Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Where, oh where has Susannah gone?

I have looked for her everywhere. Susannah was born the seventh child and the third daughter of Martin and Polly (Welch) Overly in around 1811. I say that because in Census records I would find a different birth year for each record. So I decided to settle on the year that the Overly / Oberlin researchers show for her birth year. Thankfully, there was extensive Overly / Oberlin research done prior to my family history project. Some time I will do a blog on the Overly Oberlin family and the brothers who arrived here from Germany.

It is believed that Susannah was born in Ohio. She married James Smith in Darke County, Ohio on December 9, 1830. They would remain in Darke County until about 1847. They would leave Ohio heading northwest to Fort Wayne Indiana with several other young adventurous families from Ohio. It is likely that they we in search of land new opportunities. A previous Blog “Branching out from here…” cover the move to Fort Wayne with the other Ohio Families.

James Smith and several of the Smith children are buried in the Cemetery at Nine Mile Indiana. Susannah’s name is listed on the tombstone but there is no record of her death or burial with the cemetery. I just can not find her. She is listed in the 1870 census and she is living with several of her children with others living near by. By the 1880 census, she is no where to be found.

So I decided to search for her daughters and there families in hopes of finding her living with them. Up to this point I had not found many of the daughters because Susannah had mislead me to believe that the daughters’ were still living at home in 1860. The first daughter I found was Mary Ann. She had married Jonathan Kimble on October 20, 1853 according to the marriage records for Allen County Indiana. Mary Ann and her family would settle near Camp Charlotte, in Pickaway County Ohio by the 1860 census. She has had four children by 1860. Listed in the Federal Census are the following children; Jacob (1854), Susannah (1855), James (1858) and Mary Ann born in 1859. Also listed with them is Amos Kimble (age 20) and Margaret Waters (age 16). By the 1870 Census, Jonathan Kimble and his new wife Sarah Jane (Maples) Kimble are living next to the newly widowed Susannah Smith with one son, James Kimble. By 1880, Susannah is gone and so is Jonathan Kimble. I do find Smith children who are in the area. I would assume that if Susannah were still alive she would be living with one of them.

Mary Ann, the first wife of Jonathan, is one of the Smith children buried at Nine Mile, Indiana with her dad. She died in 1863 five years before James. Mary Ann and her daughter, Susannah are buried together. Mary Ann’s daughter is named after her Grandmother. Jacob and Mary Ann Kimble, children of Jonathan and Mary Ann seemed to have died prior to the death of their mother but so far I am unable to find them also. I keep looking for them in Ohio.

And I keep looking for Susannah. I looked to see if she remarried. I looked for her with her children. I looked for her in Indiana and in Ohio. I looked for her with Overlys', with Kimbles’ and with Smiths’. I keep the search going because I know that she is patiently waiting for me to find her. I am certain that she is giving me clues that I have just not found yet. She remains a "needle in my haystack".

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