Is the LNAB for Elizabeth, wife of Thomas Holcombe, Unknown, or is it Ferguson?

+5 votes
WikiTree profile: Elizabeth Eno
in Genealogy Help by April Dauenhauer G2G6 Pilot (109k points)
recategorized by Steve Anonymous

4 Answers

+4 votes
Best answer

From the sources below, I would go with Elizabeth (unknown) and cite the following details under Disputed LNAB on her profile.

Anderson in:  the Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to N.E. 1620-1633, Vols. I-III,  NEHGS Boston, 1995p. 966, just lists her as Elizabeth ___, born about 1617; she married second, James Eno as his third wife. 

TAG: Vol 57: 1981: p. 66: the common statement that his wife Elizabeth's name was Ferguson, is highly improbably and completely undocumented.

The above is also stated in TAG. Vol. 58: 1982 p. 125 and again in TAG: Vol. 60:1984 : p. 185, the last stating Torrey erroneously included her name as Ferguson in New England Marriages.

by Chris Hoyt G2G6 Pilot (753k points)
selected by April Dauenhauer
Thank you Chris -- you organized that information very well. I put it on her profile. Much appreciated.
I'm with Chris on this, we've established Anderson as our final authority, Since he voices his opinion, we will follow it.

I'm not a PM of this profile, but Elizabeth is my 8th GGmother and I have an interest in her family.
So you are my husband's cousin, Tom. Leo is the 11th great grandson of Elizabeth Unknown Holcombe.

Normally I would take Anderson and the rest of the published views of professional genealogists, note that it is policy to go with Anderson and make the change. Working on her profile gave me pause, because two profiles for her that were LNAB unknown were merged into Ferguson, and there was a lot of source references to collections derived from family group sheets and trees. It seemed best to work for consensus before making the changes. I want all the descendants who have a stake in this ancestor to be satisfied that we have reached the best conclusion.

When I was new to genealogy, I came across the definition for "preponderance of evidence" and realized that my definition was in error. I used to think it meant how many sources I could find that supported a fact. It took me awhile to understand that it refers to how close a source is to the event and how reliable was the process of recording the fact -- the weight of the evidence by quality, not by quantity. There are so many cousins ahead of me in understanding this lovely art cum science called genealogy, just as I have made progress since my views decades ago. We are not all on the same page with our training, and I do not want to run roughshod over my cousins:)  But I can't mind read, and don't know what is expected unless I see comments. So your comments are much appreciated.
+2 votes

Her name looks like Ferguson here.

Thomas Holcomb

Birth:  Apr. 7, 1605
Devon, England
Death:  Sep. 7, 1657
Hartford County
Connecticut, USA
Son of Gilbert and Anne (Courtenay) HOLCOMB.

Married to Elizabeth FERGUSON on May 14, 1634 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts.

- Elizabeth HOLCOMB.
m. Josias Ellsworth 
m. George Griswold 
- Abigail HOLCOMB. (b. 1638)
-m. Samuel Bissell 
- Joshua HOLCOMB. (1640-1690)
- Sarah HOLCOMB. (1642-1654)
- Benajah HOLCOMB. (1644-1736)
m. Sarah ENO
- Deborah HOLCOMB. (1646-1649)
- Nathaniel HOLCOMB. (b. 1648)
m(1) Mary BLISS
m(2) Sarah OWEN
- Deborah HOLCOMB. (b. 1650)
– m. Daniel Birge 
- Jonathan HOLCOMB. (1654-1656)

It has been represented that Thomas moved from England to Boston, MA...
by Frank Gill G2G Astronaut (2.2m points)
Please do NOT rely on findagrave profiles for such information. Especially from this era.
It was the only thing I found. Any suggestion on another source?

Maybe the New England Genealogical Society would have something on Elizabeth's maiden name. I'm not a member of that organization.

On page 32 of Thomas Holcombe of Connecticut there is a reference to Elizabeth (?) was also known as Elizabeth Ferguson...

Elizabeth (?)

b. 1617, d. 7 October 1679


Four Generations of Descendants of Thomas Holcombe

     Elizabeth (?) was also known as Elizabeth Ferguson. She was born in 1617 at Devon, England. She married Thomas Holcombe, son of GilbertHolcombe and Ann Courtney, on 14 May 1634.1 Elizabeth (?) married JamesEno on 5 August 1658 at Windsor, Hartford Co., CT. Elizabeth (?) died on 7 October 1679 at Windsor, Hartford Co., CT.

Children of Elizabeth (?) and Thomas Holcombe


  1. [S56] Unknown author Founders and Patriots, Vol VII:Pg 13.


+3 votes

Elizabeth Holcomb

Birth:  Nov. 11, 1617
Devon, England
Death:  Oct. 7, 1679
Hartford County
Connecticut, USA
The stones of the Holcomb family have documented errors. Please refer to Thomas Holcomb for history and visit the Historical Society or Holcomb family site.
Family links: 
  Thomas Holcomb (1605 - 1657)*
  Thomas Holcomb (____ - 1736)*
*Calculated relationship
Granby Cemetery 
Hartford County
Connecticut, USA
Created by: M Cooley
Record added: Feb 04, 2011 
Find A Grave Memorial# 65163302

by Frank Gill G2G Astronaut (2.2m points)
+3 votes

Thank you Frank for the time and effort you contributed here. I examined all the responses and links, and have some questions.

The link to Founders and Patriots looks interesting, but I get an application pdf for joining the society, so maybe there is a different link to the data?

FindaGrave offers a lot of data, but checking with the text on the profile for Thomas Holcombe, I see that there have been questionable changes to the original gravestones. It cites no sources for the name Ferguson or the date/location of marriage.

The Four Generations of Thomas Holcombe looks good but cites a source I can't see -- the Founders and Patriots (as I said in a line above this).

I understand it is frustrating to not be able to read the entry for Thomas Holcombe in Great Migration because it is behind a pay wall at and at

We need to discuss what Robert Charles Anderson says about Thomas and Elizabeth Holcombe in his work, Great Migration Begins, Vol 2, G - O, pages 964 - 967. Following is a quote from the Puritan Great Migration Project (aka PGM)

"Our primary source of information for PGM profiles is the Great Migration series by Robert Charles Anderson. We follow Anderson's conclusions unless there is more recent published research that corrects or adds to his."

I'm asking for your confidence, cousins. I promise to be precise in the data I transcribe or paraphrase.

Marriage: by about 1634, Elizabeth ____.... (Several sources claim that Thomas Holcombe married at Dorchester on 14 May 1634 Elizabeth Ferguson. Such a marriage is not on record, and the date is that on which Holcombe was admitted to freemanship. In 1964 Jacobus noted that "[h]er maiden name has been stated as Ferguson, without proof or probability."


'''My question is this: since we cannot seem to find any citation of evidence for her LNAB to Ferguson, what do we need to accept the opinion of Anderson and Jacobus that her maiden surname is not known?'''

(From Wikipedia on Donald Lines Jacobus:)

He established the New Haven Genealogical Magazine in 1922, which became The American Genealogist (TAG) ten years later. He served as the periodical's editor and publisher for 43 years until 1966.

On the profile for Elizabeth, wife of Thomas Holcombe, I  made an effort to document known facts with footnotes on the sources, and to separate what we know from what is disputed (meaning, disputed by genealogical authorities, not meaning disputed by me).

We have a choice, to leave the profile as it is, with the surname Ferguson, and the disputed paragraphs citing the authorities, or we can change her profile back to Elizabeth Unknown, which was her identity in at least two of the profiles which were merged into Ferguson-2960.

It doesn't appear that there was a discussion at the time of the merges of what her final LNAB ought to become. So this our opportunity to hash it out and decide what we will choose for our sources: the professional and certified genealogists at Great Migration Begins and The American Genealogist, or FindaGrave and Yates and Edmund West whose sources are - and I quote - "family group sheets and electronic databases. Originally, the information was derived from an array of materials including pedigree charts, family history articles, querie."

I know what I want the choice to be, but this is a community of cousins, we are all including myself learning as we go, and we need a profile that all descendants are happy to claim as theirs.

Here are the links to Thomas Holcombe's biography in Great Migration Begins, for those who have a subscription to one or the other:

GMB - Thomas Holcombe, at

GMB - Thomas Holcombe, at


by April Dauenhauer G2G6 Pilot (109k points)
edited by April Dauenhauer

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