Absolum Karnes
(Son of Moses Karnes)

(August 23, 1817 - August 23, 1903)


1st Wife: Unknown


Artina Karnes (~1853 - ?)

Elizabeth Karnes (~1866 - ?)

Libby Karnes (~1867 - ?)

Phebe Karnes (~1868 - ?)

2nd Wife: Rebecca Brogdon (December 1, 1839 - February 11, 1900) - Married on November 13, 1869 in Gibson Co.


Thomas Anderson Karnes (“Anderson”) (April 29, 1870 - February 29, 1936)

John A. Karnes (December 15, 1871 - May 19, 1873) - Concord Cemetery


The 1870 census for Gibson County, Tennessee, District 1, does mention several Karnes households including the following which I believe to be Absolum:

144 KARNES         Abe        51  M W       farmer                        500     ALA   27
KARNES Rebecca 27 F W keeps hse TN 28
KARNES Artina 17 F W at home TN 29
KARNES Elizabeth 4 F W at home TN 30
KARNES Libby 3 F W at home TN 31
KARNES Phebe 2 F W at home TN 32
KARNES Thomas 3/12 M W at home TN 33

The columns for the 1870 Census were Dwelling Number, Surname, Given Name, Age, Sex, Color, Occupation, Property Real, Owned Pers, Birth Place, and Line Number.

There is also a marriage record in Gibson County, Tennessee, listed as:


Back of the document contains signatures:

This would make Rebecca the second wife of Absolum, and mean that all the children before Thomas Karnes had a different mother most likely. According to the information from Rebecca's headstone (see below), and the census data, she was considerably younger than Absolum (~22 years).

In addition, an internet source listed the following information from headstones located in Friendship Cemetery near Milan, Tennessee:

KARNES, A. B.  8-23-1817 - 8-23-1903   86 yrs
Ben F.  7-4-1876 - 3-24-1922
Rebecca - wife of A. B.  12-1-1839 - 2-11-1900

I'd like to personally verify this data and photograph the headstones since this data does not directly match the 1870 census data, which would indicate that Absolum was born in ~1819, and Rebecca in ~1843

In June of 2006 I received the following email after sending a message about a posting I saw on Genealogy.com

Dear John,

Thanks for replying to my message. It looks like our common ancestor is Moses Karnes. His daughter Sarah who married W.T. Caneer and is buried in Senath Cemetery and John Karnes were brother and sister. She was my third great grandmother. Their brother Absolum was my friend Dicky's Ancestor. My son and I visited Milan and tried to visit the cemeteries their but several with our family are on a Military Arsenal and special permission and escort have to be made a head of time before you can enter. Absolum (A.B.) and his wife are buried in Friendship Cemetery which is inside this fortress. The folks at the site are nice but very strict as it should be. Just let me know what you need and maybe I can fill some gaps for you. Your site was a great help to me. Thanks so very much.

Joe F. Moore Jr.

The posting by Joe F. More on Genealogy.com that I had inquired about was:


I am a friend of your cousin Dicky Don Karnes and his dad A.B. Karnes of Senath. A.B.'s Dad was Thomas Anderson Karnes son. My third great grandmother was Sarah Karnes Caneer who was born in Gibson County, the daughter of Moses and Sarah Scallorn of there. She married William T. Caneer of that area and they had several children including J.I., John Alonzo (my great great grandfather), Mary Caneer Browning, Z.P., James A, W.T. Jr., Ella Nors, Eliza, and A.A.. Several of these were in business with some Karnes in Senath. J.I. Caneer went into business with John Mose's Karnes who was the son of John Karnes, the son of Moses and Sarah Scallorn Karnes also. On ancestry.com, I found the family listed and I noticed that John and Sarah Karnes Caneer had a brother Absolum (A.B. on his toombstone at Friendship Cemetery, Milan Tennessee), who had a son named Thomas who was also born April 1870. I think this is the father of your Thomas. According to A.B., he told me that A.B. came over as you said when he was 16 and came to the South Dunklin County area. He liked it so much he walked back and got the remainder of his stuff and came back to make it his home. It all matches up. Just need some documentation.

Dicky and I were friends growing up in Senath. It is truly amazing that we are of some kin to one another. Small World. My grandparents were H.B and Clementine Norman there. We were great friends. How are you kin to him? It would be nice to talk to you and connect. Let me know what you think about this scenario. My Sarah, John who was in business there and buried near Thomas and Dessie Belle in Lulu Cemetery, and Absolum being the children of Moses Karnes and Sarah. It really makes sense. What do you think.

1 – Information provided by John M. Karnes in a posting on Genealogy.com.

2 – Information provided by Dennis Heathcock in a posting on Genealogy.com.