Boy, do I need help! My brick wall is my gg-granddaddy, one [William J Chamberlain|Chamberlain-2756]. He was born ‘about 1812’ in New Hampshire. By 1840 he was living in Washington County Texas, and he was a fairly wealthy young man, the owner of 4308 acres, six slaves, a fair amount of livestock, and a wagon. His assets were worth close to half a million dollars in today's money. He's done pretty well for a 28-year-old.
By the following tax year, he owns just 100 acres and is down to a single teenaged slave. His taxable assets are about $250. So what happened? Looking at history, Texas was in turmoil but settlers from both the US and Europe were pouring in, so land prices were booming. It wasn’t an economic crisis that precipitated his reduction in taxable property. I’ve mused over this for years. I think he sold up in anticipation of a move. Many of the settlers who emigrated under the auspices of the Mexican Government were angered by the belligerence of the attitude of the new government and wanted no part of it. My gg-grandad Cox sold up and left Texas for the same reason.
We know from earlier records that Wm. Chamberlain had traveled back and forth from Galveston to New Orleans in 1838. Research shows that it was possible to navigate the Colorado River from Austin to Matagorda Bay, which then was about 50 miles by water to Galveston. He must have made the trip once again because by 1844 he is in Louisiana and married to [Ann|Unknown-482156] b 1818 in St. John New Brunswick Canada] and they had their 1st child, a son named Charles in 1844. So we might safely assume he left Texas after the 1841 Tax List, traveled to Louisiana, courted, and married the quite possibly Cajun (Acadian) Ann by 1843. They had a string of children between 1844 and 1855, ALL born in Louisiana according to later census records. In 1856 the family moved to Leon Co Texas and he served as a private in Company B, 22nd Regiment Infantry (Hubbard’s) Texas, Confederate Army, during the Civil War. They are found in the 1860 census for Leon Co TX, but by 1870 he has died.
And I can’t hide nor hair of them in the 11 years they are in Louisiana! I can find nothing which would give me a clue as to Ann’s identity or his origins. No marriage records, no parish records, no census, parking tickets, tax lists, nuttin'!
WHERE are they during those 11 years, or for that matter, during their entire lives before 1838 for him and 1860 for her? I am stumped and desperate. HELP! I have searched for years without success.