Friday, January 29, 2010

A Return to My Research Roots

The Family History Center

I’m at a point in my research where yes, I need to push myself away from the computer, internet, etc. and concentrate more on those “antiquated” methods of research from my early research days. If you’ve been at this awhile you know what I’m talking about – microfilm / microfiche, snail mail, treks to record halls, etc. So, after months, of saying that I was going to get back to a Family History Center near me, I finally made the trek there Thursday night.

It’s taken me awhile to get there because of their hours (T-Th 9am-1pm; T-Th 7pm-9pm; Sat 9am-2pm). There are two locations here and they both have similar hours. Neither location is close to my house, so I decided to go to the one that I sort of pass on the way home from work. However, it always seemed like something was coming up on Tuesday or Thursday and on the weekends, I always seemed to forget or get wrapped up in other things of life.

When I began researching, late 1980s / early 1990s, the Family History Center was a big help in me conducting my research. In those days, there was very little on the internet (we were just beginning to discover its power) and most communication was still done via snail mail.

I was fully introduced to the Family History Center when in 1990, I moved out of my beloved home state of North Carolina to Grand Junction, Colorado. I lived in Grand Junction for most of the 1990s. Shortly after moving to Grand Junction, I begin discussing my research with one of my coworkers. My coworker and her husband were members of the local LDS church and also volunteered at the research center. She invited me down to the center on a night when she and her hubby were working and would assist me in getting started.

I was introduced to hard copies of resources that were at the library but best of all, I was introduced to their database and as a result, the repository of records, documents, books, etc. housed in the main library in Utah. The way the Family History Centers work is that for a nominal fee, you place an order for a document / record that has been recorded on microfilm / microfiche. The center notifies you when the item arrives. Then you return to the center to use their readers, etc. These days, you are allowed 90 days for viewing but I remember, in my earlier days, the time period being much shorter.

Today, thanks to their website, FamilySearch, you don’t have to spend a lot of time at the center finding out what is available. However, at least here in the US, you still have to physically go to the center to order whatever microfilm / microfiches that you are interested in. Microfilms now cost $5.75 vs. $2.85 (yes, I still have some of those old receipts) and microfiche is $0.10 per microfiche.

So, what did I order?

1. In remembrance, Cemetery Readings of Walton County, Georgia (Historical Society of Walton County, Inc.)

I’ve already seen this microfilm (it’s the resource that lead me to asking a volunteer to go to the graveyard where my great grandfather, Cornelius Pierce, is buried) but it has been at least 13 years ago that I viewed the microfilm.

So why did I reorder this book? My notes from then are a little cryptic and second, back then, for the most part, I was only looking for direct line ancestors. Now that I’ve matured somewhat as a researcher, know more about which cemeteries are African-American, have a better understanding of some of the collateral relatives, there are a lot more names, info, etc. to possibly be found.

2. The Cemeteries of Greene County, Georgia by E. H. Armor

I’ve traced my great grand father, Cornelius Pierce, and my 2nd great grandparents, Jasper and Jane Pierce, back to Greene County. Don’t know that this book will give any leads or information but I thought it was worth a try.

Almost forgot to add that one other noted difference between my early visits to the Family History Center and now is the time elapse between ordering and receiving. Colorado is right next to Utah. (Grand Junction, where I lived, is the last major stop on I-70, before heading into Utah). So, back then orders were usually received within a week even though I think they always stated 2 weeks. The order I placed last night, will take 2 – 3 weeks to get to NC. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it gets here sooner.

Until Next Time!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Wedding Day



Mr. and Mrs. Randolph Knox


From the collection of O. Jones

This is a my oldest aunt, Elmira "Marie" Hosch Knox on her wedding day.

Momma often called Aunt Marie her second momma. When they were growing up, Aunt Marie, who was 16 years older than mom and was the oldest, was often left in charge. Mom hated that when they were children but in their adult years, especially in Aunt Marie's later years, there always seem to be this special bond between them. By the way, Aunt Marie's wedding dress was made by none other than her little sister, my momma.

Until Next Time!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

My life Outside Genealogy

Once again, I’m doing the Saturday into Sunday thing for Randy Seaver’s, Genea-Musings, Saturday Night Genealogy Fun.


This week’s challenge is as follows:

Tell us about your "other" hobbies or interests outside of genealogy and family history research, writing, speaking, etc.


Write a blog post of your own, respond with a comment to this post, or add a comment on the Facebook version of this post

This gives me an opportunity to talk a bit more about “me.”

Even though, I’ve been genealogy non-stop, since returning to my research last year, I do, believe it or not, have a life outside genealogy.

1. Sewing – Momma taught me to sew when I could barely touch the presser foot, and it’s another hobby I slowly let die, but I’m slowly returning to it, too. During the past 4 years, I’ve made a few things for the house but hadn’t really returned to sewing anything for myself. Of course the true sewer in me was still hoarding up cloth and patterns. Well, my 30th HS class reunion (2009) revived my interest in sewing. Needing something to wear to the Saturday night event and not finding anything that I liked in the stores that didn’t require major alterations, I quickly whipped together a dress and just like that my interest in sewing was renewed.



The dress I made for my HS reunion
Picture from the collection of M. Jones


2. Community Involvement – My family wasn’t rich, but somehow, they were always reaching out and getting involved in helping others. It took me awhile to find my niche and sometimes I let this area of my life slide but am often reminded how much this means to me. In the past I’ve been a mentor, secret Santa, volunteer at Expanding Your Horizons (science and math fair for girls) and yesterday put my name on the list at church to volunteer to help feed at our city’s Homeless Men’s Shelter and to do whatever I can at the soon to be completed Homeless Women’s Shelter.


3. Tarheel and ACC basketball and NCAA and NFL football – Love watching most sports but being a Tarheel alum, and a fan long before being an alum, plus being born and raised in the tobacco road state, this time of year, I am especially addicted to Tarheel and ACC basketball. As a side note, I’m still fighting to get all those non-original members out. It just doesn’t seem the same with as big as the conference has gotten now.

4. I love reading. With the return to genealogy and with my cousin, dad’s side of the family, officially being published last year, I’ve been reading like crazy. As a child you could always find me with a book in hand, but in my adult life, I've always tended to go through spurts with my reading.

5. Jazz – I remember there being a time when I was in my early 20s, that I didn’t like this genre. But I was introduced through a coworker whose husband was in a jazz band and I’ve loved and appreciated it ever since. So whenever I get an opportunity to attend a show, I try to go.

Until Next Time!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Isn't she Beautiful

Grand Aunt, Effie Irene Pierce Jackson
1893 - 1951
My grandmother's sister
Scanned from 2006 Pierce Family Reunion Program

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Thank you Greta!

I almost forgot to mention that Greta from, Greta's Genealogy Blog also gifted me with the Happy 101 Award. Thank you so much for the award.

Do I have to come up with another ten?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday


This is the headstone for my Grand Aunt, Ossie Pierce Williams, my grandmother's youngest sister. Aunt Ossie's daughter, Benny Ruth Williams Costen is buried beside her.

I really miss Aunt Ossie because it always felt like as long as she was here that my grandmother was still here.

The picture is from the colletion of my second cousins, D. Outland and R. Williams.

Until Next Time!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sentimental Sunday

Granddad and Me



From the collection of Mavis Jones

I had originally planned to post this picture for a Wordless Wednesday post, but decided that I would use it today, for my second Sentimental Sunday post.

As most of you know by now, by the time I came into the world, only my maternal grandfather was living. Until his death in 1978, my granddad was my world. Much of my drive in life was derived from granddad and just knowing what he had to endure during his lifetime. I try to continue to live my life as a way of honoring him.

The one thing I always loved about my granddad was that it didn’t matter whether kids, grandkids, great grands, etc., we were all granddad’s children and he would have moved heaven and earth for us because you didn’t mess with his kids.

I remember the time there was a hornet’s nest in granddad’s backyard. My cousin and I were playing and somehow I got stung. I always say that hornet didn’t know who he was messing with. Granddad, who was well into his 80s at this point, went and got his spray can and next thing we knew, the hornets and their nest were history.

Granddad lived one street over. This picture was taken at my Aunt Lucille’s house. At the time this picture was taken, Aunt Lucille lived on the same street as granddad. I think granddad was in his 70s or early 80s in this picture.

A Happy 101 Award - Thank You Sandra and Renate


We are already a week into 2010, and I definitely needed a push to shake me out of the winter doldrums and post holiday let down. I had been contemplating what I was going to write on in the year when along came a push I needed to get back on track.

The push that I needed came from fellow bloggers and Geneafriends Sandra, I Never Knew My Father, and Renate, Into the Light, who gifted me with the Happy 101 Award. Sandra gifted me not once be twice for both of my blogs. Both ladies have been the greatest of geneafriends and both write terrific blogs that come from the heart and touch one's soul. If you have not had a chance to read either of their blogs, please take the time to check them out. You won't be disappointed.

As a receipient I have to reveal ten things that make me happy, then select ten other bloggers to receive the award.

Ten Things that make me Happy

  1. Watching sunrises on early spring mornings when there is still a bit of crispness in the morning air.
  2. The smell of honeysuckle
  3. Hearing my dad play Rachmaninoff''s Prelude in C Sharp minor
  4. A good book
  5. Hot showers
  6. My momma's rolls.
  7. My furbaby, Shelby
  8. Birds chirping
  9. The occasional splurge of a massage
  10. Making things for my family (mom, dad, the aunts, cousins, etc.) and for others (Secret Santa, etc.)
Now to pass the baton. I would like to recognize:

 Taneya's Genealogy Blog
But Now I'm Found
Reclaiming Kin
My NOLA Heritage: Robertson, Robinson, Bryan, Amos, Ancestors of Webster Parrish, Louisiana!!
Find Your Folks
We Tree
Tangled Trees
TJLGenes: Preserving Our Family History
Begin with Craft
Heritage Happens



 Until Next Time!

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year's Day Dinner

I love New Year's Day Dinner. I think I look forward to it over both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.

My meal, as handed down from my mother, is:

Hog Jowl
Black-eyed Peas
Collard Greens
Cornbread

The peas are for luck, the greens are for prosperity and I always forget what the meat stands for.

So, what's your New Year's Day dinner tradition?