Thursday, September 1, 2011

STEPHEN FIELDS 1795 Tenn. to Letcher Co. Ky.

  • STEPHEN FIELDS born 1795 in Tennessee

  • STEPHEN FIELDS born 1795 in Tennessee, came to Kentucky with his father as a young man. He was married to ELIZABETH BAILEY. Records show that STEPHEN FIELDS filed a land claim for 100 acres Jan 22, 1829 on what is now known as Fields Fork. On November 15, 1841, another claim was filed for 100 acres. He filed his last claim in 1850 for 250 acres, giving him a total of 450 acres. They had a large family of young children when he decided to go to KY. Some time later, he armed himself with a flintlock rifle, a chopping axe and as much provisions as he could carry, and started out alone across the mountains into the wilderness to locate a new home and a place to start a new life with his family. After many days of travel on foot over the mountains and valleys he came to Mace's Creek in Perry Co. He built a one room log cabin on Mudlick Branch, He did the construction of the cabin with no tools or nails except the axe he carried with him. He split the logs using the blade of his axe as a frow. He used poles and rocks to hold the roof on the house. When he finished the log house, he went back to TN to get his family. At that time Mahlon was only 2 years old and they decided to leave him with his grandparents until he was old enough to travel. It must have been very hard on the parents to strike of into the wilderness not knowing if they would ever see their little boy again. Stephen and his family came to KY bringing what they could carry on their backs plus what the packhorse could carry. They also brought a cow and calf, dog. After many days they reached Mudlick Branch. Stephen cleared the land and planted crops. The soil was fertile and produced well. After 4 years he returned to TN to get Mahlon which was the last trip he ever made back to TN. Old timers say it is easy to explain why he left the good land of TN for the wilderness of KY, for at that time KY was a hunter's paradise abounding in deer, bear, and wild turkey, and the land was almost free. In 1829 he filed a claim for 100 acres on Mudlick Branch and secured more and more land in years following. Because he owned so much land on Mudlick the name changed to Fields Fork.THOUSANDSTICKS NEWS 23 June 1983
    "In 1829 Stephen Fields filed a claim calling land, located on
    Mudlick Branch. As years passed, Stephen filed more claims and secured
    More land on Mudlick Branch. Because he owned so much land on Mudlick Branch the name was changed to Fields Fork.
    From Fields Family Findings Vol. 2, #6 pp. 8-9: "What I Know About the Fields Family" by Phillip H. Fields (1932)
    "All I know about the Fields in Kentucky is what my grandfather and great-grandfather told me. Therefore, I can only give a brief sketch, but I hope it will be of value to the present and future generations.
    My great-grandfather's name was Stephen Fields. He was born and raised in
    Tennessee according to my information. He married there and had a family,
    when he got the idea in his head to move to Kentucky. Sometime about the
    year 1818/1820, he armed himself with a flintlock rifle and a chopping
    axe, and as much provisions as he could handy carry, and started out alone
    across the mountains to locate a new home for himself and his family.
    After days of travel on foot over the hills and through the narrow
    valleys, he came to Macy's Creek in Perry County. There he chose to build his future home. So, he built a one-room, round log cabin. He did this all alone, with no tools save the axe he carried with him. At that time he had never seen a nail, so of course the house didn't have a nail in it. The roof? Why, he split out boards, using the axe blade as a frow, laid them on the ribs and weighted them down with poles and heavy stones. That used to be the way all houses were covered here in the mountains. After great-grandfather had his house finished he returned to Tennessee for the family.
    At the time of the moving to Kentucky my grandfather, Mahleon Fields, was
    only two years old. It was decided that he had better be left behind with
    his grandparents, I guess, until such a time as the family was settled in
    their new home. Seems strange that a father and mother would leave their
    two-year-old child and strike off into the wilderness across hundreds of
    miles, not knowing if they would ever see him again. But that is what they
    say they did.
    Anyway, they started for their new home with just what they wore, could
    carry on their backs and what little stuff they crammed in their budgets
    which the womenfolk had made by whipping up some bed sheets and the
    menfolks tying them on the backs of the one horse, cow, and calf, which they had brought along. That must have been a strange cavalcade!
    They arrived safely on Mace's Creek. There great-grandfather spent the
    rest of his life. Four years after they had settled in Kentucky,
    great-grandfather went back to Tennessee and brought little Mahleon home. That was the last trip great-grandfather ever made to his native state.
    By his first wife, Stephen Fields had a large family of children. The
    boys were James, George, and Mahleon; the girls were named Sally, Rebecca, Minerva, Polly, and Winnie. After the death of his first wife, Stephen married Susie Thomas and had one son by her. His name, Cornelius. James Fields married and settled on Big Creek, in Perry County and raised a large family. George joined the Confederate army and was never heard of again. Mahleon, my grandfather, married Mary Setser and settled on Mace's Creek, about one mile above his father. He, too, raised a large family. The girls, daughters of my great-grandfather, all married. Sally married William Standifer and raised a large family. A few of her children are still living in Perry County near where they were born. Rebecca married William Miller and moved to Clark County. They had a large family. Minerva married Benjamin Collins and they raised a large family. Winnie married Aaron Collins; they also raised a large family.

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