Notes for James Magnus McSwain: The 1900 census gives the name James A as a brother of Wiley, Callie and Matthew O. There is a discrepancy with his age in that census and later censuses, and his known birth date. James A is reported to be 15 years old, which would mean a birth year of about 1875, ten years earlier than the birth year of James Marvin). Yet there seems to be no indication there was another James. James M is known to be the brother of Wiley and Matthew. I cannot account for the discrepancy.
In the 1910 Census, Arkansas County, Arkansas, census, he is listed only as James McSwain. The 1920 census gives the name as James M. This is also the name on the gravestone in Mt Pleasant Cemetery, Ethel, Arkansas. I learned in January 2008 from public documents that had become available on Ancestry.com that his middle name was Magnus.
In 1910 James is married to Ruth Lowry and they have two daughters.
1910 Federal Census, Arkansas County, Arkansas, 20 April, Prairie Township, District 13, Page 3A, House #121 Fam #125, McSwain, James Head M W 25 Married 5 years AR NC NC Farmer McSwain, Ruth L Wife F W 33 Married 5 years AR IN AR McSwain, Bernetta Dau F W 4 AR AR AR McSwain, Stella Dau F W 2 AR AR AR
Stella lived only a few years. We find her grave in Mt Pleasant Cemetery in Ethel, Prairie Township, Arkansas County. Her date of death given there is 2 May 1914.
I see that in 1910, Ruth's birthplace is reported as Arkansas, but in 1920 it is Oklahoma. We know for mother information that she was born in Indian Territory, so the 1910 census is wrong. See Lowry family Notes.
1920 Federal Census, Arkansas County, Arkansas, 4 February, District 16, Page 7A, Ethel & Chute Rd, House #121 Fam #125, McSwain, James M Head M W 35 AR NC NC Farmer McSwain, Ruth L Wife F W 33 OK IN AR McSwain, Bernetta O Dau F W 14 AR AR OK Farm Laborer McSwain, Ruth A Dau F W 9 AR AR OK McSwain, Marvin J Son M W 6 AR AR OK McSwain, Thad M Son F W 3yrs 2mos AR AR OK McSwain, Wirt B Son F W 8- 1/12 [this should read 9 months] AR AR OK
Wirt B was born in 6 April 1919. This should make his age in February 1920 9 months. The enumerator must have had the right idea, but wrote it as though it was 8 years (instead of 8 months in the previous year) plus the one month of 1920.
James Magnus (Jim) was married to Ruth Lowery (spelled Lawery in some family documents and on her tombstone). Ruth died in 1924. Jim married widow Annie Padgett McSwain sometime between 1920 and 1930. Annie's first husband Robert McSwain died in January 1920, right after the 1920 census (in early January that year). In the 1930 census they are married and Annie's three younger daughters, Elsie, Nina and Hazel Bob, are living with them. There were no children from this marriage.
Bobby Butler research says middle initial is M. There was some uncertainty about the middle name; family members thought it might be Marvin, like his son. I could not get any information form the direct family members to clarify this. In January 2008, I found James' WWI Draft Registration card online. This clarifies that his middle name was Magnus.
In 1930, we find that James' first wife has died, and he has married a widow. His new wife is Martha Annie Padgett McSwain, widow of Robert Perry McSwain, a son of Phillip K McSwain, one of the original McSwain pioneers. Robert is a cousin of James Magnus, whose father is George B McSwain. James and Mattie have merged their families into one large household.
1930 Federal Census, Arkansas County, Arkansas, 22 April, District 25, page 6B, Prairie Township, Ethel & Point Rd, Hse #125, Fam #126 McSwain, James M Head M W 45 AR NC NC Farmer McSwain, Mattie A Wife F W 43 AR NC TN McSwain, That M Son M W 13 AR AR OK McSwain, Wurt B Son M W 11 AR AR OK McSwain, Bruce B Son M W 6 AR AR OK McSwain, Elsie E Step-Dau F W 20 AR AR AR McSwain, Nina M Step-Dau F W 14 AR AR AR McSwain, Hazel Bob Step-Dau F W 11 AR AR AR Rowland, Walton Cousin M W 18 AR KY AR Farm Laborer
The latter person is the son of Maggie E McSwain Rowland Porter, a daughter of Phillip McSwain, and thus a sister of Robert Perry.
Jim died by suicide. The date on his gravestone gives the date of death as 15 Oct 1944. It appears, however, that there was first a 1 (1941) then a 4 was carved over it. I first dismissed this as a prominent flaw in the gravestone, until I found the record in the Arkansas Death Index. The date of death on that register is 15 October 1941! Correlating with this is the report of his age at death at 56.
More About James Magnus McSwain: Burial: Oct 1941, Mt Pleasant Cemetery, Ethel, Arkansas, Arkansas, by Essex Funeral Home.6917 Died 2: He died by suicide.6918
More About James Magnus McSwain and Martha Annie Padgett: Marriage: Bet. 1920 - 1930, Arkansas County, Akansas.6919
Children of James Magnus McSwain and Ruth L Lowry are: