Sunday, February 13, 2011

Mystery #15: Samuel Beagle

I have noticed many times that Samuel Beagle is left off the list of children of John and Winche Beagle. There are some good reasons for people to doubt that link: Samuel was born in 1807, 5 years after the birth of Jemima, the next older child. He has been identified as being born in Dutchess County, NY, not Schoharie County where four of his sisters were born between 1792 and 1802. The treatise “Section 1 - Early Begeal Family History,” author unknown, names Samuel as one of John and Winche Beagle’s children. The author sets Samuel’s birth as 30 November 1807 in Dutchess County, NY.

It is very difficult to make judgments about where people were living in those days since pre-1850 census only listed the name of the head of household and approximate ages of the residents - with no indication of the relationship of those residents to one another. For example, there are several John Beagles enumerated in New York State in the early years of our republic.

Revolutionary War Pension documents indicate that, because of John's advanced age and frailties, by 1820, Winche was living in Fishkill with her brother James (next to their father Derrick); and John was living with son Moses in Schoharie. It seems quite possible that both John and Winche and their family might have been in Dutchess County for some time between the years 1803-1820, enlisting the aid of Winche's close relatives.

Samuel's parentage had been something of a mystery. However, there is at least one document that firmly cements his place in the family. The Will of his mother, Winche Beagle, obtained from the Schoharie County Courthouse in August 2008, includes the following sentence:
"I give and bequeath all my clothing and wearing apparel to my beloved daughter in law Charlotte wife of Samuel Beagle which will be left at the day of my death."
Samuel is later found in the 1840 US census in Worcester, Otsego County, NY, enumerated next to Moses Beagle, his (much older) brother.

Therefore, Samuel Beagle is undoubtedly the son of John and Winche Beagle.

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