A Manly Migration

Tonight I will share some of my in-progress research on my Manly family.

Manly Migration, Genealogy, Census, South Carolina, Iowa, Alabama, IndianaFor quite some time I knew that my 3rd Great Grandmother had the last name of Manly, but I had not been able to find the right records to trace her family further back with confidence. However, in the past couple weeks I have done some new research and have found some good information.

Mary (Polly) Manly was born in South Carolina in about 1803 according to the 1850 Iowa Federal Census. She was married to Thomas Bolin – Which is also spelled Bolen, Bowlin and even Bowling in different records.

I also knew that Thomas and Mary had married in 1830 in Perry, Indiana and I was able to trace how they came together.

There was a John Manly who lived in Wood Township, Clark County, Indiana in 1820 and this is the father of Mary.

By the 1830 census John Manly had moved down to Alabama.

Manly Migration, Genealogy, Census, South Carolina, Iowa, Alabama, IndianaHere is John Manly in the 1850 Alabama Federal Census showing him being born in South Carolina. Mary was the oldest daughter of John and from what I can tell the rest of the family moved south to Alabama just before she married Thomas Bolin.

In the past couple of years I have received DNA matches from the Manly family in Alabama. I had not had much luck following the paper trail, but I have finally been able to tie it all together with the 1820 census record in Indiana.

Manly Migration, Genealogy, Census, South Carolina, Iowa, Alabama, IndianaNow heading back all the way to 1800 we find John Manly Junior in the Laurens District of South Carolina. With him listed a Junior, this of course indicates that his father was also named John and this is the case as both in 1790 and 1800 there is a John Manly Senior also listed in the South Carolina Federal Census.

Another thing that had me mystified a bit was that Ancestry ThruLines had been showing the father of John Manly as a Captain Basil Manly. However, after doing some research on him I found that he was definitely not the right person. The DNA matches were all down from John Manly and not Captain Basil Manly, so I am not sure how their logic worked.

Captain Basil Manly was the head of a rich and influential family in North Carolina which because of the location was one of the many reasons I knew that the hint was wrong.  Now that I have the right person in my tree Basil is no longer showing up as a possible ancestor.

Manly Migration, Genealogy, Census, South Carolina, Iowa, Alabama, IndianaHere is the migration map for my branch of the Manly family. You can see that it starts in Laurens County, South Carolina and ends in Millersburg, Iowa.

Manly Migration, Genealogy, Census, South Carolina, Iowa, Alabama, IndianaHere we see the Manly migration to Limestone County, Alabama. I can just imagine the family parting with their daughter in Indiana as they headed south toward new opportunities.

I have friends who live near Limestone County, Alabama, so perhaps some day I will take a trip to visit where my 4th Great Grandfather lived. However, I need to do a lot more research first. I currently have DNA matches with 12 descendants of Mary’s brother Hutchison, so I am confident that my research is on the right track.

Perhaps some of the Alabama Manly family will see this and contact me.

Now back to more research.


p.s. I find that writing about my research helps me focus and even points me toward new information.

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8 Responses to A Manly Migration

  1. Audrey Manly Mabe says:

    I have William Manly in Laurens County SC, my 3rd great grandfather who left a will in 1799. Wife was Elizabeth in the will but no maiden name. I trace his descendants into Greenville SC and on to western NC. I can find nothing earlier than 1799 for William or Elizabeth.

    • vanbraman says:

      Audrey, there is a good possibility that William is the brother of John Manly Senior. John Manly Junior had a brother named William who may have been named for him.

      • Audrey says:

        There’s a possibility my William is a brother to John Sr. I communicated with a few researchers on Manly/Manley some years back and they had connected to John but none of us could ever prove a connection although we felt that the 2 Manly’s in Laurens Co late 1700-1800 had to be related.
        Thanks for your reply.

      • vanbraman says:

        Audrey, it may be too far back for a good match, but have you taken a DNA test?

    • Martha says:

      I also am a descendant of William Manly. I have his wife as Elizabeth Heath, dau. of William Heath (Hayth) Captain (1725–1775) and his wife Martha, but no documentation.

  2. Pingback: They Lived Near: Abraham Lincoln | Braman's Wanderings

  3. Sara Manley Taylor says:

    I am sara Manly Taylor William Manly is also in my direct family line. Father of Garlington George Manly. and his father was also William. I have taken the DNA test. I wouldn’t mind sharing what I know I know live in driving distance of Laurens S.C.

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