Elmina (McGowan) and John Johnson Neeley
Here is an excerpt of an analysis I used to connect Elmina McGowan Neeley to her parents:
1850 Federal Census for Auglaize Township, Allen co., OH p.579, dwelling #785:
Joseph McGowen, 30y male farmer, born PA
Melvina McGowen, 28y female, born OH
Elmina McGowen, 7y female, born OH
Clementine McGowen, 4y female, born OH
Seamon McGowen, 2y male, born OH
1860 Federal Census for Auglaize Township, Allen Co., OH p.483, dwelling #1393:
J.T. Magawin, 39y male farmer, born PA
M. Magawin, 38y female, born VA
E.J. Magawin, 17y female, born OH
M.E. Magawin, 15y female, born OH
S.E. Magawin, 12y male, born OH
Z.A. Magawin, 10y female, born OH
H.A. Magawin, 5y male, born OH
L.A. Magawin, 1y female, born OH
1865 Kansas State Census for Timber Hill Township, Bourbon Co., KS, p.40, dwelling #283:
J.S. McGowan, 45y male Farmer, born PA
M. McGowan, 44y female, born VA
C. McGowan, 19y female teacher, born OH
S. McGowan, 16y male, born OH
Z. McGowan, 14y female, born OH
H. McGowan 10y male, born OH
L. McGowan, 6y female, born OH
F. McGowan, 2y male, born OH
From these census records the following can be deduced:
Joseph T. McGowan was born in Pennsylvania between 1818-1821
Melvina McGowan was born in Ohio or Virginia between 1819-1822 and died between 1875-1880
Elmina J. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1843 – she does not appear in the household in 1865 (married in March prior to June enumeration)
Clementine (M.E.) McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1845-1846 and leaves the household after 1865
Seamon E. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1848-1849 and leaves the household after 1865
Z.A. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1850-1851 and leaves the household before 1875
Henry A. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1855-1856 and leaves the household after 1880
Louisa A. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1859-1860 and leaves the household after 1880
Frank E. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1862-1864
From Land Records we find:
Deed Record dated 3 April 1892 in Bourbon Co., KS from Mary McGowan, widow of J.T. McGowan, granted to J.W. Moore and Semon E. McGowan –
½ interest in SW ¼ of section 9, Township 24, Range 23
Land Record Index from Bourbon Co., KS showing transactions of
SW ¼ of section 9, Township 24, Range 23 –
Entered by Joseph T. McGowan on 4 Nov. 1860
from Mary McGowan et al. to John W. Moore on April 2, 1901 (same as above deed)
from Henry O. McGowan to S.E. and D.L. McGowan on April 2, 1901
from F.E. McGowan to H.O. McGowan on April 2, 1901
from L.A. Neeley, et al. to D.L. McGowan on May 10, 1901
from S.E. McGowan to Minnie Huffman on May 10, 1901
from S.E. McGowan to D.L. McGowan on Feb. 24, 1919
from D.L. McGowan to S.E. McGowan on Feb. 24, 1919
from M.A. McGowan and D.L. McGowan to Jas. G. Crocker on Feb. 21, 1924
from M.A. McGowan heirs to Jas. G. Crocker on Dec. 13, 1924
from Ora E. McGowan to Myra Mahaffey, etal. on March 23, 1931
to Janie McGowan, widow of D.L. McGowan on April 14, 1931 (see below for relationships)
As for the family of Henry Miller (father of Melvina Miller McGowan):
In NARA bounty land warrant #86844 (cited above), there is also a copy of the Last Will and Testament of Henry Miller, dated 27 February 1858 at Knox Co., OH.
This names son Avery M. Miller, daughter Malvina McGowan, daughter Zelpha Phillips, and deceased daughter Elmina Baker.
Marriage Records of Knox County, Ohio 1808-1875 gives:
p.40 – Elmina Miller married Jacob L. Baker on 29 Jan. 1837
p.58 – Malvina Miller married J.T. McGowan on 27 Feb. 1842 (prev. submitted)
p. 105 – Avery M. Miller married Rosa A. Heiple on 28 June 1851
p. 122 – Zilpha Miller married William Phillips on 8 March 1855
From Kansas Marriages 1840-1935 (database at FamilySearch.org)-
S.E. Mcgowan, born 1848 married to Missouri Stewart on 13 Sept. 1872 in Bourbon Co. KS
Zelpha A. Mcgowan, born 1852 married to J.W. Moore on 17 Dec. 1874 in Bourbon Co., KS
Marinda C. Mcgowan, born 1845 married to Joseph B. Wilson on 15 Nov. 1867 in Bourbon Co., KS
Frank E. Mcgowan, born 1868 married to Clementine Stewart on 17 Feb. 1886 in Bourbon Co., KS
NARA Civil War Pension for John J. Neeley-
statement indicates his first wife Elmina McGowan died near Greenup IL on 26 June 1882 and he is currently (15 January 1898) married to Louisa A. McGowan
Decree of Descent from Probate Court of Bourbon Co., KS 13 Feb. 1943 –
gives additional information on Semon E. McGowan (deceased 3 October 1919), leaving widow Missouri Ann McGowan (died 17 December 1930), and children D.L. McGowan, Myra Mahaffey, Bertha Boyd, Emma Feemster, Alice McGowan, Edna Brown and Ora McGowan
Letter from Mildred R. Neeley of Casey, IL to Kimberly Ormsby [Nagy] dated 12 April 1978 (she was the daughter of Charles Hiram Neeley, son of J.J. and Elmina) – she cites information given to her from Orilda Neeley, daughter of J.J. and Elmina) – mentions that the two wives of J.J. Neeley were sisters – Elmina and Louisa McGowan. (I have the original in my possession)
Enclosed are copies of several family letters , originals in possession of Elbert Cassell, descendant of Avery Miller. He lived in Carthage, MO in 1981 when I received these copies:
1. From Elmina McGowan [in Kansas] to Avery Miller [her uncle] dated 25 Aug. 1863.
2. From Clementine McGowan Wilson (in Bourbon Co) to Uncle Avery Miller her uncle dated Feb. 1867  – mentions Aunt Zilpha [Phillips] and tells of her mother’s (Melvina Miller McGowan) death
3. From Melvina Miller McGowan to her brother Avery Miller dated 30 March 1873. Mentions her children Clem and Semon and sister Zilpah .
4. From Melvina Miller McGowan to her brother Avery Miller dated 5 July 1874. mentions his wife Rosa, her sister Zilpah and William [Zilpah’s husband]. Mentions daughter Clem. Asks about daughter Elmina [still in Ohio].
5. From Melvina Miller McGowan to brother Avery Miller [ca 1875]. Mentions sons Henry and Semon, daughters Clem and Zilpah who married John Moore. Asks about her sister Zilpah and Avery’s wife Rosa
6. From Clementine McGowan Wilson to Uncle Avery Miller dated 24 Feb. 1889 – mentions Aunt Zilpha & Uncle Will [Phillips] and Uncle Avery and Aunt Rosa [Miller]. Also that her father [J.T.] has remarried. Also mentions brothers Henry, Frank, Semon and sister Zilpha. She talks about her children Bertie Adelaide, Louisa Josephine, Frank Emmet, Edward Benson, Julia Amelia, Walter Scot, and Ethel May.
I believe that the above references help to substantiate the family as follows:
Henry Miller had the following children:
1. Elmina Miller who married Jacob Baker in 1837 and died before 1858
2. Melvina Miller who married J.T. McGowan in 1842 (see below)
3. Avery Miller who married Rosa Heiple in 1851
4. Zilpha Miller who married William Phillips in 1855.
Henry was a veteran of the War of 1812 and received 160 acres of Bounty Land that passed to his daughter Melvina upon his death. That land was the SW1/4 of Section 9, township 24, range 23E in Bourbon Co. OH. Son-in-law J .T. McGowan settled on that land in 1860. This land was subsequently transferred between J.T.’s surviving children and grandchildren.
Joseph T. McGowan was born 17 July 1819 in Pennsylvania. He died 11 Dec. 1890 in Bourbon Co., KS.
He married (1) Melvina Miller in 1842 in Knox Co., OH. She was born ca 1820 in OH or VA, and died between 1875-80 probably in Bourbon Co., KS.
He married (2) Mary A. Smith in 1887 in Bourbon Co., KS.
J.T. and Melvina had the following children:
1. Elmina J. McGowan, born 21 April 1844 in Ohio who married J.J. Neeley (see below)
2. Marinda Clementine McGowan was born in 1845 in Ohio and married Joseph Wilson in 1867 in Bourbon Co., KS.
3. Seamon E. McGowan was born in 1848 in Ohio and married Missouri Stewart in 1872 in Bourbon Co., KS. He died in 1919.
4. Zilpha A. McGowan was born in 1852 in Ohio and married J.W. Moore in 1874 in Bourbon Co., KS.
5. Henry A. McGowan was born in Ohio ca 1855-1856 and leaves the household after 1880. He moves west.
6. Louisa A. McGowan was born in 1859 Ohio and marries her widowed brother-in-law J.J. Neeley (see below)
7. Frank E. McGowan was born in 1868 Ohio and married Clementine Stewart in 1886.
John J. Neeley was born 20 July 1841 and died 17 September 1908.
He married (1) Elmina J. McGowan on 14 March 1865 in Bourbon Co, KS. She was born 21 April 1844 in Ohio and died 26 June 1882 near Greenup, IL (buried in Clark Co., IL).
He married (2) Louisa A. McGowan, sister of Elmina. They were married 27 Dec. 1882. She was born in 1859 in Ohio and died in 1917 (buried in Clark Co., IL).
John J. and Elmina had 9 children including Lena E. Neeley who married Edward A. Ormsby
John J. and Louisa had 5 children.
These records should show that Elmina (McGowan) Neeley was the daughter of Joseph T. and Melvina (Miller) McGowan. She had siblings Marinda Clementine (McGowan) Wilson, Seamon E. McGowan, Zilpha A. (McGowan) Moore, Henry A. McGowan, Louisa A. (McGowan) Neeley and Frank E. McGowan. In fact, Louisa, Frank and Henry are noted to be children of J.T. McGowan on the 1880 census.
Joseph Thompson and Melvina (Miller) McGowan
The analysis itself is actually much longer and contains more information as I was trying to prove some other dates as well, but it gives an idea of how we can infer a relationship when all we have is indirect evidence to substantiate it. In other words, I have nothing that states simply "Elmina was the daughter of Joseph and Melvina McGowan", but am fairly certain that she was based on other information.