I called the Montgomery County Records and Archives, and the lady checked to see if George Norris who married Rachel Coffman in Montgomery County on 29 Oct 1826 had any will or guardianship papers when he apparently died about 1839. As far as she could determine, there are none, at least under that name.
It is very likely that Rachel Coffman, daughter of Rachel Shoemaker and John Coffman, is my maternal 4th great grandmother. She is listed as household head in the 1840 census with the eldest child being a daughter the age of my 3rd great grandmother Harriett Norris Cottrell. My Harriett married Moses Cottrell in Montgomery County in 1844 at the age of 16, and her mother signed the age affidavit, which also would indicate that Harriet’s father was deceased. We know that George who married Rachel in 1826 and William who married Elizabeth in 1825 were siblings marrying siblings. The third Norris being married at the time of the male Norris marriages was a Harriet Norris, who married a John Snyder in 1824. Lots of circumstantial evidence and no proof! Eventually Rachel married the widowed father of her son John C Norris’s wife Emmaline Bray and moved to Adams, Madison, Indiana, near my known ancestors around Shirley and other nearby locations.
Without wills or guardianship papers, I am hopeful that DNA may provide some documentation as to Harriett’s ancestry. Rachel Coffman had many sisters. . For Coffman or Shoemaker females out there - my maternal haplogroup (full sequence mtDNA) is H3 -T152C1.
Most people don't do the full sequence mtdna, so any female descendants of Rachel Coffman, her sisters, or her mother Rachel Shoemaker should at least be in the H3 mtdna haplogroup, if I have finally found the correct family line.
Rachel's sisters that I know of are Sarah (c1802) m. Absalom Byerly; Hannah (c1803) m. Frederick Chrisman Fox and John Roberts; Margaret (c1804); Elizabeth (c1806) md. William Norris; Deborah (c1808) md. Henry Hiser; and Nancy (c1815).
Daughters of Rachel Coffman Norris Bray that I have found so far are Mary (c1833) m. James G Fulton and had daughter Nora Fulton (c1870); and Elizabeth Ann (c1840) m. John Brooks and had daughters Fannie, Anna, Ellen, Mary E., and Dolly. Dolly Brooks married William Fleming and had a daughter Mary Fleming.
Looking forward to learning more and finally breaking through a very long dead end.
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