Thursday, December 23, 2010
I would tell her about what a thrill it was as a young girl to go with her to the laundromat, and watch all the close spin around. I'd tell her that it was all I could do, not to beg her to let me take a spin in one of the giant dryers... it looked so fun! Instead, I would settle for climbing into one of the carts you put your laundry in, and propel myself back and forth, pretending I was in a boat, with a shirt hanging from the tall metal hook for a sail.
I would tell her about how "cool" it was to have a Gran who worked for Geno's and would bring home huge bags of imperfect pizza rolls that my cousins and I knew were in the freezer any time we got the munchies.
I would tell her thank you for allowing my cousin, Kelly, and I to pilfer through her makeup and jewelry, so that we could get dressed up and perform concerts on the back deck of her tiny trailer.
I would tell her that of all her possessions (which really weren't many, Gran was never blessed with fine things), the things that I remember most, and would love to have someday, was her collection of Avon perfumes... the ones that come in bottles made to look like beautiful women in long, bustled dresses, and elaborate hair-dos. I would stare at those for what seemed like hours at night, dreaming up stories about the women.
I would tell her that one of the best memories of my childhood was of her, packing up Kelly and I (I was probably 14 or 15, Kelly was around 10), and taking us to Myrtle Beach for a week! I remember the thrill of driving through the tunnels that ran through the Appalachian mountains, stopping at HoJos for biscuits and gravy, and the little green, beachfront motel we stayed in. Everyday, Gran would bake in the sun, (and sleep!) while Kelly and I ran up and down the beach, knowing that we had the best grandmother in the world!
There are so many other things I would tell her, but more than anything else, I just pray that I have one more opportunity to tell her how much I love her. Merry Christmas, Gran!
Friday, August 20, 2010
Well, it's been months since my blog has been visited, but today's a slow day, and after taking a break for a while, the genealogy bug is biting again! I actually started this post back in September, but had trouble getting pictures to load, so I thought I'd better get this post up before moving on to meatier things! I hope you enjoy!
On August 7 and 8, I made my first trip to Dublin, Ohio's Irish Festival. The festival actually began on the 6th, and my best-y (along with her sister) went down the first night. I had another commitment on Saturday morning, so I joined my friend (her sister had already headed back home) that afternoon. I had heard about the festival for a couple of years, but had no idea how large it was... or how much fun it would be! In the 30 some hours I was there, there was no end to the good music, dance, story telling - I even attended an Irish "wake" (I say that in quotes because you couldn't feel too badly for the passing of the stuffed character they had laid out inside the tent!) Here are some random pictures, and hopefully a video or two if I can get them to upload, of the weekend I spent celebrating my heritage:
I got to meet up with the younger generation of Malone cousins!
Enter the Haggis!
Men in kilts! (There were many... and some looked better than others! *grin*)
Girsha - these gals were great!
The Clancy Legacy, for those who enjoy more traditional Irish tunes.
I didn't get to see Gaelic Storm, since they performed on Friday evening, but I was happy to discover Scythian... talk about a high octane performance! These guys were a ton of fun!
And the crown jewel of the weekend... meeting St. Patrick himself! Ha Ha!
Sunday, July 18, 2010
The gist of last night's challenge was as follows:
1. Find something you have written that you are really proud of. Copy it.
2. Go to the website http://iwl.me/ and paste your text into the box.
3. Tell us what famous author you write like.
Well, I'd say my best written work would be some children's stories I've written, but I didn't have access to those at the moment. Instead, I chose one of my better blog posts to copy and paste. You can reference that post here.
And as for the analysis:
Oh yeah... I write like a proper Irishman! HeeHee In case you don't know much about James Joyce, here's a mini biogrpahy.
Sunday, July 4, 2010
However, today being the 4th, and everyone's minds being on all things American, I've been thinking about the number of ancestors I've had who quite literally fought for the freedoms that we so take advantage of, and often abuse. I've thought about my Mayflower grandfather, William Brewster, who helped forge a new nation; my frontiersman grandfather, Richard Malone, who came to Ohio when it was still considered wilderness. Then there's James Hamilton Cummons, the confederate soldier, who ended up fighting for the union army.
I recently came across this photo from the Library of Congress website. It's description was as follows: Washington, Disctrict of Columbia, Hancock's Veterans Corps on F Street, NW Washington, DC. 1st US Volunteer Infantry.
You can see a larger version of the image here at the Library of Congress.
You can imagine my thrill when I looked at this picture at thought, "It is very possible that my great, great, GREAT grandfather is staring back at me from somewhere in this picture." This picture was taken in March of 1865, and according to muster rolls, James wasn't mustered out until July of '65. If you remember from an earlier post, the 1st US Volunteer Infantry was also known as the Galvanized Yankees. These were men who had enlisted in the confederate army, been captured, and sometime after being taken to a union prison camp, swore allegience to the north, and were placed far away from the war, usually in western forts.
James was just 17 when he enlisted, possibly the son of an Irish immigrant, but when the call came, he answered. I could go on listing grandfathers who fought in the Great War, and World War II, uncles who fought in Korea and Vietnam. Just in my own family tree, there are dozens of men and women who fought, struggled, and died to make a home in America. I hope and pray I never abuse those freedoms they held so dear.
Saturday, June 12, 2010
To begin with, let me show you how I fall in line with the McCutcheon name:
My grandpa has always encouraged me to learn more about his mother's family, the Sprouses and McCutcheons, but I always put them on the back burner. However, a couple of weeks ago, I came across a picture, and a document that sparked my interest, and started my journey.
This picture is of my great grandmother, Bessie Virginia Sprouse, sitting with HER mother, Sarah Catherine (Sallie) McCutcheon Sprouse.
Great Great Grandmother Sallie died in 1964, so this picture could quite possibly be one of the last she had taken.
But who was she? What was her legacy? I had heard stories about circumstances in her life, that made me believe she was a strong woman, one who deserved to be remembered and honored, and as the self-appointed family genealogist, it was my duty to start digging in.
The other source of information that intrigued me was a one page memoir my grandfather gave me, written by a Henry Lee McCutcheon. I knew that this man must have been related to Sallie in some way, for this memoir to come into our possession, and hopefully some of the contents in it could give me a lead into Sallie's family. (These memoirs are saved to my ancestry.com page, and you can read them here.)
To make a long blog post short, it didn't take me long to come across the mccutchentrace.org, and now not only can I begin getting to know Sallie, but also many generations before her. And since this is a surname post (although on Sunday, rather than the geneabloggers suggested Saturday!), I will end by giving you an overview of the McCutcheons of Augusta County, Virginia, Sallie's birthplace. This information was given to me by Ms. Sarah Splaun of mccutcheontrace.org:
Saturday, May 29, 2010
Ah yes, yet another one of my Irish surnames that just magically appeared in America; this one in Ohio. From what I've gathered, my ancestor, Richard Malone (1790-1841) was somewhat of a frontiersman, which possibly explains why the records trail ends with him. But that's a story for another day.
About the surname Malone itself... there are many places on the web where the origins of the Malone name is explained.
Ó Maoileoin, literally grandson (or descendant) of the follower of John (possibly Saint John), is the original Irish form of this name and though originally anglicised as O Malone, we have here a name which is never found with its Gaelic prefix, the form Malone being the exclusive modern form of the name. The sept is a branch of the royal O Connors of Connacht who derive their name from Conchobhar (died 971), King of Connacht. The original Maoileoin from whom the clan takes its name was said to be a nephew of Roderic O Connor, the last Celtic monarch of Ireland. The main family of Malone was for centuries associated with the Abbey of Clonmacnoise, to which they furnished many abbots and bishops, for Clonmacnoise was for a time an independent See before being united with Ardagh. In the early Middle Ages, Clonmacnoise was the great centre of Christian scholarship by the River Shannon, south of Athlone.
You can read more about the Malone surname here .
On last year's glorious trip to Ireland, I found some Malones in Wicklow...
...and also in Clifden...
Friday, May 21, 2010
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Much of my vocabulary was learned from Mamaw Mary. When a cool autumn breeze gave a sudden chill, Mamaw would say, "Boozy!" You never wore your farm clothes into town, because you didn't want to look "Jakey". And if you needed to be somewhere, but were running a bit behind, you'd be there "D'reckly".
In 1990, our family lost Mamaw Mary, and we couldn't imagine life without her. I was just 16 at the time, and it's only now, twenty years later, that I've began to wonder about Mary Workman Tomblin before she was a sweet, grey-haired old lady. So my search has started. Hopefully over the next few posts, I'll be able to share some of the history I've learned about Mamaw, and also her mother, Inez Dempsey. But for now, here's a look at the Workman line, as discovered through ancestry.com:
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Monday, May 10, 2010
Oh, the joys of technology! Just when I was getting used to being without my regular laptop, and had consoled myself because I had the forethought to save a lot of my files to the jumpdrive...*sigh*
I pull out the jump drive to access some genealogy files for Monday Madness... but there's no genealogy folder!!! Are you kidding me?
I mean, it's not like I'd cut my family tree down to a stump, but still, what an inconvenience! Fortunately the muster rolls I had just discovered on my Civil War grandfather has already been posted on the blog here, so I can retrieve them (a lesser quality than what I'd had saved, but at least they're here.) And a lot of files I can pull up again on ancestry, but the biggest frustration are the stories I had recently transcribed from my grandfather and great aunt. I wrote those up fresh, just hours after we had sat reminiscing. I'm sure I can still recount the tales they told, but they will no doubt lack the magic of the moment the original documents held.
I don't know what happened. I am 100% certain the genealogy folder was on the jump drive before the laptop crashed. Why or when would I have taken it off? Grrrr....
So today, my first foray into Monday Madness has me pulling my hair out, not over an elusive ancestor, or an unreadable census record. And it doesn't have me sharing any secrets of mental instability in my family's past (I'm sure I'll get to that in time!) I am simply driven mad today by that little thing we can't do without...TECHNOLOGY!
Sunday, May 9, 2010
"Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:
1) List your matrilineal line - your mother, her mother, etc. back to the first identifiable mother. Note: this line is how your mitochondrial DNA was passed to you!
2) Tell us if you have had your mitochondrial DNA tested, and if so, which Haplogroup you are in.
3) Post your responses on your own blog post, in Comments to this blog post, or in a Note or status line on Facebook."
I have never had the DNA testing done, although I would love to, but here is my matrilineal line, at least as far as I've been able to uncover it on ancestry.com
Beginning with my mother:
Carolyn Y. Malone (1955- present) m. Robert A Cummons
Margaret Y. Evans (1928? - present) m. Eugene G Malone
Nannie Carroll (1895-1980) m. Harvey Evans
Phoebe Ellen Smith (1870-1957) m. John Morgan Carroll
Martha Osborn (1845 - ?) m. Peter Smith
Phebe Lewis (1811 - ??) m. Lewis Osborn
Rachel Henson (1783-1987) m. John Lewis
Mary Polly Lewis (1796-1880) m. James Henson
Winetry Winnie Henson (1760-1824) m. James Theophilus Lewis
Elizabeth (?) (1738_?) m. Paul Henson
This trail of ladies began in North Carolina, moved into Kentucky, and later to Ohio. What a celebration of mothers!!
Mom. Where would I be without her? For the majority of my childhood years it was just the two of us. My dad died when he was 20. Mom was still 19. I was 14 months old. I believe those circumstances gave us an even closer bond than most mothers and daughters. She was, and still is, my best friend. There were no years of teenage angst, when I couldn't stand my mother. There's never been a time when I wasn't 100% certain that she knew more about life than I did. Without her influence, there's no way I could be the woman that I am today. I love you Carolyn Yvonne Barnes!
Sunday, May 2, 2010
It finally happened. I knew it would probably be sooner than later, but still it took me by surprise. It was no more than three, maybe four years old, but had been having issues for some time now. Then, a couple of months ago, I read a report on the net that said Acer was one of the top three worst computers to buy, and that their laptops generally had a life expectancy of three years. Well, I am here to confirm that report. I was busy making a worksheet for my Sunday School class last Wednesday, when out of nowhere the BLUE SCREEN OF DEATH appears. It wouldn't restart, or even allow me to put in the installation disk.
The next day, my husband, Rob, took the laptop to work to have their tech guy look at it, but so far he's had no luck with it. So here I am, thankful this little dinosaur of a dell still works, but wishing I had my wide screen back. And my sd card reader. And my photoshop cs (this one DOES have photoshop 7, but it's not the same!)
The good news is, I had recently backed up most of my digiscrap kits, brushes, etc onto a dvd, and I've been keeping all my genealogy stuff on my jump drive, so my two favorite hobbies are safe. Unfortunately, if the tech guy can't salvage anything, I may have lost an entire year's worth of preschool pictures, right when I was getting ready to put together the kid's end of the year albums. But such is life. If anyone loves me enough to buy me a Mac, or even a really nice PC, let me know... I'll give you my shipping address! But in the mean time, back to genealogy...
Monday, April 26, 2010
I hadn't posted in a while, so I thought I should get something up here before bed tonight! A little over a week ago, I spent a few days begging for stories from my grandfather, my great aunt, and my cousin... and my efforts were so rewarded!! Not only did I get some interesting stories about my Cummons side from my grandfather, my great aunt and cousin were able to tell me things I had never known about my grandmother's side, and that information opened up a number of "leafy discoveries" on ancestry.com With any luck, I will get some of that information posted in the next few days, but one little thing that made me smile: I finally landed an ancestor in Ireland! Whoot! That would be a William Balum Dempsey, a native of Dublin in the early 1700s. I am connected to the Dempsey name through my paternal grandmother's side. Yeah, this little tree of mine is getting crowded, but that's okay, I like the company!
Monday, April 12, 2010
With the help of footnote.com I believe I may have found out how my James Hamilton Cummons went from Confederate to Yankee. I know that James was born in Guilford County, NC. I know that he ended up in Cabell County West Virginia. I know he ended up in the US Volunteer Infantry. Using those markers, I believe the muster rolls and other files I uncovered tell the whole story of James. I hope it's okay to put these up on my blog. I couldn't find anything on footnote that said I couldn't, but if you konw otherwise, let me know!
In case you can't read the images, I'll summarize:
James went to Virginia and enlisted with the NC 54th Infantry on July 1, 1863 (which if I'm not mistaken coincides with Gettysburg). On November 7, 1863, James was taken as prisoner of war at the battle of Rappahannock Station, and transported to a prison camp at Point Lookout, Maryland (known as possibly the harshest prison camp in the union.) Just two months later, in January of 1864, James swore allegience to the union, and was enlisted in the 1st US Volunteer Infantry. Later, I will post a little bit of the historic details of Rappahannock Station, Point Lookout, and the 1st US Volunteer infantry.
Uncovering all of this, is making James really come to life for me. I mean, when all of this took place, he was no more than 17 years old! I can't imagine facing the horrors of war, and prison camp at such a young age! And then, according to that old newspaper clipping, James never went home after the war. I wonder where he was the four years before he met Causby? There is still so much to uncover, I just hope the trail doesn't run cold anytime soon!
Friday, April 9, 2010
Okay, I PROMISE I'll get to my other ancestors sooner or later, but I've been hung up on James Hamilton Cummons for nearly 12 years now, and I'm finally getting smart enough to ask the right questions and find out about him!
Ever heard of a "Galvanized Yankee"? I hadn't, until today.
Here's how it came about: As I mentioned a while back in my blog, I was uncertain as to which army James fought for during the Civil War. The newspaper clipping I posted, interviewing his wife, Causby, said he was a confederate soldier. However, a copy of the pension form the Causby applied for after James' death led me to believe he was a Union soldier. Under "service" it had listed: C1 US Vol Inf. I could only assume that meant Company 1, United States Volunteer Infantry. So, which was he? Confederate or Union? (Of course being the born and bred yank that I am, I was pulling for the Union!)
Today, I asked for help on the Civil War message boards at Ancestry.com... and just a few hours later, I was given a fascinating piece of information, and was able to put one more piece in the puzzle that was James Hamilton Cummons. When I asked for someone to help me translate Causby's pension file, here's the response I received:
Wow! I guess the answer to my question is - he was both. First a confederate, then after being taken prisoner of war, pledged allegience to the union army. I was able to confirm this, by going to this site:
On this site, you will find a roster of soldiers who were a part of the "Galvanized Yankees", and there you will find him listed as James H. Cammons (yes, I know... yet ANOTHER spelling of our last name.)
I still have not confirmed when or where he originally enlisted (I assume North Carolina, although I originally had thought Virginia - must have been looking at records for some other James). But we're getting closer!
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
My mom's family, well, they are Malones, and the only thing that could make that surname MORE Irish would be to stick an O' in front of it... but the trail runs cold with Richard Malone, who being an American frontiersman(1790-1841), didn't have much to do with census records, or other things which could reveal the names of his parents to us, and possibly take us to the old country.
My great aunt Darlene (she's my paternal grandmother's sister) told me about HER great grandparents, John Tanner Tomblin and Isabelle Dalton. "Isabelle", my aunt said, "came from Ireland!"
Super! An Irish connection!
So, last night, I sit down on Ancestry.com (yeah, my free 14 days they gave me for being away so long ran out before I was satisfied, so I bought another month's access)and began clicking on the trail of leaves ("hints" on ancestry)taking me down the path of Isabelle (1838-1920) and her ancestors. Wow! Someone (or several people) had really done their homework on these Daltons! I just kept clicking, and clicking, and clicking... about two hours worth of clicking, only to discover...
Isabelle was born in Virginia. As was her father. And her father's father. And so on and so on, until the year 1666, when one William Dalton was born in.... Yorkshire, England. Really? Even when I get an ancestor who crossed the big pond, they can't do it from Ireland? *sigh*
But I have to admit, this line was fascinating! With time for nothing more than adding names and spouses, I followed this line, too interested to watch The Biggest Loser. Or Parenthood. Or the late night news. I kept clicking until the trail ran cold with a man just listed on ancestry as "Dalton" in the year 1210.
No, that is not a typo. The year One thousand, two hundred ten. What family keeps records that can be traced that far? There had to be something special about these Daltons. Nobility maybe? It looks like I may need to spend a little time looking into the name, and the stories behind it.
But, still no Ireland.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Last July, I spent eight amazing days driving across the Irish countryside with my BFF. I will probably recount some of my stories as they relate to family history in later posts, but I wanted to share this image I took of a storefront in Waterford, while I was still posting about the Cummons side of the family.
When I took this picture, I was still bummed that I hadn't found any Cumm-"ons", only Cumm-"ins" in any of my stops through Ireland. Recently however, I spoke to a person on Flikr from Galway, who told me not to get hung up on the spelling of my surname. She said that over in Ireland, Cummons, Cummins, Cummings were pretty interchangeable, and most likely all related! So, hooray for my little Cummins and Stone storefront in Waterford... maybe they were kin folk after all!
Saturday, March 27, 2010
After all these years, all it took was a simple query!
I recently got another free 2 week subscription to ancestry.com (I try to purchase a month's subscription twice a year to look for any new leads). This time, I came across someone who had some information that corresponded with mine, but when I contacted him, he said this information came from a brother, and he was unable to confirm the details he had listed. One thing he had that I DIDN'T have, was the date of James Hamilton Cummons' marriage to Causby Jane Patterson. I wanted to confirm that the date he had was accurate... and that's where I got my epiphany!
I signed on to the Wythe County, Virginia message boards. (I knew for a fact that was where they were married.) There, I asked if anyone had access to marriage records, and if they could confirm the date I had (October 18, 1869). And then I began to wonder... what are the chances that James Hamilton listed his parent's names on the marriage records?? So, I asked about that too.
Two days later, after 12 years of hitting an ancestral brick wall, I had an answer! Here is what it said:
"According to Wythe County, Virginia Marriages 1867-1888, a compilation by Janie Dillon and Mary B. Kegley, James H. Cummons/22 yrs/single/born Gilford[Guilford]Co., NC, son of John Cummons and Sarah Nelson, married Causby[Cosby] J. Patterson/23 yrs/single/born Wythe Co., daughter of James Patterson and Sarah Halsey on August 18, 1869 in Wythe Co., VA. They were married by Andrew Wheeler."
So now, I know the name of my great, great, great, GREAT grandfather!
Welcome to the family tree, John Cummons!
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
I guess it would help to give you an idea of where this branch of Cummons' came from! Let's start by taking a look at an old newspaper article my grandfather gave me. Unfortunately, I have no idea where or when this was published, but it gives a little background on our family's origin. (I have to note, this article says that my 3rd great grandfather, James, fought for the confederacy in the Civil War. However, if I am decifering his wife's application for Civil War pension correctly, he actually fought on the Union side.)
So, as you see James and Causby settled into the Cabell County West Virginia area. This is where they lived, worked (James was a shoemaker in Huntington), raised a family, and eventually died (I have pictures of their tombstones I will scan and get on here as soon as I can.)
My family line comes from their son, Henry Arthur, who married Anna Belle Davis, and settled down to farm in Ohio. So that is where my immediate roots come from, specifically the Gallia County area. Below is a picture of my great grandparent's (William H and Bessie) log cabin. I have pictures of my grandfather as an infant on the front porch of this cabin, and as a child, I remember visiting Bessie, or Mamaw Cummons as I called her, and playing the board game "Trouble" that she kept on top of the refrigerator in this same cabin. My great grandmother lived here until the early 1990's.
As to James Hamilton's origins in North Carolina, that has yet to be discovered, but hopefully I'll be able to pinpoint that soon!