Friday, August 4, 2017

Update on Luke Tippett

As I wrote a few days ago, I was frustrated with being unable to locate the will or probate for Luke Tippett after I had found his name on an index for Wills and Probates for Edwards County, Illinois.  I wrote to the County Clerk and to the Illinois Regional Archives Depository for Edwards County and neither found any records of Wills or Probates for Luke Tippett.

Today, I decided to take another look at the Index that I had found on  I started looking at the actual records there and after awhile I realized that the stated page on the index did not match with the page of the microfilm that is on  So I began a list of matching  names and numbers of the index compared to the microfilm records.  And, after about an hours work, guess what I found!  Yep, the will for Luke Tippett!

The will gave me the name of a son that I didn't have before and the name of a son-in-law that I did not have.

A will from 1826=happiness for me!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Two new records on Luke Tippett found

July is leaving us.  I had a couple of good finds this month, but now remain a bit discouraged with the questions that the finds left me.  I wrote about Luke Tippitt in November of 2015.  He was married to my great-great-great grandfather's sister, Nancy Adamson.  I have never learned what became of Nancy after Luke died (around 1826). Here is the link to the earlier blog about the family:

While searching, I came across a listing for Luke Tippett in the Tennessee, Early Land Registers, 1778-1927.  Here Luke was listed with a Register Date of 13 May 1814 in Warren, Tennessee.  Grant or Warrant Number was 966.

A copy of the land record shows:

"I have surveyed for Luke Tippett apiece of Thomas Jones fifty acres of lands in Warren County on the Dry forks of Barren Brook, Beginning at a white oak on the North side of said Creek, running north one hundred and twenty six poles to a hickory, thence East Sixty three poles to a White oak, then South one hundred and twenty six poles to a red oak then West Sixty three poles to the beginning including the improvement where Stephen Pentfrow (sp?) did live.
                      Surveyed 26th February 1814
                      John B. Parkins (sp?), DS
                      Filed May 13th 1814
Witnessed by Archibald Barre (sp?)
                       Elijah Tippett"

What this piece of paper does show is that this is "founded on Certificate Warrant no 966 issued by the Register of West Tennessee to Thomas Jones for three hundred and twenty acres."  I don't think that the Certificate would show anything for Luke Tippett since it states that it was issued to Thomas Jones.

The only Elijah Tippett that I have in my database is the son of Luke Tippett and his first wife, Mary Vincent.  This Elijah was born about 1794, so he would have been around twenty years old when he witnessed this transaction.

The most frustrating thing that I found in July was also on was a listing in the Illinois, Wills and Probate Records, 1772-1999.  The listing shows very clearly (it is typed):

" 'T'
Tippett, Luke-19"

The source shows that this listing is for Edwards County, Illinois, which is where Luke died.  I wrote to Edwards County County Clerk enclosing a copy of what I have and requested any records.  None were found.  I sent a request to the Illinois Regional Archives for Edwards County and have not yet heard back from them.

The source page shows a Citation for "Will records, 1815-1922; Author: Illinois County Court (Edwards County); Probate Place: Edwards, Illinois.

Source Information shows: Illinois, Wills and Probate Records, 1772-1999. Original data: Illinois County, District and Probate Courts.

I'm not sure where that leaves me.  This information must be somewhere! I will keep pursuing this.

Monday, July 3, 2017

June 2017

It's been a slow month (in June) for genealogy for me.  Not for any lack of trying, but just nothing really coming up.  I have been keeping up with the hints.  I have been trying again to find some information on my husband's grandfather's first wife, and thought I had a lead, but it didn't pan out.  I'm feeling pretty stuck with trying to find what became of this woman. I need to go over what few pieces of information that I have and see what is missing.

Estella Mabel Colwell was born around 1905 in Illinois to Charles Reuben  and Rhoda Rose Patterson Colwell.  Her brother Charles Edward Colwell was born in 1907 in Wyoming, Stark County, Illinois.  (She also had a sister Jennie who was born in August of 1902 in Illinois.  According to Find A Grave, Jennie died in December of 1905. However, she is listed in the 1910 Census as age 7, living with her parents and siblings.  But, the census also shows that her mother had 3 children with 2 living)

In 1910, Estella Mabel Colwell was listed in the Steuben, Marshall County, Illinois Census as "Mabel", age 5. She was listed as living with her parents, her sister Jennie and her brother Edward.  Her father was listed as a coal miner.

Mabel's parents divorced sometime before 1917, when her mother was listed as being married to Raymond Angelo Bice and living in Elmira, New York.  Mabel was twelve years old in 1917.  In the following year, Mabel's father died in Sparland, Marshall County, Illinois in October (1918). Mabel married George Leo Moreland in April 1919 in Lacon, Marshall County, Illinois.  She was fourteen years old when she married, and George was twenty-two years old.  Mabel's mother consented to the marriage.  George was in the service at the time of the marriage.

Mabel is listed in the 1920 Lacon, Marshall County, Illinois Census, with George, listed as age 22 and Mabel listed as age 15.  George worked as a Teamster and his father William lived next door to them.  Mabel's mother and brother Charles are listed as living in New York in 1920.

And there the records I have found pretty much end.  George Moreland married again in 1925 in Granville, Putnam County, Illinois.  So he and Mabel divorced between 1920 and 1925. I did find a record of Mabel's grand-uncle's probate from 1932 and it stated that the court had been unable to locate Mabel.

Both Mabel's brother and her mother's obituaries do not list her.  Her mother died in 1960 in New York and her brother Charles died in New York in 1976.

The only other clue that I have is that my husband's mother remembered her mother and father sometimes arguing over someone named "Mabel". Since my mother-in-law was not born until 1929, she would have had to have been old enough to remember their arguments about Mabel.

I think that I will retry my efforts over finding a copy of George and Mabel's divorce, but other than that, I don't have many ideas for searching.  I will try again and see if that results in anything.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Will of James A. Ferrel 1794-1864

I transcribed the will of James A. Ferrel (my 3rd great grandfather) born in 1795. His will was written in Vigo County, Indiana on the 7th day of January in 1864.  He died three days later on the 10th of January.  I found several things interesting in his will and perhaps they were the norm back then, but I have never come across this before.  Instead of the first item being to leave his bequest to his wife, the will started with his bequest to his youngest daughter, Lourena. The next bequest was to his youngest son William.  And the third to his granddaughter Ellen. Then he finally got to his wife.  Why would this be?

Will of James A. Ferrel
(Transcription done 5/24/2017 by Sue Adamson Fritz)

In the name of the Benevolent Father of all:
The last will and Testament of James Ferrel of Vigo County Indiana.
I, James Ferrel considering the uncertainty of this mortal life and being of sound mind and memory, do make and publish this my last Will and Testament in manner and form following.

Item 1st   I give and bequeath to my daughter Lourena of my personal property, one horse, one cow, also bed and bedding to make her equal to my other daughters who have already received these Bequests.

Item 2nd   I give and bequeath to my son William H. one horse, one cow and fifty acres of Real Estate, to make him equal to my other sons who have already received a like bequest.  The said Real Estate subject to the designations and regulations hereafter provided.

Item 3rd   I give and bequeath to my grand daughter, Ellen Sanders, one horse, one cow, bed and bedding provided she continues to live with my family until she is eighteen years old; that is if any should not be dissolved by providential dispensation before she arrives at that age.

Item 4th   I give and bequeath to my beloved wife in lieu of her dower, the farm on which we now reside containing about ninety six acres, to have and to hold the same for sole use and benefit during her natural life subject to all the provisions of this my last Will. I also give and bequeath to her all my personal property of every description excepting only so much as are included in the bequests above and what may be necessary to pay my just debts.

At the death of my said Wife the Real Estate aforesaid and such part of my said personal property as may remain unconsumed I give and bequeath as follows.

I give and bequeath to my daughter Lourina five acres off the South West  corner of said Real Estate.  The same to include the [unreadable word] and to be so sit off as not to include the buildings where I am now living.

The real estate above bequeathed to my son William H. is to be set off as follows. Forty acres off of the South end of my farm and ten acres adjoining on the north of the said forty.  The said ten acres to extend to the north side of my said Real Estate, and to be taken out of the East side of the said farm and north of the said forty acres above dis__________[unreadable]. 

I give and bequest the remainder of my said farm equally to my sons, James and Walter D.  The said to be divided or dispersed of as they may determine.  The said bequest is on consideration [unreadable] my sons James and Walter [unreadable] my daughters [unreadable] Sarah Ann and Rosanna [the rest unreadable]

...year after they come in possession of the said property.  Each of my said sons to pay fifty dollars apiece to each of the said daughters.

In witness whereof I hereunto set my hand and seal this 7th day of January 1861.

[signed] James Ferrel

{Signed in presence of Moody Chamberlain, Jr., Jno. L. Dickerson, John W. Wilson}

Friday, May 5, 2017

April Genealogy Pursuits

This has been a good month, although a very busy month.  We were gone for about 10 days, so my genealogy searches slowed down somewhat.  However, by keeping up with my hints, I came across a whole new line to pursue!

Here's what I had known: my great-great-great grandmother, Elizabeth Swain, had been born in 1838 in Ohio to parents John Louman Swain and Nancy Waters.

I had never researched Elizabeth's mother, Nancy Waters, so when I saw a hint for her, I was thrilled. That hint led me to her parents, James Waters and Mary Lanier. I learned that they had married in Pendleton County, Kentucky in 1810.  I then found James Waters listed in the 1850 census of Preble County, Ohio where he was listed as age 73 living with his son James Waters.

However, this is where my research veered off.  I found that Mary Lanier's parents were Isham Lanier and Catherine "Caty" Underwood.  Isham was born in 1765 in Virginia.  His parents were James Henry Lanier and Mary Cooke.  James was born in 1724 in Virginia. And James' parents were Thomas Sampson Lanier and Elizabeth Washington (Thomas born in 1682 in Virginia).  And lastly, Thomas's parents were John Lanier and Sarah Edmonds (John born in 1656 in England).

So to sum up, this has taken me from my 3rd grandparent to my 9th grandparents! All of this information will now lead to further research to successfully verify for myself that it is all accurate.  It is so thrilling to find new information! As for now, I'm off to do more research!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Review of March Genealogical Pursuits

Well, it's been an interesting month for my genealogy pursuits.

I have kept up with the hints for the past month, which have led me to some further research on family.  One hint was about the Bergan family.  As I researched, I learned that Paul Misner (his mother was a Bergan) had become a priest, then a bishop.  Apparently he had become lost in our family stories as his first cousin had become a quite well-known bishop, then archbishop (Gerald Thomas Bergan). Anyway, it ended up being quite an interesting story that I never knew. So that story was told on my blog.

I have also kept up with the 52 Questions that I committed myself to doing at the first of the year. March's theme was Goals and Achievements.

But the best thing of all for the month of March was being found and then contacted by a long-lost cousin who found me on  We have not had contact with her or her siblings for about 35 years! It has been such a blessing to share information and pictures.  We are hoping for a reunion in person soon!

And I have been helping my son-in-law with some of his genealogy, which has been interesting.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Bishop Paul Bergan Misner 1891-1938

While going through some of the hints on, I came upon some for the Misner family.  Katie Bergan, daughter of Nicholas Bergan, had married Frank Misner in 1888.  One of their children was Paul B. Misner, born in 1891 in Peoria, Illinois.  As I looked at hints for Paul, I began to wonder if he had married.  It appeared that he had traveled a great deal, so I decided to look into him more.

I found Paul Misner in the 1930 Census living in Los Angeles.  He was listed as a priest teaching at a college there.  Well, that answered my question about a wife or children.  I looked more and found that he had attended St. Mary’s Seminary in Perryville, Missouri In 1917.  As I continued searching, I learned that he had studied in Rome, Italy from November 1920 until June 1922.  He arrived in Shanghai, China for missionary work in February of 1923.

The Rev. Paul Bergan Misner of the Vincentian Fathers was appointed bishop of the province of Kiangsi, China in 1934.  He had served in China since 1923.

Bishop Misner died at the age of 47 on the 1st of November in 1938 in a small village Chin-Kao-i near Yushan, Kiangsi, China. The cause of death was listed as “Probably apoplexy”.  He was buried within the mission compound at Yushan.

The reason why I found this story so fascinating is that Paul Misner was a first cousin to Gerald Thomas Bergan.  Gerald was born in Peoria in 1892.  He and Paul attended and graduated from Spalding Institute in Peoria.  Gerald was ordained in Rome in 1915, and became a bishop in 1934 in Des Moines, Iowa, the same year that his cousin Paul became a bishop in China!

Bishop Gerald Bergan was one of my great-grandfather’s best friends, so I grew up hearing about him frequently.  I never heard of his first cousin, Bishop Paul Misner.  My family has a very, very distant relationship (going way back in Ireland)  to Nicholas Bergan, grandfather to both Gerald and Paul.