Asahel "Asa" Lomax

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Asahel "Asa" Lomax

Also Known As: "Asa Lomax"
Birthplace: Guilford County, North Carolina, United States
Death: Died in Portland, Callaway County, Missouri, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of William Pemlott Lomax and Sarah Lomax
Husband of Betty Jane Lomax and Lucinda Lomax
Father of Jane Evaline Nickels; Elizabeth A. Roberson; Mary Booker; ... Aud; Jesse Lomax and 2 others
Brother of William Lomax; Robert Lomax; Hannah Sweet; Jonathan Lomax; Senator Abel Lomax and 2 others

Occupation: Fur Trapper, Brawler
Managed by: Justin Swanström
Last Updated:

About Asahel "Asa" Lomax

He was a millstone cutter and a farmer. He seems to have been a quarter Cherokee, through his grandmother Rachel Hare.

In March 1810, he was a witness in a court case involving his brother Jonathan. He was sued for $27 in Smith County, Tennessee in a case that lasted from 1813 to 1815. He lost the suit and two tracts of land were ordered to be sold to satisfy the claim. He was listed on the 1815 tax list of Guilford County, North Carolina.

The ages of his children indicate he married his first wife Betty Jane between 1806 and 1812, perhaps in Tennessee, but possibly in North Carolina or Missouri. His daughter Elizabeth was apparently born between 1807 and 1813 in Tennessee.

The following story illustrates family reaction to Asahel's character. "I will mention one instance he [Joseph Lomax] told me of his father [Abel Lomax] that shows the good qualities he had. In those early days they would check their corn ground with a shovel plow and one would go ahead and drop the corn in the checks and one would follow with a hoe and cover it. He [Joseph] was quite small and was dropping the corn and his father was covering it. His father was thinking of a letter he had gotten from his relatives in Tennessee relating that his brother, Asahel, who was much more fond of drinking and fighting than work, had gotten into some serious trouble from a fight. His father told him about it and cried like a baby as it hurt him so much to think that his own brother was so careless of his manhood." (Quintin Wentworth Lomax) Joseph was born in 1809, so this story might be dated to about 1816.

He is said to have moved from Wilson County, Tennessee to Missouri about 1816.

He is said to have been in what is now St. Francois County, Missouri in 1816. He was named on the 1819 personal property tax of the Territory of Missouri in Montgomery County. Callaway County was created in 1820 from Montgomery. He was a voter in 1822 in Auxvasse Township. Asahel was listed on combined land and personal property tax lists 1823-1825 for Callaway County. He was the only Lomax listed in these early Missouri records.

There is no 1820 census for Missouri. Missouri became a state in 1821. Asahel appears on the 1830 census as Asael Loamax in Callaway County, and the 1840 census as Asel Lomax at Auxvasse in Callaway County.

The town of Portland, mentioned below in connection with Asahel 1826-1850 "was called Portland because it was mostly just a little river port used by traders on their way to St. Louis from points further upriver."

Lomax (1984) wrote: "Not far from A.D. 1816, Asahel Lomax moved from the State of Tennessee to, or near Iron Mountain [St. Francois County], Mo. Joseph T. Bryan, Esq., Fulton, Mo., wrote me Feb. 16, A.D. 1888, that he lived in Portland, Mo., from A.D. 1826 to A.D. 1850. During that time Asahel Lomax frequently visited Portland. He had two sons, William and Jesse, and, he thought, two daughters. D. C. Arens of Portland Missouri wrote me Feb. 28, 1888 that Asahel Lomax died on the Missouri River, above that place, thirty or forty years ago. He struck a man in the mouth, and the man's teeth poisoned him so that his arm withered up to his shoulder. His son William was killed in a miner's row in California [he was lynched for stealing a horse]. His son Jesse was injured by a horse and died. His daughter married Edward Booker. She had two daughters who lived near Chamois, Orange County, Missouri. Both Booker and his wife are dead. J. W. Phillips, Esq., of Fulton, wrote me, Feb. 16, 1888, 'that Asahel Lomax was an early settler in Callaway County, Mo. He had two sons, William and Jesse. The father and sons are dead. His daughter married Rood Odds and settled in Osage County, Mo. I once met one of Rood Odds' daughters in Osage Co.' S. W. Loughlin of Chamois, Mo., Apr. 3 1888 wrote me that a sister of Booker married a Mr. Joseph, and a Jennie Booker lived with them. She married and left the country many years ago. After Asahel Lomax moved to Iron Mountain there are about ten years of his life of which I have no account, and the above presumed dates of the births of his children might miss their births many years ... The father might have had other children than those above named ... He was a large and well-built man, very active, had great strength, and loved to fight. He was a millstone cutter by trade and occupation, but so much more fond of fun, frolic and sprees than earning his living, that he was often entangled in financial troubles. In those days 'imprisonment for debt,' was the law. It cost his brothers a large amount of money to settle his indebtedness, and on clearing him from the last one in Tennessee, an estrangement took place, and he went to Missouri; after which there was no correspondence between him and his brothers."

Although the above passage credits Asahel with only two daughters, the 1830 census shows him with four. On the 1840 census he has only two, the older two having married, Mary in 1836 and Elizabeth in 1840.

In 1830 he was living near Robert Reed and William Owen. They were perhaps relatives of the William Bethel Allen with whom (Asahel’s daughter?) Nancy was living in 1850.

Asahel’s first wife died or left him between 1830 and 1840. He-remarried in 1848, to Lucinda Van Bibber, a shirt-tail relative of the Daniel Boone family.

According to family tradition, Asahel spent several years as a fur trapper (in the Rocky Mountains?), say about 1832-1839. If so, he might have been recruited in the grog shops of St. Louis, the typical source for such men. The story is not impossible, but at that time he would have been a married man in his 40s with children nearly grown.

A history of Missouri relates the following story. "A man named Lomax, who was one of the early settlers of Callaway county, was taken sick and sent for a physician at Fulton, who gave him calomel and salivated him very badly; and in order to stop salivation he poured cold water on him, which caused him to lose all his teeth." (Bryan, 234, citing Letter of Alfred Kibbe)

In 1850 he was living in Callaway County, Missouri. He was listed on the census in the 12th District as Asa Lomax (63), born in North Carolina, with wife Lucinda (37), born in Missouri. He was still there in 1860, age 73, born in North Carolina, a farmer with $1,000 in real estate and $200 in personal property. Asahel died of blood poisoning, after being infected when he hit a man in the mouth during a fight.


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Asahel "Asa" Lomax's Timeline

February 15, 1787
Guilford County, North Carolina, United States
Age 24
Tennessee, United States
Age 26
Age 28
Age 30
Age 31
Age 32
Age 35