Update about blog

Summertime in Black Mountain

My other blogs: Alchemy of Clay
Three Family Trees...the Swasey, Booth and Rogers families, now being published every other day or so...

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Uncle Thomas in Bacon's Rebellion

Thomas Hansford was born in 1646 in Virginia
Death 13 November 1676 in York County, Virginia

FATHER: John Hansford 1590-1661
MOTHER: Elizabeth Jands

Marriage: about 1665 Hogg Island, Surry, New York
Thomas was hanged by Gov. Berkley of Virginia for his participation in Bacons Rebellion. He is said to be the first American born person to be executed in the Colonies.

Southside Virginia Families, Vol. 1, by John Bennett Boddie, Genealogical Pub. Co, 1966, page 157.

NOTE: one souce says as many as 23 Men were hung. Did not state Names.
His land was confiscated by the government.

Wikipedia says:
Bacon's Rebellion was an armed rebellion in 1676 by Virginia settlers led by Nathaniel Bacon against the rule of Governor William Berkeley. The colony's disorganized frontier political structure, combined with accumulating grievances (including leaving Bacon out of his inner circle, refusing to allow Bacon to be a part of his fur trade with the Native Americans, and Doeg tribe Indian attacks), helped to motivate a popular uprising against Berkeley, who had failed to address the demands of the colonists regarding their safety.
About a thousand Virginians of all classes rose up in arms against Berkeley, attacking Native Americans, chasing Berkeley from Jamestown, Virginia, and ultimately torching the capital. The rebellion was first suppressed by a few armed merchant ships from London whose captains sided with Berkeley and the loyalists.[2] Government forces from England arrived soon after and spent several years defeating pockets of resistance and reforming the colonial government to one more directly under royal control.[3]
It was the first rebellion in the American colonies in which discontented frontiersmen took part; a similar uprising in Maryland took place later that year. The alliance between former indentured servants and Africans against bond-servitude disturbed the ruling class, who responded by hardening the racial caste of slavery.[4][5][6] While the farmers did not succeed in their initial goal of driving Native Americans from Virginia, the rebellion did result in Berkeley being recalled to England.

The Burning of Jamestown by Howard Pyle, ca. 1905.
Thomas Hansford had a younger brother, Charles, born May 9, 1654.  He married Elizabeth Folliet Moody, and their son William Hansford is a direct ancestor of mine.  Six generations later would be born my grandfather, Albert J. "Bud" Webb.

So my rebellious spirit might have been well tamed, but the blood runs true!

Friday, November 28, 2014

All dressed up for the parade

My mom liked to dress up...she was 9 for this queenly looking costume...

I'm sharing this for Nov 29 Sepia Saturday
which shows a float and some girls dressed as swans, as well as a Swan Maiden on the float.
Details are:
As a general rule, if you take a daft photograph and then let it soak up eighty years of history it will become even dafter. This is certainly true of this 1930 photograph of the Swan Maiden's Carriage at the Grace Brothers Ball in Sydney, Australia. Grace Brothers were - believe it or not - a famous Department Store, and the strange scene depicted in this photograph (which comes to us by way of the Flickr stream of the Powerhouse Museum) is as strange as anything you might have seen in an episode of "Are You Being Served?". Possible themes for Sepia Saturday 256 include festivals, floats, feathers and fair maidens.
Come over the the Sepia Saturday site and look at other submissions to this theme..

Here my mother dresses up again, pretending to be a bit older than her 12 years.

And when she was a bit older, she was involved with this company of the ROTC...but I don't believe she was depicted here.  However, that's the recently built Thomas Jefferson Highschool of San Antonio, Texas from 1934.  I've posted more pictures of the ROTC companies as well as my mother's various uniforms before HERE.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Sunny where?

Like half the other people in our mobile-minded country, I'm traveling for the holiday to see family.
But the place I am going is having rain.  Not fun.  I was hoping for sunshine.
So that means more time indoors, eating.  Or not, if I tie my hands behind my back perhaps.

I am not a shopper, so don't expect to see me in any malls or stores.  Ah, that's a relief.  And I'm glad that you're glad. 

For Christmas gifts...think either pottery (I know, you are a bit tired of it by now if you're my relative) or gift certificates if you're one of those young people that I know doesn't want pottery!

But try to find local businesses to support whatever you are gifting!  A dollar spent in your own community goes around and around keeping our neighbors happy and fed and clothed and housed...well, you know.

So as everyone prepares for the feast of Thanksgiving, I hope you enjoy being with friends and relations.  Click on the link below...but come back here if you want to comment!

Norman Rockwell

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The ancestors calling...

I've spent much of this rainy day cleaning things around the house. (Sunday the 23rd Nov.)  Kitty litter (my un-faorite-est) then the 2 aquariums...which is such fun and now my fingers are all wrinkly.  But the chartreuse water is gone and now I have counted the guppies (20 teens, 10 adults) and kept them separated.  The big tank still has my 7 year old angel and some younger but ferocious big fish...oh that's not what I want to write you about.

Today with rain outside, I've happily searched on Ancestry.  Went climbing the tree to my great grandmother's side, the Williams.  She was a relative that my mother probably never knew, because her father had died so young.  The Williams came from Missouri to Texas, and from Kentucky to Missouri.

So I've got all these hints on the Williams tree, all these brothers and sisters about whom I know nothing.

I usually ignore them, but today took the time to look at an interesting name, "Liberty Williams" who was one of the elder brothers to William T. Williams, my great grandmom's dad.  Great times 3 Uncle Liberty.  Liberty and William T were born in Pulaski County, Kentucky.

And their parents were born in the same area as well, both Richard Frederick Williams and his wife Nancy Hansford Williams.  Richard Frederick Williams was born in 1792 in Crab Orchard, Lincoln County, Kentucky,

Richard's father, Frederick Williams probably came from South Carolina, while his mother Cassandra Elizabeth, "Cassiah" Tate Williams came from North Carolina.  They were the pioneers who moved to Kentucky by 1792 when Richard was born.  Their first child had been born in South Carolina in 1787.

And the Frederick and Cassiah Williams family may have moved to Kentucky for a while, but they died in Tennessee, while Richard F. as well as Liberty Williams (and other Williams) moved to Missouri.  And then sometime between the time William T. was 38 and 56 (by 1863) he moved from Missouri to Texas, leaving Liberty in Missouri with all his family!

Farmers all.  They had such a job ahead of them when moving to new territory.

It wasn't just go look at the land, put up a cabin, and sew some seeds right away.  Clear timber.  Find fresh water nearby.  Plow the land.  Bring along some livestock as well, and maybe take a few trips back to sources of seeds, nails, the rest of needed livestock, and hope that everyone stays healthy while each of the people help build whatever buildings were first needed.  Put in a garden, or at least go pick those berries and nuts.  And while waiting for any kind of food to grow, what do you eat?  Not barely enough berries!  (Couldn't resist the pun).  The hunters were out getting deer, squirrel, rabbits, birds and whatever could be shot for food.  Mum would have been taking these carcases and skinning them, or plucking, and cooking over a campfire.

What do you think, campfires were not much different than cooking in a fireplace.  Hauling some iron pots and pans were very important in order to make meals.  Someone was bringing water from a creek or river...every night!  And someone was chopping some logs while the littlest someones just picked up sticks for kindling.

Yes a life that was out in nature.  Sounds idyllic, right?  Not when you think of snakes, cold, rain and many bugs and even heat at other times.

It must have made these very hardy folks, cause William T. lived to be 72.  And his wife, Dorcas White Williams, mother of 8,(6 of whom lived to adulthood) lived to 74 years of age.

I'm so glad I was born when I was.  I get the benefit of medical care and social security rather than an adult child who will care for me in my old age.  AND I get the internet.  I don't know how many of the people in the 1800's could read and write, and certainly it was far fewer in the 1700s.  Those folks were too busy killing their food and cooking it, or growing it and eating and sleeping to bother to write anything, let alone teach the kids how.  Schools were obviously a real boon when towns were formed.  But that's another topic for another day.

Monday, November 24, 2014

While reading my blog list

I'm so glad to have beautiful music to listen to while reading blogs, and eating breakfast.  You all out there in blogland don't care if I'm sitting here in my jammies.  And yet, there's the missing element which a shared breakfast used to have.  Pass the funnies.  My turn for "this section" of the paper.  We always waited to read "Parade"...I wonder if the Sunday paper still has it.

I haven't purchased a newspaper in probably 20 years.  But I do look at various news sites on line.  Not as often as I first did.  I hope they survive as on line sites, because that's where local news is archived.  What would genealogists do without the local listings of obituaries and weddings?  Do they still list the newborns also?

I'm pretty much addicted to these luminous screens for information these days.  I still like the funnies and go to Comics to read my favorites.  Sundays are special still.   I stopped reading Yahoo's news page long ago.  But I don't get much of the international news unless I stop by BBC or CNN.  How do you get your news?  Is it broken up by commercial messages on the big 4 networks on a TV?  Or do you select which things to read on your computer?

Thanks for being part of my life...and you didn't even know it.

How do you read your blogs?

Oh, my music is either streaming through iTunes (free internet choice of several thousand broadcasts with NO commercial messages besides support for NPR kinds of yearly things) or right now listening to "Elder Music on Time Goes By" which is published Sunday mornings with humor by Peter Tibbles from Australia.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Where have they gone?

Monarch Caterpillar, for next springtime!  We know what to look for when he's gone.
Labyrinth in clay after Chartres Cathedral design - finger meditation
I was looking for a blogger that I used to enjoy.  How sad to find the blog has been removed.  No way of knowing what happened to her.  Where have all the flowers gone? (As Pete Seger used to sing.)

Recently Jimmy Carter celebrated his 90th, and still helps build homes with Habitat for Humanity.

I have a blog to be posted in the event of my untimely death.  It just says, "In the event I'm not here anymore."  So I can let people know (if my survivors happen to find it, or if the date it is scheduled to be posted actually comes along and I haven't removed it myself!)

Death for people in their 70s should no longer be a scarey word, or a life event that gives fear to any of us.  We need to shake hands with that old Grim Reaper guy, though his is obviously pretty bony...and just walk along for however long we have on this earth.  Just one day after another is all anyone has to live...and hope that we can live each of them to the fullest.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Paper cutting or...

Scherenschnitte (which means "scissor cuts" in German,) is the art of paper cutting design. The art work often has symmetry within the design, and common forms include silhouettes, valentines, and love letters. The art tradition was founded in Switzerland and Germany in the 16th century, and was brought to Colonial America in the 18th century by immigrants who settled primarily in Pennsylvania. (Source: Wikipedia)
A shop window in Asheville, NC last Christmas-time
I think it was closed the day I caught these pictures.
My silhouette, cut in the 1970s I think

I know my parents had a pair cut of themselves when young, but I don't know where they went.  I wonder if my ex-husband has the one we had made of him still.  

It's pretty amazing to be able to cut a profile of someone who's sitting right there waiting to see what it looks like...so I think that the paper cutters of the world are portrait painters extraordinaire.

Check Sepia Saturday for more interesting connections to this photo. Look at the names at the bottom of the page for other blog posts.   Link HERE.

On correct spelling

This article on reading penmanship is long overdue, and I was happy to see it on my newsletter from the Old Buncombe County Genealogical Society.


Deciphering Old Documents

by Dee Gibson-Roles

One of the most difficult tasks for a genealogist is that of reading and deciphering handwriting in old documents. Besides the fact that some handwriting is almost impossible to read, there were letters and letter forms used in “the olden days” that are no longer commonly used, if used at all.

Coupled with that problem is the lack of standardized spelling until close to the 20th century. We will address all of these problems here and provide some tips on deciphering old documents.

One letter or term that is often seen in old handwriting and continues today is the word or term “ye” as in “Ye Olde Tavern.” Quite often today this “ye” is used when an ambiance of colonial times is desired. Most pronounce the word as “yee.”

But this pronunciation is totally in error. It seems hard to fathom that the correct pronunciation is simple “the” — just as the word “the” is pronounced. Of course the first question is, “How on earth did they get ‘the’ out of ‘ye’?!?” Perhaps a bit of the history of the term will explain.

The letter form that became the “Y” was called a “thorn” and was probably derived from a rune, part of a runic alphabet used by Northern European or Germanic peoples until about the 1200s. It represented what is now our “th.” But when the printing press came into use, there was no sign or letter for the thorn, which resembles a lower-case “p” with the loop moved down to the middle of the vertical line.

The letter closest in appearance to the thorn was the “y,” which was often substituted for the thorn in printed material. Thus the “y” when used in this context was pronounced “th,” and when the letter e was added to it, the word became “the” in pronunciation.

Few people today even realize that the word is actually pronounced “the.”

Another letter form that can be confusing to a researcher, especially a new one, it that of the double “s.” Almost anywhere in a document that a word with a double “s” (as in Tennessee) occurred, the two letters were replaced with a symbol or letter that was very similar in appearance to a lower case “f” or “p.” It is very important to remember this when reading or transcribing any old handwriting.

Obviously some indexers are not aware of this, as we sometimes see the word “Tennepee” or “Tennefee” in transcriptions of old handwriting used in place of what is obviously supposed to be “Tennessee.”

Capitals and Spelling Confusion

Sometimes it is very hard to distinguish between two or more letters at the start of a word. Good examples of this are the letters “I” and “L” or “J” and “I.” Also, it can be difficult to distinguish an upper case “S” from an upper case “L,” especially in given names or even surnames.

By comparing the unknown letter to a known word in which the letter is definitely the same as the one in question, one can usually ascertain which letter is correct.

A good example of this is confusion between the names Samuel and Lemuel. Often it is hard to determine which one is the correct, one as many writers formed the capital “S” and “L” nearly alike. The best way to resolve the question is to search for another known word in the document that begins with the same letter and compare the known first letter to the one in question.

For many researchers, the first attempts at reading on old document result in much frustration. There are several reasons for the difficulty. Two of the most obvious are the spelling of words and the embellishment of many letters with flourishes and so on.

First and foremost, there was no standard spelling until the late 19th century or early 20th century. We often hear the statement that a certain word or name was misspelled in a document. However, we cannot say that the spelling of any word or name was incorrect at that time because of the lack of standardization.

In fact, it has been said that the more ways a person could find (or invent) to spell his name or another word was an indication of his educational level and/or his intelligence. Doubtless this is an exaggeration, but it does bear a grain of truth.

Another spelling problem is that many words were spelled phonetically, as the writer heard them, and not necessarily the way we would expect to see them. For example, in one letter written by a Confederate soldier to his family, he stated that a friend had died of “new money” fever. He was referring to pneumonia or “pneumonie fever” as it was called.

Punctuation and capitalization of words is another problem. Punctuation was, at best, a “sometime thing” and again, there was no standardization where capitalization of the first letter of a word was concerned. One can expect to see several words within a sentence with the first letter capitalized even in formal documents. (Common nouns especially were often capitalized, as they still are in modern German.)

As far as the lack of punctuation is concerned, it is best to read a whole paragraph and determine where the punctuation should be placed to make the sentences “make sense.”

Transcribing Errors

We would be remiss if we did not mention transcription at this point. In transcribing any document, the contents must be recorded exactly as they are in the original documents, spelling problems and lack of punctuation included. In fact, the word “transcription” as applied to older documents indicates that it has been recorded word for word exactly as written in the original document.

If necessary, one can add footnotes or endnotes to the transcription explaining or clarifying any part that is still difficult to understand.

On a lighter note, one researcher was recently transcribing County Court minutes from the 1790s, recording the transcription as a Word document. Repeatedly, the program kept trying to correct the spelling and repeatedly, the transcriber reversed the correction to be exactly what was in the minutes. Finally the program gave up and notified the transcriber that it was turning off the spell-check function!

When attempting to read an old document in which words or passages are difficult to decipher, it is a good idea to record the entire document on paper, or least the paragraph that contains the difficult part or parts, leaving a blank space for any word that is illegible. After reading and recording the entire passage, one can often determine the mystery word by seeing its place in the context of the entire document.

Another “trick” is to try to locate the “mystery” letter or letters in another word or words that are legible and known. By comparing the two, it is often easier to determine what the mystery word actually is.

Reading old documents can be challenging, frustrating and discouraging to a beginner. Rest assured that it will be easier as time passes and more documents are read. And remember, help is available from local genealogical and historical societies in most areas.

Also check out what Ronni Bennett said last Wed over HERE at Time Goes By Blog.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

What I've been reading

Thanks to fellow bloggers, this is a popular topic.

I can't say everything Bill Bryson has written has been my "cup of tea."  But the ones I like, I've absolutely loved, and laughed out loud quite a few times reading them.

This travelogue through Britain in the 90s was full of chuckles, though it could have referred to places in I-don't-know-maybe India.  I just know nothing about the places in England.  I would love to visit them...and my roots are from there, but somehow all those shires just run together in my brain.  So this was a perfect read for me, a spoof that cut through all kinds of sacred cows and I didn't even know it.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Rainy days

Sometimes life throws us lemons...you know the saying.
I'm dealing with some these days.
And it's rainy.
So I'll be back in a while.  Thanks for coming to visit whatever is on my mind for so many times!

Friday, November 14, 2014


For this week's Sepia Saturday, HERE.

A photo prompt with a gentleman carrying a lady across a shallow but wide stretch of water.

Mmm.  Gallantry.
Dictionary- meaning number 2 (the first one has to do with fighting) is "polite attention or respect given by men to women. "

  1. Going across water.
  1. Lady keeps her feet dry.
  1. Man gets his feet wet.
  1. Man carries lady, getting to hold her close!
  1. Man saves lady from unknown dangers, thus proves himself gallant, even in the other meaning of the word. 
  3. (Did you notice a problem with my numbering system there?  Funny about that! I have no patience with a program that causes more problems than it solves.)

Well, this photo has 2 out of 5 of the qualities of the prompt photo.

Crossing water.

Lady has dry feet, and those little tiny heels must have been fun on those thin planks of wood!

But the lady was going first across the bridge of unknown dangers...thus the gallantry of my father is in question.  However he also is not hanging on, thus his intelligence is also in question.

And his feet stayed dry also, which is good, because he probably polished those white shoes that morning.

And he didn't get to have a good hug of her by carrying her across, which I'm actually glad he didn't attempt or I probably wouldn't be here today, as they would have broken both their necks as they fell into the weedy San Antonio River.

Chilly here

When my son in Indiana called the other day, and asked if it was cold here yet, I gleefully said it was not. It was 60 on Tuesday, so I walked around Lake Tomahawk.

Yesterday I did it again.

NOT today, because that good old arctic air has arrived, and 30 degrees F is our high today, with gusty winds.

The sun is shining however, melting some of the frost on distant mountain peak tree limbs...but there are some which are still white with hoarfrost.  Clouds of moisture flow through the branches and freeze on them, leaving them to glisten until it gets over freezing.

I brought home some clay work to delve into in my sunny living room window...by the heater also.  So my fingers will hopefully stay warm while making sculptures in clay.  My little studio is much too cold to throw on the wheel, but that's ok...I've got plenty of pots that are finished and waiting to glaze at the studio downtown (Black Mountain Center for the Arts.)  (Check out their blog HERE.)

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Edenton Tea Party

Edenton Colony

In 1658 adventurers from the Jamestown area, drifted through the wilderness from Virginia, found a location on the bank of a natural harbor, the site of present day Edenton.

Edenton Colony was the first permanent settlement in what is now the state of North Carolina (in the United States). It became the modern town of Edenton, North Carolina.

Edenton was established in 1712 as the Towne on Queen Anne's Creek. It was later known as Ye Towne on Mattercommack Creek and, yet later as the Port of Roanoke. It was renamed Edenton and incorporated in 1722 in honor of Governor Charles Eden who had died that year.[4]


Edenton served as the capital of North Carolina from 1722 to 1743, with the governor establishing his residence there and the population increasing during that period.

Easy sea access halted with a 1795 hurricane which silted Roanoke Inlet. The 1805 Dismal Swamp Canal also took business elsewhere by diverting shipping to Norfolk. Locals also didn't want a railroad, thus further impeding the local economy.[7]


Edenton Tea Party

The Edenton Tea Party was one of the earliest organized women’s political actions in United States history.  On October 25, 1774, Mrs. Penelope Barker organized, at the home of Mrs. Elizabeth King, fifty-one women in Edenton, North Carolina.  Together they formed an alliance wholeheartedly supporting the American cause against “taxation without representation.”

Penelope Barker is credited for organizing the women who participated in the Edenton Tea Party. Image courtesy of the North Carolina Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries.
Penelope Barker is credited for organizing the women who participated in the Edenton Tea Party. Image courtesy of the North Carolina Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries.

In response to the Tea Act of 1773, the Provincial Deputies of North Carolina resolved to boycott all British tea and cloth received after September 10, 1774.  The women of Edenton signed an agreement on October 25, 1774, saying they were “determined to give memorable proof of their patriotism” and could not be “indifferent on any occasion that appears nearly to affect the peace and happiness of our country . . . it is a duty that we owe, not only to our near and dear connections . . . but to ourselves.”

The custom of drinking tea was a long-standing social English tradition.  Social gatherings were defined by the amount and quality of tea provided.  Boycotting a substance that was consumed on a daily basis, and that was so highly regarded in society, demonstrated the colonists strong disapproval of the 1773 Tea Act.  The Boston Tea Party, in December 1773, resulted in Parliament passing the “Intolerable Acts.”  It was proof of the Crown’s absolute authority.  Following the example of their Boston patriots, the women of Edenton boldly protested Britain’s what they considered unjust laws.

At the meeting, Barker said, “Maybe it has only been men who have protested the king up to now.  That only means we women have taken too long to let our voices be heard.  We are signing our names to a document, not hiding ourselves behind costumes like the men in Boston did at their tea party.  The British will know who we are.”  Part of the declaration stated, “We, the aforesaid Ladys will not promote ye wear of any manufacturer from England until such time that all acts which tend to enslave our Native country shall be repealed."

Barker sent the proclamation to a London newspaper, confident the women’s stance would cause a stir in England.  British journalists and cartoonists depicted the women in a negative light, as bad mothers and loose women, and did not take them seriously.  However, the Patriots in America praised the women for their stance.  Women all over the colonies followed Barker’s lead and began boycotting British goods.

From England, in January 1775, Arthur Iredell wrote his brother, James Iredell, describing England’s reaction to the Edenton Tea Party.  According to Arthur Iredell, the incident was not taken seriously because it was led by women.  He sarcastically remarked, “The only security on our side … is the probability that there are but few places in America which possess so much female artillery as Edenton.”  The Edenton women were also satirized in a political cartoon published in London in March 1775.

 Even though the Edenton Tea Party was ridiculed in England, it was praised in the colonies.  The women of Edenton represented American frustrations with English monarchical rule and the need for American separation and independence.

Lindley S. Butler, North Carolina and the Coming of the Revolution, 1763-1776 (Raleigh, 1976); Richard M. Dillard, “The Historic Tea-Party of Edenton: An Incident in North Carolina Connected with British Taxation,” in The North Carolina Booklet (Raleigh, 1926); William S. Powell, North Carolina Through Four Centuries (Chapel Hill, 1989); and Lou Rogers, Tar Heel Women (Raleigh, 1949).

A British cartoon satirizing the Edenton Tea Party participants

The list of the 51 women is somewhat confusing...the same name appears 3 times, so it's possible that the transcription has an error, or there were 3 women named Elizabeth Roberts, and 2 named Mary Creacy, a small possibility.  You can view the list and a biography of Penelope Barker here.

I was looking for the mother of my ancestor James Moore Powell, born in the same county (Bertie) as the town of Edenton. Apparently his mother was Secaley Celia (Sally) AVERITT Powell.  No Averitt, or Everitt, nor Powell on the list.

James Powell was born in 1791, so either his mother or grandmother may well have been part of the tea party.

My quandry these days is who his father might have been.  There are two gentlemen on his family tree, with birth and death dates different, and both supposedly married to Sally Averitt.

James himself may have been two people, because he married Nancy Jones Traylor, but another James Powell married someone named Mary.

I'm enjoying playing sleuth and searching through records.  I found a James Powell lived in Warrenton, NC, and was in the army during the War of 1812, though he didn't see any fighting apparently.

Or was this the other James Powell?  Unless it says James M. Powell, it is still a question, and the soldier didn't use any initial.  But the 1820 census of Warrenton does have James M. Powell, so it's more likely that this single man is my ancestor.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Garish simplicity

This is my new profile photo on my blogs.  Can't compete with that beauty!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

May we no longer need soldiers

I am grateful for the concept of a peace-keeper.

I wish that we no longer needed to consider soldiers necessary.

When we pray for peace on earth, and even write it on many Christmas cards, do we ever think how hard it would actually be?  Assuming that those who aren't Christians also want the same thing, it is a great intellectual exercise.

In the meantime, thank you to all who have served their countries believing that their sacrifice would be for the greater good. 

When we consider a global economy, do we consider a global identity?  That the Chinese and South Africans and Brazilians (to pick any cultures out of my hat) could all just be humans? 


Monday, November 10, 2014

Sunny Mondays

There are some redeeming qualities when the sun is shining, no matter what day of the week.

I haven't much good to say, which reminds me to be quiet.  But I do celebrate the sunshine.  So I'll share that feeling of joy with you.

I also have a small little (miniscule really) joy of life to share.  The guppies had babies again.  I don't know what I'll do when they all grow to full size, as they are just in a little 10 gallon tank.  But life continues.  And I smile in the simplicity of new beings to share it with.

On the other hand, the Christmas cactus which I rescued from beside the road about 6 months ago, continues to not bloom, but stay alive.  Any suggestions as to how to get it in the mood for blooming?

I tried fertilizer (liquid) and sun (all summer) and now it's indoors in an east facing window which also gets a bit of afternoon sunshine.  It's gone dry, and it's been overwatered.  But it just sits there looking peaked.

I hope your Monday is full of blessings of whatever variety pleasing for you!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Century mark for his birth

My father, George Elmore Rogers Jr, was born 100 years ago today.  In Galveston, Texas, to a family of Christian Scientists.  Christian Scientists would read from the Bible and the Christian Science literature, and pray when someone was sick. That's important because he never had medical treatment in his long life.  He lived to 70 years and died in 1985. 

(l ro r) Poppy, (George Sr.) mother Mataley (behind) myself, my father, (George Jr,) Gummy (behind) and Uncle Jimmy, on the porch of our first house in St. Louis, MO

I celebrated the anniversary of his birth last year on this blog HERE.

 He was an accountant, being the son of a bookkeeper.  His beautiful penmanship remained steady for a long time, but did become shakey in his later years.

He loved to tinker in the garage or basement, with various projects, lots of which came from Popular Mechanics magazine.  Since he had no sons to share these ideas with, I would sometimes watch what he was working on.  My sister and I had only a few of these boyish gifts, but some were for his grandsons many years later.

North American badge
The aircraft company was his contribution to WW II, where he worked when I was born in 1942.

He was handy, and finished the basement of our first home in St. Louis by himself.  He worked on our family cars to keep them running, and he did all the yard work himself.  No lawnmower with a motor either, (at least at that house) and he enjoyed raising some roses also.

Dad in front, Mary Beth, (my sis), Claudette, myself (Barbara), Sandra from l to r.  Near St. Louis, MO around 1954.  Cousins Claudette and Sandra visited from Houston on summer vacation.

We lived in apartments for about 8 years when we first moved to St. Louis, MO, and I think he was so glad to have a bit of property of his own again.  My parents had owned 2 homes in Texas before we moved. Then they owned two homes in St. Louis, and one in Framingham, MA, then returned to Houston.
In front of new house, Dad, sister Mary, and mother, in 1962 St. Louis, MO

Last house my parents owned, in Houston, TX

In Feb. 1960 these brothers buried their father George Rogers, Sr. in Houston, TX - from l to r, George Jr, Chauncey, James Rogers.  They are all gone now, but there are many of their children alive who are now the elders of the family.

George E Rogers Jr at Epcot, FL
Dad, Lisa, Tai in stroller, Zach and myself (l to r) at Epcot Center, Disney World, FL
My parents welcomed my sister, Mary, and her two children (Lisa and Zach) to live with them for a few years in the Houston house above.  One summer in the early 80s the grands went to Disney World near Orlando FL, for a vacation (without my sister.)  I was then a student at the University of Florida in nearby Gainesville, FL, and met them with my son, Tai, for one day of their vacation. 

With his deep faith, his last months apparently were pretty hard for him, and my parents knew I would want to interfere and get him help from medicine...so they wanted me to stay away.  I complied, at the urging of my sister who minimized his condition to me.  I had left the religion years before and found that the belief in prayer as the only way to have healing gave a lot of needless suffering for Christian Scientists.

When my father died at home, my mother and sister followed his wishes to have a cremation and no marker to designate his remains.  There also was no memorial service.  I gave myself a memorial ritual for my father, as I mourned his loss and celebrated his wonderful life, sitting in meditation with his pictures and letters for 40 days.  I'm glad I did, and wonder if my parents really felt better by not having any ritual to mark his life.

I remember all the times he drove me to school functions before I had a license, waiting till parties or dances were over, then taking me home again.  I think he lived his religion through his works and love towards others, not by going to church.

Happy birthday, Daddy!  I will continue to remember you with love.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

"The Butler"

I just came home from seeing the movie "The Butler," about a Black man who worked many years as a butler in The White House.

I was enthralled to see what occurred in my lifetime (and in that of the main character in the movie.)  I will continue to use the term Black for the people of color who now call themselves African Americans, because that is the name used since the civil rights movement originally touched my life.

That was the time when Blacks finally got some rights.  It was such a hard and bitter struggle from the sit-ins and marches and all the abusive legal problems.  But at the end of the movie, by the time 2008 gave us a Black President of the US, so much had been achieved.

I live in North Carolina, and know there are still many racial problems today.

Yet I lived in the times of the movie.  When grandchildren of cotton farmers went to college and became not only protestors, but also members of government.  The immense leadership that is to be found in the minds and hearts of Blacks is just beginning to be appreciated.

This was a second revolution in America.  The one to be free from colonization took place over 200 years ago.

 But the one for all people to finally have the same rights no matter what their color of skin, happened while I was growing up, raising a family, having a career, getting my own college degrees, changing my ideas about life, and being gradually impacted by this huge revolution in our culture.

My children went to public schools alongside Black children.  I worked for equal housing opportunities to integrate neighborhoods in the 60s. But since I was responsible for my children, I didn't march or demonstrate...I feared what would happen to my children if I went to jail.  But I remember a local pub, my favorite place to stop for a drink after work, had a car burned right outside it's doors in the riots of 68.  And that was in Hartford, CT.

I more recently ate my lunches side by side with Black elders here in Black Mountain, NC, at our community center, provided at low cost by the Council on Aging (I think a federal program.)  I also served in St. Augustine FL as a counselor at the time the 2 federally supported nursing homes merged, so the Black nursing home was absorbed into a remodeled one which formerly had housed only whites (1998.)

And women are still treated invisibly in many ways.  We have become the "Butlers" and have always been there, but have not risen beyond our domestic and under-paid status.  There is always a much more obvious and needful cause for which women rally and try to get justice rather than their own.

North Carolina is such a sad state in which to live.  We (____________fill in the affiliation here) people walk around either angry or disgusted or in grief or planning another action to re-obtain our rights.

This last election (on Tues this week) triggered a lot of those feelings for me.

The 19th amendment gave women the right to vote, less than 100 years ago.  It became law when 2/3 of the states ratified it in 1920.  Did you know it wasn't for fifty-one more years, until 1971, that North Carolina finally ratified it?

Women need to acknowledge their rights are being abridged, in subtle ways that make it more difficult for them (and others like Blacks) to vote in North Carolina today.

Voting will require picture ID's here in the next election.  And other election restrictions have been put in place that will limit the rights of many people to register and vote.

I continue to speak out for the rights of any underdogs...whether religious, sexual preference, race, or gender.  Remember women are a majority.   But first we have to see that we are oppressed! Remember the frogs that are in the pot of water that is slowly heated to boiling.  They died and didn't even know what was happening.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Another cousin contact

Hi Leslie...this is for you, special.

I am so thrilled to have been contacted by you here...my second cousin I think...cause we have the same great grandparents on my mother's side of my ancestry, Eugenia and Charles Miller!

I hope you got my email.
I did a bit of searching for records for your family, and have at least found some birthdates which I have added to my personal/private ancestry family tree.

I think we met when I traveled one summer with my 2 oldest boys and briefly stopped in San Antonio.

I can imagine you've a lifetime of stories to share, and I will be patient, but do want to hear all!

For my other cousins, who share the same grandparents on my father's side...it's absolutely amazing, Pat, Chris, Cindy, Sandra and Claudette, to connect with you all as well.  I'm not on Facebook as much as I used to be, but am still busy blogging here!

Leslie, if you want me to be your Facebook friend, I would like that also.  The only warning I can give is that I'm a bit "far out" as people used to say in the 70s. In the 21st Century, I don't know how to describe myself.

I've been like one of those lost relations...since I admit I'm the one who never stayed in the same place for long.  Yet now I've lived 7 years in Black Mountain, NC and have met so many people whose entire families haven't moved away from these mountains and valleys.  They are always amazed when I say I was born in Texas, raised in St. Louis, and have spent my adult life between Florida and North Carolina, mainly.

I have been making pottery again since retiring, and occasionally sell some.  I have 3 children spread around (all adults by now) and 6 grandchildren.  I've been single most of my adult life, and love living with 2 cats.  Ahhh, so relaxing to come home and have a quiet house where I can be the introvert that I truly am.  I read a lot, am active in my church, have some friends who also make pots, and some friends who like to take day trips around NC where I take photos for my blogs.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Fishing or enjoying water

OK, looking back, waaay back to 2009-10 for old photos, this is what I found.
A February visit to a lovely falls...Hooker Falls on the Little River in DuPont Forest, NC.

My friend is enjoying the sunshine on this cold day at the foot of the falls.
I have seen boats with fishermen in them over on the far side from the "swimming area."
The Little River tumbles over lots of falls, and provides many a trout pool, if only I knew how to catch them.  I prefer just going to a restaurant and having fresh catch (even if it comes from a farm!)
Hooker Falls has been known for years to local residents and was named for Edmund Hooker, who operated a mill below the falls in the late 1800s. At the time, it was named Mill Shoals Falls. The Falls was seen in the movie Last of the Mohicans as the falls the characters go over in canoes.
In the 1990s, DuPont Forest was sold to the State of North Carolina, and as DuPont has completed cleanup of various areas, those areas have been made open to the public.  (Source, Wikipedia)

In 2009 Siesta Key, FL, as we waited for a beautiful sunset.  Didn't see any fishermen either.

Siesta Key is a barrier island off the southwestern coast of Florida in the United States of America. It is situated between Roberts Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.  After the probable Amerindian name of Zarazote for the area and the bay, the key was originally named "Sarasota Key" by European cartographers during exploration beginning in 1513. That name can be seen on maps from the early 18th century as well as on all local maps drawn before the name change to "Siesta Key" in the 1920s. (Source: Wikipedia)

My North Carolina friends are vacationing right now on another Key near Sarasota, for a couple of weeks, while I help them by feeding their cats.  I hope they are enjoying this snshine!

In case you want to catch something closer to fish or fishing, look over at Sepia Saturday here.
I think my photos are a bit more pleasing than the one in the prompt, but that's just my personal taste.

Getting help

I have been known to use those 800 numbers when Ancestry DOT com just muddles things up too much for me to figure out.
And I've learned how to do several things.

Last night's 50 minute call taught me how when an ancestor appears twice and is married to the same wife (who only appears once) and has two sets of the identical parents, and has two sets of the identical children, they want me to count it as Intra-Familial Marriages.

So I followed that advice, and it didn't remove the duplicate ancestor...nor his parents nor the 24 kids.

So the customer service guy (with several holds while he consulted his supervisor) sent me another set of instructions.

I wasn't to try to do them while he was on the line, as they were very involved and I needed to take the time to do them.

I then was supposed to answer a survey as to how satisfied I was with his service.

The dingbat survey (totally recorded) didn't record my answers, and asked the first question about 5 times before it moved on to the second question.  After the 5th time telling it that "No, I didn't solve my problem," I finally hung up.  Hope Eric doesn't lose his job...but I finally just deleted my ancestor's children and his parents.  And this morning I started adding them back into the tree.

At least the ancestrial cousins don't leave my list of relations when they are deleted from a family.  But I haven't the time to put them all back in today.

So a bunch of cousins have just gone missing.  The only useful thing I find for them is proving the birth or death dates for their mothers.

I may leave out a mother that is listed having children in her 60's.  And being 20 years older than her husband.  I think someone made a mistake there.

So that was almost an hour of my life gone last night.  And then this morning I couldn't log onto Ancestry the way I always do...and had to ask them to send me a new password.  Some help!

But I'm hooked...because now I'm in the realm of the glorious patriots who somehow stuck their necks out to fight and sometimes die to make a country where people would have a say in their government.  Yesterday was election day.  No comment.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

When kitty sitting...

Of course I have to get to know my lovely whiskered friends.

Monty likes to play with the entertainment tree.

Max would even reach up my leg with his paws, but is declawed so they were soft.

And Miss Ella was playful also, though wouldn't be still for her photo!

These cats have definitely been trained when someone holds a little box (camera) up in front of them that goes "click."

Monday, November 3, 2014

Black Mountain Library

As photographed in 1968, in the collection of the Swannanoa Valley History Museum, and published in Swannanoa Valley, postcard history series, in 2014, by Mary McPhail Standaert and Joseph Standaert.

I've shared some photos of the inside of our library HERE.

Last winter the outside looked like this.

I thought I had some photos of the nice plantings in front of the library, but apparently I focused on the plants and left out the facade of the actual building.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Another Louise's Restaurant!

...this one near Linville Falls...though technically their address is Spruce-Pine, NC.

(There's a Louisa's here in Black Mountain (breakfast and lunch only))

Helen checked out the menu, while I took a pic of the byline on the cover...

 This restaurant straddles 3 counties, Avery, Burke and McDowell!  What a hoot.

And it's good and it's reasonably priced.  I had home-made apple sauce with my Calabash shrimp and a double size portion of fries, and Helen had home-made cole slaw after her BLT hold the B.  Simple fare, but good.

The way we decided to eat there was the crowded parking lot.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Early snow

It's not that early in the year, just early in the day, before dawn.  The silly camera insisted I needed a flash, but of course the snow is just a dusting.  But it's still falling.  However 34 degrees until noon is forecast, so not much is likely to stick.

It's changing my plans for the day though.  With a high of 40, I don't think we'll be walking around Dillsboro looking at pottery.  Sorry potters.  I do feel for you outside all day, and know this will eat into your sales.