Abner Darling in the 1800 Census.

Darling Line
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.I’ve felt pretty solid that Abner Darling (b. 1780)’s father was Abner Darling (b. 1747). A little less so that his father was Ebenezer. On the other side of the tree, I am confident that Benjamin and Mehitable Darling had a son, Ebenezer.[i] But I’m not so confident that Ebenezer, the father of Abner, is the same person as Ebenezer, the son of Benjamin and Mehitable. This relationship is one of those times where I don’t know what is wrong, but something just doesn’t feel right.

Again, I’m confident that 24.  Rufus Holton Darling’s (1816-1857) father is #48.  Abner Darling (b. 1780-1839). And I’m convinced that 192. Ebenezer Darling (1718-1790) and 193. Mary Hakes had a son #96 Abner Darling (1747-c. 1800).Where I’m not confident is that Abner Darling’s (b. 1780-1839) father was 96. Abner Darling (1747-c. 1800) and not another Abner Darling.  That probably sounds confusing, and it is, but the bottom line is I need to go back and do more research on Abner Darling  (1780-1839) and confirm everything and make sure the connection between #48 and #96 is correct.

As I began researching, the first thing I noticed is that it was not my Abner Darling who lived Whitestown, Oneida County, New York during the 1800 Census[ii] and died sometime after that.  That record indicated:

Abner Darling  —  3  1  0  1  0  ||  2  0  0  1  0

The adults fit with what I think is the family unit at that time, but none of the children fit. My Abner’s children were born between 1779 and 1789 so none of them would be under 10 in the 1800 census.

Searching further, I found a Hannah Darling who was the head of a household in Bethlehem, Albany County, New York in the 1800 Census.[iii] In census records before 1850, I try to ascribe all of the family members to census record entries and see if it makes sense. If something is inconsistent, I seek a likely scenario that would make the record fit. In this case:

Detail of 1800 Census Record for Hannah Darling
1800 Census – Hannah Darling – — 0  1  3  1  0  ||  0 1 3  0  1


Under 10            0
10-16                1          Alanson, Age 13.
16-26                3          Thomas, 25; Abner, 20; Reid, 17
26-45                1          First name unknown Darling, Age 28.
Over 45’ –           0

Note: The first boy named Thomas died in 1776.


Under 10            0
10-16                1          Hannah or Deidame, ages 11 and 13. One is missing.
16-26                3          Luana, Age 15, Lucinda, Age 15, Esther, 22.
26-45                0
Over 45’            1          Hannah, Age 53

Hannah and her children line up very nicely to this 1800 Census record.

Sylvia age 27, Lucy age 29, and Mary age 30 all appear to be missing in this record as I would expect. I will need to follow their marriage information or death information to confirm this.

That Luana and Lucinda were identified as being 16 when they were only 15 is easy for me to accept. I believe this is the correct family unit. For Hannah to have been enumerated in the 1800 census as the head of household, her husband Abner must have passed (or vanished) before the enumeration date of 4 August 1800. That shifts my death date for Abner from after 4 Aug 1800 to before 4 Aug 1800.

I suspect that either Hannah, the younger, or Deidame had died before 1800 leaving only one daughter in the 10 to 16 age range.

Future Actions:

  • Find record for Abner’s death between 1790 and 1800.
  • Find a record for Hannah’s death, marriage, or census enumeration from 1800 to 1810.
  • Trace what happened to Abner & Hannah’s other children.


[i] Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915, Family Search, Ebenezer Darling – 1718. “Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:F458-7ZZ; 4 December 2014), Ebenezer Darling, 25 Aug 1718; citing Mendon, Worcester, Massachusetts, 56; FHL microfilm 855,377. https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:F458-7ZZ.

[ii] “United States Census, 1800,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XH5Y-F7Z; accessed 3 November 2017), Abner Darling, Whitestown, Oneida, New York, United States; citing p. 172, NARA microfilm publication M32, (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 23; FHL microfilm 193,711.

[iii] “United States Census, 1800,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XHRC-RQF; accessed 5 November 2017), Hannah Darling, Bethlehem, Albany, New York, United States; citing p. 107, NARA microfilm publication M32, (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 22; FHL microfilm 193,710.