FFF~Week #48

The beginning of my 3rd generation maternal ancestors!  Looks like this will carry over into 2016.  Once I get into the 4th generation people, I might combine husband and wife pairs if I haven’t been able to research them.

Ancestor: My maternal 3rd-great-grandfather (Aaron Ballard)

Facts: Please look here and here.

I’d like to share how grateful I am that Aaron Ballard and his wife Nancy Pearson decided to settle here in Henry County, Indiana.  It’s a lovely county, rich with history, and I feel a special connection with these folks I never had the chance to meet.  Maybe someday I will.

I’m also thankful that I have this space in which to record my thoughts and share neat things about my family.  I appreciate you all for taking the time to read my gibberish.

Happy Thanksgiving all.

Genealogy Roadshow~Ohio Style!


Recently, I had the absolute pleasure of attending a meeting of the Butler County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society where the presentation was Genealogy Roadshow style.  For those of you who haven’t heard of it or seen it on TV, Genealogy Roadshow is broadcast on PBS.  From the website: “Part detective story, part emotional journey, Genealogy Roadshow combines history and science to uncover fascinating stories of diverse Americans.”  The Butler County Chapter put their own spin on the show’s format using Butler County families and ancestors.  They announced the meeting earlier in 2015 and asked for inquiries.  My 4th-great-grandparents were married there and lived there their entire lives.  My 4th-great-grandfather, James A. Fowler, left property in his will to his living children in the village of Darrtown, so I sent off my inquiry as to where might that property be located.  Along with four other entries, mine was also selected.


Nancy Porter, genealogist and membership chair for the Butler County chapter, handled my request.  She first located the land that my ancestor had owned and then worked her way back to how it came to him, plus gave some history of the village of Darrtown.  The above plat map shows the different lots Fowler owned and left in his will to his children.

The other four cases were interesting, as well.  Men of the same name, a lady’s name that came up in someone’s history but the research led to no evidence of her, and a story of children raised by others as their mother died young and their father couldn’t raise them plus work.

I very much appreciate all the work that went into this project.  This has given me a great starting point to get back to Butler County and further my research at the courthouse and, of course, take another trip through Darrtown!

FFF~Week #47

Ancestor: My paternal 3rd-great-grandmother (Elizabeth M. Ray)


  1. Born 14 June 1843 in Jackson County, Tennessee.
  2. Daughter of Samuel H. Ray and Nancy C. McCaleb.
  3. Granddaughter of Joseph H. Ray, great-granddaughter of James Ray, and great-great-granddaughter of James Ray.
  4. Died 15 December 15 1883.
  5. Finding the Pendergrass/Ray history was a huge find for me! More research to be done!

Info found here.

FFF~Week #46

Ancestor: My paternal 3rd-great-grandfather (John T. Pendergrass)


  1. Born 9 April 1833.
  2. Son of Jesse Pendergrass and Ann Witt.
  3. Was married first to Annie Donaldson.
  4. Married Elizabeth Ray around 1862 (birth of oldest child).
  5. Died 28 May 1921 in Putnam Co, Tennessee.

Found info here.

FFF~Week #43

Ancestor: My paternal 3rd-great-grandmother (Annie L. Gentry)


  1. Born 18 June 1826 in Jackson County, Tennessee.
  2. Married Larkin F. Harris.
  3. Daughter of Robert Gentry and Nancy Harris (Nancy possibly a sister to Joseph Harris, Larkin’s father).
  4. Died 29 July 1908 in Putnam County, Tennessee.
  5. ??  Need to do more research!

Info found on FindAGrave.com Memorial #39955645.

FFF~Week #42

Ancestor: My paternal 3rd-great-grandfather (Larkin F. Harris)


  1. Born 13 February 1824 in Tennessee.
  2. Son of Joseph Harris and Sarah Richardson.
  3. Married Annie L. Gentry around 1848 (birth of first child).
  4. Died 26 June 1913 in Putnam County, Tennessee.
  5. ?? Need to research more!

FFF~Week #41

Ancestor: My paternal 3rd-great-grandmother (Mary Elizabeth “Betsy” Shanks)


  1. Born 13 February 1826 in Fauquier County, Virginia.
  2. Betsy was the daughter of William Shanks and Margaret Maddux.
  3. She married David Wood Maxwell on 2 June 1844 in Jackson County, Tennessee.
  4. She had 10 children:  Martha Ann, Margaret Frances, Joel Whitten, Jane Elizabeth, William Cullom, James Thomas, Tennessee Belle, Laura Josephine, Andrew McClain, and David Wood Jr.
  5. Died 9 May 1888 in Putnam County, TN.

Info obtained from here.