Another Ann: Another Possibility

When I found The Adventures of Ann: Stories of Colonial Times by Mary Eleanor Wilkins Freeman, I had to get it and read it. Here is another Ann of story who lived but a generation or two before our own great-great-grandmother Ann. What light might the life of the Ann of the novel shed on the Ann of our family?

Ann of The Adventures of Ann was five years old when her mother remarried. The step-father did not want to support the first husband’s child, so he and the mother indentured Ann out to service at the tender age of five. If there is a reason for a girl to grow up and not know her maiden name, this is a good case.

The colonial era and even into the early years of America’s emergence as a nation saw a great many early deaths. There were the wars and plagues, killer flu seasons, not to mention private battle and Indian attacks. It was not uncommon for a woman to take a second husband, nor for a man to take a second wife.

So here we must pause to conjecture. Did our Ann lose her birth family at an early age? That is one possibility for her not passing her maiden name on to her children. The children may not have known her family because she herself may have not learned it.

Exploring History through Ancestry and Literature