James Jenks and his family were some of the first settlers of Logan County. James Jenks was the oldest son of William and Ann Jenks. James was born at Hartford, England on December 20, 1799. James Jenks was eighteen years of age in the year of 1817 when his parents sailed to America. Family history tells us that the captain of the ship was not a proficient navigator and the trip lasted nearly 11 long weeks. The long and taxing trip took its toll on the Jenks’family, as Mother Ann and a young child died within days of arriving in America. All but one of James’ brothers and sisters migrated to America except for one daughter, Elizabeth(b.5 May 1805) who stayed for unknown reasons. One infant daughter of William and Ann had died in England. The rest of James’ siblings are as follows-
Ann Jenks-(b. 10 Jan 1802 ma.George Mozee 2 Oct 1823) William Jenks-(b. 7 Jun 1807) Sarah Jenks-(b. 26 Jun 1808 d. 8 Oct 1817-this was the child that died upon arrival to America) Mary Jenks-(b. 14 Feb 1810 ma.Luke Southern 24 Aug 1836(Giles Co.) Their children were Elizabeth,Joseph,Martha and John Jane Jenks-(b. 5 Jun 1813 ma.Christopher Stafford 4 Dec 1845(Giles Co.)) Charles Jenks-(b 10 Sept 1815 ma.Susan Virginia VanVactor) Charles is the Authors’ Great-Great Grandfather
The territory which present day Logan Co. covers encompassed several counties throughout the ages. The Jenks family settled in what was Giles Co., Va.. Logan Co., WV encompassed parts of several counties, including Giles Co., Va., and was created on Jan 12, 1824. This will account for the differing county information the researchers found when researching this family.
James Jenks lived in the Logan/Giles Co. area with his family until 1826, at which time he married Elizabeth(Betsy) Stollings, daughter of Jacob and Sarah Stollings. The wedding took place in Logan Co., WV. Elizabeth was born on Oct 9, 1807. James and Elizabeth had three children;
Anthelia Jenks(Dimmock) b. Oct 28, 1828-Logan Co., WV ma. Oliver Dimmock-Missouri d. April 3, 1882 Brown County, KS Sarah Jane Jenks(Callaway) b. Nov 3, 1830-Logan Co. ma. McKenzie J. Callaway d. Mar 4, 1910-Oregon James Benton Jenks b. Apr 3, 1833-Logan Co. ma. Mary E. Callaway d. Apr 5, 1893-Oregon
James Jenks appeared to have lived out the rest of his life in Logan Co., and passed away on 17 Sept 1834 of Cholera. It is reported that James was a Sheriff, County Clerk and Circuit Judge in the area. One source, “G.T. Swain’s History of Logan Co, WV” states that records of the Circuit Court of Logan Co were destroyed in 1864 during the Civil War and it is impossible to determine who the early judges of Logan Co., WV were. Another source, The Virginia Genealogist, vol 19, 1975, shows documentation of a record showing James Jenks as the Deputy Clerk of Logan Co. An excerpt reads;
“I James Jenks deputy clerk of the county court of Logan, do hereby certify, that I have carefully and deliberately examined the list of Taxable property hereunto annexed and that I find that the same to be correct according to the best information I am able to obtain. Given under my hand this 14 day of June, 1824. James Jenks DC for Joseph McDonald Clk”.
Research of these records show that another West Virginia Act passed March 23, 1836, which read as follows:
“Be it enacted by the general assembly, that the auditor of public accounts, be, and his is hereby authorized to issue his warrant upon the treasury in favour of the executor of James Jenks, deceased, late deputy sheriff of Logan County, for the sum of thirty dollars and four cents, the amount of sundry insolvent tickets for militia fines, not paid in consequence of the death of said Jenks, and sundry militia claims not presented within the time required by law, for the like cause.
This act shall be in force from its passage.”