Once Again, There are No Easy Cases in Genealogy

As I’ve reviewed my recent research efforts, I found that I’ve got bits and pieces of things everywhere.  So the goal for the rest of the year is to bring those bits and pieces together, organize them, and see what we’ve really got. To do that I’m going to concentrate on the two “core” families, the Mansons and the Gines families. I haven’t said much about the Mansons lately (of course I haven’t said much of anything lately!).

As for the Mansons, we have documented with strong evidence seven generations back. A couple of issues remain however. The first one is, what about that eighth generation back? That would be the parents of Charlotte Manson, who were apparently immigrants from Scotland in the mid-to-late 18th-century. We have developed a number of hypotheses about this generation and we have some likely candidates. But now is the time to finally nail that down. In coming posts we will review the evidence of the first seven generations back and will explore the hypotheses concerning that eighth generation.

With respect to the Gines family, there are several major mysteries that remain to be solved. We can document this family back at least five generations. But what about the sixth? Three years ago we had a major breakthrough when we were able to show that in the fifth-generation back, our male ancestor was George Guion. We also showed that variations in spelling that confuse this issue and how we solved them. We’ll review some of that here. But then we’ll press on to find the origins of George Guion. The places that this search will likely take us may be very surprising, if my preliminary hunches are correct.

One issue that we’ll put some effort into that is outside the “core” families is our continuing search for Sarah Gilbert. Sarah Gilbert we know to have been born about 1850, probably in Eastern Kansas or Western Missouri.  Here’s the record evidence we have of her: (A) according to the marriage records of Clay County, Missouri, she was married to Ezekiel Johnson on September 5, 1867. (B) she appears with husband Zeke in the 1870 census of Clay County. (C) she appears with husband Zeke and daughter Mary Elizabeth in the 1880 census of Kansas City (Jackson County), Missouri. After that she seems to have disappeared. Our working theory is that she died sometime between 1880 and 1885. But we have no records or other evidence to back this up. The theory is based on the fact that in 1885, Zeke Johnson married another woman named Irena Neal. Their marriage certificate is in the records of Jackson County, Missouri. The family lore is that Sarah Gilbert was an Indian. But there is no yet discovered evidence of that.  So we will be digging deeper into the history and records of Clay County, Missouri in an effort to find Sarah Gilbert. Sarah Gilbert was my mother’s great-grandmother.

This will all be great fun and the discoveries will be interesting. Hope you enjoy the journey is much as I will!



July 2012
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