The Collins Page

Information is provided by LaNoy "Tex" Collins. You may contact him at Thanks LaNoy, for being our very FIRST contributor to the Stewart County Family Album.

Included in LaNoy's information you will find: A. Background on the Collins Family, B. Oldest Woman In America: article about Anna Collins, C. Documents binding executors of Francis Collins's estate, D. Genealogy information about the family of Francis Collins, E. Genealogy information about the family of James Monroe Collins.


The Irish Collins, or O’Collinses, takes their family name from the Gaelic personal name meaning “young fearless warrior.” In Gaelic their surname is spelled “O’Cuilean” and is sometimes mistaken for “Cullen.” The Collins sept was lords of Lower Connelloe in County Limerick and also ruled a barony in that country. In the mid-thirteenth century, however, they lost this territory and were driven out of the country by the forces of Maurice Fitzgerald, the second Lord of Offaly. They then settled in Carbery in County Cork, where they allied with their kinsman, the powerful O’Donovan sept. The John Collins, who died in the early 19th century, was called the “last of the bards” and the “last of the genealogists and historiographers of Munsters.” His best known work was his Gaelic poem “Lament Over Timnoleague Abbey.” Michael Collins, the famous Irish patriot from West cork, was reputed to have combined the best qualities of the soldier and the administrator. He participated in and was jailed for his part in the Easter Rebellion and was imprisoned again for his actions in seeking the establishment of the Irish Free State. He later became commander in chief of the military forces and was subsequently killed in a battle with a party of irregulars.

I shall start with Francis Collins born 11 March 1791 in South Carolina. Francis does not appear in the census until 1840 Stewart County, Tennessee. Francis would have been forty-nine years old which seems rather strange that he would just be settling down to a permanent home. Francis Collins was a very noted Methodist Preacher in the south in those days and this could be the reason that he had not taken up permanent residence before. In those days it was not unusual for a preacher to travel around the country and not own any material things. There were only two families of Collins in Stewart County when Francis first appeared in 1840, the other being William Collins. James Monroe Collins, son of Francis Collins and Alice Brown states on the 1880 Federal Census that his father was from South Carolina and his mother were from Tennessee. If Francis was just going from place to place preaching or he was on his way to Stewart County is not known, but somewhere in Tennessee he met Alice Brown and married about 1827. It appears that Alice died either in child birth or shortly there after as James Monroe was living with his father after he married his second wife, Anna (Annis), her last name unknown, in about 1829. Stewart County, Tennessee is located along the Eastern Shore of the Tennessee River coinciding with the Kentucky Lake with its northern border stretching along the Kentucky State Line. Its eastern boundary is along the Montgomery county line, and on the south lies Houston County. Dominated by ridges and valleys, this beautiful section of Tennessee State was settled by pioneers who were mostly from North Carolina. In 1788, the western part of Davidson County was formed into Tennessee County with Clarksville as the county seat. In 1796, the year that Tennessee became a state, Tennessee County was divided into Robertson and Montgomery Counties. By an act of the General Assembly, passed November 1, 1803, Stewart County was created and named in honor of Duncan Stewart of the pioneer farmers of the county. Francis Collins died before 6 May 1844 because on this date Anna (Annis) Collins, his wife, Jacob Browning and Benjamin McIntosh bound One hundred dollars to the governor so that they might become to executors and administrators of the personal property of Francis Collins. Anna Collins, age 40, was still in Stewart County in 1850 living with three of her children, John age 20, Benjamin age 14, and Francis Jr. Age 11. Lousia J. Collins is not listed as living with her mother but she does show up on the marriage records as marrying Thomas B. Madden in Benton Co., Tennessee 23 September 1851. On the 1840 Stewart County census Louisa is listed as under five years old, so she has married rather young. James Monroe Collins is listed in 1850 census as age 21 and living with John Collins age 20, from Tennessee. The 1850 Stewart County census also lists Andrew Collins age 60 from South Carolina and Hanna Collins age 42 from Tennessee. This is not documented but I think that the John Collins living with James Monroe is a son of Hannah Collins, widow of Benjamin Collins, a son of William Collins who passed away before 1850. The relationship of James Monroe and John Collins I am not sure of. In 1860 Anna (Annis) Collins age 53 is still in Stewart County living with,her son, John Collins 29, Marion Collins age 24 and her daughter,Louisa J. Collins, age 21, who has returned home from her marriage to Thomas B. Madden. In 1870 census of Polk County, Tennessee Anna (Annis) Collins age 62 is living with (unreadable) female age 35 from Tennessee, William Collins age 23 of Tennessee, Richard Collins age 15 of Tennessee, and Zeoma Collins age 1 of Tennessee. It is my belief, but it has not been proven, that all the Collins of Stewart County from 1830 until 1860 were related with the exception of Andrew Collins of North Carolina. William Francis Collins, son of James Monroe Collins, moved from Tennessee to New Concord Community, Callaway County, Kentucky after 1882 and before 1884. During the year 1891 William Francis was fatally injured in a mill boiler explosion. His wife Manerva Jane (Alsup) along with her brother and his family moved to Meridian, Bosque County, Texas.


Mrs. Anna Collins of Troy, Tennessee Is in her 108th year. Mrs. Anna Collins of Troy, Tennessee is probably the oldest woman in the United States. She was born in Robertson County, Tennessee April 17, 1788 and is therefore in her 108th year. Her husband, Francis Collins, was born March 11, 1791 and came from South Carolina to West Tennessee. He was one of the most noted Methodist evangelists that were ever in the south. It is said of him that in one of his revival meetings such enthusiasm was manifested that there were in two weeks 845 conversions and 456 accessions to the church. Five children were born to Francis and Anna Collins, two of who are still living, the eldest being a man of three score and six years. She has used tobacco constantly for fifty-five years and is as strong today as most women at the age of 45.

This article was sent to me by a Mr. Ben Brewer. It did not have a date on it.

Know all men by these presents that we Annis Collins, Jacob Browning and Benjamin McIntosh all of the County of Stewart and the State of Tennessee are held and firmly bound unto the Governor or his successors in office to which payment will and truly to be made we bind ourselves our heirs executors and administrators jointly and severally firmly by these presents sealed with our seals and dated the 6th day of May 1844_____the condition of the above obligation is such that the above bound Annis Collins Administratrix of all and singular item goods and chattel Rights and credits of Francis Collins deceased do make or cause to be made a true and perfect inventory of all and singular item goods and chattel Rights and credits of said deceased which have and shall cause unto these the hands the hands possession or knowledge of the said Annis Collins or unto the hands or possession of any other person or persons for her and the same so made executrix or cause to be executed unto this court within ninety days from the date of these presents and the same goods chattel credits and all  other goods and all other goods chattels and credits of the deceased at the time of his death or which at any time after shall come into the hands or possession of her do will and truly administrator according to law and further do make or cause to be made a true and just account of his administration within two years after the date of these presents and all the rest and residue of goods chattels and credits which shall be found remaining  (not readable) the said administration account the same being first examined and allowed by the court shall deliver and pay unto such person or persons respectfully as the same shall be due pursuant to the true entrant and meaning of the acts in such case made and provided and if it shall appear that any last will and testament were made by the deceased and the execution or executions thereto named do exhibit the same in court making request to have it allowed and approved of according if this said Annis Collins above bound be thereunto required do render and deliver said letters of Administration  approbation’s of such testament being first had and made in the said court then the above hereunto set our hands and seals the day and year above written.

Taken and acknowledged

Annis X Collins

In open court May term 1844

Benjamin X McIntosh

Approval of by this court

B.J. Fraser                JP

Wm. Bell                  JP

John Randle              JP



Francis was born 11 March 1791 in S.C. and died 1844 in Stewart County, Tn. He married first, Alice Brown(e) about 1827 and they had one son. 1. James Monroe Collins born 2 January 1829 Stewart County, Tn. Francis married second: Annis (Anna) unknown and they had four children. 1. John Collins ca 1830, 2. Benjamin Collins ca 1836, 3. Francis Collins ca 1836, 4. Louisa J. Collins ca 1839.

James Monroe Collins married Mary Jane Obar 8 January 1850 in Stewart County, Tn. They had fourteen children. One son, William Francis Collins married Manerva Jane Alsup of Benton County, Tn. and migrated to Callaway County, Ky. Manerva's parents were James R. Alsup of Stewart County, Tn. and Hannah Rose Lewis. While William Francis was living in Callaway County, Ky. he was killed in a mill boiler explosion in 1891.  After William Francis died Manerva and her children along with one of her brothers migrated to Texas by train. Manerva is buried at the Kimball Cemetery Bosque County, Texas.

James Monroe Collins

    Born: January 2, 1829                      Dover, Stewart County, Tn.

    Married: January 8, 1850                Stewart County, Tn.

    Died: Aft 1880                                  Benton County, Tn.

    Father: Francis CollinsMother: Alice Brown(e); Wife: Mary Jane Obar,  Born: Abt. 1829 , Stewart County, Tn.; Died: Aft: 1875

Children: 1.  William Francis Collins;  Born: Abt: 1851,  Married: January 1873,  Big Sandy, Benton County, Tn.,  Spouse: Manerva Jane Alsup

2.  Nancy Ann Collins; Born: October 11, 1852, Benton County, Died: August 19, 1888, Benton County, Married: Winfield Scott Brewer

3.  James W. Collins;  Born: Abt. 1854, Spouse: Isabelle Greer

4.  Robert S. Collins;  Born: Abt 1856,  Spouse: Mary Ann Davis

5.  Henry R. Collins; Born: Abt 1857, Spouse: Elizabeth Davis

6.  Newton M. Collins; Born: Abt: 1858, Spouse: Parthula Brewer

7.  L. Margarette Collins, Born: Abt: 1861

8.  D. Richard Collins, Born: Abt: 1862, Died: Abt: 1940 , Obion County, Tn.

9.  J. Thomas Collins; Born: May 13, 1865, spouse: Viola (Arlia) Curetta Dudley

10. George L. Collins; Born: Abt: 1866

11. Mary Ann Collins; Born: Abt: 1868, Spouse: George Durham

12: Emaline M. Collins, Born: Abt: 1870, Spouse: John Turner

13. Lafayette "Tate" Collins,  Born: Abt: 1872

14. Anderson Collins, Born: Abt: 1874

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