Thursday, March 23, 2006

Grandma Phoebe Conrad

Phoebe (Conrad) Skinner is, as female ancestors tend to be, hard to know. Here are a few things we can pull from the lives of the men around her.

From her father's, Daniel Conrad's will1 we can see that Phoebe's dad was a character. The will also indicates that she was raised with slaves in the household. Census records indicate that she became Alexander's second wife when she was about 15 and he was about 22. Fifteen was very young in the 1800s, just as it is today. Unlike most of her neighbors, Phoebe could read and write. Her husband, Alexander, could not.

She and Alexander both grew up in pioneer homes and they hued their life together from the wilderness. They began in the wilderness, but their neighborhood became a settled farming community during their lifetime and they were, in the way of that place and time, rather wealthy. Phoebe bore fourteen children, which is a goodly number even by the 1800s standards. Some of her sons and sons-in-laws served in the Confederate Army. Her husband and others fought the Yankees as partisans and the struggle they endured continued long after the war ended.

She brings some of our most interesting ancestor stories in her heritage. Anyone from Orlando with a Skinner or Conrad in their lineage, which is just about all of us, inherits these stories. Phoebe (Conrad) Skinner's father's father, Swiss immigrant Jacob Conrad, Jr. fought in the Revolutionary War. Through her father's mother, Hannah Bogardus, she relates us to Humphrey Bogart!

Her mother's grandfather's story is one of the best Revolutionary War stories we have. Her great-grandfather Peter Shields came to the colonies to fight for the King with Burgoine's army and switched to the Colonial Army. See the entry for Mar '06 Revolutionary War Veteran Peter Shields

1. A transcription of Daniel Conrad's will can be found in Darrell Grove'sRootsWeb family tree at


  1. She was my ancestor too. I'd love to find out more! Thanks for the entry.

  2. my great grandfather was ezra henline so that would make her my great great great grandmother also finding out we are kin to humphrey bogart is just to cool :)