Enon Hall

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August 12, 2007

Couple things on the genealogy front...

First, cousin Bill Carrell, II has been researching the Lawson line of our family tree over the past several years. William Hathaway, who first purchased Enon Hall in 1762 was married to Sarah Lawson and Sarah's great great grandfather was a John Taylor. Bill has now concluded that this John Taylor was the same John Taylor who came to Jamestown in 1610 on The Swan. He builds a strong case for this by tracking Taylor's movements from county to county and eventually to Lancaster County. Bill has been kind enough to share his research for inclusion on this site. If you are descended from William Hathaway and Sarah Lawson, then you will find his article very interesting as it argues that you are also descended from a very early Jamestown settler. Download Bill's article here as a PDF: "Ancestry of Sarah (Lawson) Hathaway: Wife of William Hathaway of Enon Hall - Lancaster County, Virginia" by William P. Carrell II, B.A., J.D.

Last weekend I was discussing genealogy with William and making the point that, although we spend a lot of time focusing on our Enon Hall descendants like William and Sarah, he has slews of other lines that are equally as important to his history. I made the point that Willam and Sarah are his 7 great grandparents and that he actually has a total of 512 7 great grandparents. That lead to this weekend's project. I made a blank circular family tree chart, we printed it out large and the three of us started filling it in with all the information that Gay and I have gathered about our families over the years. William is in the center of the chart.

I really like this layout for a family tree. For me, it's the only way that I can truly see the whole picture and see all of the generations in a clear fashion. This particular chart only allows space for 9 generations. For some lines we have 13 generations. We wound up taping on extra pieces of paper to accommodate these lines.

But I thought it was interesting how many of each generation there actually are, and how many we were able to fill in.

Generation Known / Total % Known
parents 2 / 2 100%
g grandparents 8 / 8 100%
g grandparents 8 / 8 100%
2g grandparents 16 / 16 100%
3g grandparents 27 / 32 84%
4g grandparents 32 / 64 50%
5g grandparents 24 / 128 19%
6g grandparents 17 / 256 7%
7g grandparents 15 / 512 3%
8g grandparents 7 / 1,024 .70%
9g grandparents 3 / 2,048 .14%
10g grandparents 5 / 4,096 .12%
11g grandparents 4 / 8,192 .05%

I think it's pretty impressive that we can actually identify half of his great great great great grandparents. There are so many people out there who can't go beyond their grandparents. And, of course, there are also too many kids out there today who don't even know who both of their parents are.

Our Hathaway line is interesting because they stayed in one county (and in one house) for so long. Other branches of my family bounced all over the place. I can only take my Chapman line back to 1843 when William Chapman arrived in Michigan from Manchester, England. Gay's ancestors are largely from Georgia and Virginia. Most of both of our ancestors were originally from England and Ireland.

Anyway, it was a fun, family exercise combining our family trees for William in this fashion. We blew most of the weekend working on it. -- Bill

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© 1999- William H. Chapman