Before we go any further down the Abe family line I would like to pause and take a look at names. Some given names will be repeated many times. This apparently is causing considerable confusion for many genealogists searching the Abe line. Hopefully I can help clear up a couple of those issues.
If I counted right, the first name John is used seven times. Of those seven, John Adam is used three times. The names Frederick and Martha are also used three times. Elmira, Jacob, Mary, Nicholas, Sara, Virginia and William are used as first names twice. All these were used in just the first four generations.
I find online family trees all the time that have the wrong person with the wrong family. A lot of the confusion could be easily eliminated if researchers would remember to cross-reference the person with all available records (birth, death, marriage, military, burial, census, etc.). Try to curb some of the excitement of finding a possible match until you are sure it is the right one. Don't just accept the first one you run across even if it seems to be the right one.
The two names most confused are John Adam and Frederick.
#1. John Adam Abe (1782-1866) - husband of Annie Catherine and founding father of this Abe line. He usually went by his middle name Adam.
#2. John Adam Abe (1844-1914) - grandson of the #1 John Adam Abe. Son of Nicholas Abe and Lacy Ann Long. He also usually went by his middle name Adam.
#3. John Adam Abe (1880-1886) - great-grandson of #1 John Adam Abe. Son of Jacob Abe and Mary Buser.
#1. Frederick Abe (born between 1820 and 1825) - Son of #1 John Adam Abe. This Frederick, at this time, only exists by name in family stories passed down. The 1840 Census does list a male child born between 1820-1825. No record has been found to confirm him by name.
#2. Frederick Abe (1848-1929) - Grandson of #1 John Adam Abe and son of Nicholas Abe. He lived and worked in Mineral County, West Virginia. He is buried in the Abe Cemetery. This Frederick Abe DID NOT serve in the Civil War.
#3. Frederick Abe (1844-1862) - Grandson of #1 John Adam Abe and son of John Abe and Mary Margaret. This Frederick served in the Civil War in the 11th Virginia Cavalry. He was captured in Moorefield, West Virginia, and sent to Camp Chase Prison in Ohio. One month later, he was sent to the Cairo, Illinois prison hospital where died of smallpox at the age of 18. No burial information is known. He most likely is buried in one of the many unmarked graves near the hospital.
Be careful out there, especially with the #1 and #2 John Adam Abe and the #2 and #3 Frederick Abe. I will be covering the #2 John Adam and the #2 and #3 Frederick in future posts.