Jessie & Frank- My outlaw connection- by Laura Lucas

Jessie & Frank (above, Jessie, unknown date, Frank, age 55), everyone in America knows those names... what's our connection?  Although I started this blog after the excitement of finding the Lucas family branches, I've actually been at the genealogy research for some time.  The first part of my search proved fairly easy because it had already been done. You see, I knew my immediate family, my grandmother & great-grandmother, and even knew the names and dates for her parents. Which immediately took me into the James family.  My great-grandmother was born Cora James.   And as soon as I started a general search for Cora James and plugged in her name and birthdate, etc., I immediately found the James family tree sites.  Apparently I can go straight up the tree, direct discendant 10x over from the original immigrant in 1650 who arrived from Great Britain.  Family historians and genealogists had already put this together and maintained it, including one of the largest most extensive sites dedicated to the relationships of Jessie & Frank James to the rest of the James family across America. When your family has been this engrained in American history for almost 400 years (which really struck me, WOW, my family has been bere since before America was a country!), it's actually a pretty easy history to find.  I'm going to include a link to the best site here if you're interested in the James family history further. and

But now back to my specific point, my connection to the infamous outlaws....
Here goes, I am Laura Lucas (born Lemley), my mother is Coralee Lemley (born Cassler, my grandmother was Gladys Cassler (born Mills), my great-grandmother was Cora Mills (born James), her father was Duncan Thomas James, whose father was Duncan Wright James, whose father was Dr. Aldridge James, whose father was Capt. John Thomas James (all from the Virginia area so far), whose BROTHER was William James, Sr., who son was Reverand John James (and here's where they all moved out to the midwest), whose son was Reverand Robert Sallee James, whose sons were Jessie Woodson James and Alexander Franklin "Frank" James.
 So that makes them both my 3rd cousins, 4 times removed. And yes, the family went from doctors and captains, prominent men in their communities, to then Baptist Reverands in the midwest to some of the most famous criminals in our American history.  The Civil War played it's part in how the boys turned out, but in the end it was all of their own chosing.  Their father, the Reverand Robert Sallee James had died when Jessie was only 3 years old, so some of what the boys should have been learning from the father was learned on the Conferate side of the Civil War and fighting as geurillas.  Many of the most famous criminals of that time came from the same sort of background.  What you chose to do with your experiences in life, what you take from them, well that's on you.  Those who turned to crime obviously didn't learn much from their experiences. Jesse Woodson "Jesse" James is your 3rd cousin 4 times removed Here's how: 1. Coralee Gail Lemley is your mother 2. Gladys Virginia Cassler is the mother of Coralee Gail Lemley 3. Cora Virginia Mills is the mother of Gladys Virginia Cassler 4. Duncan Thomas James is the father of Cora Virginia Mills 5. Duncan Wright James is the father of Duncan Thomas James 6. Dr. Adridge James is the father of Duncan Wright James 7. Capt. John Thomas James is the father of Dr. Adridge James 8. William James, Sr. is a brother of Capt. John Thomas James 9. Rev. John M James is a son of William James, Sr. 10. Rev. Robert Sallee James is a son of Rev. John M James 11. Jesse Woodson "Jesse" James is a son of Rev. Robert Sallee James

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