52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Where There’s A Will

I have no shame in admitting that I really love wills, especially wills left by female ancestors! Wills are amazing documents because they offer a glimpse into the minds of ancestors at the end of their lives, and for women, they are often one of the few places where their voices can be distinctly heard. Women’s wills reveal their personalities, relatives and friends they were close to, or in some cases, who they were not close to, their favorite or most valuable possessions, their religious and charitable inclinations, and descriptions of land and houses.

Tomb of Dame Elizabeth Unton and her husband, Sir Thomas Unton, in Faringdon Church, Berkshire.

One of my favorite wills was composed by my 16th great grandmother, Dame Elizabeth (Hyde) Unton on 21 April 1536. Elizabeth was the daughter of Oliver and Agnes Hyde of Denchworth, Berkshire, England. She married Sir Thomas Unton, son of Hugh Unton, of Faringdon, Berkshire. Elizabeth and Thomas had four children, including my ancestor, Alexander. Sir Thomas was the sheriff of Berkshire and Oxfordshire, and he received his knighthood at Anne Boleyn’s coronation in May 1533. Sir Thomas died on 4 August 1533 and was buried in the north transept of Faringdon Church. Elizabeth did not long survive her husband, and she was buried next to him in Faringdon Church, where their large tombs still rest.

The Structure

Elizabeth’s will follows the same structure and form as other wills of this period. It begins by providing context for this period in Elizabeth’s life (date, reigning monarch, her name, marital status, and name and position of her husband). She then gives her soul to God and gives instructions as to the burial of her body. Next, Elizabeth disperses her earthly possessions to her children, relatives, friends, and servants. Her final acts are to distribute money to the poor people of the parish and to name her executors and overseer of her will.

There are several other aspects of the will that are worth noting. As per the time period, the registered copy of Elizabeth’s will was written in secretary hand, which is a challenge in itself. In addition, spelling was not standardized in the 16th century, so for example, cow was written as “kowe,” wholly as “hooly,” and satin as “Satten.” The will also contains archaic words including “kyne” (plural of cow). Between the old handwriting, spelling, and archaic words, her will is a little difficult to navigate. However, the contents were worth the effort of the transcription!

Context

Context is very important, especially when I am determining if I am looking at the right will for the right ancestor. Elizabeth’s will begins with the date (21 April 1536) and the regnal year (27) of the monarch, Henry VIII. She then states her name, Elizabeth Unton, and her home parish, Faringdon in Berkshire. Widows often stated their marital status and the name and position of their husbands (Knight, Gentleman, Esquire, Yeoman, Butcher). Elizabeth styles herself as the “widowe and late wife of Sir Thomas Unton Knyght decessed.” She also provides some context and clues to her identity at the end of the will by naming “Thomas Hyde and John Hyde my brethren, myn executours” and “my brother William Hide Overseer.” In the 16th-century, “brother” could also refer to brother-in-law, not just a blood brother, but in Elizabeth’s case, these three men are her real brothers. In a few sentences, Elizabeth positioned herself within her family groups and in Berkshire society.

Understanding the historical and political context for an ancestor’s will can help make connections between major life events, therefore, the date of Elizabeth’s will, 1536, is particularly important. The rise of Anne Boleyn and later her fall in 1536 and the marriage of Jane Seymour to Henry VIII in the same year share some interesting connections with the personal lives of Sir Thomas and Elizabeth. Sir Thomas was knighted at Queen Anne’s coronation only a few months before his death in 1533. Elizabeth composed her will on 21 April 1536, 9 days before the arrests of men accused of having sexual relations with Queen Anne. On May 19, Queen Anne was beheaded on the Tower Green, and on 17 June, Elizabeth’s will was probated in London. Queen Anne’s ultimate success of becoming queen corresponded with Sir Thomas’s rise in station, and her death occurred probably within a month of Elizabeth’s death. On 20 May, Henry VIII became engaged to Jane Seymour, and on 30 May, he married her at the Palace of Whitehall in London. Elizabeth may have still been alive on this date, and she probably did not imagine that the execution of one queen and marriage of another would so personally affect her family. Also, the fact that the Untons were courtiers and spent time at court serving the king meant that any political or personal turmoil in the King’s life meant possible changes in theirs.

Connections with events in both the Tudor royal family and the Untons continued in the next two generations. Sir Thomas and Elizabeth’s oldest son, Sir Alexander Unton (my 15ht great grandfather), was knighted at the coronation of King Edward VI, son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, on 20 February 1546/7.

But the most significant connection to the Tudors was still to come. Sir Alexander and Lady Cecily Unton’s oldest son, Sir Edward Unton (my 14th great grandfather), married Lady Anne, Countess of Warwick, who was born Lady Anne Seymour, eldest daughter of Edward Seymour, 1st Duke of Somerset, eldest brother of Queen Jane Seymour and Lord Protector, and his second wife, Anne (Stanhope) Seymour, Duchess of Somerset. The advantageous marriage of a Countess and daughter of a Duke to the son of a knight (who had yet to be knighted himself) was quite a success story for Edward. However, by studying how life events of the Tudors, Seymours, and Untons overlapped and placing those events in context, this marriage is not as far fetched as it seems at first.

Bequests: Possessions

It is interesting to note that due to English common law practices, Elizabeth could only bequeath possessions that were specifically willed to her by Sir Thomas. She automatically received a life interest in 1/3 of his estate, but that property would go to her husband’s heirs (their children) after her death. However, Sir Thomas gave her additional control of certain possessions and property upon his death, therefore, Elizabeth was able to distribute them to people as she desired. It is hard to imagine that women really had very little control over property unless it was specifically given to them by their fathers, through a marriage contract, or by their husbands. It is possible that some of the valuable items seen below came with Elizabeth upon her marriage, which is why Sir Thomas bequeathed them to her. Or, he left them to her for extra income and to help support her after his death (I am thinking particularly of the farm animals and stores of wheat, malt, and wool). Whatever the case, Elizabeth had control over the property seen below, and she carefully thought out to whom she would leave it.

Bequests of silver, candlesticks, textiles, and other items to Alexander Unton.

Elizabeth thoughtfully bequeathed her most valuable possessions to her children.

1. Alexander:

  • “the great palett with all thinges thereto belonging”
  • “a Chaffingdishe of silver”
  • “twoo candelsticks of silver”

    Example of a 16th-century chafing dish.
  • “a diap table Clothe”
  • “a Cupbord clothe of diapre”
  • “vj napkyns of diapre”
  • “all the hanging of my hall”
  • “the hanginges of the parlour”
  • “then hanging of the Chamber over the hall”
  • “my silver bason wt an Ewer of silver”
  • “my twoo silver saltes gilte”

2. Anne Vampage:

  • “twoo gownes”
  • “twoo kirtells of Satten”
  • “a velvet bonnett”

3. Thomas:

  • “the bedde in the parlour with all thinges therunto apperteynying”
  • Example of a 16th-century bed.

    “thre fetherbeddes and all the mattreses unbequethed wt there appurtenances”

  • “all my plate”
  • “all my Carpettes and Cusshens”
  • “an other silver bason wt an Ewer”
  • “other twoo silver saltes gilt”

4. Edith “doughter Unton:”

  • one cushion

Elizabeth’s most valuable items included textiles like gowns, napkins, tablecloths, wall hangings, and cushions, and silver pieces like salts, ewers, and basins. In order to distinguish some of her possessions, Elizabeth noted where they were located within Wadley Hall, the house and estate left to Elizabeth by Sir Thomas. This is particularly wonderful because it gives me an idea about the layout of the house. There was a hall, a parlor where a bed (likely the best bed) stood, and a chamber over the hall. The house most likely had more rooms, and by the time her great grandson owned the house, it contained 59 rooms.

Bequests: Animals, Implements, and Crops

Elizabeth also left farm animals, implements, and crops to her children.

1. Alexander:

  • “fyve hundred Shepe after they be shorne”
  • “viij oxen”
  • “a plowe wt (with) all things therto Belonging”
  • “fourty beasts that were bred since my husbond dyed”
  • all my Swyne pigges and pecockes

2. Anne Vampage:

  • “tenne Rames after they be shorn”
  • “my hakny horss”

3. Thomas:

  • “fyve hundreth ewes wt lambs”
  • “tenne hundreth wethers” (rams)
  • “xxxti Rammes after they be shorne”
  •  “viij oxen”
  •  “a plowgh wt thappurtenances”
  •  “all my carte and my Carte horsses with there appurtenances”
  • “fourty kyne wt there calves”
  • “tenne steres”
  • “all my whete and malt wt other graynes shall remayne to thuse and mayntennce of my house”

4. Alexander and Thomas:

  • “all my blades and Corne now in the feldes sowen”

Bequests: Relatives, Friends, and Servants

Elizabeth also left possessions and animals to her relations, servants, and other people who are likely other servants, tenants, or friends.

1. She left 6 shillings 8 pence to each of her servants who carried her body to Faringdon Church to be buried.

2. “my men servants and my sonns servants”

  • “blak cotes”

3. Annes Badham: (unknown)

  • “a kowe”

4. Mawde, Jane, and Annes: servants

  • each “a kowe”

5. Dorothe Doram: (unknown)

  • “a gowne of Clothe”
  • “a gowne of Say”
  • “a kirtell of tawnye Satten”
  • “a velveet bonnet”
  • “a Blak frontlet”
  • “a score of shepe after they be shorne”
  • “two kyne”

6. Thomas Richards: (unknown)

  • “one holding in Throppe wtout paying therfor any fyne”
  • “a score shepe after they be shorn”
  • “two kyne”

7. Rauf Harper: (unknown)

  • “twoo kyne”
  • “a mattre”
  • “twoo paire of Canvas shets”
  • “a white Coverlet”
  • “a score shepe after they Be shorne”

8. Henry Pimperloo: (unknown)

  • “a mattres”
  • a coverlet
  • a bolster
  • “a paire of shetes”
  • “two kyne”

9. Thomas Wordaine: (unknown)

  • “a score of shepe after they be shorne”

10. William Badnall: (unknown)

  • “thirtye shepe after they be shorne”

11. Thomas Dybley: (unknown)

  • “thirty shepe after they be shorne”

12. “Maistres” Hulcott: (unknown)

  • “a blak gowne”

13. Sir Nicolas and to Sir Thomas: (unknown)

  • “eche of them a blak gowne”

14. Thomas Cockes: nephew

  • “thirty shepe after they be shorne”

15. Robert Cooke: nephew

  • “twenty shepe after they be shorne”

16. Her sons and daughters, sons and daughters in law, brothers and sisters, sisters in law, nephew Cooke and his wife:

  • “blak gowns”

At some point, I would like to do extra research to determine who the unidentified people were and how they were connected to Elizabeth.

Her bequests also show the scale of farming at the Wadley Hall estate. As can be seen, the Untons main source of revenue was wool.

  • Sheep: 1,190 (plus lambs)
  • Rams: 1,040
  • Unidentified “beastes:” 40
  • Cows: 52 (pkus calves)
  • Steers: 10
  • Oxen: 16
  • Horse: 1, unspecified number of cart horses
  • Swine and pigs: unspecified number
  • Peacocks: unspecified number

Bequests: Church and Charity

All Saints Church, Faringdon, Berkshire.

Not only did Elizabeth leave possessions, animals, and other valuable items to her children, relatives, friends, and servants, but like a good, wealthy, Tudor woman, she also made numerous bequests and donations to the local Faringdon Church and poor people living within the parish. It was also customary people of means to request family or priests to pray for their souls and the souls of close family members.

1. Faringdon Church

  • Body to be buried in Trinity Chapel next to her husband.
  • 2 shillings to the high altar.
  • 3 shillings 4 pence to maintain the bells.
  • 20 pounds “bestowed for the newe making of seets in the Ile where my husbonde lyeth.”
  • “myn executours shall fynde a preest to pray for my soule my husbande soule and all xpen soules by the space of fyve yeres and to geve him yerely for his salary sex poundes.”

2. Parish Poor

  • 20 pounds “bestowed in Almes amonge pour people.”
  • “twenty nobilles to be gevyn to the pour people of Ffaryingdon wtin the space of fower yeres that is to sey every yere xxxiij s iiijd.”
  • “to pour people abrode in the Country in almes at tymes convenient by the space of fyve yeres thurtye pounde.”

3. General Charity

  • “myne executours shall sell my Cheyne of gold and to bestowe the money therof in deades of charitie as they shall thinke best for the welthe of my soule.”

Conclusions

I really enjoyed getting to know my ancestress, Dame Elizabeth Unton, a little bit better this week. Her will was well organized and specific, which suggests that she was detail oriented and wanted to ensure that her valued possessions and farm accoutrements went to the appropriate people. She also seemed to enjoy beautiful clothing and fine furnishings, but she was also generous to those less fortunate than herself. Elizabeth’s will offers some tantalizing glimpses into the life of a Tudor-era woman, and I am excited to continue to research her!

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Heirloom

The brooch!

One of my favorite family heirlooms, a beautiful little brooch, has an interesting story attached to it. My grandmother gave this brooch to my mom years ago, but she did not know anything about the brooch’s origins. She found the brooch among my great-great grandmother Jessie Robinson’s possessions after her death in 1966. It is definitely an old piece of jewelry, and although my grandmother knew it was probably significant to Jessie, she had no particular attachment to it. My mom never wore the brooch because the clasp on the back is not very secure, so it sat untouched in a drawer for a long time.

Several years ago, mom was telling me the history behind some other pieces of jewelry, when she saw the brooch and showed it to me. The metal is brass, and it has some beautiful filigree work around the edges. The center of the brooch is a pink stone and a white cameo of a woman with curly hair piled on the top of her head and a ruff around her neck. The brooch is 2 inches long and 3/4 of an inch at its widest. I remember thinking how beautiful and dainty it was and wishing that we knew who it belonged to and how old it actually was.

Cora Preston wearing the brooch.

When I began organizing and scanning family photographs, I found one of my 3rd great grandmother Cora Isabel McKelvey Preston taken by the Poole Art Company in Nashville, Tennessee in the 1880s. Cora apparently loved jewelry based on the beautiful pieces she wore in all photographs taken of her. She showed off large dangling earrings, necklaces, pendants, brooches, pins, and bracelets. In this particular photograph, she wore earrings, a large necklace, and a distinctive brooch pinned to the top of her dress. The brooch looked familiar, and upon closer examination, I realized that it was the same brooch that my mom had in her drawer!

 

The outline of the cameo and the decoration surrounding it can be clearly seen as well as the decorative ends of the brooch. This photograph solved several mysteries at once:

  1. The brooch belonged to my 3rd great grandmother Cora.
  2. It dates from at least the 1880s.
  3. The brooch must have been one of her favorite pieces. Or, it was her daughter Jessie’s favorite piece of her mother’s jewelry.

I can’t believe how lucky I was to be able to identify the owner and the age of a piece of jewelry from a 130 year old photograph! This experience taught me that taking notice of the smallest details can make all the difference, and now that small brooch is one of my most treasured family heirlooms.

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Valentine

Happy Valentine’s Day! In the spirit of today, below is an image of a romantic letter received by my 2nd great grandmother, Jessie Preston Robinson, from an unknown sender in June 1893. She was 17 years old and had just graduated from Fogg High School in Nashville, Tennessee. Although the letter was not signed, Jessie presumably knew the identity of her secret admirer. At the end of the letter, he writes “Since ‘All the world loves a lover,’ I need not tell you who I am, but promise to be an earnest co-worker with you as I trust in you.”

Because she took the care to keep this letter, I assumed it was sent to her by her future husband, Thomas Robinson, who she knew at this point in her life. However, the following statement proved this theory incorrect: “when I recall my mother’s love story … with a man twenty-five years her senior, and could you realize her pride and gratitude – her eager confidence in superiority of age and attainment – you would feel strongly its blessed potency.”

Jessie’s soon to be husband was only three years older than her, and her admirer suggested that there was a significant age difference between them, like that between his mother and her husband. Therefore, the letter was written by someone other than Thomas. Unfortunately, that little anecdote is the only clue to his identity, and it is still a mystery!

Jessie Lois Preston Robinson in 1893, the year she received the love letter.

Throughout the letter, the admirer attempted to convince Jessie that any young lady should be very flattered to have attracted the attentions of an older man who had the means to take care of her. In his words, ” To have been loved nice truly and dearly by a great heart and expanded intellect has not been the happy destiny of many girls, perhaps greater than you or I.” He clearly thought quite highly of himself, and I do wonder if maybe Jessie thought him too full of himself, too old to be attractive to her, or a little bit of both. Even though she did not return his love and married someone else, she did keep the letter. Maybe she thought the letter was a sweet gesture or maybe it came from someone she liked, just not someone she could love.

I do not know how Jessie responded to this letter. Did she send one to him? Did she speak to him in person? It is fascinating to think how different her life would have been if she had decided to marry this older man instead of my great-great grandfather. Many details surrounding this letter have been lost, and I do not expect to ever discover the identity of the admirer. But it does provide an interesting insight into courtship, proposals, and romantic love in the late 19th-century!

 

 

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Favorite Name

St. Cunigunde

Researching my German heritage has been a priority for me over the past two years, and one branch in particular has been particularly fascinating. My third great grandfather, William Althauser (born Wilhelm) emigrated from Baden in the 1850s with his mother, Anna Krieg Althauser, and his siblings. They settled in Cincinnati, Ohio, near some of Anna’s siblings who had emigrated in the 1830s. Both the Althausers and Kriegs used traditional names like Anna, Maria, and Katharina, but they also used names that I have not seen in other branches of my family like Verena and Ursula. However, my very favorite name is the quite unusual Kunigunde!

My Kunigunde is William Althauser’s 3rd great grandmother on his father’s side, which makes her my 8th great grandmother. Kunigunde was born Kunigunde Gerwig in Maugenhard, Baden, Germany. Maugenhard is a small town located on the edge of the Black Forest in southwest Germany, about 10.5 miles north Basel, Switzerland, about 33 miles south of Freiburg, Germany, and 20 miles east of Mulhouse, France. Kunigunde was born to Paul Gerwig and Verena Jakob in 1676 and was baptized in Maugenhard on 3 April 1676.

When she was 25 years old, Kunigunde married Andreas König on 21 February 1702 in Opfingen, another small Black Forest town just outside of Freiburg. After examining Opfingen parish records, I found that Kunigunde’s parents do not make an appearance, indicating that they possibly remained in Maugenhard. How Kunigunde met Andreas is not known, and I am also not sure why they were married in Opfingen if Maugenahard was Kunigunde’s home parish. However, there are other possibilities for this. Perhaps Kunigunde’s parents died before her marriage, and she moved to Opfingen to live with other relatives. Maybe her family did move to Opfingen but her parents died elsewhere. I will need to continue researching Maugenhard parish records to answer some of these questions.

Kunigunde’s husband, Andreas, was born in Opfingen to Johann König and Barbara Frei and baptized on 25 November 1682. Andreas was 6 years younger than his new bride, being only 19 when they married. Kunigunde gave birth to 9 children who were baptized in the German Lutheran Church: Barbara, an unnamed daughter, Johann (probably named for Johann König), Andreas (probably named for his father), Verena (probably named for Verena Jakob Gerwig), Anna Maria (who died in 1716 at the age of 5), an unnamed son, Anna (who died in 1715 at 14 months old), and Anna (born in 1716).

The youngest daughter and my 7th great grandmother, Anna, married a local man, Michael Schumacher, on 9 November 1745 when she was 29 years old. Only two years later, her mother Kunigunde died on 24 January 1747 in Opfingen. Kunigunde was 70 years old. Kunigunde’s husband Andreas lived another 15 years, dying in 1762.

But what is the history of the name Kunigunde? It is Germanic in origin, “kuni” meaning “clan” and “gund” meaning “war.” This name was popular in the Middle Ages and early Renaissance periods. Well-known women named Kunigunde or a variant of the name included: Queen Cunigunde of Swabia, Holy Roman Empress St. Cunigunde of Luxembourg, Queen Kunigunde of Bohemia, and St. Kinga of Poland. The most famous woman with this name was St. Cunigunde, who married the Holy Roman Emperor Henry II. She was very involved in charitable works and founded a Benedictine monastery where she retired after the death of her husband. She was later canonized by Pope Innocent III on 29 March 1200.

After learning about St. Cunigunde, I wondered why Paul and Verena chose to name their daughter Kunigunde. St. Cunigunde’s feast day is March 3, so it is possible that Kunigunde was born that day (she was baptized 3 April). Perhaps her parents admired this saint’s devotion to charity, even though they were not Catholic themselves. Maybe she was named for another family member or friend of the family. Whatever the reason, my ancestress was given the name of a strong woman who had genuine concern for those less fortunate than her. And although this name has largely fallen out of use, I think it is quite beautiful!

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Longevity

While looking at my family tree, I found some ancestors who only lived into their 20s and 30s, some who made it to middle age, and others who lived past 90. I was very surprised how many of my direct ancestors lived past 80, particularly the female ancestors.

I would like to highlight my two most long-lived ancestors that I have found in my family tree: Ann Cochran Dixon, who died at the age of 93/94 and George Christian, who died at the age of 101.

Ann Cochran Dixon

Ann was born to George and Nancy (Henry) Cochran in 1763, most likely in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Two dates have surfaced for Ann’s birthday: April 9, 1763 and August 16, 1763. Her death notice in the local newspaper reported her birth date as April 1763, and her tombstone further specified April 9, 1763. Her granddaughter wrote her obituary, in which she gave Ann’s birth date as August 16, 1763. Although the exact day cannot be determined, all records agree that the year was 1763. Following the death of her mother in 1769, Ann was sent to live with her uncle Reverend John Roan and aunt Anne (Cochran) Roan in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. When her uncle died in 1775, Ann returned to her father in Chester County.

Most of Ann’s immediate male relatives served in the Revolutionary War. Ann’s brother John and father George both served in the militia and as artificers, Ann’s uncle Stephen served as a militia captain and in the Pennsylvania Assembly, and her uncle Dr. John Cochran more notably served as the Surgeon General of the Continental Army and was a close friend of General George Washington. Ann had the opportunity to meet and socialize with Martha Washington during the Valley Forge encampment, who she met through her uncle, Dr. John Cochran.

Ann married Sankey Dixon in 1788 outside of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Sankey was the son of John and Arabella (Murray) Dixon of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the Continental Army as early as 1776 and served until he was discharged as a lieutenant on June 3, 1783. He was present for many of the famous encampments and battles of the war, including Valley Forge and the surrender at Yorktown.

The Dixons left Pennsylvania sometime between 1790 and 1792 and settled in the Shenandoah Valley. By 1807, they were living in Knox County, Tennessee. Ann gave birth to seven children – John, Matthew Lyle, Robert, Nancy Henry, Isabella, Mary Roan, and Margaret Ingles – and five survived to adulthood. Sadly, Sankey died in 1814, leaving Ann a widow. In 1822, Ann and her youngest daughter moved to Winchester, Tennessee to live with Matthew.

Ann began to make appearances in contemporary public records during the later part of her life. In 1839 she successfully applied for and obtained a Revolutionary War widow’s pension of $320 a year. Ann gradually became financially independent after receiving her pension for several years, and in 1844 she was able to purchase in her name a house and lot in Winchester. She furnished part of the house with her personal furniture, which included her bed and bedstead, a half dozen chairs, her clothes press, and her clock. She wrote a will before her death and left everything she owned to her daughter Margaret.

Ann led an exciting life and lived to an impressive 93 years (or 94, depending on her birth date). She outlived her husband, all of her children, and many of her grandchildren.

George Christian

George was born in 1769, the son of Colonel Gilbert Christian and Margaret (Anderson) Christian. Gilbert was a well-known frontiersman, soldier, and local official who was instrumental in the formation of the State of Franklin and a good friend of John Sevier, the first Governor of Tennessee. George served as a soldier in some of the Indian campaigns in the early 1790s under the command of his father-in-law to be, Captain William McCormick. In 1803, he married Elizabeth McCormick in Knox County, Tennessee.

By 1808, he and his family had settled in Overton County, Tennessee. He purchased land and participated in the development of the county. While living in Overton County, he wrote a series of letters to Lyman Draper about the early formation of the state of Tennessee, the conflicts with the Indians, and his family history. George wrote his will in 1867, and died on April 3, 1870 in Overton County at the age of 101.

 

Other Observations

Ann and George are connected in some interesting ways:

  1. They are both my 5th great-grandparents, Ann on my Dad’s side and George on my Mom’s side.
  2. They were both born in the 1760s.
  3. They had immediate family members who served in the Revolutionary War.
  4. They lived in East Tennessee during the same time period. Ann lived in Knox County, Tennessee as early as 1807, if not before then, until 1822. George’s family lived in the same area around the same time period. His father, Gilbert, was buried in Knoxville in 1793, and George married his wife, Elizabeth McCormick, in Knox County in 1803.
  5. They had family members who were involved in Tennessee politics. George’s father was very involved in the State of Franklin, and Ann’s cousin by marriage was Archibald Roane, second Governor of Tennessee.
  6. Finally, both Ann and George migrated farther west into Tennessee, Ann to Franklin County in 1822 and George to Overton County by 1808.

While I have no proof that they ever met, it is fascinating to think that those two had so much in common, including myself!