|1860 US Census, population schedule, Wild Cat District, Cherokee County, Georgia, USA|
(Hillhouse family outlined in blue, Putnam family outlined in pink)
I had to interrupt my husband's yard work to share my finding with him. Oh course, I was mentally doing my happy dance because I had just felt I would someday find something like this. Ever the realist, he asked what we would do with this information. This has lead to a few plans that could serve as answers to his question.
First, I decided to post about it. I see this as an example not so much of trying to prove what you think might have happened, but instead to be more aware of other people, relationships, or events that might become apparent when you are researching an ancestor.
Next, I'll be using HathiTrust Digital Library to look more closely at various regiments listed in the Roster of the Confederate Soldiers in Georgia. With so many relatives in my family and my husband's serving in the Confederate States Army in the companies coming from Cherokee County, Georgia, there may be members from both our families who served together in the same regiment or even the same company.
Later that same day, while looking through a Cherokee County Marriage Book. available online through the Georgia Virtual Vault, I noticed my 2nd Great Grandfather, William Hiram Dean, was listed as the minister performing a marriage. My husband's 2nd Great Grandfather, Elijah Hillhouse, was a Justice of the Peace in the same county at about the same time. Previously I had used the marriage books to attest to the names of spouses or the date of a marriage. Now I'll pay more attention to the minister's name or that of the Justice of the Peace who performed the marriage. There may turn out to be more family connections that occurred long before my husband and I ever met!
Finally, this had all been another reminder that these aren't just names on a census page. They are people. It is my husband's Great Grand Uncle Robert who had his spinster sisters Harriet and Elizabeth living with him for many years, even as he and his wife Semeline raised their three children. It is also my 3rd Great Grandfather Daniel Putnam, one of so many born in the Carolinas, lured to Georgia through the Cherokee Land Lottery of 1832 and the eventual resells of many lots, farming his land with my 3rd Great Grandmother Mary McConnell Putnam as they raised nine children. Real people with real stories worth celebrating.