Van Gundy Family Tree

Notes for William M LOONEY

Researcher Robert McCormick had this to say about William and his family:

"William (4) Looney was bom about 1785 in what is now Hawkins County, Tennessee. He descends from a long lineof frontiersmen: his father, Michael Looney, was a Revolutionary War veteran and an early settler in Stanley Valley,near Rogersville, Hawkins County, Tennessee. Williarn's grandfather, Absalom Looney, discovered the area inVirginia known as Abb's Valley. William's great-grandfather, Robert Looney, was the first of his line to arrive inAmerica, with wife Elizabeth, in the early 1720s from the Isle of Man. Robert established Looney's Mill, Looney'sFerry, and Looney's Fort, all important frontier outposts in Virginia near the James River.

William Looney is recorded as one of the first settlers on Eleven Point River in what is now Randolph County,Arkansas. William and two Stubblefield cousins (probably Fielding and Coleman) arrived at Eleven Point possiblyas early as 1802. William and cousins often traveled a two-week journey of 13 5 miles as far as Cape Girardeau,Missouri to purchase supplies.

William, his Stubblefield cousins, and others who came shortly afterward including the Baker, Garrett, Mcllroy,Rice, Vandergriff, Wells, and White families laid the foundations for communities such as Dalton, Elm Store, andGladesville.

During this period, William Looney served as justice of the peace and magistrate in Davidson and Union townships (I 816 - ea 1825), and Captain in the 3rd Regiment, Arkansas Militia (commissioned 1820).

In 1823, William was granted patents for land south of Dalton. He, wife Rhoda Stubblefield (daughter of WilliamStubblefield and Elizabeth McDaniel) and family, built a home that still exists today. The William LooneyHomeplace is noted as one of the oldest in Randolph County. At its peak, the old homeplace included 1,500 acres,and its orchards produced as much as 1,500 gallons of brandy each year. By about 1850, the extended Looney,Mcllroy, Stubblefield, and Wells families owned most of the land near Eleven Point River in a 30-mile stretch fromElm Store to Birdell. The old homeplace has remained in the hands of William Looney's relatives, descendants ofthe Downey, Rice and Stubblefield families.

In 1843, William Looney purchased land in Pocahontas (originally called Bettis'Bluff) from Thomas Drew. Theinitial map of Pocahontas showed that William Looney owned the whole block on the south side of the old courtsquare.

The town of Pitman was established near Current River in 1853. Among its first businessmen were WilliamLooney's son, Michael Looney, and son-in-law, Erasmus Pitman. Together, they built a steam/saw/grist mill and adistillery.

William Looney died April 1846 in Randolph Co, Arkansas. His wife, Rhoda, died in August 1847. They had 10children."

Residences & events:

1840 Davidson, Randolph Co, TN. The family lived within shouting distance of Rhoda's siblings. William's family included: 2 males aged 15-20, 2 at 20-30, William at 50-60, 1 female under 5, 3 at 10-15, and 1 at 40-50 years. Next door was nephew Pleasant and Thena (Looney) Stubblefield, their daughter.

Copyright 2010 by BJ Van Gundy

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