Tag Archives: Jacob Troxell

The Descendants of Jacob Troxell

In 1998, when I was still in my twenties, I self published a family history of my ancestor Jacob Troxell. The manuscript was not fancy by any means. I wrote and typed the document on a simple word processing typewriter as we did not own a computer. I copied the pages on the xerox machine at work, then took them to Kinko’s to spiral bind them together. I wrote dozens of letters to various family members, in the beginning, to gather information for the book, and then later, to sell copies of my precious manuscript. Even then I was thinking ahead when I donated a copy to the Allen County Public Library in Indiana. Today, the book can be found by searching WorldCat.


WorldCat Entry for the Troxell book


Some Mayflower silver books from my own collection

Back then, I was a relatively new genealogist, but I knew the importance of numbering systems and including my sources. The book was not footnoted, however, but modeled on the style of the Mayflower silver books. Each descendant was assigned a number, followed by their full name with an accounting of their lineage back to the original ancestor or immigrant. Biographical information and a list of known children came next. At the end of each entry, a list of references was included. The Mayflower books have evolved since then, with later volumes in the series using inline references instead of footnotes.

As my skills have developed and evolved in the last 18 years, it has become more important to me to revise my first manuscript. I waffle between embarrassment and pride in my early accomplishment. The state of Indiana celebrated its bicentennial during the year 2016. As a result, there was a push to release state historical documents into the public view. Last June, while I was at SCGS’s Jamboree, Ancestry released several Indiana related databases, including but not limited to, death, marriage, and birth records. Overall, this has been a huge boon to my research as three of my four grandparents were natives of Indiana. Many of my maternal grandfather’s ancestors were among the earliest settlers of the state, particularly in the county of Fayette. Jacob Troxell was one of these early pioneers, arriving in the mid 1820s. His family belonged to the wave of settlers who moved west from Pennsylvania into the Miami Valley of Ohio during the first decade of the nineteenth century. As a young child (or teenager), Jacob Troxell settled outside of Dayton, Ohio. As the United States expanded into Indiana, prosperous Daytonians began purchasing land in Indiana. Abraham Troxell, Jacob’s father, bought land in Waterloo Township in 1826 and Jacob relocated his young family to Fayette county. A few years later, Abraham deeded the Fayette county land to Jacob.


n The revised outline of Jacob’s descendants

So where do I start? As my friends and family will attest, I have been bombarding them with updates on this enterprise. Over my Thanksgiving break, I pulled out my copy of the Troxell manuscript. I began to construct a new framework (or outline) for Jacob and his next three generations of descendants, based on the original manuscript and all the subsequent research I have added to my database in the last two decades. My outline was simple, recording only Jacob and his descendants, spouses, and children, with only birth, marriage, and death dates. Overall, I prefer the NGS Quarterly system of numbing. (For more information on genealogy numbering systems, check out Numbering Your Genealogy by Curran, Crane, and Wray.) In this draft, I stopped to write very few footnotes as I wanted to focus on constructing the outline. Those footnotes that I did write were generally for infants who died young. There would be little for me to add later on. At this point, the outline has become my research plan.


Obituary spreadsheet

In the next phase, I transferred all the names of the direct descendants to an excel spreadsheet. In four generations, Jacob’s progeny increased to 206 known individuals, including those of his four step-children. Currently, I am collecting obituaries with the goal to locate as many newspaper articles, obituaries, and death notices of these descendants as possible, with about 50% tracked down already. This week I expanded the spreadsheet to include spouses. I have been delighted to discover many of Indiana’s county libraries have improved online research request forms as well as online obituary indexes. St. Joseph county, Allen county, and Plymouth county have been extremely useful to me during the last month. I was also pleased to discover that newspapers[dot]com added two Muncie newspapers to their premium membership in the last week. Having a spreadsheet to record what records I do and do not have has been extremely helpful. I feel my research is much more focused, plus I love crossing things off when I obtain a record! One additional research bonus…I have found it very helpful to organize my research based on the assigned number a descendant was given, both in my paper and digital files.

Stay tuned for periodic updates on this endeavor in the coming months! What plans do you have to record your family history?

“Who Lives? Who Dies? Who Tells Your Story?


©2017 Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2017/01/11/the-descendants-of-jacob-troxell/

2016 – A Year in Review


Working at the library

A week ago, I honestly didn’t think I was going to write a year in review blog. Yesterday, I pulled up the post I wrote for 2015 and decided it would probably be a good idea after all. Looking back gave me some much needed reflection. What are my goals for 2016? I feel somewhat scattered as there are several projects that I want to undertake, but I am unfocused and a little unmotivated at present. I work best when I write stuff down in lists, but I seldom take the time to do so unless I have an imminent deadline and prioritizing is essential.

I had four main goals for 2015, and I accomplished 50-75% of them. The two 100% successful goals were publishing the second volume of World War II letters, Lots of Love, Daddy, and working on my skills as a genealogy lecturer. The book was finished in late September. At over 400 pages, it is almost twice as long as the first volume Dear Mother, Love Daddy. The project was a lot of work and I am going to step away from the letters for a little while. The second goal, to improve my skills as a genealogy lecturer, is also going well. I have spoken to three northern California genealogy societies this year as well as continued to give free lecturers at my local library. For 2017, I have already accepted speaking engagements for two northern California societies, for the main branch of the Sacramento library’s genealogy department, and for SCGS’s Jamboree (a national genealogy conference in Southern California).

Lots of Love, Daddy cover

The Second Volume of Letters

Goal number three was to publish an article in a national or state level periodical. Technically, I published an article in the Utah Genealogical Association’s magazine Crossroads in late 2015, but I wasn’t aware of it until 2016. Additionally, I wrote a guest blog (online) for the NextGen genealogy network. However, neither of these truly fulfill my intention of writing for a national or state level periodical. My goal was to write a family history or lineage so I give this goal a 50/50 completion rating.

Goal number four was to lay the groundwork for my BCG portfolio, anticipating that I would go on the clock sometime in 2017. I did do some work towards this. Finally seeing completed portfolio’s at the BCG table at Jamboree made some of the elements, like the KDP, finally click for me. I had to throw out the family I was going to use as I didn’t need to “prove” any of the relationships. I pretty much had direct evidence for everything. I have a new family chosen that fits the parameters of the KDP, but I haven’t had the time to focus on any research since last summer. Ultimately though, at this point, I am not ready to jump in and go on the clock so I don’t feel like I accomplished this goal.

What I accomplished in 2016…

  • Published Lots of Love, Daddy 
  • Attended SCGS’s Jamboree
  • Submitted speaking proposals to SCGS’s Jamboree and was accepted to speak in 2017
  • Gave first paid lecture to the Roots Cellar Sacramento Genealogy Society, followed by lectures to the Solano County Genealogical Society and the Placer County Genealogical Society
  • Gave three additional lectures at the Franklin Branch of the Sacramento library
  • Continued to volunteer once a month at the library, dispensing genealogy advice and assistance
  • Finished transcribing and posting over 1,300 letters written during WWII (the end of a 3½ year project!)
  • Began organizing, transcribing, and posting the 1960s letters from the Yegerlehner family archive
  • Scanned hundreds of Yegerlehner family slides, including some photographs from Roscoe’s & Gladys’ 1964 world tour
  • Recruited two maternal family members to DNA test. Sadly, I had several people turn me down on both sides of the family. 😦
  • Inspired by the three sibling DNA chromosome mapping technique that has been very popular this year, I began chromosome mapping the DNA of two sibling pairs (my brother & myself, as well as my two children)
  • Wrote four brief family lineages which are posted on this blog under the “lineages” tab (this makes some nice cousin bait!) and I wrote some of my research down!
  • Completed my application for the Mayflower Society based on the lineage of my ancestor Myles Standish and was approved
  • Began migrating some of the WWII letters and some family documents to archival safe Hollinger boxes and folders
  • Attended the Sacramento African American Family History Seminar with keynote speaker Kenyatta Berry
  • Organized the Kerschner/Scofield collection of letters with the intent to start transcribing them in 2017
  • Continued to post daily on the blog (4th year in a row) with over 2,078 posts since November 2012
  • Wrote the new framework for an update of my 1998 book The Descendants of Jacob Troxell 1787-1885 of Fayette County, Indiana
  • Laid some basic framework for my BCG portfolio, viewed several portfolios at Jamboree, and rethought my KDP and other elements…

First page from the original Troxell book

Goals for 2017 – Speaking and Writing

  • Write a new addition of Jacob Troxell of Fayette County, fully sourced and using a reasonable exhaustive search. The new volume will be similar in scope to the silver Mayflower books. All descendants from generations 1-3 will be fully discussed, and the fourth generation will be named. Eventually I plan to write a second volume starting with the fourth generation. There is only one living person from the fourth generation (that I am aware of) and he is in his nineties.
  • Continue to transcribe and organize my incredibly huge family archive. I feel very blessed by this collection but I am continually overwhelmed by all the information I have to process and preserve.
  • Broaden the scope of my speaking opportunities as well as develop more presentations

Odds and Ends…other stuff I might like to do

  • Submit additional Mayflower lineage(s)
  • Write a finding aid and complete inventory for the WWII letters
  • Work on the third volume of WWII letters
  • Scan more slides
  • Map more DNA chromosomes and find more maternal relatives to test
  • Have fun and make more amazing genealogy related discoveries!


©2017 Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found: https://genealogylady.net/2017/01/07/2016-a-year-in-review/