Monday, May 26, 2014

Here’s my ticket!

Revolutionary War Flag
Revolutionary War Flag
photo by
Nink Allsbrook

Memorial Day is a day to reflect on my ancestors who served in the military in an effort to form our country and to keep it free for generations to come.  And while there have been many who fit the bill, I can’t think of anyone who has piqued my interest more than my 5th great grandfather, Ashbel Waller, who is my ticket to join the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR).  The process of gaining admittance into DAR is a bit overwhelming but at some point I’ll make it happen.  Until then, I’ll continue to research Ashbel and prepare for the upcoming project.

Ashbel (Ashbell, Ashabel, Asahel) Waller was the son of Phineas Waller (1717-1787) and Rhoda (Phebe) Taylor (1717-?) and from what I have learned, was the sixth of eleven children.  He was born 18 Oct 1759 in Cornwall, Connecticut, and baptized 11 Nov 1759.

Not much is known about Ashbel’s early life until 1 Aug 1779 when he enlisted in Webb’s 2nd Continental or 2nd Connecticut Line and served until he was discharged on 15 Jan 1780.  At the age of 20, Ashbel was in the throes of war and while he served for just a short period of time, his name will forever be in history books as a Revolutionary War patriot.  MY Revolutionary War patriot.

Ashbel returned from war and per the Barbour Collection, Ashbel of Cornwall was married to Sarah Abbott of Sharon on 1 Nov 1781 by Judge Kellogg, JP.  Sarah gave birth to Solomon (Salmon) Waller, my 4th great grandfather, in 1788 in Pennsylvania.  The family shows in later years in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, where Ashbel owned 50 acres of land valued at $240.

More children, Hannah, Ruth, Sena and Alvin, joined the family, although I can’t confirm they were Sarah’s children or if another woman had entered Ashbel’s life.  Somewhere between 1800-1810, the family moved to Butler County, Ohio, and on 5 Sep 1820, Ashbel and Elizabeth Blackleach were married by Rev. James Hugh.  What had happened to Sarah? 

In the 1840 census Ashbel is listed as “under 90” and was living with an “under 80” female (Elizabeth) in Union Township, Butler County, Ohio.    But Ashbel had an important neighbor by the name of Jane Turner, a woman living alone.  And on 12 Apr 1842 at the spry age of 83, Ashbel and Jane Turner were married in Butler County, Ohio by Rev. David Laymon.  Which means that sometime between the 1840 census and this marriage, Elizabeth most likely died.

There is so much information about Ashbel’s life – war records, pension records, marriage ceremonies performed, death on 20 Sep 1848, and his will – but I’ve yet to be 100% sure of his final resting place.  A few years ago a researcher from the Butler Country Historical Society located some items for me, one of which was 1985 correspondence to the Butler County Commissioner regarding a gravestone with the partial name Elizabeth Walle_ and, potentially, the grave of Ashbel Waller in Liberty Township, Ohio.  This graveyard is located on property that was owned by Ashbel in 1830 and is described as about 101 acres in the northeast corner of Section 6 on the 1830 cadastral map.  It is described today as about 0.4 mile eastward from Route 747 along Hamilton-Mason Road thence about 0.2 mile southward parallel to the meridional section line.  I wish I knew more about land deeds so I could figure out exactly what that means.

The point of the 1985 correspondence was to help the establishment of the graveyard’s historical significance in light of Ashbel’s participation in the Revolutionary War.  And now nearly 30 years later, I would somehow like to learn even more about this graveyard and to, hopefully, stand in front of the grave of MY Revolutionary War patriot and 5th great grandfather, Ashbel Waller.

It’s time to step it up and get back to researching so I can punch my ticket into DAR!


  1. Debi, happy Memorial Day. I hope you are able to visit the site one day soon!

  2. Debi, I'm in the same boat as you: I have a relative who is "my" ticket into DAR, and yet...well, it seems like everything else in the world conspires to keep me from completing that application!

    I hope you get to "make it happen" and complete your application soon. You have gleaned so much information on him already!