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This is my first lead that may connect Gurley to Tennessee if I'm not grasping at straws with my analysis below.  There is a marriage bond for Thomas Parks and Drucilla Sellers 27 DEC 1827, William B. Morgan, Bondsman and Hy Blount, Witness.

I found three prospects for Thomas and Drucilla in the 1830 census:

  • 1830 Buncombe, NC census.  Both are in the 20-30 bracket and no children.  Interestingly, Buncome is also just north of Anderson SC and Spartanburg SC where Gurley, Emanuel and Bennett go around 1835.
  • 1830 Mechlenburg NC (Charlotte).  1Male <5, he is 50-60; she is 30-40
  • 1830 Lincoln, TN. 1 Male <5, he is 20-30; she is 20-30.  This is due north of the Birmingham, AL area where Gurley ends up moving in 1835.

In 1840 I found prospects in Marshall AL, Franklin NC, Lincoln TN, Butler, AL, Hardeman, TN and Franklin, TN that could fit the marriage date and approx ages.  None of these track the 1830 census.  The Thomas Parks in Lincoln, TN has now jumped in age substantially past that of the 1830 Lincoln candidate so I feel sure it is a different family.  The closest tracking is that the 1830 Lincoln may now be in the neighboring county of Franklin, TN and the ages fit.

Moving forward to the 1850 I found several Thomas Parks (Park,Parkes, etc.) but none matching the ages and names.

However, the Franklin, Tennessee Thomas Parks family does look like possibilities if you stretch a bit.

1830: Lincoln, TN:  1Male<5; 1M 20-30; 1Female 20-30

1840: 4males 5-10; 2m 10-15; 1m 30-40; 1f <5; 2f 5-10; 1f 10-15 [but no other female listed? error?] Also, they have one male and one female who should have been in the 1830 census if the Lincoln family was them - although they may have been born just after the census or ages mis-reported in 1840.

1850: Dist.1  Thomas Parks b.NC age 46 and wife Nancy b.NC age 41 {Is this a new wife or is this Drucilla? Nancy Drucilla?}  Note that both Thomas and Nancy are born in NC.

  • Ambrose m-20 b.NC + Nancy Smith 4May1851:  In Gallatin, IL 1860-1880 censuses
  • Elizabeth f-16 b.TN + James C. Grant 16Feb1851
  • Nancy f-14 b.TN + Calvin C. Burt 4Jun1854 or Wm B. Brandon 18Sep1855
  • William m-13 b.TN +Adeline Wiseman 23Dec1852
  • Mary f-11 b.TN + Newman Newman 6Aug 1866
  • DELILA f-7 b.TN + possibly Charles Flanbeau 1889
  • Elroy S m-10 b. TN (maybe not their child)
  • Daniel m-9 b.TN
  • Huldy f-2 b. TN
  • John Parks age 40; b.NC

1860: Dist 6  Thomas Parks 56, Nancy 52

  • Delilah f-17 b.TN
  • Mahulda f-11 b.TN
  • Julia ROGERS f-60 b.VA
  • John Parks m-45 b.TN(?) - listed as Idiot

1870:  Dist 6th Civil:  Thomas Parks listed by himself - no other family members.

Gurley and Delila were married just prior to Thomas and Drucilla in 1826 so perhaps they were close families at the time.  They may have moved to Buncome county which is just north of Ashville, NC in 1830 prior to the Sellers boys heading to SC and AL. or to Lincoln Co. Tennessee just north of where Gurley ends up in AL.

As noted above in the census data, I'm unsure about whether Nancy and Drucilla are the same people.  They name a daughter Nancy and another Delila so I think she was missed somehow in the 1840 census document.  Also perhaps only coincidental, but there is a Julia Rogers living with them in the 1860 census.  Keep in mind that Emanuel and Bennett married two of John Roger's daughters.  Could this Julia be tied in to that family?

As noted, I found Ambrose Parks in Gallatin, IL in 1860-80 with wife Nancy.  I haven't researched any more of the family but they appear to have left the area in the 1860's perhaps due to the war.

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