Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Mother's Day Serendipity Find

This past weekend Mocavo offered free access to their records, and having never used the website, it was time to give it a try. My test subject was Daniel Tidd, my favorite ancestor for such work. There were 223 results and looking over them page by page many were repeats or various pages from the same works. Two in particular found in NEHGS publication XIV and a Lineage Book will be investigated more fully today.

This is a family that has troubled me for forty years, since beginning my research on them. In my database there was Lydia and her possible parents William and Jane Carley/Carter/Kerley. Lydia was married to Daniel Tidd 21 December 1694, in Woburn, Massachusetts, and they are my seventh great grandparents. Daniel born in 1663 in Lexington, Massachusetts, died 29 November 1696, at the age of 33. Lydia born in about 1672 was a young widow and remained unmarried until her death 14 June 1727, at the age of 50. They had two children, Daniel born in 1693 in Lexington and Marah or Mary born in 1695. There was both a probate and guardianship where they are mentioned. Both of the children are mentioned in their grandfather John Tidd's will, who died 13 April 1703 in Lexington, which was probated 31 May 1703.

In glancing at another result there was reference to Lydia Carley's father William Carley in a listing for findagrave.com. Since access was limited on Mocavo, as it required registration, it was time to move on to the findagrave.com website. What was discovered for William Carley enabled me to break down the brick wall for this family. Amazing, is that the information was posted in 2005 and so for nine years it has been waiting for me to find it. The information about the family is limited, but crucial to pinpointing what was already known and confirming the family connection.

The key point is that William Carley who died 13 May 1719 in Lexington, at age 86 and his will was probated 15 June 1719. In his will he mentions his wife, his seven daughters, five of their married names and one grandson William. The burial information for their daughters Sarah Arms, Ruth Lock, Elizabeth Carley, and Lydia Tidd are found there as well. The search for their daughters Mary Johnson, Hannah Whittaker, and Rachel Carley continues. By examining the information shared about each the family composite continues to grow. Rachel who died at age 50, and Elizabeth who died at age 34, appear not to have married.

Going on to familysearch.org several original records are identified. There are birth records for daughters Mary, Sarah and Hannah in Sudbury, Massachusetts. Within the family tree information there it is indicated that Lydia, Rachel, Ruth and Elizabeth were born in Cambridge. Their mother Jane or Jeane King died in Cambridge on 12 January 1721. Hannah and her husband Nathaniel Whittaker have extensive information in the family tree, including the names of their four sons Samuel, Nathaniel, William and Jonas.

Interestingly there are land deeds with transactions for Lydia Teed/Tidd, which were located years ago at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. The second one clearly involves her sister Hannah and N. Whittaker.

1707?, 14 November (12th year of his majesty’s reign) - Film #664005, Book 14, p. 566
Lydia Teed relict of Daniel Teed of Cambridge to John Mead
7 acres in Cambridge
Bordered by land of Daniel Tedd’s house.
Witnesses Jessie? Mead and John Hancock.
21 July 1708, filed in Charlestowne 23 July 1708

1722, 2 April - Film #554015, Book 28, p. 336
N. Whittaker of Concord and Robert Fisk of Lexington
Wife Hannah Whittaker and Lydia Tidd of Lexington relict of Daniel Tidd deceased.
Possession of William Tidd? Faint
Property in Lexington
Signed Wellington?
Witnesses Daniel Munroe and Mic. Tyler? Filed August 4, 1729?

So many clues and the serendipity was truly felt as the pieces of the puzzle came together. Seeking copies of the original wills is the next step. Then there will be other possible records in town, court, land, church and other places to be researched. To me one of the most sentimental factors was knowing Lydia comes from a family of seven girls. Her grandson, the father of our Daniel Tidd the revolutionary war veteran, came from a family of seven boys.

As a mother it has always intrigued me how their mother felt when she sent six of those boys to fight for our country. Now I wonder how the mother of seven daughters would feel raising them in the late 1600s and into the early 1700s. For mothers from all time periods and in all places it is a blessing and a challenge to watch our children grow and find their way in life. As you discover the families of your ancestors take a moment to appreciate the serendipity of understanding their lives and the sacrifices their mother's made in establishing our heritage. Happy Mother's Day!

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