Monday, April 21, 2014

52 Ancestors - #16 Fidelia N. Riggs – What in the World does the N Stand For?

Fidelia N. Riggs was born in Woodbridge, Connecticut on April 21, 1812. She was the daughter of James Riggs and Pamelia Carrington, and had the following brothers and sisters: Julius, Edwin, Lafayette, Dennis, Daniel, Anna Eliza, Sarah, Helen, Frances, Cynthia, and Martha. Fidelia is my great great great grandmother. 

Fidelia married my great great great grandfather Thomas Tubbs Grave (born June 14, 1808) in 1830 in Dexter, Jefferson County, New York. A story that has been passed down from one generation to another is about how Thomas and Fidelia met. Fidelia was a noticeably pretty girl and as a young lady she went visiting in Herkimer, New York. One Sunday she went to church there wearing a "scoop bonnet" with the entire front filled with roses. Thomas Graves was also there that morning and upon seeing Fidelia among those pink roses, he was so smitten by her beauty that he never looked at another woman. 

Thomas and Fidelia’s first child Henrietta M. was born in January 17, 1831 in New York. Their second Pamelia Fidelia was born January 1833 also in New York State along with Cynthia Elizabeth in 1835, Lydia I. in March 1837, Lafayette William on April 21, 1839, Sarah Frances in 1841, Thomas Jefferson in 1843, Anne Eliza on April 10, 1847 and my great great grandfather James born January 2, 1850. 

Sometime in 1850, Thomas and Fidelia went west, traveling through the Great Lakes to Horicon, Dodge County, Wisconsin.  By August 2, 1850 they were living in Hubbard. They bought a farm near Oak Grove, Dodge County, near where Morrison Barott later settled. (Their daughter, Cynthia later married Alfred Barott, son on Morrison and Diana Barott). Thomas and Fidelia built a beautiful, brick house there that still stands.

Thomas and Fidelia’s daughter Pamelia Graves married Burness Crawford; Henrietta married Mortimer Sayles; Sarah Frances married Henry Duboise; Lydia married first Hugh Devlin and then upon his death his brother Robert; Lafayette William married Emily Stratton; and my great great grandfather James married Effie Beaubier. Thomas Jefferson Graves never married and died in the Civil War. My great grandfather Jefferson Thomas was named for him.

Thomas Tubbs Graves died December 11, 1867 In Oak Grove Township, Horicon County, Wisconsin. In the 1870 census Fidelia is 56 years old and living alone with one of her grandchildren – six year old Cora Sayles.

Fidelia died on August 21, 1871 in Horicon, Dodge County, Wisconsin and is buried at Wruke Cemetery in Horicon with her husband. In May 2001 Thomas and Fidelia’s descendants erected a new tombstone for their grave.

Some things we may never know and I think what the N stands for is one of them. I didn’t find any Carrington or Riggs relatives that had names beginning with N. None of the records that I have found ever had anything more than just the initial.

(Some of the information here was provided by the great granddaughter of Cynthia Elizabeth Graves Barott – Viola Cayo Schnake Walden. I would like to thank previous generations again for writing it down and passing information along.)

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