Tombstone Tuesday – May 21, 2019 – William Skinner


Photo by Donna Skinner Shuey on Find a grave

William Skinner was born on February 11, 1774 in Virginia. He was the son of Joseph and Mary (Bromley) Skinner. They had four sons; Richard (1773), William (1774), Henry (1776), Joseph (1779).

William married Amelia Barnett in 1794. They had ten childre; Rosanna (1795), John (1798), Milly (1800), Catherine (1802), Sarah (1803), William Jr. (1810), Elizabeth (1810), George (1812), Barnet Gaines (1812), Nancy(1814).

William Enlisted into the Army on May 14, 1814 in Suffock, Virginia at the age of 36. He was honorably discharged in March of 1815.

MIUSA1798_102871-00195 - Wm Skinner


In the 1810 Federal Census, William Skinner and his family lived in Harrison, Kentucky. William and Amelia have two sons and five daughters. In the 1820 Census, the Skinner family is found in Georgetown, Kentucky and they have two sons and five daughters. By the time of the 1830 Federal Census, William and Amelia are now living in Franklin County, Indiana and they have five sons and one daughter. In the 1840 Federal Census, William and Amelia are in Decatur, Indiana with two sons and a daughter.

One hundred and sixty three years ago today, William died on May 21, 1856 in Michigantown, Clinton County, Indiana. William Skinner had a last will dated May 6, 1856 registered in Clinton County, Indiana, fifteen days before he died.

WmSkinner Will

Transcribed version of Wm Skinner  last will.

He was buried is buried in Layton Cemetery which is being reclaimed by the surrounding forest.  Sadly, this cemetery is no longer maintained.


Rest in peace, William.

Love, Jan

William is my third cousin five times removed.



Tombstone Tuesday – May 14, 2019 – Frank Hayner


Frank Hayner was the son of John H. and Sarah (Seaburn) Hayner  was born on September 19, 1874 in St Clair, Michigan.  John and Sarah had nine children; William (1863), John (1867), Nellie (1869), Charles(1871), Frank (1874/5), Paul (1878), Leslie (1879), Fred (1884), Alex (1886).

In the 1880 Federal Census, John and Sarah are found in St Clair, Michigan living on Mulberry Street. John works in a tannery. They have seven children living with them; William, John, Nellie, Charles, Frank, Paul and Leslie. Frank is listed as 7 years old and is attending school. In the 1900 Federal Census, Frank remains living with his parents. He is a single man who works as a day laborer. By the 1910 Federal Census, Frank is now working as a sailor on the Great Lakes. His residences is still with his parents in St Clair.


One hundred years ago today, Frank died in the US Marine Hospital in Detroit, Michigan. Frank was working as an sailor on the SS Stadicons when he sustained a spinal injury in an accident which was his eventual cause of death.


He is buried in the Hayner plot in Hillside Cemetery in St. Clair, Michigan.

HillsideCemetery St Clair MI

Rest in peace, Frank!

Love, Jan

Frank is my first cousin three times removed.

Tombstone Tuesday – May 7, 2019 – James G Barkham


Barkham Family Plot in Lakeside Cemetery, Holly Michigan

James Barkham was born on December 25, 1842 in Rochester, Michigan. He was the son of Edmund and Mary (Wilkinson) Barkham.  Edmund and Mary had ten children; Sarah (1836), Christopher (1837), Agnes (1840), Stephen (1841), James (1842), Robert (1845), Myrtie (1848), Marshall (1852), Lina (1853), Evaline (1854). In the 1850 Federal Census, James is a a seven year old living with his seven siblings and his parents in Avon, Oakland County, Michigan. Edmund is a Miller by trade. By the time of the 1860 Federal Census, James is eighteen years old and there are eight siblings living with him and his parents. The family remains in Oakland County.

James married Mary Thomas. They were married in Michigan and most likely Oakland County but I have not found the marriage record yet. They had four children; Myrtie (1867), Harry (1869), James (1872), Carlton (1873). In the 1870 Federal Census, James and Mary are listed in Holly Michigan with two children, Myrtie and Harry. James is a Miller by trade. By the time of the 1880 Federal Census, James and Mary have four children; Myrtie, Harry, James and Carlton. Mary Thomas Barkham died on March 10, 1881 at the age of thirty four.

James married Myra in 1892. I do not know her maiden name at this time. In the 1900 Federal Census, James, Myra and Harry are found in Plano, Texas. He is a Miller working at a flour mill.  By the 1910 Federal Census, James and Myra have returned to Michigan and they live in Detroit.   James is employed at a flour mill. They live on Winder Street. They have one son, James and daughter Myrtie and her husband Joseph Bellford living with them. They seem to be running a boarding house and have eight lodgers living with them. In the 1930 Federal Census, James is living with his daughter, Myrtie and her family.  They are living in the Village of Holly.  Myra has apparently died.

James Barkham

Eighty five years ago today, at the age of ninety one, James died in Holly, Oakland County, Michigan. I have not been able to locate where James is buried. His death Certificate indicates that it is in Holly Michigan. He is likely buried with his first wife Mary but I am unable to locate her also. His Parents and siblings are buried in Commerce Village Burial Grounds. His children are buried in Lakeside Cemetery in Holly. When I find him, I will update this post.

Rest in peace, James.

Love, Jan

James is the Uncle of the husband of my Great Grand Aunt.


Tombstone Tuesday – April 30,2019 – Miriam Best Howell


Miriam Best was the daughter of Conrad and Catherine (Loucks) Best born  on February 21, 1826 in Bayham Township, Elgin, Ontario.   Miriam Best married Nathan Howell on July 25, 1848 in Middlesex, Ontario.

In the 1851 Census, Miriam and Nathan have several children living with them; W. H. Howell (1835), Nathan (1836) , Elizabeth (1837), Elisha (1848), Lorenzo (1849), Margaret (1850). I can only assume that the older Howell children are either siblings of Nathan or children from a previous marriage. Nathan is 14 years older that Miriam.

In the 1861 Canadian Census, Miriam and Nathan have seven children living with them; Elisha (1848), Lorenzo (1849), John (1853), Lewis E (1854), Alvin M. (1855), Margaret (1851), Alice (1859).

In the 1871 Canadian Census, Miriam and Nathan Howell are found in Bayham Township. They have seven children ; Elisha (1849), Lorenzo (1851), Margaret (1852), John (1854) , Lewis (1856), Alvin (1857) , Alice (1858) and Miriam’s Mother, Catheren Best (1801) living with them.

The birth dates for all the children are not the same within the Census records. These errors could be as an result of the census taker or inaccurate information provided by  Miriam. It is hard to tell at this time. The names are all accurate.

One hundred and twenty one years ago today, Miriam died at the age of 72 from what appears to have been a stroke. The death record indicates that it was a blood rupture. She is buried in the Best cemetery in Corinth, Elgin, Ontario.


Rest in peace, Miriam!

Love, Jan

Miriam is my three times Great Grand Aunt.

Tombstone Tuesday – April 23, 2019 – William Crane


William Crane was born in Ontario in 1816. His parents were of Scottish descent. He married Sara Ann Best in Middlesex, Ontario on December 22, 1841. William and Sarah had eight children; Abigail (1842), Nancy Jane (1843), William B (1851), Oreanna (Anna) (1851), Amanda (1857), Annatta (1859), Samuel (1863), James (1870).

William Crane was a Farmer. In some of the Ontario Census, William’s name is spelled Crain. In the 1861 Ontario Census, William and Sarah are listed with six children; Abigail, Nancy Jane, William B, Oreanna, Amanda, H. E. Crane(1858) who I believe must be Annatta. I am thinking the Census taker recorded it wrong. In the 1871 Ontario Census, William can be found in East Elgin, Ontario with his wife and six of his children; Jane, Anna, Amanda, Annette, Samuel and James. Two of the older children have married and moved on. He lists his occupation as a farmer. He is a Wesleyan Methodist. In the 1881 Ontario Census, William and Sarah have three children who still live at home, Amanda, Samuel and James.

One hundred and thirty six years ago today, April 23, 1883, William Crane died. He is buried in the Best Cemetery in Corinth, Elgin County, Ontario.


Rest in peace, William

Love, Jan

William is the husband of my third Great Grand Aunt, Sara Ann Best.

Tombstone Tuesday – April 16, 2019 – Abigail Leete Stone

Abigail Leete, daughter of the Andrew and Elizabeth (Jorden) Leete, was born in Guilford Connecticut in 1683. Andrew and Elizabeth had six children; William (1671), Caleb (1673), Samuel (1677), Dorothy (1680), Abigail (1683), Mercy (1685).

Abigail married Abraham Bradley after the death of his first wife. Abraham Bradley died in 1721. Abigail married Ebenezer Stone in 1725. Ebenezer Stone is the son of Lieutenant Nathaniel Stone. Abigail and Ebenezer had one daughter whose name was Abigail.

Two hundred and fifty-one years ago today, Abigail Leete Stone died in Guilford, Connecticut at the age of eighty-four years old.

She was buried in West Cemetery, Madison Township, New Haven County, Connecticut.

West Cemetery NewHaven Connecticut-2

Rest in peace, Abigail!

Love, Jan

Abigail is my 7th Great Grand Aunt. She is a fourth generation descendant of William Leete who was one of the founders of Guilford Connecticut, President of the Federation of the Colonies and the first Governor of Connecticut.



Tombstone Tuesday – April 9, 2017 – John Alden Dix

JohnAldenDix Tombstone

John Alden was the son of James Lawton and Laura (Stevens) Dix. He was born on December 25,1861 in Glens Falls, Washington County, New York.  James and Laura had four children; Walter (1858), Annie (1859), John (1861), Charles (1864).

In the 1870 Federal Census, James and Laura are living in Queensbury New York with their children and James’s father Samuel. James and Samuel have real estate holdings in excess of twenty five thousand dollars declared in the census. They are both farmers and it is my belief that Samuel is a widower. In the 1880 Federal Census, the family remains in Queensbury. James and Laura have the same number of children, and it appears that James is no longer a farmer but is a property manager. John Alden is nineteen years old and is attending Cornell University. He graduated from Cornell University in 1883 and continued his education at Hamilton College until 1912. He became a successful businessman who was involved in the lumber and paper industry and later in banking.

In 1899, John Alden married Gertrude Thompson. In the 1900 Federal Census, they live in Greenwich, New York. They have no children but have two servants which they employ. John’s occupation is listed as Capitalist.

John became active in the Democratic National Convention in 1904 and served as chairman of the State Democratic Committee from 1908-1910. John was issued a US Passport on April 2, 1908. They live at 491 State St in Albany, New York. In the 1910 Federal Census, John Alden’s occupation is listed as a Banker. He and Gertrude have no children but have five servants employed in their household. In 1911, he was elected as a Democratic and became the 38th Governor of the State of New York and served for two years until 1913. While he was governor he was credited with establishing a New York State Factory Commission which was, responsible for inspecting conditions in the factories, improving fire codes, building codes and passing a law which limited the work week to fifty four hours. After leaving office he retired from politics but was a very successful in other business ventures.

John AldenDix

John Alden Dix – Photo from Findagrave

In the 1920 Federal Census, they are living in Albany, New York and they have one servant working for them.

Ninety one years ago today, April 9, 1928, John Alden Dix died in Manhattan, New York of a heart attack. He was buried in the Thompson plot in section 41, lot 11 in the Albany Rural Cemetery located in Albany, New York along side his wife Gertrude who died a few years earlier.


Historic Albany Rural Cemetery – Est. 1841

Rest in Peace, John.

Love, Jan

John Alden is my fifth cousin three times removed on the maternal side of my family.