Tuesday, January 14, 2014

52 ANCESTORS in 52 WEEKS: #3 Grover BUELL - Oh dear, which one is which??

I ran into a a series of "Grover BUELL" ancestors not long after I started searching in my mother's family. We knew very little about my maternal grandmother's parents' families - partly because she loved to dramatize her life and her history. How I wish I'd begun researching in our family tree before she died so many years ago so I could ask more questions. What was true and what was ...somewhat jazzed up - that was a challenge.  I learned to use her bits and pieces as possible clues, if at all.

After a year, I figured out that her father - James Grover TERWILLIGER  (yes, that Terwilliger, of my Terwilliger Souvenir Album blog) was known as "Grove" or sometimes "Grover" in the family.

Hmmm, Grover was a great clue, wasn't it? Sounded and looked like a family surname somewhere.  Surely I could find out the source of the Grover, couldn't I? Surely.  Of course. But it took several generations and searches before I finally found the GROVER surname.

Here's the listing travelling in time from the LAST Grover, up to the source:

James "Grove" Grover TERWILLIGER, b.27 May 1856 in NY, d.17 Mar 1929, NJ
       m. 11 Jun 1910 to Clara "Gussie" Augusta GRAVES
James M. TERWILLIGER, b. 30 Jan 1825 in NY, d. 18 Oct 1909, NY
       m. 1851 to Harriet  BUELL
Grover BUELL/Buel, b. 24 Dec 1794 in NY, d. aft 18 Feb 1874, NY
       m. 17 Dec 1814 to Charlotte BORTLE [brick wall]
Grover BUELL/Buel, b. 22 Jan 1759 in NY, d. abt 1811, NY
       m. 1781 to Mehitable HAMLIN?[surname not proven][brick wall]
Grover BUELL/Buel, b. 4 Apr 1732 in CT, d. 14 Sep 1818, NY
       m. 15 Feb 1758 to Jerusha BUCK
Nathaniel BUELL/Buel, b. 29 Sep 1700 in CT, d. ?
       m. 14 Nov 1720/21 to Deborah HORTON
(Rev.) Joshua HORTON, b. abt 1669 in NY, d. 1744, NJ
       m. abt 1690 to Elizabeth GROVER

Whew!  I thought I'd never find that first GROVER surname!  And as I searched, I ran into several brick walls on the female side, which added to my frustration.  I of course suspected that the Grover surname must be further up one of those missing lines.

Then I'd search and find yet another line, and be frustrated, then find another, and so on.  When I reached Nathaniel BUELL and his wife Deborah HORTON, I was sure I must have missed the connection further down.  Nathaniel? Not a Grover? Oh-oh - must be up one of those dead-end lines.  Sigh.  I gave up for some months, I have to say.

However, I eventually persevered looking back a few more steps - and there she was: Elizabeth GROVER!

Elizabeth GROVER, b. 15 Sep 1673 in NY, was one of 3 girls of Simon GROVER & Elizabeth MOORE.
When (Rev.) Joshua HORTON & Elizabeth GROVER married, they had only 2 sons out of 8 children, and both were named Joshua (one died young).  If they'd had more boys, I'm certain they would have named one of them Grover, don't you think?   Their 3rd daughter, Deborah, & husband Nathaniel BUELL, had 9 children with one son dying young (Eliphalet) - 4 girls, 5 boys.  The very first Grover BUELL is their 6th child.

In my searches I found that several of the Grover Buell's siblings had sons they also named Grover - after all, people named their children after family members quite commonly.  So the only way I could keep track of them all was to research everyone.  My direct line Grover BUELLs had to be known by their birth year as part of their name, just to help me keep them all straight.

Grover BUELL 1759 had a brother, Simon (Capt.) Buell, who named his first son Grover Buell as well.

Grover BUELL 1794 & his wife Charlotte, had 4 girls but only one son named Simon, who had no children. Their eldest daughter, Mary Buell, m. John W. Patterson; they had 4 children, and the first boy was named Grover Buell Patterson - repeating the pattern for another generation.

Mary's youngest sister, my 2ndgreat-grandmother Harriet BUELL m. James M. TERWILLIGER, and used the Grover name as a middle name for the first of two living sons. To differentiate him from his father, the family used his middle name, Grover.

If you have more information about any of the individuals listed above, I'd love to hear from you in a comment below, or in an email to calewis at telus dot net - I always appreciate details!  I have much research still to do on these ancestors, and more documentation to find as well.


Sally Knudsen said...

This a great lesson in gathering all information. You would think an fairly uncommon name like Grover would be helpful - not! Those last name first name combinations are challenging!

Celia Lewis said...

Thanks for stopping by, Sally. I'm sure there are several other Grover Buell's around in cousins of cousins in that family, but I don't tend to follow all the sibling lines down very far - maybe one, possibly two generations.
There are a few family trees out there who think James M. Terwilliger married a Harriet Doolittle... but our family already knew from oral history and her other siblings (events, photos) that it was Harriet Buell who married our James M. Terwilliger.
Now if only I could figure out what on earth that middle initial stands for... More research to come.


Family, friends, and others - I hope you enjoy these pages about our ancestors and their lives. Genealogy has become somewhat of an obsession, more than a hobby, and definitely a wonderful mystery to dig into and discover. Enjoy my writing, and contact me at celia.winky at gmail dot com if you have anything to add to the stories. ... Celia Lewis