Mysteries
Home

 

There are MANY unanswered questions about our Doak Ancestors. Listed below are some of them.  It is hoped that YOU will be able to help us solved some of these mysteries.  Send us an E-mail at  doak@doak.ws  if you think you have some information.

Robert Doak - Immigrant.  (arrived here 1718)

Who were Roberts Parents? Where and when was he born? It is reported that he was one of seven brothers. DID he have brothers and sisters?  When did he die?  Where is his grave?  (Note of 8/4/2001)  We are trying to confirm that he was born in or near Ballymena, Antrim, Northern Island about 1676. We are also trying to confirm that he had at least 5 brothers (Samuel, John, William, James and David) and that perhaps they, along with their mother, were ALL on board the Elizabeth that came to Boston Harbor in 1718. His father's name may have been Samuel.

( Note as of 6/20/02). A researcher that I respect very much says emphatically that there is not, nor never was a "Nathaniel" in this line at this time. This same researcher says that a document seen in the past indicates that Robert and Margaret MAY have returned to Ireland after the sale of their land in Londonderry, N.H. in 1725. This remains to be proven.

(Note as of 3/31/03)  It is now almost certain that Robert and Margaret went to Pennsylvania in 1725 after selling all their land (556 acres) in Londonderry, N.H.. We feel there is evidence they went to Donegal, Pa. to be near their son John who owned land there. Margaret paid taxes on land there. So it is likely that Robert died on the way to Donegal or soon after arriving there. Margaret died later (prior to 1737). Both are probably buried in long lost graves on what were the family farms at Donegal.

James Doak - Son Of Robert of 1718.

Who were Jame's children? Were is the birth record? Where were they born? Was THIS James the James Doak "Warned out" of Boston in 1725?

James had a son James Jr.. There apparently were at least two other sons (Robert and John) and there may have been daughters. James was a farmer and was very active buying and selling land. He did this with modest success. There are many Land Records showing his dealings. On many of these, later in his life, he worked jointly with his Son James Jr.. We know that James married Martha Rankin Sterling (Starling) in Boston in 1726.  Martha's maiden name was Rankin and her first marriage was to Hugh Sterling. Her son by that marriage may have lived with her and James Doak while he grew up. The Sterling name may have been fairly well known in Boston. We know that James died in 1776. No other information at this time.

James Doak Jr. - Son of James Doak

There is quite a bit of information on James Jr.. We know he married Janet Boyes and had 9 children. We know the birth dates of the children. We know a lot about one of the children (Robert Doak b. 1780) but we know nothing about the rest of them. James Jr. seems to have disappeared from the record books after 1785 along with all his children except Robert.  Where did they all go?  When and where did they die? He had three sons, James, John and Robert.  What happened to James and John?  Did they marry?  Did they have children?

Note of (12/01/00) We now know that one of the daughters, Margaret Doak, went to Bradford, Vermont in 1790 and married David Wilson. They had at least one son, David Wilson Jr..  Were there other children?                                                   

(Note on 8/5/01)  Yes, there were more children - 8 more for a total of nine. We also now know that Martha Doak, Margarets' sister, also went to Bradford, Vermont circa 1795 and married John McDuffe (or McDuffee). She had eleven children.

Bestsy Doak, another sister, married John Orne. Where did they go to live? Were there any children?

(Note as of 8/5/01) The son, James, went to Prospect, Maine near Belfast in 1810 and raised a family. He married Elizabeth Park and had 6 children. He was a ships carpenter and his sons were either Military or Sailors.

 As of 6/20/02, we still do not any any information on the son John. He was born 1785 and would have turned 21 in 1806. We are looking for information on any unknown John Doak showing up married or having children from 1806 and 1830.

John Orne married Bestsy Doak February 13, 1803. Where did they go? Did they have any children. I need someone to give me an Orne family History.

Note of 5/2/05  - A John Orne died at age 39 in 1812. Maybe a casualty of the war of 1812?  No further sign of Betty.

Pennsylvania Land Mysteries - We need land records for the Doak families that we know were in Lancaster, Chester and Washington Counties of Pennsylvania. The Doak line may also have been in Beaver and Northumberland Counties during the 1700's. Can anyone help dig those our for us? 

Robert Doak of South Strabane. Doak's Plains - Washington County, Pa. 1780.

This Robert Doak came to Washington County in 1780 to take up a grant for 300 acres of land. He and his son William came "out of Harrisburg" according to an old history book. He and his son had to leave the farm once for many months due to "Indian troubles". So they had a place of refuge somewhere in the late 1700's. There was another son Robert, from Maytown, and also a daughter Jean.  There is a good record of the elder Robert's family and descendents all around Washington County, but NO INFORMATION on WHERE at Harrisburg this Robert lived before 1780.  Was it around Maytown, Pa. in Lancaster County?  Was he an immigrant to America or was he the missing son of James and Martha Doak family already in America at Londonderry, N.H.?  This is the mystery.

It is my belief that this Robert was the son of James Doak, and was baptized in Boston in 1728.  I think when he was 21 (1749) he left Londonderry, N.H. for Donegal, Pa. where he knew that  his uncles had been successful farmers 25 years earlier. He may have arrived in Lancaster County (Maytown) about 1750, got married, had childeren (at least two sons and a daughter).  He and one son (William) may have left for Washington County in 1780, leaving his wife and the other son, Robert at  Lancaster County until they got the new farm cleared and working. They may have returned, temporarily,  to live with Robert's family at Maytown during the  "Indian Troubles". His son Robert was a Blacksmith and may have had a business in the Maytown area until he inherited a farm next to the old "Doak Plains" farm in the early 1800 after the death of his father, Robert.  What we need are land records or tax records to prove that the above story might be true.

jrd   6/20/02     Revised 8/29/02  Revised 5/2/05