Another One Bites the Dust

This is about our gg-grandmother, Mary Mezick who married Edward Catlin in 1847 (Maryland, U.S., Compiled Marriages, 1655-1850). Their daughter was Caroline Catlin who married J.W.T. Robertson. Who were Mary’s parents?

Covington Mezick, NOT

Many people on Ancestry whom I assume are distant relatives say her father was Covington Mezick. This might be on the basis of his will, dated 1828 and probated in March of that year, in which he names a daughter, Eliza Mary Ann. However, a transcription of Mary Catlin’s gravestone in the Hearn-Catlin cemetery puts her birth date as 31 August 1831. Granted this might have been hard to read, and I haven’t seen it myself. But she is 18 years old on the 1850 census list which appears to confirm the 1831 date. So that puts Covington out of the picture.

Grandfather Turner

A deed dated 20 March 1858 between William R. Jackson and “Edward W. Catlin and wife” records a transfer of property. The Catlins are selling 2 tracts of land, Turnstile and Mt. Hope, “being a piece of land devised to the said Mary A. Catlin wife of Edward W. Catlin by the last will and testment of her grandfather John Turner . . .” (Somerset County Circuit Court (Land Records) LW 5, p. 0531, MSA_CE103_5; available on the Maryland State Land Records site).

The will of John Turner dated 4 Dec. 1839 and probated 28 April 1840 (Maryland Probate Estate and Guardianship Files, 1796-1940) lists his wife, Polly Turner; his 4 children — “Mary Harris, wife of William Harris,” John Turner Junior, Naaman Turner, and Rebecca Turner; and finally his 3 grandchildren — John Mezick, Mary Mezick, and Purnell Harris.

This is how we’ve assembled a tree that shows John Turner and his wife Polly who may have been a Barkley, his 2 sons, and 2 daughters.

Because his daughter Rebecca has not changed her last name, we assume she is not married at the time of his 1840 will. So his other daughter, Mary, must have been married twice, for him to have grandchildren with 2 different names, Mezick and Harris.

Littleton Mezick

We conclude that Mary Turner married first, Littleton Mezick, in 1828 according to Somerset County Marriage Licenses 1796-1832. He must have passed away, although we have no record of that. The last dated document we have for Littleton Mezick is a bond from 1834, (Somerset County Court (Land Records) GH 7, p. 0245, MSA_CE102_61, available on the Maryland State Land Records site.)

Everything You Know Is Wrong

In applying for membership in the Daughters of the American Revolution on the basis of my 4G-grandfather Cannon Wainwright (which connection was denied, BTW) we uncovered some surprises in the Robertson lineage. We (my sister, my cousins, me, and several people with trees on Ancestry) have for quite some time identified George Washington Henry Robertson’s father as a Samuel Robertson who lived in Somerset County, MD from 1770 to 1832.

This turns out to be incorrect. My source for this relationship was Samuel’s will which named his son George as executor. George would have been 10 years old at the time of Samuel’s death and although he might have been precocious, we doubt he was up to administering his deceased father’s affairs at the time. So thanks to the DAR genealogy researchers we have found the couple who were most likely George’s parents — Elias Robertson and Francis Willing.

Francis Willing and Elias Robertson were married 11 May 1819, as listed in Marriage Licenses of Somerset County, Maryland, 1796-1831, p 158/209.

Elias dies in 1832 and names in his will his wife Francis, and all his children: James [a son by his first wife Nelly Silvia], and then Samuel, George, Francis [a son], Mary, John Q., and Henry C, presumably in birth order. (Maryland Probate Estate and Guardianship Files, 1796-1940; Somerset JP4)

Francis dies in 1850. The account of her estate also lists her offspring by name: “her son Samuel Robertson, her son George W. Robertson . . .” and so on. This is recorded in the Maryland Register of Wills Records, 1629-1999, Administration accounts 1845-1851 vol 2; pp 262-263 of 287. George W. Robertson is named as executor.

Next, we have a deed that records the sale of a tract of land called Hickory Ridge in Somerset County. This deed lists all of Elias and Francis Robertson’s children including “George W. Robertson and Leah his wife” (Somerset County Circuit Court (Land Records) LW 2, pp. 32-34, MSA CE 103-2), thus connecting this particular George W. Robertson with Leah, our gg-grandmother.