Sunday, May 31, 2009

SNGF on Sunday Morning

I thought I join in on Randy's fun this week.

Every genealogy researcher has to have a little fun, so climb onboard the Saturday Night Genealogy Fun express and enjoy the ride.

For this week's SNGF, please do this:

1. Go to the web site.

2. Read his Bad Jokes page. What was the first one that popped up?

3. Click on his Birthday Calculator link. What are five Fun Facts you didn't know about your birthday?

4. Click on the "what your name means" link. What are your Number, your Soul Urge number and your Inner Dream number? Do the descriptions of your numbers match your perception of yourself? Note - females need to enter their birth name, not married name.

5. Tell the world your answers (with as much privacy protection as you wish) in a blog post or in comments to this post.

Enjoy!!! You can even do your spouse and kids, huh? Find out anything useful there?

2. Bad Joke - An oldie and not the worst I've ever heard:

A young couple gets married, and the groom asks his bride if he can have a dresser drawer of his own that she will never open. The bride agrees. After 30 years of marriage, she notices that his drawer has been left open. She peeks inside and sees 3 golf balls and $1,000.

She confronts her husband and asks for an explanation. He explains 'Every time I was unfaithful to you, I put a golf ball in the drawer.' She figures 3 times in 30 years isn't bad and asks 'But what about the $1,000?' He replied 'Whenever I got a dozen golf balls, I sold them'

3. Five fun facts about my birthday:
  1. Your Native American Zodiac sign is Owl; your plant is Mistletoe. (That's why I collect owls!)
  2. You are 1,560,720,967 seconds old.(No wonder I'm tired all the time.)
  3. Top songs: Mack the Knife by Bobby Darin; Venus by Frankie Avalon; Smoke Gets in Your Eyes by The Platters and Lonely Boy by Paul Anka.(A great year for music!)
  4. The moon's phase on the day you were born was waning gibbous. (Waning whatous? At least it wasn't a full moon.)
  5. Your lucky day is Thursday. Today is not one of your lucky days! (OK, I'll wait until Thursday to buy my lottery tickets this week.)
4. My number is 1. The characteristics of #1 are: Initiating action, pioneering, leading, independent, attaining, individual.

A number 1 Expression denotes the skilled executive with keen administrative capabilities. (I'm a peon.) You must develop the capacity to be a fine leader, sales executive, or promoter. (I lead the parade every September, does that count?) You have the tools to become an original person with a creative approach to problem solving, and a penchant for initiating action. (Along with a talent for getting shot down!) Someone may have to follow behind you to handle the details, but you know how to get things going and make things happen. (Give me a plan and I'll handle the details.) You have a good mind and the ability to use it for your advancement. (Should have stopped with a good mind.) Because of these factors, you have much potential for achievement and financial rewards. (LOL) Frequently, this expression belongs to one running a business or striving to achieve a level of accomplishment on ones talents and efforts. (I do mind my own business.) You have little need for much supervision, preferring to act on your own with little restraint. (When working with children restraint is necessary.) You are both ambitious and determined. Self-confident and self-reliant must be yours, as you develop a strong unyielding will and the courage of your convictions. (Yup, my way or the highway.)

The negative attributes of the 1 Expression are egotism and a self-centered approach to life. This is an aggressive number and if it is over-emphasized it is very hard to live with. You do not have to be overly aggressive to fulfill your destiny. The 1 has a natural instinct to dominate and to be the boss; adhering to the concept of being number One. Again, you do not have to dominate and destroy in order to lead and manage. (Ouch!)

My Soul Urge number is 9. Giving, kind and generous. I hope I live up to that.

My Inner Dream number is 1. I may dream of being the boss but I wouldn;t really want the job!

My numbers are the same as President Obama's. Something's wrong there!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Time on the Farm

I've mentioned before that most of my childhood memories are a bit blurry. Snapshots of time rather than video if you will. Some of my clearest memories are of the farm my father and step-mother had in North Carolina. They weren't there all that long and my time there only consisted of a couple of summers and one school year.

We never had a pet when I was young. We did have a cat when I was older. On the farm we had all kinds of animals. There were dogs, a terrier that loved to play ball and torment the bull, a collie with a mean streak and a couple of others that didn't stay long. We had some cows, mostly Charolais and a bull named Gordy. There was a hog lot and a smoke house. Chickens, turkeys and guinea hens. Best of all there were also a stubborn pony and quarter horse named Stormy.

I have very few pictures of the farm and none have been scanned yet. You came through the gate at the road and were greeted by two green tar papered tobacco barns. Straight ahead was a gate to the main pasture and just the other side of the gate was a pecan tree. (I can still see that tree and myself sitting under it, cracking nuts that I was supposed to be gathering.) The driveway took a turn to the left and continued down to the yard where there was a single wide trailer and two block buildings, one a smoke house and the other a pump house.

There was also a barn. My father got it in his head that being from the north he had to build a barn with a hip roof. Because it was in the south it was built up on blocks, well off of the ground. I was always under the impression that this was to keep out critters like snakes and rats but I fail to see how this would have stopped them so maybe there was another reason. Dad built it himself with the occasional help of a friend and of course us. The day he decided to but up the big aluminum sheets for the roof I seemed to be the only one around to help so he tied a rope around his middle, tossed it over the center beam and gave me the other end so I could haul him back over if he fell. Thankfully he didn't fall and I didn't get sling-shotted over to the hog lot!

Beyond the barn was the home garden. Up until my time on the farm I was familiar with peas and corn, both of which came in tin cans. We also had iceberg lettuce now and then. On the farm we grew all sorts of things I'd never heard of. There were collards, black-eyed peas, okra and tomatoes. Rows of potatoes and yams. Based on my memories I'd say that the garden had to have been at least half an acre, possibly more. I learned to hoe weeds and kill snakes. I learned how to can.

Our main crop was tobacco, which I've written about as My First Job. During the school year that I spent there I learned to mix the seed with sand and broadcast it in a small bed. Then we worried over it until it was big enough to transplant to the field. The small plants were pulled and laid very neatly in a basket. Then my step-sister and I sat on the back of a contraption that was pulled by the tractor and fed the plants into a wheel as it came around and set the plants in the field. There were several plants missed in the first row but I soon got the hang of it. Everything about tobacco was monotonous and there were days I thought I'd die of boredom.

It wasn't all work. We had a small pond and I can remember fishing with bamboo poles. I don't remember ever catching a fish but I do remember being terrified of both the snakes and snapping turtles that lived there. There was also the horse and pony to ride. What city kid wouldn't be thrilled to ride a horse? After I'd been led around on the horse for some time I was finally allowed to ride by myself in the pasture in front of the house. We started to fly around and it was pure joy. I headed back toward the house and everyone was yelling and waving their arms at me. Just in time I got the message that I was directing the horse straight for the hot-wire fence. It was a long time before I was allowed to ride alone again. Being short I always had a hard time getting on the horse and being younger I usually got stuck with the pony. Funny that I can't remember it's gender or it's name. The pony earned it's keep by pulling a cart and my step-mother also used it to plow one small field that we couldn't get the tractor into. It was a smart pony that didn't like to be ridden. The first time I saddled it myself it swelled out it's chest so that the saddle wasn't as tight as it could be. I put my foot in the stirrup and the saddle slid right around and dumped me in the dust and I swear I heard that pony laugh. There was another time that I decided to ride on my own but the pony had other ideas. We got as far as the road and it took of off for the neighbors yard and right under their pine trees. There was plenty of clearance for the pony but not for me. We ran around the yard twice and then headed straight home.

I also learned the realities of where the meat on the table came from. I couldn't eat chicken for several years. We had a feed lot for the cows that we planned to butcher and learned not to get attached to them. The time came when it was decided to butcher the bull, Gordy. Now Gordy was a very tame bull and more like a pet. He was loaded onto the trailer and Dad took him to the butcher. He came back and filled the freezer. We made it clear that we wouldn't be eating Gordy. So Dad loaded the meat back into the truck and went back to town and traded Gordy for someone else's meat. I suspect that Dad merely drove around or maybe stopped into the feed store to have a good laugh with the guys but we were appeased. There was another time that for what ever reason Dad brought the hogs that had been killed back from the butcher uncut. I remember there being lots of people there to help and we cut them ourselves and I got the job of helping to mix up the sausage and then pack it into casings. No part went to waste but I refused to even try the chitlins, feet or brains that others thought a treat.

Another chore I had was to milk the one Jersey cow we had. Not a fun job by any means. I swear that cow hated me and she could kick! I did love the fresh warm milk. I learned to make butter in a crock with an electric churn.

I learned so much in such a short period of time. I went back to being a city girl. I've lived in ten different homes as an adult and while some of them had nice landscaping I never had any real desire to garden until I moved here. My children are all on there own so I have plenty of time. We ended up here at a very stressful point in our marraige. Gardening has become therapeutic for me and knowing that I'll have the garden to play in helps me get through the very long winters. Up until now I've grown only flowers but today we'll plant a vegetable bed. My grandchildren will always think of me as a gardener and I hope I can pass on some of the things that I learned on the farm to them.

This was written for the 73rd edition of the Carnival of Genealogy, The Good Earth. I'm looking forward to hosting this edition right here at Apple's Tree.
Thank you to footnote Maven for the wonderful poster!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Divorce Petition, Doughty-Graham

Elizabeth did divorce James. This was a huge find for me as it gave me the name of Elizabeth's father, Littleton Doughty. This and other family documents were found online in the Munice/Delaware County Digital Resource Library. I will share some of the others on Amanuensis Monday, hosted by John Newmark at Transylvanian Dutch.

Elizabeth A Graham
James Graham

Pet. Divorce
Circut Spring Term 1855

Your complainant represents that she is a resident of the State of Indiana and has been for the last ten years, and that she was married to the Defendant, James Graham on the ____ [blank] day of _____[blank] A.D. 1844, and that ever since their marriage said defendant has been a cruel + unfaithful Husband, and did not provide for his family as he should. that about five years after their Marriage Said defendant left your petitioner without any cause whatever and continued absent for some time. that some three years since he left your petitioner for parts unknown and still continues absent, that he left nothing for your petitioner to support herself and family. Your Petitioner would further show that she inherited from the estate of her father (Littleton Doughty) Eighty nine acres of land in Section twenty nine (29) Town twenty one (21) North of Range ten (10) East, in Delaware County that said James previous to his leaving your petitioner, sold twenty two acres of said

[next scan]

and by fradulent representations induced her to sign a deed to the same, and that he has sold and disposed of a large amount of another property belonged to your petitioner to no advantage to her or her family.

Your petitioner therefore prays the Court to forever dissolve the bonds on Matrimony heretofore existing between them and for ever absolve her from the fellowship and society of him the said James, and that she may be for ever be quieted in the peacable possession and enforment of all of said land not [inserted] he shall pay to this petitioner the sum of $1000.00 [end of insert] here tofore disposed of and grant such other relief as may seem just and reasonable and as in duty bound will ever be grateful + c.

D + S nation
Plffs Attys

Stat vol 1_P_253

Memorial Day

Later today family and friends will gather here for a barbecue. This morning I'm taking a few minutes to reflect on those that lost their lives in service to the US and to pray for the safe return of those currently at risk.

Happy Memorial Day

Friday, May 15, 2009


I have learned so much about my family as I transcribe letters. Most were written to Sarah Ann Camfield Carlisle who was called either Anna or Annie. While I'm learning about what is going on around her I'm not learning nearly enough about her.

She was born 5 August 1853, most likely in Onondaga County, NY. I have no idea at this point who her birth parents were, she was the foster or adopted daughter of Michael and Sarah Ann (Wisner) Camfield.

Her early years were spent in Onondaga County but I have not discovered how old she was before the family moved to Lake County, IL. By 1870 the family was living in Buchanan, Berrien County, MI. Letters written by her cousin, Ella Hall McKinnon, indicate that this move took place when Anna was 12 or c. 1865. Anna obtained her teaching certificate and taught school briefly.

After the family moved to Buchanan, Anna's brother, Joseph, met and became friends with Ashley Carlisle. Ashley persued Anna even after the Camfield family moved on to Burr Oak, St Joseph County, MI. Ashley and Anna married on 2 October 1876 in Buchanan, where Anna would reside for the remainder of her life except for a brief period in 1880.

It was sometime after her marraige to Ashley that Anna learned that she had been adopted and this knowledge troubled her.

Anna and Ashley were blessed with three children, Francis in 1878, Daniel in 1885, and Tamerson in 1887. They lived in the Carlisle family home with Ashley's step-mother Hannah. From the letters I've learned that Hannah could be quite demanding so I imagine that Anna looked forward to the freqent trips that Hannah took. After Anna's father died in 1899, her mother also moved in with the family for several months of the year.

Anna and Ashley never seemed to go without but they never seemed to have a surplus of anything either. Ashley worked as a stone mason and Anna found herself on her own with the children for weeks at a time. She was responsible for managing the family's money and did a wonderful job stretching every cent. She sewed most of the clothes the family wore and made the quilts that kept them warm. The garden was tended and food was put up to get the family through the winter months. I do not know if she learned nursing from her mother-in-law or if it came naturally to her but she was often called on to tend ill friends and neighbors.

Ashley was a Civil War veteran and "he" threw a party on his birthday every year for other veterans. I can only imagine the work that this was for Anna as it wasn't unusual for more that 100 to attend.

Anna was firm but loving to her children. The letters written by Daniel and Tamerson to her in 1899 were quite sweet. I hope to learn more of the family's dynamics as the letters continue.

Anna was certainly a devoted wife. In his later years Ashley developed Parkinson's disease and Anna devoted herself to caring for him. It is said that she knew she was ill herself but refused to seek treatment so she could care for Ashley. After his death she was taken to a doctor but the breast cancer was far too advanced and she died just 18 months after her husband.

I know so much more about Anna than I did a couple of years ago but I really wish I knew a bit more.

This was written for the 72nd edition of the Carnival of Genealogy, Mothers!, to be hosted by Jasia at Creative Gene.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Thank You!

I'm very surprised and flattered to have received the One Lovely Blog award from several different bloggers. I want to thank Cheryl of Heritage Happens, Harriet of Genealogy Happens, Greta of Greta's Genealogy Bog, Alana of A Twig In My Tree and Pam of Granny's Genealogy.

Right now I don't feel very deserving of this award as I have been very guilty of blog neglect the last few weeks. I'm behind on the letter transcriptions and I haven't written a thing. Shamefully, I haven't kept caught up on anyone else's writing either. Hopefully over the next couple of weeks I'll be able to get caught up a bit.

I'm supposed to pass this on to seven others but instead I'll direct you to my blogroll where there are dozens of deserving blogs listed. And with that I'm off to catch up on some reading.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Etola Robinson, May 7, 1899


South Bend Ind. May 7th
Mrs. Annie Carlisle:

Dear Friend

I am located on East Washington St. just acrost the road west of Bell's rooms and it is a very pleasant place my rooms are in the east side up stairs of the building and are very nice I have a big room that corners with a poarch and in the ____ over the poarch and is a window in the west side. The north side has two windows and the east side one. The stairs come up into a hall and acrost that is my citchen with one window in the east side and one in the south side so you see I have

page 2

light all around there is a nice green yard and lots of shade and a garret opens of of my ________ and I have the privlage of puting any thing in there that I want to and I have a small closet and there is another room about the size of my bed room at home with a closet of of it that I can have any time I want it but I could not resist sleeping in the big room this summer.

four widths of my carpet covered the room except about four inches and I put oil cloth there and it was one fancy stripe with the whole of the

page 3

brown on each age to long so I cut that off and riped out the width that run acrost from the citchen door to the front door (it was the most worn and the dirtyest) and washed it and that with what came off of the other four carpeted my hall and stair way so I am very glad I did not sell it for it looks very well and will do me nicely for a year. I have not any pictures or curtains up yet but the windows have blinds so it does not matter much. I sewed away friday and saturday and am

page 4

going again tomorrow.

I am in the house with Mrs. glavin and she has a little girl two years old last dec. and a baby boy about five weeks old and the little girl has a kitten so you see I am well fixed.

Bell come over here every day she was up to my rooms this evening said I should give you her best. she has ten days to sew yet then she will be through. I was very lucky coming over nothing was broken but my lamp chimney. Tell Daniel to use that enamil truck for any thing he wants to I forgot to see it while there and Annie

page 5

why did you not send that bundle with me? I forgot all about it untill I guess I must have benn halfway over here.

Tell the children to write me a nice long letter and tell me all the news. Melia was up after her hat last night and told me that Lizzie _____ is married well I do not think of any more to write this time so will close let Lib read this and then I will not need to write her the description of my rooms write soon please and all the news love to all. from your friend

Etoley Robinson

page 6

Direct to No 628 East Washington St.

P. S. Please send me a few sunflower seed in your letter. the double if you have them.

For more see:
Camfield Family Letters
Descendants of Sarah Ann Wisner
Michael Camfield

Robinson, Etola (South Bend, IN) to “Mrs. Annie Carlisle”
[Anna Camfield Carlisle]. Letter. 7 May 1899. Digital Images 1-6.
Privately held by Apple, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,]
Snowville, New York. 2009.
[Carlisle Family, Box #1, Correspondence, Jan - Mar 1899,
Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan. 2008.]

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Rose Graham Camfield, April 27, 1899


South Bend april 27th

Dear ann -

we got your letter amd mothers I think Mother writes a very cheerful letter I am going to write them a letter to day we got the baby some dresses I am going to ask libby to send his pattern so Bell can make them she has more time for sewing than Libby

Well I spose, Frank will reach Chicago tomorrow we read in the papers

page 2

his regiment will be in that city to be paid off and Baneted about a week I spose they will have a great time Joe would like to go over but is to buisy will you and ashley go when he gets home tell him we are waiting to hear about Cuba

this leaves us all well and buisy we did not move after all and dont know when we shall but some time

page 3

I havent seen Toley since she was here has she returned home

we have made some garden and a fiew flowers Joe wants you to write ant tell him when fishing is best, he and a couple of friends are going to driveover some sunday to fish well I havent time to write more so good by Rose

dont for get your promise to bring the children over this sumer

page 4

find enclosed samples of babys dresses we are going to get mother and Libby some aprons

For more see:
Camfield Family Letters
Descendants of Sarah Ann Wisner
Michael Camfield

Camfield, Rose Graham (South Bend, IN) to “Dear ann”
[Anna Camfield Carlisle]. Letter. 27 April 1899. Digital Images 1-2.
Privately held by Apple, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,]
Snowville, New York. 2009.
[Carlisle Family, Box #1, Correspondence, Apr - Dec 1899,
Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan. 2008.]

Monday, May 4, 2009

Elizabeth Warner Camfield, April 2, 1899

In her next letter Libbie is very chatty. She, Sarah Ann and Earl are all feeling better. Her mother hurt her back, so she has returned to her home and Libbie's father is caring for her.

She tells a little about her sister, Ola, and her brother-in-law, Bert Harris.
Well Uncle Ashley my father has been having a time keeping “bachelor's hall" ever since Ma has been here he has been over to Ola's taking care of things Bert's father, mother, and grandfather have all been sick at the same time at the other house (you know they live in their daughter's house) and Bert + Ola + children had to go over there and that left things to suffer for the want of care at their home so Pa is staying there he does the barn chores gets his own meals of course besides skimming the milk, churning and taking care of the butter. The Dr. said Berts grandfather might drop away any time and again prehaps he will get well. Ola has her hands full but yet they have good neighbors while here their hasn't been a neighbor woman only Mrs. Burks in the house since grandfather was buried. Mrs. B - hasn't been here for aweek now but she has had a bad swelling time with a tooth.

Mrs Plant, who was a neighbor of Sarah Ann's and who has been mentioned in previous letters has been staying with her nephew in Burr Oak.

Ola Warner was born in 1867 and married Bert Harris about 1890. At the time of this letter they had three children; Howard Harris, born about 1893; Laura Harris, born about 1895; and Norman Harris, born about 1897.

For more see:
Camfield Family Letters
Descendants of Sarah Ann Wisner
Michael Camfield

Camfield, Elizabeth Warner (Batavia, MI) to “Dear Ones One and all”
[Anna Camfield Carlisle]. Letter. 2 April 1899. Digital Images 1-4.
Privately held by Apple, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,]
Snowville, New York. 2009.
[Carlisle Family, Box #1, Correspondence, Apr - Dec 1899,
Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan. 2008.]

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Elizabeth Warner Camfield, March 25, 1899

Libbie opens her letter with:
I received both of your letters but the first one didn't reach me the night that you got my letter. Am glad you had such a nice time on the road home and Uncle Ashley it was to bad that you had to get a scolding after you had work so hard to keep things clean but then I don't believe she scolded you very hard, did she?

She goes on to say that Sarah Ann is slowly improving, however now baby Earl is ill and Fred had to have a tooth pulled.

She finishes the letter by asking Tamerson to write to her.

For more see:
Camfield Family Letters
Descendants of Sarah Ann Wisner
Michael Camfield

Camfield, Elizabeth Warner (Batavia, MI) to “Dear Auntie and all”
[Anna Camfield Carlisle]. Letter. 25 March 1899. Digital Images 1-2.
Privately held by Apple, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,]
Snowville, New York. 2009.
[Carlisle Family, Box #1, Correspondence, Jan - Mar 1899,
Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan. 2008.]

Friday, May 1, 2009

Ruby Blanche Camfield, March 21, 1899

South Bend
March 21 (1899)

Dear Tamerson, -

How are you getting along. We are well and hope you are the same. i want you to tell Edna King that I want you and her to have your piturs taken and give me one as I hear that Edna Is going to move to Chicago.

page 2

I did not write to you for so long bacaus I thought I did write and you did not answer Tolla was to our house and spent the night. I go to school now and am in the 5 grade. My teacher name is Miss F. French. She is very good well I must close. Yours Truly
Ruby Camfield

This letter was so short that I have included it here in it's entirety. This a picture of Tamerson Carlisle and "friend." Is the friend Edna King?

For more see:
Camfield Family Letters
Descendants of Sarah Ann Wisner
Michael Camfield
Ruby Blanche Camfield

Camfield, Ruby Blance (South Bend, IN) to “Dear Tamerson”
[Tamerson Louisa Carlisle]. Letter. 23 March 1899. Digital Images 1-2.
Privately held by Apple, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,]
Snowville, New York. 2009.
[Carlisle Family, Box #1, Correspondence, Jan - Mar 1899,
Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan. 2008.]