Archibald Scalf remained in the home of his mother on Johns Creek only six years following their migration from Russell County. He and his younger brothers assisted their mother to carry the burden of rearing the family and when he married several of the other children were growing up and had begun to help with the farm and household chores.

Arch, as everybody called him, born 1835, married Sarah Ann Sellards, September 2, 1652, in Floyd County. She was 15, Sarah Ann was a daughter of John. W. and Elizabeth Burchett Sellards of the pioneer Sellards Settlement on Buffalo Creek, Floyd County. Her grandfather, John Sellards, Indian fighter and brother to the borderland Indian captive, Jenny Sellards Wiley, had come to the Big Sandy valley and founded the community in 1794 when the area was a primitive wilderness. Four years after Arch and Sarah Ann were married, John Henry Scalf, a brother increased the marital bonds of the two families when he married Clarinda Sellards, first cousin to Sarah Ann. (1)

The 1860 Floyd County, Kentucky Census lists the Archibald and Sarah Ann Sellards family with Prestonsburg as the postoffice. They were probably living in the lower Johns Creek area at the time. He had a personal estate valued at $750.00. His age was given as 26 years, his wife's as 32 years. This census is incorrect as to Archibald and Sarah Ann's ages as he was 20 and she 25 when they were married in 1852. If the age given at time of marriage is correct he was born in 1832 and she in 1827.

Easter, or Esther L. as in the census, was five years old in 1860 and Martha Jane was one year old. One puzzling entry in the census was a Mary E. Scalf, 48 years old. This could not be his mother as her name was Talitha, although a deed record of Virginia does show it as Delitha. The entry is puzzling but it may be just another one of the errors found in early census records.

War clouds had been hovering over the nation for years and Arch and Sarah Ann were married nine years before the Civil War erupted. The predominant sentiment of the Scalfs, Sellards and other area families was pro-Confederate and Arch and his brother, Hezekiah, enlisted in Company A, Fifth Kentucky Mounted Infantry, organized at Prestonsburg by Col. Andrew Jackson May. Their service was brief. Hezekiah was captured following the Battle of Middle Creek in January 1862 and paroled. Arch was captured later by the Unionists and with several others of Confederate sympathy, among whom was Hiram Clark, a Buffalo Creek resident, were sent off to a prisoner-of-war camp in Michigan. Tradition recalls that Arch was seized while visiting his home. He suffered a great deal in the Michigan camp but survived until the end of the war. Clark succumbed in the camp and was buried in the camp cemetery (2).

The war over, Archibald returned to his family, then residing on Johns Creek and they picked up the pieces of their shattered lives and began anew. John Henry Scalf, who had resided on Buffalo Creek through the war, had been robbed repeatedly by guerrillas as had others. John died in the spring of 1864, a year before, his brother returned from Michigan. (3)

Arch resided most of his life in Martin County, near the postoffice of what is now Tomahawk, Kentucky, but did live for several years on Dick's Creek, a tributary of Johns Creek, in Floyd County. He spent his life in farming and carpentry with occasional work as a stone mason, particularly the construction of hand-hewn stone fireplaces and chimneys.

He was a deeply religious man and was affiliated with the United Baptists, a church indigenous to the area founded by the Rev. Wallis Bailey in 1837 and which today has a large following in Eastern Kentucky. He attended church regularly over the area from Johns Creek to Martin County and having attained to high degree of accomplishment in hymn singing was in great demand as a song leader at the rural church gatherings.

It was while he was living in Martin County that he was visited by his sister, Nancy ("Mary"). She met Columbus C. Mills, a member of an old Martin County settler family. They were married in 1855 and she and Arch resided near each other in the community for years.

Many elderly people who remember Arch Scalf are wont to recall his appearance at church and his deeply spiritual rendition of the old hymns. He had a shock of white hair and long whiskers, commonly affected by old men of the time and one person, in commenting on his appearance in the pulpit, remarked that he reminded her of her conception of the Hebrew prophets. (4)

Sarah Ann Scalf died several years before her husband and was buried in a cemetery at Dick's Creek, Archibald died at the home of son-in-law, Rev. William Cook, at Tomahawk, Ky. The body was brought from Martin County and interred by the side of Sarah Ann. Prior to 1949 when Dewey Lake was impounded many graves of the area were relocated, Archibald and Sarah Ann Scalf, were exhumed and reburied at the Government Relocation cemetery at Auxier, Kentucky.

Seven daughters and a son were born to the union of Archibald and Sarah Ann Sellards Scalf.

These were:

I. Easter Scalf, married William Crider. They resided in Lawrence County, Kentucky. Their children were Leotta, married Henry Collins; Morgan married MintIe Collins and moved to Oklahoma; Lewis, also moved to Oklahoma; Etta, married Collins, moved to Oklahoma; Budget, married Rice; Minnie, married Marion Hurd, who was killed.

II. Eliza Scalf, married first John Henry Lilly, second Henry Webb. Eliza and John Henry Lilly were the parents of three children: Jane, married James Aldridge; Rosa, married Jeff Ward; Mintie, married Harless. There was no issue from the second marriage.

III. Mintie Bartola Scalf, married Jack Webb. The names of the children of Jack Webb and Mintie Bartola Scalf, Webb, if any, are not known. Mintie Bartola lies buried on Daniel's Creek, at the mouth of Sycamore Fork, Johnson County, Kentucky.

IV. Andrew Scalf, married Phoebe Jane Webb. They resided most of their lives in Martin County but in later life lived for a short period of time on Prater Creek, near Banner, Kentucky. Their children were Tom, crippled for life in a mine accident; Buck, killed in the mines; James; Floyd; and Virgie, married Joe Mills. Andrew and Phoebe Jane Scalf are buried on Prater Creek.

V. Nancy Caroline Scalf, married Levi Strickland in 1887. Nancy Caroline was born in 1862, died August 1900. Children were Anna, married William Burchett; Luverna, married first John Branham, second Farmer Marshall; Martha, married Tobe Nichols; Edna, married Richard Carter. (5)

VI. Sarah Scalf, married William Cook. He was a minister of the United Baptist Church. Two children were Lizzie and Dixie.

VII. Martha Jane Scalf, married Amos Spears, November 20, 1873. She died July 28, 1934, her husband preceding her in death September 19, 1926. Five sons and three daughters were:

1. Lafayette Spears, born Nov. 16, 1874, died Nov. 3, 1947. Married Mintie James.

2. Marion Jefferson Spears, born July 3, 1876, married Farinda Justice.

3. Margaret Spears, born March 17, 1877, died August 30, 1899.

4. Rutherford B. Spears, born April 28, 1882, died Jan. 14, 1936. Married Rebecca Damron.

5. Andrew J. Spears, born June 28, 1887, killed by a falling tree near Boldman, Kentucky, in 1935. Married Elizabeth Taylor.

6. Roland Spears, born Jan, 31, 1901, married June Goble.

7. Ilzady Spears, born April 28, 1896, married T.B. Blackburn.

8. Ballard Spears, married first Sissie Blackburn; second, Della Clark.

Amos and Jane Scalf Spears reared their family on Johns Creek near the postoffice of McCombs, Kentucky. He was a large landowner and engaged in logging. Two of his sons, Rutherford B. and Andrew were teachers.

Ronald Melba Spears, son of Roland, born August 14, 1933, was drowned in Johns Creek, August 28, 1948.

VIII. Mary Scalf, married James Caudill. They resided at Riceville, Kentucky. Children were Frank Caudill, married Rose Rice; Thomas, married Amy Conley; Archie, married Mary Hackworth; Cynthia, born Oct. 28, 1884, married William Howard; Elizabeth, born June 10, 1886, married Greeley Hackworth; John D. Caudill, married Dollie Conley; Sarah Alice, born Jan.14, 1881, died May 31, 1945, married Garfield Music, born Nov. 1, 1880. One son is Worth Music, married Darcus Montgomery. Children of Worth and Darcus are Tom Ed and Billy Worth. John D. Caudill was killed in the mines at Wayland, Ky., Nov. 5, 1951.


1. From THE SELLARDS THROUGH TWO CENTURIES, by Elias Howard Sellards, pages 65-66 we excerpt the following on John W. Sellards, Jr.: "John Sellards, Jr. (John W. Sellards), a grandson of Hezekiah, was born in Kentucky in 1798. Little is known of his personal life other than he lived in Floyd County near the Pike County border and in the neighborhood in which he was born. He is said to have taught school at some time in his life. Land records indicate he acquired considerable land. The earliest record that has been found of John Jr., by name is in the 1820 census of Floyd County, Kentucky. He was then married and had two daughters both under five years of age. His wife, Elizabeth Burchett, born in Virginia, was then twenty years old, being approximately twelve years younger than he. His will, made in 1888, indicates that his wife was then living. This will contains much of interest. He was still mentally alert at the age of ninety as shown by the detailed description of each parcel of land, marked by trees and bounded by old fields, drains, hollows, brooks, streams, ridges, and hilltops ..... The will of John W. Sellards, made December 9, 1888, was entered, following his death, as part of the Floyd County Court records February 11, 1889. It was recollected by Phoebe Alice Stratton Scalf (1864-1954), niece of John W. Sellards, that he was, always referred to as "Uncle Jackie." He was a small man and was crippled, by what cause Mrs. Scalf did not know. He had several children, besides Sarah Ann. Their names as best they can be ascertained were Elias (1834-1862), James (1835-1863), Martha, born 1838, Drury, born 1841, Lorena Jane, born 1843, Nancy F., born 1846, John W. born 1849, William Benjamin, born 1850, Burrell Jefferson, born 1852, Elizabeth, born 1855. Others, not mentioned in his will were Andrew, Polly, Margaret, Alice and Katherine.

2. Archibald Scalf was awarded a Confederate pension by Kentucky in 1913, effective July 30, 1912. The pension certificate for $10 per month, to be paid quarterly, was signed by J. Tandy Ellis, Adjutant-General, and W.J. Stone, Examiner of Pensions. The certificate was number 1179. Archibald's address then was Brandy Keg, Ky., which served the lower Johns Creek area near Dick's Creek.

3. See section of John Henry Scalf and Clarinda Scalf descendants.

4. Recalled by Mrs. Dove Butler Collins, who was reared near Dick's Creek.

5. Levi Strickland, oldest man in Eastern Kentucky at the time of his death, Feb. 29, 1964, was born November 15, 1860, at Clendennin, West Virginia, a son of Stephen and Barbara Auxier Strickland. He came to Kentucky when 25 years old and engaged in farming and logging on Johns Creek. In later life he removed to Prestonsburg vicinity. He was buried in the Strickland family cemetery near East Point, Kentucky.