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Ask the Experts . . . Howard and Jean Merrill

  2008 December (2 answers)

Subject: Re: Merrill family Jacob Merrill
Date: Tue, December 7, 2008 7:44p

Question: Jason Snyder wrote:


My wife thinks that I must be using this site wrong - maybe my email address is being blocked? My work address is ******, if the was not been working.

I am from the Lycoming County, PA Merrill line...and they were descended from a Jacob Merrill. Incidentally, in PA they pronounce it "Merl" least my family branch did. Is that different? Jacob married an Elizabeth Fulkerson in Morris County, NJ is 1781...but nothing else appears known. I found a Jacob Merrill - son of Peter - b. 3/22/1754 in on of your responses from November 2007. No other mention on the current site list for anyone Jacob near his probable birth year. I found a much earlier reference from a response you gave in 1999-2000 about this very Jacob Merrill where you suggest he came from the Staten Island Merrills or up "the Susquehana". I have not found any other references to the Lycoming Merrill branch. It is a fairly active branch and they have yearly family reunions.

I have not found any evidence that he descended from the Staten Island line...his three known children were Nicholas, John, and Elizabeth. Nicholas is common in that line...but in many others as well. The Susquehana suggestion is confusing to me...I am not really sure what it means. If you are interested in the Lycoming line at all, I can also provide that information. Also, my grandmother's sister, Ruth, is still living, and has many great stories of growing up with her Merrill siblings and father.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. An email confirmation of receipt if nothing else would put my at least confirm that I am using the website correctly.

Thank you, Jason

Answer: Jason:

There is nothing wrong with the way you are using the site. The hold-up is on our end. We are way behind on answering queries, dealing with the effects of hurricane Gustave, but we finally have gotten things back to near normal.

We did receive the details of your Lycoming branch sent Nov 22, and finally figured out that the vertical bars in front of each name were generation numbers from Jacob - hadn't seen that before in run-on text and it confused me for a while. Usually see indentations. Once I figured it out it was no problem. Thanks so much for sending it. Haven't had a chance to record the data that is new to us yet. That also held up our response, but we should have acknowledged it's receipt. We apologize for the delay.

We had Jacob and his clan in Lycoming in our "Lineage Unknown" file. From another reference we had a Jacob and his m. to Elizabeth Fulkerson and we assume this refers to the same Jacob. The fact that their m. took place in Morris Co. NJ, together with the fact that his eldest son was named Nicholas gives us a clue as to his possible lineage. Although NJ records are notoriously lacking, there is one Andrew Merrill [b.1757], who in his Rev. War pension application detailed his movements after the war from Morris Co NJ where he was b., back and forth between VA and the MD panhandle, ending up in Clark Co, KY. He was the son of Nicholas (3) [Philip (2), Richard (1)] and Lydia. He and each of his known siblings named a son Nicholas. While we don't have record of Jacob's b. or baptism as a son of Nicholas (3) and Lydia as we do for Andrew, we suspect he is another of their sons. He is b. in the right time frame, he m. in the right place and he named his son Nicholas. The great majority of the Nicholas' that we have in our database are descended from Nicholas (3). This lineage is all supposition on our part.

One way to add another nail in this proposed lineage is through DNA testing. The DNA associated with the male Y-chromosome is passed from father to son, essentially unchanged over many, many generations. We now have a number of descendants of Richard and William of Staten Island who have been tested [a simple saliva test] and all have essentially the same DNA pattern. This test will not tell you who Jacob' father was, but will indicate that you belong to the Staten Island line.

Sorry for the delay,

Howard and Jean Merrill


Subject: Re: Merrill family Andrew Allen (6) Merrill
Date: Sat, December 27, 2008 2:16a

Question: Stephen Schoolcraft wrote:

I am interested in finding out who the parents of my great great great grandfather were and any other information you may have on his family line if any. His name was Andrew Merrill he was born in 1800 in the town of New Hartford, Litchfield Co.,Conn. He left the area when he was 28 years old moved to Syracuse, New York was burned out and later moved to Otisco, New york where he and his wife Amanda Doud are buried in a local Cemetery.

Answer: Stephen:

According to the church records of New Hartford Andrew [Allen] Merrill was baptized in New Hartford, 1799 Sep 15, son of Michael and Tryphena Merrill. Andrew (6)'s lineage is Michael (5), Joseph (4), Abraham (3), John (2), immigrant Nathaniel (1). More details are available.

Let us introduce ourselves. We are Howard and Jean Merrill. For twenty five years we have been trying to database the Merrill/Merrell family nationwide from the original immigrants down to the present day for all immigrant lines. So far we have info on over 60,000 Merrill males plus their wives and daughters in our database, but we estimate there have been well over 100,000 so we have a long way to go, and need and appreciate all the help we can get, particularly with the later generations. We use this database strictly to try and help folks trace their Merrill roots. Be assured that no info on living individuals will become internet accessible from us.

While our database is not internet searchable, we will be glad to search it for anybody and share what we find at no cost. All we ask is that folks share their Merrill data with us so that we can expand our database and do a better job of helping solve Merrill lineage problems.

We would be very interested in any detailed info you have on the Merrill surname descendants of Andrew Allen and Amanda. We had from another correspondent that Amanda's surname was Dodd, but we have no confirmation on that. What do you know of Amanda's family and her dates? m. date? It seems that Andrew and Amanda must have m. in CT, since their eldest son, James Watson was b. CT. If he left CT in 1828, their eldest daughter, Helen, 1826-1837, must also been b. CT. All the rest of their children were b. NY.

Howard and Jean Merrill

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