Friday, November 19, 2010

Day 152

I am home. I hit the Colorado border about 1pm (MDT) and was at Ray's by 4pm. It was glorious to see the mountains. They are snow covered and lined the whole horizon by the time I reached Sterling, CO. Colorado Springs looks much the same but the grandkids have all grown and Archer is trying (so far unsuccessfully) to walk.

This has been the most glorious five month experience. I have learned a lot about myself as well as a wealth of information, insight, and appreciation for our ancestors. This trip encompassed
  • 152 days
  • 13,755 miles
  • 1 flat tire
  • 3 oil changes
  • 4 rubbermaid tubs of genealogy material
  • less than 14 days of bad weather
  • 0 unsolvable problems
  • hundreds of wonderful relatives dead and alive
  • 1000s of photos
  • dozens of grave stones

Fiona the GPS is a bit battered but still functioning. My car has survived despite being loaded to the gills. I highly recommend everyone designing a sabbatical experience -investing in your own personal passion. Many thanks to all of you who put me up, gave me encouragement, supported my excentricities, and read my blog. I couldn't have done this without you.

Tomorrow, I move into my new home. Life will return to "normal" but hopefully with more balance. I will spend the next year compiling stories and creating some books. A completely documented family history (citations and copies of all documentation will come later).

I will sign off - but keep in touch. This has been a life altering experience.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Day 151

The day began with cold and clouds but no precipitation. The clouds remained until I crossed the Mississipi about 1pm when they lifted and I got lovely blue skies and high clouds. Crossing the big river at Bettendorf, IA was as exciting as it was 5 months ago at Hannibal, MO. This time I am thrilled to be going home to see family, reenergized for my job and anxious to get writing some family stories.

The 9 hour drive went easily fueled by two tanks of gas, a book on tape, lively music, diet coke and ice tea. A blue, pink and white sunset illuminated the sky about 5:30 as I crossed the Missouri River from Council Bluffs to Omaha. I arrived safely in my hotel in Lincoln, Nebraska before 7pm. Tomorrow I hope to be off early. I would like to be in Colorado Springs before dark.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Day 150

A cool day in Chicago but no snow or rain. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it will last a few more days.

Lois and I spent nearly 6 hours at the Art Institute. We didn't get through all the exhibits but had a fabulous time looking at Impressionists, modern art, Asian pieces, and miniatures. The miniatures were done in the 30s by a woman from Chicago. She was very interested in art history and architecture and designed various room interiors (n=30?) based on location (e.g., Connecticut), setting (e.g., dining room), and period (e.g. 1760). She then hired artisans to create the miniature furniture, rugs, wall decor, portraits, and accessories to furnish the room. The rugs, for example, were all needle pointed in silk - 40 stitches to the inch. Each room allowed you to look through a doorway into another furnished space (e.g. from a living room into the entry hall) and out the "windows" to a garden, lake, or street scene. Each room was exquisite. Obviously these exhibits were my favorite.

Shortly, Pam, Jay and I are going out to dinner. Lois is staying home and entertaining her granddaughter Alex. We should all have a good evening. Tomorrow I head for home!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Day 149

Brrr. There was ice on the windshield this morning. Best benefit of my new house - I have a garage for the first time in 15 years!!

I made the drive from E. Lansing to Chicago in about 4.5 hours with a stop at an outlet mall (no tops but I did find a belt). I managed to follow ALL of Fiona's directions correctly and arrived unscathed at Aunt Lois'. We had a lovely lunch (Lois is the queen of gracious dining) and spent the rest of the afternoon and evening nattering away.

Late in the afternoon Jay came home and we walked over to the fitness center (such a euphemism for a grand facility) for a solid 45 minute work out. This was a good effort but made little dent in the calories from Lois' lovely dinner. Hummm - more workout in the morning I think.

Meanwhile, Lois and I rummaged through various old collections and came upon a college scrapbook from my grandmother. The years were 1916-1918 and the scrap book includes letters from friends, programs from plays, opera, etc. she saw, valentines, goofy jokes, the college newspaper, postcards and other miscellany that is not that dissimilar from what many of us collected to document our teenage years. She definitely had a wacky sense of humor. I also made a copy of a tintype of gg Davenport and his parents which must have been taken about 1866. Cousins Bill and David - you haven't fallen far from the tree.

Tomorrow, Lois and I are off to the Art Institute. Should be great fun.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Day 148

Just a short blog tonight. I am including a photo of 65 University Drive in East Lansing. This is house grandpa and grandma Tukey purchased in 1945 when they moved from Geneva, NY to E. Lansing so grandpa could assume the duties of Hort. Dept. Chair at MSU. It is the home where Aunt Ann spent most of her growing up and where Dad created a bedroom for himself in the attic when he came home from the war.

Ann and I spent a great morning together. We hit a thrift shop at a local hospital where I finally found a pair of cuff links for a reasonable price (still looking for a belt). Then it was off to the Michigan State Library and Archives. Ann did some research for a friend of Aunt Louise's. I began the search for gggCharles Richardson. He moved frequently. We know he was an early (1847) pioneer in Jamestown, Michigan. He moved north in 1875 to purchase land in a neighboring county and today I found the land record. Yea! However, where he died has remained a mystery. Wife Eliza is buried in Jamestown. Charles did not die in Jamestown. Neither did he die in Boston, MI or Evart, MI as reported from other sources.

After a nice lunch, Ann went home to work on materials for her class and I returned to search all the library's records for Ottawa, Oceola, Muskegon and Newaygo counties. No luck finding death records, burial records, anything on early settlers, etc. About 3pm I headed for the Archives. On microfilm were death indices. After a little searching, I found Charles. He died, as our records indicated, on Sept. 18, 1891 - in Barton, Newaygo County, Michigan. There still is no listing (that I can find) for his burial in a cemetery but we at least have narrowed the location of his death. My guess is that he died away from family and may be buried in an anonymous grave or on his farm. His death records list his occupation as farmer and the names of his parents as "unknown" - highly unlikely if he was living close to children. His wanderlust (and long years with lots of children) probably meant he enjoyed is solitude which makes him a bit unknown to later generations.

Tomorrow morning I leave for Chicago. Lois, Pam and Jay have activities already planned for tomorrow afternoon and Wednesday. Then I head for home Thursday morning. Amazing.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Day 147

I realized that I posted my log last night with out the traditional cemetery photos. Here is the marker for Alanson and Eliza Davenport.

However, the best marker in the cemery goes to Basel Trombly. No he is not related but I loved the creativity.

I left Ohio late this morning arriving easily in East Lansing, Michigan by 2pm. Aunt Ann and Uncle Michael look great. Ann and I ran a few errands but mostly spent the afternoon and evening talking nonstop. Tomorrow I have conned her into taking me to a consignment shop to find a new belt and then off to the Michigan Archives to find a cemetery listing for Charles Richardson - we hope.
The weather has turned cold and I am grateful for a warm coat. The skies were gray all day but no rain or snow. It should be warmer tomorrow - hopefully.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Day 146

I had a lovely sleep in this morning but was still off to Fort Meigs cemetery in Perrysburg by 9am. Thank goodness I had a reasonable description of the monument for Alanson and Eliza Middaugh Davenport (3ggs). I found it after only 15 minutes. In this case it was good that I knew one of their children married Christopher Hum because there was a large Hum monument that was easy to spot. The white Davenport obelisk is in good shape even though the lettering is fading. Alanson and Eliza are buried together with their son William next to them under a separate marker (he died early at age 47). Alanson had a G.A.R. military marker but I can't imagine he was in the Civil War. He would have been 55 years old in 1861. It may be that the marker should have been next to William's grave since he would have been 20 in 1862 - more appropriate for enlistment.

I then tried to visit a historic village on the Maumee River but evidently it is closed for the winter. Ditto with the Wood County Historical Society. I guess it is a good thing I am headed home. I spent the afternoon at the Wood County Public Library in Bowling Green. The historical society keeps many of its records there so I ended up with surname files and a variety of publications to investigate.

My searches were pretty fruitless. There appears to be no will or probate record for Alanson or Eliza or any of their children (in Wood County). Alanson was living with his son Newman at the time of his death so there may not have been enough property to divide. Alanson, according to the obituary I found, moved from Huron County in 1842 and purchased farm land. It may be that Newman took over the farm thus the deed had already transferred by the time Alanson died in 1893 at age 86.

The rest of the afternoon was spent walking and relaxing. I will head for E. Lansing, MI tomorrow morning.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Day 145

Today was a day for travel. The 5.5 hour trip to Bowling Green, Ohio was easy. The weather was beautiful and I had a good book on tape. This is a nice small town and the carillon from Bowling Green State University provides periodic musical background. I had a long walk around the campus. The fraternities and sororities seem to comprise what used to be dorm facilities. Greek life is thriving here.

I am spending odd bits of time trying to prioritize and conceptualize organizing all the genealogy data and the format for several books. It is and will continue to be an ongoing effort. Tonight is a night for labeling photographs - I am a bit behind and would like to get them in the correct electronic files before I get home. Tomorrow - cemetery and library - What Else!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Day 144

A totally exciting 9 hours at the library!!!!! Not. Well, it wasn't too bad except that like most archives, the temperature is about 60 degrees with a slight breeze. My hands were frozen all day.

Despite the cold, I managed to get through the remaining surname files:
3 Robertson
8 Robinson
3 Kennedy
4 Withers
1 Haynes
1 Pate
3 Barbee
9 Stephens
2 DeHaven
5 Holt
3 Jennings
3 Johnston
4 Hampton
plus two books from the stacks.

The best find was a copy of information from an old Stephens bible (Stephens lead into the Holt, Sterrett and Bowmer families). I found the names, spouses and children for Eleanor Stephens' siblings and confirmation that her father (Capt. Richard Stephens) enlisted in the 10th Virginia on 18 Feb 1777, a regiment later designated the 6th Virginia, retiring on 12 Feb. 1781. The bible also listed Eleanor and John Holts' children. We have always known that Eleanor and John were the parents of Elizabeth Holt (3 gg who married William Sterett) and Joseph Holt - Secty of War and Judge Advocate General under President Lincoln. There were hints in various documents of at least one brother older than Joseph and one younger - Thomas. The bible gave me all five children - Richard, James, Joseph, Thomas and Elizabeth. Yea!

I also got a complete list of all the burials in the Sterett family cemetery - that one down in the ditch not too far from Cloverport, KY. The graves were documented about 60 years ago which may explain why Sarah DeHaven Sterett's grave is listed but I couldn't find it - the stone has been covered up or destroyed. In the same file was a listing of information from a Sterett bible. It confirmed John and Sarah DeHaven Sterett's children and some grandchildren (birth, marriage and death dates). The bible also lists the births of black children born on the plantation between 1799 and 1821.

I have lots of other scraps and tidbits. Hopefully when I get home I can put the mosaic together to make complete stories. Speaking of which - I will be home a week from tomorrow. It is hard to believe that this trip is winding down so quickly. Tomorrow I head for Bowling Green and Perrysburg, OH to catch two probate records and a cemetery on the Davenport side. Sunday I will drive back to Michigan and drop in on Aunt Ann and Uncle Mike. Ditto on Tuesday for Aunt Lois, Pam and Jay in Chicago, finally heading for Colorado next Thursday.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Day 143

Today I was in downtown Frankfort at the KY History Society. I decided to focus on surname files first. These are files that contain research, letters, and various family history sources donated to the library. I started with Atkinsons and am making my way down the list of family names. Some files have lots of information. Some have nothing that pertains to us. I made it through:
Atkinsons - 1 file
Ballards - 6 files (I got some solid information on early Ballards into Virginia (~1650). There were two Thomases and 2 Johns before our Rebecca Ballard who married John Holloway (part of the Letcher line).
Holloways - 3 files
Starlings - 1 file
Lynes - 1 file
Letchers - 1 file
Perkins - 5 files
Robertsons - 9 files down, 3 to go

In Robertson file #6 was a court order for an apprenticeship. I'm sure it was standard for the day be seems rather depressing:

Order Book (court documents) 23, p 199. Dec. 16, 1794. John Keith aged 5 on 18th January next to be bound to Col. Alexander Robertson to learn the art and mystery of a farmer.

On the other hand, I am sure gg Davenport would be pleased to know that farming was so highly regarded 210 years ago.

Tomorrow I hope to finish the surname files and the biography files then move on to some selected books and the Draper paper microfilm. Good news (?) the History Society is open from 10am to 8pm.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Day 142

I wish I had an interesting blog for today. Faint microfilm - white handwriting on black paper - makes for a long day of slogging. I found and copied several early deeds (1797) from several family members but nothing too exciting.

I didn't get to the Draper Papers until 3pm - 1 hour before closing. The Archives only has some of the manuscripts so I had to pick and choose a person to research from within the "Kentucky Papers" (versus the Boone papers, etc.) I went for Nancy Letcher. Locating the correct roll of film is almost as challenging as locating the filmed manuscript. It involves searching the appendices for the correct access number, then locating the appendix for the correct portion of the manuscript, then using your decoder ring to deduce the access number which in turn gives you the targeted microfilm reel. Today - #501! Once loaded, you realize that there are 4 volumes CC 33, 34, 35, and 36 on the microfilm. Thank goodness I wanted CC33. However, there is no index. You simply read every handwritten entry, looking for a reference to or letter from Nancy Letcher. In some ways this resembles the Nathan Goold research on the Tukey genealogy in Maine - only worse. Mr. Draper was trying to put the pre-1830 genealogy together for an entire state. On the positive side, the entries are in chronological order. On the down side, the letter I was looking for was dated Sept. 29, 1884 - after starting in 1880. I finally found Nancy Letcher - only to discover that the letter was from a very rude Nancy Letcher who lived in Covington, KY, was granddaughter to a famous pioneer, Thomas Kennedy of Covington - and who are not our Thomas Kennedy or Nancy Letcher at all. (I had to sort out this conundrum several months ago.). Thank goodness - we didn't want anyone that rude anyway.

Tomorrow - off to the KY Historical Society to make inroads on as many surname files as possible. Hopefully, I will have some more personal ancestral tidbits to share!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Day 141

A short day. Not too interesting.
Web and catalog research for the KY State Library and Archives.
Phone calls to set up utilities and moving company for new home in Colorado Springs.
Long hours of microfilm peering at the Archives - small print, mediocre focus, bleery eyes.
End of day appointments and a salad for dinner.
More internet follow-up and phone calls this evening.
Tomorrow - more microfilm.

My microfilm work is focusing on early KY counties from which later counties were carved. So far, a bit on Richard Stephens but not much. Tomorrow I will finish Fayette County and then look through some of the 143 microfilm rolls that comprise the Draper Papers. These are notes, interviews, diaries and other information collected by Draper documenting the KY/VA frontier prior to 1830. I'll let you know what I find.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Day 140

Today started with a very flat tire. Thank goodness it was in the parking lot of the hotel and not on the open road. Realizing I had put 11,000 miles in 4 months on already used tires, I figured the best bet was to replace all the tires especially going into snowy weather. Thank goodness for AAA and WalMart. WalMart is not my first choice for any purchase. However, it is open on Sunday. By 10:15 I had new tires and was on my way to the Harrodsburg Historical Society.

I found some interesting papers in the closed vertical files. Two of them were bonds for $100,000 placed by Alexander Robertson and 3 others who served as sheriffs for Mercer County. Evidently the bond was required as these individuals were responsible for physically collecting taxes from all residents (in the years 1787, 1790) and getting them to the Virginia state government. I also found the guardianship papers for Margaret Robertson after Alexander died. No luck finding any cemetery listings for either Alexander or Margaret.

Leaving Harrodsburg, I worked my way north and east past Pleasant Hill and to the far side of the KY River gorge palisades - the gorge of limestone that cuts through the area. I went through the small town of Wilmore to High Bridge. High Bridge is known for its cantilevered bridge used for railway traffic. For us, it spans Dick's river at its convergence with the Kentucky River - just where Alexander Robertson and his family purchased 1,400 acres - and the property eventually given to the Shakers. It is trully a lovely location. I will leave you tonight envisioning this property on a golden, crisp autumn day.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Day 139

Today contained unexpected bonuses. I made a quick trip to Lexington but was unimpressed with the art galleries. Then it was off to Harrodsburg and the historical society. There was no information in the regular surname files but there were two land deeds for William Starling in the closed vertical files. The deeds mention William's son Edmond Lyne Starling and William's wife Polly. The deeds are dated 1812 and 1814. This helps as I had two conflicting dates for Suzanne Lyne Starling, William's first wife and our 5 gg. The information leads credence to the 1802 death date. But confirmation came from a totally unexpected quarter.

I was looking at marriage records and found the marriage of John McDowell and Lucy Starling (William and Suzanne's daughter) in 1809. In the same listing were Lucas Sullivant and Sally Starling in 1800, William Starling and Mary McDowell, and then - William Starling and Polly McDowell in 1805. Obviously, the Starling and McDowell families were close geographically and emotionally.

I was then searching through some old research from the 1950s and what pops up - Alexander Robertson. I had lost track of the Robertson/Robinson family after Augusta County, VA. I knew they had come to Kentucky and Margaret Robertson married Benjamin Thomas Letcher (4 GGs) but had no luck in locating Alexander and his wife Margaret (5 GGs). Now I have confirmation. They came, probably with Alexander's brother James and a nephew Stephen about 1775. Alexander claimed 400 acres of land through improvement (a crop of corn and 2 cabins) and then a preemption (additional acreage for free) of 1000 acres. The courts approved is petition in 1776. Now here is what really blew my mind - especially after visiting Pleasant Hill (the Shaker settlement just a few miles from here) 2 weeks ago:

Mercer County, KY Court Records - Deed book 10: July 14, 1816 - Robertson Heirs to Shaker Society. James George and Elizabeth his wife, Benjamin Letcher and Margaret his wife, John Hann and Jane his wife, James Robertson, Samuel McKee and Patsy his wife, George Robertson, Charlotte Robertson of the County of Garrard, State of KY convey to John Bryant, Abraham Wilhite and Francis Foris for and in behalf of the Society of people on Shawneed Run called Shakes of the County of Mercer, for the sum of $1., a tract of land in Mercer County on the Kentucky River containing by estimation 1,400 acres and know as Samuel Woods settlement and preemption claim which was patented to Alexander Robertson and John McMurtry and being the residue of said 1,400 acres mentioned in a deed of relinquishment which was executed by the said Robertson to the heirs of John McMurtry.
Acknowledged by the parties in Garrard Co. and recorded in Mercer Co. July 25, 1816.

This transaction gave the Shakers nearly 1/3 of the 5,000 acres they ultimately acquired. The Samuel Woods mentioned in the court record was Alexander Robertson's step father. AMAZING. I will now look at the Pleasant Hills with new eyes.

Of course with the Robertsons and Robinsons to look at, I didn't have near enough time at the historical society. Luckily, a volunteer is painting at their facility tomorrow and said I could come back rather than waiting until Tuesday. YIPPEE!!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Day 138

Today was a day of cemeteries and travel. It has also become quite cold. I spent most of the day bundled in layers including gloves and ear muffs. The wind was bitter.

I left my motel in Henderson headed for the countryside. I easily found (amazing) the Holloway cemetery and the old homestead. I knocked on the door of the house but no one was home. I took pictures anyway. I then went back down the road and drove into a residential home's driveway closest to the cemetery. Mr. Bill Forrester came out and graciously gave me all the access I wanted. The cemetery is on a slight rise with long range views over the tilled corn fields. About 20 graves for the Smith and Holloway families are enclosed in a deteriorating wrought iron fence. (Otherwise, the cemetery is in lovely condition.) Various children and grandchildren of Ann Starling Holloway (1777-1840) and John Holloway (1762-1825) were buried at the site along with Ann and John.

When I was finished photographing, Donna Forrester came out of the house and invited me in. She and Bill care for the cemetery since it is on their property. They are under no obligation to do so but have a deep sense of responsibility. They weed, water, rake and mow plus paint the fence. They are concerned about the fence as it approaches its 200th birthday - it will soon fall over just due to long exposure. They contacted the last direct Holloway descendant but she is not interested in paying for replacing the fence. After the last few days, I am getting obsessed with taking care of our family's resting places. I don't know if we can get local groups to adopt them or whether each part of our families should adopt a cemetery getting the kids and grandkids involved or just not fuss about them. Thoughts from others are welcome.

I then headed east to Springfield, KY. This was supposedly the resting place of William Starling, Ann Starling Holloway's father. His home, I think, was closer to Harrodsburg. I don't know why he was buried in Springfield. The genealogy section of the Washington County Public Library offered no clues. He is not mentioned in any local history nor is there a probate listing for him. The library did confirm that he was buried in the city cemetery which was just down the street. Hoping for the best (there is no master layout for the cemetery, associating names with plots - you just have to walk the graves), I bundled up and started looking at older stones. Wonderfully, within 20 minutes, I found William under a juniper tree. His grave is a large horizontal tomb with only his name and dates on it. The stone is broken but the grave seems to be intact. Many of the older stones are in much worse condition. However the cemetery is obviously maintained and stones are cared for as best as possible.

Finally, I drove to Frankfort, KY. I am here for a week. Tomorrow I will go into the KY Historical Society. Sunday, I will do chores and probably go to Harrodsburg to look for more information on Starlings. This search may spill over to Monday. Tuesday I will spend at the state archives and then Wed and Thurs, back to the Historical Society to fill in any Kentucky and Virginia gaps.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Day 136

For those of you that waited up last night for the blog, my apologies. The internet was uncooperative. However, I did write and post the blog for yesterday this morning.

This morning it was off to the county court house and down to the basement vault for probate records. Both John Holloway and George Atkinson had long wills - 5-6 pages each. They were detailed about the disposition of their property and were very fair with all children. John Holloway designated about 20 slaves by name to be distributed amongst family members. He specifically requested that mothers and children not be separated during any future sales or exchanges. John's wife Ann received full control of all his property for her lifetime. If she remarried, she was still to receive 1/3 of everything. Obviously this was a strong, long-lived marriage.

George Atkinson's will made several interesting decisions. He forgave all debts that his brothers or children had incurred with him. He wanted everyone to start evenly for the distribution of assets. He also decided that he was not pleased with the old cemetery at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. He made provision for the graves of all relations interred there to be moved to the plots purchased at the new Fernwood City Cemetery. He also called for marble monuments to be built and a sturdy fence to surround the area. Interesting. There were 2 codicils to the will. The second one revoked the 3 individuals originally set to serve as his executors (2 sons and a son-in-law) and gave the power to his eldest son John C. Atkinson. I don't know if there was a rift in the family or ?????

I also have the will from James H. Letcher. He disposes most all of his property to the Presbyterian church and his son Oscar G. Letcher. He mentions a nephew and James Letcher Taylor but makes no mention of his son Edward's (our GG grandfather) children or grand children. He sounds like a stern character. Wonder what the schism was in that family.

I then spent several hours in the historical society. Nothing much new but some odds and ends. Mid-afternoon, I took in the Audubon museum. They did have a painting of a turkey which said it was painted in Louisiana. I don't know what happened to the turkey he painted at the Holloway home - maybe it is in the hands of relatives.

Day 135

Well, you get blog 135 on the morning of day 136. Yesterday was one of the 2 days since I left home that I didn't feel well. However, a couple of doses of Airborne and I was on my way to the Henderson County Library. Also the internet would NOT stay up last night so I went to bed.

I found that Holloways and Atkinsons had much to do with the founding of the town. John Holloway, Anne Starling Holloway, and George Holloway (John's brother) arrived here in the late 1790s. George ran a small trading post. John and Anne took up his land bounty from the Revolutionary War and then traded it for more land (~1500 - 2000 acres) south of the small village of Henderson. Anne was a true pioneer woman as she carried her first born daughter, Rebecca Ballard Holloway, as she road horseback from Virginia to western Kentucky. John and Anne lived their lives on the farm. John served on several town committees including the early court of quarterly session in 1802. He died at age 65 in 1825 leaving his wife to run the plantation until her son John G. Holloway was able to take over its management. John and Anne are buried on the family farm which I hope to get to tomorrow.

Meanwhile, George Atkinson arrived from Richmond, VA in 1817. He established his first tobacco warehouse on the Ohio River, buying a mill and warehouse from John James Audubon (his mill venture did not pan out). Speaking of Audubon, he did much of his painting in this area. He often stayed with the Atkinsons, but more often the Holloways. One day he found the perfect turkey specimen and shot it. The turkey cock had a red flannel strip tied to its leg. It turns out, Anne Holloway was saving this turkey for breeding and it had gotten out of its pen - thus it was in the woods when Audubon killed it. Meanwhile, Audubon got little Rebecca Ballard Holloway to hold the dead bird while he sketched it. Audubon was frequently broke so paid for his board and room with his paintings. Several still belong to various members of the family.

Back to Atkinsons. George was very involved in all things commercial and governmental. He sat on the board for the local private school. He and others set up commissions and stock subscriptions to establish roads, construct wharves, and build buildings. In 1837, he and others financed the Henderson and Nashville Railroad. In 1850, he and his partners established Farmers Bank. The bank was highly successful and his son Edward joined its management in the 1870s. It should be noted that Hugh Atkinson, George's grandson and our great grandfather, was also in the banking business in Chicago. Obviously, meticulous detail and financial dealings suited this branch of the family.

This morning I am off to the courthouse to secure probate and marriage records. I will spend the afternoon at the genealogical society. More tonight if the internet cooperates.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Day 134

Today was a long day and much of it frustrating.

I headed for Meade County stopping at the public library to look for any additional information on the Hayneses. A history of the county mentioned 4g grandparents William and Agnes Haynes. William and his family emigrated from Bedford County, VA about 1805. William was a farmer but also served as county surveyor from 1840 to 1867. A discussion on slavery (in the county history) had an interesting connection with other parts of the family. "Another slave owner, Henry Haynes of Brandenberg, had sent his slaves from the county. They were working on the farm of George Atkinson at Henderson, KY." William (b. 1773) was 20 years older than George (b.1793) and separated by 60+ miles but they obviously knew each other due to the commercial traffic on the Ohio. Their two families would be joined when, in 1900, George's grandson Hugh Letcher Atkinson married Elizabeth Bowmer, Henry Haynes' great granddaughter.

I then searched the countryside for the Haynes cemetery. It is hidden somewhere on a farm but I had no luck finding it. Ditto with the Bowmer cemetery in Breckinridge County. Ditto with Edward DeHaven's grave - even with new directions. Finally, I went searching again for the Sterett Cemetery - since I had to go that way to get to Henderson. Driving Skillman Road for the 6th time, I peered through the weeds down a long embankment and found the stones. The cemetery is in very poor shape. Many graves are broken or knocked down. Weeds abound. It is very sad. I found John Sterett (4gg) and his second wife Polly but no Sarah DeHaven Sterett - our 4g grandmother. It is hard to know that the graves of both Sarah and her father, a Revolutionary War hero, have virtually disappeared. William Sterett's grave (3gg) was there but not one for his wife Elizabeth Holt Sterett.

About 3pm I finally arrived in Henderson, KY. After checking into a motel, I found Atkinson Park - named for our gg Edward. It is a lovely location bordering the Ohio River with playgrounds, walking paths, a disc golf course, athletic fields, and picnic areas. I then went to the Fernwood Cemetery. Hooray for having the lot numbers and for a cemetery office that is manned and has maps! SUCCESS all around. I found Hugh and Elizabeth Atkinson's graves - our great grandparents. I found a Letcher monument with James Hughes Letcher and Nannie T. Kennedy Letcher (3gg). And finally - for those cousins who asked my why we never have a large monument - A huge obelisk for George Atkinson with a large horizontal crypt for his wife Lucy Ann Holloway Atkinson. Our 3 gg (Edward and Nancy Letcher Atkinson) and numerous other relatives were there as well. Nice they all keep each other company. Quite a contrast to my efforts earlier in the day.

Tomorrow - library time working particularly on the Holloways.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Day 133

My traveling partner for the last 10 days left for home. I was sorry to see Anne go but I am sure Uncle Carl was thrilled to have her home again. A double bonus - today is their 52nd wedding anniversary.

I spent much of the day doing research and set-up for the rest of my trip. As I make my way to Henderson, KY to research Atkinsons and Holloways, I will take in some cemeteries and fill in a few of the blanks Anne and I were unable to finish.

Today, I managed to find the location of the Hayneses (an elusive bunch because of the common name). William Haynes and Agnes Pate Haynes (4gg) are buried in Meade County, just north of Breckinridge County, east of Cloverport. So far, I have found no record of their parents in Kentucky but believe they came from Bedford County, VA originally. Their daughter Emily married William Bowmer. William is buried in the Bowmer Cemetery in Breckinridge County - am not sure where this is but will ask at the court house tomorrow. Meanwhile, William H. and Agnes are buried in the old Haynes Cemetery on the Ohio River outside Brandenburg, KY as is Emily, under her 2nd married name. 13 years after William Bowmer died, she married a family friend but is still buried in the Haynes cemetery. This too will take some searching because the cemetery is located on the Fannie Haynes farm. Note: Fannie was alive in 1892. Who knows who owns the farm now.

I hope to get to Henderson tomorrow night and will spend 2 days there before coming back to Frankfort for some family searches in the Haroddsburg area over the weekend and research at the KY historical library next week.

Since I no new photos today, I will leave you with four of the Holt stained glass windows from Horsley Chapel from yesterday.