Thanks for your post.Sorry for my delayed response.I was out of town, and then had to take a little bit of time to get reacquainted with my Allen / Smith connection.
I have tried to concentrate on the where’s and why’s of the Allen’s migrations.Unfortunately, for any answer I give you, I seem to introduce another question.I’m open to your ideas / comments / suggestions on what I have laid out below.
In reconstructing Reuben’s early life, I believe he lived with his parents until he came of age (18, or so.) In order for him and Pearly to court and marry, Reuben must have been in Massachusetts sometime between about 1808 and 1811.
What I think I know about Elijah Allen (Reuben’s father), starting from when Reuben was born (15 Apr 1790) until Pearly and he were in Ohio, is:
• Living in Brookfield, Massachusetts from the early 1780’s.
• Before the birth of Elijah’s daughter, Elizabeth, in May 1794 the family moved to Craftsbury, Orleans Co., VT.Craftsbury was named for Col. Ebenezer Crafts who, along with others, received a charter for the town.Most of the others were members of a Massachusetts line regiment that had been organized early in the Revolution by Col. Crafts.I have not determined if Elijah served under Col. Crafts, but certainly Elijah must have known some of Craft's regiment, as Brookfield was only 7 miles north of Sturbridge, where Col Crafts was living before moving to Craftsbury.Like many other prominent citizens, Crafts was caught up in the post-Revolutionary depression, and apparently the Vermont town was one of the few pieces of property he was able to salvage.I do not know if Elijah was similarly motivated to move there.
• When the Allen’s first moved there in 1793 / 1794, Elizabeth later wrote, there were no more than 12 people living in the area.About 16 years later, the 1810 census lists 82 families in Craftsbury.Of those families, there were 50 men and 42 women between ages 16 and 25.Some of them were undoubtedly already married.And, with women often marrying younger than men, there may have been even fewer of the 42 women available than there were of the 50 men.In any event, the odds of finding a marriage partner appear to have been against the men.
• Elijah is enumerated in Craftsbury in the 1800, 1810, 1820, and 1830 federal censuses.Reuben was probably one of the children enumerated with him in 1800, but probably was not included in 1810.I believe he may have gone back to Massachusetts to work and find a mate.
Now, leaving Elijah behind and continuing on with:
• Based on the birth of what appears to be Reuben’s and Pearly’s first child, Samuel, on 6 Oct 1812, I have estimated their marriage date as 1811 / 1812.And I believe it was probably in Massachusetts, although I have not found record of it.
• When Reuben came of age (17 – 20) he may have left Craftsbury and returned to Massachusetts to work for a friend or relative in or around Berkshire County.This would have provided him and Pearly the opportunity to meet.I have no record to support this supposition, though.
• Reuben and Pearly lived in Craftsbury for the births of their first three or four children: Samuel Lewis (6 Oct 1812); Lucy Maria (18 Jul 1814); possible unknown female based on 1830 census (1815 – 1820); and George Whitehead (18 Dec 1816).
• Chileab Smith arrived in Huron County, OH during this time, around 1814.
• Reuben and family removed to Black River Twp., Huron Co., OH about 3 – 6 years later than Chileab, between 1817 and 1820.Reuben is enumerated in the 1820 census of Black River Twp., Huron Co., OH living next door to Chileab.In 1824, Lorain County was formed, with Black River Township becoming part of Lorain County.
I have more information about the families, but this is about the best I can do on the Where, When and Why of their relocations.I hope it is helpful.I always welcome feedback.
I am certainly interested in any information you have, and would be interested in sharing about Pearly and her ancestral lines.Thanks for offering.
E-mail at AOL: timofrench