PIONEER SETTLERS OF
SEBASTIAN COUNTY, ARKANSAS
MARTIN ALONZO EAST, the son of Joseph & Permelia (Cason) East, was born 10 Jan 1839 near Highland, Madison County, Illinois. In 1817, Martin's father Joseph settled in Illinois as a youth with his parents James & Mary "Polly" (Edwards) East who left the Red River area of Robertson County, Tennessee, their farm lying very close to the Kentucky/Tennessee border. Prior to that, they resided in Oglethorpe County, GA where Martin's father was born about 1807. Martin's ancestors were all farmers.
Martin's paternal grandparents, James & Polly East left Henry County, Virginia during the late 1780's & settled in Georgia along with James' parents James & Eushan East Sr. Mary "Polly" was the daughter of Edmund & Elizabeth Edwards who also settled in Oglethorpe Co GA, but later traveled to Robertson County, TN about 1812 with James & Polly.
Martin's mother Permelia was born about 1812 in Screven County, GA and came to Illinois during the 1820's with her parents Hillery & Mary (Smith) Cason. Hillery and his father Hillery Sr came from the Pitt County, NC area before settling in Georgia during the 1790's.
During the 1840's after his father Joseph died, young Martin, his twin sister Mary & older brother Calvin left Illinois & accompanied their mother, Cason grandparents & other relatives to the Batesville area of Independence County, Arkansas. Martin's mother Permelia married Dr John Morris in 1850, who became the step-father. Family tradition & other evidence suggests they held their step-father in high regard. Their family farm was located east of Batesville in the Gainsboro area of Independence County.
In 1859, when he was a young 20 year old man, Martin was ordained a Methodist minister, becoming a "circuit rider", traveling throughout various areas of Arkansas performing his ministorial duties. His mother Permelia passed away in 1860.
While with the Greenwood Circuit which was headquartered in Sebastian County, Arkansas, he met his future wife Miss Eliza Harriet Jones, the daughter of Sebastian County pioneer settlers, John & Narcissa (Rutherford) Jones. On 3 Feb 1862, shortly after the beginning of the Civil War, Martin married Eliza at the home of her parents in Sebastian County. Eliza was born 3 Feb 1842 in Greene County, Tennessee. Eliza’s parents left Tennessee when she was an infant and settled in Crawford County, Arkansas, in the area around Auburn & Bloomer which later became part of Sebastian County. Eliza's father John Jones became one of the first commissioners from Big Creek Township when Sebastian County was created in 1851.
A "family tradition" related to me by Theral Jones of Greenwood, Arkansas suggests that Eliza Jones, as an infant, fell overboard into the Mississippi River while the family was enroute from Greene Co, Tennessee to Arkansas. She was about 1 year old since this journey was made about 1843. Theral Jones is a descendant of Eliza's brother Robert M. Jones.
Another "family tradition" related to me by the late Juanita (McClellan) Greenfield of Fort Smith, Arkansas suggests that during the Civil War, Eliza & other family members came home to find their brother George Jones hanging from a tree on their father's place in Sebastian County. They supposedly cut him down and buried him in the Jones Cemetery. Official documents of their mother Narcissa's Civil War claims suggests that George Jones was shot by southern bushwackers and died in the arms of his wife. However, Narcissa's brother Gus Rutherford was hanged by these southern extremists. In a letter from a daughter of Robert M. Jones, Lona (Jones) Thornton, there is a "tradition" that Robert, as a child, was put on the shoulders of a friend and helped cut Gus down from the tree.
In March 1863, Martin Alonzo East traveled to Fayetteville, Arkansas & enlisted in Company "I" 1st Ark. U.S. Volunteer Infantry of the Union Army. His older brother Calvin had joined the Confederate Army & was killed just a few months prior at Murphreesboro TN. This was truly a war of brother against brother.
After the war, Martin brought his family back to Independence County, Arkansas,
but returned to Sebastian County by 1870, settling on a farm near Auburn. For many
years, he continued to farm & perform duties as a local Methodist minister. Martin and
Eliza had a large family of 13 children, 2 of them dying in infancy.
1Sep1860 - Independence Co AR (Federal Land Purchase-Twp 14N Range 4W 160 acres)
EAST, MARTIN A
16 Oct 1861 - Independence Co AR (Courthouse Records-MinisterCredentials)
M.A. EAST ordained as a deacon in Methodist Protestant Church
1870 - Federal Census (Gainsboro, Independence Co Ark, Pg 10 Fam#74)
EAST, MARTIN A, age 32, born IL, Farmer (1400/400)
Eliza H, age 28, born AR (note: actually born in TN)
Carrie N 3////Martin 1
JohnJones, age 17, born AR (Eliza's brother)
John Morris, age 67, born NJ, Physician (Martin's step-father)
13Jul1878 - Franklin Co AR (Land Records)
EAST, MARTIN A - Filed for a Patent on 56.72 acres, Lot 1 of Section 4 Township 6 North (Eagle Twp), Range 29 West on 13 Jul 1878, which he received on 13 Jul 1885. (Note: This 56 acre tract of land, where he built his house, was actually in Sebastian County. It was about 2 or 3 miles southeast of Auburn and due east of the old Center Valley Community. This 56 acre tract joined the southeast corner of the 160 acre L shaped tract he already owned in Sections 32 & 33 of Township 7 North (Bates Twp). Of this 160 acre tract, 80 acres was supposedly part of an inheritance he and his wife received from Eliza's father John Jones. This 80 acre tract was west (side by side) the 80 acres owned by the Burris family. The other 80 acres of this L shaped 160 acre tract, was owned by Martin's step-father, Dr John Morris, who resided with Martin & Eliza after leaving Independence County, Arkansas.)
1880 - Federal Census (Bates Twp, Sebastian Co Ark, pg 186)
EAST, ALONZO, age 41, born IL Parents:TN/TN (Note: parents actually born GA)
Eliza H, age 38, born AR, Parents:IL/TN (Note: Both parents born TN)
Carry 13, MartinL 12, AnnP 9, JohnB 8, Florida 6, Sarah E 4, Alonzo 2, Louisa 1
Federal Land Purchases (Franklin County, AR)
13Jul1885 - EAST, MARTIN A, Section 4, Twp 6N, Range 29W, 56.72 acres
1900 - Federal Census (BatesTwp, SebastianCo,Ark, ED#106,sh13,HH #235)
EAST, MARTIN A, born Jan1839/61/IL/TN/TN (Farmer/Owner)
Eliza H, born Feb1842/58/TN/TN/TN (12 children/10 surviving)
1910 - Federal Census (Sebastian Co AR/Bates Twp HH 67)
EAST, MARTIN A Age71/IL/TN/GA (Farmer/Owner)
Eliza/68/TN/TN/TN (13 Children/9 Survived)
1910 - Federal Census(Franklin Co AR,PrairieTwp/HH 219/Greenwood&Auburn Rd)
EAST, WILLIAM W Age26/AR/IL/TN (Farmer/Renter)
Kate/24 (Marr 6 years)
(Son of M.A. East//Next to sister Annie, wife of Dr Wm E.Jones)
1920 - Federal Census (Sebastian Co AR/Bates Twp/HH 40)
EAST, W.W. Age36/AR/IL/TN (Farmer)
EAST, E.H. Non-Resident/Lined Out(Mother Eliza resided Arkoma OK w/son Bonnie)
(Next to E.M Jones)
Rev. Martin Alonzo East died 23 Jan 1913 and was buried in Pinnell Cemetery, which was later relocated to Center Valley after the establishment of Fort Chaffee during World War II. His wife Eliza passed away almost 13 years later 1 Dec 1925 while staying with her son Bonnie & family in Arkoma, Oklahoma, which is just across the line. She was buried next to her husband in the Pinnell Cemetery.
(Click on links at the top of this page for notes concerning Martin's autobiography, his Civil War pension papers & Jones Civil War papers)
Child 1: Infant EAST
Born: 1863 Sebastian Co AR??//Died in infancy
Child 2: MARY BELL EAST
Born: 1864 Sebastian Co AR??//Died in Infancy
Child 3: CARRIE N. EAST
Born: 1866 Independence Co AR//Died: Before 1890 Aunurn(Sebastian) AR
Married: G.J. Milhoan 30 Dec 1886 Sebastian Co AR
Child 4: MARTIN LUTHER EAST
Born: 21 Oct 1868 Independence Co AR//Died: 21 Aug 1891 Auburn(Sebastian) AR
Married: Elizabeth “Lizzie” Burris 6 Apr 1887 Sebastian Co AR
Born: 14 Aug 1870 Batesville(Independence) AR//Died: 26 Feb 1960 Little Rock (Pulaski) AR
Married: Dr William Enoch Jones 4 May 1887 Auburn (Sebastian) AR
Child 6: JOHN BAPTIST EAST
Born: 8 Aug 1872 Auburn(Sebastian) AR//Died: 2 Dec 1935 Fort Smith(Sebastian) AR
Married: Blanche Brown 2 Feb 1896 Sebastian Co AR
Child 7: FLORIDA EAST
Born: 1 Feb 1874 Auburn(Sebastian) AR//Died: 18 Sep 1891 Auburn(Sebastian) AR
Child 8: SARAH E. “Dolly” EAST
Born: 1 Nov 1875 Auburn(Sebastian) AR//Died: 9 Sep 1956 Auburn(Sebastian) AR
Married: Benjamin Wallace “Dee” McLellan 5 Apr 1896 Sebastian Co AR
Child 9: ALONZO “HAYES” EAST
Born: 25 Dec 1877 Auburn(Sebastian) AR//Died: 1 Oct 1954 Sulphur(Murray) OK
Married: Nannie Neal
Child 10: DAISY LOUISA EAST
Born: 5 Sep 1879 Auburn(Sebastian) AR//Died: 9 Mar 1921 Auburn(Sebastian) AR
Married: NEVER MARRIED (Invalid with Tuberculosis)
NOTE: There was another woman named DAISY B. EAST who married AUTHUR L. RATTEREE on 21 Dec 1892 in Sebastian County, Arkansas. This other Daisy B. East was born 1874 in IOWA & was the daughter of JOHN & REBECCA EAST who settled in the Van Buren area of Crawford County, Arkansas near Sebastian County around 1890 from the Shelby & Jasper County area of IOWA. Her father JOHN EAST, born 1834 in INDIANA, was the son of HUGHS & ROSENA (HODGE) EAST who settled in Lawrence County, INDIANA during the 1830's from Surry County, NORTH CAROLINA where their ancestors had settled during the 1700's.
DAISY B. & AUTHUR RATTEREE later moved to Beaumont, TEXAS where they still resided in 1930.
THERE IS NO KNOWN CONNECTION TO MARTIN ALONZO EAST.
Child 11: MOODY HOOD EAST
Born: 7 Nov 1881 Auburn(Sebastian) AR///Died: 6 Nov 1974 Tulsa, OK
Married: Anna Craig(1) on 17 Mar 1901 Sebastian Co AR; Ethel Janice Lucas(2) on 20 Sep 1921 Tulsa OK
Child 12: WILLIAM WARREN “WILL” EAST
Born: 30 Jun 1883 Auburn(Sebastian) AR///Died: 10 Aug 1972 Paris(Logan) AR Charleston(Franklin) AR
Married: Kate Chaney on 23 Dec 1903 Franklin Co AR
Child 13: ORA BONNIE ROSCOE EAST
Born: 30 Dec 1888 Auburn(Sebastian) AR///Died: 8 Jan 1947 Fort Smith(Sebastian) AR
Married: Carrie Jasper 18 Aug 1911 Sebastian Co AR
JOSEPH & PERMELIA (CASON) EAST
JOHN & NARCISSA (RUTHERFORD) JONES