Saturday, July 28, 2012

Back to the 80s

Just got back from Hendricks Civic Theatre's production of the musical, Back to the 80s. WOW! Great show! The setting was senior year at a mythical high school, with a former reminiscing about his senior year. The kids in the cast performed a number of tough songs very well. The storyline went well, the hero got to take his "true love" to the prom and the obnoxious jock lost the girl. Unfortunately, there's only one show left, tomorrow at 2:30. If you can make it, check the HCT site for details []. Kudos to cast and crew!

By the way, auditions for Haunting at Jitter Junction [written by Ron Schnitzius] will be held at Longstreet Playhouse, August 5,6.7 at 7:00. Cast of 19 being directed by Bob Jessen. See the HCT site for directions! The play is a hoot! It's set at the Shimmy-Shammy Lounge  in the town of Jitter Junction in Southern Indiana during the depression. Romance, a possible murder, seances, a hold-up, all sorts of fun stuff! If you saw Fracas at Jitter Junction back in 2008, it is the same play! :)-

Friday, July 27, 2012

Jacob Crousore's land dealings

OK, I'm confused! According to the Delaware Co. Deeds, Jacob Crousore sold 80 acres - N1/2 of NE1/4 of Section 13 Twp 21N of Range 8E to Isaiah Love for $225 on 11 March 1844 [14:102]. Then on 30 May 1849 he sold the same property for the same money to the same person! [20:576] On that same date Jacob purchased the same tract of land from John Hutson/Hudson for $214.[20:575]

Now, Hutson purchased that tract as well as another adjoining tract in Sec. 13 from Joseph Cook on 5 March 1839, but the deed wasn't recorded until 7 April 1845. That was 13 months after  Jacob Crousore sold the property to I. Love. Maybe that accounts for the 1849 deed? Hutson hadn't recorded the original purchase. Jacob would then have had to acquire the land between March 1839 and March 1844.

Jacob and most of the rest of the family moved to Howard Co. about 1849. Daughter Edith married there in June of 1849.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Muncie Research

I finally made it to Muncie! The genealogy facility in the Carnegie Library on Jackson St. is really nice. Many of their wills, deeds and court records are online. I'd been having fits accessing the site. The Muncie library has a new url, which was part of it. The old url was on other sites [i.e. Gen Web] and  didn't get you to the updated site.

I made copies of a few crucial deeds and a will. I looked at a couple of probate files and a few books. The staff there is incredibly helpful.

Also, I tried out the fare at Richard's Restaurant on M.L. King Blvd. Great breaded pork tenderloin!

Oh, I have the glitches worked out with the Muncie Library site, so if I need to make copies of any more of the online records, it's doable!

Anderson is up next!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Daniel Boone & West Point?

OK, this is totally off topic for a genealogy blog... Well, maybe not, it is historical. I was watching an old Daniel Boone episode yestrday and was completely baffled! Dan'l & Mingo were on their way to the fort at West Point when they spotted British soldiers and one "civilian." The civilian and our heroes end up at the same tavern, where said civilian, Major Andre [Mr. Anderson] meets with the West Point commander to pay the plans to the fort and help the traitorous commander flee to British lines. We're sorta OK up to now, most of the plot sounds reasonably accurate. Whoa! The West Point CO is a General Hugh Scott. Dan'l enlists the help of some local NY rangers to KIDANP Andre and foil the plot. To top it off, they capture Gen. Scott as well, after he kills the complicit tavern keeper. Boy, did history unravel in that final 25 minutes! [Traitor or not, Benedict Arnold must have been rolling over in his grave!]

Off to Muncie tomorrow. I have a will, a few court records and about 50 deeds to examine!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Midwestern Roots Conference

I ventured to the "old neighborhood" Friday and Saturday for the IHS 2012 Midwestern Roots Conference at the Indy Marriot East at 21st and Shadeland. [I grew up at the extreme eastern end of Irvington - the last bus turn-around in the city limits and between 10th and 16th in Warren Twp.] As usual the conference was pretty well put together. The sessions I attended were both informative and entertaining. The Genealogical Society of Marion County did a brisk business. We had quite a few people stop by with questions. Hopefully, a few new members will come out of the visits. If you get a chance, attend the next Midwestern Roots Conference in 2014.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Robert Cunningham & the Alamo

I was thumbing through my copy of Walter Lord's A Time to Stand, published in 1961. It is one of the better historical works on the battle of the Alamo. One item stood out that I had previously overlooked - " was Adjutant John Baugh who gave the signal to hole up. The men quickly dropped from the walls..... William Carey and the artillerymen on the west side."

Why is this passage significant? 1st cousin 5 times removed, Robert W. Cunningham was a private in Carey's artillery company.

Robert W. Cunnigham [b. 18 Oct. 1804 in Chenango or Ontario Co., NY] was the eldest son of David Cunningham and Anna Jennison. [Anna's sister, Dolly married John W. Simmons, my line. Also Robert's grandmother, Lucy Morris, was the step-mother of John W. Simmons.] The family eventually settled in Jeffiersonville, Clark Co., IN. They also spent time in Kentucky after leaving NY.

The Simmons and Jennison families tended toward occupations that kept them near the Ohio River in southern Indiana and Ohio and northern Kentucky. Robert was no exception. He eventually went to work on cargo boats traveling the Ohio and Mississippi. He spent some time in Arkansas before writing his family in 1832 that he had decided to settle in New Orleans.

That decision was short-lived. On 4 March 1833, Cunningham was granted a league of land on Skull Creek [present-day Colorado Co.] in Austin's Texas Colony. Robert joined the Texas army as a sergeant and 2nd gunner in Captain T.L.F. Parrott's Artillery Company. On 10 December 1835, the Texan forces took San Antonio de Bexar from General Cos. Cunningham was one of fewer than 100 regulars left to garrison Bexar.

In early 1836, Cunningham wrote the family that he had joined the army. He was reassigned to Captain William R. Carey's artillery company as a private. Carey's artillerymen were assigned to artillery HQ at the SW corner of the Alamo compound.

Thus the significance of the passage in Lord's book. Col. Travis was among the first defenders killed on the north wall. It was there that the Mexican forces finally breached the north wall and swarmed into the Alamo. When Baugh, 2nd in command, gave the order to "hole up," Robert Cunningham was probably among those men who methodically retreated to the barracks for the last stand. [Jim Bowie was too ill to take an active part in command and David Crockett had his hands full defending the palisade connecting the west wall with the church.] 
The barracks along the south and west walls were the scene of brutal hand-to-hand combat. The Mexicans turned the defenders' cannons on the barracks, then charged in to slaughter the survivors of the cannonade.

By 6:30 A.M. on 6 March 1836, 31 year-old Robert W. Cunningham, the more famous Travis, Bowie, Crockett and 180-200 other men had met their fate. The Alamo had fallen.

Whether Robert was killed at his post, during the ensuing retreat to the barracks or holed up with other defenders in one of the small barracks rooms is not known. His Simmons, Jennison and Singletary relations had chosen to take a stand for independence in 1776. Robert W. Cunningham gave his life for the same principle 60 years later.

My guess is that it was sometime in April before word reached the Cunningham home in Jeffersonville, Indiana that the Alamo had fallen.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Smith & Crousore Trips: Part 1

Finally made it to Wilmington, OH & Rushville, IN for rounds 1 & 2 of my Smith & Crousore searches. I checked the 1819 Clinton Co. marriage of John Smith to Elizabeth Crowser. Voila! John was given permission to marry by his father, William Smith!

If an SAR application for Henry Smith, father of William, grandfather of Abraham is remotely correct, and William married Elizabeth Reel, then I may have deeds between William [wife Elizabeth] and John. One deed places William in Highland Co. selling Clinton Co. property to John.

Driving US 52 from I-74 to Rushville is an adventure! Not much luck there. I did copy a couple of deeds that involved a John & Elizabeth Smith.

Strange, not a single land record for the Crousores!!

Next up: Muncie, Delaware Co., IN.

Friday, July 6, 2012

4th Follow-up: What happened to the Rev War ancestors?

I thought I'd do a follow-up on the patriots listed on the 4th of July post:

Captain Edward Prall: Returned to Harford Co., MD. He was an original member of the Society of the Cincinnati [officers' fraternal orginization], served in local politics and died in 1803.

John Faucett: The pioneer spirit was in John Faucett. At 46, he took a flatboat to SW Ohio in 1797. Son Joseph was born along the way. Then, at 73, he uprooted his family and moved to central Indiana in 1824. He died in 1838 - aged 86; buried in Shiloh Cemetery in Hendricks Co.

Holden Rhodes: Holden remained a mariner after the war, serving as master of several sloops. Hedied in Warwick, RI in 1809. Four of his six sons were lost at sea.

Seth Mahurin/Huron: He took the family to SW Ohio during the 1790s. He died in Warren Co. in 1815. Granddaughter Rebecca married Joseph Faucett.

John St. John: He also settled in Warren Co., OH, where he died in 1819. Daughter Bethiah married Othniel Huron, son of Seth.

John Simmons, Sr.: After the war, John returned to his beloved tavern. The 1st mayor of American NYC was sworn in at the tavern. The family watched as George Washington was sworn in as the 1st President at Federal Hall across the street. John died in 1795, the "biggest man in NY." Part of the tavern had to be dismantled to get his body out for burial!

John Simmons, Jr.: Three marriages and stops in Chenango Co., NY, near Canonsburgh, PA, Dearborn Co., IN, Monroe Co., OH & Wheeling, VA, where he died in 1843. John was a farmer and innkeeper.

Amos Singletary: He was a farmer and grist miller and remained active in public service. Amos died in MA in 1806.

Peter Jennison: Peter became fairly wealthy and owned a number of slaves. He married Mehitable, daughter of Amos Singletary. Jennison died in Chenango Co., NY in 1816. Daughter Dolly married John W. Simmons, son of John Jr.

General Thomas Sumter: The Gamecock became a major political figure in South Carolina. He served in the state legislature and as a US Represenative and Senator from SC. Sumter died in 1832 at 98.

General Nathanael Greene: The "Fighting Quaker" was given a plantation in Georgia after the war. He died there from heatstroke in 1786.

General Benedict Arnold: Needless to say, Arnold was forced to move to England after the war. Financial setbacks marked his last years. He died in 1801 in London.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Birthday America!

On our nation's birthday, take the time to reflect on those of your ancestors who served in the Continental Army, local militias or offered aid and comfort to the patriot cause as non-combatants. I  put together a list of my own, at the risk of missing someone, here goes!

Captain Edward Prall, MD: signer of the Bush Declaration in 1775, served on various committees for Harford Co., MD, served with Smallwood's Maryland Regiment at Long Island, captured there, served with 1st Maryland Line in Southern Campaign. [unmarried brother of ancestor Cornelius Prall]

John Faucett, PA: served on Pennsylvania - Northern Virginia - Ohio frontier with Pennsylvania militia as "ranger and spy," briefly assigned to Virginia Regulars.

Holden Rhodes, RI: privateer [our naval forces], prize master aboard sloops Joseph and Satisfaction, spent   about 16 months as a POW at Britain's Forten Prison.

Seth Mahurin/Hurin, NJ: signed Articles of Association of the Freeholders & Inhabitants of Pequannock in the County of Morris, sent supplies to the Continental Army at Morristown Encampment, winter 1779-80.

John St. John, NY: Scofield's West Chester Militia of the 4th Regiment, New York Line.

John Simmons, Sr., NY: His tavern at Wall & Nassau Sts. in NYC was a patriot gathering place, served in the provisional 2nd Regiment of NY Troops. [DAR Patriot Index adds 5th & 6th NY Regiments, Duchess Co. Militia.] [Sons William and John, Jr. also served.]

John Simmons, Jr., NY: Onderdonk's Clarkstown Militia assigned to Hays' NY Regiment [1778-80], Bowman's Co., Col. Weissenfel's Regiment of NY Levies [1781-82]

Amos Singletary, MA: Sutton's representative in the Provincial Congress for 4 years.

Peter Jennison, MA: Growl's Militia Co., Col. Learned's Regiment at Lexington [19 April 1775]

General Thomas Sumter, SC: "The Gamecock," South Carolina partisan leader. [brother to ancestor Anna Sumter Land]

On the "distant cousin" side of the ledger:

General Nathanael Greene, RI: Quartermaster General of the Continental Army, assigned commander of Southern Army after Gates' disaster at Camden.

General Benedict Arnold, CT: with Ethan Allen, captured Fort Ticonderoga, wounded and captured during invasion of Quebec, Canada, hero of the Battle of Saratoga [received crippling wound in left leg] - at this point, possibly on of the greatest American military heroes on record. [Then things took a nosedive, culminating with his treasonous act of selling the plans of West Point to the British.]