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Biographical sketch of


b. 1847 d. 1908


William Peggram family portrait


William was born in Tennessee, August 10, 1847. The original spelling of his surname is believed to have been Pegram. Our early ancestors were prone to add or drop letter from their names as it suited them. Most had little or no education, and spelled words the way that they sounded to them. William's "main interest was raising livestock." After the end of the Civil War, he moved west to get away from the destruction caused by the war. His first wife's name is unknown. She bore him two daughters before she died young. Florence, born December 15, 1873, and a younger daughter, whose name is also unknown. After her death William was unable to care for the little girls and left them in separate homes with relatives.

He married (2) Nancy Jane Woods, March 18, 1884, in Wise County, Texas. She had a daughter, Sarah (Sadie), and a twelve year old son by a previous marriage. Later, William returned for Florence, because he was not satisfied with the treatment that she was getting. The family where the other daughter had lived, upon their request, were allowed to adopt her.

William and Nancy Jane went to live near Rhine (Ryan), in Indian Territory, in Oklahoma, where they remained for about fifteen years. William's daughter, Florence, married Mont Stone, and Nancy Jane's daughter, Sadie, married Bert Dye, while the family was here. Six children were also born to William and Nancy here: two who died in infancy, and James Monroe (Jim), Myrtle, Evelyn, Benjamin Hardy (Pete), and William Roy, who was born December 12, 1896.

William started farther west with his family, sometime in the year 1901. They stopped on Buck Creek, in Collingsworth County, Texas, and lived here for a year or longer, in a dugout. On May 31, 1903, they loaded all of their household belongings into one wagon, and headed for the open range of New Mexico. They had brought along a spare wagon for hauling baby calves, to use as needed to prevent delaying their journey. While in this county, Jim had married Sarah Jane McIntosh. Jim, Sarah Jane, and Myrtle drove, the cattle and Pete and Roy drove the horses, while their parents drove the wagons. The trip took a month.

"On the first day of July, 1903, they camped just east of Tucumcari Mountain, in Quay County, New Mexico. The spring of 1903 was very dry and sheep had been grazing the country. The free grass the family was seeking was not to be found, but the horses and saddle horses were exhausted. They put up a tent and prepared to rest awhile. The next day rains began to fall and within a week the whole country was green. Nancy Jane did the cooking, while Sarah, Myrtle, Pete, and Roy herded the livestock al1 summer. Wm. and Jim searched the country for a suitable place to establish a home. Wm. bought the Browning place at the mouth of ~dar Rincon (Later called Horton Canyon). This place had a stone house with windows. The windows had glass panes. This was the first house the children remembered living in that had real windows and wooden floors."

Jim and his wife, Sarah Jane decided to go back to Oklahoma, where they could depend on the rainfall. "Although Wm. could barely read or write, education for his children was important to William  William and Nancy Jane decided their children needed to go to school and there was no prospect for a school to be opened in their district in Quay County at that time." In August of 1904, Jim and Sarah Jane, his mother, and brothers and sister, left in  covered wagons "to retrace the path back to Indian territory, in Oklahoma. They stopped in Ft. Cobb and picked cotton, earning $1 a hundred." After Christmas, schools opened for three or four months, until time to work in the fields. Myrtle went to Ft. Cobb and stayed with an elderly couple earning her room and board and attending school. William had stayed in New Mexico to take care of his cattle. He traded his place in Quay County for one in Dodson County, where there was a school.

William died from pneumonia June 4, 1908, and is buried in the Dodson Cemetery. Nancy Jane moved with her family and cattle back to Buck Creek, where Jim and Sarah Jane had remained. On the way she sold their cow herd for "$35 a head".

Children of:
William Peggram and (1)unknown first wife

Peggram. Florence b. 15 Dec. 1873
Daughter (unknown)

Children of:
William Peggram and (2) Nancy Jane (Wood) Pegram

Peggram, James Monroe
Benjamin Hardy
William Roy b. 12 Dec. 1896

This biographical sketch is based on information  sent by a family member in Wiggins, Colorado to Dorothy Pegram Roland and published in her book.   The father of this William Peggram is not identified in the book but we think we may have identified his father. We have found only 2 William Pegrams of approximately the right age born in Tennessee.  We orginally thought that William A. was the son of James J. Pegram but we later found that the son of James J. died during the 1870s. That leaves only William A., the son of Daniel Ethelbert Pegram.  We are still looking for documentation. I have talked to a number of family members over the years but none have information about the parents of Williams A.