The following articles were originally
published in the Madison County Genealogical Society Newsletter in
2003. They are discussing the missing marriages, missing censuses and
tombstones in the area.
Madison County, Ohio Research Problems
from Madison County’s Black Hole:
The northern part of Fairfield Township borders
Jefferson Township in Madison County, Ohio, and Pleasant and Prairie
Townships in Franklin County. Records in this area have the oddest way
of disappearing. For example, there are a number of marriages missing
from this area. I am going to include two of them in this article. The
people involved might have married in Madison County and also might
have married in Franklin County. They were living near the county line
and could have been married in a church in either county. The following
marriages of residents of this area are known to have take place, but
there is no record of the marriages in the probate court of either
Madison or Franklin Counties. I have gone beyond checking indexes for
these people. I have read every page in the microfilmed county marriage
for both Madison and Franklin Counties. Indexes and extracted records
for each of the touching counties have also been checked for the
following missing marriage records.
According to an article in the Logan
County, Ohio history book, George M. Clover, born in Franklin County,
Ohio, son of Joshua and Rachel Clover, married Sarah M. Wright,
daughter of Abraham and Jemima (Benjamin) Wright. They were married 22
December 1844. George M. Clover went to Madison County after his
marriage to learn the blacksmith’s trade. The article does not
include the place of their marriage. There is no record of this
marriage in the Madison or Franklin County records. In the 1850 U.S.
census, Abraham Wright was a blacksmith and lived in Fairfield
Township, Madison County, Ohio. Sarah was probably living in Madison
County with her father when they were married and George may have even
worked for her father as an apprentice to learn the blacksmith trade.
Usually, a young couple married where the female lived. So where is the
county marriage record?
Thomas Cullumber’s 1893 obituary in
the London Semi-Weekly Enterprise, was full of information about his
family. He was born in 1817, the son of John and Patsy Cullumber.
Thomas Cullumber’s first wife was Susan Lilly, youngest daughter
of A. Lilly and wife, of Lilly Chapel. The children of Thomas Cullumber
were listed including his daughter, Mrs. Elizabeth Clover. Lilly Chapel
is in the northern part of Fairfield Township, Madison County. Susan
was actually Emily Susan Lilly. She is Emily S. in the 1860 U. S.
Census. Her father, Armiger Lilly is with the family. In her death
record, she is E. S. Cullumber. Thomas’s family lived in Franklin
County until his father purchased land in Madison County on 12 January
1833 when Matthew and Ann Bonner sold 149 acres in Madison County to
John Cullumber of Franklin County. I cannot prove where Emily Lilly was
living when they married nor do I have an exact date. However, her
brother, Elijah Lilly, is mentioned in a county history article in
Iowa. Elijah’s family came from Virginia to Ross County, Ohio in
1817 where they lived for 20 years. They then moved on to Madison
County, Ohio. So they should have been in Madison County by about 1838.
Elizabeth was the eldest child of Thomas and Emily Cullumber. The
tombstone of Elizabeth (Cullumber) Clover gives her birth date as 28
March 1840. If Thomas married ca. 1838-1839, when he was about 21 years
old, it would fit nicely with the birth of Elizabeth. The
Cullumber’s were living in Fairfield Township, Madison County.
According to all of these details, we would expect this pair of young
people to have married in Madison County, or at least in Franklin
County. So where is the marriage record?
Additional missing marriages from this
1840 time period. It is my belief that one minister simply
failed to turn in returns to the county in spite of the
requirement to do so. They are right on a county line which might
have confused the isse. All of these people lived near what is
called Lilly Chapel in Madison County or near Alton, in Franklin
County, Ohio. They might well have shared the same minister.
Chloe Dougherty married Orin Clover 14 August 1838 according to a bible
Solomon Clover and Jane Widner 8 June 1837 from county history article
Eva Lilly and ?C.? Durflinger ca. 1845 per Ohio death certificate
of son, Calvin Durflinger, born 5 November 1849, Madison County, Ohio.
Thomas Cullumber and Emily Susan Lilly per the Obituary of Thomas
Cullumber, first child born 1840
John Lilly and Mary ? First child born ca. 1840
Eva Durflinger first appears in a census in 1860, widowed so she is
also missing in the 1850 census.
Message from the
Black Hole--The Incomplete 1850 Census by June Clover Byrne
Sometimes we grow very dependent on
census records. But we have to keep in mind that they were created by
human beings. Human beings make errors and the census takers of Madison
County were no exception. I previously wrote about some marriages which
are missing for people who lived in Madison County at the time they
married. It turns out that the census records are not any more complete
than the marriage records are.
There is a small area of Madison
County which was missed by the census takers in the 1850 census. The
1862 Landowner’s Atlas shows the Lilly, Durflinger, and Cullumber
land was along what is now Olmsted Road where it intersects with
Gerich-Lilly road in the extreme northeast corner of Fairfield
Township. The critical area is the one around that intersection. I have
wondered if the census taker became confused by the many county line
changes in this area. Or maybe he just forgot or took the day off. Who
The following names were extracted
from the 1860 Federal Census of Madison County, Ohio, Fairfield
Township, NARA M653 roll 1004, pages 437A and 437B. There are other
names on the pages which appear to be missing in the 1850 census, but I
don’t know enough about them to comment. I paged the 1850 Federal
Census for Fairfield and Jefferson Townships in Madison County using
NARA 0M432 roll 706. I found these errors and omissions while comparing
Wesley Lilly, age 58,
page 437A, line 25. He is not in 1850 census of Madison County.
However, I am sure he was there. He married Mary Durflinger, in Madison
County, on 20 September 1829. According to a county history article by
his son, Henry, the family moved to Madison County about that time.
However, he is not in 1850 census in Madison County or Franklin County.
He died 1889 and is buried in Lower Glade Cemetery in Madison County.
Durflinger, age 88, page 437A, line 38. According to Durflinger
sources, this is
the widow of Daniel Durflinger. They
had moved on to the area of Noblesville, Hamilton County, Indiana where
he died ca. 1844. Sometime after that, she moved back to Madison County. The exact date of her
return is unknown, but she has not been found in the Indiana Census and
is not in Madison County in 1850. She was the mother of the Mary
Durflinger who married Wesley Lilly. Consequently, it is reasonable
that she might have returned to live near her daughter. The obvious
suspicion is that this is one more person missing from the Madison
County Census in 1850.
Durflinger: Eva and Calvin, aged 11, born Ohio, were actually in the
household of Elizabeth
Durflinger above in 1860. However, not only are Eva and her son,
Calvin, missing from the 1850 census, but her marriage record is
page 437B, line 1: I wrote about his missing marriage in a previous
article. His father, John Cullumber, died 11 April 1845, aged 66 years
3 months 17 days. Thomas was the guardian of his father’s minor
children and shows up at various dates in the estate records. The court
records prove he was in the county even though he is missing from the
census in 1850. His marriage is also missing.
Armiger Lilly: page 437B, line 10. I am not certain when Armiger moved
to Madison County. However, he is in the personal property lists in
Madison County in 1850. His wife, Rebecca Lilly, died 2 January 1851,
and is buried in the Old Hampton Cemetery in West Jefferson, Ohio. He
would surely have been buried beside her, but–you guessed
it–his tombstone is missing.
Benjamin Gardner is another person who appears to have been missing in
the 1850 census. I assume he
was in the area because he married Martha Cullumber, 24 July 1843, in
Madison County, Ohio. Martha must have died because Benjamin married
Tobitha Cullumber, 2 January 1851, in Madison County. I can’t
find him in 1850 anywhere. He is certainly not in Madison County.
However, both of these girls were daughters of John Cullumber, and
sisters of the Thomas Cullumber. Since Thomas Cullumber is also on the
missing list, I think this is a very suspicious circumstance.
I don’t know how many people
are missing from this corner of Fairfield. It makes you wonder what all
is missing that we don’t know about yet.
Copyright 2003 June Clover Byrne
Published by permission. Sent by June Byrne, researching Clover,
Cullumber, Lilly, Ferguson, McHenry, in Madison County, Ohio.
from the Black Hole by June Clover Byrne
Madison County, Ohio research presents some special problems. One of
the problems is the multiple boundary changes. These line changes can
be seen clearly in the Map Guide to
the U.S. Federal Censuses, 1790-1920, by William Thorndale and
William Dollarhide, (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1987
), pages 267-274. This book also has information about Ohio historical
geography. It is available in most genealogical libraries.
According to the Map Guide, when the
1790 census was taken, the area that is now Madison County was in the
Virginia Military Reserve which was part of the Northwest Territory. Of
course, since it was only a territory, no census was taken in 1790 or
in 1800. The permanent Indian cessions were not until 1795 so any lines
on the map before that were more a statement of plans than a reflection
of reality. Ross County was created in 1798 and it included a large
part of southwestern Ohio of today. The borders of Ross County were a
giant rectangle which covered twelve present day counties.
Ohio became a state in 1803 at which time Franklin County was created
and Madison County was carved out of Franklin County in 1810. A federal
census was taken in 1810 in Ohio but it was lost except for Washington
County so that is of precious little use to us in Madison County. The
southern boundary of Madison with Fayette County has remained the same
since 1810. As for the eastern boundary with Franklin, the line was
originally straight. Before 1850, the line was changed slightly to
follow Big Darby Creek. The western border with Clark County and the
northern borders with Union County and Champaign County have also
changed several times.
In Caldwell’s Atlas of Madison
County, there are articles about families which were said to
have arrived in Madison County by 1807 or thereabouts. A house on a
piece of land on the eastern border of what is now Madison County would
have started out in Franklin County in 1807. It might have then been in
Champaign County for a few years before the border was straightened out
and the house ended in present day Madison County. All of these
boundary changes occurred before 1850. You need to consult the Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses,
1790-1920, because the record you want so much may be in another
If you are not sure where your family was living, there is a great way
to find out. The set of 1862
Landowner’s Maps of Madison County was filmed by the
Family History Library in Salt Lake and they are available on
microfiche set 6079886 which you can request at any Family History
Center. This is a type of map which has the farms marked off and the
names of the owners on the farms. You can then photocopy your township
and take a magnifying glass and look for your ancestor. If you do not
have a FHC available, you can send some money to the Madison County
Genealogical Society which will be happy to copy your township for you.
Ah, you say, but my family didn’t own land. Well, there is still
a way. Get the above map. Then check the censuses for several years and
collect all the names on the same page of each census. Somewhere, there
will be a neighbor who did own land and who appears on the 1862 map. As
a matter of fact, you can sometimes follow the route of the census
taker down the roads on the map. Don’t look for any startling
revelations about your ancestors on maps, but they are a fascinating
study anyway. It is a wonderful experience to be able to actually walk
where our ancestors lived and worked and walked. You may also be able
to tell from the map which church or cemetery was closest to your
ancestors which will tell you where to search for their records.
Sent by June C. Byrne researching
Clover, Cullumber, Ferguson, Lilly, McHenry, McCafferty in Madison
County, Ohio. Junebyr@aol.com If you have more examples of missing
records, please contact me.
Copyright 2003 June C. Byrne
Maintained by Valerie
All research and information
is courtesy of June Clover
is used here with her permission.
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2009 June C. Byrne
page last updated 15 January 2012