Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – Female Ancestors’ Lifespans

Genea-Musings’ Randy Seaver has issued his weekly Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge. This week, we are to list our female ancestors back at least five generations, determining their life spans and identifying who had the shortest and longest lives.

I can name all of my ancestors back five generations, but half of my tree will have no answers because some village records don’t begin until 1828. The 1869 Hungarian census helps fill in a few gaps. I have my ancestors’ names because the parents were named in the baptismal records of the next generation.

Here are my ancestors:

3. Doris Priscilla Adams (1923-2008), 85 years

5. Helena Anna Scerbak (1893-1985), 91 years
7. Hazel Ethel Coleman (1901-1995), 94 years

Great Grandmothers:
9. Maria Kacsenyak (1859-1926), 66 years
11. Anna Murcko (1872-1967), 95 years
13. Annie Maude Stuart (1874-1940), 66 years
15. Anna Elisabeth Jensen (1872-1916), 43 years

Great Great Grandmothers:
17. Maria Repka (1825-after 1869), 44+ years
19. Anna Haluska (1832-after 1869). 37+ years
21. Maria Patorai (1839-1912), 72 years
23. Maria Szova (1845-1925), 79 years
25. Nellie F. Tarbox (1856-1927), 71 Years
27. Elida Ann Hicks (1833-1914), 81 years
29. Sarah Moriah Crouse (1833-1930), 97 years
31. Margrethe Bruun (1843-1890), 47 years

Great Great Great Grandmothers:
33. Anna Miklus (?-?)
35. Elizabeth Gulyas (?-?)
37. Anna Tucsik (?-?)
39. Maria Hovance (?-?)
41. Helena Murcko (?-?)
43. Anna Szurgent (?-?)
45. Anna Lisinska (?-?)
47. Maria Fengya (?-?)
49. Sarah Ann Parker (1817-1900), 83 years
51. Mary Elizabeth Scripture (1827-1966), 38 years
53. Catherine Carlisle (1798-1888), 90 years
55. Abigail Carlisle (1793-1871), 78 years
57. Mary Elizabeth Astle (1811-1889), 78 years
59. Rebecca Jones (1809-1897), 88 years
61. Johanne Elisabeth Molin (1814-1895), 80 years
63. Anna Amalie Christendatter (1823-after 1871), 48+ years

Broken down into decades I have:

1 ancestor who died aged 30-39
2 ancestors who died aged 40-49
0 ancestors who died aged 50-59
2 ancestors who died aged 60-69
5 ancestors who died aged 70-79
5 ancestors who died aged 80-89
5 ancestors who died aged 90-99
11 ancestors for whom I have insufficient dates to determine their life spans.

My female ancestor with the shortest lifespan is Mary Elizabeth Scripture, wife of George Rogers Tarbox of Calais, Maine, who died at the age of 38 years. I don’t have a cause of death for her (no death certificates in that era), but she had given birth to her seventh and last known child in July 1863. It is possible she died in childbirth.

My female ancestor who lived the longest is Sarah Moriah Crouse, wife of William Coleman, also of Calais, Maine, born 7 May 1833 and died 18 October 1930 at the age of 97 years, 5 months and 11 days.


William Williams, Son of Matthias Williams Senior of Cumberland County, Virginia

William Williams was the youngest of the children of Matthias Williams Senior and his wife, Jean/Jane of Cumberland County, Virginia. More is known about this family than that of his siblings for the simple fact that there is a surviving family Bible. However, this Williams family had a real penchant for living in what became severe burned counties, as William’s final destination was Marion County, Tennessee, which lost most of its records in a 1922 fire.

William was born c1760-65, probably in Cumberland County, Virginia. He died between 1830-40, probably in Marion County, Tennessee. William married Judith Saunders before 12 Nov 1788, Cumberland County, VA. Their marriage bond is only dated by the name of the governor, fixing the date as noted above.  Judith was born c1765, Virginia and died after 1850, probably Marion County, where she lived with her daughter, Nancy.  Her parents or possible siblings have not been identified. William bought land in Marion Co. in 1825 and  Shiloh Church minutes in Roane County show that the petition of one William Williams for a letter of dismission on 26 March 1825 was granted so the Williams family apparently made their way from Roane County down to the Tennessee-Alabama border in the spring of 1825.

No military record has been found for William relating to the American Revolution. He might have been just a bit too young to serve or, passing away after 1830, he might not have lived long enough or felt the need to apply for any pension after the 1832 pension act was passed.

William and Judith were the parents of eleven children, most of whom lived to adulthood.

  1. Henrietta, born 3 October 1789, probably Cumberland County, Virginia; died before 15 December 1836, probably Marion County, Tennessee. She married Matthew Pryor, 22 Sept 1808, Roane County, Tennessee. He was born 8 Feb 1787, North Carolina and died 12 June 1869 at Red Hill, near Whitwell, also in Marion County. Henrietta and Matthew had fourteen children, the last born about 1836 and who died young, according to family lore. That 14th children might just have worn out Henrietta. Matthew and Henrietta have many descendants.
  2. Sarah, born 12 February 1790, probably Cumberland County, Virginia. She died after 1870, probably Texas County, Missouri; married William Pryor, c1808, possibly in Anderson County, Tennessee. William was born c1785, North Carolina and died after 1870, probably in Texas County, Missouri.  This family removed to Texas and Webster Cos., MO. William was the brother of John Henry and Matthew Pryor, who also married Williams sisters. Sarah and William had two sons and a daughter and have descendants today.
  3. Sterling, born 27 Oct 1792, probably Cumberland County, Virginia; died after 1860, probably Hot Spring County, Arkansas. He married Polly Cobb, 20 July 1821, in Roane County, Tennessee. Sterling and Polly had ten children and have descendants today.
  4. Elizabeth, born 1 December 1794, probably Cumberland County, Virginia. No other information has been found relating to her.
  5. Harriet, born 18 December 1796, probably Cumberland County, Virginia. Harriet died in May 1868, Marion County, Tennessee. She married John Henry Pryor, 1 Aug 1817, Roane County, Tennessee. He was born c1796, probably in North Carolina and died 1844, reportedly in Hamilton County, Tennessee. Harriet and John had twelve children and have numerous descendants.
  6. John, born 13 December1798, probably Cumberland County, Virginia; died 9 July 1862, Hot Spring County, Arkansas; married Lucy Ann Moore, c1825, probably Marion County, Tennessee. She was born 22 July 1808, Tennessee; died 12 May 1869, Hot Spring County, Arkansas.  She was possibly the daughter of John Moore who lived next door to John Williams in Marion County, Tennessee in 1830.  Both John and Lucy are buried at Lono Cemetery, Hot Spring County, Arkansas. They also had twelve children and have many descendants.
  7. Paul M. , born 23 August 1801, probably Cumberland County, Virginia; died 1830-40, possibly in Marion County, Tennessee.  He married Mary Davis, c1827, probably in Marion County. She was born 19 Dec 1807, Tennessee; died 7 Dec 1888, Morgan County, Tennessee. She married (2) Noah Stonecipher. He was born 26 Feb 1804, North Carolina; died 8 July 1875, Morgan County, Tennessee. Paul and Mary had two known sons – Henry, who died at Molino del Rey in 1848 during the Mexican War, unmarried and with no known children and William M., who married Mary Dow Stonecipher in 1849, who does have descendants.
  8. Matthias, born 13 December 1803, probably Cumberland County, Virginia; died after 1880 and likely is the pauper “Mt. Williams” who died in Roane County, Tennessee and buried there on 4 December 1884. Matthias married (1) Rebecca Davison, 21 Nov 1825 in Roane County. She was born c1807, probably Tennessee; died 1840-1850, probably also in Roane County. (2) Millie A.E. (Lizzie) Shackelford, 30 Aug 1855 in Roane County. She was born c1835, Tennessee; died after 1900, probably in Roane County. Matthias had fourteen children between his two wives and has many descendants.
  9. Nancy, born 17 December 1806, either Anderson or Roane County, Tennessee; died 2 Mar 1883 in Marion County. Nancy never married, but had at least one daughter, Mary Williams Slatten, born 1842 and died in 1916, who married Wade Hampton Slatten, born 1847; died 1888. It looks like she may have had a second, so far unidentified daughter, based on early census records.
  10. William Alexander, born 15 January 1808, probably Roane County, Tennessee; died 12 Dec 1866, probably Lafayette County, Arkansas. He married Hepsabeth Davidson, perhaps a sister of Rebecca Davison, who married his brother, Matthias, on 9 October 1828, probably in Marion County, Tennessee. Hepsabeth’s parents and siblings have never been identified.
  11. Mary, born 24 Feb 1810, probably Roane County, Tennessee; died 22 Nov 1891, probably Marion County, Tennessee. Mary married her eldest sister Henrietta’s widower, Matthew Pryor, widower of her sister, Henrietta on 15 Dec 1836, probably in Marion County. Matthew, who already had fourteen children with Henrietta, went on to have eight more with second wife, Mary.

This family has zillions of descendants. Please leave a comment if you are one of them!

Recommended Reads

Recommended Reads


Canadian Immigration to Maine, 1850-1940 AND

Thousands of Photos on Interactive Map of “Lost London”, both by Gail Dever on Genealogy à la Carte

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Consider Researching at BYU Library by Jill Morelli on Genealogy Certification: My Personal Journey

One of the best, most touching posts I’ve read in a long time:
Every Opportunity Counts by Peggy Lauritzen on Anxiously Engaged

Michelle has been sharing an intriguing multi-part family story:
Forgive Us, by Michelle Ganus Taggart on A Southern Sleuth

Great-Grandmother’s Quilt: Eliza Jane Eagle by Mary Sutherland on Genealogy Ensemble


Do You Use Reddit for Genealogy?, by Diane L. Richard on UpFront with NGS

Methodology, News, Etc.

Ask Yvette – Dealing with Records Loss During World War II, by Yvette Hoitink on Dutch Genealogy

I find that an unsourced tree might be just as right as a sourced one, especially if the sources are “Family Data Collection” or other online trees:
I Hate to Admit That an Unsourced Tree Was Right! by Lori Samuelson on Genealogy at Heart

A Box Is Just a Box, Or Is It? by Melissa Barker on A Genealogist in the Archives

British Ancestry? Then How British Are You? By Leland Meitzler on Genealogy Blog

Genealogy Education

Be sure to check the GeneaWebinars Calendar for on-going hangouts and study groups. Click on the links below to determine local times.

The Family History Library has two great conferences coming up which can be accessed by webinar:
(Live at the FHL in Salt Lake or via webinar) FREE United States Research Seminar August 22-26, 2016 by Thomas MacEntee on Geneabloggers      AND

European Family History Conference, Family History Library and Webinar, 12-16 September 2016 in Salt Lake City AND 500 webinar spots. Registration begins 1 August 2016, described by Lorine McGinnis Schulze on Olive Tree Genealogy Blog.

The Germanic French – Researching Alsatian and Lorrainian Families, Saturday, 30 July 2016,  by John Philip Colletta on Legacy Family Tree Webinars

Solutions for Missing and Scarce Records, Saturday, 30 July 2016, by Tom Jones on Legacy Family Tree Webinars

FamilySearch U.S.: Ask Your Research Question, Tuesday, 2 August 2016

FamilySearch England Research Case Study, Thursday, 4 August 2016

Five Reasons the Records Aren’t in the Courthouse by George G. Morgan, Saturday, 6 August 2016, Southern California Genealogical Society