The Keen Family of Broughton Gifford – Good Old Research and a DNA Mystery

I had done some preliminary research on my the family of my Great Great Grandmother, Dora Keen Wardell, a while ago. I found her and her mother and sisters in the 1841 Census in England. That info enabled me to figure out that they were from Broughton Gifford, Wiltshire.

Keen is a very common name in that area of Wiltshire, and to compound the difficulties of research in the 18th century, the families weren’t very unique when it came to first names.

Daniel Jane Keen marriageI am very confident that my Great Great Grandmother’s grandfather was a William Keen of Broughton Gifford. I am fairly confident that I know who is parents are, however, at this point I can’t be 100% sure. There were a few William Keens born about the same time in Broughton Gifford. Two of those are possibilities. A third William Keen who was the son of Daniel Keen and his first wife, Jane Shepherd, is the one that I am pretty sure is my ancestor.

I had been working on compiling as much data as I could for all of the Keen families in Broughton Gifford and attempting to connect them either to my family or others, when I found that I had a DNA match with a descendant of a Samuel Keen from Broughton Gifford.
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A New DNA Match Helps Connect Stanford Families

Mohill

Mohill, County Leitrim, Ireland Market Square

When I put together my first genealogy book back in 2013 I ran in to the challenge of deciding how to include not only my two direct Stanford lines, but also how to include the three other Stanford families in New Haven that I was pretty sure connected to one or the other of my Stanford lines but couldn’t prove it. I ended up making the book in three parts. The first two parts were my two families and the third was the three “probably related” families. One of which was the descendants of Patrick Stanford and Catherine Mulligan.

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Updated:Genealogy Research Helps Solve a Civil War Mystery

Kate Hewitt

Catherine Hewitt, the fiance of Gen. John Fulton Reynolds

Updated to add link to the article online:

History.net: The Lost Story of Kate the Secret Love of Gettysburg First Hero

A few years ago I helped, Jeff Harding, a battlefield guide at Gettysburg National Park, with some research concerning the monument for my Great Great Grandfather’s unit at Gettysburg. A few months ago he came to me with a new challenge concerning the fiance of General John Fulton Reynolds, the first officer killed at the Battle of Gettysburg.
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