It is always difficult to follow a person’s records when their name is recorded differently over the years. James’ surname was recorded as “Waters,” “Walter,” and “Walters” over the many years. I have settled on Walter because it appears to be the surname he was buried with. James was a Patriot, serving in a Virginia artillery detachment during the Revolutionary War.
James Walter was born on either 16 or 17 Feb 1752.[i]in the Province of Maryland (now state of Maryland). He was the first child of John Walter and Ann Parker. He had five siblings, namely: William, Rebecca Conyers, Richard, Lawrence, and James.
James was a Sergeant in the Revolutionary War. It appears that he joined up about 1777 in Virginia. On 02 Apr 1782 he was assigned to an Artillery detachment commanded by Capt-Lt Lewis Booker. He was known as the “Forage Master.” After the war, he received a warrant for 400 acres of Bounty Land, in what would become Kentucky, for his Revolutionary War Service to Virginia.
In 1793, when he was 40, he married Margaret Ann Swan of Virginia.
James and Margaret Ann (Swan) Walter had six (known) children.
Nancy Anne Walter was born in 1788.
Elkina Walter was born in 1789. she died in 1852.
Catherine Ann Dent Walter was born on 15 Jun 1794 in. She married David Swayze on 30 Jan 1817 in Fairfield County, Ohio. She died on 16 Apr 1868 in Kalamazoo, Michigan, at the residence of her daughter, Elizabeth.
In 1804, James Walter executed a Deed of Trust transferring his property in Kentucky to Elijah Pollard of Frederick, Virginia, USA
James Walter died on 10 May 18381 in Lancaster, Fairfield County, Ohio, USA. He was buried at the Old Methodist Cemetery. Later, he was reinterred at the City Burial Plot, Lancaster, Fairfield County, Ohio.
James Walter (1752-1838) – Revolutionary War Soldier was buried in Lancaster, Fairfield County, Ohio
By Don Taylor
In my searches for information on my wife’s 4th great-grandfather, James Walker (1752-1838), I kept running into a source that seemed to be the source used in many other people’s trees but was not cited. Eventually, I determined the mystery source. It was, The Official Roster of the Soldiers of the American Revolution Buried in the State of Ohio. It was compiled under the Direction of Frank D. Henderson, The Adjutant General. A copy of the book is available online at one of my favorite sites, Archive.Org.
On page 385 is an entry for Walter, James, (Fairfield Co.). It reads:
WALTER, JAMES, (Fairfield Co.)
Sgt “Forage Master.” Br Maryland, 1759. Mar Margaret Ann Levan, of Maryland, after the Revolutionary war, date not known. Children : Nancy, mar Leevir ; Elkanah, mar Rachel Decker ; Catherine Ann Dent, mar David Levayzee , Eliz, mar Chas Stockard 1, James Gurley 2; James, mar Polly ___ John, mar Belinda Reese. D May 10, 1838, Lancaster, O. Bur Old Methodist Cem and City Burial Plot Lancaster, O. Cem converted into park, bodies moved to new Cem in Lancaster, marking on head stone obliterated and identification impossible. MI: “James Walter, died May 10, 1838, aged 80 years, 2 mo, 23 da.”_ Jan 4, 1804 received transfer of 400 acres in Ky for serv in Rev War. Deeded in Frederick Co, Va. His name appears on a muster roll of a detachment of artillery commanded by Capt Lt Booker, belonging to the 1st Regt, dated Camp near Bacon Bridge, Apr 2, 1782, covering the months of Jan, Feb and Mch, 1782, which shows that he enlisted for the war. Ref: Natl No 12581 James Lincoln (Capt) Mass. Old Northwest Genealogical Quarterly Vol 3, p 74. Letter fr War Dept signed “Lutz Wahl,, Brigadier Gen, Acting the Adj Gen, by E. W. M.” Fur infor War Dept The Adj Gen Office Washington.
I know there are a few errors. Certainly “Margaret Ann Levan” is Margaret Ann Swan and “David Levayzee” is David Swayzee. I’ve seen handwriting where a capital “S” could look like an “Le,” so, I understand the possibility for errors of this type. Also, the birthdate is not consistent with other sources.
Although I know there are minor errors in the entry, I’m tentatively accepting the following as facts:
Born: 1759 in Maryland [Inconsistent – Alternate]
AKA: “Forage Master”
Military Service: Was a Sergeant in the Revolutionary War.
Military Service: Assigned to an Artillery detachment commanded by Capt Lt Booker, belonging to the 1st Regt, dated Camp near Bacon Bridge, Apr 2, 1782, covering the months of Jan, Feb and Mch, 1782.
Marriage: Margaret Ann Levan [Swan] after April 19, 1783.
Nancy, married Leevir [possibly Sevir];
Elkanah, married Rachel Decker ;
Catherine Ann Dent, married David Levayzee [Swayzee],
Eliz, married Chas Stockard 1, James Gurley 2;
James, married Polly ___
John, married Belinda Reese.
Property: 1804 received transfer of 400 acres in Ky for serv in Rev War. Deed in Frederick Co, Va.
Died: May 10, 1838, Lancaster, O.
Buried: Old Methodist Cemetery – reinterred: City Burial Plot Lancaster, Ohio. Cemetery
Note: Margaret Ann Levan [Swan] was “of Maryland”
This record embodies my experiences that finding one record leads to a dozen other things to research. In this case, I want to do the following future actions:
Assess the birth records for James Walter.
Learn more about Captain Lt. Booker and the 1st
Learn more about the Camp near Bacon Bridge.
Research further his marriage date to Margaret Swan.
Research his land in Kentucky.
Review DAR Natl No 12581 James Lincoln (Capt) Mass. and determine how that record fits with James Walter.
Review Old Northwest Genealogical Quarterly Vol 3, p 74. Letter fr War Dept signed “Lutz Wahl, Brigadier Gen, Acting the Adj Gen, by E. W. M.”
Another article discovered on Genealogy Bank
that provides insight into the lives of the Darling family of Kalamazoo during the mid-1800s. The Darling’s and the Swayze’s were involved with the First Methodist Church of Kalamazoo.
Kalamazoo Gazette (Kalamazoo, MI) – August 14, 1916, Page 6
Pioneer’s Letter Tells History of Kalamazoo first Methodist Church
MISS EMMA DARLING FINDS EPISTLE PENNED BY HER MOTHER YEARS AGO.
In looking through some treasures in her desk the other day Miss Emma Darling* came across, a paper in the handwriting of her mother, who had jotted down a few incidents in the history of the First Methodist church that are of moment and are certainly not known by many today though familiar facts In pioneer days.
Miss Darling’s parents and grandparents were pioneers and did much to make history for this section of Michigan. And today Miis Darling resides on a portion of the land purchased by her father Rufus H. Darling* when he came to Michigan in (hose days when hardships were aplenty and luxuries a. thing unknown.
Of the Methodist church Mrs. Darling* writes:
“My father’s family came here in the spring of 1840 and united with this church by letter. This Methodist people were then holding- service in a little old schoolhouse on ‘ South Rose street where the Jewish synagogue now stands. Mr., Richards came here as pastor the next, fail after we did and.the church then began plans for building a church.
Gen’l Burdick Gives Lot
“Their means were limited for their number was small and they met with many discouragements. The sister churches thought we never could build and pay for as large a church as we planned to have. But these things only made us more persevering.
General Burdick gave the church the lot where the Dutch Reformed church now stands and, Mr. Wiseman* drew the plan for the church hut he died before the church was completed. But he made a request that they would use hie Bible at the dedication.
“Mr. Richards stayed hero two years in all and Rev. Range followed and the church was completed during this time, for the church was dedicated in the year 1842. If was not entirely free from debt until 1850.
“Mr. Watson preached the sermon at the dedication.’ There was only one class at this time, led by my father, David Swayze*, and father and sister, Emily* led the singing.”
The late. George Torrey in his history of Kalamazoo says in regard to the Methodist church: “The first sermon preached in the town, was by Rev. James Robe, who was appointed to the Kalamazoo mission by the Indiana Conference, in “1822; and who is, now, a resident of the place. (This history was published to 1867).
Service in Titus Bronson home
The service was held in the house of Mr. Titus Bronson after whom tho place was named. The first-class was organized in the Year 1832 and was composed of eight members of whom Harrison Coleman was leader.
“The first board of trustees was organized at the house of Mr. C. Walters, on February 8th, 1841, and consisted of, David Swayze, C. Walters, Luke Olmsted. Isaac Tewkesbury, Amos P, Bush, Isaac Wiseman, William E. White, and David J. Davidson.
“The first church edifice was dedicated in 1842 on the church square, Church and Academy streets, and was occupied until the spring of 1866 when it was sold to the Dutch Reformed church.
“The society are now erecting what is intended to be one of the largest and most costly churches In the state, which will be completed during the year. They have flourishing Sunday school of about 250 scholars under the superintendency of Mr. Geo. H. Lyman, and a membership of nearly three hundred communicants, under the pastoral, care of Rev. Charles Shelling. The Kalamazoo District is In charge of Rev. R. Sapp, presiding elder.”
The [Swayze] family came to Kalamazoo in the spring of 1840.
David Swayze led a class at the church (ca. 1842)
David Swayze and Emily [Emily Ann Swayze] lead the singing at the church (ca. 1842).
David Swayze was a member of the first board of trustees for the First Methodist Church in Kalamazoo in 1841.
Isaac Wiseman was a member of the first board of trustees for the First Methodist Church in Kalamazoo in 1841.
Image: The Methodists’ 1842 building on Academy. Map of Kalamazoo, Michigan. H MAP 912.77417 M6475 1858 | Source: “First Methodist Church — Kalamazoo Public Library”. 2019. Kalamazoo Public Library. Accessed December 19 2019. https://www.kpl.gov/local-history/kalamazoo-history/religion/first-methodist-church/.
*Endnotes – Relationships
 Emma Darling, my wife’s 2nd great aunt.
[2[ Rufus H. Darling, my wife’s 2nd great grandfather.
 “Mrs. Darling” refers to Emma’s mother, Elizabeth Jane (Swayze) Darling, my wife’s 2nd great grandmother.
 Mr. Wiseman refers to Elizabeth Jane (Swayze’s) first husband, Isaac Wiseman.
 David Swayze was my wife’s 3rd great grandfather.
 Emily Ann Swayze, my wife’s 3rd great aunt.
According to Forebears, the surname “Beardsley” is a derivation of “Bardsley,” which was derived from being from a place, ‘of Bardsley.’ Bardsley is a parish between Ashton and Oldham, near Manchester. The American Bardsleys, and all the North English Bardsleys, and perhaps all the Beardsleys, hail from the Lancashire parish[i].
Ancestry suggests the name may be based upon an unidentified place, possibly in Nottinghamshire, where the surname is particularly common[ii].
Of course, I need to see things in order to understand the relationships of locations in England. Using Google Maps, I learned that Forebears puts the Beardsleys up near Manchester and Ancestry suggests a location 60 miles southeast of Manchester. Oddly enouth, my Beardsley are from Ilkeston and Stratford-upon-Avon (50 and 90 miles from Manchester).
Locations of Beardsleys based on Forebears and Ancestry are in Gray and the locations of my wife’s Beardsley ancestors births.
It seems odd to me that William and his son were born so far apart. It makes me wonder if my data regarding their birthplaces is incorrect. Additionally, I’m relying mostly upon the research of others for those specific locations (sources I’ve found only say they were born in England). In any event, I haven’t had a chance to research these individuals in depth yet. However, the Interregnum may explain the relocation.
Worldwide there are approximately 12,390 people who bear the Beardsley surname.
It is most prevalent in the United State where over three-quarters of the people with the Beardsley surname live. Little Montserrat (a small island in the Lesser Antilles has the highest density of Beardsleys with 1 in 1,220 people having the surname.
Earliest Beardsley Ancestors
My wife’s ninth-great-grandfather, William Beardsley was born about 1604 in Stratford-on-Avon, Warwickshire, England. I, of course, like to imagine that young William Beardsley was named for William Shakespheare, a contemporary of the town of Stratford on Avon. Likewise, little William was about 12-years-old when Shakespeare died, so I speculate that William had seen, or at least knew of Shakespeare. William moved to Ilkeston, Darbyshire, England sometime before 1630 where he married Marie Harvie.
There, he had a son, Joseph Beardsley, who was born in Ilkeston, Darbyshire, England in 1635.
It was sometime before 1665 that William, Marie, and Joseph located to the Colonies and settled in Stratford, Fairfield County, Connecticut.
The Interregnum of England took place from 1649 to 1660. (The between the execution of Charles I and the arrival of Charles II and the start of the Restoration[iii]. It was the time of Oliver Cromwell. More research is needed to know if they arrived in the Colonies before during, or after the Interregnum. In any event, it was a time of great upheaval in England and that chaos might have been the cause for leaving England for the new world.
So, both William and Joseph were immigrant ancestors from England.
Joseph married Abigail Phebe Dayton in Connecticut in 1665. They had a daughter, Hannah Beardsley, who is my wife’s seventh-great-grandmother.
My wife’s direct Beardsley ancestors:
Grandfather: Robert Harry Darling (1905-1969)
Great-grandfather: Rufus Harry Darling (1857-1917)
3nd Great-grandmother: Elizabeth Jane Swayze (1818-1896)
Frustration strikes again with the linkage between Family Tree Maker 3 for Mac and my tree on Ancestry. I’m not sure how it happened but my Family Tree Maker (FTM) file for the Darling-Huber tree said it wasn’t linked to Ancestry, but when I went to Ancestry, it indicated that it was linked with Family Tree Maker and gave me the file name it was linked in. The same one that said it wasn’t linked. My on-line tree has many people I’m sharing with and my FTM has underlying source links and media that I don’t want to lose connections to.
I called Ancestry and spoke to their support. No help. They told me to break the tree, then go to FTM, start a new tree, and then download from Ancestry. Basically, revert to Ancestry’s version of my data. I have done that in the past and found that my sources were generally all messed up and that most of the media I had with my sources seemed to be lost. Then I happened upon a new idea.
I decided to go ahead and break the tree on Ancestry. Then in FTM, create a new tree by importing from Ancestry. After that task was complete, I merged my old FTM file into the new one. After completion there were a few duplicated individuals and a few duplicated sources but, all the connections appear to be correct. That’s okay. I’d rather have duplicates that I can select the best source from than have missing source information.
I’ll work with it for a while and let you know if I find any serious problems.
David Sweazy [Sr.] & the 1820 Census
The 1920 Census is always problematic because only the head of the household is named. Others in the household are only given a range of ages, sex, and status. There is also identification of what sector of the economy the individual was engaged in.
1820 Census Entry for David Sweazy – Image via Ancestry.Com.
I find it important to analyze the census information and associate all that I can determine.
The David Sweazy household of Richland, Fairfield County Ohio[i].
WM* Ages to 10
1 Presumed to be William Marsh who was age 6.
1 Presumed to be Daniel S who was 9 or 10.
WM ages 16 to 26
Presumed to be Evan who was 17 or 18.
David Jr. is enumerated elsewhere in the Census.
WM ages 26 to 45
All three are unknown individuals.
WM 45 & Up
Oldest male presumed to be David Sweazy age 58
WF** 10 to 16
1 Presumed to be Edith, age 12 or 13.
1 presumed to be Elizabeth, age 15 or 16.
1 Possibly Sarah who would be 19 or 20.
WF 45 & Up
Presumed to be wife Alice, age 51
* WM = White Males | **WF = White Females
In addition, an entry indicates that four people were engaged in Agriculture and one was engaged in Manufacture.
First, I believe there is enough detail to assure that I have the correct David Swazey/Swayze.
Then I take the information that is there and derive the following facts
For David, William, Daniel, Evan, Edith Elizabeth, and Alice I would add the following:
Name – I’d add Sweazy as an alternate surname for all.
Birth – In the Notes section, I’d add, “1820 Census is consistent.
For David – Census – Date: 7 Aug 1820 | Place: Richland, Fairfield, Ohio: Living with 10 others in household, He was engaged in either Agriculture or Manufacture.
For Sarah, – Birth – in the Notes section, I’d add “1820 Census is NOT Consistent” Sarah may have been 10 to 16 in 1820 Census or may be numerated elsewhere.
In the notes for the 1820 Census Source Citation I’d add: Neighbors: Love, Bailey, McBride, & Young
For Alice and any of the children, I might or might not add:
Lived 7 Aug 1820 – Richland, Fairfield, Ohio – Presumed to be living with (father) David Swayze.
I think that fairly well covers the things that we know from the Census. I would love to hear in the comments anyone who thinks I missed a fact or I added a “fact” not in evidence.
David Sweazy [Jr.] & the 1820 Census
Using the same process for David Sweazy (Jr.) I find
David Sweazy [Jr.] household of Richland, Fairfield, Ohio[ii]:
WM* Ages to 10
Unknown male – b. 1810-1820
WM ages 16 to 26
Presumed to be David [Jr.] Age 24
WM ages 26 to 45
Unknown Male born b. 1775-1794
WF** to 10
Presumed to be Elizabeth, age 2
WF 26 to 45
Presumed to be Catherine, Age 25-26
WF 45 & Up
Unknown female – b. bef 1775
* WM = White Males | **WF = White FemalesIn addition, an entry indicates that two people were engaged in Agriculture.
This Census is a bit more concerning because a daughter, Emily Ann Swayze is not accounted for. If she was born on 21 Jan 1820 she should be enumerated here but isn’t. Also, there are two other adults who are unknown. We know that David’s parents were enumerated elsewhere, so, these two adults could possibly be Katherine’s parents, James & Margaret. Everything else seems to fit so I’m going to accept this entry as being that of David Swayze/Sweezey
For David, Elizabeth, and Catherine I would add the following:
Name – I’d add Sweazy as an alternate surname for all.
Birth – In the Notes section, I’d add, “1820 Census is consistent.
For David – Census – Date: 7 Aug 1820 | Place: Richland, Fairfield, Ohio: Living with five others in household, He was engaged in Agriculture.
For Emily – Birth Notes – 1820 Census NOT Consistent – Not enumerated. May have been born after 7 Aug 1820.
For Emily – Under Tasks – Analyze birth information regarding Emily. Could she have been born after 7 Aug 1820?
In the notes for the 1820 Census Source Citation I’d add: Neighbors: Noble(?), Williams, Marguhart, & Martin
In my research notes for Catherine’s parents, James & Margaret Walker, I’d add
the following note:“Conjecture: May have lived with daughter Catherine during 1820 Census. “
And under my tasks for them, add a task to search for James Walker in the 1820 Census.
Again, I would love to hear in the comments below if anyone thinks I missed a fact or I added a “fact” not in evidence.
[i] “United States Census, 1820,” Database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XHLS-J2K : accessed 16 June 2015), David Sweazy, Richland, Fairfield, Ohio; citing p. 191, NARA microfilm publication M33, (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 87; FHL microfilm 181,393.
[ii] “United States Census, 1820,” Database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XHLS-VQG : accessed 16 June 2015), David Sweezy, Richland, Fairfield, Ohio; citing p. 188, NARA microfilm publication M33, (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 87; FHL microfilm 181,393.