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Saturday, April 6, 2013

A Buck Moves West

As always, I welcome additions, corrections or necessary deletions when brought to my attention. I recently received this correction for Ebenezer Cole’s first daughter, Elizabeth Cole Palmer. The correction is for her grandson which I had incorrectly given as William Gifford Ayer. If this is important to your family line, please change it to Willard Gilford Ayer.

Corrections sent in:

Ebenezer Cole’s First Daughter

Elizabeth Cole (1791-1875) m. 1814, John Palmer (1789-1889)

          Melvina Augusta Palmer (1842-1927) m. 1863 Elijah Ayer (1837-1927)

                    Willard Gilford Ayer (1875-1965 Attleboro MA) m. 1902 Gertrude   
                                  Eugenie Newell in Plainville MA (1876-1921 Attleboro MA) – 2 children

The next child in Edward and Phebe Tower Buck’s family will be their first daughter Ann Buck. Ann ended up a long way from home so I thought she deserved a bit more blog space than some of the others. 

Ann (1800-1883) m. 1819 Benjamin Simonton (1795 Portland ME-1883 Cass Co. IA)
 – 16 children

Ann married Benjamin Simonton from Portland ME in 1819. Benjamin was the son of Thomas and Mary Alden Simonton. By this marriage, the descendants of this family can claim Mayflower descendancy through Benjamin’s mother, Mary Alden. Benjamin was the 3x gt. grandson of John Alden. Some time during the year 1819, Ann’s two younger brothers, William and Thomas died. I’ve found no explanation for this although, often, when two young family members die in the same year, it’s due to some disease. In our era, we don’t think much about scarlet fever and measles, but both of those childhood diseases were killers in the 1800’s.
My notes on Ann say they left New Brunswick for ME in 1825. The first five children were born in NB; the remaining 11 were born in Portland ME.

Benjamin and Ann Simonton’s children were:

          1. William Buck (1822-?) Adopted
          2. Mary Alden (1820-1899) m. 1851 in Portland ME Royal Cummings
          3. Ann Phoebe (1822-1905 Lawrence MA) m. 1844 Daniel Handy of    
              Boston MA – 2 children
          4. Susan M. (1823-?) m. 1846 in Portland ME William H. Swain of Boston  
          5. Jane T. (1825-?)
          6. Sarah M. (1826-?)
          7. Thomas B. (1828-?) m. 1853 in Portland ME Seraphina Margeson
          8. Elizabeth (1830-?)
          9. James P. (1831-?)
          10. Charles McLellan (1833-1905 Cleveland OK) m. 1869 in Cleveland OK 
                 Hannah Elizabeth Waltrous of Cattaraugus Co., NY – 5 children
          11. Caroline L. (1835-1914) m. 1859 James G. Davis of Windham VT
          12. John L. (1837-?) m. Lydia Unknown of NY
          13. George E. (1838-1841 Portland ME)
          14. Olive A. (1840-1842 Portland ME)
          15. Silas A. (1842-1924 Cleveland OK) m. 1868 Clarissa A. Turner
                – 3 children
          16. William L. (1843-?) m. in Cass Co., IA Ellen Griffin
The 1850 Federal Census for Portland, Cumberland Co., ME, shows this family still living there, with Jane, Elizabeth, Charles, Caroline, John, Silas and William still living with them. Sometime in the 1850’s-1860’s time frame the family moved to Cass Co., IA. This was mostly farming country with small groups of population in small towns scattered across the landscape. The 1880 census shows that Benjamin and Ann are living with their son, Charles, in Franklin, Cass Co. IA. The records for the Wiota Cemetery show that both Benjamin and Ann are buried there.  They also show a military gravestone for Silas Simonton, with no dates, just Co. B, 42nd Illinois Infantry.

I haven’t done the digging on this, but he was of the appropriate age to have been in the Civil War. The 1910 census shows Silas and wife with their son James living with them. He is age 33 and his occupation is a printer. Silas is listed as a landlord in that census. There is a grandson, Delford, age 10 living with them but it doesn’t indicate who the father is. But by 1920, James and Delford are gone and their divorced son, George, is living with them. Silas and Clarissa also had a daughter, Bertha, for whom I’ve found 3 marriages and no children. In 1935, she applied to the Gov’t for a military headstone for her father’s grave. It was approved, shipped and placed on his, then unmarked, grave in the Wiota Cemetery, Cass Co., IA. Then I found a 1900 census for George. His wife’s name was Bertha, also, and Delford was his son, born in Dec. 1899. They were living in Atlantic City, Cass Co., IA.

Over the years, I’ve been in touch with a descendant of Charles Simonton who has generously shared a great deal of his information. I truly appreciate the generosity of all genealogists who spend hours on research yet are always willing to share what they’ve found.  Then, in the last few years before I retired, a new staff member was added and, would you believe, his name was Simonton. The minute he opened his mouth I knew he was from New England, so first chance I got I was asking him questions. Not only was he from New England but he was from the town right next door to the one I grew up in. As a teenager, he even had a job in one of the drug stores in my town. Here we were both of us over 400 miles away from our beginnings and just happened to end up working for the same organization. Of course, I had to ask him about his name and he said he knew they had come from ME and that there were family stories that they were Mayflower descendants. Right then I knew he was connected to the same Simonton family. I didn’t pursue it to see if Benjamin and Ann were his ancestors. But then you never know!  I love small world stories!!

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