The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966 Page: 146
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Holland Coffee, born on August 15, 1807,2 to Ambrose and
Mildred (Moore) Coffee, was descended from Edward and Ann
(Powell) Coffee who lived in Essex County, Virginia, in the
early eighteenth century.3 A grandson of Edward, Ambrose Coffee
left Virginia with relatives and friends to live for a time in the
western counties of North Carolina. Notable in this group besides
the Coffees were the Moores and the Hayes-John Coffee (Jack)
Hays, the noted Texas Ranger captain, was a relative of the Cof-
fees. It cannot be proven that in moving west Ambrose lived in
Warren County, Tennessee, but since several of his children were
2Jesse Coffee (brother) Family Bible.
"Among the five children mentioned in Edward's will, probated in 1716, was John
who married Jane Graves. James, one of the nine children born of that union, took
as his wife Elizabeth Cleveland, a daughter of Alexander Cleveland, whose rela-
tive (brother or uncle) married Martha Coffee, a sister of John Coffee. John and
Martha (Coffee) Cleveland were the parents of Colonel Benjamin Cleveland, thus
making Colonel Cleveland doubly related to Ambrose, son of James and Elizabeth
and father of Holland Coffee. Holland's mother was a daughter of Jesse Moore of
Virginia and North Carolina.
Of the nine children of Ambrose and Mildred, two besides Holland are known to
have lived in Texas. After residing for a time in Hinds County, Mississippi, Thomas
Jefferson Coffee, who married Malinda Graves Williams Haley, came to Brazoria
County, Texas, where he operated a large plantation until his death in 1858.
America, a sister of Holland and Thomas J., married Samuel Lusk of Buncombe
County, North Carolina, and Warren County, Tennessee. The Lusks moved first to
Alabama and then to Texas, where they settled in Austin's colony as early as 1835.
Descendants of that family still live in Washington County.
Elizabeth Coffee, another sister of Holland, married George Washington Jewell,
who built and operated the Indian Queen Hotel in McMinnville, Tennessee. Jewell
raised a company and came to Texas to assist in the war against Mexico in 1836,
but arrived after the battle of San Jacinto. Elizabeth died in Warren County in
1843, and her husband died in North Texas in 1848. Apparently brought to Texas
by her father, Mary Elizabeth Jewell made her home with Holland and Sophia
Coffee and continued in the household after Sophia's marriage to Major George
Also the Ambrose Coffee family had at least one cousin in Texas. Mrs. Thomas
J. Rusk was the former Mary (Polly) Cleveland, a granddaughter of "Mad" John
Cleveland, son of Colonel Ben and Mary (Graves) Cleveland. Although they were
not in Texas, other cousins of prominence were Mrs. C. J. McDonald, wife of a
governor of Georgia, and Jesse Franklin, who fought through the North Carolina
campaigns with his uncle, Colonel Ben Cleveland, then served in various lesser
civil offices before he was elected governor of the state in 1820o.
Genealogical data on the Coffee family collected by Don Ruth Coffee Merritt,
Dallas, Texas; Lyman C. Draper, Kings Mountain and Its Heroes (Cincinnati,
1881), 425; Northern Standard (Clarksville), June 24, 1848; Lyon G. Tyler (ed.),
Encyclopedia of Virginia Biography (5 vols.; New York, 1915), II, 347.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966, periodical, 1966; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117144/m1/186/: accessed August 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.