What I do have:
The Alderson Cousins site gives his birthdate as 16 November 1848 in Maury, Tennessee. Robert is with the family in the 1850 census in Maury, TN and in the 1860 census in Marion, Illinois. After that I can not pin down a record for him.
There is an interesting possibility that he enlisted in the Civil War. There is an enlistment for February 1865 for a Robert B Alderson from Arrowsmith, Illinois (McLean County) that joined the K 155th Illinois Infantry. It seems that same Robert died in Nashville, Illinois on 6 April 1864(5). Oddly though, I can't find the cemetery record on the Nationwide Gravesite Locator even though I have two separate records that suggest it should exist.
United States Civil War Soldiers Index, 1861-1865: Robert B Alderson
Robert would have been 16/17 years old in 1865. Young but I guess not unheard of.
There are only two other Robert Alderson's that show up in Illinois in the 1860 census. (My Robert B acutally shows up as Bennedic). A father and a son living in Macoupin, Illinois ages 50 and 10. The same Robert Alderson seems to show up in the 1865 Illinois State Census also in Macoupin, Illinois. The census was supposedly taken on 3rd July 1865, suggesting he is not the Robert Alderson that died in April. I guess there is still the possibility that the 10 year old, now 15, could be the one who enlisted.
I feel like I'm just dancing around it... There just isn't quite enough information to pin the two together. ARG!
MRN (more research needed)