Saturday, January 15, 2011

Surname Saturday

Confirmation of a Surname, a Marriage, and Family Lore

While I regroup and decide on my next plan of attack in trying to determine the last slave owner of my 2nd great grandparents, Jasper and Jane Pierce, I thought I would briefly revisit my great grandmother Fannie.

Since I’ve not written about Grandma Fannie in awhile, some of the basic background with regard to her various surnames is as follows:

Henry – This is the surname handed down by my grandmother concerning her mother’s maiden name.

White – This was the surname handed down by grandmom’s siblings, Ossie, Evelina, and Roy. Prior to 2009, I had never heard of the White surname.

Sanford – This was the surname that the descendants of my grandmother’s older half sister knew Grandma Fannie as.

Amazingly, I’m slowly confirming all of my great grandmother’s surnames.

First there was the White surname. This was Grandma Fannie’s surname at the time she married my great grandfather, Cornelius Pierce, in 1889. I wrote about this discovery in 2009.

During my research trip to Walton County, GA probate court (November 2010), I was finally able to confirm the Sanford surname when I found the marriage certificate for one Fannie Pierce and B. F. Sanford. I do wish that GA marriage certificates gave more information but based on research to date as well as the stories handed down by my grandmother and other descendants, I’m confident that this is my great grandmother and that she married B. F. Sanford after the death of my great grandfather.

To repeat the story handed down from grandmom, after Cornelius died, Great Grandma Fannie had stated that she was not going to marry again because of how great granddad had treated her. (Based on family stories, I think Great Grandpa Cornelius was a ladies man.). However, not too long after Cornelius’ death (14 May 1910), there was some man hanging around and Great Grandma proceeded to try to get her girls married off. However, grandma never did complete the story and never divulged this new man’s name or even if Fannie remarried although I guess it’s sort of implied. Years latter, and after my grandmother had passed, we learned of the Sanford surname when some of Grand Aunt Mattie’s children came to visit.

So, this only leaves one surname to prove or disprove and of the three, it’s the one that presents the biggest challenge and yet, based on family lore, and circumstantial evidence I believe it existed, too and while I’ll continue to try to find Grandma Fannie via the White surname, my gut still keeps telling me it’s the Henry or versions there of that will help me to locate her prior to 1889.

The picture of the marriage license for my Great Grandmother to B. F. Sanford was taken on November 15, 2010 by the owner of this blog. The marriage license is located in Book K, page 124, Walton County, GA Marriage Records, Colored.

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