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Archive for the ‘Andrews’ Category

This is the story (just the beginning) of finding a family for my 5x-great grandmother, Freelove (—-) Andrews, born around 1746.  I am related to Freelove in the following way:  my grandmother Edna May Darling — her father Russell E. Darling — Emma L. Lamphere — Hannah Andrews — Jesse Andrews — Freelove (—-).  In my last post, I reviewed some sources for the Andrews.  I had gone through those resources carefully looking for a stray “Freelove” cousin.  No luck.

Although I originally encountered Freelove in Warwick around 1790-1810, I first realized that she had been living previously in Coventry, Rhode Island through an article in Rhode Island Roots, (volume 31, March, 2005, p. 33 – 39, Cherry Fletcher Bamburg “Warwick Residency Certificates, 1737-1820”).  Freelove’s entry (p. 36) reads:

For:  Freelove Andrew, widow of Philip, and ch. of Philip Andrew   From:  Coventry    Date:  8 Dec. 1787

So, Warwick warned Freelove and her children that they didn’t belong in Warwick and needed to leave (they didn’t).  Since her previous town was Coventry, that certainly makes me wonder if she was perhaps born or raised in Coventry.

I copied some deeds from microfilm at the Family History Library in February, but then I didn’t like my page pictures, so I went to Coventry Town Hall to get better ones.

The Coventry Town Hall and Public Library is an unimposing building on Flat River Road, Coventry.

The Coventry Town Hall and Public Library is an unimposing building on Flat River Road, Coventry.  There is plenty of parking.

Coventry, Rhode Island

Coventry was originally the western section of Warwick, and split off in 1741.  So ancestors could have been living in Warwick, but then you find their later deeds in Coventry, but actually they never moved.  I don’t think that’s quite what happened here, but I do think my ancestors were often close to the borders of East Greenwich, Warwick, and Coventry.

The town hall is on Flat River Road.  You park around the back. There’s not a lot of signage from the parking lot, but one door leads you to the library and town hall.  The older records are on movable shelves in a back room in the town clerk section.  A retired gentleman was around that day that helped me find a few things.  He asked me what family I was researching, and when I said Andrews, he guffawed a bit and wished me luck.  Guess everyone knows I am in need of that.

Phillip Andrews in Coventry

I was hoping to find evidence of Phillip and Freelove Andrew’s time in Coventry.

First of all, there were no vital records to be found for Phillip.  I was really hoping a death record would show up.  I have narrowed down his death to 1780-1787.  No death or probate record in Coventry (or Warwick or East Greenwich).  There are MANY Andrews in Coventry (see the Andrews manuscript mentioned last time), but no records seemed to pertain to my branch.

When I first looked at the deeds, I encountered one of those special indexing systems.  They are used in a large alphabetical index that covers 1743-1925. I later learned, from Christine Rose’s Courthouse Indexes Illustrated (2006) that this is called the Russell Index (p. 15).  It classifies names by CERTAIN letters that may appear in the name after the first letter.  It’s the first time I’ve seen this one, so I had to stop and figure it out.  I’m sure it solved some problems in the pre-digital world, but it’s a bit convoluted today.

This code was filmed from the flyleaf of each index volume.  It's the "Russell Code".

This code was filmed from the flyleaf of each index volume. It’s the “Russell Code”.

Andrews deeds

As I explored deeds, I was a little surprised at what I found.  The index showed five deeds of interest:

  • Grantee: Phillip Andrews al. Grantor: John Alerton Jr. v 4 p. 228 (1768)
  • Grantee: John Adams Grantor: Philip Andrews al. v. 5  p. 136  (1768)
  • Grantee: Josiah Potter GrantorPhilip Andrews al by Shff  v. 5  p. 205 (1771)
  • Grantee: Sweet Whitford Grantor: Jesse Andrews al. v. 9  p. 114 (1796)
  • Grantee: Abner Bartholick Grantor: Jesse Andrews al. v. 9  p. 116 (1796)

Let me summarize what happened in the deeds.

  1.  v 4 p. 228 (1768)    I, John Alerton Junr of Coventry … Cooper … for … Eight Hundred good Spanish milled Dollars … paid by John Andrews and Phillip Andrews of East GreenwichCoopers
    • A certain parcel of Land Situate … in Coventry … by Estimation One hundred and fifty acres … Butted and Bounded as followeth: South on a Highway West on Carrs River North on the fish pond farm so called East on Land formerly belonging to Gideon Freeborn,
    • Together with part of Two Mishnick Lots,
      • one part of the Seventh Lot Bound East and West on a highway North on the Lot Number Eight South on the Lot Number Six by Estimation 4 acres
      • also part of another Lot Number five butted and bounded as followeth East and West on a Highway North on the Lot Number Six, South on the Lot Number four, by estimation Two acres and one half, be the same more or less …
    • and Rose Alerton, wife to the above said John Alerton Junr … surrender all her right of dower … 12 day of April 1768.   In the presence of William Spencer Junr, Thomas Shippee.  John Rice, Town Clerk … Personally appeared … Before Thomas Shippee Justice of the Peace.
  2. v. 5  p. 136  (1768)   We, John & Phillip Andrews for … Thirty Pounds … paid by John Adams of Warren in the County of Bristol and Colony of Rhode Island, Yeoman … Quit Claim all our Right which we now have or ever had … all that part of the Farm No.2 in the last Division below Carrs River, said farm was drawn in the right of Ezekiel Holloman … on the north of a Streight line to be drawn from the Northerly Corner of the farm on which we now live to the South Westerly Corner of the fish pond farm so called … said dividing line is to be run agreeable to the original plan of the three mentioned farms … third day of May … 1768.
    • In the presence of Stephen Potter, Mary Potter.
    • Signed John Andrews … Phillip Andrews.
    • And Hannah the wife of me the said John Andrews … do acquit all her … Dower … Hannah Andrews, her mark.
    • And Freelove the wife of me the said Phillip Andrews … doth acquit all her Right of Dower … Freelove Andrews her mark
    • Personally appeared … John Andrews … 24th day of November 1770
    • Personally appeared … Phillip Andrews … tenth day of December, 1770 Before me Sam Wall Justice of the Peace.
  3. v. 5  p. 205 (1771)    I Henry Rice Esq. Sherriff of the County of Kent in the Colony of Rhode Island … Whereas two Executions against John Andrews and Philip Andrews at the suit of John Alerton Junr and one Execution against John Andrews at the suit of Joseph Carpenter were by me the said Sheriff levied on a certain farm or tract of Land Situate  in Coventry with a Dwelling House and other Buildings thereon standing containing about One Hundred and Fifty Acres Bounded as followeth viz Southerly on a Highway Westerly on Carrs River Northerly and Easterly on Land formerly belonging to John Adams, and whereas on the first day of December AD 1770 all the Estate Right Title Interest and Property of the said John Andrews and Philip Andrews in the premises aforesaid were by me the said Sheriff sold at Public Vendue for the satisfaction of said executions to Josiah Potter who was the Highest Bidder for the sum of One Hundred and Twenty Six Pounds lawful money which the said Josiah Potter hath since well and truly paid me the said Sheriff.
    • Now Know ye that by force and Vertue of an Act of the General Assembly at their Session held at South Kingstown … October 1763 entitled “An Act for Regulating the Method of Assigning Real Estate Sold by Execution &c” —-  I the Said Sheriff … Sell … to … Josiah… All and Every the Lands Tenaments and Hereditaments with their and every of their Appurtenances …
    • In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my Hand and Seal the Twenty Sixth day of January … 1771.
  4. v. 9  p. 114 (1796)    We Christopher Andrews of Pits Town in the County of Renselaer in the State of New York Yeoman and Jesse Andrews of Coventry Mariner … for … the sum of Ten Dollars … To us … paid by …  Sweet Whitford of Coventry … Yeoman.  One certain small lot of land lying … in that partcalledMishnick Swamp being part of the Lot Number five in said Swamp, … contains by estimation two acres.
    • hereunto set our hands and seals this Seventh Day of September, AD1796.
    • In the presence of Asa Stone, William Stone.  Before William Stone Justice of the Peace
  5. v. 9  p. 116 (1796)    We Christopher Andrews of Pits Town in the County of Renselaer in the State of New York Yeoman and Jesse Andrews of Coventry Mariner … for … the sum of 22 Dollars and a half Dollar … To us … paid by … Abner Bartholick of Coventry … Yeoman.  Two small Lots of land
    • one of which is part of the Seventh Lot in Mishnick Swamp Lying in the Township of Coventry … containing by estimation four acres …
    • the other small lot being part of the Fifth Lot in Mishnick Swamp … containing by estimation one half acre …
    • hereunto set our hands and seals this Seventh Day of September, AD1796.
    • In the presence of Asa Stone, William Stone.  Before William Stone Justice of the Peace
Older records at the Coventry town clerk's office.

Older records at the Coventry town clerk’s office.

10 things I learned from the deeds

  1. Phillip Andrews and his father made a land purchase together in 1768. I know it was him and his father (and not, say, a brother John) because their wives signed a subsequent deed. There were SO MANY John Andrews transactions in the Coventry index, I haven’t yet sorted out the prior ones that belong to this John.
  2. John and Phillip bought 150 acres plus buildings in 1768, plus small parts of Lots 7 and 5 in Mishnick Swamp (I believe, today, this is known as Mishnock Swamp).  Mishnock Swamp is very near the Maple Root Baptist Church in Coventry, a church heavily populated with Andrews, and built on their land.  A couple of months later, they quit-claimed what appears to be a smaller property nearby … could that have been their previous home?
  3. It seems possible that Phillip and John housed their families in one dwelling on this property, although I don’t yet know if other properties were owned, or if more than the one mentioned dwelling was available there.
  4. Phillip and his father John Andrews were coopers.  Never knew that; I had only seen Philip working as a soldier in wartime from time to time.
  5. The property was near Carrs River.  So, the land was near the border of Coventry and West Warwick.
  6. If there’s one thing I learned from Judy G. Russell during “Law School for Genealogists” at GRIP last summer, it was to check the legal terms that I am not completely sure of.  For these deeds, I looked up the following in Black’s Dictionary of Law, 1891 (Judy Russell offers her Black’s Dictionary of Law advice here):
    • ExecutionThe completion, fulfillment, or perfecting of anything, or carrying it into operation and effect. The signing, sealing, and delivery of a deed. The signing and publication of a will. The performance of a contract according to its terms.    In practice. The last stage of a suit, whereby possession is obtained of anything recovered. It is styled “final process,” and consists in putting the sentence of the law in force. 3 Bl. Comm. 412. The carrying into effect of the sentence or judgment of a court.
    • VendueA sale; generally a sale at public auction; and more particularly a sale so made under authority of law, as by a constable, sheriff, tax collector, administrator, etc.
    • Tenement This term, in its vulgar acceptation, is only applied to houses and other buildings, but in its original, proper, and legal sense it signifies everything that may be holden, provided it be of a permanent nature, whether it be of a substantial and sensible, or of an unsubstantial, ideal, kind. Thus, liberum tenementum, frank tenement, or freehold, is applicable not only to lands and other solid objects, but also to offices, rents, commons, advowsons, franchises, peerages, etc. 2 Bl. Comm. 16.     “Tenement” is a word of greater extent than “land,” including not only land, but rents, commons, and several other rights and interests issuing out of or concerning land. 1 Steph. Comm. 158, 159.
    • HereditamentsThings capable of being inherited, be it corporeal or incorporeal, real, personal, or mixed, and including not only lands and everything thereon, but also heir-looms, and certain furniture which, by custom, may descend to the heir together with the land. Co. Litt. 56; 2 Bl. Comm. 17. The two kinds of hereditaments are corporeal, which are tangible, (in fact, they mean the same thing as land,) and incorporeal, which are not tangible, and are the rights and profits annexed to or issuing out of land. Wharton.

      Freelove Andrews her mark, from the 1777 deed.

      Freelove Andrews her mark, from the 1768 deed.

  7. And, of course, I need to know the law that impacted my ancestor’s life – in this case:  an Act of the General Assembly at their Session held at South Kingstown … October 1763 entitled “An Act for Regulating the Method of Assigning Real Estate Sold by Execution &c” –  I referred to Bartlett’s Colonial Records of Rhode Island (vol. 6, p. 373) but it only reports:
    • Public Acts Passed During the Year 1763 —  [item 3] An Act for regulating the method of conveying and assessing real estates sold by execution, and for changing the form of the deed heretofore given and used by the Sheriffs (October).    [a better source for the law might be the State Archives].
  8. The 150 acres were seized by the sheriff and sold in 1771, based on “suits” by John Alerton Jr and Joseph Carpenter.  This implies there were some kind of mortgages or claims that I haven’t found yet.  The loss of the land may explain why no deeds or probate seem to mark the end of John Andrews’ life, and with no vital record, there is no evidence of John’s death.
  9. In 1796, Phillip’s sons Christopher and Jesse sold the small remaining part of Lots 5 & 7 in the Mishnock Swamp.  Christopher had already moved on to Pittstown, New York, and Jesse was a newlywed and was about to buy property on Main Street, East Greenwich, the following year.
  10. The mention of Ezekial Holliman as the original owner of one of the swamp lots is intriguing – more coming on that idea in the future. 
Carr River marked in orange spots; Mishnock Swamp marked with red marker. Courtesy of Google Maps.

Carr River marked in orange spots; Mishnock Swamp marked with red marker. Courtesy of Google Maps.

Making a connection through the deeds

Needless to say, even as I was sitting at the microfilm machine in Salt Lake City, I quickly checked all the names mentioned in the deeds against the index of the Andrews Genealogy to see if any were related to Phillip.  None were found (not that that proves anything, of course).  But since I am seeking Freelove’s family, that might be good news – perhaps they were connected to her.

The most interesting name was the first one, John Alerton, Jr., since Phillip Andrews’ first acquisition might be most closely connected to his family or his wife’s. Two factors that make this less likely are the fact that Phillip’s father John was also a purchaser, and that John Alerton eventually foreclosed on them – but, who knows.  I copied John Alerton’s marriage, children’s births, and probate record from the Coventry Town Hall.  Based on dates, I wondered if he could be Freelove’s brother.

The name Alerton rang a bell, and I couldn’t remember why, then of course I remembered Isaac Allerton, Mayflower passenger. I thought if I could consult the recent Allerton “silver book” I could get a quick overview of any possible links to Freelove.  

I consulted:

  • Robert Charles Anderson’s bibliographic notes on Isaac Allerton in The Great Migration Begins (vol. 1, p. 39). 
  • An older book online – A history of the Allerton family in the United States : 1585 to 1885 by Walter S. Allerton.  I was a little astonished at what I found. The John Allerton, Jr. that lived in Coventry, R.I. (p. 39) had a daughter Freelove (be still my heart! – although that would not be my Freelove) and an uncle Jesse.  The family even had links to Plainfield and Norwich, Connecticut, where my Andrews ended up.  Just finding a Freelove and a Jesse in John Allerton’s family is enough to make this a giant clue.
  • Descendants of Edward Small of New England by Lora Altine Woodbury Underhill, 1910, volume 2, p. 685.  This book repeated the story of John Allerton, Sen. being the son of Isaac (3).
  • I was feeling pretty excited about the Allertons. Unfortunately, the silver book (Mayflower Families Through Five Generations, Vol. 17: Issac Allerton, 2013) explained, in a footnote on page 7, that John Allerton Sr. of Norwich, Conn., Warwick, and Coventry, R.I. was only tied to the Mayflower Allertons by family tradition, and no evidence linked him to the person assumed to be his father, Isaac (3) Allerton, even though that had been re-copied in several places.

So, no easy, carefully traced tree here. The Allertons (junior and senior) are real but I will have to research them myself.  One thing I learned from the silver book was that John Allerton Sr was also in Warwick. There are no vital records  for Allertons reported in Arnold’s Rhode Island Vital Records, vol. 1, but there may be other Warwick records.

The section at town hall with the more recent real estate records.

The section at town hall with the more recent real estate records.

In closing

It occurs to me that Phillip’s son Christopher’s departure for Pittstown, New York in the late 1790’s could be the result of a bounty land grant for Phillip, after the Revolutionary War.  I’ve never found that – just a few records here and there about several years of service.  But I need to look more.  First of all, I’m going to review the laws and see if Phillips’ death in the late 1780’s would have prevented the family from getting such a grant.

But meanwhile, back in Coventry, I am a little mystified by the origins of the 150 acre lot and the Mishnock swamp lots.  On the one hand, Mishnock Swamp is adjacent to the Maple Root Church property, clearly Andrews land.  On the other hand, they didn’t buy it from close Andrews relatives or in-laws – they bought it from John Alerton Jr.  I have a vague idea that John Alerton could possibly be a relative of Freelove.  But I need to know where John Alerton got the land, regardless of any connection to Freelove.  I think that is the next step.

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2015/03/26/coventry-town-hall/

In later years, parts of Coventry became industrialized, where waterpower was available.

In later years, the parts of Coventry where waterpower was available became industrialized.

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Harriet Frances James

Descendants of John MacAndrews, who was present in Quidnesset, Rhode Island in the late 1600’s, owe a great deal to their early 20th-century genealogist, Miss Harriet Frances James.  Miss James’ story is told by Lora S. LaMance in her book The Greene Family and its Branches (Floral Park, NY: Mayflower Publishing Co., 1904(?)).  From the words, one gets the impression they may have been friends.

(p. 103) Chapter XVIII, Line of Lieut. John Greene of Coventry – Descendants of Hannah Greene-Andrews. 

This chapter is a difficult one. In the main I follow Miss Hattie James’ work, “The Andrews Genealogy.” This lady inherited an aptitude for genealogical work from both her father and grandmother. She was born in an Andrews community, and personally knew the half dozen old gentlemen of 85 and 90, who were looked up to as authority on the intricate family relationship. She interviewed all of these, solicited family records from branch after branch, and made a careful study of the old books and records. After years of labor and expense, just as she was getting it into shape for publication, grievous bodily affliction befell her. She finished it lying upon her back, and writing with benumbed, half-paralyzed hands. The Gleaner of Phenix, R. I., ran it as a serial for something over a year. A friend tells us that this invaluable work has netted its author not a penny. When her years of suffering are over, too late it will be realized by this family that a historian was in their midst, and they appreciated her not.

Hattie James never married (according to her census records) and apparently ill health prevented her from completing her work in book form.  Her father had a career in mill operations which took the family from Coventry (the village of Washington) up to Pawtucket, Rhode Island.  According to her own genealogical writing (p.145), Hattie James (4 Nov 1846 – 19 Mar 1916 – death date taken from Pawtucket, R.I. City Directory, 1916) has the following place in the Andrews family:  Harriet Frances James(8) Albert Greene James(7) Jane Andrews(6) Timothy(5) Elnathan(4) John(3) William(2) John(1).

Miss James’ work exists today in two versions.

  • A set of scrapbooks at the Rhode Island Historical Society contains the newspaper clippings for Harriet’s work in the Gleaner as well as other news items, obituaries from circa 1900, notes and ephemera. I have examined this and the notes, etc are mostly unrelated to the early Andrews. I have no photographs or specific notes about this manuscript.
  • A three-volume compiled version of her work, with additions, notes and corrections by Anthony Tarbox Briggs is available from the Family History Library on microfilm #22323 Item 1.  It is also available at the Rhode Island Historical Society.
Maple Root Baptist Church, from The Greene Family and Its Branches by Lora S. LaMance, 1904,  p. 106.

Maple Root Baptist Church, a very significant church for the Andrews who spread west to Coventry, Rhode Island.  From The Greene Family and Its Branches by Lora S. LaMance, 1904, p. 106.

The Andrews Family of Rhode Island

Miss James begins her work with a brief overview of the land situation in King’s Town and Quidnesset, Rhode Island in the 1600’s.  She reviews the “Atherton Purchase” and the “Fones Purchase.”  The earliest record she found for John (1) Andrews/MacAndrews was his participation in the Fones Purchase of 1671. From page 5 –

January 1, 1672, he and five others, Capt. John Fones, John Greene, (Quidnesset John) John Briggs, Henry Tibbetts and Thomas Waterman, bought a large tract of land in Narragansett Country for a valuable sum, of Awashuwett, Chief Sachem of the Narragansett Tribe of Indians, the tract since known as the “Fones Purchase”.  The above men were all residents of Quidnesset except John Fones who lived three miles west, now “Briggs Corner”.

Although that situation (that is, the 1671 beginning of the Andrews family story) hasn’t changed too much in the years since, I feel that more work could and should be done to piece together the early generations of Andrews.

Miss James reviewed some stories that she heard while gathering information from various Andrews descendants.  From page 5 –

Among the family traditions are these –

  • First – He came originally from Scotland.  The original name, MacAndrews, helps to sustain this and it has come down to the present time in some of the families of his descendants.
  • Second – There were three brothers, so there were in the Alfred Andrew’s Genealogical Record, but I am not able to connect our Rhode Island Andrews with them.
  • Third – He was driven out of Boston on account of the liberty he took in expressing his opinion, probably on religious views.  His obstinacy in sustaining his rights seemed like John of Boston after he came to King’s Town.
  • Fourth – He came to King’s Town from Cape Cod.  This too is an old family tradition.
  • Fifth – Sometime since leaving Scotland he had lived in Barbadoes, but not so well sustained.

I admire how she presented these as unsubstantiated rumors, which is certainly the truth.  In her genealogical pages, she unfortunately incorporates them into her narrative, but resists glorifying or exaggerating these stories in any way, which many of her contemporaries would surely have done.

Devils Foot Rock, on Post Road in North Kingstown, courtesy of Google maps

Devils Foot Rock, on Post Road in North Kingstown, courtesy of Google maps

Devil’s Foot

Miss James explains a bit about the location of John Andrews’ farm:

[page 9] Land around “Devil’s Foot Rock” for quite a distance took its name from that ledge.  This legendary rock is near the Post Road about halfway between Greenwich and Wickford.  It is being broken up now and carried off to be used for some purpose which I do not remember.  It is a grey granite, also a natural curiosity which it seems a pity to disturb.  It is termed “Devil’s Foot” from impressions made in the rock that resemble the marks of a human foot made in the snow.

[page 13] John Andrews (2) … deeded for love, etc. to his six brothers a share of their father’s property.

“To my six brother, William, Charles, James, Thomas, Edward and Benoni, all interest I have by my father, John Andrews deceased, unto 70 acres, which is part of 90 acres in Greenwich.  And if any brother die before he is twenty one, his part to go equally to the others.  The full improvements and benefits of 70 acres to be at the disposal of mother-in-law (i.e., step-mother) that now is Mary Andrews, until the youngest brother is twenty one”.

The Reamins of Frenchtown, from Memoir Concerning the French Settlement, 1879, p. 1.

The Remains of Frenchtown, from Memoir Concerning the French Settlement, 1879, p. 1.

He agrees to pay for life to his step-mother 10 bushels of apples yearly.

He sold Captain Thomas Fry of East Greenwich his interest in a certain tract of land in Narragansett Country near Devil’s Foot, bounded partly by land of his father, John Andrews deceased, who had with others bought land in 1672 of certain Indians.  John Jr. was one of the 24 partners to the “Fones Purchase” when it was confirmed in 1677.

When he sold the above mentioned land top Thomas Fry April 1, 1698, he lived in Newport.  His stay in Newport was short.  In 1700 he lived in East Greenwich and his children’s birth were recorded here.  He died before 1721.  Rebecca, his widow, married (2) June 18, 1721, John Nichols of East Greenwich.  His land heired from his father, joined his own at “Devil’s Foot” and run up to his father’s homestead and west towards Frenchtown.

It seems clear that she examined deeds in either East Greenwich, North Kingstown, or both.  The above paragraphs are her interpretation of those deeds – others might reach slightly different conclusions.  I do plan to look at them myself.

I would like to revisit the East Greenwich and North Kingstown records mentioned here and make my own analysis of the early deeds.

I would like to revisit the East Greenwich and North Kingstown records mentioned here and make my own analysis of the early deeds.  Photo from East Greenwich Town Hall by Diane Boumenot.

John MacAndrews and his children

Miss James presents the following genealogy for John (1) Andrews.  See my links toward the bottom of this post for some additional pages.

JOHN MACANDREWS, alias ANDREW, first of King’s Town, came from Scotland and lived in Boston, at Cape Cod, and is known to have lived in King’s Towne before May 20, 1671.  He died there before August 22, 1693, for at that date his eldest son, John, settled his father’s estate.  He married first _____.  They had 2 children, John and William.  He married (2) Mary Ridgely by whom they had 5 children, Charles, James, Thomas, Edward, (also called Edmund) and Benoni.  In course of time his descendants called themselves “Andrews”.

The children of John Andrews (1) and his first wife were –

2 – John (2)

3 – William (2) born Aug 23, 1679, died 1762.

The children by second wife, Mary Ridgely, were –

4 – Charles (2) born ——-, died Jany. 13, 1762

5 – James (2) born ——-, died 1715.

6 – Thomas (2) born ——-, died ——- No further record.

7 – Edward (2) born ——-, died ——- No further record.

8 – Benoni (2) born ——–, died ——.

A North Kingstown probate records.  Due to damage from an explosion, the records are challenging to use, although a great deal of effort has been put into restoration.

A North Kingstown probate record for a different family. Due to damage from an explosion, the records are challenging to use, although a great deal of effort has been put into restoration.  Photo by Diane Boumenot.

Other sources

There are other significant sources for John Andrews:

  • For a quality article on some questions about the early Andrews and Sweet families, see The American Genealogist, January, 1976, vol. 52, p 18-20: “Mary Andrew, Wife Of Henry Sweet” by Harriet Woodbury Hodge. The article cites specific deeds and the information that she gleaned from them, to place Mary Andrew as a daughter of John (1) Andrews and his unknown first wife.  TAG articles are available online to NEHGS members, or at libraries with genealogical collections.
  • A Genforum discussion by Duane Boggs titled Griffin, Fry, Spencer and Andrews takes some of these same deeds (above) and speculates that the first wife of John (1) Andrews was a heretofore unknown daughter of Robert Griffin.
  • A more complete version of the Atherton and Fones deeds can be found in The Records of the Proprietors of the Narragansett : Otherwise Called the Fones record (1894) by James N. Arnold.  John Andrews is found on page 166, 167 and 168.
  • Austin’s Genealogical Dictionary of Rhode Island, page 3 of the 1969 or 1978 edition published by Genealogical Publishing Co.  It can be viewed in an older edition here, although the reproduction is of poor quality.  Torrey’s New England Marriages Prior to 1700 cites Austin and seems to have no further evidence, although with so many John Andrews entries, there’s always a possibility.
  • Some court records for John Andrews, showing that he and Mary Ridgely were fined after the birth of their child (as well as his appearance in some other capacities) are briefly chronicled here and there in the book Rhode Island General Court of Trials, transcribed by Jane Fletcher Fiske, 1998.  There are some Andrews in Gleanings of Newport Court Files, 1659-1783 by Jane Fletcher Fiske, 1998, however these appear to be too far into the 1700’s to be among the first couple of generations of Andrews.  These two books can be found at libraries with Rhode Island genealogical collections.

In closing

I think Miss James’ work is good, although far better on the lines that eventually spread out to Coventry, where she came from, and the Maple Root Church, than on, say, my lines, which appear to be barely known by that group.  But in many ways, her work was just the beginning of the early Andrews story, missing some portions and in need of additional evidence and clarification.

I have copies of pages 1 – 150 of the Andrews Genealogy book (covering approx 1690-1825) – download pdf copy of that here – which gets through the first few generations.  I also have a copy of the entire index, about 100 pages – a pdf of that will download here – if, after using the index, you need more than the pages I have available here, you will have to rent Family History Library microfilm #22323.

Personally, I am descended from sons Charles (2) and Benoni (2).  More on that another time. I have a lot to do to follow up on these sources.

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2015/03/01/the-andrews-of-rhode-island-3/

Grave of Harriet F James and her parents, Albert C and Mary A James, at Woodland Cemetery, Coventry. Photo used with permission from FindAGrave contributor "Harriet", from entry #65156414.

Grave of Harriet F James and her parents, Albert C and Mary A James, at Woodland Cemetery, Coventry, R.I.. Photo used with permission from FindAGrave.com contributor “Harriet”, from entry #65156414.

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My recent DNA matches to other descendants of the Andrews family of East Greenwich, Rhode Island helped me to realize that I had found the correct origins for my ggg-grandmother Hannah Andrews, but left many important gaps in my information.  I am related to Hannah in the following way:  my grandmother Edna May Darling – her father Russell E Darling – his mother Emma L Lamphere – her mother Hannah Andrews.  Hannah’s parents are Jesse Andrews and Sarah Arnold.

This branch of the tree looks like this:

pedigree chart of my gggg-grandfather Jesse Andrews

pedigree chart of my gggg-grandfather Jesse Andrews

Although Hannah’s parents are Jesse Andrews (son of Phillip) and Sarah Arnold (daughter of Joseph) who married in 1795 in Warwick, Rhode Island, there are several problems with Hannah’s tree:

  • I am not even showing Jesse’s wife Sarah Arnold’s family here, because I have a theory they are Joseph Arnold and Dinah Wightman, but I am far from proving that. Arnold was a very common name, and there were at least four Joseph Arnolds in the second half of the 1700’s in Warwick, and possibly six or eight. The ancestors of Joseph and Dinah are a Who’s Who of early Warwick – Greenes, Holdens, Wightmans, and Gortons – but so far, nothing is proven yet.
  • Jesse’s mother is named Freelove, and was the head of household in Warwick for several decades after the (apparent) death of her husband Philip, sometimes next to Jesse Andrews and Joseph Arnold.  Freelove’s family is unknown to me.
  • The Andrews ancestors appear in all parts of Philip’s tree, and their genealogy was compiled by Harriet Frances James.  I have studied her work at the Rhode Island Historical Society in two forms – a scrapbook of columns she wrote late in life for a local newspaper about the Andrews genealogy, and a more formally compiled version of her work produced by Anthony Tarbox Briggs and published in a few small volumes.  Many of the early Andrews appear in local vital, land, and military records.

I don’t want to lose my opportunity at the Family History Library in February to move this along, so I have been working on three particular problems.

1.  Is Jesse’s mother really Freelove?  What evidence can I find?

The idea that Jesse’s mother was named Freelove came from the fact that she was located next to Jesse in the 1810 census in Warwick, and also appeared in the 1790 census as a head of household. Other evidence such as vital records had eluded me. Rhode Island research can always be assisted by consulting the R.I. Genealogical Society’s Rhode Island Roots, available now on the NEHGS website.  I went to Advanced Search:

http://www.americanancestors.org/search/advanced-search/

and chose Category: Journal and Periodicals, and Database: Rhode Island Roots.

Previously I had been making use of my old CD of volumes 1 – 30 of Rhode Island Roots.  So the NEHGS digital compilation (which covers volumes 1 – 34, and will remain about 5 years out in the future, I believe) was the first time I saw an index for volume 31.  An article by Cherry Fletcher Bamburg appeared in volume 31, March, 2005, p. 33 – 39, “Warwick Residency Certificates, 1737-1820.”  The author explained the meaning of “warnings out” and her discovery of “a folder of the original residency certificates at Warwick City Hall.” A transcription of the certificates followed.

Freelove’s entry (p. 36) reads:

For:  Freelove Andrew, widow of Philip, and ch. of Philip Andrew   From:  Coventry    Date:  8 Dec. 1787

This was a huge discovery for me, because it was the only time I had seen her name connected with Philip (no marriage record has been found).  Philip had died by February, 1786 when son Christopher “son of Mr Philip Andrews, decd” was married by Elder John Gorton (Elder John Gorton and the Six Principle Baptist Church of East Greenwich, Rhode Island by Cherry Fletcher Bamburg, RIGS, 2001, p. 325).  How long was Freelove in Coventry?  Had her husband Philip been there with her prior to his death, or did she go there after his death, perhaps to be near her own family?

Philip often performed military service in the 1760’s and 1770’s and he may have had other lines of work, but I don’t know.  Philip was enumerated in a military census in Warwick in 1777, and, according to cards in the Revolutionary War index at the Rhode Island State Archives, and muster rolls on Fold3, he served during most of the Revolutionary War and was in Col. Topham’s regiment as late as 1780.  So his death occurred between 1780 and 1786.

Philip Andrews on Major Chirstopher Manchester's Company Muster Roll, 1780. NARA M246. Muster rolls, payrolls, strength returns, and other miscellaneous personnel, pay, and supply records of American Army units, 1775-83. Folder 58, p. 93. Roll 88, Rhode Island. Found on Fold3.com.

Philip Andrews on Major Christopher Manchester’s Company Muster Roll, 1780. NARA M246. Muster rolls, payrolls, strength returns, and other miscellaneous personnel, pay, and supply records of American Army units, 1775-83. Folder 58, p. 93. Roll 88, Rhode Island. Accessed on Fold3.com.

I have already learned from Gleanings from Rhode Island Town Records: Early Coventry Records, compiled by Catherine Hey and published as the 2010 Special Bonus Issue of Rhode Island Roots, that Phillip Andrews was taxed in Coventry in 1768 (p. 126) and 1769 (p. 130).  Author Catherine Hey provides an interesting preface about the origins of early Coventry, which was set off from Warwick in 1741, and notes about the record sets.

At the Family History Library, I will be exploring records (particularly deeds) for Coventry, Rhode Island, but I suspect a visit to Coventry town hall will also be needed.

2.  What was Freelove’s maiden name? 

Freelove was a fairly common name in Warwick, so it may or may not be a clue.  I am using two forms of attack on the problem of finding Freelove’s family.

Explore in full her husband’s Andrews tree.  This has been very interesting.  The Andrews were quite intermarried with each other (not complaining, I think that helped me find so many matches to them in mom’s DNA).  The nearest non-Andrews ancestors to Philip were his two grandmothers, Rebecca Sweet and Judith Matteson.  I have not gotten too far with reliable information on the Sweets, and I have compiled a list of sources I will be using at the Family History Library and the Rhode Island Historical Society Library.  But the Mattesons were easier to explore.  Apparently the original immigrant, Henry Matteson, came from Denmark.  The Mattesons, Weavers, and Andrews first appeared on the Portsmouth/Newport side of Rhode Island, and moved on to North Kingstown/East Greenwich/Warwick in the late 1600’s.  I need to examine the Andrews sources again, and I’ll have another post after I do, but it seems clear these families intermarried a lot and they are NOT the same families I am seeing in the Arnold line I’m investigating as Sarah’s family.

Look at the trees of my mother’s DNA connections where the link seems likely to be early Warwick/East Greenwich R.I. families.  Obviously, I don’t necessarily trust the trees of these matches, but I review them and do some exploring on my own. I paid attention to trees where the particular branch I am likely to be related to was obvious, and also used the matrix, common matches, and comparison tools in Family Tree DNA.  These are new to me so I spent a lot of time just figuring things out.  For this I only paid attention to “Longest Block” matches of 10 cM or more.

By searching for some early Warwick names among the ancestors of mom’s matches, I found that mom was related to two people descended from a Rice/Stafford/Greene/Wightman family of early North Kingstown, R.I.  Those people were cousins to each other, so it’s no coincidence their trees matched.  This is how they matched mom’s DNA (along with one additional person) – the match is roughly 13 cM, on Chromosome 11:

Three people that match mom, viewed in the Family Finder chromosome browser.

Three people that match mom, viewed in the Family Finder chromosome browser. The match is about a 13cM match.

I later found one or two others in this exact spot, but none had trees on Family Tree DNA.  It’s hard to know what to think, but a match with Wightmans/Greenes would support the theory I have about Sarah Arnold.  I suspect this little group is related to Jesse’s wife Sarah or his mother Freelove.  I find with my early Rhode Island or Massachusetts families that even fairly close matches turn out to be quite a ways back.  And more distant matches are not findable at all.

3.  The wife of Philip and Freelove’s son Christopher was Freelove Rice.  What can I learn from that relationship? 

Philip had, I believe, several siblings but I only know the name of one – Christopher Andrews.  Christopher married Freelove Rice of Warwick and moved to Pittstown, New York, and they are buried there.  The Rice family happens to have some excellent documentation.  Cherry Fletcher Bamburg published 4 articles on them in Rhode Island Roots:

  1. Bamburg, Cherry Fletcher.  “Major Henry Rice of Warwick and His Family.”  Rhode Island Roots 24 (March/June 1998): 1 – 60.
  2. Bamburg, Cherry Fletcher.  “John1 Rice of Warwick, Rhode Island.”  Rhode Island Roots 24 (September/December 1998): 153-168.
  3. Bamburg, Cherry Fletcher.  “John2 Rice, Jr.,  of Warwick, Rhode Island.”  Rhode Island Roots 25 (September 1999): 81-118.
  4. Bamburg, Cherry Fletcher.  “John2 Rice, Jr.,  of Warwick, Rhode Island (concluded).”  Rhode Island Roots 27 (March 2001): 1 – 26.

I printed these articles, placed them in a 3 ring folder, and have studied them carefully.  And that was good, because although I saw no solid links to a possible mother for Christopher, studying them helped me find something in the DNA matches.  It didn’t strike me at first, not until I had revisited the articles once again.

In the graphic above, several people matched mom in one spot.  On the tree associated with two female cousins, I see they are descended from Freelove’s grandparents, Capt. Randall Rice and Dinah Greene.  Their tree contains the same details as the articles mentioned above (Family Tree DNA trees do not show sources), giving me a bit of extra confidence in the work of these 2 cousins.  Their family descends from son Fones Rice, who married Susannah Havens (and my mom is unlikely to be descended from that couple, since they were in Clarendon, Vermont by 1775 according to article 4 (above), page 11).  The link to my mom could also possibly be in Susannah’s early Warwick family, but still, it is interesting to get a clue that mom could be related to Freelove Rice.  Freelove’s father is their son Job Rice.

Freelove Rice with her parents and grandparents.  Image from Family Tree Maker.

Freelove Rice with her parents and grandparents. Image from Family Tree Maker.

I definitely intend to focus on Freelove’s family going forward.  I need to find the ancestor “Freelove” that she may have been descended from (or perhaps it was a sibling somewhere) and move forward from there.  The fact that Christopher’s mother had the name Freelove, and his wife did, didn’t seem like a huge clue before, but it’s starting to.

So I have several things to follow up on in Salt Lake City:

  • looking at Coventry records in the 1780’s for evidence of Philip’s activities there, and any links to other family
  • consult every part of the documentation on the Andrews compiled by Harriet Frances James
  • Explore resources I have found for the Sweet and Matteson families

And follow up at home:

  • complete Freelove’s ancestral tree
  • compile a full military record for Philip, and see who he served with
  • keep searching for evidence of Freelove or Philip’s deaths.

If my gggg-grandmother Freelove IS related to the younger Freelove (Rice) Andrews, this would help to build the case of the possible parents I have found for Jesse’s wife Sarah Arnold.  They share Wightmans, Gortons, and Greenes.  Interesting!

The post you are reading is located at: http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2015/01/03/in-search-of-freelove-andrews

A street in Newport, from Sketches of Early American Architecture by O.R. Eggers, 1922.

A street in Newport, from Sketches of Early American Architecture by O.R. Eggers, 1922.

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A Better Look at the Census

Jesse and Sarah Andrews’ children in the census

Recently I decided to do a search in the 1830 Federal Census for the Andrews children that appear to be missing from Jesse and Sarah Andrew’s home and farm in Ashford, Connecticut.  Of course, I don’t know their names or anything, they are just a merry band of tick marks from early census records.

Jesse and Sarah are related to me in the following way:  their daughter Hannah Andrews (1819-1878), her daughter Emma Luella Lamphere (1857-1927), her son Russell Earl Darling (1883-1959), and his daughter, my grandmother, Edna May Darling (1905-1999).

Jesse and Sarah married in 1795. Here is what I know of their children from census records:

  • 1800 –  1 male under 10, 2 females under 10 = 3
  • 1810 –  3 males under 10, 1 male 10-15, 1 female under 10, 2 females 10-1 5 = 7
  • 1820 –  3 males under 10, 2 males 10-16, 2 females under 10, 1 female 10-16, 1 female 16-26 = 9    (1 person engaged in agriculture, 5 persons engaged in manufactures)
  • 1830 – only the two adults

To guess when each child was born, I spaced them out evenly between the periods when they first appeared in the census (in the Under 10 categories).  It would look something like this:

first group, could be in any order:

  • girl b. 1796
  • boy b. 1797
  • girl b. 1799

second group, could be in any order:

  • boy b. 1801
  • girl b. 1803 – could be Diana [this is a theory, based on matching her possible grandmother’s name]
  • boy b. 1806
  • boy b. 1809 – could be Benjamin [almost certainly their child]

last group (and I know the last two):

  • boy b. 1811
  • girl b. 1813
  • boy b. 1815
  • boy b. 1816 – this was Alden
  • girl b. 1819 – this was Hannah

Putting it together in this way shows that they had 12 children.  I don’t even see a lot of room for additional children who may not have survived.  Either the number is around 12, or there are other factors involved here that I don’t know about.  Since I happen to know that the youngest two claimed Jesse as their father, I doubt that other children are mixed in here.

So the mystery remains, where did the children go in 1830 – some barely teenagers – and my best theory is that some of them moved to Norwich, a thriving mill town at that time.  Perhaps the younger ones stayed with newly-married older siblings.  I base this on Hannah’s marriage in 1838 to a Norwich resident, and her husband’s appearance in the 1840 census in Norwich, as well as the five “engaged in manufactures” family members from the 1820 census – the offspring appeared to have some home industry, or perhaps they traveled to a workplace every day.  Other possibilities for finding industrial work would have been Killingly or Plainfield, Connecticut.

A search in Norwich

I searched the 1830 federal census records in Norwich, Connecticut for anyone named Andrews.  Of course, there could be married daughters, but I don’t know their names.

Running a search in Ancestry.com for last name “Andrews” in the 1830 census for Norwich brought up one result – Elisha Andrews.  Unfortunately, the quality of the page view was very poor.

1830 census image for Elisha Andrews, Norwich, Connecticut.  From Ancestry.com.

1830 census image for Elisha Andrews, Norwich, Connecticut. From Ancestry.com.

There are several things I know about this census section:

  • the handwriting was not so much bad as a little strange – note the “L” in “Ladd,” second entry from the bottom
  • This image is suffering from improper lighting or exposure – the overly light areas can’t be due to completely faded-out ink
  • The transcription is bad (and you can hardly blame them)
  • If the images and transcription are bad, there COULD be a lot more Andrews in the Town of Norwich section.

I turned to Internet Archive (www.archive.org – a free site) to see if their images were better than this one.  They won’t have an index of the contents, just the images of the NARA microfilm rolls, county by county, so I searched for:  “1830 Census New London.”  It was the first item that came up –

Population schedules of the fifth census of the United States, 1830, Connecticut [microform] (1969).  Reel 0010 – 1830 Connecticut Federal Population Census Schedules – New London County

There were 566 pages.  I looked at the Ancestry.com page to find a page number.  Ancestry’s source notes gave the page as 127, but a page number 252 could ALSO clearly be seen.  Turns out, 252 was the page number I needed.  Here is the same section of the page, this time from page 252 in the Internet Archive copy:

the same census page, this time from the Internet Archive image.

the same census page, this time from the Internet Archive image.  Better!

The Internet Archive copy is completely readable (except for the weird handwriting).  With no index there, I had to read the records for Norwich myself, page by page.  Norwich City was on pages 192 – 228.  Town of Norwich was on 230 – 254.  It didn’t take long.  No more Andrews were found.

A search in the county

After finding so little in Norwich, I concluded I needed to look at a wider area.  To search more broadly for Andrews, and make a list of possible Andrews children, I chose the two most likely counties:  Windham, where Ashford and Plainfield were, and New London, where Norwich was.  I wanted to see who was in the 1830, 1840, and 1850 census.

I took long lists from the Ancestry index like this:

The last name "Andrew" in New London County, 1850.  I copied this test directly from the screen.

The last name “Andrew” in New London County, 1850. I copied this text directly from the screen.

I pasted the text into Excel like this:

The census data pasted into an Excel file.  From here, it can be sorted and highlighted in different ways.

The 1850 census data pasted into an Excel file, sorted by birth year.

I added “Andrew” and “Andrews” entries (and a few other various spellings) from both counties in 1850 to this spreadsheet, resulting in about 130 entries.   I then eliminated (from the 1850 portion of the list) all women that were married to an Andrews.  From vital records, I added some men who had married Andrews women, and also used the vital records to eliminate some Andrews from further considerations as Jesse’s children.  I also added in the names from 1830 and 1840 census records in those counties.

Some steps that helped me eliminate some Andrews on the list from further consideration:

  • limited the list to those born between 1795 and 1822
  • Limited the birthplaces to Rhode Island or Massachusetts, or, if close to 1820, possibly Connecticut
  • looked at military and pension records on Fold3
  • looked for Connecticut death records.
  • looked for marriage records to see if parents were named
  • looked in newspaper notices at Newspapers.com and GenealogyBank
Some likely suspects for the children of Jesse Andrews.

Some likely suspects for the children of Jesse Andrews.

In the end, I had about 20 possible Andrews offspring.

  • Abby Andrews m. Gurdon Bushnel
  • Alden Andrews – definitely a son
  • Amaret Andrews m. John Phelps
  • Benjamin B Andrews – very likely to be a son; mother Sarah lived with him later on
  • Cordelia F Andrews – seems possible because she married Bradford Lyon in Ashford, however, there was an Ephraim Andrews there who could have been her father.
  • Diana Andrews – married Peleg Arnold.  Seems possible because of her grandmother being Dinah/Diana. 
  • Erastus Andrews
  • George R Andrews
  • Gideon G Andrews
  • Gilbert Andrew
  • Hannah Andrews – definitely a daughter
  • Harris Andrew
  • Huldah Andrews m. George Smith
  • Jane Andrews m. Hazard Rodman
  • Mary W Andrews m. William Davis
  • Nathaniel Andros
  • Parish Andrews  (possibly Paris)
  • Rebecca Andrews m. Jason Pray
  • Susan S Andrews m. Griggs Weeks
  • Sylvester Andrew
  • Thomas Andrews
  • Wheaton Andrew  (possibly Weeden)

Where things stand

Some factors that are holding me back:

  • While I know Jesse had a brother named Christopher, his father’s home showed other children, and I have never identified Jesse’s other siblings.  His father was Phillip, and his mother’s name is unknown, and may possibly be Freelove.
  • I have a Warwick, R.I. family I suspect may be Sarah Arnold’s. The father is almost definitely Joseph (that is from her marriage record), and the correct family may be Joseph Arnold and Dinah (sometimes Diana) Whitman.   Only five children are mentioned for them in The Arnold Memorial by Elisha Steve Arnold, and none were recorded in Warwick or East Greenwich, Rhode Island.   The five are Nicholas, Josiah, Joseph, Ann, and John.
  • The descendants of the original John Andrews family grew and spread west from North Kingstown and East Greenwich into the large town of Coventry.  Some of those Coventry families spread into eastern Connecticut – meaning all these Andrews may be distant cousins, and those who were recorded in the census as born in Rhode Island may easily have been from the Coventry families.
Western view of Danielson and Killingly from History and Antiquities of Every Town in Connecticut by John Warner Barber, 1838, p. 433.

Western view of Killingly from History and Antiquities of Every Town in Connecticut by John Warner Barber, 1838, p. 433.

Some factors that have come to light in this investigation:

  • There was an older Benjamin Andrews in Plainfield in 1830 who had a household of 15, mostly young people.  I have long thought Benjamin was a common name among the Andrews, and I suspect he could be a relative, and possibly be housing the children – perhaps they worked at a local mill, or were being educated.
  • I looked in vain for a Phillip Andrews or a Joseph Andrews, who would be the children named for the grandfathers.  Perhaps such children existed but died fairly young.
  • Of the female Andrews I have found in Windham County marriage records, all seem to disappear from Windham before 1850.  One or two of the  husbands died, but clearly 1810-1840 was a time of exodus from these southern New England counties, as people headed north or west.  I suspect many are to be found in Vermont, New York State, Ohio, Michigan, etc.

So, without siblings for either parent, and only two children absolutely identified – Alden and Hannah – it is hard to make sense of this list.

Next steps

  • Compile a research list and systematically go through each of the names on my list, noting results.  If there were any low-hanging fruit on these folks identifying parents, I would have found it already.
  • Keep trying to identify the parents of Diana Andrews’ husband Peleg Arnold.
  • Look again for probate records back in Warwick and East Greenwich which might mention any of these people.
  • Investigate any records for the Joseph Arnold I am pursuing.  I did not find Warwick probate records for him in 1819, or deeds any time around 1819, but I need to keep looking.  Perhaps he died in East Greenwich.
  • Be open minded about additional, more poorly documented (if such a thing is possible) Joseph Arnolds who could be Sarah’s father.
  • Ultimately, use any of Jesse and Sarah’s children that I can confirm to help me determine more about his father Phillip’s family and also details of Sarah’s family.
  • Look again at Jesse’s brother Christopher Andrews, to identify the names he used for his children which appear NOT to belong to his wife’s family.
  • Ultimately, I find myself very curious about whether my great-great grandmother Hannah Andrews was a cotton mill worker as a girl.  I wonder if I will ever know?
Some statistics about the cotton manufacture in Killingly, Connecticut, from , p. 432.

Some statistics about the cotton manufacture in Killingly, Connecticut, from History and Antiquities of Every Town in Connecticut by John Warner Barber, 1838, p. 432.

One name study, anyone?

Of Jesse and Sarah’s 12 children, I have two children identified, two are serious possibilities, and that leaves 18 possibilities for the other 8 spots.  Of course, they may have left children behind in Warwick (Warwick/East Greenwich were loaded with Andrews), or the mysterious spot in Massachusetts they may have stopped in before moving to Ashford.  But I feel like a couple of these may be right.

This is starting to look and feel like a study of all descendants of John Andrews, the (supposedly) original Scottish settler who died in North Kingstown, Rhode Island in 1693.  The more I study these obscure people, the more I know there is a lot more work to be done.  When the Rhode Island Historical Society Library re-opens gradually over the next month or two, I am going to get in there and photograph the manuscript they have on this family.

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2014/11/24/better-look-at-the-census/

2014-10-17 19.18.55

 — Illustration from The Art of Homemaking, 1898.

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I recently pinned down the family of Hannah Andrews, my ggg-grandmother.  I thought I would give an account here of how that happened.

My relationship to Hannah Andrews (counting up from my grandmother):

  • Hannah Andrews (1819 – 1878), my 3rd great grandmother
  • Emma Luella Lamphere (1857 – 1927), daughter of Hannah Andrews
  • Russell Earl Darling (1883 – 1959), son of Emma Luella Lamphere
  • Edna May Darling (1905 – 1999), my grandmother, daughter of Russell Earl Darling

I have documented Hannah previously in On Poverty, Records, and Chicken ThievesThe Brick Wall Stories: A Theory on Hannah Andrews and The Brick Wall Stories: Hannah Andrews.  I have listed a lot of sources there, so I won’t do that today – just my thought process as I went through this for the last 4 years.  Future work on these lines will bring up more documentation.

The story of Hannah Andrews

Hannah’s youngest child was my gg-grandmother Emma Luella Lamphere.  I had to trace Emma’s scattered history back a ways to even find Hannah.  Emma had been born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama (and that was as far back as our vague family recollections went), but thanks to census records I began to realize her parents were from southern New England, and I found them and their Connecticut-born older children in some basic Connecticut sources.  I knew Hannah’s name from her marriage to Russell Lamphere recorded at Norwich, Connecticut in 1838.  Hannah Andrews, of Ashford, Connecticut.

Norwich Town 11 June 1838 Russell Lamphere of Norwich and Hannah Andrews of Ashford entered in the marriage relation before me .  Joel R. Arnold, Pastor of the Congl Church Colchester.  Received July 5, 1878.  Simeon [?] Town Clerk

Norwich Town 11 June 1838 Russell Lamphere of Norwich and Hannah Andrews of Ashford entered in the marriage relation before me . Joel R. Arnold, Pastor of the Congl Church Colchester. Received July 5, 1838. Simeon [Thomas?] Town Clerk

Hannah married Russell Lamphere and had four children in the industrial areas of Norwich Falls and Greenville, Connecticut: William H. (b. 1840), Sarah E. (b. 1843), Charles C. (b. 1844), and Caroline M (b. 1847).  In the 1850 census Russell is listed as a “Machinist” with property worth $700; really not a bad level of prosperity considering he was one of 14 children and would likely have received nothing from his father at that point.

During the early years of her marriage, Hannah often lived near or with an “Alden Andrews“, a farmer a year or two older than her, who married twice and became the father of a number of children.  Later in the 1880’s (after Hannah’s death), one of Alden’s sons lived in Russell’s household and was working in the mill with Russell.  This, as well as the fact that Alden named his first son Russell, is how I knew early on that Alden and Hannah were siblings.

Russell Lamphere was an ambitious man who took his family from the booming mill town of Norwich, Connecticut and headed south to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to start a business around 1852.  The south was anxious to process more of their own cotton and not depend on northern industries so much; I can only assume that this may have been part of his motivation. I wonder how they made the trip?   The Lampheres were not used to traveling – Russell’s brother William reported in his 80’s that he had never left their county in Connecticut – I wonder if the trip was by water, with an inland journey by carriage?  A younger sister or cousin of Russell, and her new husband, also found their way to Tuscaloosa, but otherwise, they went alone.

Hannah and Russell’s last child, Emma was born in 1854 in Alabama, and, lacking birth records, there could have been other children who did not survive.  I learned from Tuscaloosa newspapers (In Which I Stoop to Buying Microfilm) that Russell’s business partner died around 1860, and Russell opened a metalworking shop in downtown Tuscaloosa.  I am still uncertain what the original business was.

The business Russell advertised after the death of his partner.

The business Russell advertised in 1861 after the death of his partner.

Other than a family memory that things didn’t go well with the business because of the Civil War, and that it was unsafe after the war, no one really knows how it all went for them.  Hannah raised her young children and, presumably, watched them become quite southern, during divisive times.  The Tuscaloosa newspapers of the 1860’s were full of bitter, hateful reporting leading up to the Civil War.  How was that atmosphere for Russell and Hannah?  Were they conflicted?  The sons were grown by the time the war broke out. Charles definitely served in the Civil War as a Confederate soldier and stayed in the South for the rest of his life, and I believe William died in 1912 in Tuscaloosa.  In both cases I am basing this on how they named their children and some claims about being born in Connecticut.  There had been some letters from a civil war soldier among my family’s possessions, now lost – I suspect these were from Charles or William to their parents.  I’m sure the well being of her family and the safety of her sons placed Hannah squarely on the southern side of this conflict.

Towards the end of her life Hannah suffered from a “long and painful illness.”  She may have been ill when the 1870 census taker came around to a room in a boarding house shared by Emma and her father in Meridian, Mississippi (A Story Just Like Russell Lamphere’s). I have not found any other family member in the 1870 census. Where were Hannah and her daughters Sarah and Caroline? Could their absence have something to do with Hannah’s illness?

Hannah's daughter Emma Lamphere Darling , 1857-1927.  Emma, her daughter and granddaughter were tall and thin, with long, narrow faces and a sort of stateliness. My guess would be, Hannah looked something like that.

Hannah’s daughter Emma Lamphere Darling , 1857-1927. Emma, her daughter and granddaughter were tall and thin, with long, narrow faces and a sort of stateliness. My guess would be, Hannah looked something like that.

Between 1870 and 1875, Russell and Hannah moved the family up to Johnston, Rhode Island, just outside of Providence, where Russell was a “Manufacturer of Cotton Goods” according the the Rhode Island state census.  The west side of Providence, and Johnston, were filled with many textile manufacturing operations, large and small, at that time.  Daughters Sarah and Emma were living with them.  I have never determined what happened to Caroline, but she may have come north with the family since Russell’s obituary, much later, mentions a daughter in Eden Park, Cranston, who could not possibly be the other two daughters.  After leaving the south, it’s likely Hannah never saw her two sons again, although I can’t be sure of that.

Hannah died in 1878 in Providence, of gall stones.  She is buried in an unmarked grave at Yantic Cemetery, Norwich, likely a plot purchased by her husband in happier times.

from The Providence Daily Journal, June 25, 1878.

from The Providence Daily Journal, June 25, 1878.

Within the next year or two, her daughters Emma and Sarah married, and her husband remarried.  Was her illness another long, sad note in the difficult times this family faced?  Or was it actually relatively brief?  Did it impact how the business venture in Johnston went?  The family had moved on to Providence by the time of her death, where by 1880 Russell was an overseer in a large mill, obviously not his own.  It’s sad to think of them burying her far away (and Russell followed her, a couple of decades later), and probably thinking, for years, that they would put up a headstone, a plan that never came to fruition.

Section 6, Plot 9, "R & W Lamphere" at Yantic Cemetery, Norwich, Connecticut

Section 6, Plot 9, “R & W Lamphere” at Yantic Cemetery, Norwich, Connecticut

Who were the Andrews? 

At first, I thought it would be easy to discover the Andrews of Ashford, Connecticut, and learn about Hannah’s origins.  Ashford is a little town in rural northeastern Connecticut, well north of Norwich. I knew Hannah’s story was a little bit complicated, because sometimes she and Alden, or their children, reported them being born in Massachusetts, sometimes Connecticut.  Her Providence death records reported her parents as Jesse and Sarah Andrews (Alden’s 1873 death record lists a father, Jesse, only), and her birth place as Coventry, Connecticut. Nothing much came of the Coventry clue, so I moved back to a more contemporary record.  Knowing she was “of Ashford” in 1838, I checked the 1840 census records.

No Jesse Andrews in the 1840 census.  In 1830, Jesse Andrews was living in Ashford. His household showed only a man, 60-70, and a woman, 50-60.  Next to him was a “Benjamin Andrews”, also in a household of 2, a younger man and woman.  The 1820 census for Ashford showed Jesse Andrews in a bustling household of 11; a male over 45, a female 26 – 44, and 8 of the occupants were 16 or under.  One person was engaged in Agriculture and 5 in Manufactures.  The 1810 and prior census records showed no Jesse Andrews anywhere in Windham County.  I readily admit, I was confused.  How could that lonely household of 2 in 1830 have been the family of Hannah and her brother Alden, who would have been around 11 and 13 that year?

Ashford, from Connecticut Historical Collections by J.W. Barber, New Haven, 1836, p. 417.

Ashford, from Connecticut Historical Collections by J.W. Barber, New Haven, 1836, p. 417.

I set about hunting every Jesse Andrews I could, in New England.  One was married to “Sarah” and they lived their lives in Montague, Massachusetts.  The trouble was, in the years when Hannah and Alden could have been born, they were busy having several other children, and they raised a large family and never left Montague.  They were never in Ashford.

The only other Jesse Andrews that married a “Sarah” was a 1795 marriage record in Warwick, Rhode Island, for Jesse Andrews and “Sally Arnold.” Surely, that was too early for children born in 1817 and 1819.  And, of all the Connecticut and Massachusetts references I had seen, no mention was ever made of Rhode Island.

A visit to Ashford showed no vital or probate records for any of the people I knew, or any likely Andrews.  On another trip I went to Eastford, an offshoot of Ashford, again, nothing.

Key Fact #1

The one thing my Ashford visit turned up was a deed from Jesse Andrews to Alden Andrews in January, 1838 for the purchase of a 50 acre tract of land in southeastern Ashford.

It was good and bad news.  The names were unusual enough, and the year was the exact year that tied her family to Ashford, 1838, so I had to accept that this was Hannah’s family.  That was great, I had found them.  What was bad was the poor documentation and subsequent disappearance of Andrews from Ashford.  In the only other deed for Jesse, he (“of Ashford”) purchased the same property, with a mortgage, in 1832.  Alden lost the property by 1840, and was in Springfield, Massachusetts when he married for the first time.  I suspect Jesse was dead by 1840.

And here things sat for quite a while.  I pursued a line of Andrews that came from Ipswich, Massachusetts to Preston, Connecticut for quite a long time, and some Andrews from the Hartford area.  Alden’s name is unusual enough that I felt, for sure, I would find it.  I didn’t.

About a year and a half ago I began again my hunt for Jesse and Sarah, and this Benjamin Andrews who was a neighbor.

Key Fact #2

It’s almost hard to say why this clue was so big, but as I searched census records I finally noticed that there was an 1850 census record in Eastford for Benjamin Andrews, who was a 41 year old recent widower with two children, and a woman named Sarah Andrews, 74 and both Benjamin and Sarah reported being born in Rhode Island. 

Suddenly, it all made sense.  Benjamin was another son of Jesse Andrews, and Sarah was his mother, who was by then a widow.  If they came from Rhode Island, she could be the “Sally Arnold” who married Jesse Andrews in 1795.  Benjamin could have been born in Rhode Island around 1809.  Jesse and Sarah could have been the older couple in Ashford in 1830.  Sarah’s age when Hannah was born in 1819 could have been, say, 44.  Not completely crazy.

I visited the Connecticut State Library around this time, and learned that Sarah continued to live with Benjamin, during his second marriage, until she disappeared from the Norwich city directories about 1862.  No death or probate records, and that was too bad because I was hoping to find a death record that gave Sarah’s maiden name.  None turned up.  Benjamin himself developed quite a criminal record towards the end of his life and spent time in prison.

I began studying the Warwick Jesse and Sarah Andrews in earnest.  I learned several things:

  • Jesse was the son of Phillip Andrews, according to his marriage record and a manuscript I found at the Rhode Island Historical Society.  This rather obscure Andrews family descended from a North Kingstown, Rhode Island founder – one of the Fones purchasers – John Andrews (sometimes McAndrews).  Jesse had a grandmother named Hannah.
  • Jesse’s part of this family was not well documented, but he and one brother, Christopher, had detailed marriage records that have survived.
  • Phillip, the father, had an active military career in the French and Indian Wars and the American Revolution.  He was sometimes in the company of a Benjamin Andrews. The name of his wife is unknown. He died before 1795 when he was “dec’d” on Jesse’s marriage record. No probate.
East Greenwich Town Hall, formerly the Kent County Courthouse.  Photo by Diane Boumenot.

East Greenwich Town Hall, formerly the Kent County Courthouse. Photo by Diane Boumenot.

  • Since I knew from the marriage record that Sally’s father was Joseph Arnold (an extremely common name in that place and time) I noted that Jesse often lived next to a Joseph Arnold, and also another neighbor named Freelove Andrews, possibly Jesse’s widowed mother, whose name is unknown.
  • Jesse’s brother Christopher left Rhode Island in the late 1700’s for Pittstown, Rensselaer, New York.  He became the father of numerous children and he and his children are quite well documented.
  • Jesse had a Seaman’s Protection Certificate issued in 1798 and served on the Brig Fanny out of Providence in 1799.
  • Jesse purchased a small house and lot at the corner of Main and Montrose Streets in East Greenwich in 1797.  He sold it by 1800 and was at that time listed as “Yeoman alias Mariner.”  His wife “Sarah” signed one of the deeds, showing that “Sally” was indeed a “Sarah.”

Jesse appeared with a growing family in the 1800 and 1810 census in Warwick, then disappeared.  Not really knowing Sarah’s exact Arnold family and possible connections, I did an extensive census match-up between Warwick in 1810 and Ashford in 1820 to see if anyone might have accompanied them (A Census of the Census and 9 Other Things I Tried).  Nothing came of that.

Key Fact #3

All of this was helpful, but didn’t prove that the family in Warwick was the same as the family in Ashford.  Then I decided to get some DNA testing done on both my parents. 

Mom’s test came up with dozens of close matches to either Christopher Andrews (Jesse’s brother) or other Andrews of Warwick and East Greenwich, as well as the local families they tended to intermarry with – Sweets, Mattisons, Arnolds, Greenes.  Mom has no other connections in this part of Rhode Island.  It can really only come from Hannah Andrews.  I’m going to continue testing with other companies, but I’m accepting this evidence at this point.

The Old Randall Holden House, from History of Warwick by Fuller.  Randall Holden is a possible ancestor, depending on the exact Arnold line I may discover for Sarah.

The Old Randall Holden House, from History of Warwick by Fuller. Randall Holden is a possible ancestor, depending on the exact Arnold line I may discover for Sarah.

Things I still don’t know

  • Hannah and Russell were married by a Rev. Joel R. Arnold of the Colchester Conn. church, a popular preacher who didn’t stay long.  Now I am wondering if he is related to Sarah.  Duh.  Arnold.  That’s just occurring to me.
  • What happened between 1810 and 1820?  If they were in Massachusetts, where?  I find no evidence in deeds, many of which are actually online.  I see other relatives heading to Vermont or New York, but I never see anyone else going to Massachusetts.  Nearby Massachusetts should be a possibility (just north of Ashford, maybe) but I can’t find any record.  Perhaps Jesse’s mother died, and he had a small inheritance, and went elsewhere to buy land.  But I can’t find it.  I read Warwick town records for this decade, thinking they may have thrown him out, or paid him for something, but no luck.
  • The name Alden – where did that come from?  None of these Arnolds or Andrews had Mayflower roots.
  • Sarah Arnold’s parents will have to be discovered among the early Warwick Arnolds.  Her birth was not recorded, so she may have been in a family that migrated from one town to another, perhaps recording only part of their family.  My biggest clue is the proximity of Joseph Arnold to Jesse Andrews in the census records.
  • While I don’t think there are marked graves for Jesse and Sarah, I at least would like to find some notice of their deaths.
  • I have a theory that the missing children for Jesse and Sarah Andrews in the 1830 Ashford census may have headed south to Norwich, with their older siblings, to work in mills or do piecework at home.  Hannah could really only have met Russell in Norwich.
  • There were many other children in the Warwick 1810 census whose names are not known to me – what became of them?  I see little clear evidence in Warwick, Ashford, or Norwich.
  • It is embarrassing that I only have first name/middle initials for 4 of Hannah’s 5 children.  I normally do much better than that. In Sarah’s case, I sought out her grave and cemetery records, and I certainly sought and sometimes found marriage and death records for all.  If any of their descendants read this, please, let me know if you know one.
  • Now that I have the DNA bug, I’m a little curious about what the DNA of Alden’s descendants might tell us.  I don’t know any of them, but for his oldest son Russell, in particular, I have a lot of leads.

In the meantime, yay.  I found my ancestors right in my own backyard. Much more research will follow.

In summary

Hannah saw a lot in her 59 years.  She was born in a town that was new to her family, moved at least once or twice, and may have been part of the workforce at an early age.  I suspect when she met her husband he seemed far above her in station, and I am quite sure he was a very smart man, a sort of self-educated engineer.  Not much transpired after marriage that was easy or particularly successful, but I have in mind a version of her life where she admires her smart and ambitious husband, is appreciated for her willingness to follow him south, weathers very difficult times during the war, tends her children until, at the end, they must tend her, and is sincerely mourned. Rest in peace.

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2014/09/30/hannah-andrews-brick-wall/

East Greenwich, from Picturesque Rhode Island. P245

East Greenwich, from Picturesque Rhode Island. P245

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This week I had the opportunity to visit the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.  The massive library consists of three buildings: the Jefferson Building, the Adams Building, and the Madison Building.  I took the Metro to the Capital South stop on the Blue Line.   It was only about 2 blocks up from there.  Parking, and even driving, looked completely impossible – the local streets seemed closed off, with police at every intersection.  That looked like a permanent state of affairs to me, but I could be wrong.

The Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress, across from the Capital building.

The Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress, across from the Capital building.

I wanted to visit the stunning Jefferson Building, and then get a research card and look at a manuscript in the Madison Building.  I had a backup plan if there was more time – a list of books I had found in the online card catalog, saved, emailed to myself, and printed.  Books from the stacks at the Library of Congress must be requested; one cannot roam the stacks. The old Genealogy Room is now gone; users should request the materials from the Main Reading Room.  This isn’t my favorite way of doing things, so I thought I would prefer to go for a manuscript.

Main entrance of the Jefferson Building.  The exit is in the back.

Main entrance of the Jefferson Building. The exit is in the back.

The Jefferson Building

The Jefferson Building with its famous Main Reading Room is incredibly beautiful.  I don’t know when I’ve been so overwhelmed by a building.  It was inspiring, and deserved a longer visit.  I hung by some of the tours, listening in.  I’ll have to take one of those someday.

The main entryway is several stories tall with marble staircases.

The Jefferson Building. The main entryway is several stories tall with marble staircases.

I walked through the Jefferson Building, visited the gift shop on my way out and purchased a sale book of old Massachusetts maps for $12, and then walked across the street to the more modern Madison Building.

A closer view of one of the marble staircases.

A closer view of one of the marble staircases in the Jefferson Building.

The Reader’s Registration

I visited the Reader’s Registration office in the Madison Building (LM-140) to request my registration card.  I had previously registered online for the card through the link on this page which was not really necessary but I hoped it would speed things up on site.  The card was cute. It will be good for two years.  Then, I went up to the sixth floor (yellow/red sections of the huge building) and found, with some difficulty, the cafeteria.  I had lunch, and it was quite peaceful in there until right about 12, when it got very busy.

Some details of the Main Reading Room.  I could have gained access once I had my research card, but didn't have enough time.

Some details of the Main Reading Room. I could have gained access once I had my research card, but didn’t have enough time.

The manuscript

I went to the Manuscripts Room on the first floor of the Madison Building. There were lockers, and very little could be brought in, but my tablet was ok, and they had wifi, which was helpful. I also brought my camera in to take pictures of the documents. I stored my other gear in the locker they gave me.

I had previously dropped them an email to inquire if the manuscript set I wanted had to be pre-ordered for remote retrieval.  They said that it should be available without advance planning.

The manuscript I had selected from the online catalog was:

Rhode Island General Assembly records, 1653-1747
Creator Rhode Island. General Assembly.
Extent 24 items ; 6 containers ; 2 linear feet
Summary Minutes, acts, and proceedings of Rhode Island’s colonial legislature sitting in various towns.
Finding Aid: http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mss/eadmss.ms009023
LC Online Catalog record: http://lccn.loc.gov/mm83085753

The Madison Building

The Madison Building, Library of Congress.

Since the files had not been microfilmed, they let me use the originals.  I was mystified about the origins and provenance of the old, handwritten sets of Rhode Island General Assembly records.  The earliest records were in three bound and restored volumes; the later three were archival folders with loose papers or loosely sewn booklets.  As I read through them I realized where they came from.  Early in Rhode Island history, there was no state capital exactly; the state government often met at Newport but also floated from place to place regularly.  As the minutes of government business were written, it would be ordered that extra copies be made and filed with the main towns – usually at least Providence, Portsmouth, Newport and Warwick.  Many of the pages I saw in this archive were marked “Portsmouth.”

A sample page of the manuscript of Rhode Island General Assembly records, hhh

A sample page of the manuscript of Rhode Island General Assembly records.  The writing is fairly uniform within each section, and VERY small, to save paper, I presume.

I focused on finding three items relating to my 8x-great grandfather John McAndrews / Andrews:

  1. His freeman status, 1671
  2. His part in the Pettaquamscutt Purchase, mentioned in the General Assembly 1671
  3. A General Assembly act to lessen a criminal sentence he received, in 1679.
At the manuscript reading area in the Madison Building.

At the manuscript reading area in the Madison Building.

Sadly, I tried hard but didn’t find the 1671 records, and I think this is because the version I was reading was incomplete.  I did find the 1679 record.  What astonished me was that I have seen mentions of this item several times, and seen it in a compiled genealogy at the Rhode Island Historical Society.  I NEVER knew what the crime was, but I do now:

[Volume 2, unpaginated:  At a Genl Assembly held for the Collony at Newport the 29th of October 1679]  Voted Upon the petition of John Mackandrews, alias Andrews to this Genl Assembly that they would be pleased to remit the sentence of the Genl Court of Tryalls against him, the Reasons contained in the said petition, Being the Great infirmity of his Body the Great infirmity of his Body [<–good sign that this was a copy] and the smallness of his Estate which said Reasons being to us made apparent, and alsoe there being no Evidence against him but the womans accusation and his incapassety to maintain his family, Upon the consideration thereof this Assembly doe remitt, and take off the Corporal punishment due to him the said John Mackandrew by the law of this Collony, and alsoe five pounds of the pecunery [muled?] or fine due by the law aforesaid: And alsoe this Assembly doe hereby further order that the Recorder shall grant forth Execution for the Remainder of the fine due by the law, until the Genl Assembly give order for it : Hoping that this our Clemency and good will, will not in any Wise encourage him nor any others to offend against law in the like manner.

No complete or well researched work has been done on John Andrews and I would like to solve the mystery of his arrival in Rhode Island, possibly from Scotland, his whereabouts before his arrival in North Kingstown, and of his marriage(s) and children.

My purchase at the gift shop.   Massachusetts: Mapping the Bay State Through History

My purchase at the gift shop. Massachusetts: Mapping the Bay State Through History

Records of the Colony of Rhode Island

Most of what I looked at should be contained in the printed books “The Records of the Colony of Rhode Island” but apparently I had missed some of the John Andrews items previously.  I enjoyed perusing the 6 volumes/boxes, I was excited to find my item as it was originally written (or at least copied), and I am newly dedicated to using the Records of the Colony of Rhode Island. Any time I see a reference to an act by the government, I am going to check out the record myself and not rely on someone else’s summary.

I will have to save the list of books to be pulled from the stacks for another trip.  But I enjoyed my visit to the library and I would love to go back.

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2014/09/25/library-of-congress/

This early seal with an anchor was evidently meant to mark this as an official copy.  It appears many times in the volumes.

This early seal with an anchor (from a restored, bound page) was evidently meant to mark this as an official copy. It appears many times in the volumes.

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So in my search for the origins of the Jesse and Sarah Andrews who lived in Ashford, Connecticut in 1820, I have concentrated recently (see the previous post) on a family by that name who seemed to disappear from Warwick, Rhode Island after 1810.

The problem

As the search goes on, I have come to believe that poverty is playing a big role in the lack of available evidence.  Around 1800, most of my other New England ancestors were doing many of the following things:

  • farming, and using ear marks for cattle (well maybe ear marks were more common in 1700)
  • buying and selling property; paying taxes
  • recorded in state or federal census records
  • occasionally: divorce or other lawsuits, licenses for various businesses, church membership, graduating from college
  • holding various small public service positions in their towns or serving in the military
  • recording the births of children with the town
  • having their own death noted briefly in a local paper, and/or recorded by the town
  • leaving an estate that required probate and/or guardianship of children
  • buried in a grave with a marker

But, not so much with Jesse Andrews.  While I do have some good evidence of his parentage and his father’s family tree, this is all I have on Jesse himself:

  • 1795 – Jesse Andrews and Sally Arnold married in Warwick, by James Jerrauld, Justice.  He was the son of “Philip, dec.”  She was the daughter of Joseph.
  • 1797 – Jesse, a “mariner”, purchased a house and lot on Main Street, East Greenwich, R.I.  His brother Christopher seemed to have a half share of it.
  • 1798 – Jesse, age 32, received a Seaman’s Protection Certificate, Providence, Rhode Island. Reportedly had been born in Warwick R.I.
  • 1799 – Jesse returned from a 4 month voyage to Surinam as crew on the Brig Fanny (B. Alger, Master)

ship

  • 1800 – Jesse, “yeoman alias mariner” sold the East Greenwich house and lot.  Christopher seemed to sell his half share.
  • 1800 – Census – Jesse was living in Warwick with 3 children and two women.  Joseph Arnold was a neighbor. Freelove Andrews was next door (may possibly be his widowed mother)
  • 1810 – Census – Jesse living in Warwick with an adult female and 7 children under 16.  Joseph Arnold was a neighbor. Freelove Andrews was next door (may possibly be his widowed mother)
  • —  THIS IS THE POINT WHERE THE TWO FAMILIES MAY OR MAY NOT BE THE SAME —
  • 1820 – Census – Jesse living in Ashford, CT with two females over 16 and 8 children under 16.
  • 1830 – Census – Jesse living in Ashford, CT with a female, 50-59.
  • 1832 – Jesse purchased a 50 acre property in southeastern Ashford, with a mortgage
  • 1838 – Jesse sold the 50 acre property to his son Alden; Alden mortgaged it, then sold it in 1839.
  • 1838 – when daughter Hannah (my ggg-grandmother) married in 1838, she was “of Ashford.”
  • [after this, I find records for a Benjamin B. Andrews and widowed mother Sarah – not proved she is the same Sarah. No death record for Sarah.]

Looking for family and neighbors

I have been tracking family and neighbors like crazy.  That is probably the only thing that will solve this but so far, it has only provided numerous clues.  There are three main impediments:  (1) I only know one of Jesse’s siblings, but early census records show there are at least five more; (2) I only know two of Jesse’s children, but census records indicate there may be five more, and (3) Sally Arnold’s father was named Joseph Arnold, which is not only an incredibly common name in the area, but is shared with two others that made dozens of land transactions.  So I am still wading through that.

Years in Rhode Island

Jesse does not appear in the East Greenwich or Warwick land records except for the brief ownership of a house on Main Street, East Greenwich (which is adjacent to Warwick – the busy street is half East Greenwich, half Warwick).  The house and lot in East Greenwich were “24 square rods of land” (equals less than a sixth acre) so clearly Jesse was not going into farming on his own.  Since the deeds indicate he was a mariner in 1797 and was, by 1800, “yeoman, alias mariner” we know it’s the same person, but I can only suppose “yeoman” meant, in this case, farming someone else’s land, perhaps his father in law’s, Joseph Arnold, who seems to be nearby in the census.

The division between Warwick and East Greenwich is close to Main Street, EG.  Post Road marked in blue.

The division between Warwick and East Greenwich is close to Main Street, EG. Post Road marked in blue. Map from 1856.

The crew lists I examined at the Rhode Island Historical Society begin around 1797, so although I only have one record of a voyage for him, he may have had earlier voyages.  But clearly, from the deeds, he transitioned from mariner to yeoman by 1800.  I assume his plan to support a house for his growing family was not sustainable, although perhaps there was another reason to give up the house.

Years in Connecticut

Other than the land transactions in Ashford which definitely tie Jesse to the son I know about, Alden, and pretty much prove to me that the Jesse in Ashford is indeed my gggg grandfather, I am finding nothing else in Connecticut – no probate, no other property, no taxes, no death record for him or for Sarah, no graves, and no military records.

The one decent theory I have, tying Jesse & Sarah Andrews of Ashford to the Warwick couple, is reinforced by the numbers in the 1810 and 1820 census records – they had 7 children under 16 in 1810, and 8 in 1820.  A possible son, and his widowed mother Sarah, consistently claim after 1840 to have been born in Rhode Island. This additional son is named Benjamin B. Andrews.  He lived with a mother Sarah from about 1840 until 1861 when, I believe, she died.  I was surprised to see, as he grew older, that Benjamin developed quite a criminal record.

The life of a chicken thief

As I was preparing for my trip to the Connecticut State Archives, I came across a search screen for “Databases of Individuals Listed in State Archives Records“.  None of the data sets looked appropriate for my Andrews family so on a whim I tried “Wethersfield Prison Records 1800-1903.”  Uh oh.  A search for Andrews turned up this:

  • last name: Andrews
  • first name: Benjamin
  • residence: Eastford
  • court: Windham
  • crime: breaking and entering
  • victim: Higginbotham, Daniel
  • prison term: one year, six months
  • date issued: 2/14/1882

This was the person I have tentatively identified as Jesse’s son.  So that was not cheerful news, and I started a newspaper search for more details of Benjamin’s life (I knew he had lived in the towns of Ashford/Eastford, and Norwich at various times; he married twice, to Lucy B Snow, and Mary Ann Davis).  I found various criminal convictions, such as:

  • 09 December 1864Benjamin B. Andrews of Norwich, Ct., went out robbing hen roosts, on the 2d stole about a wagon load, was arrested, examined, case adjourned, and then he took leg bail.  [note – I believe that means he ran off]. (Springfield Union (Springfield, MA), p. 2).
  • 03 March 1866Benjamin B. Andrews of Norwich, has been arrested and bound over for trial by the superior court for pretending to be a justice of the peace and marrying a couple. (Providence Evening Press (Providence, RI) vol. XIV, iss. 157, p. 3).  Same story – 17 March 1866  (Springfield Republican (Springfield, MA), p. 8).
  • 30 April 1878Benjamin Andrews from Eastford, was brought before Judge Tilden last week, charged with stealing 10 chickens from Cha. Simpson of South Windham.  He was found guilty on circumstantial evidence, and fined $5 and costs.  He appealed, and in default of bonds was sent to Brooklyn to await trial.  He was well known at the jail, and bears a bad reputation among his neighbors.  It is stated that one year he sold 200 chickens and did not raise one of them.  (Willimantic Enterprise News, as transcribed on the Ancestry.com Message Board for “1877 Willimantic Enterprise News” item #1262)
  • 20 March 1882Benjamin Andrews, one of a gang of burglars who have plundered many houses in Windham County, has been sent to state prison for a year.  (New Haven Register (New Haven, CT) vol. XLII, iss. 66, p. 4.)

chickensBenjamin had married twice, and had several children.  He was usually listed as a farmer. Whether he was pursuing criminal activity his whole life, or only later in life, I don’t know.  He died of “Peritonitis” in 1885.  Benjamin appears in the Eastford, Connecticut death records (Town of Eastford Births Marriages Deaths, vol. 3 1881-1886, p.210-211)  with no place of birth, parents, or exact age listed.  Court or even prison records, if I can find them, might reveal more about his origins.

Poverty and genealogy

Jesse Andrew’s lack of wealth and property are holding back my progress on this search.  This will not come as news to genealogists, of course.  And it could be pointed out that sometimes, poverty itself causes records to be produced for an individual – “warnings out” for out-of-town residents who were falling on hard times, to put them on notice not to expect town support if needed, and perhaps consider relocating to their home town, also repayment by the town for support of the poor by residents who “bid” to house and feed them, or perhaps for the coffin and burial. Interviews were often a part of the warning-out system, involving the life story of the poor person, since the home town needed to be determined, and the rules on that were convoluted.  Finding any stray remnants of such interviews can be extremely helpful, of course.

Unwelcome Americans

Unwelcome Americans

In my frustration with the Jesse Andrews question I turned for help to a book which focuses on poverty in 18th-century Rhode Island.  Unwelcome Americans by Ruth Wallis Herndon (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2001) traces the stories of 40 Rhode Island paupers, presenting as much of their lives, families, and experiences as can be known.  Genealogists would enjoy the book, which attempts to tell the stories that other history books never will.  Often, the stories are partial – a glimpse of a well-documented span of a couple years, perhaps, with no clear beginning and no clear end.  Because a number of Ruth’s profiles are of Warwick residents, I hoped to find some familiar names, but did not.  But I learned a lot about the undocumented nature of the life of paupers, and about the communities she describes in Rhode Island.

This glimpse into the world of Rhode Island’s somewhat invisible classes helped me to realize that Jesse’s absence from  town and tax records, vital records, newspapers, probate records, and cemeteries, with only brief stints of property ownership, probably puts him in the struggling un-landed class, with no real trade.  According to Unwelcome Americans, stints as ship crew members were common for poorer families during this period.  In neither location did Jesse’s fortunes sink low enough to put him on public assistance (I would have seen that in the town records I looked at).  In Warwick I suspect, from the census record evidence, that he and his wife usually lived with her father, or his mother.  By the time they got to Ashford, Connecticut, some of the older children were capable of helping out.  Indeed, an older sibling must have taken in the younger children if the 1830 census, showing Jesse and Sarah living alone, is to be believed, because daughter Hannah was only 12 then.

Jesse living near Benjamin Andrews as shown in the 1830 census.  Benjamin was a newlywed, living with his wife, Jesse and his wife are there, but Jesse's 2 youngest children are not present in either household.

Jesse living near Benjamin Andrews in Ashford as shown in the 1830 census. Benjamin was a newlywed, living with his wife, Jesse and his wife are there, but Jesse’s 2 youngest children are not present in either household.

In conclusion

The pattern that I noticed with many of my 19th century southern New England ancestors, that gradually lost the last remnants of family land after it had been divided many times over, seemed to strike early with Jesse Andrews and his family. They were poor.  Therefore I plan to pursue the following record types now:

  • General Assembly records in Rhode Island  – a Joseph Arnold of Warwick petitioned the General Assembly as an insolvent debtor in 1823.  While not certain to be Sarah’s father, it just might be since the record is unlikely to belong to the two wealthy Joseph Arnolds that I am already aware of.  This would be at the Rhode Island State Archives.
  • Court records in Rhode Island – there is a Kent County Court of Common Pleas record for the same petition, above.  This should be at the Rhode Island Judicial Archives.
  • Court records in Connecticut – there should be records related to some of Benjamin B. Andrews’ crimes, listed above (and many more, I expect).  If I could prove that he was Jesse’s son, that would be very significant, since he and his mother Sarah were born in Rhode Island.
  • Factory town records – since there is little evidence of the Andrews children in Ashford (for instance, their marriages), I should explore the Norwich area to see if they sought factory jobs there.  Son Alden pursued farming for the rest of his life, but there is no evidence of who the other children were or what they did.  My guess would be, they sought out factory jobs, or migrated north or west in search of available farmland.  Since daughter Hannah presumably met her husband in Norwich, and he worked in a factory there, I have sometimes wondered if she was a young factory worker, or living in town with older siblings.
  • Military records – Jesse’s father Philip served in the Revolutionary War, and died young, and I see no evidence that his widow (whose name I am unsure of) ever filed for a widow’s pension.  But I will keep looking.
  • Town records in Ashford – Although I have covered deeds, vital, probate and cemetery records in Ashford, I need to look more thoroughly through the town council records.

Sources for Warwick

I would not be nearly as far along with the Warwick/East Greenwich information without the following valuable works, all published by the Rhode Island Genealogical Society.  The first two contain hundreds of amazing footnotes explaining relationships and circumstances of the individuals named.  The last four books are transcriptions of some town council records.

  • Bamberg, Cherry Fletcher.  The Diary of Capt. Samuel Tillinghast of Warwick, Rhode Island 1757-1766.  Greenville, Rhode Island: Rhode Island Genealogical Society (Special Publication No. 3), 2000.
  • Bamberg, Cherry Fletcher.  Elder John Gorton and the Six Principle Baptist Church of East Greenwich, Rhode Island.  Greenville, Rhode Island: Rhode Island Genealogical Society (Special Publication No. 6), 2001.
  • Bamberg, Cherry Fletcher.  Gleanings from Rhode Island Town Records: East Greenwich Town Council Records, 1734 – 1774.  Rhode Island Roots Special Bonus Issue 2008.
  • Bamberg, Cherry Fletcher.  Gleanings from Rhode Island Town Records: East Greenwich Town Council Records, 1775 – 1800 Rhode Island Roots Special Bonus Issue 2009.
  • Bamberg, Cherry Fletcher.  Gleanings from Rhode Island Town Records: Warwick Town Council Records, 1742 – 1780 Rhode Island Roots Special Bonus Issue 2012.
  • Bamberg, Cherry Fletcher.  Gleanings from Rhode Island Town Records: Warwick Town Council Records, 1781 – 1801.  Rhode Island Roots Special Bonus Issue 2013.
Special issues of Rhode Island Roots containing transcribed and indexed town records.  RIGS members receive these - a great reason to join!

Special issues of Rhode Island Roots containing transcribed and indexed town records. RIGS members receive these – a great reason to join!

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2013/11/11/on-poverty-records-and-chicken-thieves

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I visited the Connecticut State Library for the first time this week.  The library, located in downtown Hartford on Capital Avenue, has a genealogy/history section on the lower level.  I parked in the parking garage just across Oak Street.

The Connecticut State Library front entrance

The Connecticut State Library front entrance

Examining the resources in advance, I consulted the Genealogists page (note that the collections extend for several pages).  There is a page of finding aids for historical collections, some of which are online.   There is a collection of digital records at the Connecticut State Library which can be searched online, and a search screen for “Databases of Individuals Listed in State Archives Records“.

My mission that day was to look for a death record for my gggg-grandmother Sarah Andrews, who died probably shortly after 1861, when she appeared in the Norwich City Directory boarding in the same house as her (I believe) son Benjamin Andrews. She would have been around 85 at that point.  I had been to Norwich, and also Eastford and Ashford, and had not found a record yet.  I was hoping to find a maiden name.

There is a long hallway to one side of the reading room that contains many of the well-known Connecticut card indices. You get to visit them in person!

There is a long hallway to one side of the reading room that contains many of the well-known Connecticut card indices. You get to visit them in person!

I do not have a lot of Connecticut ancestors, and certainly no early Connecticut families before 1800.   If I did, I would really have been at the right place.  For those who have those connections, I would say this library is a must-visit.

A Lamphere cousin in the Barbour Collection of Connecticut Vital Records

An Andrews record in the Church Records index

I was lucky that a well known Massachusetts genealogist was in the library that day, and helped me find all available resources for Sarah’s death, newspaper, probate, or church records.  Nothing was found, which was pretty much what I expected since I didn’t find it in the cities and towns I visited. But I should stress that there is a helpful library staff who would also have been happy to help.  This is not a place where the staff are stand-offish; they were very nice.

A Lamphere cousin in the Barbour Collection of Connecticut Vital Records

A Lamphere cousin in the Barbour Collection of Connecticut Vital Records

The Barber Collection of Vital Records didn’t help me much.  I have consulted it before online, but it was fun to use the card index in person.

There are several rows of newspaper microfilm in a back room.

There are several rows of newspaper microfilm in a back room.

The collection of Connecticut newspapers on microfilm was very impressive.  In the Hale newspaper index I did find a second, repeated death notice for another gggg-grandmother, Lydia (Miner) Lamphere, 1849, Norwich.  I had obtained one from the Norwich Courier previously; this one was in the Norwich Bulletin, January, 1849.

The book stacks contained town books, family genealogies, and related books and journals.

The book stacks contained town books, family genealogies, and related books and journals.

In the stacks, I looked for volumes on the local areas where the Andrews lived – Ashford, Eastford, and Norwich.  I also explored some typewritten and published books on various family names.  The collection was quite good and I found one or two items that were new to me.

The Hale Newspaper volumes

The Hale volumes

The Hale Cemetery index is not just a card file, but also consists of bound books where the cemeteries are presented section by section.  I found the section of Yantic Cemetery, Norwich, where some my Lamphere ggg-grandparents were buried, and some nearby sections with other relatives.  I took pictures of all those pages.

The microfilm (here, of local town records including vital, probate and land) was neatly and clearly labelled.

The microfilm (here, of local town records including vital, probate and land) was neatly and clearly labelled.

I looked through some town records on microfilm for Sarah’s death.  No luck.

My large cell phone doubles as a small tablet in libraries.  I access Evernote for my research notes and to-do's, and my tree on Ancestry.  Since I always have it with me, the notes are always where I need them.

My large Galaxy Note 2 cell phone doubles as a small tablet in libraries. I access Evernote for my research notes and to-do’s, my tree on Ancestry, any of my documents stored on Dropbox, and even take pictures in a pinch. My daughters call it the “genealogy phone.”  That’s not meant to be a compliment.

I always enjoy looking through the random materials collected in the Vertical Files.  I didn’t find much.

The main reading area at the library

The main reading area at the library

It wasn’t all that busy in the library that day, and I decided to ask the librarian about a question I have had for a long time – whether there could be any papers from the office of U.S. Representative John Turner Wait (1811-1899) in an archive somewhere.  He had a perfect resource for that – a volume called “A Guide to Research Collections of Former Members of the House of Representatives 1789-1987.”  John Turner Wait’s entry indicated that the Connecticut Historical Society had two letters and another set of correspondence with one individual.  None of that looked like it could possibly explain his relationship with my ggg-grandfather Russell Lamphere.  The librarian suggested I try his probate record, since obviously papers could have remained in private hands, and he helped me find the record.  The probate record was pretty revealing about his relationships with his two daughters and their husbands. He did not specifically mention his papers, and the contents and furnishings of his law library seemed to go to a partner.  The mystery continues. I recorded the names for future reference.  

My friend Barbara and I ate lunch in the lunchroom.

My friend Barbara and I brought our lunches and ate in the lunchroom.

The last thing I did was look at the 1861 city directory entry on microfilm where Sarah Andrews is mentioned for the last time.  Although I had seen the directories online at Ancestry.com, I noticed, this time, a useful map at the beginning of the book, and that the book was called “number 1″ which explains why I have never found one prior to 1861.  She does not appear from 1862 on.

Stedman's Directory of the City and Town of Norwich. Norwich, Conn., 1861. (no. 1) Page 1: map. Map should enlarge if clicked or opened.  Photograph from microfilm reader.

Stedman’s Directory of the City and Town of Norwich. Norwich, Conn., 1861. (no. 1) Page 1: map of the Original Town of Norwich. Map should enlarge if clicked or opened. Photograph from microfilm reader.

There was far more at the library/archives than I was able to explore in one day.  I always find that subsequent visits and questions are helpful.  All in all, an interesting trip, but I fear that Sarah’s death is unrecorded, so I will not be able to find her maiden name that way.  On to other Andrews strategies … one involves a chicken thief.

The post you are reading is located at:  http://onerhodeislandfamily.com/2013/10/28/a-visit-to-the-conn-state-library

chickens

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