This famous genealogy compiled by Francis
Bacon Trowbridge between 1898 and 1907 and published in 1908 is
the foundation for the history and genealogy of the (West) Virginia
families presented on this web site. I first encountered
this very large book in the Library of Congress in Washington,
D.C. in the 1970's and extracted much of the information on the
early family and our West Virginia branch. The entire book
is now available for viewing and downloading (of individual pages)
on Ancestry.com, which of course requires a subscription to Ancestry.
A one month subscription more than covers the cost of obtaining
relevant portions of this book from any other source. The following
is extracted from the preface (pages 7 & 8) to the book.
The preface begins by recounting that
the first attempt at a genealogy of the descendants of Thomas
Trowbridge, the immigrant ancestor who came to America from England,
was made as early as 1850 and the material collected was published
in a pamphlet in 1854. In 1869, Thomas R. Trowbridge, grandfather
of Francis Bacon Trowbridge, employed Rev. Frederick W. Chapman
to take the material collected in the 1850's and as much other
material as could be found and prepare a book for publication.
The result was, "Trowbridge Family" published in 1872.
Mr. Trowbridge in the preface goes on to describe his own efforts.
"The compilation of the present book was begun early in 1898.
The genealogical standard has advanced materially since the 'Trowbridge
Family' was published, and the compiler of the present book decided
that he would obtain the best results if he should disregard all
printed records of the Trowbridge's and proceed as if no history
of the family had ever been published. He has followed this
plan throughout the compilation of this book, and all statements
made are based on public records, examined by himself in nearly
every case, or on correspondence with members of the family.
Mr. Lothorp Withington, a recognized authority on genealogy research
in English records, has been employed to conduct the investigation
in England. Mr. Robert A. Smith of Washington, D.C., was
employed to copy the war records of Trowbridges previous to the
Civil War in the United States Pension Office. The many
hundreds of records of their service in the Civil War were taken
by the compiler from the official rosters of the several states
(a most laborious work, as those volumes are not indexed), supplemented
by family letters and a search of the records in the Pension Office.
The compiler has searched the public records diligently for the
few facts that are missing in the earlier generations and his
correspondents know how earnestly he has written them to supply
the facts, missing in the later generations. He has made
a special effort to give the birth and parentage of the Trowbridge
wives. The completeness of details in the biographical sketches
indicate his efforts in that direction. He has corresponded
with some member of each family circle within the past six months,
so that family registers are as complete as it was possible to
make them. The proof sheets have been compared with the
original notes made by the compiler and the letters he has received."
"The greater part of this book is a history of Thomas Trowbridge
and his descendants. In the course of searches for members of that family the compiler
has accumulated considerable data relative to several other families of Trowbridges,
some perhaps descending from Thomas Trowbridge, but so far not certainly identified, and others
known to be not descended from him. These have been included in this book..."
"The compiler feels that he has conscientiously made ever effort to make this history complete and he
now with regret draws his work to a close."
FRANCIS BACON TROWBRIDGE
New Haven, Conn., June 30, 1908