Week 7 (Feb 12-18) – Love. Which ancestor do you love to research? Which ancestor do you feel especially close to? Which ancestor seemed to have a lot of love?
This one was tough. The one I’m closest to, that started me doing genealogy, was my Nana Hazel – Hazel Pearl Roberts Reynolds – but I already did a post on her. The one I feel closest to, is my Dad, and we already know that I haven’t been able to finish the post I did on him. So…the one that had a lot of love… well, that was most of them. Large families, sacrifice and struggle – it’s all in the evidence of the lists of children and grandchildren, the movement from one country to another or across the wilderness of the North American continent.
My great-great-grandmother, Carrie Hawkins Roberts had thirteen children. Her second daughter, Gertrude Bradbury Roberts married Ernest Gilbert Seavey when she was seventeen – and by the time she was forty-four, she had given birth to sixteen children, three sets of twins in there.
The one that I think had a lot of love to give though, is my third great-grandmother, Mary Ann Wilder Roberts Miller.
Mary Ann was born on January 9, 1828 in Dennysville, Washington County, Maine to Theophilus Wilder and Rachel Gardner. She was born sixth of twelve children, the fifth of seven daughters.
On February 22, 1851, Mary Ann married Hiram Hills Roberts in Northfield, Washington County, Maine. She was twenty-three. In March of 1852, she gave birth to their first son, Daniel Wellington. William Hiram was born in 1854, Frances Anna in 1856, John Milton, my great-great-grandfather in 1858, Charles E. in 1860 and Hiram Hills Junior in June of 1863, two months after she lost her husband in the Civil War.
Her husband, Hiram Hills, was buried in Bellefontaine, Ohio after dying from dysentery on the way home from combat in the Civil War. He served in the Co. H 28th Maine Regiment. He was thirty six years old.
She is listed as resident in 1860 in Northfield. She may have been in Wesley after Hiram died, staying with family.
On August 13, 1866, she married William N. Miller in Wesley, Washington County, Maine. When she married William, she had six children of her own – and she gained eight from William’s first marriage. William had just lost his wife, Maryan Elizabeth Hayward and three of his children in 1865 to an influenza epidemic.
Margaret J (1842), George Henry (1843), Samuel Hayward (1845), Mary Elizabeth (1850), Josiah F. (1856), Sarah (1857), Elizabeth (1861), Clara M. (1863) are the surviving children of Maryan and William that would be calling Mary Ann ‘stepmother’.
It was obviously a hurried wedding since their first daughter, Adria, was born a month later on September 16, 1866 in Wesley. Abigail A. was born in 1869, Lizzie J. was born in 1871 and William E. “Willie” in 1874.
On July 18, 1878 in Wesley, Washington County, Maine, William N. Miller died. Her youngest, Willie, was four years old.
In 1880, the census has her listed as living in Wesley, widowed and with Abigail, age 11, Lizzie, age 9, Willie, age 6, John age 21 and Hiram, age 16.
They lived between the farms/houses of James Gray and James Gray Jr. according to the census. Five houses down was her son Daniel with his family.
Mary Ann died on June 20, 1905 in Wesley, Washington County, Maine at age 77. She was buried with Hiram…not William. (He was buried with his son, William Miller) It seems that she still had a lot of love for her lost soldier.