Dennis Prue

Dennis Prue

Dennis has been researching family trees for more than 30 years. His expertise has been invaluable in helping to break through brick walls.


This Old Tree, May/June 2015

This month’s column is part two of William and Anna Tibbetts research. I asked Jay if he has ever done a search for William Tibbetts using the federal census and his answer was not really.

So I started with the first United States Census in 1790. I found four William Tibbetts in Maine. They are as follows:

William Tibbetts of a Town east of Machias; William Tibbetts of Condas Keeg Plantation; William Tibbetts of Waterboro and William Tibbetts of Shapleigh.

There were no William Tibbetts living in the Augusta/Gardener area in the 1790’s. Jay knows that is his ancestor, Daniel Tibbetts, stated he was born in Shapleigh. I would believe that William in Shapleigh in 1790 would be the correct man. Still I looked at census records in 1800, 1810, 1820, 1840 and 1850.

The William Tibbetts of the Town east of Machias stays in Washington County and is not found in western Maine. The William Tibbetts of Waterboro stays in the town Waterboro. His family is recorded in vital records of Waterboro.

The William Tibbetts of Condas Keeg is found in the Bangor area and his family is well documented and not Jay’s ancestor.

The William Tibbetts of Shapleigh is found in the 1790 and 1800 census as follows:

In 1790, the household is William and his wife and 3 sons, all under the age of 16.

In 1800 his household consists of William, his wife with 5 children. William has 1 son under 10, two sons between ages of 10 to 15 and two daughters, 1 under 10 and 1 aged 10-15. So therefore, one of sons listed in 1790 is either moved from home or has died.

In 1810 William is living in Harmony, Maine. He had sold the property he owned in Shapleigh in 1809 to Stephen Hussey. William’s household is composed of William, his wife, 3 sons under 10, 2 daughters under 10 and 1 daughter between ages of 10-15.

In the 1820 census, William is not listed but there is an Elisha Tibbetts in Harmony. His household consists of 1 male 10-15, 1 male 16-18, 1 male 26-44, 1 male 45 and older, 1 female 10-15 and 1 female age 26-44. William would be 45 and older at this time.

In the 1830 census for Harmony, there are two Tibbetts’ families, Elisha Tibbetts and William Tibbetts Jr.

Elisha family is listed as follows 1 male 40-49, 1 male 60-69, I female 5-9, 1 female 15-19, 1 female 30-39 and 1 female 50-59. William would be the male aged 60-69.

The William Jr family is as follows: William and his wife, no children.

In the 1840 census for Harmony, there are two Tibbetts’ family – Daniel Tibbetts and William Tibbetts.

Daniel has no males in the correct age bracket to be William.

William’s family is list as follows 1 male under 5, 1 male 5-9, 1 male 15-19, 1 male age 30-39 1 male age 70-79; 1 female under 5, 1 female age 5-9, 1 female age 20-29, 1 female age30-39. William would the male age 70-79.

Elisha is now in Glenburn and listed as 1 male 40-49; 2 females under 5, 1 female 5-9, 1 female 20-29, 1 female age 30-39 and 1 female 60-69.

The 1850 census for Harmony has William Tibbetts age 88 b. 1762, living in house of Shelburne Leighton 37, his wife Mary 47, Chandler Leighton 7, Flavilla Leighton 17, Marilla Leighton 1, Nelson Tibbetts 14, Martha Tibbetts 4 and Caroline Young 15. Flavilla should be listed as a Tibbetts according to her death record.

After the 1810 census, William is no longer the Head of the Family. He is living with Elisha and then with William Jr and finally with his widowed daughter-in-law, Mary Darling Tibbetts, wife of Shelburne Leighton. William’s wife, Anna, appears to have died between 1830-1840.

I went back to the 1790 census and this time I was looking at the Tibbetts living in Shapleigh, York, Maine. There were 5 Tibbetts’ families living in Shapleigh at this time. There were Daniel, Philip, Ebenezer, Ichabod, and William. The four other Tibbetts men living in Shapleigh are the sons of Ebenezer Tibbetts and his wife, Olive Dore. Checking further on the Ebenezer and Olive family, William would fit into this family age wise. Ebenezer’s family has been reconstructed using land deeds. Families moved in the early years as family units and therefore it make sense that William is the unrecorded son of Ebenezer & Olive Tibbetts.

Next installment on William and Anna Tibbetts will be a reconstruction of their family.

Creative Commons License
This Old Tree, May/June 2015 by Dennis Prue is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at