A Family Tree Connection ~ ENNIS/BINKLEY/CLINARD

ENNIS, BINKLEY, CLINARD DESCENDANTS: This past fall I saw a cute little yard sale sign on the corner of Hwy 431 at Mt. Sharon Road and it drew me down Mt. Sharon Rd. A ways down was another hand drawn sign that pointed down the driveway.

The yard sale was set up on the carport and I immediately spotted an OLD handmade ladderback chair with an old bottom that was probably originally a rocker, but those were gone. So set that aside for $5 – sold!

IMG_5054Next up a box of English dishes with a pretty black floral pattern – mine! Some lovely little country paintings for very little – put in my pile. Then a box of old silver stuff. Loved the Sheffield salt shakers and some neat old pewter and silverplate silverware. Cheap, so into the pile.

IMG_7338I was turning over a silver-plate dish and noticed a name scratched on the back – ENNIS. Hmmm….

IMG_5036In all my Clinard research, Ennis had been one of my stumped branches. My 4th great-grandfather, Joseph Clinard’s daughter, Elizabeth “Betsy” Clinard (born 1830 in Robertson County) had married a Captain John Ennis (Born 1809, died after 1880 based on census).

In the 1880 census, Joseph Clinard was living with his daughter and son-in-law, John, listed as a farmer, Betsy and two sons.

John Ennis 71
Elizabeth Ennis 50
William Ennis 17
David Ennis 15
Joseph Clinard 83

That had always made me think that any family keepsakes such as photos, Bibles, etc. had probably been left with Betsy, his daughter.

Pursuing that information years ago, I started calling the few Ennis families in the Robertson County phone book and happened up Mr. Ennis on Mt. Sharon Rd. We talked for quite a while, and luckily I took lots of notes. Mr. Ennis wasn’t in good health at that time and he told me his wife had done lots of research on his Ennis family, but had passed away. But she had ordered an Ennis family genealogy book and it had arrived and was there somewhere. He didn’t know much about his family history as there had been some kind of family disturbance. His daughter lived close by and took care of him. We rang off and I kept meaning to follow back up with him but never did.

…back to the yard sale…2014

IMG_5036So I turned over a round silver dish and see the name Ennis scratched in it. I looked at the friendly couple holding they yard sale that I had been chatting with as I browsed, and held up the dish. Are you the Ennis family?

“Yes, this was my father’s things and we have been cleaning out the house to get it ready to rent.”

A lightbulb instantly went off in my head – I had found Mr. Ennis that I had talked to so many years ago on the phone, but was saddened that I had never followed up to meet him.

So my next comment was – My Betsy Clinard married Captain John Ennis! Do you know anything about them?

Both of their faces lit up… We do! And we have his PICTURE!!!

Now, any of you that are into genealogy know that the photo is the holy grail, right along with the hand-written family tree going back many generations. Thankfully the yard sale was slow that day, so we got to talking and exchanging information, and the husband and daughter ran to house to find Captain John Ennis. They had moved all the family memorabilia to their house to sort through later but his portrait was large so had stood out.

After a bit they came back with Capt. John Ennis.. and here he is and Betsy and their children too!



 IMG_5034We were all so excited to meet and exchange family information. Pam Ennis Anderson was the daughter that he had mentioned taking care of him in our phone conversation.

I went home and immediately pulled up my information on the Ennis/Clinard line and started digging through my files for my notes from my interview with Mr. Ennis. As with most of us, we don’t really pay attention to those stories our elders are telling us until they are gone, and years later we wonder about their lives. Well, I had asked him a few key questions that cleared up some mysteries for Pam about her family.

Pam came to visit me a while later and brought that Ennis book her mother had ordered, along with a few other photos that were in their family files.

IMG_5762William Brown Ennis (born August 03, 1863) was married to Lucy K. Polk Binkley, daughter of Montgomery Binkley of Pleasant View and Frances Felts. William Brown Ennis died Aug 3, 1940 in Cheatham County at 77.


IMG_5761I need to finish putting all their family details into my tree, but wanted to share this fun “reunion”.



Categories: Family History: CLINARD, NC to Robertson Co, Tenn, Robertson County History | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Post navigation

One thought on “A Family Tree Connection ~ ENNIS/BINKLEY/CLINARD

  1. Albert M. Wilkinson Jr.

    February 8, 2015

    Thanks for this information. I am sending it to my cousin, Ken Harris, a descendant of Micajah Wilkinson and related to the Clinards. He went to Joelton H.S. and was born in that district. Also, the first Wilkinson in what became Tennessee was Jessie Wilkinson who apparently settled in what became Robertson County. Andrew Jackson was guardian of his two children. He was there in 1790. There are a lot of Wilkinsons in Robertson County today, no doubt related. All that came after him from N. Carolina settled on that side of the Cumberland river.

    You mentioned Pleasant View. Wilkinsons and Mallorys lived in the Pleasant View area, also Neptune. The home of James Harris Williams and Mary Ann Lowe Williams at Neptune is still there and occupied by an owner who has restored to completely. A descendant of Thomas Marvel Lowe, whose father also had that name and who himself has that name, has been chairman of the Fulton County (Atlanta) Commission for about 30 years. Mary Ann was a close relative and lived in the home of Dr. Rufus James Mallory who, along with his father and uncle, practiced medicine at Ashland City and Springfield before, during and after the Northern invasion. James Harris Williams and his wife were my great grandparents.

    I am sending a copy of this information to my cousin, Ken Harris, who lives at Antioch, on Mountain Laurel Drive. Albert Mims Wilkinson, Jr.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: