My Dad

Malcolm Bowles was born June 24, 1912, on the family ranch located on the east side of the Pedernales River at the confluence of the Colorado River. The nearest community was Mudd, which Lake Travis covered after completion of the Marshall Ford Dam. The area is now known as Spicewood and Briarcliff.

Dad always had cows to tend. He raised cattle like his father, grandfather and three brothers, all Travis County pioneers. Yet, I never heard him referred to as a cowboy by anyone, until his funeral. I remember the neighbors seeking his guidance with calving, parasite control and fencing. He enjoyed working his herd well into his eighties.

Today, he would have been 102 years old, the eleventh year since his death. He passed away one minute after midnight, June 24, 2003. His service ended with Willie Nelson’s song “Mamma’s Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys.” He is buried beside his wife of 46 years, Ida, at the Live Oak Cemetery in Manchaca, Texas.

Malcolm Bowles born 1912

The Ballad of Adam Mitchell

I would like to share with my family, friends, and followers a song written by Bob and Judy Mitchell of Littleton, Colorado. Not many families have the talent to write a song about the Battle of Guilford Courthouse and our patriot ancestor, Adam Mitchell. For my musical friends and family, hope you will enjoy the Ballad of Adam Mitchell also known as the Battle of Guilford Courthouse. 

Join Ann Winkler Hinrichs and the rest of the Mitchell descendents to sing along to the Ballad of Adam Mitchell.

Galbreath/Mitchell 106th Annual Reunion

My Illinois cousins are having their 106th annual reunion, which is the granddaddy of all reunions. This reunion is open to all descendants of James and Martha Mitchell Galbreath and their parents, William and Phebe Foreman Galbreath and John and Mary Ann Barnes Mitchell.

Saturday, July 14, the family will have a genealogy workshop at the former home of Walter and Elizabeth Galbreath Winkler at 1515 Jackson, Charleston, Illinois from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Local genealogist, David Kent Coy, will be available to help with questions.

Sunday, July 15, Reunion will be held at Walnut Point State Park, north of Oakland, Illinois starting at 11 a.m., Hickory Point Pavilion. There will be a “pitch in meal” with fried chicken and drinks provided (we will pass the hat to cover the costs). All families are asked to bring a side dish or dessert. Afterwards, there will be a business meeting to discuss Mitchell cemetery restoration project and other topics. Please bring with you family yearly updates of marriages, births and deaths. They are hoping to be entertained again by singing the “Ballad of Adam Mitchell,” written by Judy and Bob Mitchell.

*Please note, in the event of a “Heat Warning” for the day of the reunion, it will be moved to the basement of the Ashmore Presbyterian Church.

For any questions, please contact Galbreath Reunion Secretary:

Ann Winkler Hinrichs –

RSVP to Ann by Friday, July 6, 2012

Edna Bowles-Patterson

I received this picture of my Aunt Edna Bowles-Patterson, born March 3, 1906, in Indian Territory. Edna was the first child of John and Lillie Bowles, their only child not born in Texas. Edna’s parents married July 18, 1903, their certificate was delivered to Mill Creek, Indian Territory with a 1 cent stamp. I have the original marriage license/certificate and the envelope stamped Ardmore, I.T. 4 pm, July 28, 1903.

My father told me John and Lillie homesteaded near Millcreek. Lillie received word that her father, Dan Brown, was sick. They headed to Texas; crossing the Red River in a wagon. Lillie, son Johnny Sanders (by a previous marriage), husband John and the baby Edna, camped just south of Fort Worth on the Trinity River. There Edna, only months old, became deathly sick. She miraculously recovered. They arrived in Travis County, Texas before the summer of 1907.

Edna was a survivor from an infant to being a teenage surrogate mother for four brothers. She was 2nd great granddaughter of Austin founder, Thomas W. Smith who was the first Travis County Treasurer and was scalped by Indians near Austin on July 6, 1841. Edna married Tom Patterson, also a descendent of early Austin pioneers; they had five children. She witnessed Austin’s dynamic growth over the years, living to be 97 years old. Thanks to the Patterson family for sharing Aunt Edna’s picture.


20,000 Cousins

The family of Revolutionary War Patriot Adam Mitchell 1745-1802 according to statisticians (high paid mathematicians), has over 20,000 living descendents. That’s what I would call a good size family. The numbers at first blew me away and I had my doubts as to their accuracy.

I extrapolated the numbers myself just from my GGG Grandmother Rebeckah Mitchell Smith, the third daughter born to Adam and Elizabeth Mitchell b. 6 Jan 1782 in Guilford County, NC. Adam had twelve children that survived to adulthood, daughter Rebeckah and Thomas W. Smith had five children, their daughter Margaret and Lorenzo Van Cleve had five of which their first born, Elnora Van Cleve b. 14 Apr 1841 aka “First Daughter of Austin, Texas” and her husband Dan Brown had twelve children that lived to adulthood. Their youngest Lillie Brown, my Grandmother and Grandfather John W. Bowles had five.

Since I started the Westward Sagas Series of books about the Adam Mitchell family coming to Texas, four branches of Adam’s twelve children have been reunited. They are descendents of Robert b. 17 Feb 1767, John b. 4 May 1774, Rebeckah b. 6 Jan 1782 and Hezekiah b. 10 Mar 1792. Each branch holds their own family reunion. I try to attend all of them because I always learn something old.

The Granddaddy of all family reunions is the “Galbreath Reunion” which is holding their 105th Reunion on Sunday, 17 Jul 2011 at Walnut State Park, Oakland, IL. This family stems from John Mitchell and John Galbreath early settlers of Cole County, IL. Both are buried in the Mitchell Cemetery, Ashmore, IL. The Mitchell name over the generations has petered out as it has in my family, but they are as I am descendents of Adam Mitchell. Thankfully the Galbreath has done much research and maintained accurate records of their lineage. The Adam Mitchell Bible I refer to often in my work is maintained by this branch of the family. For more information on the Galbreath Reunion contact Ann Hinrichs at

We have yet to locate any descendents of the following children of Adam and Elizabeth Mitchell. If you are from one of the Adam Mitchell children below, please contact us and join the ranks of 20,000 cousins.

William Mitchell b. 17 Feb 1771
Adam Mitchell b. 5 Apr 1776
Elizabeth “Ibby” Mitchell b. 15 Dec 1780
Jennett Mitchell b. 29 Apr 1783
Samuel Mitchell b. 29 Mar 1786
David Mitchell b. 4 Feb 1788
James Mitchell b. 24 Feb 1790

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