I am joining forces with my cousin, David Emerson, to track down the fate of his great-great-grandfather, HENRY ATHERTON, b. Mansfield, MA, 6 April 1820, s/o Otis and Susannah (Burr) Atherton.
Henry m. 1st, DORCAS DRESSER, and by her had two children:Ellen Atherton (b. c.1843) and Henry French Atherton (b. 1848).Following Dorcas' death, he m. 2nd, BETSY STROUT from Maine, by whom he was to later have two more sons.In 1855, he and Betsy went westward and ended up in Lawrence, Kansas.Within a fairly short period of time, however, the marriage disintegrated and Betsy -- accompanied by her two small boys -- returned to her parents' home in Maine.
One of the sons by this second marriage was David Emerson's great-grandfather.He never knew his father, and was never certain as to what had become of him.
Another interesting aspect of this story is that the two Atherton boys growing up in Maine also never knew they had an older half-sister and half-brother (Ellen and Henry French Atherton).Apparently, Henry Atherton "gave" these children to one of his brothers to raise, even before his remarriage to Betsy Strout.
I think Henry was a bit of scoundrel but don't tell David Emerson I ever said that...
We're trying to do the following:(1) discover the final fate of Henry Atherton, last known to be in Kansas in the early 1860s; and (2) track the descendants of Henry's two children by his 1st marriage to Dorcas Dresser -- Ellen Atherton and Henry French Atherton.
Any help with this genealogical puzzle would be greatly appreciated!