Finally, we get to see the children, and look, there's George as Geo. Hixen.  He's age 13, which he would be since he hasn't had his birthday yet in 1850 (December baby).   So, this George Hixon was born in Harrison County, Ohio in 1836, what a coincidence.  But wait!  His father is supposed to be Abram and his mother is supposed to be Elizabeth.  So what gives?

By the way, because I know someone's gonna ask it's A[bner] age 65 [b. 1785 in NJ], M[artha] age 45 [b. 1805], daughter J.A. aged 18, I do not know what the initials stand for. A son A[bner]  age 15, and a son Geo[rge] age 13.  W. Shisler is William.  The initials gathered from 1860 census.  More on Martha and the Shisler family in a minute

So a breakdown of all of the census records shows the following children:

1.  A male born between 1810 and 1820
2.  A male born between 1810 and 1820
3.  A male born between 1810 and 1820
4.  A female born between 1810 and 1820 --- Jane 12  12A
5.  A female born between 1820 and 1825
6.  A male born between 1825 and 1830 --- Amos? 13
7.  A male born between 1825 and 1830
8.  A female born in 1832 -----------------------J. A.
9.  A male born in 1834 -------------------------Abner
10.  A male born in 1836 (Dec. 8)-------------George

By 1860 all the Hixon children were out of the house, and only Shissler's remained (I'm using Martha's will for the spelling of Shissler).  Abner Hixon Jr. was a 25 year old saddler, married to an Isabel, age 22.  They had no children, yet.  By 1870 they were living in North Twp, Harrison County, Ohio with the following children:  Charles age 7, Laura age 6, Julia age 5, and  Williams N. Hixon age 1.  By 1880 they had the same four children all ages 18, 16, 14, 11

I'd love to know who J.A. Hixon is, but she's a daughter and if she married she would have changed her surname.  Perhaps she married in Carroll County and there is a marriage record?  Unfortunately, I don't know.   I'm taking a stab with Amos, who was living in North Twp., Harrison County in the 1850 census, born about 1827.  His wife's name appears to be Libby, and they have a 61 year old man living with them Jackson Palmer, so there's a good chance that that may be Libby's father.

Because Martha and the Shissler family isn't part of mine, other than she married Abner, I'm not really following it much other than to say, this is her.   But in the 1860 Carroll County census we see both William (who appeared on the 1850 census with Abner and Martha) and now Amos Chisler.

No will is known to exist for Abner, which is sad because it could link my George without question.  Martha's will 14 is at the Carroll County Genealogical Society, but she lists no Hixons as heirs, only a brother Thomas Patton (that's how I know her maiden name was Patton), a grandson David Harvey Shissler, and a granddaughter Adaline Fisher.  A granddaughter with the surname of Fisher could either indicate Martha had a daughter who married a Fisher, or if the granddaughter is old enough was the daughter of one of Martha's sons and married a Fisher.  That's for a Shissler researcher to check out.

It didn't occur to me when I was there, but I should have checked to see if there were any other Hixon wills, if Martha left something to her brother, perhaps one of George's brothers did the same.  Oh well, next trip.

Part III Abner's wives

I decided a few months ago to send an email to the Harrison County, Ohio rootsweb list inquiring about this particular Abner and even mentioned that one problem I had was his wife's name should be Elizabeth.  A gentleman wrote me back with the following information.  And the pieces just continue to fall into place.

1.) Deaths Carroll Co.Probate Records: Abner Hixson 84 yrs. male, white, married, mechanic, heart disease, died Dec. 17, 1870 15A in OH, Carroll, New Hagerstown. Born PA, Westmoreland Co.  Last place of residence Carroll, Orange, New Hagerstown 15B  I'm gonna ask you to keep the Westmoreland County, PA thing in mind as we go, we'll get back to that, but I can only do one thing at a time.

Well, this is kind of cool, because La Trelle Hixon (George's son) wrote on George's death certificate that George's father was born in Pennsylvania.  But why do the census records all have him being born in New Jersey?   That I don't know, but again, we'll see more light as we approach the end of this theory.

The second thing that the gentleman sent me was some information on burials in Harrison County.  Abner Hixson, ag 91 yr, 11 mn, 17 dy d 17 Dec 1870, also buried there is "Elizabeth Hixson, ag 51 yr, 5 mn, 7 dy. d 14 Aug 18-- OR 13 Dec 18-- w/o Abner Hixson."  Aha!  So he did have a wife by the name of Elizabeth!  They are buried at Hanover Cemetery: located in the NE Quarter of Section 29, Township 11, Range 5 located in North Township. The cemetery was founded in 1828, and is located on Havanick Rd. (TR237) just north of Hanover Ridge Rd. (CR17). 16 

This paragraph is pure speculation based upon information from the census records, and her age at time of death (51) from her gravestone.  The 1830 and 1840 census both give Abner's wife's age as b. 1790-1800.  Her first born child appears to have been born

between 1810 & 1815, and she was probably at least 17 years old when he was born so 1815 minus 17 narrows down her birth year to 1790-1798.   AND if we add 51 to either end we get that she would have died between 1841 and 1849, before the 1850 census when Martha was listed as his wife.  Give Abner a chance to mourn, court and remarry before the 1850 census (1 year) and we've narrowed down the year of birth to 1790-1797, and her year of death to 1841-1848.

My genealogist gut tells me that Elizabeth was probably born closer to 1797.  And here's why.  According to the 1820 Harrison County, Ohio census, Abner and his wife had four children under the age of 10.  We also know that George was born in 1836.  I find it doubtful that Elizabeth was born in 1790 and was still having children at 46 years of age.  It is more likely that she was born near the end of the decade, say 1794, then she would have been 42 when he was born.  Much more reasonable, but does it fit with the census?  Yes, the 1820 census does list that she was between the age of 26 and 45, the 1830 shows her to have been between 30 and 40.  So...  the 1830 census would have her born between 1790 and 1800, while the 1820 would have her born between 1775 and 1794.  That is assuming that the informant was correct.  Thus she would have been born between 1790 and 1794, and that just seems quite old to be having a child, unless we go with the latest possible date.  Of course census's aren't an exact science, a lot depends upon when one's birthday falls, and whether or not one remembers they just had a birthday.  Heck, I have to take the current year and the year of my birth and subtract everytime I'm asked how old I am.   So it may well be that she was older or younger, but that's just my calculations based on the limited amount of information I have to go by.

Suppose Elizabeth was 16 at the time of marriage, and was born in 1797, she would have been married about 1813.  If she had children the following year they could have been born in 1814, 16, 18 and perhaps a set of twins.  Not impossible.  As I said, based upon the collective information, I firmly believe that Elizabeth was born between 1794 and 1797.  If in 1794 then the census would be correct when they date her as between 26 and 45 years of age, though census records are often wrong.

So now Abner has a son George age 13, just like my George.  That George would have been born in Harrison County, Ohio, just like my George said on his military records, and Abner was married to an Elizabeth, just like La Trelle said.  The only stumbling block is that Abner's name is Abner and not Abram, but I discussed that above, just before the census portion.  And well there's that matter of his birth place that I'll discuss later.

I had to be in Carrollton on January 23, 2009, so I headed up a day early in hopes of getting over to see the graves.  I got there but it was too snowy and frigid to walk the cemetery at the hour I had to be there.  I'm planning another trip up there after the spring thaw. One thing that I did get when I was up there were two deeds.  What good are deeds?  Well, I'm about to answer that question right now.

The first deed was dated February 23, 1820.17  It was for a parcel of town property in Hanover, Harrison County, Ohio, on the south side of Main Street, lot number 88.  He apparently moved right on it, as he shows up on the 1820 census (see above), and sold it on January 10, 1831. 18 What's interesting to note is in that deed he not only sold #88, but numbers 86 and 87 as well, and I've yet to find a deed where he purchased those.  But back to my point.  The wife has to sign the deed when the property is sold, and sure enough two signatures are on that deed -- Abner and Elizabeth!  Elizabeth died sometime between Dec. 7, 1836 (when George was born) and 1849, and Abner married Martha sometime after Elizabeth died and before the 1850 census taker came around.

I have heard that "my" Abner married a Martha Naordine in Clermont County in 1833, but that is not the case.  An Abner Hixon no doubt married her, but not this one.  The census shows two Abner Hixons living in Clermont County at the time, so why would this Abner travel all the way across the state to marry?  He didn't.  After Elizabeth died, Abner married again, this time to Martha Patton
[unknown].  Due to the fact that she had grandchildren, it will be assumed that her marriage to Abner was a second marriage.

The two Abner Hixons in Clermont County in 1840 are as follows.  One couple was  20 and under 30 with one son less than 5 years old. 19  The other is a male age 30 and under 40, with a wife age 20 and under 30. 20 Either one could be the one who married Martha on August 11, 1833.  If the younger is closer to 20 and the older is closer to 40, it is possible that they *could* be father and son.

Part IV Abner's Birth, with lots of speculating.

Alright, remember when I said I'd get back to Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania vs. New Jersey as Abner's birth place.  Well, here we are.  I don't know why the census would have New Jersey if that wasn't the case, and it's consistent in 50, 60 and 70.  However, both La Trelle and Abner's death certificate say he was born in Pennsylvania.  We all know that La Trelle is capable of mistakes, but did he make one?  Here's one possible theory.

In searching the census for Hixons (any spelling) in New Jersey for 1790 and 1800, I got nothing.  Not a single Hixon.  Yet Abner was supposed to have been born 1785/1786 in New Jersey.  Now it is possible that he was born in Jersey and then his family moved away by the 1790 census.  But remember the death record that said he was born in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania?  Well... there are two Hixons living in Westmoreland County PA in 1790 and both are worth considering as Abner's possible parent.

Joseph Heckson is one possibility, but he has been ruled out.  In 1790 he was living in North Huntingdon, Westmoreland County, PA., he continued to live there until the time of his death sometime prior to the taking of the 1810 census.

According to Tami's Genealogy Online 21 (which looks pretty reliable), the children are: Elizabeth, Adam, Moses, Amos, Joseph, Abraham O., David and Noah.  Unfortunately, according to Abraham O's will, 22 he has no children named George or Foster.  So Joseph appears to be a no go on my line.

James Hickson is the other possibility that I see right off.  Again, neither may be correct, this is only speculation based off the death record.  In 1790 he was living in South Huntingdon, Westmoreland County, PA.  I am figuring that they're brothers living in the same county, and being about the same age.

With the disappearance of James from Westmoreland County, and the sudden appearance of a James in Washington County, I'm wanting to bet that this may be the same man.  Especially when one compares the children and sees they're all the same age and when one takes into consideration that Washington and Westmoreland are very close together and it would not be a stretch to have a family move one county over, just as we saw Abner did from Harrison to Carroll.  Westmoreland and Washington Counties are also both very close to Harrison County, so again, it wouldn't be improbable that one would move from one location to the other.  But we have also pretty much ruled out James.  So where does this take us?  Right now I'm focusing my attention on the two Abner Hicksons of Union, Fayette County, PA, who show up in the 1810 census. 

It is my belief that Abner was indeed born in New Jersey as the census states.  Perhaps he moved to Fayette County, PA and then moved further west before coming into Ohio.  It is possible that one of the Hixons living in Westmoreland County was an aunt or uncle and Abner stopped off for a spell to visit with family, even though it was a little out of his way from Fayette to Harrison.  Though Westmoreland County is well situated on what is now US-22 which runs straight into Harrison County.  His children learned he came here "from" Westmoreland County and thus the story began that that's where he was born.  But it is my belief that over the three decades 50, 60 and 70 that Abner must have given the census info, and would have known where he was born, and that was New Jersey.    All pure speculation, and cannot be proven at this point in time.

So in 1840 Abner Hixon has the following children:

2 males 0 & under 5  (b. 1835-1840), 2 males 10 & under 15  (b. 1825-1830),  1 male 15 & under 20  (b. 1820-1825),  1 male  50 and under 60   (b. 1780-1790) -- Papa  1 female 5 and under 10   (b. 1835-1840),  1 female 15 and under 20 (b. 1820-1825),  1 female 40 and under 50  (b. 1790-1800) -- Mamma

There are times in a genealogist's gut that one just feels like they're on the right path, and this is just one of those times.  With Abner's name I decided to go back and try to locate him in earlier census records, and I did. I found him in both the 1820  and 1830 census.

The 1820 Census for the town of Hanover in Archer Twp., Harrison County, Ohio. 9
Image courtesy of
3 males less than 10 (1810-1820)  1 female  less than 10 (1810-1820)  Papa & Mamma 26-45 (1775-1794)    The mark on the right hand page indicates "number of persons engaged in agriculture."     

The 1830 Census for the town of Hanover in Archer Twp., Harrison County, Ohio. 10    
Image courtesy of
1.  Ohio State Death Certificate.
2. Tombstone just outside of Waterloo, Lawrence County, Ohio.
3.  Muster and Descriptive Roll of the 141st ONG May 11, 1864. Gives age as 27.
4.  Obituary in the Ironton Register Thursday, May 4th, 1911
5.  Ohio State Death Certificate informant Geo. F.'s son George LaTrelle (b. 1889)
6.  ditto
7.  Gallia County, Ohio Marriages book 2 page 423
8.  1840 U.S. Census Ohio, Harrison, North Twp., Hanover "Abner Hixson"  p. 1 of 2.
9.  1820 U.S. Census Ohio, Harrison, Archer Twp., Hanover "Abner Hixson"  p. 11 of 12.
10. 1830 U.S. Census Ohio, Harrison, North Twp., Hanover "Abner Hnen"  p. 1 of 2.
11. 1850 U.S. Census Ohio, Carroll, Orange "A. Hixen" p. 28 of 30.
12. Historical Collections of Harrison County, in the State of Ohio p. 534 Where there is an article on James McAFEE, the article goes on to say that a George McAfee married "Jane Hixon, daughter of Abner Hixon, a resident of Hanover."  I also found a write-up by Kybrenda on one of the McAfee lists, and she has down that Jane was born January 27, 1816 in Ohio, and that she died August 14, 1895.  She is supposedly buried at the Hanover Methodist Church Cemetery.  [Caution, I have not done my own research on Jane and therefore will not stand behind these comments at this time.  I am planning another trip after the spring thaw 2009 to Cadiz, Carrollton, and Lisbon, in other words, Harrison, Carroll and Columbiana Counties, to research this new information.]
13. 1850 US Census Ohio, Harrison, North Twp. "Amos Hixon" p. 4 of 27.
14 Martha Hixon's will is at the Carroll County Genealogical Society located at 24 2nd Street, NE  P.O. Box 36
Carrollton, OH 44615-1205. 
15A & B  Carroll County probate Deaths Bk 1, pg 30. Two pages A=p. 1 B=p. 2  Now kept at the Carroll County Genealogical Society.
16. Harrison County Ohio Cemeteries North Twp.
17  Harrison County deeds Book B page 521.
18. Harrison County deeds Book I page 269.
19. 1840 U.S. Census Ohio, Clermont, Ohio pg. 8 of 27
20 1840 U.S. Census Ohio, Clermont, Ohio  pg. 7 of 27
22.  US Gen Web Archives Special Projects Pennsylvania, Westmoreland, Wills.

The photographs and information gathered on this site are the property of Linda Trent
All rights reserved.©

Image courtesy of
So we can see that Abner was living in Harrison County both before and after George was born.  But wait, there's still the 1850 census, and it contains family member names! 

The 1850 Census for Orange Twp., Carroll County, Ohio. 11
Image courtesy of
My Hixon Logic Puzzle.
by Linda Trent
Part I  George Foster Hixon.

George Foster 1 Hixon was born Dec. 8, 1836,2 in either Harrison County 3 or Belmont County, Ohio. 4  According to his Death Certificate, he was the son of  Abram Hixon (b. Pennsylvania) and Elizabeth Boyce (b. Ohio). 5 George died April 25, 1911, in Symmes Twp., Lawrence County, Ohio. 6  He married Alcinda Morgan October 18, 1860. 7

Now for the puzzle.

It seems obvious that one of the first things that needs to be done is to look at the U.S. Census for both Harrison and Belmont County, Ohio in 1830 and 1840 and see if there were any Abram Hixons living in those areas around the time that George was born.  There were not.  In fact, there were only 4 Abrams living in Harrison County (Deavs, Matron, Rowinsky, and Rylie), and only one Abram living in Belmont County in both 1830 and 1840 (Butler and Crouse, respectively).  There were no Abrams in Harrison County in 1830.

In fact, in all of Ohio in 1830 there were only 252 Abrams in the entire state, and not one of them had a surname that remotely resembled Hixon (Hixson, Hickson, etc.)  There were a few more in the 1840 census but I still got the same results.   I looked at the 1830 census for Hixons and didn't have any luck, until...  I looked at the 1840 census, and that's when I saw it.  Abner Hixon.  It wasn't Abram, but it was close. 

In a general wide search of Hixons I did find a few Abram or Abrahams, but they lived in Connecticut (1810), Massachusetts (1840) and Tuscarawas County (1850).  But the one in Tuscarawas County would have only been 13 at the time of my George's birth.  No, that just wasn't him.   None of them seemed to connect.

I kept coming back to Abner.  It was apparent to me that Abner was either going to turn into my 3rd great-grandfather or my 2nd great granduncle.  Either way it was worth looking into.  Another thing I keep reminding myself is that La Trelle Hixon, the informant on my George F's death certificate, wasn't even born until 1889 in Lawrence County, Ohio, nearly 20 years after this Abner would have died, and way down river.  He would have never had visits from this set of grandparents, probably didn't have a lot of people talking about them, and probably only really heard of them as Grandma and Grandpa, it's very likely that he made a mistake and referred to his grandfather as Abram instead of Abner, it could also be the clerk heard wrong.  The name is very clearly Abram and not Abner on the death certificate....

Part II  Abner Hixon in the census.

While the jury is still out, there is strong circumstantial evidence that Abner Hixon is indeed my 3rd great-grandfather.  He was, indeed living in Harrison County at least as early as 1840, as evidenced in the census below.  As I said I was unable to find Abram Hixon in the 1830 census,  but I did find an Abner in the 1840, and here's what happened ever since.

The 1840 Census for the Town of Hanover in North Twp., Harrison County, Ohio. 8