Jane Ann (Alderman) Penisten (1843-1919) was my maternal 3rd-great grandmother. What follows is an exploratory analysis of the biographical information I have discovered about her.
1. Vital Records
Jane was born September 1843 in Indiana1,2,3,9, according to census records. Her tombstone lists her year of birth as 18427.
1.1. Birth Certificate
The State of Indiana did not require birth certificates at this time.
1.1.1. Birth Notice in Newspaper
If Jane's birth was mentioned in a local newspaper, it has been lost to time.
1.1.2. Bible Record
I am not aware of any surviving Bible record of the Alderman that would record the birth of Jane. Will continue to reach out to extended family in hopes that one can be located.
1.1.3. Baptismal Record
I am not aware of any baptismal record for Jane, nor do I know the church affiliation of the Alderman family. Later in life she was associated with the Methodist Episcopal church.
1.1.4. Adoption Record
There is no indication that Jane was adopted.
1.2. Marriage License
I have been unable to locate a marriage record for Jane and John Penisten. Based on the birthdate of their children, I have assumed that it took place circa 1868 in Madison County, Indiana. The courthouse in Madison County suffered a fire in 1880 and earlier marriage records were lost.
1.2.1 Marriage Notice in Newspaper
Will need to search contemporary newspaper accounts to see if mention was made of Jane and John's nuptials.
1.2.2. Anniversary Notice
Until I can locate the specific date of their marriage, I will be unable search for mention of their anniversary in local newspapers.
1.2.3. Divorce Decree
There is no indication that John and Jane were ever divorced.
1.3. Death Certificate
Jane died April 8, 1919 in Alexandria, Madison County, Indiana4. I need to request a copy of this death record for my files. Will add this to my list of "to-do" items for my next research trip.
1.3.1. Obituary in Newspaper
Jane's obituary appeared in the April 9, 1919 edition of the Alexandria Times-Tribune in Alexandria, Indiana5. Mention of her funeral appeared in the April 10, 1919 edition6.
1.3.2. Funeral Home Records
Will need to search the local historical society to see if they have records of funeral homes that might shed some light on Jane's funeral. Will add this to my list of "to-do" items for my next research trip.
1.3.3. Tombstone Photograph
Jane's tombstone in the I.O.O.F. cemetery in Alexandria, Madison County, Indiana7 has been photographed. A link to her memorial at FindAGrave is located here.
2. Census Records
2.1. Federal Census Records
2.1.1. 1910 Federal Census
On April 20, 1910, Jane was enumerated as the head of household in Ward 1, Alexandria, Madison County, Indiana8, as Jane Pennisten, female, white, age 79, widowed. She was the mother of 3 children, only 1 of whom was still living. She was born in Indiana, as were both of her parents. Her occupation was that of a laundress. She could read and write and spoke English.
2.1.2. 1900 Federal Census
On June 15, 1900, Jane was enumerated in the John Penisten household in Orestes, Madison County, Indiana9, as Jane A. Penisten, female, white, born September 1843, age 58, married. She was the mother of 3 children, 2 of whom were living. She was born Indiana, her father was born in Ohio and her mother was born in Indiana. She could read and write and spoke English.
2.1.3. 1880 Federal Census
On June 15, 1880, Jane was enumerated in the John Penniston household in Fall Creek Township, Madison County, Indiana3, as Jane A. Penniston, female, age 37, wife, keeping house. She was born in Indiana, as were her mother and father.
2.1.4. 1870 Federal Census
I have not yet located John or Jane in the 1870 census. I would have expected to find them in Madison County, Indiana, either in Richland Township (where Jane's father was) or in Fall Creek Township (where they were in 1880). Will continue to search in the hopes that they were mis-indexed.
2.1.5. 1860 Federal Census
On June 5, 1860, Jane was enumerated in the Richard Alderman household in Anderson, Madison County, Indiana2 as Jane Alderman, age 17, female, born in Illinois. This was the only record found listing a birthplace in Illinois.
2.1.6. 1850 Federal Census
On October 9, 1850, Jane was enumerated in the Richard Alderman household in Anderson Township, Madison County, Indiana1 as Jane A. Alderman, age 7, female, born in Indiana.
2.2. State Census Records
The State of Indiana conducted census in 1853, 1857, 1871, 1877, 1883, 1889, 1901, 1913, 1919 and 1931. These, however, were merely for the purposes of legislative apportionment.
2.3. Agricultural Census Records
I have not yet investigated these types of records to see what light they might shed on the Penisten family.
3. Military Records
3.1. Draft Registration
Not applicable, as Jane was female.
3.2. Pension Records
I am not aware of any military service for Jane's husband or father that would have made her eligible to receive pension benefits.
3.3. Service Records
Not applicable, as Jane was female.
4. Land Records
4.1. Deed Records
Deed records need to be thoroughly searched in Madison County, Indiana to see what records might mention Jane and her husband. Will add this to my "to-do" list for my next research trip.
4.2. Plat map / county map
Plat maps of Madison County, Indiana will need to be searched to see what information can be gleaned that might be relevant to my search.
5. Supplemental Records
Supplemental records available for research on Jane include city/county directories, court records and will and probate records. Will add these to my list of "to-do" items for my next research trip.
1. Richard Alderman household, 1850 U.S. census, population schedule, Anderson Township, Madison County, Indiana, dwelling 917, family 917; National Archives micropublication M432, roll 158, page 64.
2. Richard Alderman household, 1860 U.S. census, population schedule, Anderson, Madison County, Indiana, Anderson P.O., dwelling 112, family 112; National Archives micropublication M563, roll 277, page 241.
3. John Penniston household, 1880 U.S. census, population schedule, Fall Creek Township, Madison County, Indiana, page 228, ED 31, SD 3, dwelling 195, family 204; National Archives micropublication T9, roll 293.
4. "Indiana Death Index, 1882-1920," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VZ7M-KYD : accessed 29 March 2016), Jane A. Penniston, 08 Apr 1919; from "Indiana Deaths, 1882-1920," database, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : 2003); citing Alexandria, Indiana, City/County Health Office, Anderson or City Health Office, Elwood/Alexandria, The source of this record is the book 2CH-8 on page 64 within the series produced by the Indiana Works Progress Administration., Indiana Words Projects Administration.
5. Mrs. Jane Ann Pennisten obituary, Alexandria Times-Tribune, Alexandria, Indiana, 9 April 1919, page 1.
6. Mrs. Jane Ann Pennisten funeral, Alexandria Times-Tribune, Alexandria, Indiana, 10 April 1919, page 1.
7. FindAGrave, Inc., FindAGrave (www.findagrave.com : accessed 29 March 2016), Jane Ann Alderman Penisten tombstone.
8. 1910 U.S. census, Madison County, Indiana, population schedule, Ward 1, Alexandria, enumeration district 111, SD 8, sheet 4B, 616 South Wayne, dwelling 88, family 88; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 29 March 2016); National Archives, Washington, D.C.
9. 1900 U.S. census, Madison County, Indiana, population schedule, Monroe Township, enumeration district 96, SD 67, sheet 11B, dwelling 226, family 241; digital images, Ancestry.com (www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 December 2015); National Archives, Washington, D.C.
This post was developed as part of the series relating to Building My 2011 Research Template, an attempt to systematically document and source the details of my ancestors' lives. Comments regarding this template and the conclusions drawn in this article are welcomed.