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Owner of Texas Cotton Gin


James Key Appleby

1844 - 1908


note:  Two charts are included at the end of this article:  

John and Virginia (Key) Appleby 

James Key and Sarah (Winston) Appleby.


    As the sixth child of John and Virginia (Key) Appleby, James Key Appleby was born in LaFayette, Alabama 

on September 29th, 1844.  At the age of sixteen, James enlisted in the Confederate Army and served with the 

Fifty-fourth Georgia Regiment during the Civil War.  Following the war, he entered Poughkeepsie College and 

upon graduation entered a business career.  

       On the first day of September 1867, James Key Appleby married Sarah Lawrence Eugenia Winston.  She 

was called Dukie by her family and friends.  The ceremony was conducted by James' brother-in-law, Reverend 

Balop Benjamin McCraw.  Rev.  McCraw was first married to James Key Appleby's sister, Melissa. Upon her 

early death, McCraw later married her sister, Laura Augusta.

      One of the first recorded positions held by James was tax assessor in Chambers County, Alabama.  Two 

sons, Winston and John Key, were born in Alabama.

      In 1870, James Key Appleby, with his wife and sons, moved to Pilot Point, Denton County, Texas.  With 

five hundred black workers brought with him from Alabama, James owned and operated a cotton gin.

      Another son, Hugh, and a daughter, Nellie, were born in Texas.  In 1889, a fire destroyed the cotton gin and 

James suffered heavy financial loss.  That same year, Washington became a State and the Appleby family 

moved there and settled in Whatcom County.  James Appleby served as City Clerk in Bellingham for several 

terms of office.  Other endeavors followed, including the grocery and real estate business.

      When his health begin to fail because of throat cancer, he moved to his farm on Samish Island.  He 

continued an active life until his death on November 9, 1986.  He and his wife, are buried in Bay View Cemetery, 

Bellingham, Washington.  Their graves are unmarked (1990), but their locations are in the cemetery records.  


      A special note of thanks to Richard H. Pingrey,  of California, for the major portion of this material.  In the early 

1990's, he writes, " You are very welcome to use any of the material we have sent you.  If it is of value then we are

 pleased that we could be of assistance.  Actually, most of the credit for the material is duemy great aunt Rose 

(Rogers) Bowman.  She spent many long years gathering material on our family and she died in her late nineties, 

before most of us begun to understand the importance of what she was doing.  It was her sister, Gertrude 

Rogers, who married Dr. Winston Appleby.  They were my maternal grandparents."



Chart for John Appleby and Virginia Key


Husband: John APPLEBY

Birth: 24 May 1808   Georgia (Prob)

Death: 6 Jun 1878   Lafayette, Alabama

Buried: Lafayette Cemetery,  Alabama

Occupation: Probate Judge

Father: James APPLEBY (1779-1866)

Mother: Virginia Jane MONTGOMERY (1781-1875)


Marriage: 14 Oct 1830   Jackson Co. Georgia to:

Wife: Virginia Julia KEY

Nickname "Topie"

Birth: Circa 1810 Place: Henry Co. Virginia

Death: Jun 1892  Rome, Georgia

Buried:  Myrtle Hill Cemetery;  Rome, Georgia

Father: Tandy Center KEY (1776-1838)

Mother: Ann Barber COCHRAN


1. M Child: Tandy Linton APPLEBY

Birth: 30 Sep 1831   Henry Co. Virginia

Christen: 27 Jul 1832    Thyatira Church; Jackson Co. Georgia

Death: 29 Nov 1902    San Antonio, Bexar Co. Texas

Buried: Confederate Cemetery

San Antonio, Bexar County, Texas

Occupation: Physician

Spouse: Charlotte Elizabeth NUNN



2. F Child: Anne Cassandra APPLEBY

Birth: About 1833

Death: Infant



3. F Child: Evelyn Jane APPLEBY

Birth: 29 Aug 1835   Henry Co. Virginia

Death: 25 May 1923 Place: Georgia

Spouse: James Young ASHFORD

Marriage: 19 Oct 1854



4. F Child: Laura Augusta APPLEBY

Birth: 1 Aug 1837   Salem, Alabama

Death: 23 Nov 1856   New Orleans or 

          Lafayette, Alabama

Buried: Lafayette, Alabama Cemetery

Spouse: Balop Benjamin McCRAW

Marriage: 12 Nov 1854 Place: Salem, Alabama



5. F Child: Melissa Ann APPLEBY

Birth: 16 Sep 1839  Alabama

Death: 21 May 1868

Spouse: Balop Benjamin McCRAW

Marriage: 1 Jul 1857 

Chambers Co. Georgia



6. F Child: Mary Virginia APPLEBY

Birth: Jun 1842   Georgia

Death: 1865   Georgia

Spouse: Nathan LYONS

Marriage: 3 Jul 1860 Place: Lafayette, Chambers Co. Georgia



7. M Child: James Key APPLEBY

Birth: 29 Sep 1844   Lafayette, Chambers Co. Alabama

Death: 9 Nov 1908   Samish Island, Bellingham, Washington

Place: Bay View Cem; Bellingham, Washington

Spouse: Sarah Lawrence Eugenia WINSTON

Marriage: 1 Sep 1867   Lafayette, Chambers Co. Georgia



8. F Child: Octavia Florine APPLEBY

Birth: 1846   Lafayette, Alabama

Death: Infant



9. F Child: Susan Ione APPLEBY

Birth: 1849 Place:

Spouse: Nathan LYONS



10. M Child: John Scott APPLEBY

Birth: 1851

Death: Infant



Chart for James Key Appleby and Sarah Winston



Husband: James Key APPLEBY -


Birth: 29 Sep 1844   Lafayette, Chambers Co. Alabama

Death: 9 Nov 1908   Samish Island, Bellingham, Washington

Burial: Bay View Cemetery

Bellingham, Washington

Father: John APPLEBY (1808-1878)

Mother: Virginia Julia KEY (1810-1892

Spouse: Sarah Lawrence Eugenia WINSTON

Marriage: 1 Sep 1867   Lafayette, Chambers Co. Georgia




1. M Child: Winston APPLEBY 

Birth: 31 Aug 1868   Lafayette, Chambers Co. Alabama

Death: 16 Feb 1914    Anacortes, Skagit Co. Washington

Burial: Bay View Cem., Bellingham, Washington

Marriage: 26 Sep 1894 

Bellingham, Whatcom Co. Washington


Spouse: Gertrude Helen ROGERS

Birth: 25 Aug 1875    LaFayette, Yamahill, Oregon

Death: Dec 1944    Bellingham, Whatcom Co. Washington

Father: Ellery Walker Rogers


2. M Child: John Key APPLEBY

Birth: 24 Jun 1873   Alabama

Note: World War 1 Draft Registration In Seattle had Birth date


3. M Child: Hugh Welbon APPLEBY

Birth: 10 Sep 1882


4. F Child: Nellie APPLEBY

Spouse: WATHERALL (?)



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revised:  09 May 2003

reviewed:  07 March 2005