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How it all began

How it all began!!

I started my files on the Allender family more than 30 years ago from notes made during conversations with my sister-in-law, Odessa Allender. Odessa, a descendant from the Jefferson County family in Iowa, passed away in 1990. It was not until I began using the Family Tree Maker Program, in 2003, that I thought to continue the research, that Odessa and I had started, and I began typing information, from our notes, into the family group view. Imagine my surprise when the World Tree immediately came up with links going back to Colonial Maryland and the immigrant William, 1640-1698, who is listed in the Maryland Register of Heraldic Families. The patriarch of Odessa’s line was shown to be Richard (b.1767). A connection to the Wisconsin line was revealed, which I found particularly interesting, since my sister-in-law often mentioned her relatives in the eastern part of Wisconsin.

I realized that my goal of finding identities on all the Allenders on the U.S. pre 1850 censuses was problematic, since those censuses list only the heads of household by name. But soon two issues of more immediate concern were brought to light in emails from Christy Allender of Brevard, North Carolina. Christy is a member and researcher of the Wisconsin line of the family. These two issues and others were discussed in many emails as months dragged into years. The first was troubling for it concerned the pedigree of the Wisconsin line. Even though the patriarch of the Wisconsin line, William (b. 1807), was shown in the World Tree as a son of Richard (b. 1767), that connection was not accepted by most researchers, because William (b. 1807) had a sister, Margaret (1812-1851), and he and Margaret were married to Lashley siblings, Sarah and George. Margaret and George appeared on the 1850 Census in Ohio in the same household with the presumed patriarchal forebear of William and Margaret, the 100 year old William Alexander Allender. But here history was blocked and there was no way to get beyond the 1850 Census and find the identity of William (b. 1750) and to know if he was the actual father, or maybe the grandfather, of William and Margaret. The history of this line of Allenders remained a mystery, perhaps because William and Sarah moved to Wisconsin in 1838, and Margaret died from complications of childbirth in June 1851, after William (b. 1750) died in March 1851.

The second problem, we faced concerned the missing manuscript, herein referred to by its brief title: The Legend. Since the Gedcom records connected to the World Tree were documented by this manuscript on deposit at the Fairfield Public Library in Jefferson County, Iowa, it was considered a primary source for information on the Jefferson County line of Allenders. We hoped it might also shed light on all of the Maryland lines. Christy requested the loan of that paper, and was told it had been missing for a number of years. A copy of this paper, deposited by its author Richard Eugene Allender in 1993, was later located and returned to the library, but that happened many months later in our research.

Building on my skills as a retired librarian and cataloger, I was kept busy constructing lineages from census records for the Maryland tree, and unrelated Allender trees. I hoped, by the process of elimination, that the left over census records would show how Wisconsin and Ohio families were related. With the help of the available published genealogies, many census names fell into place in two lines that came together in Kentucky and traced back to the Moveables Plantation family in Virginia established by William (b. 1647), immigrant from England. Many of the Allender names in Ohio were shown by census records to be members of the Irish Allender family. They were descendants of John Allender (b.1769), immigrant from Ireland, who had moved to Ohio. The Rinkenbach genealogy called The Allender Family of Lehigh County, Pennsylvania (1958) proved extremely useful. Not so much for its names, since it concerned a family confined almost entirely to the one county, but for its methodolgy. Henceforth, I began to follow the Rinkenbach practice of restating the census findings with notes attached to each individual.

The Wisconsin line remained mired in Ohio, but among the five names of William Allender that appear on the 1790 Census for U.S., one William Allender in Chester County, Pennsylvania, jumped out to show as someone, who born in 1750 in nearby Harford County, Maryland, made it to Ohio and lived to be 101 years old. He is found on every census 1790-1850, but names and confirmation of his wives and some of his children, and status of children versus grandchildren was lacking.

The Ohio research, because its census for 1810 was lost, still remained a problem. Finding names on the few remaining households on 1820-1840 censuses in a state where many Allender families settled, or passed through during that period of statehood expansion, seemed impossible to unravel. Again there was help. Kristina Ahuja, descendant of Margaret (1812-1851, Ohio) a researcher in family records and living in California, had now located a copy of the missing Legend. She also began collecting a myriad of land and estate records to help in the work she and Christy had pursued to construct family views for the Allender households of their extended families in Ohio. Arduously, names on Ohio deeds and estate inventories were matched with Allender households showing on censuses of 1850 and forward, and family views were thus slowly assembled. Then, by working back in census records, the names for most members in households for 1820-1840 were identified.
So it happens that on the 1820 Census for Ohio, in the household of William Allender (b.1750) in Pultney Township, Belmont County, the three Allender brothers of Ohio, Richard (b.1801), Alexander (b.1803), and John (b.1804), are reunited. With them are a younger trio of siblings: William (b.1807, patriarch of the Wisconsin line), Margaret (b. 1812), and Thomas (b. 1814); and living next door is Nicholas, with his wife Mary, and their 7 children: Robert the oldest, age about 20; 5 daughters; and Joseph, age 5.

In The Legend, R.E. Allender writes about Ohio land sold by Richard (b. 1767) and his brother, John, to their "nephews" Nicholas and William in 1806. Among land records collected by Kristina are those that concern this sale and several other transactions, between1803 and 1830, involving the same acres and the same four Allender names: Richard, John, William and Nicholas. R.E.A. was right on the identity of brothers, Richard (b. 1767) and John. The place of residence for John on census records for Pennsylvania, agrees with that given on the deeds. The same is true for Thomas (b. 1784), the youngest brother of John and Richard, when in 1828, he comes forth with his wife, Margaret Fore, to sign off on his acres, as part of the land transfers.

The three brothers, John, Richard and Thomas, trace by census and other records, back to parents, William and Anna (Day) Allender, of Maryland. Their father, William, 1740-1793, is one of the five Williams named on the 1790 U.S. Census. The other two are William, 1739-1796 (father of Dr. Joseph Allender, depicted in a painting preserved in the Bowerman family); and William Taylor Allender, 1757-1838 (son of Joshua Allender III); and if we accept William, 1750-1851, from Chester, Pennsylvania, who followed the Delaware River to settle in Ohio, as the fourth, then only one William remains to be identified. This 5th William is most likely the William so prominently associated with Revolutionary War records of Maryland.

Among Maryland land records collected by Kristina, are three documents which serve to identify one far back in the pedigree of Odessa’s line in Iowa, namely the father of William who married Anna Day. Establishing the identity of someone that early has profound implications for other lines as well. Taken in sequence, the three Maryland land transfers reveal that the grandfather of Richard, John and Thomas of the Ohio land deals is not John, who married Lucinda, as presumed in the Legend, but instead, it is Thomas, the Hammer man. Thomas is named in The Legend as someone who works with John and lives near him. The first of the three Maryland deeds shows Thomas, the Hammer man, buying Freeland’s Mount in Harford County, Maryland in 1760. Thomas died in 1790, and the next deed dated in Dec. 1790, relates that it is his son, William, who is selling Freeland’s Mount; and then, in Mar. 1794, a third transfer has Ann Allinder, therein stated as widow of William (deceased, as of Dec. 1793), selling to the same buyer, her Dower’s Rights to Freeland’s Mount.

According to REA, in his Legend, John had 3 sons named William: 1) William (b. 1740) who married Anna Day, who we now know is not his son; 2) William, baptized and died within 8 days n 1752, according to the church record. His birth date is not known; 3) William named in Lucina’s will of 1789, as reported Baltimore County Families 1659-1759 / by Robert W. Barnes, –p. 6; he is presumed to be William (1750-1851), according to clues found in the censuses, 1790-1850. Other clues, though minor and hidden, cannot be overlooked. The names of two of Robert’s daughters are Christina and Lucinda, which suggests that through his father, Nicholas, Robert is in the John and Lucinda line, with Nicholas, a likely son of William (b. 1750). The identity of Christina Alender who married Jacob Ulrey is unknown, but the Ulreys named a daughter Lucinda, lived in Pennsylvania, then moved to Ohio.

In spite of some errors and missed records, The Legend has helped keep the Allender story alive, and it is through the efforts of Richard E. Allender and others like him that family histories are secured. Thanks are due to Christy, and Kristina for their dedication to the cause in saving family records. Thanks also to my sister-in-law, Odessa. Possessed with the gift of almost total recall, Odessa could relate many stories of the Allender families.
--Alice Alderman, June 22, 2008



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