December 31, 2014

December 29, 2014

History for all the People - NC State Archives Blog

Did you know the NC State Archives writes a really nifty little blog entitled History for all the People

They discuss ongoing projects at the archives, upcoming events, how to do things, find things, and all sorts of other interesting news. 

I subscribe to it, so it lands in my email box each time a new post is available. 

I've found it enormously helpful in learning how to find things at the archives, available resources (things off the beaten path), and loads of other cool things.

Check it out!

December 22, 2014

Family Tree Maker - Bah Humbug

I think I seriously goofed yesterday when I was cleaning up some files on my laptop. It's not a crisis level goof, recovery can happen even if it will cost $$. I hope.

I was cleaning up some OLD FTM back up files when I may have mistakenly deleted my FTM executable file. Egads. I'm surprised that FTM let me delete the entire executable so easily. So maybe that's not the issue. 

I also downloaded a FTM patch which appeared to be required about the same time. Maybe it was buggy or a virus and made my FTM.EXE disappear. Scrooge.

Or maybe I was just distracted preparing for 30+ people to give us a Christmas visit when I deleted the wrong FTM file. 

Whatever the cause, I'm very sad to see that I cannot open any of my FTM files. I'm off work for a good stretch during the holiday and was really looking forward to working on my genealogy.

There's really no point to this post except to vent.  

I'm pretty sure my gg grand-parents didn't have this problem. 

December 11, 2014

Digital Pics: Every Picture Should Tell a Story

There's a great article from the Library of Congress on how to add descriptions to digital pictures. I seriously need to do this - very few of my digital pictures have any information beyond the filename. Things like "John Stancil Gravestone" excluding important stuff like WHERE the grave is located, etc. 

In my opinion, every picture should tell a story. There's no reason why that story can't be enhanced by metadata, right?

Take a look!

December 7, 2014

Eric Ray Stancil, 1926 - 1999

Eric Ray STANCIL was born on 14 Feb 1926 in Johnston County, North Carolina, as the third child of Jesse Bernard STANCIL and Ada Lou JOHNSON. 

He had five siblings: Jesse Roland, Macon McNair, Cecil Braxton, Edith Cavelle, and Carl Donald (my father). 

On May 11, 1944, he voluntarily enlisted in the US Navy as an Apprentice Seaman. Initially, he was assigned to Camp Perry in Magruder, Virginia and the USS Shamrock Bay. 

  • July 15, 1944: Transferred to Norfolk, VA. USS Shamrock Bay. Authorized to wear the European African Middle Eastern ARMA Ribbon.
  • Dec. 16, 1944:  Crossed the 180th Meridian at Lat 11 degrees, 20 East, qualified as a Shellrack. 
  • Dec. 21, 1944:  Crossed the equator at Long 153, 20 East, qualified as a Shellrack. Authorized to wear the Asiatic-Pacific Ribbon.
  • Dec. 31, 1944 - Jan 27, 1945: Participated in the invasion and occupation of Luzon (WW II Battle of Luzon in The Philippines) between Dec. 31, 1944 and Jan. 27, 1945.
  • Jan 4 - 18, 1945:  Lingayen Gulf Landing 
  • Jan. 8, 1945: Participated in action against the Japanese at Luzon.
  • Feb. 16, 1945 - March 5, 1945:  Participated in the invasion and occupation of Iwo Jima. Authorized to wear the star on Asia-Pacific Bar.
  • March 13 - June 27, 1945: Participated in Okinawa Operation.
  • June 30, 1945: Authorized to wear the Philippine Liberation Bar for action against the enemy on Jan 8, 1945. 
  • August 26, 1945: Authorized to wear the bronze star in the Philippine Liberation Bar for participation in Battle of Luzon. Also authorized to wear a bronze star in Asiatic-Pacific Bar for participating in the Lingayen Gulf Landing and for participation in Okinawa Operation.
  • Oct. 26, 1945: Transferred to ComAirPac for further assignment.
  • Feb 7, 1946 - March 13, 1945: Granted 30 days leave plus 4 days travel time for serving 18 months outside the continental US.
  • March 13, 1946: Reported to Norfolk, Va.
  • April 11, 1946: Transferred to Charleston, SC
  • May 13, 1946:  Transferred to naval station at Green Cove Springs, Florida.
  • May 17, 1946:  Honorably discharged from the Navy.

Summary of Battles 
Dec - Jan 1945:  Battle of Luzon
Jan 1945: Lingayen Gulf Landing
Feb - March 1945:  Iwo Jima
March - June 1945:  Okinawa

Summary of Medals
American Area Camp Medal
Eur-African-Mid East Camp Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Camp Medal, 3 stars
Philippine Liberation Ribbon, 1 star
Point System, World War II Victory Medal

When he was 33, he married his 2nd wife, Nannie Mae LEWIS, daughter of Jesse Edward LEWIS and Lillian Mae JONES, on 28 Feb 1959 in Wake County, North Carolina.

After his service in the military, Eric was employed by Coopers BBQ Stand, Pine State Creamery, Raleigh Times, Oil Company in Wake County, North Carolina, USA. 

He was counted in the census in 1930  and 1940 census in Wake County, North Carolina.

Eric was my uncle, my father's older brother. I remember him as a very happy and affectionate fellow. He was my very favorite uncle.

Eric died on 12 Jun 1998 in Wake County, North Carolina at age 72. He is buried at Mountlawn Cemetery in Raleigh, NC.

November 27, 2014

North Carolina Land Grants

The message boards don't see a lot of action these days, but they are chocked full of gems. For example, last night I came across a FREE site listing all of North Carolina's land grants from 1663 to 1960. 

Very cool. Check it out.

It's the simple things that make me happy. And grateful.

November 9, 2014

Wake County Genealogical Society December Meeting

Please join the Wake County Genealogical Society for our holiday presentation, “Family Holiday Traditions and Recipes, and the Stories and Photos that Go with Them” on Tuesday, December 9, 2014 at 7pm at the Olivia Raney Local History Library, 4016 Carya Drive, Raleigh, NC  27610. WCGS volunteer Jennie Gunther will coordinate the discussion.

Everyone is encouraged to bring food, recipes, photos, and stories of traditions to share, and to learn engaging ways of preserving and passing on these traditions to family members.

Meetings are free and open to the public, and are for all levels of family historians and genealogists, whether or not you are researching in Wake County. Come share some holiday cheer genealogy style!  It's a wonderful opportunity to step away from the computer to socialize with others who enjoy the same hobby—you might even meet a new cousin.

November 5, 2014

Dillard-Davis Family Cemetary

The Dillard-Davis Family Cemetery in Granville County is rich in family history for me. My great grandparents, Jonathan Davis and Cornelia Dillard Davis are buried there, along with many of their ancestors and descendants. 

The cemetery is located on Woodland Church Road in Granville County very near the Wake County line. I've been there several times. It's in a wooded area near a home with a viscous looking pooch chained up in the front yard. It's very overgrown with brush. There are only a handful of engraved stones, and some graves are marked with just a rock. I imagine there are plenty of unmarked graves, likely those of distant family members or possibly slaves.

Gladfry Bailey 
Born 1790 
Died 1867

William Bailey 
Born Dec 10, 1791
Died Dec 18, 1861
My notes: WPA records show death date as 15 Dec 1861. I haven't really figured out all these William Baileys, but I think this fellow was my 1st cousin 5 times removed.

Cornelia Davis
Wife of Jonathan F. Davis
Born March 7, 1838
My notes: My great grandmother who, along with her husband, owned the property across the road and likely the property hosting the cemetery, at one time.

Jonathan Davis
Born Dec 18, 1829 
Died July 22, 1900
My notes: Cornelia's husband. Jonathan owned a great deal of land as well as slaves. There is a Freemason symbol at the top of his gravestone.

Davis, L.  (b. 8 Nov ? - d. 25 Nov 1863). This may be Luvinia Davis. I believe she died a few weeks after birth. She is the daughter of Jonathan and Cornelia. She appears on the census of Cemetery Census, but not on the census of Find-A-Grave.

Davis, L. B. (b. 11 Aug 1834 - d.). I'm not sure who this is. He appears on the census of Cemetery Census, but not on the census of Find-A-Grave.

Davis, Mary A.  
Born Jan 13, 1827 
Died Sept 30, 1910
My notes: I think this is Mary Ann Davis, daughter of Jonathan Davis and Tildanthe Bailey. Jonathan's (the son of a Jonathan and husband of Cornelia) sister. She shows up on the school census for Granville County Beaver Dam School. The census is undated, but probably is from sometime in the 1840s.

Seraphno Davis (b. 17 Jan 1874 - d. 9 Dec 1903). Daughter of J.F. and C. Davis. I'm not sure why they put her maiden name on her gravestone, but Seraphno was married to Jim Inscore. I'm not sure if Jim died shortly after his wife or if he ran off, but his in-laws, Jonathan and Cornelia, raised his two children Lucy and Hubert.

Susan A. G. Davis
Sacred to the memory of 
Susan A. G. wife of Wm D. Davis
Born 1832 
Died Sept 10, 1861

W. D. Davis 
Died August 18, 1891
My notes: Probably the husband of Susan, above. He died just before his 43rd birthday, possible in the Civil War. There is a Freemason symbol at the top of his gravestone.

Whitman Davis
In memory of
 (b. 28 Apr 1862 - d. 19 Dec 1882). WPA records death date as 19 Dec 1888.

Dilliard, E. H. (b. 17 Feb 1831 - d. 2 Nov 1851). I think this is Elijah H. Dillard, son of Israel Dillard and Mahalia Bailey. Brother of Cornelia.

Dilliard, H. C.(b. 31 Dec 1843 - d. 13 Apr 1882)  WPA records birth date as 31 Dec 1818 and death date as 13 Apr 1887. This might be Henry Dillard, son of Israel Dillard and Mahalia Bailey. Brother of Cornelia.

Dilliard, I. F. (b. 11 Sep 1811 - d. 7 May 1888). WPA records death date as 7 May 1886. This is Israel Dillard, Cornelia's father and my 3rd great grandfather.

Dilliard, M. C. W. (b. 3 Nov 1839 - d. 12 Nov 1869). WPA records birth date as 3 Nov 1832 and death date as 12 Nov 1860.

Dilliard, W. I. (b. 15 Mar 1842 - d. 23 Oct 1862). This is probably the son of Israel and Mahalia. He died at age 20, I'm guessing an early casualty of the Civil War.

Loyd, Nasada B. (b. 29 Jul 1896 - d. 27 Jan 1906)

Moore, W. H. H. (b. 16 Jan 1841 - d. 8 Feb 1895)

Ray, Lucy (b. 1 Apr 1859 - d. 12 Dec 1920). Daughter of Seraphno and Jim Inscore, married to Mark Ray.

Here's a link to a census of the cemetery. It even provides directions. Here's Find-A-Grave's site - it differs a bit from the above link so be sure to look at both.

October 22, 2014

Agnes Belle Stancil Sauls, 1900 - 1969

John Exum Sauls and
Agnes Belle Stancil Sauls
Agnes Belle STANCIL, my great aunt on my father's side, was born on 15 Jul 1901 in Johnston County, North Carolina as the youngest child of Joseph Henry STANCIL and Fannie A. JOHNSON. 

She had two siblings; my grandfather Jesse Bernard, and Mary Pearl. 

When she was 19, Aunt Belle married John Exum SAULS, son of Leonard Jefferson SAULS and Dizzie JOHNSON, on 14 Dec 1919 in Johnston County, North Carolina.

The 1930 census found Aunt Belle and her family in Durham County, North Carolina. She was 29 years old. She also appears on the 1940 census.

Aunt Belle and husband John Exum SAULS had 5 children:

1. Agnes Louise SAULS, born on 26 Feb 1921 in Granville County, North Carolina. She died in Jan 1969 and married Unknown FALCON on 25 Jun 1943.

2. John Exum SAULS was born on 25 Aug 1922 in Granville County, North Carolina, USA.

3. Joseph Willard SAULS was born on 14 Jun 1925 in Orange County, North Carolina. He died on 27 Jun 1940 in Hoke County, North Carolina.

4. Herbert Hoover SAULS was born on 17 Jan 1928 in Archer Lodge, Johnston County, North Carolina. He died in Nov 1928.

5. Garland Linwood SAULS was born on 03 Mar 1932 in Durham County, North Carolina.

I have been told Aunt Belle had Type II Diabetes and was blind. She died on 27 Jan 1969 in Johnston County, North Carolina at age 68.

Mrs. Agnes Sauls
Rites are Slated

Mrs. Agnes Sauls, 68, of Route 2, Clayton, died Monday in Johnston Memorial Hospital following a long illness.

She was a native of Johnston County. Her parents were the late Joseph H. and Fannie Johnson Stancil.

A graveside service will be held at 2 o'clock Wednesday afternoon in Woodlawn Memorial Park in Durham, The Rev. Ronald Creech will officiate.

She is survived by her husband, John E. Sauls; one daughter Mrs. Agnes Sauls Falcon of New Orleans, LA, two sons, John E. Sauls of Littleton, CO., and Garland L. Sauls of Durham; 10 grandchildren, and two great grandchildren.

October 21, 2014

Jesse Pleasants and Maude Haswell: Married Dec. 30, 1919

Wake County Register of Deeds, Raleigh, NC
Certifcate of Marriage: 1919, Page 94
Groom:  Jesse Pleasants, age 26, resident of Wake Forest, R-3, NC
Parents:  J.D. Pleasants and Almetta Pleasants, both parents living and residents of Youngsville R-3, NC
Bride:  Maude Haswell, age 25, resident of Wake Forsest, R-5, NC
Parents:  Wm. A. Haswell and Gussie Haswell, father deceased mother living and resident of Wake Forest, R-5, NC
Date of Marriage:  Dec. 30, 1919
Place of Marriage:  New Light Township, Wake County, NC
Officiating Officer:  W.J. Simpson, Justice of the Peace
Witnesses:  G.M. Little of Youngsville, R-3, NC, W.J. Simpson, Jr. of Wake Forest, R-1, NC, W.L. Simpson of Wake Forest, R-1, NC

October 19, 2014

Ester Allen, born 1762 in Bladen County, NC

My 4th great grandma, Esther ALLEN was born about 1762 in Bladen County, North Carolina.  She was the first child of James ALLEN and wife Elizabeth Nancy UNKNOWN. 

Ester had eleven siblings!  They were: Nathan T., Nancy Ann, Mary Polly, Josiah, Rebecca, Gideon, Sarah, William, Thomas, Edith, and Anna. 

When she was 33, Ester married Jesse MORGAN on 02 Jan 1795 in Johnston County, North Carolina, per their marriage bond.

Ester and Jesse had one daughter I know of, Elizabeth Sallie, who was born in 1808 in Johnston County, North Carolina. 

Elizabeth died in 1880 in Johnston County, North Carolina. She married William Young STANCIL before 1835 in Johnston County, North Carolina.

October 12, 2014

Wake County Genealogical Society Meeting Oct 14 - Don't Miss It!

October 14: Wake County Genealogical Society presents “Calling in the Big Guns--When to Hire a Professional Genealogist, How They Can Help and What to Expect"!

“Calling in the Big Guns--When to Hire a Professional Genealogist, How They Can Help and What to Expect" will be presented by a panel of professional genealogists, headed by Diane Richard, on Tuesday, October 14 at 7 pm, at the Page Walker Arts & History Center, 119 Ambassador Loop, Cary, NC 27513.

This talk is part of a special joint meeting of the Wake County Genealogical Society and the Durham-Orange Genealogical Society, and will be followed by a social hour with refreshments.

Meetings are free and open to the public, and are for all levels of family historians and genealogists. Come learn what professional help is available to break through your family history "brick wall" and bring a friend!  It's a wonderful opportunity to step away from the computer to socialize with others who enjoy the same hobby—you might even meet a new cousin.

Be sure to put the December meeting of the Wake County Genealogical Society on your calendar now too! Tuesday, December 9, 2014 at 7pm at the Olivia Raney Local History Library, 4016 Carya Drive, Raleigh, NC  27610. Our speaker Jennie Gunther will coordinate a presentation on “Family Holiday Traditions and Recipes, and the Stories and Photos that Go with Them”. Everyone is urged to bring food, recipes, photos, and stories of traditions to share. Come join us for some holiday cheer genealogy style!

[Note: Our "4th Tuesday" meeting for Nov. is pushed into early Dec. to avoid the Thanksgiving holiday, and we skip the 4th Tuesday of Dec.  Regular "4th Tuesday" meetings begin again in January and continue through May.]

October 3, 2014

Happy 1st Blog Anniversary to me!

It was a year ago that I started this blog.

I was searching for a way to share my information with anyone who might be interested. I was sitting on such a rich treasure and felt it was my responsibility to my ancestors to make their stories known.

My "bloganniversary" coincides with the 2013 Davis family reunion. No coincidence there. I started the blog then because sharing is always at top of my mind when I am in a room full of family. 


And THANK YOU to everyone who reads, comments, and supports my little blog. I sure am grateful!

September 10, 2014

Wake County Genealogical Society - Next Meeting Sept 23 - JOIN US!

The Wake County Genealogical Society is excited to announce our first meeting of the season on Tuesday, September 23 at 7pm, at the Olivia Raney Local History Library, 4016 Carya Drive, Raleigh, NC 27610.
September’s meeting will be all about YOU! You are invited to share your summer genealogical adventures, your ideas for future WCGS presentations, and perhaps you can even share your time and talents to volunteer for a committee, a board position, or just a one-time task.
Meetings are free and open to the public, and are for all levels of family historians and genealogists. Bring a friend! It's a wonderful opportunity to step away from the computer and socialize with others who enjoy the same hobby.
Go ahead and also put October’s meeting on your calendar NOW! At 7pm on October 14
(note change of date) we will co-host a joint meeting with the Durham-Orange Genealogical Society at the Page Walker Arts & History Center in Cary, NC. The topic will be “Calling in the Big Guns--When to Hire a Professional Genealogist,  How They Can Help and What to Expect."
Questions? Email

September 5, 2014

Daughters of the American Revolution: What's the big deal??

I've long been interested in joining the Daughters of the American Revolution. That is, until I stopped long enough to ask myself "why?". I don't have a good answer.

I met a very nice lady recently and I said to her "convince me why I should join the DAR". She explained that it's an excellent way to share my research and to ensure it is available for others down the road.

Now, that's a great thought, but I already do that in many ways. Via this blog, my posts to various forums, my public family tree on I'm a sharing kind of gal.

My sense is that, like many fraternal organizations of old, the DAR is aging and weakening. I hope that doesn't prompt a slew of DAR ladies to storm my little neighborhood!  But if I'm going to devote my time and money, I'd like to belong to an organization that has an impact.

I'm aware that the DAR does have some community outreach and that various chapters are more active than others.

Another issue is the cost. One of my local chapters charges $150 just to apply. I'd want to be sure I got my money's worth out of that and as a good consumer, I'm just not seeing the value.

Someone change my mind. Please.

September 4, 2014

Facebook Settings for Genealogists

Ok - so this article I'll reference isn't specific to genealogists. BUT, as a genealogist, I use FaceBook more and more in my research and to sharpen my skills. Like everyone who uses FaceBook, I want to be sure I am careful about my privacy.

FaceBook makes it all ridiculously complicated, probably on purpose because they make money selling your data.

Don't know about you, but I'd seriously prefer that my data not be sold. Not that I'm a secretive sort of person, after all, all you have to do is Google my name and you'll see that I'm all over the internet (but in a good way!). It's just a matter of principle.

So since I'm not the brightest light in the house, I'm really grateful when articles come along that break it down for me in a way I can digest.

5 FaceBook Settings to Change NOW

Don't get me wrong - I love FaceBook. I know people who abhor it, but I really enjoy keeping up with friends and I'm particularly enjoying plugging into the local genealogy community via FaceBook. However, there's nothing wrong with a little caution.


August 30, 2014

Where in the world are the Harricanes?

It's down the road a spell. Neither here or there. Might be in Wake County or in Granville County or in Franklin County. According to my mother, the center of the Harricanes was Pocomoke in western Franklin County. But according to my Aunt Doris, the Harricanes sat right on the Granville/Wake County line. 

But no matter who you might ask, everyone agrees the Harricanes can guarantee two things:  Moonshine and country people with a high suspicion of strangers. My family fit the mold perfectly on both counts. 

On Saturday afternoons, my Aunt Lib would tuck a bologna sandwich and some nabs in her pocketbook and ride the back roads of the Harricanes with my mother, her mother, or anyone who would get in the car. 

The area is known for it's many moonshine stills and rough people accustomed to scratching out a living from nothing. And more churches than you can shake a stick at.

The Raleigh News & Observer has written a few articles on the Harricanes over the years. Here's one

And of course, every time there was a large moonshine bust, it made the papers for miles around. You can read one of the more colorful stories here  about a female moonshiner and her underground still. 

Not much has changed in the Harricanes all these years. There's more people cause land is cheap, but I'm pretty sure you can still get all the Moonshine you might need - just so long as you go to church on Sunday.

August 28, 2014

Davis Family Reunion, October 4 in Wake Forest, NC

Join us for the Davis family reunion at Good Hope Church in Wake Forest, NC on Oct 4 starting at noon. Largely the descendants of Sidney Irvin Davis and Cordelia Davis, but ANY Davis is welcome!

It is a pig picking and sides. We provide the pig - you provide the sides!

4038 Graham Sherron Rd.
Wake Forest, NC 27587
Ph: (919) 527-2804

Email me with questions!

August 20, 2014

William Stancil Land Grant in Cumberland County, NC 1807


Wm Stancil
100 Acres Land
No. 379


State of North Carolina
Cumberland County

Surveyed Sept 26, 1807 for William Stancil

100 acres of land in said county warrant No. 379 and Ent. Oct 1, 1799

Beginning at a stake ?? on or near Elizabeth Stewart back line of her land toward Averas corner then at Averas line north sixty then past forty six chains to a pine in the edge of the south field road then south twenty four east seventeen chains and fifty links to a stake and pointer on Averas line then north forty four east thirty three chains and fifty links then north forty six and fifteen chains then south sixty six west seventy six chains along Elizabeth Stewart’s line of her back track to her line of the Avera survey then as that link to the Beginning.

Alexander Avera
James Carraway

James McNeil, Surv.

August 10, 2014

NCPedia: Things you never knew about North Carolina

Gosh knows I love my North Carolina. Born and raised here, I have said many times that I am extremely lucky to live in the land of my ancestors. Particularly the dead ones. <SMILE>

The NCPedia site is all about all things North Carolina. Here, you can browse biographies, people, culture, and history. Plus business, education, and geography. All part of North Carolina. It has nearly 7000 images.  


NC Trivia Quiz

Women in North Carolina

Folklore and Legends

Places of Interest 

State Symbols

Who knew we had a State Dog?? But seriously....a PLOTT HOUND??

They're cute and all, but I really think my darling Sophie would be an excellent candidate for State Dog!

Ever heard the State Toast? (Just to show what a North Carolina nerd I can be, it used to be part of my email signature!)
Here's the land of the longleaf pine
The summer land where the sun doth shine
Where the weak grow strong and the strong grow great
Here's to Down Home, the old North State

Read the rest of the toast here

August 9, 2014

Caraleigh Baptist Church, Raleigh, NC

Caraleigh Baptist Church began holding church services in 1898 in a brick dwelling house at 413 Montose Avenue in Raleigh. They were received into the Raleigh Association in 1904, which is the official date of their founding. 

Their next building - occupied from 1898 until 1924 - was a one room structure built on land donated by the Caraleigh Mill Company on Park Avenue (now Gilbert Street). 

In 1924, they moved into their present home which has a main auditorium, 13 Sunday School rooms, beautiful hammered glass windows, a belfry and bell, and a heating plant in the basement. The church sits at the corner of Summitt Avenue and Greene Street in the Caraleigh neighborhood just south of downtown Raleigh. This new church was built on land donated by Mr. Linneham and was officially dedicated in 1929. 

My grandparents, Atlas Allen and wife Ethel Davis, and their daughters Gladys, Lib, and Mary Joyce were devoted members of the church. Atlas and Ethel had bought their first home at 117 Summitt Avenue in July of 1938 in the heart of Caraleigh. The church was within easy walking distance of their new home, although I'm sure there were plenty of Sundays when the family headed north to Franklin County to attend services at Good Home Baptist Church in Youngsville.

Atlas and Ethel Davis Allen

August 8, 2014

Geeky Friday: Old Maps

Maps are cool. Especially old maps. And especially old maps of North Carolina and the counties I research. 

Here's some great info on using maps in genealogy

Over the years, I've bought a few old NC maps on eBay, but that can get to be an expensive hobby and these days I'd rather put my genealogy dollars elsewhere. 

I do have a few fav map sites and one sorta map site:

Early American Roads and Trails - these trails head west and most are not on the eastern seaboard, but if you have family who set out for the great unknown, information on westward trails will be very interesting.

Perry-Castaneda Map Collection - The University of Texas has a real gem here. Many of the maps were produced by the CIA and include topograhic (my personal fav) and aeronautical maps. Historical maps from all over the world. 

Library of Congress Map Collection - nearly 400,000 maps dating back to 1299. Map geek heaven.

Green's Path - one of the primary routes settlers used in migrating south from Virginia. Runs roughly the same route as today's I-95. Some of my ancestors were travelers on Green's Path.

It's going to be a rainy gray weekend here in Raleigh, NC. Perfect time to get lost in genealogy!

August 4, 2014

Franklin County, North Carolina

Franklin County is a relatively rural North Carolina county named for my very favorite historical genius, the late great Mr. Benjamin Franklin. 

It is north of the capital county of Wake and was formed from a now defunct county, Bute. It is to the right of Granville County. Granville, Franklin and Wake share a border, which makes it a lot of fun/grief when researching ancestors who thought nothing of hopping across county lines as they farmed, raised families, and made corn liquor.

For example, my mother was born in Franklin County. Her middle sister was born in Granville, and her youngest sister was born in Wake. And the family probably moved just a mile or so down the road between children.

Note!  Do not confuse Franklin County with Franklin, NC. They are at separate ends of the state.

Franklin County Genealogical Resources

Franklin County on USGenWeb

Franklin County genealogy at the Franklin County Public Library, Louisville, NC

Franklin County, NC on 

August 3, 2014

Marriage Bond for Cyrus Davis Jr. and Salley Byers, Sept. 11, 1813

Marriage Bond
Granville County
Cyrus Davis and Salley Byers
Sept. 11, 1813
NC Archives

State of North Carolina
Granville County

Know all Men by these Presents, That we Cyrus Davis & Edward Chappel are held and firmly bound unto Wm. Hawkins Governour, or his successors in office, in the full sum of five hundred pounds, current Money; to be paid to the said Governour, his Successors or Assigns,  for which payment well and truly to be made and done, we bind ourselves, our Heirs, Executors, and Aministrators, jointly and severally, firmly by these presents, sealed with our Seals and dated this 11th day of September Anno Domini 1813.

The Condition of the above obligation is such, that where as the above bounden Cyrus Davis, Jr. hath made application for a License for a Marriage to be celebrated between him and Salley Byers of the County aforesaid : Now in case it shall not appear hereafter that there is any lawful Cause or Impediment to obstruct the said Marriage, then the obligation to be void, otherwise to remain in full force and virtue.

Signed, sealed, and delivered in the presence of
 Jun Sneed

Cyrus Davis (his mark), Seal

Edward Chappel, Seal

August 1, 2014

Will of Sherwood Wilson, October 28, 1840

Know all men by these presents that I Sherwood Wilson of the County of Warren and State of North Carolina being of sane mind and memory do this 28th day of October in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and forty make the publish this my last will and testament in manner and form following to wit.

Item 1st. I lend to my wife Peggy the whole of my estate both real and personal during her natural life should she see cause to give to any one of my daughters any article such as a bed cow & calf during her life she is hereby authorized to do so & after my death my wish & desire  is that the whole of my estate both real & personal be equally divided in the following manner to my daughter Nancy to have one fifth part & my daughter Jane one fifth part & my daughter Polly one fifth part & my daughter Ellenor to have one fifth part & my granddaughter Julia Catherine Wilson the remaining fifth & should  my granddaughter who is an infant die leaving no lawful issue my wish is for the part left to her to be divided among my surviving children & their heirs. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand & affixed my seal this day & date above. 

In the presence of:
Edw. White
John D. Tucker

Sherwood Wilson (his mark)

Codicil to this my will made this 9 day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred & forty four.

Item 1st, my wish is that if my granddaughter Julia Catherine Wilson while an infant have my daughters & their ? then & and in that case she is to forfit and lose her interest in the land left to her on the other page of this my will given under my hand & seal this day & date above.

Signed sealed and delivered in the presence of 

Edw. White
I Lo’ke (?) Mayfield

Source:  North Carolina Archives

July 28, 2014

Incredible resources in your public library!

One of the best things that happened to me today was the discovery of the rich online offerings of the Wake County Public Library!

I had no idea the number of wonderful databases I could access via the library site.  My favorite at the moment is Heritage Quest. You can access many of the databases on Heritage Quest that are available on Ancestry, except for one that is particularly of interest to me.

PERSI (Periodical Source Index) is the largest subject/people/places index in genealogy and local history. It was created by the wonderful folks at the Allen County Public Library which has long been a mecca for genealogists. PERSI indexes articles in 11,000 journals and periodicals including those published by local and national genealogical societies. 

Don't have a membership with your local or county genealogical society? Miss receiving their publications with relevant information about your areas and surnames of research? No problem! PERSI can peruse the index of journal articles for you. For example, when I searched on "Granville County, NC" in PERSI, I got hits on a boat load of articles in the NC Genealogy Society Journal and the Granville County Genealogical Society's Granville Connections. Plus lots of other local journals. Jackpot!

I remember using printed volumes of PERSI when I was in high school and college, but I really haven't paid much attention to it (or obviously to my local library) in the time I've been researching ancestors. Big Mistake!

So! Log on to your local library right now to get a good look at all the awesome resources you're missing out on. In Wake County, NC, you'll need your library card number to access. That's probably the case in other counties too.