Ancestor 25 – Sophia Robertson

Sophia Robertson was born about 1815 in Botetout County, Virginia.

Sophia married Tobias Riddle on May 28, 1836 in Montgomery County, Virginia when she was 21 years old.  Her father is given as John Robertson and mother, Mary “Polly” Hess.  Tobias and Sophia had six children.(listed in order of birth):  Letilia, Thomas, Susan, Julia, Benjamin, and Cleophas.

1840 Sndx R340 There is a Tobias in Pulaski Twp p 201

1850 Census Smyth Co, VA 10th district p.206 – Tobias & Sophia have 4 children. Tobias has the occupation of “Moulder”

1860 Census Logan Co, WV, Huffs Creek p.42 – Tobian & Sophia have 6 children. Tobias’ estate is valued at $125. No occupation given.

Sometime at the beginning of the Civil War, Tobias made a difficult choice.  While most of his family was deep in Virginia and fought with the Confederacy, Tobias became a Union Soldier with the 8th West Virginia Infantry Regiment that changed the name in 1864 to the 7th West Virginia Calvery.  Based on the date and location of his death, he either fought in the Battle of Cross Keys that was fought in June 8 1862 or the Second Battle of Bull Run on August 29-30 1862.  Maybe both.

The suffering to die of jundance from a wound.  And away from the comforts of home and family.  Did Sophia go to him before he died?  Did she even know until afterward?  She was left alone with six children all still living at home.  The 1870 census will show that the oldest daughter was married and the other children were dispersed among relatives.

Pension Index: General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934. Pension # 240449 with wife Sophia dated 1878.   Tobias died, November 14, 1862, in Washington County, Virginia, from jaundice after an injury in the war age 53.

1870 census – Sophia not found yet which is why I consider she may have gone to his side.  Did she have any family support?  One brother was a confederate soilder who would end up spending a year as a POW before being released and returning to his home. Clearly the family took in the children, but what happened to Sophia?  The pension was filed for in her name in 1878 so she was alive then.  Nothing more.

She filed for a widow’s pension in 1878.  I located a US Federal Census Mortality Schedules Index for Suffira Riddle with the correct age in Mercer Co WV.  It is reasonable to assume this is her and she died in Jan 1880 of pneumonia at age 65.