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YES! Jacob Croy is the son of Andrew Croy

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signatures of Parent and son

Together on a legal transaction with information on their literacy. (On another document it shows Susanna signing with her mark.) I was pretty excited to see this!

Parents and children care for each other. They support each other. They help each other in their undertakings. Long ago they worked together and lived with each other far into adulthood. As now, when things were tough grandparents cared for grandchildren, and they often bought and sold property together. Love and support (and, yes, its opposite) are human qualities, past and present.

I went to Ohio hoping to find evidence that Jacob Croy was the son of Andrew Croy. Mind you, I knew it was true. But, for genealogists, proximity, as in living in the same place and even the same house, is not definitive proof of a familial relationship. Still, at some point, can’t all that coinciding evidence be considered “proof?”

I knew a great deal before my trip. (Rehashed below.[i]) From this information, I surmised that Duncan, Michael, Richard, Samuel, and my great-great grandfather Jacob were sons of Andrew. Various age estimates fit the 1820 census information. Referencing only my source information, the names of two sons, one born 1811-1820 and another born 1826-1830 were unknown. The names of two daughters born 1811-1815 and 1821-1825 were also unknown. Now all but one of those names can be confirmed through evidence.

So, what new documentation did I find?

  • Mary Croy married Robert Russell on 14 February 1835 in Carroll County.[ii]
  • Mary died in Carroll County of consumption 11 June 1871. She was born in Jefferson County to “parents Andrew and Susannah Croy.”[iii]
  • Then there was this lovely obituary.[iv] “Matthew Russell who died at the dawning of the 29th day of August 1881 was born May 27th 1818, on the farm on which he died­–his father having entered that piece in 1812…Mr. Russell was united in marriage to Miss Margaret Croy on the 18th of August, 1840, and leaves his widow and six children (we believe all the family) to morn his departure…”
  • And this gem from a synopsis of an “aged newspaper clipping owned by Ed Norris of Fresno [Ohio]…The mill was purchased by Andy Croy, father of the late David Croy in 1839 and operated by him for 16 years.”[v] I found the deed in which Andrew sells that land on the 25th of March 1856. It outlines the history of the property including the previous date of purchase and ownership.[vi]
  • Finally, how about two couples named Croy selling, together, a piece of land in Coshocton County? The document includes the names of both Andrew and Jacob and their wives. And the land is adjacent to, and in the same White Eyes Township and same section and range, S6 R 5, as the land with the mill.[vii] (See photo above)

I think I have a vast body of proof to substantiate my claim. The two daughters are Mary and Margaret whom Andrew and Susannah went to live with after selling the mill. The youngest son is David, who stayed in Coshocton County all his life. The last son…well there is always more history to discover.

What I do know is close to heart. Family takes care of each other, supports each other…or not. The choice matters. Andrew and Susannah chose to foster that connection. And Jacob was their son.

[i]
  • Mathias Croy married Susan Pugh on 4 January 1816 in Brown Township, Stark/Carroll County[i], Ohio (He and Andrew are the only Croy males of age to be Jacob’s father in Stark/Carroll County. Jacob was born 6 March 1810.)
  • Mathias Croy, according to Stark County Tax Records from 1826-1830, lived continuously in Rose Township
  • On the 1820 census, Andrew Croy and a female, born 1776-1794, lived in Brown Township, Stark/Carroll County with 2 boys born 1801-1810 and 4 boys and 1 girl born 1811-1820.
  • Andrew and family, according to the Stark County Tax Records from 1826-1830, continued living in Brown Township through 1828.
  • Andrew bought land in Rose Township, Stark/Carroll County, Ohio on 2 April 1829.
  • Jacob Croy married Margaret Pugh in Stark/Carroll County, Ohio on 5 April 1830.
  • On the 1830 census, four Croy families lived in Rose Township (one township away from Brown), Stark/Carroll County, Ohio:
    • Andrew and a female, born 1776-1794, with one boy, born 1801-1810, 1 boy and 1 girl, born 1811-1815, 1 girl, born 1821-1825 and 1 son, born 1826-1830
    • Duncan and a female, born 1801-1810, with 1 boy and 1 girl, born 1826-1830
    • Jacob and a female, born 1801-1810
    • Mathias and a female, born 1776-1794, 1 boy and 1 girl born 1816-1820, 1 boy and 1 girl born 1821-1825, 1 boy and 1 girl born 1826-1830
  • Andrew Croy paid taxes on lot 18 in Morges, Rose Township Ohio from 1833-1838.
  • Jacob Croy paid taxes on a lot 17 in Morges, Rose Township from 1833-1835
  • Michael Croy paid taxes on lot 24 in Morges, Rose Township from 1833-1835.
  • On the 1840 census, two Croy families lived in White eyes Township, Coshocton County, Oh
    • Andrew Croy born 1871-1880, lived with a female born 1781-1790, 1 male born 1801-1810, 1 boy and 1 girl born 1821-1825, 1 boy born 1831-1835, and 1 girl born 1836-1840.
    • Michael Croy born 1801-1810 with a female born 1811-1820, a girl born 1831-1835, and a boy born 1836-1840.
  • On the 1840 census, two Croy families with the head of household named Jacob lived in Coshocton County
    • Jacob of Washington County who had lived in the township and county on previous census records since 1820 at least…so not our Jacob.
    • Jacob Croy born 1801-1810 lived in Mill Creek Township, Coshocton County with a female and male born 1811-1820, 1 boy and 1 girl born 1831-1835, and 1 boy born 1836-1840.
  • One Croy, Richard, born 1811-1820 with a female born 1815-1821 and a boy under 5.
  • Samuel Croy married Catherine McClish 10 February 1837.
[ii] Robert Russell and Mary Croy marriage record, 14 February 1835; Carroll county Genealogical Library, 24 2nd St NE, Carrollton, Ohio; V I Marriage Records, pg 38.
[iii] Mary Russell death record, 11 June 1871; Carroll County Genealogical Library,24 2nd St NE, Carrollton, Ohio; Record of Deaths, Probate Court, pg 36-38, # 98.
[iv] Matthew Russell obituary; Carroll Chronicle, Carrollton, Ohio, 2 September 1881; Carroll County Genealogical Library, pg 35.
[v] Coshocton County Chapter of OGS, White Eyes Township, Coshocton County: Cemeteries…Brief History… Vol. XV: “The First Grist Mill 1832 on White Eyes Creek pg 174.
[vi] Deed: Andrew Croy to David Reed; Coshocton County Deed Book, V 31, Pg 754; Coshocton County Records Office, Coshocton, OH.
[vii] Deed: Jacob & Andrew Croy to William Adams; Coshocton County Deed Book, V 23, Pg 421; Coshocton County Records Office, Coshocton, OH.

Happy 2015

I decided to do this just for fun. Once I sunk neck deep into the exercise I began to doubt my concept of fun! Anyway, just to put the new year into a genealogical perspective:

Today I have direct family ranging in age from 7 to 95, all living in California,

BUT…

One hundred years ago today, January 1, 1915 my direct ancestors lived in Oklahoma, Kansas, and Missouri and ranged in age from 2 to 83. There were eight individuals.

My father, Ralph Lewis Croy was 2 years old. He lived in Henryetta, Oklahoma with

my grandfather, Justus Leonice Croy, age 35,

and my grandmother, Mary (Mollie) Elizabeth Ison Croy, age 32.

Also living in Henryetta were

my great grandfather, Calvin Harrison Croy, age 64,

and my great grandmother, Sarah Angelina Smith Croy, age 61.

 My maternal great grandfather, Gabriel Washington Ison, age 59,

and my great grandmother Gillian (Gillie) Virginia Morriss Ison, age 54,

lived in Potosi, Linn County, Kansas.

 AND at 83, my great, great grandfather Peter Philander Morriss still lived

near Rothville, in Salt Creek Township, Chariton County, Missouri.

Now, ready to get crazy? I did, figuring this out…hope I got it.

Two hundred years ago today, January 1, 1815, living direct ancestors spread across Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Virginia. They ranged in age from 4 to 92. Nineteen people in all, if I counted correctly.

In Ohio:

My great, great grandfather Jacob Croy was 4 years old. He lived in Stark County (to be Carroll County,) Ohio with

my great, great, great grandfather, Andrew Croy, age 34,

and my great, great, great grandmother, Susanna Oswalt Croy, age about 30.

Little Jacob had yet to meet my great, great grandmother Margaret Pugh (Croy) age 1. Her history is unknown.

Jacob’s grandmother, my 4X’s great grandmother, Mary Huston Croy (Roberts,) 53 at the time, lived in Plain City, Union County, Ohio. (His grandfather and namesake had died sometime after 1805 and any history before him is unknown.)

Susanna Oswalt’s father, my 4X’s great grandfather, Jacob Oswalt II, age 49,

and my 4X’s great grandmother, Sarah Huston, age about 49, lived in Rose Township, Stark County(to be Carroll County,) Ohio, as well.

Great, great grandfather Henry Smith was about 12 and living in Southeastern Ohio. (His history before then is unknown.)

Meanwhile, 3X’s great grandparents Zerah Payne and Amy Felch Payne, ages at the time 36 and 27 respectively, lived in Coshocton County, Ohio.

In Virginia:

My 3X’s great grandfather Thomas H. Morriss, age 16, and my 3X’s great grandmother, Malinda Salling (Morriss), age 11, lived in (likely Rockbridge) Virginia.

Thomas’ father, my 4X’s great grandfather, Allison Morriss, age 38, lived in Amherst County, Virginia with my 4X’s great grandmother Nancy Peters Morriss, age 36.

4X’s great grandfather, George Salling, age 44, and 4X’s great grandfather Matilda Caroline Carter Salling, age 40, lived in Estillville (what would be Gate City,) Scott County, Virginia on the Cumberland Gap.

Oh, and the Ison’s? 3X’s great grandparents Isaac Sterling Ison and Charity Ingram (Ison) both were living in Estillville (what would be Gate City,) Scott County, Virginia on the Cumberland Gap as well. They were 16 and 11, respectively.

And in Pennsylvania, amazingly…

In Londonderry Township, Bedford County, Pennsylvania,

my great, great, great, great, great (that’s 5 greats now) grandfather,

Jacob Oswalt, age about 92, still lived.

(Great, great grandmother Sephronia Payne Smith, great great grandfather Schuyler Ison, great great grandmother Mary Ann Overstreet Ison lived between these two milestones.)

 

 

“The family became widely scattered.”

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http://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2014/06/rare-map-on-display-at-library-scored-some-firsts/

 Part 1: Researching a Family Migration

More than a year ago I found this simple quote in a book written in 1887 about the history of Noble County.[i] The quote referenced Mathias and Richard Croy who settled in Beaver Township, Ohio in 1806.[ii]  That unassuming quote encompasses all the digging, analyzing, and convoluted tracking I have engaged in since my last entry.

My goal? Trace the migration of my direct descendants and their families from Will’s Creek[iii] to where ever in Ohio they finally settled. The reality? Well, to be concise, “The family became widely scattered!”

It is unclear just how soon word reached Will’s Creek regarding the many political changes afoot at the end of the Revolutionary War. Did word trickle in, one voice to another? Did one of the few who could read get access to a newspaper that spelled out the changes? Or did they return from exploring the Ohio Territory with soft pelts and their own grand stories?

How ever it happened, their little wilderness community soon felt the impact of the Treaty of Paris, as well as the “Ordinance of 1787” opening land west and north of the Ohio River.  General “Mad” Anthony Wayne’s defeat of the Shawnee and Delaware Indians eased, if not eliminated, the threat to their personal safety. The sweet, crisp smell of opportunity wafted over the Alleghany Mountains into Will’s Creek, and its inhabitants followed the scent. By 1798, five years before Ohio became a State, the U.S. Direct Tax Lists began recording a separate category of resident, the “unseated.” The label indicated a property owner who no longer occupyed the land. In most cases, these “unseated” had migrated west, and west mostly meant the Ohio Valley.

By 1806, all of Jacob, Richard, John, and Mathias Croy’s families (with approximately 30 children in tow,) along with the family of Jacob Oswalt II (7 children at the time,) and Alexander Huston (11 children) had made Ohio their home. My contrary self argued that recording all of this was a time consuming boondoggle, but I work from the premise that Place matters. People interact through a point in time and geography to form, in the end, their lives. And to really know these people, one must understand their time and their place.

If I intended to continue with this convoluted adventure, and I did, I needed a plan, a system for organizing the whirlwind. Some of this “system” definitely evolved as I went. I only wish I had been less serendipitous, but that, I fear, would have required some essential changes to my character. Still, in case the method that unfolded might help others with their own research, I include it below.[iv]

During the next two weeks I plan a series of posts about the Ohio migration. Until then, check out another enlightening post from the Library of Congress about the first map published after the “Ordinance of 1787” when some very independent minded States jockeyed for the Ohio Valley prize.  It includes a very revealing look at punishment in the 1700’s. http://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2014/06/rare-map-on-display-at-library-scored-some-firsts/ One of the great surveying accomplishments of our Nation would soon make this map obsolete. But that is the subject of another post.

If you followed this blog previously, you may notice that I am making an admittedly time consuming effort to document my sources both as a nod to genealogical standards and because it frees me to write without constantly alluding to sources and asides.

[i] History: Noble County, Ohio (L.H. Watkins, 1887,) pgs 576-579; digital images, New York Public Library, GoogleBooks

[ii] National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington, D.C.; Township Plats of Selected States; Series#; T1234; Roll: 50 from Public Land Survey Township Plats, compiled 1789-1946 Records of Bureau of Land Management (Ancestry. Com. U.S., Indexed Early Land Ownership and Township Plats, 1785-1898 (database on-line). Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.)

Note: Township 8, Range 7, Section 10: part of Belmont County , 1806; Guernsey County, 1811; Noble County,1851

[iii] See previous posts

[iv]

  1. Work from the most accurate version of a Family Sheet for each family you are tracking.
  2. Determine the last recorded residence at the original location. (In my case Londonderry Township, Bedford County, PA) Record it on the family sheet and file the documentation. (I used Evernote so it is searchable.)
  3. Record the first point of recorded residence FOR EVERY FAMILY MEMBER if possible. You never know what you might uncover. In my case, I was trying to track a mother and her family after her mate’s early death. The information spoke volumes.
  4. Create a file for each place. People migrate, not just by family, but by age groupings, marriage, and reasons of history.
  5. Research the places they went. What laws, events, boundary changes, establishment dates of schools, cemeteries, churches etc. might give insight into those lives. This happens as you go along.
  6. Consider birth and marriage dates and places (those that are backed by records.) They can provide migratory clues.
  7. Finally, create an outline of your information. Study it and build their story from it

 

Where in Will’s Creek? …and great Library of Congress blog

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Where they lived?

Where they lived?

This week I buried myself in the world of land warrants, attempting to determine approximately where those tenacious Will’s Creek settlers lived. The picture above, with the help of Google Earth, is my best guess. I created a table (found at the end of the post) briefly explaining each number on the map.

Many known settlers who appeared on tax records did not appear in land warrants. Numerous pioneers of the time, especially those on the colonial frontiers, rejected any expectation to warrant and/or pay for land, considering it an infringement on their free right of settlement.

For me, it is time to move on. This time I travel, virtually, to Northeastern Ohio. As the century turned a page, so did our nation’s history. The Treaty of Paris ending the Revolutionary War opened lands to settlement north of the Ohio River. Go to this recent and outstanding Library of Congress blog by Erin Allen outlining early efforts to inform local tribes as well as British outposts of this land transfer to the newly formed United States. http://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2014/04/a-journey-to-the-northwest-frontier-in-1783-the-journal-of-george-mccully/

You can also access the journal by George McCully at this site. A member of the expedition charged with sharing the outcome of the treaty, he documents the trek from Pittsburg, PA to Detroit. His detailed account of the excursion gives insight into the journey many in the Will’s Creek community were about to undertake. As always, original source documents are the best way to learn about the past. So, please, access his journal and read Erin Allen’s excellent explanation of the period! While you are at it subscribe to the blog. It is very good.

Land Warrant and Deed Information (As a disclaimer, I am not a resident of the area so lack the “inside track” regarding historical tidbits useful in explaining some references in the warrants. So, please, if you are out there, I appreciate any clarification.)

 

Warrant Applicant Date Detail
#1 Andrew Huston Sr. From3/1/1763App. 12/2/1784 50 ac bound on W John Hawthorns Tract; NW George Cook; N Nicolas Liberger; E Alex. Ross; S Wills-Town-Tract Mouth of Gladens Run
#2 Cornelius Devore Esq 9/16/1792 150 ac W side Wills Creek joining his 200 and lands surveyed for Andrew Huston
#3CastbarFosholt/Philip Devore 5/20/1793 surveyed for Jacob Oswalt Jr; Oct. 26/ 1795 transferred to Alex. Huston; 5/26/1803 transferred to Castbar Fosholt; 5/10/1830 sold to Philip Devore $300 100 acres adjoining Nicholas Lybarger, Jacob Oswalt Sr. and on W by a Mt. on a small branch of Gladwens Run part of Wills Creek
#4 Benjamin Tomlinson From 3/1/1765 app. 3/29/1790 60 ac E side joining Wills Creek opposite mouth of Gladdens Run joining Wills-Town-Tract
#5 George Cook 4/23/1793 100 ac on Laurel Run both sides of rd from Simon Hays mill
#6 Andrew Huston Jr. 5/9/1815 A weaver applis for 25 ac joining Wills Mountain on E; W Cornilias Devere, Benjamin Tomblingson; S Andrew Huston

So far I have not located any land warrants for Laurence Lamb, Jacob Croy, Jacob Neimyer, Anthony Asher, John Hains, John Albright, Valentine Baker, George Amrine, Martin Fait, Godfrey Woolback, John Blyew, or John Porter to name a few.

An Account of Frontier Revolutionary Service: Nicholas Lyberger

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“In the fall of the year 1776, in the month of November about the 15th the Indians made an incursion into Morrison’s Cove in Bedford County and burnt Ulrick’s Mill and Killed all Ulrick’s family but one who was absent at the time. On this occasion all the volunteers and Militia of Bedford county were called out and some from Conegocheague. We were collected at the town of Bedford and Col Davidson of the Militia took the command. I was then as a volunteer in the company commanded by Lieutenant Oserwalt.”

The above quote provides a small taste of the extreme conditions endured by those who chose to live on the edge of the Pennsylvania frontier in the 1700’s. The hazards amplified as the Shawnee and Iroquis began escalating their attacks, stirred by British promises to ban settlements west of the Ohio River in exchange for their support. As I hinted in an earlier posting, the most vivid accountings of frontier life in the 18th century come from first person recollections. Revolutionary pensions were long offered only to those unable to make a living on their own. But an 1832 law offered pensions to all who served in the war, as well as their widows. If the veteran did not have a record of service, he would submit a petition through his state of residence and include an extensive personal narrative. These first-hand accounts are extraordinary resources. Nicolas Lybarger (Liebarger/Liberger etc.) who lived in the Will’s Creek area of then Cumberland Valley Township, Bedford County (later Londonderry Township) provided a fabulous narrative in his petition. Portions have been quoted in other historical accounts. I have transcribed the complete petition here. Petition of Nicholas Lyberger for Revolutionary War Pension The “Oserwalt” mentioned here is Michael Oswalt, son of Jacob Oswalt Sr. Hustons and Croys probably also participated in these excursions. (See Outline of inhabitants of Wills Creek from the previous post.) Later, in April of 1847, the wife of Nicholas, Christina Lyberger, petitioned for widow’s benefits. Her daughter Elizabeth Devore placed her mark by her name proving the veracity of the claim. Included was a page copied from a family bible by Nicholas Lyberger, a “Dutch” bible as the record states.  While mostly illegible (He copied it but made a mark when he signed his name so likely didn’t understand what he copied.) the name Croy appears at the bottom of the page, just another testament to the closely connected families of the Will’s Creek settlement.

The Will’s Creek Community

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Andrew Huston Land Warrant

Andrew Huston Land Warrant

In southwestern Pennsylvania, between present-day Bedford, PA and Cumberland, Maryland, run a series of long narrow valleys created by a system of ridges in the Allegany Mountain Range. In one of them, between the Allegany Front on the west and Will’s Mountain on the east, runs Little Will’s Creek joining the main artery of Will’s Creek. The valley then opens up to where numerous “runs” traverse the valley, emptying into the ever widening Will’s Creek as it works its way to the Potomac. Situated on the edge of the frontier, European settlers began trickling into this valley in the mid 1700’s.

The area was under the jurisdiction of Cumberland Valley Township up until 1785 when Londonderry Township was formed. By taking the first tax records for Cumberland Valley Township, 1771 (found in The Kernel of Greatness: an informal bicentennial History of Bedford County) and comparing them to the Londonderry Township list from 1786, I was able to infer the names of the first and subsequent settlers into the valley. An overview of the results is found here. Outline of inhabitants of Wills Creek (If anyone is interested in the spreadsheet where I calculated my results, let me know and I will send it to you.)

Andrew Huston, father of Alexander Huston, my five times great grandfather, was the first recorded settler in the Will’s Creek area in 1771. His land warrant, recorded in 1784, gives March 1763 as the date of first habitation.  In 1773, Laurence Lamb entered the valley (again based on tax records.) His daughter, Mary Lamb, married, Richard Croy, the probable brother of Jacob Croy. The Croys first appear on Cumberland Valley tax records in 1776. Jacob Croy married Mary Huston, the daughter of Alexander Huston. Jacob Oswalt, who married Rebecca Huston, Andrew’s daughter, arrived in 1776 as well. If that isn’t hard enough to follow, the son of Jacob and Mary Croy, Andrew, married the daughter of Jacob and Rebecca Oswalt, Susannah.

While today’s society views blood ties as close as these skeptically, frontier America during the revolutionary period was scantly populated and these close-knit relationships were inevitable. Based on my research, for example, no more than 15 to 20 families represented by no more than 8 or 9 surnames lived in the isolated Will’s Creek community by 1779.

Note in the land warrant pictured in this blog that the warranted land borders a Nicholas Liberger. The lives of these people best finds expression through their own first-hand accounts. One vivid account comes from Nicholas. My next blog looks at the more intimate details of those lives.