Update about blog

Come on over to my other blog, Alchemy of Clay and Living in Black Mountain NC, where the scenery and my ceramic arts life are combined. I've moved some personal blog posts, (as well as those that are about my ancestors) back here.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Born in Cheesecake?

I was chasing the tree (on Ancestry) earlier today.  When visiting for Thanksgiving I got to do some more updating on the tree...and ran into an ancestress supposedly born in Cheesecake, VA, Elizabeth Foilliott Moody Hansford in 1661.

I googled it (did you know google is also a verb?) and there is no such city. (At least in 2014 York County, VA)

There was another similar sounding place, where her son William Hansford was born in 1686.  So I'm about to chase that place and make sure it at least once existed.

Early Virginia history says (Wikipedia style):

Native Americans

The area which is now York County was long inhabited by Native Americans. These were hunter-gatherer groups during the late Woodland Period (1000 BC to AD 1000) and earlier.
By the late 16th century, much of the coastal plain draining to the Chesapeake Bay of the current Commonwealth of Virginia was called Tenakomakah in Algonquian, meaning "densely inhabited land".[3] There, a weroance (or chief) named Wahunsunacock (1547–1618) created a powerful empire of eastern-Algonquian language-speaking people known as the Powhatan Confederacy by conquering or affiliating by agreement with approximately 30 tribes. Wahunsunacock was originally from a village known as "Powhatan", near the fall line of the James River. (The Powhatan Hill neighborhood of the current city of Richmond was developed near this site.) He was known as Chief Powhatan, and later established a second capital village, known as Werowocomoco, in a centrally located position in Tenakomakah. It was located along the north bank of the York River in present-day Gloucester County (which was subdivided from York County in 1651).[4]
The Chiskiack tribe of the Powhatan Confederacy lived in York County on the south side of the York River until the 1630s, when escalating conflicts with the expanding English colony based at Jamestown caused them to move. The former site of the village of Chiskiack (also sometimes spelled "Kiskiack"), as well as the Cheesecake Road and Cheesecake Cemetery (names also thought to have derived from the Powhatan), were later developed as the present-day Naval Weapons Station Yorktown near Yorktown and are included in the military base.
After Chief Powhatan moved his capital from there in 1609, the site believed to have been Werowocomoco near Purtan Bay was lost to history. Since the early 21st century, however, it has been under continuing archaeological study projects. The discoveries and ongoing research led by the College of William and Mary hold great promise in expanding understanding of the lives of the Native Americans in the area during that era of York County's history.
For more details on this topic, see Powhatan Confederacy.
Note, most of the links don't work unless you are on Wikipedia.  But it's great to hear that there is an archeological site being examined.

And the cemetery led me to more stories...it's got a nice big sign saying Cheesecake Cemetery.

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