Saturday, February 2, 2008

Trip to Mobile, Alabama - Search for Answers

Those questions and many more prompted a trip to Alabama for a Roberts’s family reunion, August 2005, at the invitation of Roy and Debbie Isbell.[i] The Isbells’ interest in historical architecture led them in 1994 to purchase and restore the endangered Roberts-Taylor House, a Greek Revival townhouse in Mobile, Alabama. For ten years Roy and his brother Ray have researched the Roberts family tree and uncovered a wealth of material, organizing much of it on a web site which provides a complete genealogy of Joel Roberts Ninde’s relatives. During the family reunion, oral interviews conducted with Joel’s familial descendants Elizabeth ”Beth” Condo Miller, Palmer Clarkston Hamilton, Mary Pillans Van Antwerp, and Mordecai “Mawk” Arnold were recorded and transcribed by Roy Isbell. [ii] [iii] [iv] [v] A question that has puzzled Fort Wayne researchers is the pronunciation of Joel's first name. Beth Condo Miller cleared up this question: Jo-el (long o and short (e) is the pronunciation for females and Joel (one syllable) for males. Most of the information included in this document can be found in files at the Roberts-Taylor-Isbell House, 910 Government Street, Mobile, Alabama, and at the Allen County Library Genealogy Department in Fort Wayne, Indiana. [vi]
[i] Questions were formulated by Angie Quinn, Executive Director ARCH, Architectural Preservation Organization, and Fort Wayne, Indiana.[ii] Descent order - Dr. Willis Roberts, Joel A. Roberts, Virginia “Jennie” (Roberts) Eberlein, Marietta (Eberlein) Paul, Elizabeth Zane (Paul) Condo and Elizabeth “Beth” (Condo) Miller. “The Descendants of Dr. Willis Roberts & Asenath Alexander.”[iii] Descent order - Dr. Willis Roberts, Laura M. (Roberts) Pillans, Harry Pillans, Palmer Pillans, Martha Torrey (Pillans) Hamilton, and Palmer Clarkson Hamilton. Ibid.[iv] Descent order - Dr. Willis Roberts, Laura M. (Roberts) Pillans, Harry Pillans, Harry “Hal” Torrey Pillans Mary (Pillans) Van Antwerp. Ibid. .[v] Descent order - Dr. Willis Roberts, Seth Willis Roberts, Mordecai Roberts, Miss Mordecai Roberts, Mordecai “Mawk” Arnold. Ibid.[vi] Editing by Joline Bowers, Leo, IN. Professor Christine Erickson, IPFW, Fort Wayne, IN, Bob Bulmer, East Lyme, Connecticut and Roy and Ray Isbell, Mobile, Alabama.

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