About William

Birth William Armstrong was born about 1801-1803 in New York, possibly Onondaga County.[[1]]
Marriage William married Sarah “Sally” Nash, date unknown, but probably prior to abt. 1822 when son George was born. No marriage record has been found. Sally was born 21 January 1802, Brookfield, Chenango (now Madison) County, New York. Her parents were Isaac and Amy (Hall) Nash, both born in Rhode Island. Sally died 21 December 1886, in Brookfield. She is buried in Brookfield Rural Cemetery in the same plot as her brother, Isaac Nash. The grave is newly marked (thanks to Dad).[[2]]
Death William died between 12 July 1870 and 1 June 1874. Exact date is not known.[[3]]
Occupation Miller.[[4]]
Residences Note: Based on censuses – have not yet added probable residences based on children’s birthplaces.
1810: Not known
1820: Not known[[5]]
1830: North Brookfield, Madison County, New York
1835: Gridley Dist (School Dist. #8), Marshall, Oneida County, New York[6]
1840: Gridley Dist (School Dist. #8), Marshall, Oneida County, New York
1845: Not known.[[7]]
1850: Augusta, Oneida County, New York
1855: Not yet known – have been unable to find William in 1855 census.
1860: South Hamilton, Madison County, New York[[8]]
1865: Brookfield, Madison County, New York
1870: South Hamilton, Madison County, New York[[9]]
Children The 1865 New York State census lists William and Sally’s marriage as a first for each, and list Sally as having had 13 children. Compiling the family using the 1830-1870 censuses, George appears to be the eldest son. There are two possible sons and a daughter between George and Isaac. Possible candidates for sons are Azel B. Armstrong and Cyrus Armstrong. Another candidate, Hiram Armstrong, who was also a miller, can be ruled out. He was the son of Hackaliah Armstrong .[[10]]Death certs for Isaac, Ellen, Mary, Sarah and Rosanna all list parents as William and Sarah.Naming Conventions: It appears that one son is named for Sally’s father (Isaac N. Nash). Sarah may be named for Sally. Could this have any significance in predicting William’s father’s name? George’s middle name is said by some researchers to be Riker (no source). Could this be a family name?

  1. George R. Armstrong
    Born: abt. 1822, Madison Co., New York
    Died: 22 September 1875, North Brookfield, Madison Co., New York
  2. Isaac N. Armstrong
    Born: 12 October 1830, Brookfield, Madison Co., New York
    Died: 6 March 1906, Sherburne, Chenango Co., New York
  3. Ellen Armstrong
    Born: abt. 1833, Oneida Co., New York
    Died: 21 February 1902, Hamilton, Madison Co., New York
  4. Mary Armstrong
    Born: 5 March 1836, Brookfield, Madison Co., New York
    Died: 24 December 1897, South Brookfield, Madison Co., New York
  5. Sarah Armstrong
    Born: abt. 1839, Oneida Co., New York
    Died: 21 February 1907, Smyrna, Chenango Co., New York
  6. Edward R. Armstrong
    Born: abt. 1841, Madison Co., New York
    Died: 3 April 1865
  7. Rosanna Armstrong
    Born: 16 April 1842, Oneida Co., New York
    Died: 15 July 1908, Madison, Madison Co., New York
  8. Catherine Armstrong
    Born: abt. 1845, Madison Co., New York
    Died: aft. 1 June 1925
Religion Unknown. Sources say that Sally’s parents were Seventh Day Baptists and Sally’s mother’s obituary was found in the Sabbath Recorder. Her parents are not listed in Membership Records of Seventh Baptists of Central New York State, 1797- 1940s, by Ilou M. Sanford. Sally’s sister, Olive (Nash) Walter, was buried by a Seventh Day Baptist minister.There is a Baptist church in South Hamilton, where William was living in 1870 (last known residence before his death). His daughter, Ellen, who also lived in South Hamilton, was very involved in the Willing Workers service group in the church. Madison County Church Records, by Roberta Kincaid, does not list records for this church.

Church records for the Baptist Church in North Brookfield, where William lived in 1830, are supposed to go back to the early 1800s, but could not be found in 2014.

Deeds William is not listed as having real property in any of the censuses that list it. No deed records found at Madison County Clerk’s Office. No entries for William found in Oneida County indices at FamilySearch.
Wills & Probate No probate documents found for William in Madison County (Surrogate’s Court). No probate entries for William in the Oneida County Probate indices online at FamilySearch.org.
Newspapers No obituary was found in the following newspapers:

  • Deaths, Births, Marriages from Newspapers Published in Hamilton, Madison County, New York, 1818-1886, by Mrs. E. P. Smith, et al
  • Democratic Union, Hamilton, New York, newspaper 1870-1874
DNA Have done a Y-DNA test. There are no known matches closer than 10-15 generations.

[1] The 1865 New York State (NYS) census gives his place of birth as Onondaga County. It is the only document found so far. All United States censuses and the 1865 New York State census agree that his year of birth was between 1801 and 1803; all US censuses list his place of birth as New York, as does 1 of the 5 death certs. for his children. (The rest do not say.) William has not been found in the 1855 NYS census, but that may give more clues. (He has not been found in Marshall, Sangerfield and Augusta in Oneida County. Have not found him in Brookfield at the FHL. Many towns are missing from the 1855 census.

[2] Death certificate for Sally Armstrong, which lists her birth and death date, parents, and lists her as a widow.

[3] William was living at the time of the 1870 census, and Sally was listed as a widow at the time of the 1875 New York State census (living in Brookfield). William is not listed as having died within the year (previous to 1 June 1875) in the 1875 census, so assume he died before 1 June 1874. William’s children, George and Mary, both named their children William about 1872 and 1873, so William may have died about 1871 or 1872.

[4] William is listed as a miller in all United States and New York State censuses from 1850 to 1870, with the exception of 1855, where he has not been found. In the 1830 and 1840 censuses, he is listed as in manufacture, not agriculture. In the 1820 Schedule of Manufactures; there are only three businesses listed for all of Madison County. No mills listed are listed. (NARA).

[5]¬†William may have been too young to have his own household in 1820. Interestingly, two of the children of William’s son, George, list their father as having been born in Michigan. By all accounts, George was born about 1822 in Madison County, New York, so why do they believe he was born in Michigan? Did William go to Michigan briefly about 1822 or so and come back?

[6] School District 8 records at Oneida Historical Society. Although William is not listed, his neighbors are. Using maps of the time period and Google Maps, William likely lived on Gridley-Paige Road.

[7] The NYS census does not survive for Madison or Oneida Counties, except for the Town of Vernon, according to Maryilyn Douglas and Melinda Yates, New York State Census Records, 1790-1925, Bibliography Bulletin 88 (Albany: The State Education Department, 1981), 11-12.

[8] Using an 1875 landowners map, Google Maps, and the 1860 and 1870 censuses, it is possible to see where William lived in those years; his residence was located in South Hamilton, at the intersections of Williams and South Hamilton Roads. There is an old grist mill and saw mill there, parts of which are still standing (in 2011). It was owned in 1870 by Ellery B. Fuller.

[9] See number 7, above.

[10] Why these men as possible sons of William? Azel B. Armstrong is buried right next to William’s daughter, Roseanna in Madison, NY. His death cert. says “Unknown” for parents. It appears that Cyrus’ wife, Betsey, and their young son lived with son George in 1850. Hiram was a miller who lived in the same area (Brookfield and Hamilton). One of the sons may have become a miller because the 1840 census lists 2 in the household working in manufacture.