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!