|Images enlarge when clicked.|
One hundred and six years ago, this week.
'Hyde,' that's a surname to retain in this accounting. As in Hyde Park, New York.
The Gazette observed Roy's father, Oliver Ellsworth 'O. E.' Hardesty (c1867-1943), took dinner that Sunday with men friends. Roy's sister Hallie Hardesty (1893-1980) is twice mentioned: she associated with an aunt Guffey .... and a Calla Guffy.
Hallie had returned from visiting 'Mrs. G. W. Guffey' at Shawnee, Oklahoma. Cassandra Ann (Hyde) Guffey (1857-1934), also seen as 'Cassa' and 'Cassie,' was sister to Roy and Hallie's mother, Addie May (Hyde) Hardesty (1870-1938), who, for all I know, had her own dinner plans ... obliging Roy and husband O. E. to find their supper elsewhere.
(b1896) was maternal first cousin to Roy, Hallie and Gertrude (right). Calla's mother, Mary Ann 'Annie' (Hyde) Guffey (1864-1953), was sister to Cassie and Addie May; all were daughters of Jim Hyde and the former Mary Ann Pace (1837-1910).
We can almost pivot from Guffeys: Addie May (Hyde) Hardesty's sisters married Guffey men in Nemaha County, Kansas; born in Ohio and Iowa, they may not have even known they were first cousins, once removed.
I say 'almost' because figuring out how all these Guffeys were related took me to a most interesting transcript.
I like that the document is called "A True Statement." As to exploits circuitously appearing online, Ila Faye (Murphy) Combs mailed photocopy of a hand-written document before her 2012 death.* Alice Gleason Gould apparently transcribed the True Statement ... along with bits of Combs' 1980s correspondence ... and posted text to ancestry.com in 2008. "Enclosed is my grandmother's statement regarding ... the Hyde Park fable," wrote Combs. "My cousin found the story in his mother's papers. As you can see, it was deteriorating with age ..." And, indeed, Gould's text lurches around gaps. "We don't know when grandma wrote the story, but it must have been in the late 1940's," continued Combs.
'Grandma' was Annie (Hyde) Guffey, mother to our Calla. "In a nutshell, I believe ... grandma was saying that the Hyde Park land had been rented or leased by the state for New York for 100 years. Its hard to tell, but I think she believed that – in the 86 years that the land had been leased – the rent had amounted to 20 million dollars."
I realized the Hyde Park Fable deserved looking into.
"Near 1907, a man in a New York government office found on record the unclaimed Hyde Park estate deeded to Jacob Scott by his father who sailed across the waters to America to see his son Jacob Scott, but failed to find him, and bought this land Hyde Park 86 years before the Heirs were hunted up. This New York man married one of the cousins. They looked for all of the heirs and found them and had all of them make an affidavit that they were legal heirs of Jacob Scott and send the affidavits to them.""Grandmother ... lived in our home most of the time that I was growing up," wrote Combs. "I have been intrigued by the tale since I was a little girl." Understandably, revelation of her grandmother's True Statement has spurred effort to run our Scott ancestry. I can say "our" because Annie, in the now-deteriorated document, identified her mother: Mary Ann (Pace) Hyde. She is my 2x great-grandmother. Dead forty months, she'd been wife to Jim Hyde, with whom my grandfather was reported as taking Sunday supper in 1913.
Twenty million dollars. That is some incentive. "I have been anxious to pass the Scott legend on to you," wrote Combs. "It is said that the Scott's arrived in New York very early. I think the immigrant grandfather's name was John & he was from Scotland?? His land grant was along the Hudson River in Dutchess County & its present day location would be Hyde Park, NY, home of the Roosevelts. When John Scott died, the land was to go to his sons which included Jacob."
And, sure enough, I have a Jacob Scott (perhaps 1778-1824) in my database. As Mary Ann (Pace) Hyde's maternal grandfather. My 4x great-grandfather. Combs' Grandma Annie also identified three Pace siblings already in my files. These are my people.
"The legend claims that a lawyer was commissioned to go back east & check on the situation. Grandmother says he was never heard from again & they suspected that he had been paid off or met foul play. In 1909 the family tried again. I do not know how many of the family members were in on the deal but my great-grandmother Mary Anna (Pace) Hyde obtained an affidavit ..." in what appears to have been the year before her death.
Gould also transcribed the reverse side of Annie (Hyde) Guffey's tattered but True Statement ... as best she could.
"affidavit out at Fallis, Okla. Amanda Pace Lewis at Walnut Iowa. Harvy Pace at Council Bluffs, Iowa"
Finding Everett I describe the end of Gertrude's short life there in 1916. Roy David, my then-unmarried paternal grandfather, carried U.S. mail from Fallis until at least 1917. Great aunts Gertrude and Hallie entertained Calla Guffey, daughter of the True Statement's authoress, at Fallis. In the home that Mary Ann (Pace) Hyde's daughter Addie May (right) shared with O. E. Hardesty. It's exhilarating to think my great-grandmother wanted the unidentified man once holding a "New York government office" to know of our ancestry. (Demonstrable reverence for historic predecessors is scarce, among sub-sequent generations of my Hardesty kinsmen.)
Gould knew – and annotated the True Statement to reflect – Mary Ann (Pace) Hyde's mother was Sophronia (Scott) Pace (1813-1853).† In 1917, and almost assuredly unbeknownst to Combs and Gould, the Springfield Missouri Interstate Historical Society published The Ozark Region, Its History and Its People, Vol. 2. Sophronia is depicted in recountal of a prominent, Aurora, Missouri mine owner. As well as her parents, including her namesake: "Among the first of this energetic family to come to this country was old Jacob Scott, born in 1778 on March 19th, and his good wife Sophronia (Stedman) Scott, born on Christmas day, 1779. This ambitious couple had the strength and hardihood to not only make a success in conquering adversity in the country but also to rear a thriving family ..." which included my 3x great-grandmother, Sophronia (Scott) Pace. "Jacob Scott died after a most useful life on October 24, 1824, and was followed to the other shore by his faithful wife on April 22, 1850, and lies buried at King Hill cemetery, near St. Joseph, Concordia, New York "‡ I felt compelled to get to another shore ... and assert Jacob Scott's paternal ancestry.
I am reasonably certain I descend from the dispossessed heir, Jacob Scott (1778-1824)! "As we know, Jacob came west," wrote Combs, correct where the above biography is problematic. "It was never explained what happened to Jacob's holdings but the family apparently felt that they had been hoodwinked out of a fortune."
It is time to rectify that injustice.
In 1897 Jim Hyde relied on O. E. Hardesty's father David Hardesty (1836-1903) when he "proved up" forty Oklahoma acres he'd homesteaded. Witness testimony secured title to that land. With an eye to owing a slice of Hyde Park, New York, I launched into my own proofs. When Combs wrote "I just hope some clues can be gleaned to give us something to go on for our research," I knew what she was talking about.
Facts sorta peter out. "Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]" is typical, in meager online trees bearing Jacob Scott's profile. Wife Sophronia (Stedman) Scott was likely baptized in the Spring of 1780. At the still-standing First Church of Christ, Congregational meeting house in Farmington, Connecticut. (Thank you Connecticut State Library, for transcribing those records in 1943.) Chalkley does identify a Jacob Scott as an orphan of John; but as the fellow was age sixteen in 1764, I find this Virginian particularly unlikely as candidate for a New York inheritance. That Jacob Scott had a guardian ... and legal representation.
I'm more certain Sophronia and a young son are anonymously enumerated in the Jacob Scott entry on an Oxford, New York tax list from 1800. From that also-true document, one might appreciate "conquering adversity" lauded in the Aurora miner's hagiography. Scott paid a mere 6¢ tax on his farm and house near the Chenango River: there was no value to his personal estate. Scott's standing seems quite distinct from an international traveler who can pluck up a New World land grant and sail off.
I had been no more successful at fortune hunting than Jim Hyde's daughters. Simply because her meditative countenance seems to convey consternation I have on this matter, I post a c1922 photograph of paternal great-grandmother Addie May (right). In Oklahoma barrenness.
Before I leave final observation to Combs, I must introduce Amanda Jane (Pace) Lewis (1835-1926). Sister to Jim Hyde's wife, Mary Ann (Pace) Hyde, "Aunt Amanda" appears in Guffey's True Statement. She's been challenging to inquire into. After marriage, census records place siblings and various nieces in her household: despite perplexing my research, I admire that Amanda likely knew how (and accessed sufficient resources) to keep family knitted together following loss of a parent. Combs wrote "My great-grandmother Mary Anna (Pace) Hyde obtained an affidavit & sent it to Amanda & Amanda hired their cousin, John Scott, attorney, to see what he could find out. Amanda payed his fee. I guess John Scott came up empty handed as the story ends with him."
* Combs was no doubt named – in part – for Ila Calla Guffey, seen in the above society page. Combs' mother was born within a year of Hallie Hardesty ... her maiden name was Mabel Hallie Guffey. Hallie (Hardesty) King (1893-1980) and Mabel Hallie (Guffey) Murphy (1892-1969) were likely named for their maternal aunt, Hallie Maud (Hyde, Morrow) Conwell (1876-1959). Jim and Mary Ann (Pace) Hyde gave the name to their youngest surviving daughter.
† Teetotalism played a role in my last post, I Cannot Enjoy Reading Bad News. I feel compelled to note Sophronia was in 1832 an inaugural member of the Mount Vernon, Illinois Temperance Society. She had married physic Joel Jackson Pace (1813-1846) four months earlier: Pace was the organization's inaugural Secretary. Johnson, who culled Pioneer Association archives, was published in 1893: "As they were all akin to us, I have a mind to [name] the whole outfit."
‡ I found no such cemetery. A King Hill Cemetery is "arguably the second oldest cemetery in St. Joseph," Missouri, reported the St. Joseph News-Press. Find A Grave bears no memorial to Jacob Scott. They also disclose only 58% of King Hill markers have been photographed by volunteers.