Reading through a pile of Facebook posts past year or so, I see that many who received a DNA surprise express a lot of anger toward their mothers for "lying to me all these years". I've never experienced any anger toward my mom for not telling me the truth. Of course, she's deceased so I can't ask questions on the "why" but she loved me unconditionally and so did the man who raised me. I was lucky to have such giving and loving parents, no matter whose DNA created me.
June 18, 2021
October 21, 2020
- He married Cornelia DILLARD on 24 January 1861 in Granville County, NC.
- He shows up on the 1850 and 1870 census in southern Granville County, but not in 1860.
- He is buried in the DAVIS family cemetery on Woodland Church Road in Granville County.
- He fathered at least 12 children between 1861 and 1899.
- He was a Freemason.
- He left a brief will where he names 7 of his children and owned about 200 acres of land.
- He was a slave owner.
- He was 32 when he married Cornelia. Was he married previously?
- His first child with Cornelia was born in 1861. The next one in 1865. Which might suggest that he served in the US Civil War, but I can find no solid evidence. He also could have served in the Mexican War, per his age.
- I'm told "someone" in a "nearby county" has a tintype of Jonathan. What I wouldn't give to get a good look at it!
- According to the will, the family was fairly well to do at one time. But the next generation was dirt poor. What happened? Reconstruction?
October 12, 2020
In these unusual times, we have to get creative. The extensive Davis clan of central North Carolina traditionally meet the first Saturday each October. We meet at the church which has cared for our family spiritually for generations, Good Hope Baptist Church.
Good Hope has recently changed their name to Covenant Hope Church. There's a story there but don't get me started on that one. Regardless, it will always be Good Hope to me and to the many generations of ancestors buried in its cemetery.
Sadly, given the state of the world we could not risk the health of those who attend so the next best option was to host it virtually. Same day, same time. Minus the BBQ. And hugs. And long table of pot luck yummies. And strolls through the family cemetery complete with stories and longing.
Even missing that homemade BBQ, there we were....a handful of faithful Davis family members trying desperately to connect with one another from behind our devices and maintain our tradition. And you know what? It worked!
For those of us who managed to sign on to Zoom...we connected. We visited. We caught up with one another. We shared news, we appreciated one another's talents as Ellen sang, Marie played the piano and Matt played some mean Johnny Cash on his guitar. It was two whole hours of connecting, in many ways more so than we are physically together. That's a bit of a headscratcher...but it was good.
I left the virtual reunion feeling like I had truly visited with my family. I don't always have that feeling at our reunions when we are all crowded into Good Hope's fellowship hall straining for conversations to be heard over the din.
An important take away for me is to never feel the current state of the world takes away all the goodness in life. A door was (temporarily) closed, but God opened a window and the breeze blew in gifts I never imagined, such as experiencing the talents in my family I would not have enjoyed otherwise.
It's all in the perception. Right?
April 22, 2018
November 21, 2017
Oh, and the Wake County Genealogical Society. I'm President now and loving every single second of working with this wonderful organization.
But about those Adlers...I've made contact with more than a few cousins via DNA matches. That's been fun. And as mentioned above, I've visited Tarboro several times. What a precious little town! It is the 9th oldest NC town and a huge chunk of downtown is on the National Register of Historic Places.
I got to see the Adler Department Store, still standing but vacant. There was a fire, but you can still see the staircase to the right and a check out stand to your left. Sadly, I was unable to get inside.
January 7, 2017
To say I was floored to discover that I had a brother would be an understatement. I've always been an only child, or so I thought, longing for a sibling. Little did I know.
Walter Joel ADLER (Joel) was born on 08 Aug 1943 in Edgecombe County North Carolina. He was the only child of Harry Adler and wife Doris Hurst Adler.
Joel attended school in Tarboro, NC and graduated from Tarboro High School in June, 1962.
|Joel at Tarboro High School in 1958|
|Joel at Tarboro High School in 1960|
Joel left military life in 1965 and moved to Miami, Florida to assist his parents in managing the apartment building where they lived. He married Mary Anne Brunson in Destin, Florida in October of 1968:
|Playground Daily News, Fort Walton Beach, Florida, 17 Oct 1968|
Joel and Mary Anne had two beautiful children: Mikel and Joanne.
Joel was a very accomplished man and very mindful of his community. He was a member of the Destin Volunteer Fire Department, a board member of the Fire District Association, former board member of Destin Water Users, captain of Destin Search and Recovery Team, a Red Cross instructor in first aid and CPR, and a deputy sheriff with the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Department. He was also an accomplished underwater photographer, an avid hunter and fisherman.
Sadly, Joel passed away on 04 June 1984 in Destin Florida. He is buried in the Destin Memorial Cemetery. I'm disappointed I did not get to know him as I'm told he was a real jokester at times! But even without knowing him I love and admire him as my brother.