For years, ever since becoming interested in genealogy in 1989 and discovering I was descended from a man named James Hill, I have been hunting for his father.
Sure, I have been looking for his mother, too, but somehow I thought searching for the dad would be easier. Well, it hasn’t been. Neither of them have been easy to find.
I thought I had something when I read that Mrs. Hill, mother of James, had died in 1825 or 1826 in Ohio and was buried on the family farm.1 But there’s only one source for that, the book The History of Hardin County, Ohio, and there is contradictory information throughout it, so nailing down the facts hasn’t been simple. It may be true, but there isn’t another source confirming the story, at least I haven’t found one yet, and she is not named, further complicating matters.
Today I was poking around on a family tree database called WorldConnect. I came upon a theory that James’ sister, named either Rebecca or Barbara Hill, used her father’s name for one of her sons.1 She had married Samuel Tidd, a brother of Sarah (who went by Sallie) and son of Martin Tidd. Sarah had married James Hill.
Samuel Tidd’s son was named Hugh Hill Tidd. And researcher Darren Bagley thinks this may very well be the name of their father: Hugh Hill.
So I will have to see what I can find to prove or disprove this.
1. The site where an online version of the book was available for many years for free has changed to a subscription site, and I haven’t found the actual text anywhere yet, which I wanted to include here.
2. The name of James Hill’s sister has been convoluted by the book The History of Hardin County, Ohio, which has her as both Rebecca and Barbara. Thankfully her gravestone still exists, and it clearly has the name Rebecca on it. Where the name Barbara originated is unknown, although it is likely just a mistake by the gentlemen who compiled the Hardin County book.