The Children of Bryant Collins (1814-1862) and Mary Morgan (1815~1910)
Brother vs. brother in the American Civil War
Bryant Collins was the son of Thomas Collins and Nancy Williams. He married Mary Morgan by about 1837 and had 11 children. They were both from North Carolina, but Bryant had numerous land grants in Letcher Co., Kentucky, along Alum Cave creek and then the Rockhouse Fork in the 1840s and early 1850s. During the American Civil War, some of their sons enlisted in the Union Army, while others volunteered for the Confederate Army. The allegiances for some changed after Bryant was murdered in his own farmyard by Confederate soldiers under the command of Col. Benjamin Caudill.
The Collins children, according to censuses and birth and marriage records, were (for full references, see My Lineage from the Roots Up, vol. 2):
Carter W born May 24, 1837, in Perry Co., Kentucky. He married Mary Ann “Polly” Robison (1836-1934) June 28 in Morgan Co. and then June 29, 1855, in Letcher Co., Kentucky (apparently one for each family). They had six children. He enlisted as a Private in Co. H of the 13th Kentucky Cavalry (Caudill’s Army) October 1, 1862. He deserted to the Union a month later, enlisting in the 10th Kentucky Cavalry (Co. A) and serving as a Sergeant until it disbanded in 1863. The family moved to Blairs Mill (Morgan Co.) by 1880. He died September 23, 1903, and is buried in Sargent Cemetery (Collins Family Cemetery), Morgan Co., Kentucky.
Nancy born in 1839, presumably in Kentucky. She married Enoch England (1830-1909) October 20, 1855, in Letcher Co., Kentucky, and had more than 10 children. She died February 23, 1884, and is buried in Dud Carpenter Cemetery, Magoffin Co., Kentucky.
Eleanor “Nelly” born February 11, 1841, in Perry Co., Kentucky (what would become Letcher Co.). She married Reece D. Young (1836-1922) December 27, 1857, in Letcher Co., Kentucky. He was a Union soldier in the Civil War. They had 10 children, and by 1910 had adopted one of their granddaughters. She died June 14, 1913, in Jackson Co., Kentucky. She was supposed to be buried in Cornett Cemetery.
Jesse born about 1843 in Letcher Co., Kentucky. He was a Private in Co. L of the 14th Kentucky Cavalry of the Union Army during the Civil War. He married Sarah J Robinson (1846-1912) before 1870. They lived in Rowan Co., Kentucky, and had 6 surviving children as of 1910. He died September 20, 1912, and is buried in Purvis Cemetery, Rowan Co., Kentucky.
Fielding born about 1845 in Letcher Co., Kentucky. He was a Corporal in the same unit of the Union Army as his brother, Co. L of the 14th Kentucky Cavalry. In 1864 he also served in the Kentucky Three Forks Infantry Battalion. He lived in Booneville, Owsley Co., Kentucky, after the war and married Annie Bowman (~1841-1911) about 1870. He appears to have died by 1880 and his widow remarried John Seal.
Berdine born February 1848 in Letcher Co., Kentucky. He served as a Private in the Kentucky Three Forks Infantry Battalion of the Union Army in 1864. He lived with his uncle Thomas in 1870. He married (1st) Luvina Warren (~1849~1888) by 1872 and had at least 6 children, with the youngest born in Kansas. He married (2nd) Ella June Lackey March 17, 1901, in Douglas, Kansas.
Hugh born February 7, 1849, in Letcher Co., Kentucky. He enlisted in 3rd Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Co. G) of the Confederate Army as a Private in 1864. He married (1st) Margaret Bowman (~1850~1896, sister of Annie Bowman above) by about 1872, and was living in Owsley Co., Kentucky, in 1880. They had at least 9 children, with the oldest four born in Kentucky. They were living in Hiawatha, Kansas, by 1885. He appears to have married (2nd) Rose Anna McGunk (1847-1933, daughter of Irish immigrants) by 1900. He died October 28, 1926, and is buried in Mount Calvary Catholic Cemetery, Lawrence, Kansas.
James born about 1851 in Letcher Co., Kentucky. Lived with his uncle Thomas Collins in 1870. He married (1st) Elizabeth Taylor (~1852~1891) about 1872, presumably in Letcher Co., Kentucky. They were living in West Virginia in 1880 and had several children before her death. He married (2nd) Mary “Polly” King (~1871-1961) August 17, 1892, in Douglas Co., Kansas. His two youngest children were living with them in Kansas in 1900, with one said to be born in Kansas and the youngest in Texas (which may have been Mary’s daughter). He died after 1925, presumably in Kansas.
Hardy born March 8, 1853, in Letcher Co., Kentucky. He is assumed to have died young, or he may have gone by another name after his father’s death.
Polly Ann born April 3, 1855, in Letcher Co., Kentucky. She is missing from the 1870 census, but appears to have married Jerry Smith (b. ~1850) by 1878. They had at least five surviving children, and she apparently died by 1900.
Margaret born September 1858 in Letcher Co., Kentucky. She married Calvin Stidham (b. ~1849) about 1874 and had nine children. She died after 1920, presumably in Letcher Co., Kentucky.
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After Bryant’s murder, Mary married Henry Neece (b. ~1786). In 1870 her unmarried children were living next door to them with their uncle Thomas Collins.
In 1880, Mary and Henry, who was blind and disabled, were living with her daughter Margaret (Collins) Stidham. She was widowed again by 1900 and still living with the Stidhams in Rockhouse, Letcher Co., Kentucky. She appears to have died prior to 1910.