Who Was John Shoemake of Jackson County, Alabama?
The information listed below was posted on the internet by Patty Wood:
Anna/Annie Shoemake was the daughter of Daniel Thorn and the granddaughter of Parch Corn. Daniel Thorn had a reservation of 640 acres [think farm] in Jackson Co, AL not many miles from John Shoemake's reservation. Daniel Thorn was a white man. His wife was daughter of Parch Corn who lived in Parch Corn Cove in what later became the western part of Marshall Co, AL near the Tennessee River.
John A. Shoemake's father was a white man by the name of ... get this .... Jones.
Some people claiming to be the heirs of John Shoemake filed a claim with the Board of Commissioners for the value of John Shoemakes reservation. The Treaty of 1835 provided for this. The United States government paid the claim for $7690 in 1847. In 1851 the government thinking that the Shoemake reservation was unclaimed lands sold it at auction. The buyers then evicted John and Anna Shoemake from their reservation. The original claim was a fraud as it turned out. John and Anna Shoemake then were dispossessed of their reservation and in turn filed a petition to get their reservation back. In those papers is a ton of information. Those who made depositions stated that John Shoemake was a "mulatto negro". Surprise. The citizenship papers of W. H. Shoemake state he was a white man. Same papers give the name of Jones as the father of John A. Shoemake. The men who made depositions in the mid 1850's knew John Shoemake who died in 1852.
John Shoemake was NOT called "Balljack". There was a John Shoemake who lived in Overton Co, TN who was connected to some Smiths and Exedines who was call John "Balljack" Shoemake but he was a much younger man than the John Shoemake who had the reservation. It has been claimed that the citizenship papers referred to him as "Balljack" but if you look at the original papers there is NO MENTION of "Balljack". Someone has gotten two men confused. It is unknown who John Shoemake who had the reservation father was.
Only one of John A. Shoemake's sons had left Alabama before 1850 and that was in 1849. The others remained until after the suit to get their reservation back was finished. They did get it back and then sold it. They were all gone by 1860.
The Cherokees ceded the land that became Jackson Co, AL in 1819. The reservations [thinks farms] were given by the Treaties of 1817 and 1819 to lands ceded by the Cherokees.
Email me if you want to discuss this further.
Here Is Another Story Told By John?
(My remarks in Italics)
Sunday, March 06, 2005
Granddaddy Jim was born in Cotulla, Texas, down by the Rio Grande. As a young man, he went west to the Marathon area and got a job as a cowboy on a ranch, which in those days was a not a glamourous job at all. He held several different ranch jobs out there before he married Aunt Jennie in 1896 and sort of settled down, working as a clerk in one of the general stores, since he was literate and numerate and honest. Later on, though, when he was in his thirties, he joined up with the newly-established Mounted Border Patrol, which wasn't founded until 1904. Their main job, then as now, was catching illegal immigrants while using no violence unless attacked. During the Mexican Revolution, which began in 1910 and spiraled on with dizzying complexity, bandit gangs raiding across the river became common--these guys were mostly livestock rustlers--, and Jim was in more than one gunfight; his partner was shot dead beside him in one of these skirmishes.
Jim always said that he was part Indian, and everyone believed him, it's been family lore for decades that we're part-Cherokee, but we never had any real evidence. Jim didn't have too much to say about his family, and the story is that he left home young because his father mistreated him. Jim's father was named James Preston Shoemake, and he was born in 1826 in Jackson County, Alabama, which was Cherokee territory then. James Preston moved west, away from his family, down to the Rio Grande area sometime before 1860, since in that year he married a woman named Sarah Louisa Tomlin in Texas. We don't know anything about her family. James Preston died sometime after 1896 in Cotulla, Texas. James Preston had two brothers, William H. and John Wesley Shoemake (the name John Wesley indicates they were already Methodists, which the family has been since time immemorial), among other siblings, and he had two first cousins named Lula B. and Mary E. Shoemake.
I'm going to quickly jump back a generation. James Preston's father was John A. Shoemake, who might have been born around 1803, perhaps in Chesterfield County, South Carolina. John A. married a woman named Elizabeth, whom we know nothing about, in about 1824, and he was out in Jackson County, Alabama, part of the Cherokee lands, at that time. He died in a village called Crowtown in that region in 1855. Now, John A. had at least two other sons, James Preston's brothers William H. and John W., and William had two daughters, Lula and Mary. Here's where it gets interesting.
There is a document called the Dawes Roll, compiled in, I believe 1893, in the Indian Territory, what is today Oklahoma, that lists all the members of the Cherokee Nation who were entitled to certain federal government rights. William H. Shoemake is number 32130 on the Dawes Roll, Lula B. is 32131, Mary E. is 32132, and John W. is 32133. James Preston would therefore have qualified, too, but he was down in Cotulla rather than in Oklahoma with everybody else. Why he chose to go to Texas while the rest of his relatives all went to Oklahoma, I do not know. What I do know is that all the Jackson County, Alabama, Shoemakes left there or died there before the 1850s.(My remarks: Other evidence show that some of them were still there in 1850)
Let's go back to John A. Shoemake, father of William,
John, and James Preston. John A. was the son of Anna Thorn (or Anna
Bone) and an unknown man, and he was probably born in 1803. We don't
know whether Anna was married to the man or not; this is why we're not
sure what her original surname was. But Anna, possibly recently widowed
or possibly with an illegitimate child on her hands, married a man named
John Shoemake, called "Balljack", sometime in the decade of
1800. Balljack adopted John A. as his stepson and gave him his surname.
To repeat: Balljack was not John A.'s biological father, but Anna was
his biological mother. This means that Anna is as far back as we can
trace the bloodline, because Balljack and his ancestors are not related
to my family by blood.
OK. Let's go through it again. My grandmother, Bonnie
Shoemake (1910-1988), was the daughter of James Lafayette "Granddaddy
Jim" Shoemake (1874-1960), who was the son of James Preston Shoemake
(1826-1896?), who was the son of John A. Shoemake (1803?-1855?), who
was the son of Anna Thorn or Anna Bone and the stepson of John "Balljack"
My Remarks: In 1850 there was a John Shoemake, age 84, born in South Carolina, listed on the census roll for Jackson County, Alabama. Next to him was listed Jack A. Shoemake, age 47. The name appears as Jack A., and not John A. as has been reported. This persons is more than likely John "BallJack" Shoemake and not the John who is living next to him.