cilla1946 on Family Tree Circles
Journals and Posts
It seems the BROWN families of Berks and some surrounding counties in Pa. have been marrying each other for many years.
I have been researching my grandmother's family for several years and I was completly stuck for some time.I am still having some problems but I have made great progress.
The old trunk in my grandmothers basement in Dayton,Ohio was the beginning of my interest in the lives of my ancestors.I was just a girl of about eight years when she opened it to me the first time.My life changed that day over fifty years ago and I will be forever grateful to her for that!The many trinkets,clothes,high button shoes,pictures and so much more were the beginning of my thirst for things and people of long ago.
Her name was Clara Priscilla BROWN before she married Howard Thomas BRYANT in 1910.She always called herself Pennsylvania Dutch and told me her roots were in Berks County although she was born in Dayton.
I had no idea how many years,records,searches and dead ends I would stumble through to prove her stories were connected to Berks County.I have prevailed and now have proof that she did indeed have roots in Berks County through her mothers family who had been farmers,horse dealers and cattle merchants from the late 1700s. Mostly in Tulpehocken and Bethel Townships.Her gg grandfather Philip BRAUN was born in Tulpehocken Twp. around 1730 which is the earliest connection I have found to date.
My real problem which took me several months to solve, was the fact that her mother,Priscilla BROWN,married David Paul BROWN who was born in Rohrerstown,Lancaster County.I learned soon enough that Browns married Browns, Bashores married Bashores and Browns and Bashores married each other every day in early Pennsylvania!I discovered that my great grandmother Priscilla had a brother named Adam Keeney BROWN who married twice.Both times his bride was named Leah BASHORE born of different parents.What a tangled web of names,dates and marriages are a part of Pennsylvania genealogy!
Through countless hours of reading census after census,comparing one to another and sometimes sheer luck it is possible to make the correct connections.I have found that one should never depend on the realability of another persons work.Always double check and draw your own conclusions.Many times a tiny bit of information is all that I needed to find the correct family.Several times it came down to recognizing family names passed down through the generations or a story heard long ago that fit.
The journey that started with an old trunk has brought me to a place where I know who I am and where I come from.The satisfaction of that knowledge only makes me hunger for more.
For anyone who is seriously looking for their ancestors the key is persistance!
I am still having a bit of trouble chasing down some of the very earliest BROWN family .If anyone has connections with my family I would really appreciate knowing if you are farther along than I am.
I have been researching my Bryant ancestry for the better part of three years and I am no closer now than the day I began.There is nothing more frustrating than to have just enough information to set you on a quest that ends exactly where you started!
As a child I was very close to my grandfather who lived next door to my family on Illinois Ave.in Dayton,Montgomery County,Ohio.
HOWARD THOMAS BRYANT born Sept,24,1889 Dayton,Ohio
died Sept.14,1959 Dayton,Ohio
buried at Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum Dayton,ohio
His parents were:
LIBERTY S. BRYANT born Sept.24,1844 near Schnectady,New York
died Nov.14,1923 Dayton,Ohio
buried at Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum Dayton,Ohio
SARAH BELLE WARE born Feb.2,1848 Dayton,ohio
died June 22,1934 Dayton,Ohio
buried at Woodland Cemetery and Arboretum Dayton,Ohio
My dead end is Liberty!There are absolutely no records of any kind for him before he married Sarah Belle on Dec.26,1877 in Dayton,Ohio
He is a complete mystery.My grandfather gave the information for Liberty's death certificate where he stated he did not know who his grandparents were.
I have done hours of research in an effort to locate any record of the birth of Liberty to no avail.There were many Bryant births in New York during a five year span that I allowed myself 1843-1848 but none for a Liberty.
At one point while doing a search I resorted to looking at all male Bryant births anywhere in New York where there was a middle initial S.! Desperation on my part that only gave me another mystery to solve.
I stumbled across a WINFIELD S.BRYANT who had the aproximate birthdate although he has two different years listed.Born in New York in either 1844 or 1847 depending on which record you assume to be correct.In any event,this person enlisted in the army two times.Both enlistments occured in Syracuse N.Y.the first being Dec,23,1865 which lasted until he was discharged after being injured at Mobile in Sept.1868.
The same WINFIELD S. BRYANT enlisted again at Syracuse on July,17,1869 listing his profession as "soldier".After this record he disappears from any recorded records that I can find.
I did find him on the 1860 census in Syracuse living in the home of WILLIAM and MARY Jordan along with a sister MALVINA.
I also found a record of a Mary Bryant who applied for his pension in New York in 1891.She was listed as his mother on the application.
This made me wonder if this Mary and Mary Jordan are one and the same.
I am thoughly confused at this point.There are several reasons for my fixation on WINFIELD S. BRYANT
The first is the fact that he seems to disappear at some point after his enlisment in 1869
The second is the fact that LIBERTY S. BRYANT appears out of thin air in 1877 on a marriage record in Dayton.
The third is that I can find no death record for WINFIELD nor birth record for LIBERTY.
The fourth reason and one I find very interesting is that LIBERTY'S son CLIFFORD was a deserter from the army in Cuba during the Spanish American War.He was caught and dishonorably discharged after which he changed his date of birth and went to California where he lived the rest of his life.What caught my eye was that he changed his birthdate to Sept.24th.Could he have followed in LIBERTY'S footsteps?Did father and son both desert?
DID WINFIELD change his name to LIBERTY and begin a new life in Ohio? Will I ever figure this out?
If anyone ever reads this and has even a glimmer of help for me I would be so very grateful!At the very least I need someone to tell me that it is possible that I am on the right track.
I do love a good mystery but this one is almost more than I know how to deal with!
I am searching for death information on John George Brown b.1821 Lancaster County,Pa. Married Leah Culbertson and fathered 11 children with her.He was a master blacksmith in Rohrerstown.
When I first started doing genealogy research I found it sometimes nearly impossible to locate maiden names of long dead ancestors.Mainly because I wasn't going about it in the right way.
Often times I would copy from another family tree only to discover later that I had copied someone who had the wrong information.By doing this, mistakes are only perpetuated and the basic lineage is lost to the researcher.
After many mistakes and wrong information I learned that the only way to assure the correct information is to check,check again and the check again.
I learned to "think outside the box" so to speak.If you can't find a maiden name there are ways to research that quite often will give you what you are looking for.
I often start with
when doing this type of research.If you have enough basic information and a marriage was recorded,you can quite often find the maiden name of the bride along with her parents names.
If that doesn't help you can do a round about search by looking for marriage records or baptism records of a child of the couple at the same site.They will usually have the parents names listed including the mother's maiden name.Sometimes death certificates can be found there as well.
I have also had some success by Googling the surname+family associations.You would be surprised at how many family associations are out there!
I have also Googled just the husband's name + state + genealogy and found a wealth of information.When you use Google you just have to be very careful to double check any information that you find.
Once you find what you believe to be the correct maiden name of the wife in question you can go to the census records.Check to see if that person was born in the correct time period and would be the right age for the marriage.
If you are checking for someone who was born in the late 1700's or early 1800's you can't necessarily go by what state a person was born in.During that period of time people were pioneers and migrated far and wide.
Another thing I learned is to look at the original census record and not just a transcription.Often times a women with children lost her husband and remarried soon after.In this case a child would have a different last name from the mother which wouldn't usually be on the transcription.On the original census,step children are usually listed as such.
These are a few of the research techniques I have used successfully to locate maiden names.
This post may not intrest everyone but for those who have ancestors who may have lived in the Miami Valley of Ohio it just might be of help.
Many of my ancestors migrated to Ohio from Maryland or Pennsylvania and settled in the area known as the Miami Valley.The area covers several Ohio counties including Montgomery,Greene,Warren,Butler,Clark,Champaign,Shelby,Logan and several more.
While researching my family I came across a wonderful site that contains a wealth of information.I was able to read in history books about my own ancestors!They weren't famous in the strict sense of the word.Just ordinary settlers,businessmen and people looking for a new life.
I found out that my ancestors settled in Dayton as early as 1804,just a few years after the very first white man surveyed the area.
Maybe your ancestors are mentioned in the pages of one of the books located at (( http://www.daytonhistorybooks.com/index.html ))
Don't let the name of the site scare you off.There are many books and lots of information that cover all the areas of the Miami Valley.
If you have any connection to the area I hope you will check this site!
The surnames of my ancestors mentioned are Boogher,Booher,Ware,Bryant,Lehman and several others.
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