• Donna Hechler Porter

Jeremiah Crews, Possible Children, Part 5: Mary Amelia "Milly" Crews Nelson

Another possible daughter of Jeremiah Crews and Elizabeth Harlan is Mary Amelia "Milly" Crews. Previously, I have written of Susannah Crews Nelson, Nancy Crews Adams, and Elizabeth Crews Boon.


Mary Amelia "Milly" Crews is given as Mary in the 1850 and 1870 Sullivan County, Indiana censuses, but as Amelia in the 1860 Sullivan County, Indiana census. She is apparently given the name of "Milly" on her marriage certificate.

According to the 1850, 1860, and 1870 Sullivan County, Indiana censuses, Mary Amelia was born in Kentucky in 1801. If this date is correct, she may well have been born in Madison County, Kentucky, and possibly in the Muddy Creek area as her father had not yet left there at this date.

Amelia's father, Jeremiah Crews, subsequently left Madison County when she was a young girl not more than ten years old. He made brief stops in Jefferson and Henry Counties, Kentucky, but then likely moved on to Daviess County, Kentucky, where he is believed to have been found in the census that year. At the age of 26, she married John J. Nelson in Daviess County, Kentucky, and the marriage is found in Dodd, Jordan, Kentucky Marriages, 1802-1850. Amelia's sister, Susannah Crews, married James Nelson two years previous in 1820 in Daviess County, Kentucky. I have not been able to determine if James and John were brothers or not. John J. Nelson was also born in Kentucky but was a year older than Amelia, having been born on 1 October 1799 according to his tombstone. The birthyear is further supported in the 1850 and 1860 Sullivan County, Indiana censuses. His family may well have left Madison County at around the same time as the Crews family.


Not long after their marriage, John and Amelia left Kentucky and moved to Indiana with the families of Crews, Nelson, Adams, and Boone, and James is enumerated in the 1830 Vigo County, Indiana census along with several of these families, including Amelia's father, Jeremiah Crews. By 1840, they had moved south to Sullivan County, Indiana, where they were enumerated in the census that year, and by 1850 the Sullivan County, Indiana census enumerates them in the Curry Township. James and Amelia are still found here in the 1860 census.

On 22 July 1864, as the Civil War was winding to a close, James died. He was buried in the Friendship Baptist Church Cemetery in Farmersburg in Sullivan County, Indiana. By the time the 1870 census was taken, 69 year old Amelia was living with her youngest daughter, 29 year old Margaret Nelson.


Gravestone of John J. Nelson

Friendship Baptist Church Cemetery, Sullivan County, Indiana


Amelia is not found in the 1880 census, so it is likely she had died by that date. There are indications on Ancestry that Margaret subsequently married Franklin Hanger/Hauger, but that he had died by 1880 and she was living with her brother-in-law John Booth, husband of her older sister Susan Crews who had died by this date, in the 1880 Sedgewick County, Kansas census. Amelia is not seen.

According to census records, John and Amelia had the following children: An unnamed daughter, b abt 1825, James J. Nelson, b abt 1827, Susan Nelson, b abt 1830, William A. Nelson, b abt 1834, Eliza Jane Nelson, b abt 1839, and Margaret Nelson, b abt 1841.

(The above information, unless noted otherwise, was given to me courtesy of Marian Kay Cruse Abbott, a descendant of Jeremiah Cruse and Elizabeth Harland).

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