Saturday, October 26, 2013

Ancestor Highlight: Samuel Myers Hartman, November 10, 1844 – June 19, 1928, my 2nd great grandfather

I’ve been highlighting ancestors that made highlighting easy because somebody wrote about them in a book or there was some quirk in their history that brought up questions.  But we have more relatives that just quietly lived their lives, with the daily struggles to make a living, and the sorrows and joys we all share in the making of a life, but which aren’t recorded in government forms or written about in the newspaper.  Samuel Myers Hartman was one of those men …at least until he turned 79.

As Samuel Myers Hartman’s father was named Samuel, and he named one of his sons Samuel Thomas, I will refer to Samuel Myers Hartman as Samuel M.

Samuel M. was born a farmer’s son, and he became a farmer as well. His father, Samuel, owned property worth $1001 in 1850 in the Canaan Township of Wayne County OH. At that point they had 8 children, ranging from 19 to just born, and young Samuel M. was 6 years old. (1850 Census) By the time Samuel M. was 16, his father had become a very successful farmer, owning $18,200 worth of real property and $1573 of personal property. (1860 Census.)  [For perspective, a 4 room apartment rented for $4.45 cents a month in 1860; land sold for $3-$5 an acre; a laborer’s wage without board was 90 cents a day; eggs were 20 cents a dozen. (]

When he was 23, Samuel Myers Hartman married Julia Ann Zimmerman, daughter of the previously discussed Mennonite soldier. (1900 census) Over the course of their marriage they had 6 sons and 5 daughters (Charlie, Ettie, Dellie, Fanny, Zoe, Jesse, Samuel Thomas, Wellie, Odo, Henry, and Cleo). In 1875, when he was 31, he moved his family from Wayne County, Ohio and moved to Allen township in Hancock County, Ohio [or, for those of us not used to thinking in counties, from somewhere near Wooster OH to somewhere near Findlay OH], and again took up farming. By the time Samuel M. was head of his own household, the census forms had stopped asking for a valuation of property owned so I can’t give a comparison to his father, but we do know that he supported eleven kids, and had enough money later in life to be able to retire and move into a home in Findlay and to own an automobile. His wife Julia Ann died in 1913 at the age of 68, leaving him a widower.  Samuel M. married again four years later, in 1917, to Hattie Tarr Breasler. He was 73. [Obituary, The Findlay Morning Republican, Wednesday, June 20, 1928, p. 12. 1880, 1900, 1910 & 1920 Census]

In the spring of 1923, when he was 79, Samuel M. got in an automobile accident in Findlay at the corner of First and Main streets. The driver of the other car sued him for $4500 in damages, and Samuel M. cross-claimed for $1200. It must have been one a heckuva accident! [Again, for perspective, the average car cost $393; the average house cost $8,142; the average wage was $1066; 2.5 lbs of coffee was $1.] On the eve of trial the parties came to an undisclosed settlement on January 18 , 1924. [Note to self: Remember to write the court for a copy of pleadings and settlement agreement.]( ; The Findlay Morning Republican: Monday, November 5, 1923, p.14;  Thursday, January 17, 1924, p. 14; Friday, January 18, 1924, p. 3; and Wednesday, June 20, 1928, p. 12.)

Samuel M. Hartman, died at one o’clock on June 19, 1928 at his home, at 318 First street, Findlay, Ohio, of cerebral hemorrhages, following a serious illness of two weeks. He was 83 years old.The funeral was held at two o’clock June 21, 1928 from the residence on First Street, with Rev. W. I. Alexander, former pastor of the Pine Avenue Presbyterian Church, where Samuel M. had been a member for the past eleven years, officiating. He was buried in the Van Buren cemetery. He was survived by nine of his children: are Charles Hartman, LaGrange, IL; Mrs. Etta Archer, Bartlesville, OK.; Mrs. Zoe Rader, Alvada, OH; Mrs. Fanny Erwin and H.B. Hartman, both of Findlay, OH; J.E. Hartman, Bluffton, OH; W.J. Hartman, O. L. Hartman, and Mrs. Cleo Duffield, all of Van Buren, OH. [Obituary, The Findlay Morning Republican, Wednesday, June 20, 1928, p. 12.]

Sunday, October 20, 2013

First pass of Mom’s Maternal line

In the past week I got as far as it appears I can on this first pass through of my Mom’s mother’s side of the family. Earlier, in the Catching You Up post, I explained how far I’d gotten up Mom’s maternal grandmother’s line in this first pass and posted a picture of the direct line pedigree chart starting from Fannie (Hartman) Hart Erwin (which involved the following surnames: Diehl, Hart, Hartman, Meyers, Speicher, Whonsetler, Wonsetler/Wonsettler, and Zimmerman). Since then, I’ve been researching Mom’s maternal grandfather’s family, and have gotten as far as I can go on this first not-so-very-in-depth pass. I’ve got some good hints as to where I’ll be going in the next step up in general, on several of the lines, but I just can’t find/make the next connection using the family papers I have,, Google EBooks for county history books,, Google, and, alone, right now.  [Yes, I know I originally said I’d stick to for the first pass – I got enticed and distracted. ; ) ]

Mom’s maternal grandfather’s family tree, as I have it now, looks like this (click to embiggen):

It involves folks with the following surnames: Conley, Cosner, Craig, Erwin, Lewis, Miller, Wilson. 

I can tell that in the next pass I will be doing a lot more research into North Carolina, as I have indication in the documentation I have that nearly everyone I lost the trail of was born in or spent some time in North Carolina. It shows that Judge William Erwin & his wife Lydia Lewis were born in North Carolina, as were both Henry Conley, his father John, and his father John, and Henry’s wife Sarah Cosner. I have some indication that Judge William Erwin’s father, William, may have been born in Ireland. Adam Craig may have at one point been in Tennessee, since his daughter, Eliza Ann, was born in that state, but I really know very little about him. I know nothing about either John Conley's (1776-1853) wife or his mother.
Putting together the charts for my Mom's maternal line, the direct line chart of my maternal grandmother (Mom’s Mother, Mabel Erwin), as I have it now, looks like this (click to embiggen):

I’ve been reading up on lots of other possible types of searches for the second pass. That pass will take more time and more patience. I can see now too, that I will probably take some time off searching between the two passes to create and/or organize my physical files in a much better way as that will help me make a better and more successful search ultimately. I will probably also be sending out emails/letters to older relatives requesting memories/stories they have of their relatives/ancestors as those would both help my search and provide body & color to the bare bones of my document search to help me know my ancestors more as people. But first I must finish the first pass of the rest of the family.

This weekend I started the first pass of my mother’s paternal line of the family. I have some help with this side in the form of handwritten remembrances of her own family and family tree, and that of her husband, by my great grandmother, Pearl Pauline Bailey.  I started by entering her remembered connections and names as she wrote them into and waited overnight for little wiggling leaves to show up to hopefully verify her memories. I’ve already discovered that her remembrances of family history aren’t entirely accurate. So, while it’s a start, it all must be verified. Fun!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Ancestor Highlight: William "Judge" Erwin, 1777-1837, my 4th great grandfather

      William Erwin, my 4th great grandfather, was born in central and lived in North Carolina from 1777 until approximately 1810. He moved with his family to Indiana Territory in about 1810, locating in what became Clark County, Indiana.  He served for some years as a Magistrate of the Indiana Territory, appointed by Territorial Governor William Henry Harrison (who was later President of the U.S., for one month). The Indian Territory consisted of what is now Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and parts of Michigan, Minnesota and Ohio.

In l8l5 he moved to what became Lawrence county, Indiana, just a year later when Indiana became a state in December 1816. In that county, he became widely known, serving for a time as County Judge.  He was described as a ”man of fine abilities, and… integrity”.  His commissions as County Judge were signed by Jonathan Jennings, as Governor of the state of Illinois, and R. A. New, as Secretary of State.

Judge William Erwin and three of his sons, Jarrett L., David and Crawford (my 3rd great grandfather), moved from Indiana, and settled in Clay County Illinois, in October, 1832. Judge Erwin, as he was known, bought his first tract of land there, 80 acres, in 1833. The Erwins were influential citizens, and did much toward building up schools and churches, and developing the county. Judge William Erwin was a member of the County Board in 1834.

The first school taught in the Hoosier Prairie was by Judge Erwin, at his own home, and attended by all in reach. Young men would also come from other neighborhoods and board in the vicinity in order to attend the school. “The school was taught by Judge William Erwin, in a log cabin in the Judge’s own door-yard, and the seats consisted of split poles with pins in them for leg's; the floor was of puncheon, and the window was simply a log out of one side of the cabin, with nothing over the aperture. They however kept a plank with which they covered this crack when the weather was too cold. The room was warmed by a huge fire-place, and the chimney was made of sticks and mud.” (p. 149 of History of Wayne and Clay Counties, Illinois; Chicago: Globe Publishing, Historical Publishers, 1884; Reprint published by Brookhaven Publishers 2000.)

Judge Erwin died August 4, 1837, and was the first person buried in the Erwin Cemetery. The land occupied by this cemetery was once selected by him for a building site for his home, but he afterward changed his mind in regard to it, and upon his death his friends buried him there.

[Facts drawn from “History of Lawrence, Orange and Washington Counties, Indiana: From the Earliest time to the Present; Together with Interesting Biographical Sketches, Reminiscenses, Note, etc.” Chicago: Goodspeed Bros. & Co., Publishers, 1881, Digitized by Google, pp. 103-104, 249-250;  A biographical sketch of Capt Hugh Erwin, in The History of Cherokee County, Kansas included within the History of Kansas by William G. Cutler, published by A.T. Andreas, 1883; “History of Wayne and Clay Counties, Illinois; Chicago: Globe Publishing, Historical Publishers, 1884, Reprint published by Brookhaven Publishers 2000; digitized by Google, pp. 449, 451; Wikipedia: Indiana Territory (; Web: Illinois, Find-a-grave Index, 1809-2012 (found at; the  United States Federal Census of 1790, 1800, 1810, 1820, and 1830; and U.S. General Land Office Records, 1996-1907.]

Monday, October 14, 2013

October 7, 2013 - October 13, 2013

As I've been working for the Unemployment Insurance Department for over twenty years, it is ingrained in me to run my weeks Monday through Sunday, as we do at work; accordingly, the dates above.  This week I have been concentrating on the Erwin branch of the family. I'm not as far along as I'd hoped for two reasons: 1) this week at work was high stress, which because of my gastroparesis, tends to eat into my energy reserves and by the end of the week I was exhausted, and didn't get on the computer to dive back into my research until Sunday evening; and 2) there is a gracious plenty of information about the Erwins in Illinois and, just before that, in Indiana, and there are a whole bunch of them, with repeating family names. I am going fairly slowly to try to make sure I have the correct people in my tree, and the correct information attached to the correct person.

I did a post mid-week on Eli Erwin because I was so excited to have found his muster papers. I am now back to his & John's father, Crawford (who apparently greatly preferred being married to being single as he had three wives and did not go more than a year without one after each of the first two died) and his grandfather, William, with hints that I might get to his great grandfather, (in NC, maybe William, again) if I can sort out who belongs to whom as there appear to be even more Erwins in NC in the late 1700s - early 1800s than there are in Indiana and Illinois in later years.

I believe I'm going to have to let go of my goal of having finished this pass through Mom's side of the family before I see her next given that I haven't even reached her Dad's side of the family yet. Sorry, Mom.

As this is a three day weekend for me, I hope to get another Ancestor Highlight up sometime tomorrow (Monday).  Long term, one of my personal goals is to truly flesh out my female ancestors as best I can, as women tend to get lost in history and I don't want them to get lost in our family history; but I have to acknowledge that at this early stage my highlights are definitely male-centric.  This is because there is more documentation about men, particularly if there's a war (and additionally the male Erwins have managed to get themselves into several early county history books in Illinois and Indiana [which, serendipitously, are available as free, searchable, ebooks through Google books*]). I will probably get more about the women in the family on the next pass through the research and I will highlight the women when I can. But the next Ancestor Highlight is likely to be about a man again.


*If you have any desire to read these county histories yourself, contact me, or say so in the comments, and I'll list the books so you can find them yourself.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

A Tragic Family Mystery? (Eli Erwin)

   I've run into another puzzle in my family research this week. Since I caught all of you up to where I'd gotten before I started the blog, I'm back into the Erwin line again. Normally I don't do a lot with brothers and sisters of my direct line ancestors, but I do flesh them out to some extent because I've found it often helps me find the right person(s) in prior generations. So this week I've been working on John Erwin's (2nd great-great grandfather)  brother's and sisters. 

Three of his brothers also served in the Civil War, on the Union side, but only Lafayette made it home. Captain William Erwin died at the Battle of Spanish Fort, AL. Private Eli (Elias) Erwin died at the Battle of Shiloh, TN. Or did he?

It is family lore that Eli died at the Battle of Shiloh, which occurred on April 6 and 7, 1862. There is a grave for him at the Hoosier Cemetery in Louisville in Clay county Illinois. According to, it indicates that he died on April 5, 1862, but that could just be a typo. By the time I'd gotten to Eli, I'd gotten pretty good at finding out service information for the Civil War. The fact that the National Park Service Soldier and Sailor Search website was not operable during the Federal Government shutdown and that the National Archives website was operating on a very limited basis for the same reason did put a hitch in my stride but I had work-arounds. I confirmed that Eli had served with Company F of the 18th Missouri Infantry, through the Missouri Archive online system, and I used that information to search for Eli at, just looking for anything they might have to add some color to his profile. Boy, did I ever find "color"!

I found a 9 pg  record of Muster Rolls (summarized bi-monthly) document at for Elias Erwin which indicates, in pertinent part:

"Elias Erwin. Private, Co F, 18 Reg’t Missouri Infantry

Appears on Company Muster Roll November & December 1861, Present

Appears on Company Muster Roll January & February 1862, Present

Appears on Company Muster Roll March & April 1862, Absent
Remarks: Badly wounded in both thighs in the battle 6 April 1862 and sent to Savannah, Tenn

Appears on Company Muster Roll May & June 1862, Absent
Remarks: Wounded in both thighs Battle Shiloh 6 April 1862. Left at Hospital Savannah, Tenn April 7/62.

Appears on Company Muster Roll for date of August 31, 1962
Remarks: Discharged from Camp No. 10 near Corinth Miss. On account of wounds received in action Battle of Shiloh 6th April 62. Enrolled Dec. 17, 61 Westin, MO. Date & place muster in not shown. Name not bourne on subsequent rolls of this company"*

If he had died at Shiloh, I would have thought that the document would have said "killed" or "died" instead of discharged? To me, "Discharged" indicates he was alive on August 31, 1862. Wouldn't you think so?

Based on the grave, I'm thinking that he didn't make it home after discharge. Perhaps it is a memorial grave, without an actual internment?

I feel so bad for the boy. He was only 19 in 1862 (per census records). He had been "badly wounded" in both thighs. He was discharged to get himself home, near Corinth Miss, between the May 1862 Seige of Corinth and the early October Battle of Corinth. He was in the Confederate state of Mississippi and nearly 350 miles from home, and the area between where he was and home must have been crawling with hostile troops. I hope someone took care of him at the end and that he wasn't alone and scared.

Whether he died in June 1862, or sometime after August 31, 1862, will probably remain a mystery. In either case, it was a tragedy.

*[Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Volunteer Organizations During the American Civil War, compiled 1890 - 1912, documenting the period 1861 - 1866; Publication Number M405; National Archives Catalog No. 300398; Record group 94; State: Missouri; Roll 0520; Military Unit: 18th Infantry, E-Ge.]

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Ancestor Highlight: Henry Y Zimmerman, 1795-1853, my 3rd great grand father

I don’t know as much about Henry Zimmerman as I do about John Erwin. There has been much less written about him, and I’m struggling with applying the “Does this make sense?” standard (see the blog article Anne's Top Ten Rules For Growing Your Family Tree) to the facts I did find. But the man intrigues me…perhaps because of the contradictions and mysteries. I have spent a more time on him than anyone else thus far, trying to resolve the contradictions and get through the mysteries. I need to let him go for now, to move on now, and maybe by the time I get back to him, something will have been dug up and digitized that will help me crack the conundrum. However, in order to be able to leave him (I even dreamed about researching him last night!), I must write about him.

I obtained information from his census records and death records through’s little wiggling leaves.

Henry Y Zimmerman was born in about the year 1794 or 1795. I know this in part because he said in the 1850 Census on September 13, 1850 (in Chester Township, Wayne County, Ohio) that he was 56 years old. Simple math puts his likely birth year at 1794. On that Census, he also said he was born in Maryland, and that he was a farmer. It also says that his wife, Frances, is 50 years old and was born in Pennsylvania. It lists his children as Henry, 20; Caroline M., 17; Susanna, 15; Hiram F., 14; Martin V., 12; Oliver P, 9; and Juliann, 7. The first two children were born in Pennsylvania, and the rest of them were born in Ohio. I descend from Juliann (later designated as Julia A Zimmerman).

                I also have him, and probably most of his family, in Chester Township, Wayne County, Ohio, in 1840, but that Census form was not nearly as detailed as the later one; it consists of numbers in columns indicating how many people in his household in certain age ranges.

                It’s the information that I obtained along with his death and burial information that starts bringing in the contradiction and mystery. Through I have a record of his death and burial place from the Ohio Obituary Index kept at the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center (it describes its source as Wayne County Grave Registration Cards) and I have a record of his burial place through a link provided by to which has a memorial page for Henry Y Zimmerman with a picture of the cemetery, it’s name and address. Through these sources I have his birth year as 1795 in Maryland, his age at death as 58, and his death date as September 12, 1853. He was buried at Eight Square Mennonite Cemetery, Lattasburg/Chester Township, Wayne County, Ohio. The memorial lists his wife and children, and they match, so I know he’s my Henry Y. Zimmerman. Apparently, he’s Mennonite; that’s interesting (later research into his wife shows she’s Mennonite and buried there as well).  Both death records contain the note that he served in the Army in the war of 1812 under the command of Captain George Sanderson. 

                Wait! A Mennonite soldier? This is where it stopped making sense.

The Mennonites are a peace church. They don’t fight in any war. I knew this because when I was young I was a member of the Church of the Brethren, and even attended a Church of the Brethren affiliated college (Juniata College - great school & experience!). As one of the three historic peace churches, the Church of the Brethren has often partnered with the other two (Mennonite and Quaker) in their peace efforts. But just to be sure I’ve spent a lot of time reading Mennonite histories in the past week, and a lot of time reading about the War of 1812.

I first checked to see whether I could find out if Henry Y Zimmerman did serve in the War of 1812. Per addendums to a lecture given before the Lancaster Literary Institute, by George Sanderson, Esq., in 1851, titled  “A Brief History ofthe Early Settlement of Fairfield County" which was subsequently printed in the local Lancaster PA paper, "with added facts", "H. Zimmerman" was a private in the campaign of 1813-1814  I then remembered the luck I had in finding digitized enlistment rosters for my ancestors in the Civil War and looked for any records relating to enlistment rosters for the War of 1812, and there I found “Served In 1813 and 1814: Private Henry Zimmerman”. Excerpted from Roster of Ohio Soldiers in the War of 1812, 27th United States Infantry, Roll of Capt. George Sanderson's Company, And “Henry Zimmerman Enlisted June 7, 1813”, per 1880 History of Franklin & Pickaway Counties, Ohio; Military Record (See That was the muster center for Ohio. He was honorably discharged in Detroit in 1814, per A History of Fairfield County Ohio, Chapter XVIII, The War of 1812 and The Mexican War (see

In doing this research, I also found out that there are a whole bunch of Henry Zimmerman(s) in that time frame (it was a very popular name – though seemingly only one with a middle initial Y) – so it could still be someone else. On the other hand, the Ohio Society of the United States  Daughters  of1812, include Henry Y Zimmerman’s grave on their Online Index to Grave Records of Servicemen of the War of 1812, for the State of Ohio. (See And I would assume they check these things out pretty carefully.

I then started looking up variations of War and Mennonite and American, and skimmed two histories of the Mennonites I’d earlier picked up via Google books. I found that, while in Ohio, as of 1803, Quakers, Mennonites, and “Dunkers” were exempt from military duty in the state militia in lieu of a three dollar annual payment, that didn’t apply to federal call ups, and it wasn’t until WWII that a formalized alternative service was created. I did see several rather entertaining complaints of senior officers throughout various wars whose rolls contained Mennonites, Quakers or Brethren that they were “near deadweight” as they wouldn’t pick up a gun and had to be put to cleaning, grave-digging or cooking duties.  According to Notes on the Ohio Militia duringthe War of 1812 by  James T. Brenner much of the Ohio militia was relegated to building roads, convoying supplies, and manning blockhouses, causing one Ohio officer to remark, “The militia of Ohio have been made pack horses and merely served as convenience for others to receive the honor and glory.”  I could see a Mennonite soldier serving his draft duty in such a way, such that the contradiction becomes somewhat more plausible.

I don’t feel that the contradiction is resolved, but perhaps it is as resolved as it is going to get. I know it is as resolved as it is going to get right now. Now to the mystery: I can’t find anyone beyond him. I hit a brick wall. Hopefully, I’ll be able to dismantle it later but not right now. In my search I saw other people putting posts on genealogical forums seeking information on him too. Many postulate that Fanny is his second wife and that the first two children, born in PA, are from an unnamed first wife. Later research into his son Henry showed that he was born in Westmoreland County PA, but I can find nothing about Henry Y there. At least I am not alone; those other people can’t find his parents in Maryland, or anywhere else, either.

If anyone has any more information on my 3rd great-grandfather Henry Y Zimmerman than I do, I would love to hear from you!

The direct descent line is:
Henry Y Zimmerman (1795-1853) – Frances “Fanny” Speicher (1801-1876)
Julia Ann Zimmerman (1844-1913) – Samuel Myers Hartman(1844-1928)
Mabel LeRe Erwin (1910-1990)Clarence Snyder (1910-1984) – my maternal grandparents
My Mom

I Feel Like Thomas Edison

This week I made fewer discoveries and spent more time running into roadblocks. But, as Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed 10,000 times. I have successfully found 10,000 ways that do not work,” and I have been discovering sources of information that may well work for other people on the tree later on, bookmarking them, and/or joining them, as needed. I have also added a few bits and pieces of additional facts to people I’d already discovered (some real estate transactions by Great Aunt Julia Hart Siddall and her 2nd husband found on and; some family stories about Great Aunt Julia Hart Siddall told to me by one of my mother’s sisters after she saw the post about the quilt and my efforts to find the drapery shop; some Civil War related information for some of 2nd great grandfather John Erwin’s siblings, etc). And I’ve been doing some background research on the War of 1812 and Mennonites to try to understand and reconcile some facts I’d found regarding one of my third great grandfathers, Henry Y. Zimmerman, who will be my Ancestor Highlight for this week (I learned a lot but it didn’t help me reconcile the two opposing facts – the man is a puzzlement, on multiple levels). I will write that post tomorrow.

I also received and uploaded some family tree software to my computer so that I can work on it outside of and so I can more easily keep track of information obtained from sources other than Ancestry. I am living proof that incessant advertising works. Over the past several months I’ve gotten a tone of ads from for software called Family Tree Maker. I bought the latest version of it. I’ve since seen competing blog posts by other people as to whether they like it better or something called RootsMagic or Family Source better. Since I’m just beginning I rather think that whatever I get used to will work for me and this is set up a lot like and will sync with quite easily, which I like.

The Family Tree Maker software also helped me make the chart I put up with the catch up post earlier this week. Making the chart was easy and fun. Figuring out how to post it on BlogSpot was anything but; even though I found a how to video and a step by step instruction with pictures on the web. It didn’t turn out like I wanted it to turn out but it’s readable and adequate. It’s odd how I have infinite patience with historical research, even including brick walls; but am shortly reduced to cussing at the computer and pounding the desk (both actions utterly unhelpful) when I’m trying to do something technical and it isn’t working, lol!

Next week I’m going back to the Erwin branch to get them as far as I can, and then I’m moving on to the Snyder side of Mom’s family. My goal is to get the first pass through Mom’s family done by the end of October. I don’t know yet if that is possible, but I’m going to try.

P.S. Hah! I just learned how to make paragraphs in html! (I had no paragraphs the first two times I previewed this. I needed to use html to put in links.) I can learn nearly anything from a good Google search! And now, to bed.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Catching You Up

     I've been trying to figure out a way to catch you up with the basic work I'd done prior to starting the blog, in a way you could see it [as opposed to yet another long-winded post.].  [Update: I figured out a better way to post it. (Click on the picture to embiggen.)]

      Prior to the start of the blog, I began working my way up the family tree, starting with my maternal grandmother, Mabel LeRe Erwin, and going up through her mother, Fannie S. Hartman Erwin. In order to have the picture stay on one page, I've begun the started tree below with Fannie. My Great-Grandfather, Vernon Erwin, was Fannie's second husband. I have some information on my grandmother's half-siblings, and on other siblings/children and every level, but for the purposes of the above tree, I limited the information displayed to the direct line ancestors to keep it from being too busy to look and and understand easily (these people have big families!). These are the people I've documented as being in our family tree through my first pass through of checking's little wiggling leaves (that's how Ancestry indicates it has "hints" to be looked at relating to this person).

      Based on what I know so far, as I dig deeper into their lives and history, I'll be learning a lot more about the history of Wayne & Hancock counties in Ohio, and certain portions of Pennsylvania, and Maryland. Johan Gorg Whonsetler and his son Nicholas may have been born in Germany the country...or in Germany Township, Adams Co. Pennsylvania. I have something that says Germany, but since everything else in their lives says Pennsylvania, and I know there's a Germany Township in PA that was being created about then (the benefits of going to college in Pennsylvania...) I'm not sure but what they may have come from Germany township, rather than the country. This is one of the points I intend to nail down in later research into these people. [Catherine Meyers' and Frances Speicher's potential parents were among those I had to take off because I couldn't truly document the connection; that's were I lost another Germany connection. But, who knows, I may get them back in later research.] From now on I'll be reporting weekly on what I've done and/or discovered; foundation and catch up posts are done.