William Augustus Strong
The earliest Strong that can be documented in our family is William Augustus Strong. According to Army records, he was 31 when he died in November 30, 1814 when serving in the War of 1812. The records also confirm that he was born in Durham, CT. So, our best information shows that he was born in Durham, CT in 1783. To date, his parents have not been identified although the search has been ongoing for 40 years or more and 2 local professional researchers have assisted in the search.
William was first mentioned in the records by Fowler’s "History of Durham Connecticut" (available at www.gutenberg.com). He was sworn in as a Freeman in 1802 at about 19 years of age. He married Abigail Crane about 1802 and they acquired several parcels on land, one of which had been inherited by Abigail. Three children were born in Durham, Maria, William and Alonzo. William died as an infant.
William and Abigail sold off their holdings in Durham, CT and moved to Atwater, OH, arriving there in 1806 or early 1807. He was one of the early settlers there and built the first frame house there. Soon after arriving in Atwater, Maria died and was the first to be buried in the Atwater Cemetery. Luzerne was born in Atwater.
There was a saying that settlers from Connecticut normally built a comfortable house first, while those from Pennslyvania built a barn first.
After Luzerne was born, Abigail became disenchanted with the frontier and insisted on returning to Connecticut. She was given a horse and some money and she returned to Durham. No information is available as to where she stayed in Durham, but she died in 1814 and is buried among Strong’s in the Old Durham Cemetery. A notation on her grave stone states that an infant is buried at her feet. This could be William, who had died before they migrated to Ohio of another child, a mystery.