Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Beeks line: Morgan Abraham-not quite an immigrant

Oh, how cool!  I've just seen the will for this man, actual digital images on line at the National Library of Wales. I am supposed to cite the record thus:  http://handle.net/10107/934427.  Fortunately, the will is in English so I can read some of it. Other parts are beyond my skill level, but here is a brief summary of what I can understand and of what was new to me.

He describes himself in his will as a yeoman, meaning (I believe) farmer with property.  His inventory which was taken on July 7, 1712  gave a value of 120 pounds, 10 shillings.  This included wearables, and various animals and crops, including six oxen, four cows, and something else that may be sheep or could be something else entirely.  It also lists hard corn (that already harvested), and corn growing in the ground, and the implements of husbandry.  Yes, Morgan Abraham was definitely a farmer.

What else do we know about him?  There is at least one record that refers to him as a carpenter. We know he was planning to come to America when he died, and that his wife and at least some of his children made the trip as planned a year later.  His wife's name was Sarah but that's all we know at this point.  Although his will is found in the National Library of Wales, it seems that the area he lived in, Longtown, Parish Clodock, Herefordshire, is English, although at one time it had been Welsh and many place names, etc., were Welsh.  Since Morgan Abraham is the first known person in this line, it's hard to know for sure whether he was of English or of Welsh roots.

He was born about 1660 and died June 28, 1712, having written his will on June 24 of that year.  William, his oldest son, and Sarah were able to sell the land that had been left to Sarah and this allowed the family enough funds to migrate to what is probably Chester County, Pennsylvania.  A lot of Welsh Quaker families lived there and they may have been among neighbors.  I need to do more research to determine whether a Sarah Abraham indexed in the Ancestry Quaker records, noted as of "Delaware, Pennsylvania" could be our Sarah Abraham.

Morgan and Sarah are listed as having children James, Joseph, Noah, William, Mary, Enoch, Sarah, and Elizabeth.  Sarah, widow of Morgan died in 1746 in "Wayne, Delaware, Pennsylvania" so she is the immigrant ancestor in this line.

I still can't believe how neat it was to actually see his will on line.  Isn't the Internet great?

The line of descent is:

Morgan Abraham-Sarah
Elizabeth Abraham-Lewellen Bowen Martin
Joel Martin-Anna Thompson
Llewellen Martin-Elizabeth Painter
Joel Martin-Nancy Bane
Matilda Martin-David Wise
Elizabeth Wise-John Beeks
Wilbur Beeks-Cleo Aldridge
Mary Margaret Beeks-Cleveland Harshbarger
Their descendents

Update: 9/14/2015  I apologize for the error.  Morgan Abraham, as fascinating as he is, doesn't belong to the Beeks line.  The Matilda Martin who married David Wise is a different Matilda Martin.   However, I'm choosing to leave this blog post up in case it can help someone else.