Posted By:Thomas Kerwin
Subject:Re: Nathaniel H. Cotton of 1850s Sampson County, NC
Post Date:December 18, 2012 at 05:26:34
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Forum:Georgia Genealogy Forum
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I’m not related to any member of this family.

1940 is the last available census at this time.

This is your problem -

Facts you should know about the early census records -
All census records [1790 – 1840] prior to the 1850 census ONLY listed the head of household; whether male or female.

NO specific age was stated for any family member
NO place of birth was stated – city, state, or country
NO city, town, or village is stated – only the county; however some census takers listed the township
NO street address was stated
NO marital status was stated – single, married, widowed, or divorced
NO family relationship was stated – brother, sister, cousin, son, daughter, wife, inlaw, etc…
NO occupation was stated
NO parental birthplaces are stated                     
NO race was stated [but assume “white”]
1850, 1860 & 1870 census records do not show family relationships, marital status or parental birthplaces.

Step children are not enumerated as “step” children
Adopted children are not enumerated as “adopted”
Grand children are not enumerated as “grand children”
Orphaned children were not enumerated as "orphan"

1850 is the 1st census that shows all family members

1880 is the 1st census that shows parental birthplaces and family relationships +++

1850 -
Name: Nathan Cotton
Age: 21
Birth Year: abt 1829
Birthplace: North Carolina
Home in 1850: Neuse (south side), Wayne, North Carolina
Gender: Male

Nathan Cotton 21, Sampson county
Mariah Cotton 25, NC

1860 -
Name: Nathan Cotton
Age in 1860: 33
Birth Year: abt 1827
Home in 1860: Westbrooks, Sampson, North Carolina
Gender: Male
Post Office: Newton Grove

Nathan Cotton 33, NC - turpentine distiller
Nancy M Cotton 39, NC
Lewis B Cotton 9, NC
Clarisa Cotton 7, NC

Nathan H. Cotton
Birth abt 1827 in North Carolina
Death - unknown
he married -
Nancy M Cotton [maiden name - unknown]
Birth abt 1821
Death - unknown

You will not be able to locate him in the 1840 census and prior years because ONLY the head of the house was listed on those census'. In 1840 Nathan would only be abt 11 yrs old.