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  • Writer's pictureDonna Hechler Porter

Jeremiah Crews, Possible Children, Part 4: Nancy Crews Adams

Updated: Apr 21, 2020

Unlike her sisters Susanna Crews Nelson who I wrote of here and Elizabeth Crews Boone who I wrote about here, little information is available on Nancy Crews, possible daughter of Jeremiah Crews and Elizabeth Harlan.

The best source for Nancy Crews' parents is her marriage bond to Noah Adams and filed on 16 May 1816 in Shelby County, Kentucky. The bond documents Nancy as the daughter of Elizabeth Crews. While Jeremiah is not listed on the bond, Nancy's sister, Susanna Crews, is mentioned as the daughter of Jeremiah on her bond of marriage to James Nelson in Shelby County five years previous in 1813, and the bondsman for Susanna and James was Zachariah Crews. The two bonds within three years of each other in the same county suggests a strong link between Nancy and Susanna and further connects them both to Jeremiah and Elizabeth.

According to the 1860 Vigo County, Indiana census, Nancy was born in 1800 in Kentucky. She was probably born in Jefferson County for her father disappears from Madison County, Kentucky tax records by 1799, and on 3 December 1800 he purchased 100 acres on Floyd's Fork for 60 pounds (see Porter, Metes & Bounds II: David Crews, Ancestors & Descendants, 2nd ed, pg 195). In determining her birthdate, it should be noted that the three census records, 1850, 1860, and 1870 are not in agreement. The 1850 census has her birthyear as 1808, which would make her only ten years old at the time of her marriage. The 1870 census gives her age as 73, but that is actually thirteen years older than the census in 1860 ten years previously. Since she was older by this time, and someone else may well have have given the birthyear, the birthyear of 1800 from the 1860 census is likely the more accurate.

Despite the fact that Noah Adams is not found in the 1820 census in Vigo County, Indiana, he and Nancy no doubt moved shortly after their marriage to that county with the families of Cruse, Nelson, and Boone. That year, these families are located in that county, including Nancy's father, Jeremiah Cruse, and her sister and brother-in-law James J. and Susanna (Crews) Nelson. They could have been perhaps living with either her family or his.

Noah is found in the 1840 Vigo County, Indiana census in Linton Towship, but by 1850 he must have died for Nancy is the head of the household in the 1850 Vigo County, Indiana census. She was still living in the Linton Township. In 1850, living with her, were Izah Adams, 23, Joziah Adams, 20, David Adams, 17, Jeremiah Adams, 14, Nancy Adams, 13, and Noah E. Adams, 12. These are likely Nancy's children, but the birthdate of Izah, in 1827, suggests these are not all of the children. Since Nancy and Noah were married in 1826, it is likely there were several other children older than Izah who were no longer living at home. Noah's age of 12 also suggests that Noah may have died shortly after the 1850 census since twelve year old Noah is the last child.

In 1860, Nancy is still living in Linton Township as the head of the household, with son Jeremiah Adams, now 23 years of age, Elizabeth Adams, 22, probably the wife of Jeremiah, and likely their children David Adams, 4, Mary Adams, 2, and Thomas Adams, 7 months. The only other person in the household that year was Joshua Adams aged 26. He may have been the Joziah Adams listed as being only 20 in the 1850 census.

By 1870 Nancy, now enumerated as being 73 years of age, was living in the household of Elijah and Mary York in Honey Creek Township still in Vigo County, Indiana. The Yorks were living close to the households of James Cruse and William Cruse, sons of Nancy's deceased brother David Cruse and his wife Jane Jewell. However, there is no information as to who the Yorks were in relation to Nancy. Mary York was 23 years old that year and was thus born in 1847. As such, she would have been three years old in 1850, but there is no three year old female in the household with Nancy in the 1850 census. It is possible either Noah or Mary were Nancy's grandchildren or a niece / nephew, but more research must be done in order to determine that.

Nancy must have died between the 1870 and 1880 censuses, for she is not seen again.

SOURCES: Unless otherwise noted, research is courtesy of Marian Kay Cruse Abbott.

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