Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Kirtland Puzzle is Coming Together

In the diagram above you can see my name in the box at the bottom left: M. Rebecca Margheim, married to Larry C. Jamison. Along the line of ancestry represented there you'll see that my 3rd great grandparents are Betsy Bartlett and Arva Phelps. Betsy (1811-bef 1850) and Arva (1797-aft 1870) were both born in New Hampshire, but by 1830, according to the Federal Census, had moved to Kirtland, Geauga, Ohio. I've often wondered what prompted them to make the 600 mile move from Groton, NH to Kirtland, OH, and with whom they might have made that journey. 

Last night I wanted to do more exploring using the new genealogy search engine Mocavo, so I entered "Arva Phelps + Kirtland" as search terms. Things often unfold so quickly for me that I can't recall which link led to which information in proper sequence, but the resulting articles and documents that I discovered gave me some important clues. 

The first link I clicked on led me to Internet Archive, to the publication "History of Ashburnham, Massachusetts, from the grant of Dorchester Canada to the present time, 1734-1886; with a genealogical register of Ashburnham families". The page that opened showed me the Samuel Metcalf family and told me that several of his children "removed" to Kirtland, Ohio from Groton, New Hampshire! In researching those family members I found connections to my 3rd great grandparents, Arva and Betsy Phelps, who also "removed" from Groton to Kirtland. I found so much information that I drew up the diagram above so I could keep it all straight.

The result was that I determined how some of the family members connected and who Betsy and Arva must have traveled and settled with in Kirtland. Page 1 of the 1830 Federal Census for Kirtland, shows the Metcalfs and Phelps families as neighbors. 

Now I'm going to read more of that History of Ashburnham, MA and explore the ancestries of some of these other connected families in the hopes that I can learn more about Arva and Betsy Phelps. If I learn anything, I'll be back with another post on the subject.

1 comment:

Nancy said...

Becky, Phelps is a very common name in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Kirtland was a gathering place for the Saints in the early 1830s. It's possible that these family members were also converts. It will be interesting to read what you discover about these ancestors.