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Dee Burris Blakley ([personal profile] dee_burris) wrote2012-11-21 08:27 am

Random musings...

I started this blog to share - photos, memories, documents, places and people - with other people.

Freely sharing was important to me because of the sharing of information I experienced in the early years of this journey when I asked for information.

On surname message boards. Hard to believe, but I still find posts of my own from 1999 on some of those boards.

Distant cousins found the blog in Google searches. I correspond with several of them still. All the other bloggers were right.

If you build it, they will come.
In the last few months, I've started getting emails that go something like this:
I am making sure that this e-mail doesn't bounce. I am researching a possible family connection in Arkansas. (That's the actual text of a message I found in my inbox this morning.)

I always reply to those, to let them know the email address is still good. Sometimes, there is a distant family connection.

Sometimes, people have seen how Arkansas-intensive my tracks are on the internet, and they just need help with their own trees.

What can I say? I'm a Scorpio, and always intrigued by a mystery.

Even when it doesn't have one of my own surnames on it.
You know how people say that they hope they don't find out they unwittingly married their own cousin?

I've always figured that somewhere downline - closer to my generation - I'd find out someone was a cousin of their spouse.

I decided last week to start looking at my nephews' and niece's families on the *other* sides of their families.

I started with my niece. Her father's surname is Rankin.

Started with her dad and went backward.

After about 3 hours, I sat here grinning like a fool.

Her dad is my 4th cousin, twice removed. The connection starts in 1877, when John James Rankin married Margaret Ann Lemley in Pope County.

Margaret Ann was the daughter of Ephraim Lemley, Jr. and Cynthia Elvira Burris.

So my niece is also my 4th cousin, three times removed.
Of course, I didn't stop with the pedigree.

I'm looking for bits and pieces of information that give the third dimension to the names, dates and places.

Turns out the Rankins (and their allied families) were quite the movers and shakers in Perry County, AR.

And some of its earliest settlers.

The Rankin family will have blog posts of its own.
rainbow: text "out of spoons error. please reinstall universe and reboot" (Default)

[personal profile] rainbow 2012-11-27 12:36 pm (UTC)(link)
No, the Brennan grandparents were up in Grey Co, Ontario, and died in 1885 (Patrick) and 1888 (Mary). And John left Theresa fairly well off, with a large, fully paid for home on Addison.

I DID just find Clara (17) and Herbert (14) living there wth Theresa in 1897 per the Husted's Guide, but James (16) wasn't there.

Then in 1900 Clara (20) is living with a Curtis aunt and her husband, James (19) is in Santa Cruz, CA, and Herbert (17) is missing.

Huh. I've just had a thought. I wonder if both boys went to St. Mary's High School. It was in Oakland then (the Brennans were in Berkeley, juts north of Oakland). That might fit; quite a few Brennan boys went to St. Mary's. It moved to Berkeley later, and then my grandparent's moved next to it in the 50s, alhtough my uncle went to a public high school instead. I should ask him why...

Time to write my cousin John (Herbert's grandson; he's a 3rd cousin once removed) to see if he has any info...

rainbow: text "out of spoons error. please reinstall universe and reboot" (Default)

[personal profile] rainbow 2012-11-28 07:59 am (UTC)(link)
I'm not much of a blogger :/ I get lost and distracted too easily.

One mystery I'd love to solve is the death of one of my great-grandfathers. His youngest son, a half brother to a grandfather I never met (I'm not sure my father, who I met only once, ever met his father; his parents divorced when he was an infant).

According to my great-granduncle, his father was drunk one day and drowned in a creek that ran past his property. It would have been in the early 30s.

He's not buried with his wife, who died in the teens. Duval Co, FL, has *no record* of his death.

My g-gu lost contact with all his step-siblings as a small child; his father threw him and his mother out one day when he was three.

I've searched all sorts of records in case his mother had been romancing, but so far as I could find when I had an ancestry.com membership, no William Hoyt born circa 1877 died in Jacksonville.

The other kids are all dead now and I haven't been able to locate their kids.

It's one of my two "most wanted" mysteries. (The other is what happened to my Brennan ggfather's twin sister. Cousin John's records did record that Ed had a twin sister, but not whether she came to the US or stayed in Canada.)

I love searching these things out! <3