Monday, September 29, 2014

A Daughter of the American Revolution

Okay, I will admit it. I am just too lazy to apply to the DAR.

That said, when I started on this genealogical journey. I don't think I gave a thought to the history of my ancestors. I know it never occurred to me that I would have ancestors who fought in the American Revolution.

Over the years, this is a list of my relatives who I have found who have applications among the DAR.

Corliss Hinds Conneticut
David Bent Conneticut
Evans Long Virginia
Ripley Copeland NC/SC

And those who have American Rev records or were in the militia.
Jesse Baker SC
Dauswell Rogers VA
Benjamin Merrill NC
Several of the Brunsons, though I don't know if they are my direct ancestor, and there remains for me the question of Elijah Owens as a soldier.

I also have probable loyalists and/or Tories
Jacob Pyburn VA
William Riddle VA

My Traherns were never in the American Revolution, War of 1812 or the Civil War, whereas my Pyburn's participated in both the War of 1812 and the Civil War. Over 25 percent of the Brunson and Franklin kinfolk did not return from the Civil War, though I find no records that they fought in the 1812. The McCurdy's fought in the War of 1812, the Florida Indian Wars and the Civil War. And there are many families I just can't find enough data on (all mainly from South Carolina) to determine if they participated or not.

The short story, most of my family history is deeply routed in the history of America. Not that that isn't true for many of us, it was just something I never quite considered.

Autosomal DNA and sharing

In the day and age of identity theft, many find the prospect of sharing their genomes to be frightening. Although I am not sure of the exact nature of their fears, as a genealogist it is frustrating when your second cousin is listed as an anonymous tester and doesn't respond to your contact.

The fear of being able to ascertain medical information from the matches is possible, however, to do so, someone would first have to know exactly where they match, search for the snp's relevant to medical information AND know their exact location on each chromosome, and then cross reference that to a match! Do you have any idea how labor intensive that is? Not to say there isn't some folks who would do that, but really, who wants to spend hours on that? The knowledge that would take on DNA is far above the average user.

I am a self proclaimed genealogy addict. I have tracked down relatives that are living and made contact by telephone, facebook and email. My expectation is never to necessarily forge a personal relationship, or to intrude, but to find information, verify what I have, and most of all, to ensure accuracy in my research. I don't expect most of the people I contact to necessarily be interested, or share my passion for family research. I only hope that they are willing to share their knowledge.

Testing my parents and myself was another step for me in my research. It was a way for me to hopefully breakdown some brick walls, and possibly find my half Uncles. It has been gratifying to confirm by DNA the accuracy of my research with DNA matches. To know that yes, I got it right. So when I see a match, and I reach out to them, my purpose is no different. I just want to figure out the connections. To see which 4th great grandparent this may connect to.

Sometimes we find however, what researchers call a NPE, a non parental event. Meaning that the person you thought was the father or mother, isn't. Is that disappointing, yes, but it is a fact that we as genealogists must face. Sometimes we find information that we don't want to find. Sometimes we find a relative no one knew about with DNA. But in genealogy, sometimes we find out that our great grandfather was in prison for murder. It may be easier to put our head in the sand and ignore it, but the truth is, we are all better for knowing.

I understand that there are many who have tested with 23andme or who have uploaded to gedmatch, who really aren't into genealogy. Maybe they are adopted. Maybe they are curious. That's okay. As someone who may contact them, it would be my wish that they be open to sharing what they do know. As someone who is searching for an adoptee, I truly hope that I can assist those adoptees that I match with. There is nothing more than I would like to do than to help them find some of their roots.

Now that I have been using DNA matches for a few months, I don't anxiously go to every match. Those 10 cM matches are just too hard to find unless they already match a known relative, or have a surname in common. I prefer to focus on the matches with more DNA. The chances are I may find something that way. What I have learned is more often than not, I will contact a match, and we will look at each other's trees, and nothing pops out. We may share a 74 cM match, but we can't find it. It's so frustrating.

Maybe that's why people don't share. I really don't know. Even on gedmatch, people post their genome, but leave no contact info. It makes you wonder why they bothered to put their data on there at all. I mean, yeah, we may be 4th cousins, but since I can't contact you, I will never know how. Maybe people are afraid that we will learn to much about them, however, the truth is, like most genealogists, I am more interested in your distant relative, than you. I want to connect the dots, figure out that great great grandmother's maiden name, or who that great great great Aunt married. It isn't personal, and it may seem selfish, but to be honest, the hundreds of hours I have spent researching is something that you may not understand. I, like so many others, willingly share all the fruits of those labors with anyone who asks. The information I ferret out, isn't mine alone, it is ours. It belongs to all who are my family, whether they are my first cousin, or my sixth cousin.

When I started genealogy, I never wanted a straight lineal family tree. I wanted a giant Redwood of a tree, with as many leaves and branches as I could possibly find. DNA matches, are such a great advantage to this.

So if you have tested, or are considering testing, be more open to the idea of sharing. You don't necessarily have to do anything other than share, and maybe tell the match your grandparents and where they lived. Because if they are any good at genealogy, your grandparents, as long as they were born before 1940 is all the information they will need.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Barnes family

For over twenty years, my Aunt Leahmanda and Aunt Patt were stuck on their great grandfather, John Lunsford Barnes. Who were his parents? They knew about two sisters, Harriet and Fanny, and a brother Marshall. As luck would have it, whichever ancestor who chose me to be their genealogical angel, I found John Lunsford's family about 11 years ago, while looking for the wrong thing in the right place.

John Lunsford Barnes was the second son of John W. Sanders Barnes and his wife Sarah "Sally" Owens. The couple were married in Russell County, Alabama in 1841. They were members of a baptist church there, and thanks to her father, Sally owned land and slaves. Sally was a daughter of John J. Owens and Lucinda Long. Her father had purchased land in Russell County after the Cherokee lottery. John J. Owens was a son of Elijah Owens and his wife Nancy Ann Howard, while Lucinda Long was the daughter of Evans Long and Lucy Apperson.

We know nothing of John Sanders Barnes, except according to census records he was born in 1813 or 1814 in North Carolina. In 1850 he has a woman old enough to be his mother, Frances Smith, born about 1785 in Virginia. Also in his home that year, and in 1860 is a Jane Horton, born 1810 in North Carolina. Since the death of Frances Smith is recorded in the family bible, I am sure she was a relative, and given her age, I strongly suspect she is in fact his mother.

The question then must arise is Frances Smith, who likely married a Smith after her Barnes husband died, connected in any way to Abel Smith who resides in Russell County, or his wife Katherine Barnes. I have found no clues to Frances or Jane. There are no probate records for either in the Russell county records on familysearch. Nor is there a marriage record for any Barnes connected to the family.

I know from my father's DNA that his ydna Haplogroup is I1, which matches only two known Barnes lines of that type in the surname group (without the YDNA test though, I can't verify they are of the same line).  One I know comes from Virginia.

John Sanders Barnes and his wife Sally Owens children's name may or may not be a clue. The eldest child, a son named Robert Thomas Barnes has no known namesake to Sally's family. The next child was Margaret Elizabeth Barnes, followed by Sarah Lucinda Barnes, who was named for her mother and maternal grandmother. The next child was Mary Olivia "Allie" Barnes followed by Harriet Frances  Barnes (named after Frances Smith?), followed by Clara McGeehee Barnes (named after Sarah's sister), followed by John Lunsford Barnes (named after father/grandfather and maternal Uncle), followed by Marshall Johnson Wellborn Barnes (there is a man by this name in a neighboring county) and then lastly by Abbas Sanders Barnes.

The move to Pike county still is puzzling. Though I know some of her Owens relatives lived there, I can see no reason for the move other than the financial losses brought by the Civil War. The probate records for the estate of John Sanders Barnes show that his estate was insolvent. Within two years, Sarah Owens would marry John A. Smith from Georgia.

A family bible lists the births, deaths and marriages of this generation. The deaths of Lucinda Long Owens and Francis Smith are also recorded. After the death of Sarah Owens the bible went to one of her daughters, and the next two generations of handwriting come from them. The family resided in Pike County and attended baptist churches there, if the gravesites are an indication. When Crenshaw county was formed, we see the family residing there, and also later in Opps, in Covington County.

Robert Thomas Barnes married a virginian, Lina Virginia Bowman. The couple moved to Texas. They had two daughters, Grace and J I V Barnes, and one son Charlie Edward Barnes. They had no grandchildren.

Margaret Elizabeth Barnes married William Tompkins. They had one son who was briefly married to his first cousin Lula Benton. Thomas Tompkins disappears from records, and I have not been able to locate more information on him.

Sarah Lucinda Barnes married James Absalom "Ab" Benton. They had several children who were raised in Pike County.

Mary Olivia "Allie" Barnes married Thomas Jefferson Nicholson. They had a large family in Pike County, Alabama. I have corresponded with some of their descendants.

Harriet Frances "Fannie" Barnes married  John Wesley Colquit and had a large family. The Colquit family lived in Crenshaw County, Alabama where many of their descendants still reside.

Clara McGeehee Barnes married John Yarborough with whom she had no children and then Hugh Harris Smith, her stepbrother. They had four children and resided in Crenshaw County, Alabama.

John Lunsford Barnes married Epsy Eiland with whom he had one child. After Epsy's death he married Margaret Eleanor Baker and had a large family. In 1910 the family moved from Crenshaw, Alabama to Baker in Okaloosa County, Florida. This is my direct line.

Marshall Johnson Welborn Barnes married Jesse D. Bricken of Pike County, Alabama and had several children. The youngest son, an infant when his wife died, was raised by his Uncle and is often found with the last name Bricken. After his wife's death he remarried Frances Viola Bush with whom he had one child. Marshall and many of his children are buried in Mobile, Alabama.

The only child who died as an infant that is recorded in the bible is Abbas Sanders Barnes.

Thomas Simpson Woodward

Before I knew that he was my first cousin 6 times removed, I had read and relished the "Woodward's Reminiscences of the Creek or Muscogee Indians" available here. His letters, recollections and information on his time among the Creek Indians are invaluable to many who research the lower creek indians. Since I research the Tensaw area, I have often referred to his writings.

Yet Thomas Simpson Woodward is my relative. His grandfather was Nehemiah Howard and his grandmother was Edith Ede Smith, the parents of my 5th great grandmother, Nancy Ann Howard, the wife of Elijah Owens. My 4th great grandfather John J. Owens speculated heavily on the land that opened up with the Cherokee land lotteries, and owned some of the first land in Russell County, where the family soon settled. Nancy Ann Howard Owens is buried there.

Some of the family remained in Columbus, Georgia, and some moved to Dallas County, Alabama where Thomas Simpson Woodward married in 1820 Sarah Ann Dubose, the mother of his three eldest children. By the late 1830's he had started a reputed relationship with Mary, a slave, and alleged mother of three children.

Thomas Woodward wrote of his relatives very little, yet it is the only insight into the family of which I also belong that exists. His cousin Clarissa Owens married James William Boykin, the ambassador of Indian Affairs for Georgia, but I don't recall any mention of him  in his letters. What he does write about was his grandfather's prejudice against his father, Thomas Woodward for being a descendant of Indians.

The Howards were among the earliest settlers in Georgia, prominent men, they owned plantations and slaves. Thomas was raised by an Aunt when his mother passed away, and mention of his attempts to obtain  his inheritance are in his correspondence, a feat I don't think he ever accomplished.

His correspondence which covers a wonderful period in the history of Alabama was never meant to be published, but thankfully someone saw the value and did. It is from his words, and the words of men like George Strother Gaines, Benjamin Hawkins, and Albert Pickett that we have first hand accounts of an important part of the history of Alabama.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

An open letter to my Uncle

Dear Uncle,
You do not know me. You may not even know that I am your niece. My grandmother died with you as her secret, and only an accidental slip by  her sister led me to knowing you existed, though I always had a suspicion.

You are 66 years old. You were born sometime between February and September in 1948, and given the other facts I know, I suspect you were born July-August of 1948. Given that there was a hospital a few miles from where my grandmother was living at 2310 Alma Street in San Pedro, California, you were probably born at the San Pedro hospital in Los Angeles County, California.

You may not even know you are adopted. I know you were raised Catholic, that whether the adoption was private, or through the Catholic Charities, my grandmother had to agree that you would be raised Catholic.

Your birth mother was Dolores Barbara Hinds, born March 10, 1927 in Syracuse, New York. She was petite with blond hair and blue eyes. She was artistic, and rather fragile. She was prone to what was then called "nervous breakdowns." She worked for your father for a while, though I am not sure how long, I know she didn't graduate high school but went to work during World War 2. From our conversations, I assumed it was with the law firm your father belonged to. She was always proud of that career.  She died in 2000.

Your birth father was Saul Kauffman born in 1893 and died in 1975. He spent his life in Syracuse, New York, where he graduated from Syracuse University and became a lawyer. His obituary lists no other children, only his wife and some of his siblings. He was involved in the Jewish community from the newspaper articles I found and he was the child of Russian emigrants. He was 55 when you were born, while your mother was only 21. He was married, and he did pay for her trip to California to have you.

You had two half brothers who died before they were forty, and a half sister who is my mother. You have four nephews and two living nieces, and even a few grand nieces and a grand nephew.

Before I knew about you I was looking for my mother's paternal half brother, now I search for you as well. I realize you are a man full grown, with a lifetime belonging to another family. You may not want to be found, and that I can understand. For myself, I just want to know where your are. Did you have a family? Do I have other cousins? What became of you?

Finding an adoptee from 1948 will be hard, when I don't know the exact date you were born. An average of 3500 males were born in Los Angeles county each month from February to September, so  I can only hope that someday you find this, and you ask yourself if this could be me? I have had my mother's DNA tested, for genealogical purposes, but also in the hope that by some miracle, you or a child tests and she matches. To make it easier, I placed her on gedmatch a free service that has matches from more than one company.

Until then, I will continue to search, and hope that eventually I will find you.

Your Niece,

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Hardy Family- Part 4 Shep Jr and his family

William Sheppard Hardy Jr married Talula Johnson. According to my great grandmother, Talula was a "Diamond/Johnson bastard baby." My Aunts took it that she didn't care for her too much. However, I don't quite understand the hatred. Talula died in 1910 when my great grandmother was 15 years old. And while the family may have visited, the Hardy family lived in Baldwin County, Alabama, and she lived in Jay.

Before I discuss the family, I want to give a bit of information on Talula. Talula was born in 1862 to William Washington Johnson. We know that William's parents were William Burton Johnson and Elizabeth Parker from well documented sources. William is always living with his mother, but his wives or relationships leave me scratching my head. In 1850 he is living with a Nancy who has children Sarah, James and Lewis Johnson in Conecuh County. (there is a suggestion that these are mulatto children, but in this census they are white). In 1860 he is living with Elizabeth, and a daughter Elizabeth age 3, also in Conecuh County. In 1870 we find him with Nancy, and children Elizabeth age 11 and Talula age 7. In 1880, he is with a Mary and a son Willie S age 5.

I know that Mary Johnson, William W. Johnson's sister married John Diamond. At her death, John married her sister Matilda. We know that John Diamond is related to the Conecuh county Diamonds even if we aren't sure how. The question then remains, since the Nancy in 1850 is different in age than the Elizabeth in 1860, whose different in age then the Nancy in 1870, who is Talula's mother, and is she also a Diamond? Given their location, I can't rule out that the only connection to the Diamond family is the marriage to John Diamond.

William Sheppard Hardy Jr worked in the logging business. I have yet to find his death date, but his granddaughter told me he didn't die in Alabama or Florida, but in Mississippi, presumably near where all the rest of the family was living and working. When Talula died, Shep Jr married Mary Grice, who according to the granddaughter, didn't treat the younger kids well at all. Mary lived in and died in Brewton, Alabama where she is buried. The couple had no living children.

The children of William Sheppard Hardy Jr and Talula Johnson are

Houston Benjamin Hardy who married a Kinslett and then Lois Lucy Paul.
Houston had a daughter Leila by his first wife, and by his second wife he had Shepard Clyde Hardy, Eldred Morgan Hardy, Mary Hardy, Homer Hardy, and Barbara Tellura Hardy.

One of Houston's granddaughters, Dorothy Faye Hardy is a lovely lady who I spoke with on the phone. I found out that the family did keep in touch back in the 1940's.

Sarah Mattie Hardy who married Bolden Green Taylor. The family lived near Bayminette, Alabama where they are buried. The children of Sarah Mattie and Bolden are Floyd G Taylor, Maurice Jordan Taylor, Thomas T Taylor, Vella Lee "Babe" Taylor, Marie Taylor, Hazel Taylor, Eunice Alice Taylor, Annette Taylor, Bolden Taylor Jr, and Harris Eugene Taylor.

After trial and error, I have been able to make contact with one of Sarah's granddaughters. One of my grandpa's cousins remembered several of the girls, but they lost contact in the 1950's or 1960's.

Lela F. Viola Hardy married Alma Eldridge Chute. The family lived in Mississippi before moving to Georgia. Lela and Alma Chute had the following children Joseph Herman Chute, Sadie Eunice Chute, Vernon James Chute, William Orrin Chute, Gayle Marie Chute, and Woodrow Chute.

I have been able to make contact with a grandchild of Lela Hardy.

Robert Morgan Hardy is my great grandfather. He married Lula Bell Pyburn and had four children, Virgina Evelyne Hardy, Dorothy Gene Hardy, Milton Oliver Hardy and Robert Burns Hardy. Robert Burns Hardy was killed when his ship was bombed during World War 2. His brother Milton, a marine, had just left the ship and watched it happen. Milton and Robert Hardy each had one daughter, and I have been in contact with each. Dorothy Hardy is still living, and I am in contact with her children and grandchildren. Virginia Hardy had 6 children, 3 of them are still living.

Jodie Price Hardy married Aldine Gore. The family moved from Mississippi to Georgia. I was contacted by her grandchildren several years ago. Jodie and Aldine's children are Mildred Ethel Gore, Willie Morgan Gore, Maude Elaine Gore, Verna Aldine Gore, and Cecil Kade Gore.

Willie "Burnzy" Hardy married Vera Agnes Harvison. Like his father he was involved in the logging industry in Mississippi and Alabama. His children were Myrtle Louise Hardy, Myrtis Voncille Hardy, William Sheppard Hardy and Bernice Hardy. I have been in contact with one of his grandchildren.

Iva Lee Hardy was married more than once, but I only know the name of one, Sidney Lamar Summer Sr. I know that they divorced, and that they had two sons, Sidney Lamar Summer Jr, who has one daughter, and Albion Fernando Summer Sr, whose only son died. Albion Fernando Summer Sr, better known as A.F. Summers was the Attorney General for Mississippi during the Civil rights movement. He is the most well known of the family. I asked an attorney friend if he could tell  me which side he defended during the Civil Rights movement, and all he could say is "he was a good guy", meaning he was for Civil Rights.

I have been in contact with the granddaughter of Iva Lee Hardy.

Adren Fleming Hardy, sometimes spelled Adrian died in World War 1 in the trenches in France.

Emma Mable Hardy married Melvin West and lived her adult life in Mississippi. I know that my grandmother and her parents visited annually, because for the last few years, I was fortunate enough to have spoken with her daughter before her death, Iva Gray. She was a wonderful lady. The children of Emma Mable and Melvin were Melvin West Jr, Iva Gray West, Peggy West, and Adrian Lamar West.

As far as I know, a few years ago there were 4 or 5 of the cousins (my grandmother's generation) left, but I believe now, we have only my Aunt Dot, and maybe her cousin Annette. I am so grateful that I took the time to call and speak to as many of these ladies (for that's what they were) before they died.

The Hardy family part 3 -my family line

Shep Hardy Sr's family was previously listed, but now I want to go into a bit more detail on his children.

Harriet Elizabeth Hardy married Edward "Wash" Campbell. Wash was a son of Neil Campbell and Sarah Bowen, and thus Wash is a first cousin to Jane Bowen, the wife of John Wesley Hardin. At one time we thought that Nancy Bowen, the grandmother of Wash was a McCurdy because she is living with Thomas Sunday and Anna McCurdy his wife, and it may still be true, but now we know that Anna is the daughter of Martha "Mattie"Bowen, and that Nancy's husband was most likely her Uncle.

Harriet and Wash Campbell had the following children
Sarah Campbell
Nicey Campbell
Neill Campbell
Edward Charles Campbell
Leon Sheppard Campbell
Caroline Campbell
Bert Tram Campbell
Lawrence Campbell
Hattie Viola Campbell

Hattie Viola Campbell was the third wife of my great great grandfather Archie Bald Pyburn, and had three children, Eulene, Carlton and Claire Ruth Pyburn. As a child I remember going to see Aunt Eulene, who was not just my father's half great Aunt but also a cousin. Dad said that Carlton lived just around the corner and we used to see them too, though I don't remember that.

James T. Hardy married Roseada Little and had one son, Leander Hardy. The family lived in Baldwin county, Alabama.

Robert Henry Hardy married Roseanna Pierce. The family moved from Baldwin County, Alabama to Muscogee, Florida. Their children were Ella Hardy, William Shepard "Will" Hardy, Samuel Tilton Hardy, Sarah Elizabeth "Lizzie" Hardy, Nancy Jane Hardy, Virginia "Jennie" Hardy, and Lula Hardy. One of Robert Henry Hardy's granddaughters is among my correspondents.

William Sheppard Hardy Jr I will discuss separately.

Nancy Jane Hardy married John Richard "Dick" Boyington. The family resided in Baldwin County, Alabama. Their children were Cleyton Sheppard Boyington, Johnny Everett "Bye" Boyington, Herbert Hubbard Boyington, Lillie V. "Pat" Boyington, Bamma Boyington, Louis Alto Boyington, Sally Boyington, Nancy Boyington, and Doyle Boyington.

Laura Texana "Ada" Hardy married Christopher Columbus Collins. Their children were James Collins, Mamie Collins, Mary Jane Collins, Emily Margaret Collins, William Edward/Edwin Collins, Eli Augustus Collins, Flora Katherine Collins, Laura Helen Collins, Christopher Columbus Collins, Thomas Collins, Otto Tobias Collins, Sarah Collins and Ella Therese Collins.

Ebenezer "Eb" Hardy married Maggie Hayes but had no children.

Ella Ida Hardy married Phillip Arch Hinote. They resided in Baldwin County, Alabama and had the following children, Kassie McElveries Hinote, Otis Hinote, Gladys Hinote, Robert Mayo Hinote, Laskey A Hinote, Mattie Lee Hinote, Sally Elizabeth Hinote, Alice Hinote, Leskie Hinote, Ada Esther Hinote, and Woodrow Miley "Dub" Hinote.

The Hardy Family part 2- Outlaw connections

One of the things about my particular Hardy family is the name Shephard Hardy. It is a family name. And in the south, until I find a family (with connections to Coffee/Covington) with that name, everyone with the name Shephard Hardy is a relation, with one major assumption that I will get to shortly.

The Hardy family has a tradition in logging. The family land, 320 acres bought by William Shephard Hardy Sr., known as "Shep", and that of his brother and brothers in law are all in the areas surrounding Munson in Santa Rosa County. The area was heavily logged in the 19th century, so much so that, by 1880, the industry had died. I mention this because it explains the paths the family takes.

I descend from Shep Hardy but I have friends in my genealogy circles who descend from some of his siblings. While I am trying to stick to this family, I will mention other family connections as they pop up that tie into my panhandle lines.

Shep Hardy married Sarah "Sally" Nelson, presumably the daughter of Leonard Nelson and his wife Luvena, (the only Sarah Nelson her age in the area is in this household in 1850). His Civil War registration states he was born in Coffee County, Alabama, he was 27 years old, married and a laborer in Warrington District. He enlisted in Co C., Walker's Regiment (Morton Confederates or the 5th Confederate Infantry) in Montgomery, Alabama in September of 1861. His record, which isn't found in Alabama, but under the Co H 40th Tennessee (due to transfer of the unit) shows that as his wife said, he was taken prisoner during the war. His brother, Robert Hardy, belonged to the same regiment, and was also a prisoner on Island 10 (taken April of 1862). Unfortunately for Sarah, her pension was denied.

Shep Hardy went into business with John Wesley Hardin, the outlaw in Alabama just prior to his capture. Shep was one of the men with him when he was captured in fact. From John Wesley's own book, we have the following about the partnership "Soon afterwards I concluded to go into the logging business and formed a partnership with a man named Shep Hardie, who was an experienced logger. We went west about sixty miles to the Stick River and began, doing well". (Hardin, John Wesley, "The Life of John Wesley Hardin" p 113, Smith and More, 1896, found here .) The place he was talking about was Pollard, Alabama (misspelled as Polland in the book), and the river he is referring to was the Styx River and is likely near the Holmans Precinct where we find Shep Hardy in 1880. Shep Hardy Senior died in March 9, 1889 when he was hit by a train. His widow Sarah died in 1926.

Shep Hardy and his wife Sarah had the following children
Harriet Elizabeth Hardy born 1858
James T. Hardy born 1859
Robert Henry Hardy born 1861
William Shephard Hardy Jr born 1861
Nancy Jane Hardy born 1868
Laura Texana Hardy born 1870
Araguefela Hardy born 1872
Ebenezar "Eb" Hardy born 1877
Ella Ida Hardy born 1879

Rebecca E. Hardy born in 1838 was the eldest daughter of Gardner and Harriet. She married James Mathew Foster, a son of Samuel Foster and his wife Nancy Lowe. The family of Rebecca Hardy and James Foster was
James  Foster Jr born 1857
Mary Rebecca Foster born 1858
Martha Foster born 1862
Samuel Foster born 1864
Mary Foster born 1868
Missouri Foster born 1872
Milton Foster born 1873
William Ephraim Foster born 1878
John Foster born 1881

Harriet Hardy born in 1839/1840 married James "Jim" McCraney (or McCranie). Unlike Rebecca who remained in Santa Rosa, the McCraney family is found near Shep Hardy in 1880 in Baldwin County, Alabama, indicating that they were most likely also involved in the logging industry.
Harriet Hardy and James McCraney had the following children
Margaret McCraney born 1866
Isabelle "Belle" McCraney born 1868
Ellen McCraney born 1869
Emma McCraney born 1872
Alexander William "Eleck" McCraney born 1874
Charles McCraney born 1875
James D McCraney born 1879
Aseneth McCraney born 1880
Harriet McCraney born 1885

Jane A. M. Hardy born in 1841 is found in 1870 with a son Aden Augustus Fleming born in 1861. I have yet to figure out which of the Fleming men is the father. In 1880, Jane, now the wife of James "Jim" Butcher is found near her brother Shep Hardy with Aden in her home. In fact, my ancestor William Shepard Hardy Jr named his youngest son after his cousin, Adrian Fleming Hardy. I have not found a marriage record for Jane or a death record, or any data about her after 1880.

Sarah Frances Hardy born 1844 married James Curtis in Escambia County, Florida in 1866. She had two children, Robert L. Curtis and Mary Harriet Curtis. In 1873 she married Charles Williams. The family lived north of Pensacola, near Gonzalez before moving into Pensacola, Florida. Sarah outlived her daughter and raised her grandchildren whose last name is Solderquist.

Robert H. Hardy, born in 1846 was the second son of Gardner Hardy and Harriet. He was captured with his brother during the Civil War, but reenlisted in the 6th Alabama Cavalry in 1863. In 1867 he is shown with a wife, and it is because of this, and the name of the child, that it is assumed this wife was Elizabeth "Lizzie" Fleming (a daughter of George Fleming and Nicy Pyburn). George Gardner Hardy was born to Lizzie in 1868, and a daughter, Lena in 1871. By 1880, Lizzie has apparently married a black man named Thornton Adams. In 1885 the children are listed as his wards. Because he's never with the family, I can't prove that he is the father. But given the name (George after his maternal grandfather and Gardner after his paternal grandfather), and the fact that Robert was married, I think this is a very likely family connection.

The second connection to Robert Hardy, is one of purely circumstantial evidence, and until we get a male ydna test done, yet unproven (his descendant has done one). A Robert H. Hardy was arrested and send to prison in 1898 for molestation of his daughter. His wife was Laura Olean Hawkins (who incidentally has a sister who is married into my Beck kinfolks), who had moved to Baldwin county, Alabama just prior to their marriage. Robert H Hardy and his sons were arrested for theft in Baldwin County, Alabama (miscellaneous records in probate files, he was filing a writ of habeus corpus). The children of Robert H. Hardy and his wife, Laura Olean Hawkins are
Willie H. Hardy born 1874
Shepard A. Hardy born 1877
James Oscar Hardy born 1880
Bama Agnes Della Hardy born 1882
Robert Hardy born 1885
Charles Austin Hardy born 1886
Albert E Hardy born 1887
Joseph Hardy born 1891.

The only thing we have found about Robert Hardy is the description of him in an article written by R. W. Brooks in October 1931 in the Atmore Advance, (article found here ) in which Bob Hardy was described as "one of the toughest characters I knew." Brooks went on to say that Bob was hung in Texas and gave an account of his "confession" to a murder, but the truth is, there is no record in the list (yes there is a list) of executions of a Bob Hardy in Texas or anywhere else. It appears that Bob Hardy (and  his sons if the newspaper accounts are true I found) was a bit shady. So shady that he hid from the census. But I am pretty confident that this Bob Hardy and mine are one and the same, especially given that he names his son Shepard Hardy.

Mary Hardy born in 1851, I can find no more on her.

Martha Hardy born in 1852 per burial (older per census). Martha had an illegitimate child, Eva M. Hardy who is found with Martha in 1870 (born in 1868). Martha goes on to marry Michael Welsh but has no more children. Martha was a nurse and is buried at St. Michael's Cemetery, Pensacola. Her daughter Eva married Louis Anderson.

Epharim H. Hardy born in 1852 is found with his mother in 1860. He may be living with his brother Robert in 1867, but after that, we see nothing on Ephaim (not even with a different surname) until 1880 when he has married Mary Brake. Like his sister, Rebecca, Ephraim remained in Santa Rosa county, while the rest of the family moved on to Escambia County, Florida, and some on to Baldwin County, Alabama. The children of Ephraim and Mary are
Mary Harriet Hardy born 1878
Robert Hasty Hardy born 1880
William Shephard Hardy born 1884
John Hardy born 1886
Alonzo "Lonnie" Hardy born 1890
Kizzie Hardy born 1891
Ephraim Hasty Hardy born 1896
Mallory Hardy born 1899
Dewey Hardy born 1901
Lewis Hardy born 1904
Mary May Hardy born 1904
Frank Hardy born 1905
James Jerome Hardy born 1907

The Hardy family Part 1- The mystery

When I started genealogy, my Aunt Leahmanda gave me a disc with the research on the family. Years prior, Leahmanda had taken the Barnes side, and my Aunt Patt had taken the Hardy side. So when I started on my father's family, I already had a wealth of information. Aunt Patt and Aunt Leahmanda visited old cemeteries, dug through paper records at the library, and spoke with family members. A lot of the information on the Hardy's came from their grandmother, Lula Bell "Mama" Hardy. As in previous posts, I will devote one post to each generation.

We start out with Gardner Hardy, previously mislabeled as George Hardy, an assumption based on the 1850 Santa Rosa census where the family is found as G. Hardy. I figured out his name was Gardner when I found a George Gardner Hardy, a grandson of George Fleming and his wife Nicey Pyburn. I did a google search, and found an interesting piece of information on Gardner Hardy found here. In 1843, Gardner Hardy was charged with assault with the intent to commit murder. In 1844, he failed to appear, this case is all I could find on the subject at this time.

It turns out that Gardner Hardy, born about 1811 was a resident of Dale County, Alabama. From the locations of the births of his children, we know that when he ran from Dale County, he briefly resided in Louisiana. The entire family then came to Santa Rosa County, Florida, where they are found in 1850.

Land records show that in December 1841, Gardner purchased land in Coffee County, Alabama totaling about 162 acres, or 4 quarter sections, 2 in township 5N range 21E (the NW 1/4 NE 1/4 and NE 1/4 NW 1/4 of section 5) and 2 in township 6N and range 21 E (SW 1/4 and NE 1/4 SE 1/4 of section 33). The plat map shows that the section 5 portion had the Yellow Water river and the Section 33 is just north of it, with the Pea river just to the East. Based on maps, it appears that Gardner and his family lived in about the center of Coffee county, just North East of Shiloh, and North West of Richburg.

The 1840 census shows Gardner age 20-29, a wife the same age, and a male and female both under 5. His nearest neighbors are include several Parrish families, John B. Calling or Callway, and Henry Nobles. The 1850 census in Santa Rosa County, Florida show Gardner Hardy as G. Hardy, and his wife Harriet, and children William, Rebecca, Harriet, Jane, Frances, Robert, and Martha. Frances age 6 was born in Louisiana (1844) while Robert age 3, was born in Florida. The family is living with what appears to be John S. King, but from land records is John F. King, and his wife, Margaret A, age 16. Gardner, Harriet and Margaret King are all born in Georgia, so it is possible that Margaret, is a sister to Gardner or Harriet.

Others on the page are Samuel Foster, Wilkins Neely, Madison Hall, and W.B. Guish. From land records, we know that Gardner and his family are living somewhere in Township 4 N, range 26 W. Later family member associations are strongly associated with this area, which includes Munson, Bear Lake and the Sweetwater River.

In 1860, we find Harriet Hardy in Santa Rosa County, Florida. In her home are Harriet, Jane A. M., Sarah F. (Frances), Robert, Martha, Mary and Ephraim. Neighbors are Benjamin Knotts, Jona Grantham, Jeremiah Covington, John Roberts, George Wathen or Wather, John Foster, Elizabeth Nelson and James Strength. Land records for John Roberts and her son William Shepard Hardy Sr are both found in township 4N range 27 W, about 10-15 miles west of the 1850 location.

In 1858, Gardner Hardy buys 320 acres of land in Covington County, Alabama which is the last record for him, however in 1851 he is the assignee of Elizabeth Hollingsworth, heir of William H. Esom for his military land warrant from the Florida Wars, for 160 acres in township 3s, range 26 W.
There is no 3S range 26W for Santa Rosa County, and the BLM site does not give one.

Since we have no clues on Gardner Hardy, or the surname of his wife Harriet, let's look at the other's who seem to be associated. Elizabeth Hollingsworth and John F. King.

There is an Elizabeth Hollingsworth in 1850 in Caddo, Louisiana, wife of James Hollingsworth who was born in 1809 in SC, her family was born in Alabama. There is also a deed from 1860 from a Henry Hinote to an Eliza J. Hollingsworth, in Macon, Bibb County, Georgia. Given that the sale was for a business, it would be that Elizabeth Hollingsworth, age 43 born in SC, wife of James Hollingsworth, merchant, in Santa Rosa County, Florida, is probably the same as the Elizabeth Hollingsworth that Gardner is assignee for. The question remains, is he a relative, or did he just purchase this land from her?

As for John F. King, as before stated he lived in Santa Rosa, was born 1828 in South Carolina per the record of 1850, had a wife Margaret and daughter Marianna. There is a genealogy for a John F King who was married to a Martha Covington online. The trick though is in 1850 there are two John F. Kings in the census. One born 1828, the other 1819. The second John F King was married to a Sarah in 1850 with daughter Elizabeth, in 1860 he is widowed, with a son John G King and a daughter Tempy Ann King living in the same area as the Hardy's and the other John F. King. Since both John F. King's are born in South Carolina, it doesn't appear to get any easier. And there are two  King's in Santa Rosa on the 1867 census, John F. King, the man discussed whose not the man the Hardy's lived with, and a Jones F King, single and over 21. Thus far I have found no other documentation of the mysterious John F or S King from 1850.

For the family of Gardner Hardy and his wife Harriet (born about 1823 in Georgia and apparently died 1860-1867 in Santa Rosa County, Florida) we have the following children
1. William Shepard Hardy Sr born in 1837 married Sarah "Sally Nelson
2. Rebecca E. Hardy born 1838 married James Mathew Foster
3. Harriet Hardy born 1839/40 married James "Jim" McCraney
4. Jane A. M. Hardy born 1841 married an unknown Fleming during Civil War and James Butcher.
5. Sarah Frances Hardy born 1846 married James Curtis and Charles Williams
6. Robert Hardy born 1847 presumed to have married Elizabeth "Lizzie" Fleming and Laura Olean Hawkins
7. Martha Hardy born 1848 married Michael Welsh
8. Mary Hardy born 1851.
9. Ephraim Hardy born 1852 married Mary Brake.

Though some researchers have rumors that Harriet was a Nelson, I have never been able to find any information confirming or not confirming that.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Not Choctaw Enough- Skepticism- Part 2

Recently, after someone contacted me as match. I posted in my facebook group that mom had three matches now with Choctaw descendants. The flurry of comments, some skeptical and negative pursued.

First, yes, you can't tell a tribe from DNA. I know this, but in the case of two of the matches, they are both grandchildren of Dawes enrollee's, whose tree only has in common with Mom that they are Choctaw. The other was a Choctaw from either Mississippi or Louisiana. All three are more than 50 percent Choctaw, so matching to them made my day.

Second, to the "oh yeah right", when I said that DNA didn't prove native ancestry, genealogy did. Well, I have a few things to say about that. Yes, genealogy does prove tribal ancestry, which is why it is the only way to enroll. And that is definitely not all I have to say on the subject.

First, as for genealogy and documentation. Something that some of the more "pure" of you want to scoff at. Since in genealogy we work backwards, let's just begin with that. My grandfather was raised by his grandmother, a Dawes enrollee. I spoke with both of her daughters before they died, and also communicate with his cousins. And I have even tracked down and spoke with descendants of my great great grandmother's siblings. No, that's not documentation, but the census and dawes enrollment are. So is the 1885 and 1896 annuity where I found her name, and her parents.

Then there is the 1856 annuity where I found the names on the Trahern side. And the court documents signed by my 4th great grandfather, James N. Trahern. And since those of you who are the most skeptical aren't from the Oklahoma Choctaws, I don't expect you to know much about the whose who of our tribe in Oklahoma, but there is the letter (thanks to Jeff Fortney) I have from Robert M. Jones on behalf of James N. Trahern about the land he got with his mother, Peggy Trahern in the supplement. In the same letter, Robert M. Jones states that James is his cousin and he is living with him.

Then there is the newspaper article that quotes Eliza Ann Flack stating her mother was a half breed and a niece of Pushmataha, and her father was Charles Juzan. Court of claims testimonies that state that from Okalahomma that his brother was Tappenahoma and he was a nephew of Pushmataha. Letters from the National Archives from Pierre Juzan on behalf of Tappenahoma where he (Tappenahoma) refers to Pushmataha as his Uncle, and where Pierre asks to accompany his Uncle. A claim from a descendant of Eliza Ann where she states Eliza's mother is Peggy Trahern.

Do you think it was an accident that Peggy and her sister Delilah were given land in the supplement of the Treaty of Dancing Creek? Or that in April 1831 that James N. Trahern, in the company of his maternal cousin, Joseph P Lancaster (Delilah's son), and George W. Trahern (his paternal cousin) were sent to the Choctaw Academy? There are only two families within the Choctaw nation, who were named Trahern. My family who came to Oklahoma in 1838, and their cousins, who remained in Mississippi until 1890.

Let's move on to the Riddle side of the family, and the documentation there. Aside from the 1856, 1885 and 1896 annuity rolls, there is the court of claim case which names all the heirs of William Riddle. The Choctaw mission records where John Riddle and his brother William Riddle were named as the nephews of Mushulatubbee. Prior to the marriage of some white men named Riddle, many decades later, there was only one Riddle family in the Choctaw nation.

I wouldn't expect those who aren't Oklahoma Choctaws to know that both Susan Riddle's brothers were prominent men in the nation. Or to know that her nephew Tandy Walker and her cousin Joseph Kincade both served as Chief, or that Peggy's son Pierre Juzan also served as Chief. Why would you?

If you descend from Mississippi Choctaws, your history forked from the Oklahoma Choctaws when they went west. While it may be true that the Mississippi Choctaws in their bands and communities held truer to the culture of the Choctaws, that doesn't make them more Choctaw. While it's true that the full bloods in Mississippi experienced hardships that those in Oklahoma did not, there is so much that the Oklahoma Choctaws suffered.

There probably isn't a descendant of a single Oklahoma Choctaw that I know of, who did not have someone die in the family on the way to Oklahoma. Whether it was during removal, or private emigration, every family lost someone. There is a reason my family has the first burials at Skullyville in 1834. When the Choctaws finally arrived to their new homes, small pox and other illness decimated the arrivals. There are families in which almost the entire family died.

So yes, it pisses me off that someone on their high horse, looks at me, an obviously white woman, and scoffs and wants to call me a wannabe and a pretender. My grandfather was not white. He was discriminated against for the color of his skin most of his life. I may not have enough Choctaw in your eyes, but it's still there. I didn't go looking for a glorified identity as a descendant of a native american. I am one. I was raised knowing I was Choctaw since I could talk.

I have friends who are obviously native, and those who like myself, aren't. But I can tell you, we all know our history. And it isn't made up, and it isn't in our heads. It's part of our heritage. Just because we look white, doesn't mean we can't be proud of our native heritage, it's part of our whole. And there is nothing wrong in celebrating that.

Genealogy and DNA results

Since I tested both my parents, I have been checking the matches on 23andme and on gedmatch weekly. Some areas have proven to be frustrating, but as of now, this is where I stand.

My Mom's 8 great grandparents and their matches.

1. John S. Hager, parents William Dan Hager and Eda Burnett/Barnett- three confirmed matches to a sibling of John S. Hager, which also show a match to a Burnett we haven't identified the connection of yet.
2. Martha Collins, parents Martin Daniel Collins and Martha Mangrum- one confirmed match to a sibling of Martin Collins.
3. Jason Adams, parents George W. Adams and Louisa Rogers- four matches to the Rogers family, three confirmed from a sibling of Louisa, and one from a sibling of her grandfather. Several other matches that aren't yet identified.
4. Margaret Trahern, parents Robert Trahern and Cornelia Gardner- no confirmed matches, though we have three small matches to known Choctaws that will connect to this line.
5. Francis Marion Hinds, parents Thomas Hinds and Mary Crawford- one confirmed match to a sibling of Francis Hinds and two matches to the Corless and/or the Hinds family.
6. Emma Paxton, parents Benjamin Paxton and Mary Douglas- no matches confirmed.
7. George Timmins, parents Joseph Timmins and Sarah Phillips- two confirmed matches from his sons
8. Sarah Brampton, parents Edward Brampton and Ruth Spicer- same as for her husband, two matches from her sons.

There are several matches for Mom that are English in origin, but identifying them hasn't been my top priority. The Choctaw families just haven't shown much promise yet in testers.

My father's 8 great grandparents and their matches.
1. John Lunsford Barnes, parents John Sanders Barnes and Sarah Owens- one confirmed match from a sibling of John Lunsford, and one from a daughter.
2. Margaret Eleanor Baker, parents Abner Baker and Margaret Vaughn, a confirmed match from a sibling of her father and the match from her daughter.
3. Jacob Barnett Franklin, parents Greenberry Franklin and Holland Merrill, a confirmed match from a sibling of Holland Merrill, and a match from their son.
4. Amanda Octavia Thomas, parents Daniel Thomas and Sarah Martha Brunson, only a match from her son.
5. William Shepard Hardy Jr., parents William Shepard Hardy Sr and Sarah Nelson, no confirmed matches.
6. Talula Johnson, parents William W. Johnson and unknown, no confirmed matches.
7. Archibald Pyburn, parents Benjamin Pyburn and Mary Jane Chitty, two confirmed matches with siblings of Mary Jane Chitty.
8. Plina McCurdy, parents William M. McCurdy, and Amanda Beck, two confirmed with siblings of Plina McCurdy, and one possible match also for the Beck side that shares too much for her connection with the McCurdy family. Several matches with the cousins (9) but none with the 2 known Sunday only descendants

So, for Dad, his weak matches still are with the Brunson, Franklin, Barnes, Owens, Hardy and Pyburn families. Literally half of his tree.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Great Communicator

Years ago, a friend and fellow researcher said, "there is a story teller for every generation."

This week, I was fortunate to receive some invaluable family history from a previous story teller, my great great Aunt, Rena Adams Blanco. Rena's sister Bertha saved her letters, mostly undated, but from the content they are from after their mother's death in 1955 until her death. When Bertha died, they of course went to Marilyn, her daughter. When Marilyn died, she made sure that they came to me.

I read through each of the letters, surprised at the treasure I held in my hands, words from someone written over 50 years ago. The letters contain information about her activities (canning mostly), her weight (a common thread for the two sisters), information about and gossip about family and friends. And in more than one the question, "have you heard from Claudus?".

That about brought tears to my eyes. For Claudus was my grandfather. Rena never did call him Ray. And over and over she asked her sister, have you heard from him, until finally, in a letter a few months before she died, she said he had called, and he was going to come and see her. Of course, he never did. She died before then. I was touched beyond words that his Aunt loved him that much.

I also learned something about Bonnie, her sister and my great grandmother. She said, probably about 1965, that she hadn't talked to her for 10-12 years. I know the approximate year because Bonnie did attend her mother's funeral. I also learned that when Rena learned her cancer had returned, and not long before she died, Bonnie came.

I learned that Rena kept in touch with her cousins, most especially, the children of her Uncle William Trahern. Over and over she talked about them, most especially her cousin Pete. I learned that she reached out to her mother's cousins, and they had a reunion at her Uncle Will's place. I think I even know that those who attended were Newtons, children of Catherine Trahern Newton.

Rena also filled out a book about the family. She listed her siblings, their wedding date (latest), their birth dates, her cousins, her Uncles and Aunts, and what she knew of her parents.

In her time, Rena was the person who reached out to the family. She was the keeper of it's past. And when she died, no one picked it up. So when Bonnie died in 1983, no one knew, they thought she had died long ago. Bertha kept her letters and her book, but no one kept in touch, until our cousin Loren Adams reached out to the family, and wrote a book on the Adams family for his grandfather, Rena's half brother Amos Adams.

It is Loren's book that is primarily responsible for the questions that led me on this journey.

I only hope that one day, someone will recall me as the story teller of my generation.


Mom and Dad each had relatives on their DNA results that I needed to figure out. One I had the name and the family, but no idea exactly how he connected. The other was anonymous, and had recently had their genome put on gedmatch. With Genome mate, I knew that this individual matched two of his paternal lines, and I was convinced that they were descended from my grandfather's double first cousin, but to prove it.

I embarked on a journey to fill in as much as possible on the families associated with these matches. I found obituaries for the Syracuse family, reached out to descendants on Facebook. After a full day, I figured out mom's relative, he is a great grandson of her grandmother's brother. Bingo, another breakthrough.

Dad's was a little more difficult. I knew that because I suspected this person descended from a double first cousin, the amount of DNA would be greater, so that the relationship was probably a little more distant than the predicted second cousin. And the person was anonymous, the individual who managed the gedmatch account couldn't give me information. So I decided to do some digging. 

I knew that they had a first cousin they were matching with. So I looked into that person's genealogy, because I had a name. And nothing. There was no way that was my connection. In desperation I emailed the cousin. A phone call later, she had me on a three way call with the person. I had my confirmation, and I was thrilled. 

I am not sure if the amount of DNA Dad shares with this individual is a DNA bonanza or a headache. The match represents four of his eight great grandparents in common. So when someone matches us both, it is a little bit harder to figure out how, but the total DNA Dad shares with her, roughly 10 percent of his paternal DNA, is awesome, and it doesn't hurt that 220 cM's of that DNA I got too.

So sometimes several hours of research and perseverance pay off.

Monday, September 8, 2014

More on the Autosomal DNA front

While Dad's family has had some progress, my mother's DNA has yielded some very enlightening results.

When you go to the autosomal DNA statistic chart on ISOGG, roughly these are the estimated percentages of DNA/total cM's you should share.

25%     1700 cM     (grandparents, aunts, uncles, double first cousins, half siblings)
12.5%    850 cM     (great grandparents, first cousins, half niece and nephew, great uncles/aunts, half                                    aunt/uncles, child of double first cousin (2nd))
6.25%      425 cM    (first cousin once removed, half first cousin, grandchild of (double first))
3.125%    212 cM    (first twice removed, second cousin, great grandchild of (double first)
1.563%  106.25 cM   (second once removed, half second cousin)
.781%    53.13 cM    (third cousins, second cousin twice removed)
.391%    26.56 cM     (third cousin once removed)
0.195%   13.28 cM     (fourth cousin, third cousin twice removed)
              3.32 cM         fifth cousin

               0.83 cM        6th cousin

My parents results however when compared to known genealogical relationships is however, nothing like this.

My mother's results

Estimated 1st Cousin 850 cM (25 percent) (None)
Estimated 2nd cousin 290-350 cM (None)

2nd cousin once removed 152 cM
3rd cousin 98 cm – 145 cM

2nd cousin twice removed 46 cM (two both)
3rd cousin once removed 65-74 cM
fourth cousin 39-49 cM

5th cousin 28 cM

6th cousin 22 cM-42 cM (most likely estimate 11-17 cM)

Her second cousin once removed and one of her second cousin twice removed come from siblings of her grandmother, Elizabeth Ruth Timmins. The other second cousin twice removed comes from a sibling of her grandfather Leroy Hinds, and the two sixth cousin matches come from the Corliss line which is associated with the family. 

Two of the third cousins, and one of the third cousin once removed are from the sibling of John Hager, mom's great grandfather. The other third cousin, a fourth cousin, a third cousin once removed and a 5th cousin are from the Rogers family. The final 3rd cousin once removed has proven to be a particularly challenging case. He matches a single 74 cM segment with my mother, and his relationship is estimated as he is adopted. The back half of the segment matches the Rogers family but none of the individuals matching the front half match the back. She has also matched a fourth cousin to her great great grandmother, Martha Collins.

Aside from the Corliss/Hinds family which was early colonial and can have higher percentages, the rest have no known consanguinity soI can't explain the consistency in the results for such higher percentages of DNA shared.

My father's results

Estimated 1st cousin 850 cM (none)
Estimated 2nd cousin 379 cM
** Note this is suspected to descend from a double first it could be a second cousin once removed (double first shares 25 percent... second from this 12.5, once removed 6.25%)

2nd cousin twice removed 76 cM
3rd cousin 42 cM
3rd cousin once 39 cM, 56.6 cM
4th cousin 13 cM, 42 cM, 49 cM, 60 cM and 100 cM (last is probably related twice)

My father's results seem to be all over the place, but the challenge here is that the majority of the relationships are to his McCurdy family. Two of these matches are actually McCurdy's twice, which will inflate the DNA shared. One of the fourth cousins shares so much, that I suspect the other side of her line, the Penton's is related to the Beck side of my father's line. One match estimated at a 2nd cousin has chosen to remain anonymous, however, based on some of the matches they share on gedmatch, I highly suspect that this individual is from my grandfather's double first cousin. Given the amount shared, it is most likely a grandchild or their child from one of this family, unless of course, he is just related to the individual along several lines and this isn't a true representation.

Recombination, and the exact amount of DNA passed along surely belies the table though, if my results are any indication. Though I must admit I have noticed a trend on the amount of DNA I have inherited from my parents.

When my parents have a match, about 75 percent of the time I will inherit the match. Depending on the number of segments, my inheritance is generally half of what they inherited, if they have 4 segments, I may get two, or if it is one segment, then I generally inherit the exact match. Thus, I think it is very probable that helps to explain why some of the matches seem larger than the expectation. If my mom shares 15 cM with an individual who is a 6th cousin, and I share the same 15 cM, obviously the formula doesn't work. 

Though I want someday to figure out as many of the matches as I can, I am concentrating more on the larger matches, and the segments where so many individuals share them that the chance of figuring it out is much greater. Both my parents literally have 15-20 cM segments shared with a dozen people. I figure the odds are that between us all, sooner or later we can narrow it down to a location or a family.