The Two James Brents

In the search for my fourth-great-grandmother Eliza H. Brent Pigg, I discovered two men named James Brents, around the same age as each other, and both living in Lincoln County, Tennessee, the same area as Eliza. Are either related to Eliza? And who are their parents?

This was confusing at first, but I think I’ve been able to separate the two men. All of the below information comes from records on

  1. James Monroe Brents – often in records as James M. Brents
    He was born October 20, 1809 in Marshall County, Tennessee. His parents were Thomas Brents and Jane “Jenny” McWhorter. He married Rhoda Cowden on October 5, 1842 in Marshall County, Tennessee. Their children include: Wilson Payne, Lavinia Emma, Thomas Marion, Mary, Otis and Lucinda Leota. James died July 21, 1883 at the age of 76 and is buried in Talley Cemetery in Lewisburg, Marshall County, Tennessee.
  2. James Brents or Brent? 
    He was born about 1800 in North Carolina. On December 3, 1854, he married Martia Stacy Douthit Ellis, widow of James Ellis, in Lincoln County, Tennessee. They are on the 1860 census in Lincoln County, along with Stacy’s two youngest sons, Wiley and Jesse. Several family trees list James’ death date as January 7, 1866, but I haven’t found any records. There is not much information I have been able to locate about this James.

James #2’s North Carolina birth place matches Eliza’s, but that is not much to go on.

I do believe both James are related somehow, perhaps first cousins? Since we know James Monroe Brents probable parents, I am going to start looking there for more clues.

Do you have more information on the Brent/Brents family or are you a descendant whom has taken an ancestry DNA through Ancestry, 23andme, MyHeritage, or another site? I would be interested in seeing if our DNA matches! You can contact me at

Originally posted June 1, 2018

One thought on “The Two James Brents

  1. Pingback: Eliza H. Brent Pigg – Down Home Genealogy

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