Was Nancy Burnum really just 10 years old when son William “Billy” Golden was born in 1854?

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WARNING - Read the Notes!

Was Nancy Burnum really just 10 years old when her son William “Billy” Golden was born in 1854? Her birth date is listed in many Ancestry.com family histories as 3 October 1844.

Billy’s marriage certificate lists his parents as William Golden and Nancy Burnum.

>>> Per the 1880 census for Billy and his family, his father (William Golden) is listed as having been born in South Carolina and his mother (Nancy Burnum) in Alabama. Parent names were not listed in census but their state of birth was.

I believe that family historians have copied and pasted an error which has perpetuated itself as users of Ancestry.com click-to-add without thinking about the relationship of dates to the information being added.

This is probably an old error. Ancestry now checks the dates as you enter them and lets you know that a person would have been too young to have a child or to have entered into marriage.

10 is just too improbable an age. It is not medically impossible, but not likely that Nancy Burnum was born in 1844 and her son was born in 1854. … If she were 12 then maybe we would have to rethink that. Even in 2016 it was still possible for a 12 year old girl to be consummated and legally married off in the USA … (see More info at this link)

The probable error: The birthdate of 3 October 1844 matches that of Nancy M. A. Adamson who married to William F. Golden. These Goldens lived in Clayton County, Georgia. There is evidence of Nancy M. A. Adamson’s birthdate.

There is no evidence of Nancy Burnum’s birthdate nor her parentage presented in any of the many family histories that list her birthdate as 3 Oct 1844.

There is also no known documentation nor evidence for the identity of her husband William Golden’s birthdate or parentage. Both were probably born in the 1820s or 1830s.

Best regards,
William “Bill” Golden
… yet another William Golden! but not known to be related.
Norfolk1956@gmail.com


You are welcome to add to or to correct this story by contacting: Bill Golden, Norfolk1956@gmail.com

BTW – I look forward to sharing your stories, photos and in-search-of quests. Contact me at the email address above.

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