Sunday, September 2, 2012



            The following was abstracted from a family tree report prepared by ROLLAND TRUMAN Attorney-at-law 1206 Security Bldg. Long Beach, California originally dated 1942 and revised in1945. This report was found on the web site. The report is slightly confusing but it includes information regarding many people from Ohio County, KY that are related to President Truman. Part of this report was written before Harry S. Truman became President, so it might refer to him as Senator Truman. I have not changed the report other than to reorganize it so that it is a bit easier to read. There are a few errors in this report, such as referring to the Owensboro newspaper as being from Ohio County. I have not done any independent research on this subject.

            From reading the following it appears that the grandfather of Harry S. Truman was Anderson Shipp Truman; and that Anderson Shipp Truman had a brother named Milford Madison Truman, whose descendants lived in Ohio County, KY. The report follows:


            HARRY S. TRUMAN was born May 8, 1884 in the town of Lamar, Barton County, Missouri. He married Elizabeth Wallace on June 18, 1919. They have one child, MARY MARGARET, who is a music student at George Washington University, Washington D. C. According to "This Man Truman" by Frank McNaughton and Walter Heymeyer, "born of humble circumstances—drugstore helper, then news boy, railroad hand, bank clerk, farmer, soldier, manager of a clothing store, county judge, Senator, Vice-President and finally President of the United States—his career is the prototype of the American man.'' He became United States Senator from Missouri in 1935 and gained inter­national prominence as leader of the Truman Investigating Committee which he headed beginning March 1, 1941. In November 1944, he was elected Vice-President of the United States. On November 17, 1944 we sent out congratu­lations and stated; "You have made the Truman’s mighty proud and when you become the President of the United States, there will simply be no living with us."

            On April 12, 1945, HARRY S. TRUMAN became the President of the United States of America.

            In this family tree, we cannot begin to set forth the wonderful way our beloved President has maintained his office in the few months he has been President. Current magazines, daily newspapers and many books are being written about his achievements.

            Our main purpose is to trace the TRUMAN ancestry and to tie in the family history with PRESIDENT TRUMAN, as we have received numerous letters, tele­grams and telephone calls requesting information.

            An article entitled "Truman's Kentucky Background" by Paul Nafe and Grace Clayton Banta, released through the Courier-Journal Roto Magazine, (Louisville, Kentucky) On June 3rd, 1945, and "Harry Truman's Missouri" appearing in Life Magazine, June 25, 1945, give information regarding his maternal ancestors as well as many historical facts and pictures.


            WILLIAM TRUMAN, born January 15th, 1787, according to W. L. TRUMAN'S letter, was the third orphan boy in the group from England. He was a very handsome young man, about 5'8" in height, weight 145 pounds, and a fine conversationalist. We quote further from the letter by W. L. Truman: "He (WILLIAM) married MISS EMMA SHIPP near Versailles, Woodford County, Kentucky. She was a wealthy aristocrat, well educated. He settled eight miles north of Shelbyville and near the town of Christiansburg; bought 160 acres (231 acres according to a letter dated May 31st, 1932 by W. S. TRUMAN of Pleasure­ville, Kentucky), and built a fine home for his wife and God gave them seven boys (eight is correct) and four girls.

            On October 3rd, 1945, we received a letter from KATHERINE TRUMAN COOPER of Paducah, Kentucky wherein she enclosed a copy of the Bible record of her grandfather (MILFORD MADISON TRUMAN). This is the first record we have seen which gives the parents of WILLIAM TRUMAN of Shelbyville, Kentucky, who fought in the War of 1812. Here is the valuable information:

"WILLIAM TRUMAN (II), son of WILLIAM (I), and NANCY TRUMAN, and father of MILFORD MADISON TRUMAN, was born January 15, 1787."

"EMMA GRANT SHIPP, wife of WILLIAM TRUMAN and daughter of RICHARD D. SHIPP(1747) and ELIZABETH DONIPHAN (1759) was born October 29, 1787."

"WILLIAM TRUMAN, and EMMA G. SHIPP, daughter of R. D. and ELIZABETH D. SHIPP, were married August 28, 1807."

"Children: RICHARD DONOPHAN" TRUMAN born March 3, 1812; EDMUND ARMSTEAD TRUMAN was born August 17, 1810; DELILA ANN TRUMAN was born March 1, 1814; ANDERSON SHIPP TRUMAN was born February 27, 1816; WILLIAM W. TRUMAN (III) was born January 28, 1818; MINERVA E. TRUMAN was born June 19, 1820; MILFORD MADISON TRUMAN was born April 1, 1822; WOODFORD C. TRUMAN was born March 20, 1824; ELIZABETH SOPHIA TRUMAN was born July 4, 1825; JOHN THOMAS TRUMAN was born March 1, 1829; MARY SHIPP TRUMAN was born March 2, 1832; SANFORD TRUMAN was born August 10, 1808, their eldest son who died at the age of two years."


ANDERSON SHIPP TRUMAN was one of twelve children born to WILLIAM TRUMAN and EMILY SHIPP TRUMAN of Shelby County, Kentucky. He was born February 27, 1816. He was married to Mary Jane Homes in Shelby County, Kentucky on August 13, 1846. They later moved to Jackson County, Missouri. Five children were born to this marriage, namely: MARGARET ELLEN, WILLIAM THOMAS, JOHN ANDERSON, EMILY and MARY MARTHA.

MARGARET ELLEN married JOSEPH TILFORD NOLAND. Their daughter is MARY ETHEL NOLAND of 216 North Delaware, Independence, Missouri.

WILLIAM THOMAS married HENRIETTA STRANG and their son is MAJOR GENERAL RALPH EMERSON TRUMAN of 5106 Garfield Avenue, Kansas City, 4, Missouri, who is now retired.


JOHN ANDERSON TRUMAN married MARTHA ELLEN YOUNG of Grandview, Missouri. She is now 92 years old (1945). They have three children: HARRY S., JOHN VIVIAN and MARY JANE.

4. HARRY S. TRUMAN. The (initial) S. in the name of Harry S. Truman stands for both Shipp and Solomon, his own grandfather, and his wife's father's name. Senator Truman, according to "Who's Who in America", was born Mary 8, 1884, married Bee Wallace June 18, 1919, attended army school after being county judge in Missouri, was captain of Field Artillery, U. S. Army Corps in World War I; is Colonel in Field Artillery Reserve. In his official capacity he has been credited with the construction of $25,000,000 worth of highways and public buildings in Jackson County, Missouri.


Milford Truman had two sons, Laban Sebree Truman, who is the ancestor of the Truman’s of Columbus, Georgia, and John Gardner Truman.

3. LABAN SEBREE TRUMAN married Sallie Gray of Ohio County, Kentucky. He had three children, Everett Howard, Carline and Catherine Truman. Everett married Pearl Lillian Smith of Louisville, Kentucky; and she is now the President of the Truman and Smith Institute of Columbus, Georgia. Her name appears in American Women, Women of Achievement and the Inter­national Blue Book, the "Who's Who in the World." They had one child, Valerie Evelyn Truman of Columbus, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia with a bachelor of arts degree and from Oglethorpe University with a master of arts degree. She is now the Registrar of the Truman and Smith Institute. She is the wife of Leslie Lloyd Wohlford, who came from Hampton, Iowa; and they have one child, Alice Jean Truman Wohlford. Little Alice, (ared one year two months 1944) on her father's side, is a direct descendant of Peter Stuyvesant, early colonial governor of New Amsterdam (now New York).


JOHN GARDNER was born November 22, 1849 at ______. He married SARAH ANNIE JONES on October 9, 1875 at Ohio County, Kentucky. She was born October 12, 1857 at _____________. (Her sister is NORA ACKER of Tryon, North Carolina who has twin daughters, ADA and IDA.) According to a letter dated January 21, 1945 from ADA ACKER JOHNSON of Campobello, South Carolina, the marriage license is recorded in the Ohio County, Kentucky Marriage Book "U", page 120.)


MILFORD GARDNER TRUMAN (also known as Billy Norton)

RAY was born August 12, 1878 and died February 5, 1879.

ROSCOE was born March 23, 1880 and died February 8, 1881.

NORAH was born October 12, 1889 and died August 14, 1890.

EARL was born a twin of CARL, born March 20, 1897 and died the same day as born.

Archibald William Truman, H.D., F. A. C. S., is a famous surgeon who is now head of the Glendale Sanitarium & Hospital at Glendale, California. He is a cousin of Senator Harry S. Truman and looks enough like the Senator to be his twin brother, except that Harry's forehead is higher.

JOHN GARDNER TRUMAN moved to Oklahoma, or Indian Territory, in the early Eighties. He visited in Kentucky only one time after leaving. That was in 1904. WILLIAM MADISON SMITH of Louisville, Kentucky, in his letter of January 3, 1945, states, "He gave us kids a very minute description of the opening of the Cherokee Strip in which he participated." "It compared favor­ably with Edna Ferber's screen play 'Cimarron' as portrayed by Richard Dix and Irene Dunn."

SARAH ANNIE died of cancer April 14, 1908 and is buried at Nunn, Colorado. We visited the grave with our folks on August 12, 1926. The cemetery is located in a desolate and lonely area.

JOHN GARDNER TRUMAN died August 24, 1931 at the age of 82 years and is buried at Inglewood Cemetery, Inglewood, California, near Los Angeles.

We are indebted to ADA ACKER JOHNSON of Campobello, South Carolina for information concerning the ancestors of SARAH ANNIE JONES. She has sent us copies of many historical documents in regard to this branch of the family, together with many prints of our ancestors.

SARAH ANNIE JONES TRUMAN was the daughter of MASON LONG JONES, born January 13, 1835 and died February 25, 1916 and MARY ELLEN COOPER, born January 6, 1835 and died November 10, 1880.

Other children of MASON LONG JONES and MARY ELLEN COOPER were:

WILLIAM JOSEPH JONES, born August 28, 1859; died May, 15, 1941.
CHARLES TIMOLEON JONES, born August 7, 1861; died July 24, 1917.
JACOB CARL JONES, born May 22, 1864; died June 12, 1915.
ELIJAH ROSCO JONES, born September 9, 1866.
EFFIE LILLIAN JONES-BALL, born June 8, 1873; died Apr. 20, 1936.
ARCHIE CLIFTON JONES, born Feb. 14, 1877; died September 24, 1926.
(Wife's child?) MYRTLE C. born Aug. 13, 1883.
JENNIE J. born June 21, 1853, died Dec. 11, 1912.

The above records were copied from MASON LONG JONES' Bible, now owned by ELIJAH R. JONES of Fordsville, Kentucky.

MASON LONG JONES was a son of WILLIAM SNELLING JONES, born March 7, 1801 and died August 6, 1853; and SUSANNAH CARTER JONES, born March 13, 1795, died March 27, 1854. Other children were:

MARY ANN JONES, born Aug. 11, 1821; died November 19, 1897. HENRY FRANCIS JONES, born September 16, 1823; died Sept. 6, 1832. ELIZABETH JONES, born March 22, 1826; died Feb. 18, 1893. WILLIAM WASHINGTON JONES, born Sept. 26, 1828. JAMES MCDOWELL JONES, born March 8, 1831; died May 13, 1862. RICHARD JONES, born November 1, 1833; died November 12, 1833.

The above records of names and births, including others not listed were copied from WILLIAM SHELLING JONES' Bible, now (1945), owned by Mrs. A. D. MORTON, Hardinsburg, Kentucky.

As already noted, the mother of SARAH ANNIE JONES was MARY ELLEN COOPER, who was a daughter of JOSEPH HENRY COOPER, born May 2, 1802 and died Oct. 19 1892; and SARAH McDANIEL, born August 9, 1805 and died June 13, 1880.

JOSEPH HENRY COOPER was a son of JACOB COOPER who died in 1805 in Chester County, South Carolina and served in the South Carolina Militia from 1780-1785. His mother was REBECCA McKINNEY, born June 15, 1760 in Virginia and died Nov. 2, 1838 in Breckinridge County, Kentucky. Her parents were JOHN McKINNEY AND ELIZABETH McDONALD.

The parents of JACOB COOPER were JACOB COOPER, who was granted a land grant April 6, 1753 at Anson County, North Carolina and who died about May 11, 1769 in Craven County, South Carolina, and MARY ________ .

            WILLIAM MADISON SMITH, Louisville, Kentucky states that "grand Dad (WILLIAM MADISON) was a high type citizen, a consecrated Christian, a Dea­con in the Baptist Church for years, and a Mason. He was also a Democrat. He was born in the East End of Ohio County, Kentucky, and for his charity and good-neighbor policy, was called "Uncle Milt". He was a total abstain­er from alcoholic drinks and never used tobacco in any form. When they celebrated their fiftieth anniversary in 1895, eight children were present, only JOHN GARDNER being absent."

            WILLIAM MADISON SMITH, in his letter of January 5th, 1945, informs us also that he is a bachelor, has been a clerk in the Louisville, Kentucky Post Office for 25 (35) years, and is a farmer on the side. He own most of the farm on which his Grand Dad, WILLIAM MADISON, resided after settling in Kentucky. He has traveled considerably throughout the United States, made a trip to Alaska and in 1939 he visited the Holy Land, France, Egypt, Smyrna, Turkey, Greece, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium and England, returning to the United States on Thursday before war was declared the following Sunday.

            The Owensboro Messenger, Ohio County, Kentucky in its Sunday issue of July 22, 1945, contains a featured Article by W. E. Daniel, with pictures, giving a detailed account of the Truman’s in that area:

            “MILFORD was one of twelve children of WILLIAM TRUMAN AND EMILY SHIPP TRUMAN of Shelby County, Kentucky. MILFORD TRUMAN was born on the 1st day of April, 1822 near Cropper and Bag­da, small villages in Shelby County, Kentucky and about 35 miles east of Louisville on the perimeter of the Bluegrass section.

In 1845 he married LOUCINDA NEVIL. Ancestors on both sides had originally migrated from Virginia. According to a letter dated January 3rd, 1945, from WILLIAM M. SMITH of Louisville, Kentucky, nine children, seven boys and two girls, were born to them. After the birth of the first two children, they moved to the vicinity of St. Joseph, Missouri to operate a farm for his married sister. While residing there, a third child was born. In the early 50's they moved to Fordsville, Ohio County, Kentucky and purchased a farm on which they lived until his death in 1901. His wife's death preceded his by about three years. Both were buried in the Fordsville Cemetery.

The children in the order in which they were born are as follows:

HUMPHREY D., Deceased. Buried at Canadian, Texas. He married ELIZABETH PHILLIPS. He performed the marriage ceremony for NORA JONES (sister of SARAH ANNIE JONES who married JOHN GARDNER TRUMAN) and HENRY ACKER, ac­cording to their daughter, ADA ACKER JOHNSON of Campobello, South Carolina.
JOHN GARDNER, Deceased, married ANNIE JONES.
RICHARD, Deceased. Buried in Yellow Creek Cemetery, a few miles from Owensboro, Kentucky. Married JOSEPHINE DAVIDSON.
THEORDORIC NEWTON, Deceased. Buried in a country cemetery near Fordsville, Kentucky. Married POLLYANA CROW.
WILLIAM CLAUDIUS, Deceased. Buried in Fordsville Cemetery. Married MARY ROBY.
MARY MARJORIE, Deceased. Buried in Fordsville Cemetery. Married JOHN H. SMITH March 19th, 1884. They lived to celebrate their golden wedding anniversary. He died January 21st 1941. There were four children, namely:
            WILLIAM MADISON of Louisville, Ky. A sister and brother survive.
            ANNA ELIZA, now 81 years old (as of January 1945) lives at Van Zant,      Kentucky. Is very feeble. She married JOSEPH M. COOPER in January        1884. He is deceased.
            LABAN S., now 77 years old (Jan. 1945) married SALLY GRAY. Live on    his farm RFD #1, Narrows Kentucky. Wife still living.”

            LABAN SEBREE TRUMAN was born about 1868, at ________County, Kentucky. He married SALLY GRAY of Ohio County, Kentucky on _________ at ___________. They lived on his farm on RFD #1, Narrows, Kentucky, where his wife still lives (January 1945). They had three children: EVERETT HOWARD, CAROLINE and KATHERINE.

EVERETT HOWARD TRUMAN married PEARL LILLIAN SMITH OF Louisville, Kentucky in 1914. She is now president of the Truman & Smith Institute of Col­umbus, Georgia. Her name appears In American Women, Women of Achiev­ement and the International Blue Book, the "Who's Who in the World". She is a noted author and teacher and is known professionally as PEARL SMITH TRUMAN. They have one child, VALERIE EVELYN. She is graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Arts De­gree and Oglethorpe University with a Master of Arts degree. She is now the registrar of the Truman & Smith Institute. In 1942 she mar­ried LESLIE LLOYD WOHLFORD who came from Hampton, Iowa. They have one child, ALICE JEAN TRUMAN, born August 15, 1943 at Columbus, Georgia.

KATHERINE TRUMAN has taught school in Paducah, Kentucky and is married to D. T. COOPER, Principal of a Junior High School. Their address is Colonial H eights, Kentucky. She is presently working on the Truman History in connection with her branch of the family.

Update 9-26-2012

In the book Truman by David McCullough, copyright 1992, at page 409, there is a reference to a letter that President Harry Truman wrote to his family in Kansas; the President had traveled to Europe by ship to meet with Churchill and Stalin. In the letter President Truman wrote of meeting a seaman on board the ship named Lawrence Truman and stated, "He comes from Owensborough (sic), Ky., and is the great grandson of our grandfather's brother. He's a nice boy and has green eyes just like Margaret's."


  1. Thank you very much for helping to preserve and sharing our family's history. I have been starting to piece together our Smith Family Tree and it is refreshing to become more acquainted with our roots. Much appreciated - John Henry Smith III: Born in Owensboro, Kentucky 1958, Graduated from Kennett High School, Kennett, MO and University of Missouri @ Columbia 1980. Served 20+ years as a Senior Chief Fire Controlman (Surface Warfare) United States Navy (Retired in 2002). Presently teach and coach Middle School. Feel free to contact me at Have a glorious day!

    1. Hi, This is awesome!... John Gardener Truman is my great great grandpa (he was the one that missed the 50th anniversary). He had Roy Mason Truman with Sarah Annie Jones. Roy had Lester Earl Truman. Lester had Ron Roy Truman. Ron had Jon David Truman, that's me.