Friday, April 27, 2012

Ancestor Wish List: How many of you have famous people you hoped you were related to when you first got into genealogy? I do have a handful of famous ancestors, both direct [Roger Williams] and collateral [Thomas Sumter, Nathanael Greene and Benedict Arnold.] There were two childhood heroes that I was hoping to link to in some fashion. Guess what? I did it! It took some stretching, but the ties are there!

#2: Wyatt Earp: I got hooked on Wyatt Earp through the TV series and have read tons of material on the Earps and the "Gunfight in the vacant lot next to Fly's Photographic Studio" [or better known OK Corral]. David Cawby, brother of my 3rd great-grandfather Martin Cawby Jr., married Nancy Earp. She was Wyatt's 4th cousin twice removed. Like I said - a wee bit of a stretch!

#1: David Crockett: I was one of the thousands of kids who caught "Davy Mania" thanks to Walt Disney. Again, it stuck. Reading about Crockett and the Alamo has been a passion. We won't discuss this surrendering issue. Lucinda Morris Cunningham was the 2nd wife of John Simmons Jr., my 4th great-grandfather. Her eldest son from her 1st marriage was Robert W. Cunningham. Robert went to Texas and found himself in an artillery company at the December 1835 siege of Bexar [San Antonio]. He stayed on as an artilleryman with the Tejanos at the Alamo in March 1836. Along with William B. Travis, James Bowie and, yes, DAVID CROCKETT, Robert W. Cunningham followed Travis' words to fellow Texans - "Liberty or Death, God and Texas!"

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

For those of you visiting the blog for PFA Reunion updates dates: If you would like to learn more about the John Prall House, where we will hold our general meeting and lunch, or the Prallville Mills across the road, please visit the Delaware River Mill Society site at If you would like to check out the sites we will probably include on the Staten Island trip [Historic Richmondtown, The Billiou House, the Watering Place, Fort Wadsworth, etc.] go to the following links:,_New_York
We will probably visit Washington's Crossing on Sunday, September 16. Some of you may be wondering why this particular place? In addition to the Crossing's historical significance, Prall and other local families were actively involved in helping to secure boats for Washington and serving the cause. John Prall, Jr. was involved with the Crossing. Edward Prall [Aaron, Pieter, Arent Jansen, Jan Arentsen], born in Hunterdon Co., moved to Maryland and served with the Maryland Line, had been captured at Long Island. 400 Maryland troops fought off six assaults and their ground while Washington withdrew the army to safety. [256 casualties]

More later...........................

Thursday, April 19, 2012

2012 Prall Family Association Reunion: For those Pralls who happen to stumble across the blog and aren't aware of the reunion or any Pralls not already members, it will be held in [of course] Prallsville, Hunterdon Co., NJ. [Brothers Aaron, Cornelius & Peter Prall [Pieter, Arent Jansen, Jan Arentsen] settled in Hunterdon Co. in the 1730s. Brother Johannes Praul settled in Bucks Co., PA]

Our social gathering/general meeting will held at the John Prall House across the road from the Prallsville Mills. We will meet on Friday [Sep.14] for a get-together, Prall news, lunch & a couple of speakers. There will be an art show at the mills that you can check out. You can explore Hunterdon Co., NJ or Bucks Co., PA on your own after the meeting, or get together with "cousins." [Either Friday or Saturday evenig we will try to have a 'social' at the base hotel (TBA).]

Saturday [Sep. 15] will be a long, but fun day! We will take a bus trip to Staten Island. There we will visit Historic Richmond Town, the Billiou House [home of Arent Jansen Prall's in-laws], the Watering Pace near Tompkinsville [where it is believed the family first came ashore], Ft. Wadworth and possibly another site or two.

Sunday [Sep. 16] will probably include a trip to Washington's Crossing Park [PA side] and a Delaware River Cruise.

I'll add some Hunterdon area sites to visit as the reunion nears.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My research focus for the past few months has been on my  CROUSORE [Kraushaar, Crowser, Croushore, etc.] family. My maternal 3rd great-grandfather was Jacob Crousore. His wife was listed in numerous family trees as Annie Ice. I was never convinced that those trees were correct. I took on identifying Jacob's wife as my "brick wall" for January's Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy Problem Solving Course [more on the SLIG in a later post].

I knew Jacob was married in Ohio during the early 1820s, but not where. Online census indexes were a bust, so I knew the 1820 Census Index book could open the door - it did. John [Jacob's father] and Christian Crouser were in Clinton Co., OH in 1820. Next stop - marriage index. There were three Crowser entries: Elisabeth to John Smith [1818], John to Caroline Treadway [1835] and Jacob to Jemima Smith [29 Aug 1822]. Jemima definitely match with Annie, Anna or Anny from the 1850-70 Howard Co., IN Censuses.
I later received the marriage license, which named Jacob's father as John Crowser and Jemima's brother as John Smi th. The Crousores were in Delaware Co., IN during the 1830s. A deed search turned up "Jacob Crouser and Ama Jemima his wife." [She was 'Amy' in another deed.] Ama was indexed as Annie, Anna and Anny, now it made sense!

Jacob's trail seemed to end with the 1870 census. But NO! Sole surviving son, William, went to McPherson Co., KS, where the family appeared in the 1875 Kansas State census [Jacob & Emma]. Records show Jacob there until 1877. It appears Ama died about 1876.

So, Jacob Crousore [b. c1805 PA - d. 1877-1879 McPherson Co., KS] and Ama Jemima Smith [b. c1803 VA - d. c1876 McPherson Co., KS] were the parents of Edith Crousore who married John T. Simmons. Edith and John named a daughter Ama Jimima [Mima], who was my great-grandmother. I had always wondered where Mima's name originated. Now I know!

I'm working on Jacob's grandfather once again. The project is attempting to get all of Nicholas Crousore's children and their spouses identified. I'm missing one spouse, you guessed it! The wife of John, Jacob's father.

Monday, April 16, 2012

TDP Genealogy Blog Debut Entry

Hi fellow family historians,

I have been researching since 1990. My posts will focus on my family history research and adventures, the Prall Family Association, my ancestral family stories, the Genealogical Society of Marion County [IN] and my speaking engagements.

As I get rolling, I will be posting updates for the Prall Family Association Reunion coming up September 14-16 in Prallsville, NJ. I will also add recent research adventures and post some old ones.

Here's a partial list of families that I am researching: Prall, McHugh, Faucett, Crail, Wolary, Cawby, Simmons, Rhodes, Hubbard, Clark, Gulley, Hickey, Wagner, Laubscher, O'Neil, Rittenhouse and Crousore. There's plenty more, but these will do for a start.

If I can help anyone with info on my families, drop me a note. I'll give details on speaking topics a bit later. Welcome aboard!