Friday, October 13, 2017


Chasing the "Smith" in Abiathar Smith Robinson to JOSEPH SMITH, Mormon

Nadene Goldfoot
Abiathar Smith Robinson 1829-1904
Younger picture from 2nd cousin Tom

I'm on another tangent today of still delving into the mystery of who Abiathar Smith Robinson's parents really are because I have no hard evidence, great theories.  He appeared in my maternal grandfather's bible as the father of Grandfather Frank Hugh Robinson, my mother's father.  Frank ran away from home at about age 16 according to his oral history over his father not letting him remove his horse from a pasture where the bull had entered.  It was on a Sunday and his father wouldn't allow it.  Thus Frank removed himself forever from his family.  He did try to locate them later in life, but he said the building of records had burned down. However, I had found him living next door to one of his sisters later on during his first marriage.  It must have been after that that he lost communication with anyone.  So we have never learned more about the family other than Abiathar, born December 1829 was very strict religiously.  He hasn't appeared on any records other than 1852 marriage, and 1870, 1880, 1900 census. Being born before 1850 is hard on me as his name was not on any census and this means that his father could have been but he was just a tally mark.  No name. He missed being on any 1850 census or would have found it.  I've hunted online for over 10 years and he hasn't showed up.  A Waterman cousin, professional librarian, hunted in person, going to county offices, and couldn't find hide nor hair of him.
Abiathar Smith Robinson b: December 1829 in New York or Vermont according to census information was married to Julia Ann Tuller in Tunbridge, Orange, Vermont  on February 29, 1852, which is very close to Royalton, Vermont where she was born and raised.
 Tunbridge is full of Robinsons and Tullers and Durkees who are buried there according to my source,  Now I find a Smith Cemetery there as well. Only 2 people are buried there.  
Too small to be tended by anyone
                                           Tunbridge's Smith Cemetery-2 interred 
To find the graves of the  2 people here, From Tunbridge village go north on VT Route 110 about 1/4 mile and turn right onto Strafford Road just before you cross the highway bridge. Go about 3-3/4 miles on Strafford Road and turn left onto County Turnpike. Go about 6/10 mile to Bicknell Road. Turn right onto Bicknell Road and go about 1 mile and drive a short distance up the hill beyond Larkin Road. The cemetery is on the left being located at the edge of a pasture, the plot surrounded by an electric cattle fence. It is said that there are seven graves with the first burial dated 1807 and the last in 1881. That was probably Major Smith who was buried that year.

Alma Andrus Smith was born June 10, 1805 and died January 6, 1853.  Her husband was Major Smith, also buried there.

Major Smith was born November 14, 1804 and died September 23, 1881.  His parents were Joseph and Hannah Fifield.  This information and the following is from the Tunbridge section in Hamilton Child, Gazetteer of Orange County, Vermont 1762-1888: "Major SMITH, remained in this town and cared for his parents in their old age. He always lived here, and is buried in the family burying-ground on the old farm. Of his children, two sons and one daughter, Azro A., the eldest, is pastor of the Congregational church at Johnson, and the daughter died in 1863, leaving, one child."

Hanna Fifield Smith was Major Smith's mother. Hannah married Joseph Smith at Gilmanton, Belknap,  NH on 23 Feb 1794 with Rev. Isaac Smith officiating. 

Joseph Smith, developer of the Mormon Religion, was from Gilmanton, Belknap, New Hampshire . Was his mom Joseph Smith's  daughter in law?  Information below is from ""

Birth: unknown
Death: unknown

"Stephen and Joseph SMITH. brothers, came from Gilmanton, "Belknap, New Hampshire., and located in this town [Tunbridge VT] in 1793. They each purchased land, made a clearing: and built a house of logs in the then wilderness, the nearest neighbor of Joseph being a Mr. MOODY, three miles to the southeast. February 23, 1794, Joseph SMITH was married to Hannah FIFIELD, at Gilmanton, by Rev. Isaac SMITH, for whom they had both worked for several years, and soon after started for their forest home, on East hill, in this town, the place now occupied by their grandson, Walter F. SMITH. Mrs. SMITH deemed it no hardship to take her first child in her arms and go to Stephen SMITH's, the place now occupied: by George L. SWAN, on West hill, a distance of five miles, her only guide being marked trees, and return the same day. Who of her great-grandchildren would be equal to the task at the present time? Joseph and Hannah SMITH reared two sons and four daughters, the eldest of whom, Josiah, settled and died in Hopkinton, St. Lawrence county, N. Y. The other son, Major SMITH, remained in this town and cared for his parents in their old age. He always lived here, and is buried in the family burying-ground on the old farm." Source: Hamilton Child, Gazetteer of Orange County, Vermont 1762-1888

"During these early years, Dea. Simeon Hunt started a settlement in the N E. corner of the town [Tunbridge], whose "good wife" made the bread for Joseph Smith during the summer of 1792, while preparing a home for his family of children, which he brought on an ox -sled, with all his goods, in the following winter, driving their only cow, and were obliged to get her shod before reaching their new home in the woods. The old clock which was brought with much care on that sled, still stands in the same corner of the room where it has been faithfully beating time for 67 years. Faithful old sentinel ! let him serve out his three score years and ten. Dea. Major Smith, the son of Joseph, lived on the same spot where his father made his early strike for a home." Source: Abby Maria Hemenway, The Vermont Historical Gazetteer, vol 2, pp. 1121-22

Family links:
  Hannah Fifield Smith*

  Major Smith (1804 - 1881)*

*Calculated relationship

Note: He is probably one of 7 persons buried in the Smith Cem., Tunbridge VT but this has to be checked.

Son Major Smith
Birth: Nov. 14, 1804
Orange County
Vermont, USA
Death: Sep. 23, 1881
Orange County
Vermont, USA

Major was the son of Joseph and Hannah (Fifield) Smith. This information and the following is from the Tunbridge section in Hamilton Child, Gazetteer of Orange County, Vermont 1762-1888: "Major SMITH, remained in this town and cared for his parents in their old age. He always lived here, and is buried in the family burying-ground on the old farm. Of his children, two sons and one daughter, Azro A., the eldest, is pastor of the Congregational church at Johnson, and the daughter died in 1863, leaving, one child."

Family links: of Major Smith
  Joseph Smith
  Hannah Fifield Smith

  Alma Andrus Smith (1805 - 1853)*
THE Mormon Joseph Smith, however, was born in Sharon, Vermont on December 23, 1805.
"May 16, 2014 - Family experiences may have shaped Joseph Smith's questions about God, ... The new Smith family lived at the Tunbridge farm for six years before Joseph determined to ... the family moved again to Tunbridge, then to RoyaltonVermont. ... Here, with Don Carlos's birth, the family grew—but little else did."

Joseph met his wife, Lucy Mack, through her brother, Stephen Mack. "To distract her from her grief, Stephen Mack invited Lucy to stay with him at his home in Tunbridge, Vermont. There, Lucy’s "depressed"  mood began to change after she became acquainted with a tall, strong 23-year-old named Joseph Smith. Joseph and Lucy were married on January 24, 1796." 

For months, Lucy and the children waited in Norwich, Vermont hoping for good news from him. At length, Joseph Smith Sr. sent word for his family to join him in a town called Palmyra, over 300 miles away in the fertile, wheat-growing Genesee country of New York.

I found a Moses Robinson in the Genesee, Allegany, New York area who was already on my tree leading to a 1600 George Robinson, not the Reverend John of the Pilgrims boarding the Mayflower.  This was the line I had first thought our genealogy would lead us. A Smith girl could have married or had an affair with a Robinson boy from this area where Abiathar could have been born.  But I'm counting on him being connected to the Reverend John Robinson line as his DNA is leading me to believe.

                                              Tunbridge's Durkee Cemetery- 64 interred

Going back to Tunbridge, there are a few Smiths on record there with  Emily Nelson Smith born in 1820 and died on January 2, 1900 is buried in the Durkee Cemetery.  Julia Ann Tuller, Abiathar's wife's mother was Asenith  Durkee.   The Smith middle name very likely is for her.  Her husband was Pvt. George W. Smith born August 13, 1822 and died December 29,1921 in Tunbridge.  George was born in Peru, Maine and was senile at death. He lived all his life in Maine, but was boarding with Joseph and Mary Fay in Strafford, Orange Vermont on June 4, 1900 when the census was taken.This took place 5 months after his wife had died.   He was 77 years old then and was a widower.  He was listed as a farm laborer. The question I ask is why are they buried in the Durkee Cemetery if all their life was spent in Maine?  

I found an Emily Nelson on the 5th August 1870 census of Strafford, Orange, Vermont.  On it was Levi Nelson, 85, wife Mary 80, and Aaron Nelson 53 and Emily Nelson 44 who could have been Aaron's wife.  That means that Aaron could have later died and Emily was a 2nd wife to George W. Smith.  I doesn't explain the Smith middle name of my  1829 born ggrandfather, Abiathar Smith Robinson.  I saw that below their names was listed Joseph and Mary Fay!  I don't have them in my name bank, but I do have many Fays. Fays have married Robinsons in Bennington, Vermont.  

John Robinson b: 1803 d: May 20, 1870 was born and died in Tunbridge and buried here.  I've long thought that could have been the John Robinson living with Julia Ann Tuller's family in Royalton, VT found on the 1850 census with Julia and her family.  I thought perhaps he was Abiathar's father.  They had given his age as 51 then, making his birth 1799 on the census.                                                  
An Irish Robinson family James b:1813 and Mary Clemons b:1816
Two Robinson brothers John and James; their wives and children, a sister of the two brothers and their widowed mother made up the group coming to the New World
.(no relation but we match Irish DNA haplogroup more than English) 

                                              Robinson Cemetery
I found 2 Joseph Fays buried in the Robinson Cemetery in Strafford, Orange, Vermont. 

Joseph L. Fay with headstone was born about 1808 and died at age 62 on November 5, 1870.
Joseph Fay with headstone was born 1843 and died at age 81 in 1924. 
Fays number 12 in this cemetery: 

Bartletts, 5 of them are buried here.  They are Abiel, Charles H, Rebekah, Ruth and Samuel.  Bartletts are also on my DNA match of segments on chromosomes who is a 3rd cousin.  

Durkee-3 of them are here. 

Robinson-24 are here.  

I might be able to connect everyone in this cemtery to either Abiathar or most likely Julia Tuller, his wife.  It could even turn out that the John Robinson living with them was a relative from Tunbridge!  Good grief!  I never thought of that.  
Wallace and Julia Smith, a Pioneer Family in 1800
no relation). 

Smith is worse than Robinson.  Robinson was the 16th most popular surname, now has dropped to the 20th.  Smith is number 1.    " If you have a Smith in your family, you have a staggering 81 million records to pore through on Ancestry. Smith has long been the most common surname in both the United States and Great Britain. Each U.S. census lists more and more Smiths, from 274,919 in 1850 to 2,376,206 in 2000. Yet the name is far from generic and has a rich and complicated history."  Robinson can also be a Jewish name, and I through my father, am Jewish.  Clark, which is on the Robinson tree, is number 21 in popularity.

I've always wondered about the Smith middle name.  Usually it means the parent of the mother, and that Mom was a Smith.  Look at this common pattern, part of the family below:
Descendants of Harvey A. Robinson

1   Harvey A. Robinson b: August 23, 1821 d: March 13, 1866 in Hume, Allegheny, New York
.. +Elizabeth Fuller b: 1824 d: 1856
. 2   Hubbard Fuller Robinson b: 1856 d: 1891

This shows a case where the mother had died in childbirth at age 32, very sad.  The child's middle name was the surname of his mother.

So is my Abiathar Smith Robinon's mother the daughter of Hannah Smith married to THE Joseph Smith of the Mormon religious history?  Being Abiathar married in Tunbridge, it's possible in not a huge coincidence.  


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Tuesday, October 10, 2017


Robinson Tree Discovers Missing GGGrandparents Through DNA Testing of Y Haplogroup Match

Nadene Goldfoot
Abiathar Smith Robinson's parents are found

Abiathar was born in 1829 in Vermont or maybe even New York but  married in 1852 in Tunbridge, Vermont to a Royalton, Vermont lady, Julia Ann Tuller.  Abiathar's father evidently was a James Robinson b: January 24, 1777 in Deerfield, Rockingham, New Hampshire.  He died in Mt. Vernon, Kennebec, Maine on March 26, 1857.  It was around then that Abiathar and Julia had moved to Canada, for 3 of their children were born there. 

Now, counting myself as the 1st generation, have gone back 10 generations to John Robinson b: 1611 and Elizabeth Pemberton of Meppershall, England.    

Abiathar's great great grandson, Ken, took a DNA test and found his Y haplogroup (male line) was R-L21 with a rare DYS of 12, not the usual 13.  He had one other match that had also tested with 67 alleles that was the same as he was.  It was another Robinson with a history of New Hampshire and Maine.  I had his tree.  The problem was that I knew we connected in our families, but how to figure who the connecting person was.  I finally used dates and took an educated guess, creating another set of parents for Abiathar from this tree.  That's all I had; a guess.  

This time while working on a Robinson-Wilson genealogy search, I accidentally connected with a supposed brother from this guess to the Maine Robinson tree.  I had the probable father already from the Maine tree without a wife, and found him and his wife on a burial reference with his wife bearing the surname of the middle name of Abiathar's supposed brother.  I had Abiathar and this supposed brother attached to the wrong father and quickly adjusted it to the information on the burial reference! It's easy to do on my software. The burial reference listed both parents and gave the birth town of each.  It coincided with the Maine-Robinson tree!   I had done it so many times before for poor Abiathar.  I had created 15 different sets of parents for him thinking each one was correct.    I hit paydirt this time.  It all matches the DNA evidence of belonging to the Maine Robinson line that leads to  John Robinson of Meppershall, England, the tree of our Robinson DNA match. 
ChrStart LocationEnd LocationCentimorgans (cM)SNPs
 Example of a few of Ken and myself segment matches of chromosomes #1, #2 and another in #2.

The disappointing factor is that my cousin Ken and James A Robinson of the original Meppershall tree, though matching in the Y haplogroup, do not match each other in shared DNA segments.  They are too far apart to be related to each other via DNA.  My brother and I do not have a match with him, either.  That doesn't mean that another of Ken's siblings wouldn't have a match if they were tested, though, but it's improbable.  

There is one more match to us and it also happens to be an  R. A Robinson whose Y haplogroup is R-M269, the same tag we had had in the beginning of Ken's test.  He is also using the Meppershall tree.  We have some matching people from this tree.  Again, he is not a match to Ken with any chromosomal segments.  Both men, JAR and RAR, have a distance of 5, which means the common ancestor  at 12 generations ago for JAR was 90.99% sure and for RAR was 80.16% sure. Twenty-five years is usually considered a generation.  The connection thus goes back about 300 years to 1717.  

On is Meppershall tree, this can take me back to Captain James Robinson born in 1711 in Exeter, Rockingham, New Hampshire and his wife, Mary Gilman.  On the Reverend Robinson tree with Israel Robinson of Kattelville, New York, I have Abiathar being the brother of  Ebenezer Ganong Robinson, an ancestor of one of our lady matches, another DNA piece of evidence.  Around 1717, this could go back to either Peter Robinson, Sr, or his son born in Rehoboth, Bristol, Massachusetts Bay.  You see, all roads to our early ancestors lead first to Massachusetts in this exodus from England to America.  

One problem I have is that my father was Jewish, and Robinson is also a surname used by many Jewish people.  We have a few other Robinson matches but are of the Jewish line, so this is something I have to check out first.  Which side of the family matches these Robinsons?  
   Two ladies who are a match to my Robinson cousin and my brother and myself do not have Robinson surnames.  They match with Robinsons from New York and Vermont only.  Their Robinson line leads to Reverend John Robinson who told the Pilgrims to board the Mayflower.  This causes me to think that the DNA- Y haplogroup clue is the wrong one.  Whoever connected to this NH-Maine line?  I must have every Robinson of New England ever born on my tree?  It's hard to think I've missed a few.

Descendants of JOHN ROBINSON, Sr.
[1] JOHN ROBINSON, Sr. b: February 09, 1611/12 in Meppershall, Bedfordshire, England d: September 10, 1675 in Exeter, Rockingham, New Hampshire
.. +Elizabeth Trickley b: 1623 in Haverhill, Essex, Massachusetts d: December 24, 1715 in Hampton, Rockingham, New Hampshire
*2nd Wife of [1] JOHN ROBINSON, Sr.:
.. +Elizabeth PEMBERTON b: Abt. 1623 in Haverhill, Essex, Massachusetts d: December 24, 1715 in Hampton, Rockingham, New Hampshire

                                            Maine Winter   

 The only disappointment is that there still remains the fact of not having any paper evidence of his birth to any parents.  He had been born in December 1829.  It could have had something to do with it.  
I have been searching for years for the clinching evidence of who Abiathar Smith Robinson b: 1829 I thought in either Vermont or New York was and it turns out he was from the New Hampshire-Maine line of Robinsons!  Sometimes it turns out that an ancestor evidently never knows for sure where they had been born  Maybe it wasn't that big a deal back then. I had census information from 1870 and 1880 and they both said he was born in Vermont.  The 1900 census said he was from New York. Then he died in 1904.
My male cousin, son of my mother's brother had his DNA tested and his Y haplogroup has tested to 67 alleles and more to the point where it is now tagged as R-L21.  It had been called R1b1a2a1a1b4.  You can see why it was changed to something easier.  The dys of the first allele was a 12-something a little rare.  Most other R haplogroup people had a 13.  There was one man who matched my cousin but his Robinsons were from Maine.  That wasn't on any census.  As it turns out, they were from New Hampshire before they went into Maine.  I thought from other possible lines of Robinsons that we had been in New Hampshire as well.  This was New England and New England was full of Robinsons.  This genealogy is like trying to find the needle dropped in the haystack.  Everyone was a Robinson!  It was Reverend John Robinson who sent the Pilgrims on the Mayflower to America!  He never made it himself but his son, Isaac came over and fathered a whole flock of Robinsons.
Because of this one man that we have connected to through Family Tree's Y haplogroup test, I had procured his genealogy tree, and tried blindly to connect Abiathar to it without any knowledge.  Since then I undid this with ease, using my Old Family Tree Maker software program one now downloads.  I had to have my son put it in my computer for me years ago.

Samuel Sherbourne Robinson b: January 15, 1810 in Mt. Vernon, Kennebec, Maine d: October 21, 1892 in Mt. Vernon, Kennebec, Maine

[1] James ROBINSON b: January 24, 1777 in Deerfield, Rockingham, New Hampshire d: March 26, 1857 in Mt Vernon, Kennebec, Maine
.. +Phebe Sherbourne b: Abt. 1777 in Wakefield, New Hampshire d: in prob. Mt Vernon, Kennebec, Maine
 I found a death certificate from Maine for Samuel Sherbourne Robinson and on it listed his parents.  Oddly, I had been playing around with possible parents and had connected Abiathar as a brother to this man by utter chance.  I saw that Abiathar was now this man's brother by the way I had fooled around, experimenting and realized I was holding his death certificate, so I undid the wrong parents I had him connected to and put in James Robinson, the name on the certificate.  Then I looked in my vast name bank and had about 100 James Robinsons and guessed at the age by the other name I had had erroneously as his father, and anyway, found a man without a wife but from the right town in New Hampshire!  It was Deerfield, Rockingham, New Hampshire.  I was able to type in the mother's name.  It was Phebe Sherbourne.  Good grief!  I had the death location for her on the certificate and it fit.  I looked at the five children on the list and the brother I had been working on who had died with the death certificate was Samuel Sherbourne Robinson.  It all fit.  She was from Wakefeld, New Hampshire.  Her husband was already in my computer.

As I look at my evidence in the light of the next 5am morning, I am depending on Abiathar's present sibling, Samuel Sherbourne Robinson, to be an actual sibling.  It's a most logical connection, unverified still.  Yet we do have this matching DNA on the Y haplogroup that is a rare match and the tree.  I still wonder why Abiathar didn't go into Maine or even New Hampshire, and why he went into Canada in those 10 some years in the 60's.  Was he ostracized from the family?  Did they have a bru-ha-ha like Abiathar had with my grandfather, Frank Hugh Robinson?  Did they just lose touch with each other?  Questions still remain.  How do fathers get separated from their sons?  

As it turns out, our Robinsons are not one of Reverend John Robinson who sent the Pilgrims from Holland onto the Mayflower. In this case, their DNA's Y haplogroup is unknown, though an R.   Now, my next challenge will be to connect my three female dna matches that I have found through 23&Me, Family Tree DNA and  Maybe it will now be easier. I'll be checking out the Meppershall Tree.   Whatever, with Abiathar's oral history of his ancestor coming to America not on the Mayflower but the next ship, we know we originated in Massachusetts, and wandered through Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, and now can add Maine to our New England Robinson family.  Like grandfather Frank had said, he was A BLUE BLOODED YANKEE!

Notable people from this part of Maine are:

The First Town-Meeting. - The first legal meeting was held at the house of Samuel Leavitt on Thursday, the 30th day of January, 1766; Wadleigh Cram was chosen moderator; Thomas Simpson, Esq., parish clerk; Samuel Leavitt, John Robinson, Eliphalet Griffin, selectmen; Benjamin Batchelder, constable; John Gile, Jacob Longfellow, Daniel Ladd, Obediah Marston, and Nathaniel Maloon, surveyors of highways; Jonathan Glidden and Samuel Tilton, assessors; Abram True and Jeremiah Eastman, auditors; Jedediah Prescott, Jeremiah Eastman, Samuel Tilton, Benjamin Folsom, Thomas Burleigh, Capt. Samuel Leavitt, Thomas Simpson were chosen "a Committee to look out for a Suitable Place to Sett a meeting-house upon and a Return att the next anual Meeting from under the major part of their hands and the Same to be received or Rejected by the Parish as they Shall think proper."

It would help to have several or more claimants of belonging to Reverend John Robinson's line to have the same Y haplogroup as my male cousin.  Otherwise, my connecting to people of the same haplogroup looks like the better choice.  Y haplogroup has very small mutations over a period of time.  It's a way of telling who is on the same branch.  Genealogy is showing one thing, yet science is showing another with science's DNA evidence in both.  This is one big conundrum for me!

Post Script:
Another look at Peter Robinson on the Reverend John Robinson tree showed an amazing fact!  Peter Robinson, son of Peter Robinson, Sr. was born October 25, 1717 in Rehoboth, Bristol, Massachusetts in 1717 but died in Londonderry, Rockingham, New Hampshire!

That's where my searching on this line stopped.  I think I've found the connection to both trees, if that's possible.  Oh my.  Maybe it has helped to write all this out.  Halleluhah! I need to find more Robinsons now.  

Peter Robinson's brother, already on the tree, is Ebenezer Robinson, Major in the Revolutionary war who had moved from Rehoboth, Bristol, Massachusetts to Roxbury, Delaware, New York.  He is the father of Daniel Robinson, Reverend b: 1771 in Carmel, Putnam, New York who died in Kattellville, Broome, Schoharie, New York in 1866.  He was the father of Israel Robinson b: 1800 in Roxbury and died in Kattellville in 1867 who was the father of Ebenezer Ganong and most likely, ABIATHAR SMITH ROBINSON (1829). 

Peter Robinson 1695-1785 and wife Elizabeth Sabin's 2 sons fathered the 2 different branches. He was born in Rehoboth, Bristol, Massachusetts and died in Barnstable, Massachusetts.
Major Ebenezer was born in 1735 in Rehoboth and he died in Roxbury, Delaware, New York.  His wife was Anna Stone.

John was born in 1742 in Rehoboth and he died in Otsego, New York.  His wife was Phoebe Clapp.  It was his son, Jacob H Robinson born in 1790 in Vermont and died in Bakersfield, Franklin, Vermont that leads to a chromosomal match.  

Thus we have the connection between the two trees.  Rockingham, New Hampshire shows up in both trees.  This is it.  Who Abiathar's parents are doesn't really matter.  He must be on both lines.  DNA has proved that through the Y haplogroup of being R-L21 and also by finding actual chromosome matches of segments from people connected to the John Robinson-Pilgrim line.  Whew!  Think I'll keep him on the latter line with Ebenezer Ganong as a brother and Israel Robinson as his father. My Jewish bloodline and being a defender of Israel draws me with a smile to this ggggrandfather of mine.  My father, Maurice Goldfoot, was a buyer of cattle.  He would smile thinking that Israel lived in Kattellville.   


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Sunday, October 08, 2017


DNA Leads to Roxbury, New York for Abiathar Smith Robinson's birth

  Nadene Goldfoot                                                                       
DNA is leading me to one of the descendants of Reverend John Robinson of Holland who led the pilgrims to sail in the Mayflower in 1620 to America. Grandfather Frank Hugh Robinson's oral history was that his family came over not on the Mayflower but the ship after it.    My ggrandfather, Abiathar Smith Robinson, said that he was born in New York before he died.  His Y haplogroup of DNA is R-L21.  He had married Julia Ann Tuller in 1852 in Tunbridge, Vermont.  She was from the town next door, Royalton, Vermont.  Earlier census said he was born in Vermont. The question is, "Who gave the census taker the information, Abiathar?  Children? 2nd Wife?                                                                                                                       
Any records as to who his parents were have been lost or destroyed.  Now I'm relying on DNA to lead to his ancestors.  I have found two ladies who share DNA with me.  We have to assume it's Robinson DNA.  One has found an Ebenezer Ganong Robinson born May 1823 in Roxbury, Delaware, New York  as an ancestor.  Ebenezer's wife was Julia Ann Morse, also born in Roxbury.
Church that Robinsons attended
I've found that Ebenezer's father was Daniel G. Robinson born in 1796 in Roxbury.  Sophia Randall, also born in Roxbury, was his wife.  Their first child was Ebenezer Ganong Robinson born 1823.
Frank Hugh Robinson as a little boy with father, Abiathar Smith Robinson
Abiathar met his wife, Julia Ann Tuller, in Royalton, Windsor, Vermont and married her in 1852 in Tunbridge, Orange, Vermont.  She was 17, he 23.   Was he from New York or Vermont? 
The 2nd child could very well have been Abiathar Smith Robinson b: 1829.  Mary E Robinson was born two years later in 1831.  Irena was born in 1835, and Abigail in 1839.  Anna Polina was born in 1842, and John H Robinson was born in 1844.   Why is it that Abiathar's records have never appeared?   Is it because he was born in December?   Ebenezer died November 20, 1900 Clark County, Washington.  Abiathar's son, Frank Hugh, died in Hillsboro, Washington, Oregon.
Batavia Kill was a small stream running down in the east of Vega Mountain in the area SE of the town of Roxbury.  The Robinsons farmed and ran mills on the banks of the Kill.  Vega Mountain, east of the town of Roxbury where Major Ebenezer Robinson, his sons and sons-in-law settled in 1793 to 1794.  "The oldest school-house in this town is the one above Robinson's grist-mill, up the Hardscrabble road. It was built in 1813, of stone, and is in as good condition as when built. Since the consolidation of the districts around the village with the village district, it has been used by the "Christians" as a place of worship, but at present there is no organization of the kind in the town."
Promoted to Major by July, 1776. A company such as he had commanded as Captain would consist of 85 to 100 men from a specific neighborhood or town. They constituted a “beat” or company. On the first “beat” of a drum, the first company would organize, and so on through the six beats of the regiment.  “Each man had to furnish his own good musket or firelock and Bayonet, sword or tomahawk, a steel ramrod, worm, priming wire and brush fitted thereto, a cartouch box to contain 23 rounds of cartridges, 12 flints and a knapsack, or to be fined under forfeiture.” 

Everyone in those days were farmers, and of course the Robinson's all over New England were farmers, too.  Major Ebenezer Robinson born 1735 that then could be Abiathar's great grandfather. He died in 1802 in Roxbury, New York.  Born in Massachusetts, he had been a Major in the Revolutionary War.   Ebenezer's son was Issachar b: 1761 in Dutchess, NY and died in Delaware, New York.  His son was Daniel G born in 1796 in Roxbury  and then Daniel's 2nd son I hope was Abiathar Smith. The 1st son, Abiathar's brother, was  then Ebenezer Ganong Robinson b 1823.  It is from this connection that we connect our DNA and our genealogy trees.  
This town was formed from Stamford March 23rd, 1799. Unfortunately the leaf containing the proceedings of the first town meeting is missing from the clerk's record-book. On a later page we have it recorded that "the subscribers, finding it necessary to lay out a road from Mantana kill [adopt] a westerly course, beginning at a heap of stones and running near the dwelling house of William Varmilya, and from thence by a line of marked trees to the dwelling house of Thomas Austin, to a beech tree marked H; the same being four rods wide.
"Done by us, John T. More, David Robinson, Commissioners of Highways."
The other lead goes to Robinsons living in Bakersfield, Franklin,  Vermont as far back as the 1790-1800 period.  
Both lines lead to Reverend John Robinson of the Pilgrims.   


1829, December: Abiathar Smith Robinson b: in NY or Vermont
1834, December 18, Julia Ann Tuller b: in Royalton, Windsor, Vermont
1852, February 29, m::Abiathar-Julia in Tunbridge, Orange, Vt.
1852, November, Edward Rix Robinson b: in Vermont
1855                    Edgar Clyde Robinson b: in Vermont

Leaving Royalton, Vermont for Montreal, Canada

Farming, breaking sod on prairie

1857, October, Nellie Elizabeth Robinson b: in Canada, Upper English

1861, April 12 Civil War began in USA
1861, August, Emma Hattie Robinson b: in Canada
1864, April 21, John C. Robinson b: in Canada, Montreal English
Returning after Civil War but to Wenona, Illinois
1865, May 9 Civil War ended in USA

1865,               Julia Robinson b: in Vermont
1867, June,    William S. Robinson b: in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1870 Aug 11, Census said Abiathar's parents born in Vermont
1870, June 21, Frank Hugh Robinson b: in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1873, Jan.5, Nellie E m: Daniel C. McCullem, Omaha, Douglas, Neb.
1875, November, Minnie J. Robinson b: in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1879, March 13, Edgar Clyde m: Mary Elizabeth Acuff, Cambridge, Ill.
1880 June 7, Census said Abiathar's parents born in Vermont
1880, May 30, Arthur Roy Robinson b: in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1880, Dec 24, Emma Hattie m: George D. Miller in Wenona, Marshall, Ill.
1887, April 17, Edgar Clyde d:: Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1887, December 2,  Julia Tuller d: in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1888, Feb 22, John C m: Hermia Howell in Osage, LaSalle, Illinois
1889,            William m: Carrie A. Monninger in LaSalle, Illinois
1891, March 7, Daniel McCullem d: Omaha, Nebraska s(Nellie)
1891, Sept, Minnie J. m: Louis Sherman Cusac in Lacon, Marshall, Ill.
1892, Dec 2, Frank Hugh m: Alice Mitchell in Omaha, Nebraska
1893, Jan 5, Nellie E m: Alexander Charles Sillik in Omaha, Nebraska
1896,           Abiathar m: Mary Jan Walters in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1903,           Julia,  d: ??
1900 June 7,Census said Abiathar's parents born in New York.under 2nd wife's name, Mary J; NY, NY, NY, for Abiathar 
1904, August 11, Arthur Roy m: Minnie Mae Ross Smith in Lacon, Illinois
1904, October 7, Abiathar S. Robinson d:  in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1905, Dec.28, Nellie E.d: Omaha,Douglas, Nebraska
1910,             Frank Hugh m: Augusta Gustafson in Sioux City, Iowa
1912, Sept. 20, Edward Rix , m: -Jenette Jenson, Tama, Iowa

1915 Model T. Ford
1918, July 5, Mary Jane Walters d: in Streator, Illinois (Abiathar S)
1922,                  Edward Rix Robinson d: in Illinois
1923, June 5, John C. d: LaSalle, Illinois
1923               Minnie J.: d: Illinois
1923, July 7, Alexander Charles Sillik d: in Tulsa, Oklahoma (Nellie)
1924, July 2, George D. Miller d: Wenona, Marshall, Illinois ? (Emma)
1927, April 17, Arthur Roy d:  in Peoria, LaSalle,  Illinois
1930, Dec 29, Emma Hattie d: Streater, LaSalle, Illinois
1935, April 19, William S. d: Peoria, LaSalle, Illinois
1936, Oct 27, Hermia Howell d: LaSalle, LaSalle, Illinois (John C)
1942 Nash Automobile
1943, Dec 14, Carrie A. Monninger d: Davenport, Iowa (William S)
1952, May 27, Frank Hugh d: Hillsboro, Washington, Oregon
1955, April 19, Augusta d: Hillsboro, Washington, Oregon (Frank)


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Monday, May 15, 2017


Events Leading to the Robinson's Move to Upper Canada From Vermont

Nadene Goldfoot                                    
Civil War
1861 to 1865

Julia Ann Tuller was born in 1834  and raised in Royalton, Windsor, Vermont where she met and married Abiathar Smith Robinson February 29, 1852 in Tunbridge, Orange, Vermont.  Their first child, Edward Rix Robinson, was born in Vermont by November 1852 as well as their 2nd son, Edgar in 1853, but by October 1857, their daughter, Nellie Elizabeth was born in Upper Canada in the English speaking area.  Then in August of 1861 another daughter, Emma Hattie was born in Canada as well as another son, John C by April 1864 in Montreal, Canada-another English speaking area.
Ontario, Canada
The USA census of 1870 finds that the family had returned to the states and had settled in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois.  Julia Ann and Abiathar are buried in the Wenona Cemetery.

1776    USA born after Revolutionary War-July 4th
1777    Vermont first USA state to prohibit slavery
1829   Abiathar Smith Robinson born-December
1834   Julia Ann Tuller born -December
1834    Slavery abolished in Great Britain
1834    Start of Underground Railroad from South USA to SW Ontario, Canada to escape slavery
1852    Julia Ann and Abiathar marry in Tunbridge, Orange, Vermont, USA, February 29
1852   Edward Rix Robinson born, Vermont USA in November  not on 1870 census
1853   Edgar C Robinson born, Vermont USA  on 1870 census age 17
Montreal, Quebec, Canada

1856 Possible time of move to Canada:  Why?  What was Lure?
Had they been Loyalists?  Quakers?  Land hungry?  Abolitionists?   
1857  Nellie Elizabeth Robinson born Upper Canada (English Speaking) in October on 1870 census age 11in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois
1859  Wenona, Marshall, Illinois incorporated-on RR Line
1861  Emma Hattie Robinson born Canada in August on 1870 census in Wenona age 9
1864 John C Robinson born Montreal,  Quebec, Canada  on April 21 on 1870 census in Wenona age 7
Map of Upper Canada (in orange) with contemporary Canada (in pink) surrounding it
Upper Canada is mentioned.  Where was that?
"The Province of Upper Canada (French: province du Haut-Canada) was a part of British Canada established in 1791 by the United Kingdom, in order to govern the central third of the lands in British North America and to accommodate Loyalist refugees of the United States after the American Revolution. The new province remained, for the next fifty years of growth and settlement, the colonial government of the territory.
Upper Canada existed from 26 December 1791 to 10 February 1841 and generally comprised present-day Southern Ontario. The "upper" prefix in the name reflects its geographic position being closer to the headwaters of the Saint Lawrence River than that of Lower Canada (or present-day Quebec) to the northeast.
Upper Canada included all of modern-day Southern Ontario and all those areas of Northern Ontario in the Pays d'en Haut which had formed part of New France, essentially the watersheds of the Ottawa River or Lakes Huron and Superior, excluding any lands within the watershed of Hudson Bay."
Events going on in Canada during this period:

Events in Canada from 1852 to 1865: Robinson Tree Genealogy
Exploring time spent in Canada:
1852 - The Grand Trunk Railway receives its charter.
June 6, 1854 - Canada and the U.S. sign a Reciprocity Treaty, ensuring reduction of customs duties (June 6).
1855 - Bytown is renamed Ottawa.
1856 - The Grand Trunk Railway opens its Toronto-Montréal line.
November 17, 1856 - Grand Trunk Railway completed
1857 - Palliser Expedition sent to explore Ruperts Land.
1857 - Queen Victoria designates George-Étienne Cartier's choice of Ottawa as capital of the Province of Canada.
1857 - Desjardins Canal railway bridge collapse, Hamilton, Ontario - 60 killed
April 25, 1858 - Start of Fraser River Gold Rush
November 19, 1858 - The Birth of British Columbia
1858 - The Halifax-Truro line begins rail service.
1858 - Chinese immigrants from California arrive in British Columbia, attracted by the Fraser River Gold Rush.
February 2, 1859 - - Ottawa Chosen as the Capital of Canada
November 9, 1859 - Reformers Hold Convention
1859 - James Carnegie, the Earl of Southesk is the first tourist in Western Canada.
September 1, 1860 - Prince of Wales lays cornerstone of the Parliament buildings.
June 27, 1860 - First Queen's Plate Horse Race
1860   End of Underground Railroad Usage
1861, April 12-start of Civil War, USA
November 8, 1861 - Britain Arms Canada During the Trent Crisis
1861 - Joseph Howe becomes Premier of Nova Scotia.
1862 - Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick accepts its first woman student.
1862 - Start of Canada-wide Smallpox Epidemic - 20,000 killed
1862 - Smallpox Epidemic starts to decimate Haida people of Queen Charlotte Islands, BC - 9,400 killed in the next decade, to 1872
September 1, 1864 - Charlottetown Conference takes the first steps toward Confederation; originally designed to discuss Maritime union; (to Sept. 9).
October 19, 1864 - St. Albans Raid - 25 Confederate States of America soldiers using Montréal as a base raid St. Albans, Vermont; they rob three banks of $200,000, torch the town and kill one person.  "On October 19, 1864, St. Albans was the site of the St. Albans Raid, the northernmost Confederate land action of the American Civil War, which was an enemy cavalry raid and bank robbery across the border from Quebec, Canada.. References to "St. Albans" prior to this date generally refer to the town center, which now belongs to the city. The town was incorporated in 1859, and the city in 1902.]
Henri Le Caron, who, while acting as a secret agent of the British government, held the position of "Inspector-General of the Irish Republican Army", asserted that he distributed fifteen thousand stands of arms and almost three million rounds of ammunition in the care of the many trusted men stationed between New York and St. Albans, in preparation for the unsuccessful Fenian raid on Canada which took place in April 1870.  United States General George Meade, forewarned, captured much of these munitions as they arrived.
1865, May 9-end of Civil War, USA
1865 Julia Robinson born listed on 1870 census as born in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois 
October 10, 1865 - Delegates Meet at the Québec Conference to Plan Confederation. They identify the Seventy Two Resolutions that set out the basis for union; to October 27, 1865.
1867, July 1;  Canada divided into Provinces of Ontario and Quebec.
1869  William S Robinson born in Wenona Marshall, Illinois
1870  Frank Hugh Robinson born on June 21 in Wenona  (my grandfather)
1870 USA Census: Abiathar and family are in Wenona, Marshall, Illinois.
1875 Minnie J. Robinson born in Wenona. 
1879  Arthur Roy Robinson born in Wenona.
1883 Coal mine in Wenona which offers jobs.  " The principal mine in this county is located at Wenona, on the Illinois Central railroad, and is operated by the Wenona Coal Company. The mine is comparatively new. It went into operation in the summer of 1883."

St. Albans, Franklin, Vermont was about 100 miles or less to Royalton, Windsor, Vermont. It is a major port for immigration to and from Canada.   One would think that this Robinson family would have known about the Underground Railroad's goings on.  After all, I do not know for sure what town Abiathar was born in.  I do know he was living in Tunbridge, Orange County in 1852 when he was 23 years old.   It's even possible that some of the St. Albans' Robinsons could have been their relatives. lists 152 Robinsons in Franklin County.

It may be that Julia Ann was the instigator of moving to Upper Canada, especially to Ontario.  Her mother was Asenith Durkee and they must have had lots of relatives up there.   There were many Durkees living throughout the area.  For example, there was a Sarah Durkee who married on January 2, 1860 in Oxford, Ontario, Canada.  An Ontario death happened to William Durkee at age 76 with parents  Myran Durkee born in Smithville and Elizabeth Meredith.  William's wife was Ellen Durkee.  Gladys Durkee used the St. Albans Vermont Boarder Crossing in 1895 to go to Norwich, Canada.
     I even found a Sarah Fannie Tuller, 5'7" green eyed 34 year old lady crossing from Madoc, Ontario, Canada to Vermont in 1895.  Sarah was heading for Michigan for a permanent stay.   She was Welsh!  Ah ha!  The biggest puzzle I've had is that my grandfather, Frank Hugh Robinson had said that they were from Wales.  DNA shows we have mostly Irish matches.  That  must have come from  Julia Ann Tuller and not Abiathar and the Robinsons.  I've just found her buried in Madoc, Canada.  I thought she would stay in Michigan. .  I have found 14 Tullers in Upper Canada on this website and also 139 Durkees.

I have found that  Rowland T. Robinson of Ferrisburgh, Vermont was active in helping with the Underground Railroad.  " Rowland Thomas Robinson (1796-1879)  made abolition the cause of his life 
and sheltered fugitives at Rokeby,his home in Ferrisburgh, Addison, Vermont. Both Thomas, his father,  and Rowland T. Robinson 
managed the family's grist and saw mills and built up one of Addison 
County's largest sheep farms during the early decades of the 19th century. 
Rowland Thomas's son Rowland Evans Robinson (1833-1900) was an artist and 
author; he wrote a series of folktales, published by Houghton Mifflin, that 
were enormously popular in Vermont at the turn of the century as well as 
several Underground Railroad stories. Of his children, Rachel (1878-1919) 
became a successful commercial artist, Mary (1884-1931) worked as a 
botanical artist before becoming a wife and mother, and Rowland Thomas 
(1882-1951) tended the family farm, now converted from sheep to dairy. 
"Rowlie," as he was known, and his wife Elizabeth did not have children, and 
when she died in 1961, she left the site to be operated as a museum.                
Ferrisburgh, Addison, Vermont's Rokeby

  "The house was the home for almost 200 years of the Robinson family, who were millers, farmers, abolitionists, authors, naturalists, and artists. In the 1830s and 1840s, under the auspices of Rowland Thomas Robinson, Rokeby served as a safe house along the Underground Railroad. Letters from the family of Rowland T. and Rachel Gilpin Robinson, devout Quakers and radical abolitionists, mention fugitive slaves by name and in some detail.   The record of their correspondence gives an important view into the practices and methods of abolitionists and the details of the operation of the Underground Railroad

There is a Rowland Robinson in my name bank. Could he be an ancestor of this Abolitionist?  He was born earlier and to a John Robinson: I don't know if we are connected to this line or not.  Update: Through, I find we are not connected at all.  "Rowland Robinson, the primitive of our family in this country, was born in 1654, at or near a place called Long Bluff, in Cumberland, England. He came to this country in 1675, married Mary, the daughter or John and Mary Allen, in 1676, who were from Barnstable, England. Her mother's name before marriage was Bacon, who was born also in Barnstable.  Rowland Robinson died at his residence, situated near the pond or cove of Pettaquamscutt river, in 1716, aged 62 years. His wife was born in 1656, and died in 1706, aged 50 years. They were both buried in the Narragansett Friends - called Quakers - burial ground, Kingston, now South Kingston - , about two miles south of Tower Hill village. Their graves are in the north-east corner of the burial ground. Mr. Robinson ." His descendants went to Rhode Island-Hon William and Abigail; Thomas and Sarah,  Thomas Richardson and Jemima.  

Descendants of John Robinson
1   [1] John Robinson b: 1713 in North Kingstown, Rhode Island, USA
.. +Mary Irish b: 1713
. 2   John Robinson b: 1733
. 2   Rowland Robinson b: 1737
. 2   Daniel Robinson b: 1738
. 2   Lydia Robinson b: 1755
. 2   Jedidiah Robinson b: 1756 in prob. Rhode Island
..... +Elizabeth Lawton b: 1750
*2nd Wife of [1] John Robinson:
.. +Sarah Davis

Here's an example of a later Robinson : born in St Albans who moved to Illinois. 

John W. Robinson

Illinois Deaths and Stillbirths
NameJohn W. Robinson
Event Date04 Aug 1927
Event PlaceShirland, Winnebago, Illinois
Birth Year (Estimated)1850
Birth Date30 Dec 1849
BirthplaceSt. Albans, Vt.
Father's NameIsreal Robinson
Father's BirthplaceSuanton, Vt.
Mother's NameCaroline Spaulding
Mother's BirthplaceMorristown, Vt.
Residence PlaceShirland, Ill.
Spouse's NameHenrietta Miller
Burial Date07 Aug 1927
Burial PlaceRockton, Ill.

Next question should be, why immigrate to Illinois, and especially to Wenona? In 2010 it had only 1,056 people and that was going down from 2000.   I visited the cemetery a number of years ago and it is a very very small town.  What was that attraction?  The cemetery was gorgous, and the soup and hamburger were the best in the USA, I think, but what could have attracted people  150 years ago?  I saw lovely fields of corn growing alongside the road to the cemetery.  The fertile land must have attracted them as everyone in those days were farmers.  Abiathar did have a farm in Wenona and a field with a horse and a bull, that I know.  My grandfather, Frank Hugh Robinson was a teamster and could manage 4 horses together for his wagon.  He had a favorite horse as a kid.  His parents were very religious and very strict: possibly  Methodists who did not work on Sundays of any sort.

The book/article is
by Jane Williamson.  

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