BiographiesGenealogy Information

BIOGRAPHY: Ruel Marshall Earp born August 7, 1828

This biography is included in the E-Books Biographies of Notable and Not-so-Notable  Alabama Pioneers Volume II and First Families of Lawrence County, Alabama Volume I




Lawrence County, Alabama

Ruel Marshall Earp was born Aug. 7, 1828, in Lawrence County, Alabama, the son of James Earp (1797 GA – 1861 Upshur Co., Texas) and Mary (Sanders) Earp (1802 TN – 1863). His parents James and Mary were married June 20, 1818, in Lawrence County, Alabama. They were the parents of eleven children, the first eight of whom were born in Alabama.

James Earp traveled to Texas with his single brother, Benjamin Earp before 1835 where he received a first-class headright certificate granting him 4,605 acres of land. He returned to Alabama and brought his elderly father, another brother, William, and his family. James acquired additional acreage in 1846 and settled his large family north of the Sabine River in present day Gregg County. This settlement was named Earpville and became a stopover for the stage from Louisiana. He sold several pieces of his land between 1849 and 1860. He became a very popular man in Earpville and by 1860 the census indicated that he was a merchant.

James was appointed postmaster in 1856 and kept this position to his death on August 7, 1861. He is buried in Earpville Cemetery. Earpville eventually became a part of Longview by 1882.

Ruel’s grandparents were Cullen Ballenger Earp and his wife Patsy (Robertson) Earp. They were married in 1793 in Wake County, N.C. Texas. Cullen had been a captain of a regiment in Washington County, North Carolina in 1779. On the 1810 Federal Census of Washington County (Alabama) Miss. Territory, Cullin Earp is shown with 2 males over 21, 2 females over 21, and 1 slave. (Ref. Irvine Bulletin date July 30, 1958, in C.A. Earp’s notes) Cullin Earp was a Private in the Tennessee volunteer Cavalry, under Col. Thomas Alcorn and Capt. Thomas Bradley, on an expedition against the Creek Nation Indians. He enlisted on September 14, 1813, and was mustered out on December 10, 1813.

Cullin Earp was appointed a Marshal of Blount County, Alabama in 1817, by the Governor of Alabama Territory, when it was still part of the Mississippi Territory. (Ref: Mrs. Bessie Love to C.A. Earp, April 28, 61 and Mrs. Floyd Gunn August 28, 61 to C.A. Earp. A Mrs. Gunn lived in Dallas and is now deceased. Mrs. Gunn was a descendant of Sarah Earp Rogers, daughter of William Earp).

It appears that Cullen and Patsy (Robertson) Earp were the parents of James(born 1798 GA), William (b. 1800 GA) and Benjamin Earp and three daughters names unknown at this time. William names a son, Cullin R. Earp after his father and Benjamin was killed around 1837. He never married and left no descendants.

James Earp (b. 1798) moved to Texas before 1835 and founded the town of Earpville in what was then Upshur County, Texas.

William Earp  (b. 1800) married 1st Matilda Watkins16 May 1818 in Marengo County, Alabama; 2nd Betsy Vaughan 21 September 1819 in Lawrence County, Alabama; 3rd Hannah Parker 19 October 1837 in Marshall County, Alabama.

Benjamin Earp (b. ca. 1801) never married, was killed in Sequin, Texas in 1837.

Ruel, son of James above, had a prominent military record. As a young man he was a soldier in the war with Mexico in 1847, and fourteen years later when the conflict broke out between the North and South, he joined the Confederate army and was fighting the southern cause until the end of the war. He was wounded at Chickamauga, but soon recovered and was back on the fighting line. At another time, he was captured and spent about three months in an Ohio federal prison. The greater part of his service was under General Hood.

Ruel married 1st (Unknown) and they had the following child.

George Washington Earp (b. 1856 Tarrant County, Texas) married Elizabeth Morton b. Nov. 19, 1878, Parker County, Texas. She was born ca. 1860. He married 2nd Sally aft. 1906.

Ruel married 2nd Mary Wilson (b. ca. 1840 TN). They had the following children:

  1. Robert Earp (b. 1860)
  2. Thomas Earp (b. 1862)
  3. James Hiram Earp (b. 1863- see biography below)
  4. Frances Earp (b. 1864)
  5. Anna Earp (b. 1867)
  6. Missouri Earp (b. 1868)
  7. Edgar Earp (b. 1870)

Ruel died March 12, 1908, and Mary (Wilson) Earp died January 8, 1910.


This biography is included in the E-Books Biographies of Notable and Not-so-Notable  Alabama Pioneers Volume II and First Families of Lawrence County, Alabama Volume I


By (author):  Causey, Donna R

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About Donna R Causey

Donna R. Causey, resident of Alabama, was a teacher in the public school system for twenty years. When she retired, Donna found time to focus on her lifetime passion for historical writing. She developed the websites www.alabamapioneers and All her books can be purchased at and Barnes & Noble. She has authored numerous genealogy books. RIBBON OF LOVE: A Novel Of Colonial America (TAPESTRY OF LOVE) is her first novel in the Tapestry of Love about her family where she uses actual characters, facts, dates and places to create a story about life as it might have happened in colonial Virginia. Faith and Courage: Tapestry of Love (Volume 2) is the second book and the third FreeHearts: A Novel of Colonial America (Book 3 in the Tapestry of Love Series) Discordance: The Cottinghams (Volume 1) is the continuation of the story. . For a complete list of books, visit Donna R Causey

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