James Daniel Hinson (1881-1949)

bertie_hinsons_siblings_-_6-left  bertie_hinsons_siblings_-_6-right

(Scrapbook pages created in Close To My Heart’s Studio J.)

James Daniel Hinson is my grandfather Wallace Paul Cowan’s uncle, brother to his mother Myrtle Bertie Hinson Cowan (1879-1971). He is the 6th of 10 children of Isaac Newton Hinson (1849-1925) and Louisa Cumi Harp Hinson (1852-1918). You can read about their family here.

Daniel was born July 6, 1881 in Whitener, Arkansas. He first appears on the 1900 US Census, age 18, living with his parents and siblings in Springdale, Arkansas. He married Capitola Lester in Washington County, Arkansas on July 18, 1905. He was 24, she was 20.

On the 1910 US Census, Daniel J is 29 and Capitola is 24. They live in Springdale, and they have a son Willie N, age 4, Daniel is working as a laborer, doing odd jobs. Capitola is a dressmaker, working at home. She has given birth to two children. Horace G. Hinson was born October 23, 1908, and died of pneumonia on November 30, 1908 according to his Find A Grave memorial.

On the 1920 US Census, they are in Iola, Kansas. Daniel J is 38 and working as a laborer in a garage. Capitola is 34 and is a dressmaker, working at home. They have 4 children now. Willie is 13, Lester is 9, Murvin is 6 and Mildred is 2. They had another son, Herbert D. Hinson, born June 3, 1925. He died May 12, 1926 and his Find A Grave memorial is here.

On the 1930 US Census, they remain in Iola, Kansas. James D is 48 and a laborer doing odd jobs. Capitola G is 44 and a seamstress in a private home. Children still at home are Murvin (age 17), Mildred (age 12) and now they have E Glenn who is 8.

On the 1940 US Census, they are still in Iola, Kansas. Dan is 58 and Capitola is 54. An occupation isn’t listed for Dan, but Capitola is a seamstress at WPA Sewing Room. (WPA stands for Works Progress Administration, part of the New Deal which provided jobs during the Great Depression. You can read more about it here.) The only child left at home is Glenn, age 18, who is working as an elevator operator at a hotel.

Dan died on May 31, 1949 and Capitola died November 8, 1970. They are buried in Highland Cemetery in Iola, Kansas. Find A Grave has memorials for Dan and Capitola.

His children:

William Newton Hinson (pictured above with younger brother Murvin) was born April 20, 1906. He married Margaret Brower. I can’t find him on the 1930 US Census, but by 1940 they are in Las Vegas, Nevada. William is 34 and working as a brakeman on a steam railroad. Margaret is 30 and a stenographer. Margaret died July 13, 1956. William died August 17, 1989. His Find A Grave memorial is here.

Lester K. Hinson (left, pictured with his dad shortly before his dad died) was born November 13, 1910. He married Thelma L. Croley, and worked as an auto mechanic in Iola, Kansas on the 1930 and 1040 US Census. They had 1 child. Lester died June 20, 1983 and Thelma died March 9, 1989. Lester’s Find A Grave memorial is here.

Murvin D. Hinson (right, pictured with his dad) was born July 26, 1913. He married Evelyn Ruth Leslie. On the 1940 US Census they are in Iola, Kansas, and he works as a timekeeper for county road improvement. He enlisted in the Army at the end of World War II on April 21, 1945 and served through July 21, 1946. He died September 30, 1994 and Evelyn died August 27, 1999. Murvin’s Find a Grave memorial is here.

HINSON MildredMildred Lois Hinson (pictured to the right, and below with her brother Glen) was born 1917. She married William McClay and is found living with him in the 1940 US Census in Iola, Kansas. William’s occupation was “ice-man.” By 1948 she is living in Wichita, Kansas and listed in the city directory under her maiden name. She died 1984. Mildred’s Find A Grave memorial is here.

Lloyd Glen HINSON Mildred and GlenHinson (pictured with his sister Mildred) was born August 19, 1921. He married Gladys Mae Downey and they had 3 children. They lived in Pasadena, Texas. Glen died on March 7, 1986 and Gladys died on December 12 the same year.

Louisa Cumi Harp Hinson (1852-1918) – Her Obituary

HARP Louis Cumi Left Her Sister HARP black and white cropped

Photo: Louisa Cumi Harp Hinson on the left, and one of her sisters





My grandfather Wallace Paul Cowan had a clipping of his grandmother’s obituary published in Springdale News (date unknown) and I have transcribed it:

Louisa Curry Hinson (nee Harp) was born November 30, 1852 near Hindsville, Madison County, Ark., and died April 10, 1918 at the family home on East Emma Avenue, Springdale Ark., at 5:20 am, age 65 years, 4 months and 10 days.

At age fifteen years she was converted and joined the Baptist church in the community of her childhood. She lived a consistent Christian life until the day of her death.

October 14, 1868, she was married to I.N. Hinson to whom she was a faithful and devoted wife until the day of her death. They had ten children, eight of whom still live. They are Mack of Springdale, Daniel of Iola, Kansas, Len of Camp Beauregard, LA, Mrs. Blake Baggett and Mrs. Bertie Cowan of Springdale, Mrs. Elmer Loyd of Van Buren, Mrs. S. O. Johnson of Memphis, TN, and Mrs. Andrew Sanders of Lorenzo, TX. All of these except Mrs. Johnson and Mrs. Sanders were present at the funeral, sickness preventing their presence. Besides these she leaves one sister, Mrs. Martha Nail of Wichita Falls, TX and three brothers, Jim and Burden Harp of Hindsville and Allen Harp of Kirkland TX. The last named brother couldn’t be present at the funeral.

Mrs. Hinson was a beautiful patient Christian character. Her influences in the home meant much to the family. She was cheerful, pleasant and patient in all things. As a mother she was kind and gentle and devoted to the interests of her children. As a wife she was devoted and patient and helpful. The stars she will wear in eternity can alone reflect the kindly patience and gentle care which she showed in every realm of her life.

On the morning of April 4, she suffered a paralytic stroke while about the duties of the house. She did not think she was very sick, but soon sunk into unconsciousness. From this she never aroused. Gradually her condition grew worse, until on Wednesday morning, April 10, at 5:20 oclock she went away to meet her savior. Her place will not be filled here again. She is gone from us never to return but awaits us coming to her. The Lord grant that we should go to that way at the end of our days.

Funeral services were conducted at the home Thursday afternoon, April 11, by pastor W. I. Elledge of the Baptist Church in the presence of a large crowd of sorrowing friends and relatives. Her remains were laid away in Bluff Cemetary the same day. The friends of the family showed their appreciation of her excellent character in every possible way. The beautiful floral tribute spoke more eloquently than words can express the esteem in which she was held by those who knew her best.

Card of thanks: We take this method of extending our thanks and of expressing our deep appreciation to every person who so kindly helped us in the sickness and death of our wife and mother. The kindness of friends is worth more at such a time as this as any other thing we know. We thank you every one. I.N. Hinson and family.

Isaac Newton Hinson (1849-1925) & Louisa Cumi Harp (1852-1918)

isaac__cumi_hinson_-_2-left  isaac__cumi_hinson_-_2-right

(Scrapbook pages created in Close To My Heart’s Studio J.)

Isaac Newton Hinson and Louisa Cumi Harp are my 2x great grandparents. They were the parents of my great grandmother Myrtle Bertie Hinson.

Isaac Newton Hinson was born November 24, 1849 in Arkansas. He was the son of Daniel Hinson and Rhoda Vaughn.

Louisa Cumi Harp was born November 30, 1852 in Arkansas. She was the daughter of James Thomas Harp and Nancy Jane Hinds.

On the 1850 US Census, Isaac’s family was farming in Brush Creek, Washington County, Arkansas. Isaac was 1, his father Daniel was 40, and his mother Rhoda was 40. His siblings in the home were William, age 17; Margaret, age 14; Penelope, age 11; Thomas, age 8; and Daniel, age 5 – all were born in Arkansas. Only William had attended school the prior year. Their last name was listed as Hynson.

On the 1860 US Census, Isaac’s family farmed in Clear Creek, Washington County, Arkansas. Isaac was 10, father Daniel was 54 and mother Rhoda was 48.  Siblings in the home were Thomas, age 18; Phillip Daniel, age 15; Emily, age 1; Penelope, age 20, and her husband William Linley, age 23, and their daughter Mary, an infant. It is noted that Rhoda and Penelope can’t read. No one in the home attended school the prior year.

Also on the 1860 US Census, Louisa’s family farmed in War Eagle Walnut, Benton County, Arkansas. Louisa was 5, father James was 37, and mother Nancy Harp was 32. Siblings in the home were: William, age 16; Julia, age 14; Sarah, age 11; Mary, age 8; John, age 4; Martha, age 2; and James, age 1. Neither of Louisa’s parents could read, and no one in the home attended school the prior year.

Isaac & Louisa married in about 1869. Isaac was about 19 and Louisa was about 16.

On the 1870 US Census, Isaac & Louisa were both 20 years old. They farmed in Prairie, Madison County, Arkansas. Isaac was listed as Newton and Louisa was listed as Cumi. Isaac is marked as unable to read.

On the 1880 US Census, the family was still in Prairie, Madison County, Arkansas. Isaac was 30 and Louisa was 24. They had 5 children: Zimri, age 10; Thomas, age 7; Dora, age 5; May Belle, age 3; and Bertie, an infant. Isaac is marked as being unable to read or write, and Zimri had attended school the prior year.

On the 1900 US Census, the family was farming in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas. Isaac, listed as Newton, was 51 and Louisa was 47. Children in the home were: Bertie, age 20 and recorded as a son; Daniel, age 18; Lin, age 16; Cleopatra, age 14; and Vernia, age 10. Isaac and Louisa had been married for 30 years, and Louisa had given birth to 11 children, with 9 living. Vernia and Lin were attending school.

On the 1910 US Census, the family was in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas. Isaac was 60 and a driver in a livery barn. Louisa was 56, and had given birth to 10 children, with 7 still alive. Isaac and Louisa had been married for 40 years. Children in the home were: Cleopatra, age 24; Bertie, age 29 (married for 7 years but abandoned by her husband) was a dressmaker working from the home, and her son Paul, age 7; Lin, age 27, working as a brakeman on the railroad, and his wife Annie, age 20.

Louisa died on April 10, 1918 in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas. She was 65. Her Find a Grave memorial is here.

On the 1920 US Census, widowed Isaac was 70. He lived with daughter Bertie, age 33 and divorced, and her son Paul, age 16 in Springdale, Washington County, Arkansas. Paul had attended school and was the only one employed. He worked as a delivery boy for a grocery store.

Isaac died July 12, 1925 in Washington County, Arkansas. He was 75. His Find A Grave memorial is here.

My beautiful picture

Bluff Cemetery in Springdale, Arkansas

Photo: Isaac and Louisa are buried together in Bluff Cemetery in Springdale, Arkansas. The photo shows my great grandmother Bertie with her sisters Dora Ada and May Belle. The young girl is Dora Ada’s granddaughter Cleona Sanders.

HINSON Isaac HARP Louisa, HINSON Bertie HINSON Dora Ada SANDERS Andrew Jackson

This photo was sent to me by Sonny Sanders, son of Utah Sanders and grandson of Andrew Jackson Sanders and Dora Ada Hinson (they are incorrectly labeled and Mr & Mrs A. G. Sanders in the photo.) In the center of the photo is Louisa and “G. Father Hinson” is Isaac. My great grandmother Bertie is in the top row at the far right, and my grandfather Wallace Paul Cowan is on the left in the front row. Shiloh Museum of Ozark History has this photo in their archives and provided me with more information. The photo was taken at the Baggett residence in Springdale around 1904. The man in the middle row to the left of Louisa is Blake Baggett. Based on that identification, I think he’s holding his daughter Winnie G. Baggett, who was born in 1900, and I believe that is his wife May Belle Hinson standing behind him to the left.

The children of Isaac Newton Hinson and Louisa Cumi Harp are:

Zimri Hinson – Zimri was born July 5, 1870 in Whitener, Madison County, Arkansas. He died July 30, 1884 in Waco, Texas according to family records.
Thomas Macklin Hinson – 1872-1945
Dora Ada Hinson – 1875-1959
May Belle Hinson – 1877-1970
Myrtle Bertie Hinson – 1879-1971
James Daniel Hinson – 1881-1949
Lin Walter Hinson – 1885-1952
Polk Wallis Hinson – Polk was born on February 16, 1887 in Whitener, Madison County, Arkansas, and died March 3, 1887 according to family records.
Cleopatra Ellen Hinson – 1886-1946
Vernia Jane Hinson – 1889-1920

Albert Gibson Cowan (1884-1963)

I grew up, from age 5, living with my grandfather Wallace Paul Cowan (1903-1988). He went by the name Paul, and was a quiet man. He didn’t share a lot, but it was clear he was bitter about his father. Until I found Paul’s photos and letters after my Mom’s death and started researching, all I knew was that Paul’s dad abandoned him and his mother, which meant that Paul had to go to work at a very young age to help support the family.

I found a piece of paper written in my grandfather’s hand:

Pauls Father

And I found one photo of Albert Gibson Cowan:

My beautiful picture

Front Left is Albert Gibson Cowan

and written on the back:


Pratt Photo – Paris Texas
AG Cowan, First Row Left
age: 28
Supt. of Telephone Co Lines & Switch Board Crew
& his 7 man crew. Names?

Here is a closeup from the photo of Albert next to a photo of Paul as a boy:


From letters between my grandfather and his mother (Myrtle Bertie Hinson, 1879-1971) I thought I’d found valuable information:

Bertie to Paul Letter October 28 1964SHORTENED






Dated October 28, 1964:
Now Paul we have real Beautiful weather. Now all I no about AG, he died at Neoshea MO at Hospital with cancer of stomac he was at Springfield Springfield Hospital for month so his girl and …

It seems my grandfather asked for more information because the topic is addressed again:

Bertie to Paul Letter March 23 1965  Bertie to Paul Letter Part 2 March 1964

Dated March 23, 1965:
Now about your Dad being dead he had a cancer of stomach. he was at the Neosho MO Hospital is all I no for Willie Pond told me and as for no I sent you his girl and husband name after I heard it so that I no.

I found this in with Paul’s letters, and I think this is Bertie’s writing, so perhaps this is what she’s referring to:

Albert's supposed daughter

Bertie was 85 when she wrote these letters. The person she was getting information from, Willie Reed Pond (1891-1987) was Albert’s cousin, daughter of Martha Anna Cowan.

I wanted to know what happened to Albert after he left the family. I pieced together quite a bit of the family tree using Paul’s photos with names and dates recorded on them, and other written records he left. Those were very helpful when combined with census information and other records I found online at ancestry.com or familysearch.org.

The first census Albert would have been recorded on isn’t available – most of the 1890 census was destroyed by fire. He is found in the 1900 census living in Springdale, Arkansas with his parents Thomas and Mary Cowan, and his sister Mary M. His age is recorded as 18, but I believe it was actually 16. (I know that he had an older brother, too, who was already out of the house.)

The next record I have of Albert is his marriage to Bertie. They were married on March 16, 1902 in Washington County, Arkansas, and the license says they were both 21. Actually Bertie was 22, and I believe Albert was was 11 days shy of 18.


My grandfather was born January 25, 1903, and I believe Albert left before he was a year old. I haven’t found record of a divorce.

By the 1910 census, Bertie and Paul are living with her parents and a sister and brother in Springdale (and is marked as married) and Albert is boarding in a house in Comanche County, Oklahoma working as a telephone lineman.

In 1912 he married Izora Beatrice Shirley (1892-1943) in Custer, Oklahoma, and he is recorded as being 28, which agrees with the 1884 birth year.


His World War I draft card shows him living in Roger Mills, Oklahoma and married to Izora. He is of medium height and medium build with blue eyes and dark hair. He works as a lineman for the telephone company.

US World War I Draft Registration Cards AlbertGibsonCOWAN

In 1920 Albert and Izora are living in Roger Mills, Oklahoma and have 2 children. Albert is listed as a manager in the telephone industry. In 1930 they’ve moved to Chilhowee, Missouri and have 3 children. Albert is listed as a lineman in the telephone industry and Izora is a dressmaker at home. He probably doesn’t know that his son Paul has moved to Kansas City, Missouri, just 70 miles away.

In the most recent census available to us, 1940, Albert and Izora and their 3 children are living in Los Angeles, California. Izora’s brother also lives in the house. Albert’s occupation is troubleshooter for telephone company and he worked 12 hours the previous week and only 4 weeks in 1939. Izora is a Forewoman and worked 40 hours the previous week and 43 weeks of 1939. The Great Depression was just about over. This is the first census where Albert’s birth year is listed correctly.

It’s interesting to note that on the 1940 census, their oldest child, Albert Gibson Cowan Jr, age 24, has completed his 2nd year of college but isn’t currently attending school, and is working as a service station attendant. Their daughter Sonora, age 19, is said to be a senior in high school. Their daughter Marjorie is 17 and is said to be in 4th grade.

His 1942 World War II draft card solved a mystery for me.

US World War II Draft Registration CardsAlbertGibsonCOWAN

I had a lovely photo that was marked in my Grandfather’s handwriting as “Aunt May Cowan & daughter” but I couldn’t figure out who Aunt May was. His father had one sister, noted as Mary M in the 1900 census.

My beautiful picture

“Aunt May Cowan” – Charlotte May Cowan

Backof AuntMay photo

On the draft card, it asks him for “Name and address of person who will always know your address.” He answered “Mrs. R. J. Cambron (sister) Route 2 McAlester.” He also notes that his place of residence is 4492 W 16th Street in Los Angeles California, but that his mailing address was Route 2 North McAlester. I researched Mrs. R. J. Cambron in McAlester and found a marriage license for Mr. Ruby James Cambron and Miss May Cowan from May 1912. She was 26. “Mary M,” Albert’s sister from the 1900 census, would have been 26. Tracking her through 1940 on the census, she went by May but her tombstone says Charlotte May.

Izora died in Los Angeles in 1943. It appears that their children stayed in the area. It’s hard to track people without the census but I know that Albert Gibson Cowan Jr died in 2002 in California, Sonora died in 1973 in Washington, and Marjorie died in 1997 in California.

Despite the age inconsistencies, I think I have the right man. However, the information from the letters between Bertie and Paul don’t mesh with what I found regarding Albert’s death. Plus, he didn’t have a daughter who became Mrs. Clifford Johnson in Sparta, Missouri. In fact, I find that Clifford Johnson’s wife was Mable Alice Dobbs.

Missouri  puts death certificates online:(http://s1.sos.mo.gov/records/archives/archivesdb/deathcertificates/)
and I found a death certificate for Albert G. Cowan:

Albert Cowan Death Certificate

This shows that he died December 17, 1963 at the Missouri State Hospital in Nevada, Missouri, which was sometimes referred to as the Lunatic Asylum. He had been there for a year and half, and the cause of death is coronary occlusion. His occupation is listed as “retired telephone man” and his usual residence is in Springfield, Missouri. His parents are unknown, and his wife is Izora Beatrice Shirley (Dec.) He is buried in Ozark Cemetary, and Funeral Director was Adams-Monger.

I requested records from Adams Funeral Home in Ozark. I received a form filled out containing information for death certificate and obituary, which doesn’t indicate who provided the information. Listed are his 3 children, all in California. It’s noted that the funeral was a Masonic service. There’s also a letter from his niece, Virginia Saunders, in Oklahoma, who wants to put a stone on the grave. Virginia Cambron Saunders (1921-2006) is the baby in the picture above with her mother, Aunt May.

An obituary can be found at the Christian County Missouri Genealogy website:
“Cowan, Albert G. 27 Mar 1884 – 10 Dec 1963  CCR 19 Dec 1963
Albert G. Cowan, 80, of Ozark, died at 10:40 a.m. Tuesday in the state hospital at Nevada. He had lived in Ozark since 1937 and was a retired lineman. Survivors are two daughters, Mrs. Sonora Christman, Orange Calif., and Miss Margie Cowan, of Norco, Calif.; a son, Albert Cowan, Jr., North Hollywood, Calif.; and four grandchildren. Funeral services were at the Adams-Monger Chapel here at 2 p.m. today (Thursday), with Masonic rites at the graveside in Ozark Cemetery.”

There’s some misinformation there. He hadn’t lived in Ozark since 1937. He was in California on the 1940 census, on his 1942 World War II Draft Card, and his wife died there in 1943. Sonora Christman was actually Sonora Chrisman. Finally, his date of death was reported incorrectly.

I have theories about the discrepancies between what Bertie said in the letters to Paul and the records I have found. The birth and death years my grandfather wrote for his father don’t match with what I found. The birth year of 1881 is from the marriage certificate, which Paul had. I don’t know where the 1965 death year came from – the letters mentioning his death were written in 1964. Regarding the cause and place of death, I wonder if relatives shared a false story since he was in a mental hospital. The note regarding his daughter really threw me, but I have a theory that Mrs. Clifford Johnson was a caregiver for Albert. Maybe someone referred to her as “Albert’s girl” and Bertie thought they meant his daughter. Just a theory.

If you have any information about Albert Gibson Cowan, I’d love to talk to you.

September 2015: Check out the update here.