John testified in a Civil War widow's pension application for Minerva Delaney that not only was he present at Daniel and Manerva's wedding but that Daniel was his brother. The two men were together through at least part of the Civil war with Daniel's father-in-law Pleasant M. Alexander, again by John's testimony. Both soldiers indicated in their pension files that they were born in Blount County, TN.
BUT, here's where it gets strange. Daniel Delaney, in his deposition to support John's Civil War pension application, said that he wasn't related to John. Fact or fiction? Or was John lying when he said Daniel was his brother?
I believe that a review of the two situations and timeframes points to the truth. I believe that it was Daniel who lied, because he thought that being John's brother would discredit his testimony. The moment in time for his deposition was very soon after the Civil War. John had previously received a pension for injuries in the Mexican War, but he now had to verify that he had been loyal to the Union before the pension would be renewed. Daniel's testimony would indeed likely have been disallowed because of the relationship.
With John's testimony, the moment in time was a few years after Daniel's death in 1895. Daniel's military record was already proven and secure, from Daniel's earlier pension application. John didn't need to lie, as he was merely testifying that Daniel's widow had in fact been his wife; and family testimony would be expected, as they are the ones most likely to attend weddings.
So, both soldiers indicated they were born in Blount, Daniel between 1831-35 and John on 20 Mar 1825, according to his pension file. And the enlistment physical descriptions for the two are very alike: Grey eyes, light hair, dark complexion, Daniel 5'4" and John 5'7", both farmers.
So who were the parents?
The only Delaney family that I have located in the Blount area for that time period is a Dan. (short for Daniel) Delany in the 1830 Blount Co, TN census. This Daniel was born between 1760-1770.
1830 Blount Co. TN census
It may be helpful here to discuss where the Delaneys appeared to be located in Blount County, which covered a lot of country. The elder Daniel Delaney was listed on the 1830 Blount census in the Western District. John said that he was born in Morganton, Blount Co., TN, once a thriving community which dwindled after the Civil War and is now under Tellico Lake. Morganton is located on the Blount/Monroe line, close to Roane County, which explains why Daniel and John were found in all three counties. Before it was submerged, Morganton ended up in Loudon County, which was formed from pieces of Roane, Monroe and Blount counties.
Daniel the Elder appears to have died between 1830 and 1840, for he did not appear in the 1840 census. However, an Eliza Delaney, a match for the older female in Dan's 1830 household, did live in Blount with the following in her household:
1840 Blount Co. TN censusEliza, 1 female 40- under 50
1 male 5- under 10
2 males 10 - under 15
1 female 20-under 30
I have been unable to locate either Daniel or John in the 1850 census, but by 1860 they were both married and living in Blount County. Two households away from Daniel was a woman named Elender/Eleanor Delaney, born 1820ish, who likely was related in some way. She was in the 1850 Monroe Census and was of an age to be the youngest female in old Daniel's household in 1830 and the only young woman in Eliza's 1840 census. Her oldest daughter's name was Eliza Jane -named perhaps for Eliza Delaney in the 1840 Blount Census? In 1860, Ellender/Eleanor/Ellen was living 2 houses away from Daniel H. Delaney in Blount County; and by 1870, she was in Chattanooga, Hamilton Co, recorded as Ellen Delano, with three of her children, whose names and ages confirmed that this was the same woman.
Additionally, there were two Delaney women who married Finley men in 1836 and in very early 1840 Blount. These could account for the two young women who were in Daniel the Elder's household in 1830 and gone by the time Eliza appears with only one young woman in 1840.
Possible Family Structure
Below is what the family structure of Daniel H. and John "Casson" Delaney may look like. Please, do not take this as gospel, and do not report this to any family tree or genealogy site. Doing that muddies the waters, and the end result would be that we might never be able to get good answers.
I can place all these people in Blount in the right timeframe - but have no Bible records, wills, or deeds to back them up. Many Blount records were destroyed by fire. The search continues. If you have any information on these folks or would like to collaborate on research, please contact me.
©Alexis Hacker Scholz 2002-2014.
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