Sullivan County, Indiana, Research

Visited the:

* County Health Department to check on 4 death certificates. Hit paydirt with one. The other 3 had no death certs even though they died 20 years after the one I did receive! Odd. The one I did receive was for Mary (Ammerman) Ford. Gave me a date of death, age at death, place of birth (Illinois), and name of mother (Elizabeth Lutz; I’ve seen the possibility of Troxell or Taxell online but unsourced so Lutz might be a good hint).

* Public Library to recheck family files. Still no luck with Ford or Ammerman.

* Historical Society to see what they had. Very helpful ladies who pulled Ford and Ammerman files for me. Nothing new that I hadn’t seen before. I left my name and contact info in case someone comes in doing the same line of research as me.

* Courthouse to get actual copies of 4 documents I had found online. I had the book and page numbers for said documents. I found 2 easily enough. However, the other 2 sent me to the basement.

IMG_0758 Rows upon rows in a locked room in the basement of records. Did I find the 2 ledgers I sought? No! And I went up and down each aisle. The farther into the basement room I went, the more cobwebs I encountered.

This beautiful rotunda there made up for it!

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I found the land my great-grandfather Joseph V. Ford owned, where my grandfather grew up, so my husband and I drove out and found it…it was covered by a small man-made lake. Bummer!

All in all, a productive research trip. The day was beautiful, and the color of that man-made lake was an astounding blue. Maybe Grampa was keeping tabs on us that day!

Genealogy Do-Over~Week 2

Week 2: 9 Jan-15 Jan 2015

*Setting Research Goals

  • Who was John Ford’s birth family? Particularly his 12 siblings’ names. For females, I need to find marriage records for Genesee Co, NY, and surrounding areas for female Fords of that time. I do have a list of male Fords that could possibly be brothers.
  • Who was John Ford’s first wife and his three children with her? I know he married a Mary Hill in 1831 in Ohio, and his first son Lyman was born in 1832 (my 2nd-great-GF). There were 2 other children, but something happened to the first wife and 2 other children. I haven’t found anything that explicitly says Mary died or that John and Mary divorced. On the 1840 census in IN, John Ford is living with Mary, Lyman, and one of the other children in a county on the Ohio River so cholera is always a possibility. John remarried in 1847 in Ohio so sometime during the 1840 census and his remarriage in 1847 something happened to his first family.
  • In the process of this research, I’ve found that John had a younger brother named Lyman. John and Lyman were in Ohio in the early 1830s and both married then.  Lyman moved to Indiana (on the 1850 census) for a time after that, to the county next to John’s, but then returned to Ohio by 1860 where he lived the rest of his life. In 1850, John was in California during The Gold Rush, working as a trader. In 1860, he is back on the Indiana census. It is interesting to note that Lyman was married in Washington County, PA, where Archibald Bennet had enlisted as a Frontier Ranger during the Revolutionary War…more connections! Lyman lived in Monroe County, OH, and John married Mary Hill in Gallia County, OH, both very close to Washington County, PA. Furthermore, John married his second wife Caroline in Noble County, OH.

*Conducting Self-Interview

  •  Completing Family Group Sheets: My own is done but I need to work on aunts, uncles, and cousins, will focus on Fords at this time.
  • Need to create my autobiography. Can I fit it all onto 1 page? Not sure.

*Conducting Family Interviews

  • I plan on asking members of a family Facebook group to share what they know about the family, their memories. Also need to set a 2015 reunion date. This is not the Ford family, though.
  • See if I can find a Ford Family group on the internet to share info with. Darn near impossible.
  • Get my Dad to take a DNA test! (He’s a Ford.)

ETA: At the end of Week 2, I have accomplished completing Family Group Sheets for each generation of my Ford line back to John Ford. I did this in RootsMagic7 with the help of censuses. John Ford had a total of 8 known children (3 from his first marriage and 5 from his second marriage), his son Lyman had 10 known children, his son Joseph had 4 known children, his son Harold had 1 known child, and his son is my dad with 2 daughters. FindAGrave dot com was a big help in this endeavor, especially for folks more than 50 years gone.

Evidentia: You and I come face to face tomorrow! I’m taking my laptop to the library where I can get some serious work accomplished!

Genealogy Do-Over~Week 1

Week 1: 2 Jan-8 Jan 2015

I’ve decided to work on a do-over with my research on John Ford, my 3rd-great-GF (paternal), or, more precisely, John Ford’s parents and family.

*Setting Previous Research Aside
I’ve decided to modify this a bit since I’ve accumulated quite a bit of information about Mr. Ford himself. I’m going to get what I have better organized. I have digital information, hard copy information, stuff saved in Evernote…all of this needs to be properly organized and cited.

*Preparing to Research (Further)
I am going to devise a research plan to make better educated searches for information. In Indiana, I need to better search the county where John Ford lived, I need to request his compiled service record from NARA, I need to better research the county in Ohio where he was first married, Sacket Harbor in NY where he was discharged in 1829, why he lived in Arkansas, etc. Oops, I about fell down the rabbit hole! Thus, I need a written research plan combined with a research log, possibly in Excel, to track research progress. Luckily, a member of the Genealogy Do-Over FB group shared an Excel template for a research log, and it is excellent! (Thank you Ellen Coulter!)

*Establishing Base Practices and Guidelines
I’m using RootsMagic7 and have added Folder Marker to my computer to match folder colors to RM7 colors for family lines.
I need to learn to add source citations to images (practiced doing this on this post).
I need to do this as soon as I scan the image into the computer…NO WAITING!
Save digital info to Evernote to my main folder, then move to appropriate family folders to keep organized, using appropriate note titles and tags.
Use Evidentia to its fullest potential for citing my sources, beginning with building a case for the Ford family.
Become BFFs with Evidence Explained!

On a side note, this first day of Genealogy Do-Over I actually did a bit of research for the project I’m working on for future BCG certification. This project will require further research in Ohio; I hope to attend the OGS annual conference in April to work on that. Fingers crossed!

ETA: I began this post on 2 Jan 2015. Since then, I’ve figured out how to add citations to images and save as .pdf files, I’ve color coded my folders on my hard drive to match my family lines in RootsMagic7, I have done some digital organizing of said files, and I have spreadsheets for research logging and census tracking. I have the next couple days off work so I plan to begin adding sources to Evidentia!


Sorry I’ve been MIA recently…I’m going to the Allen County Public Library tomorrow and have been doing research out the yahoo to prepare for the trip (so that when I get there, I’m not totally bumbling around). I have had some BIG finds in my Ford research, which is located in northwest New York State in the mid to late 1700s. I have a few titles to pull that I need for my DAR application research. I just hope I have enough time before they close tomorrow to look at all I want to look at!

With the Fords in NW New York State, they were very close to the Canadian border. I found on the 1820 census that my 4th-great-GF’s household included TWO foreigners, not naturalized! Methinks his wife, Prudence Bennett, and possibly either a brother or sister of hers were from Canada. I’ve been working forward and backward from that 1820 census to approximate years of birth (their son said that they had had 13 children and so far I think I have most of the male children’s names; females are a different story; I need to look at birth/marriage/death records from the area during that time to see if I can find females with the parents of Nathan/Nathaniel and Prudence).

More to come when I (hopefully) find it!