Father of James, Greenville, William, Redford, Martin, Moses, Judea, Anjaline, Montaville, Franklin, Henry, John, and Thomas Preston.
His second wife was Nancy Martin Peery.
Their children were Winfield, George, Mary, Unnamed Twins, Nancy, Louisa, Henry, and John Preston.
Son of Moses Preston and Frances Fanny Arthur.
Per: The Big Sandy Valley by William Ely, pages 76-81 written in 1887: Moses, or "Coby" Preston, the third son of Moses Preston and his wife, nee Miss Arthur, was one of the remarkable men whom the Sandy Valley has developed. He was born near the birth of the present century, and on coming to manhood married Elizabeth Haney, a woman of worth and great energy. She bore him a large family of children, who, following in the footsteps of their honored parents, are the foremost citizens in the Sandy Valley and in the homes they have hewn out in the far South-west.
Soon after Mr. Preston's marriage with Miss Haney, being of a restless disposition, he, with his young wife, moved to the Scioto Valley country; but, finding chills and fever as abundant as good land, they shook the dust, or mud, from the soles of their feet and hastened back to the Great Sandy country. While the move down to Scioto was attended with expense, the plain, economical ways of life which Mr. Preston adopted in early life, and kept up until the hour of his death, enabled him to return to the Sandy Valley with more material wealth than he had at starting. On his return he settled on the place known at the time as the Spencer farm, now the Kise farm, some miles below George's Creek. Here he lived many years, and prospered greatly.
Alone, and afterward with his brother-in-law, Archibald Borders, he was among the first to engage in peeling and running tan-bark to Cincinnati, floating it down in barges, constructed, often, out of lumber sawed by hand, called whip-sawing. He and his brother-in-law, Judge Borders, were as well and favorably known to the old time tanners and other business men of the Queen City as are the great timber-dealers of the present time known to the mill-men and builders in Cincinnati. He established a reputation for honesty and fair-dealing unsurpassed by no one in the business; in some instances the bark went off without being subject to measurement, so much confidence had the buyers in Mr. Preston's honesty. While tan-bark was a specialty with him, he was almost as well known as a large timber-dealer. He also sent barge-loads of hoop-poles and staves to the Cincinnati market. Dealing in bark, cooper-stuff, and saw-logs combined seems to us to be sufficient for one man's busy attention; but to one with the business foresight of "Coby" Preston this alone was insignificant, and at the same time he carried on a large general store, and cultivated many farms. By applying business rules to every department of his extended pursuits, he made money at all, and was never accused of overreaching the hireling that wrought for him.
About the time Johnson County was formed into a separate jurisdiction, which was in 1843, Mr. Preston moved up to the mouth of Paint Creek, and ever after, as long as he lived, made that place the center of his business enterprises, although he alternated his residence between the mouth of Paint and Paintsville, one-half of a mile above, having good residences at both places. Like all dwellers on the highway with a good house, he entertained the wayfaring man in a sumptuous style at this home on the river.
The wife of his youth, after sharing with him his sorrows and joys, and assisting her husband by her good counsels and domestic skill, sickened and died, leaving behind a number of sons, who, by following the good and wholesome advice given them by their mother, and walking in the footsteps of their father, have, nearly all of them, come to the front as business men and upright citizens in the vicinity where they were brought up.
After the death of his first wife, Mr. Preston married Nancy, a daughter of David Peery, of Tazewell County, Virginia. They lived in great peace until his sudden death, in 1870. He and his wife being on a visit to his brother, Arthur, at Graves' Shoal, after dinner he went to the barn to saddle the horses, to return with his wife to their home at Paintsville, when one of the animals kicked him so severely that he died almost instantly. His death was not only a sad blow to his family, but was profoundly regretted by the entire people of the valley; for in more respects that one a prince among the people had fallen when the life went out of the body of Moses, or Coby, Preston. While his death was sudden and unexpected to him and others, he had had the sagacity to make ample provision for his wife, and had, as his sons started out in business, aided them with a liberal hand; so that no family jar rent the bonds that bound the family together, after he had left the busy haunts of men. Mr. Preston was an honest man, the noblest work of God.
Coby, or Moses, Preston took a deep interest in political affairs, although he was never an office seeker. He ignored, to some extent, Church formularies, but squared his life by the Golden Rule. His portrait will be recognized by the old-time Sandians as one of peculiar correctness.
The modern built brick mansion, the Paintsville residence of his son, Captain Frank Preston, bears testimony to the progress of architecture in the Sandy Valley. He is, in some respects, the representative of the family. He is a man of wealth, character, and enterprise, and has the confidence of the entire community in which he lives, as a merchant, a timber-dealer, a steamboatman, and general business man. He married into one of the most prominent families of the Sandy Valley, a daughter of General Daniel Hager. He sends his sons and daughters to the best colleges and schools, to receive their mental training. Himself and family are members and liberal supporters of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. He, like his father, is a strong Democrat, but not an office-seeker.
James, another son, died many years ago. Greenville lives in Texas. Martin is, and has always been, a prominent business man of Paintsville, and has a son engaged in literary pursuits, besides being a lawyer and preacher. Moses rose to eminence as a merchant, but died many years ago. His wife, another daughter of General Hager, after her first husband's death, married Dr. Turner, a prominent citizen of Paintsville. William and Montraville are both prosperous farmers and saving business men, living near Paintsville.
Moses is buried with both of his wives at the Old Preston Cemetery on Preston Street, Paintsville, Johnson Co., KY. The inscription on the tombstone reads: Moses Preston Sr. born May 2, 1797 and departed this life Nov. 28, 1868, 71 yrs 6 mos, 26 days; "Kind angels watch his sleeping, till Jesus comes to raise the just. Then may he wake with sweet surprise, and in his Saviour's image rise." ************************************