Thursday, March 1, 2012

~ Eleanor ~

     My maternal grandmother's father, Samuel George Davis was born in Ohio to Flora Braught and Daniel Davis.  Flora's parents were Samuel C. Braught and Eleanor.
     It looks like MaMa was named after her great-grandmother, Eleanor J. Braught.  I don't know much about this Eleanor.  The 1870 U.S. Federal Census shows Eleanor living with a family in Ohio and working as a domestic servant.  Her daughter, Flora who is listed as D & D (deaf & dumb) is living with her in this house.  Ten years later, the 1880 census has Eleanor as head of household with both children living with her.  Flora is now 17 years old and her brother, Samuel who was not with his mother in 1870 is 23 years old.
     Both the 1870 and 1880 censuses show Eleanor's place of birth as Vermont.  Her last name is different in each of these censuses.  The 1880 census has the last name Sams and the 1870 census has the last name of her late husband and children which was Braught.  I thought that Sams might be her maiden name because I also found that name in the Civil War Pension Index.  I saw Eleanor's name listed as Clark in the 1890 Veterans Schedule.  How many last names did this woman have?
     A few days ago, while looking up the name Eleanor Sams on, I came across a story that another subscriber had posted.  This person had written that Eleanor married William Riley Sams in 1867.  The story was about William and not Eleanor.  There was no other information about my 3rd great-grandmother other than the censuses which Eleanor appeared in being listed as sources on this person's tree.  Eleanor was a widow in 1867 due to her husband Samuel Braught's death three years earlier.  Why wasn't she listed with her new husband in the 1870 census and where was her son who was only 13 at the time?  Was she working as a live-in domestic servant for financial reasons?  Was her daughter listed with her in the house she served because of the little girl's ailment and young age?  If she did indeed marry William Sams and this last name was her new married name and not a maiden name then why use the previous married name on census?  She did have the name Sams in the next census though.  I haven't found Eleanor in any other census and I have no idea when or where she died so I can't get any information from a death certificate.

     all these unanswered questions...

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