Daughter born after father's death

+8 votes
This is a problem I have been trying to solve for several years now. Lillie Fuston is shown on all records so far found as having been born in October 1870. This includes 1900 census, death certificate and grave marker.  Have not been able to locate any birth record or find her on the 1880 census.

The only problem is her listed father, James W Fuston (Fouston), was killed at Murphreesboro in 1862. Her widowed mother remarried to James Lawson in 1874.

This error shows up on the error report for my grandmother. If anybody has any brilliant ideas on how to locate more information for Lillie – like a better birth date, who her real father was, anything at all – it would really be appreciated.
WikiTree profile: Lillie Byers
in Genealogy Help by Shirley Dalton G2G6 Pilot (538k points)
From what I'm reading about Tennessee Birth records, they didn't have consistent state-wide birth records prior to 1908. So you could try double-checking Ancestry records or the state archives, but not a whole lot of hope there.


Since she was born in Warren County, not near a major city, that's another strike against her for potential records. People living in or around major cities apparently had a better chance of records.

Any thought about potential church records? Baptism? Christening? Any records of what church the parents attended?

And the only other thought - could her father have faked his death in battle? And returned home long enough to hide for years, then father a child, and disappear? I know - it starts to stray into the realm of speculation, but I suppose anything's possible.
Anything is possible. I don't have any information regarding church membership or attendance. It is also possible that he took a break and came home after his enlistment but before his death long enough to father Lillie. But that still doesn't explain where she was in 1880. Have not been able to find her or her mother on that year's census. Guess I'll just keep looking.

2 Answers

+1 vote
I have a similar problem in my GGrandmother being born 2 years after her mother's death. Realizing that the Jones women lied about their age often, my Grandmother found she could have applied for social security a year earlier than she did. I changed her birth date until I can find references until I can back them up, but it looks like she took the lie to her grave.
by Charles West G2G6 Mach 1 (15.1k points)
+1 vote
I am a direct descendant of James Fuston  I was told in the 1970s by Deilah Maude Sanders that Louisa Sanders Fuston became pregnant after her husband was killed in the Civil War--there are lots of possible scenarios but I have no knowledge of what happened.  She said that a Mr. Lawson was her second husband but not the father of Lillie, either.
Thanks Mark. It does appear as if we will never be able to find out the answer. So do I leave Lillie's father as James Fuston? Or change it to unknown?

Related questions

+8 votes
0 answers
+5 votes
1 answer
61 views asked May 3 in Genealogy Help by Susan Byers G2G Crew (490 points)
+7 votes
0 answers
+3 votes
3 answers
+2 votes
1 answer
+8 votes
2 answers
173 views asked Jul 7, 2020 in Appreciation by David Hughey G2G Astronaut (1.7m points)
+4 votes
2 answers
+6 votes
3 answers
285 views asked Mar 25, 2019 in Genealogy Help by Living Tardy G2G6 Pilot (773k points)

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright