American Douglas History

The Douglases from Maine to the Midwest


There are several Douglas families that lived in New England in the colonial times. I can think of four off hand. One family lived in Connecticut; another family in Middleboro, Massachusetts, and the other two in Maine. One of the Maine Douglas families has their history documented by J. Lufkin Douglas. The other family is our family and this website documents the information that I have gathered over 30 years of careful research..


York, Topsham, Albion, Sedgwick, Brooksville, Penobscot... are some of the primary towns associated with some of our early Douglases, York. Maine (in York Co) is at the southern tip of Maine and is the location of early Maine settlements. Topsham (in Sagadahoc Co) is about 60 or 70 miles up the coast from York near the city of Brunswick, and is inland several miles. Topsham was the home of our ancestor James Douglas (see below). Albion (originally called Freetown, later Fairfax, now called Albion in Kennebec Co) is well inland, about 50 or 60 miles north and slightly east of Topsham. It is situated east of the nearby city of Waterville. Sedgwick, Brooksville and Penobscot (in Hancock Co) are coastal towns a few miles from each other, about half way up the coast of Maine at the drainage basin of the Penobscot River. They are about 70 or 80 miles (as the crow flies) from Topsham, and about 30 miles south of Bangor.

A number of Douglas descendants resided in various towns in Penobscot County - not to be confused with the town of Penobscot. Penobscot County is inland, north of Hancock Co. It includes Bangor at the southern edge. The Penobscot River runs down through Penobscot County to Bangor, past the west edge of Hancock County, and exits into the bay where Sedgwick, Brooksville and Penobscot are located..


The Penobscot River is 350 miles long, making it the second longest river in the state of Maine and the longest river entirely in Maine. Its drainage basin contains 8,610 square miles. It arises from four branches and several lakes in central Maine, and it flows generally east. West Branch joins the East Branch at Medway and the river then flows south, past the city of Bangor, where it becomes navigable. It empties into the Atlantic Ocean in Penobscot Bay. Penobscot Bay is home to the Penobscot tribe that lived on Indian Island.

The first European known to have explored the river was the Portuguese Estaban Gomez in 1524, followed by the Frenchman Samuel de Champlain in 1605. A few years later French Jesuit priests came among the Penobscot people as missionaries and converted them to Catholicism.1 The French settlement of Pentagouet, now Castine, was founded at the point where the river becomes Penobscot Bay, and the Penobscot people made a permanent settlement at Indian Old Town, on an island above the head of navigation, around the Catholic mission. Throughout the 16th and half of the 17th centuries, these were likely the only permanent settlements on the river, although the Penobscots considered the entire river and bay their hunting ground and maintained other seasonal villages along its banks.

In 1669, the Mohawk tribe made raids from the west that were very destructive to the Penobscot people. The English settlers in Massachusetts also sent periodic raiding parties to the Penobscot in this period but were not strong enough to wrest the area from French control until the 1750s. In a treaty of 1752, however, Massachusetts laid claim to the entire Penobscot watershed, and in 1759 the Pownall Expedition, led by Governor Thomas Pownall, established Fort Pownall on Cape Jellison in what is now Stockton Springs. This signaled the beginning of English domination, and the incorporation of the Penobscot River valley into New England.

The first permanent English settler on the river was Joshua Treat (1726-1802), who was initially the armorer and translator at Fort Pownall. His oldest son, Joshua Treat, Jr., built a log house and sawmill at Marsh Bay in what is now Frankfort, and other members of their extended family, joined by additional settlers from Massachusetts and New Hampshire, pushed ever further up-river, eventually restricting the Penobscot people to Indian Old Town, the present Penobscot Indian Reservation.

The river and bay were the site of battles in both the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. In both cases the British navy won, and in 1814 they sacked the town of Bangor. To prevent this from happening a third time, and because the nearby boundary between the United States and British Canada was still contested into the 1840s, the Federal government in 1844 began constructing a huge granite fort, Fort Knox, opposite the town of Bucksport, near the mouth of the river. The fort never fired a shot in anger, but remains one of the Penobscot's major man-made landmarks.

In the 19th century the river was a conduit for the transport of logs from the northern woods, to be sawed into lumber at mills around Old Town and Orono, and transported on ships from Bangor, at the head of tide. (The average high tide at Bangor is 13 feet as of 2009.) A secondary economic use made of the river late in the century was as a source of sawed ice for urban markets.

In the 20th century, lumbering was largely supplanted by papermaking, in the form of large wood pulp and paper mills located all along the river from Millinocket and East Millinocket in the north, to South Brewer and Bucksport in the south. The development of cheap hydropower also attracted other types of light manufacturing, like textiles and shoes.

In the 21st century, with the sudden decline of the Maine paper industry, and the divestiture of its woodlands, the Penobscot watershed is becoming more and more associated with recreational use (fishing, hunting, boating, and tourism) and less with manufacturing.


Following the Battle of Dunbar, Scotland (where the Scottish army was soundly defeated by the English), about 150 of the Scottish prisoners of war were sent to English colonies in America as indentured laborers. Approximately 60 were sent to the Saugus Iron Works near Lynn, Massachusetts. Of this number about 35 were employed by the Iron Works and the rest were sold to various interests in New England. The Scots mostly worked as unskilled laborers performing tasks such as chopping wood. Some learned skills such as making charcoal, blacksmithing and carpentry. Most of these Scots were able to gain their freedom after seven years and some remained in Massachusetts and others moved on the Maine, where they started families and assimilated into Puritan society. An Alexander Douglas has been listed as a Scottish POW that was sent the English colonies as an indentured laborer. We do not know where he was placed. A James Gordon is on an inventory list of indentured laborers at the Saugus Iron Works.

Why do we care about James Gordon?

Since I originally drafted this family history, genealogical research has embraced DNA sampling. A family member (usually a male) can submit his DNA and for a small fee have it analyzed and added to the data base. To further my goals I submitted a sample of my brotherís (James Richard Douglas) DNA for analysis. When the results were compared to others in the data base it revealed that, with one exceptions, our closest matches were all named Gordon. The one exception was well known to me because we had crossed paths while doing our research we knew that we shared the same James Douglas family tree. So there is the mystery. It seems that we are not Douglasí at all but Gordons.

It is possible that the father of James (or his grandfather?) came from this group of indentured Scottish men. According to what I have learned so far about early immigration to Maine many came from the Boston area. It is my belief that our ancestors moved to York Co, ME (where James was born, according to researchers of this family). If, on the other hand, James was not born in York Co (These researchers also found no birth record for him there), then it is possible that he was born in the Boston area. Perhaps we should be searching for James (or his parents) in the Boston area?

James and Margaret married in York, York Co, ME in 1731 (according to the marriage record). Therefore, we know James was at least in York by 1731 (whether he was born there or migrated there, we donít know). Margaret was probably from the town of Elliot (a settlement most likely founded by her ancestors), which is a few miles from York.

As settlements expanded up the coast, Topsham is where James and Margaret settled shortly after their marriage of 1731 (this is where most of their children were born). They would have packed all their belongings on a ship, and sailed up the coast some 60 or 70 miles. Their first child, Mary, was born Sep 1732, but we donít know where (could have been in York or Topsham). Most likely, Mary died soon after birth, since their second child, James, was born in Topsham Oct 1733. Therefore, we at least know the family had arrived in Topsham between 1731 and 1733.

And further, their last child, John, was born at Topsham abt 1760, so James would have been in the Topsham area for perhaps 30 years or more. This is consistent with the findings of Fred Boyle. "The first records of any Douglas in the Topsham area are found in French and Indian War muster roll records for James Douglas who served, 13 July 1742 - 11 Aug 1742, under Capt. Noble at St. Georgeís, a fort established to protect the area of Brunswick and Topsham." Soldiers (and citizens) were busy fighting attacks from the French and Indians. It looks like James was a soldier and later a military supplier in 1757 "hauling wood and stores for Ft. George."

So, if the last son was born about 1760, and according to Fred Boyle, James was "definitely" deceased by 1770, then James died somewhere between 1760 and 1770. Also, according to Fred Boyle, James was granted land in Topsham by Belcher Noyes for the Pejepscot Proprietors, 8 Oct 1761. So, in that case, James died between 1761 and 1770. If Margaret died in Topsham in 1794 - over 80 years old (according to Fred Boyle), then most likely James died in the Topsham area, too. Maybe he was killed by Indians as he cut wood in the wilderness to haul to Ft. George? He would have been in his 50s or 60s, so maybe he died of natural causes?

Anyway, James would not have been the immigrating Douglas ancestor to settle on the bank of the Penobscot River (as was stated by Effie Maybelle). It was in fact (well, maybe) Effieís memory of stories about the "son" of James and Margaret - our James (Jr.), father of Andrew - that settled on the bank of the Penobscot River. To help with this conclusion, the English did not get the Penobscot River area until 1752, and settlements came some years after that when the territory was actually possessed from the French.

James (Jr.) and his family was of Sedgwick (which is at the mouth of the Penobscot River). He may have married Mary (Snow?) in Topsham or at Sedgwick, but their children were born at Sedgwick - the first was in 1794 (the same year his mother, Margaret, died). Therefore, James (Jr.) moved from Topsham to Sedgwick between 1752 (when the English claimed the area from the French) and 1794. (It should be noted that Ft. Pownall was not established there until 1759 to actually possess the territory.)

But Effie Maybelle said our immigrant Douglas ancestor settled on the bank of the Penobscot River in what afterward became Penobscot County. Penobscot County was originally included in Hancock County. The act establishing Penobscot Co passed the Massachusetts legislature Feb 15, 1816. The southern boundary was fixed very much as it remains at present. But Penobscot Co is not on the coast (near Sedgwick). It is inland (above Hancock County) about 20 or 30 miles from the coast. I know we donít have information on all families, but the earliest Douglases I could find with activity (marriage, birth, death) in Penobscot Co, were the grandchildren and great grandchildren of James and Margaret. At this point, there is difficulty in reconciling things with Effie Maybelleís Penobscot River story.

The more we investigate these details, the chances are we will eventually settle on a story that is "close to accurate"... maybe.
                         research and observations by Jim Benson, a Douglas reseacher

1The role of the Jesuits in converting American Indians to Christianity is controversial. When they became less warlike they also became vulnerable to other tribes who were not converted to Christianity. As a result some Christianized Indians became wiped out by their more bellicose brethren. See ďBlack RobeĒ novel and movie which is based on real events.

The Douglases from Maine to the Midwest

"Those who went to New England . . . were screened to exclude the 'disruptive or obstinate' but to include craftsmen, physicians, midwives, ministers, and other useful people.  The chosen were those who appeared devout and were deemed able to 'shape the wilderness into useful space.'  They were to a large extent a cross section of English life.  Gentlemen, unlike elsewhere, led the migration into New England.

They crossed the ocean in groups, often as members of dissenting congregations who were familiar with one another and further bound together by an eagerness to worship God as they pleased.  They came expecting to stay and were called, appropriately, 'planters.'  They erected towns . . . and within the towns, villages that resemble those known at home. No two New England towns or villages were identical, but some general remarks can be made about how they were created, laid out, and governed.  As a rule in the early years of settlement, the central government of a New England colony assigned the site for a new town.  It dispensed the land to groups, never to individual families.  Individual families were rarely allowed to squat on a spot of their choosing.  An average site was parceled out to thirty or forty heads of households, which gave the town at the start a population of between 150 and 200 inhabitants.  Every town group contained an inner core of colonists who had known one another in England or in some previous American settlement.,

Apparently James was a squatter who did not take kindly to absentee proprietors who sent their agents to collect payment for land that he, James, felt belonged to no one before he established a claim.  James and his neighbors, Thomas Willson, Andrew Jack, Robert Douglas, William Willson and Hugh Willson held firm in their belief that they had a right to this land until in 1763 an arrest warrant was issued for all of the above.  An agreement was reached in 1765 when they each paid the proprietors 30 shillings for five acres of land each.2

"In 1714, eight businessmen and politicians, most of them Bostonians, bought title to the old Pejepscot patent, which the Council for New England had granted to its original proprietors in 1632.  This new group of entrepreneurs laid out the towns of Brunswick and Topsham and shipped the settlers, deeds in hand, from Boston.  This arrangement typified the kind of speculation in real estate that characterized a large part, but not all, of the expansion of New England in the eighteenth century."3  In 1746, I found a record of James DOUGLAS in a "List of Inhabitants..." filed by a local agent for the Pejepscot Proprietors.

This map of Sedgwick shows the area where our family settled.  "Twenty-Four miles S.S.W. of Ellsworth.  Terminus of Stage line to Bucksport.  Incorporated the 2nd town in the county and the 59th in the State.  January 12, 1789.  Named in honor of Major Robert Sedgwick.  Plantation name "Naskeag" - by the earlier adventure it was called "Nasket."  In a census of the people of this region in 1688, two French families of eight souls were found at Naskeag Point.  The first permanent settler was Andrew Black in 1759.  Four years later came Goodwin Reed, John and Daniel Black and two years later still, Rueben Gray.  In 1817, a portion of the town was annexed to Brooksville.  In 1849, another portion was taken to form Brooklin.  Population in 1880 was 1,128."

JAMES DOUGLAS and MARGARET Elliot ELLIOT filed a record of an intention to marry dated October 28, 1731 in York, Maine.   They raised nine children.  They were:

   1. MARY DOUGLAS was born 10 September 1732.
   2. JAMES DOUGLAS was born 8 October 1733 in Ft. George at Topsham, Maine.
   3. MARGARET DOUGLAS was born 23 June 1734.
   4. SARAH DOUGLAS was born 11 January 1735/36.
   5. ROBERT DOUGLAS was born 14 August 1736 in Ft. George at Topsham, Maine.
   6. ANDREW DOUGLAS was born about 1742.
   7. FRANCIS DOUGLAS was born 19 June 1743 in Topsham, Maine.
   8. WILLIAM DOUGLAS was born about 1750 in Ft. George at Topsham, Maine.
   9. JOHN DOUGLAS was born about 1760 in Topsham, Maine.

1David Freeman Hawke, Everyday Life In Early America, Harper and Row 1989, pages 16, 17
2 Pejepscot Papers, Vol. 3, Brunswick Records, Vol. 4, Topsham Records.
3 Eastern Land Papers, page 25, State of Massachusetts Archives - Bangor Historical Magazine, p. 665-667.

Generation II

1. James' namesake, James, born October 8, 1733, married a young lady named Mary.  On November 2, 1782 James conveyed 100 acres at head of Majabigwaduce River, Hancock Co., [Deed 3:105] to Joshua Grindle.  This deed was signed by his wife, Mary and witnessed by Joshua Snow and Uriah Graffam.  There is no record of Mary's maiden name, but I am exploring the possibility that she is the daughter of Joshua Snow.  Joshua lived next door to James Douglas.  James and Mary named one of their sons, Joshua S. and another son of theirs named his son, Joshua.  Joshua Snow was a resident of Sedgwick 17 years as of 1785 and appeared to play a big part in the lives of my ancestors in the form of witnessing legal documents such as deeds.  Remember though, Mary's paternity has not been proven. ("Mark Twain said, "History tells us that the truth is not hard to kill, but a lie told well is immortal ......... the internet harbors many "genealogists" busy achieving their immortality")

Later, James joined his brother, John, and moved to Penobscot.  James and Mary had six children:   

   1. JAMES DOUGLAS, b. 18 February 1774, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine.
   2. JOSHUA S. DOUGLAS, b. 29 March 1775, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine.  Possibly the namesake of Joshua Snow, who was a next-door neighbor and close family friend and possibly Joshua's grandfather. 
   3. ROBERT DOUGLAS, b. 18 January 1777, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine.  Endorsed for "service" at Brunswick on 4 August 1755.  Served as a sentinel under Captain Samuel Moody on 18 November 1764.
   4. ANDREW DOUGLAS, b. 4 October 1778, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine; married Eunice DOUGLAS on 26 March 1803, d. 22 June 1865, Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio.
   5. JOHN DOUGLAS, b. 29 November 1779, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine; m. MERCY DORR, 12 June 1812, Blue Hill, Maine; b. 17 May 1793.  John Douglas was a farmer and a mariner.  In 1784 he was located in Brooksville as a settler and proprietor.  He sold Lot 1-111 to Abner Dodge and the lot was sold to Joshua Grindle in 1793.  On 14 August 1786 a Lincoln County Deed shows that John Douglas of Naskeag (later known as Sedgwick) conveys land to Nicholas Snow.  The area that became known as Sedgwick was previously named Naskeag, presumably a name given by the Indians in the area.
   6. ISAAC DOUGLAS, b. 17 June 1784, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine; m. MERCY DORR, 14 June 1813; b. 8 February 1789.

2. Robert Douglas (born 14 August 1737-- August 14, 1736, there is a record of a baptism for Robert, son of James and Margaret Douglas in the First Church of Wells, Maine). He married Barbara Alexander on 2 October 1761 in Topsham, Maine. They apparently spent their life in the area as records show that Robert died in North Haven, Knox County, Maine. They had three children that I know of. They are:

   1. MARGARET DOUGLAS born 8 November 1762 in Topsham, Maine.
   2. BARBARA DOUGLAS born 4 December 1764 in Topsham, Maine.
   3. JAMES DOUGLAS born 2 November 1766 in Topsham, Maine.

3. Andrew Douglas married Jean or Jane Alexander on 30 October 1762 in Topsham, Maine. Andrew was born in 1740 in Topsham, Sagadahoc, Maine. He died in 1820 in Sebec, Penobscot, Maine. They had the following six children:

   1. SARAH DOUGLAS, b. 19 February 1763 in Topsham, Maine.
   2. ANDREW DOUGLAS died in 1763
   3. MARY DOUGLAS, b. 12 November 1764 in Topsham, Maine
   4. MARGARET DOUGLAS, b. 22 March 1767 in Topsham, Maine.
   5. JAMES DOUGLAS, b. 31 March 1769 in Topsham, Maine.
   6. JOHN DOUGLAS, b. 27 February 1770 in Topsham, Maine.

4. Francis Douglas married Rodah (Wilson?) about 1769. He was born on 19 June 1743 in Topsham, Maine. Francis and Rodah had ten children. They are:

   1. JOHN DOUGLAS birthdate unknown.
   2. MARY DOUGLAS b. 19 November 1769
   3. MARGARET DOUGLAS b. 9 November 1771
   4. SARAH DOUGLAS b. 1 June 1774
   5. JAMES DOUGLAS b. 3 November 1776 died 1808
   6. FRANCIS DOUGLAS b. 28 June 1779 died 30 January 1865
   7. NATHANIEL DOUGLAS b. 24 February 1783
   8. RODAH DOUGLAS b. 26 October 1786 died sometime after 27 July 1850 (?)
   9. ZEBULON DOUGLAS b. 21 April 1789 died sometime after 27 July 1850 (?)
   10. LETTICE DOUGLAS b. 23 November 1791 died 1863

5. I will have to mention James' brother, William, here also, because James' son, Andrew, born 4 October 1778 and William's daughter, Eunice, born 4 October 1781 married each other.  This caused me several years of confusion - first cousin marrying first cousin.  Every time I would search for Andrew's wife, this Eunice Douglas showed up with the same last name and birth date as Andrew.  I thought for sure my notes were wrong.  I finally reconciled this when I found their tombstones with the date of their death and their age at that time. (See the tombstones pictured on the Homepage.)

William Douglas born 23 October 1757 and Eunice (deBry/Steward) were married on 22 October 1776 in Topsham, Maine. William died about 1820.   (There are at least eight genealogists researching this family and they all show Eunice with either deBry or Steward or both.  To my knowledge, no one has been able to solve the mystery of her name.)  William and Eunice settled in the Topsham area of Maine and raised twelve children.  They are:

   1. JAMES DOUGLAS, b. 4 July 1777, Fairfax, Albion Co., Maine.
   2. MARGARET DOUGLAS, b. 20 February 1780, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine; She married Seth Dammon (Damon)31 May 1801, d. 3 January 1856,
   3. EUNICE DOUGLAS, b. 4 October 1781, Freetown, Fairfax, Kennebec, Maine; d. 1 October 1865, Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio.
   4. WILLIAM DOUGLAS, JR., b. 30 April 1782, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine.
   5. JEREMIAH DOUGLAS, b. 18 February 1787, Fairfax, Kennebec Co. Maine or Massachusetts; d. 9 October 1870, Volga, Iowa.
   6. MARY DOUGLAS, b. 18 June 1789, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine.
   7. FRANCIS DOUGLAS, b. 2 March 1792, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine.
   8. RUTH DOUGLAS, b. 23 June 1794, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine; d. 25 June 1853, Carroll, ME.
   9. ANDREW J. DOUGLAS, b. 13 February 1796, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine; d. 12 April 1867, Rising Sun, Ohio Co., Indiana.
   10. THOMAS W. DOUGLAS b. 19 April 1798, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine; d. 25 October 1865, Vermillion Co., Illinois.
   11. JANE DOUGLAS, b. 25 April 1800, Fairfax, Kennebec Co., Maine.
   12. JOHN DOUGLAS, b. February 1806, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine.

6. John Douglas was born about 1760 in Topsham, Maine. He married Thankful Black about 1780. They had two children. They are:

   1. JAMES DOUGLAS born 16 April 1781 and died 9 May 1864
   2. JOHN DOUGLAS born 5 July 1783 and died 1843

It's useful to read up on Maine's early (and continuing) extractive industry. In looking at places, be sure to factor in the fluidity of wood-cutters' residence. Following William Sr, John Smart, Jeremiah, and William Jr in the censuses, etc., finds them in one lumber camp after another. The extent to which whole families moved with the men's work is a question, as much such work is seasonal. I think it's likely that many, most, or all were subsistence farmers during the summer -- which suggests a degree of permanence -- and lumbermen otherwise, with meat hunting and fur trapping, and possibly other labor-for-hire jobs worked in as well. The same general mix of economic activity probably prevailed in WI. People tend to migrate to places where their tool sets and practical knowledge will serve them. As Cousin Effie Maybelle Douglas 4 points out, Jeremiah was noted in Adams Co WI for his team of horses. A lumberman's horses, I'd say. (BTW, Effie Maybelle Douglas Hart went by "May.") Referring to Cousin May's assertion, I'm curious how W.L. Douglas (Douglas shoes) figures into our tree, and I wonder if that family hasn't pursued genealogical questions about the identity of the Scottish Douglases who were the source of the would-be inheritance (which seems to be known about in the other branches of the American family).

My big-picture rule is that people tend to stay pretty much in place unless they are drawn to move by opportunity, and opportunity is generally recognized in simple economic terms -- can I make a better living? Often in America the magnet is availability of affordable land. Ideals like freedom of religion, etc., count too, but feeding, clothing, and housing the family come first. (I saw a talk by Elizabeth Shown Mills once, in which she started by showing a cartoon of two Pilgrim-garbed men standing next to a ship's rail. One is saying, "First I'm going to practice the religion of my choice, and then I'm going into real estate.")(John Goodwin Douglas, great-great grandson of Jeremiah Douglas and Margaret Smart)

Generation III

Maine marriage records show that Andrew and Eunice (Douglas) were married on 18 October 1803, in Clinton, Kennebec County, Maine.  They had the following children:

   1. JOSHUA DOUGLAS, b. 19 December 1803, Maine; m. MARY CLINKER d. 20 May 1871, Sugarcreek Twp., Wayne Co., Ohio.
   2. JOHN DOUGLAS, b. 4 February 1806, Sedgwick, Hancock Co., Maine.
   3. DAVID ORDWAY DOUGLAS, b. 14 May 1808; m. ADELINE BROWN, Sugar Creek Twp., Wayne Co., Ohio.
   4. THOMAS DOUGLAS, b. 11 November 1814, Maine or Massachusetts; m. MARGARET CLINTON Thomas Douglas, Margaret Clinton on 2 May 1848, d. 31 March 1893, Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio.
   5. (DAUGHTER) DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1815.
   6. EMILY DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1825; m. LYNVITT.
   7. MARY DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1825; m. MCCARTY.
   8. CHARLOTTE DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1827; m. NATHAN REED.

Sometime before 1828, Andrew and Eunice and their first four sons packed up their belongings and moved south to Ohio.4  It may be that the cold winters of Maine drove them south.  Or it could be that the promise of seemingly unlimited land lured them south and west.  Or it could be a combination.  Nevertheless, I found them in Wayne County, Ohio in the 1830 census.

The first three boys were young adults and while in Wayne County they married and settled in on nearby farms.  Thomas, the fourth son, was only 16 years old in 1830 so he moved west with his parents to Mechanicsburg, Champaign County, Ohio.

Andrew and Eunice lived well into their eighties on their farm in Mechanicsburg.  They raised four daughters and in their later years the census, records show a young man named Josiah was living with them.  Josiah was the oldest son of Andrew's oldest son, Joshua.  Therefore, he was Andrew's oldest grandson.  Andrew and Eunice were getting on in years and needed help with the farm.  I think Joshua sent Josiah to help out his grandparents on the farm.  Josiah stayed in the area, married and raised a family.  I have met some of his descendants.  His great-granddaughter, Marian, gave me the picture of his childen that is posted on this site.

My husband, Bob, our son, Doug, and I found Andrew and Eunice's tombstones in a little cemetery on Mr. Coffey's farm in the outskirts of Mechanicsburg, Ohio.  Along with them were the stones for Thomas and his wife, Margaret, and an unnamed baby girl Douglas.

Jeremiah and Margaret SMART were married on the 9th of May 1810 in Hampden, Maine. They had the following children: 

   1. CHARLOTTE BULL DOUGLAS, b. 9 August 1816 in Penobscot County, Maine married on 25 December 1842 to William Harrison Douglas, d. 18 October 1870 in Volga, Iowa .
   2. EMILY DOUGLAS b. circa , Penobscot County, Maine; married a Mr. Young.
   3. DAVID DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1819 in Penobscot County, Maine; d. 30 November 1864,in Point Bluff, Wisconsin
   4.JOSIAH FAIRFIELD DOUGLAS, b. 8 July 1822 in Penobscot County, Maine, married on 8 July 1846 to Nancy A. Damon, d. 31 March 1886 in Stoughton, Dane County, Wisconsin
   5. JEREMIAH DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1825 in Penobscot County, Maine; married on 5 July 1843 to Ellen Tusler, d. about 1891 in Dane County, Wisconsin.
   6. SOPHIA DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1826 in Penobscot County, Maine, married to Frederick Cummings, d. 4 January 1899 in Volga, Iowa.
   7. JOHN SMART DOUGLAS, b. 11 September 1828 in Penobscot County, Maine, married on 23 March 1856 to Isabele Amanda Oakes, d. 30 January 1917 in Grand Rapids, Wisconsin.

Jeremiah Douglass took his family west from Howland, Penobscot County, Maine, to Stoughton, Dane County, Wisconsin, around 1840. My father's cousin, Maybelle Douglas Hart, wrote in her 1936 manuscript that Jeremiah made the move at the urging of his cousins, Frank and Cushing Douglass. The only Cushing name association I have found is with William Cushing Hammatt, with whom the Douglasses and Smarts had several real estate dealings in Penobscot County. I believe there's likely to be a marriage or two somewhere behind these given and second names. (by John Goodwin Douglas) 

John Smart Douglas
Elizabeth Amanda Oakes

  Maybelle Effie Douglas Hart's 1936 manuscript chronicling her family's journey to the west.

There was another Jeremiah Douglass around this time who came from England and served in the War 1812. In the service of this country, he lost his right arm. Several of us who contributed to this website thought he was probably our ancestor, Jeremiah. We have since determined that he was not our man. Maybelle Douglas Hart, in her several drafts of her family's history, does not mention Jeremiah having a missing arm. She also said he was noted for his team of horses, which might be difficult for a one-armed man to hitch and handle.


Mary Douglas married Francis Ames or Eames on 10 May 1809. Mary was born on 1 June 1789 in Fairfax, Albion Co., Maine. She died on 12 May 1879 in Unity, Kennebec, Maine. Francis was born on 18 Apr 1786 in Jefferson, Lincoln, ME. He died on 31 July 1863 in Waldo Co., ME. They married on 10 May 1809 in Jefferson, Lincoln Co., ME. They had eight children:

   1.THANKFUL was born in 1811. She died in September 1829 in Jefferson, ME
   2.WILLIAM DOUGLAS was born in 1814. He died in 1883
   3.MARIA was born on 1 Dec 1815. She died in 1842
   4.JONATHAN was born on 5 February 1817 in Kenduskeag, Penobscot Co., ME. He died on 11 Jan 1898 in Kenduskeag. He married Betsey Pendergast Stockridge.
   5.PAUL was born on 9 February 1819 in Jefferson, ME. He died on 30 July 1896 in Jefferson.
   6.MOSES was born on 12 Aug 1823 in Jefferson, ME. He died in 1846.
   7.ELIZABETH was born on 8 March 1825. She died in 1895.
   8.FRANCIS was born in 1829. He died in 1918..
Generation IV

Joshua Douglas married Mary Clinker June 3, 1830 in Sugar Creek, Wayne County, Ohio. They had seven children. They were:

    1.MARIA was born in 1831 (probably in Wayne County, Ohio). She married Martin Emick on July 4, 1850 in Sugar Creek, Wayne County, Ohio.
    2.JOSIAH was born on 16 December 1832. He married Abigail Taylor on 11 October 1860 in Mechanicsburg, Ohio. He died 18 May 1920 in Mechanicsburg, Ohio.
    3.SUSANNA was born in Wayne County, Ohio in 1834. She married Henry Leichty on 23 February 1860 in Wayne County, Ohio. .
    4.THOMAS was born 25 September 1836 in Wayne County, Ohio. He married Mellisa J. Swinehart on 19 Mar 1863 in East Union, Wayne County, Ohio. He died on 21 Nov 1916 in East Union Twp.,
Wayne County, Ohio.
    6.REBECCA was born on 24 Oct 1841 in Wayne co., Ohio as the sixth child of Joshua Douglas and Mary Clinker. She died on 13 May 1916 in Apple Creek, and is buried in Apple Creek Cemetery, OH.
Rebecca Douglas married Hiram STAUFFER on 09 Nov 1879.
    7.DANIEL was born on 7 Sep 1845. He died 17 Sep 1874 and is buried in Arnold Cemetary, Richland, Wayne County, Ohio


Luella Rose Baldwin, John Thomas, William Arthur, Frank Dewan,  Charles Oscar, Leona and John T., Sr.

Thomas and Margaret (CLINTON) were married on the 2nd of May 1848 in Mechanicsburg, Ohio.  They had the following children:

   1. MARGARET DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1849, Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio; d. Bef. 1850, Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio.
   2. WILLIAM DOUGLAS, b. 25 July 1852, Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio; d. 30 March 1928, Lockington, Shelby Co., Ohio.
   3. NANCY E. DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1854; d. Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio; m. D. L. BOWEN.
   4. JOHN THOMAS DOUGLAS, b. 16 March 1856; d. 17 March 1930 in Bell County, Texas; m. LUELLA ROSE BALDWIN.
   5. THOMAS H. DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1858; d. Mechanicsburg, Champaign Co., Ohio.
   6. LEWIS DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1861; d. Hills Valley, Illinois.
   7. SOLOMON LINVILLE DOUGLAS, b. 01 November 1865; died somewhere in Texas.

Margaret died four days after the birth of her eighth child, Solomon Linville.  Although I could find no record of the cause of her death, I assume it was related to complications of childbirth.

Margaret's parents lived nearby in Urbana, Ohio.  Her father, William, was a Private in the War of 1812 in Captain Conners Company, Col. Stovers Regiment, General Winders Brigade.  He was in
Washington, D.C. just before it was burned and was in the skirmish at Bladensburg, Maryland.  He received land warrants of 120 acres for his service to this country.

Generation V

William Douglas married Mabel Elanore (Chapple) on April 18, 1877 in Urbana, Ohio.  "Ella" was born in Boston, Massachusetts on February 4, 1853 to William and Elizabeth Chapple of England.  They had five children:

   1. EARL DOUGLAS, b. Abt. 1878.
   2. BESSIE DOUGLAS, b. May 1880.
   3. J. RALPH DOUGLAS, b. July 1882.
   4. WILLIAM ABRAHAM DOUGLAS born 27 May 1884, m. IRVA Jean (WATSON)1 September 1909, d. 24 September 1910
   5. FLORENCE DOUGLAS, b. December 1888.


Thankful Ames (Eames) was born in 1811. Could not determine the name of her spouse. She died in Sep 1829 in Jefferson, Maine.

She had the following child:


Jonathan Ames was born on 05 Feb 1817 in Kenduskeag, Penobscot, ME. He married BETSEY PENDERGAST STOCKRIDGE. He died on 11 Jan 1898 in Kenduskeag, Penobscot, ME.

They had the following children:

   1. ELLA M. AMES was born in 1844. She died in 1898.
   2. JOHN F. AMES was born on 25 Jun 1846. He died in 1929.
   3. ISAAC WESLEY AMES was born on 22 Jan 1849. He died in 1942.
   4. ORION SHERMAN AMES was born on 04 Mar 1851. He died in 1934.
   5. MARCELLUS AMES was born on 29 Apr 1853. He died in 1898.
   6. MARGERY AMES was born on 14 Apr 1855. She died in 1882.
   7. MARY AMES was born on 21 Nov 1857. She died in 1876.
   8. CHARLES HERBERT AMES was born on 16 Aug 1859. He married GEORGIA MARY VARNEY. He died in 1947.
   9. FRANK AMES was born on 13 Sep 1861. He died in 1942.
   10. JENNIE V. AMES was born in 1864. She died in 1921.

********************************************************************************************************************************************************************************* This website is a work in process - more information and photographs will be added. The contents are the result of research and travels over the last 30+ years. Be advised that some UNVERIFIED details have been included as CLUES to assist in further research. If your Douglas line is not represented here, or if you have additions or corrections, please contact me. Any documented information or photographs to add to this history, would be extremely welcome. Contact me at the address below if you have something to add.


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