Vesta Zipporah Choate/Choates was my fifth great grandmother in Anderson County, Tennessee. I have two lines, one quite certain and the other very probable, which lead back to her.
She was the wife of John England. She apparently was known as Zipporah, because she signed her name as Zipporah England on an 1818 Anderson County deed after her husband had died.
Zipporah is not a common name. I have found records for four Zipporahs in Anderson County. The first was Vesta Zipporah Choate herself, the second was her daughter Vesta Zipporah England who married John Wasson, the third was her granddaughter Vesta Zipporah Wasson (daughter of John Wasson and Vesta Zipporah England), and the fourth was her granddaughter Zipporah Peters (daughter of Thomas Peters and Sarah B. (Jenny) England). I have found no record that indicates that Zipporah Peters' name was Vesta Zipporah Peters. But it seems likely that it was, given the "Vesta Zipporah" pattern which her cousin's name, her aunt's name, and her grandmother's name followed.
Zipporah Peters and her husband Alfred Carter Cross were my third great grandparents in Anderson County. Zipporah Cross is one of the people listed in this settlement. I was already convinced that Zipporah Peters was the granddaughter of Vesta Zipporah Choate before locating this settlement, but this settlement does serve to provide further confirming evidence.
John England and Jane Peters were my third great grandparents in Anderson County. I believe that John England, husband of Jane Peters, was the grandson of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate. (I also believe that Jane Peters and Zipporah Peters were sisters, but that is a separate issue). The missing link between the two John Englands is probably Titus England, probable father of Jane Peters' husband John England, and probable son of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate. However, there were several men named Titus England at about the same time (probably all related), and there are confusing records associated with them.
One Titus England married Elizabeth Stewart. Titus England and Elizabeth Stewart subsequently removed to Missouri. Elizabeth Stewart appeared in the 1850 census for Benton County, Missouri. She was a 75 year old widow living with one of her sons, a daughter-in-law, and some of her grandchildren.
John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate definitely had a son named Titus England, and I believe that he married a woman named Elizabeth. Some researchers seem to have identified him with Titus England who married Elizabeth Stewart. But I believe the dates are all wrong. Titus England and Elizabeth Stewart seem to have been about twenty years older than Titus England of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate and their probable daughter-in-law Elizabeth. In addition, Elizabeth the probable daughter-in-law of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate appears as a 55 year old widow in the 1850 Anderson County, Tennessee census. She was living as head of household with her unmarried children, and was living next door to two of her married sons. In particular, she was living next door to the aforementioned John England and Jane Peters.
There was a Titus England in both the 1830 and the 1840 Anderson County, Tennessee censuses. I believe that he was the son of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate, and that he died 1840/1850 leaving his wife Elizabeth a widow. The item in this settlement that would seem to confirm this theory is an entry for Titus England Heirs. The settlement is dated 1852, which is consistent with Vesta Zipporah Choate's son Titus England having died 1840/1850.
State of Tennessee and Anderson County, November Term County Court 1852 Settlements Wm. England Administrator of the Estate of Zipporah England decd. Wm. England admt By amt of sales and notes $120.50 Vouchers No 1 Zipporah Cross proven account $10.50 No 2 Henry Farmer proven account 1.98 No 3 James Peters Receipt 10.34 No 4 Elizabeth Leaths Receipt 2.07 No 5 Milly Cross Receipt 10.34 No 6 Titus England Heirs Receipt 9.90 No 7 John Worthington Receipt 2.40 No 8 Thomas Peters Receipt 10.34 No 9 Administrators Jus 10.00 No 10 R H Coward Clk Ju John Key Ju 4.25 ------- $71.82 Whole amt of debt $120.50 Whole amt of ???? $71.82 --------- Whole amt due at this time $48.68 his Wm. x England mark Confirmed by the Court James Lamar Charman I certify that the foregoing settlement was made by me with Wm. England Administrator and after said settlement being made said amount appears to be behind $48.68 said settlement is now indebted to ???? ?????? ??? confirmation ?????? this 30th day October 1852. R H Coward Clk
William England, the administrator, was the son of Titus England and Elizabeth, and the grandson of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate. So he was administering his grandmother's settlement. This appears to be further evidence that my proposed line is correct. William would have been the brother of my third great grandfather John England who married Jane Peters. William England, John England, and their mother the widow Elizabeth England were living in adjacent houses in Anderson County, Tennessee in 1850.
I have not been able to identify Henry Farmer.
Zipporah Cross was Zipporah Peters, wife of Alfred Carter Cross and granddaughter of Vesta Zipporah Choate.
James Peters is puzzling. There were several James Peters in Anderson County in this time frame. All of them were related to Thomas Peters, son-in-law of Vesta Zipporah Choate. However, none of them would naturally have been heirs. The 1830 and 1840 censuses seem to suggest that Thomas Peters and Sarah B. (Jenny) England had more sons than have been thus far accounted for. I think this entry suggests that Thomas and Jenny had a son named James, and that this James would have been the grandson of Vesta Zipporah Choate.
Elizabeth Leaths was probably a granddaughter of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate. John and Zipporah had a daughter Susannah England who married Joseph Worthington. An Elizabeth Worthington married G.W. Leath in the right time frame (namely 1844) that she could have been the daughter of Joseph Worthington and Susannah England. This bears further investigation.
Milly Cross was Amelia (Milly) England, daughter of John England, and Vesta Zipporah Choate. Milly married Jesse Cross.
Titus England heirs has been discussed previously. This would include the administrator William England, William's brother John, and all their other siblings.
John Worthington was the husband of Vesta Zipporah Wasson, granddaughter of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate. I wonder if John Worthington was related to Joseph Worthington.
Thomas Peters was the son-in-law of John England and Vesta Zipporah Choate.