Friday, August 31, 2012

Mormon Pioneer Overland Travel Database

The Mormon Pioneer Overland Travel database is one of the most comprehensive and amazing genealogical resources available anywhere. It is hosted by the Church History Library (CHL) in Salt Lake City, Utah, but has become what it is due to the dedication and service of one of the librarians at the CHL and a small handful of dedicated, long-term, detail-oriented service missionaries. (Here's a previous post about the database.)

The database includes members of the Church who traveled to Utah before the railroad, whether from the east or the west. Most of these people joined the Church in the eastern United States or Europe and crossed the Plains heading west, but some pioneers, including the Parkinsons listed below, joined the Church in Australia and sailed across the Pacific Ocean to join the Mormon settlement in San Bernardino, California, and from there traveled across the desert to Utah.

I've included links below to each of my ancestors who is listed in the database, and a few who aren't in it.

In each link, if you click on the name of the pioneer, you will be able to see notes and sources for the pioneer, including every mention of the pioneer in various records, as well as a link to the pioneer company, which lists all known members of the company and all known sources about the company.

If you have additional primary information (autobiographies, diaries, obituaries, census or immigration records) that would add to the valuable information in the Mormon Pioneer Overland Travel database, you can send it to the missionaries to add to the collection.

Tanner Ancestors

Christensen, Jens (1819-1866)
Christensen, Karen Mary Johannesen (1821-1878)
Jarvis, Ann Prior (1829-1913)
Jarvis, George (1823-1913)
Jarvis, Margaret Jarvis (1857-1934)
Oveson, Jens Andreas (1816-1905)
Oveson, Kjersten Maria Pedersen (1813-1874)
Oveson, Mary Kjirstine Christensen (1846-1922)
Oveson, Ove Christian (1840-1924)
Parkinson, Mary Ann Bryant Porter (1826-1905)
Parkinson, Thomas (1830-1906)
Shepherd, Samuel (1790-1877)
Tanner, Eliza Ellen Parkinson (1857-1930)
Tanner, Henry Martin (1852-1935)
Tanner, John (1778-1850)
Tanner, Julia Ann Shepherd (1829-1899)
Tanner, Sidney (1809-1895)

Morgan Ancestors

Christensdatter, Christiane (1799-?)
  • Not in database; left Denmark on a ship in 1866; more research needs to be done to figure out which year she crossed the plains.
Christensen, Jens and Karen
  • See entries in Tanner section.
Christensen, Marinus (1863-1927)
Linton, Ellen Sutton McKetchney (1832-1909)
Linton, Samuel (1828-1916)
Morgan, John Hamilton (1842-1894)
Sutton, John (1788-1865)
Sutton, Mary Ellison (1799-1869)
Thomas, David Nathan (1820-1888)
Thomas, Adeline Springthorpe Sparks (1826-1891)

Wessman Ancestors

Cripps, Charles (1795-1870)
Cripps, Elizabeth Baker (1801-1891)
Hayward, Gammon (1828-1883)
Hayward, Henry John (1852-1927)
Hayward, Sarah Ann Cripps (1830-1932)
Pugsley, Martha Roach (1829-1906)
Pugsley, Philip (1822-1903)

Glade Ancestors

Glade, Eliza Mary Litson (1846-1920)
Glade, James (1831-1882)
Hill, Archibald Newell (1816-1900)
Litson, Frances Ann Mathews (1819-1885)
Litson, Richard (1819-1872)
Marsden, Mary Ann Hancock (1803-1877)
  • Should she be in database? Her migration year was 1866, but she may not have crossed the plains that year or the next. This information needs to be tracked down.
McQueen, Ann Harris Hamilton (1819-1892)
  • When did she and her husband cross the ocean and cross the plains?
Pettit, Edwin (1834-1924)
Pettit, Rebecca Hood Hill (1845-1922)

Other People I've Requested Added to the Database

The Redd Slaves (Chancey, Luke, Marinda, Sam, Venus)
Eliza Christine Carolina Reiche Wilcken and children

The pictures (all from Wikipedia and used under a Creative Commons License) are of Independence Rock, South Pass, the Sweetwater River (1870), Echo Canyon, and the Salt Lake Valley, major sites along the Mormon Trail.

Friday, August 17, 2012

A Snapshot of History: My Grandparents in the 1940 Census

The 1940 Census was released recently and quickly indexed. It is available at (free) and (for a fee).

Here are the United States 1940 Census records for my four grandparents. They were all still single and living at home in 1940.

Wallace Ove Tanner, age 15, St. Johns, Arizona

Jessie Maxine Morgan, age 14, 79 D Street, Salt Lake City, Utah

John Hayward Wessman, age 22, 184 E Street, Salt Lake City, Utah

Beverly Lucille Glade, age 15, 1421 Sherman Avenue, Salt Lake City, Utah

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Marsden Family: 1841 Census

Marsdens in the 1841 England census.
The 1841 census shows the Marsden family living in England, in the county of Derbyshire, the civil parish (government division) of Chesterfield, the hundred (ecclesiastical division) of Scarsdale, and the township of Walton. They are in the Chesterfield registration district, and sub-registration district, which might help locate further records and locate their home on a map.

Besides all those divisions, the census shows them living at Walton Mill. A website named From the Neolithic to the Sea includes the following information about Walton Mill:
Walton Works was a cotton wick mill, located in Brampton, Chesterfield in Derbyshire. 
The mill was built by Mr Hewitt and Mr Bunting in the 1770's and was known as Walton 'Bump' Mill. It is believed that the name refers to a cheap type of cotton which they produced. 
Disaster struck when in the year 1800, a fire destroyed most of the buildings and outhouses as well as most of the machinery. The steam engine survived the blaze and the mill was rebuilt. It is surmised that the base and ground floor of the mill is of original construction, but the brick work on the upper floors are a result of the fire. An attempt to make the mill fire proof was made as cotton is highly flammable. Through out the years the buildings were adapted, new structures built and removed as needs demanded. 
The partnership of Hewitt and Bunting expanded to include Mr Creswick, Mr Longdon and Mr Claughton between 1806 and 1835. Bushiness changed and expanded so that in the 1840’s and 1850’s the firm was engaged in cotton spinning and doubling, candlewick manufacturing and bleaching. A Mr Barnes, who owned several local collieries and lived in the building which is now Ashgate Hospice, also owned the mill for a short period before its purchase by the Robinsons in 1896. 
The mill closed in 2003 and part of the building is now Grade II listed. It is vacant following closure of manufacturing business. The site has site mostly been cleared.
The census lists Charles Marsden's occupation, as well as that of Eliza Marsden (daughter? sister? niece?) as "Pot. M." Charles Marsden was a potter.

It was a large household: Charles (35) and his wife Mary (35), their children John (13), Ellen (11), Hannah (10), Charles (8), and Mary (5 or 6). Then the ages jump, so the next two girls listed may be daughters, but could also be sister or nieces, Sarah Marsden (11) and Eliza Marsden (15). Next is Joseph Hancock (70), coachman. I believe this is Mary's father, but I cannot yet state that for a fact. The next residents of the household were Ruth Longson (23 or 25), and Charles (10), Robert (7) and Herbert Longson (1). What a busy household! Fourteen people!
The next household listed on the census was the James and Ann Wheatcroft family. The story of that family is an interesting part of the history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in England. Here is Ardis Parshall's story about them, Sarah Wheatcroft: Service for the Dead.
The final columns on the 1841 census mention birthplace, whether in the county or not, or in Scotland, Ireland or Wales. Most of the members of the household were born in the county of Derbyshire, but the mother, Mary Marsden was born in a different county, her father Joseph was listed as being born in Ireland, and Robert and Herbert Longson were born in a different county.

That is a review of the basic information about the family in this census. If you were to read through the entire census for the area you would find out all sorts of things about the community where they lived, but I will not get into that here.

Questions raised by this census:
  • Is Joseph Hancock Mary's father? (Yes.)
  • Who are Eliza and Sarah Marsden?
  • Who are the Longsons? Why were they part of the household?
  • What kind of house did they live in? Does their house still exist? How would I find the location on a map?
  • What kind of pottery did Charles Marsden make? How extensive was the pottery industry in Derbyshire? Why was a potter living at Walton Mill, which was a cotton mill?
  • What were their living conditions like with fourteen people in one household? Sanitation? Sleeping arrangements? Food preparation and storage?
When this census was taken, Mary had already been a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for a year, and her husband was baptized about the time this census was taken. More about those exciting times later!

Coming next: The Marsdens in the 1851 Census

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Marsden Family: Ancestry, Part 1

Compiling the records of the Marsden family on Ancestry is an ongoing effort. Ancestry includes a series of "hints" of historical and other information that should be added to each person's entry. I try not to include resources without some confirmation that the record is actually for the person in question and is accurate, or agrees with other sources on the family.

Here is my current family tree on the Marsdens. As you can see, I have not traced the family tree past Charles and Mary Ann Hancock Marsden.

The little leaf icons show that there are hints for Charles Marsden and all of the grandparents in the family.

Here is Charles Marsden's current page in the family tree:

I've already attached a series of hints, including connections to ten other family trees. I always connect to other family trees, if their information looks even generally reliable, so that I get notifications if they add other resources, and so they get notifications when I add new resources. I just looked through all the family trees that I've linked to Charles Marsden, and I don't recognize the names of any of the tree owners. Just one of the tree is thoroughly sourced, but that tree has also added a fictitious wife and child to Charles Marsden. That means that I shouldn't rely on any of these family trees and any work I do on this family will need to be based on my own research.

Here are the sources I have in Ancestry on Charles Marsden. First, his U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900. This is a database compiled by Ancestry from Family Search and other sources, and should not be taken as a definitive source. It could be accurate and based on family records, but it could include mistakes. This record shows the following information:
U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900
Name:     Charles Marsden
Gender:     Male
Birth Place:     En[gland]
Birth Year:     1804
Spouse Name:     Mary Ann Hancock
Spouse Birth Place:     En[gland]
Spouse Birth Year:     1803
Marriage Year:     1826
Marriage State:     En[gland]
Number Pages:     1
The citation is given in Ancestry as follows:
Yates Publishing. U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2004.
The next record is from the England & Wales Free BMD records. From 1837 to 1915, local English and Welsh government registries made a quarterly report to the General Register Office in London about all the births, marriages and deaths occurring the preceding quarter. The events are listed by quarter, which is why Charles Marsden's death is listed as "Jul-Aug-Sep 1854."
England & Wales, FreeBMD Death Index: 1837-1915
Name:     Charles Marsden
Date of Registration:     Jul-Aug-Sep 1854
Registration district:     Chesterfield
Inferred County:     Derbyshire
Volume:     7b
Page:     311
Here is an image of the index showing Charles Marsden's death. I have changed the contrast so it is more readable. Charles is on the fourth line.

Here is his entry.

The entry states that he died in Chesterfield and that the information is in book 7b, page 311. I have not been able to figure out how to access that information.

Here is the citation information for this record:
FreeBMD. England & Wales, FreeBMD Death Index: 1837-1915 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2006. Original data: General Register Office. England and Wales Civil Registration Indexes. London, England: General Register Office.
You don't have to have Ancestry to access this index. It is also available at the website FreeBMD.

Charles Marsden shows up in two English census records. Here are both of them with complete citations. The citations as I have included them here contain more information than would need to be listed in a book or article.

Census Returns of England and Wales, 1841. Kew, Surrey, England: The National Archives of the UK (TNA): Public Record Office (PRO), 1841. 1841 England Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc, 2010. Class: HO107; Piece: 194; Book: 10; Civil Parish: Chesterfield; County: Derbyshire; Enumeration District: 18; ; Page: 1; Line: 1; GSU roll: 241296.
Census Returns of England and Wales, 1851. Kew, Surrey, England: The National Archives of the UK (TNA): Public Record Office (PRO), 1851. 1851 England Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2005. Class: HO107; Piece: 2147; Folio: 596; Page: 10; GSU roll: 87779-87780.
The Marsdens in the 1851 census, page 11. (Lucy and Eliza Ann Marsden.)

And that is enough information for one post. I will look at each of these census pages individually in subsequent posts, and continue with the other resources from Ancestry after that.

To be continued...