Sunday, December 2, 2012

I had so much FUN!!!!!

Who would have thought that I could have so much FUN!!! right after I had so much FUN!!!

I have just returned from spending a few days in the David Library of the American Revolution in Washington's Crossing Pennsylvania. For a know it all like me learning new stuff just makes my day. It makes me a better know it all. And this trip I just did not stop learning new stuff. I am working on a book (okay, so I am always working on a book and one day one will actually get done, I know, I know) that jumped out at me as being some thing that had to be done. A How-To on Hessians.

So for a few days I looked at everything Hessian and it was a non-stop, "I didn't know that" or "I didn't think about that" kind of experience. Of course, I am going to save those revelations for the book, but no matter.

Out of the experience came news that after July 1782 (somewhere is mention in the Papers of the Continental Congress, but I haven't looked at is deeply yet) if was possible for a Hessian to get out of prison by joining the Continental Army, or for the amount of $80.00 to obtain a redemption certificate and basically get a get out of prison camp free card. Had to sign an oath of allegiance. If he did not have $80.00 he could indenture himself to someone who made the payment for them (wonder if there are records somewhere about these guys) and work off the debt. Or of course he could stay in prison. This put an entirely different view on my view of how Hessians joined the Continental Army.  So the question is if a Hessian gets a redemption certificate and heads into the wilds of Pennsylvania or The Valley is he really a deserter?

If you don't know the David Library you should. Google it and see all the neat things they have in their catalog. If you have an interest in anything between 1750 and 1800 this is the place to be. I could have spent a month. The next time the Bucks County Genealogical Society invites me to come and speak I will be much better prepared to take advantage of the facility. I think that is called a research plan.

Thank you the David Library of the American Revolution.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

More than one way to skin a CMSR

I have been looking for military records on Fold3 and couldn't help noticing your involvement there. Consequently, I have a question regarding the Civil War Records. Specifically, I wish to locate a military record for William Carter who served in Co. C, 8th Missouri Infantry, CSA (Mitchell's).  The index for this company, however, begins at Cl-G!  I do have a Company C roster which does, in fact, begin with Adamson, Isaac. (I spot checked two other names from the list, and they were included.)  Putting in the soldier's name brings me negative results.
Any thoughts?
 try this:,none

if that does not work do this search:

William Carter

there is a single abstract card.
These are further comments that I would have made had I thought about them at the time.
My search rotation with Fold3 is Browse, Search, Advanced Search. 
So in this case no luck with Browse because the A - Ck is not listed. It looks like it was combined with the 7th by mistake.
Search for William Carter just returned too many possibilities. But with a little narrowing it was obtainable.

Advanced Search as above gets right to the record. Wish there was more than one.
Knowing when to be creative in index searches is a key element of a genealogists tool box. 
I am sure that we all have examples of records that we could not find using standard methods but found when were creative.
I think my favorite is using a neighbor to locate someone in a census.

Monday, November 19, 2012

War of 1812 Compiled Military Service Records

I received a request for info a while back that I thought I would share.

Are there service records for the War of 1812. I found my ancestor in the Register of Enlistments. I thought he was in the militia.

First there are compiled military service records for volunteer soldiers (like militia and state troops) if the War Department managed to obtain the muster or payrolls. The index to these compiled miltary service records are found on NARA microfilm and are available on Some complied military service records were microfilmed and are now also on Fold3. These are the records that relate to Uriah Blue's Detachment of Chickasaw Indians, Maj. McIntosh's Company of Creek Indians, sailors on Lake Erie and soldiers from the Territory of Mississippi.

There are no compiled military service records for Regular Army personnel. You have to create those on your own. The first step is to find the person on the Register of Enlistments to see what it has to say. From there you should be able to obtain the company and regiment that the person belongs to. From there you go to RG94, Records of the Adjutant Generals Office and the series entries that are in the 90s. These include enlistment papers, medical certificates and personal papers.

In addition to the 90s, as I call them there is one other place you might consult. That is M1856, Discharge Certificates and Miscellaneous Records Relating to the Discharge of Soldiers from the Regular Army, 1792-1815. These six rolls of microfilm are really interesting. The joy for me is the miscellaneous records part. The other joy is the finding aid which is available as a .pdf file through the online microfilm catalog. It is 116 pages of searchable names. There is also information from these records in a section on the website that is called War of 1812 Discharge Certificates.

It is also possible for a person to both be in the militia and the Regular Army, just not at the same time. Many militiamen join the Regular Army during the war. Many researchers fail to recognize that when the militiaman falls off the rolls, he might have joined the Regular Army. Prior to Ancestry putting up the Register of Enlistments this was generally ignored because the registers are a real pain to deal with. Today there is really no excuse.

There are additional resources for War of 1812 research which can be found at:

At a minimum, you should read Stuart L. Butler's article on Genealogical Records of the War of 1812.

There is also a list of links to other resources at this URL.

Butler has several books which I use often in my Virginia research in the War of 1812. My favorite has been recently revised.

A GUIDE TO VIRGINIA MILITIA UNITS IN THE WAR OF 1812 Stuart Lee Butler, second edition, revised and expanded. 8 x 10,
2011, xvi, 270 pages, index, maps, photos. When this volume first was published in 1988, it quickly became a definitive study on the role played by the Virginia militia in defense of both the state and the nation in the Anglo-British conflict. The author of the volume spent his career with the National Archives and Records Administration in the Old military and Civil Branch Records, where he specialized in early American military records. Since his retirement, Mr. Butler has continued his research in the area of the War of 1812, and with the upcoming bicentennial of the conflict, the product of this expanded research is presented in this new work. The primary sources of information for this enlarged volume are found among the massive holdings of the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington, DC. In addition, materials have been drawn from numerous other state and local archival collections to present a balanced, scholarly account of the Virginia militia and its role in this war. This book is as complete a guide to the militia units raised in Virginia as records permit. The book is divided into three parts: Part I describes the organization of the Virginia militia, i.e., its regiments, battalions, and companies, and explains in what manner it was to be called up during an emergency. Part II frames an expanded history of the role played by the Virginia militia during this conflict. Part III, the largest portion, is a county-by-county listing of the units, with the naming of the regimental commanders, company commanders, and the known action and movements of the unit during the war. The book includes the name of the company or unit commander, not every soldier who served within that unit. Researchers who have secured copies of CMSRs [compiled military service records] from the National Archives or other sources will be able to determine the unit in which a soldier served, where and when that unit operated, and, in most instances, ascertain the soldier's county of origin. A complete index of unit commanders completes this standard reference work. What is presented here is a distillation of a life's research by the premier scholar in the field of the War of 1812.
[Gtvm2] $30.00

VIRGINIA SOLDIERS IN THE UNITED STATES ARMY, 1800-1815 compiled by Stuart Lee Butler. 1986, paper, 188 pages, introduction, index. This volume contains the abstracted service records of 5,193 Virginians who enlisted in the regular United States army during the period 1800-1815. Material is taken from the Register of Enlistments now in the custody of the National Archives. The list contains, wherever possible: full name; unit to which he was assigned; occupation prior to enlistment; county of birth; age; place and date of enlistment, and status at the end of his term of services (i.e., date and place of discharge, desertion, death, or other record. This book will become a major reference tool for genealogists in this period of Virginia history. Many of the pioneer families in the mid-west were descended from these cashiered soldiers at the end of the war.
[Vsus] $17.00

He also wrote a book on the titled Real Patriots and Heroic Soldiers: Gen. Joel Leftwich and the Virginia Brigade in the War of 1812

Hope all of this helps.



I had so much FUN!!!!

[I posted this on my As Craig Sees It Blog, but I thought it needed to be here also; hope you don't mind]

I just spent a week in the National Archives as a tour leader for the National Genealogical Society First Annual (at least I hope it is an annual event) D.C. Research Tour.

I have to tell you that I had a blast. Twenty-four people all anxious to learn more about records in the National Archives. What more could I guy like me ask for?

It was so much fun that I thought I would do it again. Only this time as a Heritage Books tour. And in such a way that it would not conflict with the 2nd Annual National Genealogical Society D.C. Research Trip.

One of the problems with the D.C. trip, and I am not being critical, is that orientation to the tour occurred the night before the first visit to NARA. I think that can be solved by using a GoToMeeting format and having orientation a week or so before the event so there is time to let it rest and have time to think about it. And then of course have a quick check closer to the event.

Then my mind wrapped around the possibilities. Why not have about four lectures spread over the month before the event that dealt with the theme. So if the theme was Revolutionary War it might look like this:

Understanding Revolutionary War Compiled Military Service Records
Understanding Revolutionary War Pensions
Understanding Pension Ledgers, Pension Payments, Last and Final Payments
Understanding Bounty Land
(requires internet connection, headset, and whatever else it takes to make GoToMeeting work on your end. Sessions will be recorded and available for download later, maybe provided on a flash drive to participants)

Three days at the National Archives
Two days at the DAR Library
(meaning that I will be at each one of these places on the appropriate days and available for guidance and consultation)

Hotel and Food on you.
Transportation to and from facilities on you.

Cost: $225

What do you think of the concept?
What themes should be considered?
What facilities should be visited?
What have I forgotten?
Would you go?

Help me, please.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

What Grandmother Said?

I have a brick wall I’ve been chipping at for about 35 years, and I thought I’d run it by you:

My grandmother Ruby Reed left a hand-drawn family tree that indicated that her mother’s father (1822—1863) was killed in the Civil War.

So the only evidence that you have that your grandmother's mother's father was a Prosser is this family tree?  And some people of that surname in a later census found in the household of others?

Ruby’s mother was Rhoda Ruth Prosser, who was born in Hillsdale, Michigan in 1860.  Rhoda’s younger brother Charles was born about 1863, and their mother (also named Rhoda) remarried, to Henry Jones, in 1865.  I have not been able to find the Prossers on the 1860 census of Hillsdale, and of course by 1870 they are listed with Henry Jones. 

Where is Charles in 1870?

Although you do not mention Robin Wilsey in this post as the father of Rhoda Ruth, you state that is the case in your blog according to her death record. There is an R. Wilsey in the 1860 census in Michigan (Tuscola, Fremont, p. 27), with a wife Rhoda and a three-year-old daughter, Rhoda. Are you sure that this is not your family of interest. Rhoda, the daughter is born in Michigan, but it looks like they came from Canada just before 1858.
So one has to ask what the basis is for the assertion that Rhoda Ruth is born in Hillsdale, Michigan in 1860. Could it be that the Rhoda in the household of R. Wilsey in 1860 is this person?

If that I nos the case than Ruby Reed's mother's (Rhoda Jones) father would be a Wilsey, not a Prosser. Is is possible that Rhoda Wilsey, wife of R. Wilsey (aka Robin) remarried to a Prosser and that the man who died in the Civil War was Wilsey and her mother remarried a Prosser, only to marry Henry Jones at a later date prior to 1870?

It’s taken me a long time to learn of Rhoda Prosser Jones’ death (she was indeed hit by a train – or possibly murdered) in 1883, and even longer to understand that she would not have received a pension, because she had remarried. 

But her children under certain circumstances would have in the event of her marriage.
So, I have the Civil War pension records for every male Prosser who fought in a Michigan regiment during the Civil War.

In looking at the list of Michigan soldiers from Hillsdale county (on the Hillsdale US GenWeb), there is one Prosser – Lewis Prosser, who was 17 in (presumably) 1861.  That seems way too young, as Rhoda was about 30 when my great grandmother was born.

So, I have two questions:

1.        Would it be productive to explore the military records of all the Prossers from Michigan, who fought in the Civil War?  I’ve looked on Fold3, and they only have index cards.  According to the Civil War Soldiers & Sailors, there were 7 Prossers who fought from Michigan, and some of those names I recognize as being men I have pension records for.  For that matter, since Prosser is a fairly unusual name, maybe I should explore ALL Prossers who fought on the Union side!

I would focus on those who died in the war.

2.       And, since Prosser is an unusual name, it has occurred to me that perhaps my great-great-grandfather wasn’t alone in the state of Michigan, that perhaps he had brothers or cousins there as well.  And perhaps I should explore the families & ancestries of those other Prossers.  I’m doing a proof argument on Charles Prosser (who died in Chicago in 1910), and in arguing that the two Charles Prossers in Michigan during the right time period are not my great-grandmother’s brother, I’ve discovered that those other two Charles Prossers are actually related to each other – 2nd cousins.  AND, what is stranger still, all three Charles Prossers had sons named Earl.

So who was Earl?

I would also look at the Wilsey families in the area to the same depth, but believe because they were new to the area you might not find much.

So, any hints you could give me would be greatly appreciated!

My sense of this is that Robin Wilsey and Rhoda Wilsey of the 1860 census are the parents of your Rhoda.

That Rhoda Wilsey would married a Prosser prior to 1863 and have Charles.

That Rhoda would then marry Henry Jones. will will will will and will you will you as you is a you and a you a you

And then Henry would kill her, but that is just a guess.

Hope this helps.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Marine Corps Muster Roll Remarks

While researching U.S. Marine Corps records for a client, I located muster rolls noting that this ancestor was put on probation in early 1938 and spent several months “sick” [and hospitalized] before his last found record in January 1939.
The following discharge notes were included in that final muster roll.
“1, jd by S/Rs fr Bty C, 1st Bn, 10th Mar, 1st Mar Brig, FMF, Post. 1-17, con Post Prison awtg BCD. 18, jd in person. 18, BCD in pursuant of sent of SCM. Char Bad.”
 1, joined by Service/Records from Battery C, First Battalion, Tenth Marines, First Marine Brigade, Fleet Marine Force, Post 1 - 17, confined Post Prison awaiting Bad Conduct Discharge, 18, judged in person. 18, Bad Conduct Discharge in pursuant of sentence of Summary Court Martial. Character of Service: Bad
There is the possiblity that it is not a Summary Courts-martial, but a Special Courts-Martial. Today, under the UCMJ (Uniform Code of Military Justice) it would have to be a Special Courts-Martial, but I am not sure what the circumstances were in 1939. Because NPRC states that it has Summary Courts-Martials on file that do not result in a BCD it leads me to believe that Summary Court-Martials could sentence an enlisted man to a BCD at some time in the past. 

2008 Elliot
Quantico, VA 22134

If that does not work I would So I would start with the Marine Corps Historical Center to see if they know where they are located.

Since the Marine Corps and the Navy are all part of the Navy Department it might be that they are found in Navy JAG records.

They would be in RG 125, Records of the Office of the Judge Advocate General (Navy), but they seem to end in 1930 at NARA. So if the MCHC does not pan out I would then look to the Naval Historical Center.

Additionally, a same-name ancestor, and the name is unusual, enlisted and served in the U.S. Army in 1944.  Could this have been possible if the enlistee had served time in a Marine Corps prison?

He probably lied about prior service. In 1944 they were not that picky and probably did not check to see if there was prior service.

Hope this helps.


Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Underwood Sisters?

I would also to prove the relationship of two women who I suspect are sisters in my family tree.  I have an ancestor - Rebecca Underwood - who appears in the
census suddenly in 1860 in Clarke County, Iowa.  The Census states she was from Indiana.

You have to admit that the household she is in in 1860 in Clarke County is an interesting one. I think you need to look at why she is in the Hunt household. I would not consider Iowa to necessarily be a safe place for an unemployed 18 year old woman. It looks like she marries prior to the 1870 census. When does she marry, to whom, where, when?

  I am pretty sure she is my ancestor based on her location in the Iowa census.

How are you sure? Not from what is in the 1860 census. Must be something else.

 I checked Indiana for census records on Rebecca and there is a Rebecca Underwood in the 1850 – 1870 Censuses in Hendricks, Indiana that has a similar birth year but I have ruled her out as a match because I have the 1870 census for my Rebecca Underwood (now Proctor) in the same place in Clarke County, Iowa.

If you found Rebecca in 1850 in Indiana, did you also find the person you suspect of being her sister in the same household? 

I believe I have found Rebecca’s sister based on the fact that the 1880 Census for Rebecca states that she has her niece and nephew living with her and her husband.  The census gave the niece and nephew’s name as Mary and William Lafollette, who were born in Indiana.

Could you send me the citiation. I don't see the census record you are refering to.

  I was able to find a marriage record for a Susanna Underwood who married a Joshua LaFollette in Clarke Co Iowa in Jul 1859. 
Yet I don't see a Joshua LaFollette in the 1860 census.

From the location and the names I am pretty sure that Rebecca and Susanna are sisters. 
Why is that?

However I cannot find other Underwoods in Clarke Co – there is a group of Underwoods who lived in Mahaska County, Iowa but the census records seem spotty for them and I do not find any Underwood Iowa family trees on that have sisters named Susanna and Rebecca.
Probably because you are not looking for an Iowa family with a Susanna and Rebecca but an Indiana one.

Where would you suggest I look next?
I suggest that you focus on finding Rebecca in Indiana (or elsewhere) in 1850 and also the person you believe to be her sister. There is also the possibility that the residents of the Hunt household in 1850 believed that she was born in Indiana, whereas she might have just been from Indiana but born in another state. Regardless, given their ages and the issue that you believe them to be in the same county in 1860, they should be together in 1850 somewhere.

I also continue to wonder who this Garner Hunt might be and what his family looks like. Why would Rebecca end up in this household. Is there a relationship between her and any of the other people in this household.

In the 1880 census do both sisters have parents born in the same states.

I would not rule out the Rebecca Underwood of Hendricks just yet.

Hope this helps.


Monday, May 7, 2012

Emily Gloria Grey

Emily Gloria Grey was born born 19 June 1915 per her social security application.  [The names of her parent's are blacked out, however I am appealing that based on the fact that she is deceased as well as her husband, and I am a direct descendent.  All pertinent documentation was sent in along with the appeal.  It's been 30 days and nothing from them yet].

On her social security application  she states her birth place as Baltimore, Maryland.  Emily Grey married Weldon W. Tyson on 17 May 1935 in Anne Arundel, Annapolis, Maryland.  She states she was 20 at the time of marriage with no prior marriages.  

Emily Gray Tyson died 31 December 1994 at Peninsula Medical Center in Fruitland, Putnam, Florida.  Her birth date is given as 19 June 1915.  She was a widow.

Based on this information I took a trip to the Baltimore State Archives, in Annapolis, MD to look for Emily's birth record.  After spending 3 hours with a very nice archivist no birth record was found within a 5 year time span for an Emily Gloria Grey/Gray in Baltimore or Annapolis County.  Now I'm stuck.

You don't mention finding Emily as a child of anyone in the 1920 and 1930 census enumerations. That is where I would start looking while you wait for the SS-5 to appear. 

I would also look for a newspaper article about the marriage of Emily and Weldon and see what clues it provides. Might be in the Baltimore Sun since she was from Baltimore.

You might also look for a birth announcement in the Baltimore Sun.

I have very little faith in social security applications or even marriage certificates for that matter. My great-grandmother not only cheated at checkers, but she also managed to have two entirely different sets of parents between the SS-5, the church record of the marriage and the county record of the marriage.

Get back to me with what you find and we can take it from there.

As an aside, the archives in Annapolis is the Maryland State Archives. There is no Annapolis County, it is Anne Arundel. And Baltimore County is not the same thing as Baltimore City, they have been separate since 1859 (that is off the top of my head, I think it is right). So if you did not look at Baltimore City records, you should do that.


He Died Mysteriously

My ancestor, Stamey Thomas Craver (1891-1918), died rather mysteriously and I'm trying to figure out his cause of death.  He lived his whole life in NC, and died in Forsyth County. His death certificate is on-line at and in the NC Archives but there is no cause of death!  He died November 7, 1918.  Family lore is that he was struck by a train.  That's all anyone remembers. I even checked the original death certificate at the NC Archives - it's just like on The cause of death area is blank and there's nothing on the back or penciled in or on the next or previous page.

I searched the newspapers on and I checked the Winston-Salem Journal on microfilm at the State Library in Raleigh and couldn't find any mention of accidents or Stamey just prior to or just after November 7. 

I emailed the NC Medical Examiner office, and their response is below -- they don't have any records that go that far back.

Any further ideas for how to solve this mystery?

The first thing that I do when I encounter a male death in the 1917 to 1919 timeframe is consult my database of known dead in World War One. There were five Cravers, but none from NC or named Thomas. Sometimes it pans out, mostly not.

I have a great uncle that was struck by a train. But there was a newspaper article and fortunately a piece of paper in his pocket with the name and address of his brother in Oklahoma. That was how the family learned of the death of Worton French Scott, hit by a train in California. Family lore has it that he rode a lot of trains.

Blank causes of death are not unheard of. Probably means that there was the expectation of a coroner's inquest. So you headed down the right path to find the coroner's report but probably went about it in the wrong way. A coroner would be responsible for providing his findings to the appropriate court. So in the absence of a report from the medical examiner I would look in Forsyth County court minutes. The county court, according to the "Guide to County Records in the North Caroline Archives" has court minutes from 1915 to 1931 on film. Can you figure out the name of the coroner at the time in the records. Try looking for him in newspaper articles. It could be that at the time of the death the person, because of the trauma of the accident could not be identified so the article is about an unidentified person being hit by a train.

Also in examining the possibilities for court records in the county there are two boxes of Railroad Records, 1870 - 1930. Can't imagine what they are, but they must be worth a look. I believe that you should also look for suit between the family and the railroad. Could it have been a wrongful death?

Looking at is only one of the places to look. And the Winston-Salem Journal is a good place also, but again only one of the places to look. There might have been more than one paper in Forsyth County at the time. So that should be examined to see what other papers should be consulted. It is also possible that he was struck by a train in some other place than Forsyth County and came home to die. So the accident was in one jurisdiction and the death in another. Where did he live in the county in relation to the railroad? There is a good NC railroad map for 1900 online, just Google it. It looks like two different rail companies ran through the county in that timeframe.

There is of course the possibility that the train that he was hit by was a foundry train. It looks like he was an iron moulder the year before his death. You should look for the company records and see if his death was a result of being hit by something at work. My own great-grandfather was a moulder who was hit in the head by something while he was working at the Newport News Shipyard in the early 1900s. 

It looks like he might have been working for Briggs-Shaffner Company and they still exist today. Now the question for the other readers is how did I know that he was a iron moulder and worked for Briggs-Shaffner in 1917?

Hope this helps.



Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Private corporation pension records

In a nutshell, I have a question for you on historic pension records for genealogy research. Specifically corporate pension records.  By way of background, I'm a librarian not a genealogist.  However, I did work for a time at a private-sector financial services firm that handled company pensions.  (For instance, AT&T -- one of their clients -- has provided employee pensions longer than Social Security has existed.) 
My question specifically is do you know of any resources, websites, or sources about company pension plans for family history research? The public and military pensions are great resources. I assume the corporate ones would be as well, if the information became public.   I have done a bit of searching, but can't find any myself.  That is outside of a couple railroad archives and I suspect a big roadblock will be private nature of these records.  Any information or suggestions would be most welcome.

I have no experience in these records, but as you are aware these large corporations have librarians and archivists (quiet as they might be). That is where I would start. Your point about private is well taken, they probably are going to be inaccessible, but you won't know til you try.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Soldier in 1840 in the census?

Where would I find a census record of a soldier supposedly stationed at Fort/Camp Jesup, Louisiana in 1840? I've searched for him on reading line by line without success.

A fort would be a somewhat permanent structure, a camp is a more impermanent place. In the case of Fort Jesup it was built in 1822. It was a fort and would remain so until about 1846 when it was abandoned. There is a state park there today, so the park ranger might be a good person to contact to see if they have a card file or something of that ilk that deals with soldiers at the fort.

It is likely for this time period you will not find a census record for a soldier at Fort Jesup. Military people are ignored a lot when it comes to census enumerators.

It would be a good idea to determine what units were at the fort in 1840. Your soldier could be a part of the fort headquarters staff or part of an infantry, cavalry or artillery regiment stationed there.

If you do not know what unit the soldier was in you can start on with the Register of Enlistments.

Regimental muster rolls are found on NARA microfilm for the years after 1821 when the Army reorganized into the alpha company - numbered regimental system.

So finding the soldier on the muster rolls would be like finding them on the census in that time period.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Henry Stone, Georgia Revolutionary War Soldier

Were there any applications for the 1832 Cherokee Land Lottery in Georgia?  If so, where are they located?

There were two lotteries in Georgia in 1832, one Land and one Gold. The land lottery was in the northern most part of the state and gave away the Cherokee Nation in 160 acre parcels. It was these two lotteries that caused the "Trail of Tears." 

The records that exist are found on Georgia State Archives microfilm and are divided into four sections each consisting of plats and grants.  The basic requirements for eligibility were that a person be a U.S. citizen for three years and a resident of Georgia for three years. Other qualifications allowed for additional draws. One of these was a Revolutionary War veteran who had not previously won was entitled to two draws.

The source that I use for untangling the confusion in my mind about the Georgia lotteries is Paul K. Graham's book, Georgia Land Lottery Research, available from the Georgia Genealogical Society. It is full of explanations about each lottery, research strategies, eligible participants and maps.

I'm trying to find out how Henry Stone qualified as an R.S. in the drawing.   In the index, he is listed as R.S. Sweat's Company in Ware County Georgia. This Company was Militia.

I have always thought that R.S. meant Revolutionary War Service. Still do, but several things bother me about Henry Stone. There is a Henry Stone in James A. Sweat's Company of Ware County, Georgia Militia. 

Now the problem. I find him in Sweat's Company in 1838. A little removed from the Revolutionary War.

It is unlikely that there is a Revolutionary War militia company from Ware County, as the county is not formed until 1824. It was created out of Appling County in 1818 and before that it was Creek Land. It was named Nicholas Ware who was born in 1769, not really old enough to name a county in 1776.

There is a muster roll in The South Georgia Historical and Genealogical Quarterly, v.1, #3, p. 12 that shows a Henry Stone in Captain James A. Sweat's Company, mustered in June 1838 and serving until August 1838 to repel the Indian invasion in Ware County.

There is a Henry Stone, with a Revolutionary War pension, but he comes out of Loudoun County, Virginia and into West Virginia. There is no indication that he made it to Georgia. There is also is a Henry Stone from Connecticut in the militia. The DAR Patriot Index, on page 2592 has three Henry Stone entries, these two and another public service Henry Stone. All are dead by 1833 and the Henry who is the last to die in 1833 is the one from Loudoun County, Virginia who dies in Monongalia County, [West] Virginia. So these are not candidates for Henry Stone of Ware County, Georgia in 1838. There is also no Henry Stone listed in the Census of Pensioners 1840. Of course because he is alive in 1838 does not mean that he is alive in 1840. I am unable to locate a Henry Stone in the 1840 census of Georgia, or in any other census prior to 1850 (a cursory look). There are two Henry Stones (one born in 1780) in Ware County in 1850 (a cursory look).

Georgia Revolutionary Soldiers & Sailors, Patriots & Pioneers, Volume 2, Laurens - Worth Counties does not include any Henry Stone entries. There are four patriots buried in Ware County.

My assumption is that this information comes from Knight's book, Georgia Roster of the Revolution which on page 325 begins a list of Revolutionary War Soldiers and the Widows of Revolutionary War
Soldiers listed in the Cherokee Land Lottery, 1838. Henry Stone is listed on page 330 as District 14, Section 2, Lot 12, Sweat's District, Ware County. This entry is the only Henry Stone in the book based on a full text search. District 14 is in the middle of Cherokee County a far piece from Ware County. It is also possible that it is from The Cherokee Land Lottery, but that book is not in my library, at the moment.

So here we have a source in isolation that says that Henry Stone of Ware County, in Sweat's District in 1838 is a Revolutionary War soldier. 

Was Henry Stone of Ware County a Revolutionary War Soldier?

I doubt it. 

Friday, February 10, 2012

It Just Doesn't Add Up, part 2

You have pointed out a possibility which seems likely - - -

1. The 1903 book's paragraph on "McDowell or McDole" (page 976) concludes with "In 1784 Thomas and William went on to Shirley Hill, Goffstown, where they parted, Thomas going to Vermont where he was never heard from after."   If this 1784 date is correct it seems a cinch that the three generations from original emigre to one of his sons to adulthood to marriage and family could NOT be sufficient to cover the years from "1630 or 1640" to "in 1784"!   


2. Also, with some three hours of reading and checking I have located on page 315 of "The History of Bedford" the following - which I had read several times before but had not connected the conflicting aspects of the statement:  "John McLaughlin and Mary, his wife, came from Ireland about 1735;" - obviously not close enough in date to support the trail of events from the genealogy on page 976.    

A better way would be to have gone to Google and found the book. It is

and download the text version (the PDFs don't seem to be searchable) and look for your names of interest.

3. Interestingly, I personally located the graves of William McDole "died 1784, at 65th year" therefore born 1719 and of Rosannah McDole "died 1791, 64th year" therefore born 1721.  A single 2" slab - wide enough to stretch across both graves - in Hillside Cemetery (Grasmere, NH).


4. Do you ascribe to what I've been told: That those two-graves-wide headstones use the wife's name BEFORE marriage?  If so, "Rosannah McDole" on her stone verifies her prior marriage to William's elder brother, Thomas . . . when the two McDole's, the wife of one and children of two of them arrived in Bedford, Rosannah was then the wife of Thomas and mother of his several children.

To ascribe to it would mean that I considered such rule of thumb to always be true. I don't believe that anything is always true. This tombstone exists in isolation and given that the last names match it does not mean much. You will need to find other evidence to support the possibility of the prior marriage.. 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

It Just does not add up

I would like to ask for your assistance in cracking a genealogical "brick wall" with which I have been struggling on and off for some 20 years. At age 97 I am starting to be concerned that I may not live long enough to see it broken.

I am not sure how best to proceed. Perhaps a brief description of what I have found and my understanding of the "brick wall" will suffice for now.

On page 975 of the "History of Bedford New Hampshire from 1737- published by the town - 1903" by the Rumford Printing Company of Concord, N.H. ... the page's heading reads "Genealogies - McDowell" and a sub-head of "McDowell or McDole".

The copy reads:

"This family comes from Scotch ancestry, which, like so many of our townspeople's ancestors, had settled in the north of Ireland (see McPherson.) A father and his two sons, whose names we have not learned, joined the Massachusetts Bay colony about 1630 or 1640. The father was killed in Boston in a singular manner, a tub of butter falling upon and crushing his chest. One son died soon after. The other son married and settled in Londonderry, where three children were born, Thomas, William, and Mary. Both parents died when the children were small, but they found a home with a Mr. McLaughlin."

The genealogy continues for another like number of lines, but the above is enough, I believe, for my query. I have searched Passenger Ship listings for years without locating one listing a father and two sons - under any name - sailing from any port to Boston or to other cities both north and south of
Boston - without locating a father and two sons.

I am anxious to confirm the story as told above - and thus either verify or find faulty the language quoted above.


So the time line as I see it is:

1630 or 1640 – Massachusetts Bay Colony, a father >30 lets say and two sons, >10 (old enough to travel)
Father dies, one son dies, remaining son marries at say age >20 or say 1650
1650 – 1660 Three children born of remaining son, Thomas, William, and Mary
1660 about parents die, children are small, live with McLaughlin.
Thomas and William serve in the Revolutionary War at the age of 110 or thereabouts.
So it is more likely that the 1630 to 1640 is a typo and that they arrived in 1730 to 1740 a full hundred years later and at a time much more consistent with Scots-Irish migration to the colonies.
So, I would say that the language is faulty and that going back from what you know and can prove about this family would be a better use of your time. The Bedford history can provide clues but it appears to have problems.

Revolutionary War Service

How did a person qualify for a Revolutionary War Soldier? Did they submit paperwork or any type of document?   Are there applications available for Revolutionary War Soldiers?  If so where are they located?

 A person did not really have to qualify to be a revolutionary war soldier. There were various kinds of service. You probably, before the war, spent time practicing in the militia. The age varied but generally it was 18 to 21. You could serve on multiple occasions through out the war. Then there was the Continental Line, either raised by a state at the request of the Continental Congress. Like the First Virginia Regiment or the Third Virginia Regiment. Then there were regiments raised by the Continental Congress, like the 23rd Continental Regiment. There were rifle regiments, there are artificers (guys who fixed stuff), and then there were also specialty regiments, like Lee's Legion. Then there were State Navies and the Continental Navy and Marines.  

For enlisted men there probably won't be paperwork for enlistment. They would be called enlistment papers. Some do exist, but I have no memory of every seeing but one and it was a recruit muster roll.

For officers, if there are officer appointments you will find reference to them in county court minutes for militia and in state archives, usually the executive branch records. For Continental Line you may find correspondence in the Papers of the Continental Congress available on Fold3. Appointment Letters or Warrants may also be found in the personal papers of the officer if they survive. I do not have any samples of any letters of appointment in my collection.

What is available for Revolutionary War soldiers are compiled military service records, company muster rolls, payrolls and other information. The best place to look for these if you are not in the National Archives is Fold3.