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Organizing Genealogical Records: the HOW and the WHAT

 

gold fields

And when you notice that men have disappeared in the 1850 census—right after the California ‘49er Gold Rush? They just might be there! In 1850 I missed David Markley and Samuel Croy. Samuel deserted his wife, Catherine Pugh Croy. David returned. Could be they headed to the goldfields like David’s brother, John. From Coshocton Tribune, Nov. 1924

Time to clean house—my genealogical house, that is. My goal:

 

  • Research brick walls
  • Review and update family sheets
  • Organize related files, both computer and paper

NO SMALL TASK! So I decided to take one grouping at a time.

First ones to tackle: the Ohio clan. Why? They had not been updated since 2015!

Also, the fourth of my historical fiction series, The Maggie Chronicles, delves deep into their nineteenth-century Ohio lives. The book deviates significantly from the Andrew Croy family’s real life, but my research of them revealed so much that was new or corrected that I thought I should take a closer look.

Deep in the weeds, a genealogist’s disease, I discovered much and, boy, did I organize!

Here is how:

  1. I printed out the family tree and sheets from my genealogy program to work from, numbering each of the children in birth order.
  2. All information on the children used that numbering system. i.e. In my paper files, I numbered each page of info. and paper clipped it together by date. In my computer files, I numbered each item followed by a year for each item in the parent folder. Here is an example of what that looked like. Screen Shot 2019-09-23 at 8.10.31 AM
  3. Then I set to work filling in blanks. Mind you, I’ve worked on this for ten years now and applied to a number of societies requiring detailed support so I have bunches of data. Nuts, I know. SO, HOW DO YOU ORGANIZE?

Just in case you want to get right to the chase, I’ve updated all my Ohio records. You can find them here. Ohio family sheets 9-15-2019

What I discovered—and didn’t.

  1. Two brick walls for these families are still unclimbed. HELP ANYONE?
  • HENRY SMITH: I think he is probably the brother of EVERHART SMITH (who married Selena Payne, sister of Henry’s wife Sephronia Payne…so you’d figure) BUT I can’t find a direct link yet.
  • MARGARET PUGH: wife of Jacob Croy. I made up a family in my next book, just ‘cause, but I cannot verify my guess that she is the daughter of John Pugh, likely son of Aaron.
  1. The MARKLEY family (David, Selena, and Catherine) that married into the ZERAH PAYNE family (Selena, Samuel, and Michael), always fascinated me. Another disease of a genealogist is digging deep where you don’t belong. But, hey, if you are a Markley descendent you might be interested. So I wondered:
  • Who was/were their ancestors, and—Jackpot! I found an article on an ADAM MARKLEY who had a very large family and settled in Bethlehem Township, Coshocton County, Ohio. After some digging, I found the probate records (both available on Ancestry) of Adam and his son, father of those children, FREDRICK MARKLEY.
  • Also, the aftermath of the Knox County, Indiana tragedy where I estimate at least seven Markley/Payne children died in a ten-year period after their arrival. The children of SAMUEL AND SELENA MARKLEY PAYNE were distributed: CATHERINE MARKLEY PAYNE, whose husband Michael also died, took in Amy. Daughter Rachel, then nineteen, returned to Coshocton County with Eliza and Burd. Their eldest James was already married and established in Knox County.
  1. Again digging way too deep, I clarified (or complicated) the lives of the children of Calvin and Sarah Angeline (Payne) Smith Croy.
  • A correction for CHARLES HENRY CROY that eliminated a wife (Watch out! There are more souls out there with the same name and similar birthdates that you might think!)
  • The addition of a second wife for WILLIAM DUNCAN CROY (DELLA SLAUGHTER) She eventually married William’s mother Sarah’s sister Selena’s son, EARLE UFFNER.
  • A little more information on DAVID HARRISON CROY and his complicated marriage history, including a new birth certificate for his son Daniel, which gives his father as an Everett McCoy. David always claimed this boy as his and Louise Marie, aka Billie Lou Moody (among other names) gave a lot of different/questionable versions of information on her documents.

Check out this post for more of the convoluted.

So, I’m brain dead, cross-eyed, and exhausted. Tomorrow—I return an Ohio in the 1800s and the imaginary world of my making.

About croywright

The author, a writer of history and historical fiction, always yearned to go back in time.

2 responses »

  1. Pugh – Have you looked into the Pugh family of Palmer Twp., Washington County? Very close to Fairfield and Decatur twps. A Pugh was a soldier in Civil War. See Palmer Twp. chapter of “Rolls of Honor” for his entry. I don’t recall where he was born, but perhaps there is a connection with Margaret Pugh’s family.

    Reply
    • I have and the Pugh’s of Greene County, from which I believe that soldier’s father Benjamin came. I am more convinced that, since Jacob and Margaret married in Carroll County, 1830, and lived in that same year next to Jacob’s uncle, Mathias, who had married a Pugh, AND next to a John Pugh whose 1820 census record’s had a likely match to Margaret, that John is her father. I just can’t find much of anything to verify it. I appreciate you always thinking!

      Reply

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