Seeing Some of the Puzzle Pieces in the 1870 Census


I’ve been working this puzzle for awhile now, trying to figure out what family paths lead to a set of cousins sharing DNA on Chromosome 14.  I’m not quite sure I’ve got that figured out, but I’m finding a pattern that various DNA matches over and over again lead us back to a certain grouping of families.  Note, those matches from AncestryDNA that have not yet uploaded to GEDmatch, can not be tied to any particular chromosome, but can be tied to each other through the AncestryDNA tools.

Excuse a moment of geek speak here.  It’ll help me to remember what I was thinking when I come back and read this months from now.

My purpose here is to record how some of these pieces are falling together by tying together some neighbors on a Troup County, Georgia 1870 Census, and a group of DNA matches.  GROUP OF DNA MATCHES… in the process of writing this I’ve come to the realization that the knowledge of the web of families that I’m discussing here is Holistic…it’s the knowledge I’ve gained from researching the set of DNA matches for the set of cousins we have DNA kits for.   At times the relationships I’ll discuss below will apply to only one kit, and is not triangulated.  Other times it’s a cluster of inter-related DNA matches…but to write about these families, I have to use a 10,000 ft view, not writing about any one cousin, or any one DNA segment…but using the picture in my head that’s been painted by researching these folks as a set of cousins all belonging on one very interwoven tree.  I know I did not say that well, like life and families, this is complex.

Here goes.

I got to this particular page of the Census by following up on DNA match “R.W.”  The tester involved is old enough to know the family history of her grandfather who was born before the Civil War.  Her grandmother, Margarett Winston, was an enslaved woman of African Ancestry, and her step-grandfather Hope Winston, was of similar background, but her biological grandfather was European.  Both the grandmother and step-grandfather carried the Winston surname before marriage suggesting they were both enslaved by the Winston family, and a Winston, or a close associate, was the likely DNA contributor.  Margarett aka Millie is seen as a ten year old as part of a family headed by Aleck Winston.

1870 Aleck Winston

Family 205 is Aleck Winston’s Household (B).

Family 206 is headed James Winston (B)

Family 208 is headed by Daniel Ward (B) – Ward is a surname that had been relevant in recent work on the chromosome 14 mystery.  Just below is a Bell family.  Bell had come recently as a surname of interest…perhaps it would turn out to be relevant that on a Winston branch of our tree we have a John Bell Williams (per a Williams-Winston marriage in that line).  It was time to see who else was in the neighborhood.

Family 209 is headed by Moriah Bell (B)

Family 212 is headed by R. Clemmons ( W ) – Perhaps it’s only coincidence that one of my knowledgeable contacts on the Hope Winston extended family carries the Clemmons surname…and may have come to it by marriage, but what else could be seen by looking back a page or two, and looking forward a page or two.

Family 179 Marshal Hill (B) – We have Hill  intersections at various places in our tree.

Family 182 Aleck Griggs (B) – As I had learned from correspondence with my Clemmons contact, descendants of a cluster related to Owens/Winston (that of Hope Winston) and other families,  there is a marriage in to a Griggs family.

Family 183 Linda Reid (B) – Reid/Reed is in a cluster of families of DNA matches.  In our family there was “Uncle Buck”, Robert Whitaker who married Henrietta Burton. Robert was the grandson of Agnes Winston and Frank Whitaker AKA Huguley.  In 1910 Robert had a niece Mattie Lou Reed living in his household. (Her biological parents are an open question.)

Family 184 Tom Thornton (B)

1870 Mariah Winston

Family 185 Mariah Winston (B) – My knowledge of where Mariah Winston fits come from the puzzle pieces from a couple of different matches (Writeli and Maryalice).  The screen shot below is likely difficult to read, but it illustrates the path where we have Mariah Winston who was the mother of Nancy Winston who was united with Joseph Davidson.  Together they had a number of children which included a son Robert Lee Davidson who went on to marry a woman whose maiden name was also Davidson.  His wife being Lucilla Davidson.

Mariah Winston

But we had already met Lucilla Davidson in another context.  DNA cousin writeli is a descendant of Burrell Prince Davidson and Artimesia Heard.  (Artimesia is a descendant of Robert Kent Heard and an enslaved woman.  Robert Kent Heard is a descendant of the same family that gave us Governor Stephen Heard that I’ve written about previously.  Governor Stephen Heard’s grandson was the neighbor of our Wess Heard in the 1870 census of Dooley County, Georgia.)  It’s interesting that Lucilla is a child of Artimesia Heard and Burrell Prince Davidson.

Burrell Prince Davidson

Family 188 W. B. Johnson ( W ) – We have various Johnson intersections in the trees of our matches.

Family 189 (M) – Jane Ward

Family 193 ( W ) – William Collins – It is unclear if this William Collins is related to another Collins I have written of – Terry Collins.  On an 1850 slave schedule his name was written with reference to three Erwin children.

Family 199 ( W ) – Thomas Winston Erwin – Son of Hezekiah F Erwin and Mary Johnson Winston.

Hope Winston 1870

Family 200 (B) – Bardary Winston

I wrote extensively about the family connections related to this family in May of 2016.  Note the child Hope Winston in this family is the Step-Grandfather referred to earlier in the first few paragraphs of this discussion of the 1870 census.  Here’s a link to the May of 2016 blog.

There are other Winstons and Erwins on this page, but this looks like a nice bookend to close this discussion.

Besides, I have breaking news on another front.  I sent a text to granddaughter Trin, “I just found another 40 pound Hershey bar.”  Are you curious?



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