The Family History of Three Brothers, Henry Huffman Jr., Ambrose Huffman
and Teter Huffman, Who Came to Barren County, Kentucky from Virginia
between 1797 and 1804.


Jon E. Huffman
John H. Huffman, Sr.



PROLOGUE THE YEARS BEFORE ( 1505 – 1788 ) 1.
Written and Compiled by Jon E. Huffman
Written and Compiled by John H. Huffman, Sr.
Written and Compiled by Jon E. Huffman
To Laura for giving me her patience;
To my family for giving me my subject.
To my wife Bunny, for her support and encouragement;
To Sam and Debbie for their special contributions.
JHH, Sr.


These matters are of no importance except for the light which they may throw upon strange vanished days which no one living can understand __ all those stiff-necked figures in the picture albums, with their heads supported by invisible brackets __ all their likes and dislikes __ all the endless anecdotes about them which have died into a strange hushed silence. As one tries to piece them all together, the responsibility becomes enormous, for one is speculating about history and toying rudely with the springs of change. We can interpret, but we can never know. All that is certain __ and this is as sure as fate __ is that these vanished people made things what they are.

John P. Marquand

Wickford Point

Fooling around in the papers my grandparents, especially my grandmother, left behind, I get glimpses of lives close to mine, related to mine in ways I recognize but don’t completely comprehend. I’d like to live in their clothes for a while.

Wallace Stegner

Angle of Repose



In a project involving this much information it would be nearly impossible to list all of the individuals who have helped to supply the records, photographs, documents, and the other bits and pieces of data that went into this report. The authors wish to thank, collectively, all of those living descendants and other interested parties who have taken the trouble to dig through scrapbooks and albums in order to make our work possible. Particularly, however, there are some individuals that deserve special mention:

First of all, we wish to thank Mr. Walter Galloway, Mrs. Iola Miller Weaver, and Mrs. Violet Atwell Huffman, all now deceased. The results of their early efforts, while working on their own respective family histories, have provided the authors with a solid database upon which to build and develop our own manuscript.

We are indebted to Mr. Gene Clack of Mooresville, Indiana, for his hospitality and generosity. He shared a wealth of family information and photos, particularly on Ambrose Huffman’s line in Kentucky.

Special thanks to two individuals for furnishing us with the greater part of our information on Ezekiel Huffman’s line in Missouri; Mrs. Jane PerLee Milner of Liberty, Missouri, and Mrs. Iona Gomel White, of Craig, Missouri. These ladies generously provided extensive family history, including many photographs, and they furnished these materials at the request of a voice on the telephone. Thank you for your trust.

We are also very grateful to Ms. Sandra L. Sheets, of Eaton, Ohio, and Mr. Glenn D. Abernathy, of Salem, Oregon, who unselfishly contributed important research on the lines of Armstead Huffman and Jesse George Huffman, respectively.

One of the most enjoyable aspects of researching and writing a family history is the opportunity to discover and to actually meet new kinfolk, both near and far away. We had the pleasure of meeting many for the first time in their homes, while, regrettably, our contact with others was necessarily limited to the telephone or email. In every case, however, we were made to “feel like family,” and for that we thank you all.



This book is a corroborative effort between two Huffman “cousins” who share the same enthusiasm for their family’s history. They were first introduced to each other while researching their individual ancestor’s line, but soon the idea of publishing a more comprehensive book seemed the natural thing to do. Of course, a work of this nature is never really finished, but is always “a work in progress,” a never-ending story. However, there comes a time when it feels both necessary and prudent to put it all together and publish. Too often in genealogical research, workers fail to get past the discovery stage, and the result is years of accumulated fact and fantasy that never make it to the printed page. One of the objectives in publishing this book is to leave our family records in some organized format so that they will make sense to anyone who reads them, and we think we have accomplished that.

The total material in this volume includes sixteen generations of descendants and, in some cases, the children that make up the seventeenth generation. In these pages there are many questions that remain unanswered and others for which no answers will ever be possible. Regrettably, the name of every ancestor and descendant could not be identified, but the authors have striven for accuracy with the notion that a mistake in reporting is more serious than an omission in data. Every reasonable attempt has been made to check and verify all materials whenever possible, but the number of sources involved makes complete accuracy impossible, and errors are bound to occur. The authors would appreciate having any data discrepancies brought to their attention.

The primary focus herein is the three Huffman brothers, Henry, Ambrose, and Teter, and their descendants. They were sons of German immigrants, and they left Virginia and settled in Barren County, Kentucky between 1797 and 1804. For the sake of continuity and interest for the reader, we have included in the Prologue a review of our ancestors’ early life in Germany and their subsequent immigration to North America. However, we feel that this period of our family’s history has been adequately covered in other publications, and a list of these sources is provided in the bibliography section. Our story really begins with the westward migration from Virginia to Kentucky and beyond. As a family history, it is divided into four parts, a short introductory section, or Prologue, and three major sections, devoted to each of the brothers and his descendants. The major portion of the book was written by Jon E. Huffman and includes the Prologue, Part One, and Part Three. His direct ancestor was Henry Huffman, Jr., who is the subject of Part One, while Part Three deals with the youngest of the brothers, Teter Huffman. Part Two was written by John H. Huffman, Sr. and covers his direct ancestor, Ambrose Huffman.

The word “Barrens” in the title refers to the name used at the end of the 18th century to describe that part of south central Kentucky located in what is now the northern part of Barren County and the southern part of Hart County. It was an area of mostly meadows with few trees, covered with grass two or three feet in height. The Barrens extended some 60 to 70 miles in length by 20 to 30 miles in breadth and was the source for the name of Barren County. Despite its early reputation of being a poor and unfit place for habitation, it has proven to be one of the richest areas in the state for agricultural purposes.

In this report a Descendant Tree was not included since there are too many individuals listed to make it practical. However, in Appendix V at the end of the report, is a Descendant Tree Outline, which lists all of the descendants of Johannes Henrich Hofmann, the 1743 immigrant. The outline contains the same type of information as a descendant tree (i.e., an individual’s children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.) but instead of showing each individual in a box connected by lines to other boxes, the individuals are listed in outline form. Each individual, along with the dates of their birth and death, is on a separate line, and each generation is numbered and indented slightly more than the one before it. Each descendant’s spouse is directly beneath him or her and is marked with a plus sign (+). This type of tree can fit many generations on a single page, and once the reader becomes familiar with using the outline, it becomes an easy method of checking relationships between individuals and families.

From their beginning southeast of Glasgow, in Barren County, the Huffman family quickly spread into the adjoining counties of Metcalfe, Hart, Green, Edmonson and Grayson. It may be helpful to readers to briefly discuss the formation dates for these counties and identify which are parent and which are offspring counties. Green County was formed in 1793, but gave up areas to form Barren, Cumberland and Pulaski Counties in 1799. Thus when Ambrose Huffman received his land grant for acreage in Green County in 1797, his homestead actually fell in Barren County after the new boundaries were formed in 1799. Grayson County was formed in 1810. Hart County was formed in 1819 from parts of Barren and Hardin Counties but gave up land in 1825 to form Edmonson County. Metcalfe County was formed in 1860 from parts of Adair, Barren, Cumberland, Green and Monroe Counties.

The availability of official records from the different counties in Kentucky is quite variable due to courthouse fires and other disasters. We were fortunate in that fact that the courthouses of Barren, Edmonson and Green Counties have never burned, and all records dating from the time of courthouse construction to the present are on file and available to researchers. Some of these documents date to before 1800. Unfortunately, other counties were not so lucky. In 1865, the Metcalfe County courthouse in Edmonton, Kentucky was burned by John Hunt Morgan’s Confederate cavalry, and everything was lost. Fortunately the loss represented only a six-year gap, since the county was not formed until 1860. However, in Hart County, at Munfordville, the courthouse burned to the ground in 1928, and over 100 years of official records were totally destroyed. The courthouse at Leitchfield, in Grayson County, burned three times, once in 1864, once in 1896, and partially again in 1936.

Finally, without the help of personal computers, the task of researching, compiling and writing this manuscript would have been infinitely more difficult. The genealogy database program used in the organization of materials for this book was Family Tree Maker by Broderbund Software, Inc.