The Haley Brick Wall

Roberts/Scott/Haley
By Don Taylor

I hate to ever admit it but, I think I may have hit a brick wall on my Haley line. I think I’ve followed all the reasonable paths and I’m down to speculation and looking to see if I can find any evidence to support or conflict with my speculation.

My Speculation

1860 Census[1]

The 1860 Census indicates that living with my third-great-grandparents (Andrew & Malinda Haley) were Benjamin and Nancy Haley (ages 81 and 70 respectively) were both born in North Carolina. Andrew as only 23-years-old during 1860, so it is unlikely that Benjamin and Nancy are his parents. More likely, they are his grandparents; but they could be related in some other way. Through this post, I’ll consider facts that may confirm or refute this speculation/hypothesis.

1850 Census[2]

An Ancestry search of the 1850 Census resulted in finding four individuals named Benjamin Haily (or Haley or Hailey) who were born in North Carolina. Ancestry indicates birth years for the four as, 1802, 1805, 1818, and 1830. None of these seemed to fit my Benjamin Haley. I then searched Family Search using the same criteria. There, the same four individuals were presented, however, the one identified as born about 1830 is identified as being born about 1780 which fits my Benjamin Haley. Looking at the image carefully, it is not clear if the entry is 20 or 70. In my opinion, many of the other twos on the page support the idea that this entry is a 70. If this is the case, then the household would consist of

Clay County, Kentucky – Enumerated 24 Aug 1850 – Dwelling & Household 383, Lines 30-36.

  • Elizabeth Haily       Age 44 North Carolina (cannot read or write)
  • A??zy  Jr.                    Age 14 Tennessee
  • Edward                       Age 12 Tennessee
  • Solomon                    Age 8   Tennessee
  • Sarah                           Age 5   Tennessee
  • Asa                               Age 7/12 Kentucky
  • Benj.                            Age 70 North Carolina (cannot read or write)

It is my sense that this is my Benjamin and he is living with his daughter-in-law and her five children.

1840 Census

My Benjamin Haley should be about 60 years of age during the 1840 Census. A review of the census indicates there are two Benjamin Haley’s enumerated in Tennessee. One was in Madison County and appears to be between 30 and 40 years of age[3]. This is clearly not my Benjamin Haley.

The second Benjamin is in Henry County[4]. He is between 20 and 30 years of age. Clearly not my Benjamin Haley either. So, the question is, is he with a son and daughter-in-law or could he still be in North Carolina.

Conclusion

I feel I’ve come against a brick wall. I am not finding any records which are shedding light upon any of these individuals. I think I’ll set this family line aside for a while and come back to it afresh later.

My speculation is that the parents of Andrew J. Haley (1836-1905) are unknown. I believe Andrew’s grandfather was Benjamin Haley (1779-c.1860). I suspect that Benjamin’s apparent wife, Nancy,  during the 1860 census is a second wife and not Andrew’s biological grandmother.[5]

If you have evidence which supports Andrew J. Haley’s parentage or evidence with contradicts this conclusion, I’d love to hear about it.  Please use the comment form below. Continue reading “The Haley Brick Wall”

Andrew J Hailey and the 1850 Census

Census Sunday
Roberts-Scott-Haley
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.Sometimes it takes a leap to find an ancestor in the census records. Such is the case for my third-great-grandfather, Andrew J. Hailey.

Finding Andrew in the 1850 Census has been a challenge. Some facts that I think I  know:

  • Andrew was born in Tennessee in 1836.
  • Andrew’s parents were born in Tennessee.[i]
  • Andrew married Martha Melinda Montgomery in Manchester, Coffee, Tennessee in 1857.[ii]
  • Andrew and Martha lived in Manchester, Coffee County, Tennessee in 1860.[iii]

The 1850 Census indicated one Haily family in Coffee County with children in the proper age group. It has two children, Charles & James, born in 1836 plus/minus a year. Neither seems to be a candidate for my Andrew.

However, in Bedford County, (next to Coffee County) there was a Madison Hailey family with a male in the household of the right age named “Anderson.” Also, both apparent parents were born in Tennessee as I would expect.[iv] Could this “Anderson” by my Andrew?

Anderson or Andrew?

A close look at the census image doesn’t either confirm or refute it. Indeed, what the enumerator wrote looks more like “Anderson” than “Andrew,” but it is so poorly written, it is difficult to tell, it could be “Andrew.”

The 1850 Census doesn’t provide relationships; however, the household looks like it might be a typical family unit with Madison and Anney Hailey as the apparent parents of six children.

Household                              Sex      Age      Birthplace

Madison L Hailey                    M         33        Tennessee

Anney Hailey                            F          35        Tennessee

Anderson J Hailey                  M        16        Tennessee

James C Hailey                         M         12        Tennessee

Elizabeth M Hailey                  F          10        Tennessee

Mary Ann Hailey                     F          8          Tennessee

Hester Ann Hailey                   F          7          Tennessee

John R Hailey                           M         3          Tennessee

If this “Anderson” is my Andrew, and my Andrew was living in Coffee County with his wife, I would expect I can’t find Anderson in any census. The 1840 Census doesn’t have names except for the head of the household. Going back to the 1860 Census, I have scoured the 1860 Census and have been unable to find an Anderson Hailey anywhere. So, I believe that either Anderson died or Anderson J. Hailey is Andrew J. Hailey.

I am going to take the leap and ascribe Anderson as Andrew and Madison and Anney as his parents in my records tentatively. I’ll be able to back it out at any time. In the meanwhile, I’ll continue searching for information to corroborate or refute this tentative association.

Continue reading “Andrew J Hailey and the 1850 Census”