Robert Frost and
Mary 'Polly' Trent
of Sneadville, Tennessee


This information from e-mail letter (Jim Quinn to Ray Parsons) February 3, 2001.


Ref. 28. Mary (Polly) Trent married Robert Frost in 1830. They had six children. In a article about her oldest son Thomas Jefferson Frost, in the book The history of Butte County (California). It is written about her as follows: Mary (Polly) Trent, the grand daughter of Zachariah Trent, whose wife was a Greene, through whom the family traces back a connection with General Nethanial Green of the Revolutionary fame. Her uncle Stokely Trent, was judge in the courts for twenty-seven years. Mrs Robert Frost Died at Unionville, Iowa, the mother of Twelve Children, four of whom are still living. The other 6 children in this article must be her second husband John Clancy's children. We also found that Zachariah Trent was her father, not her grandfather.

Ref. 29. More from Pete Hubicki Rootsweb db (phubicki@carolina.rr.com): Robert Frost Married Mary Trent (otherwise known as Polly) in 1830 and they had six children. In a article about his son Thomas J. Frost, from a book called the history of Butte County, The following is said about Robert Frost. At ten years of age, Thomas J. Frost migrated to Iowa, when his father, Robert Frost built two flat boats that took eighteen families down Clinch River to the Tennessee, Down the Tennessee to the Ohio, and on the Ohio as far as Cairo, Illinois. and there the party left the flat boats. They then took passage on a stern-wheeler, the old Kate Kearny to Alexandria, Mo. Robert Frost had brought with him an old prairie schooner, and for one hundred dollars in gold he bought a yoke of cattle. With this outfit the family went on to Unionville, Iowa, where he bought and took up land, which he soon improved; Sticking to the task until in 1860, he passed away. Our Aunt Doris Field wrote a story about this branch of the family. A lot of research was done to compile this story, though some is speculation, I thought it would be included as follows. The little town of Sneadville in the Appalachian hills of east Tennessee was home to the prosperous Robert Frost family in 1850. Both Robert and his wife Mary had been born there, or at least not far away. Perhaps just over the ridge to the north where a well-watered hollow provides fertile farm land. At ages 32 and 29 they had tree boys and a little girl. The eldest Thomas Jefferson Frost, was well named, being a independent and free thinking young fellow of nine years. Next came John Frost, Seven and Young Simpson and little Mariah. When tragedy struck in the form of a disasterous fire which wiped out their log out-bouldings. Shocked Robert Frost decided to pack up the familys belongings and move to the new state of Iowa. Land there was reported to be rich and only to need the sod turned over to plant a crop, unlike Tennessee where every acre had to be wrestled from the forest with difficulty. His older brother was anxious to increase his holdings and gladly bought their land in Tennessee for a reasonable price. The year following their arrival in Iowa another son joined the family and was named for the great Tennessee leader and "Presiden Andrew Jackson". The next years in Iowa were busy ones for the industrous Frost family. Although one Baby's death started a new family plot, another son was healthy and robust and given the family name Landon. Wilth good land producing abundantly and growing soms to help him, Robert was able to hire a young mulatto by the name of Eliga Collins to help his "Polly" with the baby and the kitchen duties. By 1860 he was one of the most prosperous farmers near Unionville in Udell township when again tragedy struck.

Robert Frost was killed by a runaway team. A neighbor, John Clancy, lost his wife in child birth within the month. Mary finding the farm too much to handle with just the boys, accepted John Clancy as husband as well as adding another large family to her charge. As all such changes do, this one wrought both good and bad. Thomas J. Frost had often spoken his mind regarding the slavery question and as soon as his mother had been appointed legal guardian of his younger brothers and sisters, he was off to the war, Joining in 1861. He was accepted as a corporal in the Iowa Volenteer Cavalry and spent most of the next three years away from home except when ill with dysentry. The young Frost youngsters were absorbed into the Clancy family without too much discord. They had been neighbors and friends for years, but still it was not quite the same and when, in the spring of 1864 President Lincoln issued an appeal to the men of Iowa and other western states to sign up for garrison duty to relieve the regular armies for battle, young Andrew Jackson Frost badgered his mother to let him join. The term of enlistment was only 100 days and there would be little danger so she finally gave in and went with him to enlist. A new ruling specified that enlistees were presumed to be the age they said they were and so twelve year old Andrew was accepted as 18, all five foot three inches of him. The oldest son Thomas had meanwhile been wounded and captured and exchanged. While at home recovering from dysentery he had met and fell in love with a young nieghbor Mary Rinker. A general disgust with war, coupled with the longing of love caused him (by now a sergeant) to disregard re-enlisting and to come home in 1864. With Andrews hundred day enlistment over the family was together again, but not for long. The older Frost youngsters grew up and went there own way. Thomas married Mary in 1864. And Mariah married Alfred Hiatt in 1868.

Some time later their mother must have died because, although Thomas was now living out of the state he was named guardian for the one remaining minor child, Landon. Andrew, too must have spent some time with Thomas and his wife and it appears that they both came to California at approximately the same time. Andrew Married there in 1875 when he was 23 years old. His bride, Louisa Thompson was 25 years old although it appears that she fibbed about that from time to time. They settled down in Northern California and raised a large family of boys, and as in Andrews parents case, only had one girl, Eva Genevieve Frost born in 1893. The dates of birth and death for Robert Frost are questionable. Another Robert Frost was found in Hawkins Co., TN. Robert may not be the son of Thomas so he possibly could be the son of William, Simeon, or John Frost.


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