Caswell County Genealogy
 

Kerr, Lieutenant John Hosea McNeill

Kerr, Lieutenant John Hosea McNeill

Male 1844 - 1924  (80 years)

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  • Name Kerr, John Hosea McNeill  [1, 2
    Title Lieutenant 
    Born 20 Apr 1844  Stoney Creek Township, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Gender Male 
    Reference Number 3165 
    _MILT Confederate Soldier 
    Died 19 Aug 1924  Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Buried First Baptist Church of Yanceyville, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I3125  Caswell County
    Last Modified 21 Jun 2022 

    Father Kerr, Major James,   b. 19 Aug 1788, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Apr 1848, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 59 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother McNeill, Frances Ann,   b. 1 Aug 1813,   d. 5 Sep 1869  (Age 56 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Married 29 Sep 1835  Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Reference Number 24079 
    Notes 
    • Marriage Record
      Groom: James Kerr
      Bride Frances McNiel
      Bond Date: 29 September 1835
      Bondsman/Witness: John Kerr,Jr.
      Location: Caswell County, North Carolina
      Source: Caswell County, North Carolina Marriage Bonds, 1778-1868, Katharine Kerr Kendall (1981) at 56.
    Family ID F1641  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Yancey, Eliza Catherine,   b. 30 Jun 1844, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Apr 1927, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 82 years) 
    Married 18 Dec 1870  Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Reference Number 24093 
    Notes 
    • Marriage date also seen as 19 December 1870.
    Children 
     1. Kerr, James Yancey,   b. 23 Aug 1871,   d. 19 Nov 1875  (Age 4 years)  [natural]
    +2. Kerr, John Hosea,   b. 31 Dec 1873, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Jun 1958, Warrenton, Warren County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 84 years)  [natural]
    +3. Kerr, Mary Graves Miles,   b. 1 Oct 1875, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 Dec 1965  (Age 90 years)  [natural]
    +4. Kerr, Albert Yancey,   b. 28 Feb 1878, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 15 Jan 1942, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 63 years)  [natural]
    +5. Kerr, Barzillai Graves,   b. 4 Jul 1880,   d. 3 Dec 1939, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 59 years)  [natural]
    +6. Kerr, Martha Frances,   b. 19 May 1883, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 May 1965, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 82 years)  [natural]
    +7. Kerr, Nannie Emma,   b. 28 Sep 1885, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Oct 1978, Cortaro, Arizona Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 93 years)  [natural]
    Last Modified 21 Jun 2022 
    Family ID F1643  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 20 Apr 1844 - Stoney Creek Township, Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 18 Dec 1870 - Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 19 Aug 1924 - Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - First Baptist Church of Yanceyville, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos


  • Notes 
    • John Hosea Kerr (1844-1924)

      John Hosea Kerr (1844-1924)

      (for larger image, click on photograph)
      _______________

      John Hosea McNeill Kerr was born April 20, 1844 in Stony Creek township to Major James Kerr and Frances A. McNeill Kerr. He bore names of both grandfathers, John Kerr who married Mary Graves and of Hosea McNeill who married Isabella Graves a daughter of the popular Baptist preacher Reverend Barzillai Graves. The father of John Kerr died in 1848 when John was only four years old and his mother remarried James L. Graves in 1849 who became his guardian. After the death of his stepfather in 1857, his mother sold the Kerr home still standing at the foot of Stony Creek Mountain. She took her children to Newton County, Georgia where she had many cousins. John and his brother James attended law school at the University of Georgia.

      In 1861 with war clouds threatening, Frances returned to North Carolina and purchased a plantation in Davidson County. It has been said she invested her money in a munitions plant to aid the Confederacy. Her son John entered the Confederate army from Davidson County in 1862 at 18 years and rose to rank of Lieutenant. He was wounded at the battle around Winchester which resulted in the amputation of his leg. He was in a hospital in Winchester for a long time and thought for dead by his family. He made his return home first going to the home of his sister Frances Kerr Mebane in Mebane, North Carolina. After the War Between the States his mother Frances settled in Yanceyville, building the home later owned by T. J. Henderson.

      In 1870 John H. Kerr married a distant cousin, Eliza Catherine Yancey, daughter of Dr. Albert Gallatin Yancey. In 1874 they purchased a brick home on Main St. which had been built about thirty years previously in Yanceyville and that was later home of son A. Y. Kerr and family. John Kerr was Clerk of Court of Caswell County from 1874-1882. His portrait has been presented to the office of the Clerk. Although handicapped by loss of a leg in the War, he used his crutches and could climb the courthouse steps as fast as anyone. After the election of Democrat Grover Cleveland to the Presidency, John went to Washington and secured employment at the Department of the Treasury. He spent his leisure time at the arboretum and attending auctions. Upon retirement he was presented with a silver-handled cane by the Treasury Department.

      An ardent Baptist, he was active in the Baptist Church and the Beulah Association. He could have qualified as a landscape architect. When clerk of court he was chosen to supervise the yards and landscape of the courthouse. The gazebo and decorative boulders and walks around his home testify to his interest in landscaping. He was also an auctioneer. But his favorite pastime was attending Confederate reunions all over the country from Richmond to Arkansas. Often a son would accompany him. John Kerr stood six feet, four inches tall and wore a high felt hat. The sons had no fear of getting lost in a crowd for a climb to a high spot would always provide view of their father. He towered over the crowd.

      He and his wife owned the Kerr Hotel where judges, drummers, and towns people came to eat. Governor Zebulon Vance was a guest when he was campaigning for his senate seat. Eliza C. Kerr was a postmistress 1894-1894 of Yanceyville. John Hosea Kerr died of a stroke August 19, 1924. After a short illness in 1927 Eliza Catherine died on April 21. She always called her husband "Cousin John" and to him she was always "Cat." To everybody she was "Cat," "Aunt Cat," "Cousin Cat," or "Miss Cat." Both are buried at the Yanceyville Baptist Church.

      Their children were: James Yancey Kerr (1871-1875), who died of diptheria; John Hosea Kerr; Mary Miles Kerr; Albert Yancey Kerr; Barzillai Graves Kerr; Martha Frances Kerr; and Nannie Emma Kerr.

      Source: The Heritage of Caswell County, North Carolina, Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor (1985) at 339-340 (Article #420, "John Hosea Kerr" by Mary Frances Kerr Donaldson).
      _______________

      Co. B., 12th Regiment, C.S.A. Army. Source: The Heritage of Caswell County, North Carolina, Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor (1985) at 629 ("Caswell County chapter #1152 United Daughters of the Confederacy").

      In 1874 he purchased a brick home on Main Street in Yanceyville that had been built about thirty years earlier. This is the Kerr House in Yanceyville (once the Kerr Hotel) that was occuppied by Albert Yancey Kerr and his family (including Katharine Kerr Kendall).

      He and his wife owned the Kerr Hotel where judges, drummers, and towns people came to eat. Governor Zebulon Vance was a guest when he was campaigning for his Senate seat. Eliza Catherine Kerr was Yanceyville postmistress 1894-1898.

      John Hosea Kerr died of a stroke August 19, 1924. After a short illness in 1927 Eliza Catherine died on April 21. She always called her husband "Cousin John" and to him she was always "Cat." To everybody she was "Cat." "Aunt Cat," "Cousin Cat," or "Miss Cat." Both are buried at the Yanceyville Baptist cemetery.

      See: The Heritage of Caswell County, North Carolina, Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor (1985) at 339 (Article No. 420).

      Kerr Hotel

      Note the following provided by the CCHA:

      The brick Kerr Hotel is thought by Katherine Kerr Kendall (who grew up in the building) to have been built under the supervision of Josiah Rucks. Ibzan Rice is known to have obtained a tavern license in 1838 for operation from the building. Upon Rice's death in 1848, Rucks apparently took over the tavern and added to it. However, he was never able to pay for it, and in 1858 joined with the Rice heirs to convey the title to Dr. Bedford Brown, Jr. This son of the U.S. Senator Bedford Brown of Rose Hill (an historic home west of Yanceyville) practiced medicine in this building until he became a surgeon of the Confederacy, and later a prominent physician in Alexandria, Virginia. Apparently, the Rucks continued to operate the tavern until the family left Yanceyville during Reconstruction. A Confederate veteran, John Kerr, operated the hotel from around 1890 well into the 20th century. The house is on the National Register as the birthplace of Congressman John Kerr, and has entertained many distinguished guests.

      See: Yanceyville Historic District Walking Tour

      While is full name is seen as John Hosea McNeill Kerr, his gravestone at the First Baptist Church of Yanceyville Cemetery shows: John Hosea Kerr.
      _______________

      The Bee (Danville, Virginia) 20 August 1924 (Page 2)

      Judge J. H. Kerr Is Dead at Age of 80

      A long distance telephone message from Yanceyville, N. C., yesterday evening announced the death at his home there of ex-Judge John H. Kerr, subsequently clerk of the curt there and one of the oldest and most honored men of North Carolina. Judge Kerr sustained a stroke of paralysis last Thursday, since then little hope of recovery at his age had been entertained. His end came peacefully at 3 P. M., with his loved ones around him.

      Judge Kerr has spend [sic] practically all of his long and useful life in Caswell county, save the period he followed the Stars and Bars in the war of the "‘60s". Entering the Confederate Service at the age of 17 or 18, he served as a soldier throughout that long struggle until wounded seriously and had a fine record. He lost a leg in the service.

      Illness Was Brief

      Returning to this native county after the war, he prepared for the bar and later was made probate judge, a position in which he served for many years. His health had continued unusually good as the years advanced until the fatal seizure last week. A gentleman of the old school, he exemplified in his life and character the lost traditions of the times in which he was raised. Probably no man was so universally known in Caswell and adjoining counties and few so widely esteemed.

      Judge Kerr is survived by his wife and __ children, these being Hon. John H. Kerr of Warrenton, N.C., representative in Congress; A. Yancey Kerr, of Yanceyville, and Graves Kerr of Lynchburg, Va., Mrs. W. O. Spencer of Winston-Salem, N. C.; Mrs. F. [S.] A. Malloy of Yanceyville; and Mrs. A. H. Motz of Milton, N. C.

      Funeral services will be held at the Yanceyville Baptist church this Wednesday afternoon at 5 o’clock
      _______________

      1900 US Census
      Name: John H Kerr
      Home in 1900: Yanceyville, Caswell, North Carolina
      Age: 56
      Estimated birth year: abt 1844
      Birthplace: North Carolina
      Relationship to head-of-house: Head
      Spouse's name: Elu C
      Race: White
      Household Members: Name Age
      John H Kerr 56
      Elu C Kerr 54
      Batley G Kerr 19
      Martha F Kerr 17
      Nannie E Kerr 13
      Albert Y Kerr 22
      Willie M Kerr 18
      Evaline C Vernon 42

      1920 United States Federal Census
      Name: John H Kerr
      Home in 1920: Yanceyville, Caswell, North Carolina
      Age: 75 years
      Estimated birth year: abt 1845
      Birthplace: North Carolina
      Relation to Head of House: Head
      Spouse's name: Eliza C
      Father's Birth Place: North Carolina
      Mother's Birth Place: North Carolina
      Marital Status: Married
      Race: White
      Sex: Male
      Home owned: Own
      Able to read: Yes
      Able to Write: Yes
      Occupation: General Farmer
      Image: 1303
      Household Members: Name Age
      John H Kerr 75
      Eliza C Kerr 70

      Family Data Collection - Individual Records
      Name: John Hosea McNeill Kerr
      Spouse: Eliza Catherine Yancey
      Parents: James Kerr, Frances A McNeill
      Birth Place: Caswell County, Stony Creek Twp, NC
      Birth Date: 20 Apr 1844
      Marriage Place: Yanceyville, Caswell County, NC
      Marriage Date: 18 Dec 1870
      Death Place: Yanceyville, Caswell County, NC
      Death Date: 19 Aug 1924

      J. H. Kerr Family Bible Caswell & Warren Co's, NC
      No Publication date shown but Copyrighted in 1874 Now, 1974. in possession of Mrs.J. Kerr, Jr., N. C.

      John H. Kerr was born 20th April A.D. 1844
      Eliza C. Kerr was born 30th Jane A.D. 1844
      Jirnmie Kerr Our oldest son was born August 23rd 1871.
      John H. Kerr Jr. our second son was born 30th Dec. 1873
      Mary Kerr our oldest daughter was born 1st day Oct. 1875
      Yancey Kerr our third son was born 28th Feby 1878
      Basley Graves Kerr was born 4th July A.D. 1880.
      Martha Frances Kerr was born A.D. 1883. The 19th May - died 21 May, 1965
      Nannie Emma Kerr was born 28th Sept. A.D. l885
      John Hosea Kerr, son of John Hosea Kerr & Ella Foote Kerr, born May 19, 1900 in Warrenton.
      James Yancey Kerr, son of John Hosea Kerr & Ella Foote Kerr, born Aug 3, 1902 in Warrenton.

      Marriages.
      Nannie Emma Kerr and Dr. S. A. Malloy were married May 14th 1914.
      Joan H. Kerr and Eliza C. Yancey were married on the 19th day December A.D. 1870.
      Issue:
      3. Mary Kerr & Dr. W. O. Spencer were married May 24, 1894
      2. John H. Kerr and Ella Foote were married, Feb. 15, 1899.
      4. A. Yancey Kerr and Willie Myers were married Dec. 8, 1898 (1st time)
      5. Mary Oliver MAY 30th 1919 (2nd time)
      B. Graves Kerr and Lucy M. Jackson were married Nov. 22, 1906.
      6. Martha Frances Kerr and A. H. Motz were married Sept. l6, 1913.

      Deaths.
      Jimie Kerr our oldest son died 18th Nov. A.D. 1875.
      John Hosea Kerr Sr. born June. 20, 1844 died Aug. 19th 1924.
      Eliza Catherine Yancey Kerr born June 30th l844, died Apr. 21, 1927.
      Basley Graves Kerr son of J. H. & E. C. Kerr horn July 4th 1830, died Dec. 3, 1939.
      Albert Yancey Kerr, son of J. W. & E. C. Kerr born Feb. 28th 1873, died Jan 15, 1942
      Martha Frances Kerr Motz died May 21, l965
      Mary Kerr Spencer died at her home in Winston-Salem, N.C. Sunday, December 5, 1965
      John Hosea Kerr, born Dec 30, 1873 in Caswell Co., he died June 21, l958 in Warrenton.
      James Yancey Kerr, son of John Hosea Kerr & Ella Foote Kerr died May 26, 1974 in Warrenton.
      Ella Foote Kerr, wife of John Hosea Kerr, died June 4, l949 in Richmond, Va. burned in Warrenton.
      John Hosea Kerr, son of John Hosea Kerr & Ella Foote Kerr, died in Warrenton, May 28, 1968 in Warrenton.
      *Note: the numbers are in no particular pattern on this bible record. Not sure what they mean.
      _______________

      Name: John Hosea Kerr
      Death date: 19 Aug 1924
      Death place: Yanceyville Twp., Caswell, North Carolina
      Gender: Male
      Race or color (on document): White
      Race or color (expanded): White
      Age at death: 80y 3m 29d
      Birthdate: 20 Apr 1844
      Birthplace: Caswell Co., Nc
      Marital status: Married
      Spouse's name: Catherine Yancey Kerr
      Father's name: James Kerr
      Father's birthplace: Caswell Co., Nc
      Mother's name: Francis Mcneil
      Mother's birthplace: North Carolina
      Residence: Yanceyville, NC
      Cemetery name: Yanceyville Baptist Church
      Burial place: Yanceyville, Nc
      Burial date: 20 Aug 1924
      Collection: LDS North Carolina Deaths, 1906-1930

  • Sources 
    1. Details: Thomas McNeill of Caswell County, North Carolina, His Forebears & Descendants, Ben L. Rose (1984) at 43.

    2. Details: The Heritage of Caswell County, North Carolina, Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor (1985) at 339-340 (Article #420, "John Hosea Kerr" by Mary Frances Kerr Donaldson).

    3. Details: The Heritage of Caswell County, North Carolina, Jeannine D. Whitlow, Editor (1985) at 380 (Article #485, "Hosea McNeill" by Mary Frances Kerr Donaldson).