SMALLs in Indiana


Kent & Sussex



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Southeastern Indiana

 My Line of SMALLs

In 1830, my ancestor Thomas Small and seven of his surviving children immigrated to the USA, where they settled in Ripley County, Indiana. One married daughter, Martha Small Southon, remained in England. One married son, James, came to the USA slightly later in 1831, and eventually settled about 15 to 20 miles away from his parents and siblings, in Harrison, Hamilton County, Ohio. James is known to have been in New York state for about 10 years before arriving in Ohio. In New York, he worked off an indenture that he had made to pay for his travel expenses from England, and he then worked as a miller there until economic changes in New York forced him to seek work elsewhere. It is likely that the other Small family members may also have worked off indentures, briefly, in New York before they arrived in Indiana.

There were a number of English families who arrived in Ripley County in the 1820s and 1830s. A number of these families, such as the Clarks, Jennings, and Moons were from villages in Kent and Sussex very near where the Smalls emigrated from. The Clarks and Jennings were related to each other by marriages in England. In Ripley County, three of the Small children married into the Clark families and one Small son married into the Jennings family. Only two of the seven Small children who married in the USA married American-born individuals.

In Ripley County, the Smalls settled in Adams Township, where most of the sons purchased farms. Most of the Smalls were members of the Pipe Creek Baptist Church near Penntown, Indiana. Between 1850 and 1860, the Small sons in Ripley County decided to move. Two sons moved west to neighboring Decatur County, Indiana, and another son north into Franklin County. In 1856, the remaining Ripley County son moved to Iowa. By 1860, the son who moved to Franklin County had moved on to Shelby County, Illinois.

In 1866, with the opening of the Nebraska Territory, the Small son in Iowa, along with several related Clark and Jennings families moved to Pawnee County, Nebraska.

Today, many of Thomas Small's descendents remain in the general vicinity of Ripley County, Indiana - in Indiana, southwestern Ohio and northern Kentucky. Others claiming Thomas as an ancestor are found scattered across the USA, with a number of the descendants of those Smalls who moved to Illinois and Nebraska now being found on the west coast of the United States.


My third cousin, James Louis Small, did much of the research on our line of SMALLs. He personally searched records in England, Indiana, and elsewhere, and most of the information on our English ancestors would not exist but for his research.

Cathy Morgan researched the Nebraska branch of the family. Other cousins who contributed data include: Dorothy Bailey, Jewel Bruce, George Cann, Linda Capps Clark, Donna Coots, Shirley Cummings, Brenda Emery, Bob Small Farnum, Jim Howe, Lora Small Kalbli, Deb Matthews, Doreen McDaniels, Derek Small, Loren Small, Richard Small, Bob Tubesing, and Shawn Whitney.

Dividers courtesy of

Last updated Saturday, 08-Sep-2018 09:19:14 MDT

The information on these pages has been developed by the efforts of a number of researchers who, jointly, have spent untold hours on compiling the data presented here. In respect of these efforts, the information on this website may not be reproduced in any format for commercial profit, and may not be published elsewhere in any format without permission from the author(s). All rights reserved.