Happy Birthday Zilpha Hodges



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Zilpha Hodges (1807-1884)

Zilpha Hodges was born on 18 Jan 1807 in Franklin, Virginia, as the second child of Rebecca and John “Redhead” Hodges. She had one sibling, namely: Gabriel. Not much is known about her childhood. It is quite likely that she had additional siblings. There was more than one man in the neighborhood with the same name as her father and the records for Virginia are sparse, so we can only hope that her early years were happy ones.

When she was 19, Zilpha married Peter Holland McCall, son of William S. McCall and Mildred Holland, on 10 Apr 1826 in Franklin, Virginia.

Peter Holland McCall and Zilpha Hodges had the following children:

  1. John William “Buck” McCall was born about 1827 in Franklin, Virginia. He died on 20 Nov 1866 in Portland, Callaway, Missouri.
  2. Robert Henry “Bob” McCall was born on 08 Mar 1829 in Franklin, Virginia. He married Elizabeth K Kemp on 15 Feb 1850 in Callaway, Missouri. She died. He married Nancy Agnes Huston on 14 Jul 1854 in Osage, Missouri. He died on 04 May 1909 in Iowa.
  3. Samual Christopher “Sam” McCall was born on 18 Jan 1833 in Franklin, Virginia. He shared his birthday with his mother. He married Elizabeth A. Linville on 13 Dec 1860 in Callaway, Missouri. He married Sarah Janava McClellan on 04 Jan 1877 in Missouri. He died on 03 Mar 1922 in Ham’s Prairie, Callaway, Missouri.
  4. Nancy Ann McCall was born on 24 Mar 1836 in Franklin, Virginia. She married Henry F Harland on 06 Dec 1860 in Callaway, Missouri. She died on 30 Jun 1890 in Callaway, Missouri.
  5. Thomas Alexander “Horse” McCall was born about 1839 in Virginia. He died in 1869.
  6. Mary Mildred McCall was born on 04 Mar 1841 in Callaway, Missouri. She married Benjamin Estill on 06 Nov 1857 in Callaway, Missouri. She married James Edward Scott on 16 Jan 1873 in Callaway, Missouri. She married John Dill McClellan after 1882. She died on 30 Aug 1923 in Callaway, Missouri.
  7. James Franklin “Jim” McCall was born on 07 Jun 1846 in Portland, Callaway, Missouri. He married Martha Alice Scott on 16 Jan 1873 in Callaway, Missouri. He died on 06 Jul 1923 in Castana, Monona, Iowa.
Zilpha and Peter McCall children: Sam, Mary, James and Robert.
Zilpha and Peter McCall children: Sam, Mary, James and Robert.

Sometime between 1839 and 1840, Zilpha and Peter McCall packed up their family and moved from Virginia to Callaway County, Missouri. Nearly all of Peter’s siblings and their families made the move about the same time. Peter bought 47.4 acres of land in Callaway County in 1848.

Peter McCall, land purchase.
Peter McCall, land purchase.

Zilpha and Peter McCall in Callaway, Missouri for the remainder of their lives.

McCall, 1850 Federal Census.
McCall, 1860 Federal Census.

Zilpha and Peter saw their sons go off to fight for the Confederacy during the Civil War. Callaway County had only recently been settled and most of its citizens had roots in the south, so the area was mainly loyal to the rebel cause.

Peter Holland McCall died on 20 Apr 1867, leaving Zilpha a widow at age 60. Luckily, she was able to live with and near her children for the rest of her life.

McCall, 1870 Federal Census.
McCall, 1880 Federal Census.

The McCall family was split apart in 1882. Zilpha’s youngest son, James Franklin “Jim” McCall and his brother-in-law, husband of Mary Mildred, had a fight resulting in the death of the brother-in-law, James Edward “Ed” Scott. The event was especially tragic because the two affected families were doubly related. Jim was married to Ed’s sister and Ed was married to Jim’s sister. On 24 March 1882, the “Callaway Weekly Gazette” in Fulton, Missouri reported:

FATAL AFFRAY – A case of Self-Defence.  –  Results of Ed. Scott, Near Portland.

T. Harrison, Prosecuting attorney, and I. W. Boulware, Esq., went to Portland on Monday of this week to see about the killing of Ed Scott, alleged to have been done by one James McCall. Esquire R. D. Harris of Portland, held an inquest on the dead body of Scott on Thursday of last week, and the verdict of the jury was that he came to his death by violence at the hands of one James McCall on Wednesday of last week.

After the verdict of the Coroner’s jury ‘Squire Harris issued a warrant for McCall and lodged it in the hands of Deputy Sheriff John B. Goodrich.  John arrested McCall and ‘Squire Harris sent for S. T. Harrison, Prosecuting Attorney.  On Monday he went down to prosecute the case and I. W. Boulware, Esq., went down to defend.  When they arrived at Portland S. T. Harrison examined the evidence that was given before the Coroner and dismissed the case. The evidence showed that McCall was perfectly justifiable in what he did — it was a clear case of self-defense. The evidence was as follows:

“James McCall and Ed. Scott, and two other young Mc Calls, nephews of both James McCall and Ed. Scott, left Portland together on a wagon Wednesday evening of last week.  After they had left Portland some distance — about to Logan creek — Scott began to accuse James McCall of cheating his (Scott’s) mother in some railroad ties, which McCall denied and Scott struck him with his fist and knocked him over on the wagon tongue.

Scott then tried to get hold of McCall, but McCall managed to extricate himself from the position he was in on the wagon tongue and got away from Scott and ran around to the other end of the wagon.  Scott by this time had gotten a stick and ran after McCall and knocked him down to his knees three times as he would start to get up.  By this time one of the young McCall’s took Scott off McCall. While Scott had McCall down he yelled, ‘enough,’ and begged Scott to let him alone.  When Scott got loose from young McCall he then got out his knife and took after McCall. McCall ran with Scott after him — until they got to where there were some rocks and McCall picked up one and threw it at Scott and missed him and then Scott hurled one at McCall and missed him.  McCall then threw another rock at Scott which struck him on the left ear.  Scott fell on the ground and got up in a short time and walked in company with one of the young McCall’s that was along to the house of a McCall about ten or eleven o’clock that night.  A post mortem examination by ‘Squire (Dr.) Harris showed that the left temporal bone of the skull was badly crushed so that one could put in his two fingers after the skin was removed.  The evidence all showed that defendant tried to avoid a difficulty, but Scott would not listen to reason.  The affair is a very sad one McCall and Scott were double brothers-in-law.  Each had married the others sister. Both had drunk too much whisky before leaving Portland that evening. The difficulty occurred between sun down and dark.

After this event, James Franklin moved his family from Missouri to Iowa. Other family members moved to Iowa and some moved back and forth between Missouri and Iowa, but the family could never be as close as they were before the incident.

Zilpha Hodges McCall died on 06 Mar 1884 in Reform, Callaway, Missouri. She was buried in Mar 1884 at the Old Salem Cemetery in Reform, Callaway, Missouri.

Where is she in the tree?

Relationship chart, Thomas Leland Estes to Zilpha Hodges.
Pedigree chart, Zilpha Hodges.

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