Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Born on Tax Day

Guess who has a birthday on tax day? I thought I would just pick someone who had the birthday of April 15th to write about and there she was.

Polly Ann Caudill was born on April 15, 1847. She was the daughter of John Adams Caudill and Rachel Cornett. She was 13th of 14 children. In the 1850 census she was listed as 4 years old. In 1860 she is listed as 12 and this time shows as Mary. Polly was a nickname for Mary in those times. I don't know if that was her given name and she always went by Polly of if the census taker assumed that she was a Mary when they said Polly. Regardless, she is known to us as Polly Ann. In 1867 she married Enoch A. "Uncle Chunk" Craft.

In the 1870 Census Enoch is 25 and Polly is 23. They have two children: Rachel Virginia, age 2, named for Polly's mother and Archelous, 9 months, named for Chunk's father.

In the 1880 census their family has grown. Polly has had six more children but only four of them live. Nancy born in 1872 died of diptheria when she was 3. John D. was born in July of 1876 and died of unknown causes in January 1878. So the family is listed as:

  • Enoch A. Craft, 38, farmer

  • Polly Ann, 33, keeping house

  • Rachel, 12

  • Arch, 10

  • Lettie J., 9

  • Drusilla, 5

  • Watson G., 3

  • Benjamin, 7 months, born in September

In the 1900 Census we find

  • Enoch 58

  • Polly A 53

  • Matty 18

  • Ibby V 15

  • Sarah J 11

The 1890 Census was destroyed by a fire in Washington, so a lot of things have happened to Polly. Her father died in 1873. Her mother in 1887. Her oldest daughter, Rachel, has married Isarel Jesse Adams, son of Jesse B. Adams and Margaret "Peggy" Jenkins. (For the Mullins relatives, these are the parents of Grandma Rosie Adams that Joshua Mullins married and Joshua's mother, Rebecca Hays married Jesse after Peggy Jenkins died.) Archelous has married Pricy Adkins and presented Polly with the first of many grandchildren. Lettie has married Joe Hall, and our grandmother, Nancy Alice Hall is 1 year old. Drusilla "Siller" Craft has married Isom Sergent. Little Watson who was just a baby in the 1880 census died in 1881. Benjamin has just married within the year and is living next door to them. Sabrina who was born in 1883 has married Elbert Bentley and is living on the other side of Polly.

In 1910 Enoch is 68. Polly is 63. They have been married 42 years and Polly reports that she has had 12 children and only seven are alive. Our grandmother, Lettie, died in 1905 and Ibby died in 1907. Both hung themselves so it was a terrible thing for Polly to live through. Daughter Mattie married Maryland Bates. Ibby had been married to John Holbrook. and baby daughther, Sarah Jane, married Benjamin Franklin. Sarah and Ben agree to live with her mother and father and take care of them for the rest of their lives. At this point Sarah's son, Enoch is in the household.

In 1920 Enoch is 77 and Polly is 72. In 1930 Enoch is 88 and Polly 83.

Take a close look at this picture of Polly and Chunk. I got it from Aunt Wilma. Candy says that there is a ghost on the right side. She sees the whole outline and face of a child. I see shadows of leaves, but you look at it and see what you think.

I have a great story about Polly from Watson Craft, her great-grandson, but I will save it for another day.

As an another aside. I am looking for Alexander Venters in the 1900 census. He has been very difficult to find and a lot of luck has gone into finding him on other census years. One year he was Attender Venters, another Ellender, Eleck etc. I got real excited as I looked at the records again for Polly and Chunk when on the same page I saw an Alexander Venters as a farm hand for one of their neighbors in the 1900 census. I quickly went back to Alexander and it was not the right one, but get this. Guess how the transcriber put the name? Oldert Venton. No wonder this is so hard to do.

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