Monday, March 06, 2017

Sick and not in a good way

The worst part is not the $352. It's the fact that the pharmacist FREAKED OUT at me and said she has never seen worse insurance coverage. Everywhere I go, this is how I get treated. With horror and sympathy. If people didn't react that way I wouldn't feel so bad. But they do and then I feel alone and singled out. I mean, "never seen worse insurance coverage" pretty much singles me out, right?

Saturday, March 04, 2017

Tony Tony Tony

First of all if you were on my email feed on this blog I just realized I goofed and deleted you so you probably missed my normal posts for January and February. I'm sure that had a huge impact on your life and I apologize.

Now on to my normal post for today. Mike I went to an event called "National Achievers Congress" or something like that and if it sounds scammy, well, it kind of was, but get this, Tony Robbins was there. Tony. Robbins.

The story starts a few months ago when Mike says to me, hey Tony Robbins is coming to Portland, want to see him?

And I say, duh, of course I do, but I don't think we can afford him.

And then Mike shows me the ad and it shows the 3 keynote speakers (including Tony) and I say:

With this look of glee as if I'm talking about the Pope, and Mike just looks at me like I'm nutso. This is how I look at him when he talks about Dr. Nassir Ghaemi who is Mike's Beyonce, and I have NO IDEA who Dr. Ghaemi is or why I should care about him.

So I have to explain that Gary Vee is only this really awesome speaker and entrepreneur and he is so energetic and inspiring and Mike must see him. Ok, and Tony Robbins is pretty ok as well, so I've heard.

After Mike gets the tickets I read the fine print and it says Gary Vee is appearing via "humagram". And I don't know what Humagram means but I'm guessing it doesn't mean "live and in person". I was disappointed, but I had a few months to get over it and then at least get excited about seeing Gary Vee's hologram.

Unfortunately, the majority of the people at the event (7000 people) did not read the fine print and so were verrry P.O.'d that Gary wasn't really there.  The hologram thing was cool though. Now, I personally had cheap seats in the way back so Gary's hologram defo looked like a real person on the stage. But when the next speaker came on, I wasn't really sure if that guy was real or a hologram. Which is the condition of my eyesight and a testimony to how far back my seats were.

This link is a 30-second video someone else took, so you have an idea of the hologram up close:

The sad thing about this event was that - well, check that, there were A LOT of sad things about this event. One of the sad things about this event was that of the 6 speakers, Gary was the only one who didn't try to sell us anything. So in a way that was a relief to me, that after all I had done to hype up Gary Vee, he didn't let me down. But the rest of the event was sort of weird.

I guess I can give Tony Robbins a pass because he just threw up a photo of his new book that just came out this week, but he didn't actually ask us to buy it.

The other speakers all gave sales pitches for their classes that "coincidentally" will be taught in Portland in April. Incidentally, it worked because we signed Mike up for one of them.

The scammy event was oversold, so we spent a good hour trying to find parking, and then the fire marshal kicked us out because we couldn't find seats, and we had to sit in the lobby until we could try again to get a seat (which we did), and then we had to wait an hour and 20 for a sandwich at lunchtime, and the event was scheduled to end at 5pm and Tony was still talking at 7:30pm and we had to go get the kids from the babysitter. According to Twitter, Tony was STILL talking at 8:30pm when other people gave up and had to get THEIR kids from the babysitter.

And yet, we really had a great time. I took a lot of notes and now I can say I saw a hologram and I saw Tony Robbins live.

For a different perspective, here is a very interesting review. All of what she says is what really happened.

There were about 5 minutes when Mike and I considered asking for a refund (when we got kicked out and had to wait in the lobby until..."we're not sure what, but something is going to happen" said the event staff), but we overheard a couple women asking for a refund and the staff member was saying, WELL, it's a VERY LENGTHY process, at which point we just laughed it off.  And I guess that's my point. Despite a very long list of things we could complain about, we actually had a great time in spite of it all. Is it our new Jocko Willink (aka OLW Good) attitudes? Are we more used to weird events than other people (e.g. Bulletproof Conference)?

I don't know. But for this one, I achieved my goals. See Tony Robbins, because he's Tony Robbins. (I wasn't the only one...Tony spoke to a guy in the front row, asked him, "Why are you here today?" The guy says "To see you." And Tony says, "Yeah, but what did you hope to get from me?" The guy says, "This moment, right now. To see you." Which probably sounded really stupid but that's the same thing I told Mike. Basically, "I want to see Tony Robbins because he's famous." The truth is I didn't agree with everything Tony said and did that night. That's ok. My goal was to see him, and I did.

And I'm grateful to Gary Vee for his contribution, and he came out of the whole thing smelling like a rose.

Books I read in February

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

{genealogy} Schoonover ancestry part 4 - Peter, Niclaes, Hendrick Claessen, and Claes Hendrickse Van Schoonoven

Peter Schoonoven

Heather’s 6th great grandfather

Peter Schoonoven was born in 1738 in Walpack, New Jersey, the son of Pieternella and Niclaeus. He had at least 2 children with Neeltie Swartwout, with 2 others unconfirmed. He died in 1807 in Tioga, New York, at the age of 69.

Much of the analysis of Peter’s life is in son James’s biography. That is where I reprinted Peter’s probate record and analysis of his life with Neeltje.

I have no documentation of Peter’s early life. Since he would have married Neeltje around age 45, and it was her 2nd marriage, maybe it was a 2nd marriage for him as well. If there was an earlier family, I have no idea.

Professional Schoonover researchers have been documenting this family for decades. The master tree can be found here:

And even these researchers do not have any more information than I already have. Burial location and place are unknown.

Niclaes Schoonoven

Heather’s 7th great grandfather

Other than locating a transcript of his will, I owe all of the research to the Schoonover genealogists who collaborated on this site:

I reprinted their text below.

Niclaes Van Schoonhoven was born Abt June 03, 1694 in Kingston, Ulster Co, NY, and died probably in September, 1764 Walpack Twp, NJ. He married Pieternella Westfael Abt 1728, daughter of Nicholas Westvael and Sarah Van Aken. From research by Patty B. Myers: "After the death of his father, Nicholas and his brothers Henricus and Rudolphus, together with their wives and families and the families of Brinks and Swartwouts, moved to from Kingston via Old Mine Road to Sussex Co., New Jersey. [The Old Mine Road was probably the first wheeled-vehicle road in this country, built three hundred years and perhaps more ago by the pioneer Dutch settlers for access to the mines of the Minisink country. It extended from Esopus (now Kingston), New York, and Sussex and Warren Counties in New Jersey, to the Delaware Water Gap. (C. G. Hine, The Old Mine Road, Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, N.J., 1909.)]  They made their homes in the Minisink area of the upper Delaware River Valley, Sussex Co., NJ. In 1747 they were attached to the Moravian Church of the Upper Delaware Valley, Walpack. (Tedford E. Schoonover, Our Family History, Schoonover, Kar, Robinson, Hayes, p. 5.)"

We do have a transcript of his will, which shows his wife’s first name. Inventory was made and the will was proven in late September 1764, so he probably died in early September.

Niclaes and Pieternella would have witnessed and survived the Indian massacres of December 1755.

He lived in the same time period and was raised alongside who we might call his “step-brother” who was also legally named Niclaes Schoonoven. But that stepbrother is AKA “Nick the bastard”, and the 2 Nicks did not share mother or father. Nick the bastard’s story is so colorful that I was disappointed that I wasn’t descended from him.

Hendrick Claessen Van Schoonoven

Heather’s 8th great grandfather

Based on research done by professional Schoonover researchers and published here:
I know the following.

Hendrick Claessen Van Schoonoven was baptized 5 May 1652 at the Dutch Reformed Church in Fort Orange, Orange County, New York.

He married (1) Debora Christoffels Davids on 6 July 1679, but divorced her in Oct 1687 after she produced Nick the bastard, referenced in my earlier post about his unrelated “step”brother. Hendrick had no legitimate children with Debora. Court document recording the divorce testimony indicates that he really wanted Debora to agree to come home with him and live as an “honest woman” and that he repeatedly told the court that he forgave her. It must have broken his heart when Debora refused to come home with him, telling the court that she had never loved him.

He married (2) Cornelia Swartwout, before 12 November 1688 in Albany, New York. Old Swartwout family histories also record this marriage, but say it was “before 1689”. We know it was before 12 Nov 1688, because that is when he wrote his will, and in that will he named Cornelia as his bride. He wrote the will specifically to name Debora’s child and show that he was to be effectively left out of the estate by being left one shilling. (Ulster County, N.Y. Probate Records, Vol. I, p. 49, originally published in New York by Gustave Anjou 1906, reprinted by Palatine Transcripts, Arthur C. M. Kelly, Rhinebeck, NY 12572, 1980.)

Hendrick and Cornelia would go on to have 8 children.

There is a curious story about how he almost married (3) Willemjen De Lange, but that marriage banns registered 4 Dec 1715 were “withdrawn the same day”. We know this is the same Henry because in the marriage banns he is referred to as the widower of Cornelia Swartwout.

It is from this publication of marriage banns that we know that he died after 4 Dec 1715, but that is all we know about when he may have died.

He and Cornelia are buried in the Dutch Reformed Church, Kingston, Ulster County, New York, the same place his parents are buried.

Claes Henrickse Van Schoonoven

Heather’s 9th great grandfather

Claess Van Schoonoven was born in 1629 in Wilsburgh/Utrecht, Holland. He had one son and one daughter with Neeltie Frederickse. He died as a young father, before 16 March 1661 in New York at the age of 32, and was buried in Kingston, New York.

From research of Patty B. Myers: "KLASS1 VAN SCHOONOVER, came to America 1640-48. There is a record of him being in Fort Orange (Albany) prior to 1654. He d. 15 Mar 1661; bur. in the church yard of the Dutch Reformed Church in Kingston, N.Y.; m 1654 CORNELIA ("NEELTIE") FREDRICKSE. Klaas van Schoonover was a carpenter and also dealt in real estate. In 1657 he held a patent for a lot in Beverwyck (original name of Fort Orange). He had a number of real estate transactions recorded in Ulster County, New York prior to his death. A deed of 1657 records the ground on which the Askokan Reservoir now stands near Kingston as the property of Klaas Hendrick Van Schoonhoven, Dutch immigrant from Wiltaberg (Utrecht, Holland). 

Again, all of this research is from the professional Schoonover researchers and published here:

There are some references on the web to Claess’s father and grandfather, but since the Schoonover master tree indicates that this is not proven, I will stop with Claess.

Claess would have been part of the New Netherland colonialists. The colony was originally set up as a trading post, but happened to be located on good farmland and eventually the Dutch colonists used it as such. They took (stole) Native American land, and tensions between the Dutch and the Natives resulted in a series of wars. The first war lasted from September 1659 to July 1660. Claess would have been present to witness this and possibly could have been a casualty of this war.

In September 1664, the New Netherland colony was ceded to the English. The English got along better with the Native Americans and they wrote a peace treaty in 1665, and paid for the stolen land. However, the Dutch and the Native Americans would clash again during the French and Indian Wars in terrible massacres in Pennsylvania settlements in December 1755, as I referred to in Niclaes's bio.

{genealogy} Schoonover ancestry part 3 - James Schoonover

James Schoonover

Heather’s 5th great grandfather

Note - some interwebs people say that his name was actually Jacobus. But since I found *zero* evidence of this, I only refer to him as James. "James" was a nickname for Jacobus in the Dutch community. Nevertheless, zero evidence.

James Schoonover was born on July 21, 1785 in Pennsylvania. He married Mary in 1806. They had seven children in 18 years. He died on October 20, 1867, having lived a long life of 82 years, and was buried in Robb Cemetery, Williamsport, Indiana.

James’s exact birth date is derived from the age listed on his gravestone. We only know he was born in Pennsylvania because that is what he self-reported in the 1850 and 1860 censuses.

Finding James’s parents has proven to be a challenge. There were a lot of Schoonovers in the New England area and they all had the same names (James, Henry, Joseph, John, etc). I have not found any documents from Pennsylvania 1785 that place James there at all. However, there was a Dutch settlement in Pennsylvania, so it would not be unreasonable for James to be from there.

After some analysis, it seems likely that his father was named Peter Schoonover. My analysis follows at the end of James’s biography.

James married Mary (unknown last name) before 1806, when their first child was born. I derived their children’s names as well as Mary’s name from later censuses, and I counted all the tick marks and ages to make sure they match up. James and Mary had 4 sons and 3 daughters. The first 5 children (through Anson) were born in New York, probably Tioga County, where James is living in 1810.

Sometime between Feb 1817 and Dec 1819, the family moves to Clark County, Ohio. This is where the 6th child is born, and then we can see the family in the 1820 census. The last child is born in 1825, also in Clark County.

In March 1825, James purchases some land in Clark County and here is the deed (at least, I think that's what this is). This is from the U.S. General Land Office.

And he purchases a 2nd farm in Clark County in 1829:

And we see him there in the 1830 and 1840 censuses.

But by 1850 he has moved to Washington, Warren County, Indiana (same place as son Anson). Since Anson moved in 1843, maybe James and Mary moved at the same time.

In 1850, James is now 65 years old, and Mary is 69.

Mary dies in 1856 and is buried in the same Robb Cemetery as son Anson (and later James). I noted that in 1850, James and Mary are living next door to the Robb family. I am guessing the Robb Cemetery is located on that family’s property.

On 21 May 1858, James writes his will. Because he will not die for another 9 years, some of the heirs listed will pass away before their inheritance. The will reads as follows (I transcribed it myself):

I James Schoonover of Warren County in the State of Indiana do invoke and publish this as my last will and testament. First, I direct that all my debts be first paid.

Second, if at the time of my death I shall not have sold my two farms, I then Direct that the same be sold by my administrator at the appraised value of said land, such value to be ascertained by three disinterested freeholders of the neighborhood under oath, and if said land will not sell within one year at such appraised value that it be sold for the best price to be had, provided that a majority in interest of my legalees in this will assent to such sale.

Third, I give and bequeath to my son Peter Schoonover the sum of $1000, and to my daughter Eliza G. the sum of $1000, and to my daughter Rebecca Briggs the sum of $1000, and to my two grandsons children of my son nephew to wit James Schoonover and Jerome Schoonover the sum of $1000 one half each, all which bequests I directed to be paid to them out of the first monies received after first paying debts.

Fourth, I will and direct that whatever balance may remain after payment of the foregoing bequests and that speak equally divided among all my heirs according to the provisions of the law. 

In witness whereof this 21st day of May 1858.

Son Anson died prior to 1858, so he is not listed as an heir. I wasn’t able to verify who Jerome Schoonover is.

James dies 20 October 1867, and his will was proven on 19 November 1867. He was buried in the Robb Cemetery. 

In order to continue this line, I need to know James’s parents. Though I haven’t found anything definitive, it is very possible that his father’s name was Peter Schoonover. His mother’s name is not as certain, but could possibly be Neeltje Swartwout.

Here is my analysis.

  1. James self-reports that he was born in Pennsylvania around 1785. Pennsylvania had a  state census in 1786, and there were 4 Schoonovers there at the time: Benjamin, James, Peter, and Henry. So one of those could be our James’s father.
  2. As I mentioned, I believe James was living in Tioga County, New York as we see him in the 1810 census. In 1807 in Tioga County, we can find a probate record indicating that Peter Schoonover had died without a will, and James Schoonover is named administrator of Peter’s estate. Although this doesn’t prove the relationship between James and Peter, it does show that 2 men of these names were both in Tioga County at the same time and that they are likely related in some way. (You can click the picture to make it bigger.)

  3. There was a Peter Schoonoven who was married to a Neeltje Swartwout. They had a child named Lena, who was baptized in Sussex, New Jersey, in 1790. Sussex had a close-knit community of Dutch settlers who participated in what was called the Dutch Reformed Church. The image below is transcript of the original document. The transcript was created in the late 1800s or early 1900s. The child’s name is shown in the left margin, with the parents’ names beside.
     I reviewed this transcript back to 1745 or so and from that I could tell that this church community stayed together for a really long time. I also could see that this is the first time Peter shows up in the log book. So he wasn’t born into this community, and he is not shown with son James from 1785.  I can also tell that Neeltje Swartout was previously married to Abraham Cortright. The last baby she had with Abraham was baptised in 1777. Therefore it is possible that between 1777 and 1790, Abraham could have died, and she could have married Peter, and then could have had James in 1785. The log book only shows baptisms, but not marriages or death records.
  4. Abraham Cortright died sometime before 1787. His father’s will was written in March 1787, and his father refers to son Abraham, deceased. So now our window for Abraham’s death date has been narrowed to between 1777 and 1787.
  5. Why would Neeltje be in Pennsylvania if her church records are from New Jersey.  I find the answer in an old published Cortright family history book. This book indicates that the Cortrights, including Abraham’s brothers and father, owned farmland in Pennsylvania. They traveled to the Sussex church for baptisms. So this does place Neeltje in Pennsylvania where she could have met and married Peter and given birth to James in 1785, assuming that Abraham died before 1785.

Though none of these individual bullets definitively show that James’s parents were Peter Schoonoven and Neeltje Swartwout, together they make a compelling story that at least proves it is not impossible. The story is compelling enough that I will proceed with Peter’s biography as if he is James’s father.

{genealogy} Schoonover ancestry part 2 - Anson Schoonover

Anson Schoonover

Heather’s 4th great grandfather

When Anson Schoonover was born on February 14, 1817, in New York, his father, James, was 31 and his mother, Mary, was 35. He married Telitha Runyan on June 18, 1839. They had six children in 12 years. He died on December 24, 1853, in Warren, Indiana, at the age of 36, and was buried in Robb Cemetery, Williamsport, Indiana.

Anson’s exact birth date is derived from the age and death date listed on his gravestone. We know he was born in New York because that is what he reported on the 1850 census.

Here is an image of his marriage record showing his marriage to Telitha Runyan on 18 June 1839. This was recorded in Clark County, Ohio. In the left-hand column, it kind of looks like they marked Anson’s middle initial as “B”. Anson is 22 and Telitha is 19.

We can see Anson in the 1840 census in Pleasant Township, Clark County, Ohio. Even though the 1840 census is not an “every name” census, I like this one because you can see Anson is living next door to James Schoonover (presumably his father and is of the correct age), and George Runion, who is his wife Telitha’s father.

Here is the image of the 1850 census from Washington, Warren County, Indiana where we can see his whole family (this is a re-run of my post about daughter Mary). He is a farmer, and he reports that he was born in New York. We can derive from the kids’ birthplaces that they family moved from Ohio to Indiana around 1843. This is also where we find out about baby George, who is the only one of the Schoonover siblings who would not survive to adulthood. George dies at age 11. And he is also buried in Robb Cemetery, like his father. Youngest sibling Telitha Ellen hasn’t been born yet.

According to Anson’s gravestone, he died on 24 December 1853 at age 36. I couldn’t find any information regarding the circumstances of his death. A local newspaper called The Wabash Commercial that was printed in 1853-1854. Just the right time to report on Anson’s death. But all I could find were administrator notices printed in 1854. The Peter Schoonover listed as administrator is Anson's brother, who was also living in Warren at the time.

{genealogy} Schoonover ancestry part 1 - Mary M. Schoonover

This series is about the Schoonover/Schoonhover/Schoonoven/Van Schoonoven line on my mom's side of the family. My lineage is:

my mom
John Royce – Marjorie Grace Gibbons
La Rue Royce – Winifred Teague Burch
Rousseau Angelus Burch – Clara Louise Teague
Isaac A. Burch – Mary M. Schoonover
Anson Schoonover – Telitha Runyan
James Schoonover – Mary X
     (link between James and Peter is assumed, based on analysis of 5 other documents)
Peter Schoonoven – Neeltje Swartwout
Niclaes Schoonoven – Pieternella Westfall
Hendrick Claessen Van Schoonoven – Cornelia Swartwout
Claes Henrickse Van Schoonoven – Neeltje Fredrickse

Mary M. Schoonover

I never learned what the "M." stands for...

Heather’s 3rd  great grandmother

When Mary M Schoonover was born on September 30, 1841, in Ohio, her father, Anson, was 24, and her mother, Telitha, was 21. She married Isaac A Burch on October 14, 1858, in Warren, Indiana. They had two children who survived to adulthood, and three other children who died young. She died on March 2, 1928, at the age of 86, and was buried in Salina, Kansas.

Mary’s exact birth date is shown on her gravestone. Gravestone dates are often incorrect. In the 1900 census, the census taker reports Mary’s birth month and year as September 1842. So, we have a range.

The earliest record I have for Mary is the 1850 census. We find her in her parents house in Washington Township, Warren County, Indiana. She is reported as 9 years old. The census was taken on October 8 that year, so if her birthday was in September, she would have been born in 1841.

Here is the family. Mary is 9 years old. Father Anson is 33 years old and is working as a farmer. The last column indicates that he was born in New York. Wife Telitha is 30 years old, and she was born in Ohio. Then the 2 oldest children, including Mary M., were also born in Ohio, but 3 children following Mary were born in Indiana. So we can derive that Mary moved from Ohio to Indiana by the time she was 2 years old, around 1843-ish.

Her father died 3 years later, in December 1853, when Mary was 12 years old.

Mary’s mother Telitha remarried in 1855.

Then on 14 October 1858, Mary marries Isaac A. Burch in Warren County, Indiana. I haven’t seen the actual record, but it was indexed. I have been unable to find this couple in the 1860 census.

Her 2 sons who survive to adulthood are Rousseau Angelus Burch, born in 1862, and Charles Wilkes Burch, born in 1869. Both boys are born in Indiana.

We learn later from husband Isaac Burch’s obituary, that the family moves to Kansas in October 1869. They take up farming in Elm Creek, Saline County, Kansas. Mary’s mother and all of her brothers and sisters all move to Lyons, Rice County, Kansas and take up farming as well. This move happens after the 1870 Indiana census, but before the 1875 Kansas state census. I don’t think Mary was the first Schoonover to arrive in Kansas. I think some Schoonover uncles/cousins had arrived a few years before.

In both the 1870 and the 1880 censuses, the Mary Schoonover Burch family is found living Elm Creek, Saline County, Kansas.

Again from Isaac’s obituary we learn that the family moved from Elm Creek to Salina in 1883.

I found this wonderful photo from a user on It indicates that these are the Schoonover siblings, plus one extra gal that is unknown, taken ca. 1900 in Lyons, Kansas. Mary’s brother William H. Harrison Schoonover dies in 1901, so the date is consistent. Names are listed at the top. Mary is seated with a 4 over her head.

Husband Isaac dies in 1909, but Mary lives on in Salina until 1928. She continues to appear regularly in Federal and Kansas State censuses.

I even find her once in the 1913 Salina City Directory, so we know she lived at 147 N. 8th (also referenced in Isaac’s obit).  And look, there is son Charles W. Burch in the directory as well.

Google Earth image of 147 North 8th Street, Salina, Kansas. Looks pretty nice.

29 April 1910 – Garnett News Journal (Garnett, Kansas). This news clipping shows us some of the other Schoonovers who located in Kansas. Mrs. William Hopkins is Mary’s sister, Susana Schoonover Hopkins. I think Judge Schoonover is Manford Schoonover (1856-1928), who would be Mary’s cousin or uncle…I’m not sure.

24 June 1915 – The Salina Daily Union newspaper describes a sort of family reunion. All of these people are Schoonovers or related in some way.

6 October 1915 – here’s a clipping from the Salina Evening Journal.

Mrs. T.J. Haxton is Mary’s sister, Telitha Ellen Schoonover Haxton (husband is Thomas Jefferson Haxton). Nell Haxton is Telitha’s daughter. Ike Schoonover is Mary’s brother, Isaac. Mrs. Mary Schoonover is Mary’s sister-in-law, Mary Swisher, who married our Mary’s brother William H. H. Schoonover. (Double-H middle name, one of the H’s stands for Harrison. William died in 1901.)  The others are nieces and in-laws.

Mary died 2 March 1928, and is buried in Gypsum Hill Cemetery in Salina, Saline County, Kansas, next to her husband.

The Emporia Gazette (Emporia, Kansas) 2 March 1928
(The wife of Justice Buch is Clara Teague, who died 25 April 1928.)

The Iola Register (Iola, Kansas) 3 March 1928
Also printed in The Emporia Gazette

Thursday, February 23, 2017

{genealogy} Martha, Joseph, and Edward Jewell of Somerset County, England

These bios are for the Jewell ancestors in my line. I only have 3 Jewell ancestors so I combined them all in one post. I was able to research these last weekend while made the UK records available for free for a few days.

My lineage is as follows:
my dad
Charles Henry Derham – Mary Ann Burbridge
Henry Derham – Martha Jewell
Joseph Jewell – Anne Hitchcock
Edward Jewell – Betty Newberry

Martha Jewell

Heather’s 3rd great grandmother

When Martha Jewell was baptised in 1814 in Bickenhall, Somerset County, England, her father, Joseph, was 33, and her mother, Anne, was 33. She married Henry Derham on May 21, 1835, in her hometown. She died on October 11, 1868, in Corunna, Michigan, at the age of 53 or 54, and was buried in Shiawassee, Michigan.

Here is a copy of a baptismal record from Church of England. Her name is at the bottom of the image. She was baptized 2 Oct 1814. Profession is listed as “weaver”…I assume that is her father Joseph’s profession.

The next record I have is also from Church of England, showing that she married Henry Derham 21 May 1835, after marriage banns had been posted for the previous 3 weeks. You can’t see from this image, but the source citation also indicates that this occurred in Bickenhall, Somerset County, England. Assuming she was baptised as a baby, she is about 21 at her marriage. Her husband Henry is at least age 19 based on his baptism age.

Six years later we can see this couple along with their children in the 1841 census. They live in the Parish of Street, which is in Somerset County, England. In the first column “Place”, it’s marked “do” (“ditto”). On the previous page of the census, the place has been marked “Godswell Lane”. (I couldn’t find evidence that Godswell Lane still exists today, though Parish of Street is a large city.) Son William is 2 years old, and son Alfred is 6 months old. They are also living with Ann Leigh and her daughter(?) Louisa, but I don’t know who they are.

It may appear curious that Martha is listed as age 25. This would put her birth year in 1816, which conflicts with the baptism record. However, in 1841, for whatever reason the policy of the census taker was to round ages downward, the the lower multiple of 5. This applied to anyone age 15 and older.

Another thing to note is that the oldest child in the house is reportedly only 2 years old, though Henry and Martha have been married for 6 years at this point. This is unusual, so we might look for a child that had been born earlier but did not survive. A biographical sketch was later written about the family, but it indicated that Martha only had 5 children. It is true that she had 5 children who survived to adulthood, but I believe there was a 6th child Daniel who was born and died in 1850. Therefore, since the biography left out Daniel, it is possible other children who died young could have been left out as well.

Another interesting this is that Martha Derham appears twice in the 1841 census. In the 2nd, she is in her father’s household. It looks like I failed to get an image of the 2nd page, but in the citation we see Alfred is 8 months old, so it would seem like it is 2 months after the previous census was taken.  However, supposedly the 1841 census was designed so that it all took place on one day. So of course Alfred could not be both 6 months old and 8 months old on that day. Someone was confused.

 Little William is not in the household, and neither is Henry. The census place is Parish of Bickenhall. See Joseph Jewell and wife Ann on the top 2 lines, with Martha Derham on the last line. (Baby Alfred was on the next page.) A simple explanation is that Martha and the baby were just visiting her parents. In 1841, census takers were required to list everyone who was in the house that day, even if they were just visiting as guests.

Based on the biographical sketch, which was published in 1891, we can follow the family. It indicates that Henry Derham immigrated in 1847, but whether Martha came with him at that time, I’m not sure. She had their fifth child, daughter Emma, in 1847, and records indicate that Emma was born in England.

If I knew exactly when Martha came to America, that would help settle whether or not she (and Henry) had criminal records. Somerset County jail records show that in 1848, a Martha Derham, aged 33, served 1 month in prison for larceny. I know there was another Martha Derham in Somerset County at the same time as our Martha Jewell Derham. So which one went to jail in 1848? The story gets more interesting when I tell you there are A LOT of criminal records for a Henry Derham that was Martha’s husband’s age, back when he was in his 20s. Stealing a goose, larceny, that kind of thing. Sometimes he was acquitted and sometimes he served time (like, 1-3 months at a time). And yes I did check if that’s where he was in 1841 during the 2nd census, but no, that’s not it, at least not that I could find.

The biography goes on to say that after Henry stayed in New York for 2 years, he went to Shiawassee County, Michigan in 1849, and identified property he wanted to purchase. It appears the purchase was made in 1850, at which time he built a house. The biography states that the family lived there until 1866, until Mr. Derham moved to Corunna (also in Shiawassee County). Presumably Martha went with him. The biography states that she died in 1868. It also states that she was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

I have not found the family in the 1850 U.S. census. They may be hiding due to all the moving that was going on during that year.

Here they are in the township of Venice, Shiawassee County, in 1860. Venice is near Corunna. Again, Martha reports herself to be the same age as Henry (age 42), but in this case we can not blame weird rules that the census taker had to follow. I wonder if she lies about her age to appear younger.

It’s hard to read, but her headstone inscription says she died 11 Oct 1868 at age 53. She is buried in Wilkinson Cemetery, in Shiawassee County, Michigan.

Here is the biographical sketch of her son, Alfred Derham. I posted the parts that pertained to Martha Jewell Derham.

Joseph Jewell

Heather’s 4th great grandfather

Joseph Jewell was born in 1781 in Curry Rivel, Somerset, England, the son of Betty and Edward. He married Anne Hitchcock on April 17, 1805, in Bickenhall, Somerset, England. He died in March 1857 in Bickenhall, Somerset, England, having lived a long life of 76 years, and was buried there.
Here is a copy of a baptismal record from Church of England, St. Andrews parish, Curry Rivel, Somerset County, England. His name is at the bottom of the image. He was baptized 23 June 1782. Parents names are Edward and Betty Jewel.

Based on census and burial records later, it’s pretty safe to assume that Joseph was baptised when he was a baby, and so was born in 1782.
The next record we have is the marriage record from 1805, showing his marriage to Ann Hitchcock on 17 April 1805. They were married in Bickenhall, Somerset County, England, in St. Paul’s Church.

We previously saw them in the 1841 census when daughter Martha Jewell Derham was living with them. And here they are in in 1851, no kids at home. Just Joseph and Ann, still in Bickenhall, living on Abby Hill street. (Again, I looked for such a location today, but came up empty-handed.)

A burial index for St. Paul’s Church (same church where he was married) shows that he was buried on 3 March 1857. If he died in 1857, he would have been 75 years old.

Edward Jewell

Heather’s 5th great grandfather

Edward Jewell might have been born in 1757 in Somerset County, England. He married Betty Newberry on September 20, 1779, in his Curry Rivel, Somerset, England. Here is an image of his marriage record. It is from Church of England in Curry Rivel, though I’m not sure which parish. 

If he was born in 1757, then he was 22 when he married Betty.

His death date and burial location are unknown, but I do have a record of an Edward Jewell that was born in 1757, buried in Somerset County on 14 February 1837. Edward Jewell, was not an uncommon name, but the approximate age and the location are promising.

I did search the 1841 census for Edward Jewell and came up negative, so it does seem he died before 1841.

After Edward, we have a brick wall for now.


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