Roper Families in Arkansas


L. David Roper
December 3, 1992


The First Two Centuries of Ropers in Arkansas (1800-1999)
Arkansas Tax Lists 1830-1839:          county             page
Austin P. Roper                                 Phillips            022
Austin P. Roper                                 Phillips            016
John A. Roper                                   Crittenden       010
John A. Roper                                   Crittenden       008
Martha Roper                                   Phillips           016
Martha Roper                                   Phillips           022
William George Roper                     Phillips           022
William George Roper                     Phillips           017
William George Roper
                     Phillips           016
William Green Roper                       Phillips           016
William Green Roper                       Phillips           022
William Green Roper                       Phillips           017


Index of Arkansas Wills & Admininistrations to 1900
Name                           Date    Record Page
Martha Roper           1839    2          214
William G. Roper      1843    B         71
George L. Roper       1854    B         366
Sarah G. Roper         1860    G         234


1840 Arkansas census:
Name                                       County                        Page    Township
A. P. Roper                            Phillips           060      planter
Charles Roper                       Scott               187
William George Roper         Phillips           090      St. Francis
William Green Roper           Phillips           087      St. Francis
Another index shows:
Charles Roper                       Searcy


Johnson Co. AR Chancery Court Record Book A: 23 Sep 1841:
 James K. Jones & James Roper vs. Thomas G. Robinson, Jacob Robinson and Greenberry Robinson...Bill bring to enjoin collection of certain notes-sale of certain lands. Contract be set aside...


Barbara Wills, Pine Grove CA, 1978:
Biddy Roper b c1793 TN m John W. Linn (Lynn) 5 Jul 1843 Johnson Co. AR. In 1855 she was living in Yell Co. AR. My g.g.grandfather (George Roper) d Oct 1852


Arlene Willis, 1739 Cascade Vista, Burlington WA 98223:

Mary Elizabeth Roper (d/o William Roper) b 14 Oct 1849 m John Henry Willis (according to family in 1866 in Russellville or Dardanelle m Yell Co. AR. Told family that her mother was a Shoptaw. It seems more likely, however, that she remembered the person who raised her as being a Shoptaw.


Arkansas Marriages Early to 1850:
Names                                                             Date                County
Roper & David Thomas              12 Jan 1843    Phillips
Selitha Roper & George W. McKinney      27 Jan 1850    Franklin
Silina Roper & Arannal Hill                        30 Aug 1846   Phillips


1850 AR census
Name                           County                        Page    Township
Austin P. Roper         Monroe           365      Hampton
Biddy T. Roper          Jackson           04        Taylors
Charles Roper           Conway           255      Cadron T.
Edwin Roper             Franklin           12        Mulberry
Pope Co.:
John W. Linn 53 miller TN Biddy 55 TN Marion 16 M TN Robert 14 KY George Roper 22 TN 284
Crawford Co.:
John Roper 28 VA 287 Big Cree Elvira 27 KY Sarah 17 KY
John L. Roper           Phillips           147      Big Cree
Melvina Roper          Phillips           137      Helena
Name                                       Value               Born
Carroll Co.
Yewell Roper 36 p.145  Prairie  $100 TN Mary 27 GA Caroline 12 MO John H. 10 MO Margaret E. 8 MO Jane 5 MO Thomas L. 2 AR Louisa F. 1 AR
Another index shows a Roper in Montgomery Co.


Johnson Co. AR Record Book O 1848-1858
William Roper $1 County Tax Delinquent for the year; 1851


Pope Co. AR marriages:  B-31
George Roper 24 & Martha J. Thomas 17 15 Jun 1851 by B.B.Sublett J.P
Jerry E. DuVAll 22 & Miss Mary Roper 23 both of Moreland Twp 23 Dec 1877  by J.W. Sugg J.P. E-185


Arkansas Family Historian, V.13, 1975:
Liberty Baptist Church Cemetery, Lafayette Co. 3 mi. SE of Stamps on Oak Grove Rd.
Charles S. Roper b 23 Apr 1852 d 25 Jul 1910 husband of M. E. Roper
Caudie M. Roper b 1893 d 1949 wife of Lonnie O. Roper
Infant Dau. Roper b 1914 d 1914 dau. of L. O. & C. M. Roper
Lonnie O. Roper b 1884 d 1929 husband of Claudie M. Roper
M. E. Roper b 2 Feb 1860 d 29 Oct 1911 wife of Charles S. Roper
William Roper b 1911 d 1919 son of L. O. & C. M. Roper


Tax Records of Yell Co. AR:1854 George Roper, 1855 William Roper &
George Roper, 1856 George Roper, 1857 no Ropers, 1858 George Roper,
1859 George & William Roper


Phillips Co. AR marriages: Green Roper 21 & Eliza Evans 18 18Apr1855
Martha E. Roper 18 & William Porter 38 17 Nov 1861
Pleasant G. Roper 25 Milly A. Russell 24 1 Jun 1868
Sam Roper 54 & Catherine Lounden (Landen?) 25 8 Jun 1878


History of Freestone County Texas, V.1:
Thomas Albert Roper, Sr. was born in Madison Co. MS, and moved to Poplar Bluff AR in 1856 and then to Grand Prairie TX. He was a Confederate soldier and a farmer. His three children were Betty, Thomas A. and Lillian Martha. T. A. Roper is buried at Ward Prairie Cemetery. Betty Roper married Kit Butler and had three children: Hardy, Grace and Jessie.
Lillian M. Roper married C. B. Willard and had nine children.
T. A. Roper, Jr. married Hardella Jones, dau. Of A. F. Jones on 22 Nov 1882 in Freestone Co. They had one son Eddie born 3 Jul 1884 and died 19 Sep 1884. Hardella and Eddie are buried at Ward Prairie Cemetery. T. A. Roper, Jr. then married Adons Estella Taylor on 13 Jul 1898 in Fairfield TX. They had two children Thomas Edell Roper born 19 Sep 1899 and Evelyn Lillian born 26 Jul 1907. T. A. and Estella moved back to MS. 22 Oct 1903. Estelle d 8 Mar 1948 and T. A. Roper, Jr. d 31 Dec 1932. Thomas Edell Roper d 23 Sep 1959 and all are buried at Popular Springs Cemetery in Crystal Springs MS. Estella Taylor Roper was the daughter of Thomas S. Taylor and Lou Nicy McMillian Taylor. She attended church at Dew Methodist. Thomas A. Roper Jr. was a farmer and raised horses.


Phyllis Arnold, 38 Kingwood Lane, Cabot AR 72023 in 1992:
Mathew Shoptaw left the CSA & joined the Union Army and received a pension. Pension record: 31 Aug 1899 Mathew T. Shoptaw, Kylly Chaha. Choctaw Nation, Indian Territory. Mathew states he m in Johnson Co. AR in 1859 by Pate Denvin J.P., his wife d 1891. Affidavit of 3 Apr 1915 Russellville AR: m Sarah Serrilda Roper some time in 1859. She d 3 Feb 1891.

Shirley Coyle, 7818 E. King Pl., Tulsa OK 74115:
Sarah Serrilda Roper d 3 Feb 1891 Ft. Smith, Sebastian Co. AR


History of Crawford County: p.525: John Roper was convicted of the murder of John Rogers, and sentenced to be hung on the last Friday of April 1860. The sentence was commuted by Pres. Buchanan.


1860 AR census 25 Jul 1860:
P.O. Berryville, Prairie Twp Carroll Co.:
Ewel Roper 48 farmer tanner $580 TN  p. 765  547/536
Mary 37 GA Nancy C. 20 MO John H. 19 MO Margaret E. 18 MO Mary J. 15 MO Thomas L. 11 AR Louisa E. 9 AR Pleasant E. 7 M AR Bedeanis 5 F AR William A. 1 AR
John C. Stephens 24 farmer IN Catherine 36 GA Huddah A. 3 MO Caroline Roper 20
Pope Co. Clark Twp Russellville 3 Jul 1860:
Mathew T. Shoptaw 28 M lumberman KY  Sarah 15 F AR (m within year) Bridget Roper 5 AR
Yell Co., Delaware Twnshp: William Roper 35 AL boatman Margarete 17 TN Mary 10 AR Jenks B. 7 AR male twins Artemissa and Narcissa 5 AR James Telford 3 AR and Jacob Cowger, Jr. 1 AR

Phyllis Arnold told the compiler that it should read “female twins.”
Neighbors are another Roper family all born in TN
George Roper 35 boatman Martha Ann 25, Nancey E. 11, William D. 8, Alfred 7


Mortality Schedule AR 1860:
Alabama Roper 1 Yell Co. F Aug b AR whooping cough
George Roper 15 Yell Co. M Aug b AR typhoid fever
Ira G. Roper 25  Phillips Co. M Mar b TN pneumonia
Lucinda Roper 30 Yell Co. F Aug b AL typhoid fever

AR Damn Yankees: Enlisted 30 Oct 1863 Yell Co. AR George Wroper 37 Overton Co. TN 3rd AR Union Cav. Co.D


History of Freestone Co. TX: p.634:
Cantrell Bethel Willard was the oldest of ten children born to James Aaron and Nancy E. Willard. He was born on 8 Sep 1864 in Auburntown, Cannon Co. TN.  When he was two years old the family left TN and the desolation and destruction wrought by the Civil War. They came to TX in search of a new and better means of living and settles in the Ward Prairie Community where he spent most of his life. On 28 Jun 1882, at the age of 18, he married Lillian Martha Roper, b 22 Sep 1865, Popular Bluff AR, daughter of T. A. Roper, Sr. and Lillian Martha Mathenia. They had nine children, only four of whom lived to adulthood. James Daniel b 8 Jun 1883, d 29 Sep 1907 m Donnie Murphy. Their children:
Cantrell Bethel, Jesse, Velma and James Daniel;
Tolbert Young b 1 apr 1894 d 25 Aug 1937 m Alma Hammack Jul 1912. They had no children.
Charles B. Willard b 11 Jul 1896 d 11 Nov 1957 m Anna Kate Snealey 1917. Their children: Kathryn, Charles Gibson, Ruth Evelyn, Billy, Wayne, Jennifer and Kenneth.
Dollie b 10 Apr 1910 in Crystal Springs MS m Buel Rozell Burns 13 Aug 1925. He was born 26 Feb 1907 in Corsicana TX, the son of John Buel Burns and Martha Alice Hook. They had one child, Martha Jean b 14 Aug 1926 in Teague TX m Donald Elwood Brunner b 21 Sep 1921 in Altoona PA. They m 1 Dec 1943. Their children: Donna Jean b 1 Mar 1946 m Irvin Byron Willard b 10 Dec 1943. Irvin is the grandson of Nelson Alexander Willard, a half brother to James Aaron Willard. Their children: Donna Denise b 19 Feb 1967, Lori Deanne b 2 Nov 1968, Douglas Byron b 5 May 1973
Second child of Martha Jean, Karen Denise b 2 Jan 1951 m Dorman L. Leach. One child: Shawni Kay b 29 May 1971.
Cantrell Bethel had a cotton gin, gristmill and a country store at Ward Prairie. He was considered by his associates and friends in the community to be a "high-toned," honest, upright gentleman in every respect, good for his contracts and worthy of the confidence and respect of all good citizens.  This couple lost six children in six years: Lena Rivers b 19 Aug 1885 d 12 Aug 1889; Jennie Mae b 28 Oct 1887 d 4 Aug 1889; Cantrell Thomas b 31 Dec 1891 d 8 Feb 1894; Lona b 29 Jul 1898 d 11 Apr 1906; Lillian M. b 23 Sep 1903 d 20 Sep 1905; James Daniel was killed at the age of 24. They are all buried in the Day Cemetery.
After suffering such a great loss, Cantrell decided a change would be good for them both. Hearing of the prosperity of the truck farmers in MS from Lillian's brother, T. A. Roper, Jr., he sold his home and business and moved to Crystal Springs MS in 1907. Here their last child was born Dollie B. In 1918 Cantrell became constable for Copiah Co. MS. He was well liked by all and respected in the community. He died of a heart attack on 7 May 1921 in the line of duty. He is buried in Popular Springs Cemetery in Crystal Springs. Longing for family and friends Lillian returned to Freestone Co. TX in 1922 with her twelve-year-old daughter Dollie B., where she lived the remainder of her life. She died 23 Oct 1941 in Corpus Christi, while visiting her daughter and was buried in the Day tery at Ward Prairie in Freestone Co. TX


AR Family Historian, V.13, p.208: Mrs. Phyllis Arnold, #2 Hayes Court, N. Little Rock AR 72118-Perry Co. AR-Need full names of the husbands of Martha Ann Wise. She had one dau. named Lulu Powell b 1869, another dau. Gola Roper b 1874, and a son David Roper b 1877. In 1879 Mrs. Martha Ann Roper m George Henry. She lived in Roland Pulaski Co. AR and is also buried there.


1870 census of Johnson Co. AR Pittsburg Twp:
Amanda Kilburn 37 TN Artemissa Roper 14 AR
Perry Co. Bentley Twp, Union City:
Mathews Shoptaw 32 farmer KY Sarah 26 AR Mary A. 8 AR Cordelia 1 AR Miles M. Harris 48 farmer KY Jenks B. Roper 18 AR


1870 Mortality Schedule for Ar:
Mary Roper 16 F Drew Co. Jun b GA dropsy


Johnson Co. AR Marriage Records, Book N, p.99:
David Jones 27 Yell Co. m Artemissa Roper 20 of said county & state.
Methodist Protestant Church 27 ar 1873 p.248: Wm. Rwooper m Miss Martha Gaines parties of lawful age at residence of Mr. Stills 22 Dec 1870


History of Benton County: p.101: The Benton Chapter, R.A.M., was chartered 23 Oct 1874, on petition of ...W.B. Roper


Phyllis Arnold, 38 Kingwood Lane, Cabot AR 72032 letter of 28 Nov 1992:
I have in my possession a page torn from a Bible. ... this page was from her grandmother's Bible:
Glola Roper b Perry Co. AR 27 Oct 1874 d 17 Jun 1905
David Roper b Perry Co. AR 19 Mar 1877 d 19 Jan 1 899


1877 Roland Twp, Pulaski Co. AR personal property tax list:
Jenks Roper, William Roper
1878: J. B. Roper, William Roper


The AR Gazette, 28 Nov 1877, p.1: Died at his residence in  Phillips Co., on the 7 inst. Mr. William Green Roper 36


1880 census of AR: Pulaski Co. Roland Twp.
William Roper W M 63[1] farmer AL AL AL Sarah Roper W F 53 AR AL KY  Joseph L Wise (stepson) 16 AR GA AR
(Bible record: Milledge Wise d Perry Co. AR 4 Dec 1865. His widow Sarah Coker m William Roper. Another child is [1]Martha Ann Wise b Perry Co. AR 7 Nov 1851.)
George Henry W M 45 farmer NC NC NC
Goly Roper W F 6 AR - AR  David Roper W M 4 AR - AR


AR Family Historian Mar 1887: Newspaper clipping from Baxter Co.
Baxter Co. has lost three sheriffs in the line of duty: Sheriff A.J. Byler, the first man to hold such office, was killed on 25 Jun the young outlaw Jesse Roper at the Twiggs Ranch south of Mountain Home. It was a direct result of the Denton-Twiggs feud at Gassville, where Roper's uncle, John Twiggs, was killed on Main St. in front of the present post office during a shootout with the Dentons."


CA newspaper clipping: Crystal Smith. Former county resident Crystal Smith 88 Ontario died Friday in an Ontario hospital after a brief illness. Mrs. Smith was born 25 Dec 1900 in Elm Springs AR. She had been a county resident for many years.  She worked as a grader for the Santa Paula Citrus Assoc. for 20 years before her retirement. She was a past member of the Santa Paula Rebecca Lodge and the Ojai Valley Range. She is survived by daughter Mildred Atkinson of San Quinton, Baja, Mexico; son James C. Smith of Fair Oaks; sister Dolly Wike of Santa Paula; brothers Thoma Roper of Sacramento and Russell Roper of Newbury Park; eight grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren.  Friends may call from 9 a.m. to noon Wed. at the Skillin-Carroll Mort., Santa Paula. Services will be held at 2 p.m. Wed. in the mortuary chapel, with the Rev. James Butler of the First United Meth. Ch. Of Santa Paula officiating.  Burial will follow in Santa Paula Cemetery.


1900 AR census for Sevier Co. AR, Bear Creek, 9 Jul 1900, p.158:
Following census is of Louise Evelina Roper. M (1) Honeycutt and (2) [1]Atkinson aka Martholomew 453/463 Robert W. Atkinson 45 b Jun 1854 TN fb NC mb NC lab. Sawmill Louise 50 b May 1850 MO fb TN mb GA md 12 yrs. George Hunnicut 18 b Apr 1882 MS fb AL mb MO laborer sawmill


Pope Co. AR marriages:
Bill Vinson 26 & Miss J. C. Roper 16 both of London, Pope Co.1 Jan 1902 Bk H-231
John J. Gotcher 24 & Annie Roper 18 both of Delaware, Logan Co. 2 Mar 1902 by H.J. Chastain J.P. Bk H-253
F. L. Roper 25 & Minnie Reynolds 25 both of Appleton 15 May 1904 by J.W. Stround J.P. Bk I-147