Delitha Hays was counted in the 1840 Census, Tippah County, Mississippi:
She was head of household with 1 male, age 10-15; 1 male, 15-20; 2 males 20-30; 2 females under 5, 1 female age 20-30, 1 female, age 40-50 [herself]
A John Hays was also in Tippah Co in 1840 with 1 male under 5; 1 male 5-10; 1 male 10-15; 1 male 30-40; and 1 male 60-70. He had 1 female age 5-10; 1 female 20-30 and 1 female 60-70. [Apparently an older couple and a couple with several children. It is not possible to tell if John was the male age 30-40, or the male age 60-70. Could this be some of Delitha's husband's relatives? No evidence this family was still there by 1850.]
The courthouse in Tippah County was destroyed during the Civil War, so there are few records to work with in this time period. The border area of Mississippi/Tennessee was in some dispute early on - much of this area was settled by those from Tennessee drifting down into newly opened territory in eastern and northern Mississippi. Tennessee in turn was settled in part by those from North Carolina - it was the location for bounty land from the Revolution and was once a very large "county" of North Carolina. The birth places of Delitha and her family would suggest she may have arrived in Mississippi from Tennessee and North Carolina.
An 1837 Tax List of Tippah Co was found online at USGenWeb:
Hays, M. L.
I have not seen the original of this 1837 tax list. M's are often confused with W's & N's, and L's are confused with S's. It is unlikely this was the John of the 1840 census - was this Delitha's husband?
Another researcher of this family told me some years ago that Delitha was listed in the 1841 and 1845 Mississippi state censuses. These have been posted online on Ancestry in digital format, and I do not find her there although she should have been. There was a Delilah [and Delitha's name has been found that way] both years, but she is listed as Delilah Jones and the name is quite plain. The 1841 census is particularly difficult to read, but I have looked at all images and nothing resembles the name Delitha Hays.
In 1850, she was still there in Tippah County, Mississippi with this household:
1850 Census, Tippah Co MS, Dwelling #1038.
"Delilah" Hays, age 53, born NC. Parthena, age 12, b. TN [Parthena will later testify that she was present at the marriage of Elias & Martha Crutcher Hays in Tippah Co in 1847.]
Probable granddaughters: Mary Ball, age 11, Alethe Ball age 9, Elizabeth Vincent, age 4. [There was a marriage in Shelby Co TN: Charles Vincent to Polly Hays, 12 Apr 1834. A Charles Vinson was listed in the MS State Census in 1845 - there was one male, 4 females in his household. No Hays/Ball marriage has been found. This would seem to indicate Delitha had daughters who are now deceased and she is raising their children. There is additional proof such a relationship to Mary Ball and Elizabeth Vincent, although Alethe does not appear in any other record.]
After finding the marriage of Charles Vincent to Polly Hays in Shelby County, TN, I checked the 1830 Shelby Co census for any Hays families. There were two "M." Hays and two "J." Hays families. Both M. Hays families has a female age 30-40 which would have been Delitha's age. M. L. Hays was on the 1837 tax list in Tippah County.
Elias was very probably Delitha's son and my great great grandfather. I have no record stating the relationship, but he did name a daughter Delitha and there are other associations too close to ignore.
Dwelling #1013. Elias Hays, 22, Laborer, born TN. Martha 17, born TN, Mary E. age , age 1, born in Mississippi
Elias was born 28 Jan 1829 [on his grave marker] and would have been age 11 in 1840 and there was a male age 10-15 in Delitha's household
These may be her sons, with birthplaces in North Carolina, or they could be part of the family of the John Hays from 1840.
Dwelling #1073. Martin Hays, age 21, born NC. Margaret R. age 21, born TN
[if Elias was the male age 10-15, there is not place for Martin in Delitha's household in 1840 unless he was mistakenly counted as 15-20]
Dwelling #1074. John Hays, age 26, born NC. Frances, age 23, b. IL, Nancy J. age 6, born TN. And Wiley Martin, age 18, b. AL.
[both of the 1840 Hays families had a male age 15-20]
One other Hays family was in Tippah County in 1850, but his birth place seems to separate him from these others. He was in Dwelling #518. Thomas Hays, 30, born SC. Nancy, 26 born TN. Alsey O. age 2 & John, 4/12, both born in MS. And Rebecca Robinson, age 18. Thomas Hays remained in Tippah Co and in the 1860 census was apparently living with his in-laws Asa [age 82, b. VA] & Frances Robinson [age 65, b. SC].
Delitha and Elias Hays moved to Johnson County, Arkansas in the early 1850's. A few court records document their presence and Delitha's place as grandmother to Elizabeth Vincent and Mary Ball.
April Court, 1853. Johnson Co AR
Delitha Hays petitioned the court to appoint Elias B. Hays as guardian for her granddaughter Elizabeth Vincent under the age of 14. [living with Delitha as a 4-year-old in 1850]
6 Jul 1856. Mary Ann Ball was married to Richard Grantham in Johnson Co at the home of Delitha Hays. [Mary was living with Delitha in 1850, when she was 11 years old.]
1857 (date is incomplete). From Probate Court Records, Johnson Co AR, over 10,000 Names. Compiled by Mrs. R. W. Michel. Copy sent from Jane Lumsden: Richard Grantham petitions to remove Elias Hays, guardian of Elizabeth Vincent.
[ Petition was denied and Elizabeth remained in the home of Elias for the 1860 Census]
In 1840, Delitha appeared to have two older sons, ages 20-30. In 1850, there were several Hays families already located in Johnson Co, AR. One of these may indeed be one of those older sons. Another Hays marriage occurred in Shelby County, TN, although it was after 1840 - of course that was just over the state line from Tippah Co. N. R. Hays married Mary Gilbert 5 Feb 1845
N. R. & Mary Hays are on the Johnson Co AR Census in 1850 in the same Township (Pittsburg) where Delitha & Elias will be found in 1860. But N. R. was not there by 1860. He had in fact gone to California and the 1860 census shows his given name was Nicholas.]
1850 Johnson Co AR Census: Pittsburg Twp. #59
N. R. Hays, age 26, b. AL Mary age 25, b. TN
John W. age 5, b. TN Mary Jane age 2, b. AR Eliza Ann age 1/12 b. AR
1860 Toulomne Co, CA, p.379b, Hh 3310
Nicholas Hayes, age 40, b. TN, Stockraiser. Mary A. age 35, b. TN
John W. age 15 b. TN, Mary J. age 12, b. AR, Ann E. age 10, b. CA, George M. 9, b. CA, Sara A. age 4, b. CA. Chas. Amos, age 32, a miner. b. MI.
In 1860, in Johnson Co AR we find both Delitha and Elias Hays, along with other significant, or possibly significant families.
1860 Census. Pittsburg Township, Johnson Co AR, Hh 341.
Delitha Hays age 58, b. NC. Margaret Hays age 28, b. TN. Parthena, age 20, b. MS
Ardenia age 9 and Arkansas age 7, both born in AR. [I believe Margaret to possibly be the widow of Martin of the 1850 Tippah Co census. This is the last known record of Delitha.]
Elias Hays & family was also in Johnson Co in 1860, Pittsburg Twp, Hh 252. He gave his place of birth as MS but I believe that is wrong. Baby Mary from 1850 was now age 11 and born in MS. Ann 7, "Dolitha" 5, John 3, & William 2, have all been born in Arkansas. Elizabeth Vincent, now 14, is with the family.
Nathan & Sarah Grantham, parents of Richard who married Elias's niece Mary Ann Ball, lived in Pittsburg Twp, Hh 351.
R. H. Grantham, age 24, b.LA, and Mary [Mary Ann Ball] age 21, b. Mississippi, and Sarah, age 1, were also living in Pittsburg Twp of Johnson Co, Hh 276.
There was a John Hays in Pittsburg Twp, Hh 317, age 39, b. in NC. No spouse. Daughter Isabella age 7 and son Francis age 4, both born in AR. [No way to be certain this was the John Hays from 1850, Tippah Co MS - if so, his wife Frances has died and the daughter Nancy, born about 1844 has either died or married or is living elsewhere. It is significant that his birthplace is NC and he has named a son Francis. This could very well be the John Hays, son of Henry & Elizabeth Dillard Hays who was a single man in Johnson Co in 1850. However, the age doesn't match what is known about either John.]
Several other Hays familes were in Johnson Co, AR - in Spadra and Horsehead Townships.
To sum up the children of Delitha Hays and her unknown husband. All the evidence I have to include Elias's widow's pension application for his service in the Civil War indicates that Elias, born 1829, and Parthenia, born 1838, were certainly her children. She had two older daughters, one who married a Vincent [perhaps Polly who married Charles Vincent] and one who married a Ball.
There is one additional possibility for a daughter. Lucinda Hays and Gabriel Malone were married in Hardeman Co TN [another Tennessee/Mississippi border county] on 11 Jan 1839.
In the 1850 census in Tippah County, Elias Hays, son of Delitha, was living next door to Lucinda and her husband in a virtual nest of the family members of John Malone, who is said to be the father of Gabriel. Gabriel was age 30, born NC; Lucinda listed as age 20 [an error if she married in 1839], born TN. Children were William H. H., age 9, Ann E. 7, John R. 5, Henry C. 3, and Z. Baylor, age 11/12. The 1845 Mississippi State Census had listed Gabriel Malone in Tippah Co with 2 males, 2 females in the household. He was two names from Charles Vinson [Vincent?] who might have been his brother-in-law.
Delitha had other sons indicated by the 1840 census who may have been
Nicholas, born circa 1820-24 - might have been the first of the family to move to Arkansas
Martin, born late 1820's who married a Margaret and died prior to the 1860 census,
John, born circa 1824, who also moved to Johnson Co, Arkansas.
As always, and thoughts or information on any of the above named persons is appreciated.