Copyright © Janice Tracy, Mississippi Memories

Friday, October 9, 2009

Shrock Family in Mississippi, Part 1

Descendants of Joseph Kilpatrick Shrock have lived in Mississippi for over 150 years, and the Shrock name is certainly familiar to anyone who has roots in Attala County, Mississippi. In fact, my own ancestors lived for many years near the small Attala County community that bears Joseph K. Shrock's name. In 1848, two Pennsylvania families joined when Joseph K. Shrock, born May 6, 1821 in South Carolina, married Caroline Fitler, born circa 1826. Joseph was the son of Henry Shrock, born in Pennsylvania on October 9, 1780, and his wife, Sarah. Henry Shrock and his family, like a number of other families, had migrated from Kershaw County, South Carolina to Madison County where they named their new home, "Camden" for Camden, South Carolina. 
According to the date of death shown on her grave stone in Camden Cemetery in Madison County, Mississippi, Sarah Shrock died on September 16, 1836, over a decade before her son would marry Caroline FitlerCaroline was the daughter of William Fitler, born 1785 in Pennsylvania, and Eliza Fitler, born 1788 in New York. The Fitler family was quite well-known in Pennsylvania, where one of Caroline's ancestors had served as Mayor of Philadelphia. Today, Fitler Square, named for the Fitler family, is a living reminder of that family's contribution to the city. Since Eliza Fitler's household in Madison County, Mississippi, in 1850, did not include William, it is likely that Caroline's father had already died. Eliza, however, lived long enough to see her daughter marry Joseph Shrock, apparently dying in 1853. William and Eliza Fitler are also buried in Camden Cemetery in Madison County, near the graves of Joseph's parents, Sarah and Henry Shrock.
Joseph and Caroline Shrock settled into married life near Camden, Mississippi, where they built their home. Later, in 1862, Shrock built a church, Shrock Methodist Church, and in 1865, he built a store. Shrock Store was a thriving enterprise, known for its varied inventory of merchandise available to residents of this rural and fairly remote area of Mississippi. Shrock Store was a vital part of the community, and at one time, it also housed a post office. The Shrock House, Shrock Methodist Church, and the Shrock Store, now historical structures, still stand. According to the U. S. Census of 1850, the Shrock household enumerated on September 2, 1850, in Attalaville, Mississippi, included these individuals:
Joseph K. Shrock, 29 year old male, merchant, property valued at $800, born in SC
Caroline S., 24 year old female, born in MS
William H., 1 year old male, born in MS
Henry D. Berry, 22 year old male, clerk, born in SC
In 1860, the Shrock household, headed by Joseph K., by then 39 years old, included Caroline Shrock, his wife, age 35. The couple had six children, Henry F.,11, William F., 10, Eliza, 7, George, 6, Joseph, 4, and Mary E., 2 years old. Also living in the Shrock household was Louisa Fitler, 36 years old, and likely Caroline's sister or sister-in-law. Two men, Stith A. Wright, 27 years old, and George Mitchell, 20, shown to be machinists by occupation, were also counted in the Shrock household. Since Joseph Shrock's occupation on the 1860 census record was "steam miller and farmer," it seems fairly certain that Wright and Mitchell were mill employees.
While doing research for this post, I ran across a wonderful book on Google Books by Elmo Howard that included an article about the Shrock home, the man who built it, and the family that lived there. Click here to read more about the Shrock family in "Mississippi Scenes: Notes on Literature and History."

Mississippi Scenes: Notes on Literature and History, by Elmo Howard, Google Books, accessed on October 8 - 9, 2009, Camden Cemetery, Madison, Mississippi, accessed on October 9, 2009, U. S. Census Collection, 1850 and 1860, accessed on October 8 - 9, 2009


  1. Hello! I am a descendant of Philip Schrock, (1778-1815) who may be a brother of Henry Schrock (born in 1780). My grandmother (now deceased) has in her notes that Henry Schrock married Mary Fletcher (1808-1854). She says the info comes from Joseph K. Schrock's biography sketch in "Memories of Mississippi", page 766. Your posting says he was married to Sarah, who died in 1836. I'm really puzzled! The birth year for Henry, and the place, matches up with her notes. Are they the same person?

    Norell Mounger

  2. Mary Fletcher is the correct wife.

    Phillip is Henry Shrock's brother. Their mother's name is Catherine.

    I descend from Henry and Catherine Shrock, Mary Fletcher and Henry Shrock (son of Henry and Catherine), Caroline Fitler and Joseph Shrock.

    Shrock Ray

  3. just sent a lot of info but couldn't get it to publish. Yes, Philip is a brother of Henry. I am Sylvia Shrock and lived at Shrock. I will be happy to share information. I am in the process of writing a book about Shrock and their stories

  4. Hello,

    I am the great, great,great grandson of Joseph K. Shrock. William was my great, great grandfather. I remember going to the old store when my great,great grandmother and great aunt went to vote and when the post office was still operational. My parents restored the store, the house and the church. Many fond memories. I have a picture or Caroline and Joseph in oil at my house along with a picture of William in the Mississip Senate when they voted for sucession from the Union.

    Hal Shrock Scott

  5. I am Sylvia Shrock Scott and my great great grandfatherwas Joseph K. Shrock and founded the town of Shrock. Shrock was never called Attalville. I inherited Shrock from my father and Uncle in 1985 and lived there 15 years. We have the detailed ancestry going back to Germany in 1755 written and verified by a cousin ,Lynda Haas. In 1888 my grandfather, William Fitler Shrock was granted a post office and it did not close until 1911, The other Schrock family were also related and David Schrock and David married Nancy Ehrock who was Joseph K.Shrock's sister. In 1985 Bill and I restored both the house and store exactly as the two living children of Willian F. Shrock remembered it. It was on tour at Christmas for the years we lived there. It is no longer available to tour.
    If you wish to get in touch please comment on my facebook page and we'll try to share notes.

    1. Sylvia I am looking for anyone related to your dads second wife Helen..I have pictures of her father from the 40's and 50's that belong with the family. Diane

    2. Sylvia I am looking for anyone related to your step-mom Helen..I have pictures of her father from the 1940's that belong with the family.

  6. Mary Fletcher was married to Henry Schrock Jr. He was brother of Philip Schrock who died before the rest came to Mississippi. Nancy Schrock wife of Philip came to Ms with her children and Henry Jr. I am Sylvia Schrock Scott and I lived at Shrock House for 15 years. I will glad to share the history with you.

  7. Henry Shrock Jr. She also died before they came to Ms. and left Henry Schrock Jr. with six children, one deceased.