52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Sarah Davis, neé McCane

Another of my maternal 3rd great-grandmothers was Sarah McCane Davis. I have very few documentary records for her life. None of them is sufficient alone to warrant giving her a name. Here are the records that lead to her name:

The marriage record of my 2nd great-grandmother, Delila or Delia Davis Harmon, has a document signed by Morris Davis giving permission for his daughter, Delilah Davis, to marry Thomas Harmon.

The Virginia death index for Delia Harmon lists her parents as Morris and Sarah Davis.(1)

A marriage bond image (2) was available through FamilySearch.org for Morris Davis and Sarah McCane on April 1 1812 in Surry County, Virginia, a county just across the border south of Grayson County, North Carolina, which provides the maiden name for Morris’ wife/Delilah’s mother. DAVIS Morris & McCANE Sarah Marriage Bond 1812 Surry County, North Carolina (2)The bond was jointly signed by Morris Davis and David McCane; the relationship between David McCane and Sarah is unknown. He could have been her father, her brother or perhaps an uncle.

Tax records and census records for Morris Davis indicate he and his wife and children lived in Grayson County, Virginia until the county boundaries changed in 1842 when the area where they lived was changed to Carroll County.

It was only in the 1850 census (3) that a name was once again given to Morris Davis’ wife: Sarah. The below clip of the census begins with their son, William and his wife, followed by Morris and Sarah and three of their younger children: Nancy, Jane and Morris.1850

 

Sarah and Morris were the parents of eight known children: David (1814), Elizabeth (1815), Delila (1818), Sarah (1820), Nancy (1825), William (1827), Jane (1835), and Morris (1838).

 

By the 1860 census, Morris was enumerated with his daughter and son-in-law in Clinton County, Ohio; Sarah was not enumerated and her death is assumed. It is not known if Sarah made the move to Clinton County and then died or if Morris made the move to Clinton County following the death of his wife. No records have, as yet, been located for either Morris or Sarah.

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(1) “Virginia, Deaths and Burials, 1853-1912,” index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/X5RV-LNY : accessed 16 Nov 2014), Delia Harman, 05 Nov 1888; citing Carroll, Virginia, reference p91c38; FHL microfilm 2056976.

(2) “North Carolina, County Marriages, 1762-1979 ,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11664-134147-82?cc=1726957 : accessed 16 Nov 2014), 004364145 > image 75 of 686; county courthouses, North Carolina.

(3) Year: 1850; Census Place: District 11, Carroll, Virginia; Roll: M432_939; Page: 359B; Image: 277

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.

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52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #42 – Elizabeth Wilkes

Another of my 3rd great-grandmothers on the my mothers side was Elizabeth Wilkes Smith. Little is known of Elizabeth other than the unsubstantiated report that her maiden name was Wilkes and that she was the wife of Wyatt Tansel Smith. Some family historians have a marriage date for Elizabeth and Wyatt of February 14, 1807 in Granville County, North Carolina; however, none of them has listed or provided a source for that date and I have not yet found any documentation to support it.

An 1820 census record for Wiat Smith in Guilford County, North Carolina listed the family unit and one adult male, one adult female, two males under 10, five females under 10 and one female between 10 and 20. I am currently aware of the name of only one of the sons: Allen Journal Smith (1815). The names of the daughters were Gilly Ann (1807), Piety Thomas (my 2nd great-grandmother born about 1810), Prudence (1812), Martha (1815), Beda Elsy (1818) and Jacksy Jane (1819).

1820The 1830 census was for Grayson County, Virginia, which indicated they had moved from North Carolina sometime between 1820 and 1830, probably closer to the later date because tax lists didn’t include Wyatt until after 1830. Another son was born between 1825 and 1830 – Wyatt (1828). There were tick marks for seven females and the oldest, Gilly Ann, had married in 1827, which means two additional females were added. I do not currently know their identities.1830The 1840 census, still in Grayson County, indicated the older children had left the household and both Wyatt and a wife [not identified by name] were still living. The oldest and unidentified son had either died or established his own household and Piety Thomas and Martha married, accounting for the five daughters and two sons still at home.1840 The 1850 and 1860 census records can be seen on the blog about Wyatt, which do list Elizabeth by name and by that time none of the children were still residing at home.

No birth, marriage, death, burial, land or probate records have as yet been located for Elizabeth, so all that is known about her is her name and the names of some of her descendants.

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #41 – Wyatt Tansel Smith – Miller and Wheelwright

Another 3rd great-grandfather on my mother’s side [there are eight of them all total] was Wyatt Tansel Smith. Wyatt was born in North Carolina about 1788. An 1820 census record showed him living in Guilford County, North Carolina along with his wife, two sons and six daughters.

The overwhelming majority of my ancestors were farmers so any time I find another occupation listed, I am interested to learn more. The 1840 census had a breakdown of what the people in Wyatt’s household did and although there was only one adult male, their were tickmarks for both Agriculture and Manufacturing. The 1850 census listed his occupation as miller, which would have been considered a type of manufacturing, at least for census purposes. 1850 Miller

A grain or grist miller was someone who ground grain between stones, which would turn wheat or corn into flour or meal. A sawmill miller was one who worked with lumber. Since the 1860 census indicated Wyatt was a wheelwright – one who made wheels from wood – it may be more likely that Wyatt’s mill was a sawmill rather than a grist mill, although there is an online article about Mabry’s Mill along the Blue Ridge Parkway that was a combination grist or grain mill, sawmill and wheelwright business, so Wyatt could have also been a jack-of-all-trades. 1860 wheelwright

Articles about the wheelwright trade indicated the successful wheelwright required “strength, ingenuity, and the talents of both a carpenter and a blacksmith. Precise measuring skills are mandatory.”(1) Because wheel making could be a two or three person job, the wheelwright may have worked with a blacksmith or other assistant to get the job done. The wheelwright was a tradesman who built or repaired wheels for carts or wagons.(2) In the early years, he may have cut his own lumber, which meant he had to understand the qualities of the different types of wood because different parts of a wheel had to endure different types of stresses and would need a different type of wood to endure and be a quality wheel. Eventually, wheelwrights began purchasing the lumber they would use rather than to cut their own.

In making wheels, the wheelwright began at the center with the hub to which he would attach and hand carved spokes, which would then be attached to a perfectly crafted and perfectly round outer wooden rim.

Wyatt is thought to have been the son of John “Pepper” Smith and Mary “Millie” English. Since an 1870 census for him has not been found, it is assumed he died between 1860 and 1870. No birth or death dates or place of burial are currently known.

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1. http://www.history.org/almanack/life/trades/tradewhe.cfm

2. http://tangledtrees.blogspot.com/2009/03/occupation-wheelwright.html

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.

 

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #40 – Jacob Lineberry (1770-1852)

My 3rd great-grandfather on my mother’s side was Jacob Lineberry II [or perhaps fourth if you count the two Jacob’s before him who spelled their last name as Leyenberger]. This Jacob was born in Guilford County, North Carolina in about 1770 in the area that would become Randolph County in 1779. While most of his relatives stayed in North Carolina, Jacob moved to what became Carroll County, Virginia, probably sometime between 1790 and 1800 – he was not listed in the 1799 tax rolls for Grayson County, Virginia but was listed for 1800 tax rolls [Carroll County wasn’t formed until 1842].

He married the former Mary Fanning about 1799. Most of the family historians list their marriage as occurring in Randolph County, North Carolina, perhaps due, in part, to the family history written by W.S. Lineberry where he stated “Jacob married and moved to Virginia …” However, land grant records would indicate Mary’s father was already living in Grayson County, Virginia by 1796, which leads me to suspect they may have married in Grayson County rather than Randolph County; no actual records have been located as yet.

The website, New River Notes, has a page with links to ‘Enumerations’ with a transcription of early Grayson County tax lists for a number of years. In 1800, Jacob was listed as Jacob Linbery with tax liability for one male over 21 and one horse. The 1805 land tax list showed Jacob’s tax liability as 154 acres with a value of $50 and a tax liability of 24 cents. The 1810 tax list for Jacob was for one white adult male, zero slaves and two horses. 1813 taxes were again for one white adult male, no slaves, but now four horses for a total liability of 64 cents. 1817 was for the same one adult and four horses with a tax liability of 72 cents. The 1824 assessment indicated Jacob and Mary’s oldest son, Francis, was living and taxed on his own with one horse, while Jacob’s assessment was for three adult white males and three horses – a total tax liability of 36 cents. By 1835, Jacob and all his sons were living in separate, taxable, households or taxed in Jacob’s household: two adult males and two horses for 12 cents.

The 1820 census lists tick marks for two adults plus five males and six females under 25. One of the six females [age between 16 and 25] is not accounted for in the known names of their children. Their known children were: Francis (1801), Catherine (1803), Jacob P. and George (about 1806), Joseph (1807), Elizabeth (1809), Martha ‘Patsy’ (1812), Mary (1814), Lurana Susany (1815), Jeremiah (1817) and Euphama (1820). 1820Each of the census records indicates Jacob and Mary were born in different decades. The 1830 census record lists a female child born between 1825 and 1830; if Mary were born nearer the 1780 year, it is possible this could be their daughter, although it is also possible she could be a granddaughter or even a neighbor or other relative. 1830The 1840 census has tick marks for Jacob and Mary and their youngest son, Jeremiah. Jeremiah married in 1845, but the 1850 census lists both Jacob and Jeremiah as widowed and, three-year-old Mary, one of Jeremiah’s daughters living in the household.

Jacob died in Carroll County, Virginia on January 17, 1852 and is buried in the Old Fanning Cemetery. LINEBERRY Jacob HS @ Fanning Frost Cemetery 1871-1852

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #39 – Mary Fanning

My 3rd great-grandmother was Mary Fanning Lineberry, daughter of John Fanning, Sr. and Elizabeth Ann Lipps. She was born about 1771 in North Carolina and died about 1846 in Carroll County, Virginia.

Little is known of her other than her name and general years of her birth and death. This is quite typical of a woman’s life in the time period prior to the 1850 census when they could at least have their name written on a census but since she died about 1846 she was never recorded on a census.

She married Jacob Lineberry IV, probably in Grayson County, Virginia, about 1800. She and Jacob had at least eleven children: Francis (1801), Catherine (1803), Jacob P. [my 2nd great-grandfather] (1805), George (1806),  Joseph (1807), Elizabeth (1809), Martha ‘Patsy’ (1812), Mary ‘Polly’ (1814), Lurana (1815), Jeremiah (1817), and Euphamia (1820).

When her father died in about 1813, she inherited a share of her father’s land grant. The property was originally in Grayson County but was in the area that became Carroll County in 1842 when county borders were realigned. Jacob purchased the remainder of the land from her brothers and she and Jacob lived there from about 1813 for the rest of their lives. Both her father and her husband are buried on the land so it seems likely that she and her mother are buried there as well.

 

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – #25 Morris Davis

Morris Davis was my 3rd great-grandfather [my mother Virginia Lineberry Willis > Jacob Lineberry > Rhoda Harmon Lineberry > Delila Davis Harmon > Morris Davis]. As is the case for most of my more distant ancestors, I have more questions than I have document-supported answers.

He was born in Virginia, perhaps in Wythe County, to Charles and Miriam Carr Davis about 1792. He married Sarah McCane in Surry County, North Carolina on April 1, 1812, according to the date of the marriage bond.

The 1820 Grayson County, Virginia tick mark census indicated that, in the time between their marriage and the census, Morris and Sarah had one son and three daughters [David, Elizabeth, Delila and Sarah].

The 1830 Grayson County census listed the same children above plus one male [William], and three as yet unidentified sons and one more daughter [Nancy].  The next decade added two more children [Jane and Morris].

The 1850 census for Carroll County, Virginia [remember the 1842 creation of Carroll County out of Grayson County  I mentioned in an earlier blog] is the first census for which details such as name, age, occupation, property value, birth location and literacy were made available. Morris was listed as 56, a farmer with property value of $250 who was born in Virginia and could read and write.

There was a fairly large migration of people from Virginia to Ohio to what was known as Virginia Military District Land Grants. This was land set aside as bounty land for military service. Morris purchased 120 acres in 1837 and another 40 acres in 1838.

By the 1860 census in Clinton County, Ohio, Morris was enumerated in the home of his daughter Sarah Summers, son-in-law, and grandchildren but without Sarah his wife.1860 Ohio

I have no information to identify when the families moved to Ohio and I have not found death or burial records for either Morris or Sarah his wife and no records past the 1860 census.

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #24 – Delila Davis Harmon

One of my four second great-grandmothers on my mother’s side was Delila Davis Harmon. Delila was one of eight known children of Morris and Sarah McCane Davis born about 1820 in Grayson County Virginia. She married Thomas Benjamin Harmon in Grayson County on August 23, 1838. It’s oftentimes difficult to determine maiden names of women this early in our country’s history but Martha Fontaine Patterson uploaded on Delila’s FindAGrave memorial a copy of the permission to marry signed by her father [I provided a link to the page with the permission and marriage bond in my blog for Thomas].Davis PermissionI have spelled her name in this blog as Delila but there is often no consistency in early records in the way a name was spelled. Many of the people who recorded events listed names as they heard them; additionally, people often went by nicknames and used them in official documents. Her name in the marriage permission document above is Delila but the 1850 census listed her as Lila while the 1870 census spelled her name Delilah and the 1880 census spelled it Delila. The 1860 census has not yet been found. The 1850 ‘Lila’ was apparently what she was called; in fact, with the propensity for people in the South to pronounce the ending ‘a’ with a ‘y’ sound, she may have been called Liley (with a long I sound) or perhaps Lillie.

Delila and Thomas had eleven known children [censuses were recorded every ten years and provide one of the best listings of the children in a family; however, birth records were scanty and children may well have been born and died during the decade between censuses and consequently missed]. My great-grandmother, Rhoda Harmon Lineberry, appears to have been their 5th child. Because I named the children in the blog about her husband, I won’t list them again.

Delila died at about 68 years of age on November 5, 1888 in Hillsville, Virginia. The listed cause of death was dropsy, an old term for edema, which could have been a symptom of several health issues, including heart failure. She was buried in the Melton Cemetery in the Mount Zion Community of Carroll County; there is a FindAGrave memorial for her with some details and a photo of her headstone as well as the marriage permission and bond.

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This blog was prepared as a part of Amy Johnson Crow’s  No Story Too Small 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge.