Archiver > VASHENAN > 2010-08 > 1283312173

Subject: Re: [VASHENAN] The mystery of Henry Polk and John Ryman -Shenandoah County, VA
Date: Tue, 31 Aug 2010 23:36:13 EDT

Larry and Listmates, Here is something to consider..........

I'm am not willing yet to concede that Henry or John M. Polk were base-born
based on a marriage record where the father is not named. Many men died or
took off while their wives were pregnant and the women remarried and the
kid never knew who his real father was. Never assume anything.........find a
document........there is always a paper trail. You just have to know where
to look.
Vann says:
"Henry Polk resided with the family of John and Christina Ryman at the
time of the 1850 Census. There may have been some relationship of
Henry to 12 year old John M Polk in dwelling 1144. They are the only
two individuals with the surname Polk in this immediate area. When
John married he did not list the name of his father. He indicates that
his mothers name was Rebecca. This was a rather common occurrance for
base-born children. There is no evidence that Henry was the father of
John, however, it does pose an interesting question."
I'm sorry, no disrespect intended, but I don't believe that the above is
a question that should even be considered. Henry Polk born circa 1826 would
have been 13 years old when he fathered John M. Polk. I believe John born
circa 1837 is his youngest brother or half-brother. I believe they also had
a sister named Rosannah born 1831 and possibly a brother named Philip Polk.

One of two things happened to leave these two boys with family members.
Either most of the family died in one of the epidemics of Typhoid, Cholera,
or Smallpox that was going around between 1835-38 in Shenandoah County or
the man of the house went off and left the family and died or the family left
the area with the older children, leaving the two youngest behind, to be
sent for later and something happened and they were never sent for.

In the 1830 Federal Census there is the following family which may be the
family of Henry and John M. Polk.

1830 Federal Census: Virginia
Western District, Shenandoah County
Page 136
W. T. Allen, Enumerator


1 male under 5 years of age {Henry Polk}
1 male 5 and under 10 years of age
1 male 15 and under 20 years of age
1 male 40 and under 50 years of age {Head of Household John Polk}
1 female under 5 years of age
1 female 5 and under 10 years of age
2 females 10 and under 15 years of age
1 female 30 and under 40 years of age

Since Rosannah Polk was not born in 1831 and John M. Polk was not born in
1837, they are not reflected in this census.

There is no 1840 census for John Poke/Polk which re-enforces my premise as
to he died or left the area.

John might have married twice:
M/1: Catharine
M/2: Rebecca
If my premise is correct, then possibly John Ryman raised Henry Polk as a
son rather then a grandson, if one of his daughter married John Polk and
died in the epidemic after the birth of John M. Polk in 1837.

I found the following information about John Ryman.

John Ryman
Born: 23 August 1764, Probably Philadelphia County, PA, possibly son of
Ludwig Ryman
Died: 5 November 1858, Shenandoah County, Virginia
Married: Date Unknown to Christina Fadley
Born: 1769, Pennsylvania
Died: 1 November 1863, Rockingham County, Virginia

Supposedly John Ryman left a Will in Shenandoah County probated in 1859 but
I could find no evidence of this Will.

Children of John Ryman
1. Henry Ryman
2. Joseph Ryman
3. Jacob Ryman
4. John Ryman
5. David Ryman

6. Samuel Ryman
7. Daniel Ryman
8. Lewis Ryman
9. Elizabeth Ryman
10. Hannah Ryman {Could her name be Hannah Rebecca Ryman and married John
11. Catharine Ryman
One more thing. There had to be Polk families in Shenandoah County early on
since we found the following marriages:

Leonard Lonas and Mary Polk
7 June 1813
Bondsman: Adam Polk

John Polk and Cathrine Funkhouser
14 March 1811
Bondsman: Adam Polk

John Barhman and Elizabeth Polk, His Ward
9 June 1817

Simon Polk and Dorothy Dellinger
6 June 1844
Bondsman: Frederick Dillinger
Researched and Submitted by Gloria Bushong

This thread: