I am posting this to get a check on my thinking of using X Chromosome data to narrow a search.
Yesterday I made a major discovery in the hunt for my great great grandmother who ignited my interest in genealogy 16 years ago. This is my biggest break yet. I went to visit a cousin last year, and she gave me some photos of her. As she was talking about the photo she said, this is Grandma Purple. I asked her why purple, and she said maybe she wore purple all of the time.
Yesterday, I was again just wilding in my research and decided to go through the 1870 census again. This time in the county where her first husband lived. As I was paging through, I came across a family with the last name Purple and a 15 year old daughter named Sarah Robison. Two years ago, I would have just kept going, but since I know knew my gg grandmother was called Grandma Purple, and the little girl, though not Mary, was still a Robinson variant, I decided to push further. The first thing was to check my DNA matches for the last name Purple which yielded 0 hits.
Next I looked at the female in the house. It quickly lead to a census 10 years earlier with a woman named Catharine Roberson and a 5 year old daughter named Mary M.
This appears to be my gg grandmother and her mother. I looked again at the Purple family, and found that their marriage of the son, Lewis, referred to his parents as Catharine Brown and James Purple. That gives me the maiden name for her mother hopefully.
The surname also matches a close <3-5 cousin> DNA of mine, who happens to share X chromosome segments with my family.
My gg grandmother is my mothers mothers mothers mother. The DNA cousin of mine, is named Geraldine Reveal. I had the opportunity of speaking with her 3 years ago, and she told me the story of her father, who abandon the family and had nothing to do with them and she had no more information on him than his name.
His surname, happens to be Brown. If Geraldine were to have inherited the matching X Chromosome segment from him, he would have had to inherited it from his mother. If I inherited my X from Catharine, and this is the portion that matches, she would have to be his sister or his mother's maiden name would need to be Brown as well.
Am on on the right track with my X chromosome research?