The DYER Family
From History of Union County, Kentucky. pub. 1886
Submitted by: Gary & Frances
Who by the way, is researching this family.
If any family in Union County deserves the
reputation of being a Union County family, it must be the Dyer
family. The founder of the stock was one of the first settlers, and
he raised a large family, all of whom, except one, married and raised
families. Most of these children lived and died in Union County, and
there are now probably more members of the Dyer family within Union
County than any other race.
This family was founded by Wm. Dyer, a blacksmith, who
was born in Virginia in 1780. He came to Union County in 1804, and settled near
where Morganfield now stands. He married Gracie McGee in Virginia, before
coming here. His first four children were by her. He married a Miss Harris
about the year 1815. The last five children are hers. Wm. Dyer is said to have
been one of the men who located the county seat of Morganfield. Tradition has
it that he in company with the other commissioners, were reclining on the bank
near the spring, slightly feeling the effects of fatigue and Jeremiah Riddle's
whisky, when Mr. Dyer threw his cane up the hill toward where the Court House
now stands, and proclaimed oracularly, that there would be the county capital.
He was a man of impulse, but integrity. An illustration of this is seen in an
incident of his life, that is related as follows: A neighbor of his, by the
name of Gwinn, had a horse that was constantly breaking into Dyer's cornfield.
After sending word to Mr. Gwinn several times to keep the trespassing horse off
his corn, Mr. Dyer shot the offending animal and then sent the price of the
horse down to Morganfield to its owner. Mr. Dyer died in 1832. All his
children died rather young. There seems to have been considerable consumption in
the family. His trade has staid (sic) in the family. His sons, John and
Nathan, were good regular blacksmiths, and Harvey and James did the work for
their farms. John Will, the son of John Dyer, and John Will the son of Nathan,
are blacksmiths, but John, the son of Nathan, is the only one now in the
In the second generation the following are the children:
James married a Miss Mason, and died in 1851; Elizabeth married a Mr. Ball and
died in 1860; John married Lauren Mason, and died in 1870; Henderson died a
bachelor; Nathan Harris married Marium Griggs, and died in 1863. Rebecca
married Frederick Wolflin, and died during the war; George married Josephine
Haleman, and died about 1847; Mary Ann married Irving Spaulding, and died about
1862; Martha married a Mr. Rice; Edward Harvey married America Bingham, and died
In the third generation the following are noted: The
children of James are Kate (Quirey), who has one child, Holbert; Mrs. Hedges,
who has four children, John, William, Laura and Alice; Ada, who was never
married; William (deceased) had two children, Sallie and Harry; John M., has
fourteen children, eleven by his first wife and three by the second. Their
names are Mary B., William P., James M., Darius, Thomas, Benjamin, Orval, Marsh,
Attie, Saline, Lamond and three others whose names the reporter did not
ascertain; Thomas has never married and Marsh (deceased) never married.
The children of Elizabeth were Edward, married; Mary Ann, deceased;
William, deceased; Thadeus, deceased.
The children of John, are John Will, who has six
children: Brooks, deceased; Ed, Lauren, Russell, Bessie, Charmain.
James has eight children, Hampton, Thomase (deceased),
Charles, Adda, Rebecca, Ida, Fred, and the baby.
Dorcas (Kirk) has three children, and Elizabeth (Murray)
has two, Mabel and Charles.
The children of Nathan are John Will, who has eight
children, Edward, Margeret, Mary, Richard, Mettie, Catherine, Clara and Thomas;
America (House) has three children, James, Amanda and one boy; Nancy (Connelly),
who has five children, Verna, Mattie, James, Eula and Grover; Mary Minor and
Thomas Harris, never married; Susan (House) had five children, Mary, Thomas,
Greene, Nellie and Harden; George Frederick has four children, Lillie,
Frederick, Cordie, Traverse and Judith Ann (Lata).
Edward Harvey's children were William C., who has six
children, Lillie, Pearlie, Orval, Allie, Bertha and Leslie; Henry R. has two
children, one deceased and Jennie; George W., two, Thomas John and one infant;
Rebecca (Wolflin) had five children, all dead.
The children of George are Arminda (Hanley), who has
three or four children; James, who had three children; Sallie (Weldon and
Craig), who had one child, Thomas, by Weldon, and three by Craig.
The children of Mary Ann (Spalding) are Mary Ann,
deceased, who had three or four children; James and Nellie, who had two
The children of Martha (Rice) are Ellen, who had two
children by Kirker and one by Rice; Mary, who had four children, and Fred.
Some of the less numerous branches of this family have
removed from Union, and live as wide apart as Minnesota and Texas. The main
part of this family has always been within a day's walk of Morganfield.