Monday, October 27, 2014

Fishing for Troutman and catching some links

The adventure continues as I amass documents and make links along my Troutman line. Dad's mother, Helen (Zeller) Kelly's mother's line climbs back up the family tree to two notable families of Western Maryland, the Troutman family and the Workman family. Both are listed on the DAR patriots list so I wanted to know more about their service and what else I could find out about their lives. Add to that the fact that these two families lived about 12 miles from each other in the mid to late 1700s and... how could I not investigate?!

The game was to crawl back in time and look at each generation as I go knowing full well that the terrain gets more challenging back past 1850 and that wonderfully delightful 1850 census. (After working in the "dark ages" before 1850 for a while and then moving up in time to the glorious 1850 census, it feels to me like someone opened a window!)

I started with my Grandma Kelly making sure all vital records that were available for her and husband Gustav Zeller were in the file and scanned as well. At this point, the name of my overall genealogy game is to double and triple check to make absolutely certain that I've requested every available vital record for each ancestor. As you've probably found out, the archives and state vital records folks too quickly run out of goodies for us and we face that ugly message, "the first death certificates were required in Maryland in 1898." So I want to make absolutely certain that I have grabbed all the low hanging fruit that I can. But I digress from fishing.

Grandma Kelly's mother was Moretta (Workman) Zeller (1859-1946) and her mother was Nancy Ann (Troutman) Workman (1826-1882) who married Elisha Workman (1816-1864), and I blogged about Elisha recently and you can read that here. Nancy Ann sported a number of names throughout her life and that was not a help when tracking her in records, I want to tell you! While with her birth family she was Nancy but once she got married she was either Anna or Anne, except for a little while when she was Angeline as she is listed in the 1860s census. Some legal documents and her will show her as Anna A. Go figure.

Anyway, that name thing was a bit of a problem because how do you prove that the Nancy in the estate papers of her father, Benjamin Franklin Troutman (1780-1856), is the same person as Anna A. in her will? How, indeed! Then I found Daniel.

Daniel Troutman was Nancy Anna's brother, and you can see that relationship in the way the names are listed in her father's estate papers. Did I tell you about her father's estate papers? No? OK, let me get back to that in another blog post because it's a heart-warming story about genealogical kindness. Here's a look at a the disbursal list from Benjamin's estate.

As you can see there, Nancy Anne is listed as "Nancy Workman". There, on the list above her name is Daniel, listed as "Danl". Presuming as we do that "heirs" is children unless otherwise stated, he's her brother. Having her listed as Nancy Workman is a lucky find because it narrow down the possible candidates who could be "Nancy Workman" and points directly to our girl. Oh, and did I mention that one Daniel Troutman is listed as the administrator of Nancy Anna's husband, Elisha Workman? There ya' go. The two generations are linked.

In looking for and finding the vitals of an ancestor I sometimes get so excited when I find gold that I forget to look for records that link the generations. Gotta stop doing that. The links the thing.
Nancy Anna (Troutman) Workman (1826 - 1882).

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