Hello! This is actually Sarah Simmons, Debbie Cook is my mother in law, but she lets me use her account for my research since we are part of the same family now. Thomas is my 4th great-grandfather.
I have run into the same sorts of issues with spellings, and the names seem to be common enough that I can find all sorts of Thomas' and Johns but nothing to connect them, and I have also seen the rumors of Thomas being from the states, and Ann being from Ontario, but also nothing to confirm that in terms of records. My family legends state John came from England, but I also have no proof of that, although I can find many Johns and Thomas' in England as well .
My strategy at the moment is to research everyone living in the area of West Dover, Shad Bay, Prospect, and Halifax that have similar names and try to make a connection. I have found not death records for any of the children, although William and Charles Henry (Grandchildren of Thomas and Ann) ended up on Bayers rd in Halifax. So I am also investigating a connection to the Bayers family. John and Thomas do not show up on the 1881 Census, and I cannot find any of them on the 1871 Census, so I am uncertain of their exact dates of death. Nathaniel Smith who runs the Prospect Geneology website(www.prospectvillage.ca/
) has told me is is descended from James Coolen who married Fanny Simmonds, and that Ann Warren's parents are likely a Thomas Warren and Margaret Tuttle, but I haven't been able to find records on them either.
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