Friday, March 8, 2013

Shady Lady

Early 1800s Methodist Camp Meeting in the Colonies, when my 3rd great grandmother
 was in her 20s
I've been searching for any info on Elizabeth Dean, my 3rd Great Grandmother for two years.  She has stayed at the top of the Dean Family Tree as the earliest ancestor so far, born in 1785, in Virginia.

I did some research on Virginia in the 1700s and early 1800s to add a little local flavor to Elizabeth's story, especially since I have no photos of her or her gravestone.  

Rolling a "Hogs-Head" barrel  of tobacco to the pier.  Growing tobacco in Virginia
became so popular as a money-maker, depleting the soil eventually,
so early settlers torn their houses down and moved farther inland
 to continue growing  their tobacco in its space.

What information I do have on Elizabeth begins with the 1850 census for Morgan County, Kentucky, where she is a 65-year-old farmer who owns $1,000 worth of real estate and has two sons, Elisha Dean, age 24, and Daniel Dean, age 35. Elizabeth says she was born in Virginia and both sons were born in Tennessee.

 Daniel's last name would change over the next 10 years, adding even more problems in figuring out these early Dean ancestors.  Elisha Dean proves indeed to be my 2nd great grandfather.

There are several other solid brick walls concerning these early Dean ancestors I am trying to break through, while still editing the rest of the book's chapters.

No mention of a husband for Elizabeth was made on the 1850 census.

Is she the widow of a Dean husband, or did she not marry, and Dean is her own surname?

I have turned up nothing over the past several years to answer that question.  No marriage record, no parents listed anywhere.

Until this week, when one of my several-times removed Dean cousins also researching the family added a husband for Elizabeth.  James Dean, born 1870 in Pennsylvania, died in 1862 in Rockingham, Virginia.

Elisha was born in 1824.  His father was still alive?

Something about this just doesn't ring true for me, but I added James next to Elizabeth up there on the top of the Dean tree.  And there he will stay until proven a mistake.

James Dean (abt 1780 - 1862), m. Elizabeth Dean (abt 1875 - before 1870)
Elisha Dean, abt 1826 - ? 
Daniel Dean, abt 1815 - ? 
And now I continue editing the other chapters and leave this first chapter as it is above.

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