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Forum Home > Norris Family > John D Norris (OH) + Hannah Otto

Dave Norris
Member
Posts: 5

New member and fairly new to genealogical research. I am researching the Norris families, particularly those that migrated to the Richland, Ashland, and Wayne County areas of Ohio in the early to mid 1800s. My great-grandfather was Vatchel Norris from Ashland County and later Lorain County. I believe he was the son of John D and Hannah (Otto) Norris who lived in Ashland County, OH in 1850. John supposedly was born in Huntingdon County, PA in 1819 before coming to OH. I would like to discover who John's parents were and how they were related to other Norrises in PA.

So far my research has brought me to the conclusions that my great-great-grandfather was not the same John D. Norris that was the son of Joseph Sr. and brother of Joseph Jr.; nor was he the son of Amos Norris who moved to Mochican Twp (OH) in 1810 and Orange Twp around 1814 with Vatchel Metcalf.  I believe my gg grandfather John was the father of Susannah Norris Kinney and grandfather of Dr. John Kinney who founded the old Kinney Smith Hospital in Wooster, OH; and is buried in the Overton Church of God cemetery outside of Wooster, OH.  His gravestone puts his birth date as March 15, 1819.  His death date is Jan. 12, 1897.

John married Hannah Otto in 1842 in Ohio, and there were 4 children living with them for the 1850 Census, listed only  by initials:  S.A. (female, 7), A.E. (female, 5), V. (male, 3), and E. (female, 1).  I think E. was a male but being an infant perhaps the census taker assumed wrongly or just wrote the wrong letter.  I think E. was Edmund Norris, who lived in Polk, OH and died in 1923.

My great grandfather Vatchel Norris lived to be 61.  There was another Vatchel Norris in Ashland County who died about age 21 years earlier.  With multiple Vatchels, Johns, Amoses, Williams, and later Eds all around Ashland OH area, it gets a bit muddy whose line was whose.  For some time, some thought Amos Norris, buried in Nankin (old Orange) Cemetery in 1848 was our ggg grandfather.  For various reasons I'm fairly convinced he is not, even though he had a son named John, who married Lydia and then Rebecca... but Amos and my gg grandfather probably were related somehow and knew each other.

I can't tell you if anyone in John's family moved west from Ohio, such as Indiana, Illinois, or Iowa, though I know some Norrises did.  Vatchel did not, but maybe John spent some time out there after his wife Hannah died in 1851, because his children ended up living with other families in the Ashland area for awhile (Susannah and Vatchel lived with the Casner family in 1860).  Susannah's husband Job Kinney and their children all later ended up attending the same family reunion as Vatchel's children and Edmund and his children; and there were some ladies who kept traveling back from Monroeville, IN each year to attend, but they might have been from the Kinney side.

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Dave

My ancestors were farmers.  My roots are in tilled soil.

July 28, 2011 at 2:31 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dave Norris
Member
Posts: 5

Update:

Since John D. Norris was born in Huntingdon County, PA in 1819, he had to move to Ashland County, OH sometime after that.  I'm being led to believe that my great-great-grandfather John D was John David Norris, son of William Norris, who was born in Maryland in 1781, moved to Huntingdon County, was married in 1805 to Mary Harnoc, was a captain in the War of 1812 (per a biographical sketch done for Ashland County) and had about a dozen children, of whom one was John David Norris.  This William moved to Mohican Township, Ashland County, OH in 1823 and stayed there several years.  I still haven't found when he died or where he's buried.  Other children of William would have included Nancy Norris Miller, Joseph Norris, Matilda Norris Burgh (later Matilda Urie), and Margaret Norris Watson.

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Dave

My ancestors were farmers.  My roots are in tilled soil.

August 9, 2011 at 11:13 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Dave Norris
Member
Posts: 5

Wow, this is great!  Deb posted a blog entry that may have led to a breakthrough for my lineage research:  http://woodcockvalley.webs.com/apps/blog/entries/show/8253532-two-norris-brothers.  Thanks Deb!

Now I need to get busy on finding all the right documentation here in Ohio to confirm a few links, but as long as it all shakes out, it looks like (counting my son) our line has been in America for at least nine generations, and since before George Washington, ha!  If so, I would be a descendant of John D Norris, Joseph Sr.'s son, Joseph Jr.'s brother.

Would love to hear from anyone else whose line leads them from the Huntingdon County area to Ashland County OH.

Oh, and above I said Vatchel didn't move west... I stand partially corrected.  He didn't move to the states I mentioned above, but I found an obituary that stated he did spend part of his married life in Kansas.  But then he moved back.  Glad to know I'm not the first to move away then come back!

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Dave

My ancestors were farmers.  My roots are in tilled soil.

September 2, 2011 at 10:41 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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