Monday, May 25, 2009

North Carolina Family Records Online

This announcement came over the North Carolina State Archives and Library websites and was unveiled during the National Genealogical Society Conference that was held in Raleigh last week.

These family bible records have been scanned and transcribed and placed online for use by the general public. The new records also include marriage notices from the local newspapers. These records have been valuable in placing children with their parents and learning about the families of North Carolina. They are fully searchable and the images can be saved to your harddrive simply by right clicking > save.

North Carolina Family Records Online collection
The State Library of North Carolina and the North Carolina State Archive sare proud to present their newest digital collection, North Carolina Family Records Online. The joint digital collection currently contains nearly 220 family Bible records (lists of birth, marriage, and death information typically written inside of North Carolina family Bibles) from the State Archives, and the six-volume Marriage and Death Notices from Raleigh Register and North Carolina State Gazette: 1799-1893, an 1,100-page compendium ofmarriage announcements and obituaries compiled by then State Librarian Carrie L. Braughton.

This exciting online collection was unveiled at the National GenealogicalSociety Conference, held at the Raleigh Convention Center from May 13-16.

North Carolina Family Records Online has a narrow scope at present, containing only a tenth of the over 2,000 Bible records owned by theNorth Carolina State Archives, but it is hoped that the online collection will continue to grow. All of the Bible records selected for digitization contain family history information dating from the 1700s or earlier and span over 150 years, with the majority of the materials dating to between roughly 1750 and 1900. Each record has been scanned, transcribed by Archives and Library staff, and is available for free on the web. And, because the mostly handwritten materials have been transcribed, the entire collection is full-text searchable, enabling users to search by name, location, or other subject words and phrases.

Due to the content and period of time covered in the North Carolina Family Records Online collection, it reflects only a small segment of NorthCarolina's diverse population - namely literate, Protestant Caucasians of the 18th and 19th Centuries. However, 25 Bible records contain documentation about the birth of slaves, and many other records contain information about governors, legislators, and other political and military leaders who helped shape this country. The State Archives continues to collect Family Bible Records that begin before 1913 from all of North Carolina's citizens,with the hopes providing a broader understanding of North Carolina's past.

Questions to Amy Rudersdorf ( Druscie Simpson ( / ____________________________________________________________

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 2

This is part 2 in a series of posts about our journey of finding out who the children of Etheldred Godwin were. In post 1, we learned that Dred Godwin moved from North Carolina to Clay Co., Indiana about 1830 and he was enumerated on the 1830 Clay County Indiana census report and the 1840 and 1850 census reports for Putnam County, Indiana. In 1830 Dred Godwin had 8 children living in the household - 4 boys and 4 girls; In 1840, he had 6 children - 3 boys and 3 girls - the oldest boy and girl had probably moved out by this time. In 1850, there were 3 "children" living in the household. Dred's wife was not listed, so she had probably died between 1840 and 1850.

Here is the entry for Etheldred Godwin on the 1850 Washington Township, Putnam County, IN census report:

Dwelling no. 250/Family no. 250
Line no. 32 - Etheldred Godwin, 76 years,
old, male, Farmer, Value of Real Estate owned - $400, born in North Carolina,
cannot read or write
Line no. 33 - Margaret Godwin, 21 years old,female,
born in North Carolina, cannot read or write
Line no. 34 - Scion Godwin, 19
years old, male, born in Indiana
Line no. 35 - Joshua Godwin, 26 years old,
male, born in North Carolina, Cannot read or write
This census report was important because it gave us three additional Godwins to research in Indiana - Joshua, Scion, and Margaret.

Additional Facts about Joshua Godwin:

Could not be found on any census reports. According to the 1850 census report, he was born about 1824 in North Carolina. There are no marriage records for him in Indiana.

Additional Facts about Margaret Godwin:

On Jan 18th, 1853, Margaret Godin married George W Scavins in Putnam Co., IN

They were enumerated on the 1860 Parke Co., IN census report with children Michael, Joshua, James, and Sarah (Sylvia). [ has them indexed under George "Sarings"].

Margaret Sabin was enumerated on the 1880 census report in Larimer County, Colorado in Livermore township with her children (she was widowed), "nephew" Solomon Thomas, and "brother" Cyon Gadwin. Margaret's marital status was "widow," however, her husband, George Sabins evidently left Margaret and her children for another woman.

--This census report indicates that Cyon Godwin and Margaret (Godwin) Sabin were siblings

--It also provides clues about a nephew, Solomon Thomas - could he be the son of one of Margaret's sisters?

Additional Facts about Scion/Cyon Godwin:
Things we already know about him:

Listed on the 1850 Putnam Co., IN census report at home with sister Margaret Godwin

Listed on the 1880 Larimer Co., CO census report in household of his sister, Margaret Godwin

Sion/Cyon Godwin was also found living with another family - that of Jonathan and Sarah Godden - in Boone County, Iowa:

In 1854, Sion "Godden" was listed on the Boone Co., Iowa State census report next door to Jonathan Godden.

In 1856, Scion "Godden" was listed on the Boone Co., Iowa State Census report in the household of Jonathan and Sarah Godden. An older gentleman, Enoch Godden, aged 83, born in North Carolina, was also living in the household.

An interesting tidbit of information about Jonathan and Sarah - On August 27th, 1844, Jonathan Godwin married Sarah Godwin in Putnam County, Indiana. Perhaps they were cousins?

The Enoch Godwin mentioned above who was living in Jonathan and Sarah Godden's household, was enumerated on the 1840 Clay County (Jackson township), Indiana census report - he was the male between 60 and 70 years old (born between 1770 and 1780) - with 3 male children, and 1 female child, and 1 female between 60 and 70 years of age (Enoch's wife) - living in the household.

--could this Enoch Godwin have been a brother to our Etheldred and Nathan Godwin?

Related Posts:
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 1
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 3
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 4
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 5

Finding the heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 1

This post is part 1 in a series of posts written about finding the heirs of Etheldred Godwin. Unfortunately, Etheldred - from now on I will refer to him as "Dred" for short - did not leave a will or probate record in Indiana that I, or many other researchers of this line, have been able to locate. We were, however, able to piece together a family profile illustrating the children and grandchildren of Dred Godwin by using a more creative approach to records analysis. By putting bits and pieces together from information gleaned from census reports, deed records, land records, and family histories, we were able to reconstruct this family. This blog series outlines our quest for the truth..


Etheldred Godwin was born about 1774 in North Carolina. He lived in Sampson Co., NC until about 1800 when he removed to Randolph Co., NC with his mother Rachel and his brother Nathan. He married Peggy Ball in Randolph Co., NC in 1806. Between 1828 and 1830, he and Nathan removed with their families to Clay/Putnam Co., Indiana. In North Carolina, he was known as "Dred" Godwin in most records. In Indiana, however, he was known as "Netheldred" Godwin. Often his last name was misprinted as "Goddin/Godden" as there were families by this name already in the area when Dred and his family arrived.

Resources Checked

No probate or wills could be found on file for Dred Godwin in Putnam Co., IN.

The only clues we had on his children were taken from the following census reports:

In 1830, Dred Godwin was enumerated on the Clay County, Indiana census report. "Ntheldrige Godwin" was head of house with 4 males - 1 male under 5 (born between 1825-1830), 2 males between 10 and 15 years old (born between 1815-1820), and 1 male between 50 and 60 years old (Dred Godwin, born between 1770-1780); and 4 females - 1 female under 5 (born between 1825-1830), 1 female between 5 and 10 (born between 1820-1825), 1 female between 10 and 15 (born between 1815-1820), and 1 female between 40 and 50 years old (Dred's wife, born between 1780-1790). Dred's brother Nathan Godwin was also on this page.

In 1840, "Netheldred Goddin" was enumerated on the Putnam County, Indiana census report (Warren Township, southern half of Putnam Co., IN). There were 3 males and 3 females in the household. 1 male between 5 and 10 (born between 1830-1835), 1 male between 20 and 30 (born between 1810-1820), and 1 male between 60 and 70 years old (Dred Godwin, born between 1770-1780); There was 1 female between 10 and 15 (born between 1825-1830), 1 female between 15 and 20 (born between 1820-1825), and 1 female between 50 and 60 years old (Dred's wife, born between 1780-1790).

In 1850, "Etheldred Godwin" was enumerated on the Putnam County, Indiana (Washington Township) census report. He was 76 years old, born abt 1774 in North Carolina and he was a farmer. Three other people were also living in the household with him. His wife must have died between 1840 and 1850 because she is not listed on this 1850 census report. In the house was Margaret Godwin, 21 years old, born abt 1829, in North Carolina; Scion Godwin,19 years old, born abt 1831 in Indiana, and Joshua Godwin, 26 years old, born abt 1824 in NC.

So far we have 8 children in the household in 1830, 6 children in 1840, and 3 children in 1850 (assuming every member of the household is a child of Dred and Peggy Godwin).

In part 2 of this series, we will explore the information gleaned from the 1850 census report mentioned above.

Related Posts:

Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 2
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 3
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 4
Finding the Heirs of Etheldred Godwin - Part 5

Genealogy Journal 5/23/09

Today I went to my local Family History Library to review the two deeds I had ordered last month. The library was pretty busy today because of some classes they were giving. The first film I reviewed was a deed index, (grantor) film from Putnam Co., IN, for surnames starting with letters "T" through "Z."  I was looking for a deed by William Thomas and his wife, Elizabeth that was recorded around 1852 for two tracts of land - each a 1/7th share of 40 acres each - one in section 17 and one in section 8 of township 12 north of range 5. I was successful in finding this entry in the index. It referenced Deed book U on page 526.  I will need to order this film to see the actual deed that was recorded. I will order the film the next time I visit the library as I have had my hands full with the index film and the other film I ordered - Putnam County IN deed book R, S, and T.

In deed book S on page 224, I found the deed from George W Sabin and wife Margaret to Lenox M. Knight that was recorded 16 September 1853.  George Sabin sold off two tracts of land each of 1/7th shares of 40 A in sections 8 and 17 in township 12, north of range 5.  These shares were the same tracts of land that William Thomas, mentioned above, was selling in 1853.

The land that William Thomas and George W Sabin were selling were tracts of land that had been given as legacy to the 7 heirs of Etheldred Godwin upon his death in 1852. These tracts of land were traced via the husbands' names of Dred Godwin's daughters. More information about these deeds and Etheldred Godwin's family is to come....

I was able to use the digital microfilm viewer while at the library.  With this system I was able to find the deeds of interest and scan them, edit them on the fly, then save to my jump drive. It only costs $0.50 per 15 minutes, or $2.00/hr. Not bad. And it was fast. I had a list of all the deeds I wanted to scan and the corresponding pages from these films. I scanned almost all of the Godwin/Goodwin and Sabin deeds I could find. When I got home, I transcribed all 13 pages I had scanned copies of!

At the beginning of this deed book S was an index that listed alphabetically all of the grantors and grantees in the book. This was a great help!

I am allowed to keep the films at the library for 30 days. (I did pay $5.50 to order the films). I need to go back to the library and scan two more deeds from this deed book S. I also want to go back to the deed index and copy down all of the entries for William Thomas, and also for all the other Thomas men who recorded deeds. Although this is not my direct line, it might be able to help some of the Thomas descendants to place William Thomas into a familial line in Indiana.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Saving genealogy photos

This is the word table that I create to index and organize the photos I get from other people. This table illustrates a collection of photos I received from David Campbell. I can open this Word doc and look at the description of a particular photo I am interested in.

Notice the column under "file name" is blank - I have not figured out how to name my photos yet. And I have not decided if I am going to continue to use this Word Doc table as an indexing system for my photo files.

Another cousin of mine sent me some photos so I named them all with a simple convention using the initials of their name because I didn't really know right away who the people in the photos were or what their relationship was to my family. Nor did I know the dates or places where the photos were taken. I just wanted to make sure I knew who sent me the pictures. I also use this convention because sometimes I want to share the photo with another cousin, post online to an online family tree site, or use in a blog - I always ask permission from the owner of the photo before I do this. So I called them simply "BPU_001" - The BPU are the initials of the person who sent me the photos.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Visit to the Randolph County NC Library

Last weekend I made the 1.5 hour trip from Raleigh to Asheboro (Randolph Co), NC to visit the Randolph Room (genealogy library) of the Asheboro Public Library in search of information on my Godwin ancestors. Their online website has a list of all the family files that can be found in their genealogy collection, one of which is the GODWIN file. My main goal was to peruse the contents of this folder and see if I can find anything interesting.

The directions I had to the library were not accurate, so I had to drive around a bit before I found it. Luckily I had my phone on me which has internet. I was able to type in the address of the house that I turned around at as the starting point and the library's address as the final destination. I got to the library in no time. The Randolph room was a small room situated on the bottom floor of the library. There were three 4-6 person tables scrunched in the room. The family files were situated in tall file cabinets that ran the length of the walls. It did not take long for me to find the Godwin file.

The first thing I noticed about the folder was that "See Lucas file" was written across the front of the folder. Inside, the Godwin folder contained printouts of Charles Lucas' WorldOne Connect file posted on Charles Lucas maintains the Lucas Family website and is highly active in using DNA to connect the Lucases of the Carolinas. His printouts contained information on William Godwin, whom he stated was the father of David, Samuel, and Thomas Godwin of Edgecombe Co., NC.

The folder also contained printouts of a court case that Nathan Godwin was involved in against William Burney. Nathan Godwin, the complaintant, testified that he was running a mill on his property and that when William Burney moved to the area, he also started a mill running that prevented Nathan's mill from running properly. The neighbors who testified on William Burney's behalf claimed that Nathan's mill was run down and had not been working for quite some time. The court was in favor of William Burney. This court case was significant in that it indicated that Nathan Godwin owned and operated a mill on his property. However, this information was not new to me as I already had copies of this court suit in my files.

Lastly, the folder contained printouts of another court case that Nathan Godwin was involved in pertaining to his wife's Latham family and the estate of John Latham, Nathan's wife Sarah Latham's father. I also have copies of these court precedings already in my files.

Since I did not find anything new or interesting in the Godwin family folder, I moved on to the Lucas family folder. I found a lot of valuable information on the family of John Lucas who married Elizabeth Milberry Godwin. I believe Elizabeth Godwin was the sister of my supposed ancestor, Nathan Godwin. I printed out almost everything I found in the Lucas folder for further review, however upon first glance, I don't believe that I did ever find any documents that revealed what Elizabeth Lucas' maiden name really was. I think that family lore has had her as a Godwin for many years now. I need to follow up on this lead. Some interesting things I found in this folder were pictures of a log cabin that John Lucas built prior to the Revolutionary War and some articles about its current state of repair and restoration. Also I found many pedigree sheets compiled and submitted by several of Lucas' descendants, many of whom also removed to Indiana in the early 1830s. A local gentleman by the name of Paul Lucas has been slated as the authority on the Lucas family of North Carolina. I might send a note to some of these researchers to see what documentation supports the Godwin name being tied into the Lucas family line. This folder was a wealth of information and had copies of several deeds, wills, and estate files. Surprisingly, however, the folder did NOT contain a copy of John and Milberry's estate files which are housed at the Archives and copies of which are in my own personal collection. They did not leave a will.

Two other folders I briefly examined were the Steed and Lewis family folders. These folders were too thick to photocopy and I had already spent my $20 photocopying the Lucas family folder contents (they charge $0.20 a page). I need to come back to these folders when I have more time, and when these lines are fresher in my mind.

I feel good about my trip, however, I kind of feel like I spent too much time, energy and money on the Lucas family. However it has always been my mantra and secret of success to learn all that I can about not just my own family of interest, but those who lived around them during their lifetimes. It will also be beneficial to have information on the descendants of this Lucas line, as they do share maternal Godwin DNA and they moved around the country as my Godwins did.