Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Holbrook brick wall: James Lamphire

Someone who died in 1848 and was married in 1796 shouldn't be so hard to find.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.  For now, he's pretty much a mystery. 

The first real evidence of James Lamphire is his marriage to Hannah Eames on May 8, 1796 in Bozrah, Connecticut.  I have not been able to find evidence of his birth date, and I have several theories as to why that is, but it may be that none of them are correct.  At any rate, he was probably born in 1774, based on information at his death, and it seems possible or even likely that he descends from the Lanfear/Lanphear/Lanphire/Lamphire etc families of Westerly, Rhode Island.  My "favorite" candidate for his parents changes every time I look at his file, so obviously I need to do more research.  The answer as to his parentage has to be somewhere! 

He was in Bozrah, Connecticut in 1800 and in Warren, Herkimer, NY in the 1810 census. He and Hannah already had three children by this time, two girls and a boy.  They seem to not be listed in the 1820 census, at least I haven't found them yet, but there are four families of various spelling in Madison County, New York, which is where we find James in 1830. (The other families are in Brookfield but James shows up first in Fenner.)  By then, he and Hannah are each 50-59 years old, and there is one male aged 10-14 with them. There is also a James Lamfere back in Herkimer County, New York, young enough to be our James's son, but there is no proof that he is a son, that I know of. In fact, his estate papers say that David was his only son.  In the 1840 census, James and Hannah are by themselves in Fenner, both aged 60-69.

Hannah probably died prior to November 7, 1847, when James, aged 73, of Cazenovia, married Susan Roster, of Stockbridge.  James was likely already ill, for he died of cancer on June 2, 1848, aged 74 years old. He is described as a farmer, which is likely how he made his living throughout his life.  He died without a will, and there is a request on file that David Mitchell was owed $10 from the estate and therefore asked to be appointed administer.  The application for administrator lists the widow, David Lamphire of Wisconsin, Alvin Stannard, Mrs. Polly Sullen, Mrs. Reuben Hattin, and Mrs. Simeon Green all of various locations in New York as heirs.  There is no mention of the younger James in Herkimer County, but there is also no mention of our ancestor and his daughter, Susan Lamphire Eddy.  Perhaps each of those people had already been given a share of the estate, or had been gifted prior to James's death. (Or maybe the younger James had died without issue.)  The estate (personal property only) was valued at less than $1000.

Known children of James and Hannah are Parmelia, Polly, Harriet (known as Nancy), David, and Susan.  David's birthdate is listed as 1817, which would not make him the boy listed in the 1810 census, so more work needs to be done here.

This is as much as I know of James. He seems to be a sly one, and is probably hiding behind a different spelling than the ones I have tried, or perhaps even behind a different first name.  Several people in the collateral lines are known by their middle name, or by a different name altogether, for whatever reason. 

I've been working on this part of the line for a long time and my "possible clues" folder is about an inch thick. The answer may be in that file, but I'm not fitting the puzzle pieces together yet.  If you know anything that might help me, please contact me!  I owe Jessica Franks a huge debt of gratitude for showing me all the information she had from Madison County, New York, and for sharing pictures and estate information with me! 

Our line of descent: 

James Lamphire-Hannah Eames
Susan Lamphire-Joseph Eddy
Susan Eddy-Hiram Stanard
Louis Stanard-Mary Alice Hetrick
Etta Stanard-Loren Holbrook
Lois/Gladys/Howard/Ray