This page was last updated on 11 August 2021

Click here to 
Print this page

Biography finder





























Index of first names

Dr James Douglas









This page is a Stub - you can help improve it


Research notes:


James Douglass was an early settler of Dade County Missouri. His first wife, MARTHA WHITE, was murdered Rock Prairie Twp, Dade Co, MO, in March of 1848 by her negro slave Peter Douglas and also two or three of his own children near Everton.


It is possible he is the son of William Douglass and Margaret (Peggy) Stroud, and a grandson of Col Edward Douglass
The following was a deposition for Nancy's pension of James Douglass' War of 1812 service:

SARAH C. ECCLESTON aged 49 years (and on the 21 Jul 1887)-
(Note: Sarah was born in 1838-she was ten years old when MARTHA WHITE was murdered!)-Mildred Dotterer: her story in an affidavit 21 Jul 1887:
" I resided in Dade County Missouri in 1848 and was well all and personally acquainted with the above named JAMES DOUGLASS and his first wife MARTHA DOUGLASS. I know that the said MARTHA DOUGLASS was killed by a negro in the Spring of 1848....the said MARTHA DOUGLASS was the wife of the said JAMES DOUGLASS who at the time of the killing of his said wife was living with her in Dade County State of Missouri. The said JAMES DOUGLASS at said time owned a negro slave by the name of PETER and the said negro slave killed MARTHA DOUGLASS by striking her over the head with a gun. What caused the killing was the fact that he said PETER did not want to be a slave and did not want his children to be slaves and so he killed his three children and then attempted to kill himself when the said JAMES DOUGLASS interfered and was hit by the said PETER then he, said JAMES DOUGLASS, went and got a gun which the said PETER took from him and beat him with the gun over the head until he fell. The said PETER then turned and beat the said MARTHA DOUGLASS with the gun which beating caused her death. And I went to the burial with my father and the rest of the family."

"NANCY C DOUGLASS formerly MRS. NANCY C. HENSLEY was married to JAMES DOUGLASS at my father's home in Dade County MO on 16th day of JUly 1848 and I was present when the marriage ceremony was performed an I was well acquainted with both of the said parties."

Peter Douglass was hung in Dade County. James Douglas married July 16, 1848 a young widow, Mrs. Nancy Caroline Hensley. They moved before 1850 to Greene Co, MO and in 1851 emancipated seven of his eleven slaves (Deed records):
Springfield County, MO records (source: Pension records of Mrs. Nancy Douglass, 60 pp. (War 1812, James Douglass. Slaves emancipated 1853, The Springfield-Greene County Library on-line records:

Dr. JAMES DOUGLASS freed the following persons giving Deed of Manumissions to all of them, on the 15 day of August, 1853 (note that their surname will all be Douglass as PETE DOUGLASS was the name given for his slave who killed the wife of Dr.James Douglass (MARTHA WHITE) in 1848 Dade Co, MO and was hung in Greenfield, Dade Co, MO in the 1850's:
ALBERT (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Hagar (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Henry (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Franklin (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Mary (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Sarah (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Mahala (DOUGLASS), a person of colour
Land Records Springfield Office Sales Book 1833-1892
Greene Co, MO
DOUGLAS---James T30 R24 Sec 35 40 acres 12 Jun 1851
DOUGLAS James T30 Range 24 Sec 35 80 acres 11 Dec 1851
The land is in the same section located almost exactly in the middle of the direct-line distance of Ash Grove and Bois Des Arc
Springfield County, MO records (source: The Springfield-Greene County Library)
Mrs. Nancy Caroline HENSLEY was the widow of James S. HENSLEY.(1840 Barry Co, MO). She may have been nee Nancy Glas/Barron, wife of Thomas Douglass and James Murray with some or all being alias'. Her children used the surnames of Murray and Hensley. I have a copy of the original marriage certificate signed by William DUNN, JP that is in the hands now of Bert Dunn, a descendant.

Nancy had the children below from her marriage James S. Hensley abt 1836 (he was in what was then Barry Co, MO 1840):

1850 Greene County, Missouri, Cass Twp
#352DOUGLASS JAMES 73 Tenn ( 0 value on property given)
NANCY C. 30 Tenn
HENSLEY JOHN K. 12 Missouri
JAMES F. 10 Missouri
ORLENA C. S. 8 Missouri
ALEXANDER D. 6 Missouri
VIRGINIA 3 Missouri
Descendants of Nancy Caroline BARRON
Generation No. 1
1. Nancy Caroline1 (Glas) BARRON (Wife of Thomas DOUGLASS) was born 1820 in Tennessee, and died Abt. January 1900 in Seneca, Newton Co., Missouri.

She may have m1 Thomas DOUGLASS.(Thomas Douglass in MO 1840, War of 1812 Pension papers, wife is Nancy BARRON.

She married (2) James S. HENSLEY Abt. 1836. He died August 01, 1847 in Bolivar, Polk County, Missouri.(from Nancy's pension application papers)

She married (3) Dr. James DOUGLASS July 16, 1848 in Dade County, Missouri. He was born Bet. 1774 - 1779 in Tennessee, and died February 12, 1859 in Mt. Vernon, Lawrence County, Missouri. (I have a copy of their original marriage certificate signed by JP, William Dunn).

I believe Nancy had all these alisas. Her children used MURRAY and HENSLEY.

Children of Nancy (GLAS) BARRON and James HENSLEY are:

2. i. JOHN K2 HENSLEY, b. November 02, 1839, Missouri.

3. ii. JAMES F. HENSLEY, b. 1838, Polk Co, MO. Lived Lawrence Co, MO.

iii. ORLENA C. S. HENSLEY, b. 1844, Missouri.

iv. VIRGINIA E. HENSLEY, b. 1847, Missouri.

4. v. ALEXANDER D. HENSLEY, b. March 19, 1846, MO; d. March 12, 1904, Dublin, Erath Co, TX.

James DOUGLASS enlisted for the War of 1812 at Fayetteville, Tenn (present Lincoln County, TN, about 40 miles due east of Chattanooga and just above the Alabama state line. on Sep 1814. James was discharged in Dixon County(Dickson County just west of Nashville across the river at Nashville).
James DOUGLASS died at one of his farm's near Mt. Vernon, MO Feb. 12, 1859. He also owned land previously in Greene Co, MO that he paid cash for and had Bounty land for his war service. (Atlas' of Greene Co, MO, Lawrence Co, MO (pub. by Greene County Archives & Records Center, 1126 Boonville, Springfield, MO 65801, Probates Mount Vernon, MO Court house, newspaper records Dade Co, MO, History of Dade Co, MO.




James MURRAY was the admr. for the estate of Jonathan DOUGLASS (brother of James DOUGLASS d 1859, Jonathan DOUGLASS died 1841 in Greene Co, MO. Jonathan had extensive bank notes in Knox,TN, and Monroe Co, TN, as well as railroad stock (He is listed as Douglass, Jonathan Third (LDS,and there is evidence their information is true). Jonathan's older children contested in Monroe Co, TN his intestate settlement in Greene Co, MO,who sold all his personal effects and gave the money to his widow and minor children. (Jonathan left a will in 1840 Monroe Co, TN) and his widow and children are named.

James S. Douglass bought much land in Lawrence, Dade and Greene Co, MO. He may have been a land speculator, had at least 11 slaves even after one, Peter DOUGLASS killed James DOUGLASS' wife Martha WHITE 1848 in Dade Co, MO, as well as two of his own children. Pete was hung in Dade Co, MO for the murder. The elderly James DOUGLASS married two months later, Nancy Caroline HENSLEY, widow of James S. HENSLEY. In 1850 Greene Co, Mo they are living in Cass Twp, her Hensley chidren named HENSLEY. Two were apprenticed to Guion Leeper (Greene Co, MO) and James Douglass secured their release. Another older son was on his own. These same children went by MURRAY and HENSLEY. In a two-page handwritten (I have copies of the original records)narrative, Nancy listed the heirs of James DOUGLASS who were descendants of his siblings and where they lived. I have made contact with some of these siblings. Nancy applied for James DOUGLASS' pension (War of 1812)and did not give her maiden name on any of the many pages, nor any family of hers or James, she said his occupation was doctor. She was finally granted the pension. She had several friends who wrote affadavits she used as evidence of when she married James DOUGLASS. She stated that her husband James S. HENSLEY died in 1847 in Polk Co, MO. I have in my possession from Bert DUNN, a copy of the original handwritten marriage certificate by William DUNN, JP of James DOUGLASS to Caroline HENSLEY. The Dade County court house was burned in the Civil War, so this may be an original certificate or a replacement certificate but in any case exists. I have posted the estate settlements of James Douglass and Jonathan Douglass on-line.

The main reason for all the name changing may have been railroad and/or land speculation, Indian heritage (more than likely the reason) as they did not want to go to Indian Territories but the children of Nancy used MURRAY and HENSLEY surnames and we know she married JAMES DOUGLASS.

I believe Nancy was the daughter of Joseph GLASS and Jemima DOUGLASS. Joseph died in TN and Jemima and her family moved to Ark/Tx. She was buried beside her son Joseph B. GLASS in AR. She died in TX. Jemima was Indian. THOMAS DOUGLASS and JONATHAN DOUGLASS were named guardian's of Joseph and Jemima's children. They may have been brothers of Jemima DOUGLASS. Or Thomas may have been JAMES THOMAS DOUGLASS.

I don't know the answers to the above puzzle, but do want to know if my Jesse DOUGLAS (wife Sarah Ann) is related to them because Ira Alexander DOUGLASS was in what was then called Barry Co, MO by 1840, which then extended to include a much larger Smith Twp in Dade Co, MO. Didama DOUGLAS was Ira's sister and is my line and James HENSLEY also lived in Barry Co in 1840 with wife and right amount of children.




Nancy C. DOUGLAF and William A. McCanse Say that to the best of their knowledge and belief the names of the heirs of the said James DOUGLAFS (DOUGLASS) deceased, and their places of residence are respective by as follows: Jonathan L. DOUGLAFS (DOUGLASS) who is a son of a brother to said dec'd who reside in the county of Lawrence & state of Mifsouri. Emily HOLLOWAY, Martha LOWE, & Rutela DOLIN, who are the daughters of a brother to the said dec'd, Amanda Jane MORRISON, Jonathan MORRISON, minor children of Almeda MORRISON daughter of a Brother to the said deceased who reside in Lawrence County Mifouri. RUFUS R. Douglafs (DOUGLASS), who is the son of a brother to the said deaceased, who reside in greene County Mifouri, JAMES KELSEY MURRAY, THOS Douglafs (DOUGLASS) , Alexander D., Almeda, Sarah Jane & Darthula, Heirs of Jane MURRAY who was the daughter of a Brother to the said deceased, who reside in Greene county Mifouri. Joseph WHITE, Nancy WHITE now wife of Isaac MURRY, Mary WHITE, Elizabeth WHITE, Isabella WHITE, & Martha WHITE heirs of Elizabeth WHITE who was the daughter of a Brother to the said deceased, who reside in Greene County Mifouri, James Douglafs a Brothers Son to the said deceased who resides in Little rock in the State of arkansas. Ibby DONALD, half sister to the said deceased, who resides in the state of Texas, and Mary DOUGLAFS & two brothers names not known, who are the heirs of a brother to the said deceased, and who reside in the state of Tennefsee. Thosf? & Jane Has kin who reside in Ozark County, State of Tenf___. Joseph B. GLAFS (GLASS) who resides in Hempstead County State of Ark. John C. GLAFS who resides in Bowie County State of Texas, Matthew GLAFS who resides in the State of Tennefsee 30 miles from Memphis.
Wiles GLAPS who reside in scott County ark, the above are children of a sister to said deceased
The following are the children of Polley Ann McADOO a Sisters daughter. James McADOO, Elizabeth McADOO & Gideon B. McADOO who reside in Hempstead Co, Ark.
Mary DOUGLAFS a half sister to James DOUGLAFS deceased who resides in the state of Texas and is married to a man whose name is unknown to said admr. That.... (the narrative ends)


Marie deWolfe writes: I believe you are right. My 3gr. Grandfather was Jesse Douglass, born in MO, travelled to AR as young child, family came from the Carolinas, he served in Civil war, listed as full blood cherokee, his dau. Grandma Ginny,married a white man, name Thomas Massey, they lived near Conway AR. Their children have passed down stories, such as coming out of church on some Sundays they would hear an indian cry or yelp, and Grandma Ginny would kiss each of her children ans tell them she would be back and disappear in the direction of the yell, when they asked thier father where she had gone he'd just say, "to be with her people.". She taught her children the language, and the ways of the Cherokee, however it was done in secret and they were told not to let on that they were 1/2 breeds. Grandma Ginny had a great amount of hidden contempt for the "white men", but due to the politics of the area, tried to pass as "white". When she was dying of TB she reverted to her native language and refused to speak english. There are still descendents in AR that will not speak of the indian things they know due to fear of repercussions from more than likely the klan.


See also:

  • The Slave Trade

    Any contributions will be gratefully accepted



    Errors and Omissions

    The Forum

    What's new?

    We are looking for your help to improve the accuracy of The Douglas Archives.

    If you spot errors, or omissions, then please do let us know


    Many articles are stubs which would benefit from re-writing. Can you help?


    You are not authorized to add this page or any images from this page to (or its subsidiaries) or other fee-paying sites without our express permission and then, if given, only by including our copyright and a URL link to the web site.


    If you have met a brick wall with your research, then posting a notice in the Douglas Archives Forum may be the answer. Or, it may help you find the answer!

    You may also be able to help others answer their queries.

    Visit the Douglas Archives Forum.


    2 Minute Survey

    To provide feedback on the website, please take a couple of minutes to complete our survey.


    We try to keep everyone up to date with new entries, via our What's New section on the home page.

    We also use the Community Network to keep researchers abreast of developments in the Douglas Archives.

    Help with costs

    Maintaining the three sections of the site has its costs.  Any contribution the defray them is very welcome



    If you would like to receive a very occasional newsletter - Sign up!



    Back to top


    The content of this website is a collection of materials gathered from a variety of sources, some of it unedited.

    The webmaster does not intend to claim authorship, but gives credit to the originators for their work.

    As work progresses, some of the content may be re-written and presented in a unique format, to which we would then be able to claim ownership.

    Discussion and contributions from those more knowledgeable is welcome.

    Contact Us

    Last modified: Monday, 25 March 2024