Home » Crawford » Stoner – Shaffer – Needham Connection

Stoner – Shaffer – Needham Connection

Do you use siblings and their descendants to help you locate information on one of your ancestors? Over the years, I’ve found that following these siblings and their families has led me to information I would never have found by just tracking my ancestoral lines.

Thus, I have decide to re-study Nelson G. Crawford’s sister, Polly and her family. Nelson and Polly are the only children that I’ve been able to verify as children of my brick wall ancestor, James Crawford.

James Crawford’s will actually identifies one of Polly’s children in his will: Martha Jane Stoner.

James Crawford will naming Martha Jane Stoner

Even though Martha Stoner is identified in James’ will, tracking her descendants has proven difficult. I believe Martha married Jonathan Sheffer in 1862 in Preble County, Ohio.

Marriage record Jonathan Sheffer and Martha Stoner (Stover)

An 1870 census record for a household of Jonathan Shaffer in Preble County, Ohio includes four children: Emma, Albert, Laura and Charles.

Finding documents to tie Jonathan Sheffer (Shaffer) and his family to other descendants of James Crawford has proven to be difficult. Even proving that the Laura Shaffer shown in the census is the wife of Abner Needham is tricky.

Researchers of FamilySearch have identified the children of Abner Needham. However, the current consensus for his wife’s name is Laura Scheffler. So not only is there a question of who Laura’s parents are, but also how her surname is spelled.

Thus, I decided to look at some of the original records to see how the name is spelled. First, the marriage record for Jonathan and Martha (shown above) uses the SHEFFER spelling for the name. However, this same record also appears to spell Martha’s name as STOVER and not Stoner.

The marriage record for Abner Needham shows Laura’s name as Laura Sheffer and identifies Jonathan D Sheffer as her father.

Marriage record Abner Needham and Laura Sheffer

So, where is the Schlepper spelling coming from? My guess is that it is coming from a birth record for one of Abner and Laura’s children. The index for Preble County birth records shows the variation in the spelling of Laura’s surname.

Abner Needham children in birth records

However, viewing the actual documents, I believe that the name does not have an ‘L’ in it.

Chester Needham’s birth record
Lavina Needham’s birth record
Russel Needham’s birth record

Additional records that show the parents of the Needham children include the marriage record and the death certificate for Chester Needham.

Chester Needham’s marriage record
Chester Needham death certificate

Based on these various documents, I believe that the spelling of Laura’s name is Sheffer or Shaffer and not Scheffler.

However, I can’t prove that Laura Sheffer descends from James Crawford. I am missing document tying the Sheffer family to other descendants of Polly Crawford and John Stoner. In addition, I have not been able to identify any DNA matches thru this line.

Thus, I’m inviting readers to prove me wrong — to provide proof that I’ve made a wrong conclusion regarding Martha Jane Stoner and her family.

1. Martha Jane Stoner was born about 1837 in Ohio, United States.1

She was listed on the census as a 13 year old white female born OH and was listed as Martha Stover at Gasper Twp. in Gasper Township, Preble, Ohio, United States on 2 Aug 1850.2

She was on the census as a 33 year old female born Ohio and was listed as Martha Shaffer in Preble, Ohio, United States on 1 Jul 1870.34

Martha was also known as Martha Jane Sheffer.

Martha Jane Stoner and Jonathan Sheffer were married on 27 Mar 1862 in Preble, Ohio, United States.510

Jonathan Sheffer, son of Samuel Shaffer and Mary Ann Donahoo, was born on 8 Jul 1840 in Highland, Ohio, United States.11

He was on the census as a 32 year old male born Ohio and was listed as Jonathan Shaffer in Preble, Ohio, United States on 1 Jul 1870.3,12

He died on 4 Jun 1930 at the age of 89 in Detroit, Pike, Illinois, United States.11

Jonathan was buried on 6 Jun 1930 at Blue River in Detroit, Pike, Illinois, United States.11 Martha Jane Stoner and Jonathan Sheffer had the following children:

11. Emma Shaffer was born about 1864 in Preble, Ohio, United States.13

She was on the census as a 6 year old female born Ohio and was listed as Emma Shaffer in Preble, Ohio, United States on 1 Jul 1870.12,14

She lived in Twin Township, Preble County, Ohio on 11 Jun 1880.1516

12. Albert F. Shaffer was born on 18 May 1866 in Preble, Ohio, United States.13,17

Hewas listed as a 4 year old male born Ohio and was listed as Albert F. Shaffer in Preble, Ohio, United States on 8 Aug 1870.1213

He lived in Twin Township, Preble County, Ohio on 11 Jun 1880.18

Albert died on 4 Nov 1894 at the age of 28 in Eaton, Preble, Ohio, United States.17

He was buried at Preble County Home Cemetery in Eaton, Preble, Ohio, United States.17

13. Laura A. Shaffer was born about 1869 in Preble, Ohio, United States.13

She was listed as a 1 year old female born Ohio and was listed as Laura A. Shaffer in Preble, Ohio, United States on 1 Jul 1870.1213

She lived in Lanier Township, Preble, Ohio, United States on 15 Jun 1880.19

Laura lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

She died on 9 Jul 1901 at the age of 32 in Montgomery, Ohio, United States.2526

She was buried at Greencastle in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.2527

Laura was the parent of Anna Keller.2829

Laura A. Shaffer and Abner Needham were married on 12 Aug 1885 in Preble, Ohio, United States.3031

Abner Needham32 was born about 1846.20

He lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

He died on 12 Sep 1930 at the age of 84 in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.20,33

The funeral of Abner was held on 15 Sep 1930.20

He was buried on 15 Sep 1930 at Greencastle Cemetery.20

He was the parent of Anna Keller.2829 Laura A. Shaffer and Abner Needham had the following children:

131. Chester Needham was born on 29 Apr 1889 in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.2122,24,34

He lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

Chester lived in Detroit, Michigan, United States in 1930.20,33

He died on 16 Oct 1943 at the age of 54 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan, United States.34

He was buried on 20 Oct 1943 at Grand Lawn Cemetery in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan, United States.34

Chester Needham and Anna Keller were married on 11 Apr 1910 in Detroit, Wayne, Michigan, United States.2829

Anna Keller was born in 1891.

She was the child of Abner Needham and Laura A. Shaffer.2829

132. Russell Jacob Needham24,35 was born in Jan 1892 in Ohio, United States.24,3637

He was born on 23 Jan 1893.35

Russell lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

He registered for the military draft  in 1918 in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.35

He lived in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States in Sep 1930.20,33

Russell registered for the military draft  in 1942 in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.38

He died in 1964 at the age of 72 in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.3940

He was buried on 27 Jul 1964 at Dayton Memorial Park Cemetery in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.3940

Caroline B Hammer41 died in 1954.41

She was buried in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.41

133. Frederick Needham24 was born in Mar 1896 in Ohio, United States.24

He lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

Frederick lived in Cleveland, Cuyahoga, Ohio, United States in Sep 1930.20,33

He lived in Bedford, Cuyahoga, Ohio, United States in 1964.40

134. Laura Lovina Needham24 was born on 11 Feb 1891 in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States.2324,42

She lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

Laura lived in Dayton, Montgomery, Ohio, United States in 1930.33

_____ Kingery20 was born (date unknown).

Laura Lovina Needham and Thomas Brett were married on 5 Sep 1933 in Richmond, Indiana.23

Thomas Brett23

135. Emma Needham was born in Jun 1899 in Ohio, United States.24

She lived in Harrison Township, Montgomery, Ohio in 1900.24

Emma lived in San Diego, California, United States in Sep 1930.20,33

She lived in Los Angeles, California, United States in 1964.40

_____ Brown20 was born (date unknown).

14. Charles E. Sheffer14 was born in May 1870 in Preble, Ohio, United States.14

He lived in Lanier Township, Preble, Ohio, United States on 8 Aug 1870.12

  Sources:

      1. 1850 U.S. Census, Preble County Ohio, population schedule, [CivilDivision], [ED], [PageID] Image [Image] of [ImageTotal], [HouseholdID], [Person]; digital image, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : [AccessType] [AccessDate]); National Archives Publication M432. [FileNumber] [WebAddress].

        2. 1850 U.S. Census, Preble County Ohio, population schedule, Gasper Township, Preble County, Ohio, image 4 of 23, household 577, James Crawford.

        3. Gilbert, Audrey, 1870 Preble County Ohio Census (: , ), (Doc. #:  CRAWFORD.OH.086).

        4. 1870 U.S. Census, DeKalb County, Indiana, population schedule, Jackson Township, DeKalb County, Indiana, page 315 (image 1 of 29) Image [Image] of [ImageTotal], household 7, John Sheffer; digital image, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online July 2017); NARA microfilm publication T132. [WebAddress].

        5. Gilbert, Audrey, Preble County, Ohio Marriages:  1860-1898 (: , ).

        6. Gilbert, Audrey, Preble County, Ohio Marriages:  1860-1898 (: , ), p. 96 (Crawford.OH.085).

        7. U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/7836/). Yates Publishing. U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 : [AccessType] [AccessDate]; [Page].

        8. Dodd, JOrdan, “Ohio, Marriages, 1803-1900,”Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online (July 2017), Jonathan Sheffer.

        9. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1774-1993,” database, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online March 2018), Martha Stover / Johnathan D. Sheffer.

        10. “Ohio, Compiled Marriage Index, 1803-1900,” , Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online February 2019), Martha Stover – Jonathan Sheffer.

        11. “Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths Index, 1916-1947,” database on-line, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online July 2017), Jonathan Shaffer.

        12. 1870 U.S. Census, Preble County Ohio, population schedule, Lanier Township, Preble County, Ohio, page 156, household 90, Jonathan Sheffer; digital image, Ancestry.com(www.ancestry.com: viewed online July 2017); NARA microfilm publication T132. Found online at [WebAddress]

        13. Gilbert, Audrey, 1870 Preble County Ohio Census (: , ).

        14. Gilbert, Audrey, 1870 Preble County Ohio Census (: , ), p. 70 (Crawford.OH.086).

        15. Preble County, Ohio 1880 Census (Uttica, KY: McDowell Publications, 1983), page 25, ED 2, SD 203 (Ancestry image 22 of 32). Hereinafter cited as Preble County, Ohio 1880 Census.

        16. 1880 U.S. Cneus, Preble County, Ohio, population schedule, Twin Township, Preble County, Ohio, ED 203, Page 25, household 231, Emma Sheffer; digital image, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online July 2017); NARA microfilm publication T9.

        17. Find a Grave, database and images, Find a Grave (www.findagrave.com : viewed online July 2017), memorial for Albert F. Sheffer (1866-1894), Find a Grave Memorial no. #115425935, created by Historybuff, citing Preble County Home Cemetery, Eaton, Preble County, Ohio;, Albert F. Shefffer.

        18. 1880 U.S. Cneus, Preble County, Ohio, population schedule, Twin Township, Preble County, Ohio, ED 203, page 25, household 228, Frank Sheffer.

        19. 1880 U.S. Cneus, Preble County, Ohio, population schedule, Lanier Township, Preble County, Ohio, ED 200, page 24, , Laura Sheffer.

        20. “Abner D Needham,” Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio), 14 September 1930; digital image, Newspapers.com (www.newspapers.com : viewed online February 2018).

        21. “Ohio, Births and Christenings INdex, 1774-1973,” database, Ancestry (www.ancestry.com : viewed online February 2019), Chester Dare Needham.

        22. Ohio, Montgomery. Birth and Death Records, 1866-1910.  Film ## 4017450. Chester Dare Needham, 29 apr 1889 Vol. 4digital images, FamilySearch http://www.familysearch.org : viewed online 3 July 2020.

        23. “Indiana, Marriages, 1810-2001,” database, Ancestry,  (www.ancestry.com : viewed online February 2019), Lavina Kingery.

        24. 1900 U.S. Census, Montgomery County, Ohio, population schedule, Harrison Township, Montgomery County, Ohio, ED 87, Sheet 16 A Image [Image] of [ImageTotal], family 423, Abner Needham; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed onlnie February 2019). https://www.ancestry.com/interactive/7602/4117773_00433?pid=41239697.

        25. Find a Grave, database and images, Find a Grave (www.findagrave.com : viewed online 3 July 2020), memorial for Laura Alice Needham (? – 1901), Find a Grave Memorial no. #102071608,

        26. “Needham- Laura,” The Dayton Herald (Dayton, Ohio), 10 July 1901, page 2; digital image, Newspapers.com (www.newspapers.com : viewed online 4 July 2020).

        27. “Local news,”  Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio), 10 July 1901, page 7; digital image, Newspapers.com (www.newspapers.com : viewed online 4 July 2020).

        28. Michigan, County Marriages, 1820-1940, Detroit, Wayne, Michigan, Chester Needham, 11 April 1910; database with images, Ancestry ancestry.com . viewed online 3 July 2020. Original Source: Marriage Records. Michigan Marriages. FamilySearch.

        29. Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867-1952, Chester Needham, digital images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : viewed online 3 July 2020). Original Source: Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867-1952.

        30. Genealogical & Historical Records of Preble County, Ohio (http://gen2.pcdl.lib.oh.us : viewed online 3 July 2020), Laura  Shefffer.

        31. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1774-1993,” database Laura A. sheffer.

        32. “Ohio, County Marriages, 1774-1993,” database Laura A. Sheffer – Abner Needham.

        33. “Abner D Needham,”  Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio), 13 September 1930; digital image, Newspapers.com (www.newspapers.com : viewed online February 2019).

        34. “Michigan, Death Records 1867-1952,” database, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online 3 July 2020), Chester D Needham.

        35. “World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918,” database, Ancestry (Ancestry.com : viewed online 3 July 2020), Russell Jacob Needham.

        36. Ohio, Montgomery. Birth and Death Records, 1866-1910, Russell Needham, Jan 1892; .

        37. “Ohio, Births and Christenings INdex, 1774-1973,” database Russell Needham.

        38. “U.S. World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942,” digital images, NARA Record Group: Records of the Selective Service System, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : viewed online 3 July 2020), Russel Jacob Needham; citing .

        39. Find a Grave, database and images, Find a Grave (www.findagrave.com : viewed online 3 July 2020), memorial for Russell Jackson Needham (? – 1964), Find a Grave Memorial no. #139773720,

        40. “Needham, Russell J.,” The Journal Herald (Dayton, Ohio), 25 July 1964, page 6; digital images, Newspapers.com (www.newspapers.com : viewed online 3 July 2020).

        41. Find a Grave, database and images, Find a Grave (www.findagrave.com : viewed online 3 July 2020), memorial for Caroline B Hammer Needham (? – 1954), Find a Grave Memorial no. #139773675,

        42. Ohio, Montgomery. Birth and Death Rec