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Saturday, February 4, 2012

North Carolina to Shelby County, Indiana

Rockingham County, NC - highlighted in red

While researching some of my Shelby County ancestors who lived in Moral Township I found many families from that area who had migrated from various counties in North Carolina (where I currently live). An overwhelming number of the Moral Township families came from Rockingham County, North Carolina.
On a visit to the library in High Point, N. C. (which has a wonderful genealogy room) I decided to see how many of the Shelby County families had left behind records in both Guilford and Rockingham Counties. (Rockingham was formed from Guilford in 1785) The High Point Library is located in Guilford County and has a good collection of books from both counties. However, I ended up spending the day with the Rockingham County records – and didn’t get through all of them. I plan to go back soon and see what else I can “dig up”!

Before I went to High Point, I checked two good books about Shelby County for names to research. These books: The Genealogy of Moral Township, Shelby County, Indiana and History of Shelby County, Indiana by Edward H. Chadwick contain numerous family histories and biographies. In Chadwick’s book I found MANY families that had roots in North Carolina, not just the Moral Township families. I made lists and notes about the N.C. families and took them with me to High Point.

These families are just a few that I found in the early deed and will books for Rockingham County:

Cayton – Jacob, James and William
Cobler – Frederick, Christopher, Nicholas, Alsy, and Williamson
Coffee – Joshua
Coley - James and Maynard
Joyce – Alexander, Elisha, John, Thomas and Phebe
Martin – Peter, Richard, and  more
Means – Robert, William, and Elizabeth
Moberly – William, Thomas
Odell – Jeremiah, Jesse, John, and more

Smith – Drury, Thomas and more

I would like to recommend one book that I found in the Lexington, N.C. library. The title is: Early Families of the N. C. Counties of Rockingham and Stokes with Revolutionary Service, published by the James Hunter Chapter NSDAR of Madison, N.C.  This book is full of family histories and includes details of their involvement in the Revolutionary War. It has many familiar names that are also found in Shelby County.
The Means family information in the above named book is of special interest to me (I have several connections to this family). The book has an excerpt from an old letter written in 1870 by Dr. David Means, a grandson of Robert Means. It tells about Robert’s service in the Revolutionary War. The book also has an interesting extract from Robert Means’ will, probated in August 1822 in Rockingham County, N.C.

A few other families of interest in this book with Shelby County connections were Cobler, Coffey and Moore.
This will be an ongoing project – connecting our Shelby County families to their North Carolina roots. I hope you will find it as interesting as I do!