An American Journey
The Genealogy of the Curbow-Montoya Family
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Ellen Elizabeth West
A Narrative of her Life written by her son John Ashford Atwood
In his written narrative of the family history, John Ashford Atwood wrote about his mother, Ellen Elizabeth West as follows:
"And now as to my mother's (Ellen Elizabeth West) people, they were slave owners in Louisiana, and I heard my mother say that when the Negros were set free that they would not leave their owners but wanted to stay and work for them just like they had been doing, and she said she would help take care of the little Negro babies while their mothers worked.
I don't know anything about my grandfather West. He died before I was born. I do know that he was give 4 leagues and a labor of land for his service in the Army at the close of the Civil War, and that he died soon after the war closed, and I know that his children let the land sharks beat them out of all the land that he owned.
Grandmother West lived among her children after Grandfather died, most of the time with her youngest son; he was single until after her death.
They had nine children in the family, and their names beginning with the oldest were: Dick, Jeff, Demphis, Nancy (Nan), Tom, willis, Sarah, Ellen (my mother), and John, for whom I was named. (I also have part of my father's youngest brother's name, Ashford), and all of my uncles and aunts except one, Aunt Sarah, spent their lives in Williamson, Travis and Bell Counties (Texas)...lived and died in those three counties. Aunt Sarah died in Oklahoma, and my mother in Callahan County, Texas.