The elusive Mr. Elisha Smith

+3 votes
Hello everyone. I have dabbled in genealogy for a few years. Currently I am focusing on trying to trace my father's family. With a last name like Smith it isn't easy. I have hit a roadblock with my ggg grandfather: Elisha Smith (Smith-158732) The gentleman claims to be born in NY about 1800, but in later sources his son says England. That added to the fact he has about a 40 year absence in census records (from birth to 1840). In that time period he married Melissa Hedge. No marriage records, nothing. I am beginning to understand why most genealogist are gray headed. This is giving me gray hair!
in Genealogy Help by Patrick Smith G2G1 (1.2k points)
edited by Patrick Smith
Patrick, have you seen this



Name: Elisha Smith

Event Type: Census

Event Year: 1850

Event Place: Manchester, Dearborn, Indiana, United States

Gender: Male

Age: 50

Race: White

Race (Original):

Birth Year (Estimated): 1800

Birthplace: New York

Household ID: 210

House Number: 210

Line Number: 39

Affiliate Name: The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)

Affiliate Publication Number: M432

Affiliate Film Number: 141

GS Film Number: 7754

Digital Folder Number: 004193373

Image Number: 00298



Household Role Sex Age Birthplace

Elisha Smith M 50 New York

Melissa Smith F 33 New York

Lyman Smith M 13 Indiana

Edmund Smith M 10 Indiana

Mary M Smith F 7 Indiana

Samuel Smith M 6 Indiana




Citing this Record:

"United States Census, 1850," database with images, FamilySearch ( : 12 April 2016), Elisha Smith, Manchester, Dearborn, Indiana, United States; citing family 210, NARA microfilm publication M432 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).

Check out this in Find A Grave


Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed 22 May 2018), memorial page for Elisha Smith (1800–20 Jun 1863), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15871079, citing Stiles Cemetery, Stiles, Davis County, Iowa, USA ; Maintained by Airrow (contributor 46629499) .

Patrick, did you have a chance to check these?

1 Answer

+1 vote
Yes, I have checked each of those. Today I was able to find some more about Elisha. I found his middle initial is an M (from his son's tombstones) and I am confident I located him in the 1840 census living in Hendricks, IN. On there was a photo of his tombstone. Elisha is my white whale. This genealogy stuff is a blast. I feel like a detective.
Great, thanks

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