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Other, : John Allen Ross was the ggrandson of Rice Farrar Ross (12-3-1776 to 4-8-1856) and Sarah Bonham (8-5-1787 to 3-29-1849). He was the grandson of William W. Ross (12-5-1815 to about 1865) and Mary Ann Hendrix (3-25-1825 to 7-23-1904). Mary had a brother, William Hendrix, who was wounded in the Civil War. John was the son of Isaac Rice Ross (1851-1943) and Mary Rutha Barton Ross (1850-1929).
Mary Rutha Barton was the gggranddaughter of Joshua Barton (August 19, 1718) and Jane Dubart Barton. She was the ggranddaughter of David Barton (March 15, 1744) and Hanna Hill Barton. She was the granddaughter of Thomas Barton (November 26, 1844) and Tabitha Hodges Barton. She was the daughter of William Hill Barton (about 1815, Wilson or Rutherford County, Tennessee) and Susan Allen Barton. Rutha married Isaac Rice Ross, November 31, 1873, in McNairy County, Tennessee.
The 1860 census of Jacks Creek, Henderson County, Tennessee, shows William Hill Barton as age 47 and Mary Rutha as age 10. She had seven brothers and sisters
Romona Irene Duniven was the gdaughter of William Dunevent (about 1830) and Martha Dodson (about 1830)
She was the daughter of William Henry Dunivan ( note name change) (1865, Lincoln County, Tennessee- 1832 in Amarillo, Texas), and Nancy Elvira Luella Strickland (1869, Fayetteville, Tennesee-1949, Amarillo, Texas). W.H. and Nancy were married in 1885 in Fayetteville, Tennessee. W. H. was employed at a flower mill at the time.
Irene was the gdaughter of John Strickland and Martha Abbott.
Nancy had a brother, High Strickland, and two sisters: Mrs. Pernie Parish, and Sarran Duniway. She probably had others. She was a member of the Methodist Church. So was Irene until after her marriage, when she joined the Baptist Church with John. At one time John taught the Youth Sunday School Class, at First Baptist Church, Lone Oak.
The 1900 census of Hunt County showed these living in the home: Isaac Rice , Mary Rutha,. Mary Susan, Martha Elizabeth, William Thomas, Charlotte Lenora, John Allen, James Charles, and Ivy Lee Ross. The 1910 census showed Isaac, Mary R., Mary S., William T., Charlotte L., John A. and Ivy L. Ross. The 1920 Hunt County census showed Isaac, Mary Rutha and William T. living in one house . John Allen Ross, Mary Susan Stinson and Wesley Stinson, were living in another house near by. The 1930 census showed Isaac, Mary Susan and William Thomas living in one house. John Allen, Irene, Bryan, Wilson and Evelyn Marie were living in another house near by.
When Isaac Rice and family moved to Texas they first lived in Cooke County, Texas.
John Allen Ross was born November 11, 1887 in Kentuckytown, Grayson ,County, Texas. Later his family moved to Wolfe City, Hunt County, Texas. In 1894 Isaac was saved and joined the Baptist Church. Due to his work on the farm John did not get to go to school beyond the eighth grade. He did a lot of reading and helped to educate himself. The family next moved to Lone Oak, Texas. During World War I, John served as a Sergeant in the U. S. Calvary, stationed at Camp MacArthur, in Waco, Texas. His job was to train soldiers. Between 1917 and 1919 the camp trained 40,000 men. The worst thing that happened to him was the terrible flu and pneumonia which led to his emphysema. He never fully got over it. It probably contributed to his death. John's greatest "Birthday Party"? was that first Armistice Day. John, and his brothers, worked hard on the farm. Still they had time for hunting and fishing. They always had good guns and dogs. One of their dogs was named "Spits"?. John, and Tony Chapman, went down to Corpus Christi, to pick cotton and swim in the ocean. They remained good friends for years to come. Romona Irene Duniven (note name change) was born August 21, 1905 near Commerce, Texas. On May 7, 1922 John and Irene were married in Lone Oak, by Bro. C. J. Rogers, pastor of the Lone Oak Baptist Mission. John was age 34 and Irene 16. Even though John owned a house in Lone Oak, they lived on a farm north of Lone Oak. Life was quiet for Irene who came out of a family of 14 children. At the time of her marriage the Duniven family lived in the Commerce area.. Henry and Nancy (Nannie) farmed there for 10 years before they moved to Amarillo in 1926. Most of the other Dunivens moved to Amarillo also.
Bryan Allen was born April 12, 1924. John Wilson was born February 26, 1926. Then came the "Depression "which hit the family very hard. The mules, cows, chickens and farm equipment had to be sold. Mules went for $5.00 each. The house in Lone Oak had to be sold.. The family had to rent a little place in Lone Oak. Evelyn Marie was born June 9, 1928. The Isaac Rice and John Ross families moved up near Greenville, Texas. That is where the families lived when Mary Rutha Barton Ross died in 1929. It was a very sad time for all of the family. Irene gave her children their Christmas presents early to help comfort them. Then there were no presents when Christmas came.
The John Ross family moved to Amarillo for 11 months. The family moved everything they had in their Model T. Ford. They even had to help push the car up "Ranger Hill"?. John worked at a Mobile Oil filling station (the Midway Service Station on Madison Street) which was owned by Henry and three of his sons.. The Ross family lived in a duplex, owned by Carl Duniven. It was located at 909 N. Taylor, Street. Wynona Lee was born in Amarillo on March 23, 1931. Walker and Hattie Bell Rhoden, and family,lived on the other side of the duplex. Hattie, Viola, and some of the other Dunivens, were a great help to Irene at that time.
John felt like the higher altitude made it harder for him to breathe. He was also anxious to get back to Hunt County to help his Ross family. Also, it could have been that John was not fond of working for his Duniven relatives. Anyway, he took the family back to Hunt County. This time to the Riley Grove Community, which was about 5 miles south west of Commerce. Isaac Rice, William Thomas Ross and Mary Susan Ross Stinson were running a farm. John's family moved about a mile from them and helped on their farm. Bryan and Wilson started to school there at Riley Grove. Things changed with the death of Mary Susan in 1934. Isaac went to live with James Charles and Lilly. William Thomas went to Savoy, Fannin County, Texas, to live with his cousins, James E. and Sarah E. Barton. The Bartons are buried in the Oak Hill cemetery, in Fannin County. That meant that John had to find work anywhere he could. Finally he had to work for the W.P.A. (Works Projects Administration) in Commerce. The family could not afford to run the car, so it was traded for a cow and calf. From that time on the family never owned a car. That meant that John had to walk to Commerce and back each day to work. Soon the cow was sold to the government. Roosevelt was buying up cattle and killing them to raise prices. During this period Mary Dell was born January 8, 1934.
So many of the veterans were having such a hard time that the government opened up the CCC.s (Civilian Conservation Corps) and allowed veterans to join. John got in and was sent to work on the Palo Duro Canyon, and later to Linden, Texas. He was paid $30.00 a month with room and board. He sent most of it home each month. It was a very hard time for the family. Irene took care of her five children with no transportation. With school, shopping, sicknesses, etc., things were most difficult. Along with the childhood diseases, the children had, Irene had to have surgery, Bryan had pneumonia, Bryan and Wilson had diphtheria, from the school vaccinations. The doctor who gave them was later declared insane. John did not get to come home very often. The family decided to move to Lone Oak. Charlotte Lenora Bass (John's sister) found a place for the family to rent. It was owned by Dora Vice, who became a helper and friend to the family. After a time the house burned to the ground from a spark, that came from the wood stove flue. It lit the wood shingles. The family saved what they had on. Charlotte Bass (John's sister), offered to let the family of seven move into the two back rooms of her home. The move was easy. There wasn't anything to move. Charlotte was a life-saver for the family. Some time later the family rented a small house a few yards from the city water tower. It was four rooms and a path. Later the family rented the Coppage house, and it was larger. They lived there until the move to Abilene. On one occasion Irene went to visit a neighbor. While knocking on the door a large dog came around the corner and lunged at her. She twisted her leg trying to get away from him. Her leg hurt her the rest of her life.
The Ross children entered school at Lone Oak. After a time John came home from the CCC.s. Finally he did have to join again, for a time, to make a living. While in Lone he did all kinds of jobs such as farm work, lawn mowing, janitor at church, sexton for two cemeteries, W.P.A., and other things. Bryan and Wilson were working in most of these things. During the cotton harvest the whole family would pick (not pull bolls). Irene was often the best "picker"? in the field (both black and white). She liked farm work better than house work. For one thing, she got to be with family more. The late summer picking helped the family to buy school clothes and supplies. During those years cotton picking went from 40 cents a hundred to one dollar a hundred. Bryan and Wilson were also janitor at the school and did painting and dipped water out of storm sellers. Bryan worked for the A.A.A. measuring land for air photos (farmers were paid to cut back on planting cotton), one summer working at Majors Air Force Base, in Greenville (a case of mumps put a stop to that), and at a flower mill in Greenville. Wilson worked at Love Nit in Greenville. It was a clothing manufacturing company. Irene cooked school lunches at the school and worked at a mattress factory. At one time Bryan was manager of a theatre and Wilson ran the projector and other equipment. Bryan hired the extra help, and supervised them.
The owner had gone to Galveston, Texas, to work in a defense plant. Bryan and Wilson were quite active in sports and in Boy Scout programs. They both became "Life Scouts"?. F.P. Scott, Superintendent of Schools, and Jesse Miller, Principal of the high school, were the Boy Scout leaders. Mr. Scott was also Superintendent of the Baptist Sunday School. All of the family were active in First Baptist Church, Lone Oak. One highlight was when the church was able to call Rev. Ira Hampton Peak ( a nephew to John) to come be pastor for a year while he was in Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He went on from there to pastor some great churches in Texas, Missouri and Louisiana. One summer he had Edgar Hallock to come lead the music for a revival. Edgar later became an outstanding missionary in Brazil. . John respected outstanding people. He named Bryan for William Jennings Bryan, Wilson for Woodrow Wilson and Winston Byrd, for Winston Churchill and Admiral Robert Byrd.
In 1943 Bryan and Wilson graduated from high school. Wilson left for Hardin-Simmons University, Abilene, Texas, and Bryan went off to war. After training in four places in the United States, he served in France, Belgium, Holland and Germany. He came home, after the war in Europe, expecting to help with the invasion of Japan. With the dropping of the two atomic bombs, he got out of the army.. He moved the family to Abilene, Texas while on leave in July of 1945. John became the manager of the Hardin-Simmons Riding School horses and barns. He loved the work, with the horses, and association with the students. He continued to work there until he retired in 1953. The move was a blessing to the family. Each anniversary John would call upon the family to celebrate the move. Irene worked at Hendrix Memorial for over 30 years, retiring September 1, 1977 at the age of 70. She worked in Central Supply, and was made a Licensed Vocational Nurse because of her work. For a time Mary Dell also worked there. While attending Hardin-Simmons, Marie worked at the university bookstore and post office. She was putting up the mail when Abilene Hall burned. Truman Kirk had to rush her out. She wanted to finish her job. Bryan got out of service January 23, 1946 and entered Hardin-Simmons on the 30th. Winston and Mary Dell attended Hardin-Simmons. Wilson finished Hardin-Simmons in 1947, married Jimmie Ruth Meek, from San Angelo, and went on to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth. While in school he pastored First Baptist Church, Gene Autry, Oklahoma, and then the Terrace Acres Baptist Church, in Fort Worth. Jimmie served as secretary at the Sagamore Hill Baptist Church, Fort Worth. When he graduated he and Jimmie went to the mission field in Costa Rica, Mexico, and later to the Spanish Baptist Publishing House in El Paso, Texas, where they served for 37 years. Wilson served as Director of the Business Services and Finance Division. Jimmie worked in the library. On one of his furloughs, Wilson earned a masters degree from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and one from Texas Tech University. Bryan finished college in 1948 and he and Alice Louise Cook, from San Angelo, were married and moved to the seminary. Alice graduated from Hardin-Simmons in 1947. Alice was secretary at the Harris Avenue Baptist Church when they married, .Alice was later secretary at the Broadway Baptist Church, Fort Worth. Bryan pastored the West Fork Baptist Church, Azle, and the Enterprise Baptist Church, Whitewright, Texas. He worked for the O'Neal-Foster Construction Company. After graduation he pastored four churches :Pleasant Valley Baptist Church, Post, Westview Baptist Church, Slaton, Lakeview Baptist Church, San Angelo and Tennyson Baptist Church, Tennyson. Also as a Director of Mission for 21 years. Alice taught kindergarten for 27 years. When Wilson and Jimmie retired they moved to Fort Worth. Wilson died of cancer, September 1, 1989, at the age of 63. Jimmie now lives at the Waterford Retirement Center, Fort Worth. Their children are:Becky, Judy and Gary. Bryan and Alice live in San Angelo. Their children are :Richard, Randall, Norman and Charlotte.
John's Ross siblings were: William Thomas, James Charles, Ivy Lee, Martha Elizabeth, Mary Susan and Charlotte Lenora. They have all died. Irene's Duniven siblings were:` William Ruby, John Arthur, Carl Lonnil, Henry Erb, Viola Minnil, Eula Mae, Almer D., Herbert Lee, Rual Ernest, Ethel, Leona, Hattie Bell and Grady Garland. All of them have died.
Isaac R., Mary R., Susan and Wesley are buried in Lone Oak, Texas. Martha Elizabeth is buried in Oklahoma, and Charlotte is buried in Caddo Mills. James C. is buried in Fort Worth, and William is buried in Fannin or Grayson County. John and Irene are buried in Abilene.
John and Irene were godly people. They loved the Lord, the Bible and the church. They believed in, and practiced prayer. They were strong on moral values. They said, "no sexual sins, no smoking, drinking, gambling, dancing or drugs"?. John explained one thing this way "if you want to smoke, leave home!"? They felt the same way about cursing, dirty stories and dirty pictures. They were both honest. They never wanted to take advantage of anyone. When John hired help, he believed in paying them right. John and Irene were hard workers and taught the same to their children " An idle mind is the devil's work shop"?. They loved their children, and when they grew up, and had families, John and Irene looked forward to their visits in a great way. Nothing seemed to please them more. They had a high regard for education, even though they did not get to complete their formal education. Their encouragement led to their children receiving a number of college and seminary degrees. Irene spent hours reading to the children, and many of the stories were from the Bible. Irene ordered bird cards for the children. She wanted them to love nature. She made a lot of the Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations out of construction paper. Real eggs were painted for Easter eggs. There is no telling how many birthday cakes Irene baked. Irene did not spank often, but she did have children stand in the corner, or churn until the butter came. John enjoyed spending time with educated and cultured people. He felt they were a help to him. The Riding School and hospital afforded John and Irene excellent places for valuable friendships. Dr. Rupert Richardson, President of Hardin-Simmons, and two professors, were pallbearers at John's funeral. Dr. Lindell Harris, Bible Professor at Hardin-Simmons, conducted Irene's funeral. Hospital friends served as pallbearers. Dr. Powell, C.E.O. for Hendrix Hospital, and Dr. Morgan, the family doctor, were close friends of Irene. John was romantic. He loved poetry, nature, and his sweetheart. He loved to give Irene the first lilac of the season. It is interesting to read love-letters John and Irene wrote to each other, before marriage, and while John was in the CCC.s. Irene got a thrill out of buying, or making, presents for the children and grandchildren. She was a good customer of the hospital gift shop. She must have had a big heart to hold that much love for her family. John and Irene were good at writing letters. They kept the children informed on what was going on at home. They were thankful to be able to own their own home on Hickory Street. They did not have a car. This limited their contacts with relatives. They were glad that some of these folk did come to see them. This included Dunivens, from Amarillo, Arizona and California. Some of the Hunt County Ross relatives did get to come some.
John and Irene loved picnics in the parks, especially if grandchildren were present. John loved the Abilene State Fair., and times sitting in the mall talking to old friends. After retirement the television afforded enjoyment. They were strong "Dallas Cowboy"? fans. Since Mary Dell did not marry she got to live with John and Irene until their deaths. She was a joy and delight, as well as a dedicated helper. She also "loved those Cowboys"?. After the death of her parents she went to live with Marie and Truman. A trailer home was moved in for her. She really loved her time there. Due to a chemical imbalance, she moved to the nice Mulberry Manor nursing home in Stephenville. There they could help to regulate her medications. Mary has done much reading, and has added to the knowledge she gained by attending classes at Hardin-Simmons, years earlier. She has written some beautiful poetry. Her spirit has been a blessing to the nursing home, as well as to her family. You can't find anyone who loves the Lord more than Mary. She is the pet of the family. One year she was chosen as Resident Volunteer Of The Year for the state of Texas. Her plaque is displayed at the nursing home. She loves people and she loves nature. She loves it when family members come to see her. Marie has been a special caregiver to her. Mary Dell has dealt with many health problems with a courageous spirit.
Evelyn Marie graduated from Hardin-Simmons in 1951 She married Truman Kirk in 1948.. She was a fourth grade school teacher for 37 years.most of this in Cisco, Texas. Marie lacked only 3 hours completing requirements for a master's degree. Family needs took priority. Marie has not only helped Mary Dell, but has also been a minister to all of the families "she went about doing good"?. Marie has bean an excellent writer. Many of her articles have appeared in newspapers, while others have been shared with family and friends. Truman graduated from Hardin- Simmons and the University of Texas Law School. He worked for four newspapers, served as a judge and as an attorney. He also served on the Abilene City Commission. Like Marie, he was an active church member. Through his law practice he was able to assist a lot of needy people. He was a big help to the Ross family as well. Cancer brought him to an untimely death at the age of 71. Marie is now living at the Stilwell Memorial Residence in Waco. Their children are: Kendall, Karen, Kalene and Kevin.
Wynona Lee, second Ross daughter, was born March 23, 1931 in Amarillo, Texas
Wynona married Bill Troup, January 29, 1949, while they lived in Abilene. The ceremony was performed by Dr. Criswell in Dallas. She is a graduate of Mc Lennon Community College with a major in journalism and minor in art. She has enjoyed painting and decorating her home. Also teaching and practicing her profession. She has spoken to various civic clubs on various phases of art. Bill was a chemist for the TXU and the TPL companies for 40 years. He was a good provider for his family. The Troups have lived in the Waco area for 51 years. Bill died of cancer November 16, 2005. The children are Randall and Teresa. Wynona continues to live in Waco. She is fighting a good fight against cancer.
Rutha Nan was born in Lone Oak December 1, 1940. She moved with the family to Abilene, Texas in 1955, and graduated from Abilene High School. She went to Hardin-Simmons one semester. She met Walter Van Dusen at the beginning of the semester and married him at the end. She and Walter were married February 14, 1959, at the University Baptist Church, Abilene. She graduated from Eastfield College in Mesquite in 1980 with an associate of science degree in digital electronics. For the past 20 years she has been working for Locheed-Martin , missils division, as an electronics technician, with high security clearance. Walter served in the Air Force for 7 years ( including the Vietnam War period. He attended the University of Texas, at Arlington, on the G. I. Bill. He graduated in 1971 with a major in electrical engineering. He worked for TXU for 30 years. He is now retired. The two sons are Darrel Ross, and Anthony Scott. Walter and Rutha live in Mesquite. They enjoy hunting, fishing, camping and boating.
Winston Byrd Ross was born February 22, 1943 in Lone Oak, Texas. He moved with the family when they moved to Abilene in 1955. He graduated from Abilene High School in 1961. He worked for the Abilene Reporter News for four years, part of the time as District Manager. On August 24, 1963 he married his high school sweetheart, Gloria Jean Williams, in Denton, Texas. Gloria was born in Terrell, Texas June 24, 1943. She graduated from Texas Woman's University, Denton, in 1965. She received a Master of Fine Arts degree and a Master of Recreational and Leisure Management degree from the University of North Texas in 1979. She has taught art and has sold paintings. Along with his work, Winston attended the following Universities: Hardin-Simmons, University of North, Texas, Texas A. and M., University, University Texas at Arlington and University of Texas at Dallas. He completed 3 years of studies. He completed the 30 hours required to take the CPA exam. He took the 3-day exam and passed it the first time around and with flying colors. On June 1, 2006, he retired after 42 years with Seven Eleven (the Southland Corporation). He started at the bottom and ended up as Director of Franchise Accounting (Director is the next step below Vice President. He had 9 Division Controllers and 2 Department Managers reporting to him).. Their son is John Winston Ross.
After John and Irene died the children determined that they would continue to get together each year. Winston and Gloria have hosted most of these. There is food, fellowship and a time of sharing. Each person is given a chance tell what has been happening in his life that year. Around 45 adults and youth participate. The Ross family members do love one another. It would be great if John and Irene could tell what they are enjoying now. They were truly prepared for their rewards. They had been "good and faithful servants"?. They are in heaven ready to welcome their very large family. They are saying:"May the circle be unbroken"?
Bryan and Alice had 4 children, Wilson and Jimmie, 3, Marie and Truman 4, Wynona and Bill, 2, Rutha and Walter, 2 and Winston and Gloria, 1. Truman and Marie set the "grandchild record"?, but Winston and Gloria are coming on fast. It would be great if some family member could write a history of the grandchildren and their families.