Van Gundy Family Tree

Notes for John Parker "Jack" STUBBLEFIELD

John and Mary Elizabeth had 10 children.

1830 Winchester, Clark Co, KY. The census recorded living in John's household: 2 males under 5 years of age, 1 at 20-30, 1 was 30-40, and 1 female at 20-30.

From The Winchester Democrat Friday, June 15, 1894 Vol. XXVII, No 55, pg 2
Chronicles of Winchester and Clark County.
The Damon and Pythias of '33

"John Stubblefield in '33 had his cabinet shop on the corner of Main and Fairfax streets, where Mrs. Ford's store now stands, and made coffins for rich and poor alike. If he received pay for them he took it, but if black or white needed coffins and were too poor to pay for them he made them for them without money and without prices; took them to their houses, arrayed their bodies for the last journey, took them to their gloomy starting points and left them. His shop was the place to hear the news, and to learn the names of the latest victims of the fell disease. All day long and often all night he and his assistant - a negro man - worked at the solemn trade, and saw faces of men and women pass their door whom they never saw again alive. Two men, who had offered their services to Mr. Stubblefield as nurses of the sick, were always anxious to hear the news. One morning, on inquiry, they learned that the coffin maker had six coffins to make as soon as possible. These nurses were dissimilar in appearance and hight, one being six feet six inches in height, whose name shall be Damon; the other was about five feet, whose name shall be Pythias; Damon and Pythias drew themselves apart and consulted what was best to be done. The disease was "raging," people who took remedies died as rapidly as those who took none - their nursing could do no good - so they vowed to be true to each other, and that if one should take cholera the other should stand by him while he was ill, close his eyes and bury him when he was dead. They left town at once and journeyed as far as the oil wells - about twelve miles from Winchester - when darkness overtook them. They found a lodging and concluded to to tarry for the night. When they went to their room to retire they found a short trundle and in which they were both expected to sleep. The bed suited Pythias very well, but Damon, when he attempted to lie down in it, was compelled to gather up his legs as the Patriarchs were want to do when they died or to throw them broadcast over the foot-board. After vowing to stand by each other Damon and Pythias slept. Pythias was stirring by times the next morning, and had arrayed himself in his smalls and was looking around for his other garments, when Damon attempted to rise and could not do so. His legs having been cramped all night took the cramps in earnest, and he said: Pythias I have the cholera, Pythias found his hat, coat and vest, took one look at Damon and fled the house. Damon rubbed his limbs, straightened himself and found that his cramp came from a natural cause and not from disease. But his friend Pythias he found not, nor could he overtake for the space of three whole days."

1840 Same place. That year the census said John was 40-50 years old and had living with him 2 males under 5, 2 at 5-10, 2 were 10-15, 2 females under 5 and probably his wife at 30-40. Herndon families lived 2 doors down in both directions.

1850 Still there. At census time John was a cabinet maker with $150 worth of property. He was 59 while Elizabeth was 44. They had a large family consisting of: Robert B, 24, William, 22, John, 19, Elijah, 16, Susan, 14, Catherine, 12, Benjamin B, 8, Elizabeth and Sarah, 6.

A descendant, Phyllis Sears said the following item was found but John was already deceased so the date must be incorrect: Clark Co. Democrat published at Winchester, Kentucky 15 Oct 1874: John P. Stubblefield had published an advertisement of the opening of his Carpenter and Cabinet Shop in the basement at Old Boone Corner

John's will, dated 12/1873, mentions two unmarried daughters, Betty and Sally, and wife Elizabeth. His remaining land was to be divided into sevenths and evenly distributed to his other children at the time of his wife's death.

Copyright 2010 by BJ Van Gundy

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