Tag Archives: Oklahoma


I was happy to have in my mail on Wednesday, the death certificate for my great-grandfather, James Harvey Pickens. Here is a picture of James Harvey and family, about 1907.They were married in Cooke Texas 1900.


He was listed as divorced. His wife in Tampa Florida, was listed a s a widow. I do know he left the family somewhere between 1920 and 1930. Wife Alice, my grandfather Harvey H and siblings were in Tampa in 1930. We never knew what happened to James Harvey, except that he is buried with his parents Harvey H and Sarah F Smith Pickens in Hillside cemetery, Purcell Oklahoma. It was reassuring to see I had the right SMith family in the 1860’s in Oglethorpe county Georgia. James’ death certificate verified this.

James Harvey Pickens death certificate

The state of Oklahoma was unable to find the certificates for parents of James Harvey, but, I provided all the information I had , and resent it in hopes of success. James Harvey sister was Tommie Pickens who married undertaker B.H. Rackley. Someone of that family may know something too. I have also posted it to the Pickens and McClain county boards on Ancestry. I hope to put this family back together soon.



My father , who is 77 years old today, was impressed with my recent genealogy trip. He never knew the family came from Alabama, he always thought Texas. I explained the route they took so many years ago. From South Carolina, to Alabama and then to Texas.

My tree of Pickens goes from


                                                                                    Patricia Ann

                                                                                  Hershel Harvey

                                                                                  Harvey Hershel

                                                                                   James Harvey

                                                                                       Harvey H

                                                                                      William H




                                                                                 Robert Andrew

                                                                                  Andrew Picon

My dad….

Hershel Pickens Air Force Collage

Daddy and me Christmas 2011


During the years in Texas, my great-grandfather and his family lived in Valley View, Cooke county where my Papa Harvey H Pickens was born, Sanger Texas in Denton county and then to Purcell, McClain county Oklahoma.

Arkansas to Texas to Oklahoma

It seems they took a straight path to Oklahoma. Previous to this, Harvey H the g-g grandfather lived in Lamar Texas as well. I found them in the 1880 census there with wife and several children. Although, before they came to Texas, they were in Arkansas, a strange route to take. All I can figure is there was family in southern Texas. I have yet to find who that would be. They lived in both Bradley and Columbia counties Arkansas, which are closer to the northeast corner of Texas. Another mystery to solve. Ancestor William Pickens died in Bradley county Arkansas in 1860. No record in a cemetery though, at last I tried. Only the mortality index. Harvey H and Sarah F Smith must have married between the two counties in Arkansas during the years 1862-1865 . Their first child was born in 1865. I can find no marriage record online. Time to ask for some volunteers in Arkansas!!




This is my grandmother Mamie Pickens and sister Edith Fountain, taken about February 1990. There was a family gathering that day. This is in Nana’s back yard in Bradenton Florida.


We are now without some of the family, cousin MIke , Aunt Ann and Nana. The small children all all grown.


Everyone went to Texas….

Or so it seems. Many of my ancestors made their way west, to north Texas. Some family began in Georgia, though probably not originally, others from Alabama, by way of Tennessee. In a round about way, they ended up there, and I ended up in Alabama, where my 2nd great grandfather Harvey H Pickens was born. I am much interested in going to north Texas, Fannin county and Cooke county. I found found many headstones and death certificates that traces my ancestors to that region. I posted once, “Go West Young Man.” . Many of the people who migrated did do for the land and the fact that Texas was a republic. Several ethnic groups found themselves in Texas. The first would be of Asiatic descent down to the Irish and Scottish. That’s where I come into the picture. My family is predominantly Irish and Scottish.                                                                 Harvey Pickens was born in Alabama in 1845. He married Sarah F Smith from Georgia. They married in Texas somewhere I think. Stick with me here…..their son James Harvey married Alice LIndell Davidson, daughter of Mary Lumnia Sullivan of Texas ( parents came in through Alabama, Perry county ) and Hiram Isaac Davidson of , yes, Alabama. So, as you can see, they all went through Alabama, and henceforth, here I am , in Alabama. My ancestors came from Alabama, to Arkansas to the Red River in north Texas. There they moved around, some to Oklahoma and a few married and moved to Arkansas. But, it always come back to Alabama.

I have little of those times in the way of photographs, but, I do have photos of the headstones of many, thanks to some willing volunteers.


A Lucky Call

Marriage Certificate of James Harvey Pickens and Alice Lindell Davidson

This is finally getting framed.

One day while looking into family history in Texas, I thought I would take a chance and call the Cooke County Court House. I told the woman who answered I was only guessing about information. I knew my grandfather Harvey Hershel Pickens was born in Cooke County in 1901. As most couples did back then, became pregnant almost right away. He was born in November 1901, so they must have married in 1900. Still, I was only speculating on location. Well, it turns out, it was a luck guess!! The woman at the records department was most kind , and called me back within two hours. She said they had found the liscense. I was so happy. She called me a second time, and said we also have the certificate. I asked for it to be copied and mailed. She said ” you don’t understand, we have the original ” . Imagine my surprise and joy , when she told me they had never picked it up in 1900. I had only one item from my great grandfather, a photo of the family. Now, I have a record that will last a lifetime.

James Harvey Pickens, Harvey Hershel Pickens, Viola Ruth Pickens and Alice Lindell Davidson Pickens

Where is My Next Adventure?

Looking for some help on where I should go next. Like I have said before, you go on one trip, you want another. I have a few fairly local choices…..

Lauderdale county, to look into the Davidson family. They came to Alabama from Tennessee, then migrated to , of course, Texas. Didn’t everyone. Davison married into Pickens in Texas.

Then , I have Lowndes County Alabama, to search fro Pickens. This would be to get whatever information I could on William H. Pickens and Julie Ann Brown, married in Lowndes Feb 28, 1841. I have William H ( I am guessing the H stands for Harvey, it’s all around our family) and family moving to Arkansas, in both Columbia and Bradley counties. Then , they moved to Texas. Surprise! William H son is Harvey H, whom I have found as living in Texas several years, then moving to Oklahoma. The 1850-1860 years seem to be misplaced. I can’t find any of them, but, Wiliam H dies 1860 in Arkaknsas.

And the next location, is back to Georgia, to Irwin and Dougherty counties. Still some gaps to be filled on Mamie. The first Mamie. Wife of John R McCall, mother of Mary Alva, Clifford Riley, Annie Clyde, Labert, Carl H, Yvonne, Joseph and Blanch. This family was a little confused on male and female names! The missing children, Labert, Carl H and Joseph, well, I am not sure where they ended living their last days. I heard Carl H was in Texas.

Texas, sounds like another trip to me!

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