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                          SOLVING THE PUZZLE OF STEPHEN DOUGLAS ARNOLD BISHOP

                                             What do we know of Stephen Douglas Arnold Bishop?

1) He is listed as the person Amanda Jane Beeler Mc Keehan married, 30 November 1889 Burlington, IA, on the souvenir marriage certificate held by her descendants.

2) He is listed in her Bible as her second husband and the father of her three youngest children.

3) We have two pictures of him.

4) Stephen was supposedly a sales man for the Singer Sewing Machine Company. The records, of the Singer Sewing Machine Company, are held by the Wisconsin Historical Society and are not indexed and largely unorganized.

5) ‘Stephen A. D. resides in Fairfield, Iowa' is how he is listed in the 1892 Portrait and Biographical Record of Ford County, Illinois for Capt. Lemuel Newton Bishop.

6) Stephen is listed in the 1895 Iowa State Census in Lee Co., IA with Amanda and the children.

7) There is a Stephen D. Bishop listed in the marriage records of De Witt County, IL, for a marriage to Isabelle Sites (nee Vance). There is an IGI and Illinois Online Marriage Index listing for this marriage. This couple had four children.

8) The family Bible, of Isabelle Vance Sites Bishop, lists Steven Arnold Douglas Bishop as her second husband. It also lists the births of their four children.

9) A family member related, Amanda told they had found his divorce was not final when they married and he had to go back to IL to have it finalized.

10) There is a Douglas A. Bishop in the 1900 census, IL OH RI he is listed married, boarding in a home in La Salle Co., IL. No family is listed with him.

11) Stephen is listed in the 1906 obituaries for Lemuel Newton Bishop, his father, and Elsa Anna Bradford Bishop, his mother.

12) Oak Grove Cemetery Le Roy, IL 61752. Cemetery index and plot info list S. D. Bishop in the same plot with Isabelle Bishop. Block 106, Lot 407, grave 6, without dates and has a notation, ‘not buried here'.

13) When Albert Newton Bishop died in 1934, his obit lists him being preceded in death by five brothers and one sister. Lemuel and Elsa Bishop had six sons and 5 daughters.

A search of the 1860 Illinois census for Mc Lean County produces the family of Lemuel Newton Bishop with a son Stephen A. D. age 4 years. This Stephen can be followed through the census with this family. The family is listed in Champaign County, OH in 1870 and Champaign Co., IL in 1880. The last time he is listed with them is in 1880, when he and his sister, La Delle are listed as teachers. The last time the parents are listed on the census, in 1900, Minnie is the only child living in the home.

A search of Ancestry.com's user submitted database yielded very little data. A Search of their census records provided census documentation for Lemuel Newton Bishop, his wife, children and some of the grandchildren.

A search of Heritage Quest online provided further census documentation.

A search of FamilySearch.org yielded a list of Stephen Bishop's. Each was checked for matching data and eliminated after their data did not match what we already had obtained on this line; or was too radically different to pursue. Data that provided further clues was investigated thoroughly.

The Illinois State Archives online databases provided clues to the location of marriage and death records, these were obtained where available. A follow up search for obituaries was done on the county level.

Rootsweb.com's Bishop surname list was searched for clues and contacts were made with other researchers. No one seemed to have done research on this Stephen Arnold Douglas Bishop. However, Lemuel Newton Bishop had been researched and further contacts with researchers provided clues to the link between Lemuel and our Stephen Douglas Arnold Bishop.

The obituaries for each generation brought us closer to finding present day descendants who had Isabelle Vance Sites Bishop's family Bible and pictures of her and her descendants. The Bible and her picture were copied, 28 October 2003.

Each of Stephen's siblings were followed to their areas of residence and local archives were checked for data on each family. Census documentation for each one, for every census, in which they could be found was documented. Years in which they were not found continue to be searched for documentation.

28 November 2003, phone conversation with a descendant of Ernest Leslie Bishop, concerning Bishop genealogy.

In October 2006 I finally found the date of death and obituary for Stephen's last sibling, Sarah Z. Johnson who died 29 August 1929. Stephen is not listed as a survivor. Sarah's husband, George W. B. Johnson's Civil War pension file listed Sarah having property in Oklahoma. A search for Stephen in that county was conducted without results.

6 September 2010 We have continued to search for the documentation to prove our connection to this Stephen Bishop. I still have not found his date and place of death. I have found documentation for the parents and ancestors of Lemuel Newton Bishop. If you are searching for Stephen Bishop please contact me. I feel a group effort could some day find Stephen's final resting place.

DNA testing begun in December 2011, with results returned in March 2012 links Our Bishop line to John Bishop, II the ancestor of Lemuel Newton Bishop.

Stephen Douglas Arnold Bishop

 

Updated 14 March 2012     Contact Virginia L. Aldridge