Friday, June 3, 2016

52 Ancestors – Tabitha M. Murphy (91-2016)

Tabitha M. Murphy, daughter of Martin William Murphy and Sarah Elizabeth Anderson, was born in Wetzel County, West Virginia in 1896. She was the 8th child of 11—Cora Belle Murphy, Edward Francis Murphy, Charles Homer Murphy, Essie Lee Murphy, William H. Murphy, Ella Mae Murphy, Arliff Barow Murphy, Tabitha M. Murphy, Cecil Pearl Murphy, Addie Opal Murphy, and Olive Ruby Murphy.

Tabitha’s was a short life having died in 1898 at the young age of two years. The circumstances of her death are unknown to me. She was buried at Anderson Bethel Cemetery in Littleton, Wetzel County, West Virginia.

I’ve been unable to find a record of Tabitha’s birth or death online. I’ve searched records in the Vital Research Records database of the West Virginia Archives and History website but nothing comes up. It’s possible they have a record somewhere and that I might find one if I went to Wetzel County but that’s not happening any time soon. Because Tabitha was born in 1896 and died in 1898, she was never recorded in census records. I wasn’t even aware of her existence until we visited Wetzel County several years ago and went to Anderson Bethel Cemetery where I found her marker. This was a good lesson to me to make every effort to walk the cemeteries when possible. I also learned to take pictures of the surrounding graves and to take notes of who is buried nearby. It’s a good possibility other family members are buried there, you just haven’t made the connection yet. In Tabitha’s case, I first found a metal marker stuck on a tree or pole. She also she had a stone marker in the ground that recorded her as the “daughter of Martin Murphy.” If someone hadn’t added that notation to her stone, I may have never figured out who she was.

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