I wrote this article for the Lawrence County Genealogical Society newsletter early 2006. I’m sharing my older articles on my blog so that they might help researchers online.
My interest in the Ackman family begins with my great-great-great-great grandmother, Artemecia Jane Ackman, born 30 October, 1846, in Kenton County, Kentucky. She was the daughter of Isaac Ackman and Nancy Harmon, who, by 1850, were established in Schuyler County in Western Illinois. When I moved to Lawrence County, bordering Indiana on the eastern side of Illinois, I noticed the Ackman name in the area. It didn’t take long to find a connection between the Lawrence County family and the Kenton County clan.
Alma Ackman Rainey published a history of the Ackman family in 1965. In her work, A History of the Ackman Family, 1695-1965, she traced the Southeast Illinois Ackmans, and also included some of the Western Illinois branches.
Rainey’s work states that there were three brothers, William, Charles, and John, who fought in the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. She gives an incomplete list of the children of William Ackman (Norton’s ancestor). She also states that Charles Ackman married Sallie Johnson, the daughter of Thomas Johnson who was related to the Johnsons of Georgetown, Kentucky. The children of Charles and Sallie Johnson are listed as Rebecca, born 26 March, 1807; Henry, Mary Ann, Malissa, Sally, and John. Charles Johnson “Johnst” Ackman, born in Maryland, 02 September, 1825, died Sept. 7, 1870.
Her words are vague, but it seems she believed the father of Charles Johnson was this older Charles who married Sallie Johnson.
“Charles Ackman died at sea. After the death of Charles Ackman the family moved to northern Kentucky where Charles Johnson Ackman grew to manhood. He later went to Lawrence County, Illinois—entered land and bought the same outright. Married Nancy Jane Berkshire of Boon County, Kentucky; born July 8, 1829—died July 26, 1897. Married June 15, 1848 by the Justice of the Peace James Nabb, Lawrenceville, Illinois. Children: Francis Marion, born 1849; Charles Henry, born 1851; George Washington, born 1854; Theodore, born 1855; California, born 1858; John Wesley, born 1861; Mary Ann, born 1868; and Howard Johnson, born 1870.”
There seems to have been some confusion between Charles Johnson “Johnst” Ackman of Lawrence County, and an older, earlier Lawrence County man named, Charles Ackman. Records in Lawrence County, Illinois, prove that Charles Johnson Ackman was the son of Charles and Margaret Ackman, not Charles and Sallie. The Charles and Sallie Ackman that Mrs. Rainey named are most likely, Johnst’s grandparents.
Dorchester County, Maryland, marriages list the union of Charles Ackman to Sarah Walker on 11 May, 1796. The birth of Charles Johnson Ackman is sometimes given as Dorchester County, Maryland, so there is a strong probability that these people are the Charles and Sally that Rainey describes. However, Sally (often a nickname for Sarah) is not a Johnson, she is a Walker.
A Charles Ackman is listed in Fayette County, Kentucky in the 1830 census. This man had married Margaret Johnson on 10 November, 1824. (Fayette County Kentucky Records, Vol. III, by Cook and Cook lists Acman as ACMAR.) Benjamin M. Taul was surety for this marriage. By 1830, the couple had two males and one female under 10 in their household.
Charles Ackman and his wife, Margaret, moved to Lawrence County, Illinois. He entered land on 6 January, 1837. The family is listed in the 1840 census with the following data: One male 40-50 (Charles), one female 40-50 (Margaret), two males and one female 10-15 (Charles Johnson, John Henry, and Mary Ann), three females 5-10 (Sarah, Margaret, and Susan), and one female under 5 (Rebecca).
This Charles Ackman died on 5 February, 1849, leaving a will. In it he names his wife, Margaret, and sons, John Henry and Charles Johnson. The daughters are mentioned, but not named. The later estates of John Henry and Johnson verify the names of these daughters.
Charles Ackman is buried in the Ackman-Hollister Cemetery, south of Lawrenceville on Route 1. The tombstone reads, “Charles Acman, born March 27, 1801, Died February 5, 1849, 48 years.” (Note: Irene Black’s Cemeteries of Lawrence County, 1976, gives the death as 1819 and the age as 18. The correct date and age were verified at the cemetery by Norton, December 2006.)
The 1850 Census of Lawrence County, Illinois, listed the widow and her family living next door to Charles Johnson and his new wife.
Dwelling/ 543/543 Name age occupation birthplace
Johnson Ackman 25 Farmer KY
Jane 20 KY
F. Marion 01 IL
Family Margaret Ackman 49 KY
John 22 Farmer KY
Mary Ann 21 KY Margaret 19 IL
Susan 15 IL
Rebecca 14 IL
During the remainder of the decade, Margaret’s children married and left the home.
Margaret Johnson Ackman died in May, 1860. She is listed on the 1860 Mortality Schedule for Denison Township. She was 60, a widow, born in Kentucky. She died from consumption. Written above her name was the name of a grandson, Albert W. Ream, age one.
John Henry Ackman, born about 1828 in Kentucky, married Emeline Riggs on 14 September, 1854. He died in the fall of 1859. Probate records are in Box 25 at the Lawrence County courthouse. An inventory of John Henry’s property is dated 27 November, 1856. Purchasers of personal property included Rebecca, Margaret, Susan, and Johnson Ackman, and Hugh Seeds. One receipt to Dan L. Gold, dated 5 September, 1856, to Coffin Trimmings for wife–$3.50. Lucy E. “Emeline” Ackman, wife of John H. is buried at Ackman Cemetery; death 28 June, 1855.
Mary Ann, born 1830 in Kentucky, married Samuel Seeds, 5 December, 1854. She and Samuel were deceased by 1880. Their sons, Edgar and Charlie were living with neighbors. Two daughters, Belinda J. and Susan A., are buried in the Ackman Cemetery.
A Miss Margaret Ackerman and Joseph Schaumbuss took out a marriage license in 1858, but no return was filed. Margaret, born about 1831, later married Samuel V. B. Ream. She died 5 Aug 1860 a few months after her baby, Albert W.
Sarah Ackman, born 13 April, 1833, died 5 August, 1846 and is buried beside her father in the Ackman Cemetery.
Susan Ackman married William McDonald, an Irish immigrant. They are listed in the 1860 Census of Denison Township next door to Fredrich and Rebecca Ackman Brody. Rebecca married Frederick Brady (also spelled Fredrich Brody or Baide) on 4 August, 1858. Rebecca died before 31 December, 1861, when Fredrich (Fredrick Brade) married Malissa Tague. Rebecca is buried in the Ackman Cemetery.
Charles Johnson Ackman died on 7 September, 1870 and is buried in Ackman Cemetery. His widow, Nancy J. Berkshire Ackman married Robert Tarkington (or Talkington) on 4 December, 1879. She died 26 July, 1897, and is buried in the Ackman Cemetery under the name of Ackman.