06 March 2013

Ambrose Johnson's Authentic Wife

The widowed Mrs. Lucinda Wells married Mr. Johnson.  Her husband, Elisha Wells, died in Mississippi during his service in the Civil War.  Turned out that happiness with Mr. Johnson was not to be (except for the birth of a daughter).  Lucinda discovered that Ambrose Johnson was a bigamist and had a wife still living in New York state.

No divorce was necessary since Lucinda was never legally married to Ambrose Johnson.  Still, she had some 'splaining to do to the Lapeer County Probate Court judge as to why some of her court papers were filed under the name of Mrs. Lucinda Johnson.  The U.S. Government needed an explanation, too, hence the many affidavits in the Elisha/Lucinda Wells Civil War pension file that referenced Ambrose Johnson's New York family.

Cynthia  Johnson was identified as Ambrose Johnson's wife. Mrs. [Lydia] Cynthia Jones and Ambrose Johnson were married 1 Sept 1853, in Genesee Co., New York, per an affidavit from Cynthia Johnson of Erie Co., New York, found in the Wells pension file.

Sarah Jones, age 20, of Newstead Twp., New York, daughter of Robert H. and Cynthia Jones also contributed an affidavit.  Sarah stated that her father, Robert died in Wyoming County, New York about 8 June 1850. Sarah indicated that her mother and Ambrose Johnson lived together as husband and wife until February of 1861 and believed that Johnson left for Michigan.  Her mother lived in Newstead, Erie County, New York.  [Page 93 of the Elisha Wells file]

United States Census, 1850
Bennington, Wyoming, New York, United States
Household Gender Age Birthplace
Robert H Jones  M 42 England
Lydia C Jones F 29 New York
Richard M Jones M 8 New York
Mary L Jones F 5 New York
John F Jones M 3 New York
Sarah E Jones F 1 New York

Richard M. Jones, age 27, of Pembroke, Genesee County, New York, who was Cynthia and Robert's son, also contributed.  He believed that Ambrose Johnson left New York for Lapeer County, Michigan.  There has never been a divorce and no claims of a divorce on behalf of his mother.

New York, State Census, 1855
 E.D. 2, Newstead, Erie, New York, United States
Household Gender Age Birthplace
head Ambrose Johnson M 43
wife Lydia C Johnson F 36 [Cynthia]
stepson Richard Johnson M 13
stepson John Johnson M 8
stepdaughter Sarah Johnson F 6
son Milo Johnson M 0

William U. and Pamelia Dunnett of Newstead, Erie County, New York, stated that they were keeping a hotel in Bushville, Batavia, Genesee County, New York, and that Cynthia and Ambrose Johnson were married at their house.

Lucinda (the illegitimate wife) was living in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada with Lucy Taylor (who was her only child with Ambrose Johnson).

I'm not related; no further information other than what was written in other "Detour Through History" blog posts.

No comments: