Thursday, May 30, 2013

Treasure Chest Thursday - 1870 U.S. Census Record for Jonathan Oatley

It's Treasure Chest Thursday - time to look in my digital image files to see what treasures I can find for my family history and genealogy musings.

The treasure today is the 1870 United States Census record for Jonathan Oatley (one of my 3rd great-grandfathers) in Killingly (West Killingly Post Office), Windham County, Connecticut:





The Joseph Oatly household:



The extracted information for the household, enumerated on 12 August 1870:

*  Joseph Oatly - age 53, male, white, a Stone Cutter, $4000 in real property, $850 in personal property, born Rhode Island, a male citizen of U.S. age 21 years or older, a male citizen of the U.S. age 21 years or older whose right to vote has been denied or abridged on other grounds than rebellion or other crime.
*  Cynthia Oatly - age 55, female, white, keeping house, born Rhode Island
*  Joseph F. Oatly - age 17, male, white, no occupation, born Conn.
*  Alice Oatley - age 14, female, white, at school, born Conn., attended school in last year
*  Jonathan Oatly - age 79, male, white, at home, born Rhode Island, a male citizen of U.S. age 21 years or older

The source citation for this census entry is:

1870 United States Federal Census, Windham County, Connecticut, Population Schedule, West Killingly: Page 445, dwelling #725, Family #1045, Joseph Oatly household; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com); citing National Archives Microfilm Publication M593, Roll 116.

The only obvious errors in this enumeration of the Joseph Oatly family with his father, Jonathan, residing with them, is the surname, which most records spell as "Oatley."  Jonathan Oatly was age 79 on the official census day of 1 June 1870  (having been born in July 1790) and was age 80 when the enumerator visited in August.

The most intriguing item on this census record is the last column for Joseph Oatly.  There was a mark there for him - indicating that he was a male citizen of the U.S. age 21 years or older whose right to vote has been denied or abridged on other grounds than rebellion or other crime.  I had never noticed that column before!  What does that mean?  Why would a person be denied the right to vote if he had committed no crime?  I would understand a column that enumerated those whose right to vote was denied or abridged for being a rebel, especially right after the Civil War.  Perhaps Joseph Oatly had not paid his taxes, or was judged a bad citizen.  

The mark in column 20 seems intentional.  There's another mark further down the page for a 19 year old man, but there is no summation at the bottom of the page.  

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2013/05/treasure-chest-thursday-1870-us-census_30.html

copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

3 comments:

ponyswimgal said...

Really interesting. Did he fight for the Rebels in the Civil War?

Celia Lewis said...

Perhaps he had mental illness, or a medical/physical condition limiting his ability to vote (stroke, blindness, epilepsy, etc.)... Maybe there's a clue somewhere in the year or three before this census, in a newspaper? Puzzling, isn't it.

woodelf said...

Now that is interesting. How did I miss that section?? I checked my Confederate guy in the 1870 and that was not checked off for him, so having fought for the South did not seem an automatic disqualifier.