Records for American Female Guaridan Society of New York

+2 votes
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My Great Grandmother was "indentured" or adopted from this society.  Does anyone know if the intake records are available online?  I do know her birth surname and I know the surname of the people who adopted her, but not much else.  I live in Panama right now so it's impossible for me to go to physical sites to research.  I have done different searches on Ancestry and google and I am not having much luck.

 

Thanks in advance for any suggestions or help!
WikiTree profile: Kate McCulloch
in Genealogy Help by Nancy Young G2G3 (3.8k points)

1 Answer

0 votes

When was she indentured? If it was 1881 or later you should find the records here.

by Chris Hampson G2G6 Pilot (104k points)
Thank you Chris.  I should have put the date on my question.  Her indenture papers read 1878.  I did find a book on Amazon and I wouldn't mind buying it if I know there was a real chance she might be in there.  She was not on the orphan trains.  She was 9 years old when she was adopted.  I have her indenture papers and a letter to the Mrs. Bavin who adopted her, but I don't know Mrs. Bavin's first name or their exact location.  The one possibility I found in the 1880 Census, of course, doesn't tell me if she was adopted.  It just has her as daughter and the age is right and approximate logical location.  Katey ended up in Chenango county when she married my great grandfather so it makes sense she was adopted at least somewhat close to that area.  The family story is that there were 13 children and 7 of them were put up for adoption because they couldn't afford to feed them.

The 1880 Census I found has a Catherine Bavin of the correct age in Smyrna, Chenango, New York.  Her mother is a widowed Harriet Bavin (56) with three grown sons from 27 to 21.  Smyrna is pretty close to Plymouth which is the address on her indenture papers.  Would you consider this a pretty likely match?
Given the age difference between her and the youngest son Charles, and the fact that she doesn't appear in the 1870 census or the 1875 NY census I'd say it's a pretty good working assumption. If you can rule out any other possible marriage or death records for her then the case becomes even stronger.
I just found some more evidence that this is probably her adoptive family!  Harriet's husband, John, died in 1875 and in the earlier census records for the family Catherine does not show up at all.  Makes sense that Harriet might adopt a daughter to help her and be a female companion in her old age.  The son's are not married in 1880 so this would be a big help.
Excellent! It's always nice to make these breakthroughs.

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