Tuesday, April 19, 2016

David West (1758 – after 1826) Part 1: 1758 – 1810

Compiled by Joy Ikelman, April 2016. All disclaimers apply.

David West (1758 – after 1826) 
[Part 1: 1758 – 1810]
Thomas West (1630/1631 – 1720) m. Phebe Waters
    Benjamin West (1665 – 1733) m. Hannah Shadduck
        Benjamin West, Jr. (1688 – after 1739) m. Mehitable Bailey
            Elijah West (1722 – 1798) m. (1) unknown; m. (2) Hannah Thurber
                David West (1758 – after 1826) m. Susannah Hoag

Summary: David West is the ancestor of one of our West DNA Family Group #5 participants. At least two generations of David West’s family were members of the Religious Society of Friends. West lived in Dutchess County, NY, Prince Edward County, Ontario, and Genesee County, NY. His children eventually settled in Michigan.

Note: Quaker customs and record-keeping are unique. Please refer to Understanding Quaker Records on this blog site for more information.


Signature from David West’s land lease petition,

Ameliasburg, Prince Edward County, Ontario, 1811.

1758 – 1779: Early Years of David West
David West was born 28 Feb 1758 in Pawling, Dutchess County, NY. [1] His father was Elijah West and his mother is unknown. Elijah West was a tenant farmer [2] and also an innkeeper. [3] David siblings were Benajah, Elisha, Mary, and Abigail. [4]

In 1774, David West’s father, Elijah, moved to Windsor, Windsor County, VT [5].  He married Hannah Thurber [6] and started a new family. He left his five children behind in Dutchess County, NY. David was about 16 years old when his father moved away. It is possible that a neighbor, Nehemiah Merritt, looked over the West children. He is mentioned several times in association with the West family. [7, 8] The Merritts were Quakers, and it possible that David West was led to become a Quaker from this association. Or, he may have joined the Friends after he married.

Circa 1779 – 1782: David West and Susannah Hoag Are Married

Looking for Proof. I thought it was “family tradition” that David West married Susannah (or Susanna) Hoag, who was from a much-respected Quaker family. However, I found only one source for this information.

In about 1949, Julia Hoag Quackenbush donated a typed manuscript about Hoag family history to the New York State Library in Albany. [9] This seems to be the source of the West/Hoag marriage information in various on-line genealogies. In 2001, Frank Doherty cited this source in his narrative on “The Hoag Family” in Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York. [10] The notation from Doherty (Quackenbush) reads: Susanna, b. 3 July 1755; m. David, b. 28 Feb 1758, son of Elijah West of Beekman.

We still need a primary document to show the marriage of West and Hoag. It might be found in an Oblong or Nine Partners Monthly Meeting minute book. [11] For this article, we will assume that Quackenbush’s statement is true. We know from the Quaker records that David married a woman named “Susannah,” because they are found together in two Quaker records. [12]

Estimated Marriage Date. If David was already a member of the Society of Friends, he would have been at least 21 years old when he married Susannah. This was a Quaker custom in the 1700s. [13] Their first child, Benjamin, was born in November of 1782. So, their marriage date would be between 1779 and 1782. Also, if David was not a Quaker at the time of marriage, Susannah would have received mention for “marriage out of unity” or “marriage out of discipline.” It would be recorded in a Meeting minute, and this would give clues to a marriage date.

A Little about the Hoag Family

Hoag Ancestors. There are several versions of Hoag family history in old books and New England genealogies. Here is Susannah’s direct line. Dates are approximate.

    Richard Hoag m. Joan _____
        John Hoag (1643/1644 – 1728) m. Ebezener Emery
            Benjamin Hoag, Sr. (1680 – after 1760) m. (1) Sara Norris; (2) Esther Swett
                Benjamin Hoag, Jr. (1714 – after 1781) [14] m. Lydia Jones
                    Susannah Hoag (1755 – after 1819) m. David West

A common family story is that Richard and Joan Hoag went back to England in the early 1650s, and John stayed behind in Boston as an apprentice. [15] John Hoag eventually moved to Newbury, Essex County, MA. His children became Quakers in the early 1700s. [16] The next two generations lived in Amesbury, Essex County, MA. John Hoag was a local judge during the Salem Delusions (witch trials), but was dismissed because he believed the accusations were false. [17]

The Hoags Move to Dutchess County, NY. The Hoags and other Quakers moved to areas in and around Beekman Patent by the 1740s. [18] They were part of the men and women who established the Oblong Meeting in 1742. [19] Benjamin and Lydia Hoag, Susannah’s parents, came to Dutchess County in about 1755. Benjamin Hoag, Senior and Junior are listed as “Heads of Families” in a 1761 Quaker census (membership list) of Oblong Monthly Meeting. [20]

Susannah’s name and birth date were also listed in this Quaker census. [21] She appears in the list with her brothers and sisters. We do not know if Susannah was born in Amesbury, Essex County, MA, like her older siblings, [22] or in Dutchess County like her younger siblings.

1782 – 1796: Children of David and Susannah West

I believe that the following were David and Susannah’s children:
  • Benjamin West (1782 – 1858)
  • Daughter West (b. ca 1785)
  • Abraham West (1787 – 1864)
  • Jacob West (b. ca 1789 – d. after 1845)
  • Daughter West (b. ca 1793)
  • Levi West (b. 1796 – d. after 1847)
Benjamin, Abraham, Jacob, and Levi have good paper trails. They have geographical locations in common. They are listed together in historical records. The two daughters are implied by the Censuses of 1790 and 1800, and are not proven.
Benjamin was named after Susannah’s father, Benjamin Hoag. This was a Quaker custom. [23] David and Susannah selected Biblical names for their other male children—Abraham, Jacob, and Levi. I spent some time looking for an “Isaac”—as in the Biblical lineage of “Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Levi.” [24] There were Isaac Wests in the area, but none were related. Some historians include “Morgan West” as one of the children. He was associated with FG#5 descendants in his later years. [25] As of 2016, there is not enough documentation to prove with certainty that he is related to these West brothers.
1790: U.S. Census of 1790, Dutchess County, NY
In 1790, David West was counted in Washington, Dutchess County, NY. [26] His brother, Elisha, was counted there too. The two names appear on the same Census page.
In 1790, the David West family had one male 16 years and older (David, age 32). There are also five males less than 16 years old. These would be Benjamin, age 8; Abraham, age 3; possibly Jacob, age 1, plus two more boys. There are two females—Susannah, age 35, and probably a daughter, about 6 years old. Perhaps two sons did not survive into the 1800 Census, and this accounts for the two “extra” boys.
There are two more possibilities, based on the Quaker customs of (1) apprenticeships and (2) caring for all children from Meetings. Apprenticeships were almost mandatory during the ages of 14 to 21. Members of a Meeting would decide what a child (male or female) would learn, and pick the family that would provide this education. The children were counted with the family of their “Master.” [27] Friends also placed Quaker children from their Meetings who were orphans or from very poor families. This was called “putting out to Friends.” [28] So, in the 1790 Census, it is possible that David was teaching apprentices, or has taken in children who were in need.
1800: U.S. Census of 1800, Dutchess County, NY
In the 1800 Census, David is still in Washington, Dutchess County, NY. [29] David’s brother Elisha is counted in Stanford, Dutchess County. [30] It is unlikely that either brother moved. In 1793, the Township of Washington had been subdivided into Stanford to the north, and Washington to the south. [31] Elisha was on the tax rolls of Stanford, NY. [32] David was not on the tax rolls. Once again, the numbers of David and Susannah’s children—and their ages—do not add up.
David West’s record shows one male 45 and over—David was actually 42 years old. The record shows one female 26 to 44—Susannah was 44 or 45. There is one female under 10 years old, and one 16 to 25. The record shows two males under ten, and one male 16 to 25 years old. Their son, Benjamin, would have been 18 years old. The two males “under 10” were probably Jacob (age 11) and Levi (age 4). Who was left out? It was Abraham, who was 13 or 14. Abraham was at the right age to be an apprentice for some other Quaker family, and would be counted with them.
1810: U.S. Census of 1810, Greene County, NY
I could not find a record for David West in the 1810 Census. However, his son Jacob West and a female in Jacob’s age group (most likely his wife, Lana) were counted in the Census in Windham, Greene County, NY. [33, 34] He was on the same page as Asael (Asahel/Asahael) Disbrow. He was the father of Polly Disbrow [35]. Polly married David’s son, Benjamin, in 1806. [36]
Benjamin and Polly West were not listed in this Census. In fact, the entire West family, with the exception of Jacob and his wife, were in Upper Canada (Ontario) by 1810.
The Quaker migration to Canada in the early 1800s was a significant time for the Religious Society of Friends. The Friends began to interact with non-Quaker settlers in daily life. This was actually a new idea, and contrary to Quaker discipline that still required that Friends were to be “set apart.” David and Susannah West—and their sons—were part of the modernization that was occurring.  
Please see Part 2: 1810 – 1826 to learn more about David West.  [coming soon] 
References and Additional Notes
West Family DNA group results are at http://web.utk.edu/~corn/westdna/west5.htm.

1. Hartland Monthly Meeting of Friends, “Members of Hartland Monthly Meeting, Niagara County, New York, Residing at Elba, Genesee County, New York,” Membership 1821-1862, H303. Vol. 3.3, p. 8. Archived at Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA.
2. Frank J. Doherty, 1990: “Historical Records,” Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York: An Historical and Genealogical Study of All of the 18th Century Settlers in the Patent, Volume 1, Frank J. Doherty, New England Historic Genealogical Society, Pleasant Valley, NY, p. 352.
3. Frank J. Doherty, 1993: “Abbot to Burtch,” Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York, Volume 2, p. 572.
4. William Slade, compiler, 1823: Vermont State Papers: Being a Collection of Records and Documents, Connected with the Assumption and Establishment of Government by the People of Vermont, J.W. Copeland, Middlebury, VT, p. 504. The names of the children are listed in a land deed dispute.
5. Sherman Evarts, 1914: “The Vermont Constitution and the Constitution House,” The Vermonter, Volume 19, Number 4, April, p. 61.
6. Katherine E. Conlin, Wilma Burnham Paronto, and Stella Vitty Henry, 1977: Chronicles of Windsor, 1761-1975, The Countryman Press, Taftsville, VT.
7. Frank J. Doherty, 2003: “Hunter to Leavens,” Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York, Volume 7, p. 863. Nehemiah Merritt’s land bordered Elijah West’s land. After Elijah moved to Vermont, Merritt took over the rent payments.
8. State of New York, 1925: Minutes of the Committee and of the First Commission for Detecting and Defeating Conspiracies in the State of New York, December 11, 1776 – September 23, 1778 with Collateral Documents, New York Historical Society, New York, NY, p. 529. In 1777, Elisha West (brother to David) mentions Nehemiah Merritt in his testimony about a murder case. Elisha was about 17 years old and David was 19.
9. Julia Hoag Quackenbush, 1938-1949: Hoag Ancestry: from John 1st Who Came to this Country, and Includes the Descendants of the Three Sons who Remained Here. Typed manuscript. Archived at the New York State Library in Albany.
10. Frank J. Doherty, 2001: “Hadden to Hunt,” Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York, Volume 6, p. 527.
11. Susannah Hoag’s family attended the Oblong Monthly Meeting and later, Nine Partners Monthly Meeting. Both were in Dutchess County, NY.
12. There are two instances listing David and Susannah together. (1) Farmington Monthly Meeting of Friends (Orthodox), 1803-1897: Men’s and Joint Meetings, 1816-1821, F335, Volume 1.3, pp. 94 and 109. Archived at Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA. This was a membership transfer to Farmington Monthly Meeting. (2) Hartland Monthly Meeting of Friends, 1821-1905: Vital Records: Marriages 1821-1850, H393, Volume 3.1. Archived at Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA. David and Susannah West are listed as the parents of Abraham West who is marrying his second wife, Anna French.
13. J. William Frost, 1973: The Quaker Family in Colonial America: A Portrait of the Society of Friends, St. Martin’s Press, NY, p. 136. Age 21 was the age of legal accountability, and men were encouraged to marry after this age. Frost states (p. 151) that in the latter part of the 18th Century, the average age for marriage was 22 for women, and 26.5 for men.
14. Benjamin and Lydia Hoag were witnesses to the marriage of Levi Hoag (Susannah’s brother) in 1781, at Elijah Hoag’s Creek Meeting in Dutchess County. Previously, researchers have listed the death date as “after 1760” for both Benjamin Senior and Junior. The 1781 marriage record is located in Nine Partners Monthly Meeting data—Vital Records: Births, Deaths, Marriages, Disownments, Manumissions 1769-1798, N335, Volume 4.1, p. 32. Archived at Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA.
15. J. Hoag, 2003: The History of the Hoag Family in America. Word document on-line at http://hdhdata.org/whoag/NEW.HOAG-1.doc. Partial revision, 2008. Accessed Feb 2016. This seems to be a working document for genealogies on the Hoag and Emery families, written by a family historian. It is very well researched and documented. Records show that the Hoags were in Boston before 1636.
16. Joseph Hoag, 1846: A Journal of the Life and Gospel Labors of that Devoted Servant and Minister of Christ, Joseph Hoag, printed in 1860 by David Heston, Sherwoods, NY, p. 2-4.
17. Ibid, p. 2.
18. William P. McDermott, 1986: “Colonial Land Grants in Dutchess County, N.Y., A Case Study in Settlement,” The Hudson Valley Regional Review, September, Volume 3, Number 2, p. 15.
19. Frank Hasbrouck, 1909, editor: The History of Dutchess County, New York, S.A. Matthieu, Poughkeepsie, NY, p. 53.
20. Warren H. Wilson, 1907: “Appendix A: List of Heads of Families on the Verge of our Monthly Meeting Held on the Oblong and the Nine Partners Circularly,” Quaker Hill—A Sociological Study, Columbia University, New York, NY. The list was compiled on “4m 16d 1761.”
21. Oblong Monthly Meeting, 1744-1903: Vital Records 1745-1783, Volume 3.1, O373, p. 198. Archived at Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA.
22. The Topsfield Historical Society, 1913: Vital Records of Amesbury, Massachusetts to the End of the Year 1849, Topsfield, MA, p. 126.
23. David Hacker Fischer, 1989: Albion’s Seed: Four British Folkways in America, Oxford University Press, NY, p. 505. In Quaker families during this time, the first son was named after the mother’s father.
24. Book of Genesis, Chapters 25-29. In The Bible, Abraham’s son was Isaac. Isaac’s son was Jacob. Jacob’s son was Levi.  
25. In the 1850 Census, Morgan West was counted with the family of Ira and Elizabeth (West) Smith in Franklin, Fulton County, OH. He was 59. Elizabeth was Abraham’s daughter. The record that follows next is Charles and Lydia (West) Munson. Lydia was Levi’s daughter. By the 1860 Census, Morgan West moved with Elizabeth Smith and her three children to Raisin, Lenawee County, MI. In 1870 at age 79, Morgan West was living with the family of Daniel and Charlotte Smith in Plainfield, Kent County, MI.
26. Census of 1790, Washington, Dutchess County, New York. Records of the Bureau of the Census, National Archives, Washington, D.C.
27. Frost, p. 140. Children attended school from age 7 to 14. At that time an apprenticeship was carefully chosen by parents and by the local Meeting. “The apprentice could be treated as if he were his (the father’s) child, because he was generally an acquaintance’s son or daughter.”
28. Frost, p. 45.
29. Census of 1800, Washington, Dutchess County, New York. Records of the Bureau of the Census, National Archives, Washington, D.C.
30. Census of 1800, Stanford, Dutchess County, New York. Records of the Bureau of the Census, National Archives, Washington, D.C.
31. Hasbrouck, p. 654.
32. New York Comptroller’s Office, 1799-1804: Tax Assessment Rolls of Real and Personal Estates, New York State Archives, Albany, NY.
33. Census of 1810, Windham, Greene County, New York. Records of the Bureau of the Census, National Archives, Washington, D.C.
34. William Wade Hinshaw, Thomas Worth Marshall, and Dr. Barlow Lindley, compilers, 1946: “Adrian Monthly Meeting,” Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy, 1607-1943, Volume IV, p. 1372. Lana is mentioned in the marriage record of Maria West to Henry Leeds in 1842. Maria is the “dt Jacob & Lana, Adrian, Lenawee Co., Mich.”
35. Lorraine Cook White, editor, 1994-2002: The Lucius Barnes Barbour Collection of Connecticut Town Vital Records, Vol. 1-155, Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, Maryland. “Fairfield (Connecticut) Vital Records, 1639-1850,” p. 46.
36. _______, 1888: Portrait and Biographical Album of Lenawee County, Michigan, Chapman Brothers, Chicago, Illinois, p. 452.
Many thanks to Lorelle VanFossen for her excellent genealogical work. VanFossen is a descendant of Levi West. To see her compilation of the descendants of David West, go to: http://family.cameraontheroad.com/family-names/david-west-descendants/

Sunday, April 17, 2016

William West 1746 VA

WEST Family DNA Project
William West 1746 VA
WEST Family Group 5
Descendents of William WEST and Mary Rutherford.
This is the family represented by DNA samples W23 and W24.
Each male with the surname WEST in this chart has a Y chromosome that is a copy of the Y chromosome of William WEST b 1746.   This passing of genetic code from father to son is the key to using Y-DNA for genealogy research.  Any living male with the surname WEST, who is descended from one of the WESTs in this chart, will have Y-DNA that matches samples W23 and W24.

1.   WEST
   2. William WEST, b 1746, d 1829 Greene Co. TN
        + Mary RUTHERFORD, m. abt 1770
         3. John WEST, b 1771 VA
         3. James WEST, b 1772 VA,  d 1834 Hawkins Co. TN
             + Nancy GRIGSBY
              4. Samuel WEST, b 1805 Hawkins Co TN, d 1861/62 Osage Co MO
                  + Nancy POINTER, m.  1829 Franklin Co. MO
                     5. Samuel WEST, b 1838 Gasconade Co MO, d 1922 Cole Co MO
                        + Nancy Jane KILMER, m. 1862 Osage Co MO
                       6. Mary Elizabeth WEST, b 1863 Osage Co MO, d 1960 Cole Co MO
                           + Joseph FINN, m. abt 1891 Gasconade Co MO
                       6. Martha R. WEST, b 1869 Osage Co MO, d bef 1900
                           + John SERZY (Surzey, Sercy)
                            7. Charles Lenzy SERZY, b 1894 MO,  d 1972
                       6. John Simeon WEST, b 1872 Osage Co MO, d 1943 Cole Co MO
                            + Nora Arminda FINN, m.  1901 Gasconade Co. MO
                       6. James Jasper WEST, b 1874 Osage Co MO, d 1936 Tulsa Co OK
                           + Eliza Catherine WHEAT, m. 1898 Gasconade Co MO
                              7. Arley Taylor WEST,b 1906 Gasconade Co MO, d 1972 Tulsa Co OK
                       6. Alice Malinda WEST, b 1877, d 1928 Tulsa Co OK
                           + Joseph W. Carroll, m. 1896 Gasconade Co MO
                       6. Minnie WEST, b 1880, died in infancy
                       6. unknown WEST
                       6. unknown WEST    
      2. James WEST, d. abt 1782 Rockingham Co. VA
          + Catherine BYRD, m. 1771
             3. William WEST, b 1781 VA, d 1843 VA .

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Halcomb Heckart Branch of the West Family

Submitted by Cindy Halcomb Wyant.

A side note per Ben West’s early comments on the West/Milliken family. I discovered this just recently: Isabella West was the first wife of Hiram Halcomb, after she died he married a Frances Rice. Frances also died, and Hiram married for a third time a Mrs. Mahala Wade Vaughn. Mahala had an existing daughter, Senora T. Vaughn, who would marry George Harbison Milliken. George was the son of James Milliken and Elsie West Milliken. Just one of the many Halcomb/West/Milliken connections! I speak “Milliken” entanglement fairly well … if anyone has questions I am glad to share what I have learned. Those connections are also documented on my Ancestry site “Halcomb Heckart Family Tree,” owner cindywyant68.

There is another related topic I would like to address on the parentage of Isabella West Halcomb. There is a large amount of data out there showing that she is the daughter of “William West”. With the Will of Amos West (previously posted on the blog by Ben West) and the document (my last post) EC 5-60 - Scott vs Herndon, Filed 17 Nov 1815  - I think we can safely say that her father was Amos West. I believe that “William” was Amos’s oldest brother and that he may, or may not, have had a daughter named Isabella that is being confused with her first cousin - the wife of Hiram Halcomb. Would be interested in any comments on this.

I quit too soon on the paragraph on the West/Milliken family > Elsie/Elcie West Milliken was the daughter of William and Angeline Clendennen West – oldest brother of Amos – both sons of Richard West and Susannah “Isabel” Fike West.

Note: I have three Richard Wests related to Amos West. His father - Richard West (Sr.) 1739-1820; his brother – Richard West (Jr.) 1764-1820; and his son – Richard West (III) 1806-1841.

Thought you might be interested in these pictures of two of Amos West's
grandsons.  The second one is my great-great grandfather.  It's not often
that we are able to photographically document ancestors that are removed by that many generations.

Capt Amos West (1834-1913) taken about 1912.  Son of Richard West, and grandson of Amos West.  Enlisted in Company D, Kentucky 2nd Infantry Regiment, CSA on 13 Jul 1861.  Photo courtesy of Ben West for Find A Grave Memorial #67490937.

Amos Halcomb (1816-1896) taken about 1893.  Son of Isabella West Halcomb, grandson of Amos West.  Private, Co., A, Capt Alexander Robinson's Cass Co., Bn, District of the Border USA - Cass Co., Missouri 1864.  Photo courtesy of Cindy Halcomb Wyant

My great-great grandfather, Amos Halcomb, was the brother of Joseph Sively Halcomb – Isabel Stebbins descended from Joseph.  This picture of Amos Halcomb comes from a group sitting of four generations of Halcombs – Amos; his oldest son Joseph Sively;  grandson Lysander Berdette; and his great granddaughter Hazel Verne Boone Halcomb Hunsaker.  The baby looks to be about 6 months old – she was born 10 Jul 1892.  So I date the picture early 1893.  Lysander had two daughters – the second one was Theodora H. Halcomb Stebbins, the mother of Isabel Stebbins Giulvezan.  Isabel Stebbins Giulvezan was born in 1918 and died in 2000, she was the wife of George Steven Giulvezan Sr.  We owe her a great debt for all that she did in preserving our family history!  She was also the founding regent of the John Sappington Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution - Affton, Missouri.   – Cindy Halcomb Wyant

NOTE: My great grandfather, James William Halcomb’s, oldest brother, Joseph Sivley Halcomb, married Amanda Boone Scholl.  Amanda could trace her Boone lineage through her mother Harriett Rite Boone who was the daughter of Thomas Boone, son of Squire Boone, son of Samuel Boone who was the older brother of “Daniel Boone”.  Samuel and Daniel  were the sons of Squire Boone.  Many years later I would visit the Historic Boone home near Defiance, Missouri and find Isabel Stebbins Giulvezan listed on the wall as a member of their early preservation efforts.  Somehow I was not surprised at all to find her name there! :o)
Rest in Peace Isabel - your work continues!  Your words have not only stepped into the “computer age”, they now serve as testimony for an amazing phenomena called DNA which proves who we think we are.

I try to add as much “minutia” to my Ancestry sites as I can. I feel that is the most public way that I can share what I have learned.  My Halcomb Heckart Family Tree lists 14,760 people with 4,460 stories and pictures.

In my case I didn’t have the surroundings of family when I was growing up.  My father was a Government surveyor and we moved 27 times before I was 10 years old.  My mother’s family lived in North Dakota and we spent several assignments near them … so I knew who they were.  But the Halcomb side in Missouri was more of a mystery which was compounded by the fact that my grandfather Halcomb died before I was born.  I knew two of his sisters, and his mother was still living until I was age 4 – but I have only one vague memory of her.

Back in the 70’s I was on a search in Kentucky to find “who I really was” spurred mostly by whether I was a Hal
comb or a Holcomb.  I came on the manuscript “Notes on Hiram Halcomb …” by Isabel Stebbins Giulvezan in the Kentucky State Historical Society Library.  I photocopied it in its entirety!  Her wonderful research got me started on the complexities of our family.  Returning home after my trip, I corresponded with Isabel and she graciously allowed me to use her research.  It was just recently that I discovered she had also written another manuscript “Notes on Amos West …” which I am sure you are aware of.  If not, it is in ebook form on Ancestry.  She did an amazing job of itemizing legal documents for the last 30 years of his life.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

West Family Connections to Herndon, Halcomb and Milligan

Thought you might be interested in this 1815 (1801) legal document on the Herndon family. Amos West’s wife was Frances Herndon West. She was the daughter of James Herndon. I descend from her daughter “Isabell West Halkum”. The correct spelling should be Isabella West Halcomb, wife of Hiram Halcomb. Let me know if I can answer any questions regarding my West/Halcomb line.  – Cindy Halcomb Wyant


"Logan County, Kentucky Abstract of Equity Cases, Vol 1" by Montgomery Vanderpool, PO Box 151, Russellville, KY 42276, 1986, pp. 39 & 40.

EC 5-60 - Scott vs Herndon, Filed 17 Nov 1815. Thomas B. Scott complains that on 17 Aug 1801 for a valuable consideration he paid James Herndon they entered into an agreement. James Herndon to convey to Scott "one tract of land holden by headright and obtained by him this day as per certificate containing 200 acres, when he may make a conveyance thereof, that Scott is to pay the necessary and legal fee to the government its officers authorized to collect against the time required by law." Scott states he paid the state price for the land and all charges and fees, etc. and caused the land to be granted to Herndon by Patent from the Commonwealth of Kentucky, bearing date 23 Jan 1813. That since Scott caused the land to be patented to James Herndon he has departed this life intestate at least as to the land and that George Herndon, Cornelus Herndon, Elisha Herndon, James Herndon, John Herndon, Joseph Herndon, Polly Wilkins, Leonard West, Isabell West now Isabell Halkum wife of Hiram Halkum, Agnes West, James West, Richard West, Polly West now Polly Milligan wife of William Milligan are the legal heirs and representatives of James Herndon. The heirs are inhabitants of Logan Co. except for Cornelius who is an inhabitant of Tennessee. That Leonard, Agnes, James and Richard are infants under the age of 21. The West children were children of Frances West, late Frances Herndon (West), Deceased wife of Amos West. Includes agreement between Scott and Herndon dated 17 Aug 1801. The agreement says Thomas B. Scott is of Jessamine Co., KY.

My family data is posted to my Ancestry site “Halcomb Heckart Family Tree”, owner cindywyant68. Amos & Frances Herndon West were my 4th great grandparents. Hiram and Isabella West Halcomb were my 3rd great grandparents. These were followed by Amos Halcomb(Isabella Catherine Sivley) / James William Halcomb(Margaret May Plain) / Everett Thurman Halcomb Sr.(Lelia Helen Heckart) / Everett Thurman Halcomb Jr.(Fern Natalie Hanson) / and myself. – Cindy Halcomb Wyant

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Persistence - Don't Ever Give Up!

This article was written 28 May 2014 for the West, Fike and Allied Families in MyFamily.com.   I am posting this today to point to the importance of not just deciding the facts will never be found.  Joy Ikelman and Ben West have told me that they are preparing articles for this blog... I am so excited to see their articles, I decided to find something to help the time pass!  My article will show that I am stubborn about finding what I want to learn.  I hope it will encourage all that read this to decide to knock down brick walls in their family tree research or in anything else in their lives that is of importance to them.   - John G. West

Don't ever give up! I have been studying my family history since I was a kid of about 10 years of age. At times life got in the way a little for me to stay at my life-long hobby, but I would pick up again and continue the course. College and dating girls took me away from genealogy. Then being in the Air Force for four years was a serious obstacle to researching... but I would still do a little research and Mom would send me little notes about the family. She knew that the service was not where I wanted to be, but I had to serve like everyone else and it was my duty. She also knew that family history kept me going and made the not so great times more bearable!

Mom's father died when I was about 12 in 1959, he was an old man that had a rough life and 8 kids. He worked very hard - my Dad had worked with him in a factory for a few years... stating that no man worked as hard as he did! He was known to drink a lot over the years, but never missed work, though. He drank only on the weekends!  He was almost 79 when he died and had very little money or possessions. His small life insurance policy paid some of his final expenses, family paid the rest. He had enough to pay for the funeral and a grave spot near his father's grave and a number of family members in a large cemetery in Owensboro, KY where he lived. The $255 from Social Security was supposed to help and should have paid for a grave marker. One son got the check and was the one that was supposed to get the marker made and installed at his grave. It apparently never happened!

Dad's father did not get a marker either. Not long before my father died, he & Mom decided that their father's should have markers. Dad got the one for his Dad (Warner West) in Christian County, KY. It had been over 10 years since Mom's father had died and the cemetery could not figure out from the records where his grave was actually located which made placing a marker impossible. After my Dad died I took Mom to the cemetery to help her find the grave, but we spent a lot of time in vain. I have gone back and walked the whole area trying to figure it out many times. Two years ago, I insisted on the cemetery director to actually go out with me and find the grave. He was determined to help me find it - the cemetery should know where he was buried, the burial was in recent times (1959). We spent several hours even after it began raining. I really did not want to give up.

This Memorial Day weekend (2014), I was determined that I was going to find grandpa's grave. It was an outrage that the cemetery did not know the exact location. They had records, why was this so difficult? I had been in charge of Evansville's city cemeteries with Oak Hill Cemetery being older and larger than the Rosehill-Elmwood Cemetery in Owensboro. After trying again, going from information in the office files and back to the cemetery section and back again three times, I finally asked if I could actually examine the records to see what the problem might be. I finally figured it out. Section G had 3 divisions. The burial list that was recorded in alphabetical order had him buried in Section G,
Division 2, Lot 44. While the burial plot maps had him in Division 3. These two records were never cross-checked before. Division 3 is where all of my grandfather's family was buried, Division 2 is next to # 3 not all that far. However the two divisions had over 800 burials. Once I looked in Division 2 after consulting the records in the alphabetical listing of who should be buried around him, it was easy to find the lot. His was the only plot that did not have a marker in the rolls and graves near lot 44.

It would have been easy to just forget it and accept the fact he was buried somewhere in Division 3 near his father and let it go. Persistence (ok and stubbornness) paid off in finally finding his grave after all of these years. The records have been corrected. Now, if only I had the money to get a marker for his grave.

The moral of this story is to "never give up." The answer is there somewhere, keep looking. Many in this group have found records that everyone said was forever lost. New information seems to pop up from other sources. New technology changes what we currently know. Just look at what DNA has done to help us discover our family connections, what new tools will the near future give us? Keep searching, be persistent and discover the facts!