Monday, July 15, 2013

Mystery Monday: A Stumble in the Search for Mary Ann

Mystery Monday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers encouraging bloggers to share mystery ancestors or mystery records – anything which is currently unsolved.  With any luck fellow genealogy bloggers will lend their eyes to what has been found so far and possibly help solve the mystery.


My study of the 1810 Rockingham County, Virginia census thrilled me with the possibility of finally discovering the parents of Mary Ann Armentrout, second wife of my 3G grandfather Fielding Jollett.  I had hoped the 1820 census would add weight to my theory.  However, it does nothing for it although it doesn’t hurt either.

1820 Rockingham County, VA Census with John Armentrout































Why?  Because somebody had the bright idea to alphabetize the census rather than list residents geographically which would have preserved the neighbor connection that is so useful in finding relatives, particularly women whose names just disappeared upon marriage.

But on the plus side, John is still there (with his last name spelled “Armentrought”), with a household that resembles the one from 1810, only 10 years older.


1810
1820
Males under 10
-
1 – possibly John Jr. (1816)
Males 10 - 16
-
-
Males 16 - 18
-
-
Males 16 - 26
-
-
Males 26 - 45
-
-
Males over 45
1 – John Armentrout
1 – John Armentrout
Females under 10
1 – possibly Linda (1805)
-
Females 10 - 16
1 – possibly Elizabeth (1798)
1 – possibly Linda (1805)
Females 16 - 26
1 – possibly Maria (1795)
2 – possibly Elizabeth (1798)
and possibly Maria (1795)
Females 26 - 45
-
-
Females over 45
1 – Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout
1 – Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout

The 1830 census shows no John Armentrout in Rockingham County.  It’s possible he had moved to a different county, he was living in someone else’s household - maybe one of his children’s, or he had died.  At any rate, in 1837, Mary Ann Armentrout and Fielding Jollett sold some land she had inherited from her late father John.

Feeling that my leads had dried up, I recalled a recent blogpost by Jacqi Stevens at A Family Tapestry.  In her series on using social media in genealogy, she reminded me that even the old stand-bys like Rootsweb and Genforum are a form of social media, albeit “low-tech.”  So off to Genforum and Rootsweb I went in search of surname forums and information on the Lingles, my most likely candidate for a mother for Mary Ann. 

Fortunately there had been an inquiry related to Jacob Lingle, Elizabeth’s father.  UNfortunately, the thread was old – like 2001 old.  Still I dashed off an email to 2 of the respondents on the thread.  The AOL email bounced back.  The email to the Juno account is still out there.  Juno!!  Juno??  Who uses that anymore?  Is it even still around?  Hmm – that might come back too.

But in that dusty thread was a shiny nugget.  The original poster said her ancestor was Barbara Snyder, daughter of Martin Snyder/Schneider and Anna Maria LINGLE.  This is the same couple that served as sponsors at the baptism of Maria Armentrout, the one I HOPE was later known as Mary Ann.  The Schneiders were not doing just a neighborly favor for John and Elizabeth Armentrout; there was a family bond.

I admit it’s just another little tidbit that amounts to nothing in the quest to pin down Mary Ann’s parents.  Maybe it’s time I try to revive that Lingle surname forum with a little inquiry of my own.



© 2014, Wendy Mathias.  All rights reserved.

13 comments:

  1. I have an old AOL email that I keep active just for that exact reason. I had posted things back in 2006 and I hope someone will answer my questions.

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    1. That's encouraging to know. So far, however, Juno has not responded but I'm patient.

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  2. My fingers are crossed for Juno. :)

    Happy Monday!

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  3. How exciting to hear this, Wendy!

    Knowing the way these old forums work, I'd suggest also posting your own reply there. The forums conceal your email address, but will notify you by email whenever someone responds to your thread (and include a hyperlink back to that specific thread).

    Better yet, if you post your own reply on the forums, consider including a link back to this article. I do for my pertinent blog posts. You will see in your traffic when someone heads your way from a forum.

    Another thought might be to also take a look at--and perhaps consider posting your own query at--the county sites on those forums. I've had better luck in that manner--say, Rockingham County, Virginia--especially if you delve into common surnames like Snyder.

    I always see posts on genealogy forums as long term investments. You never know when someone will find your post (and vice versa, when you will try to respond to someone else's query) and respond. I have posts there from the late 1990s, and still get notifications that someone just responded.

    Thanks for the mention, Wendy, and glad it prompted you to explore this avenue. This story isn't over yet!

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    1. Good point about the county forum. A Snyder or Lingle descendant might be out there just waiting for me.

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  4. Fascinating detective work Wendy! And Juno? I haven't heard of that in years.

    Forums are great tools. I've had people respond to one of my forum requests much later too.

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    1. That's encouraging to hear. But I still haven't heard from the Juno guy.

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    2. Well that stinks! But don't give up. Maybe he just hasn't checked his email yet. =)

      I want to let you know that your blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at http://janasgenealogyandfamilyhistory.blogspot.com/2013/07/follow-friday-fab-finds-for-july-19-2013.html

      Have a great weekend!

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  5. I visited Rootsweb today too - hoping to catch some cousins. (Jacqi's nudges seem to be having an effect!) Most of the queries for the ancestors I am interested in were from 1999-2001! But I posted non the less - on county boards. And now I'll take Jacqi's additional advice and reply to my query.

    I hope you get some responses, Wendy!

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    1. I DID! Within the hour!

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    2. Yay! Good for you! Nothing for me so far. :(

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  6. Wow girl, that is just something. I am so excited that you will find our 3G grandmother's family. I know you will succeed!

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