When I was a kid growing up in Texas in the 1960s, I suffered from an identity crisis. While I didn’t know who I was, I knew who I was not. For one, I was not born in Texas, and that was a problem for some folks. I grew up fascinated by American history while having no idea where my ancestors fit in with the … Continue reading Had I Known Then What I Know Now
Her story goes like this: Theodosia Beck Beasley, age 14, married a 28-year-old man named John McMullan in Orange County, Virginia. The year was 1769. Together they had five children, one of whom was a fourth great-grandfather on my mother’s side named Patrick McMullan. At some point in time, Theodosia left John and married a man by the name of William Dula. How this came … Continue reading Bad Grandma?
I have received my DNA results from Ancestry.com, and while there were no significant surprises, based what I have seen so far, I am thrilled by the results. In several places, it provided validation to some branches that I had considered working theories in need of proof. The new consanguinity (a fancy word for cousinship) connections revealed on one particular branch on my father’s side … Continue reading The Results Are In! – Part 1
This was originally posted September 2010 during German American Heritage Month In 2021, it is observed in the month of October. In the post, I discuss the intolerance and bigotry shown towards German Americans a little over 100 years ago during WWI. I hope that by posting this readers will understand that we need to stop the cycle of violence & racial injustice and come … Continue reading German American Heritage Month 2021 is in October
Not too long after the January 6th insurrection, I became curious about the history of political violence in the United States. One of the first events that came to mind was the Draft Riots of 1863. Although the New York Draft Riot of July 3 – 5 is infamous as the most deadly and expensive civil disturbance in American history, it is not the only … Continue reading Bloody Monday
I detailed the branches stemming from my third great-grandmother, Mary Emily Knox, which I recently discovered, in a previous post. One of those branches was the branch of my 7th great-grandmother, Jane Winder, and her father, the Rev. John Winder. There is new and, unfortunately, conflicting information to add regarding the branch stemming from John Winder and our connection to to two Irish legends. John … Continue reading Irish Legends
While I await my DNA results, I continue to follow the paper trail, finding new and exciting branches in my family tree. For example, I have discovered who my mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother’s mother was. Her name was Mary Jenkinson, and finding her in 17th Century England reminds me of an episode of Arrested Development – the one where Michael discovered … Continue reading My Mother’s Mother’s Mother…
One facet of my study of family history involves finding answers to why my ancestors did the things they did. For example, some of the questions I seek to answer are: ‘How and why did my Southern ancestors maintain and defend the system of slavery?’ ‘What made my DeBacker family pull up roots in Belgium and go to Kansas in the 1880s?’ ‘Why did my … Continue reading Why They Did the Things They Did
Here’s something I’ve not seen before: a Marriage Bond. As I was doing some research this afternoon I came across a document titled marriage bond and it was essentially a contract signed by my great great grandfather Constantine Kollros and his future brother-in-law, Erhardt Eichhorn. The purpose of the document was to confirm Constantine’s intent to marry, Erhardt’s sister, Maria Eichhorn. Constantine was required to … Continue reading Here’s Something I’ve Not Seen Before
When I was growing up, one of the family legends from my maternal grandmother was that we were direct descendants of John Knox, the Reformer – the man who founded the Presbyterian Church in Scotland. This connection to a famous individual who was a contemporary of Mary Queen of Scots and Elizabeth the First was supposedly through my great, great, great-grandmother, Mary Emily Knox Kelsey … Continue reading Knox, Knox, Who’s there?