Genealogy Friday: Don’t Give up on Those Brick Walls

We all have brick walls we want to break through.   Some seem nearly impossible to break through._DSC0073-66

I had one just like that.   For 25 years I looked for the parents of my GG-Grandfather.

All I had to go on was a family bible and obituary.

The family name, Davis, was very common.  However, he had one given name we believed to be common, John and another we knew was unique, Arias.

However, I still couldn’t find him.

For years and years I looked.  After 15 years I’d given up hope and began to wonder if he ever existed.

I'm beginning to find enough information to break through those brick walls
I’m beginning to find enough information to break through those brick walls

By this time census records were online, but I still couldn’t find him.  I decided to search for my GG-Grandmother, his wife, under her maiden name.

BINGO!  There he was.  I also solved another mystery.  They lived with her mother, who had been widowed during the Civil War.  I knew she’d either remarried or died between 1870-1880 because I could find nothing on her after the 1870 census.  Now I knew her new married name.

Still, even after all of this work I had no other information on John Arias Davis.

I traced numerous John Davis in the state and the area but the more I’d research the more I proved each one wasn’t my John Davis.

Finally, about five years later I found an 1897 City Directory {the only one surviving from that time} and proved that my GG-Grandmother was a widow.

They lived 500 steps from a cemetery but there were no marked graves or records. I checked with the nearby churches and funeral homes but they had no records from that time.

So who were his parents?

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