Saturday, October 12, 2013

Surname Saturday: OLIVER

The surname OLIVER comes "from the Old French personal name Olivier, which was taken to England by the Normans from France. It was popular throughout Europe in the Middle Ages as having been borne by one of Charlemagne’s paladins, the faithful friend of Roland, about whose exploits there were many popular romances. The name ostensibly means 'olive tree' (see Oliveira), but this is almost certainly the result of folk etymology working on an unidentified Germanic personal name, perhaps a cognate of Alvaro." --from the Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press,

Stories and History:

Ahnentafel #528 - John OLIVER (dates unknown) - earliest known OLIVER ancestor, he was born in St. Paul's Parish, Stafford Co., Virginia and married a woman by the name of Margaret or Elizabeth. They had seven known children, most of whose names are unknown, except for the eldest, John and George (below) and the youngest, Rebecca.

Ahnentafel #264 - George OLIVER (1728 - 1786) - also born in St. Paul's Parish, he married Jemima REAGAN (b. bet. 1720-9 - d. c. 1770) there in 1745. They had nine known children. Their fifth child was born in Albemarle Co., Virginia in the 1750s, while the next few were born in Prince Edward County. The youngest was born in Guilford County in 1770, the same year Jemima died. George then married Martha WHITWORTH (b. bet. 1740-50 - d. c. 1814) in 1772 in Guilford County, and had at least four more children with her. About 1773 they moved to Rockingham Co., North Carolina, where George died.

Ahnentafel #132 - John OLIVER (b. bet. 1750-55 - d. bet. 1826-30) - not much is known about his ancestor, other than he was born in Virginia and married Mary [--?--], probably about 1786. Their first of their eight children was born in 1787 in Jones Co., North Carolina.

Ahnentafel #66 - William OLIVER (b. bet. 1784-7 - d. 1841) - William was born in North Carolina. He married Elizabeth EDGING (d. bef. 1812) in 1806 in Rockingham County and had four known children. After Elizabeth's death, William married Nancy PAINTER (dates unknown) in Franklin Co., Alabama. Their one child was named after his late wife. They eventually made their way to Lincoln Co., Tennessee, settling in the part of the county that later became Moore County. 

Ahnentafel #33 - Ellender "Nellie" OLIVER (c. 1807 - c. 1849) - born in Rockingham Co., North Carolina, she married Franklin Preston MIDKIFF (c. 1800 - c. 1839) about 1825 in Lincoln (now Moore) Co., Tennessee. They had seven known children, at least one of whom did not survive childhood, and another is currently unaccounted for. Franklin died fairly young, and when Nellie died, her youngest son, Charles Anderson MIDKIFF, was only 10 years old.

Ahnentafel #16 - Charles Anderson MIDKIFF, I (1839 - 1919) - emigrated from Tennessee to Cooke and Grayson Counties in Texas with three of his four older siblings. He later lived in Oklahoma Territory, Colorado, and eventually, Butte County, California. You can read more about him in a biographical sketch here on my website, as well as a sketch on his military service in the Confederacy that I posted n 2008 on this blog.

Ahnentafel #8 - John Franklin MIDKIFF, I (1870 - 1926) was married twice. He had four children with his first wife and three with his second. His daughter from his first marriage married his second wife's brother, making their children double and half cousins with my father-in-law!

Ahnentafel #4 - John Franklin MIDKIFF, II (1910 - 1957) - I've written a bit about John on this blog in one of my best posts, "Every Eleven Miles."

Ahnentafel #2 - My children's paternal grandfather (living)

Ahnentafel #1 - My children's father (living)

More About the OLIVER Family:

1. Online database (I update this at least once a month): OLIVER ancestors and relatives (no info on living persons available)

2. Posts about OLIVER ancestors and relatives on this blog

3. The Oliver Reunion Association

My Children's OLIVER Immigration Trail:

Stafford Co., VA > Albemarle Co., VA > Prince Edward Co., VA > Guilford Co., VA > Rockingham Co., VA > Jones Co., VA > Rockingham Co., VA > Lincoln (now Moore) Co., TN > Grayson Co., TX > Cooke Co., TX > Cleveland Co., OK Territory > Pottawatomie Co., OK > Delta Co., CO > Butte Co., CA > Custer Co., ID > Yakima Co., WA > Clark Co., WA > Spokane Co., WA

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