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Finally! Missouri!

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missouri

A close-up shot of northern Missouri counties showing Chariton on the left and Ralls on the right.

The Final Chapter in my Missouri Bound Musings

The ancestors of Gillian Virginia Morris, my grandmother’s maternal grandmother, made it to Missouri! That is, if you have followed my previous posts.

To discover how her parents, Peter Philander and Elizabeth Ely Morris, met, we must dig into Place. I use a capital “P” for Place because I consider it key to all historical research. And to understand Place, you need maps, and I do LOVE maps.

But first, a recap:

  • Part 1 and 2: Thomas H. and Malinda Salling[i] Morris(s) moved from Rockbridge County, Virginia by about 1845 and settled in Chariton County, Missouri with their children. One of those children was Gillian’s father Peter Philander Morris.
  • Part 3 and 4: Isaac Ely and Mary Polly Judy Ely travelled from Clark/Montgomery County, Kentucky to Missouri with their children. One of their children was William Scott Ely. They arrived with Isaac’s father Benjamin Ely in about 1820, and bought land in Ralls County, Missouri in 1824.
  • Part 5: Hankerson Adam Utterback and Catherine Pence Utterback moved from Boone County, Kentucky to Ralls County, Missouri via Clay County, MO by about 1824.[ii] In 1829, his daughter Rebecca Virginia Utterback bought land in Ralls County, as well.
  • Part 1: While not a direct ancestor, an important connection is John Salling brother of Malinda Salling Morris. He moved from Rockbridge County, Kentucky to Ralls County, Missouri by 1833.

William’s father, Isaac, had purchased various sections in Township 55 Range 6 of Ralls County.Ralls tsp 55 R6 Elys

Rebecca’s father, Hankerson owned 160 acres in Township 55 Range 7 Section 33, shown below. Note that, geographically, the map below would be to the left of the map above. The bend in the Salt River left incomplete above is completed below.Ralls 55-7 Page_49.jpg Utterbacks Rall county

Living so near, it is clear how William Scott Ely and Rebecca Utterback met and married.[iii] Rebecca had her land and William bought land nearby.[iv]

But how did their child, Elizabeth Ely (her gravestone says Eliza), meet and marry Peter Philander Morris, of Chariton County? How far apart are Chariton County and Ralls County? The map at the top of this post is a close-up of Missouri from the excellent map resource at the State Historical Society of Missouri.[v]According to the map’s scale for mileage, the two counties are about 60 miles apart (Google Maps confirms this). Sixty miles is a fair distance to travel in the 1800’s.

The key, of course, is Peter’s uncle John Salling. The Morris family of Chariton County likely visited the Salling family in Ralls County. So how close was John Salling to the William Scott Ely’s homestead? The plat maps for Ralls County[vi] found at the Missouri Digital Heritage site gives us a clue. I took the land office records[vii] of the families previously mentioned, a spreadsheet of which can be found hereRalls County, Missouri Land Records, and compared it to the plat maps of 1878. Here is a close-up of Sections 54-7. (You saw 55-6 and 55-7 previously.) I’ve circled the land ownership of William and Rebecca Utterback Ely and put a rectangle around the property of John Adam Salling so you can see how near they lived to one another.[viii]Ralls County Tnp 54 R7 copy

A visit, a soirée, a chance encounter? Who knows, but Elizabeth Ely and Peter Philander Morris met—and they married. I have not found a marriage certificate or the exact date of their marriage, but the death certificate of their first child, Thomas, born on June 25, 1856, names them as his parents.[ix] Place…an important push-pin in family history.

[i] Also Sally and Salley
[ii] George H. Utterback, son of Hankerson, helped sponsor the atlas listed below and indicated 1834 as his year of settlement.
[iii] Some say September 24, 1829, but I have not yet been able to verify this.
[iv] See a spreadsheet of the land purchases of all the Ralls County families here.Ralls County, Missouri Land Records
[v] The full map is available here. http://digital.shsmo.org/cdm/singleitem/collection/Maps/id/92
[vi] AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORICAL ATLAS OF RALLS COUNTY, MISSOURI Compiled, drawn and published from Personal Examinations and Surveys BY EDWARDS BROTHERS, OF MISSOURI. General Office: 209 S. FIFTH STREET, PHILADELPHIA, PA. 1878 http://cdm.sos.mo.gov/cdm/compoundobject/collection/mocoplats/id/2716/rec/1
[vii] Ancestry.com. U.S. General Land Office Records, 1776-2015 [various]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008.
[viii] Note that John A. Salling died in September 1878 based on Letters of Administration, 1849-1907; Author: Missouri. Probate Court (Ralls County); Probate Place: Ralls, Missouri
His land now appears to belong to his son Samuel I Salling, his daughter Susan, who married Charles H. Phillips, and Stephen Scobee, the father of Ely Scobee, who married John’s daughter Rebecca and died of Typhoid fever six weeks later (based on a find a grave report).
[ix] http://www.sos.mo.gov/images/archives/deathcerts/1928/1928_00021911.PDF

 

Missouri Bound Part 5: The Utterbacks

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9-When-Harry-Met-Sally-quotes

A side note: I am neck deep in my fiction! I just finished the first edit of my upcoming American Historical Fiction novel set in Pennsylvania and Ohio after the Revolutionary War. I’m editing my second novel based on records of New Haven Colony. AND I’m researching my third, which takes place in the area around Bennington, Vermont during the American Revolution. Oh…almost forgot, I just finished a short prequel to my upcoming book #1.

I had to pull my fingers loose from my fictional world and found myself procrastinating in a whirlpool of research and digression. One thing lured me back—the chance to pull out all my plat maps to explain how Harry met Sally (well, really, how Peter met Elizabeth).

Before I can do that, however, I must get the Utterback’s to Missouri. So, with the worst of puns, I am utterly back.

The Utterback Family

The last of the pertinent families to the ancestry of Gillian Virginia Morris(s) Ison is the Utterback family. The majority of the information regarding birth, death, marriage, and progeny comes from the much-cited Utterback, William Irvin, The history and genealogy of the Utterback family in America, 1622-1937. Huntington, W. Va.: Gentry Bros. Printing Co., 1937. I cannot verify this information but admit to including it in the family sheets for Gillian’s ancestors, found here. Here is what I can verify:

  • Herman (Harmon) Otterbach (later the name was spelled Utterback) arrived in Virginia in 1714, from Musen in Westphalia, Germany. He came with his family and eleven other families. They came to work the iron mills at Fort Germanna, Virginia under the sponsorship of Governor Spotswood in 1714. By 1720, the families, disenchanted by their treatment, relocated to Germantown, Virginia.[i]
  • Herman Otterbach/Utterback came to Virginia with his sons John Philip, John, and daughters, one of which was Anna Margrete[ii]Little Fork culpepper Cty, VA Otterbach
  • Son, John Philip Utterback appeared on Rent Rolls 1751-1754, Prince William County, VA; 1764, Culpeper County, VA.
  • Henry, son of the above John Philip and father of Hankerson Utterback, died by January 1799, based on index of probate for Culpeper County, Virginia (The actual record does not exist as far as I can tell. I went through each page of the actual records and there is a huge hole for this time period. Also checked Library of VA Chancery Records for the county and neighboring counties.)

As our land gained footing a separate nation, records expanded and more research information is available. Consequently, the records for Hankerson Utterback are more numerous.

  • Hankerson Utterback shows up on the 1810 census for Boone County, Kentucky and again on the 1820 census for Burlington, Boone Cty, KY. Marriages of his children Adam (m. 1814), Joseph (m. 1823), and Elizabeth (m. 1823) are all documented for Boone County in the Kentucky Compiled Marriages on Family Search.
  • By 1827 Hankerson had moved to Clay County, Missouri[iii]and by 1828, he had bought land in Ralls County, Missouri.

So, now Hankerson Utterback and his family (I’ve found records for Adam, Joseph, George, Rebecca, Abraham, Elizabeth, and Emily) have made it to Missouri. (I seem to always set myself down in the past like it’s the present.)

But what is monumental to me, is that on April 1, 1829,[iv] Rebecca Utterback purchased a deed for land in Ralls County, five months before her September 24, 1829, marriage to William Scott Ely. Monumental, first, because the land is deeded to a woman, likely a way for her father to protected her future. But monumental, second because of how the plot of land figures prominently in how Gillian’s father, Peter Philander Morris, meets his future wife!

I love land records! Next week’s post finally gets to the place all these Missouri Bound ramblings were heading—Ralls County and Chariton County, and how “the twain shall meet.”

Now, until next week, I dive back in…to editing my fictional past. Maybe a post on editing is coming soon???

[i] Raleigh Travers Green. Genealogical and Historical Notes on Culpeper County, Virginia. Embracing a Revised and Enlarged Edition of Dr. Philip slaughter’s History of St. Mark’s Parish. Culpeper, Va, USA: Regional Publishing Co., 1900. Ancestry.com [accessed 11-19-13]
[ii] Filby, P. William, ed. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s. Farmington Hills, MI, USA: Gale Research, 2012. Source Bibliography: Breitbard, Gail. Some Early Virginia Immigrants. In The Lost Palatine, no. 5 (1982), pp. 4-5. Ancestry. Com [accessed 5-14-17]
[iii] https://glorecords.blm.gov/details/patent/default.aspx?accession=MO0120__.371&docClass=STA&sid=ec205vrk.qql#patentDetailsTabIndex=2 https://glorecords.blm.gov/details/patent/default.aspx?accession=MO0260__.158&docClass=STA&sid=ec205vrk.qql
[iv] https://glorecords.blm.gov/details/patent/default.aspx?accession=MO0260__.323&docClass=STA&sid=e0k0rsad.td4#patentDetailsTabIndex=2