Monday: Map Day! — the Bonniwells & Co. and the 1850 census (part 2)

UPDATED, Jan. 9, 2023, to correct a few minor errors. Our December 15, 2022 post, The Bonniwells & Co. and the 1850 census (part 1), ended with a cliffhanger: So the members of the overland Bonniwell overland expedition were not enumerated on the decennial census while on the trail [in Nebraska] in the summer of 1850. … Continue reading Monday: Map Day! — the Bonniwells & Co. and the 1850 census (part 2)

The Bonniwells & Co. and the 1850 census (part 1)

The seventh decennial federal population census was officially enumerated for all persons living in the United States on June 1, 1850. For the first time, all (free) persons were to be listed in the census schedules by their full names.1 But as we discussed previously2, while the actual enumeration of the 1850 census should have … Continue reading The Bonniwells & Co. and the 1850 census (part 1)

The Bonniwell Bible’s provenance or, Who Owned It & When?

Provenance Provenance is an important concept for historians, collectors and museums. It refers to the chain of ownership of any collectible item, including manuscripts, artworks, official documents or, in our case, a family Bible. Establishing the provenance of an item—such as the Bonniwell Bible—from its creation to the present day is important for several reasons: … Continue reading The Bonniwell Bible’s provenance or, Who Owned It & When?

The Bonniwell Bible comes home to Mequon

UPDATE, Nov. 30, 2022: The discussion of the William Bonniwell signatures and dates, below, is not correct. I have lined-through the incorrect paragraph and added the correct info in two new paragraphs below the original misinformation. It may not look like much on the outside. It’s old. Not very big. Whole pages are missing, others … Continue reading The Bonniwell Bible comes home to Mequon

The Bonniwells & Co. in California, 1849 & 1850

Our last two posts focused on the evidence we have that documents the Bonniwell family’s two-part trip west to the gold fields of California: by the Panama shortcut in 1849 and by the overland route in 1850. Today I’d like to focus on the members of Bonniwell company after the end of their westward voyage(s), … Continue reading The Bonniwells & Co. in California, 1849 & 1850

Gold! – The Bonniwells go west…but when? and who?

UPDATED, May 27, 2022 with a few minor edits for clarity. Today, in part 8 of our series documenting the life of Clark family neighbor (and in-law) Alfred T. Bonniwell and his large extended family, we begin a fresh look at some documentary evidence that complicates and enriches our understanding of how the national “Gold … Continue reading Gold! – The Bonniwells go west…but when? and who?

Alfred Bonniwell documents – part 7: landowner, 1845

When the extended Bonniwell family arrived in Wisconsin Territory in May, 1839, youngest son Alfred T. Bonniwell was not quite two months past his 13th birthday, and his brother Walter was only two years older. Because of their youth, neither Alfred nor Walter were able join their mother and brothers as they purchased government land … Continue reading Alfred Bonniwell documents – part 7: landowner, 1845

Alfred Bonniwell documents – part 6: U.S. Citizen, 1849

Today’s post in our Bonniwell document series1 focuses on one important item, Alfred T. Bonniwell’s Petition for Naturalization as a United States citizen, completed in Milwaukee, at the U.S. District Court for the District of Wisconsin, November 6, 1849. Bonniwell, Alfred, Petition for Naturalization 6 Nov 1849; for full citation see note 2, below. Click … Continue reading Alfred Bonniwell documents – part 6: U.S. Citizen, 1849