Friday, October 26, 2012

Can't we separate all of the Johns, Georges, Davids?

Is it possible to match all of the Johns, Georges, Davids and a couple of James's to their correct parents? That is the game right now.
We begin looking in Western Pennsylvania and neighboring West Virginia where our John Owens I, the Indian Trader, planted this family in the mid to late 18th Century. Early on we only have John Owens I.and his brothers David I and George I so it's not that challenging. We also have a James Owens on Booth's Creek in Virginia. He settles there in about 1770 so he may also be a son of John Owens I. This date comes from a preemption land warrant later granted to his son John Owens. An Owen Owens also lived in the area don't know how he is related?
We may have one John son of James living in the Virginia area in the late 1700's or we may have two? We have one we know to be the son of James, as named in a land record. There are two purchases of land under the name of  John Owens in 1786. Might be two different men or the same John son of James? I have not been able to locate John Owens Jr. son of John Owens Sr. and Susanna. He may have settled in the West Virginia area? Some say he settled in Ohio?
John Owens deceased 1829 Greene County, PA
We also have a John Owens who died in 1829 in Greene County, Pennsylvania which might be John Owens son of James and Susannah? I also found a John on the 1810 Census for Ohio County, VA. Don't know if this is the same person? He was under 45 in 1810.

David Owens Ohio County, Virginia
In Ohio County, VA we also find David. I assume it is David Owens son of John Owens I. He first settles in that area about 1770. He transferred his warrant to David Jones in 1773 and remained on the property several years. I have also found a David Owens to the east of there on the 1800 Census for Washington County, PA. This may be David Owens I. He is over 45 years old. May have returned to area. 

1800 Census Washington County, PA

I matched a few of these men while doing some research for this post. I went back to Virginia Memory and found a couple of databases I had not used before. When I tried the Revolutionary War rejected claims database I found 31 documents for George Owings aka Owens. This answered so many questions, and provided more details of his death. Sadly he was slowly burned to death by Indians.

George Owens family as described by Nephew
1784 Commissioned as an Interpreter
These documents identified George Owens I children who were alive in 1840. They were identified as Thomas and George C. Owens. Their father was a Captain in the Army when they were born. He was stationed in what is now Southern Indiana. I believe George I's wife's name was Charity Casteel.
Georges Owen's half brother David I was sent from Pennsylvania to Fort Nelson in Louisville as a Native American language interpreter. As his son David II explained he met his Uncle George in April 1782 which is supported by a letter mentioning his presence at Fort Nelson. It appears that George Owens I's sons left Indiana after their father's death and joined their relatives in the more peaceful Bracken County, KY area. George and Thomas appear on Taxlists for Bracken County up until 1811 when they probably return to Indiana. So now we have George son of John II and Susanna plus George Casteel Owens son of George I and Charity Casteel. So we have the two Georges identified but still can't place the two Jameses on the taxlists?
1811 Taxlist Bracken County, KY

John and David Owens Indiana 1820
So George I and David I both lived in what is now Southern Indiana in the area that is now Clarksville. I now believe that the John and David mentioned in the History of Clark County, Indiana in 1783 may actually be George I and David I. Later there were brothers, likely David's sons, named John and David living in the area. I think someone may have gotten the names mixed up? 
Now we may be able to deduce that Willis Callaway Owens who was a DNA with my line is likely the grandson of David Owens, since George and David's families are the only early Owens families in that area. His son John Owens is probably the man who married Sarah Jackson in 1787. And their son John in turn married a Callaway. Not positive but the most likely scenario. Still need to work on finding the proper families for the two Jameses. 

1 comment:

jloppgeo said...

Confirmation! The John Owens of Clark County discussed in Baird's History of Clark County Indiana is the son of Indian Intepreter/Guide David Owens and thereby grandson of Trader John Owens. The article in Baird's is written by John A. H. Owens, a grandson of John Owens of Clark County. I have a copy of a newspaper article in the Hoosier Record, 24 Sep 1909 which states "In response to an inquiry John A. H. Owens, of this place, has been notified by the librarian of the State of Pennsylvania that David Owens his great grandfather, served as a private in the 6th Pennsylvania Regiment of the line under Col. Josiah Harmar during the Revolution. The Owens family has had a notable military record, but until he received the letter from the Pennsylvania librarian Sunday, Mr. Owens did not positive-know that he could trace his descent to a soldier of the Revolution. Capt. Geo. Owens, a great-great uncle of John Owens was in command of Ft. Jefferson Ky., on the Mississippi river just below Cairo late in the 18th century. He had beaten off several Indian attaƧks and was greatly feared by the red men. About 1790 he came up the Ohio river by boat to Clarksville and proceeded on foot to Vincennes. He was captured in the Clark county knobs and taken by the Indians to the great powwow ground at Ouiatenon near the present site of Lafayette and there burned at the stake. Many of his descendants still live in Scott county. " I haven't checked to see if the David Owens cited as serving under Josiah Harmer is the right one however John A. H. Owens appears to confirm that he is the great-grandson of Captain David Owens, half brother of Captain George Owens.