Jacob K. BOWERS 3
- Born: 3 Dec 1838, Grainger County, Tennessee 4 5
- Marriage: Louisa Jane TALBERT on 11 Nov 1866 in Shelby County, Indiana 1 2
- Died: 14 Oct 1899, Cassville, Barry County, Missouri 5
- Buried: 15 Oct 1899, Oak Hill Cemetery, Cassville, Barry County, Missouri 5
Another name for Jacob was Jacob BOWER.5
While there are some troubling issues to work around, I nonetheless believe a persuasive case can be made that Jacob K., youngest son of Andrew and Katherine, was the Jacob Bower who married Louisa Jane Talbert on 11 Nov 1866 in Shelby County, Indiana. The facts supporting this conclusion are as follows: (1) per Civil War roster records, the latter Jacob was born in Grainger County, Tennessee; (2) per his obituary, his mother died when he was three months old and his father died three years later, after which he was raised by a brother until the age of 16, when he moved to Indiana; and (3) he moved to Shelby County, Indiana, which is where David Bowers, brother of Andrew, lived, and where he married into the Talbert family, a branch of which were neighbors of David. The facts that present a problem with this conclusion are as follows: (1) the date of birth of the Indiana Jacob cannot be pinned down; and (2) his middle initial as it appears on his military records appears to be something other than "K." Further discussion of these factors follows.
There is little question that the Jacob who moved to Indiana was born in Grainger County, Tennessee, whether it be a few years before 1840 or a few years after. That fact alone might be sufficient to identify him as the son of Andrew and Katherine, especially since no other known Bowers then living in Grainger County could possibly have been his parents. [It should be noted that earlier research done on behalf of the descendants of Jacob Bower and Louisa Jane Talbert utilized the same approach, i.e., examining the possibilities and eliminating all but one, to identify his parents as William Bowers and Mary Ella Needham, having rejected Andrew and Katherine because of the date of birth of Jacob K. as per the Andrew Bowers Family Bible. Subsequent research into William's family has shown this not to be true. That shows how one can be led astray by reasoning from the known facts. Still, until new facts are discovered, there is no choice but to reason from the known facts.] Besides Andrew, there were only three known Bowers living in Grainger County about 1840 who could be candidates for the father of Jacob who moved to Indiana: Andrew's brother, John; Andrew's son, William; and James C. Bowers, who lived in another part of Grainger County and does not appear to be connected to our Bowers family. John can be ruled out because his wife, Chloe, remarried after his death about 1847, and the 1850 census for her and her second husband, William Hopson, shows no Bowers children. William can be ruled out, because the John McNew Family Bible, which identifies the children of William Bowers and Mary Ella Needham, whom John McNew married after William died, lists only Andrew and John. The family of James C. Bowers is set forth at http://searches2.rootsweb.com/cgi-bin/ifetch2?/u1/textindices/B/BOWERS+2002+265913240+F; it shows no Jacob.
The only Grainger County Bowers of this time who remains a mystery is Clarissa Bowers, who married James Brock in Grainger County on 2 Aug 1846. In the 1850 census, James and Clarissa were neighbors of Andrew's and Katherine's married daughters. She was age 43 in 1850, which means she was born about 1807 and was married at about age 39. Was she a widow of an unknown Bowers brother of Andrew, a daughter of one of the older Bowers brothers, perhaps William, who passed through Grainger County in the late 1820s, or might she have been a younger spinster sister of Andrew? No matter which, no Jacob appears in the 1850 James Brock household.
That leaves Andrew and Katherine, who are known to have had a son named Jacob K. No records remotely fitting their Jacob have been found after the 1850 census, other than those for the Jacob who moved to Indiana. Moreover, there is no other Bowers family in Grainger County in which the mother died and then the father died, leaving orphaned children, which is the gist of the family story about Jacob's parents. Of the three young children who were orphaned by the death of Katherine and then of Andrew -- Thomas, John and Jacob -- Thomas' family stories have him raising his younger brothers, which again fits Jacob's family story. Note a guardian's settlement statement in connection with Jacob K. has not been found, although one was found for John when he became 21. Perhaps none was considered necessary in the case of Jacob K, assuming it was he who left for Indiana at the age of 16. Certainly, the fact that a Jacob who was born in Grainger County, Tennessee ended up in Shelby County, Indiana, where David Bowers, brother of Andrew, lived, adds to the liklihood this Jacob was the son of Andrew and Katherine.
The date of birth for Jacob who moved to Indiana has been the biggest stumbling block in identifying him as the son of Andrew and Katherine. Note, however, there are several versions of his year of birth: 3 Nov 1842 per his tombstone; 3 Nov 1841 as calculated from his obituary; 1843 per the 1870 census; and 1841 per the 1880 census. Census records are notorious for being wrong on ages, but the tombstone is another matter (the obituary probably just had a typographical error). One has to assume Jacob, or at least his son, was not really sure when he was born. That is a troubling assumption. However, we also have his military records, which though confusing in and of themselves, provide evidence he was born at the end of 1838, just as Jacob K. was. First, there is his Muster-in Roll, dated 19 Jun 1861, which shows Jacob was then age 22. That corresponds to how old Jacob K. would have been on that date. Second, there is his Muster-out Roll, dated 2 Jul 1864, which shows Jacob was then age 25, which again is what Jacob K. would have been on that date. Other military records, however, muddy the waters. First, his Discharge, dated 2 July 1864, states he was then 22, which doesn't match the Andrew Bowers Family Bible nor the tombstone. I suspect, but can't prove, that the person who filled in the Discharge used his enlistment age by mistake. Second, there is a Regimental Descriptive Book record, which says he was 22 when he enlisted 25 Apr 1863 at Kokomo, Indiana for a term of three years, which also doesn't match the Andrew Bowers Family Bible nor the tombstone. Although this record also states he was born in Grainger County, Tennessee and contains basically the same physical description as the 1864 discharge, it is difficult to reconcile with the other enlistment and roster information. I've even considered there may have been two Jacob Bowers in Co. E, 13th Reg't Indiana Infantry, both born in Grainger County, who enlisted at different times, and whose records got mixed up, but that seems doubtful. Perhaps Jacob was temporaily released from service following his hospitalization in 1862 and then reactivated in 1863. It's just not clear from the available records.
One other factor needs to be considered. While one could enlist for the Civil War at age 18, those under age 21 needed parental consent. Might Jacob have lied about his age to avoid this requirement? On the basis of his tombstone, he would have been 19 years old when he enlisted on 19 Jun 1861. That's certainly something to consider.
In summary, though we can't be sure the Muster-in and Muster-out rolls were correct, at least they provide evidence of a date of birth that is consistent with that of Jacob K. Thus, the date of birth from the tombstone that is used by the descendants of Jacob is not quite the stumbling block as it first appeared. Still, one must consider the matter of his year of birth as unresolved.
The final stumbling block is the middle initial "K," which comes from the Andrew Bowers Family Bible. The Indiana Jacob's military roster records, when there is a middle initial recorded, generally record it as "F," although "B" and "H" are also found. No middle initial has been found in other records for the Indiana Jacob. I hesitate to ascribe too much significance to a middle initial which has been variously recorded. It's also not out of the question that the transcriptions we have of the Andrew Bower Family Bible may have misread the middle initial.
With the permission of descendants Jim Bower and Mickey Bambrick, I am tentatively listing their Jacob as the son of Andrew and Katherine. While they continue to search for direct evidence that will prove this relationship, they agree that Andrew and Katherine are most likely his parents.
Family Records for Jacob show his date of birth to be 3 Nov 1842. This is the date on his tombstone.
Obituary from Cassville Republic:
"Died, Saturday, Oct 14 at 8:05am of typhoid fever, Jacob Bower of Lohmarsburg, aged fifty-seven years, eleven months and eleven days.
Jacob Bower was born near Knoxville, Tenn. His mother dying at the age of three months and his father three years later, he was raised by a brother. At the age of sixteen he went to Indiana and upon breaking out of the war enlisted in Co. E, 13 Ind. Inf. and served three years and three months. In 1865 he married Louisa Talbert, who, with their son, J. M., survived him. In 1870 they went to northeastern Missouri but returned to Indiana. In 1878 they came to Cassville, but returned to Indiana eighteen months later. In 1881 they moved to Mineral Springs and have resided in this county since, in Cassville, Purdy, and at Lohmarsburg, the scene of his death. By trade Mr. Bower was a carpenter but had not followed it in recent years.
The remains were interred in the Cassville cemetery, Sunday, after a short service conducted by Rev. J. W. Ennes."
Noted events in his life were:
1. Census: 1850, Grainger County, Tennessee. 6
Listed as part of the family of his step-mother, Nancy Bowers, even though his brothers Thomas and John were listed as a separate family.
Jacob, 12. M, TN, Attended School
2. Guardianship: 1852, Grainger County, Tennessee. 7
In the 30 Mar 1852 Settlement of the Estate of Andrew Bowers, Dec'd, distributions totaling $161.75 were made to Daniel Hurst as Guardian of the Minor Heirs of Andrew Bowers, Dec'd. No Guardian Reports have been found.
3. Military Service: 1861-1864, Indiana. 5
Jacob Bowers was mustered into Co. E, 13th Reg't Indiana Infantry on 19 Jun 1861 at Indianapolis. Per the Muster-in Roll, he was 22 years old and had enrolled for a term of 3 years. He was discharged 1 July 1864 at Indianapolis upon completion of his term of service. Per the Muster-out roll, he was then 25, although in his discharge his age was given as 22. His discharge papers described him as 5 feet 7 1/2 inches high, dark complexion, blue eyes, and dark hair. He achieved the rank of Corporal. Roster records also show he was hospitalized in Annapolis, Maryland in 1862 and again in Newark, New Jersey in 1864.
The following summary of the early activities of the 13th Reg't appears at http://ralphinla.rootsweb.com/cwunitu.htm#u-ind:
"The regiment was mustered in at Indianapolis June 19, 1861, under the command of Col. Sullivan, and sent to West Virginia July 4, where it joined the brigade of Brig. Gen. W. S. Rosecrans. On the morning of July 11 Gen. Rosecrans led his brigade of about 1900 men through a trackless forest around to the rear of the Confederate position of perhaps 800 to 1200 men astride the Buckhannon-Beverly Road atop Rich Mountain, in Randolph County, Virginia. Reaching the road around 2 PM, they advanced along it over the crest of the hill. The 13th was supposed to send three companies to skirmish down the hill and three more companies to cover a small valley on the left, but Col. Sullivan misunderstood the order and took the whole regiment up the hill. After 40 minutes it was repositioned, Major Foster of the 13th later being complimented for his coolness in forming a portion of his men while under fire from two enemy cannons. Col. Sullivan with four companies was to charge around the road on the left. When the four regiments were set for the attack, the 19th Ohio formed into line and poured two volleys into the enemy force, which broke and retreated. The 8th and 10th Indiana charged along the road. Gen. Rosecrans himself encouraged the 13th's charge as the rebels were dispersing, capturing several prisoners. The battle was soon over, with many Confederate casualties, and 21 prisoners, two cannons, and all of the supply train captured. Rosecrans' brigade lost 12 men killed and 49 wounded."
4. Census: 1870, Shelby County, Indiana. 8
Dwelling 5, Family 6, Union Township
Household of Nancy Talbert:
Bowers, Jacob, age 26, male, white, farmer, $1100 personal property, born in Indiana
Bowers, Louisa, age 24, female, white, $1500 real property, born in Indiana
Bowers, Munroe, age 1, male, white, born in Indiana
[Jacob and Louisa shared the dwelling of Louisa's mother, Nancy Talbert. It's possible that Nancy provided the census information, which may account for the error in Jacob's state of birth.]
5. Census: 1880, Shelby County, Indiana. 9
Dwelling 44, Family 44, Union Township
Bower, Jacob, white, male, age 38, married, farmer, born in Tennessee [states of birth of father and mother are blank]
Bower, Louisa J., white, female, age 33, wife, married, keeping house, born in Indiana, father born in N. Carolina [state of mother's birth is blank]
Bower, Munroe, white, male, age 11, son, single, at school, born in Ind, father born in Tennessee, mother born in Ind
[In same dwelling, but listed as Family 45, was Nancy A. Talbert, white, female, age 63, mother-in-law, widowed, keeping house, born in Indiana, father and mother born in Virginia.]
Jacob married Louisa Jane TALBERT on 11 Nov 1866 in Shelby County, Indiana.2 5 (Louisa Jane TALBERT was born on 27 Jun 1846 in Indiana,5 died on 16 Nov 1915 in Cassville, Barry County, Missouri 5 and was buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Cassville, Barry County, Missouri 5.)