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                                     My Helton family




The Helton family is my brick wall, but here is what I have learned about them thus far.

Running in between the small towns and mountains of Pope county is the Illinois Bayou. There you find such mountains named Solo, Cloud and Oak. This part of the Ozarks is where Andrew Helton and his wife, Martha Louise Ballard, settled.

The story of Andrew begins with him living with the RAMBO family is Sevier County Tennessee in 1860. Andrew James Helton was born about 1847. I am not sure if he was born in Tennessee or not. Different Census say TN and one even says PA. His parents still remain a mystery. According to his grandson, Bill Helton, Andrew went by the name Andy. He knew the BALLARD family of Tennessee even before he married their daughter. He and Sam BALLARD were friends. They both served the south in the Civil War. In the war, Andy was cut off from his company and for about three weeks had to live on parched corn. After the war, Andy and Sam were sneaking onto a plantation and eating the watermelons when a man who was minding the property found them and yelled for his wife to bring his gun. Sam had his gun and Andy asked for it when he shot the man between the eyes. Andy’s grandson said it did not kill the man because it actually grazed his forehead. But Andy and Sam fled and Andy swum across the Tennessee river in fear of the law and did not go back. It is said that Andy did not have contact with his family in Tennessee for about 10 years.

Andy married the Martha Louise Ballard, daughter of Andrew Jackson BALLARD and Nancy FRANKLIN from east Tennessee. Nancy FRANKLIN was a niece of Benjamin FRANKLIN. Andy and Louise married about 1867 because they are found married in 1870 where they are found on the census of Pulaski County Missouri with their first child, James Helton, at the age of 3. Sarah Bethena is shown as being the age of 1. Nancy is born at Missouri about 1872. It is after 1872 that Andy and his family along with Andrew Jackson BALLARD, his daughters and their families and a couple of other families migrate to Arkansas.

They traveled by covered wagon and arrived in Pope County in the Solo Mountain community. Andrew BALLARD had lost his wife prior to coming to Pope County, but along with his widowed daughter, Rebecca WHEELER, they settled three-fourth mile east of where Solo post office was later set up. Joining them on the north was the homestead of George RUDDER and his wife, Bethena (BALLARD). South of these families about 1 ½ miles was where Andy and Louise homesteaded 160 acres. Sam BALLARD and his family settled on Dry Creek three or four miles west of the others but by 1881 they moved to the mountain and homesteaded land adjoining Rebecca on the west. Rebecca later married Thomas YOUNGER. They lived on this property the remainder of their lives. The BALLARDS and some of the HELTONS are buried at Solo Cemetery.

In 1879 on Solo Mountain is where Robert A. HELTON is born. Fanny is born about 1880 and Lorenzo Dow in 1882. Andy is listed on the census of Pope County as a laborer, but he also served as a country doctor according to his grandchildren. He doctored many in the mountains and they all loved him and knew him as Dr. Andy. Andy set the broken arm of his grandson Bill, and treated all the family as well as neighbors, and the Indians living in the area too. His granddaughter, Etta Mae, recalls his black bag he carried and he let her help him mix the herbs or remedies and carry his bag as he traveled the area to treat the sick. Family say that Andy was part Indian, but we have not been able to determine which tribe he originated from. According to his grandson, Bill, Etta Mae was on one mountain and Bill on another. They didn’t see each other very much as they got older. Andy lived on the same mountain as his son, Robert, and grandson, Bill.

Andy’s grandson, Bill says that his grandfather Andy had a temper. He said the war made Andy bitter. He was a “good ole guy” but if he got mad, you better watch out.

Andy’s son, Robert Helton  was a mail carrier. He carried the mail, on a mule, about a 22 mile round trip. At times in the winter, his mustache would freeze over, as his son, Bill recalls. He died at a young age and is buried at Solo Cemetery with his parents Andy and Louise Helton at the foot of his grave.

John Henry CURTIS and his family lived in Pope County and it is there that he met and married Sarah Bethena HELTON in January 1891. John and Bethena lived on Oak Mountain in Pope County while her brother Robert Helton and parents Andy and Louise Helton remained on Solo Mountain. This is where there four children were born. 

Andy’s youngest son, Lorenzo Dow Helton was handicapped from a case of the mumps he contracted soon after marriage, that settled in his spine. Nancy HELTON married an Indian and had two children, Jesse and Amy. Bill talks about Jesse and how funny he was and loved to hang around. Nancy’s husband died and she remarried later.

The day that Andy died, he had been making molasses all day long. He carried a five gallon bucket of this molasses quite a ways back home. Louise said he just didn’t seem right, and later called Robert saying something was wrong. It is believed he had a heart attack. That story is by his grandson, Bill. His granddaughter, Etta, says that he asked her or someone to go Robert’s house for some medicine because he knew he was ill. But by the time they arrived with help, he had passed away.





The timeline I have is this:

Born 1848

Was in Civil War sometime between 1857-1866

1865 Married Martha Louise Ballard around 1865. She was the daughter of Andrew Jackson Ballard and Nancy Ann Franklin (niece of Benjamin Franklin). She was of Tennessee, Knox County, Knoxville.

  1867 Had first child, James, in Tennessee.

1868, Bethena born in Tennessee.

1870 shown on Pulaski County, Missouri Census

1872 child Nancy is born in Missouri

1877-1878 migrated to Arkansas with the BALLARD family, settling in Pope County, in the community of Solo. Read the story taken from the Pope County History Book.

1878 child Robert is born

1880 shown on Independence Township, Pope County, Arkansas Census as farmer

1890 purchased land in Pope County

1900 shown on Northfork Township, Pope County, Arkansas Census

1910 Pope County Census

Died before 1920, buried at Solo Cemetery, Pope County Arkansas





Andrew and Martha Louise Helton's children

  • 1. Sarah Bethena Helton b: born Abt 1868 in TN, and died 24 NOV 1938 in Logan Co. AR.  She married John Henry Curtis 19 JAN 1891 in Pope Co. ,AR, son of James T. Curtis and Dicey Crouch. He was born Abt 1866 in AR, and died Aft 1920 in Pope Co. ,AR.

    •  Etta Mae Curtis
    •  Lester Robert Curtis,
    •  Zalen Curtis,
    •  Lucy A. Curtis

    2. James W. Helton b: 1867 in TN, and died Deceased. He married Polly C Luna JAN 1891 in Pearl, Ar,, Pope Co..

    3. Nancy Helton b: 1872 in MO

    4. Robert A. Helton b: 15 APR 1879 in AR  and died 22 DEC 1934 in AR. He married Georgia M. Cowen 3 AUG 1902. She was born 8 FEB 1884, and died 25 JUN 1958 in Pope Co., AR.

    • Viola Bell Helton 5 Oct 1907
    • Lawrence Patrick Helton 17 May 1905
    • Joseph Earl Helton 5 Feb 1909 (LIVING)
    • Lola May Helton 27 Mar 1911
    • Martha Luella Helton
    • Olive Rosalee Helton


    5. Fanny Helton b: MAR 1880 in AR

    6. Lorenzo Dow Helton b: 3 NOV 1882 in AR and died 13 JAN 1946 in Pope Co., AR. He married Minnie Cowen.

    • Floyd Richard Helton 4 Mar 1905
    • Myrtle Louise Helton 2 Nov 1906
    • Delmer Dow Helton 1 Feb 1911
    • Woodrow Wilson Helton
    • Ruby Ella Helton 8 Oct 1916
    • Joseph Andrew Helton 3 Mar 1909




    My Virtual Cemetery