Census Tip 2 – Wade Hampton Borin

I’ve tasked myself to be the go-to person for my surname,” Dardinger.”  I can do this because there have only been a couple of hundred persons born with the surname Dardinger, plus a somewhat smaller number of women who took the surname when they married a Dardinger man.  Most of the known Dardingers are descended from a Stephen Dardinger who came to America from Switzerland about April 1, 1858 along with his wife and three children.  Later 6 or 7 more children were born here [his obit states he had 10 children, but I only have information about 9 offspring and I don’t know if the 10th, a female who presumably died young, was born in Switzerland or America.]

Among the other people who have been born with the surname Dardinger, the largest contingent were the descendents of another Stephen Dardinger who moved to America somewhat earlier than my Stephen and settled in Marshall County, VA/WV.  Since both of the Stephen Dardingers had children named Mary Ann and John, it’s easy to get the two families confused, and I did so early on.  I’ll detail the confusion which ensued from this in another blogpost when I have a chance.

This post concerns the husband of the Mary Anne Dardinger of the West Virginia Dardingers (as I call them.)  Wade Hampton Borin is an interesting character on a number of counts and I’ll probably be posting several times on him.  This post will, however, be limited to discussing how to use search functions to find individuals in censuses when their surnames in a census aren’t what they should be.  I’ve had several correspondents for the Borin line over the years and one of them was interested in finding Wade’s parents, but wasn’t having much success.  She had information indicating that he’d lived in South Carolina, in particular in Pickens, SC.  So I decided to help her out.  A standard search on the surname came up with nothing so first tried several possible variants of the Borin surname, including putting in Wild cards.  Again no success.  So I finally decided that Wade wasn’t a particularly common given name and I did a search of the 1850 census in Pickens Count, SC for the first name Wade.  I skipped down the the B’s and sure enough there was a Wade H Burden aged seven living in a somewhat confusing family.  I reported this back to my correspondent, and using this family she was able to find them in Marshall County, WV in the 1860, 1870 & 1880 censuses under the Burden name.   The reason it hadn’t been possible to find the family in WV earlier is that Wade was out on his own in 1860  and after the civil war, in which he served on the Union side he had changed his surname to Borin by 1870.  I have a speculation as to why he changed his name, but I’ll leave that for my next post on Wade.