Friday, December 20, 2013

William Harlow Roscoe's Lineage

Probably most people who get interested in family history think about the possibility of finding a connection to someone famous... or infamous.  Just looking for a brush with fame.  A few think about the connections to significant historical events like the Revolutionary War or the passengers of the Mayflower.  William Harlow Roscoe is my connection to both of those American events. 

With my greatest thanks to other researchers, I have the lineage of William all the way back to Richard Warren, who arrived in 1620 aboard the Mayflower.  Richard Warren would be William Roscoe's 7th Great Grandfather. 

William's middle name Harlow goes back to his Grandmother's maiden name - Mercy Harlow.  Mercy's father Sgt William Harlow was a military leader in Plymouth, Massachusetts.  His first wife, Rebecca Bartlett, was the granddaughter of Richard Warren. Mercy Harlow married Asa Corbin, who fought in the Revolutionary War.  Several other ancestors of William were in the military.  The names Harlow and Corbin were used often in later Roscoe families.  William had an uncle also named William Harlow Roscoe.  

Slowly, I'm working on finding books and things to help me collect the documentation on this branch of the family tree myself.  The Nebraska State Historical Society Library in Lincoln has newspapers on microfilm from all around the state.  So far when I've been there, I've spent most of my time searching through those (and having fun doing it!).  One of these days I want to look over their book shelves more and see what they have for out-of-state research.  Fall is not the best season for going to that Library.  Saturday's are the only day I can go, and the library is within a few blocks of Memorial Stadium where over 90,000 people converge most Fall Saturday's for Husker football.  If the boys are playing out of town, you still need to check on the Husker volleyball schedule.  The library is also within shouting distance of "The Bob", or the Bob Devaney Sports Center, where the girls games are always sold-out, too.  It takes patience and determination to deal with the traffic in Lincoln on a Fall Saturday.  Maybe that's just because I'm from a small town.

Searching through old newspapers I can find things like this advertisement from the DeWitt Times-News for William Roscoe's business from April, 1884.  His uncle Charles Roscoe was also in the well and windmill business, competitive or cooperative, I don't know.  The 1885 Nebraska census shows Will's occupation as a Dealer of pumps. Other census records list him as a stock buyer and manager of the grain elevator. His obituary said he was a grain dealer. He was definitely involved in agri-business throughout his lifetime. Nebraska, State Census, 1885 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2002.

Lena and William Roscoe, about 1932
William was born March 6, 1859 in Frankfort, Herkimer County, New York.  His place of birth in his obituary is Kankakee, Illinois but he is listed in the 1860 census in Herkimer County.  He lived to be 88 years old, passed away on September 2, 1947 and is buried in the Clatonia Cemetery. 

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