This site is dedicated to the descendants of Adam Troutman (Johannes Adam Trautmann) who was born in Gross Gumpen, Hesse, Germany on 19 February 1690, and died there 10 Apr 1737. Two of his sons, Peter Troutman (born 1716) and Melchior Troutman (born 1729), sailed to America in 1751, settling first in Pennsylvania, before migrating south to Rowan County, North Carolina, shortly before the American Revolution. On 24 September 2001, the Troutman family will have been in America 250 years.
Every known Troutman family descended from Adam Troutman, up until the 1850 Census (1 June 1850), will be included in this site. By my definition, a family consists of a Troutman male, his wife or wives, and any children he may have had. To be included as one of my 52 biographical sketches of Troutman families, a Troutman male had to have married for the first time by 1 June 1850. Female Troutmans and their families are included under their fathers. In general, this site does not follow female Troutman lines beyond their spouses and children. Male Troutmans who never married are also included with their fathers.
The Troutman family in Germany actually goes back a few generations before Adam Troutman (1690), but I start with him since he is the first common ancestor of all the North Carolina Troutmans. Those interested in the ancestry of Adam Troutman (1690) should read the section of Descending Jacob's Ladder which discusses the Troutman family in Germany.
For a better understanding of this site, please read my discussion on Names, Places, and Dates.
A large part of this site is source records. I have collected various county and church records, as well as Federal Census records. The Federal Census records are for all known Troutman families through 1850, and for all Troutman families in North Carolina through 1900. These records are used to draw relationships among the various Troutmans who lived before and during 1850. As all genealogists know, beginning with the 1850 census, the names of all family members are listed in census records, making genealogy from 1850 to the present day relatively simple compared to pre-1850 genealogy.
A large part of this site is to attempt to clear up some confusing aspects of early Troutman genealogy. Part of this confusion stems from the repeated use of certain given names among the early Troutmans. Between 1690 and 1850, there were families for 5 Adam Troutmans, 6 Peter Troutmans, 7 Jacob Troutmans, 5 John Troutmans, 6 Henry Troutmans, 2 David Troutmans, 3 Andrew Troutmans, 2 Melchior Troutmans, 3 George Troutmans, 2 William Troutmans, and 2 Lawrence Troutmans. Researchers have tended to confuse two or more Troutman men because they had the same name. Perhaps the most humorous example of this is the confusion between Melchior Troutman (1744 - 1798) and his son, also named Melchior Troutman (c1776 - 1852). I've seen more than one genealogy showing a Melchior Troutman born 1744 and died 1852, nearly 107 years old!
Besides this rather outrageous mistake, most of the other mistakes are more subtle. I include pages just for sorting out the Troutmans with the same first names. Where the evidence is ambiguous, I let the reader know. In some cases, the relationships drawn are educated guesses, and I also let the reader know. Lastly, I point out some of the most common mistakes in early Troutman genealogy. None of this is to say that I have not made my share of mistakes, ranging from typographical to more serious. But, I do believe that I have the major framework of the Troutman family correct. Please contact me with any mistakes you find.
My Troutman research began with the marriage bond between my ancestors, Henry Bushart, Jr. and Sarah Troutman, in Cabarrus County, North Carolina in 1822. Without much access to North Carolina records, I began to try to sort out the North Carolina Troutmans in an effort to find the parents of my Sarah Troutman. Had I had access to more North Carolina records, I would have found rather quickly the will of Peter Troutman from Cabarrus County, dated 14 July 1859, in which Peter named his daughter "Sally Boshart." Which would have left me with the questions, which Peter Troutman, and who were his parents. In trying to sort the Troutman family, I found much of the information on this family to be incorrect.
The structure of the Troutman family which migrated to North Carolina shortly before the Revolutionary War is fairly well-known. There was Peter Troutman (born 1716), his wife Elizabeth, and their children (including Adam Troutman, born 1743, who had married and had a couple of children in Pennsylvania), and Peter's half-brother, Melchior Troutman (born 1729), his wife Anna, and their children. Melchior's (1729) son Jacob (born 1767) moved to Iredell County, North Carolina and was the forefather of most of the Iredell Troutmans. Thomas Troutman's book, Descending Jacob's Ladder, gives excellent coverage of Jacob Troutman (born 1767) and his descendents. I consulted this book often to sort the Iredell Troutmans from their cousins in Rowan, Cabarrus, and Stanly Counties, North Carolina. This site covers the Iredell Troutmans to 1850, but refers back to Descending Jacob's Ladder. As far as I know, no effort has been made to bring together all the Troutman lines prior to 1850. The Bernard Cruse files at the Lutheran Synod in Saisbury, North Carolina, are the closest thing to a "Troutman Book," but these seem to have never been organized. This site is unlike Descending Jacob's Ladder in that the furthest I try to trace any Troutman line is 1900, and some I only trace to 1850. This site is better suited to genealogists. Perhaps someone with more interest than I in the modern Troutman family will continue this research and fill out the Troutman family tree to the present day.
All the Troutman's in North Carolina in 1850 probably trace back to one of three of Peter Troutman's (1716) sons - Adam (1743), Melchior (1744), and Peter (c1761) - or one of Melchior's (1729) two sons - Adam (1752) and Jacob (1767). [Notice that I use the year of birth in parentheses after the name to avoid confusion between Troutmans with the same first name; for those whose birth year is approximate, c for circa precedes the year.] A little known fact in early Troutman genealogy is that Peter's (1716) youngest son Jacob (1768) left North Carolina with his entire family, settling in Butler County, Ohio about 1809. Thus, every Troutman in North Carolina in 1850 traces back to Adam (1743), Melchior (1744), Peter (c1761), Adam (1752), or Jacob (1767). The only real enigma in the 1850 Census is the family of George Washington Troutman (c1816) in Yancey County, North Carolina; I am really unsure of how or even if he ties into the rest of the North Carolina Troutmans.
As part of this project, I searched the 1850 Federal Census for:
1) All Troutmans in North Carolina
2) All Troutmans outside North Carolina but born in North Carolina.
Here are the results:
Montgomery Co, IL - Simeon Troutman, individual, son of Jacob (1788), son of Peter (c1761)
Crawford Co, MO - Daniel Troutman family, son of Jacob (1767)
Butler Co, OH - 3 Troutman families, descendants of Jacob (1768)
Jefferson Co, TN - William Troutman family, son of Jacob (1767)
Yancy Co, NC - George Washington Troutman family - currently unknown how and if related to rest of NC Troutmans
Catawba and Lincoln Cos, NC - 4 Troutman families, all descendents of Adam (1752)
Iredell Co, NC - 8 Troutman families, 7 of which are descendents of Jacob (1767) and the 8th, the family of William M. Troutman (1809), son of George (c1782), son of Melchior (1744)
Rowan, Cabarrus, and Stanly Cos, NC - 23 Troutman familes or individuals. One of these, John Sidney Troutman, was a descendent of Jacob (1767). John Sidney lived in Iredell, but was in Rowan apprenticing to be a carriage maker. The remaining 22 families or individuals were descendents of Adam (1743), Melchior (1744), or Peter (c1761). Due to at least 3 Troutman to Troutman marriages before 1850, 3 of these 22 families were descendents of both Adam (1743) and Peter (c1761).
Adam (1743) - 8 familes
Melchior (1744) - 10 familes or individuals
Peter (c1761) - 4 families
Note that Paul Troutman (1812) of Newberry County, SC (actually, Newberry District, SC) was missing from the 1850 Census; evidence indicates he should have been listed in 1850 in Newberry.
Before this foreword goes on forever, I'll wrap it up. However, there are some people I must thank, without whose work this site would not be possible. Previous Troutman researchers, even though some of their conclusions were incorrect, laid the groundwork for this site. Also, I would like to thank any person who ever transcribed old records from any of the counties in which the eary Troutman's lived. I found the work of Jo Lynn white very useful, and some clues from Dr. John L. Schlenker really brought the Troutman family in focus for me. The James Klutz maps are very helpful. The staff and volunteers at libraries in Salisbury and Concord, North Carolina, as well as my home library in Tampa, Florida, have been very cooperative.
Well, I hope you enjoy the site. Feel free to disagree and write me with your evidence.
Robert E. Burke Contact Info
My Troutman ancestry:
Robert Earl Burke, Jr. (1968) - me
Robert Earl Burke, Sr. (1945)
F. E. Burke, Jr. (1926)
Fonnie Earl Burke (1890)
Henrietta Bushart (1859), wife of Samuel Anderson Burke (1852)
Henry Bushart, Jr. (1833)
Sarah Troutman (1803), wife of Henry Bushart, Sr. (1801)
Peter Troutman (1780)
Melchior Troutman (1744)
Peter Troutman (1716)
Adam Troutman (1690)