The Adams family is well documented in both family records and census records back to Nimrod Adams. Nobody seems to know where Nimrod came from. His death is recorded in several history books regarding his wife, Nancy Etchison, who after his death went with her children through the Cumberland Gap to Illinois. She appears to be an interesting individual for further research, and there is some controversy about her ancestry. There is an active group researching the Etchison family.
An individual who lives near Rowan County, North Carolina, Donna Tauber, has worked very hard to find Nimrod Adams' ancestors and thus far has come up empty. Her comments on the Adams family are contained in her file which is in the Adams-Fuller archives. I have noticed several postings by her recently, so she is still actively looking for Nimrod.
I have culled the census files for the direct Adams ancestors of Mary Sue Adams, and have pretty much located them in the places where they should have been. Several interesting things from the census:
Everett Adams, a livelong farmer, is found in the 1930 census in Lake County, Illinois, working as a farm foreman at the U.S. Veterans Hospital #105. I wonder if the hospital worked a farm as a diversion for the veterans, or simply was producing food for the institution.
An additional child of William B. Adams, Adolphus Adams, shows up in the 1880 census, age 3 years. That caused me to change the date of William's marriage back several years to about 1876.
Elizabeth Matilda Niblock
Apparently no one has done any work on Elizabeth Niblock. The facts in her case demonstrate a strong family background in Rowan County, North Carolina, the same place where her husband Jesse's father Sylvester was born. The 1850 census for Union County, Illinois shows, on the same page:
John Adams (46, b. N.C.) and family (Sylvester's brother) Thomas Gore (76, b. S.C.) and family (incl wife Lydia) Josiah Gore (26, b. IL) and family ( Grandson of Thomas above and brother of Lydia who married Linsfield Shadrick N.C.E. Adams (21, b. ?) with wife Pennecia (son of John Adams above) Davis Adams (23, b. N.C.) with wife Martha (27, b. N.C., maiden name is Niblock) Elizabeth Niblock (18, b. N.C.) living with Davis above Sylvester Adams (48, b. N.C.) with wife Sarah and son Jesse (17) Also in the general vicinity are: William Niblock (12, b. N.C.) living with the Francis Hughs (22,b. N.C.) family Manda Niblock (7, b. IL) living with the G.W. Penninger (22, b. N.C.) family
Given the three Niblock children ((ages 7, 12, 18) living with other families, and Martha Niblock Adams (27) in the neighborhood, I would expect that the children are from a broken home, and related to Martha. It was common practice in those days that, if a husband died, the wife had no means of support and married a new husband who didn't want her children, and her children were farmed out to friends and family members. If a wife died, the husband couldn't care for the children and likewise we often find the children living with other families. It's also possible that the husband and wife divorced, but the effect on the children would have been the same.
At this time we can't say who died, as there are no adult Niblocks other than Martha in the Neighborhood.
I've posted the information we have on the various Niblock genealogy forums, and usually somebody responds with an answer.