Miles W. Mathis: Origins of an Enigma

by K. Starr

Opening photo

This article is an opinion piece based on information that is readily available to anybody.

In a recent article on his website related to Flat Earth, Mr. Mathis concluded, “And why would Flat Earth reconvene in 2009?  Was some new use for flat earth discovered in 2009?  Or should I say, is it just a coincidence that 2009 is when my science site really lit up, gaining traction in the mainstream?  Remember, my first book came out in 2010, in response to mainstream demand, and to compile the huge number of important science papers I had written in the past five years.  You will pardon me for seeing Flat Earth as a direct response to my arrival on the scene.  It was tailor-made to address just the sort of danger I am posing to the mainstream, and it has always been aimed directly at me.

The earth is assuredly round since it revolves around Miles Mathis.  Now that he has announced to everybody around the world that he is famous and dangerous, it might be time to give Miles the “Mathis-treatment.”  His bold proclamation makes it imperative that we get a better sense of who we are dealing with and the “danger” that he poses.  Since science and physics are outside of my pay grade, I will need to default to a form of investigation that is near and dear to both Miles and myself; and that would be genealogy.

Many people believe that MM is merely a personality used to front a committee of writers in Langley or Tavistock.  These individuals will no doubt feel that I am further muddying the waters by legitimizing the existence and importance of Mathis.  However, I am of the opinion that by shining a light on the hypocrisy of the main character, I am exposing the entire project to be a Limited Hangout by default.

Disclaimer:  Presenting genealogical information in an informative and entertaining way is a difficult task.  I will do my best to remain as clear and concise as possible even when I’m compelled to “show my work.”  But let’s power through this, shall we?

The Louisville Jeweler


These are portraits of MM’s 3rd great-grandparents Joseph Werne (1808-1858) and Susan Krantz Werne (1817-1873), and they hang in “Waveland,” the home that Daniel Boone built for his sister and her husband, William Bryan.  Waveland is now part of the Kentucky Life Museum at the University of Kentucky.

Joseph Werne (the subject of the above portrait) was born in 1808 in Freiburg, Germany (just north of the Swiss border in the wine rich section of what is now the Baden-Württemberg state). It’s unclear why he came to America. Nor is it known what his port of entry was. Joseph ended up in Louisville, Kentucky. He was a very successful silversmith there. He married Susan “Charity” Krantz.

SpiegelhalderSpiegelhalder & Werne was a partnership between Ferdinand Spiegelhalder and Joseph Werne which existed from 1836 until Werne’s death in 1858.

The letter “r” at the end of Spiegelhalder is obscured on that spoon for some reason.  A listing in “The Kentucky State Register, for the Year 1847.” confirms that the name does indeed end with an “r”.

2 Five Mansions

Joseph and Susan Krantz Werne had five children.  Their first son, Joseph Jr., was also a prominent jeweler and antiques dealer.  Joseph Jr. financed the building of five nearly identical Châteauesque mansions in the Old Louisville neighborhood of Louisville, Kentucky.  The interiors of the houses were designed by Claude Balfour while the exteriors were “entrusted to Mr. F. W. Mowbray, architect,” who also created Union Station (Louisville) at 10th & Broadway in Louisville.  A private park for the Wernes existed behind the five homes; it has since become a parking lot for the Belgravia Court Association.  Joseph Werne, Jr. and his wife lived in the house overlooking the corner of 4th and Hill.  He was also a member of the Mount Moriah Freemasonic Lodge.

1 Mount Moriah Lodge

Joseph and Susan’s other son, Henry L. Werne, married Lucy Harris Alexander (MM’s 2nd great-grandparents) and they had six children of their own.

Below is a copy of Henry Werne’s death certificate which lists his profession as “Jeweler” and his parents as Joseph Werne and Susie C. Kran(t)z.  Henry died in “Jewish Hospital,” but that doesn’t necessarily make him Jewish.

Hentry Werne death certificate

So, Miles Mathis’ 3rd great-grandfather was born in Germany to unknown parents.  He came to America for unknown reasons, entering undocumented through an unknown port.  Nobody knows how or why he landed in Louisville, KY.  He also married a woman from Virginia with unknown origins.  Despite this preponderance of mysteries, Joseph and Susan Werne became wealthy and prominent enough to have their likenesses displayed in Daniel Boone’s home.  Something is rotten in the state of Baden-Wurttemberg!  Both of their sons continued as jewelers, including MM’s 2nd great-grandfather Henry.

Henry Werne’s wife Lucy Harris Alexander MM’s 2nd great-grandmother had her share of shekels.  Harris and Alexander happen to be prominent names in the European peerage.

Federal Census 1960This breakdown is from the Federal Census of 1860.  Lucy was the youngest child of William Saunders Alexander.  (There are over 400 Saunders listed at thepeerage.)  Lucy’s mother Susan Black (again, peerage) had passed away three years before this census.

William Saunders Alexander’s occupation is listed as “Merchant,” and if we adjust for inflation, the value of his real estate and personal estate are $416,000 and $1,800,000 respectively.  At least those are the numbers that he was willing to disclose to a census taker.

Henry and Lucy’s only son was Joseph Alexander Werne (MM’s great-uncle), born in 1873.

Joseph Alexander Werne did quite well in the railroad business. He became wealthy with the Great Northern Railway Company.  During the great stock market crash of 1929, Joe lost a lot of money and had to ask his sisters for the stocks and bonds he had asked them to hold for him as collateral.  Joe claimed he never married, but he was married to a woman from Louisville.  She had pursued him to New York from Kentucky.  It was a bad match and lasted only three months.  He never had any children.  (Bad match = unconsummated.)

Their oldest daughter was named Willie (MM’s great-aunt), born in 1875.  She married a man named Miles Turpin.  Willie was named after her uncle William Saunders Alexander, who died fighting for the Confederacy in the battle of Shiloh.

Willie seems to have succumbed to manic-depression later in life.  Willie was quite dour and didn’t care much for children.  She used to give her son Miles a quarter on his birthday and tell him to buy himself an ice cream cone and stay out of the house. Her grandson Miles remembers her as a force to be reckoned with. Once when he was about four, Willie asked to look at Miles’ toy train. She attempted to take the train from him, but little Miles grabbed the train back. Willie slapped him so hard he flew across the room. “You bad lady,” said Miles. Willie was unrepentant, and the two of them kept their distance from then on.

Willie had had high hopes for her son, Miles Alexander Turpin. When he married Ruth Canary, Willie was disappointed. At their first meeting, Willie let Ruth know precisely how she felt. “My dear you look just like a peasant,” were the first words out of her mouth. Later she informed Ruth that her son “could have married the Governor of Kentucky’s daughter instead of you.

Another daughter named Susan (MM’s great-aunt) married a man named Volney Bryan who was a one-time mayor of Lexington, Kentucky.

The youngest child of Henry Werne and Lucy (Alexander) Werne was MM’s great-grandmother, Lucy Miles Werne, born in 1889.  She married a man named Russell Ramey (MM’s great-grandfather.)  We can safely assume that Miles’ name (and his father’s middle name) derives from this great-grandmother.  Since Lucy died in 1991, there is a good chance that Miles knew her personally.

Federal Census 1920

This excerpt from the 1920 Federal Census reveals that Russell Ramey (a commercial building contractor) owned his home free and clear at the age of thirty and still had enough spare change to employ a Mexican servant.  The daughter named Alice W. was MM’s grandmother Alice Werne (Ramey) Mathis, wife of MM’s grandfather Claude Emmett Mathis as evidenced by the death certificate below.  (I can document Claude and Alice (Ramey) Mathis’ connection to Miles’ father, but he is still living and is entitled to his privacy.)

Claude Mathis DC

Now ask yourself what Miles Mathis would conclude about a descendant of silversmiths, jewelers, and “merchants” who owned mansions and millions in assets.  What would he deduce from their relationships to railroad men and politicians?  And what would he surmise about individuals with obscure origins, one of them from a foreign country, who are lionized in the home of Daniel Boone’s sister?

Note:  If my earlier mention of the missing “r” on the silver spoon seemed random, I only pointed it out because a search on the name Spiegelhalder led me to a petrochemical company that makes chemicals that are used in everything from rocket fuel to ammunition.  Their compounds are also used to increase the effectiveness of new generation ammunition to prevent unplanned detonation in Army tanks and aboard Navy ships.

Our Founders“Oscar and Eric Spiegelhalder, owners of Sunhill Corporation and Holloway Sucrochemicals, Inc. bought the license for Kenflex…Upon receiving approval from Dupont for the use of Kenflex…”

Just a coincidence, no doubt.

A Friendly Society

A friendly society

MM’s great-grandfather Benjamin Victor Mathis was the son of Orange Kenton Mathis and Elizabeth Francis Chase.  Those are two interesting names.

The name Chase conjures up images of banksters, so I thought I had struck gold, but the chase was cut short. The only discovery made was a pair of “inferred” parents named William and Emily (Walters) Chase.  The 1930 Federal Census reveals that Elizabeth was just 16 years old when she married the 24-year-old Orange Kenton Mathis.

Orange:  The house of Orange, a princely dynasty that derived its name from the medieval principality of Orange, in Old Provence in Southern France.  The dynasty was important in the history of the Netherlands and is that nation’s royal family.

Kenton:  In English, the meaning of the name Kenton is: Royal chieftain

Mathis:  Origin is French and German.  The name Mathis is derived from the Hebrew Biblical given name Matityahu and means “Gift of God.”

Despite the allusions to royal heritage, Orange’s father and grandfather’s occupations are listed as “master carpenter” on the 1860 Federal Census.  Here is the family breakdown.

Orange K MathisThe family histories of the Mathis women die on the vine very quickly.  Orange Kenton’s mother Elizabeth (Finley) is no exception.  Nothing else is known about her.

MM’s 4th great-grandfather, Jeremiah Mathis is an 84-year-old widower here living with his son’s family.  His wife’s name was Esther Morse.  Nothing else is known about her either.

Deborah GrantJeremiah Mathis was born in Ocean, New Jersey to “Quakers” John and Deborah (Grant) Mathis 5th great-grandparents of MM.

Our son Jeremiah

Grant is a big family name within the peerage of Europe, but again the maternal line bears little fruit.  Find-A-Grave becomes a valuable resource at this point as it shows us that John (aka Jeremiah) Mathis’ parents were Jeremiah and Hannah (Andrews) Mathis (6th great-grandparents.)  The final traceable Mathis is John Mathis (1690-1779), buried at the “Friends Burial Ground,” as in “Society of Friends.”

Known as “John the Great” Mathis.

Born in Merthyr Tydfil Wales, changed the name from Matthews to Mathis. Settled in Burlington Co, NJ 1714.

Miles likes to claim that Mathis is not a name in the peerage, yet we see here that his direct progenitor changed the name from Matthews which at the time of this writing has 342 individuals listed at  John “the Great” Mathis (the moniker indicates that delusions of grandeur may be a genetic defect) was married to Alice (Andrews) Higbee Mathis, daughter of Mordecai Andrews (MM’s 8th great-grandfather.)

Mordecai and his family built a 2 1/2 floor house in 1699, and as of 2011, it was still Mordecai housestanding. It’s known as the Andrews-Bartlett House and is the oldest house in Ocean County, New Jersey.  Mordecai’s father, Samuel Andrews (MM’s 9th great-grandfather), was an early member of the Society of Friends at Oyster Bay and occupied positions of civic and religious trust there.  He and John Feke built the first Friends meeting house at Oyster Bay on land his wife’s uncle Anthony Wright had given to the meeting.  Samuel was one of the wealthiest men in the community in 1683, only one other man being assessed equally with him and just one higher.

Samuel Andrew’s wife, Mary Wright (MM’s 9th great-grandmother) was the oldest of three sisters who were so moved by the persecution of Quakers in New England that they went to Boston, each on her own, to testify in the courts of Puritan authority.  For their efforts, they were jailed, pilloried and run out of town.

The oldest sister, Mary, who was 18 at the time of Dyer’s death, traveled by herself to Boston a few months later. She went to demonstrate against the hanging of Mary Dyer, who after she had been banished, returned to Boston to continue preaching. Mary Wright, along with several Quakers from Salem, Mass., were all immediately jailed.  The Wright sisters were the daughters of Peter and Alice Wright (MM’s 10th great-grandparents), who were among the first settlers of Oyster Bay. The middle sister, Hannah, died at age 29 when her boat capsized while she was on a Quaker mission in Maryland. Both Mary (MM’s 9th great-grandmother) and Lydia married, and in 1685 they moved with their families to New Jersey.

Now might be a good time to re-visit the Miles Mathis article “The Society of Friends looks like Another Jewish Front.”  In that piece, he writes, “To start with, I have a small amount of experience with Quakers.  I went to Haverford College for a short time, and it is a Quaker College in Pennsylvania.  I even went to a couple of meetings.”  In an addendum, he states, “It just occurred to me that Chevy Chase went to Haverford College…I mention Chevy here because I have linked him to the families many times.  It wasn’t hard to do, given the name Chase.”  Hmmm, who else did we just see related to a Chase?

In the bio on his website, Miles paints himself as a wunderkind (or should I say, “compiler” Marie-Claude Lacroix does.)

Miles attended Monterey High School and excelled in many areas there. He won several UIL science medals, was twice first chair all-region band {tenor saxophone}, won awards with the jazz band, was a finalist in writing contests, and was chosen to design various visual items (such as prom invitations, tickets, and brochure covers) despite not being in the art classes. In addition, he was the national Latin champion for two years. As a senior he won the JCL scholarship from the state committee of classics. He was also a National Merit Scholar and won the local National Honor Society Scholarship. He should be remembered by the takers of the PSAT, 1980, for questioning one of the answers on the math portion. The PSAT admitted its error and was forced to change all scores nationally. Miles’ score: 68/78:214.

So, when it came time to choose a college he decided on Haverford in Pennsylvania?  Miles says he didn’t like the place, so he took three of his four courses at Bryn Mawr, thinking to be surrounded by women but not realizing most of them would be gay.  He claims ignorance about these poor choices because he “was a naïve boy from Texas, and no one had bothered to clue me in.”  Isn’t it curious that such a focused overachiever in high school would expect others to “clue him in” about the furthering of his education?

 Harvest Time

For this section, we should return to MM’s grandfather’s death certificate for verification of Miles’ great-grandparent’s names.

Claude Mathis DC 2

The 1910 Federal Census (shown below) has MM’s great-grandparents Victor B. Mathis and Ada (Maggart) Mathis living in Easley, MissouriBenjamin gave his occupation as “Jeweler-Repair & Sales-Own Account.”  (Was Benjamin using his middle name Victor because it sounds less Jewish?)

Victor Mathis in 1920 Census\By the time the next Federal Census rolled around in 1920, Benjamin and Ada had added a daughter and re-located to Clarksdale, Mississippi.  This time, the census-taker appears to have had a difficult time getting any name out of Benjamin.  He also identified his occupation as a self-employed real estate contractor.

Nasmed their daughter Francis

Benjamin and Ada named their daughter Francis.  The female version is typically spelled as Frances, but the census-taker got it right.  Francis is named after her grandmother Elizabeth Francis Chase whom we met in the previous section.  Elizabeth would sometimes be listed as Francis or just F.E. Chase.  Francis probably links her to a significant member of her family.  Perhaps George Francis Chase, but that is pure speculation.

FE Chase

1930 Census

Ten years later in 1930, Benjamin is now the owner of his own plumbing business?  What?  So, sometime between 1910 and 1930, Benjamin Mathis woke up and decided that he preferred plumbing over bling-bling; toilets instead of bracelets?  Somehow, I doubt it.  And why did he move the family from Missouri to Clarksdale, Mississippi?  Let’s examine what was going on in Clarksdale between 1910 and 1930.

Prior to 1920, Delta plantations were in constant need of laborers, and many black families moved to the area to work as sharecroppers. After World War I, plantation owners even encouraged blacks to move from the other parts of Mississippi to the Delta region for work. By this time, Clarksdale had also become home to a multi-cultural mixture of Lebanese, Italian, Chinese and Jewish immigrant merchants.

During the 1940s, three events occurred which increased the exodus of African-Americans from Clarksdale. First, it became possible to commercially produce a cotton crop entirely by machine, which lessened the need for a large, low-paid workforce.

By the 1940 census, Benjamin and Ada Mathis had also made their exodus to Kilgore, Texas.  The money train appears have left the Clarksdale station.

(Coincidentally, it was on 28 acres of the nearby Hopson Plantation where the International Harvester Company perfected the single-row mechanical cotton-picking machine in 1946.)

The International Harvester Company was initially named the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company after its founders, Cyrus and Leander McCormick.  Coincidentally, MM’s 2nd great-grandmother Lucy (Duncan) Ramey was the daughter of a woman named Sarah McCormick.

Sarah McCormick

As you can see, MM’s 3rd great-grandmother Sarah McCormick was from Culpeper, Virginia.  Culpeper lies smack dab in between Leander McCormick’s birthplace of Rockbridge, Virginia and Cyrus McCormick’s birthplace of Washington, D.C.  Some people at have linked MM’s Sarah McCormick to the McCormick Family; however, I can find no documentation to justify this connection.  If I had been able to connect Miles Mathis to the McCormick family definitively, this article would be over.  It would have been a drop the mic moment.

In 1946 International Harvester acquired a defense plant in Louisville, KY.  Hmmm, who do we know in MM’s family tree that was prominent in Louisville?  The coincidences seem to be piling up, don’t they?

But, let’s return to Benjamin and Ada (Maggart) Mathis.  Since we’ve already traced Benjamin’s family back to the early Quaker movement, let’s see where Ada Maggart’s line takes us.

The Indentured Princess

Ada Maggar5tAda Maggart (far left) was the third of twelve children born to John Maggart and Lucy Jennings (2nd great-grandparents.)

John owned a farm in Missouri like his father and grandfather before him.  According to the 1860 Federal Census, John’s father, grandfather, and two uncles shared farmland valued at $210, 000 adjusted for inflation.

 John’s grandfather Samuel Maggart (MM’s 4th great-grandfather) was married to a woman named Nancy Larue.

Nancy LaRue Maggart

Nancy Larue was Miles Mathis’ 4th great-grandmother.  The following listing from confirms her father as Peter Larew.

Peter LarewIt will be through Peter Larew’s mother Mary Isabella that we will meet our indentured princess.  But first a brief history of the Larew/Larue clan.




Larew Immigration Proved Tragic

The primary takeaway from this article is that the Larews were French Huguenots who fled from France(The paper mistakenly states that Abraham was Peter’s father instead of grandfather.)

Huguenots gave us

In the profile for Peter Larew above, I circled the name of Mary Isabella because she was the daughter of a professed indentured princess named Lady Isabella Fortner (Douglas) MM’s 7th great-grandmother.  Even though designates Lady Isabella as the daughter of Archibald, Duke of Douglas of Bothwell, Scotland, counters Isabella arrived in Pennsylvania in 1741 and was an indentured servant. There are plenty of stories that she was a long-lost aristocrat who ran away from home because she was not allowed to marry the man she wanted. She was set upon by pirates, and lost all her money, meaning she had to indenture herself, but there is no proof.”

However, in 1836 several depositions were made concerning the aristocratic origins of Isabella Douglas.  In 1907, the Hopewell NJ Herald published a two-page article called “A Romance in Real Life” detailing Isabella’s journey to America.

3 Journey

Was Isabella a con artist who lived a lie for her entire life?  Was she delusional?  Why was the story created and how has it survived for so long?  There’s no way to know the answers definitively, but at the very least this links Miles Mathis to the Douglas families of Scotland.  If Isabella were indeed the daughter of Duke Archibald, it would connect MM to other prominent families like the Kerrs, Stewarts, Oliphants, Hamiltons, Setons, and Murrays.

Henri de la RueLastly, by following the paternal links at, Miles Mathis’ “Larew” line eventually leads to Henry de La Rieux (1502-1570)

Henri de la Rue is thought to be the alleged out-of-wedlock issue of François I de Valois, King of France, and Daughter de la Rue. But the validity of François I as his father is under fire, as François would have been eight years old at the time of Henri’s birth.

If there is any validity or connection to a royal father, it would have most likely have been Louis XII of France. Louis XII was born 27 June 1462. He died 1 January 1515 at the age of 52.  At any rate, Henri de la Rue was famous enough to have his portrait painted during the 16th century.

Ada Maggart’s maternal line also leads us to French royalty.  Below is a copy of her mother Lucy Jennings (MM’s 2nd great-grandmother) death certificate.

4 Ada DC

Her father is listed as John W. Jennings.  The “W” stands for Woodson after his mother Frances Woodson (MM’s 4th great-grandmother) and Frances was the daughter of Jacob Woodson (MM’s 5th great-grandfather.)  Jacob’s grandmother was Phillipa Dupuy.  Dupuy is a Francophone surname rich in history and peerage, dating back to medieval times

Bartholomew Dupuy (MM’s 8th great-grandfather) descended from Alleman, the oldest son of the Crusader, Hugo Dupuy. He was probably born in the Provence of Languedoc. By virtue of his descent, he had an heired title of “Count”.  He married Susanna Lavillon (MM’s 8th great-grandmother) in 1685, a young Countess of noble standing, and of the Huguenot faith. A detailed account of the experiences which he and his wife endured during the short time they remained in France after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and of their escape in December of 1685 is given in “The Story of the Huguenot’s Sword” which was published in “Harper’s New Monthly Magazine” of April 1857. The author of this story was John Esten Cooke.

Let’s take one final gander at the overall picture of Miles Mathis’ paternal ancestry.

Benjamin Mathis jack of all trades

Benjamin Mathis was a jack of all trades (jeweler, realtor, plumber) who moved to Mississippi to take advantage of a large, low-paid African American workforce.  His mother was a Chase whose history is scrubbed.  The Mathis and Wright clan was influential in the early Quaker movement project, and they were also connected to the wealthy Andrews family of New Jersey.

Ada Maggart descended from the Larew and Dupuy families; French Huguenots forced to flee persecution in France.  The Larews descend directly from an out-of-wedlock issue of the King of France and also intermarried with a possible descendant of Archibald, Duke of Douglas, Scotland.  Count Bartholomew Dupuy’s swashbuckling escape from France has been immortalized in print.

Russell Ramey’s grandmother’s name was McCormick.  She was born near the immensely wealthy and influential McCormick family of Virginia and could easily be a relative.

Lucy Miles Werne, Miles namesake, descended from a wealthy silversmith/jeweler from Louisville, Kentucky.  Despite her grandfather’s obscure origins, he and his wife’s portraits still hang today in the house of Daniel Boone’s sister.  Lucy’s uncle owned a row of mansions in Old Louisville, and her brother was a railroad tycoon.  Her maternal grandfather, William Saunders Alexander, was a “merchant” who was worth millions.

The Moses Mordecai Maneuver

The only personal genealogical information that Miles Mathis has disclosed to his readers has been the “revelation” that he had a maternal great-grandfather named Moses Mordecai Williams.  This admission conveniently portrays Miles as being up-front and honest with his readers.  It also suggests that Moses Mordecai being Jewish is an exception, whereas I’ve shown that not to be the case.  Do you seriously believe that Miles isn’t aware of the information that I’ve uncovered in his paternal lineage?  If he took the trouble to mention Moses Mordecai but withheld all other genealogical information, what was his motivation?  I’m here to suggest the motive was misdirection, plain and simple.  While the Biblical Moses led his people to the promised land, Mathis “(mis)led his people” and “parted the sea” between his maternal and paternal family tree.  Anybody using their “Gandalf stick” to poke around Moses Mordecai would conclude that “there’s not much to see here,” and would likely be unwilling to spend the time chipping away at the genealogical fortress guarding Mathis’ paternal heritage.  And that strategy has worked marvelously until now.

With that being said, let’s see if we can discover any maternal morsels of manna.  For the readers referencing pleasure, I’ve supplied an overview of MM’s maternal grandparents.

Roland Leslie Williams

My investigation will begin with MM’s grandfather Roland Leslie Williams.  Of course, Williams is very prominent name throughout the European peerage, but you may be surprised that the surname Leslie is as well.  In fact, there are over 800 individuals, many of them were/are Earls, Lords, and Ladies that you can peruse at the

Roland Leslie Williams was an executive with the Ted Lokey Oil and Tire Company based in Amarillo, Texas.  Below is a November 1939 clipping from the Amarillo Globe-Times.

Roland Williams AnnouncementDo your dinner parties get announced in the city newspaper?  No, I didn’t think so.  Roland was able to build a new home at the age of thirty-four, so he was doing well for himself.  Let’s examine his dinner guests because of birds of a feather and all of that.

The first guests listed are Mr. and Mrs. Irvin Hurst of Oklahoma City.  A google search immediately finds us an Irvin E. Hurst of Oklahoma City at Find A Grave.  He was born in 1904, so he would have been the same age as Roland Williams.

An obituary published in the Daily Oklahoman newspaper describes Irvin E Hurst, as an OK historian, author, insurance man, and former newsman who covered some of Oklahoma’s most colorful politicians.  His spouse was born Marion Clarice Knapp.  There are tons of prominent people named Knapp, and with just a few clicks on Marion’s ancestry we easily find her father and great-grandfather:

  • Bradford Knapp (1870-1938) who among other things served as President of the universities now known as Oklahoma State, Auburn, and Texas Tech. During WWI, Bradford helped plan and carry out overseas food production for the Agriculture Department.

  • Bradford Knapp (1791-1872) belonged to one of the oldest families of New York. He was the sixth in descent from Nicholas Knapp who came to America in 1630.  Nicholas was the grandson of Roger Knapp, a knight of large possessions and great renown in the time of Henry VIII.

Another dinner party guest was L.L. Hoecker, also of Oklahoma City.

HOECKER Lawrence Lee, born Feb. 24, 1907, died June 7, 1990 in a city hospital. A native of Galveston, TX, Lawrence as an auditor joined the Home State Life Insurance Co. in its infancy, in 1929, and ultimately became Executive Vice President and General Manager of American General Life Insurance Co. of OklahomaHe was a Mason, Shriner and Jester. He served as Potentate and Director of the Jesters.  His wife Frances Helen Shive was the daughter of George Shive, a judge in Naples, Texas.

Miles’ maternal grandparents were well connected, i.e., movers and shakers.  A copy of Roland’s death certificate reveals that by the time of his death he was a drug pusher.

Moses Mordecai is MM

Also, notice that Miles’ great-grandfather Moses Mordecai Williams is listed as MM.  I find that both amusing and apropos at the same time.  Moses’ wife is listed as Dovie Hill.

Moses and Dovie were married in 1898 when Moses was 32-years-old, and Dovie was 17.

The following 1920 Federal Census reports Moses Mordecai’s profession as “Retired Banker” at the age of 55.  His early retirement was before Social Security even existed, so he must have been filthy rich. Note the occupations of the other four members of the household; “None.”

Retired Banker

Below is a photo of Moses’ father Alexander Beatty Williams, (MM’s 2nd great-grandfather) with his second wife Mary Isabel Daniels (not Moses’ mother) and a copy of Alexander’s death certificate.

Luke and Louisa

Alexander’s parents are listed as Luke and Louisa (Beatty) Williams, 3rd great-grandparents of Miles Mathis.  Luke died at a young age and on the 1870 Federal Census Louisa had turned the farm over to her son James who lists his Personal and Real Estate income as $200,000 and $138,000 respectively.  He was 36-years-old at the time.  That’s mostly all we know about the Williams and Beatty families, so let’s return to Moses Mordecai’s wife, Dovie Hill.

Dovie Hill DCOn Dovie Hill’s death certificate we can see that her parents were Elijah Hill and Mary Jane French, 2nd great-grandparents of Miles Mathis.

There are 2,000 Hills listed at thepeerage.  Mary Jane French’s parents are ghosts, and I believe that is because her name wasn’t French at all.  I base this opinion on the marriage record below which lists her maiden name as Hill.  She and Elijah were probably cousins with Mary Jane adopting her mother’s maiden name (French).  As we know, these families like to “keep it in the family.”

Alabama Marriage Indexes

Elijah Hill’s father and grandfather were named Micajah, and like the Mathis family, these Hills were early members of the Quaker project.

US Quaker Meeting

And that is all that can be squeezed out of MM’s maternal grandfather’s family history.  As you can see, there is nothing here that Miles couldn’t ultimately deflect with some damage control tactics.

5 Pumphrey

Miles’ maternal grandmother Mary Virginia Maloy’s obituary states that she began her civic work in Oklahoma City as president of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority.  In Amarillo, she served as executive assistant to the president of Amarillo College and to the board of regents.


The man and woman seated in front are MM’s great-grandparents Pumphrey Angelow Maloy (1870-1952) and Nettie Josephine McGowen (1875-1958.)

Despite how well-dressed they all appear, Pumphrey was a farmer.  There are many farmers in MM’s family history, but none of them were impoverished.  At the age of thirty and with four children under the age of seven, Pumphrey Maloy already owned his farm free and clear.

6 Masonic grave

Pumphrey was a Freemason as is evidenced by his tombstone.  On the 1910 Federal Census, his occupation is “Cattle Buyer-Own Account.”  Ten years later in 1920, he was “Commissioner-Livestock.”

And that’s all the dirt to be dug here.  This lack of incriminating evidence is the reason Miles wanted his readers and detractors to waste their time and energy poking around this section of his family tree.  When you visit Miles’ “Personal Photo Album” on his website you only find photos of an unidentified great-uncle and grandmother.  The sole identified individual is his great-grandfather, Maloy, because Pumphrey Maloy is the least controversial member of his family.

My grandmother 1926

Streetman or Straight Man?

My favorite Model Mary

These two photos are identified on Miles’ site as “My favorite model Mary, 1988.”  Since Miles “married” a woman named Mary Streetman in 1988, we can probably safely assume that these are photos of her.  The reason that I placed married in quotations is that Miles and Mary were supposedly wed on 10/8/88.  What would Miles call that?  Aces and eights, dead man’s hand.  That’s spooky, no?  They were “divorced” on 7/16/97.  I don’t need to be much of a numerology contortionist to turn that date into a 777.  Numerically speaking, Miles’ marriage was a losing hand, but his divorce was a jackpot!

Was Mary Streetman an actress playing the “straight man” character in a prank marriage?  Was she a made-up persona, like a faceless “man on the street?”  While the first question is debatable, the second question can be confidently answered in the negative.  Below is a high school yearbook picture of Mary from 1978.

Mary Streetman

That looks like the same person as the photos under the title, especially the smile (zoom in, you’ll see.)  But did Miles know her merely as an actress/model or as a wife?  He doesn’t identify her as his ex-wife in the above photos, just as his “favorite” model.  To my recollection, Miles has never mentioned Mary in any of his papers.  Considering that they spent a decade together you would think he would have an interesting story or anecdote to share, or even an offhand comment like, “My ex would always…” or “My wife and I used to…”.  I know Miles has mentioned being married, but in a very unspecific way, never alluding to Mary directly or indirectly.  (This article was compiled before MM’s “Sword” piece in which he mentions his wife.  Coincidence?)

There are two (admittedly odd) things about Mary Streetman’s paternal family history that I need to address.

7 Streetman

Here we see that Mary’s great-grandmother was Maggie Matthews.  If you recall, the Mathis name was originally Matthews back in Ireland until John “the Great” Mathis changed it upon his arrival in America.  Since there are lots of people named Matthews, this could easily be a coincidence.

The odd thing is that the 1870 Federal Census listing for Maggie’s father John, (son of Cincinnatus Mathis) looks like this:

1870 Federal Census says Mathis






Someone in John’s family has led the census taker to believe the name to be “Mathis.”  John was Mary Streetman’s 2nd great-grandfather.  The misspelling of Matthews as Mathis proves nothing, but it is a weird coincidence.

Another weird coincidence involves the Hollywood actress Faye Dunaway.

DunawayDunaway’s 2nd great-grandmother’s name was Clarissa Mathis, and Clarissa’s mother was Priscilla Dupree.

Mary Streetman’s 2nd great-grandfather Charles Streetman was married to a woman whose mother’s name was Margaret Dupree.  We’re only in the 1800’s here folks.  Let’s see where these Dupree families lived in proximity to each other, shall we?

Faye Dunaway’s Dupree ancestors birth and death locations:

  • 3rd great-grandmother Priscilla – Greenville, Virginia & Stewart, GA
  • 4th great-grandfather Reed – Brunswick, VA & Washington, GA
  • 5th great-grandfather Lewis – Goochland, VA & Laurens, SC

Mary Streetman’s Dupree ancestors birth and death locations:

  • 3rd great-grandmother Margaret – Talbot, GA & Houston, TX
  • 4th great-grandfather Thomas – Jefferson, GA & Butler, GA
  • 5th great-grandfather Herod – Greenville, VA & Jefferson, GA

We get a direct hit between the families with Greenville, VA.  Dunaway’s Dupree’s also hail from Stewart and Washington, GA, which lie south and east of Atlanta.  Mary Streetman’s Dupree’s are from Talbot, Jefferson, and Taylor GA which lie, you guessed it, south and east of Atlanta.

Bottom Line:  Faye Dunaway’s Mathis/Dupree ancestors lived in the same geographical vicinity as Mary Streetman’s Dupree ancestors for at least three generations.  That’s two bizarre connections between Mary Streetman and the name Mathis, not counting that “marriage.”  Miles and Mary were possibly distant (gay) cousins playing house while trying to advance their artistic (him) and modeling/acting (her) careers.  By 1997, at the age of 35, they decided to cut their losses and move on with their lives.  (If everything I’ve uncovered in this section seems like a reach, go back and apply the same discernment to the work of the subject at hand.)

Another suspicious aspect of the marriage between Miles and Mary was the lack of offspring.

In Conclusion

Past my PrimeSandy, I believe I am past my prime.

Throughout his work, Miles Mathis has consistently claimed that promoted people are:

  • Connected (MM is connected)
  • Were born into wealth (MM was born into wealth)
  • Descend from royalty (MM descends from royalty)
  • Are Jewish (MM is Jewish)
  • Are gay (MM is probably gay)
  • Are spooks….

That last one is the million-dollar question, isn’t it?  I believe that my work here has confirmed that the Miles Mathis character is a hypocrite at best.  But I’m afraid it goes much deeper.  The Mathis project experienced it’s “prime” exposing subjects like the Tate murders and Lincoln’s assassination.  There is genuine truth in those works, but that’s what an effective Limited Hangout needs to do to “hook you.”  Once they have gained your trust, they can then plant lies or misdirect you away from subjects that need to be investigated.  Exploring how MM is accomplishing that goal would require another lengthy investigation and this one is already long enough.

Unlike the character Sandy in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, I doubt that my actions will put a stop to “Miles Mathis.”  Too many of the readers enjoy the Kool-Aid that they are dispensing and as a former contributor (useful idiot) to the site, I understand this malady all too well.

Sources, “A Brief History of the Werne Family”, Miles Turpin
Wikipedia. “Werne’s Row”
Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky, 1876, pp. 108
Wikipedia, “Andrews-Bartlett Homestead”
Wikipedia, “Clarksdale, Mississippi”
Wikipedia, “International Harvester”
Beckley-Post Herald, June 18, 1973 “Huguenots and Jews of the Languedoc”
The Huguenot Bartholomew Dupuy and His Descendants, 1908
The Amarillo Globe-Times, 22 Nov 1939 “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie”. 1969

2 thoughts on “Miles W. Mathis: Origins of an Enigma

  1. What an informative and interesting post, Kevin. Thanks so much for sharing your unbiased, detailed, and intelligent opinion.


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