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Table 2
An Hypothesis about the Children of Gideon Crawford and Sarah Burgess
Child Birth Date

1 Daughter 1820-1825
2 Daughter 1825-1830
3 Daughter 1825-1830
4 Daughter 1830-1835
5 Gideon, Jr. 1834-1835
6 John C. 1835-1836
7 Daughter 1836-1837
8 Earline/Eveline 1837-1838

From the information in these various censuses, an hypothesis can be advanced about the children of Gideon and Sarah Crawford. This hypothesis appears in Table 2. From the information available, only three of the eight children can be named, although reasonable conclusions about the other children can be drawn concerning their existence, gender, and approximate year of birth.

Identifying Sisters of the Seven Brothers

There is evidence that the seven Crawford brothers had as many as four sisters. One sister can be linked reasonably well with the seven brothers. Two other sisters can be circumstantially linked with the seven brothers, and a fourth sister can be inferred from census records. In the 1830 census of Lowndes County, Georgia [31], John Bennett is shown as living between the Crawford brothers, Thomas and James. Also in Lowndes County in 1830, John Bennett was indicted along with four of the Crawford brothers for "riot, revolt and tumult" [38]. According to Civility Bennett, John Bennett's widow, in her application [13] for a pension as the widow of a soldier killed in service, John Bennett was killed by Indians on 21 September, 1838, while serving in the Georgia Mounted Volunteers as a substitute for William Crawford. Also included in the pension application is an affidavit from Reverend Moses Westberry stating that he married John Bennett and Civility Crawford in 1824 in McIntosh County, Georgia. Based on the close relationship between John Bennett and the Crawfords, established by his living near two of the brothers, by "rioting" with four of the brothers, and by substituting in an Indian war for another Crawford brother, it seems reasonable to conclude that Civility Crawford Bennett was a sister of the seven Crawford brothers. The fact that her marriage to John Bennett occurred in McIntosh County provides additional support for this conclusion. Two other individuals have been identified as possible sisters of the seven Crawford brothers. Martha Crawford married Joseph Hitchcock in Effingham County in 1817 [34, p. 65]. By proximity and age, she is a possible sister of the seven brothers. In the 1850 census of Effingham County [50], Martha Hitchcock is shown as age 50, and is living with Lucretia Morgan, age 60. Lucretia Morgan's maiden name was Crawford [40, 79]. It is reasonable to conclude that Lucretia Morgan and Martha Hitchcock were sisters. Three Crawford families in Effingham County are known to have borne children during the period from about 1790 through 1810. These families were William and Martha Crawford, John and Priscilla Crawford, and James and Mary/Polly Crawford. William and Martha had six children, all of whom are accounted for [18]. James and Polly had at least eleven children, but the earliest birth for any of their children is estimated to be no earlier than 1798. Since Lucretia was born in about 1790, her parents were most likely the same parents as those of the seven brothers and Civility. Also, Martha was very likely a sister of Lucretia's, and, hence, of the seven brothers. The evidence derived from estimating birth year from age in a later census is that neither Civility, Lucretia, nor Martha was the sister "under 10" in the entry for the Crawford family in the 1820 Census of McIntosh County [45]. Civility reports her age as 50 in the 1850 census of McIntosh County [78], while Martha is 50 and Lucretia is 60 in the 1850 census of Effingham County [50]. The youngest of these three sisters would have been about 20 at the time of the 1820 census. This evidence points towards the presence of a fourth daughter in the Crawford household.
A Profile of Gideon Crawford

Based on this research, the following points constitute a reasonable profile of Gideon Crawford:
      - he was born in Effingham County, Georgia about 1795;
- he moved with his mother, brothers and sisters to McIntosh County,
Georgia, by 1820;
- he drew in the 1821 Georgia Land Lottery;
- by 1830, he had moved to Lowndes County, Georgia, along with several
of his brothers and a sister and her husband;
- he presumably married Sarah Burgess at some time prior to about 1830,
probably in McIntosh County;
- he is shown in the 1830 Census as living with four females, one aged
between 20 and 30, one aged between 5 and 10, and two of age less
than 5;
- in 1830, he was indicted for riot, revolt, and tumult, with several
brothers and his brother-in-law;
- by 1840, he and his brother, Thomas, had moved to Ware County,
- Gideon Crawford and Sarah Burgess had eight children who survived
infancy: six daughters and two sons;
- Sarah Burgess Crawford died in Ware County in 1843;
- In 1844, Gideon Crawford married Orenna/Irene/Renee/Renay Stone or
- Gideon Crawford died in 1873 in Pierce County, Georgia; and,
- no record of his estate has been found.
The Search for the Parents of Gideon Crawford

The first step in searching for the parents of Gideon Crawford and his siblings was an investigation into the evidence concerning any Crawfords in Effingham County. This discovery process focused on the years preceding 1795, the approximate year of Gideon's birth, through 1820, when Gideon and his brothers were known to be in McIntosh County. The parents of these seven brothers have been reported as James and Polly Crawford [25, p. 81], and the mother has been identified as Marcilla [27, p. 83], Micilla [16, 75, p. 91], and Mercilla [89]. These mistaken identifications are apparently primarily based on two previously discussed considerations. One consideration is the mistaken interpretation of the data contained in the 1820 census of McIntosh County, leading to the identification of James and Polly Crawford as the parents of the seven brothers. The other consideration was a misreading of the name of a winner in the 1820 Georgia Land Lottery, which led to the identification of Marcilla, Micilla, or Mercilla as the mother of the seven brothers. Since the time that this mistake has appeared in secondary sources [75, 89], it has been perpetuated. Additional support for John and Priscilla Crawford as the parents of the seven brothers is that a couple by that name can be shown to exist in Effingham County from in the 1790's until about 1813. A James and Mary(or Polly) Crawford also can be shown to exist, but evidence favors John and Priscilla Crawford as the parents. No evidence of anyone named Marcilla, Mercilla, or Micilla Crawford can be found. There is also evidence explaining how the name, Priscilla, has been mistakenly read as Marcilla, Mercilla, and Micilla.
Land Surveys, Warrants, and Deeds

A series of land and legal documents provides evidence of the presence of John and Priscilla Crawford and James and Mary Crawford in Effingham County in the time period of interest. A Patsy Crawford does appear in records as well, as the wife of William Crawford and later Richard Touchstone. A review of the records of land and other legal transactions in Effingham County in the period of interest yields other data about the Crawfords of Effingham County. These deeds and other land records are summarized in Table 3. John Crawford's presence as an adult in Effingham County can be documented from at least 1785 until 1812. These documents also establish that he was married to Priscilla. His actions of selling land in 1810 and 1811 are perhaps indicative of a pending relocation, but this conclusion is speculative until corresponding dates for his appearance elsewhere can be found. James Crawford can be shown to be present as an adult in Effingham County from 1798 until 1813, at least. Further analysis of Table 3 yields the conclusion that there must have been two individuals named Mary Crawford in the Effingham County area. The earlier of the two Mary's was the widow of Alexander Crawford. The later Mary or Polly was the wife of James Crawford. Evidence will be shown below that supports the hypothesis that this James was the brother of John Crawford and, hence, was the uncle of the seven Crawford brothers. After additional review of Table 3, a reasonable conclusion can be drawn that there was a close relationship between William, John, and James Crawford. Also, a reasonable inference can be made that these three individuals had some relationship, though not necessarily sanguinary, with Charles, Alexander, both Marys, and Henry. Review of Table 4, which includes only the male Crawfords, supports some additional detail about Crawford relationships. Carter Crawford was the earliest mentioned Crawford, followed shortly by Thomas and then Charles. Then John, William, Alexander, James, and Henry appear, in that respective order. The time of the first appearances of Carter, Thomas, and Charles, relative to the other Crawfords, suggests that these three Crawfords may have constituted an earlier generation. The relatively late appearance of Henry suggests that he could be the offspring or younger brother of the other Crawfords.
James and John as Brothers

A Warrant for Survey was issued to Robert H. Hughes in 1795 for 400 acres in Effingham County, "the land where John and James Crawford lives on" [11]. John and James Crawford were also the chain carriers for the survey of this land. Their living together is further confirmation of a close relationship between the two men, most probably that of brothers. The author accepts the hypothesis that John and James were brothers. John and James may also have had some relationship with Robert H. Hughes, since he bought the land occupied by them and they then acted as his chain carriers for the survey. One last observation that can be made about John and James is that John was likely the older of the two brothers. This conclusion is based on John's appearance ten years earlier(in 1785) than James' in the records of Effingham County. Other data discussed below supports this observation. A birth year of about 1765 seems to be a reasonable estimate for John's year of birth.
Possible Brothers of John and James

Tables 3 and 4 illustrate the appearance of Alexander Crawford, William Crawford and Henry Crawford in conjunction with John and James Crawford. These joint appearances suggest a family relationship between John and James Crawford and Alexander, Henry, and William Crawford. The records mentioned in Table 3 tell us only that Alexander Crawford and Henry Crawford existed. They provide us nothing concrete with which to further identify either of these Crawfords. The only other mention of Henry Crawford discovered by this researcher is that a Henry Crawford witnessed a land transaction in 1806 in nearby Bullock County [32]. Unfortunately, no further information about Alexander Crawford has been found by this researcher. Further information is available about William Crawford, however, and this information provides significant further evidence of a close family relationship between William, James and John. William Crawford first appears in Effingham County in 1785. William Crawford married "Patsey" Bailey in 1794 [80]. Patsy is a diminutive form of the name, Martha. In 1796, William Crawford deeded his estate to his wife, Martha Crawford, and "her five children", Thomas, Nelly, Patience, Leita, and Jesse [60, p. 274]. The puzzling wording "her five children" rather than "our" or "my" children is interesting but will not be explored here. Jesse Crawford was born in 1795 [18], so he is certainly the child of William and Martha Crawford. In 1798, a Mrs. Martha Crawford married Richard Touchstone [34, p. 160]. Apparently, as mentioned above, William deeded his estate in 1796 in lieu of a will, and died shortly afterward. In 1799, John Crawford deeded land for a price of $50 [61, p. 386] to Martha Touchstone, "also called Martha Crawford", and her five children. Note that the sale was not to Richard Touchstone, as it probably would have been if this sale was a normal business transaction. The fact that John Crawford deeded land to Martha Touchstone, William Crawford's widow, after her remarriage, suggests a degree of concern with the well being of her and her five children best explained by the existence of a close family relationship between John and William.

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