Saturday, October 24, 2009

Surname Saturday/Saturday Night Genealogy Fun

We've got a new Saturday blogging theme and I thought I'd use it to shine a light on a couple of names that haven't gotten much airtime here yet. I couldn't decide between two people so I'll just briefly (as brief as I can that is, LOL) talk about them both.

The first is Simpson Gilkison. Unfortunately I only have a very basic knowledge of his life and what I do "know" comes from an unsourced paper from a cousin. The paper says that Simpson was born to John Gilkeson and Margaret Manley in September 1830 in Fleming County, KY. I was able to confirm that the family moved from Kentucky to Indiana in the 1830s. They were settled in Parke County by the 1840 Population Census enumeration and despite John's death there in 1854 (according to his tombstone and the opening of intestate procedures), the family remained in Parke County. Simpson married Susan Cole about 1856, probably in Parke County, and had something in the range of 10 children. Susan died in 1880 (again, according to the unsourced paper) and Simpson supposedly lived in Parke County until his death in

In terms of research, I've barely scratched the surface for Gilkison records. There are quite a few things to do on my list, including ordering records for several of his children in the hopes that their records will give me clues to details of his birth and perhaps confirmation of his death date and place. Preliminary searches turned up nothing in the limited church records that I have found as of yet, nor have I found a burial site and tombstone for him to help confirm his birth. No record of death has been found yet despite Parke County's taking records of death going back to 1882. Probate records and research into the availability of marriage records in the county, and the surrounding counties, still needs to be addressed. So there is a ton to do with Simpson and one of these days I'll have more than 24 hours in a day to get started.

The second subject for today's theme is Samadras Savery. Samadrus is another dark spot in my files because all I know of him, like Simpson Gilkison, is what I have been told. Unlike Simpson though, details of his life have been researched by several Savery ancestors and these same researchers have done a wonderful job with collateral lines which have been accepted to the Mayflower Society so, while this doesn't completely negate the possibility for errors, for now I feel pretty comfortable with their work. Unfortunately for the purposes of tonight's spotlight, the Savery files are with my Mom. So I'm going to have to wing it tonight.

Samadras was born in 1830 in Cotuit, Barnstable County, MA to George Savery and Catherine Baxter. Samadras would spend his entire life in Barnstable County, a fishing community on Cape Cod. He married Lydia Sturgis by 1856 and the couple would have at least 10 known children, probably more. On census enumerations, he appears as a mariner like most other Barnstable County men. He died there in December 1888. I've often wondered what the origins of his given name were. It seemed unusual to me the first time I heard it, but the Saverys were the very first line that my Mom and I started working on together when I was about 13 years old and I didn't know any 13 year olds named Samadras at the time. By now, I've spent a little more time with New England records and have seen the name more often, but I still don't know where it came from. It would be nice to find out one day.

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