Saturday, October 25, 2014

52 Ancestors: #42 Thomas Worland's Wheel Chart

Thomas Worland's Wheel Chart, which includes 75 grandchildren.
I descend from Thomas' son Stephen, then from Stephen's son John.
One of most useful and interesting genealogical treasures I have inherited is a book about the Worland family.  One Man's Family, written by Olive Lewis Kolb with the help of two Worland descendants, is well over 1000 pages long, including maps, biographical sketches, wills, and family pedigrees.  Hidden within its many pages is this wheel chart of Thomas Worland's family. The wheel chart makes it easy to see how often family names are reused.

Thomas Worland was the eldest son of John Worland III and Mary Brady.  He was born June 11, 1774 in Maryland, probably in Prince George's County.  He assumed responsibility very early in life.  His father's will, written just before Thomas' 16th birthday, named him as co-executor with his mother. (One Man's Family by Kolb)

Thomas married nineteen year-old Virlinda Hardy on December 8, 1799 in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Thomas and his wife raised a large family of 13 children, who all reached adulthood.  Barnabas, a younger brother of Thomas, married Virlinda Hardy's sister, Theresa.

Thomas, Barnabas, and most of the Worland family joined with about 60 other Catholic families in a compact to migrate to Kentucky between 1785 and 1807. This migration was inspired by the great poverty being endured in Maryland and the promise of a better life in Kentucky. By 1810, almost all of the Worland known to be living at that time were in Kentucky.  (One Man's Family by Kolb)

Thomas and Barnabas Worland [were] worthy and respectable citizens, always in active and useful occupation. (The History of Pioneer Lexington, Kentucky by Charles R. Staples)  Thomas and his brother Barnabas seem to have been very closely associated until Thomas decided to leave Kentucky in 1828 and begin a new life in Indiana.  They likely never saw each other again, since Barnabas later gathered up his family and permanently settled in Missouri.

St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church
Thomas took up his residence in a roughly-hewn log cabin situated near the Little Blue River, one mile east of Shelbyville.  In the fall of 1828, the first Catholic Mass in history of Shelby County, Indiana occured in this house.  At that time, the congregation numbered about 30 members.  On September 6, 1838, a contract was signed to build a church for $619.00 on two acres of land donated by Thomas Worland. The St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church was built in 1839.

Two of Thomas' daughters, Mary Ann and Eleanor, entered convents. Eleanor became "Sister Mary Saint Paul"; Mary Ann became "Sister Mary Clara."  Sister Mary Clara later wrote a book entitled Lives Of the Saints, where she described the Worland family's influence on Catholicism in Shelby County.

Thomas Worland's youngest daughter, Eulilia, was "feeble-minded." According to Thomas' will, five hundred dollars (in addition to her portion of the estate) was to be set aside after his death for her support.  She only lived nine more years after her father died.

Thomas Worland died July 13, 1850 in Shelby County, Indiana.  He was buried at St. Vincent's Catholic Cemetery, on the land he donated to the church.

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