Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - and he still leaves me speechless!

My handsome husband, Charles Dean Maitland, Sr.,
U.S. Air Force; his new Airman photo in 1973.

© 2012 Copyright by Carla Love Maitland

Thursday, December 20, 2012

History - My Journey of Love

My personal copy of "A Little Maid of Bunker
Hill," by Alice Turner Curtis;
Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
New York, 1952
(A reprint of the original
1927 edition.)
I’ve often wondered over the years why I came to love history so much.  I’ve had many passions in my life (as you can probably tell if you’ve read my profile description), but the love of history has been with me on and off since I was a little girl.

My favorite books in early elementary school were the series of books written by Alice Turner Curtis called the “Little Maid” books. I would get lost in the history of each of those little girls and could completely imagine myself living during those times and experiencing what they did.  My all-time favorite was “A Little Maid of Bunker Hill” pictured on this page. As an adult, I’ve purchased a few of those books just to own them, re-read them and to remember how much joy they had brought me. I’m pretty sure that reading those books was the beginning of my love of history, but I’m also fairly convinced that it might have been a genetic thing; something that was inside me that I would not be able to escape.

We had wonderful teachers in elementary school, all of whom obviously brought to life that interest and love of history that was innately within me. I can also remember trips that our family would take within my state.  I would stare out of the car window wondering what it must have been like for those first settlers in our area to travel through the wilderness, crossing our long state from the mountainous regions in the east as they sought places to settle.  I could almost feel myself a part of those travels.  A vivid imagination I had, for sure!
I also remember affectionately the study of the ancient world in the 6th grade and even have distinct memories of the beautiful blue book that we used.  It had a photo of a bas relief sculpture at the front of the book, and I remember looking at that photo over and over and thinking about the people who carved it, wondering what they must have been like. 

Unfortunately, I have no particularly good memories of history or social studies classes after that. 
My junior high social studies teachers made no impact on me whatsoever. I don’t even remember them.  How sad is that?  In high school, my World History teacher was a great guy who was also a coach, but the only good memories I have of his class were the times when we could get him ‘off topic.’ He would tell us stories about his days on a submarine during World War II, and that was genuinely fascinating.  He made the history of WWII real to me, and I believe to the whole class as well.  We really loved him. Obviously, we got him ‘off topic’ quite often!
During my senior year, I took American History. My teacher had a law degree (bless his heart) and was the head football coach.  He would come into class with a briefcase that contained his history book, his roll book, the class papers, and who knows what else.  We often speculated about that. After systematically calling the roll, he would then proceed to pull out the book and read it to us!  I could not make this up. Needless to say, I brought my art of note-passing to near perfection that year and made lots of great friends. Sorrowfully, I can also say that I didn’t “know much about history.” 
With that interest in history waning quickly, my love of French and music were growing much stronger.
Yes, I did say music, which may be a shock for any of you who know me personally.  Although you wouldn’t know it today, I had taken piano lessons for many years and had been first chair clarinet soloist in junior high school, as well as a majorette. I switched to choir in high school because the band at my high school was a concert band.  What?  No majorettes?  I wanted to perform, and I was most certainly able to do that in choir. Consequently, vocal music became my field of choice and one that I would pursue into my years in college.
College. A whole new world. I went to a college away from home during my freshman year and had the most wonderful French teacher ever. He made the class fascinating and engaged us completely in the learning process. I used to dream in French! I was also involved in the music department and was a member of the University Chorus and Glee Club. I was truly in my element with both subjects.
But history?  Dear Lord.  My Western Civilization teacher was a total horror.  The tradition at our university was that on the first day of class, you would go in and be told what books and materials you would need, be given a first assignment, and then be allowed to leave.  All of that would take about 15 to 20 minutes tops.  After giving us that information, this fellow (or I guess I should say ‘Doctor’ to be gracious about it) proceeded to say the following words, which I’ll never forget in my entire life: “My first lecture will be Pre-Literate Culture.”  Yikes! Everyone in the class started scrambling around, borrowing paper in order to have enough to begin taking notes for the entire hour.  It was a complete nightmare, and add to that the fact that he was deadly dull.  When I found out that I’d have to continue with the same teacher if I wanted to take the second semester of “Western Civ,” I chose to forgo the option and dropped it altogether after the first semester.  Good choice, as it turned out.
When I returned home the next year to my hometown university, I took the second semester of Western Civ and had the honor and pleasure to be taught by the head of the History Department.  I absolutely hung on his every word! My love of history was sparked again, and I will have to say that each and every history teacher I had at that university was awesome. I soaked in every word that they said and devoured every book that I could.  (Total geek…I know.)
In contrast, the French teacher I had was an old bat, to put it mildly, and I only took two more years of French, gaining a minor in the subject, but not cheerfully. Music, on the other hand, was still wonderful.  I was in theory classes, taking vocal music for credit on a private basis with a local ‘legend,’ and was a member of the University Chorus and the Girls Glee Club.  I just knew that music would be my major. As much as I loved history, music was still my life – I was sure that one day I would be a world-renowned singer or performer! (Or, at the very least, a music teacher.)
Funny how things change. It dawned on me one day at the beginning of my junior year that I was rushing out of the music building to go to a sorority meeting or some other social event and that everyone else was in the music department practice rooms.  I almost never spent any time in the practice rooms. Uh-oh. Not good. I realized then and there (and I truly remember that day and that “ah-ha” moment) that I might need to re-think my major – yet again.  And what would I do with a Liberal Arts degree anyway? 
I decided that I would use my knowledge of French to be an international airline stewardess, but who knew that you had to be at least 5 feet 6 inches tall?  I was only 5’ 3 ½”.  That half inch was very important to me, but it wasn’t enough to qualify me for my chosen profession!  (I’m not even 5’2” now, but we won’t go there…)  I also considered becoming a translator at the United Nations. How exciting that would be! New York City…maybe even a stint at the State Department in Washington, D.C.  What a thought, indeed.
But in the end, my love of history already had its hold on me. I managed somehow to pick up my teaching certification during my senior year.  I was determined to become a teacher who would inspire my students to love history, or at the very least, not hate it.  I wanted to be the teacher that my history teachers had not been.
I hope that I succeeded at least to some degree in accomplishing that goal. After changing my major so many times during college, I was pretty sure that teaching history would allow me to indulge in my love of the numerous other things that interested me. I could always work those topics into a history curriculum, and I would certainly be able to perform! Teachers, quite naturally, have the stage every day. Needless to say, I was one of those teachers who could get ‘off topic’ with the best of them. (We teachers call it ‘bird-walking.’  Don’t ask me why; probably the idea of hopping from topic to topic. Hmmm. Yep, that was me.) But I want to add right here and now that many of those times remain the best ‘teaching moments’ in my whole career.  I’m pretty sure that I wouldn’t do so well in the classroom today, since teachers have rigid guidelines that must be met for the dreaded TEST.  Nope. I think the true joy of teaching has been taken away from teachers in today’s world, but that’s a “whole ‘nother story,” as they say.
Tracing family history was most certainly one of those things that I often worked into my history curriculum. I’ve been amazed at the number of my former students who’ve connected with me on Facebook and who have let me know that they, too, are tracing their family’s history.  Hallelujah!  True validation that there was some success.
Looking back over the years, I’ve often wondered what would have happened if I hadn’t had those wonderful teachers in my elementary school and those remarkable history professors at my hometown university. I had certainly not had many junior or senior high history teachers who had inspired me, and I could have easily followed another one of those many paths that interested me.  I’m so thankful, though, that my inherent love of history prevailed, and that I did have those many, many years of trying to instill my own love of history into younger generations.
My secret wish over the years has been to write history books for students on the middle school level based on the historical research I’ve done on my own family – basically a version of my own “Little Maid” books.  I just knew that I’d do that as soon as I retired. But the strange thing is that I seem to have that same problem with having way too many interests that I’ve had my whole life. I’ll start to write something, then find a book I really want to read; and then I’ll remember that I was working on a line to qualify for a lineage society and will return to that research.  Or maybe I’ll work on some friend’s ancestry for them - I have a few ‘private’ trees on for that purpose. Then I’ll find myself looking over the numerous antiques and collectibles books I have trying to decide what I should sell and for how much, or I’ll begin reading the two archaeological magazines to which I subscribe. Of course there are the genealogical, historical and lineage society meetings that I always seem to be rushing off to (sound familiar?), and the luncheons and dinners that I try to have with friends.  (Lately, try is the key word there.)
And finally, of course, there is that thing called Life. I just can’t seem to get my act together, and neither my husband’s health, nor my own, have been very cooperative. Maybe one day I’ll actually get around to writing that book. I have tons of ideas for it, naturally. But for now I’m just trying to keep up with this blog - and not doing a very good job of that.
Um…well, looking back, maybe I should have become an archaeologist. I can just see me climbing over rocks, trekking through the desert or some other god-forsaken region, digging into dirt-filled sites, and making that wonderful discovery.
Oh, sure. Never mind…and quit laughing!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Thankful Thursday: In All Things Give Thanks...

I just spent a month viewing the posts of many of my friends on Facebook as they posted daily everything for which they were thankful.  I was truly touched and definitely amazed at their ability to write something each day.  I ‘opted out’ of doing that because I knew I would either never keep up (heck, I can’t even keep up with this blog!), or I would most assuredly repeat myself, since my brain seems to have ‘left my building’ a couple of years ago.
This morning, however, I was truly touched by the post of one of my distant cousin's.  She put a photo of her son as her profile photo and mentioned how much she missed him.  She went on to add that she knew that she would see him and his sister one day soon, and how thankful she was that she had been their Mother.
I broke down in tears. I cry still.  My heart is broken.
It goes without saying that most of us learned as we grew up to be thankful for everything and in all things give thanks.  However, I’m not sure I would have my cousin’s strength. Her faith is strong, and I know that gives her the ability to write those words.  I can only believe that my faith would give me that strength as well – eventually.
Her words prompted me to write this ‘Thankful Thursday’ post, since I didn’t do that during the month of November. I have so very much to be thankful for, and I’m a little ashamed that I didn’t participate in that enjoyable activity on Facebook.  I’m making up for it now, so here goes…
I am, quite naturally, thankful for all of my family – my beloved husband, my amazing three sons, my wonderful three grandchildren, and my beautiful new great grandson!  I’m also thankful for my remarkable daughter-in-law, my delightful nieces and nephews, my precious sisters-in-law (both current and ‘former!’), and even my brothers-in-law – and if you knew them, you’d know that’s a hard one to say! (Just kidding, of course. Maybe. Okay. Kidding. Really! I love them all.)
I'm also very thankful for my parents, grandparents and all of those who have 'gone on before me.' One of the joys of my life is that I chose to research my family's history and have come to know my ancestors so well. What wonderful people they were, even those few 'questionable characters' sprinkled about in the ol' family tree.
I’m thankful for all of my cousins, and that includes the ones I’ve known all my life and the many, many ‘new’ cousins I’ve ‘found’ and connected with during my years of family history research.  It’s funny how close you can become to people you never knew before, and never even knew existed, but there really must be something to that ‘genetics’ thing! J
I’m thankful for the countless friends that I have. I’ve been blessed over the years to have such good friends.  I think that the one thing that I’ve always really liked about Facebook is that it’s allowed me to ‘reconnect’ with friends that I thought I’d ‘lost’ over the years.
I would be remiss not to add that I’m thankful for the many new friends I’ve made through social media sites and through the heritage, genealogical and lineage societies that I’ve joined. So many wonderful people.
I’m also extremely thankful for the fact that I chose to be a teacher those forty-plus years ago. I know that teaching has become much more difficult in recent days than when I was in the classroom, but I’m thankful that so many young people are choosing that profession.  There is nothing in the world more wonderful than to have a former student tell you how much you meant to them and what an impact you had on their lives.  Maybe I could have made more money in another profession, but I would have never had the ‘riches’ of those grateful former students. I would also never have had the wealth of memories: mostly uplifting, positive, funny and heart-warming; others heart-breaking and depressing; and luckily only a few frustrating and infuriating; a treasure of memories, nonetheless.
I am even thankful for my health.  For those of you who really know me, you may be questioning my sanity right about now. But when everything is put in perspective, I can still walk, talk, stand, and function fairly well, and for that I’m very thankful!  And I can certainly still write – which I need to do more often.
Finally, I’m thankful to you if you read this.  I’ll repeat what I said before, that I’m writing this because of my cousin’s strength and ability to carry on in the face of such tragedy. I know that her children knew that she loved them and was especially thankful for them. 
I want my family and friends to know that as well.
 “In every thing give thanks….”  (The Bible; 1st Thessalonians 5:18)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Wonderful Wordless 'Wallace Wednesday!'

Photo of my grandfather, Baxter H. Wallace, holding my Mother, Evelyne Frances Wallace
ca. 1919 (SOURCE: My Grandmother's photo album)
Tombstone of Susan Smiley Wallace, wife of Samuel Wallace, my 2nd great grandparents.
Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, Posey Co., IN
(SOURCE:; photo added by Linda Saltzman McCall)
King Family Cemetery; Burial site of my 4th great grandmother, Rebekah Wallace (wife of William)
(SOURCE:; photo added by Danny Richards)
Marriage Papers for my 3rd great grandparents, Archibald Wallace & Henrietta "Ritty" McReynolds
Photo of the grave marker for my great grandparents, Rev. William Pierce Wallace & Mary Marvel Wallace
Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, Posey Co., IN
 (SOURCE:; photo added by Linda Saltzman McCall)

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Super Sunday - for Me at Least!

I just received some wonderful news. Back in the Spring, I submitted a family history story to the Excellence-in-Writing Competition sponsored by the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors.

This week I was notified of the winners and was honored to see my name listed as the winner of Category IV.  This category represents stories or articles from an unpublished author.

It is indeed a Super Sunday for me!  Here is a list of all of the winners:

Category I – Columns
  • First - A Big Game for the Big Day – Shelley Bishop
  • Second - Newel King, 91st Ohio Volunteer Infantry – Shelley Bishop
  • Third - Wanted: Larger ‘Needles’ – James M. Beidler
Category II – Articles
  • First - Blue Collar Breakthroughs – Sunny Morton
  • Second - Academic Libraries: A Good Reason to Head Back to Campus – Mary Penner
  • Third - An Identity Crisis: Using Indirect Evidence to Prove …. – Debbie Parker Wayne, CG
Category III – Original Research Story
  • First - Common Ground – Courtenay O’Bryan Auger
  • Second [tie] -The Long and Winding Road: The Search for the Clark Farm – Cheryl Roach
  • Second [tie] - James Holmes: He Was Tickled to be Pickled – Marjorie Waterfield
Category IV – Unpublished Author
  • First - The Butchers of Marshall Avenue – Carla Love Maitland
Category V – Unpublished Work by Published Author
  • First - The Bones of Hobo Hollow – Paul K. Graham
  • Second - Ella’s Letter – Nancy Waters Lauer
  • Third - Civil War Perils of Springtime – M. Carolyn Steele

.This may be a sign that I should continue in my writing endeavors!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - My Aunt Marguerite

My beautiful and sweet Aunt - Marguerite Tickle Sanford, wife of my great uncle, Emile Francis Sanford

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Wonderful Wednesday - a Loving Tribute to my Uncle Lonnie Sanford

James Alonzo "Lonnie" Sanford, ca. 1920s

When I think of wonderful, I think of my Uncle Lonnie.  He was wonderful to me, but unfortunately, as you will see, he didn’t have such a wonderful life.
James Alonzo “Lonnie” Sanford was born on November 11, 1902, in Memphis, Shelby Co., TN to Alonzo Orlando Sanford and Elizabeth Dorothy “Libbie” Zeigler, my great grandparents. He was Lorena Grace Sanford’s youngest brother.  She was my grandmother, and he was actually my great uncle. 
Since my Mother had no brothers and sisters (that we knew of at that time!) and my Father’s family was estranged from us for so many years, my great aunts and uncles were the only ones I knew.  They stepped into the void with love and pride.  I have already written about my sassy Aunt Bobbie, and I wanted to make sure that I included my wonderful Uncle Lonnie.  Rest assured that my precious Uncle Emile will be honored soon, too!  I was never privileged to meet my Aunt Ruby because sadly, she had passed away many years before I was born.
I thought of Uncle Lonnie as wonderful because he had that marvelous Sanford sense of humor that somehow just oozes from many of those with Sanford blood running through their veins.  He was funny, charming, handsome and brave.
He went off to fight in World War I when he was only fifteen years old, lying about his age, of course.  He simply had to go to war because his big brother, Emile, had joined the Armed Forces, and he needed to be there with him to fight in that War to End All Wars.  It was something he just had to do.  After only a few months overseas, he was reported ‘missing in action, presumed dead.’  The family was devastated.
My Grandmother recalled in later years that one day near the end of the war, as the family were all gathered on their front porch in Helena, Arkansas, she was looking down the street and saw a man walking towards the house.  She remembered that she cried and said, “That man looks like Lonnie.” Everyone thought she was just being emotional, but suddenly, as the man came closer, they all realized that it was Lonnie!  Nobody could ever explain why he was reported missing, but having had the pleasure of knowing him the few short years that I did, I’m just not surprised at all at anything that happened to him. (That’s certainly a story that needs more research!)
After the war, Lonnie and his older brother went to work as painters with their father in his business, which became known as Sanford and Sons, Painters. (Not to be confused with the TV program of yesteryear, but I’d bet they were just as funny!) They were house painters, carriage (and later automobile) painters, and fine art painters, as well. That was a talent that was passed down through the generations and even, thankfully, to my own sons through my brother, who had learned the skill from his uncles. 

Regrettably, in their spare time, my two uncles gained a rather risqué reputation, not only around Helena, but in Memphis as well.  It seems they loved the wine, women, and the night life…and the women certainly loved them. They were so very handsome.
I’ve often wondered what effect the following story had on Uncle Lonnie’s subsequent life.  One young lady, whom he dated for a while and ultimately broke up with, took a slow-acting poison, notified the newspapers, and related how she was ‘dying of a broken heart.’  It was a much-publicized story in local papers after her death, and I know that it must have caused Uncle Lonnie much anguish.  Before she died, she even sent him back the photo of himself that he had given her with a cover over his face and ‘devil-cut’ slits for his eyes.  Okay, I know the woman must have been a 'wee bit off,' but imagine what this must have done to him emotionally. It was a topic ‘not spoken of’ around our house until years after his death, and even then in a 'hush-hush' manner.
He ended up married only one time, a short-lived affair that resulted in no children.  My Uncle Emile married and settled down, but Uncle Lonnie went back to his wild ways, succumbing finally to alcoholism, which he didn’t overcome until the final two years of his life. He would spend many years of his life in and out of jail being arrested for drunkenness.  He never committed a crime…he just drank too much.
So why did I think he was wonderful?  I loved him with a child-like love that responded to the absolute love that he gave to me.  Whenever he visited us, he laughed constantly, told marvelous jokes, played games with us, taught us to paint, and – wait for it – taught us to shoot craps!  Oh, yeah…that’s what I said.  My Grandmother nearly died when she learned about that!
In the last two years of his life, he had actually become sober and was doing well with a job at a local hospital.  Sadly, he became ill and collapsed in the street walking home from work one day. He had not wanted to call in sick because he didn’t want to lose the job. The police, who knew him well, thought he was drunk again and took him to jail, where he died of pneumonia on November 2, 1957, only nine days short of his 55th birthday. I was ten years old and had just lost my Father in August of that same year. I was crushed, to say the least.
What a sad ending and what a sad life for such a wonderful man.  Yes, he was wonderful and will always remain so in my heart.  I smile even today just thinking of him.
After all, how many of you can say that you learned to shoot craps at the tender age of six?


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

My Father, Master Sgt. Richard Enloe Love, Jr.
July 24, 1914 - August 20. 1957

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Tombstone Tuesday - My Father

Richard Enlow Love, Jr.
July 24, 1914
August 20. 1957

This is my Father's tombstone - Richard Enloe Love, Jr.  He is buried in Memphis National Cemetery, located in Memphis, Shelby Co., TN.  Unfortunately, his tombstone is incorrect.  His middle name is misspelled. When I first saw it as a child, I remember being shocked, and then relieved.  I decided that if the name wasn't correct, then he wasn't really there.  Sometimes I still cling to that thought.  I was only ten years old when he died.

I found out in later years that the middle name was misspelled because it was also spelled incorrectly on his death certificate.  The military used the information from his death certificate to create the tombstone.

Even though my Grandmother (his own Mother) had given the information herself, evidently she did not check to make sure that 'Enloe' was spelled correctly.  It is often spelled as 'Enlow,' and whoever wrote the information down probably didn't think to check on the spelling either. I never understood why 'the adults' didn't have the tombstone corrected.  Perhaps they tried and were told that it couldn't be done. I have since found that it can be done, but it would be costly and a completely new tombstone would have to be created.  I'm not sure that I want that.

This particular tombstone (flawed as it is) is very meaningful to me personally.  I've visited it often over the years. Even today, some 55 years later, the tears still flow and the loss of a relationship with my Father still stings as I stand before it.  When I was  27 years old, and going through an emotionally difficult divorce, I went to the cemetery, stood before that tombstone and literally yelled out loud at my Father for leaving me.  I just knew that if he had stayed around, I wouldn't be in the sad state that I was in at that time.  My Daddy would have made sure that nothing bad would have ever happened to his little girl.  The relief I felt after doing that was enormous. I felt comforted and loved, which I knew that I was.

I was also extremely relieved to discover (after the fact) that there was no one around to witness that unseemly outburst.  Yes, I will most definitely keep that tombstone just as it is.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

My Eight Great Surprises!

I’ve always used as the basis of research for my own personal lineage those ancestors who came before what I call my ‘Eight Great’ families.  Those are the eight surnames of the four sets of my great grandparents.  Everyone and everything in my own ancestral past stems from those eight surnames, and in my mind, they are the beginning point of any ancestral hunt. My ‘Eight Great’ surnames are: Love, Wallace, Sanford, Akers, Roberts, Gardner, Marvel, and Zeigler.

Since I was born and raised in Memphis, TN and still live in that city where the Delta begins, I have quite naturally always considered myself a ‘Southern Girl.’ I never had any doubts at all as I was growing up that my ‘roots’ were completely and totally Southern.  After all, every one of my family members to whom I was close was associated with Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, or Tennessee.  Any of the family stories I ever heard had to do with those states alone.  My Love family heritage, in particular, was most definitely Southern, and had strong ties to the Lees of Virginia.  How much more Southern can you get?

You can certainly imagine then, I think, my complete and total surprise when I found out that FIVE of my ‘Eight Greats’ were Yankees!  (Mercy me, I’m pretty sure General Lee is rollin’ over in his grave right now.)  I was shocked, and in many ways, still am…that is when I’m not laughin’ my head off!
I had been researching my family history for a few years when it dawned on me one day that I should chart on a map all of those places where all of my ancestors had been.  I was already in the habit of consulting my old worn-out atlas every time I found a new place where an ancestor had lived. After doing this for a couple of years, I realized one day that more of my ancestors seemed to be from the Northern part of the U.S. than from the South. I was especially surprised to see those Northern family members who had served in the Union Army during the Civil War. At least one direct ancestor (that I know of) was a proud member of the Grand Army of the Republic, a society that was established for veterans of the Union Army.  
The Five Zeigler Brothers -
my gg grandfather standing at right

So I thought that in this blog post I would list the various places where those members of my ‘Eight Great’ families lived.  Perhaps you, dear reader, might have some connection to one of these names or areas.  If you do, please let me know!
Here is what I currently know about the travels and movements of my only Southern ‘Eight Great’ families:
Love – England to Maryland to Virginia and then to Tennessee.                                  
Roberts -  England to Virginia and then to Tennessee.                                                 
Sanford – England to South Carolina to Alabama and then to Tennessee.     
This is what I currently know about the travels and movements of my Northern ‘Eight Great’ families:
Akers – England to New Jersey to Pennsylvania to Virginia to Kentucky to Indiana.                                                                                                                               
Gardner – England to Virginia to Indiana.                                                                  
Marvel – England to Maryland to Delaware to Indiana.                                                 
Wallace – Scotland to Ireland to Pennsylvania to North Carolina to Tennessee to Indiana.                                                                                                                         
Zeigler – Germany to Pennsylvania to Missouri to Kansas.                                   
Whenever those families with Northern roots appeared in a Southern state, it was always during a period prior to the Civil War. Also, I found the membership application papers for the Grand Army of the Republic for Cpl. James Lawson Zeigler, my great-great grandfather, on the Truman State University, Pickler Memorial Library site. They were found under the Grand Army of the Republic, Department of Missouri, Manuscript Collection D1, Papers of the Corporal Dix Post.  Cpl. Zeigler served in the 27th Missouri Infantry, Company D.
Cpl. Zeigler would eventually move to Kansas, where he became a teacher and a judge, and where his daughter would meet and marry a ‘Southern boy’ from Alabama. 
Plotting the movements of your various ancestors is a wonderful way to have a realistic look at the lives of those people, especially if you study the history and geography of each of those areas.  I was not only surprised to find those five ‘Yankee’ families, but I was equally surprised to learn that six of those families had their origins in England. My Scottish and German roots are quite definitely strong because most of those families tended to intermarry with people of their own heritage.
As I’ve always told others who venture into the realm of family history research, be prepared for whatever you find, the good, the bad and the ugly.  Nothing that I found out about the origins of these families was any of those things, but finding out that I was not a full-blooded ‘Southern Girl’ was indeed an amazing discovery.
I guess ol’ General Lee will just have to get a grip on his grave now and stop all that rollin'!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Freaky Friday!

Since I’m fairly new to GeneaBloggers, I’m not sure if ‘Freaky Friday’ has ever been given as a prompt.  But that title certainly fits how I’m feeling this Friday.  To be truthful, in a number of ways, I feel great relief.  Nevertheless, when I stop to think about the difficulties that I’ve had trying to prove facts about my paternal grandfather, I get totally ‘freaked out.’
The relief comes from the fact that I’ve successfully completed applications for two lineage societies, which I talked about in my post Society Saturday And just to give my readers an update, I was accepted this week as a member of the Huguenot Society of the Founders of Manakin in the Colony of Virginia.  Yes!  I’m so excited about that. J  Needless to say, confirmation from the D.A.R. will take much longer.
The ‘freaked out’ part comes from the fact that I still have problems and questions about the records that my grandfather left over the years.  There were so many variances, beginning with his real name.  I know for a fact that his parents named him Richard Enloe Love, but for most of his life he went by the name, Enloe, which was often incorrectly spelled as Enlow – of course!  That just added to my frustration. I feel certain that he used Enloe in order to differentiate himself from his uncle, whose name was also Richard Love.  They were very close, so I can understand that need of his to be different – and he certainly was, in so many ways.  (That fact could definitely be a topic for another post!)
The earliest record I’ve ever found on him was the 1900 Jackson, Madison County, TN federal census.  His father was already deceased, and he was listed with his mother, Mary Love, who was 38 at the time, and his older sisters, Florence, 17, and Lottie, who was ten.  He was listed as nine years old, born in Tennessee, and his name was spelled Enlow.  First record. First mistake.
I found him again (as Enloe Love) in the 1910 census. He was nineteen years old, living in Memphis in a boarding house and working as an iron worker, one of the many occupations he would have over the course of his life. Somehow, he managed to give his birthplace as Mississippi. Huh?  I think that was probably because he spent a good deal of his ‘growing up’ years at the home of his favorite uncle, the afore-mentioned Richard, who lived in the small town of Michigan City in Benton County.  In subsequent census records, he always listed his birthplace as Tennessee.
He appeared again the very next year when he married my grandmother, Huldah Norma Akers.  He signed the form, naturally, as Enloe R. Love.  Oy vey…really?  He did the same thing again in 1917, when he filled out his World War I draft registration card.  However, this time he wrote down his actual place of birth, Tiptonville, Lake County, TN.  Finding that record was a true breakthrough for me because I had always believed that he was born in Dyer County, TN where most of the Love family lived.  But Bell Lowe, who was Mary Love’s sister, was living in Lake County during that time period, and Mary and her husband, Samuel T. Love (my great grandfather) were probably staying with Bell and her husband, Marvel Lowe. That’s only conjecture on my part, but the facts certainly fit.
The next official record that I obtained for my grandfather was his Social Security Application.  Sending off for that was a windfall for me because he listed his parents as Sam and Mary Love.  But, as fate would have it, he once again listed Mississippi as his place of birth, and specified Michigan City as the town.  Why would he do that?  I can only refer to my earlier speculation regarding his relationship with his Uncle Richard. 
I had sent off for that application because his death certificate named his father as someone named Joseph Love.  Who the heck was that?  I don’t think that there is anyone named Joseph in our line of the Love family.  Unfortunately, the person who gave the information was his second wife, who was a wonderful lady who obviously didn’t know much about his background.  She gave his mother’s name as ‘unknown,’ stated that he was born in Jackson, TN, and, of course, gave his full name as Enloe Richard Love!  Bless her heart. (That’s ‘southern-speak’ for OMG!)
As you can see, having so many different bits and pieces of information on the various records collected on one person is a researcher’s nightmare. Proving any point is tedious at best, but collecting so many records does help to weave together a person’s life, allowing the researcher to come to certain conclusions.  
You may also be wondering why I am so self-assured that my grandfather’s name was really Richard Enloe Love and not Enloe Richard, as all of the records appear to indicate.  I know it for a fact because he named his first-born son (my father) as Richard Enloe Love, Junior.  My father, in all of his perfectly-precise records (he was a U.S. Marine, after all!) always wrote his own name with the ‘junior’ added and always wrote his father’s name as Richard Enloe Love. My brother was named Richard Enloe Love, III.  So, yes, I know it for a fact, but finding so much conflicting information in the records I’ve gathered has truly ‘freaked me out.’
Luckily, his children from his second marriage knew his real name, and his grave marker is written correctly. That’s the one piece of proof I do have and have used extensively. 
Thank goodness for tombstones and grave markers…a thought which could be considered a tad ‘freaky’ in itself! 

Grave Marker for Richard E. Love
Colbert Memorial Gardens, Tuscumbia, AL

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Fifth of June

The fifth of June.  June the fifth.  I love those words….I love this day.  It’s a wonderful day, and it’s also a very significant day in history.  Here’s a very brief list of some important events that have happened on June 5th:
·         In 1934 Bill Moyers (news journalist) was born.
·         In 1944 the Allied Powers were planning to invade Normandy (D-Day), but had to wait till the next day because of bad weather.
·         In 1949 Ken Follett (author) was born.
·         In 1968 Sen. Robert F. Kennedy was shot in California, but didn’t die until the next day.
·         This very day, Queen Elizabeth of England is concluding her 60th Diamond Jubilee.
·         And in nineteen hundred and something  - I was born! J
Interestingly enough, this was also a big day in my own family’s history.  On 5 June 1823, my great-great grandmother, Julia Elizabeth Lee Shrewsbury, was born in Kentucky.  She chose the fifth of June to marry Charles Jones Love in 1839.  She married him in Nashville, Davidson Co., TN, when she was only sixteen years old. 
Her mother, Elizabeth Dibrell Shrewsbury, had moved her family to Nashville after the death of her husband, Drewry Shrewsbury, in 1833.  I’m not sure of the year that she moved. However, her son, attorney Albert Gallatin Shrewsbury, had already made the move to that city.  Julia must have met her future husband in Nashville soon afterwards.  Charles had been born around 1821 in Virginia, but through the many purchases of land in Tennessee by his father, Col. Charles Jones Love, Sr., the young Charles had also moved to Nashville.  I’ve always wondered how and when Julia and Charles met.  She was so young, and he was only a couple of years older.  Perhaps they waited until her 16th birthday to wed.  I can only hope that it was a marriage of ‘true love.’
The whole family, including Julia and Charles Love, would end up in Henderson County, TN.  Although Julia and Charles haven’t been found in a census of 1850, Julia’s mother, Elizabeth, was residing with her son, Albert, in 1850.  Albert would go on to become a state representative for Henderson County and was a presidential elector for Winfield Scott on the Whig ticket in 1852.  Scott lost the election to Democrat Franklin Pierce.
Charles and Julia eventually ended up in Dyer County, TN at their home called “Love’s Landing.”  It was on the banks of the Mississippi River, near the small town of Ayers.  I’ve never been able to prove the exact dates of death for either Charles or Julia.  Family lore has it that they were buried in the Love Family Cemetery on their land, which eventually was overtaken by the Mighty Mississippi.  I hope one day to prove their deaths.  In the meantime, I’m happy to share a most significant date with them.
The fifth of June…what a beautiful day! J

Marriage Record of Charles J. Love & Julia E. L. Shrewsbury
Source: TN State Library and Archives

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Society Saturday

Society Saturday is one of the writing prompts provided by GeneaBloggers today.  I laughed when I saw it because I've certainly become a 'society girl' this week!  Earlier in the week, my application for the Huguenot Society of the Founders of Manakin in the Colony of Virginia was accepted and sent in for official approval.  Then just this morning, my application and check were both accepted by the registrar for my local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.  Woo-hoo!  I'm on a society roll!

Of course, these applications have only been sent in and not 'officially' accepted yet, but I’m certainly hopeful.  I intend to send in my application for the National Huguenot Society as soon as possible. I began with the Manakin group because they have a fairly active chapter of that group here in my city, and the National organization doesn’t.

I guess my biggest surprise about all of this is that I've actually gone to the trouble to apply to these societies.  In all of my years of family history research, I never had a desire or even a goal to join one of these organizations.  I remember thinking, "oh, that would be nice," but never thought that I would really attempt to join one. Honestly, I always pictured the members of those groups as ‘little old ladies with nothing better to do.’  Boy, was I wrong about that! 

But even more importantly, I've never really thought of myself as a 'society girl' or a ‘joiner’ in any way, shape or form.  Come to think of it, however, I was a member of a college sorority and even a high school sorority. And of course there are the numerous educational and genealogical groups I belong to, and even groups relating to other interests.  Okay, maybe I'd better re-think that not being a society girl/joiner idea about myself.

But seriously, I've always been an 'out of the box' person, basically, a nonconformist in many ways. I wear my hair to my waist and have done so for many years. Oh, wait.  I've started wearing it differently now, mainly in a bun of sorts on the top of my head.  That's right. I decided a couple of years ago that since I was becoming a senior - I mean mature - adult that I should probably try to start looking like one. So I've been trying to pretend to be mature even though I know that on the inside I'm still only the little girl that my husband continuously, and lovingly, reminds me that I am. I guess I'm fooling myself though because reality does tend to set in that first time you have to show your Medicare card.  I did that just yesterday.  It was not pretty.

Nevertheless, mature or not, it just hit me a year or so ago that I wanted the lines of my ancestors that I’ve spent years researching, to be ‘acknowledged’ by certain lineage societies.  I guess that after years of doing the research, the urge to ‘join a society’ just creeps up on you.

In the past, when I first began my serious research, I will admit to thinking about being able to prove my lineage for the Mayflower Society.  As a history teacher, I knew that this was ‘the one’ that would be important for me to prove.  Do I have any ancestors who came over on the Mayflower?  Nope. Not a one.  Does my husband, who is disinterested at best in my genealogical research, have Mayflower ancestors?  Of course!  

So now I’ve promised him that the next society that I’ll be working on will be to prove his line to the Mayflower Society. Funny thing how he’s suddenly interested!  And I have honestly and truly begun that attempt.

Of course, along the way in my ‘spare’ time, I think I’ll just take a look at my lineage proofs for the Jamestown Society, the Colonial Dames, and the numerous other societies for which I qualify.

This society stuff is addictive. Somebody needs to stop me!