Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - John T. Bennett and Mollie Bennett Hester

Welcome Baptist Church Cemetery
Cullman County, Alabama

Mollie Hester
Feb. 15, 1863 - Aug. 10, 1932

J. T. Bennett
Feb. 7, 1831 - Mar. 15, 1910

John T. Bennett was born in South Carolina, the son of Lewis and Teresa (maiden name unknown) Bennett. He married Martha Gamble and they had 9 children. Mollie Hester was John and Martha's daughter, Mary "Mollie" Bennett Hester. After his wife's death, John lived with Mollie and her family. 

John's date of death on this headstone is probably incorrect since he was listed as living with Mollie and her family in the 1910 census taken on April 15 but it's the closest thing to a date of death that can be found for John. Mollie's date of death is also incorrect according to Alabama Death Records she died on 15 Mar 1933.

It appears that this headstone is fairly new - certainly it wasn't set up at the time of John's or Mollie's death. There is a matching headstone next to it for John's daughter and Mollie's twin, Mattie Bennett (who died in 1952) and Mollie's son, Lem Hester (who died in 1935).  

EDITED: 8 Dec 2010 to add information regarding Mollie's incorrect date of death.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

This Week in the Family History - November 28 - December 4

1 Dec 1861 (149 years ago) - James Arton Hopkins was born in Mulberry Gap, Hancock County, Tennessee. He was the son of Stephen Wolfenbarger (maybe) and Eliza Hopkins. [great-grandfather, Hopkins line]

1 Dec 1884 (126 years ago) - Verda Waller Hankins was born in Hopkins County, Kentucky. She was the daughter of Thomas Leander Hankins and Samantha Angeline Petty. [paternal grandmother]

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Surname Saturday - Petty

John R. Petty and Margaret E. Thomas

John R. Petty was born about 1836 in Tennessee. The exact location and the name of his parents are not proven but his father was possibly the John Petty who lived in Bradley County, Tennessee in 1860 and 1870.

Margaret E. Thomas was born about 1836 in Georgia. She was the daughter of Jesse Thomas and his wife, Rebecca (maiden name unknown). The Thomas family lived in Murray County, Georgia in 1840 and 1860 and in Lumpkin County in 1850. Margaret has at least 7 siblings including brothers named William, Oliver P. and Daniel W. and sisters named Mary and Nancy.

John and Margaret were married on 20 Sep 1857 in Whitfield County, Georgia. They were living in McMinn County, Tennessee in 1860 when the census was taken. The oldest two children had been born by that time. They had moved to Dalton in Whitfield County, Georgia by April, 1861 when their daughter, Samantha was born and lived there until about 1867 when they went back to Tennessee. The exact location is not known but it was likely the McMinn/Bradley County area. They were in Logan County, Kentucky in 1870 and had probably been there since 1869. Sometime between 1870 and 1874 they moved to Hopkins County, Kentucky.

Margaret died on 28 Jul 1876 in Hopkins County. John's fate is unknown. In 1880, most of the minor children were living with Margaret's sister, Mary Thomas Echols (and her husband, James), in Forsyth County, Georgia. 

Children of John and Margaret:
Melissa A. was born about 1858 in Tennessee. She was listed with her parents in the 1860 and 1870 census but nothing further is know about her.

Henry Milton was born on 3 Apr 1860 in Tennessee. He was living in Hopkins County in 1880 after his mother's death and apparently never married. He was 20 years old and listed in that census as an inmate of the poor house. Henry died on 9 Apr 1893, probably in Hopkins County.

Samantha Angeline was born on 3 Apr 1861 in Dalton, Whitfield County, Georgia. She married Thomas Leander Hankins on 14 May 1879 in Hopkins County. They had 7 children and Samantha died on 7 Jan 1944 in Hopkins County. She was buried there in Grapevine Cemetery.

Mary "Molly" was born in 1865 in Georgia (probably Whitfield County). She married Benjamin H. Hawkins and they had 5 children. Molly died in 1891 when her children were still very young - the oldest about 11 years old and the youngest only 1. She is buried in Friendship Cemetery in Forsyth County, Georgia.

Daniel Boone was born on 4 Apr 1867 in Georgia (probably Whitfield County). He married Mary Rebecca Cornelison and they had 7 children. He died before 1944, maybe on 26 Nov 1932. At least, there is a Daniel B. Petty who died in Fulton County, Georgia on that date. (Still need the death certificate to determine if it is this Daniel.)

Joseph Bunyan was born on 20 Apr 1869 in Kentucky. He married Fredonia "Donie" Cagle and they had 13 children. Joe died on 10 Apr 1937 in Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia.

Oliver Perry was born on 23 Jan 1871 in Kentucky. He married Vada L. Bramlett and they had 4 children. Vada died in 1899 and he later married Eliza Duckett. Perry and Eliza had 6 children. Perry died on 5 Feb 1943 in Fulton County, Georgia.

Nathaniel was born about 1873 in Kentucky. Nothing further is known about him.

John Franklin was born on 15 Sep 1874 in Hopkins County, Kentucky. He married Elizabeth Ann Givens and they had 3 children. John died on 30 Jun 1943 in Harrisburg, Saline County, Illinois.

W. O. Petty was born on 5 Jun 1876 in Hopkins County, Kentucky and died there just a few weeks later on 30 Jun 1876. 

John and Margaret were my 2nd great-grandparents through their daughter, Samantha Angeline. Click on the links above for sources and additional information. If you have a connection to this family leave a comment or e-mail me.

Related Surname Saturday Post:
Thomas Leander Hankins and Samantha Angeline Petty

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Lillie Lanier and James H. Dixon

Westview Cemetery, Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia
Section 17, Lot 319

Dec. 25, 1893 - Jan. 23, 1987

New York, PFC 327 BN Tank Corps
World War I
March 9, 1892 - Oct. 13, 1951

Lillie was the daughter of Joseph Smith Lanier and Nancy Jane Bennett and was born in Chambers County, Alabama. The birth date on her headstone is almost certainly incorrect. Based on other records she was more likely born on 25 Nov 1891. James H. Dixon was Lillie's 4th husband.

Click on links above for sources.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

This Week in the Family History - November 21 - 27

23 Nov 1879 (131 years ago) - Isabella Jane Goodloe Hankins Yates married Thomas DeVault. Janie was the daughter of John Emerson Goodloe and Eliza Ann Dobyns. She had previously married Albert Hankins and Thomas Yates. [2nd great-grandmother, Hankins line]

23 Nov 1915 (95 years ago) - Elizabeth Angeline McCauley was born in Greenville, Muhlenberg County, Kentucky. Liz was the daughter of John William McCauley and Verda Waller Hankins. [aunt, McCauley line]

25 Nov 1891 (119 years ago) - Lillie Vashti Lanier was born in Chambers County, Alabama. Lillie was the daughter of Joseph Smith Lanier and Nancy Jane Bennett. [grandaunt, Lanier line]

26 Nov 1974 (36 years ago) - James Bailey Hankins died in Carlsbad, San Diego County, California. Jimmy was the son of Thomas Leander Hankins and Samantha Angeline Petty. [granduncle, Hankins line]

26 Nov 1904 (106 years ago) - Lula Mae Hopkins was born in Brodhead, Rockcastle County, Kentucky. Lula was the daughter of James Arton Hopkins and Lucinda Howard. [grandaunt, Hopkins line]

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Surname Saturday - Wolfenbarger

Stephen Wolfenbarger and Eliza Hopkins

Let me start by saying I have absolutely no proof that Stephen Wolfenbarger was the father of Eliza Hopkins' children but that's the family story. I do know for sure is that the story doesn't exactly match what can be proven.

The story passed down through the family is that Stephen and Eliza were married in Hancock County, Tennessee, had two sons and then Stephen was killed during the Civil War. Eliza and the boys lived with her parents until she re-married in 1866 and moved to Indiana, leaving her young sons with her parents. Since the boys were raised by their Hopkins grandparents, that's the surname they used.

Records tell a different story.

Stephen Wolfenbarger was born about 1838 in Virginia. He was probably the son of Wilkerson and Milly Wolfenbarger - at least, there was a 12 yr old Stevin Wolfenbarger listed in their household in the 1850 census in Hancock County. In 1860, Stephen Wolfenbarger and an apparent wife named Margaret were listed in Hancock County in the community of Mulberry Gap. He was 22 so is probably the "Stevin" living with Wilkerson ten years earlier.

Stephen was indeed killed during the Civil War. He enlisted in Company K of the 19th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry on 22 May 861. The exact date and place of his death is unclear but his Muster Roll dated May 14, 1863 lists him as "killed in battle."

Eliza Hopkins was born on 22 Feb 1837 in Claiborne County, Tennessee in an area of the county that later became Hancock County. She was the 6th of 11 children born to Stephen Hopkins, Jr. and Rachel McFardan. Eliza had two sons born in 1860 and 1861 in Mulberry Gap. Stephen and Rachel along with most of their children moved to Harlan County, Kentucky sometime between 1861 and 1865. Eliza married Ephram Simpson there on 11 Oct 1866 and moved to Indiana. Eliza left her sons with her parents and probably never returned to Harlan County. She died on 16 Jan 1912 in Epps, Butler County, Missouri and was buried there in Sparkman Cemetery.

Now some researchers have taken the name Margaret from that 1860 census and created a person named Margaret Eliza Hopkins as Stephen's wife (you will find her in some online trees) but there was no such person. The truth is that Stephen married someone named Margaret and was almost certainly never married to Eliza although marriage records from this period have not survived in Hancock County so that can't be absolutely proven. Since Stephen did die during the Civil War it's entirely possible that he was just a good candidate to be named the father when the boys started asking questions. After all, he wasn't around to deny it and the family had moved away from Hancock County by the time the boys would have been old enough to ask questions so there was no one around to refute the story. It's entirely possible that the boys didn't even have the same father. Another telling piece of this puzzle to me is that Eliza Hopkins (not Wolfenbarger) married Ephram Simpson in 1866. Why would a widow with two small children have reverted to her maiden name?

Eliza's (and maybe Stephen's) children:
William Columbus "Lum" Hopkins was born 13 Jan 1860 in Mulberry Gap. He was married three times and had 19 children. Lum died on 11 Jul 1947 in Gratis, Preble County, Ohio and was buried in Germantown Cemetery in Montgomery County, Ohio.

James Arton "Jim" Hopkins was born 1 Dec 1861 in Mulberry Gap. He married Lucinda Howard on 25 Deb 1885 in Harlan County, Kentucky and they had 10 children. Jim died on 5 Jan 1933 in Harlan Township, Warren County, Ohio and was buried in Morrow Cemetery in Warren County.

Eliza was my 2nd great-grandmother through her son, James Arton. Click on the links above for sources and additional information. If you have a connection to this family, leave a comment or e-mail me.

Related Surname Saturday post:
James Arton Hopkins and Lucinda Howard

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Long Lost Relative

There may not be one in absolutely every family but certainly many families have a long lost relative, especially if you go back a few generations. William Robert Taylor was a long lost relative through no fault of his own. Bill spent many years of his life not even knowing that he was lost to a big part of his family.

Bill's parents, John Cook Taylor and Margaret Frances "Fannie" Warren, were married in Rockcastle County, Kentucky on August 22, 1894. Bill was born on May 16, 1895 and was their only child. His parents divorced when he was just a toddler. Fannie and Bill moved in with her parents and John remarried in 1900. Sometime shortly after the 1900 census was taken, the Warren family decided to move to Kansas. Fannie and young Bill went along with her parents, her brother, two of her sisters and their families. 

According to family stories, John chased after the wagons as they were leaving Rockcastle County begging Fannie not to take his son away but he couldn't stop her. It would be 30 years before John again saw his son.

Bill grew up in Leavenworth County, Kansas believing that his father had died when he was a baby because that's what his mother told him. Fannie eventually married Jerry Logsdon, a widower from Pulaski County, Kentucky with two sons. Jerry had lived very near the Rockcastle County line and the area of the county where Fannie's parents lived so it's quite possible that he was a long time friend of the family and had moved to Kansas with them.

The years passed. Bill married Nellie Frances Ready on March 21, 1917 in Leavenworth County and they had two sons, Orin Edward and Verne K. Bill's mother died before 1930 and on her death bed she told Bill the truth - that his father had not died all those years ago and was probably still living in Rockcastle County.

Bill & John, abt. 1951
Bill returned to Rockcastle County about 1931 for the first time since he was a little boy on that wagon heading to Kansas. He traveled by train and didn't try to contact his father before making the trip. When he got off the train in Mt. Vernon he asked about John Taylor and someone gave him directions to John's house. 

John had no idea what had become of Bill. He didn't know where Fannie had taken him or even if he was alive or dead but when he answered the knock at his door that day he took one look at the man standing there and said "That's my boy."

Bill was welcomed into the Taylor family with open arms. He learned that he had five half-siblings, four sisters and one brother. His sister, Emma, wrote the following about meeting Bill:
"I did not see him till I was 30 yrs. old. He came to visit Papa. We were so glad to see him and he felt as much like a brother as my whole brother, Hartford, did. He came back every year after that and was home when Papa died."
Bill did indeed come back every year to visit until he was into his late 60's/early 70's and no longer able to make the trip. Besides his Taylor family, his mother also had relatives still living in Rockcastle County and Bill would see them as well. Even after his father died in 1953, Bill continued his annual visit and always stayed with his step-mother, Emma Jane. Bill's sister, Emma, also visited him in Kansas a few times.

Bill died on July 7, 1975 in Lawrence, Douglas County, Kansas and was buried there in Memorial Park Cemetery. Fortunately for Bill and his family, he found his way back home and didn't remain a long lost relative.

Poster by footnoteMaven
This was written for the 100th Carnival of Genealogy "There's One in Every Family." 

John Cook Taylor was my great-grandfather. His daughter (and Bill's half-sister), Emma, was my grandmother. I remember Uncle Bill visiting every summer during my childhood and hearing the stories about John chasing the wagon, Fannie's confessing and John recognizing Bill when he showed up at his door from my grandmother and others in the family. For other sources, click on the links above for Bill, John and Fannie.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Researching in Troup County, Georgia

Legacy Museum and Troup County Archives
LaGrange, Georgia

This week I made my 2nd visit to the Troup County Archives. I arrived before the library opened so spent a few minutes looking through the museum on the 1st floor. Since it was just a few days after Veterans Day their exhibit honoring Troup County veterans was still on display. It was quite an accumulation of photos, uniforms and other memorabilia covering most of the 1st floor space.  The photos below are just a part of the exhibit.

The research library is on the 2nd floor of the building. You couldn't ask for a more helpful and knowledgeable staff. If you have Troup County ancestors but can't visit LaGrange, check out the Troup County Archives website. They have searchable cemetery records, marriage records and deeds among other things. Images are even included for the marriage records and deeds.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Vashti and Liz

Vashti McCauley Wells and Elizabeth "Liz" McCauley Carver

Liz died 7 years ago on 20 Nov 2003.

Photo courtesy of Bettie Gamblin Hendricks

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Hettie Lanier McRae

Salem Cemetery
Salem, Lee County, Alabama

Hettie Lanier McRae
May 29, 1878 - Oct. 31, 1944

Hettie Eugenia Lanier was the daughter of Joseph Smith Lanier and Nancy Jane Bennett. She married Virgil Slocum White on 27 Nov 1898 in Monroe County, Mississippi. They had 7 children and were divorced between 1910 and 1920. Hettie married William McRae before 1920. She died in Salem.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

This Week in the Family History - November 14 - 20

14 Nov 1720 (290 years ago) - Freelove Mason was born in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts. Freelove was the daughter of Joseph Mason and Elizabeth Barney. [6th great-grandmother, Hopkins line]

15 Nov 1749 (261 years ago) - Nathaniel Lanier was born in Brunswick County, Virginia. Nathaniel was the son of James Lanier and Mary Cooke. [4th great-grandfather, Lanier line]

15 Nov 1818 (192 years ago) - Charlotte T. Jackson was born in Jasper County, Georgia. Charlotte was the daughter of Samuel W. Jackson and Lavinia Malone. [2nd great-grandmother, Lanier line]

15 Nov 1840 (170 years ago) - Margaret E. Ramsey was born in Rockcastle County, Kentucky. Margaret was the daughter of Thomas Ramsey, Jr. and Rhoda Ann Lavender. [2nd great-grandmother, Taylor line]

16 Nov 1760 (250 years ago) - Charles Dobyns died in Richmond County, Virginia. Charles was the son of Daniel Dobyns and Elizabeth Godson and the husband of Sarah Nash. [6th great-grandfather, Hankins line]

16 Nov 1861 (149 years ago) - Houston G. Hankins died in Christian County, Kentucky. Houston was the son of Barnabas Hankins and Sarah Fox and the husband of Mary Weeks. [3rd great-grandfather, Hankins line]

18 Nov 1908 (102 years ago) - Cecilia "Celia" Owens died in Freedom, Rockcastle County, Kentucky. Ceila was the daughter of Wesley Owens and Louis A. Mullins and the wife of Madison Crawford Owens. [2nd great-grandmother, Taylor line]

20 Nov 1849 (161 years ago) - Felicia Lewis King died in Ashe County, North Carolina. Felicia's parent are unknown. She was the wife of Edward King. [5th great-grandmother, Taylor line]

20 Nov 1899 (111 years ago) - John Covey Howard died in Wallins Creek, Harlan County, Kentucky. John was the son of John Howard and Mary Risner and the husband of Mary Morris. [2nd great-grandfather, Hopkins line]

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Atlanta Family History Expo - Photos

I don't know how I came away with so few pictures - just too busy with other things I guess.

Thomas MacEntee, Drucilla Pair, DearMYRTLE, Valerie Craft and 
Tonia Kendrick (Valerie is answering questions for someone who stopped by.)

Amy Coffin and Drucilla Pair

Angela Walton-Raji

Me answering the question "What is a Blog?"

Mavis Jones getting a little Tech Help

Social Media Q & A with Blogger Panel
Valerie Craft, Me, Drucilla Pair, DearMYRTLE, 
Tonia Kendrick, Amy Coffin and Holly Hansen (standing)

Atlanta Family History Expo - Day 2

I took it a little easier with the classes today - attended two and participated in one. While I enjoy genealogy classes very much, a full day of them just leaves me mentally exhausted - no doubt because my brain is working overtime trying to absorb everything. Then there is the whole "I am not an early morning person" thing (and I consider anything before 10 AM as early morning). In spite of all that, I made it to Breaking Down Brick Walls with Location Based Genealogy presented by Bernie Gracy at 8:00 A.M. 

Next up was the Social Media Q & A Panel of Bloggers. I participated in the panel along with Amy CoffinTonia KendrickDearMyrtleDrucilla Pair and Valerie Craft. It was a lively hour with lots of interaction between the attendees and the panel. Except for one more class in the afternoon, I spent the rest of the day at the Beacon of Bloggers in the Exhibit Hall. 

There seemed to be a great deal of buzz throughout the two days about blogging. DearMyrtle and Thomas MacEntee both held "how to" classes and people stopped by the blogger table to ask everything from "What in the world is a blog?" to "Can someone help me set up a blog?" A few people actually set up blogs right there at the table with assistance from Amy or DearMyrtle. I'll be surprised if several other new blogs don't pop up over the next few weeks.

After lunch I attended Jennifer Dondero's presentation The DAR Library for All: Near or Far, Member or Not. I've used the online DAR Genealogical Research System (GRS) but learned several several things in this session including that record copies (applications) can now be received electronically.

Then all too soon it was time for Holly Hansen's presentation Kiss Those Brick Walls Good-bye! Research Success Stories also known as The Closing Keynote.

This was a great experience and I sincerely thank Holly and Amy for the opportunity to participate as a Blogger of Honor. If you have chance to attend a Family History Expo, do not pass it up.

Atlanta Family History Expo - Social Media Q & A Panel

Saturday morning Social Media Q & A Panel of Bloggers

It's been another busy day. I'll have more photos and a summary of the day later this evening.

Surname Saturday - Hankins

Albert Elvie Hankins and Isabella Jane Goodloe

Albert Elvie Hankins was born about 1838 in Hopkins County, Kentucky. He was the oldest son and second child of the 10 children born to Houston G. Hankins and Mary Weeks. 

Isabella Jane "Janie" Goodloe was born on 27 Jan 1838 in Hopkins County. She was the oldest of four children born to John Emerson and Eliza Ann Dobyns. By the time she was 11 years old her mother had died and her father had remarried. 

Albert and Janie were married on 24 Oct 1855 at her father's home in Hopkins County. In 1860 they were living next door to Albert's parent with the 1st two of their four children. Albert enlisted in the 8th Kentucky Confederate Infantry on 18 Oct 1861 in Hopkinsville in neighboring Christian County. As of 1 Aug 1862 he was "absent at home in Kentucky without leave" according to muster records. It's unclear exactly what happened to Albert. According to one of his granddaughters, he was wounded in the hand in a battle in Hopkinsville in 1865 so he may have returned to his unit at some point. That same granddaughter told that Albert was found with a friend in a barn in the company of deserters, was accused of desertion and shot.

Regardless of how or when Albert died, Janie was left with four young children to raise. By 1870 they were living next to her father. She married again in 1874 but her second husband, Thomas Yates, probably died within a few years. She married for the third and last time in 1879. Her third husband was Thomas DeVault and they apparently adopted a daughter at some point between 1880 and 1900. Sixteen year old Bessie Walker was listed with them in the 1900 census as an adopted daughter. In Janie's obituary a few years later Bessie's surname was listed as DeVault but nothing further is known about her.

Janie died on 23 Jul 1905 in Hopkins County of Malaria. She was buried there in Grapevine Cemetery. Albert's burial place remains unknown.

Children of Albert and Janie:
John Houston was born on 24 Aug 1856 in Hopkins County. He married Martha A. E. "Mattie Clements there on 20 Nov 1879 and they had six children. John was a farmer and operated several mills in western Kentucky. He also served as Sheriff of Hopkins County. John died on 10 Jun 1938 in Providence, Webster County, Kentucky and was buried in Odd Fellows Cemetery in Hopkins County.

Thomas Leander "Lee" was born on 13 Jun 1858 in Hopkins County. He married Samantha Angeline Petty on 14 May 1879 and they had seven children. Lee worked as a farmer and was also a Baptist minister. Lee died on 23 Apr 1929 in Hopkins County and was buried in Grapevine Cemetery.

James W. was born on 25 Jul 1860 in Hopkins County. He 1st married Mary J. Combs on 6 Apr 1883 then married Almeda Smith on 1 Aug 1889. Jim worked as a coal miner. He and Almeda had one daughter but she had a son from a previous marriage who went by Hankins. Jim died on 15 Mar 1930 in Providence and was buried in Grapevine Cemetery.

Mary Madore "Mollie" was born on 10 Mar 1863 in Hopkins County. She married Henry T. Clements on 8 Dec 1885 and they had one daughter. Mollie died on 7 Feb 1939 in Hopkins County and was buried in Grapevine Cemetery.

Albert and Janie were my 2nd great-grandparents through their son, Thomas Leander. Click on the links above for sources and additional information. If you have a connection to this family, leave a comment or e-mail me.

Additional Hankins Surname Saturday posts:

Friday, November 12, 2010

Atlanta Family History Expo - Day 1

It was a long day! The Opening Session started at 8 AM and the banquet ended just after 8 PM. Twelve hours of non-stop genealogy classes, discussions and camaraderie. What more could you want?

The keynote address "Let Your Light Shine on Digital Expectations: Preserving Yesterday's Records for Tomorrow's Researchers" was delivered by Ancestry.com's Joshua Hanna. Part of his presentation dealt with advances in imaging. He showed records that were completely unreadable but after being scanned with Ancestry's very special scanner (sorry I missed the real name of the device) there was actually writing on the page that could be read. Amazing stuff!

The exhibit hall, including the Beacon of Bloggers, opened after the keynote session and we had an hour before the first session started. Bloggers in attendance during the day included Amy Coffin, DearMyrtle, Tonia Kendrick, Valerie Craft, Lisa Alzo, Thomas MacEntee, Drusilla Pair, Angela Walton-Raji and Ginger Smith. Later in the day I skipped one of the sessions to spend more time at the blogger table. It's always fun to talk to other genealogists, especially genealogy bloggers. Lots of people stopped by and several expressed an interest in starting their own genealogy blog. DearMyrtle even helped someone set up a brand new genealogy blog right on the spot.

I attended four of the five class sessions during the day. It was standing room only for Lisa Alzo's class on Finding Your Female Ancestors which covered tips for finding elusive female ancestors. (I got there in time to get a seat.) M. Bridget Cook recommended knowing your audience - present and future, creating a realistic outline and leaving a lasting legacy in Juicy Family History: 25 Ways to Write a Compelling True Story. In Want Land? Will Travel! Southern Land Records State-by-State Arlene Eakle discussed the numerous types of land records in southern states. Jennifer Dondero's session titled Maiden Names: Did You Really Look Everywhere? covered tips for types of records that could hold the key to maiden names as well as the need to keep research logs and have a research plan.

The speaker for the banquet was M. Bridget Cook, author of Shattered Silence (the true story of the daughter of a serial killer) and Skinhead Confessions - From Hate to Hope. She discussed some of her experiences in writing those books in her presentation Handling (and Even Healing) the Skeletons in Your Genealogical Closet.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans Day 2010

In honor of Veterans Day, my favorite Veteran

David Hankins McCauley
12 Jul 1926 - 16 Jun 2000
US Navy 20 Jan 1944 - 22 Apr 1946

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Countdown to Atlanta Family History Expo - My Schedule

Atlanta Family History Expo starts on Friday and it seems like I've spent hours studying the schedule and wavering deciding on which sessions to attend. Since there are so many choices I tend to change my mind about something every time I look at the program. Well, time's up. I'm not looking anymore (at least not until I get there). I know I haven't left enough time for the Exhibit Hall and the Beacon of Bloggers booth but I'm going to play that by ear. At some point I'm bound to have information overload and need to skip a session.

For now, my schedule looks like this:

8:00 - Opening Keynote Address - Let Your Light Shin on Digital Expectations: Preserving Yesterday's Records for Tomorrow's Researchers - Joshua Hanna

10:00 - Finding Your Female Ancestors - Lisa Alzo

11:30 - Juicy Family  History: 25 Ways to Write Compelling True Stories - M. Bridget Cook

1:30 - Want Land? Will Travel! Southern Land Records State-by-State - Arlene Eakle

3:00 - Creating the Perfect Biography That Even Non-Relatives will Want to Read! - M. Bridget Cook

4:30 - Maiden Names: Did You Really Look Everywhere? - Jennifer Dondero

6:30 - Friday Night Event - Handling (and Even Healing) the Skeletons in Your Genealogical Closet - M. Bridget Cook

8:00 - Breaking Down Brick Walls with Location Based Genealogy - Bernie Gracy

9:00 - Social Media Q and A

11:00 - Digital Photography for the Family Historian - Andy Pomeroy

1:00 - The DAR Library for All: Near or Far, Member or Not - Jennifer Dondero

2:30 - What is "The South" and Why Is It Different - Arlene Eakle

4:00 - Closing Keynote - Kiss Those Brick Walls Good-bye! Research Success Stories - Holly T. Hansen

I hope I still have enough energy left for all that research I've got planned for Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. 

Wordless Wednesday - Marie, Anna Rose and Bill

Marie Krueger, Anna Rose Taylor, Bill Krueger
abt. 1930

Photo courtesy of W. H. Taylor

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Countdown to Atlanta Family History Expo - and Some Research

Two days left to get ready for this trip! 

When I first decided to attend the Atlanta Family History Expo I immediately looked at a map to see where the event was being held and what might be nearby research wise for me to take advantage of while in the area. Just 30 miles away, there was Cumming, Georgia. Cumming is the county seat of Forsyth County where my great-grandmother's younger siblings went to live with relatives after their mother's death in Kentucky in 1876 and where I have the only lead on a possible sister of my gg-grandfather. Well, this was the perfect location for Expo, I could leave a day early, get some research done in Forsyth County on Thursday and head over to Duluth by Thursday evening. Then the research wheels really started spinning.

My grandfather's sister is buried in Westview Cemetery in Atlanta so I could run by there on Sunday before heading home. But then I also need to look at some newspapers and court records in Coweta County, Georgia (Newnan) and that's less than 40 miles from Atlanta so I could just run on down there and get that research done on Monday. In the meantime, there are a couple of cemeteries an hour or so on the other side of Newnan that I could also hit on Sunday afternoon.

Then I realized that once I'm in Newnan it's only a couple of hours over to St. Clair County, Alabama where my grandfather's 1st wife was from and where they got married. Maybe I could find a lead on what happened to her and their child after they split up around 1902. So I added another day to this trip and now I'm leaving on Wednesday and returning home the next Wednesday. I think could have added a few more "while I'm in the neighborhood" locations and stayed gone for a month but I had to come home eventually so 8 days seemed like enough for one trip.

About a week ago I started thinking about a Veterans Day blog post and it hit me that the Thursday before Expo, the day I was going to research in Forsyth County is Veterans Day. Uh-oh. I broke the 1st rule of planning a research trip - be sure the facility you want to visit is OPEN. The ridiculous thing about this is that I had already contacted the St. Clair County Archives and the Coweta County Courthouse and Library. Of course, the Forsyth County Courthouse is closed on Veterans Day so I had to cancel that leg of the trip. At least I figured it out before I was standing at the courthouse door on Thursday morning. 

I'll be back before I leave with a list of Expo sessions I'm going to attend.  

Sunday, November 7, 2010

This Week in the Family History - November 7 - 13

7 Nov 1724 (286 years ago) - Deborah Buckland Cole died (probably in either Rhode Island or Massachusetts). Deborah was the daughter of Joseph Buckland and Deborah Allen and the wife of Hugh Cole. [8th great-grandmother, Hopkins line]

9 Nov 1886 (124 years ago) - John Covey Hopkins was born in Wallins Creek, Harlan County, Kentucky. John was the son of James Arton Hopkins and Lucinda Howard. [granduncle, Hopkins line]

10 Nov 1780 (230 years ago) - Gracie Eaves was born in North Carolina. Gracie was the daughter of Burwell Eaves and Izza Malone. [4th great-grandmother, Lanier line]

10 Nov 1993 (17 years ago) - Marie Krueger Cox died in Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky. Marie was the daughter of August Krueger and Susan Taylor and the wife of Henry Houston Cox. [1st cousin once removed, Taylor line]

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Surname Saturday - Taylor

John Cook Taylor and Emma Jane Owens

John Cook Taylor was born on 25 Dec 1863 in Rockcastle County, Kentucky. He was the 4th of 11 children born to James Francis Taylor and Margaret E. Ramsey and he lived his entire life in Rockcastle County. John married Sarah A. "Sally" Ramsey on 8 Jun 1885. They had two daughters and Sally died on 12 Feb 1892. John married Margaret Frances "Fannie" Warren on 22 Aug 1894. They had one son and were divorced before 1900.

Emma Jane Owens was born  on 16 Apr 1882 in Rockcastle County. She was the youngest of 7 children born to Madison Crawford Owens and Cecilia Owens and she also lived her entire life in Rockcastle County.

John and Emma Jane were married on 16 Jan 1900 at her parents home in the community of Freedom. They started their marriage living in Mt. Vernon on West Main Street near Fairground Hill. During the next twenty years they lived in 4 other houses and also stayed with John's daughter, Susie, for a while when one of their houses burned to the ground. During those years John worked as a blacksmith at his shop behind what is now Cox's Hardware in downtown Mt. Vernon. Sometime in the 1920's he sold the blacksmith shop and bought a small farm on Buckeye Road just out of town. They lived there until the early 1930's then moved back in with Susie and her family until a nearby duplex became available and they moved just down the street from Susie. From there they moved back to the Buckeye area to a different farm that their son-in-law, Elmer Hopkins, bought.

John and Emma Jane never owned a car and neither of them could drive so, as John got older, living on the farm became a problem. Occasionally they went to town  in a wagon but they usually just walked. About 1945 John and Emma Jane moved back into Mt. Vernon to a different apartment in the duplex on West Main Street.

John died on 7 Sep 1953 at their home and was buried in Elmwood Cemetery in Mt. Vernon. Emma Jane died on 17 Mar 1968 at the Rockcastle Hospital in Mt. Vernon and was buried beside John in Elmwood.

John and Sally's children:
Grace was born on 27 Aug 1886 in Mt. Vernon and was five years old when her mother died. Gracie never married and had no children. She worked at the bus station and in Dr. Pennington's office and lived most of the time with John and Emma Jane. From 1937 - 1941 Gracie lived in Loyall with her sister, Emma, and her family. Emma was working as the Postmaster and Gracie kept house and babysat for Emma's children. Gracie died on 25 Sep 1961 in Mt. Vernon and was buried in Elmwood Cemetery.

Susan was born on 3 Feb 1889 in Mt. Vernon and had just turned three years old a few days before her mother died. Susie married August Krueger on 7 Sep 1911 at John and Emma Jane's house in Mt. Vernon. They had four children and August died on 16 Feb 1927. Susie married Harvey Owens on 31 Oct 1937 in Rockcastle County but the marriage didn't last for long and they were divorced. Susie died on 14 Feb 1964 in Mt. Vernon and was buried in Elmwood Cemetery.

John and Fannie's child:
William Robert was born on 16 May 1895 in Rockcastle County. John and Fannie divorced before 1900 and  Fannie moved to Kansas with her parents and other relatives sometime in the early 1900's.  Bill married Nellie Frances Ready on 21 Mar 1917 in Leavenworth County, Kansas and they had two sons. Bill was also married to Opal Phillips and Nell Thomas but did not have other children. Bill died on 7 Jul 1975 in Lawrence, Douglas County, Kansas and was buried there in Memorial Park Cemetery.

John and Emma Jane's children:
Emma Ewers was born on 24 Oct 1900 in Mt. Vernon. She married Elmer Dennis Hopkins on 11 Oct 1920 in Jellico, Campbell County, Tennessee and they had four daughters. Emma and Elmer lived in Loyall, Harlan County, Kentucky during most of their marriage but also lived in Corbin twice during that time. Emma died on 19 Jan 1978 in Harlan and was buried in Elmwood Cemetery in Mt. Vernon.

Hartford Conn was born on 11 Apr 1905 in Mt. Vernon. He married Elizabeth Josephine Mulliner on 9 Nov 1928 in Galesburg, Knox County, Illinois and they had two children. Hartford was a musician and recording artist in the 1930's and 40's. He was part of the duo, Karl and Harty, and also a member of the Cumberland Ridge Runners. Hartford died on 17 Oct 1963 in Waukegan, Lake County, Illinois and was buried in Milburn Cemetery in Lake County.

Anna Rose was born on 10 Jun 1918 in Mt. Vernon. She married Emery Holt Chesnut on 3 Feb 1947 in Cook County, Illinois and they had one son. Anna Rose died on 17 Jul 1976 in Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County, Michigan and was buried in Milburn Cemetery in Lake County, Illinois.

John and Emma Jane were my great-grandparents through their daughter, Emma. For sources and additional information, click on the links above. If you have a connection to this family, leave a comment or e-mail me.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Atlanta Family History Expo - It's Almost Time!

This time next week I'll be sitting in a session at the Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Georgia! When I first started planning to attend the Atlanta Family History Expo it seemed so far away that it's hard to believe it's about time to think about packing.

I've looked at the schedule several times but still haven't decided for sure on which sessions to attend. There are just too many interesting topics! 

One thing I am really looking forward to is the Friday Night Event. M. Bridget Cook, author of "Shattered Silence, the Untold Story of a Serial Killer's Daughter" will be the speaker and her presentation is titled "Handling (and Even Healing) the Skeletons in Your Genealogical Closet." Now I don't have a serial killer (that I know of) in my genealogical closet but I do have a pretty big family skeleton in the not so distant past so this could not be a more interesting topic for me.

It's not too late to make plans to attend the Atlanta Family History Expo. Hope to see you there.