Chapter 0




updated 6/10/99

Compiled by Larry REA

Larry: Seven generations of Rea and we’re stuck on number 0. James brought his family out of Tennessee in 1818, from Robertson county. Orville and Marijane found a property transaction for that year.

James REA

Starling H. REA

George Washington REA

Theodore Columbus REA

Abija Lee REA

Edgar John REA

Larry Dean REA

Ed: Dad (Abija Lee REA) used to tell me the REAs came from Pennsylvania. They owned property in Philadelphia. They left town
and moved to Kentucky because one of them killed a man.



(*) James REA

born ca 1788 Augusta Co., VA

married Elizabeth CISNEY

born ca 1784 Mecklenburg Co., Charlotte, NC

(*) son Starling H. REA

son John W. REA

dau Elizabeth REA

1850 Federal Census for Hopkins Co., KY

(437) page 80 R

James RHEA (REA) 62 VA

Elizabeth 66 NC

(438) Living next door is the wife of Starling H. Rea !

Martha RHEA (REA) 41 SC

John T. 17 KY

Milton D. 15 KY

Alfred H. 12 KY

Eliza 10 KY

Mary 8 KY

Sarah 6 KY

(403) Starling’s son, George, is living down the road with the John Lynch family. John is claimed to be the brother-in-law of
Starling in Starling’s will. John’s wife is named Elizabeth [Sisk]. (Starling’s wife was Martha Patsy Sisk)

George RAY (REA) 18 KY

(Ralph R. REA) James REA had come from Augusta Co., VA, where he was born in 1788. His family had moved to Virginia from Pennsylvania. James and his wife, Elizabeth Melsa BROWN [sic], migrated to Kentucky after they were married. Elizabeth died there in 1852 but James lived until 1881, dying at Dalton, Kentucky at the age of 94 [?].

Note: The name “Melsa Brown” was on the 1818 deed for having sold property to James Rea (from TN) — don’t have any idea how it got associated with Elizabeth… Larry

Note: James doesn’t appear on the 1870 census and his second wife (Emily) is again living with the John Clark family. I believe James died in 1867 which would make his age at death approximately 79. John’s wife must be Emily’s sister, they are born in the same state. There is a very interesting connection between the Clark’s, the Ross’, and the Rea’s. James married Emily. His grandson, George W. REA, married Rebecca Ross, and William Rhea’s granddaughter married a grandson of John Clark… They were all neighbors in KY. The Clarks, Rosses ended up at Fix Ridge in Latah county, Idaho. I believe this William Rhea family is related… perhaps the match maker connection… (Larry)


(This material is from a letter written by Jessie and Molly REA, dated 24 Sep 1967)

James REA originally owned 200 acres near Madisonville, the county seat of Hopkins Co., Kentucky. He built a one and a half story log house which is still standing. It is now in the middle of a corn field and is still useful as it houses bales of hay and tobacco.

Under the weather boarding are the original logs, on either side of the center door is a large room (with fireplace across the end) one of the chimneys is built of very large sandstone ( the other has crumbled). It must have been quite a good sized house for those days. The house has a corrugated roof and it surprises us that it has been spared for so long and not burned down.

We visited with Henry Clay REA and his wife Lois, they were kind enough to take us out to the old REA homestead. We went toward Beulah from Madisonville and took what seemed to be a country road. We got permission to cross the field and visit the house and cemetery. The house is visible across the field from the cemetery.

We found the graves of James and his wife Elizabeth (she died in 1852) James’ tombstone had fallen down but was stuck back in the dirt. It couldn’t be read. It was made of scarred red sandstone.


(material given to Tommie REA, son of Jessie and Mollie REA, by Hugh Dinsmore REA, son of George Washington REA, 8 May 1968)

James REA owned several negro slaves who were freed before the Civil War but stayed with the REA family until James REA’s death ca 1867. (???) The former slaves of James REA were given the REA farm after his death. The rest of the family didn’t agree with his decision, but this is what he wanted.


John W. REA 1818 census Hopkins Co. KY

(M) Mary J.

son Thomas F. REA 1844 Hopkins Co. KY

dau Est REA 1846 Hopkins Co. KY

dau Martha W. REA 1848 Hopkins Co. KY


(material given to Tommie REA, son of Jessie and Mollie REA, by Hugh Dinsmore REA, son of George Washington REA, 8 May 1968)

John REA, the younger son of James REA, was born in 1830 or 31 in Dalton, Hopkins Co., Kentucky. He moved to Rea, AR where he died. George W. REA found that his uncle was living in AR but before he could visit him he (uncle) passed away. John REA had two daughters living in Harrison, Boone Co., AR who were in their 70’s or 80’s.


(*) Starling H. REA 1809 TN

(M) 28 Oct 1829 Martha Patsy SISK

(*) son George Washington REA 1832 Dalton KY

son Milton D. REA 1836 Dalton KY

son Alfred Henry REA 1838 Dalton KY

son Richard REA 1839

dau Elizabeth REA 1840

dau Mary B. REA 1843 Dalton KY

dau Sarah Jessie (Sally) REA 1845 KY

DIED 1847, Starling H. REA from TB Dalton KY

Martha married William H. BARTON


(This material is from a letter written by Jessie and Molly REA, dated 24 Sep 1967)

During Starling’s (REA) life the land originally owned by his father, James REA, was gradually sold, until none of it was held by REAs.

We didn’t locate the graves of Starling (REA) and Martha but perhaps we will on another trip. A Mrs. McClearn at Dawson Springs, KY told us about a Hopkins Co. Cemetery book that was about to be published. (she is a historian and had helped research the REA family)


(*) George Washington REA 1832

1(M) Rebecca Louina ROSS

son Francis Marian REA 1855 Dalton KY

(*) son Theodore Columbus REA 1857 Dalton KY

dau Martha Mahala REA 1860 Dalton KY

son George Fountain “Bud” REA 1862 Harrison AR

dau Sarath Catherine REA 1866 Harrison AR

dau Sarepta Electa REA 1868 Harrison AR

son William Henry REA 1870 Harrison AR

son Timothy Dewitt REA 1872 Harrison AR

son Starling Edgar REA 1874 Harrison AR

wife Rebecca died 7 Jan 1878

2(M) Margaret Rhuamah EVANS (?) MS

son Robert Milton REA 1879 Batavia AR

dau Ava Eliza REA 1881 Batavia AR

dau Iva Alice REA 1884 Batavia AR

son Sam Peel REA 1887 Batavia AR

died 18 July 1888 (1)

dau Mary Ruby REA 1890 Francis AR

(M) 1 Sept 1920 (30) Fred INMAN

son Hugh Dinsmore REA 1892 Francis AR


(Ralph R. REA) George Washington REA was born near Dalton, Hopkins Co., Kentucky, August 10, 1832, son of Starling H. REA and Martha Patsey SISK. Starling died in 1847, when George was a teenage boy. George’s mother remarried and George went to live with his Grandfather, James REA, a well-to-do slave holder, who owned a large tobacco farm nearby.


(This material is taken from a letter written by Jessie and Mollie REA 24 Sep 1967)

George Washington REA left Kentucky in the spring of 1857 with his wife (Rebecca Luina ROSS) and family to make a fresh start at Flatwoods, Arkansas.




Moved to Arkansas



End of Chapter 0


Print Friendly, PDF & Email