miller and J.C. Galttana admitted was enroute to Fort Worth, were it was to have been sold, were confiscated on the Fort Worth-Weatherford road Saturday afternoon by Constable A. B. Carter of Azle and Constable  J. C. Payne of Newark.
Charges of possessing intoxicating liquor for the purpose of sale were filed in the Justice Court against Galttana and Miller. In statements they made to Assistant District Attorney Will R. Parker they admitted that it was "two run" corn and that they had intended it for the Fort Worth market.
A fifty-gallon still was taken by the officers. It was in Parker County near the county line and is believed to have been used in making the thirty gallons of confiscated liquor. It was still warm indicating that the thirty gallons had just been made.

I love the "intoxicating liquor" part. I don't know why but I find this article intriguing. My cousin, Mary who was married to Willie "Bill" Galttana said he was about six years old when this happened and he remembered when all the police came to the house and tore the still apart. It was a scary time for a six year old. I don't know what the outcome of the case was. I need to follow up on this.
John and Mary Galttana ca 1928
 In 1930 they live on Newark Road in Tarrant County, Texas. John is 59 and still listed as a farm laborer and Mary is 68. Daughter Bertha Galttana and her two children "Bill" and Birdie Mae are also listed in the household.

In 1940 John and Mary are renting a place for $2 per month. One household away is his sister Lula (Louisa) Galttana Duke and her husband George Duke. They own a farm worth $2000. Both John and Mary list they are unable to work and have no income. John is 69 and Mary is 80. It is a guess that they rent a place owned by George and Lula Duke. John and Mary's Granddaughter Bertie is the next family listed on the census after John and Mary. Bertie and her much older husband, James Meyers also rent a house for $2 a month and have a son named Roy Wayne Meyers. All state they lived here in 1935 also.

John also lists in the 1940 census that he attended school through the fourth grade.

In 1942 John and Mary are living with their youngest daughter Dessie Galttana Hardee and her husband Joseph A. Hardee at 2801 Clinton Ave, Fort Worth, Texas. Dessie and Joe have seven children  and six would have been living at home, which with 10 people in a rented house would be very crowed.  I can only imagine the chaos.

 Mary died in October of 1942 and in 1943 John is still living with Joe and Dessie but at 2813 Loving Ave., Fort Worth Texas. Also living in the household is Joseph's widowed mother, Georgiana Hardee.

With a surprise ending, John Galttana and Georgiana Hardee are married on February 15, 1944. But, sadly, five days later John died from choking on a prune or fig. His death certificate says Peritonitis and intestinal obstruction. His obituary says he died in the hospital so this sounds like it was not instant and must have been very painful for him.

His obituary appeared in the Fort Wort Star Telegram, Evening Edition, February 24, 1944.

GALTTANA, JOHN CALUIN (sic), age 73, of Rt. 9 box 75, passed away in local hospital Sunday. Survivors: wife; three daughters, Mrs. Dessie Hardee, Mrs. Fay Davis, Mrs. Bertha Godley, all of Fort Worth, Services 2 p.m. Thursday, Dido School, Rev. Stewart officiating. Interment, Dido. Arrangements, Gause-Ware.

Buried at Dido Cemetery, Texas

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