View Full Version : What Successes Have You Had?

06-02-2007, 06:29 PM
I think I have found the oldest traceable ancestor....who happens to be an Englishman...I actually am not sure if he was related to my great great grandfather, or if he just took him in as his son...my great great grandfather, Charles Watson, was listed as the man in question, Stephen Watson's son....with no race given, but as an adult, he is listed as black (or negro)...I am 90% sure the boy listed as Stephen's is my relative, I am not sure if Stephen and Charles were actually related...Stephen had slaves listed (perhaps I should go back and see if any young women were listed, for one may be Charles' mother...I am a little conflicted about finding this white man in my family tree...he did after all own slaves, but he also raised my great great grandfather as his son (or at least set him free- I am not aware of him geting any great fortune or anything)....I found all of this in one evening on Ancestry.com...I did have my grandmom's obiturary as a starting point (lots of info can be found in those, and my family has a tradition of keeping them)...

so what info have you all found about your families....

06-07-2007, 09:41 AM
I’ve had some luck in that I think I’ve found my oldest traceable relatives on my dad’s side; however, I’m still not sure.

The earliest mention of my g-g-grandfather is the 1870 census. He is listed as single, mulatto approximately 25 years old. According to the census he was not living with any family so I wonder if he even had family nearby or was he alone. Now, his last name was Thibeaux and I found a white man by the same name in the 1850 census. This man was an overseer on a plantation in St. Mary, Louisiana and he would’ve been around 20 at the time of my g-g-grandfather’s birth. I think there is a connection because my g-g-grandfather was a slave in Louisiana, and the only other Thibeauxs listed on the census were in New Orleans and I don’t remember my grandfather mentioning that my g-g-grandfather was from NO. He did say that the man was mixed with Black, French, Indian and Portuguese and wore two long braids and a porkpie hat like the Indian men used to. I doubt what I found because I was always under the belief that former slaves took the last names of the plantation owners and not the overseer. Unfortunately, the trial period was up before I could do some more digging. I was in the midst of searching the slave schedules to see if I could find a listing that was a probable match for my g-g-grandfather.

Now, I found my paternal grandmother’s g-grandfather, who would be my g-g-g-grandfather. His name was John B. Square, born approximately 1822. His wife was Julia (my grandmother’s name). Their son Liva Square married Victoria (one of my aunt’s name) and had Louvenia (my sister’s name) my grandmother’s mother.

I need to go ahead and sign up for the 14-day trial period though, because we have a family reunion coming up and I would love to be able to present the family with what I have found.

06-07-2007, 02:04 PM
I've found civil war documents for my great great grandfather. He was born aroun 1843. It's quite interesting.

06-07-2007, 02:07 PM
I was able to trace a great-great-great grandfather born in 1855 from the 1870 census and 1880 census on my paternal side with my last name. One census record said he was white and another said mulatto. Don't know what he really was. He was born in South Carolina and moved to Alabama (which is where I always thought my family came from)

06-08-2007, 08:48 PM
i've found people born in the 1810's...thats the farthest i've gone..

06-21-2007, 11:16 AM
I was able to trace back to the great great's on both sides. I was also able to validate the stories told by my grandmother from her mother. On my grandmother's side, her mother's mother married two brothers. When one died she wed the other. I was able to find both census records with her name but two different Simmons brothers and the second household had some of the same kids listed with new additions. ;) So I know that is them. Plus My great granmother was in both households and my grandmother actually remembered some names. On my grandmother's father side I was able to validate the story her mother told her about the murder of my great great grandmother (an indian woman). She said, for some reason these white men were looking for her grandfather. They came to the house but he had hid himself and the boys, one of which my great grandfather in the loft. Well, when she answered the door and said they were not there they shot and killed her. (couldn't find a press clip though) They then went down by the Wetompka river and hid out there until they felt it was safe to cross which was actually years later. (She said they looked like very harry rough looking men when they emerged). They then settled in Macon, Alabama where my great grandmother resided, thus one of the sons hooked up with my great grandmother and the rest is history.

06-24-2007, 06:10 PM
My greatest success thus far has to be finding the last slave owners for several family members. Seeing in actual print that these ancestors were REALLY slaves blew me away. I always heard and thought so, but confirming it made me happy.

06-26-2007, 12:49 PM
I've found some interesting information on my maternal side. I've traced back to my great-great-great grand parents (b. 1830 and 1835 respectively). Their names were Ralph Donnell and Hannah Close Donnell of Guliford County, NC...Unfortunately, I've found the man who owned my g-g-g-grandfather too (I believe)...He was the only man by the name of Donnell during the census (1850) who owned a 20 year old male slave (my g-g-g grand father's age at that time) in Guliford County, NC...I'm making the assumption that that was Ralph Donnell...a fair assumption I think...

10-29-2007, 10:05 PM
Well so far I've been able to go back to my g-g-gradparents who were born in 1830 and 1840. Their names were Ralph Moore and Rosa Moore respectively. Ralph was from Louisiana, and Rosa was from Mississippi. Rosa is listed in several census records as mulatto. This is all on my mother's side.

07-07-2008, 01:32 AM
This week I found my great great great grandparents on my mother's father's side, Moses Spencer, Sr, & Jone Spencer (1833) on ancestry.com. It was so exciting because my oldest living aunt remembered hearing those names as a child, but didn't know who they were. Now we know.

My mother's mother's side may be a bit of an issue because there are so many whites and divorces on her side so I'm going to work on her side last. I managed to find her grandmother, Lillie Aldman (1891), but she remarried and her first married name was Wilson. I don't know her first husband's name nor can I find a marriage certificate so I'll work on that this summer.

My father's side will be a bit difficult because I can't find any records of my great grandparents other than a birth certificate for my grandfather. My dad never knew who they were either sooo.... My great grandfather won't be a problem, my great grandmother is listed as Gold Ring Author and there is no other record for her.

My father's mother's side has been a bit easier. I know her parent's names, but I haven't looked past my great grandparents yet.

This is going to take some time, but I want to leave a legacy for my children so they'll know without a doubt where their family came from. Once I find everything, i'm going to do a scapbook with copies of any documentation I can get copies of.

Peace and blessings,

07-07-2008, 03:09 AM
I've found my maternal gm on the 1920 census (I believe it's her although her name is spelled wrong. Everything else fits). I also found her SS death index.

Ive found my maternal ggm on the 1900 census.

I've found my maternal gf on the 1920 census and I've found his father's WWI registration card.

I've found my paternal gm on the 1920 and 1930 census's along with her brother.

I got stuck there as I don't know birth dates or states of births.

07-19-2008, 12:14 AM
I think I found my g-g-g-grandfather--Namon Reed-- on the 1840 census in Morgan County, Indiana. If he's who I think he is, I also found the record of his purchasing 40 acres of farm land from the US government in 1836.

I'm a little frustrated with my g-grandfather--Elijah Elihu Reed His records--census and selective service-- are really inconsistent. Sometimes he says he was born in Indiana, and sometimes Oklahoma. The only reason we know who his parents are-- Sarah (Goss) Reed and Noah Reed-- is because of his death and marriage certificates. But I've yet to find a document that has them living in the same household.

Another thing that bugs me is that we can't find a marriage certificate for his second wife-- my g-grandmother--Anna Bell Phillips.

02-03-2009, 02:21 AM
With the help of Ancestry.com I have been able to disprove the lie that has been passed down through two generations about my Maternal Great Grandmother. She didn't give birth to 22 children as I have been lead to believe. I have been able to disprove the union of my Maternal Grand Mother's siblings. Boy was that a relief!

I was soooooo displeased to find the 1890 or1900 Census missing due to a fire as it has left questions unanswerable. It was sad to run into the "wall" of 1870 Census.

I recorded what I could and have made copies for my family members.

02-03-2009, 02:49 AM
My greatest success thus far has to be finding the last slave owners for several family members. Seeing in actual print that these ancestors were REALLY slaves blew me away. I always heard and thought so, but confirming it made me happy.
How did you go about doing the research? I don't know where and how to start..??

02-07-2009, 05:41 PM
I found my Grandfather's information on my father's side on ancestry.com. My sister found some information about my great-grandmother being a Mulatto from the Georgia Archives.I decided that I am going to start all over and gather information from my parent's about our family history. I had a file that I lost during my move down south, so all of my research is gone :( Hopefully, I can go back and find new information with the new technology available to me.

NewNappydew, I would start with talking with your oldest family members and the immediate family. I would work my way from parents, grand parents, great grand parents and build a family tree.


02-22-2009, 05:34 AM
I started by asking my great aunt (the oldest living family member) to tell me everything should could remember about my family (my maternal grandmother's side). I wrote down every name, every place, etc that she mentioned, and made copies of every obituary she had, then I went and signed up for ancestry.com and made a couple post in the genforum at genealogy.com. From there i just printed out everything that looked like it may be useful and began to make a huge family tree.

I have done everything I possibly can from another state.. I've called and harrassed Vitals at Health Departments and Court Clerks for birth and death certificates and other records... begged volunteer researchers for help and I must say I got further than I expected.

I have records from 1969 back to 1880's.

As you go thru it you will get the hang of it, there are many sources out there. Give it try.. i must warn you it can be addictive :)

How did you go about doing the research? I don't know where and how to start..??

03-31-2012, 02:56 PM
I was able to find my g-g-g grandmother Isabella Sumlin of SC and her place of burial including her tombstone. Still looking for more info.

04-10-2012, 05:49 AM
One success I have had was to obtain my uncle's military record from WW2. I started out with his parent's names, his name and the fact that he died while serving in the Navy. I scoured the L.A. Central Library catalog looking for anything relating to military personnel. I found a set of 2 books listing everyone who died in the Navy during WW2. Then I found a book written by a guy name Johnson on how to find anyone in the armed forces. I went to the section that talked about personnel who died during service and decided to write 5 letters per week (there were several agencies listed) until I got an answer. It did not take me long; I got an answer from an agency in Virginia (American Monuments Commission). They wrote me a letter and sent a copy of his death record complete with the key for access to his military file ...his service number. My uncle's name is inscribes on the Wall of the Missing at a memorial in Normandie, France. Also, I have my uncle's compensation record from when he died, with a lot of help of my friend and mentor, Katherine. You might would ask why is such a file is important? Well, he made his mother (my grandmother) the beneficiary on his insurance policy and every time she moved, she had to write a letter stating her new address (so that she could get the check in the mail). So, with his compensation file, I knew every place my grandmother had lived since the time of his death and I also have a very good starting point of when she married her second husband.

Another success that I had in the genealogical section of the Central Library (again), I happened to stumble upon a book on blacks in Northeastern Connecticut. What a gold mine!!!! It listed 5 generations, going back, starting with my g-grandmother and including THE SLAVEOWNER! From that information, I was able to get a copy of the slaveowner's probate (I am now in the process of transcribing these documents). Got to love those New Englanders, they write down everything. On the same line, I have information taking me back to England in the 1600's (I just have to prove it).

So I have had several successes that I am very proud of and hope to have many more.