Most of us really take our time here for granted. For genealogists, we understand the value of time based on our research. To go into it deeper, we often see the degree to which time has an effect on tombstones for example. They weather, break, erode, are damaged by trees, brush and people.
This week, while out exploring a local cemetery, I found what I think is probably the oldest stone that I personally have seen so far in my own research and documentation. This is not to say that it's the oldest out there.
I find that this fascinates me because it isn't even someone that I am researching or in my tree, but a complete stranger that is now peeking my interest, only based on the date and place of his birth.
I'd like to point out that this script on this stone is so well preserved and readable, that I found this also to be an odd thing. I've come across so many even into the late 1800's whos stones are all but blank now. This one, has stood the test of time. It takes us back to the days.... back in time.
I hope that as you are researching that you consider all the things you see, from the very new pink silk flowers, to the degree of mold, to the position of the stone compared to others around it... what little things did you find out? What kind of adventure will they lead you on next? Wherever you go, enjoy your Adventures in Genealogy!
Yesterday I went for a drive around a local small town and was not very successful so I stopped into the public library. While trying to see if they had any info for the cemetery I was looking for, conversations struck up and we were talking about all kinds of things having to do with family and history.
Somewhere in the conversation about the cemetery I was looking for, the very kind and sweet woman told me that this particular cemetery was said to be a Black cemetery. We talked about how some cemeteries are on private land and forgotten, and how often times the cemeteries for the owners of the lands and the cemeteries of those that worked on the land were seperated because of color.
This made me remember my trip to Perry County last month. I was told that the old Cone (or Coon) Cemetery was a Black cemetery and that I'd not have any relatives in there. After hiking up to the cemetery with my wonderful cousins and guides, and photographing each stone I came across for prosterity, I finally found at the head of the cemetery overlooking what was once a large bluff to the river below, the property owners - side by side. They were indeed residing in the same cemetery as those who worked "for" them and were at one time likely their slaves who were then freed and continued to work on the farm for the owners.
Recounting this story of my discovery to the lovely lady, I could feel a sense of pride as I heard the story for the first time out of my own mouth, and I watched her face (who watched my face) as I saw the smile she gave me, and the joy in her heart showed as she said how special that they must have been. At that moment, I connected with the past in a way that I had never done before. The past, with the present.
While I never did find the cemetery I was looking for, I found something much more meaningful, and I truly enjoyed my Adventures in Genealogy!
It's completely crazy to me that one word or phrase from a person can send my mind into a research frenzy. It doesn't matter to me if it's a town name,, a surname, a first name, a business name or anything else, if you say it I will hunt it.
Such is the case for the above photo, Found on a town history page after being told that the founder of my relative's town was the person on the left. After further research, he actually was on my tree as well!! This cleared the way to see things completely different than I had before.
In a few weeks, I will be travelling to that town. I will walk on the land that he owned, and that several of my other ancestors owned. I will touch the papers that they touched, see their craftsmanship along with the place where they now rest.
When the sun shines, it allows for a more clear vision of where things are, and where they had been. I'm enjoying my Adventures in Genealogy! Are you?
I know, I know. It's Saturday, right? I suppose in hindsight, creating an active blog then getting a 60 hour a week job is probably not the wisest thing to do, but hey, if I want to keep this webpage paid up, a job it is. I hope you've all stayed with me for the transitions.
Well, among other things, my daughter also had a field trip yesterday and I got to go on it with her. Her grade toured the Capitol of Alabama - Montgomery, then went to Old Alabama Town. Now, while I initially thought this was one in the same of my ancestor's place of residence, it was not. These buildings were from downtown Montgomery and my Ancestor's town was about 36 miles away from there in an actual town called "Old Town". I was slightly disappointed, but it gave me a great view at the lives of my civil war family in that place and time.
If anyone ever gets to go see Old Alabama Town, I highly recommend the self guided tour BUT if you can manage to go twice, or perhaps do both a self guided tour and a paid tour, It was interesting to hear the stories from the Tour guides and the Actors on scene in the guided version. My only issue was that we could only see a few buildings in that time. While they were great, I really wanted to see much of the other ones as well.
I share with you today, a photo from the tour. The photo I really wish I could share was of the School teacher teaching the children what school was like back then, but that would require me to contact all the parents and get permission to post their child's photo online, and that would likely be a negative. So I'll share one without the kids in it, and hope that it conveys the same thoughts.
For your viewing pleasure, I am including a couple others below. Just so those who've never been to a historic museum of this kind can get a glimpse into the world also...
While you are daydreaming of the life these people had, make sure to enjoy your Adventures in Genealogy!
There have been many changes since I originally made this site with all the information posted. Much of which has changed and been added to, corrected and otherwise altered. In the next few weeks, I will be updating this page to match the changes in my files and in our family history.
I've met "cousins" I didn't know I had. I've read about people who fought and lived during the Civil War and uncovered mysteries that are still hanging around waiting to be solved.
I hope you are hanging on too. It's been quite a ride for me and as I get organized, I'll let you in on it.
Enjoy your week!
In 1996 my great Aunt Marie mailed me a box of papers in fear of her passing away and all her hard work and years of research with her two sisters (one my grandmother Caroline) would be lost. Both her sisters had recently passed away within months of each other and she was scared.
The odd part about this is that I was never really close to my mother's side of the family. Not by choice, but by circumstance beyond my control as a child.
I had only two years before started some research with my, at that time, husband's father's family. Rumors spread that I was a Genealogist and that I enjoyed it. (I don't know how that happens!)
Anyway, my Aunt Marie made me promise that one day I would publish a book. You see, they did not use the internet to research and really had no idea that you would be able to publish online and in digital formats.
I intend on keeping that promise. I lost touch with her after Hurricane Katrina. You see, she lived on the south side of Lake Pontchartrain and had moved to the north side. Or - at least that is what I was told.
I only recently (this month even) found out that she had passed away several months ago. I had so wanted to let her know how far I'd gotten and that her dream would soon come to reality.
This whole website would not be possible without the contributions of three very beautiful women. I so then dedicate it's existence to them:
Caroline Elizabeth Duke Wagner
Joann Duke Matthews
Ruth Marie Duke Mehrhoff
Rest in Peace. We love and Miss you all.
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