Saturday, July 24, 2010

Sepia Saturday - Memory in Motion

While digging for a Sepia Saturday worthy picture from my collection, I stumbled upon this little trio pasted to my Dad's baby album. As the first child of four, the only son, and with a Dad overseas fighting in WWII, Grandma took lots of photos of little "Sonny". Apparently, he wasn't always receptive to the idea. Once his little sister Janet arrived, he was quite the photogenic pro. He went on to become a professional photographer himself, but it is fun to point out that the camera was not always his friend!

Perhaps it is even more fun to see Grandma's arm blurred as she tried to steady her pretty little boy. With the rapid succession of this memory in motion, and due to the miniature size, I'm thinking she chose a little photo booth in lieu of a local professional. I am so thankful she didn't toss the less than perfect shots and let us see the developing and fading of tears, and the work it took just to get this busy little guy to sit still!


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hickory Grove School - Pendleton Co. KY

This is a little piece of ephemera that I have shared for years on the main Journeys Past web site, but for those of you doing research in the northern region of Pendleton County, this is a sweet little gem from the Mt. Auburn area in 1898. My great grandmother, Nellie Cox Beyersdoerfer is one of the students listed and provided this bit of history to her descendants. I also submitted a scan of the item to both the USGenWeb Pendleton County site, and allowed the transfer site that became the Pendleton County Historical Society to keep theirs.....don't get me started on that cute little bait and switch ala musical web sites. When my irritation/anger cools, I may post some clarification regarding copyright, and permissions for re-posting material from donors. And yes, I do realize this is a pre-1923, non-published item, but the issue didn't really pertain to this piece, it simply served to bring the transfer issue to my attention.

In case clicking on the image doesn't enlarge for you, the students are:
Pearl Allender, Stella Allender, Velma Norris, Nellie Cummins, Lizzie Thomas, Jessie Dunn, Edna Parker, Roy Morford, Blanche Thomas, Mary Allender, Samuel Allender, Clarence Thomas, Lanson Cox, George Cummins, Howard Bonar, Earnest Thomas, Ira Tomlin, Walter Allender, Louis Miller, Grace Foster, Daisy Dunn, Nora Bonar, Ora Sharon, Etta Miller, Orpha McGill, Maud Miller, Georgia Biddle, Dallas Norris, Robert Tomlin, Stella Biddle, Lizzie Fields, James Foster, Lucius Miller, Gussie Fields, Elbert Norris, Lee Tomlin, Walter Norris, Harry Parker, Johnny Fields.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Taking Time to History Hike!

For those of you heading to the FGS Conference in Knoxville next month, I'm sure you have been monitoring the official Conference blog for wonderful suggestions about what to do in the Knoxville area. They recently noted that the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is only 45 minutes away from downtown Knoxville. Not only is the park itself an incredible and potentially spiritual experience for nature lovers, but there are still some amazing pockets of Native American and Appalachian history within and surrounding the Park. If you decide to add this excursion to your agenda, make sure you do some homework as to the historical wealth of the region. One book I highly recommend is History Hikes of the Smokies. This item is published by the Great Smoky Mountains Association, with proceeds going to assist the Park. At 352 pages, this guide directs you through 20 trails just bursting with historic importance. You can buy it at many of the welcome centers in the area, but purchasing ahead of time is also a good idea....let's face it, how many times during travel do we get the chance sit down and leisurely read up on where to go next?

For those of you who might have ancestors lurking in the Eastern Tennessee/Western North Carolina region, you might also want to monitor another blog focused on the genealogical/historical roots of the region: Mike Maples's Blog on the Go Smokies Ning Site. I am very impressed by the surname information he regularly includes in his posts! Here is just one example that includes a history hike and all of the farming families that you would have encountered many years ago. Way to go Mike!

Even if you aren't heading to the conference this year.....if you are in the area, don't forget about this wonderful historic resource! Not only did the formation of the Park preserve the natural landscape, but it also preserved a heritage that was fading quickly. Most of the families moved out of the land claimed by the Park, but they kept their stories alive through historic structure sites, folklore, cemeteries, reunions and folk art. Our family loves visiting this region - not for the shopping - but for the vast opportunities to experience a very special part of our country. But hey, shopping and restaurants are great incentives to get the rest of the family as excited as you will be when you set your sites on all the history that awaits!

See you in the Smokies!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Happy Birthday America!

As we get out the sunscreen, burgers, and fireworks this weekend, I like to slow down at least once to reflect on what this weekend, or more importantly, the fourth should mean to all Americans. I am writing this on the 2nd of July and as I looked for an appropriate quote from one of our founding fathers, I came across this ironic little gem from my favorite reference books of all time: America's God and Country by William J. Federer.(ISBN: 1-880563-05-3)

"The second day of July, 1776 will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever.

You will think me transported with enthusiasm, but I am not. I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure that it will cost to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these states. Yet through all the gloom I can see the rays of ravishing light and glory. I can see that the end is worth all the means; that posterity will triumph in that day's transaction, even though we [may regret] it, which I trust in God we shall not."

John Adams: July 3rd, 1776

This founding father regarded the 2nd of July as the true birthday of America because the Continental Congress voted to adopt a resolution of Independence on the 2nd instead of the 4th as is traditionally observed. However, the Declaration of Independence was adopted as the official statement for this resolution on the 4th....and appropriately, it is the day we found our voice, declared our rights, and unified that cause with the people that we celebrate our true birthday. It was not until the people were able to take this Declaration and plant it like a seed in their hearts that our country had any chance to fight to the very end.

As John Adams suggested, perhaps the 2nd should be observed with solemn thanksgiving on this Day of Deliverance? At the very least, let's begin the celebration by making sure that seed is firmly planted within all of our hearts to keep the spirit of America as bright as the day she was born!

For your convenience, please take a moment to listen to the words and reflect on their meaning:

And for those of you ready to party after your moment of reflection, I couldn't help including a bit of 4th of July fun!

.....and don't forget that pursuit of happiness! :-)


Photo at top is an undated patriotic image of Grandmother Paulina Strawderman Schilling with an unidentified Uncle Sam.


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