In every family, God plants a "family historian". It is what that particular person finds himself doing at the family get togethers. This person might be peculiar "Aunt Nancy", or dull old "Cousin Ed", or the "strange second cousin" of your great grandfather (on your Mother's side).......or IF you are lucky - it might be you!
It is a shame to inherit a completed "family genealogy" because it removes the fascination of working a mind tickling, gigantic, completely engrossing puzzle. With every generation added, you are immediately presented with four new, individual puzzles. And it is a hobby that never knows completion.
I, myself, became hooked while rummaging through an old trunk, in my Mother's basement. I found a strange, faded old velvet diary that had belonged to a great aunt of my grandmother's. Opening the diary, I read a "ditty" my grandmother had written in 1907 as a very young girl. Her mother had also written in this diary. The aged, and fading ink of the diary's first entry was July 20, 1886.
Thus was born my first time to question, "Who are these people?" From this humble beginning, I discovered that my grandmother's rather unusual name, "Brantley", came from her mother's aunt's husband, William T. Brantley. Rose Trimmier and William Brantley had shared a double wedding with my grandmother's mother, Mollie Brown and William Harris.
My journey into genealogy has enriched me with numerous personalities that would never have enticed me otherwise. Being a rather self contained person, I was never prone to be a great conversationalist with strangers. But give me a "lead" in a new county or a new state and a new name, and I will fire off a letter or make a phone call to seek information on some removed, long deceased, very distant relative that will add one more piece to my family puzzle. Often I become more familiar with these people, their communities, and the period in which they lived, than some of my own present acquaintances.
There is probably nothing quite so dull as listening to another recite his family tree - or anything quite as exciting as discussing "your own" with someone else who is interested! To you, I am sending what I have been given by other family members, dug out of basement courthouses, gleaned from numerous clippings pasted in old family albums, copied from ancient tombstones in long neglected cemeteries and labored over for uncounted hours. I try hard not to make suppositions, and to have proof for any statements or connections I make. I am certain, I have made mistakes - and therein is YOUR challenge - prove it for yourself........and catch the genealogy "bug"!
Patricia Camp Evans
- CAMP, MILLER, BUTLER, HARRIS, and ANDERSON (169 KB)
Can you imagine leaving everything familiar, all your family, taking few possessions and being brave enough to face the unknown each and every day? They were a hardy stock and they did more than endure; they prevailed. They did the best they could with what they had and the irony is that they lacked all we have and they had all we lack.
- EVANS, ROSS, TUNGATES, WILLIAMS into Giles Co, TN (257 KB)
These early venturers settled in and around Giles Co, TN. They were a hardy stock.