The Old Homestead

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God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

- Romans 5:8


    Richard Dove was born Sept. 28, 1819 in Virginia. (1)
    Married Sarah Johnson on Jan. 1, 1843, in Hancock County, Ohio.  Sarah was born Sept. 23, 1825, in New York.  She was the daughter of Michael and Permelia (Standish) Johnson. (2)
    The Doves had 13 children, according to the obituary of one of their children.  Identifying these children presents some unique problems. Their names and approximate birth years are listed in the 1860, 1870, 1880 and 1900 censuses. However, information in these sources often conflicts. The following list and footnotes try to sort out most of the children and address some of the problems presented in the records.  The names of children with serious questions are followed by asterisks.
    Katharine Dove, born about 1845.  Married Jacob Frederick. (3)
    William Dove, born about 1847. (4)
    Sarah E. Dove, born July 23, 1847.  Married David S. Danner. (5)
    Electa Ann Dove, born July 17, 1849.  Married John W. Danner. (6)
    Mary Etta Dove, born about 1853.  Married Gillum Hopper. (7)
    Emily Dove, born about 1853. (8)
    Harriet Dove, born about 1858. * (9)
    Harry Dove, born about 1859. * (10)
    John Dove, born about 1859. * (11)
    Hattie Dove, born about June 1861. * (12)
    Theodore Dove, or Kidd, born May 6, 1867. (13)
    George Dove, or Guy, born about 1866. (14)
    Richard appears to have moved from Virginia to Ohio in the 1830s or early 1840s.  It seems likely that he followed an older brother named William.  Both Richard and William Dove were from Virginia and appear in early records from Hardin County, Ohio, including a pair of deeds selling property in the same area to the same man at the same time.  In the 1840 Census, William is listed in Blanchard Township, Hardin County, in a household that seems to include a husband, wife, a young boy and two young girls.  In the 1850 census, the household of Wm. Dove is listed in Jackson Township, Hardin County, Ohio.  William is listed as 36 years old and a native of Virginia. (14a)
    Since Richard isn’t listed by name in the 1840 Census in Hardin or surrounding counties and he doesn’t seem to be included in William’s household, it seems likely that he arrived in Ohio later.  When he did make the move, he probably settled in or near Delaware Township, Hancock County.  When he and Sarah were married on Jan. 1, 1843, the ceremony was conducted by John Lafferty, who was a justice of the peace in Delaware Township.
    Richard next appears in an October 1849 deed in Hardin County, Ohio.  The document records Richard’s sale of 80 acres in Hardin County to George W. Trissler.  The very next deed in the book involves William Dove’s sale of nearby land to the same Trissler. (15)
    The deed indicates that Richard was living in Hancock County at the time of the transaction.  It also provides an indication that Richard could not write.  He acknowledged the deed with his mark rather than signing his name.  Later census records indicate that he could not read or write.
     Even though the deed states that Richard was living in Hancock County in 1849, and later census records indicate that several of his children were born in Ohio during the 1840s, the family doesn’t appear to be listed in the 1850 Census.  They were probably missed by the census takers, a dishearteningly common problem in that portion of Ohio in 1850.
    In the 1860 Census, Richard was a 39-year-old farmer in Jackson Township, Hardin County.  He is not listed as owning any real estate or personal property.  The household included Sarah, age 35; Catharine, age 15; Wm., 13; Sarah E., 11; Electia Ann, 9; Mary Eta, 7; Emily, 7; Jno., 1; and Henry, 1.  The census indicates that each of the children was born in Ohio.
    Sometime after Theodore’s birth in 1867, the Doves moved westward to Clay Township, Shelby County, Mo.  Theodore’s obituary recalls: “When he was a small boy he came with his parents to Shelby county, Missouri, where they settled in the Rawson Chapel neighborhood, which is now known as Ebenezer church.  He was one of thirteen children, all of whom preceded him in death.” (16)
    In the 1870 Census, Richard is listed as a 52-year-old farmer who owned real estate valued at $400 and personal property valued at $150.  The household included Sarah, age 45; Mariett, 18; John, 8; Hariett, 12; Kidd, 6; and George, 4.  Most of the children were born in Ohio. George’s birthplace was listed as Ohio but appears to have been crossed out.
    It also seems that one of Richard’s daughters lived on the Dove’s property with her new husband.  David Dunner – actually Danner – is listed as a23-year-old farm hand in the Dove household.  However, Sarah Dunner is listed as living next door.  The Danners were married April 20, 1869.
    Richard was active in an evangelical church near his home.  “General History of Shelby County, Missouri” recounts the foundation of the Ebenezer Church. It states: “In the year 1875 Rev. C. Stauffer had charge of the work at Bloomington and Bethel, commenced regular preaching services in the Rawson school house and organized a class with the following charter members: John Schwada, Clara Schwada, Henry Leutcherding, Lydia Leutcherding, Richard Dove, Henry Wilkie, Sophia Wilkie, S. Rawson, Mrs. R. Rawson, George Farber, Louise Farber, Rosa Farber.”  In 1878, the congregation decided to build a church that it shared with other denominations.  When that building burned down in 1894, the congregation built another, which was completed that fall. (17)
    Sarah died during the 1870s.  Richard is listed a widower in the 1880 Census.  Since Sarah’s not listed among the members of the original Ebenezer Class, she may have died before 1875.
    In the 1880 Census, Richard is listed as a 61-year-old farmer in Clay Township.  His household contained Mary, 22; John, 18, farmer; Theodor, 16; and George, 14.  All of the children were born in Ohio.
    It does not appear that Richard owned property in Shelby County until 1881.  An R. Dove purchased property from S.P. Shale on Aug. 17, 1881. (18)
    In 1893, Richard’s daughter Emma returned home under sad circumstances. An account of the matter appears in the Shelby County Herald on Sept. 6.  “Mrs. Emma Campbell was brought here Monday and adjudged insane by the county court.  Monday night she was taken to the St. Joe Asylum.  She and her husband formerly lived at Hannibal and about three months ago her husband sold nearly all the household goods, took the money derived therefrom and went to St. Louis under the pretense of seeking employment.  After arriving at St. Louis he notified his wife that he would not come back and live with her again, when she came to this county and lived with her father Richard Dove near Hagers Grove.  The fact of her husband’s desertion drove her crazy.”
    In the 1900 Census, Richard is listed as an 80-year-old widower living in Clay Township.  He was a farmer who owned his own farm.  He lived with his daughter Hattie B.  She is listed as a 39-year-old widow, but her surname appears to be Dove.  Hattie Dove married Joseph A. Danner on Oct. 31, 1900, in Shelby County.
    Richard died Sept. 21, 1900.  He’s buried at Ebenezer Cemetery in Hagers Grove. (19)
    The Shelby County Herald provides descriptions of Richard’s estate. “Letters of administration were Monday granted to John W. Schwada on the estate of Richard Dove, who recently died at his home 2½ miles west of Hagers Grove.  The personal estate is valued at about $1,000 and there are seven heirs.” When the estate sale was advertised, it mentions Richard had owned “One work mare, one cow, be fresh this month; one horse mule colt, one buggy , one set single buggy harness, one stack of hay.” (20)

    (1) Richard’s tombstone at Ebenezer Cemetery in Hagers Grove, Shelby County, Mo., lists his birth and death dates. The information is available at  Census records indicate he was born in Virginia.  The 1860 Census of Jackson Township, Hardin County, Ohio, says he was 39 years old.  The 1870 Census of Clay Township, Shelby County, Mo., says he was 52.  The 1880 Census of Clay Township says he was 61.  And the 1900 Census of Clay Township says he was born in September 1820.  (2) The Hancock County marriage record appears in “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013,” available at  Sara is listed among the siblings of Richmond Johnson, son of Michael and Permelia (Standish) Johnson in his biography in “A Twentieth Century History of Hardin County, Ohio,” by Minnie I. Kohler, published in 1910, page 542.  Sara’s birth date is listed in an entry in Michael Johnson’s family Bible, an image of which is posted on  The entry appears as, “S   A Johnson.”  The 1860 Census of Jackson Township, Hardin County, Ohio, says Sara was 35 years old and had been born in New York.  (3) Katharine approximate birth year appears in 1860 Census, her only appearance in census records. Her marriage to Jacob is listed in Wyandot County Probate Court Marriage Book 3, page 179.  (4) William appears in the 1860 Census.  Because several William Doves appear in records, I have not been able to track him down.  (5) Sarah’s birth year is reported variously in census records.  Her birth date is listed as July 28, 1847, in her listing at (for a grave at Oak Hill Cemetery in Chetopa, Labette County, Kan.). However, there is no photo of the tombstone and her husband’s birth date appears to be incorrect in his listing.)  Sarah’s marriage appears at “Missouri, Marriages, 1750-1920,” at (6) Electa is listed in the 1860 Census.  Her birth date is listed on her tombstone at Ten Mile Baptist Church Cemetery, in Macon County, Mo., according to  Her husband is listed in their marriage record at “Missouri, Marriages, 1750-1920,” at (7) Marietta appears with her parents in the 1860 and 1870.  In 1880, a 22-year-old Mary is listed.  It seems likely this refers to either Marietta or the daughter listed as “Harriet” in the 1870 Census.  Her marriage in 1882 appears in the Missouri marriage records at  (8) Emily appears only in the 1860 Census.  Since she doesn’t appear in the next census or in the Missouri marriage records, it seems likely that she died young.  (9) Harriet is difficult case.  The name Harriet appears only in the 1870 Census, where she is listed as 12 years old.  And for some reason, she is listed as having a “foreign born” mother.  She also is listed slightly out of sequence with the other children, who appear in birth order.  These inconsistencies and the fact that she doesn’t seem to be listed in 1860 make it seem very possible that she was adopted, or a close relative who was living with the family.  Another possibility is that she is the person who is listed in 1860 as Harry, a 1-year-old boy.  In 1880, a 22-year-old daughter named Mary appears in the family’s listing.  This Mary might be Harriet, or she might be Mary Etta (or Marietta) with an incorrect age designation.  Finally, a Hattie Dove is listed as a widowed daughter living with Richard in the 1900 Census of Clay Township.  Although the woman’s age is listed as 39, Harriet seems like the best candidate among the children identified in previous census records.  Hattie Dove married Joseph A. Danner in Shelby County, Mo., in 1900, according to’s “Missouri, Marriage Records, 1805-2002.”  (10) Harry appears only in the 1860 Census, where he is listed as 1 year old.  Either he died young, this census listing is incorrect and “he” was actually a girl named Harriet, as described in the footnote above.  (11) Census records seem to list two Johns.  It’s possible that the Doves had a son who died very young and they named a second son John in1862.  It’s also possible that the ages in later census records are incorrect and there was only one John.  In 1860, John is listed as 1 year old.  In 1870, John is listed as 8. In 1880, he is listed as 18.  (12) Hattie’s birth information comes from the 1900 Census.  Since the name Hattie doesn’t appear in earlier census records, it’s possible that she was identified by another name.  The most likely possibility is Harriet, even though the birth dates don’t agree.  (13) Theodore’s birth date and birthplace – Wyandot County, Ohio – and his father are listed on his death certificate, which is available on the Missouri Digital Heritage website at  A 6-year-old boy named Kidd appears in the 1870 Census.  This appears to be the child who is listed as Theodore in census records from 1880 until his death in the 1930s.  (14) This child appears to be listed as George in 1870 and as Guy in 1880.  (14a) Another possible clue about Richard’s family is the mention of a Jacob Dove in Hancock County in the mid-1830s.  On May 7, 1835, Jacob Dove of Franklin County purchased land in Hancock County, according to “U.S. General Land Office Records, 1776-2015,” which is available at  This might be another brother or even a father.  A Jacob Dove, age 30-39, appears in Jackson Township, Franklin County, Ohio, in the 1840 Census.  In the 1850 Census, he is listed as a 43-year-old farmer, who was born in Ohio.  In the 1830 Census of Jackson Township, Franklin County, no Doves are listed, but there is a widow named Catharine Duff and a William Duff.  (15) The deeds both appear at Hardin County Deed Book C, page 239.  (16) Theodore’s obituary is from an unidentified, undated newspaper.  It is available at  (17) “General History of Shelby County, Missouri,” by Henry Taylor & Co., 1911, page 196 and 197.  Also, “Fifty Years In the Kansas Conference, 1864-1914: A Record of the Origin and Development of the Work of the Evangelical Association in the territory covered by the Kansas Conference,” by Press of Evangelical Association.  (18) Shelby County’s early deed indexes are available at the county’s GenWeb site at  Another record might list a transaction by “Dove, R. Wal” but the name actually looks more like “Dow.”  The transaction occurred on Nov. 12, 1875.  (19)  (20) Oct. 17, and 31, 1900, editions of Shelby County Herald of Shelbyville, Mo., available at