Joel Barnes & the 1840 Census

Census Sunday
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.I know very little about my 3rd great-grandfather, Joel Barnes. He may have been born 1bout 1790 in Broome County, New York. He married Lucy Wilson Taft and they had at least one child, Nelson, born in 1816. I have no idea about any other children nor any death information. I was unsuccessful in finding Joel in the 1850 Census records so I thought I would look for him in the 1840 Census.

Expectation & Findings:

In 1840, I would expect Joel to be about 50 years old (born 1780-1790). A search for Joel Barnes in the 1840 Census yielded 8 results:

  • Joel Barnes, Jr., Age: 20-30 – Living in Orwell Township, Bradford, Pennsylvania. Too young.
  • Joel Barnes, Age 60-70 – Living in Orwell Township, Bradford, Pennsylvania. (1770-1780)
  • Joel Barnes, Age either 80-79 or 30-40 living in Mansfield, Cattaraugus, New York. One seems too old and the other too young. But it is still possible. However, there are also two females in the household, one 20 to 30 and another one 70 to 80. This feels like it could represent Joel Barnes, his wife, his son Nelson along with Nelson’s wife and others.
  • Joel Barnes, Age 20 to 30, living in Giles, Tennessee. (Too young).
  • Joel Barnes, Age 20 to 30, Living in Marion County, South Carolina. (Too Young)
  • Joel Barnes, Age 20 to 30, Living in Madison County, Kentucky. (Too young)
  • Joel Barnes, Age 50 to 60, Living in Thompson, Windham County, Connecticut.

1840 Census – New York, Cattaragus County, Mansfield – Page 66 – 16th from top – Joel Barnes

2 1 – – – 1 – – – 1  |  – – – – 1 – – – 1

Ages Males Females Comments/Notes
< 5 2 Unknown (Grand) Children?
5-10 1 Unknown (Grand) Children?
20-30 1 Could possibly be Mercy Elisa Taft
30-40 1 Could possibly be Nelson Barnes
60-70 1 Could be Lucy Wilson Taft
70-80 1 Could be Joel Barnes.

There was no Joel Barnes in the 1850 Census in Cattaraugus County, However, there are 52  other Barnes individuals living in Cattaraugus County during the 1850 Census.  I’m not comfortable ascribing this Joel Barnes as my Joel Barnes, the father of Nelson Barnes.

Future Action

I don’t think the various Census records will help me discover more about Nelson Barnes’ father, Joel Barnes. Maybe property or probate records will shed light upon this family line.

Joel Barnes & the 1850 Census

Census Sunday
By Don Taylor

I know very little about my 3rd great-grandfather, Joel Barnes. He may have been born 1bout 1790 in Broome County, New York. He married Lucy Wilson Taft and they had at least one child, Nelson, born in 1816. I have no idea about any other children nor any death information.

In 1850, I would expect Joel to be about 60 years old.

Search Results

Using Family Searcy, my search for Joel Barnes in the 1850 Census yielded 13 results.

    • Joel Barnes, Born 1846 in Georgia – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, born 1845 in Indiana – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1839 in Kentucky – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, born 1836 – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1830 in South Carolina – Too Young
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1829 in South Carolina – Too Young
    • Joel Barnes, born 1827 in North Carolina – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, born 1816 in North Carolina – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1824 in Kentucky- Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1810 in Pennsylvania – Too young.
    • Joel Barnes, born 1795 in Vermont – Possible
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1790 in Tennessee. Possible.
    • Joel Barnes, Born 1782 in Massachusetts. Possible.

That left 3 possible Barnes’ listed by birthyear.

    • 1795 – Living in Corinth, Orange County, Vermont. Has an apparent wife, Ruth, and an implied mother living with him.  No Lucy; unlikely my Joel Barnes.
    • 1790 – Living in South Nashville, Davidson, Tennessee. He has an apparent daughter in law and two grandchildren living with him.  No Lucy; unlikely my Joel Barnes.
    • 1782 – Living in Thompson, Windham, Connecticut. He has an apparent wife, Mary Barnes and an apparent daughter, Eliza; unlikely my Joel Barnes.

None of these entries are consistent with expectations, so I believe that either Joel died before 1850 or was enumerated differently.

Future Action

Look at potential Joel Barnes’ in the 1840 Census.

Nelson Barnes & the 1840 Census

Census Sunday
By Don Taylor

Previously, I had looked at the lives of Nelson Barnes and his wife, Mercy Eliza Taft. (See Endnotes Below.)  I was unsuccessful in finding them in the 1840 Census. I thought I’d try again as part of my examination of the life of Joel Barnes.


In 1840, Nelson would have been 24 years old. He had married Mercy Eliza Taft in 1839 in New York. Mercy was born in 1822, so she should have been 18 at the time. They were in Sullivan County in 1845, but their whereabouts in 1840 is unknown. In 1840 I would expect them enumerated as:

Male 20-30
Female 15-20
Possibly a child under 5, but probably not.

There were five different Nelson Barnes enumerated in the 1840 Census.

1840 Censuses Entries for Nelson Barnes

  1. Indiana, Switzerland County, York Township, Page 352, 10th Name

– – – – – 1 |2 – – – 1
Male 20-30     – Not consistent.
Female 20-30  – Not consistent.

  1. Indiana, Allen County, Wayne Township, Page 46, 3rd from bottom.

– 2 – 2 1 – 1 | 1 1 – – – – 1
Male 40-50 – Not consistent.
Female 40-50 – Not consistent.

  1. Rhode Island, Providence, Burrillville, Page 1, 9th from bottom.

2 – – – 1 1 | – – – – – 1
Male 30-40 – Not consistent.
Female 30-40 – Not consistent

  1. New York, Steuben County, Lindley, Page 2, 21st from top.

– – – 1 2 1 | – – – 1
Male 30-40 – Not Consistent
Female 15-20 – Consistent

  1. New York, Delaware County, Franklin, Page 2, 11th from bottom.

– – 1 – 1 | – – – – – – – 1
Male 20-30 – Consistent
Female 60-70 – Not Consistent


None of these entries are wholly consistent with expectations, so I believe that either Nelson and Mercy were missed in the 1840 Census or they were enumerated in another household. Next, I’ll look closely at the various Joel Barnes in the 1850 Census.


20. Nelson Barnes (1816-1884)
– – – * Nelson Barnes – Civil War Veteran?
– – – * Memories of Martha Barnes Conner – Nelson Barnes and Mercy Eliza Taft
21. Mercy Eliza Taft (1822-1884)
– – – * Surname Saturday – Taft

Scott – Surname Saturday

Name Origin

Ancestry indicates that “Scott” is an ethnic name for someone with Scottish connections. However, the Scottish and Irish consider it the ethnic name for a Gaelic speaker.[I]

Genealogy Bank indicates “Scott” is simply a surname of Scottish origin, first attributed to Uchtredus filius Scoti who was involved in the foundation of Holyrood Abbey and Selkirk in 1120.[ii]

Forebears echos the sources that Ancestry and Genealogy Bank provide but goes into much greater depth into the life of Uchtredus filius Scoti and of other Scotts.[iii]

Although “Scotte”, “Scotts”, and “Scotch” are similar surnames, they total less than one-fiftieth of the number of people that have “Scott” as their surname.


Today,[iv] there are approximately 861,504 people in the world with the Scott surname. The vast majority, over 500,000, live in the United States. It is most common in Scotland where one in every 195 individuals is a “Scott.”

In the United States, there are more people with the “Scott” surname in Texas than any other state, however, the “Scott” surname is most frequently found in South Carolina where one in 384 people are named “Scott.”

Direct Scott Ancestors

    • Great-Grandmother: 9.  Clora Dell Scott (1883-1945) (Family Search)
    • 2nd Great Grandfather: 18. Samuel Vaden Scott(1862-1931)
    • 3rd Great-Grandfather: 36. William Hunt Scott(c. 1834-1903)
    • 4th Great-Grandfather: Samuel Kinkade Scott (1809-____)*[v]
    • 5th Great-Grandfather: John Scott (1784-1855)*
    • 6th Great-Grandfather: 288. William Jarvis Scott (____-____)*
    • 7th Great-Grandfather: 576. James Scott (1719-1783)*



Clora Scott Roberts Adams

In 1920, my great-grandmother, Clora Dell Scott, was married, widowed, and remarried and living in Hutsonville, Crawford County, Illinois with her husband, Hosea Lee Adams. With her are three or her children, Bert, Harry, and Mabel. Her eldest daughter, Carrie, died in 1906.

Meanwhile, her father, Samuel Vaden Scott was living about 135 miles southwest in Goode Township, Franklin County, Illinois where the 57-year-old is working as a night watchman.  Living with him is his second wife, Lovinia and his youngest son, William.

The 1920 Census indicates there were about 2,974 individuals with the Scott Name living in Illinois. Forty-eight of them are known to be related to my Scott Family.

1880 Census

Photo of William Hunter Scott
William Hunter Scott

The 1880 Census found the 19-year-old Samuel Scott married to Amanda and newly blessed with their oldest daughter, Clara. They live in Barren Township, Franklin County Illinois where Samuel is farming. Samuel Scott’s father, William Hunt Scott is probably living in Illinois. (Although I have not found him in the 1880 Censuses.)

1840 Census

In 1840, Samuel Vaden Scott hadn’t been born yet. His father, William Hunt Scott was only about six years old. He was living with his parents, Samuel Kinkade and Elizabeth (Hunt) Scott along with two sisters, Sarah and Mary in St. Clair County, Illinois.

Samuel Kinkade’s parents were living, however, I have not had the time to trace them in the 1840 censuses.

Colonial Times

My earliest known ancestor is thought to be James Scott who was born in what is now known as  Northern Ireland in 1719. I don’t know (yet) when he immigrated, but he died in Virginia in 1783. So, it appears that this line arrived to the colonies sometime before the revolution. My suspicion is that James came to the Colonies about 1740 during the Irish Famine of 1740-1741 where between 15 and 20 percent of the population of the Kingdom of Ireland died.


I have 129 known descendants from James Scott (1719-1783) in my tree (See: Roberts-Brown-2020). For Scott photos, please see my Flickr page of “Scott Photos.”



[i] Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press via Ancestry.Com



[iv] “Today” is based upon 2014 Data from – Ibid.

[v] Individuals marked * are tentative in this tree. I have not analyzed nor confirmed their relationship or facts.

Martha Melinda Montgomery

Ancestor Sketch

By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.Martha Melinda Montgomery Haley Midyett had a rough life. She married young (17), had six children who she saw die. She also was widowed – twice. There was no informant for her death certificate, and she was, apparently, buried without a marker.

Roberts/Brown – Ancestor #39

List of Grandparents


Martha’s birthdate is one of the most confounding set of birth information I’ve encountered. I am confident that she was born on 5 October 1839 in Tennessee, probably Bedford county. Her parents were Leonard L and Syrena (Meadows) Montgomery; she was the third of seven children born to Syrena. The 1850 Census is the record that was closest to her birth and it indicated she was ten years old at the time. The following census records suggest her being born in 1838, 1839, or 1840.

The monument (marker) for her first husband indicates her birthdate as 5 October 1835; however, there is no corroborating documentation. Likewise, her death record appears to say her birthdate is F. 1st 1836. That record also indicates her age at death as being 77 years, 11 months, and 22 days, suggesting a death date of 30 or 31 July 1836.

1840 Census

The 1840 Census didn’t indicate individual’s names, only the head of household’s name was enumerated. In this case, her father, Leonard L. Montgomery, is living in Bedford County, Tennessee. Living with him is a young boy, two very young girls, and a young woman. That fits with what I believe the family unit should have included

  • Leonard    Age 20 to 30   – He should be 26.
  • Syrena      Age 20 to 30   – She should be 25.
  • William     Age 5 to 10     – He should be 5 or 6.
  • Mary-Ann Under 5          – She should be 2.
  • Martha      Under 5          – She should be 1.

1850 Census

The 1850 Census is the first census to list names in a household. The Leonard Montgomery household of 1850 consisted of the following:

Name                                      Sex      Age      Born

    • Lenard Montgomery           M      36     Tennessee
    • Syrenia Montgomery          F       35     North Carolina
    • Wm G M Montgomery        M      15     Tennessee
    • Mary Ann Montgomery      F       11     Tennessee
    • Martha M Montgomery      F       10     Tennessee
    • John H Montgomery           M        9     Tennessee
    • Thomas J Montgomery      M        6     Tennessee
    • James H Montgomery        M        5     Tennessee
    • Harriet J Montgomery          F       0    Tennessee

This has the appearance of a traditional family.

1857 – Marriage

If the Montgomery family lived on the eastern side of Bedford County, the nearest larger town to them would have been Manchester in Coffee County. That is where the 17-year-old Martha was married to Andrew J. Haley on 20 August 1857 By L. F Dillard, Justice of the Peace.

1860 Census

The Haley family of 1860 consisted of:

  • A.J. (Andrew) Age 23
  • Malinda                      Age 21 May (aka Mary)         Age   1
  • Ben                             Age 81
  • Nancy                         Age 70

I believe that Benjamin and Nancy Haley (ages 81 and 70) are likely his grandparents.

Andrew was 25 in 1860.  For Andrew to be Nancy’s child, she would have had to have him at age 45 and Benjamin would have been 56. Possible, but it is much more likely that Benjamin and Nancy are Andrew’s grandparents. Further research will be needed to prove that.

1870 Census

Sometime between 1860 and 1870, they moved the 235 miles from Manchester, Tennessee, to Ewing, Franklin County, Illinois. During that period, Franklin County grew nearly 35% to 12,653.[1]

The 1870 Census finds Martha keeping house and has two children, Mary and Amanda, living with her and Andrew. Later, we will learn that Martha had eight children; only three lived to adulthood. The 10-year gap between Amanda’s birth and the 1870 census suggests that that decade was horrific for Martha and Andrew with several children dying.

1880 Census

Martha’s daughter Mary married Theodore Edward Curry; they had a child, Martha (Mattie). Mary and Mattie are living with Martha and Andrew as well as daughter Serina. Mary is listed as “Confined.” The nature of her (Mary’s) disability is not listed.

The census taker entered the age of the individuals in years and months.  So, the household included the following people:

Name                          Age                  Suggested Birthdate

  • Andrew J. Hailey        44 5/12          Dec 1835
  • Martha M Hailey       40 8/12          Sep 1939
  • Mary F Curry               21 8/12          Sep 1858
  • Serina J Hailey             9 2/12           Mar 1871
  • Martha L Curry            1 5/12           Dec 1878

1900 Census

The 1900 Census is where we learn what a tough life Martha had. It indicates she had eight children and only two were living. With her and Andrew are two granddaughters, Clora and Laura, two of the daughters of Martha’s daughter, Amanda. Amanda died in 1889 at the age of 28.

Living in the household was a boarder, Budge Casey, a farm laborer.

1905 Death of Andrew

Andrew died in 1905, leaving Martha a widow.

1906 – Marriage to Lacy Midyett

The 67-year-old Martha quickly remarried a widower, Lacy Meadows Midyett.

1910 Census

1910 – Martha lived with Lacy in Goode Township (a change from Barren township where she lived with Andrew). The household consisted of 75-year-old Lacy and 70-year-old Martha. Living with them was a granddaughter of Lacy, Ema Sweet.


1912 – Martha’s husband, Rev. Lacy Meadows Midyett, died in Chicago on 5 December 1912.

1914 – Martha died in Goode Township, Franklin County, Illinois, on 22 July 1914.


Green Birth, Blue Marriage, Read Death.
  • Tennessee, Bedford County – Birth, 1840, 1850,
  • Tennessee, Coffee County – Marriage 1, 1860
  • Illinois, Franklin County – 1865, 1870, 1880, 1900, marriage 2, death.

————–  Disclaimer  ————–


Continue reading “Martha Melinda Montgomery”