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Morrisons of Pennsylvania and Ohio

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2014 6:38 pm
by tmillion29
My Morrison family falls in the H1 subgroup in the Morrison DNA project. My brick wall is my great great grandfather, Thomas D Morrison who lived from abt 1805 to 1844, (dates not proven but we do have proof of his marriage in 1826 to Mitildey (Matilda Woods) in Columbiana County OH). Family legend tells us his father was likely John but possibly Robert. We believe the family moved from Fayette County, Pennsylvania to Columbiana County, Ohio around 1800. Family legend also tells us that there is a connection to a Douglas/Douglass/Dugald/Donald Morrison who fought in the Battle of Culloden. A historical account of Franklin Township in Columbiana County, Ohio states:

"John Morrison, whose grandfather, Douglass, fought at Culloden and settled in America at an early day, came to Columbiana County shortly after 1800 and assisted in building the paper mill of Beaver & Coulter on Little Bear, near what is now East Liverpool".

I have been searching for "Douglass" as a Morrison but wonder now if he may have been a Campbell as there was a Capt Dougal Campbell of Craignish and a Capt Dugald Campbell of Aucrossan both commanders at the Battle of Culloden with Dugald commanding the 43rd Highlanders. It is likely I am still looking for a D. Morrison, grandfather to John but have found nothing yet and I have found no Morrisons who served in the battle.

Does anyone have any information that might shed some light on a connection between the Campbells and Morrisons? There seem to be more Campbell's than Morrison's on our close DNA matches. I would love to be able to fill the gap and figure out who crossed the pond in our family line! Thomas D. went on to have children: Mary Jane (Bushong), Rev John William Henry (my ggrandfather), Joseph F and Thomas D Jr., both died in the Civil War and Matilda (Ludwick).

Thank you for any help you can offer~

Re: Morrisons of Pennsylvania and Ohio

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2014 11:51 pm
by morrisondna

The 1830 US Census of Franklin Township shows Thomas Morrison on the same census page with James and William Morrison. Just a few names up the list on the previous page is John Morrison and John Morrison Jr. These are listed so closely to each other that it seems likely they were all of the same family.

The 1820 census of Franklin Township shows John, John Jr., and James. Of these, only John Sr. has a son old enough to have married in 1827, so he is likely the father of Thomas.

It does seem likely that these Morrisons came from Pennsylvania, possibly after 1810 depending on the settlement history in that part of Ohio. There were a lot of John Morrisons in Pennsylvania in 1810. You might be able to narrow down the possibilities by looking at the ones who had enough family members in their household or nearby to represent the extended family of John Sr. and his sons and their wives and children. And you could eliminate the ones who were still in Pennsylvania in 1820 and see which Pennsylvania Morrisons are left as possibilities. It may be that tracking the line back one generation at a time in this way will be more productive than trying to make a direct link with Culloden from Ohio.

In Group H in the DNA projects, we have three Morrison participants with lines from Columbiana County. All three of these have matching mutations from the Group H modal values, so they are all from the same family. The basic history for one of these matches lists the earliest ancestor as a William Morrison, b. 1793 in Pennsylvania. If the other two matching Morrisons are not your immediate Morrison family, it would be worthwhile to gather all the information you can from them to help in locating your line in Pennsylvania.


Re: Morrisons of Pennsylvania and Ohio

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 6:19 pm
by tmillion29
Thank you for taking time to reply. I have been in contact with M208 for many years prior to both of us having our brothers tested. We met on an online forum. Once we received the test results, we were thrilled to find we were related and searching the same lines. So, I have all the info you have referred to regarding census info and have spent many years trying to go back a generation with no luck so I have decided to try some new approaches. I will consider those who were no longer in PA as I don't believe I have really examined that. M208 has also been in contact with the other close match (M052) that we have and we know how they connect to us. I will also focus on the others in the H1 subgroup and look forward to the SNP results. Thanks again!


Re: Morrisons of Pennsylvania and Ohio

Posted: Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:43 am
by Scot1949

I have some thoughts relative to Edwin's information on census returns. You might want to look at the census of 1810 to see if there is a John Morrison present. If his household includes a male under five years old, or maybe 5-10 based on the information listed on the YDNA Project web site, that is likely to be Thomas. In the 1830 Census, he would show as a male between 20 and 25 (probably with others).

With any luck, John may be living at the same place in both censuses, allowing you to see what might be available in the way of local or church records.

If John Sr. doesn't show up in 1810 you may need to track back to Pennsylvania.

Re: Morrisons of Pennsylvania and Ohio

Posted: Sun Dec 28, 2014 8:42 pm
by Ross
This Ohio/Pennsylvania connection is intriguing.

I have posted information about our treetop ancestor here because it's public and eventually Google indexes it for searches: ... 763&df=all&

In summary, Jonathan Morrison was born 1812 (+/-1) in Pennsylvania per every census. He was married in 1835 Erie, Pennsylvania. After his first child was born there, they appeared in 1840 Darby, Madison county, Ohio near his wife's uncle Titus Dort. The men were both blacksmiths.

One connection I considered was a nearby household (same census page) for Henry Morrison with a match on age group for one boy. The "back and forth" migration is possible if he was born in Pennsylvania, lived in Ohio with his family, but returned to Pennsylvania for a bride, especially if she was the niece of his trade mentor (just conjecture).

I have notes about many of these tracings, and I use the same technique, suggested earlier in this discussion thread, to rule in and rule out different households by watching where they go through the census and if they stay put in an area I know my target had already left.

In past years, I have traced every possible descendent of Jonathan's and can say with some certainty that we have identified every Morrison male and not found one who isn't already known to our immediate family (to include living brothers and cousins). Most of them are linked to the memorials at The next step is to move up one generation and look for the siblings and/or parents of Jonathan. I'm relying on DNA and lots of luck in my search strategies. By sharing notes here, maybe someone will have ideas or a missing tidbit that breaks down this brick wall.

BTW, I also traced a full line of Morrison men who were blacksmiths with patriarch in proximity to my target: James S Morrison who married Rhoba Peck in 1839 McKean, Erie, PA. I have a full tree on all his descendents but since it's just a "fishing line" I have not posted it publicly and besides, I've seen others who are working this line on Ancestry. If any male from that line has tested DNA, I would like to know if the results matched kit 195241… then I could rule them IN or OUT.

When I get back to genealogy research next week, I'll review all my notes for possible common threads. And I'll post the interesting snippets in the forum.

Hope to make progress, or at least encourage others to join the DNA project,
Morrison family genealogist

Re: Morrisons of Pennsylvania and Ohio

Posted: Tue Jan 20, 2015 1:55 am
by morrisondna
Betsy, I'm sure you have looked at naming patterns. Frequently the first son was named for his father's father. Pennsylvania was really thick with Morrisons in the late 1700's. Most of them were Scots-Irish.