Benjamin Fowler Life Sketch

(abt. 1768 - abt. 1827)

Benjamin Fowler was born about 1768 in British Colonial Maryland. Benjamin Fowler married around 1786 in Maryland. Benjamin Fowler died about 1827 in Butler County, Ohio.


Benjamin Fowler was born sometime around 1768 in British Colonial Maryland. His parents are currently unknown. DNA of Benjamin’s descendants suggests that Benjamin is a descendant of Thomas Fowler and Susannah Liams.

Benjamin was a child when the Revolutionary War occurred. Around 1786 he is reported to have married Mary Naylor however this relationship has not been proven. If verified, the Naylor family lived in Prince George’s County, Maryland. Since 4 of Thomas Fowler’s 8 sons lived in Prince George’s County after Thomas’ death, Benjamin would likely be a descendant of one of these four sons.

One insightful source of information about Benjamin Fowler is a letter written by a great granddaughter. The letter states that Benjamin came from Virginia and that he had 8 children. The following are known children of Benjamin and his wife:

  1. James A. Fowler
  2. Jeremiah Fowler
  3. Margaret Fowler
  4. Benjamin Fowler
  5. Mary Fowler
  6. Nancy Fowler
  7. William Fowler
  8. Rebecca Fowler

Benjamin’s first son James was born in Maryland in 1787. Benjamin’s third child Margaret was born in Kentucky in 1795. Between these two dates the state of Virginia included the land which would become the states of Kentucky and West Virginia.

Sometime between 1787 and 1791 the family migrated from Maryland to Kentucky and settled in Madison county. Benjamin Fowler appeared on the Madison county tax records from 1791 to 1801. Benjamin did not own land however there are several other Fowler’s in Madison County that did own land, descendants of Jeremiah Fowler and Druscilla Isaac from Prince George’s County, Maryland. In Kentucky, 6 more children were added to Benjamin’s family..

Between 1801 and 1811, Benjamin’s location is unknown. He does not appear on the Kentucky tax records in Madison county or in any county adjoining Madison county. In 1808 Benjamin’s son James married Elizabeth Devore in Butler County, Ohio, however a census taken in Butler County in 1807 does not include any Fowler families. Benjamin Fowler does not appear on any of the available US 1810 Census records. Daughter Margaret’s obituary stated that the family moved from Kentucky to Ohio in 1814, which confirms the family was first in Kentucky and then in Ohio.

In 1811 Benjamin purchased a lease from Miami University in Butler County, Ohio. A deed recorded in 1839 indicates that on November 22, 1811, Benjamin Fowler of Butler County, Ohio entered into an agreement with Miami University to lease 88 acres of land, Lot #2 in section 24, the 5th township, entire first range east, for the term of 92 years and renewable forever. Lease agreements included annual interest paid to the University and raised money to build Miami University which opened to students in 1824.

By the summer of 1812 when war against Britain was declared, Benjamin Fowler and his family, along with his son James and his family, lived in Butler County, Ohio. Sons James and Jeremiah enlisted in August of 1812 in Capt. Zachariah P. Dewitt’s Ohio Militia. Zachariah Dewitt was the Fowler’s neighbor.

After the war son Jeremiah married Sarah Dewitt, Capt. Dewitt’s daughter. Daughter Margaret married John Freeman Jr., son of neighbor John Freeman.

In 1820 sons James and Jeremiah and daughter Margaret lived with their families on Benjamin’s land and also likely on Zachariah Dewitt’s land. Zachariah leased more than 200 acres of land from Miami University.

In 1822 daughter Mary married Benjamin Freeman, brother of her sister Margaret’s husband.

Sometime between 1820 and 1830, both Benjamin and his wife died. Benjamin likely died around 1827 since in March of 1827, both sons Jeremiah and Benjamin patented land in Marion County, Indiana, presumably with the settlement from Benjamin’s estate. The 88 acre lease descended to oldest son James, who in 1835 sold the land to his brother Benjamin.

It is not known where Benjamin Fowler and his wife are buried.

Genealogical Research and Life Sketch completed: November 2020


Sources:

“Kentucky, Madison County Tax Books, 1787-1874,” images, FamilySearch. Microfilm #007834478.

Fowler, Mary. Letter to unknown Mrs. Fowler. 22 Sep 1902. Collection at Jefferson County Historical Society, Indiana.

Benzing, Esther, “1807 Census Butler County Ohio”, FHL, Salt Lake City Utah.

United States War of 1812 Index to Service Records, 1812-1815, database with images, FamilySearch, James Fowler, 1812-1815; citing NARA microfilm publication M602 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); roll 74; FHL microfilm 882,592.

United States War of 1812 Index to Service Records, 1812-1815, database with images, FamilySearch, Jeremiah Fowler, 1812-1815; citing NARA microfilm publication M602 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); roll 74; FHL microfilm 882,592.

"United States Census, 1820," database with images, FamilySearch, Benjamin Fowler, Oxford Township, Butler, Ohio, United States; citing p. , NARA microfilm publication , (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll ; FHL microfilm.

"Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016", database with images, FamilySearch, James Fowler and Elizabeth Devore, 1808.

"Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016", database with images, Jeremiah Fowler and Sarah Dewitt, 1817.

"Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2016", database with images, FamilySearch, Benjamin Freeman and Mary Fowler, 1822.

Jeremiah Fowler (Indianapolis, Indiana), Document no. 8025; “Land Patent Search,” digital images, General Land Office Records.

Benjamin Fowler (Indianapolis, Indiana), Document no. 8024; “Land Patent Search,” digital images, General Land Office Records.

“Ohio, Butler County. Deed Records 1803-1876.” images, Family Search. Book Z Folio 220.

Benjamin Fowler genealogy research