My Genealogy Hound

Below is a family biography from the book, History of Kentucky, Edition 1 by J. H. Battle, W. H. Perrin and G. C. Kniffin and published by F. A. Battey Publishing Company in 1885.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

* * * *

MAJ. JAMES H. ASHCRAFT was born on May 4, 1840, in Brandenburg, Meade Co., Ky. His father, Absalom Ashcraft, died when James H. was an infant, he being the youngest of a family of eleven children. His mother, whose maiden name was Delilah A. Allen, is still living and resides with her son James H. in Paducah. In consequence of her widowhood, with a large family she was unable to do more than to instill habits of honor and industry into her children. James had the privileges of the common schools, and in early life engaged in the wharf-boat business in his native county, until the breaking out of the war, when he responded to the first call of the President for troops, and became a member of Company G, Twenty-sixth Kentucky Volunteer Infantry, and in the organization was elected first lieutenant of that company. He took the field in the fall of 1861, serving until the close of the war. In May, 1862, he was promoted to captain, and in April, 1865. was promoted to major of the regiment, with which commission he was mustered out at the close of the war. He shared the vicissitudes and fortunes of his command through all their varied experience, including the battles of Shiloh, siege of Corinth, battle of Nashville, Saltville, raid of West Virginia, and the campaign to the Atlantic Coast. While on detached duty in Kentucky, he was ambushed and wounded in Meade County, near his old home and birthplace. At the close of the war, he returned to Brandenburg and for two years was engaged in mercantile pursuits; thence went to Louisville, Ky., and for a short time engaged in the grocery business, but in 1869 was appointed United States Revenue Storekeeper, which he filled one year; was then made deputy United States Marshal, under Gen. Murray, serving six years, of which time he was also deputy revenue collector for the First Kentucky District. In February, 1876, he was appointed by President Grant to the official honors of postmaster at Paducah; reappointed by President Hayes in 1880, and again by President Arthur, in 1884. Maj. Ashcraft is a man of fine personal appearance, of a military bearing and a true gentleman; to all polite and kind. He is a member of the Plainfield Lodge, No. 449, A. F. & A. M.; Paducah Chapter, No. 30, R. A. M.; Paducah Commandery, No. 11, K. T.; Friendship Lodge, No. 61, A. O. U. W.; Rapidan Lodge, No. 341, K. of H. In December 1865, in Louisville, Ky., he was married to Miss Mary E. Brown, daughter of Dr. E. O. Brown of that city. They have three children: Erasmus B., James H., and Allen M. Ashcraft.

* * * *

This family biography is one of 165 biographies included in the McCracken County, Kentucky section of the book, The History of Kentucky, Edition 1 published in 1885 by F. A. Battey Publishing Company.  For the complete description, click here: History of Kentucky, Edition 1

View additional McCracken County, Kentucky family biographies here: McCracken County, Kentucky Biographies

Use the links at the top right of this page to search or browse thousands of other family biographies.