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My Troth Ancestry

Who knows why we have this urge to discover our roots?  It is obviously in our DNA and in this day and age, we can use DNA advances to find  the answers to our questions about our roots.  Isn’t it amazing?!

My earliest known (to me) Troth ancestor was William Troth born about 1676 in England and died 1740 in the American Colonies.  He married Elizabeth Fields and (of course) there is a romantic story of her parents objecting to the marriage so they had to steal away and came to America to start a new life. William Troth came to America approximately 1700.  He and his family settled in Evesham Township, Burlington County, New Jersey.

Their son Paul Troth is my sixth great-grandfather.  All of my genealogy notes were not yet transferred to the computer when (my old old story – which is getting tiresome, I know!) the 1998 flood destroyed all hard copies of my research.  Thus the following narrative only has  a reference note – “Reference #49.” No. 49 would have been one of the thousands of notes I copied from various history and family books.  Thus, I unfortunately cannot credit the source for the following information.

. . . East of the Hewling tract was the large Troth tract.  He parted from his boyhood sweetheart, Elizabeth Fields, and made the trip across the ocean and landed at Burlington.  He loaded his packhorse with gun, axe, grubbing hoe, knives, a cooking utensil, salt, flour, corn meal, and blankets, and took the walk through the woods to his future home, which, of course, was a log cabin.  Back in England his sweetheart was making preparations to join him.  The Fieldses were a wealthy family and they objected strongly to her marrying William Troth, who was not wealthy.  They refused to pay her passage on the boat trip to this country.

True to that feminine instinct of knowing what she wanted and getting it, she sold her jewels and trinkets, thereby securing enough money to pay the passage on the sailing vessel, which required six weeks to make the crossing.

Arriving at Burlington, William Troth met her with his horse, and the two made the trip on horseback through the woods.  For fear of being brushed off the horse, she would put her arms around him and he voiced no objection.

Why did she leave her home and family in England with its luxury and security to live in a wilderness in the crudest kind of a house?  Here she found the ferocious greenhead fly, the persistent strawberry fly, and hordes of mosquitoes–all seeking her blood.  Snakes were numerous: the poisonous rattlesnake and copperhead; the rapid traveling nonpoisonous black snake, that could overcome a rattlesnake in battle; the water snake, garter snake, pine snake and other varieties.  If the door was left open, snakes would crawl into the house.  There were the screech owls and the hoot owls, breaking the silence of the night.

Troth now proceeded to build a better house of ironstone or sandstone, abundant then and now in the nearby meadow.  To make sure of keeping warm in winter, he built a large fireplace which extended almost across the room.  Doors were built opposite each other so that a horse could drag a heavy log across the room.  The back log was then rolled into the fireplace and would burn all night without any attention.  On the second floor was a fireplace not quite as large.  An outside door was made so that wood could be handed into the room.

There was a bake oven where a fire could be made inside.  When fire heated the brick bottom sufficiently, it was withdrawn and the bricks swept clean.  The bread dough was placed on the hot bricks and this heat was sufficient to bake the bread to a beautiful brown.  A thick slice of this hot bread, with butter and molasses on it, was a hungry boy’s delight, and the smell of home-made bread sharpened the appetite of the elders.

To make the bread, a jar of yeast was always kept on hand.  Mashed potatoes and water were added to the jar to keep it full.  The yeast was added to the bread dough, and then allowed to rise for a few hours.  It was then ready for the oven. Pies were also baked–huckleberry, gooseberry, and pumpkin.  For sweetening they had sorghum molasses; and if they were lucky to find a honey tree where bees stored honey in a hollow branch, this added to the sweetening supply.

As soon as lumber was available from the water-power saw mill, Troth built a high back settee.  The reason for the high back was to protect the neck and shoulders from the draft of cold air that swept across the room and up the chimney.  More hot air went up the chimney than came out into the room.  An old saying About these fireplaces was “your shins toasted and your back froze.”

In the long winter evenings as they sat around the fireplace, Troth would read Bible stories to the children.  They roasted chestnuts ( which fell to the ground by the bushels, popped popcorn, cracked hickory nuts, shell barks, and black walnuts.  Perhaps a neighbor would drop in and spend the evening.

Troth also built a cross-legged table with a long bench on each side.  His wife kept busy.  For breakfast she would fry ham in a long-handled pan over an open fire.  For dinner, a big dinner pot would be filled with pork, cabbage, and potatoes. This pot was then swung over the fire by a crane.  Supper was a bowl of corn mush and milk.  To supplement this diet, wild game was plentiful.  Domestic fowl were chicken, duck and geese.  In winter pigs were killed, and also a beef.  Tallow as made from the beef into candles and soap.  Ashes from the fire were put in a barrel.  Water was allowed to soak through the ashes; lye was obtained in this manner and was mixed with the tallow to form homemade soap.

A housewife washed and combed wool which was then spun into thread on a large spinning wheel. This thread was then made into warm winter clothing.  For summer wear, flax fibers had to be taken out of the flax stems.  This was a difficult job and a special tool had to be used.  The fiber was then spun on a smaller spinning wheel, flax being harder to spin than wool. The flax thread was then put through a weaving machine.  The linen then made into clothing.  No coloring was used; the linen was a dull gray.

While the wife was busy in the house, the husband was busy outside, cutting down trees and clearing the underbrush.  It was a hard job to dig out the stumps, so he planted his corn between the stumps, using a grubbing hoe to stir the soil and cut down unwanted growth.   When time permitted, he dug out the stumps.  He made a sort of wooden plow that was pulled by oxen.  He made a barn to shelter his grain and livestock; and he made a oxcart with solid wooden wheels, wooden axle, body, tongue, and neck yoke to hold the oxen.  The oxen pulled the cart by their powerful necks.  This was the slow method of transportation for heavy hauling  For fast transportation, one mounted a horse.  Oxen were powerful beasts weighing About a ton, as compared to a horse’s 1200 to 1500 pounds.  Oxen could pull a load in muddy ground where a horse would flounder.  Oxen were hard to train.  It was hard to get an idea into their thick skulls.  When the driver saw that an oxen team was About to hit an obstruction he would holler “whoa;” but to get them used to the word “gitup,” a whip lash was a good instructor.

During the Revolutionary War, Tylee Engle was in possession of the Troth farm.  He built a brick addition to the old sandstone part and his initials T. E. and the year 1777 were marked on the door latch.  A later owner rough coated the entire house. The present owner, James Ivins, has sold the farm to real estate developers and the old house faces a gloomy future.

Darius Brittain Troth

Darius Brittain Troth I - my great grandfather

Darius Brittain Troth I - my great grandfather

I’ve mentioned my great grandfather Darius Brittain Troth I in posts about my Foreman family.

The first known (to me) Troth ancestor was William Troth who came from England and settled in Evesham Township, Burlington County, New Jersey.

Amos Haines Troth writes:

. . . East of the Hewling tract was the large Troth tract.  He parted from his boyhood sweetheart, Elizabeth Fields, and made the trip across the ocean and landed at Burlington.  He loaded his packhorse with gun, ax, grubbing hoe, knives, a cooking utensil, salt, flour, corn meal, and blankets, and took the walk through the woods to his future home, which, of course, was a log cabin.  Back in England his sweetheart was making preparations to join him.  The Fieldses were a wealthy family and they objected strongly to her marrying William Troth, who was not wealthy.  They refused to pay her passage on the boat trip to this country.

True to that feminine instinct of knowing what she wanted and getting it, she sold her jewels and trinkets, thereby securing enough money to pay the passage on the sailing vessel, which required six weeks to make the crossing.

Arriving at Burlington, William Troth met her with his horse, and the two made the trip on horseback through the woods.  For fear of being brushed off the horse, she would put her arms around him and he voiced no objection.

Why did she leave her home and family in England with its luxury and security to live in a wilderness in the crudest kind of a house?  Here she found the ferocious greenhead fly, the persistent strawberry fly, and hordes of mosquitoes–all seeking her blood.  Snakes were numerous: the poisonous rattlesnake and copperhead; the rapid traveling nonpoisonous black snake, that could overcome a rattlesnake in battle; the water snake, garter snake, pine snake and other varieties.  If the door was left open, snakes would crawl into the house.  There were the screech owls and the hoot owls, breaking the silence of the night.

Troth now proceeded to build a better house of ironstone or sandstone, abundant then and now in the nearby meadow.  To make sure of keeping warm in winter, he built a large fireplace which extended almost across the room.  Doors were built opposite each other so that a horse could drag a heavy log across the room.  The back log was then rolled into the fireplace and would burn all night without any attention.  On the second floor was a fireplace not quite as large.  An outside door was made so that wood could be handed into the room.

There was a bake oven where a fire could be made inside.  When fire heated the brick bottom sufficiently, it was withdrawn and the bricks swept clean.  The bread dough was placed on the hot bricks and this heat was sufficient to bake the bread to a beautiful brown.  A thick slice of this hot bread, with butter and molasses on it, was a hungry boy’s delight, and the smell of home-made bread sharpened the appetite of the elders.

To make the bread, a jar of yeast was always kept on hand.  Mashed potatoes and water were added to the jar to keep it full.  The yeast was added to the bread dough, and then allowed to rise for a few hours.  It was then ready for the oven. Pies were also baked–huckleberry, gooseberry, and pumpkin.  For sweetening they had sorgham molasses; and if they were lucky to find a honey tree where bees stored honey in a hollow branch, this added to the sweetening supply.

As soon as lumber was available from the water-power saw mill, Troth built a high back settee.  The reason for the high back was to protect the neck and shoulders from the draft of cold air that swept across the room and up the chimney.  More hot air went up the chimney than came out into the room.  An old saying About these fireplaces was “your shins toasted and your back froze.”

In the long winter evenings as they sat around the fireplace, Troth would read Bible stories to the children.  They roasted chestnuts ( which fell to the ground by the bushels, popped popcorn, cracked hickory nuts, shell barks, and black walnuts.  Perhaps a neighbor would drop in and spend the evening.

Troth also built a cross-legged table with a long bench on each side.  His wife kept busy.  For breakfast she would fry ham in a long-handled pan over an open fire.  For dinner, a big dinner pot would be filled with pork, cabbage, and potatoes. This pot was then swung over the fire by a crane.  Supper was a bowl of corn mush and milk.  To supplement this diet, wild game was plentiful.  Domestic fowl were chicken, duck and geese.  In winter pigs were killed, and also a beef.  Tallow as made from the beef into candles and soap.  Ashes from the fire were put in a barrel.  Water was allowed to soak through the ashes; lye was obtained in this manner and was mixed with the tallow to form homemade soap.

A housewife washed and combed wool which was then spun into thread on a large spinning wheel. This thread was then made into warm winter clothing.  For summer wear, flax fibers had to be taken out of the flax stems.  This was a difficult job and a special tool had to be used.  The fiber was then spun on a smaller spinning wheel, flax being harder to spin than wool. The flax thread was then put through a weaving machine.  The linen then made into clothing.  No coloring was used; the linen was a dull gray.

While the wife was busy in the house, the husband was busy outside, cutting down trees and clearing the underbrush.  It was a hard job to dig out the stumps, so he planted his corn between the stumps, using a grubbing hoe to stir the soil and cut down unwanted growth.   When time permitted, he dug out the stumps.  He made a sort of wooden plow that was pulled by oxen.  He made a barn to shelter his grain and livestock; and he made an oxcart with solid wooden wheels, wooden axle, body, tongue, and neck yoke to hold the oxen.  The oxen pulled the cart by their powerful necks.  This was the slow method of transportation for heavy hauling  For fast transportation, one mounted a horse.  Oxen were powerful beasts weighing About a ton, as compared to a horse’s 1200 to 1500 pounds.  Oxen could pull a load in muddy ground where a horse would flounder.  Oxen were hard to train.  It was hard to get an idea into their thick skulls.  When the driver saw that an oxen team was about to hit an obstruction he would holler “whoa;” but to get them used to the word “gitup,” a whip lash was a good instructor.

______________

My Troth lineage

  1. William Troth and Elizabeth Fields
  2. Paul Troth and Rebecca Haines
  3. Isaac Troth and Hannah Litterell
  4. William Troth and Elizabeth Phillips
  5. Job Troth and Matilda Poland
  6. Hugh Jackson “Jack” Troth and Elizabeth Gregory
  7. Darius Brittain Troth and Susan Elizabeth “Susie” Glenn
  8. Mary Myrtle Troth and Isaac Ross Coslett

Note:  until Job Troth married Matilda Poland (whose family was from Germany), the British strain was predominant.  Susie Glenn had a Cherokee and Scottish ancestor and Isaac Ross Coslett was mostly Welsh.

It is no exaggeration to state that my blood courses with dozens of nationalities (for this posting only deals with eight generations of the Troth family).

I realize of course that internet browsers who happen upon this post could care less about genealogy research and my particular families – but – just perhaps – a Troth cousin will happen upon this site and I will discover another link (I’m hoping).

Family histories

When we moved (the second time) from Houston, Texas to Denver (Aurora), Colorado, I began ‘dabbling’ in genealogy research.  The Denver Public Library has an excellent genealogy and historical records section and the Federal Center was only a drive across town.  The resources were limitless.  I didn’t have many primary sources, i.e., no family Bibles, old journals/diaries, scrapbooks, few photographs, or letters.  What I did have was an insatiable curiosity about my heritage and some oral stories.

Basically starting from Square One, I began the research and discovered that I absolutely loved the digging and the puzzle-solving.  Questioning older relatives and searching through census records, writing to county seats for copies of deeds, wills, court records, marriage, birth and death certificates – I was off and running.

Some of the discoveries were surprising.  All were interesting.

We all have interesting family histories and a story to tell.

Uncovering the various (and there are many!) nationalities that course through my veins has been an interesting journey and of course there is no end to it.

My earliest known ancestor is in my paternal line:

Supposedly – Osbert de Borden of whom I know only his name and not the name of his wife.  His son Henry Borden died in 1370 in Headcorn, Kent, England.  I descend from Henry and his wife Robergia’s son Thomas (1401-1450).

Borden researcher Cathy Sloan visited the Church in Headcorn, County Kent , England.  In the church there was a beautiful stained glass window dedicated to the Bordens/Burdens which had been donated by a Borden descendant in 1905. The text on the window read: “To the Glory of God in Memory of Henry Borden. Headcorn circa 1380 and his descendants Thomas Burden d. 1450, John Borden, d. 1369, William Borden d. 1557, Edmund Borden 1539, Matthew Borden 1620 and Thomas Borden 1592.  Matthew was Church Warden of Headcorn and Richard Borden, his son, born at Headcorn in 1495 who died at Portsmouth, RI, USA 1671, being the first of that name in the new world.

The Bordens or Bourdens originally (supposedly)  came to England from Normandy.

Henry Bordon was the first Borden to live at Headcorn, county Kent, southeast England.

He was probably a descendant of the Bordens of Borden, a village that was about twelve miles from Headcorn.

Perhaps Henry Borden is son of Richard DeBourdon (rather than Osbert) who was born about 1201 and named after King Richard, the Lion Hearted, who reigned over England from 1189 to 1199.

The first Bordens who came to the colonies were of the Quaker persuasion.

Note: there are quite a few ‘perhaps’ and suppositions in genealogy research.  The research is a bit like a meandering river – always changing course.

_________________

Now, I know this posting is not interesting to anyone who is not researching this Borden family.

However, some of the Borden descendants may be known to others:  Sir Winston Churchill (through his mother Jennie Jerome), songwriter Willie Nelson, the infamous Lizzie Andrew Borden (reputed to have given all of the whacks), Gail Borden (primarily known for his condensed milk patent), novelist Erskine Caldwell, movie star Julia Jean “Lana” Turner, actress Marilyn Monroe, actress Elizabeth Montgomery, and Senator Adlai Ewing Stevenson III.