Thursday, November 13, 2014

George Taylor - Signer of DoI

As usual, geography is important in these discussions. I was reminded by my smart cousin J. about a reference on ancestry called A Frontier Village, Pre-Revolutionary Easton. This source has many references to George Taylor (1716-1781) who was a signer of the Declaration of Independence! Apparently, if all the various references are talking about the same person, George Taylor resided in both Easton (Northampton county, PA) and Bucks County, PA, as well as Greenwich township in New Jersey. The date associated with the New Jersey location is 1779.

Who was George Taylor? This source says he was born in Northern Ireland. He apparently only had one child who survived, James Taylor, and through James, five grandchildren: George, Thomas, James, Ann, and Mary. He also had 6 children with his housekeeper, all with the surname Smith: Naomi, Sarah, Rebecca, Naomi, Elizabeth, and Edward. Finally, when George Taylor died in 1781, he was buried in the Lutheran burial ground in Easton.

So does this George Taylor have any connection to our Taylor family? Probably not, mostly because his residence in our area of New Jersey did not happen until the end of his life. His son, James Taylor, died in 1775, and it might be worth knowing what became of George's grandson named George since we know there was somebody of the name George Taylor in Sussex County in the 1790s. Even so, I don't rank this candidate high on our list of possibilities.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Loder Connections

Here's another family who I think had connections to our TAYLOR family:  LODER. The possible clues include:
  • A witness to the 1792 will of George Taylor, probably a son of Jerononemus Taylor, was James Loder, who also did the inventory. I think there were two James Loder's around this time:
    • son of John Loder; this James Loder died around Oct 1792. 
    • son of William Loder who married Sarah Rae. The RAE name is curious because there was a Hunterdon County deed in 1815 from Alexander Rea, Richard Hixson, and William Taylor Jr, executors of George Rea, decd, to Daniel Potts, all of Kingwood, Hunterdeon, NJ. 
  • It should  be noted that Samuel Loder, among others, brought a court case against all the Summers which involved alot of money and which the Summers lost.  It should also be noted that Samuel Loder's wife Rachel Gardner was the sister of the wife of John Summers Jr, Jane Gardner.
  • 1822 deed, Hiles & Hixson to William Taylor, husband of Hannah Loder, daughter of James Loder (the one who died in 1792), formerly of Sussex, now of Amwell, Hunterdon, NJ
  • According to History of Sussex and Warren Counties, New Jersey: with illustrations and biographical sketches of its prominent men and pioneers by James P. Snell, published 1881, page 535, Samuel Loder was a tailor by trade - this would have been around 1833 in Belvidere. I bring this up because it's the first place I've seen the tailor profession even mentioned, especially for a family that might have associations with our TAYLORs.
So does anybody know of any other possible Taylor-Loder connections?

Friday, November 7, 2014

Different Taylor Families?

OK - it's time to take a breather!

Something about this Taylor research is reminding me of the long, painful process in my Sommer research of finally realizing there were two separate Sommer families who had significant connections to my Mann family, and even now, there isn't any evidence that those two Sommer families were in any way related. They were simply different families who happened to have the same surname. Now I'm starting to wonder if the same is not true with this Taylor research.

What do we have? Well, much of what I am postulating is based on my theory that Henry Taylor who ended up in Brookfield, Ohio with several other people who are related to my Struble-Taylor family, and who recorded a deposition that he in fact moved to Newton, Sussex, NJ with his father when he was a boy and served with Capt. George Ribble with the NJ Militia during the Revolution, that Henry Taylor might in fact have NO relation to my Barbara Taylor whatsoever. So let's just say that up front. It could be an additional utter coincidence that the land owned by Jacob Peter Struble, husband of Barbara Taylor, was located in Newton.

But still, Henry Taylor is more of a lead than we have for Barbara herself, so maybe it's still worth trying to understand who Henry Taylor was. The possibilities seem to be either:
  • Henry was the son of Jerononemus Taylor who, seemingly, moved from Bucks County, PA to Sussex County, NJ in the 1760s. Jerononemus died in Sussex county in 1792 and left the mill in Mansfield, Sussex, NJ to his son Henry. In 1804, there was a Sussex deed that involved Henry Taylor of Mansfield and Jane his wife. There have so far been no other records of a Henry Taylor found in Sussex County. He did show up in the 1820, 1830, 1840, and 1850 census' of Brookfield, Trumbull, Ohio. It should be noted that Brookfield-Henry also had a son named Henry, supposedly born in 1804 in New Jersey.
  • Henry Taylor was related to Joseph Taylor found in Newton, Sussex, NJ in the 1793 tax lists, remembering that Newton was the specific place mentioned in the deposition that Henry gave regarding his life in Sussex County. In addition, there was also a Hunterdon deed that not only described Joseph Taylor and Martha his wife as being of Bucks County, PA but which also placed Joseph in Sussex County in 1804. This Joseph Taylor was apparently born around 1760, while Henry was born about 1757 - thus my conjecture that they might have been brothers, although their father, whoever the man who relocated to Sussex from Bucks, is still unknown. However, we do know with some certainty that this Joseph Taylor was a Quaker, and by virtue of the Hunterdon deed, he along with other Taylor names of interest seem to have ties to Hunterdon County, NJ.
Here you can see why I start to speculate that perhaps there were two different Taylor families in Sussex County in 1800? Everything I read so far about Jerononemus and his wife is that they were of German ancestry, while it appears that the ancestry of Joseph Taylor might have come by way of Virginia and been English. We can associate Joseph Taylor with Bucks County, but what about Jerononemus? Truthfully, Jerononemus could have come from anywhere. Maybe the next step is to see if there is any documentation that ties Jerononemus Taylor and his wife to any other place.

So let me finish by saying that the whole Henry Taylor association I have made could still be wrong. WrongWrongWrong. The circumstantial evidence of his ties to Brookfield, Ohio and Sussex, New Jersey is strong, but not conclusive. We are back to what we know about Barbara Taylor - that she was married to Jacob Peter Struble and they lived in Newton, NJ, and that at least two of their children as well as other Struble relations relocated to Brookfield, Trumbull, Ohio.

And this might be as good a time as any to remind myself that all brick walls will some day fall....


Don't ask me why it has taken me so long to see the most obvious evidence. Here is a will abstract that clearly pertains to our research question:

1791, Aug. 25. Taylor, Jerononemus, of Sussex Co.; will of. Wife, Else Catharina, to remain in house and be maintained by son, Henry. Oldest son, Jacob, £225, to be paid by son, Henry. Son, George, place in Mansfield-Woodhouse, Sussex Co., where he now lives. Son, Henry, plantation whereon I now live. Son, William, the mill, in Mansfield-Woodhouse, now in his possession. Grandchild, Catharina Rush, £10. Wife, 2 cows and choice of movables; remainder to be sold and divided among children. Executors — son Jacob, and friend, Jacob Nendling. Witnesses — Samuel Coleman, William Cole, Nicholas Labrourgh. Proved Feb. 25, 1792. Lib. 34, p. 158. 1791, Sept. 27. Inventory, £98.14.3, made by Nicholas Labrourgh and William Cole. File 541S.

So this is rather amazing! This abstract helps us to account for several names in the 1793 tax list of Mansfield twp: Henry, Jacob, and William. And who was the grandchild, Catherine Rush? So many good questions!
  • First, there's the name Jerononemus. I'm inclined to think the name spelling was more like Jeronemus, which seems to have Dutch origins.
  • Next, there's the son named Henry. Given the group of names in Mansfield in the 1793 tax list, it's reasonable to think that the Henry in 1793 Mansfield was the son of Jerononemus. But was Mansfield-Henry the same Henry Taylor who served in the NJ Militia and subsequently moved to Brookfield, Ohio? If he is, then according to his own deposition, he was born in Bucks County, PA, which is where Jerononemus and Else Catharina must also have resided at one point. And then who was the Henry Taylor in Hardiston in the 1793 tax list? Was Hardiston-Henry the Henry Taylor Jr. who later married Elizabeth Oliver in 1801?
  • As for the other sons of Jerononemus:
    • The oldest son, Jacob, is presumably the one who married Mary Bray in 1807. Strangely, however, there are many internet family trees that have Jacob Taylor-husband-of-Mary-Bray born in 1745 (which makes sense) but married and having kids by 1778. Jacob Taylor's marriage to Mary Bray is specifically listed as 15 Feb 1778, but there is no source for that date, nor any explanation why there is Sussex County marriage record for Jacob Taylor and Mary Bray in 1807. It should be noted that Jacob Taylor and Mary Bray are recorded as being the parents of a Jeromus Taylor (1784-1869), which does suggest that this Jacob Taylor could have been the son of Jerononemus.
    • As for George Taylor, another will abstract was located dated 21 Apr 1792 for a George Taylor of Oxford, Sussex, NJ. His administrator was the widow, Anne Taylor. Since there is no George Taylor listed in the 1793 tax lists, I am guessing that George Taylor, son of Jerononemus, died shortly after his father in 1792.
    • Then there's William Taylor, who was already operating the mill in Mansfield. This is probably NOT the William Taylor who married Mary Swallow in Amwell, Hunterdon, NJ in 1768, though to be fair, the dates still do not preclude him from being in Sussex county in 1793. Or was William-son-of-Jerononemus the William Taylor associated with Jacob Shoemaker of Sussex, mentioned in the previous post? That William Taylor had a wife named Mary, and sons named William, George, James S. and Jabez G. as well the daughter Sophia who married Jacob Shoemaker.
Well, as excited as I was to find Jerononemus Taylor, I'm afraid we only have more inconclusive evidence to add to the growing pile. We have lots of clues but so far there is no obvious way these pieces are fitting together....

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Shoemaker Connection

As noted in previous posts about exploring Taylor connections in Sussex County, NJ, there is the matter of a certain William Taylor of Amwell, Hunterdon, NJ and his apparent association with a Jacob Shoemaker of Oxford, Sussex, New Jersey. Thanks to a source simply titled The Michael Shoemaker Book (available on ancestry), the connection has become somewhat clearer!

First, recall that there were two places where the Shoemaker-Taylor connection appeared:
  • An 1822 Sussex County deed between the entire family of John Summers, Esq. to Jacob Shoemaker of Oxford and William Taylor of Amwell.
  • The 1826 will of William Taylor of Amwell where all his estate was to be divided among four Taylors, William, George, James S., and Jabez G. (presumed by me to be his sons) and Jacob Shoemaker of Sussex County. The relationships are not explicitly stated in the will.
Now to the news provided in the newly discovered source. The Michael Shoemaker Book identifies Jacob Shoemaker as having moved some time prior to 1790 to Oxford, Sussex, NJ from Bethlehem, Northampton, PA with his parents (Peter and Elizabeth Magdalena (Maur) Schumacher) where he married Sophia, daughter of William and Mary Taylor of Raritan Twp, Hunterdon, NJ. The Shoemaker couple lived in Oxford, and Jacob dealt extensively in NJ farmlands, and "with his brother-in-law, William Taylor, bought the Taylor homestead in Raritan Twp., NJ for $8,400."

It is entirely worth noting that Raritan twp. was formed in 1838 from portions of the now defunct Amwell Twp.

This connection between the two families explains alot, especially the deed and the will we found. But there's more. More reading of this new source tells us that William Taylor had a son named George (also named in William's will), who is referred to in the source as Capt. George Taylor because of his military service. Well, Capt. George Taylor married Sarah Shoemaker, the daughter of another related Shumacher family in Northamption County, PA. George had quite an interesting life, living in various places in PA before moving with his family in 1823 to Oakland County, MI. There George Taylor died in 1841, and his wife Sarah remarried to Nathan Smith. She died in 1849. She is noted as having been "short with dark hair and spoke a broken English".

So what does all this tell us?
  • The connection of Jacob Shoemaker and William Taylor to the Summers family could be utter coincidence, but that connection is nevertheless NOT trivial. By 1825, Margaret Struble, the daughter of JP Struble and Barbara Taylor, married Peter Dodder, and in 1833, Ernest Mann III, the great nephew of John Summers, would marry Margaret Rush. And by the 1840s, both the Dodder's and the Mann's were in Oakland County, Michigan from where our modern family descends.
  • The Schumacher family belonged to the Reformed Church of Easton, PA, and since members of that family married into the Taylors, or at least some branch of Taylors, I tend to think they shared the same religion. Which is to say that perhaps THIS Taylor family was not Quaker as we've been wondering.
  • At least one member of this Taylor branch also migrated to Oakland County, Michigan, although admittedly the townships where this branch settled are not the same as the townships where our family is known to have settled.
It would seem that the main question remains:  Was THIS Taylor family related to our Barbara Taylor?

More to come!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Confiscated Lands

I'm surprised that it has taken this long for me to run across this topic. As mentioned in a previous post, I ran across several deeds involving "forfeited lands" and at first I couldn't quite understand what was meant. Then I realized that Loyalist property was being sold both in the effort to get Loyalists to leave and never come back, and to help raise money for the Revolution - which it did. Here is a link  with some description of the history.

There is also a wonderful website that lists the names of those in New Jersey who had their lands confiscated. Of the counties and names listed, the only Taylor name to appear is that of Joseph Taylor from Hunterdon county. Wouldn't we like to know more about him?

Also mentioned in both Somerset and Sussex counties for confiscated lands is Oliver Delancey, who was named in the one of the Sussex deeds involving John Taylor! Oliver Delancey was a brigadier general for the Loyalist army. All his lands were confiscated in 1779, and in 1783 he returned to England where he died in 1785.

Taylor's in Early Sussex

First, let's talk about Newton (New Town) Twp. in Sussex County, New Jersey, which was mentioned specifically in the affidavit of Henry Taylor as the place where his father moved from Bucks County, PA, probably some time in the 1760s. We should here make note that Newton township is now a defunct twp. which was located in northwest NJ. It was established in 1751 and dissolved in 1864. The area today spans territory in three present-day counties: Morris, Sussex, and Warren.

With that said, here are the records that give us some accounting of Taylors from 1793-1820(??) in Sussex county, New Jersey:

1793 Tax List

There were several Taylors in several townships, but there was only one Taylor found in the 1793 tax list of Newton, and that person was Joseph Taylor, probably the Joseph Taylor mentioned in my previous post who has been (for now) passed over as a father of Barbara Taylor.

Theoretically, we should also be able to account for Henry Taylor, since in 1793 he would have been 35 years old. The tax lists show:

Hardiston Township (this is a township that would later be formed from part of the to-be-defunct Newton Twp)

TAYLOR, Charles

Mansfield Township - it should be noted that Mansfield is directly east of Oxford twp. where so many of our other relations lived. And of course Summers, Longstreet, and Wandling are all names also found in our family tree.  This would be closest to Greenwich.


TAYLOR, William


Marriages in Sussex, NJ

25 Jul 1797, John Taylor + Rhoda Carter
29 Jan 1801, Henry Jr. Taylor + Elizabeth Oliver
6 Jul 1801, William Williams + Ann Taylor
28 Mar 1802, Jacob Struble + Barbary Taylor
8 May 1803, Isaac Bassett + Mary Taylor
3 Apr 1805, William Taylor + Susanah Rhodes
1 Jun 1807, Daniel Shoemaker + Polly Taylor
15 Feb 1807, Jacob Taylor + Mary Bray
19 Aug 1809, Thomas Norman + Sarah Taylor

This is probably as good a place as any to point out that there was a Henry Taylor Sr. and a Henry Taylor Jr. They both appear in the 1793 Tax lists, although which man is in which twp. is hard to say.


Besides the deeds previously mentioned in my post DNA Clues & Hunterdon County, NJ, here are some additional Taylor deeds in Sussex, New Jersey (this is not a comprehensive list, but a selection of those that caught my attention as pertains to my family research).

  • The earliest Sussex deed I could find with the Taylor name was 1 May 1775 between Robert Taylor, Esq. of Hunterdon County, NJ and Daniel Vliet of the same place. Apparently the land in question had been indentured and defaulted, involving the names LEWIS and MERRITT, and the sheriff of Sussex county had been directed to auction property to pay debts, and Robert Taylor (by way of Charles Stewart) was the highest bidder, which he was then selling to Daniel Vliet. NOTE: If I read the estate records in Hunterdon county correctly, Robert Taylor (originally Tyler) died in 1821 and he was from Londonderry, Ireland. 
  • In 1789, the government agent named Joseph Gaston who was in charge of selling "forfeited estates" (more on this subject in a later post), in particular Sussex land previously owned by General Oliver Delancey, conveyed 154 acres in Hardiston Twp in Sussex County to John Taylor for 66 pounds.
  • In 1794, John Taylor of Readington, Hunterdon, NJ & Lydia his wife sold to Jonathan Paul of Germantown, PHL, PA, a parcel of land 'being at the Minisinks' in the county of Sussex, which I think was over 1000 acres and which was described in the deed in a rather long list of "forfeited estates". 
  • In 1804, there was a deed between Henry Taylor of Mansfield and Jane his wife selling land in Mansfield to John Ulp of Greenwich.  What's interesting about this is that the brother of Jacob Peter Struble (who married Barbara Taylor), namely George P. Struble, served under Capt. Jacob Ulp from Brookfield, OH. This appears to be yet another link between this Henry Taylor and the Struble family.
What conclusions from this evidence? There can still only be guesswork. Even though Henry Taylor of Mansfield would appear to be the Sr. who eventually went to Brookfield, OH, Henry Taylor in Hardiston was closer to what was once Newton. And who was Charles Taylor? We have seen the names John, Jacob, and William Taylor in other contexts, but who was Charles?  

Isn't it strange how research just leads to more questions?