This year instead of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks I will probably be doing 2 blogs a month. I plan on researching some of the same people but looking at them more deeply and search for more information.
This blog is a research problem. This concerns John W. Counts, my 2nd Great Grandfather, who I wrote about in #26 of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. I wrote about his service in the Civil War but I had questions about his family.
Is John W. Counts who married Martha Pardue in 1864 the same man who married Sarah Fitzpatrick in 1881?
John W. Counts married Martha Pardue in
on January 15, 1864. The
marriage certificate is from the Family History Library of the Savannah, Georgia Church of Latter Day Saints,
the Mormans (FHL) film #159040 Georgia, . County Marriages
I know they had one daughter, Genevieve, my great grandmother, on December 1, 1864 in
. The only document I have stating Genevieve is
the daughter of John and Martha is her death certificate where her son John
Nelson Moore gave the information. Savannah
I find John W. Counts in the Savannah City Directories from 1867 to 1901; unfortunately it doesn’t list the wife’s name. There is only one John W. or John Counts in the directory for all those years.
I found an 1870
Census that might be the family. It
lists a C.W. Counts, wife Martha, children Mary Jane at 6 years old and
Catherine 1 year old. The reason I feel
this is the right family is because on the baptismal records of Genevieve’s
children she is listed as Jennie, Mary Jane, Joanne and Jane. The other reason is a sponsor of one of the
children is Rena Counts, possibly a nickname for Catherine. Also in the 1870
census there are no other Count families in Georgia at that time. Savannah
I found Genevieve, listed as Jennie Counts, at St. Vincent de Paul School, as a boarder in the 1870
also and not with her parents. This is something that has happened in many
censuses’ the family will list the children even if they are not at home at the
time and then the child is then recorded where she actually is living. I also
found her still at St. Vincent de Paul School in the 1880 Census. Even though I
could not find John W. Counts in the 1880 census he is listed in the city
directory as living at Georgia 203
Congress St., Savannah, GA in 1880. He was a truck driver so possibly wasn’t
around when they came to take the census.
On October 6, 1881 John W. Counts marries Sarah Fitzpatrick according to the Marriage Certificate found on FHL Film #183858. I then find them in the 1900 census with 3 children, Mary, Sarah and John Francis.
In the 1900 Census, Genevieve is married and living in
. I never have found a death notice for Martha
Counts but I figure she must have died or divorced after 1870 and before
1881. It is very hard to get records in Savannah because they
didn’t require any vital records before 1919. Savannah
After looking at all the information I am pretty sure that the John W. Counts that married Martha Pardue and Sarah Fitzpatrick is the same person. Since the records are not available for many of the vital records I can’t verify definitely.
John W. Counts died August 19, 1901 and is buried in Catherdral (now Catholic) Cemetery in