Wells Family

 

 

Hugh Wells  of Colchester England,  

 

Children

 

Thomas Wells  of Hadley Mass.,  Born 1620  Colchester,  England.   Emigrated to America  1635.  Married Mary Beardsley.

 

Children

 

Samuel Levi Wells .    Married Dorcas Huie

 

Children

 

Samuel Levi Wells Jr.  Born June 27  1764,  Married Miss Bonner.

 

Children first marriage.

 

William Rudolph Wells.  Died at the Alamo in 1836.

 

Children second marriage , to Mary Elizabeth Calvit.

 

Stephen Wells,  Born April 13 1795

Samuel Levi WellsIII, Born March 13 1796

Fredric Wells, Born March 4 1798

Monfort Wells, Born February 7 1800

Mary Wells,  Born February 3 1802

Elizabeth Malissa Wells,  Born January 31  1804

Thomas Jefferson Wells,  Born January 30  1806

James Madison Wells,  Born January 8 1808

 

Monfort Wells,  Born February 7 1800,  Died January 23 1882,  Married Jeanette Amelia Dent  (See Dent Line)

 

 

Children

 

Martha Lucie Wells,  Born February 7 1826

Samuel Levi Wells IV,  Born Aug. 15 1827

Monfort Wells,  Born May 30  1829

Ennemond Meuillon Wells,  Born August 3  1831

Jefferson Wells,  Born March 16  1834

Jeanette Dent Wells,  Born October 14 1836

Mary Elizabeth Wells,  Born December 21 1839

Ellen Monfort Wells,  Born April 10 1843

Charles Mathews Wells,  Born September 22 1845

Hatch Dent Wells,  Born October 5 1848

Annie Desiree Wells,  Born January 3 1850

Alice Calvit Wells,  Born October 7 1854

 

 

Jeanette Dent Wells,  Born October 14 1836,  Died June 7 1924,  married Tacitus Gaillard Calvit Jr. October 16 1854  (See Calvit  Family)

 

 

 

 

 

Wells Family

 

 

     Some Years after the American Revolution the Wells family moved south, and one of the Wells brothers settled in South Carolina.  Our  Samuel Levi Wells settled in Mississippi Territory (West Florida) later to Pontchatoula, Louisiana.  Samuel Married Dorcas Huie about 1762.  They had the following children;

 

Samuel Levi WellsII,  Born June 27 1764

Stephen Lewis Wells, Born September 6 1765

Amelia Wells,  Born May 4 1768

Levisa Wells,  Born January 10 1772

Tabitha Wells,  Born April 4 1774

Willing Wells,  Born September 11 1776

Mary Henrietta Wells,  Born August 30 1778

Editha Wells,  Born July 16 1781

Sophia Wells,  Born April 9 1784

Emily Clementia Wells,  Born September 11 1786

 

     Samuel Levi Wells II,  was probably the most prominent and outstanding member of all the generations of the Louisiana branch of the Wells family..  He was the fortune builder of the family, it was through his fortitude, and indomitable energy, and above all,  his unconquerable pioneer spirit that the way was paved for the future prominence of the family.  It took the ruthless fury of the civil war  more than half a century later to shatter the foundation of the fortune he had bequeathed  to his children.   He was born in some part of West Florida, very probably in the vicinity of Manchac,  and at the time it was under British flag.  His Birth occurred on June 27 1764 and he was the eldest child of Samuel Levi Wells and Dorcas Huie.  He was familiarly known as Lewi Wells in order to distinguish  him from his father,  who was usually recorded Samuel Wells.  When he was  about sixteen years of age his father  left  Manchac and went to  the Opelousas Country, settling in the vicinity of the present town of Will Platte, in Evangeline Parish.   Due to this move he became a Spanish subject and remained such for the next twenty three years.  He bears the distinction of having lived in the same country under four flags, England,  France,  Spain,  and United States.  He was educated along the lines of endeavor which his father followed, That of a Civil Engineer, and he was well trained in profession by that father whom he followed with compass and chain over many miles of vast prairie lands in that section of the country , and through the  thickly wooded and marshy swamps which skirted its streams.   About 1785 when he was twenty one years of age, he went to that part of the Red River Valley known as Rapids, or as the Spaniards designated it, El Rapido,  which was beginning to attract attention and were surveying was very much in demand.  However, he appears to have kept his domicile at Opelousas for some time  after that period.

     In the course of his work as a surveyor,  Samuel Levi Wells II,  became familiar with  the country in Rapides and was probably at one time the best posted man there on the value of lands.  He accordingly entered large tracts of the best land on the Red River and Bayou Rapides in his own and brother’s name, and due to his important services to the Spanish Government easily procured patents on them.  He saw the possibilities of the country and whenever he gave his professional services he readily accepted land in payment.

     Our Engineer was not only prominent in the business circles of the Spanish Country but his political prestige was of a high order, the latter was particularly enhanced after the deeding of Louisiana territory to the United States.  He then became a leader in the reorganization  of this vast new acquisitation to the young republic of the western world.    He was chosen one of the members from Rapides to sit in the first constitutional convention in 1812  immediately after  Louisiana was admitted  as a State, and assisted in no small part in framing the organic law which was to govern her in the future.  He was then chosen a member of the House  of Representatives from this State from Rapids and served from 1812 until the time of his death in 1916..  He was in New Orleans attending a session of that body at the time General Andrew Jackson met the British below that city and defeated them.

     Samuel Levi Wells II was twice married, according to the best information we can gather.  A century and a half have now elapsed since that period and we know almost nothing of his first marriage. We know that his first wife was a Miss Bonner, member of a good family which has emigrated early to Louisiana from North Carolina.  His wife died within a few years leaving two sons,  Willis and Rudolph Wells.  Willis settled in Rapides and later moved to Mississippi,  where he married and became a prosperous and a foremost citizen  of the community.  The other son, Rudolph or William Rudolph Wells was adventurous , and went to Texas with his friend Jim Bowie, and died at the Alamo in 1836.

     In 1794, at the age of thirty, Samuel Levi Wells II married Mary Elizabeth Calvit, eldest daughter of Fredric and Mary Calvit. “Don’t confuse this Calvit with the later mentioned Tactius Gaillard  Calvit, he married a grand daughter of Fredric and Mary Calvit, named Jeanette Dent Wells “.

     Sometimes after his second marriage, probably in 1795 our engineer left Natches and settled  permanently  in Rapids Parish, Louisiana.  His first home was on the south bank of Bayou Rapides where that stream empties into Red River, and there he engaged in planting cotton and indigo.  Shortly after 1800 he moved further up the Bayou Rapides, about fifteen miles from its mouth, and built a commodious home on the  South Bank of the stream.  The place was named “New Hope”, There his wife died on March 19 1809.  She was the mother of eight children, of them  General Monfort Wells, who was born on February 7 1800 on the family Plantation.  His mother died when he was nine years old and his father died when he was sixteen.  He was left to be raised by the family, especially his uncle Monfort Calvit.  As a young man he was sent to Transylvania University in Kentucky, and stayed there until he completed  his education.  When he returned to Louisiana and was finally settled on his own Plantation, he devoted his energies in partnership with his younger brother, Thomas Jefferson Wells, to agriculture  and the raising of blooded stock.  Monfort married on February 9 1825 to  Jeannette Amelia Dent, eldest daughter of Hatch Dent and Jeannette Meuillon,  Monfort Wells started building the Wellswood Plantation, that became the showplace of central Louisiana and was situated on the  Left Bank of Bayou Boeuf, about two miles below the present town of Lecompte  in the Parish  of Rapides.

     Monfort Wells represented Rapides Parish in the state senate from 1824 to 1826 and later was Adjutant  General of the Louisiana Militia with the rank of brigadier General.  His greatest efforts  however, were directed towards cultivating and improving his landed estate,  and breeding fine stock.  He went to South Carolina, where the turf and the rearing of blooded animals was at the peak, even more so than in Kentucky at that time, and there purchased nine broodmares of the most outstanding pedigrees and brought them to his Louisiana Plantation. From them came  such animals as Lecomte, reel,  war dance and others of similar world renown on the turf.  When the civil war came, it was all swept away as by a flood.  He lived almost two decades after the disaster and by economizing , managed to save most of his property from the wreck.  He died at Wellswood Plantation on January 23 1882, and was buried with his wife side by side in the Pine Hills South of the Plantation,  where only the soaring of the stately pines and the song of the wild birds break the  stillness surrounding the graves.  An iron fence encloses the little cemetery.

     General Monfort Wells and Jeannette Amelia Dent had twelve children,  the family ancestor follows the sixth child.  Jeannette Dent Wells who was born on October 14  1836.  She was born on Wellswood  Plantation , and she married on October 16 1854 to  Tacitus Gaillard Calvit, Jr. (see Calvit line).  Jeannette was a very cultured lady, and was know to be very beautiful in her youth.  She was very much interested in family history and much of the information regarding the family come from her notes.

For more on the family see Calvit line.

 

 

        Samuel Levi Wells Jr.                                          General Monfort Wells