I have yet to go through all of the family stories, so this will most likely be updated with more about this amazing ancestor, when I have all the information. Margarett Elizabeth Helm Cox is the 3rd great-grandmother (maternal) of Don Rigali. Basilee, who is mentioned in the story below is the younger brother of Elizabeth Cox Welch (our direct ancestor).

Here are some very interesting things I have gleaned about her:

Margarett Elizabeth Cox was born 18 December 1805 in Tennessee to Merdith Helm and Elizabeth Turley. To the best of our knowledge, she was the fifth child out of twelve. Her nickname was Peggy. You may see Peppy written some places, but that is believed to be somebody mistaking the two “gg” for “pp.”

Margarett Elizabeth married James Silas Cox in 1824 and they had 10 children. Some sources record Margarett Jane Cox and Jane Cox as two separate children, but from my understanding, they are the same. 

Here are some stories (with clarification) I have found.

At Comanche, TX, Grandmother (Margarett Elizabeth Helm Cox) and Basilee (her son), were baptized and joined the Baptist Church. It was in February, when they were baptized, and they had to break the ice.

Basilee carried his mother into the water and she never took a cold or was sick from the baptism. (Since there is no mention of James Silas Cox, my best guess is this happened sometime after his death in 1852.)

Margarett (Elizabeth) Cox, Basilee’s mother got her brand for her cattle in 1856, at Comanche, TX (several years after her husband James Silas Cox was killed by Indians). Cattle in those days ran out, and they had to have a brand on them to identify them. Even with the brand, they still got stole and lost.

Margarett put in a restaurant at Comanche, TX. on the Butterfield Trail. She had a log cabin with two rooms and she lived in one room and served her guests or patrons in the other. The rangers passed going from Fort at Gatesville and other Forts, and later known Fort Hood, Texas.

(To the best of my knowledge, the Butterfield Overland Stage Trail never came through Comanche. I think her restaurant was for the soldiers and others traveling from the Fort to Fort or up to the Butterfield Overland Stage Trail and this was misunderstood when the story was retold to the younger generation recording this story.)

I think this is quite impressive. She was running her own cattle ranch and restaurant at the same time. She was baptized in ice water, talk about a devotion to God.