Saturday, June 19, 2010

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - A Prolific Dad

Hey genea-funsters, it's Saturday Night! Time for more Genealogy Fun.

Your mission for Father's Day, if you decide to accept it, is to:

1) Determine who is one of the most prolific fathers in your genealogy database or in your ancestry. By prolific, I mean the one who fathered the most children.

2) Tell us about him in your own blog post, in comments to this blog post, or in comments on Facebook.

Here's mine:

I tried to find a way in Family Tree Maker 2010, Family Tree Maker 16, RootsMagic 4 and Legacy Family Tree 7 to do this in the software, but I could not.

One of the most prolific fathers in my ancestry is Zachariah Hildreth (1754-1828), who had 9 children by his first wife, Elizabeth Keyes (1759-1793) whom he married in 1777, and 8 more by his second wife, Abigail Hart (1775-1846) whom he married in 1794. The children by each wife were:

by Elizabeth Keyes: Aaron Hildreth (born 1778), Elizabeth Fletcher Hildreth, Hannah Hildreth, Zachariah Hildreth, Lucy Hildreth, Patty Hildreth, Fanny Hildreth, Nabby Hildreth, James Hildreth (born 1793).

By Abigail Hart: Abigail Hildreth (born 1795), James Hildreth, Joseph Hart Hildreth, Mary Hildreth, Jonathan Stowe Hildreth, Elizabeth Hildreth, John Hildreth, Levi Hildreth (born 1808)

Of course, not all 17 children lived to adulthood. Four of the children born to Elizabeth Keyes died in infancy or childhood, and 3 of those born to Abigail Hart died young.

The family story is that Abigail Hart was helping Elizabeth (Keyes) Fletcher care for all of her children when Elizabeth died after childbirth, and then stepped into the mother, and wife, role.

It looks like poor Abigail cut Zachariah off after child #8 was born in 1808. She was only 43, but he was 54. I wonder how many descendants Zachariah Hildreth has? Perhaps another SNGF topic sometime!

Happy Father's Day!!!


Anonymous said...

It's been ages since I blogged. Here's my post My husband's ancestor had 21 children.

Jo said...

My most prolific ancestor is probably Richard Stevens (and his wife, Janet Forsyth) who had 13 children between April 1787 and 17 March 1812 in Fife, Scotland. I'm lucky enough to have their family bible :-)

Tina Sansone said...

Arthur Aubrey Murphy (7/6/1878-5/13/1955) was born in Hardeman County, TN and died in Booneville, Prentiss County, MS. He married Martha Jane Cox (11/2/1885-11/6/1958) on March 12, 1905 in MS. He was a farmer and a Minister. They had the following 13 children:

1.Lucretia Virginia Murphy (1906-1936)
2.Aubrey Vasco Murphy (1907-1994)
3. Eula Ola Murphy (1909-1982)
4.Nathaniel Brodie Murphy (1911-1982)
5.Paul Darcie Murphy (1913-2003)
6.Sarah Bonnie Murphy (1915-2002)
7.Martha Burma Murphy (1917-1995)
8.John Prentiss Murphy (1919-1994)
9.Living Murphy (1920)
10.Georgia Cordelia Murphy (1922-1987)
11.Living Murphy (1924)
12.Living Murphy (1925)
13.Living Murphy (1928)

Cyndi Beane Henry said...

LOVED doing this challenge Randy! My post can be found here:

My most prolific male ancestor was my very own grandfather! Fifteen children between 1896 and 1943.

Dr. Bill (William L.) Smith said...

Fun one for Dad' - Thanks, Randy. Mine is at

Curiously, both of mine are Civil War Veteran's... ;-)

Kathleen Moore said...

Thanks for this great idea!

Linda McCauley said...

John Covey Howard with at least 20 children -

Sara Greenleaf said...

Fun challenge! I was able use Reunion to determine which of my Ancestors had the most children. My post at:

Carol said...

Thanks for this challenge, I so needed a reminder of a good belly laugh, and this did it, 52 times over, ???????

Greta Koehl said...

Here is the URL to my post; it includes a list of the numerous (26 or 27) offspring of my great-great grandfather Joseph Madison Carroll Norman, the chronicling of which has been the subject of my endless Whine-o-rama for the past many months.

Cynthia Shenette said...

I don't have access to my database this weekend, so I'll have to do the best I can from memory. I just can't miss out on this one...

My great-grandfather Francois Chenette (1813-1886) was the father of 24 children by four wives. For all I know there may be more (children or wives), but haven't found them yet! My grandfather Frank Shenette (1871-1945) was born to Francois and his last wife Lucie Touchette (1847-1917). His last child, Lena (Chenette) Potvin was born in 1882 and died in 1961. My guess is the female population of Quebec breathed a collective sigh of relief when Francois finally died at the age of 73 in 1886.

I haven't blogged about Francois' prolificity at Heritage Zen yet, but I hope to in the near future.

Thanks for the fun!

Bill West said...

Mine's here, Randy:

kinfolknews said...

Here's mine Randy:

That was a really fun exercise! Thanks


Terri Buster said...

Happy Father's Day to my prolific ancestor!
Great fun Randy!

Shaz said...

Brother's Keeper makes it easy to find this type of info in their Custom Ahnentafel reports. This is the main reason I keep a copy of my database on BK.

I have two men that had 18 children (one in Poland and the other in Germany)with two or more wives. The winning-est couple were my 3rd great-grandparents in Poland, Ignacy Bauza and Maryanna Kilinska, who had 15 children 1815-1840, of these 11 survived.

Melissa Brown said...

great topic, here's mine:

Jo said...

Randy, fun challenge. Here is the url for my post.

My gtgtgtgdfather, Jonathan Wise had 18 children. 17 of them lived to adulthood.

Jean said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jean said...

One ancestor of husband was way ahead in that family with 15 children. My post is here: