Thursday, May 28, 2015

The 1760 Farm of Samuel Campbell - His neighbors, the McCollams

The properties to the south of the Campbell Farm were discussed in a previous post.  The main property to the south was purchased by John Perry in 1760, passed to the Wood family, and was deeded to Obadiah Newkirk in 1843.

The property to the northwest of the Obadiah Newkirk property (and presumably to the west of the Campbell Farm) is labeled as 99 acres belonging to E.B. Littell.  Also bordering on the north at the eastern edge is the James Beattie property (Campbell Farm?).  These two properties are mentioned in the 1843 deed to Newkirk as the "John Arthur and James Beattie" lands.

1862 Farm Map of SE Wileman and NE Brashier patents in Town of Montgomery, Orange County, NY.  The line above Francis Littell, Hammer, and Newkirk farms is the dividing line between the Wileman and Brashier patents.

A description of the James Beattie lands is given in a 1815 deed from Robert Beattie to James.  ["New York, Land Records, 1630-1975," images, FamilySearch (,358689801 : accessed 28 May 2015), Orange > Deeds 1827-1828 vol GG-HH > image 135 of 545; county courthouses, New York.   1815 NOV 20 Robert Beattie to James Beattie Deed,  Liber GG, p.210 )
Bob Goodwin wrote "How this land came into the possession of Robert Beatty is long and complicated and will have to be the subject of another post."  We look forward to that.

The Littell lands were received by deed in 1850 from John Arthur.  [1850 Elias B. Littell from John Arthur, Liber 105, p. 65, Image 316,359419301]  The deed further states that these lands "were lately owned and occupied by Doctor Henry W. Hornbeck deceased."

The Hornbecks appear to be living on this land at least since 1820 when they appear in the Montgomery federal census.  However, this land is deeded to them in 1808 by Matthew McCollam. ["New York, Land Records, 1630-1975," images, FamilySearch (,358577401 : accessed 28 May 2015), Orange > Deeds 1807-1809 vol K-L > image 153 of 485; county courthouses, New York.   1808 deed from Matthew and Elizabeth McCollam to Henry Hornbeck, Liber K, p. 297]

I believe the census takers had problems with the McCollam name.  In the 1790 census the name appeared as "John McClannen" (could he be the son of Samuel McCollam who witnessed Samuel Campbell's will in 1773?).  In the 1800 census the widow McCollam was known as "Elizabeth Montfort" (this is confirmed in the deed).

The property is described as:
" ... known and distinguished in the map or plan of Wilemanton by the name of Lot number thirty and is bounded as follows that is to say,
Beginning at a small black oak sapling marked with two notches and a blaze on four sides being the southwesterly corner of lot number twenty and runs from thence
South twenty degrees West, thirty six Chains
to a stake and heap of stones on the easterly side of a hill in the line of the tract thence
South seventy degrees East, along said line twenty seven Chains and fifty links thence
North twenty degrees East, thirty six Chains and thence
North seventy degrees West, twenty seven Chains and fifty links (as the needle pointed in the year 1794) to the place of Beginning containing ninety nine acres of Land... "

This shape, size, and location match the Littell plot shown in the 1862 farm map.

It is likely the McCollams and the Campbells were neighbors for many years and maybe knew each other prior to the move from NJ to NY.  As mentioned, Samuel McCollam was a witness to the will of Samuel Campbell.  Perhaps there was even some intermarrying.

Another piece of the puzzle falls into place.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The 1760 farm of Samuel Campbell - REVISITED

You may have seen the discussions on the Joel Campbell Family Facebook page regarding the location of the first New York farm of Joel's father, Samuel.

I had presumed the farm was close to the still-standing 1760 home of Benjamin Haines.  The Campbell name appeared very close to the Haines name in the 1790 census.

Bob Goodwin placed it about 3 miles further north.  A 1783 deed between Israel Brown and Benjamin Wood mentions the Campbell lands.  The Brown/Wood property is in the "Brashier patent" which is north of the Haines home.  In fact, it shares a common border with the north edge of the Brashier patent.  The 1783 deed says the Campbell lands were north of that line.

The commonality between the family names in the 1790 census and the names of farms in the "Brown/Wood" section of the Brashier patent supports Bob's argument that the Campbell farm was in this area.  Indeed it is about 3 miles northeast of the still-standing Haines home.  It is about that same distance from Samuel's second farm on Rt 208 (the one mentioned in the 1793 deed.)

The false lead with the Haines home was due to the size and number of Haines properties and homes.  It appears that by the 1790 census, Haines had moved from the historic 1760 home on Coleman Road to another one of his properties to the north.

The location of the 1760 Campbell farm is about 10 miles from the commercial centers of Newburgh and New Windsor on the Hudson river to the East.  There were also mills on the Wallkill River less than 3 miles to the West, but the markets for goods were reached via the Hudson, not the Wallkill.

Location of Campbell Farms on a modern map.  Newburgh, New York to the right on the Hudson River.
The placement of the 1760 farm can be fine-tuned by using some old maps and deeds.  Let's start with a 1862 map of this area.  The red lines show the extent of the Brashier patent.  All early properties were laid out with respect to these borders.  More than 100 years after the patent was surveyed, very few properties overlapped those borders.

1862 "Farm Map of  the Town of Montgomery, Orange Co., N.Y., Surveyed Drawn & Published by Michael Hughes, N Friend Lith, 332 Walnut St., Philadelphia" with extent of Brashier Patent outlined in red.
As you can see, by 1862 there were no Woods, Perrys, or Campbells on the map.  A few names from the 1790 census survive.  For example, there is a "Haines" home on 40 acres where the Tin Brook makes a turn from SW to NW (it flows west to the Wallkill).  The "McKenny's"  (or McKinney) are also in the 1790 census and have three properties on this map.  The property to the north where the Tin Brook makes a loop across the "Newburgh-Ellenville Turnpike" (also known as S Plank Rd and Rt 52) contains the McKinney Home.  The "Brown" name appears in the lower right and the road bounding it to the West is still called "Brown Road."

The 198 acres owned by Obadiah Newkirk (at the crossroads of the Turnpike and the Road to St. Andrews) was acquired in 1843 from the heirs of Abraham Wood.  Abraham had apparently died and his descendents had scattered.  One of his sons signed the deed from his home in Michigan.  The guardian of his "Crowell" grandchildren also signed.  Abraham's late daughter had married a "Crowell."  [his pension application says that his oldest brother's daughter married a Crowell.]  Note the placement of the Crowell property on the map.  The description of the Wood/Newkirk property is given in the Orange County Land Records, Liber 78, p. 42 (Image 26).
" ... beginning at the corner of the lands of James Beattie and John Arthur, and runs from thence North sixty nine and one quarter degrees West forty seven chains and twenty two links, thence South twenty two and one quarter degrees West, forty four chains and fifty five links, then South sixty seven and a half degrees East, seventeen chains and ten links; thence South twenty two and one quarter degrees West, twenty seven chains and thirty six links; thence South sixty seven and one quarter degrees East, eight chains and forty three links; then North twenty two and one quarter degrees East, forty four chains and seventy eight links; thence South seventy degrees East, twenty two chains and one link; thence North twenty one and a half degrees East twenty seven chains and sixty seven links to the place of beginning; Containing one hundred and ninety eight acres and thirty four rods of land ... "
The shape of this parcel matches exactly the parcel labeled Obadiah Newkirk in the 1862 map (see blue outline).

1862 Map with Obadiah Newkirk purchase from Wood heirs outlined in blue.
This "Wood" property, however does not match the shape of the two Wood purchases in the 1700s.  Are they related?  Here is my working hypothesis:

First, the slender piece of property extending to the south, is part the purchase mentioned earlier that Benjamin Wood made from Israel Brown.   [Deed of Israel Brown to Benjamin Wood, 2 Nov 1783, Ulster Co., Deeds, Vol II, page 23.   (note that "Vol. II" comes after "HH" and before "KK".  It is not a Roman numeral.)  It is out of order in the Book of Abstracts.  In the microfilm it is located as Image 189 where page 32 should be:,360657301]

This 1783 purchase was tall (1.6 miles) and very slender (about 200 yards).  It stretched from top to bottom of the Brashier patent.  I have colored that parcel in green.  Other hints in the description say the NW corner was at a "Rode" which matches with the placement of this plot on the road to St Andrews.  It also says that his existing property borders to the east.  Which brings us to the 1771 deed in which Wood purchases his original farm from Tuthill.

Parts of the Brashier patent had been purchased by speculators, Samuel Tuthill and Benjamin Brown.   The line that divided their purchases ran north and south.  The line was marked "T.BB" (Presumably for Tuthill/BenjaminBrown).  The line became less important in 1783 when Benjamin Wood owned property on both sides of the line.  But in 1771, Wood purchased a parcel which sat in the Tuthill lands and bordered the Brown lands.  It also shared a border with the southern border of the Brashier patent.  Like the other parcels it was tall (0.9 miles) and slender (300 yards).  It is shown on the map in yellow.  [Deed of Samuel Tuthill to Benjamin Wood, 7 Jun 1771, Ulster Co., Deeds, Vol II, page 30 (Image 188),360657301]

This deed also tells us that it was bordered on the north by "a lot of one hundred acres formerly granted to John Perry."  Perry's lot was not quite as tall (0.7 miles) and not quite so slender (~400 yards).  [See  Deed from Samuel Tuthill to John Perry, 4 Dec 1760, Book GG, p.388  (Image 568 at,360654001)]  Its shape fits nicely to the north of the original Wood purchase.  It is shown in blue.  The "swamp" mentioned in the NW corner, still exists today.

1862 map with 1783 Wood (green), 1771 Wood (yellow), and 1760 Perry (blue) deed information.  The estimate of the Campbell property is in purple at the very top and extends off the map.
The Campbell property is mentioned in both the 1783 Wood Deed (" ... Beginning at a Maple Tree standing in the Line between the said lot and a lot belonging to one Cammel being the Northeast corner of the said Tract ...") and in the 1784 Deed where he gave part of the former property to, Abraham Wood (his brother?) (" ... Beginning at a Maple Tree standing in the Lane [Line?] between the said Land & a Lot of Land belonging to one Camel [Campbell] being the North East Corner of the said Lands ...").  Daniel Campbell is a witness to the 1760 Perry deed, adding credence to the proximity of Campbell lands.   No deed exists for the Campbell purchase but as it was north of the Wood and Perry land it is estimated to be where the purple rectangle sits and extends off the map northward.

Some areas of further research are obvious from this.  For example, is there a deed from Wood to Whigam (or Wickham or Wigham) in the Abstracts?  Or is there a deed from Perry to Wood?  I have searched for both of those without success.

Is there a deed from Perry to Snyder or from Perry to Brannan (the two small parcels in blue)?  These I have not searched for.  [See addendum below!]

I am sure there is something missing here.  For example, were there other relatives of Samuel Campbell with property in this area in 1760?  We know there was one other Campbell in this area at the time who cavorted with Arthur McKinney (McKenny).  (See McKinney lands on the map.)  More on that story in a future blog.

[See my google map doodles of the Brashier Patent.]


Shortly after this was published, Robert Goodwin shared the will of Joseph Hunt which locks down with certainty that this is the location of the Wood and Perry tracts.  The Campbells were to the north of these tracts, but the exact property lines have not been confirmed.  They are likely where the Beattie property is in the 1862 farm map, just to the north of the Newkirk property.

The will is that of Joseph Hunt of Montgomery, Orange Co., NY made 9 March 1807 found in Will Book D, pages 9 to 13.
In it he leaves the following bequest:
"Thirdly I give devise and bequeath unto my son Joseph Hunt and my daughter Lydia the present wife of William Brannon Jr. the farm I purchased of David and John Perry containing fifty acres of land and lot Number thirty six commonly called King’s hill lot which I purchased of James Duane containing forty five acres of land to be equally divided between them share and share alike Together with the appurtences to have and to hold the same for and during their natural lives and at their decease to their heirs and assigns forever.”
In Robert Goodwin's words, "Apparently Joseph Hunt bought from David and John Perry the south half, 50 acres, of the John Perry 1760 purchase of 100 acres. He then left his land to his son Joseph Hunt and daughter Lydia who was the wife of William Brannon. Lydia and her husband kept their half of that farm, and were apparently still residing on it in 1862. Joseph Hunt Jr. sold his portion to Abraham Snyder (Snider) 9 Dec 1848 Deed Book 98 page 94, who was still in possession when the 1862 farm map was made.  This would be the W. Brannen and A Snyder, as listed on the map and represents the south half of the John Perry 1760 farm. The importance of this is that it positively locates where in the Brashier patent the John Perry, and the Abraham Wood/Benjamin Wood farms were."

Friday, May 22, 2015

More DNA - "The Abigail DNA Project"

A previous blog discussed the Y-DNA signature of a common male ancestor shared by all paternal descendants of Joel Campbell.  Joel was born in about 1735 and is the grandson of Robert Campbell who was banished from Scotland to New Jersey in 1685.

I also wrote about the use of Y-DNA to identify other Campbell lines with whom we share "recent common ancestors."

What about our maternal line?  Just imagine what your last name would be if ten generations ago everyone decided that offspring would assume the family name of the mother.  This is sometimes called the "matriname" or "matrilineal surname."
Image from
Personally, I can only trace my matriname five generations.   [First name and country of birth is known for six generations.] I have no clue what my matriname would be at 10 generations, except that it was very likely Scottish as my 2nd, 3rd, and 4th maternal ggmothers were all born in Scotland.

But let's get back to Joel as he is my current obsession and the namesake of this blog.  His wives and the mother(s) of his children are still a source of genealogical confusion.  What were their names?  Rebecca, Nancy, Abigail, or all of the above?  Did he have two?  or was it three?  What were their maiden names?  What were their origins?  When and where did they die?  I could write several pages on all of those questions, but today I am proposing a different approach.  I am calling it "The Abigail DNA Project."

"The Abigail DNA Project" will award $500 to the person who can identify a living maternal descendant of the mother of Joel's children and convince that person to submit a sample for mtDNA testing.

I am calling it "The Abigail DNA Project" because "Abigail" is the only wife of Joel whose name is confirmed.  She may not be the mother of his children, but I needed a name and did not want to call it the "Wife of Joel Campbell DNA Project."   I did think about using "The Mother of Jemima Campbell DNA Project," but it did not sound right to me, although probably more accurate.

So here is the deal.  Joel and his wife had a daughter named Jemima (presumably the only daughter?). Jemima had several named Rebecca.  Rebecca had several named Roxy.  Roxy had a daughter named Ella.....and so on.  You must document a maternal line until you reach a living son (sons carry the mtDNA, but they don't pass it on)  or daughter of a direct maternal ancestor of Jemima.  You must contact that person and convince them to submit a mtDNA test and share the results.

Why do I want to do this?  The jackpot would be if we had a complete match with a family name in Newark in the 1700s.  Such a match would suggest a finite possibility that Joel's wife was one of that family's daughters or granddaughters.  I don't expect that to happen.  More likely we will get matches that indicate heritage (Scottish, Irish, etc) or a haplogroup that confirms or disproves European origins.

At the least we will know a little more about the woman from whom we all have a small piece of DNA.  In fact, it is just as likely that we are genetically closer to her than to Joel even though many of us carry his patriname.

Someone should be able to crack this one quickly!  Good luck!


Maternal lineage is the line that follows mother to daughter.  It consists entirely of women.

mtDNA or mitochondrial DNA is passed from a mother to her offspring.  It is passed largely intact.  Mutations occur randomly at a low enough frequency that people with a recent common maternal ancestor usually have identical mtDNA signatures.

Hence your mtDNA links your mother, her mother, her mother’s mother, and so forth, and offers a clear path from you to a maternal ancestor who is the origin your unique mtDNA signature.

A complete match between two participants using FamilyTreeDNA's mtFullSequence gives a 50% chance of a common ancestor in the last 5 generations.  The probability goes up to 95% that a common ancestor exists in the last 22 generations (about 550 years).

Suppose your maternal ancestor 22 generations ago (your 20th greatgrandmother) had 2 daughters and they each had two daughters, and so on for 22 generations.  How many is that?  It is over four million.  We could possibly have matches with four million people most of whom probably can only only trace their maternal line back 4 or 5 generations, which is not a big help from a genealogical standpoint.  Hopefully the "Abigail mtDNA signature" is only about 10 generations old (not 22) and one of the matching participants can trace their maternal line back that far.

Jemima's maternal ancestors passed down their mtDNA generation after generation. The line began with a common maternal ancestor in Africa until it ultimately reached Jemima (albeit with unique mutations that occurred about every 10-20 generations).  mtDNA marks the path from our maternal ancestors in Africa to their locations in historic times.  Because maternal descendants of Jemima carry the record of  the path of this journey, their DNA tells of something about the origins of Jemima even if we don't find any matches.

As more people are tested that path should become more detailed.  At this point, the most it can tell us is whether the maternal line took the migration path of the native americans, europeans, or africans.  It currently cannot distinguish more "recent" migrations such as migrations from the european continent to the UK after the last ice age.

You can read more about mtDNA at this link

Another good source is The Seven Daughters of Eve, Bryan Sykes.