Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Known Causes of Death

Ancestors from the Sim Family Tree:

George W. Sim - age 42             Oct. 19, 1941          Aplastic anemia

Mary A. Wallace Sim - age 75     May 2, 1945            Pernicious anemia, cerebral
                                                                                   hemorrage

Mary Huston Wallace - age 79     Sept. 29, 1923        Old age, influenza

William Wallace - age 85              Oct. 22, 1929          Dilated heart, valvolar leakage,
                                                                                    old age

William Huston - age 54               May 16, 1877          Renal affection

John W. Sim - age 83                   July 4, 1954             Coronary thrombosis

James Sim - age 84                      June 27, 1902         General debility (loss of strength)

Elizabeth Gruer Sim - age 75        July 20, 1907          Unknown protracted illness


Ancestors from the Otwell Family Tree:

Edna Otwell Sim - age 71             Sept. 16, 1976        Lung cancer, cervical cancer

Mary Charnock Otwell - age 61    Oct. 18, 1935          Chronic myocarditis

Robert Charnock - age 46            Oct. 31, 1878          Consumption

Elizabeth Scott Charnock              Mar. 25, 1898          Apoplexy  (stroke)
age 67

Edwin J. Otwell - age 48                June 2, 1920           Pernicious anemia
                                                                                       (lack of Vit. B12)

Maurice Otwell - age 69                April 6, 1915            Epilepsy, schizophrenia

Jane Ash Otwell - age 87              Jan. 20, 1938          Pneumonia, general cold, senility

John F. Otwell - age 87                 June 21, 1908         Paralysis acute ascending

Stark Taylor - age 73                    April 24, 1889         Old age, natural death

  

                

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Francis (Frank) OTWELL - Died 1839

Edna OTWELL-SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL . John F. OTWELL > William OTWELL > Francis OTWELL

On the Otwell side, Francis was the last ancestor we were able to confirm for our family tree.  From census reports he was born between 1766-1774.  We have found no information on his birth, parents or location of his early years.

We have no record of his marriage.  The Scott County, Kentucky 1810 Census listed six children along with a woman old enough to be his wife.  We believe his wife died some time after this census.  The census records showed many children.  We were able to confirm William, Parker and Mary Ann as his children.

On July 16, 1818 Francis Otwell next married Eleanor Tucker in Bourbon County, Kentucky.  Her maiden name was Berry.  She had a son, Greenberry Tucker, from her previous marriage.  Francis became Greenberry's guardian and he was around the same age as Francis' son, Parker.  Parker and Greenberry became life-long friends.  Parker named "his good friend Greenberry Tucker" as the executor of his will.

Francis Otwell was listed on the 1820 Census in Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky.  He had nine slaves.

In 1827 Eleanor and Francis were involved in a legal dispute over property (Berry vs. Tucker).  They were on opposing sides to Greenberry and other heirs that were involved in the dispute.  We next found Francis on the 1830 Scott County Census.  There is no listing for Eleanor on this census nor is she mentioned in Francis' will in 1839.  We did find Mrs. Otwell's death listed in 1850.  However, she was buried under the name Tucker in Georgetown, Kentucky.

Francis Otwell's estate appraisal was submitted to Scott County Court in January 1839 by his son, Parker Otwell, Administrator.  He had died at his Frank Otwell Farm. The appraisal included a list of his inventory and the value of his possessions.  The first listing was his 16 named slaves valued at $7175.  There were also 37 notes owed to him by family and friends.  Francis' son, William (our ancestor), moved to the Frank Otwell Farm.

Read more about the OTWELL Estates.

This will conclude our research on the Otwell Family.  We will continue researching for new information and will up-date our blog as it becomes available and verified.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

John GARTH (1713-1786)

John GARTH's "Mark"
Edna OTWELL > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL > Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL > John GARTH > Thomas GARTH > John GARTH

Our first proven GARTH ancestor in America was John GARTH. He was not educated and could only make “his mark” in lieu of a signature. Lack of education means he was likely born in the colonies.

By 1734, John was a plantation owner in St. Martin’s Parish, Hanover County, Virginia. This area was later called Fredericksville, Louisa County. He invested in land and later came to own over 2,000 acres. He raised livestock and farmed tobacco and corn.

By 1740, John married his first wife Rachel. By 1761, he married Hannah. He may have had another wife between Rachel and Hannah. He had a least 7 children: Sarah, Thomas (our ancestor), Elizabeth, Mary Ann, David, John and William. He was guardian over at least 2 additional children. In his later years, he married the widow Elizabeth CLARK in 1775. There were no children from that marriage.

John was likely a member of the Church of England, as that was required by law.

In 1745, John applied for a patent on 400 acres of land on the South Anna River. The patent required him to cultivate 3 acres out of every 15 within 3 years. And he had to pay an annual fee of one shilling for each 50 acres. After proving his patent, he built a grist mill and leased out portions of the land. This land he sold at a profit in 1761. The grist mill was later known as Byrd Mill after the man who later owned it. The original mill no longer exists.

Later land investments gave John the opportunity to avoid taxes. He would pay the fees on the land in order that the assessor would register his name. This would establish his claim on the land and prevent any future person from claiming it. He would then pay for a survey. But, he failed to apply for the patents. So, he did not pay taxes to the crown.

He was the first GARTH to own slaves. Prior to 1747, he was an overseer of slaves owned by other people. In 1747, he brought a boy aged 11 to court to have his age judged. Newly imported slaves were immediately taxable unless they were under the age of 16. To avoid taxes, John preferred to purchase young and newly imported slaves. In the 1780s, he was also accused in a lawsuit of illegally detaining a slave owned by another family.

Though he could not read or write, in the 1750s, John was a Precinct Processioner. His job was to meet with local property owners to verify the boundaries of their land and note any disputes. After land was processioned three times, the boundaries were unchangeable by law. He was also involved in building county roads.

During the Revolutionary War, John provided beef to the American Militia.

John died in 1786 at about 73 years old. In his will, he provided for his wife Elizabeth for one year. The estate was then split equally amongst his children.

The English surname GARTH means an enclosed yard or garden. Our family likely originated in England. No one knows when the GARTHs came to the colonies or who John’s father was. There is a theory that another GARTH living in Virginia as early as 1733. Known as “Old John GARTH”, he could have been John’s father. Old John could read and write and so he may have come to the colonies from England as an indentured servant.  As always, more research is needed.

This ends the GARTH research.

Reference

Davis, Rosalie Edith. The Garth Family: Descendants of John Garth of Virginia, 1734-1986. Dexter, MI: Thomson-Shore, 1988. Print.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Salem BOCOCK (1721-1783) and Susanna BOW (1720-1757) -Married in 1740 Virginia

Flag of Virginia
Edna OTWELL-SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL > Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL > John GARTH > Judith BOCOCK- GARTH > Salem BOCOCK and Susan BOW

There were several families in the colonies that used the BOCOCK surname (or variations of it). Salem was also listed as BOWCOCK in a few documents. There is no documentation linking Salem to any of these colonial families. It is believed that this surname is of French origin (BEAUCOCKE). It is suspected that his father was Henry BOWCOCK (1690-1730) of Virginia, husband of Mary. But, Salem does not appear in Henry’s 1742 will.

Salem was born about 1721 and probably in Virginia. Some researchers believe he was born in England. He married Susanna BOW (or BOWE) (1720-1757) about 1740 in Virginia. We do not know her parents names. They had at least 6 children: Judith (our ancestor), John, Mary/Mildred, Samuel, Elijah and Jason.

The earliest record for Salem was a 1742 Louisa County document that he witnessed.

Susannah must have died before 1757. In 1757, Salem was courting a local Quaker, the widow Agnes JOHNSON. The Quakers condemned Agnes for Salem’s “frequenting her house as a suitor.” Agnes broke up with Salem and returned to the Quakers, only to be condemned in 1758 for marrying a non-Quaker “by a priest”. It may be that Salem was the husband. But, this marriage did not last long and Agnes married another in 1764.

In November 1767, Salem and his son-in-law Thomas GARTH (our ancestor) drew up an article of agreement in which all of Salem’s entire estate was relinquished to GARTH. GARTH would then pay all of Salem’s taxes and provide accommodations to Salem. Any property that was sold, the proceeds would go to GARTH. Salem was only 46 years old at the time and it is unknown why this arrangement was made. The contract allowed Salem to request an annual allowance of 10% if he no longer wished to live in the GARTH household and within 2 years, he no longer appeared on GARTH’s tithe list. Another caveat of the contract was that GARTH would provide for Salem’s son Samuel who was ill and under the care of the Parish. The contract stated that if Samuel ever recovered and had to leave the Parish, GARTH would provide for him, too. (It is unknown if he ever recovered.) Also interesting is that this agreement was written by Patrick HENRY.

He may have become a Quaker in November 1776. He may have died in Bedford County, Virginia in 1783 and it is unknown where he or Susanna were buried.

This ends the BOCOCK and BOW research.

Reference


Davis, Rosalie Edith. The Garth Family: Descendants of John Garth of Virginia, 1734-1986. Dexter, MI: Thomson-Shore, 1988. Print.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Judith BOCOCK-GARTH (1740-1806)

Judith's signature
Edna SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL > Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL > John GARTH > Judith BOCOCK- GARTH

Judith, daughter of Salem BOCOCK (1721-1776) and Susannah BOW (1720-1757), was born about 1740 in Virginia.

A few references cite Judith’s surname as LONG. It is noted that one of her grandchildren, Mildred BOCOCK, also had the surname LONG referenced in a few documents. It may be that LONG was an ancestor’s surname from the BOW side that was used as a middle name. Or, it could be that her mother Susannah was previously married to someone named LONG. Most research agrees that BOCOCK was the correct surname.

Judith married her childhood friend Thomas GARTH (1740-1806) in 1761 in Louisa Co., VA. They settled in Albemarle County and had at least 9 children: John (our ancestor), Ann, Thomas Jr., Sarah, Susannah, Elijah, Jessie Winston, Garland and Mildred.

Judith died about 1806 at about 70 years old. We do not know where her grave is located.

Reference

Davis, Rosalie Edith. The Garth Family: Descendants of John Garth of Virginia, 1734-1986. Dexter, MI: Thomson-Shore, 1988. Print.



Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Thomas GARTH, Gentleman (1740-1812)

Signature of Thomas GARTH
Edna OTWELL > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL > Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL > John GARTH > Thomas GARTH

Thomas GARTH, son of John GARTH, was born about 1740 in Hanover Co., Virginia. There is no information on his mother. He was well educated, a wealthy businessman, trusted associate of Thomas JEFFERSON; he rose to a high level in local government, owned large tracts of land and earned the title “Gentleman”.

Family: At age 21, Thomas married his childhood friend Judith BOCOCK (1740-1806) in 1761 in Louisa Co., VA. They had at least 9 children: John (our ancestor), Ann GAINES, Thomas Jr., Sarah, Susannah DALTON, Elijah, Jessie Winston, Garland and Mildred FRETWELL.

Career and Property: Thomas invested in and leased many plots of land in Virginia. He farmed crops and raised livestock. His attorney on some of his legal documents was patriot Patrick HENRY.

In 1762, Thomas purchased 2 land patents in St. Anne’s Parish which is about 3.5 miles from where Thomas JEFFERSON built Monticello in 1769. Thomas GARTH appears for the first time in the index of JEFFERSON’s Memorandum Book 1767-1770, but the pages referenced are missing and it is unknown what this early connection was. He appears in a later memorandum book when JEFFERSON purchased his beef in 1771 and in a 1772 lease agreement for L11 sterling for land, stock and slaves. JEFFERSON purchased many supplies from Thomas, including butter, corn, fodder, pork, bacon, wheat, milk and tobacco. He had a long association with JEFFERSON.

JEFFERSON asked Thomas to purchase the adjoining land to his Shadwell estate. He later sold the land to JEFFERSON at a L85 profit. JEFFERSON then leased the land back to Thomas. 

Thomas also owned land adjoining Monticello and sold it to JEFFERSON- who later called this parcel Lego.  You can read the text of the document that sealed the deal; it went to auction in 2014 and sold for over $100,000.00 (http://www.rrauction.com/PastAuctionItem/3330668).  It was signed by Thomas and Judith and their daughter Ann GARTH-GAINES. (Contact Mary if you want to see a photo of it.)

By 1775, Thomas was overseer of all of JEFFERSON's holdings in Albemarle County.  Thomas appraised JEFFERSON’s cattle and in payment, received wagonage, glass and plank. He was also a witness for JEFFERSON on legal documents. JEFFERSON relied on Thomas’ advice on plantation management and Thomas was the steward for JEFFERSON’s plantations in Albemarle, Bedford and Goochland by 1776.

The Revolutionary War: During the war, the GARTHS agreed to ride between Albemarle and Tidewater to deliver papers and letters to ensure communication between the 2 areas.

On 9 November 1776, Thomas (and his friends, including JEFFERSON) signed a petition for equal and independent support for every religious denomination. This and other documents indicate that Thomas was a dissenter from the Church of England and may have been a Calvinist.

But, it is interesting that Thomas, in the early years of the Revolution, did not sign any documents or make any oaths refusing allegiance to King George III while his friends, family and JEFFERSON did. Some researchers question if he was a Tory sympathizer. However, by 1779, he served on a committee that determined whether property of sympathizers should be confiscated, so it is unlikely that he was. Also, during the Revolution, Thomas supplied the militia with thousands of pounds of food.

Back to business: Thomas was steward of Monticello for no more than 2 years in the early 1780s. When JEFFERSON was away at the Virginia House of Delegates and during his term as governor of Virginia, Thomas was expected to take care of JEFFERSON’s business affairs and pay his taxes. He also lent money to JEFFERSON who was often cash poor. In return, JEFFERSON paid him back not in wages, but in the money Thomas collected from JEFFERSON’s law accounts, notes and bonds. Thomas became rich on his land investments.

JEFFERSON described Thomas as being "excessively severe" with slaves during their very early association.  Some thirty years later, JEFFERSON was hiring an overseer and described one candidate as "brought up in the school of the Garths... his severity puts him out of the question."

In 1779, Thomas purchased 1,000 acres in Fredericksville Parish for L350 for his final home plantation.  He move into this new home in 1782.  At that point, he was no longer working for JEFFERSON. There is no indication of any issues between the two men; it is likely that Thomas had risen above his station from his wise land investments and had more opportunities in state and county government.   JEFFERSON lived in France between 1784 and 1789 and upon his return, Thomas was one of 13 Albemarle citizens to sign a letter asking JEFFERSON to continue in public office. 

Between 1783 and 1804, Thomas was a tax commissioner in Albemarle. He received a wage of $1 per day. Between 1786 and 1788, he was the Overseer of the Poor for the Virginia General Assembly. That position replaced the work that the Episcopal Church had done prior to dissolution. In 1791, he was appointed Justice of the Peace for Albemarle. By 1800, he owned 2,485 acres, 18 slaves and 14 horses.  During this decade, many roads were built in Albemarle. By 1805, he owned a stage wagon and a one horse carriage (both were taxable). Judith died about 1806. In 1807, he became the High Sheriff of Albemarle. He retired from office in 1808. We found him on the 1810 census in Frederickville, Albemarle Co.

Thomas died in October 1812 in Albemarle Co., VA. He had given most of his land holdings to his sons, but still owned over 3,000 acres. His estate was valued at over L3,000. His last wish was that a quarter of an acre of land in his apple orchard be set aside for a cemetery. This last wish was never granted and no one knows the location of his final resting place.

References

Davis, Rosalie Edith. The Garth Family: Descendants of John Garth of Virginia, 1734-1986. Dexter, MI: Thomson-Shore, 1988. Print.

Wiencek, Henry. "Master of the Mountain." Google Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Nov. 2016

Interesting Note:
Another descendent of Thomas GARTH was actress Tallulah BANKHEAD

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Capt. John GARTH, Patriot (1762-1835) and Sarah GRIFFITH (1770-1857) -Married about 1796

Old Glory
Edna OTWELL > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL > Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL > John GARTH
John GARTH, eldest child of Thomas GARTH and Judith BOCOCK, was born 15 August 1762 in Albemarle Co., Virginia.

MILITARY SERVICE: In 1832, John applied for and received a Revolutionary War pension. These papers document an interview in which he describes his service.  He served as a private in the Virginia Militia; serving 5 tours – 2 months each between 1778 and 1781. (It is likely that he was recruited at age 16 by Col. Charles LEWIS and was in the Albemarle Barracks when the British and Hessian prisoners arrived 19 January 1779.) Four tours were at the Albemarle Barracks which were not well supplied during this time and the regiment threatened to mutiny for lack of guns and clothing. John was a private in Captain LEAK’s company and in Col. LINDSLEY’s regiment and his last tour was with LAFAYETTE when they retreated in Virginia in 1781.

Signature on pension record
Interesting note - John wrote to his brother Jesse GARTH of Charlottesville, Virginia on 5 November 1813 about the War of 1812 (I do not find any documents saying he served in this war) and described the defeat of British in "Canady" and valor of Jonson's Regiment of mounted militia against the "British regulars"; tells of cowardice of PROCTOR; relates death of "Tecomse" [Tecumseh] by severely wounded Col. T. JONSON; hopes government will now support the war "hart and hand". This letter is in the library of William & Mary College, Virginia.

FAMILY LIFE: At 19 years old, John married Ann Harris RODES (1763-?) in 1782 in Albemarle. She was the daughter of his father’s close friend John RODES. They had at least 6 children: Sarah, Rodes, Judith, Nancy, Thomas and Ann. His parents gave him 294 acres of their tract at Blue Run, but they didn’t stay in Virginia. In March 1789, they moved to the “land of dark and bloody ground” soon to be known as Kentucky. Indian raids were common. They settled on 374 acres near today’s Georgetown in Scott Co.

In 1792, John was on the first board of magistrates for then Woodford County (now part of Scott Co.). He also was appointed as captain of the 12th Regiment of the Kentucky Militia. Ann died by 1795.

John next married our ancestor Sarah GRIFFITH (1770-1857) about 1796. They had at least 8 children: Daniel, Samuel, our ancestor Quintilla OTWELL, Jefferson, Mildred SUTPHIN, Lucinda GRAVES, John Madison and Albert Gallatin. John appeared on the 1800 Kentucky tax list, the 1810, 1820 and 1830 censuses in Scott Co.

After his father’s death in 1812, he inherited land in Virginia which he sold in order to purchase more land in several counties in Kentucky. Like many land owners of this era, John also owned slaves.
2 Nov 1809, Kentucky Gazette, Kentucky Digital Library
John's Advertisement
DEATH: John died 9 November 1835 in Scott Co., KY and is buried in the family plot at now named Walnut Hall Farm, a working farm SE of Georgetown. The original house and this small cemetery were documented as late as 1953, but the stones had been partially destroyed. By 1981, it was confirmed that the gravestones had all been removed.

Excerpt from Transcribed Will of John GARTH, 1833
Found on Familysearch.org

26 Dec 1835 Kentucky Gazette, Kentucky Digital Library
Estate Sale Advertisement
 
Sarah lived with her sons until her death in 1857. The farm remained in the GARTH family until 1905.

Visit John's on-line memorial:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=141903016


This also ends the GRIFFITH research.

Reference

Davis, Rosalie Edith. The Garth Family: Descendants of John Garth of Virginia, 1734-1986. Dexter, MI: Thomson-Shore, 1988. Print.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL (1801-1852)


Monument at Georgetown Cemetery with names Wm. & Quintilla Otwell and Martha DORSEY
Photo courtesy of laribel of www.findagrave.com
2 Smaller stones near monument are daughter Martha's husband and child
Edna OTWELL-SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John Franklin OTWELL > Quintilla GARTH-OTWELL

Quintilla Garth was born in Scott County, Kentucky on January 13, 1801.  Her parents were John Garth and Sarah Griffith.  After John's first wife, Ann Rodes, died he married Sarah Griffith.  "Quint" means 5 and Quintilla was John's 5th daughter.  In the Garth household there were at least 15 children, from John's two wives, who were raised in the home.  John Garth's will listed the home as a mansion house.

On the 1810 and 1820 Scott, Kentucky Censuses, Quintilla would have been recorded with a check mark under the age category listed under her father, John Garth, head of household.  Around 1821 she married William Otwell in Scott County.  They had at least six children who were listed as John Franklin, Thomas, Martha, Emily, Mary Ann and Sarah Jane.

On the 1830 Census the family was in Fayette County, Kentucky with five children listed.  They were living on a 100-acre farm.  We next found Quintilla listed in the will of her father, John Garth, dated July 4, 1833.  She was listed as an heir to $1000 and 1/12 share of railroad stock.

Upon the death of her father-in-law, Francis Otwell, Quintilla's family moved back to Scott County in 1839.  Her family lived on a 150-acre farm known as the Frank Otwell Farm.  On the 1840 Census there were six children listed and on the 1850 Census, Quiintilla was recorded as 50-years old living with her husband and four daughters.

Quintilla Garth-Otwell died 10 days short of 51-years old on January 3, 1852.  She was buried in the Georgetown Cemetery, Scott County, Kentucky.

Visit her on-line memorial:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=98557306



Friday, April 28, 2017

OTWELL Estates

Edna OTWELL > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL > William OTWELL & his father Francis OTWELL

Estate appraisals can give incite on how a family lived. Both William and Francis were farmers living on the 150 acre farm in Scott County when they died.  Both were holding notes on numerous friends and family members.  From the lists, it appears William spent some money on furniture and bedding.  We also learn that Francis was harvesting wool and had a loom.

Here are the items in William OTWELL’s estate appraisal 1858:

Furniture
Dozen juniper chairs, a juniper rocking chair, a dozen split bottom chairs, a card table, a settee, 3 steel beds with bedding (steel or iron beds were new in the 1850s), a dining table trifle gun (a table with a compartment to hide a gun), breakfast table with safe, bureau with clock, rocking chair, wardrobe, cooking stove

Household Goods
A looking glass, a bowl & pitcher, 10 blankets, bed sheet & bedding, feather bed, cupboard ware, silverware, bedding for trundle bed, wash stand, fire irons/tongs/shovel, cooking utensils, grindstone, one lot of carpeting, two lots of other sundries

Farm Products and Animals
Seven fleeces of wool, one lot of leather, bushel of clover/timothy seed, lumber, one lot of wheat in the chaff at 40 cents per bushel, 12 hogs, oxen, an ox cart with log chain, 5 cows at $30 per head, 3 heifers at $18 per head, a steer, 5 calves, one lot of sheep, 6 horses and 1 yearling filly

Planted in field
30 acres corn, 20 acres oats, 5 acres wheat

Transportation
A carriage, a four horse wagon, swingletrees

Other
$11.53 Cash (about $323 in 2017), a check from son-in-law in the amount of $557.66 (over 15K in 2017), IOU Notes totaling almost $2000.00 (equivalent to over 56K in 2017), slaves (more about that at the end of this post).

Here are items in estate of William's father Francis OTWELL 1839:

Furniture
2 chest & cupboards, 9 chairs, 9 split bottom chairs, 2 breakfast & dining tables, cupboard, bed and bedstand, a trundle bed and stand, 2 beds, table, large desk, 2 bedsteads, 5 cradles

Household Goods
tea kettle, kettle, silver soup spoon and tea spoon, 4 table cloths, 3 canisters with lids, carpet, chamber pot, loom and equipage (wheel, hooks, thread), brush for wool, wool bands, wool, black wool, 2 rugs, cooking utensils, buckets, 3 chests with contents, cupboardware, silver tumblers, 5 kettles, pot, candlesticks

Farm Items and Animals
3 rakes, 4 hemp hooks, brushes, , 2 axes, ox yoke, pair of andirons, chains, 2 buckets, 4 pairs of sheep shears, saw whetstone, saddlebags, 1 lot irons, 3 spades, old barrels, 5 hogsheads (casks for wine making), grindstone, 7 plows, 7 shovel plows, mowing laythe, 1 harrow, 5 meal bags, 2 lathes, ox cart, ox yoke, log chains, large box, cutting iron, hemp break, , 1 lot barrels, pitch fork, 29 geese, 37 hogs, 8 lassos, cow & calf, 2 steers, 7 yearling calves, 32 sheep, 6 horses, 2 lots leather, 2 lots of flax, 1 lot linen, 1 lot hempseed, 1 lot rye, 40 bushels of wheat, pork, 2000 hemp, old bacon, pork, soap, hay, 1 lot sugar crocks

In the Field
5 stacks hay, 1 stack fodder, 1 stack rye

Transportation
2 doubletrees, 7 saddles, 6 bridles, wagon, 2 singletrees, 4 lots of hames

Other
 $92.00 Cash (equivalent to about $2,300 in 2017), IOU Notes totaling almost $2500.00 (over 63K in 2017), a shot gun and equipage, slaves (see next section)

SLAVES

When we first became aware of slave ownership in our family history, it was very difficult to accept. This will be the first time some of you hear about this. So, I have split the slave information into this section to allow people to decide if they want to read about it. After years of researching our history, I have come to terms with it by understanding that this was the norm in early America. I am not proud of this information, but you have to take the good with the bad. If any of our ancestors made different choices, we may not be here today.

Keep in mind that the first OTWELL to come to Jamestown Colony (1623) came as an indentured servant in order to pay for his passage to the New World. Within 2 generations, the American OTWELLs were slave owners. The last OTWELL slave owner in our tree was John Franklin OTWELL. Slaves were also owned by our GARTH and TAYLOR ancestors.

What is interesting is that we have information for 2 estates spanning almost 20 years: Francis (1839) and William (1858). Prior to the Civil War, it was illegal to buy slaves from outside of Kentucky. The only way one could get a slave was to purchase them from existing Kentucky slave population. Additionally, it was frowned upon for gentlemen to sell their slaves - probably why William's will stipulated that his slaves were not to be sold. In comparing the estates, we find that a few of the younger people on the 1839 list appeared on the 1858 list. We also find that when the estate was split in 1858, women and their young children were kept together.

Francis’ list (1839) included 3 adult males (Jacob, Nathan and Mathew), 2 adult women with their infant children (Casey with William and Lucinda with William) and 10 children (Robert, Harry, Sam, Jefferson, Julia, Sarah, Emily, Elizabeth, Jenny and Mary). No ages were given.

William’s estate (1858) included a list of slaves with their ages. The heirs each received one slave and the remaining were grouped according to their value so that each heir received the same portion of the estate. The sons (both farmers) were willed adult men while the daughters were willed children.
  • Our ancestor John Franklin was willed Harry (21 years old). Note that Harry was one of the 10 children in Francis’ 1839 estate. John F. also received the group consisting of George, Samuel (12), Mary and Albert (9).
  • Thomas was willed Randall (21) and received the group of Elijah (33), Lucinda (40) with her 2 children (Austin and Alexander). Note that Lucinda appeared on Francis’ 1839 list.
  • Martha was willed Lewis (8) and received the group Leah (44) with children Isaac, Elizabeth and Harvey
  • Emily was willed 2 children (Billy and Dinah) and received the group Jacob (14), Fanny (21) and her 2 children (Martha and Isabel)
  • Mary Ann was willed a child named Frank and received the group Abraham (23), Rachel and her 2 children
  • Sarah Jane was willed a child named Jo and received the group Nathan (50), Hannah (17) and Henry (8). Nathan was on Francis’ 1839 list.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

William OTWELL (1798-1858)

William OTWELL's "Mark"
Edna OTWELL-SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John Franklin OTWELL > William OTWELL

William Otwell was born in Scott County, Kentucky on April 11, 1798.  His father was Francis (Frank) Otwell and his mother was unknown.  The old census reports only recorded the head of the family and did not list the names of the spouse and children.  We do know there were many children.  One brother was named Parker and a sister was named Mary Ann.

William married Quintilla Garth around 1821 in Scott County.  They had at least six children which included John Franklin, Thomas, Martha, Emily, Mary Ann and Sarah Jane.

On the 1810 and 1820 Censuses William was still in Scott County living with his parents.  He moved to Fayette County, Kentucky after the 1820 Census with his wife and lived on 100 acres of land.  Their first child, John Franklin, was born there in 1821.  William appeared on the 1830 census in Fayette with his wife, children, and 17 slaves.

In 1839 after his father's death, his family moved back to Scott County to the Frank Otwell Farm which was 150 acres located on the north-west side of the Leesburgh and Lexington Road (now known as Paris Pike).  He was listed as a purchaser of items from his father's estate records.  He was a farmer and he remained in Scott County the rest of his life.

In 1849, William was involved in a civil lawsuit OTWELL vs COOK in which precedence was set in the use of IOUs to offset other IOUs.

On the 1850 Census he was listed with his wife and four daughters.  The 1850 Slave Schedule recorded he was the owner of 21 slaves.

In June 1857 William made out his will and signed with an "X" leaving his estate to his children.  On January 12, 1858 William changed his executor from his son, John Franklin, to two non-family members.  In May 1858 his will was presented to the Scott County Court for disbursement.

William Otwell died May 18, 1858 at the age of 60.  He was buried in the Georgetown Cemetery in Scott County, Kentucky.
OTWELL Monument at Georgetown Cemetery
Photo courtesy of laribel from www.findagrave.com
Close up of text on monument
Photo courtesy of Ben T. CALVERT of www.findagrave.com
Visit his on-line memorial:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=98557164

Read more about the OTWELL Estates.

The Frank Otwell Farm

In the will of William Otwell, the Frank Otwell Farm consisting of 150 acres was to be divided equally to William's daughters, Martha Dorsey, Mary Otwell and Sarah Jane Otwell.

"The land given to my daughters is undivided and deeded to them and lies in Scott County, State of Kentucky.  If this land should fall short of 150 acres as described, I wish that it should be made up out of my estate to Martha, Mary and Sarah Jane."

Martha Otwell Dorsey quickly bought out her sisters' properties.  Mary and Sarah Jane moved to Georgetown, KY and both were deceased within a few years.

In 1878, Martha's husband, Benjamin Dorsey, willed the property to their "daughter Fannie Cromwell Dorsey and children".  In 1916, Fannie wanted to sell the property and divide the proceeds between herself and her older children.  The problem was she had several very young children. The family went to the Kentucky Court of Appeals and in Brock vs Brock, the court decided that all of the children were entitled to the proceeds even if they were born after Benjamin's death.  The property was sold outside the family.
Location of former OTWELL farm
From Google Earth, 2016
From the on-line HISTORY site:
Kentucky was granted statehood in 1792, becoming the first U.S. state west of the Appalachian Mountains. Frontiersman Daniel Boone was one of Kentucky's most prominent explorers and many immigrants followed the trail he blazed through the Cumberland Gap, known as the Wilderness Road. Although it sided with the Confederacy during the Civil War, the population was deeply divided, and many Kentucky residents fought for the North. Known primarily as an agricultural area into the 20th century, Kentucky is also a major U.S. coal producer and site of the military bases Fort Knox and Fort Campbell. It is also known as the home of the legendary Kentucky Derby horse race and bluegrass music, pioneered by Kentucky native Bill Monroe.

Flag of Kentucky


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Elizabeth MCCLANE-TAYLOR (1789-1867)


Back of Pleasant Retreat, Fayette County, KY
(Note 4 chimneys, all brick home)
From Kentucky Digital Library
Photo by Carolyn Murray-WOOLEY, 1975
Edna OTWELL- SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > Mary TAYLOR-OTWELL > Elizabeth MCCLANE-TAYLOR

Elizabeth MCCLANE was born 2 May 1789 and was the daughter of James MCCLANE according to her marriage record.  We have found no additional documents for Elizabeth prior to their marriage.
  • The MCCLANE surname was in the transcription of the marriage record listed in Kentucky Marriage Records Volume II 1810-1814.  That lists Wm MCCLANE and Wm GUILLIAM as bondsmen and James MCCLANE as father to the bride.  GUILLIAM is the maiden name of Stark's mother and Wm was likely a relation.  Bondsmen were usually uncles.
  • Many on-line sources state that an alternative spelling is MCCLAIN.
  • There was a James MCCLAIN who was killed by Indians at Dudley's Defeat.  We have found no documents to link to this line - more research is needed. 
On 22 January 1810, 21 year old Elizabeth MCCLANE married 24 year old farmer Stark TAYLOR in Fayette Co., Kentucky.  In 1813, they built their home named Pleasant Retreat (see photo).
Imagine Elizabeth rearing 16 children there!: Sarah Ann MCMURTRY, James, Richardson, Harrison, Eliza J. SATTERWHITE, Julia DIXON, Mary H. OTWELL (our ancestor), Andrew, Benjamin, Martha R. WHEELER, Anna, Catherine SMITH, Susan FITZGERALD, Berlin, Frank and Frances MCCLELLAND. 

Names of family members were not listed in censuses prior to 1850.  We do have 1810 through 1840 censuses for Stark.  1850 is the first census in which Elizabeth is listed.

Louisville Evening Bulletin, page 2, 29 April 1857
Found on Fulton Postcards
Stark died in 1859.  Executors of the will were Elizabeth and sons Richardson and Frank. Pleasant Retreat was sold at auction that year.

From The Millennial Harbinger by Alexander CAMPBELL, Wm. Kimbrough PENDLETON, Charles LOUIS, pg. 354 (from Correspondence dated 28 Apr 1859, Louisville, Kentucky to Bro. CAMPBELL)
“…On Tuesday, in the forenoon, I preached the funeral of old Brother Stark TAYLOR, of Fayette county, one of my old neighbors. He died the Lord’s day previous. My companion and former associate, Bro. Wm. CONN went with me from Georgetown to the funeral. I truly sympathized with his aged companion, Sister TAYLOR, and her sorrowing children, and gave them all the comfort I could from the word of God. After addressing a large audience, we then followed his body to the grave, and saw it placed in its long home....Affectionately your Brother, T.M. ALLEN
Elizabeth appears as head of household in the 1860 census still in Fayette Co.  She is listed as a 72 year old farmer with real estate valued at $24,000 and a personal property of $13,000.  Several of her children and their spouses lived in her household.

From the following article, we learn that Elizabeth leased out her slaves which was a common practice in Kentucky.
Lexington Observer and Reporter, 26 March 1862
Elizabeth died 6 March 1867 and was buried next to Stark in Lexington Cemetery.

Visit her on-line memorial:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=172786632

This ends the MCCLANE research.






Thursday, April 13, 2017

TAYLOR Estate


Edna OTWELL > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > Mary TAYLOR-OTWELL > Stark TAYLOR
 
Items listed on estate appraisals give us an idea of what life was like for our ancestors.  Stark TAYLOR specified "My wife Elizabeth Taylor is to have that portion of the estate to which she would be entitled if I had died intestate, to be held by her in the same manner as she would if I had made no will."  All of the household and farm items, crops, animals and slaves were owned by Stark and Elizabeth had to buy them back at auction.  The estate was then divided into 12 portions and inherited by their living children or the heirs of their dead children (some of the children died before producing heirs).
 
Items bought by his wife Elizabeth
Stove, all of the furniture in 7 rooms of home, silver ware, cupboard ware, watch, kitchen ware, 21 barrels of salt, 4 cows, 3 rows of apples, brown mare colt, 2 year old brown filly, 1 yoke of oxen, bay buggy mare, 3 hay stacks, 2 oat stacks, 35 acres corn, old buggy, ox cart, 2 horse wagons, box of bees
 
Household Items
Mills, cider, 21 barrels salt, sausage grinder, brooms, kettles, large tub, pots
 
Farm 
Scales, hemp hook, augers, cross cut and hand saw, corn knives, tools, sheep shears, cutter, buckles, rope, irons, drawing knife, side saddle, grind stone, barrels, scrapers, scythes, axes, cradles, nails, box glass, grease, cutting box, rope jack, thrasher, grain sheet, wheat fan, hemp break, 8 plows. 3 small plows, shingles, plank, ox tongs, barrow, forks, cultivator, maul & wedges, hay rake & crow bar, spade & digger, 4 doubletrees, 4 log chains, ox bows, boards, corn sheller, wagon, wagon bed, posts, yokes, bell
 
Crops
Hemp, shelled oats, oats in sheaf, wheat old corn, stack of hay, 27 acres corn, hemp seed, potatoes, 315 bushels of wheat, onions, 13 oats stacks, 6 hemp stacks, 43 stacks of hay, 6 rows of apples
 
Animals
Lambs, 6 hogs, 35 pigs, 6 heifers, 9 cows, 20 calves, bull, 45 sheep, 12 fat cattle, 12 cattle, 9 horses, a mule, 3 yearling steers, mule colt
 
Other
8 shares in Lexington Newtown Pike
 

Slaves

 
Those retained by Elizabeth TAYLOR: Rachel (34), David (33), Peter (36), Bill (17), Cynthia (24) & her child, Elizabeth (6).
 
Others that were sold: Henry (25), Aleck (35), Jack (30), Moses (10), Carrie (29), Aaron an old man, Celia (18), Belle (16), Hilda (16), Coraline (18) & her child, Jenni (26) & her child, Maria (8), Esther (4)

Louisville Daily Journal page 3, 10 October1859
Found on Fulton Postcards

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Stark TAYLOR (1786-1859)

Pleasant Retreat, Fayette County, KY
From Kentucky Digital Library
Photo by Carolyn Murray-WOOLEY, 1975
Edna OTWELL- SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > Mary TAYLOR-OTWELL > Stark TAYLOR
Stark TAYLOR was born 9 September 1786 in Virginia. His unique first name ties him to the GUILLIAM family and it is believed that his parents were William TAYLOR and Hannah GUILLIAM though no birth record exists.

Kentucky became a state in 1792.  Prior, it was considered to be an extension of Virginia.  Since there are no birth records, to say he was born in Virginia means he was born somewhere now known as Virginia or Kentucky.

On 22 January 1810, 24 year old Stark married 21 year old Elizabeth MCCLANE (1789-1867) in Fayette Co., Kentucky.

Stark and Elizabeth had at least 16 children: Sarah Ann MCMURTRY, James, Richardson, Harrison, Eliza J. SATTERWHITE, Julia DIXON, Mary H. OTWELL (our ancestor), Andrew, Benjamin, Martha R. WHEELER, Anna, Catherine SMITH, Susan FITZGERALD, Berlin, Frank and Frances MCCLELLAND. There may have been child #17 named William.

The earliest record we have is the 1810 census in Fayette County. The 1820 census was found in Mercer County, KY under the name Starky TAYLOR. 1830, 1840 and 1850 censuses were also found for Stark Taylor. The 1850 slave schedule showed that they owned 28 slaves ranging from age 2 to 52.

In 1813, they built a home called Pleasant Retreat (see photo) at the cross roads of streets now named Newton Pike & Iron Works Road in Lexington, Fayette Co., KY. What a beautiful home in which our ancestor Mary OTWELL grew up.  This house appears on the list of Kentucky Antebellum era homes.

Stark was a hemp farmer and rope manufacturer. Hemp was a big crop in Kentucky prior to the Civil War – with over 50% of rope manufactured in Kentucky. The large hemp barn located on Pleasant Retreat is a 2 story brick barn measuring 40 feet by 50 ft. Slave quarters were on the 2nd floor and the 1st floor was used for hemp seed storage.   During the civil war, this barn was a cannonball foundry. Melted lead was poured into molds and this is how Iron Works Road got its name.


Barn at Pleasant Retreat From Google Maps - Street View
Stark was a member of the Forks of Elkhorn Church.  According to MCADAMS’ Kentucky Pioneer and Court Records, on 9 April 1828, as a Trustee for the Baptist Church of Jesus Christ, Stark inherited ½ acre of land on the waters of Cane Run on behalf of the church from Lydia FORD of Fayette Co.

In 1838-39 Landowners list, he also owned a 320 acre farm on Henry’s Mill Road in Lexington.


21 November 1839, Kentucky Gazette

In 1839, Stark was appointed as a Delegate to the State Convention during a meeting of the Democratic Party in Lexington. Thus, he attended the Democratic Convention at Frankfort on 8 January 1840 to nominate candidates for the upcoming elections.

In March 1840, he was appointed to the Committee of Vigilance for Fayette Co. At the meeting, this committee unanimously resolved to regard General HARRISON an abolitionist and unworthy of the presidential nomination. (HARRISON was elected president in 1841, holding the position for 32 days before dying of pneumonia.)

In 1847, Stark was named one of the Justices of the Peace in Fayette Co.

In the book History of Kentucky, by Lewis and Richard H. COLLINS (page 57), Stark appears as an owner of a captured runaway slave on 5 August 1848.

Stark died of old age on 24 April 1859 at his home; age 73.  Transcriptions of his will (dated 20 Jan 1858) and estate appraisal and auction were found.  Executors of the will were wife Elizabeth and sons Richardson and Frank.  The estate was divided into 12 equal shares (for each of the living children or their heirs). "Mary OTWELL, wife of John OTWELL" received one share.

Stark was buried at Lexington Cemetery.

Pleasant Retreat was sold at auction on 8 October 1859.

Visit his on-line memorial:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSvcid=409999&GRid=98424358&


_________________________

Stark's father was William TAYLOR (1769-1819).  We found an 1810 census from Lexington, KY.  Online sources say he was born in Kentucky or Virginia.  He died in Lexington.

Stark's mother was Hannah GUILLIAM (1773-?) (or GUILLUM).  She was the daughter of William GUILLIAM (1753-?) and Elizabeth BOWLER (1753-?) and was born in Kentucky or Virginia.

We recently found a reference in a book stating that Stark's parents were one of the first settlers of Kentucky.  But, we have found little documentation on this family and have decided not to have a separate blog post for them at this time.

This ends the TAYLOR, GUILLIAM and BOWLER research.





Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Mary H. TAYLOR-OTWELL (1824-1890)

Edna OTWELL-SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > Mary H. TAYLOR-OTWELL

Mary H. Taylor was born around 1824 in Fayette County, Kentucky.  Her parents were Stark Taylor and Elizabeth McClane.  She came from a large family of 16 children and lived on a hemp-growing plantation in Fayette County that also included slaves.

On December 19, 1844 she married John Franklin Otwell.  Mary had only one child, Maurice Otwell, who was born in 1845.  Mary was found on the 1850 US Census living with her husband and son.  Her father, Stark Taylor, listed Mary in his will on January 20, 1858.  From 1824-1859 Mary was in Fayette County, Kentucky.

In 1859 Mary moved with her family to West Nissouri, Ontario, Canada.  She was listed on the 1881 Canadian Census.  We found many recordings for her husband, John, who was a market gardener and owned a cannery.  However, we found very little on Mary who remained in the background of her husband's business.  Although she had only one child, her home was filled with her grandchildren.  Her son, Maurice, and his family lived with her before and after his being committed to St. Mary's Insane Asylum in 1889.

After her husband's canning business was sold, the family moved to London, Ontario in 1889.  We do not have any information on Mary's death except the date of July 21, 1890 in London.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Sad Case of John F. OTWELL

Edna OTWELL > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John Franklin OTWELL
Here are all of the articles found on John Franklin's 1893 crime.  He was 72 years old.
Argus Newspaper items are from St. Mary's Museum.  All of the other's were found at Our Ontario Digital Newspapers at http://www.ourontario.ca/demo/News.html

28 October 1893, London Free Press


28 Oct 1893, Windsor Evening Record, page 7



2 November 1893, Argus Newspaper, page 5

8 Nov 1893, Argus Newspaper, page 7
9 Nov 1893, Argus Newspaper, page 5
16 Nov 1893, Argus Newspaper, page 7


More items for John F. OTWELL


Lexington Reporter, 18 Jul 1849
Donation to poor - from Old Fulton Postcards
John GARTH also listed was JF's cousin
Louisville Evening Bulletin, 21 September 1857
JF accused of steal horse and buggy - from Old Fulton
Louisville Evening Bulletin, 22 September 1857
Bail set at $1500 (nearly 40K in today's money) - from Old Fulton

Louisville Evening Bulletin, 12 Oct 1857
Names of people in jail or on bail - from Old Fulton

21 Jan 1869, Argus Newspaper, page 3
From St. Mary's Museum

15 Apr 1869, Argus Newspaper, page 2



1873, Canadian Farmer, page 350
From Google books


8 Oct 1874, Argus Newspaper
Western Fair


8 Oct 1874, Argus Newspaper
Western Fair winners

8 Oct 1874 Argus Newspaper
Western Fair winners


8 Oct 1874, Argus Newspaper
Western Fair winners

1876, American Agriculturalist, volume 35, page 113
From Google books

1876, American Agriculturalist, volume 35, page 115
From Google books.
11 Sep 1883 The London Advertiser
Found on google news
 
 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

John Franklin OTWELL (1821-1908)

25 Mar 1885
Argus Newspaper, St. Mary's Museum
Edna OTWELL-SIM > Edwin OTWELL > Maurice OTWELL > John F. OTWELL
BORN - In Fayette County, Kentucky on April 29, 1821, John Franklin Otwell was born to William Otwell and Quintilla Garth.  On the 1830 US Census we found John's father in Fayette County.  No family member names are listed on this census, just check marks for ages of those in the household.  In 1839 after the death of his grandfather, Francis Otwell, John moved with his parents to Francis' farm in Scott, Kentucky.  We found the family on the US 1840 Census in Scott, Kentucky.

MARRIAGE - On December 19, 1844 he married Mary H. Taylor.  They had one child, Maurice Otwell, born in 1845.

TIMELINE
John Otwell was found on the 1850 US Census listed as a farmer in Fayette County.  He was also listed on the 1850 Slave Schedule with a listing of five slaves, 4 males and one female.  On the Canadian 1851 Agricultural Census, John Otwell was listed as owning a 100 acre farm in West Nissouri, Ontario.  During this time he was in both Canada and Kentucky.

In 1858 he was listed in the will of his father, William, as an heir and executor.  He was also listed as the husband of Mary Taylor Otwell in the will of her father, Stark Taylor, in 1858.

In the Port Rowan News an article stated that "John Otwell came to Ontario in 1859 to escape from the mutiny and discontent between the North and South, and free his own conscience from his share of the responsibility for a system for which he had no sympathy."  John was now permanently in Ontario, Canada.
Port Rowan News, unknown date
Courtesy cousin Herb OTWELL/Arlene ROLA
Per the 1901 Canadian Census he was naturalized in 1854.

Original Label
Courtesy cousin Herb OTWELL
John was a farmer and gardener who became well-known in the community.  He grew a tremendous amount of vegetables and small fruits on about 25 acres of his farm.  In 1862 he built the first canning factory in West Nissouri.  We found many articles on the awards he won as a market gardener and also in the North Riding Show.  His business flourished.  During the growing and canning season he employed over 20 people.  He advertised for vegetable plants that would be sent by mail. He was a master of the best methods for preserving his fruits and vegetables.  Some vegetables he grew were squash, pumpkins, cabbage, onions, cucumbers, watermelon, corn, beets, carrots, parsnips and peas.  His tomatoes were rated excellent.

John Otwell had sleighs in the winter with wood-burning stoves on them.  He was the envy of many in his town.  He had an excellent reputation and was the head of a prosperous pickling company.  He led an exemplary life and was well-respected in his community.

On January 19, 1882, J. F. Otwell & Son Pickling Factory burned.  On February 22, 1882 he wrote a letter to the editor of the St. Mary's Argus thanking his insurance companies for their prompt payment.
23 Feb 1882, Argus Newspaper, page 6
St. Mary's Museum


Jar circa 1886
Maple Leaf Auctions


15 July 1886
Argus Newspaper

St. Mary's Museum
In 1886 an article stated J. F. Otwell's pickles are fast becoming famous all over the continent.  He began using a wider-neck jar with a screw top so the jars could be reused.


Can after JF sold the name
Photo courtesy St. Mary's Museum
 
In 1889 John's only child, Maurice, was committed to an insane asylum after many years of crazy behavior. The following year Mary Otwell, John's wife, died.  On the 1891 Canadian Census John is listed as 68 (he is 70), Presbyterian, and listed as a carpenter.  He had sold the farm and moved to London, Ontario.  Maurice's wife and their children are living with John.  He had previously sold his canning business.




2 Nov 1893
Argus, p 5
St. Mary's Museum
Hard times and dementia took a toll on John F. Otwell.  In November of 1893 he confessed to stealing a horse, wagon and harness that he used to steal grain from farmers in London, Ontario.  He confessed to the crimes and on November 9, 1893 he was found guilty and sentenced to two years at the Kingston Penitentiary.  He was 72-years old.  He was interviewed by Dr. Buck from the asylum his son was committed to.  Dr. Buck concluded John suffered from senile dementia and should not be responsible for his actions.  This had no effect on his sentence and John spent two years in Kingston.

We next find John on the 1901 Canadian Census.  He was 80-years old and living in St. Mary's, Ontario with his granddaughter, Mary Haley, and her family.  Some time after this he went to Detroit, Michigan where his daughter-in-law and some grandchildren were living.

DEATH - John Franklin Otwell died June 21, 1908 in Detroit.  He was 87-years old.  His cause of death was paralysis acute ascending.  His remains were returned to London, Ontario, Canada for burial.

John F. Otwell was one of the most interesting ancestors we have researched.  He was so well-respected and accomplished in his Canadian community.  His friends and neighbors signed a petition to try and stop his prison sentence.  This was unsuccessful because John had plead guilty to his crimes.  John Franklin Otwell was Mary Jane's favorite ancestor that we have researched.

Just when we thought John's stealing occurred in his old age, we found several articles in the Louisville Evening Bulletin dated around September 21, 1857.  When he was in Kentucky he stole a horse and buggy of Mr. Wilkes.  He was given bail of $1500 and remanded to jail to await trial at the next term of the criminal court.  He was also listed in a separate article as a person in jail.

21 Sep 1857
Louisville Evening Bulletin
Found on Old Fulton Postcards

Visit his on-line memorial:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=115333682
 
5 Jan 1955
Argus

St. Mary's Museum