Biography of Michael Kennedy

THE KENNEDY FAMILY. In the year 1809 Michael Kennedy, Eleanor (McCaffrey) Kennedy his wife, and their six children Thomas, William, James, Betsey, Paulina and Urban E. removed’ from Lincoln County, Ky., to Todd County (then Christian). Michael Kennedy was a coppersmith by trade, and was brought up in Dublin, Ireland. He came to America about the beginning of the Revolutionary war, in which he served as a soldier. At the close of that glorious struggle for liberty, he took up his residence in Virginia as a hunter and pioneer, and was there married in 1785. The following year, and shortly after the birth of their first son, the family packed up their small effects, and in company with some thirty other families, set out for the far-famed Kentucky, under the guidance of Gen. William Logan. The journey was made with pack horses, and was necessarily a most fatiguing and dangerous one. The whole country was infested with savages of the’ worst type, and it was necessary that the little pioneer train should be guarded both day and night by the most vigilant and experienced men of the party. They arrived, however, in safety, and most of the band settled in Lincoln County, near the present site of Stanford, while the Kennedy’s with a few other families located about eight miles from Logan’s Station (now Stan-ford). The pioneers immediately set about erecting forts and block-houses for their protection. Here the Kennedy’s resided until 1809; and here their remaining five children were born. At the latter date all removed to Todd County, as before stated. Thomas Kennedy was a house carpenter; went to New Orleans in 1805; studied medicine, became a practicing physician; was a Judge in the courts and died in October, 1837, his wife, Mary (Kellem) Kennedy, following him in November of the same year. They left no children. William and James Kennedy volunteered and served under Gen. Hopkins, in his campaign against the Indians, being engaged at Tippecanoe and Fort Harrison in Indiana. After the war the two brothers located in Gibson County, Ind., where William died September 14, 1815, leaving his wife, Ann (McBee) Kennedy, and two children: Seneca W. and William. Seneca W. died in 1846, having married Mary Petrie, who bore him six children, only one of whom survives-Sarah P. who married John Feland, of Hopkinsville, Ky. James Kennedy engaged in the horse trade, taking many droves by land and boat to New Orleans and Mobile. He lost his health from much exposure, and went to Hot Springs, Ark., to recuperate, but died there among strangers. Betsey Kennedy married Francis McCarroll, of Montgomery County, Tenn., and reared a large family of children. She died about 1830. Paulina became the second wife of Hazel Petrie. She bore him four children, and died at the age of sixty-nine years. Urban E. Kennedy was apprenticed to the tanner’s trade, and served two years under William Hopper, after which he went with his brother James to Mobile, Ala., with a drove of horses, and visited his brother Thomas in Louisiana, who persuaded him to remain with him two years, giving him a captainship on one of his coasting schooners. Here Urban learned to use the compass, and was enabled to make a large amount of money, which was spent, as he himself says, in ” foolish sport and high living;” but it had a good effect upon him, in so far as it caused him to stop and consider his way, which was the means, together with his mother’s special prayer, of bringing him into the fold of the Savior, having publicly professed religion in the fail of 1822. March 18, 1823, he married Lavinia Bryan, daughter of Thomas Bryan. She was a very handsome and refined lady, and was highly esteemed for her loving temperament and Christian piety. She died October 13, 1844, the mother of nine children Angelina, married Rev. J. T. Johnston, a minister of great ability; James T., married Miss M. Rutherford, daughter of John Rutherford; Eliza J., married George D. Park; Urban C., now a resident of Evansville, Ind.; William Mc., died in childhood; David L., now of Hopkinsville, Ky.; Mary E., widow of the Rev. James H. Nickell; Michael R., served in the Federal Army in the war of the Rebellion, losing an arm at Dallas, Ga.; Theodore F. C., served in the war under. Col. Shackelford; married Kate M. Knight. Urban E. Kennedy afterward married Achsah H. Knight, who bore him four children. Mr. Kennedy was prominently identified with the religious interests of this county, being an active member of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, from the time of his conversion to that of his lamented death, which occurred April 21, 1879. He was a member of the State Legislature in 1865-67. James T. Kennedy was born October 21, 1825, and has always resided in Todd County. He received his early education here, and has devoted his energies to farming pursuits, having a present farm of 220 acres, located some five miles east of Elkton. He is a member of the Masonic Fraternity. Mr. and Mrs. Kennedy are the parents of seven children: Lavinia J., Hiram A., Thomas H., Elizabeth E. (deceased), Mary E., James M., and Henry R. (deceased). Michael R. Kennedy was born July 22, 1842; obtained his early schooling here, and is a most respected resident of the county. His present farm of 111 acres lies adjoining the old homestead in the Fair-view District. He married Miss Belle K. Wilson, and has two children: Nellie M. and Urban R. Mr. Kennedy is a member of the Cumber-land Presbyterian Church.



Todd County KY,

Battle, J. H. Counties Of Todd And Christian, Kentucky. Historical And Biographical. F. A. Battey Publishing Co., Chicago And Louisville. 1884. At current time this manuscript consists of only the Todd County section and a few biographies from Christian County.

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