George O'Neill
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George Washington O'Neill (1811 - 1882)

George Washington O'Neill aka O'Neal
Born in Rockbridge, Virginia, United Statesmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married 22 Sep 1827 (to 24 Oct 1866) in Cocke Co, TNmap
Husband of — married 23 Dec 1870 in Gonzales Co, TXmap
Descendants descendants
Died at age 70 in Beeville, Bee, Texas, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 12 Jan 2010
This page has been accessed 2,062 times.

The 1830 census for Cocke Co., TN, page 252, Head of Household #288 is where we first see proven evidence of George Washington O’Neill. He was not yet born at the time of the 1810 census in Virginia, and by 1820 the family had moved to Cocke Co., Tennesse, where all census records before 1830 are missing. However, the 1830 census shows “Washington Oneal” as head of his own household with one female 20-30 years of age (Mary) and one male child under the age of 5 (Henry). It appears that he was living close to his father, Darius Oneal, pg. 252, HH#287. I believe that the misspelling of the last name is due to the person recording the census records, rather than the family actually changing the spelling of the name. The Boyer homestead is also on the Cocke Co., TN census of 1830 on p. 252, HH# 292 – Therefore, the Boyer and O’Neil families lived very close to one another – fitting that the Boyer children should marry O’Neil children...

In 1827, at the age of 16 or 17, George Washington married Mary Ann Boyer. She was born on September 22, 1808 in Cocke Co., TN. It appears that George Washington and Mary were childhood sweethearts and lived “next door” to each other. Ironically, Mary’s brother, Henry Huffman Boyer, married George Washington’s older sister, Rachel.

  • The following paragraph is referenced in several family trees for GW, but I have not been able to find any information supporting this info except the 1840 Census record for Geo W Oneal:

Pioneered westward from Cocke Co, TN to Clinton, MO 1833. After many hard winters of the northern midwest, in 1843, the family sold out and caught a riverboat at Kanasas City. They traveled down the MissouriRiver to St Louis. There they continued down the Mississippi River to where Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi meet. They purchased a wagon and joined a wagontrain bound for Texas. Their original destination was the coastal region of Texas, but a wagonwheel broke in the Leesville area and it delayed them. By the time repairs could be made, they had found a home in the land and community of Leesville.


G.W. O'Neil named 4 or more sons after his brothers: See book "Over the Misty Hills" by Ruth Webb O'Dell, pg 127

Census: 1840, Clinton Co. MO pg 27: GEORGE W WITH FAMILY: Geo W Oneal Free White Persons - Males - Under 5 = 2; Free White Persons - Males - 5 thru 9 = 2; Free white Persons - Males - 10 thru 14 = 1; Free White Persons - Males - 20 thru 29 = 3; Free White Persons - Females - 20 thru 39 = 1; Persons Employed in Agriculture = 4; No. White Persons over 20 Who Cannot Read and Write = 1; Free White Persons - Under 20 = 5; Free White Persons - 20 thru 49 = 4; Total Free White Persons = 9; Total All Person - Free White, Free colored, slaves = 9

  • The 1840 Census record lines up with the 1850 Census record with GW (as one of the 3 males age 20-29), his wife Mary (1 female 20-39), and his children Henry (1 male age 10-14), William & George (2 males age 5-9), Harrison & John (2 males under age 5) - who could the other 2 males age 20-29 be on the 1840 Census? brothers of his? boarders? workers?

1846 Texas compiled census & census substitutes Index G.W. Oneal, Titus County Tax list - Ancestry.com. Texas, Compiled Census and Census Substitutes Index, 1820-1890 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 1999. Original data: Jackson, Ron V., Accelerated Indexing Systems, comp.. Texas Census, 1850-1890. Compiled and digitized by Mr. Jackson and AIS from microfilmed schedules of the U.S. Federal Decennial Census, territorial/state censuses, and/or census substitutes.

1849 Texas County Tax Rolls, George W Oneill Gonzales County Texas FHL film number 002282220

Census: 1850, GEORGE WITH WIFE & CHILDREN - Gonzales Co., TX Belmont, pg 11 Fam #87 O'Neill, J.W. (38) M VA stock raiser; O'Neill, Mary (40) F TN; O'Neill, Henry (21) M TN; O'Neill, Wm (18) M TN; O'Neill, Garge (16) M MO (George); O'Neill, Harrison (14) M MO; O'Neill, John (12) M MO; O'Neill, Mary Ann (10) M MO; O'Neill, Miles (4) M TX;

1850 Slave Census - Gonzales, Gonzales, Texas - 8 November 1850 - G W O'Neill 1 Mexican female slave age 26 - "United States Census (Slave Schedule), 1850 ," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MVCQ-M67 : accessed 21 October 2015), G W Oneill, Gonzales county, Gonzales, Texas, United States; citing line number 12, NARA microfilm publication M432 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 444,920.

Census: 1860, GEORGE WITH WIFE & CHILDREN - Gonzales Co., TX, Belmont pg 73b, Dw49 Fam #46 Oneal, Geo. W. (50) M TN Oneal, Mary A. (51) F TN Oneal, Jno (John) (21) M MO Oneal, Miles (16) M TX Oneal, Calvin (10) M TX

  • By 1860 Census, Henry would be 31 & married & on his own census record with wife Amanda. William would be 28 & on his own census record with wife Elizabeth. George W Jr would be 26 & on his own census record with wife Sarah. Harrison would be 24 & on his own census record with his wife Susan. Daughter Mary Ann would be 20 & perhaps already married to John McFarland.

1860 Texas Compiled Census & Census Substitutes Index TX 1860 Slave Schedule p. 416 - George W Oneal - Gonzales County - Ancestry.com. Texas, Compiled Census and Census Substitutes Index, 1820-1890 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 1999. Original data: Jackson, Ron V., Accelerated Indexing Systems, comp.. Texas Census, 1850-1890. Compiled and digitized by Mr. Jackson and AIS from microfilmed schedules of the U.S. Federal Decennial Census, territorial/state censuses, and/or census substitutes.

1865 Texas County Tax Rolls - George W Oneill - Gonzales County, Texas - FHL film number 002282220

Excerpt of Gonzales County, Texas Civil Court Records Book: October 24, 1866 - after being separated for three years, George W. O'Neill filed for a divorce from Mary Ann (Boyer) O'Neill. George showed up for the hearing with a lawyer, but Mary did not appear nor was she represented by legal counsel. A jury of twelve people heard the evidence. The jury's findings were as follows: "We the jury find that the Plaintiff, G.W. O'Neal and Mary Ann O'Neal, the Defendant were married and lived together as man and wife several years previous to the year 1860. We also find that the said Mary Ann O'Neal abandoned the aforesaid G.W. O'Neal with intention never to return. We find that this occurred more than three years previous to the filling of this suit." George was granted the divorce by the court. The court also ordered that Mary was to reimburse George for the cost of the divorce. (Provided by Debra Hoch)

Census: 1870, GEORGE IN DAUGHTER'S HOME - Bee Co., TX Beeville pg 576 (In home of daughter, Mary Ann McFarland) "United States Census, 1870," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MXGJ-JKL : accessed 21 October 2015), George O'Neal in household of John Mcfarland, Texas, United States; citing p. 11, family 66, NARA microfilm publication M593 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 553,073.

Census: 1880, GEORGE WITH 2ND WIFE & COUSIN Bee Co., TX - Oneil, G W - (69) farming - married; Basheba (36) wife - married; Belton? (age smeared & unreadable) - cousin - single "United States Census, 1880," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MFFK-V9K : accessed 21 October 2015), G W Oneil, Precinct 2, Bee, Texas, United States; citing enumeration district 9, sheet 230D, NARA microfilm publication T9 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 1290; FHL microfilm 1,255,290.

  • Belton is John Belton L O'Neall, son of John O'Neall & Damaris K O'Neall, and brother of Sallie O'Neall who married GW's son George Jr.

Lebanon Cemetery, Live Oak County, Texas



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The Civil War began on April 12, 1861. The Texas state legislature authorized volunteer military companies on February 15, 1858, but by the time the war started, the Texas Legislature passed an act requiring all “able-bodied men between the ages of 18 to 50, with certain exceptions, to enroll for defense and be subject to call of the Confederate Government”. One of the volunteer companies that organized in Gonzales County was the Sandies Home Guard. The Sandies Home Guard was organized June 22, 1861. Henry, at the age of 32, along with 5 of his brothers, William (28), George Washington Jr. (27), Harrison (25), John (22 or 23), and Miles (16), volunteered for the Sandies Home Guard. Their younger brother, Calvin, was only 11 at the time. The brothers are listed as privates under Captain Michael Erskine. The guard’s name probably came from Sandies Creek or Sandies Hill in Leesville, TX. Then, in 1862, all the brothers, except Harrison and Calvin, enlisted into the Confederate Army and served until the end of the war. George W., John, Miles, and William all served in the 36th Cavalry Company D. However, other sources list them serving in the Texas Mounted Riflemen, which later came to be known as Company D of the 32nd Regiment Texas Volunteer Cavalry. Although Harrison volunteered for the Sandies, he did not volunteer for the Confederate Army. It may be that he stayed behind to take care of the O’Neill families left behind and his parents, George Washington, Sr. and Mary who were in their 50’s with one child, Calvin, still at home. Henry was not on the roll with his brothers and there is no clear reason why this is. His company ended up being Company A, 4th Regiment of the Texas Cavalry C.S.A., and then that group formed a part of the Brigade of General Thomas Green in 1863.
posted 2 Jul 2015 by Kelly (O'Neill) Gottsponer   [thank Kelly]
George Washington O’Neill was born May 29, 1811 in Rockbridge Co., Virgina. He was the 6th child of at least 12 children born to Darius B. O’Neil (May 18, 1764 to February 14, 1844) and Mary “Polly” Brackney (1786 to 1861). The O’Neil family lived in Rockbridge Co., VA, where George Washington was born, for 8 years (1806-1813). They then traveled to Washington Co., VA and lived there for 1 year. Finally, they traveled to Cocke Co., TN, from Virginia in 1814.

In 1827, at the age of 16 or 17, George Washington married Mary Ann Boyer. She was born on September 22, 1808 in Cocke Co., TN. It appears that George Washington and Mary were childhood sweethearts and lived “next door” to each other. Ironically, Mary’s brother, Henry Huffman Boyer, married George Washington’s older sister, Rachel. The 1830 census for Cocke Co., TN, page 252, Head of Household #288 is where we first see proven evidence of George Washington O’Neill. He was not yet born at the time of the 1810 census in Virginia, and by 1820 the family had moved to Cocke Co., Tennesse, where all census records before 1830 are missing. However, the 1830 census shows “Washington Oneal” as head of his own household with one female 20-30 years of age (Mary) and one male child under the age of 5 (Henry). It appears that he was living close to his father, Darius Oneal, pg. 252, HH#287. I believe that the misspelling of the last name is due to the person recording the census records, rather than the family actually changing the spelling of the name. The Boyer homestead is also on the Cocke Co., TN census of 1830 on p. 252, HH# 292 – Therefore, the Boyer and O’Neil families lived very close to one another – fitting that the Boyer children should marry O’Neil children...

George Washington and Mary had at least 8 children, the first of which was born when Washington was about 18 years old. The children are: Henry B. b. 1829, William b. December 3, 1832, George Washington, Jr. b. February 7, 1834, Harrison b. April 14, 1836, John b. abt. 1838-1839, Mary Ann b. September 7, 1841, Miles b. February 22, 1845, and Calvin b. abt. 1850. If you refer to the narrative on Washington’s parents, Darius and Polly, you can see that George Washington named his children after his siblings.

In approximately 1833, George Washington took his family and pioneered westward to Clinton Co., Missouri. He homesteaded in Clinton Co., MO, for 10 years. He is listed on the 1840 census of Clinton Co., Missouri on page 50. After many hard winters, the family sold out in 1843 and caught a riverboat at Kansas City. By this time, they would have had 2 children, Henry B. and William, born in Tennessee, and 4 children, G.W. Jr., Harrison, John, and Mary Ann, born in Missouri. The O’Neills, with their 6 children, traveled down the Missouri River by boat to St. Louis and then down the Mississippi River to where Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi meet. There they purchased a wagon and joined a wagon train bound for Texas. It is believed that their original destination was the coastal region of Texas, but a breaking of a wagon wheel in Leesville, Gonzales County, TX, area delayed the wagon. By the time the repairs could be made, the family had decided to stay and had found a home in the community of Leesville. They had arrived in Texas in 1845, some 2 years after leaving Missouri. In addition, Mary was pregnant during part of the travels, which may have contributed to the family settling down in Leesville rather than pushing on to the Gulf coast. Their son Miles was born February 22, 1845. It should also be mentioned that George Washington’s father, Darius, passed away in 1844, therefore he would have been “traveling” at the time of the death. The news of his father’s death may not have reached him until arriving in Texas. Also, it is reasonable to assume that George Washington originally chose Texas because his younger brother, William had already moved there and found a wife, Elizabeth Jane Dick, whom he married in Jefferson County, TX on November 19, 1839. There is also reason to believe that their brother John may have gone to Texas with William. The evidence that supports this theory is the Index to Military Rolls of the Republic of Texas, 1835-1845, that lists John O’Neil and William O’Neal under Company B 1st Regiment Infantry enlistment under Jacob Snively and David S. Nelson. John is also listed under Company A 1st Regiment Infantry under Henry Teal and Jacob Snively. John O’Neil is also listed in the index to donation land grants. The O’Neills registered a cattle brand February 1, 1848, in Gonzales County, TX, Book A. Page 56, however, it could be that all three brothers were in the cattle business together, or that George Washington ran the ranch while his brothers “played soldier”.

The 1850 census of Gonzales County, Texas, town of Gonzales lists J.W. Oneill, 38 years old born in Virginia as head of household. It is believed that, once again, the census recorder misspelled the name believing the name George begins with a “J”. His wife, Mary is listed as a female 40 years of age born in Tennessee. Henry, 21, born in Tennessee, William, 18, born in Tennessee, George 16, born in Missouri, John, 12, born in Missouri, Mary Ann, 10 born in Missouri, and Miles 4, born in Texas are also listed in the household. At the time the census was completed, Calvin must not have been born.

George Washington purchased 370 acres of land on September 15, 1851, registered in Gonzales Co., TX #H118. An additional 320 acres was purchased April 18, 1856, also registered in Gonzales Co., TX #K511. George Washington is also listed on the 1860 Gonzales Co., TX, census on page 8.

The Civil War began on April 12, 1861. Six of George Washington’s 7 sons were Confederate soldiers – only Calvin was too young, age 11 at the beginning of the war. However, Harrison, after volunteering for the Sandies Home Guard with his brothers, stayed behind. It could be that Harrison stayed behind to take care of his brothers’ families and his parents’ endeavors at home. George Washington was about 51 at the time and did not volunteer for service. Also, Mary was about 54 with still one child, Calvin, at home.

According to the book, The History of Gonzales County, the first Methodist Episcopal Church South was organized about 1866. “After they worshipped in a log building for awhile, three acres of land on the east bank of O’Neill Creek were deeded by N.H. Guinn October 5, 1870, to the trustees: Oriley Downs, John Bulger, Saul J. Thomas, George W. O’Neill, Newburn W. Guinn, and J.W. Underwood. This was the building site of a spacious white frame building. That first building was used until 1941 when it was razed and the material used in a smaller building on the same site. At some point after moving to Texas, George Washington and his wife, Mary, decided to divorce. At the time of this writing, I do not have the details of the divorce, but plan to investigate. However, the 1870 census shows that George Washington was in Bee County, Beeville, TX on page 576, in the home of his daughter Mary Ann McFarland.

At some point between the 1870 census and the 1880 census, George Washington remarried a woman by the name of Basheba. Not much is known about her at this time, but as mentioned above, research continues.

George Washington O’Neill died May 17, 1882, in Beeville, Bee County, Texas. He was 12 days shy of reaching his 81st birthday when he died. He is buried in Mineral Cemetery, Mineral, Texas, Bee County.

His first wife, Mary, died November 14, 1893 in Lavaca County, Texas, and is buried in Pilot Grove Cemetery, Yokum, Texas, Lavaca County.

This narrative involves lots of research and plagarism! I cannot share this without listing that the majority of the work was done by Debbie in Austin, TX. Her email address is: [email address removed] . Other sources include several census records, and many FTM files posted on Ancestry.com and Genealogy.com. Also, thanks to G.H. McWhorter who sent me the picture of George Washington O’Neill. His email address is [email address removed]

posted 24 May 2015 by Kelly (O'Neill) Gottsponer   [thank Kelly]
Cattle Brand 01 Feb 1848 Gonzales Co., TX - Book A, Pg 56
posted 13 Jan 2010 by Kelly (O'Neill) Gottsponer
The following provided by Debra Hoch:

Excerpt of Gonzales County, Texas Civil Court Records Book: October 2 4, 1866 after being separated for three years, George W. O'Neill filed for a d ivorce from Mary Ann (Boyer) O'Neill. George showed up for the hearing with a lawy er, but Mary did not appear nor was she represented by legal counsel. A jury o f twelve people heard the evidence..The jury's findings were as follows: "We t he jury find that the Plaintiff, G.W. O'Neal and Mary Ann O'Neal, the Defendan t were married and lived together as man and wife several years previous to t he year 1860. We also find that the said Mary Ann O'Neal abandoned the aforesa id G.W. O'Neal with intention never to return. We find that this occured moret han three years previous to the filling of this suit." George was granted the di vorce by the court. The court also ordered that Mary was to reimburse George for th e cost of the divorce.

posted 13 Jan 2010 by Kelly (O'Neill) Gottsponer
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It may be possible to confirm family relationships with George by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share some percentage of DNA with George:

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O'Neill-3407 and O'Neill-22 appear to represent the same person because: Everything important is the same. Birth date/places/family, etc.

O  >  O'Neill  >  George Washington O'Neill