Simon Cockrell was born ca. 1745 in Prince William County, Virginia. Some records show his date of birth to be 1751. On examination of the papers of his life and in particular his indenture is seems more likely that he was born in 1745. His parents were likely Thomas and Deborah Cockrell of Frederick County, Virginia since a deed of gift refers to him as son. Simon Cockrell was a Baptist Minister in Virginia and he also served as a Virginia Legislator for several terms representing the county of Russell. He also was granted bounty land in Montgomery County, Virginia and is listed as having taken the oath there. His letters during the Revolutionary War are on record at Washington, D. C. Simon Cockrell, later in life, at about age 80 was a Missouri Legislator for one term representing the new county of Clay. We call him Reverend Simon Cockrell.
Simon married Magdalena Vardeman about 1765 reportedly in James City, Virginia. Those records were cruelly destroyed and no primary documentation of this marriage seems to turn up. Our deeds provide the secondary proof that they were married where she signs her dower right.
Magdelena Vardeman was born about 1744 in Bedford County, Virginia which happens to have been the residence of her parents in that year. That she was the daughter of John Vardeman and Elizabeth Morgan is a matter of general record and of the family records of the Vardeman family. She died in 1843 within 96 hours of her husband according to family legend. The tradition further states that she is buried together with him. She is not named in the list of heirs of Simon Cockrell located in the Cass County Archives in Cass County, Missouri. Perhaps the tradition is not so far off.
Their children of record are as follows:
Moses Cockrell born about 1770 in Augusta County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year) and died about 1800 in Lee County, Virginia. He was married to Barthena Chadwell after 1787 in Virginia and they had two children. His son David is named in the list of heirs for Simon Cockrell and it further states that his whereabouts are unknown. There was a documented surname spelling change of this family of descendants to COTTRELL. Moses other child was Elizabeth.
Simon Cockrell born about 1772 in Botetourt County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year) and died September 13, 1857 in Breathitt County, Virginia. He was married two times and the name of his first wife is not a matter of family record on this date (19 AUG 1999). His second wife was Mary Smith. So many of the deeds in Russell County, Virginia are simply designated as Simon Cockrell. The only distinction between them is the name of the wife, causing a bit of confusion among early researchers as to the name of the wife of Simon Cockrell, Sr. Adding to this confusion is the fact that this Simon Cockrell is also a Simon Cockrell, Sr. and the name of the wife became generally accepted to be Mary Magdalena. The Vardeman family records do not show such a first name for the daughter of John and Elizabeth Vardeman.
Celia Cockrell born about 1773 (the residence of Simon and Magdalena was Fincastle County, Virginia in this year). She is reported to have been the wife of William Callahan. There is no evidence of this child in family records and William Callahan is not in residence in any census that we have searched to date. Perhaps something will turn up some day. This has no bearing on the children that descend from Alexander Cockrell listed further in this record.
John Cockrell born about 1775 in Montgomery County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year). John died about 1828 along the Arkansas River while on a hunting trip. He was married to Amelia Alley in Virginia. They had several children and his widow raised them all to adulthood in Kentucky.
Elizabeth Cockrell born about 1776 in Montgomery County, Virginia (the residence of her parents in that year). And died in Coles County, Illinois according to family tradition. She was married before the 1810 census of Pulaski County, Kentucky to Absolem Sargent. They had several children listed in a census before 1850 when the names were all registered. Â“BetsyÂ” Sargent is listed as living in Illinois among the heirs of Simon Cockrell
Sally Cockrell born about 1780 in Washington County, Virginia (the residence of her parents in that year). She died before the 1850 census of Edgar County, Illinois. She was married January 24, 1804 in Tazewell County, Virginia to Presley Davis as written in the book Â“Annals of Southwest VirginiaÂ”. She had several children and is listed in the heirs of Simon Cockrell as living in Clay County, Illinois in 1843.
James Cockrell born 1781 in Russell County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year). He died November 28, 1843 in Johnson County, Missouri. He married first to Miss Turner and they had a couple of daughters. He married second to the widow Nancy Mariah Doke nee Stovall. They had several children including one son who died at the age of 8 years.
Daniel Cockrell born about 1782 in Russell County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year). He died January 1, 1813 at the Battle of New Orleans. It is said that he was not married and that he had no children.
Joseph Cockrell was born June 8, 1784 in Russell County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year). And died April 3, 1837 in Johnson County, Missouri. He was married three times of record. His first wife is unnamed in all records to date. One son was born to this marriage. His second wife was Sally Hunt and the mother of Alexander Cockrell of Dallas, Texas fame. His third wife was Nancy Ellis who mothered the famous sons Francis Marion Cockrell the Confederate General and United States Senator, as well as Jeremiah Vardeman Cockrell. Jeremiah was a Colonel, Missouri Cavalry C. S. A. After the war he then moved to Taylor County, Texas and lived there until his death. He was a Circuit Judge of Western (TX) for some years: member of Congress from Texas, 1890 & 1894. Nancy Cockrell nee Ellis remarried following the death of her husband to James D. Black. She had several more children by this marriage.
William Cockrell was born about 1785 in Russell County, Virginia (the residence of his parents in that year.) He died in 1862 in Breathitt County, Kentucky. William Cockrell married Nancy Wright in 1812 near BooneÂ’s Station in Kentucky. They had several children. William Cockrell was a Baptist Minister in Kentucky and a school teacher. He was a resident of Jackson County, Missouri during the time of his fatherÂ’s death. William was the administrator of the estate and filed several appeals to claim a debt left unpaid at the time of the death of Morgan Cockrell listed later in this message. William Cockrell married after the death of his first wife to Rhoda McQuinn on December 30, 1846. She had been the niece by marriage of William and obtained an annulment from her former (abusive) husband.
Jeremiah Vardeman Cockrell or "Jerri" was born about 1786 in Russell County, Virginia ( the residence of his parents in that year). He died after the 1870 census in Breathitt County, Virginia. He married Sally Sewards on August 8, 1807 in Kentucky. They had two sons and in all the census records found there is no family residing with him. Not until later years when he is enumerated with his son is there any evidence of his family. Most of the records about this family are tradition. New data in the land records of Missouri shed light on this subject.
Morgan Cockrell was born about 1788 in Russell County, Virginia and died June 25, 1842 in Johnson County, Missouri. He is buried in the Bethel Cemetery on land he obtained on an original patent and which is still within the family property today. Morgan was married first to Dicey as found in a deed at the Lafayette County, Missouri courthouse in Lexington, Missouri. He was married second to Hannah Andrews on February 3, 1833 in Lafayette County, Missouri. Because the administrator of his estate was Joel Cockrell it is believed that this man was the son of Morgan. He is buried quite near Morgan Cockrell in the Bethel Cemetery. Another one of the children of Morgan Cockrell who is buried in that cemetery is Nancy COCKERELL. She was the wife of Barksdale S. West. The living children of Morgan are listed in the heirs of Simon Cockrell.
Alexander Cockrell was born in 1790 in Powell Valley, Russell County, Virginia and he died October 14, 1858 in Pottawatamie County, Kansas. He married Sarah Elizabeth Helm and the evidence of their marriage is the deeds of Washington County, Indiana and Clay County, Illinois. There has been some controversy in the past that her maiden name was Kelso as reported by early researchers. However the death certificate of one of her daughters gives her full maiden name. Alexander Cockrell is listed among the heirs of Simon Cockrell as living in Clay County, Indiana in 1843. This document is on record in the archives of Cass County in Cass County, Missouri.
I will welcome any connections or documented corrections to this record. Note that I am a documented descendant of this line through Morgan Cockrell.
Bella M. Hughes