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Ancestors of Kenneth Dan Collins

      18. Joseph "Joe" Brevard II Potts, born 1815 in Tuscumbia, Colbert Co., Alabama; died 1862 in Oklahoma. He was the son of 36. Joseph Brevard Potts. He married 19. Rhoda Gunn in Oklahoma.

      19. Rhoda Gunn, born 18 Apr 1818 in Pontotoc, Mississippi; died 29 Jul 1876 in Bryan County, OK. She was the daughter of 38. James G. Gunn and 39. Molley [Mollie or Moley] Colbert.

Notes for Joseph "Joe" Brevard II Potts:
Death sudden. He likely had Malaria, common in those days.
Suposedly went to visit Gov. Cyrus Harris in 1862. Found
package of white powder in the medical supplies and thinking it
was quinine (very scarce) he took it. It turned out to be
strichnine and he died.

  Notes for Rhoda Gunn:
was the only child of James Gunn and Molly Colbert, a
mixed-blood Chickasaw. James was well educated and saw to it
that Rhoda was to receive a much better education than what
most white women received. Rhoda preferred company of Indians;
fell in love and married Chickasaw, Oke-la-na, at Monroe
Mission by Father Stewart.
Rhoda's father bought land in new Choctaw Nation Indian
Territory and with health failing urged Rhoda not to fight the
removal and go asap. Oke-la-na decided to oppose the removal,
left with a small band of braves and never returned. In 1837
with heavy heart, she gathered possessions, met relatives at
Horn Lake, MS (sourth of Memphis, TN).
One famous legend was about her swimming the Mississippi
River at a point near Horn Lake on a wager for a barrell of
sugar. She retrieved a handfull of mud from the opposite bank
and swam back without pause.
The family were well prepared for the trip and had good
horses. They reached the rich valley of the Boggy River and
the family of Cyrus Harris (son of Rhoda's half sister
Elizabeth son and future gov. of Chickasaws) decided to settle
there. Rhoda's other half-sister, Sallie was the wife of
Chief Issac Albertson. She then married Joseph Bevard Potts
II, whose family settled in nort Texas and Chickasaw Nation and
gave birth to three children. After Joseph Potts died, Rhoda
and the children subsisted on their own for a number of years.
Rhoda's group continued on with other relatives to the Red
River were kinsman Ben F. Colbert was building a ferry. Some
accounts say that Rhoda married Samuel Colbert (her cousin) for
a short time and followed relatives to Red River sometime
later. She may have had a daughter, Susan, who eventually
married and went to Arkansas.
After the Civil War, Rhoda gave permission for her daugher
Sallie to marry Kentuckian Daniel Collins and for other
daughter Mary to marry Daniel's brother, John. Daniel and
Sallie lived with Aunt Sallie Albertson in a fine log house
that had taken several years to build (still-standing and
oldest occupied home in Oklahoma Territory), while John and
Mary moved in with Rhoda 'who was glad to have a man in the
house again.' Mary died in the chilbirth of her first child.
Dan and Sallie went on to raise seven children and become
prominent citizens of that area.

Shares the headstone with her half-sister, Sallie Oxbury
Colbert Albertson.

More About Rhoda Gunn:
Burial: Old Love Cemetery, Near Colbert

Marriage Notes for Joseph Potts and Rhoda Gunn:
Rhoda and Joseph Potts (related to founder of Pottsville, TX)
married and built home a few miles from Colbert Station. After
Joseph died she moved in with her half-sister, Sallie

More About Joseph Potts and Rhoda Gunn:
Marriage: Oklahoma
Children of Joseph Potts and Rhoda Gunn are:
  i.   Mary Potts, died Bet. 1867 - 1868 in Colbert, OK; married John Jefferson Collins Abt. 1866 in Colbert, OK; born 01 Feb 1844 in Caldwell Co., KY; died 25 Feb 1889.
  Notes for Mary Potts:
Died in chilbirth with first child.

  Notes for John Jefferson Collins:
"Unfortunately accidentally shot" according to L&LM in article
about his brother, Edward Collins.

Phil Pace in genealogy of "Major Groom" lists his year of
death as 1879. However, in L&LM article on brother Ed Collins
(written abt. 1891) says John death occurred "just two years
ago", also that at time of writing Ed's first child Mattie was
eleven years old. Since Ed and Elsie married in 1874, this
does not line up with an 1879 death for John. Assuming a
recording error somewhere and should be 1889. Source of the
Feb. 25 date unknown but keeping it.

  Marriage Notes for Mary Potts and John Collins:
Mary and John were sister and brother of Sallie Potts and
Daniel Collins.

  More About John Collins and Mary Potts:
Marriage: Abt. 1866, Colbert, OK

  9 ii.   Sarah (Sallie) Adeline Potts, born 03 Mar 1844 in Colbert (Indian Territory) OK; died 27 Nov 1926 in Colbert, OK; married Daniel Hiram Collins 11 Feb 1866 in near Colbert, Oklahoma.
  iii.   John Taylor Potts, born 27 Dec 1846; died 04 Jan 1881; married (1) Emily Love; married (2) Mary M. Barrett.
  iv.   Joseph Brevard III Potts, born 03 Feb 1856; died Jul 1942; married Nancy "Nannie" Valinda Davis.

      20. Alexander "Alex" McKinney, born May 1826 in Mississippi; died 24 Nov 1883. He was the son of 40. William Sr. McKinney and 41. Polly Mizell. He married 21. Martha L. "Mattie" Collins Jun 1857 in Colbert ('near'), OK.

      21. Martha L. "Mattie" Collins, born 27 May 1831 in Caldwell Co., KY; died 18 Jan 1899. She was the daughter of 16. George Washington Collins and 17. Mildred Ann Groom.

Notes for Alexander "Alex" McKinney:
ALEXANDER McKINNEY [Cherokee and Chickasaw.]
The deceased subject of this sketch was born in Mississippi, May, 1830. His father was a white man, and his mother a Cherokee, who, drifting into the Chickasaw country at an early age, was adopted by that tribe. In 1844 Alexander moved to the present Choctaw nation and attended the neighborhood school at Boggy Depot. In the year 1857 he married Miss Mattie Collins, of Grayson County, Texas, and originally from Kentucky. Miss Mattie was a bright, animated and adventurous young woman, fearlessly following her husband whethersoever he went in pursuits of game or adventure. After settling on their present home two miles from Stringtown, this lady was alone one morning when a deer trotted up to the gate in front of the house; hitherto she had never attempted to discharge a gun, but her eagerness to secure the animal was such that she risked everything and succeeded in killing the deer after firing the first barrel pretty wide of the mark. During the squally years of the revolution Mrs. McKinney more than once kept invaders from entering her premises, and on one occasion disarmed a drunken Indian who was forcing his way into the house. Mr. and Mrs. McKinney had but one child, a boy, who died early. Their love for children was such that they were constantly adopting, educating and starting them in life. No less than sixteen in this manner, at various periods became the recipients of their parental care. Four children of the late Henry McKinney, and four of William McKinney’s family were thus brought up. They also raised a niece named Maggie Pursely, and at the same time an orphan boy whom they named Ben. At the ages of sixteen and thirteen years this young couple married and are now living in the Chickasaw Nation, where they have an extensive farm under cultivation and a good stock of cattle. The above named were perhaps the youngest couple ever married in the Choctaw Nation. The deceased subject of this sketch was a most popular man, off-handed, generous and strictly honorable. Appreciating the fact that he had no offspring to hoard money for, he spent much of his means in educating, clothing and feeding the destitute children of others, so that when Alex. McKinney died at the age of fifty-three, he was sincerely regretted abroad and at home. At the time of his death, in 1883, he left a comfortable home, one thousand head of cattle, two hundred and fifty head of horses and mules, and about three hundred acres of excellent farm land. His widow, Mrs. McKinney, still resides at the old homestead and is not the less remarkable for hospitality, benevolence and love of children. Indeed, her doors are ever open to those in need of a home or a shelter. She is exceedingly fond of fishing and hunting, and their being plenty of game and several small lakes well stocked with fish on her property, she is seldom, if ever, without a house full of visitors, whom it is her greatest pleasure to entertain.
From LEADERS AND LEADING MEN, 1891, original edition.

The Alexander McKinneys,
Choctaw Nation, I.T.
by Marie Wilson
Thousand of Chickasaw and Choctaw men, women, and children were forced to move from their homeland east of the Mississippi to the lands called Indian Territory, during the decade following the year 1830. One of these women was Polly Mizzell McKinney. Polly Mizzell was a Cherokee who had moved into the Chickasaw country of Mississippi at an early age, and was adopted by the tribe. Her husband, William McKinney, Sr., was a white man, probably Irish. William and Polly, with their family, friends and neighbors, came to Choctaw Nation in 1844. They settled near Colbert, in what is now Atoka County. Polly died at or near Atoka, but the date is unknown. William and Polly McKinney had five sons; Alexander, Ned, Henry, Tom, and William, Jr., and one daughter, who married Frank Colbert. Alexander (or Alex) was born in Mississippi, May, 1826, and made the trek to Indian Territory with his mother and father, William and Polly McKinney. Alex married Martha (Mattie) Collins; his brother, William, Jr., married Martha’s sister, Sarah Collins. Alex was a popular man, off-handed and generous; he was an honest man, and a man of complete integrity. He and Mattie were prominent farmers and race-horse owners. Their place was on the west side of North Boggy, about half a mile southwest of the old A.W. Geary place, on the east bank of the river. Mr. and Mrs. McKinney had but one child, a boy, who died early. Their love for children was such that they spent a great deal of money adopting, clothing and educating no less than sixteen children. These included the four children of Alex’s brother, William, Jr., and Mattie’s sister, Sarah Collins: Harris, who married Molly Hill in 1892; Oyd; Martha, who married Charley Hayes in 1881; and Martha Louise, who married Joseph Garside of Stringtown in 1882.

Among the many children reared by Alex and Mattie McKinney, was a niece named Maggie Pursley, and at the same time, an orphan boy named Ben. At the age of sixteen and thirteen years, this young couple, Ben and Maggie, were married. They were probably the youngest couple ever married in the Choctaw Nation. After the Civil War, the home of Alex and Mattie McKinney was the stagecoach station on the old Butterfield Overland Mail Route. (Butterfield stages were no longer running, having ceased operation before the Civil War.) It is said that when the North Boggy River was high, north-bound stagecoach passengers were compelled to wait at McKinney’s until the high water subsided. From this it appears that Geary’s toll-bridge over North Boggy had passed out of existence. McKinney’s station went out of business about 1872-1873, when the railroad began operating. Alex McKinney died November 24, 1883, at the age of fifty-seven, and was buried at the old Boggy Bend Cemetery, about two miles west of Stringtown. His grave was moved to the Lehigh Cemetery when Lake Atoka was being built. At the time of his death, Alex left a comfortable home, many cattle, horses and mules, and about three hundred acres of excellent farmland. His wife, Mattie, continued to live at the old homestead-which later belonged to Dr. J.S. Fulton, and is now under water, a part of Lake Atoka.

Mattie (Martha Collins) McKinney was originally from Kentucky. She was a "bright, animated, and adventurous woman." She was known far and wide for her hospitality, benevolence, and love for children. It has been related that Mattie was grief-stricken when her niece, Mary Louise Garside, died at the young age of thirty-four, leaving seven small children, ages ranging from nine months to ten years. (These children’s names are given in the "History of the Garside Family" told elsewhere in this book.) The day of her niece, Mary’s funeral, Mattie drove up to the Old Church at Stringtown, the wheels of her buggy clattering loudly in the solemn quietness of the hour. In another few moments, the funeral service while Mattie’s mournful cries of grief filled the little church, as she made her way down the aisle to sit with the motherless children. Mattie McKinney was a fearless woman; on one occasion, she disarmed a drunken man, who was forcing his way into her home. She was fond of fishing and hunting, and there was plenty of game and several small lakes well stocked with fish on the McKinney property.
Mattie and Alex were seldom without visitors, and one of their greatest pleasures was to entertain their many friends in the Choctaw Nation.
Taken from book,
"Tales of Atoka County Heritage"
Published 1982-1983
(Thanks to Lola Withrow)

More About Alexander "Alex" McKinney:
Burial: Old Boggy Bend Cem. (Moved to Lehigh when lake built)

  Notes for Martha L. "Mattie" Collins:
(See notes under Alex. McKinney) Adopted/Raised sixteen children mostly of

Mattie lived in Grayson Co., Tx before she married Alex.

More About Alexander McKinney and Martha Collins:
Marriage: Jun 1857, Colbert ('near'), OK
Children of Alexander McKinney and Martha Collins are:
  10 i.   Benjamin F.C. McKinney, born Sep 1867 in near Atoka, Choctaw Nation; died 1900 in San Antonio, TX; Adopted child; married (1) Margaret "Maggie" Pusley 28 Dec 1883 in Home of Alex & Mattie McKinney, near Stringtown, OK. I.T.; married (2) Laura Francis Potts 06 Nov 1895.
  ii.   (14 other ado./foster children) McKinney

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