Mary Elizabeth (Manning) Brown’s Mother – Part 5 of 6

Could it be Lisa J. Mannin?

By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.I previously concluded that Sarah Jane Garvin, Mary A, and Nelly Nellie Burton could not be my 2nd great-grandmother. However, other researchers ascribe Mary Elizabeth Mannin(g)[i] Brown’s mother’s name as Lisa J. Mannin (1861-___) and others Eliza Jane Fannin (1861-1882). I have long thought that Lisa could be a shortening or corruption of Eliza and that Mannin could just be the married name of Mary’s mother.

In Part 5 of this series, I’ll further examine the evidence of Mary E Manning’s mother’s name.

In Part 1 of this series, I mentioned that I only have two sources that suggest Mary’s mother’s name.

First—The 1880 Census shows John & Lisa J Mannin living in Pine Grove, Rowan County, Kentucky.

The problem with the 1880 Census is that I can’t be 100% certain that that entry is the right John Mannin. During the 1880 Census, his father (Enoch), two uncles (Thomas and Tubel), and his brother (Isaac) all lived in Carter County. None of his siblings appear to live in Rowan County in 1880. Additionally, John died in Carter County in 1888. Rowan county is next to Carter county, but for him to relocate off by himself seems unusual. I can’t be 100% certain this John Mannin family includes my great-grandmother, two-year-old Mary.

Second—An email letter from Mary Brown’s minister, Les Crider, indicated he thought Mary’s mother’s name was Eliza Tolover.

Again, the name is problematic. He might have confused Mary’s mother’s name with Mary’s grandmother’s surname, Tolliver. So, again, I can’t be certain that Eliza is Mary’s mother’s name.

Marker: Mary E. Brown
1876 Mother 1983

One hundred thirty-one public trees refer to Mary Elizabeth Manning, who married Arthur Durwood Brown. About 25 of them, including mine, suggest Mary’s mother’s name is Eliza, Lisa, Elisa, or Liza Fannin, Fanning, Mannin, or Manning. Several researchers cited the memorial I created for Mary Elizabeth Manning Brown on Find a Grave, including a photo of Mary’s Marker.

In reviewing the sources cited on the many trees, one source, Mary E Brown’s entry in the Minnesota Death Index,[ii] I didn’t have. It provides her birth date, death date, and her mother’s maiden name of “Fanning[iii].”

One researcher cites a 1925 City Directory that places Arthur H and Mary E Brown in Morristown, New Jersey. Not Arthur D and Mary E Brown. Incorrect fact.


I am convinced that Sarah Jane Garvin, Mary A, and Nelly Nellie Burton could not be my 2nd great-grandmother. Although I’ve settled on using Elisa Jane Fannin as Mary Manning’s mother’s name, I am open to any of the similar names first names. In Part Six, I take a brief look at DNA and how it might help in this research.

Again, if you have any thoughts or comments regarding this posting, please feel to post in the comments below. If you want the comment to be private, please let me know.


[i] Mannin and Manning are used interchangeably in various documents. I try to use the spelling used in a particular document when quoted. Occasionally, Mannen, Mannan, and Mannon are also used as the spelling is typically based upon what the recorder of the document believed they heard.

[ii] “Minnesota Death Index, 1908-2002,” database, FamilySearch ( : 4 December 2014), Mary E. Brown, 08 May 1983; from “Minnesota Death Index, 1908-2002,” database, Ancestry ( : 2001); citing Crow Wing, Minnesota, record 2111797, certificate number 011688, Minnesota Department of Health, Minneapolis.

[iii] Fannin and Fanning are used interchangeably in various documents. I try to use the spelling that was used in the particular source.

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