1830 Theodocia Elvira Goyen of Mississippi

Theodocea “Docea” Elvira Goyen b. abt. 1830

Spouse 1:  Abraham Smith Davis 1810-1859 – (married on June 10, 1858).

Spouse 2:  Thomas A Aven b. 1809 – d. 1881


  • Drury B. Goyen b. abt 1800 – d.  abt 1848 m Elizabeth Smith (daughter of John Smith and Nancy Chisholm)


  • None


  • John E. Going – 1826/27 abt – ? m Elizabeth McGill (evidence strongly suggests Drury is father)
  • William W. Goyen – 1828/29 abt-1864 m Sarah Martha Bell (confirmed child of Drury B. Goyen)
  • Ann Eliza Going – 1829 abt – 1894 m. Jason Fish  (evidence strongly suggests Drury is father)
  • Theodocia Elvira Goyen – 1830 abt – 1916 m. Abraham Smith Davis 1810-1859, and then m. Thomas A. Avens 1809-1881 – no children (T. E. Going and T. D. Going are the same person as she was often called “Docea” – short for Theodocia).
  • Nancy Chisholm Goyen – 1840 – 1922 m. Robert Neely Provine


1839 June 21 – Joseph P. Prince v. Drury Gowings
In Chancery
The Answer of Drury Gowing, Guardian Ad Litem of William W. Gowings a minor to the Bill of Interpleader of Abram S Humphries the complainant. This Defendant answering to himself all right of exception to ch. said Bill of Interpleader for answer thereto saith that about the year 1824 or 1825 as he is informed and verily believe, one John Fernandes then a resident Citizen of Union District South Carolina purchased for Elizabeth Gowings at present the wife of the said Defendant & mother of the said William W. Gowing but who was then Elizabeth Smith a certain negro girl by the name of Milley then not more than 13 or 14 years of age.
And this Defendant further answering saith that the money with which said negro was purchased belonged (as he is informed & verily believes) to the said wife of this Defendant then Elizabeth Smith.
And whilst she was single and unmarried and the heir of her body, this Defendant further answering saith that he is informed and verily believes that the title to said negro Milley was by said John Farnandes vested in the said Elizabeth Smith and the heirs of her body as the money with which she had been purchased had been obtained from the sale of a negro which had been given to the said Elizabeth Smith and the heirs of her body by her father John Smith some years before.
This Defendant further answering saith that about the first of January AD 1839 that Abram S Humphries who had interpleaded in Ch Co. purchased from the said Elizabeth at that time the wife of this Defendant and the mother of the said William W. Gowing the said negro Milley and her three children Anthony about 6 years old, Maria about 4 years, and Willis about 2 years for the sum of 2000 dollars.
This Defendant further saith that 1100 dollars of this aforesaid sum was appropriated by the said Abram S Humphries by and with the consent of the said Elizabeth on the 19th day of January AD 1839 to the purchase of a certain negro woman by the name of Sarah and her two children Fayette and Oscar from one Olivia Clark then a citizen of the County of Winston in the State of Mississippi. All of which will more fully appear by reference to Exhibit marked A and which this Defendant prays may be made a part of his answer.
This Defendant further answering saith that a short time after this purchase of the last-mentioned slaves that said Abram S Humphries paid over to the said Elizabeth about four hundred dollars and a short term afterwards, some two or three hundred dollars more as this Defendant is informed and verily believes.
This Defendant further answering saith that the said Elizabeth being willing and anxious to secure to the heirs of her body as large a share as she could from the proceeds of the sale of the aforesaid negroes Milley and her three children requested the said Abram S Humphries to make and deliver to her minor son William W. Gowing a promissory note for the balance due from him on the purchase of the said Milley and her three children – which request was carried into effect by the said Abram S Humphries executing & delivering the note now in suit in the Circuit Court of Lowndes County, Mississippi wherein William W. Gowing by his next friend Drury Gowing (who is the Defendant) is Plaintiff and the said Abram S Humphries is Defendant.
This Defendant further answering saith that it was to arrest the progress of the aforesaid suit at law that the said Abram S. Humphries has interpleaded and restrained all further proceedings in said court.
This Defendant further answering saith that the negroes purchased as above mentioned by the said Abram S Humphries from the said Olivia Clark for the said Elizabeth & the heirs of her body are all that is left to the said Elizabeth & the heirs of her body of the aforesaid sum of 2000 dollars given by said Humphries for the said Milley and her three children except the amount now due on said not in suit – and that if said William W. Gowings is deprived of said sum of money that manifest injustice will be done him.
This Defendant further answering saith that the said Joseph P. Prince who now claims the amount of said note from said Abram S Humphries as garnishee should not in Equity and good conscience be permitted to have or possess the same as the said money belongs not to this Defendant but to the said William W. Gowing who is one of the minor heirs of the said Elizabeth Gowings.
This Defendant therefore prays that your Honor will protect & guard the interests of the said William W. Gowing from this and all other attempts to divest him of his just rights in the premises.
All of which matters and things this Defendant is ready and willing to aver, maintain, and prove as this Honorable Court shall direct & humbly prays to be ___ dismissed with his reasonable costs & charges in this behalf most wrongfully sustained.
Signed: Ace-Gray, Solicitors for Deft.
Note on last page: I have withdrawn Exhibit No. A from the papers to have it recorded in the Probate Clerks office of Lowndes County, Miss, August 11, 1842. A.S. Humphries.
Files Notes at top of Page: 3916 and 5251
Sheet 6, image b: indicates this is recorded in Book 24, Page 242, File 84.
Sheet 1, image a: Officer of Court v. Joseph P. Prince: indicated the case was dismissed on the 5th day of April 1842. No property found in the County on which to levy … 3916, 49 (Note: Drury Gowing won the suit and was attempting to collect his costs against Joseph P. Prince – who apparently had no property in the county)
Sheet 1, image b: State of Mississippi, Lowndes County – To the Sheriff of Lowndes County: Greeting, We command you, that the goods and chattles, lands and tenements of Joseph P Prince, late of your County, you cause to be made the sum of 25 dollars and 01 cents which Drury Gowing lately in our Circuit Court, hath recovered against him for costs about his defence in a certain action, at the suit of the said J P Prince. Whereof the said J P Prince is convicted as appears to us of record; and that you have the said moneis before the judge of our said court on the First Monday of October next, to render to the said Gowing use of Officers of Court for their costs aforesaid, – and have then there this writ. June 1st, 1842. Signed Sterling H Lester, Clerk. by Chas R Jordan.
Lowndes County, Mississippi. Circuit Court Records. Drury Gowing’s Answer: Case Number: CC3916-02b sheet 07, images a through e.  (NOTE: Ambram S. Humphries is Elizabeth Smith’s 1st cousin. Elizabeth Smith’s father John Smith and Abram S. Humphries mother Mary Smith were siblings (brother and sister). John Smith married Nancy Chisholm and Elizabeth Smith, the wife of Drury Gowing, is their daughter, and Mary Smith married John Jefferson Humphries, and Abram S. Humphries is their son).  (ALSO NOTE: John Farnandes mentioned in this answer is the son of Henry Farnandes who was sold some of Adam Chisholm decd’s land back in Union County, SC. Nancy Chisholm is the daughter of Adam Chisholm – Nancy Chisholm married John Smith – and Elizabeth Smith is their daughter – she is the wife of Drury B. Goyen/Gowing in this document … The Smiths, Humphries, Goings, Davis, Chisholms, and Alexanders  – all moved to the Pickens County, Alabama and Lowndes County, Mississippi area in the 1830s about the same time – and were related by marriage to one another). 

William W. Goyen meets and marries Sarah Martha Bell in 1851.  He is working as a school teacher at the time.  William W. Goyen boards at the home of Sarah Martha Bell’s father, Hugh Bell.   The following letters written by William W. Goyen from July to September of 1851 show his relationships with those in the McCluney household – and that he is married to Sarah Martha Bell in that time:

William W. Going’s letters written to E. D. Going and A. McCluney in July 1851:

Starkville, Miss mailed to Oakland, Miss

These were letters written to William W. Going’s sister E. D. Going (Elvira Docea Going), and his cousin Adeline McCluney. William W. Going was living in Starkville, Miss. at Hugh Bell’s home as a boarder (Hugh Bell was the father of Sarah Martha Bell – future wife of William W. Going). He had just finished teaching for the year. Elvira Going and Adeline McCluney were living with Thompson McCluney and Docea Plaxco – who was Thompson McCluney’s mother in law. Thompson McCluney was Adeline’s father, and William Going and Elvira Going’s uncleThompson McCluney had married Elvira Plaxco – who had died by the time these letters were written. Elvira Plaxco was half-sister to Drury Going. So Thompson McCluney was William W. Going’s uncle – and Docea Plaxco (maiden name was Docea Bland – she first had married Elijah Going and had two children – Drury Going, and Thomas Baxter Going. When Elijah Going died, she remarried to John Plaxco and they had Elvira Plaxco. So Docea Plaxco was William W. Going’s grandmother (his father’s mother).

The envelope the following letters came in was addressed to: Miss E. D. Goings, Oakland, Miss. The stamp on the envelope was Aug 4, 1851 – originating from Starkville, Miss. 1) The first letter addressed to “Dear Sister” – which is Miss E. D. Goings. Miss. – Oktibbeha County, July 29, 1851:

“Dear Sister – I embrace this opportunity of answering yours of June 10th which gave me great satisfaction to hear that you were all enjoying tollerably good health. It found me in good health. My health for the last few days has been rather delicate, but it is improving. Owing to the intensity of the heat and long continuance of this drought I concluded to defer coming down until fall.

My first session closed the 18th inst, and I will resume the second the 4th of August. I had quite an interesting examination and an excellent dinner given by the patrons and friends of my school. The Rev. Mr. Presley delivered an address suited to the occasion. All that was present was well pleased. Next session I shall have sevaral new schollars. I am well satisfied and am getting along with great facility. Since my school closed I have enjoyed myself finely.

Last week I road about and became acquainted with several young ladies, some of which I am greatly distressed about. This week we have had a protracted meeting at the 16 Dist. Section. I saw the Miss Burts and Miss Rife there. I can say but little about them except they are not married as yet and I suppose there is no probability of it soon.

I am still in the notion of settling myself next Fall though; if I could always have such a boarding house as I have now I would be satisfied to board. I have all the conveniences that I could ask for and nothing to pay. I am no boarding at the house of Mr. Bell the father of the beautiful Miss Bell I alluded to some time since. I intend to make a speech to Miss Bell in good earnest soon.

If you or cousin A either are going to marry I want you to write and I will com down without delay. If not I will not com before my school is out which will be the first of Dec.

The health of the country is good so far as my knowledge extends. Crops are very short in this vicinity owing to the drought. So nothing more.

Give my best love and respect to all and more especially to Granma. Tell her I want to see her very much. I am your most affectionate Brother until death. Wm. W. Goings

2) The following second part of this July 29, 1851 letter was from William W. Going to his cousin – A. E. McCluney.

Miss A. E. McCluney

Dear Cousin, I was greatly moved when I heard of your illness, but glad to hear that you are getting better when Sister wrote. I am sorry to say to you that owing to the delicacy of my health that I shall have to defer paying you a visit until fall. Nothing is more painful to me than to defer a visit in which I have anticipated as much pleasure. At this time I have vacation. I have enjoyed my self finely for the past week, and am getting along most admirably both in school and out of school.

I spend my evenings in conversation with a very amiable and intelligent young lady who shares the greater part of my affections and is sweet and consoling to me. I vainly cherish the hope that my love is reciprocated by her.

However, I have pledged myself not to give my hand in matrimony until I see Miss P of whom you have spoke of, and I am resolved to stick to my integrity if Miss P does not marry, which I hope she will not do before I come down. Though the time may seem long the fleeting moments will soon rool round. If it be the will of God for us to live we may then be blessed.

Think not hard of me dear cousin for not coming sooner, for I want to see you all worse than you can want to me. Write soon as this comes to hand. Give my respect to all and believe me I am your Affectionate cousin until death. Wm. W. Going to Miss McC

W W Goyen or Goings letters written to McCluney family in Sept 1851:

September 9, 1851

Starkville, Miss mailed to Oakland, Miss

The following two-part letter was sent to T. E. Goings (T. E. Goings – sister of William W. Going), and A. McCluney (Adeline McCluney – cousin of William W. Going). Also mentioned in the letter are 1) Uncle – who is Thompson McCluney, 2) Hugh Bell – father in law, 3) Sarah Martha Bell – now his wife, 4) cousin John (John McCluney), and 5) cousin Samuel (Samuel Thomas McCluney)T. E. A. McCluney is a combination greeting for T. E. (for T. E. Going) then A. McCluney (for Adeline McCluney).

Contents of Letter: __________________________________

Starkville, Miss. Sept. 4th, 1851

Miss T. E. Goings

“Most Dear and affectionate Sister, it is with renewed manifestation of love that I assume the pleasant task of answering your joint letter, which I have just received by today’s mail. It found us in good health and gave us great satisfaction to learn that you were enjoing the same blessing, thanks be to our great and beneficient Preserver for his mercies and blessings. You gave me a genuine riding down for not writing. I think the whipping should come on the other hand as I wrote immediately on the reception of your last letter.

I am yet teaching and anticipate teaching the ensuing year . . . if I can get Six Hundred Dollars for my services, if not I presume that I shall settle on a farm somewhere West. I have gotten along with great ease and facility in my school this year, had but one or two graduates last session and none this. Fletcher Beard came to me part of last session and for some incident I thrashed him sorter like oats and he runaway, graduated, and absconded, which I do not regret. My present patrons express their regret as not being able to procure my service for the rival year.

Crops are very fine through this County. Corn crops are by far better than I have ever saw in this County. I am of opinion the corn may be bought at 25cents per bu. There was also a very spontaneous yield of wheat. Cotton fine except where the bole worm has infected it. The Farmer in new prospect views his spacious barns filled with the yellow antennal grain and supremely takes his ease this year in the farmers’ jubilee. Nothing more on this page turn over.

Page 2.

I am highly gratified to hear of your excellent meetings, and regret much that I am not there to participate with you in your religious devotion. We have had several protracted in this vicinity, Several conversions. The health of our County is good but few deaths have occured since I last wrote you. Some marriages have taken place none of whom you were acquainted.

I am boarding at Mr. Bell’s and have been since married. You requested me to give you a description of my better half. She is of medium size, dark hair, black eyes, and indescribably hansome. she has sweet, mild and amiable disposition, and I think dear Sister when you see her and become acquainted with her that you will say that I have been happy in my choice. We anticipate paying you a visit as soon as my school is out. Sarah sends her love and respect to you. Nothing more, but remaining your affectionate brother and sister until death.”

W. W. and S. M. Goings to Miss T. E. Goings.

P. S. “Wright immediately, if not sooner.” ___________________

Sept. 9th, 1852

Miss T. E. A. McCluney

Dear Cousin, it is with pleasure that I assume the pleasant task of answering your letter which I received the 4th inst. You will see by references to sister’s part of this letter that it was written a few days ago, the reason of the delay is that I have been sick, quite sick four or five days, but I have gotten considerable better and think by good nursing and prudence that I will soon be as well as usual hear. I will assure you that I have one on whom

(Page 3)

I can rely to nurse and administer to my wants whilst sick and convalessing, this is none other than my sweet and darling wife.  Sarah is well except a bad cold. I have gotten along finely with my business and have enjoyed fine health until this little spell.

I am much rejoiced to learn of your excellent meetings and regret much that we could not be there to participate with you in your religious devotion. The health of our County is tolleabl good though there is more sickness at this time than has been this season and some fatality attending it.

I shall resume my school next Monday if I do not relapse. Tell Uncle if he can find a good piece of land for sale that he thinks will soot me to some measure what it can be bought at and perhaps I will move there. I received a letter from cousin John a few days ago and he is well and better satisfied. He wrights that he is enjoying himself finely with the young ladies. You and Sister and cousin Samuel must not get married before we come out.

You must excuse me for not writing more as I am quite week this morning. You must wright as soon as this comes to hand. Give our love to all and accept the same for your self. Nothing more, but remain your affectionate cousins until death.”

W. W. and S. M. Goings To Miss T. E. A. McCluney.

(Source: Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, The University of Texas at Austin, William Goyen, 1915-1983, Papers, ca. 1923-1984, 54 Boxes, Box 43 – Folder 10 and Box 48 – Folder 4)(Best Copies of letters with one envelope: 1851 two letters from William W Going or Goyen to sisters at McCluney Home in Yalobusha Co MS  See contents that included both envelopes – inverted black and white copies, so harder to read, but includes the 2d envelope: 1851 two letters from William W Going or Goyen to sisters at McCluney Home in Yalobusha Co MS copies of orig & transcribed by Geneva A Jones PDF – Click to see original and transcription)

1858 June 10 – Married … On the 25th ult. Rev D. Pressly, Major A. S. Davis to Miss Theodocia E. Goyen, all of Oktibbeha County. (In 1903 the newspaper shared a clipping from 1858 – the article was titled: “Forty-Five Years Ago! Extracts from the Prairie News, a Paper Published in Okolona before a majority of its present Citizenship were born.”)
Newspapers.com – Okolona Messenger – 10 Jun 1903 – Page 7

NOTE: A S Davis had previously married Adeline T. McClunney – who was Theodocia E Goyen’s first cousin – see the above letters from William W Goyen, he writes to both his cousin A McClunney and his sister T E Goyen in 1851. Adeline T. McClunney must have died some time before 1858.

1852 Dec 25 – Mississippi, U.S., Compiled Marriage Index, 1776-1935
Name: Adeline T. McClunney
Spouse: Abraham S. Davis
Marriage Date: 25 Dec 1852
County: Yalobusha
Ancestry.com. Mississippi, U.S., Compiled Marriage Index, 1776-1935 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

Abraham S Davis dies some time in 1859, leaving Theodocia Elvira Goyen Davis as a widow. Administrator of the estate is Theodocia’s brother, William W Goyen. Another brother, John E Goins is paid a disbursement of $164.57 out of the estate.

1860-1862:  William W. Goyen is ADMIN of A S DAVIS, DECD ESTATE:    (Of note, John E Goins, Hugh Bell, and William Cross, along with the other admin named John E. Davis, are all mentioned in the following records regarding the admin of A S Davis, decd’s estate):

1860 May 7 – William W. Goins admr of estate of A D Davis (or A S Davis)- No. 314. p. 335-336
W W Goins and John E Davis administrators – 1st annual acct.
1859 disbursements noted to:
John E. Goins, Pig Cromwell, Chapman and Seely, Thomas Ward, Wm McCreight, James Ross, John M Moseley, James Gillespie, Mat Ames, S Milton, J M Rogers, Cross and Suddoth …
Signed: J E Davis, W W Goins, admrs.
SALE of A D Davis intest estate included the following purchasers: A W Miller, Squire Clark, Hugh Bell, A W Miller, P Cromwell. Signed: W W Goins.

The 1860 US Census in Oktibbeha has an entry next to John E Davis with William W. Going as owner of the property where John E Davis is acting as an administrator of A S Davis decds’ estate:

1860 US Census: Oktibbeha Co, MS
Name: John E Davis; Age: 22; Birth Year: abt 1838; Gender: Male
Birth Place: Alabama
Home in 1860: Oktibbeha , Mississippi; Post Office: Starkville
Dwelling Number: 416; Family Number: 357
Occupation: Clerking
Household Members:
Name Age
James H Vail 49
Harriet Vail 36
Henry Vail 17
Robert Vail 10
Richard Vail 5
Ella Vail 1
Collittie Tubbs 10
John E Davis 22
Peter L Critz 26
Nancy Critz 24
Charles Critz 5/12
George Grizzle 35
Sarah Grizzle 30
Luella Grizzle 11
Martha Grizzle 9
Mary Grizzle 7
Lauretta Grizzle 13
Thomas Grizzle 6
Index view:
3 416 357 Vail James H 49 1811 Male Farming 400 2500 New York
4 416 357 Vail Harriet 36 1824 Female Alabama
5 416 357 Vail Henry 17 1843 Male Alabama
6 416 357 Vail Robert 10 1850 Male Mississippi
7 416 357 Vail Richard 5 1855 Male Mississippi
8 416 357 Vail Ella 1 1859 Female Mississippi
9 416 357 Tubbs Collittie 10 1850 Female Mississippi
10 416 357 Davis John E 22 1838 Male Clerking Alabama
(NOTE: lines 11-14, under John E Davis states: J E Davis, admr. Est A S Davis, decd – 15,500 pers property section. W W Going owner, J E Davis, agent. 2400 real estate section).
15 417 357 Critz Peter L 26 1834 Male Cabinet Maker 600 1500 Virginia
16 417 357 Critz Nancy 24 1836 Female Georgia
17 417 357 Critz Charles 5/12 1860 Male Mississippi
18 418 358 Grizzle George 35 1825 Male Mill Laborer Georgia
19 418 358 Grizzle Sarah 30 1830 Female Georgia
20 418 358 Grizzle Luella 11 1849 Female Mississippi Yes
21 418 358 Grizzle Martha 9 1851 Female Mississippi
22 418 358 Grizzle Mary 7 1853 Female Mississippi
23 418 358 Grizzle Lauretta 13 1847 Female Mississippi
24 418 358 Grizzle Thomas 6 1854 Male Mississippi

1861 May 6 – No 314 A S Davis intestate annual acct. W W Goyens and J E Davis admins of A S Davis decd, 1861 2d annual acct. pg. 529.
Disbursements (payments to the following people listed): J E Davis, R A Miller, James Williams D S Johnson, James Gillespie, W C Bishop, Calvin Bridges, Squire Clark, E M Sayle, T J Black, W L Cromwell.
Receipts (payments from the following people listed): T C McCuney (Note: maybe “McCluney”), James Williams, Mrs T Davis, G W Champion, Thomas Rice, J B Saunders, T W Strowhan, T E Davis, R P Davis, Silas Cooper, John McCarady, Hugh Bell.
Signed: W W Goyen.
“Mississippi Probate Records, 1781-1930,” images, FamilySearch https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99QX-7Z2Z?i=279&wc=M7MK-3P8%3A344538001%2C344782201&cc=2036959 : 21 May 2014), Oktibbeha > Final records 1857-1867 > image 242 of 415 – pg. 529; county courthouses and public libraries, Mississippi.

1862 May Court – No 314, pg 684. A S Davis intestate annual acct…
Receipts noted from the following people: A W Miller, Hugh Bell, R P Davis, W H Cross.
Paid: W W Goyen admr – on voucher at 8 percent: $3690.22.
Signed: W W Goyen, admr.
“Mississippi Probate Records, 1781-1930,” images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99QX-7ZCT?i=362&wc=M7MK-3P8%3A344538001%2C344782201&cc=2036959: 21 May 2014), Oktibbeha > Final records 1857-1867 > image 242 of 415; pg 684. county courthouses and public libraries, Mississippi.

Around 1875 Thomas A Aven marries Theodocia Elviria Goyen Davis. Thomas A Aven’s prior wife, Arminta Thomas dies in 1873. The 1880 US Census shows Elvira Aven as his wife in 1880.

1880 United States Federal Census
Name: [Elvira Aven]
Age: 49, Birth Date: Abt 1831
Birthplace: North Carolina
Home in 1880: Beat 3, Grenada, Mississippi, USA
Dwelling Number: 158
Race: White, Gender: Female
Relation to Head of House: Wife
Marital Status: Married
Spouse’s Name: Thomas Aven
Father’s Birthplace: North Carolina
Mother’s Birthplace: North Carolina
Occupation: Keeps House
Attended School: Yes
Household Members Age Relationship
Thomas Aven 70 Self (Head)
Elvira Aven 49 Wife
Hubburd Odom 19 Nephew
John Odom 17 Nephew
Emma Mcmason 8 Niece
Year: 1880; Census Place: Beat 3, Grenada, Mississippi; Roll: 647; Page: 202C; Enumeration District: 065

1880 US Census w Elvira Goyen in Grenada Co Miss

1880 US Census w Elvira Goyen in Grenada Co Miss

Some time in 1881 Thomas A Aven dies and his estate is opened in Granada County, Mississippi. Wife T E Aven and her brother in law Robert Neely Provine (husband of Nancy Chisholm Goyen) sign a bond for Theodocia Elvira Aven to administer the estate of Thomas A Aven.

1881 May 4 – Grenada County, Mississippi – In the Chancery Court of said County.
Estate of Thomas A Aven deceased.
… we T E Aven, R N Provine and L F Provine … firmly bound … in the sum of 500 dollars … condition of this Bond is, that if the above bound T E Aven as Administratrix of the goods and chattels, rights and credits of Thomas A Aven deceased shall faithfully, truly and promptly perform and discharge all the duties required … the obligations to be void …
Signed: T E Aven, R N Provine, L F Provine
Administrators, Guardians, Executors Record and Accounts, Vol. A, 1873-1906; Vol. B, 1871-1892; Vol. C, 1918-1942; Author: Grenada County (Mississippi). Chancery Clerk; Probate Place: Grenada, Mississippi. Vol A, pg 94.

The 1900 US Census shows that Nancy Goyen Provine’s sister Elvira Goyen Aven is living with Nancy and her family. She is listed as R N Provine’s “Sister in Law”.

1900 United States Federal Census
Name: Elvira Aven
Age: 69, Birth Date: Apr 1831
Birthplace: Alabama, USA
Home in 1900: Beat 4, Calhoun, Mississippi
Sheet Number: 11
Institution: 5658
Number of Dwelling in Order of Visitation: 182
Family Number: 180
Race: White, Gender: Female
Relation to Head of House: Sister in Law (Sister-in-law)
Marital Status: Widowed
Father’s Birthplace: South Carolina, USA
Mother’s Birthplace: South Carolina, USA
Can Read: Yes, Can Write: Yes, Can Speak English: Yes
Household Members Age Relationship
R N Provine 60 Head
Nannie Provine 60 Wife
Oscar Provine 23 Son
May Provine 21 Daughter
Elvira Aven 69 Sister in Law (Sister-in-law)
Ben Mccluscy 30 Hireling (Hired)
Frieda Romer 32 Hireling (Hired)
George Doler 20 Hireling (Hired)
Corse Green 12 Hireling (Hired)
R L Schultz 32 Hireling (Hired)
Leonora Schultz 11 Boarder
Year: 1900; Census Place: Beat 4, Calhoun, Mississippi; Roll: 802; Page: 11; Enumeration District: 0016; FHL microfilm: 1240802
https://www.ancestry.com/sharing/29728058?h=5d7a01 (pg 1)
https://www.ancestry.com/sharing/29701642?h=99418c (pg 2)

1900 US Census Calhoun County Miss Elvira Aven living with Nancy Provine sheet 11

1900 US Census Calhoun County Miss Elvira Aven living with Nancy Provine sheet 11

1900 US Census pg 1 w Provines

1900 US Census pg 1 w Provines

In the 1910 US Census, Theodocia is still living with her sister Nancy Chisholm Goyen Provine in Calhoun County, Mississippi:

1910 United States Federal Census
Name: Elvira T Aven
Age in 1910: 79, Birth Date: 1831
Birthplace: South Carolina
Home in 1910: Beat 4, Calhoun, Mississippi, USA
Race: White, Gender: Female
Relation to Head of House: Sister-in-law
Marital Status: Widowed
Father’s Birthplace: South Carolina
Mother’s Birthplace: South Carolina
Native Tongue: English, Able to read: Yes, Able to Write: Yes
Number of Children Born: 0
Number of Children Living: 
Household Members Age Relationship
Robert N Provine 70 Head
Nancy C Provine 70 Wife
Lizzie M Provine 30 Daughter
Elvira T Avan 79 Sister-in-law
Year: 1910; Census Place: Beat 4, Calhoun, Mississippi; Roll: T624_734; Page: 20B; Enumeration District: 0024; FHL microfilm: 1374747

1910 US Census in Calhoun Co Miss w Elvira Goyen

1910 US Census in Calhoun Co Miss w Elvira Goyen

Theodocia Elvira Goyen Davis Aven dies on September 17, 1916. She is buried in the Shiloh Cemetery, in Big Creek, Calhoun County, Mississippi.

1916 Sept 17 – U.S., Find a Grave Index, 1600s-Current
Name: T Elvira Aven
Birth Date: 23 Apr 1831
Death Date: 17 Sep 1916
Cemetery: Shiloh Cemetery
Burial or Cremation Place: Big Creek, Calhoun County, Mississippi, United States of America
Has Bio?: N
Spouse: Thomas A Aven
URL: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/158745634/t-elvira-aven
Ancestry.com. U.S., Find a Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.


See the letter dated July 31, 1851. William W. Goyen is writing to his cousin Adeline McCluney and sister Elvira Going at Thompson McCluney’s home in Oakland, Mississippi. (Yalobusha County). In his letter he tells the recipients to “Give my best to all, and more especially to Granma tell her I want to see her very much”.

Looking at the 1850 Yalobusha US Census, the only woman in Thompson McCluney’s household old enough to be William W. Goyen’s “Granma” is Docia Plaxco – age 80. (see Census below).

Docia Plaxco’s maiden name was Docia Bland – she was married to Elijah Going in Chester Co, SC until he died. She had two children by him prior to his death – Drury B. Goyen, and Sarah Goen (Goyen).

After Elijah Going’s death, Docia Bland remarried to John Plaxco. John Plaxco and Docia had one child, Elvira Plaxco, who married Thompson McCluney. Elvira died some time in the 1830s. Her mother (and Drury B. Goyen’s mother) Docia Plaxco, was living at Thompson McCluney’s household with her son-in-law and grandchildren (Thompson McCluney’s kids, and Drury B. Goyen’s children as well were her grandchildren – Drury B Goyen died some time in 1847-48).

William W. Goyen’s cousins, sisters, uncle Thompson McCluney, and grandmother Docia Plaxco were all in that home. (See below – click to enlarge):

Letter from W W Goyen to cousins and sister July 29 1851 p1

Letter from W W Goyen to cousins and sister July 29 1851 p2

Letter from W W Goyen to cousins and sister July 29 1851 p3

Letter from W W Goyen to cousins and sister July 29 1851 p4

W W Goyen or Goings letters written to McCluney fam in July 1851_Page_3

(Letter and original envelope – from William W. Goyen dated July 31, 1851 addressed to cousin A. E. McCluney (Adeline), and sister E. D. Going (Elvira).  Both living at Thompson McCluney’s household in Oakland, Yalobusha County, Mississippi).  (Originals are in Events below).

1850 US Census Yalobusha, Miss Thompson McCluney fam p11850 US Census Yalobusha, Miss Thompson McCluney fam p2

(1850 US Census – Yalobusha County, Mississippi – showing Docia Plaxco age 80 living at Thompson McCluney’s home).

William W. Goyen’s letter dated September 4-9, 1851 addressed again to Adeline McCluney, and to his sister E. T. Going in Oakland, Yalobusha Co, Miss. is below.  The letter includes the fact that William W. Goyen has married Sarah Bell some time between the time this letter was written, and the last letter on July 31, 1851.   The letter additionally mention cousins John McCluney and Samuel McCluney – also on US Census report above – further confirming these letters are addressed to Thompson McCluney’s household (where grandmother Docia Plaxco / Goyen / Bland was living).

W W Goyen letter to sister and cousin Sept 1851 p1

W W Goyen letter to sister and cousin Sept 1851 p2

W W Goyen letter to sister and cousin Sept 1851 p3

W W Goyen letter to sister and cousin Sept 1851 p4

(Transcriptions of William W. Goyen’s letters dated September 4-9, 1851 addressed to his sister and cousin at Thompson McCluney household.  Originals are below under “Events”).

Finally, the following Genealogy of the Goyen family was done in 1958 by Mrs. Elmer Mathie Adams.  It traces the siblings of William W. Goyen that she knew about and their descendants. It also traces the all the children of William W. Goyen, and their descendants.  It has been helpful in piecing together family members who may still be alive.  I have redacted birth date information of those who may possibly still be living to protect privacy:

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams page 1a

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams page 1b

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams_Page_2 redacted info

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams_Page_3 redacted

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams_Page_4

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams_Page_5 redacted

Goyen family geneaology from 1958 done by Mrs Elmer Adams_Page_6

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