Kim, I am researching the same Alva Merdick/Murdock [a great, great grandfather]. The 1860 US census lists Alva and Eliza and 7 children living in Ashland Co. Ohio.Do you think he is related to David Murdock [1820 Ashland OH] or Samuel Murdock [1815 Ashland OH]? His daughter Lucina married James Swasick [my great grandparents]in 1858.You are correct this is a tough one!My grandfather's middle name was Samuel [Budd Samuel Swasick] and I have tried to link him to Samuel Murdock  without success.I do not have a burial site for Alva or Eliza.
Thanks for the marriage date.
Tom Daniels 4450 Commonwealth Ave. Toledo, Ohio 43612-2043