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James or George

Do you have a brick wall? Does that brick wall involve identifying the father of an ancestor? At some point, many of us face such a brick wall.

One of my brick walls involves my ancestor, James Crawford. My James Crawford married Sally Duggins in 1799 in Garrard County, Kentucky. All of my research efforts have not punched a hole in this brick wall. Thus, I’m using the FAN (friends acquaintances, and neighbors) club method to branch out and try to find a way around this brick wall. I’m currently researching all of the Crawford families in the area of Garrard County, Kentucky during its early days of settlement.

One of those families is James Crawford and his wife Rebecca Anderson. My current theory is that this James Crawford might be an uncle to my ancestor. Thus, I’m hoping that by researching James and Rebecca and their children, I might find something relating to my James Crawford. Unfortunately, identifying the children of James and Rebecca is proving to be difficult.

I found information about this family in the Florence Wilson Houston book, Maxwell History and Genealogy

This book identifies the children of James and Rebecca as William Crawford, James Crawford, Isaac Crawford, Ann Crawford, Jane Crawford, Cynthia Crawford, and Polly Crawford. Even though this information is just a hint, it has proven valuable in locating records for the children of James and Rebecca. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to locate a will, probate record or even a deed that identifies these children as the children of James and/or Rebecca Crawford.

When it comes to Isaac Crawford, some other researchers show his father as George Crawford and not James. Thus, I’m trying to figure out whether there are two Isaac Crawfords in the Garrard County, Kentucky area at the same time or whether someone has an incorrect father for Isaac Crawford – and that someone could be me.

My theory: The Isaac Crawford married to Nancy Miller is the son of James and Rebecca Crawford. 

Do I have any rock solid evidence to support this theory? No! I only have tidbits of information that might connect Isaac to James and Rebecca Crawford. Most of what I have simply places Isaac Crawford in the same area as James and Rebecca during the same time period.

I have found records placing James and Rebecca Anderson living along Paint Lick Creek in Madison and Garrard Counties, Kentucky.

In that same area, several sources indicate that Isaac Crawford married Nancy Miller on 2 Dec 1808.

In 1809, there is an Isaac Crawford on the tax list for Garrard County, Kentucky. A James Crawford and a Wm Crawford are listed on the same page of this tax list. (Note: This page does not include a George Crawford.)

Isaac is also listed on the 1810 and 1811 tax lists for Garrard County, Kentucky. However, James Crawford is not listed on these tax lists. In 1811, James Crawford is said to have moved to Jefferson County, Indiana (Vawter Family in America).

Since James Crawford moved to Indiana, it is possible that a son named Isaac might also move to Indiana. In 1815, an Isaac Crawford registered land at the Jeffersonvlle land office. Jefferson County, Indiana deeds indicate that an Isaac Crawford and Nancy his wife sold land in Jefferson County, Indiana. Isaac and Nancy again sell land in 1822. In 1823, an Isaac Crawford purchases land in Bartholomew County, Indiana. Other researchers indicate that Isaac and Nancy (Miller) Crawford died in 1824.

I have yet to find a record or records linking Isaac Crawford to James Crawford, thus, I have to consider the possibility that there are either two Isaac Crawfords married to a Nancy or that Isaac’s father is George Crawford. My next step is to contact other researchers to see if they can provide information to prove or disprove my theory.

The first place I looked was on the FamilySearch tree. That tree currently shows George Crawford as the father of Isaac. Since the change log allows me to see who made changes to Isaac Crawford [LQ5D-25H],  I can see who is in the ‘James camp’ and who is in the ‘George camp’.

I have used the FamilySearch messaging system to contact these researchers – and I have received a hint that there is a court record involving Isaac’s sister, Polly Guthrie, that may identify the children of James.

Some might wonder why I’m spending so much time investigating Isaac since he isn’t my ancestor. The primary reason is that I’m hoping that by following James and Rebecca’s children, grandchildren, etc. I will stumble across some clue that will take me around my brick wall and identify the parents or siblings of my ancestor. My second reason is that one of my DNA matches descends from Isaac and my match is in the ‘George’ camp.

Check out Isaac Crawford on my RootsMagic website and let me know who you think his father is.