Monday, July 20, 2015

Mystery Monday and Motivation Monday - July 20, 2015

Hey folks, still struggling on the blog posting front, but things are progressing. Still working on the office decluttering but I'm almost done with what I'm calling Phase 1. Since I'm writing this post ahead of time, I may have even finished Phase 1 by the time this post to the blog.

The end of Phase 1 means two things, 1) I get to move on to garage decluttering for awhile but more importantly, 2) I  hope to be able to really focus on getting back on the genealogy and getting my genealogy files organized. You know I keep telling myself that if I didn't have to work, I would have the office totally back into organizational shape by now.

In the meantime, although I'm waiting for a reply, I actually did some real genealogical stuff this month. (This is the Mystery part of the Post).

As you know, from time to time when I'm bored, I google various ancestors names, hoping that something pops up. Usually even if something does, it's really nothing that benefits me but this time I'm may have come across something when I googled my grandfather's name, Harry Claudius Jones, for the umpteenth time.

Most everything that came up was either from my blog or information I had entered on Find-a-Grave. But there, at the bottom of the page, was something I hadn't seen before from Google Books. There appeared to be a hit in the Annual Catalogue of Virginia Union University. So, I clicked on the link. I still was not expecting much. This had to be some other Harry Claudius, right? But to my surprise, this Harry Claudius Jones, was from Everetts, NC, my grandmother's hometown and where my grandparents lived during the early years of their marriage.


He was in his second year in 1913. In 1913, my grandfather would have been 21 and about a year away from marrying my grandmother.

Since there seemed to be more than one catalogue contained in this listing, I searched subsequent years and found other listings for Harry Claudius Jones from Everetts, NC. My gut tells me this has to be my grandfather. After all how many Harry Claudius Joneses can there me from the same little small town in North Carolina. But the gut needs supporting documentation, so after consulting with my genea-friend, Renate, from Into the Light, I decided to write to the Virginia Union Alumni Association to see if they could help me.

I'm hoping that if there are some records that they will perhaps shed some light on my granddad's biological family, specifically my great grandmother Martha,  but more than anything, if this is my granddad, I'm just thrilled to learn about this part of his life. While his tombstone indicates that he received a Bachelors in Philosophy, I never heard dad or any of the aunts and uncles mention anything about granddaddy going to college. And my first cousins (all older than me) hadn't heard anything either.

By the way, since my genea-friend Renate lives in VA and often passes through Richmond in her travels, she has offered to stop by Virginia Union and do look ups if need be. If I don't hear anything soon, I may have to take her up on that offer or better yet, go myself during the Afro American Historical and Genealogical Society (AAHGS) conference, which will be held in Richmond this year. For now, though, I will try to be patient and continue to work on the organizing, and other life happenings.

Until my next post!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Motivation Monday - June 29, 2015

It's hard to believe it's been nearly six months since I've posted  anything to Conversations and as I stated many times both here and on Georgia Black Crackers, I can't promise this time is going to be any different but I pray and hope that this is finally the turning point where I return to my research and blogging.

Since today and tomorrow are the final days of the month for June, I'll just go ahead and move into the goals for July 2015.

If you've been reading the few posts that I've done this year on Georgia Black Crackers, you know that this past month, I've been steadily working on getting my office back in order, so my first goal for the month of July is to finish this project (Goal Date: July 31, 2015). Believe it or not, I've made tremendous headway in getting the office organized but still feel like I have a long way to go. When you are finding papers dating back to 2004, you realize that this is going to take longer than expected. I've filled my recycling bin to the brim three times now (it only gets picked up every other week) and still have more to add.

Other goals for the month are as follows:

  • Post about 2014 research trip to Everetts, NC. (Goal Date(s): Weeks of 06/29/15 and 07/06/15
  • If I complete the overall office organization, began the organization of genealogy files plus spruce up the file cabinet that contains much of my research information (Goal Date: 07/31/15).
  • A minimum of one blog post per week even if it's a meme.
  • Contact Virginia Union Alumni Association to determine if my grandfather attended school there (Goal Date: July 4, 2015). Since I've not been blogging, you don't know about this potential find. Hopefully, one of my blog posts will bring you up to speed on it.
  • As, with the maternal side of the family, determine exactly where I was in my research the last time I was seriously researching and develop a plan for the next research steps. (Goal Date: July 18, 2015).
Hope to see you later this week!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Goals for 2015

It's so hard to believe that another year has ended and new one has begun and I'm sure I'll be saying the same thing next year at this time. The older you get, the more time just seems to fly by.

Even though, I didn't get much blog posting or research done, 2014 was a some what productive year. So here are a few of the happenings from 2014 (both genealogical and non-genealogical)

  • After living in my home state for the bulk of my life, I finally made the trek to eastern North Carolina to visit the ancestral home county. The ancestors had been calling me to do that for awhile and while I really didn't gain any new knowledge on this trip, there were a few exciting moments.
         I'm also reminded that I never did a post(s) about my research trip, so that is goal #1 for 2015.

  • This leads me into one of the more exciting finds from 2014 and it happened right as I was getting ready to go on that research trip. I discovered quite a few newspaper articles that mentioned my Great Grandfather, Peter Everett, and my Great Grand Aunt, Goldia Everett Johnson Hyman Benton. Once again, no great genealogical gems but since, until then, I had never come across any of my ancestors in any newspaper articles, it was the thrill of a lifetime.
          So, goal #2 for 2015 will be to blog about those newly discovered newspaper articles.

  • 2014 was also filled with sadness. Just as I was finally starting to come out of the genealogical funk that I had been in ever since my dad died in March 2011, I was once again back there as I lost my beloved companion of 14 years.

Shelby (2000 - Oct 28, 2014)

  • I did manage to get through 2014 without any new crazy health issues. Just a lot of follow-up on the 2013 issues, which caused me to go through a lot of sick time. So, from a health perspective, I need 2015 to be a sane year.
So besides the 2 goals already mentioned, what are the remainder of my genealogical goals for 2015. The usual ones - 

  • Get back to blogging and researching
  • Get the nearly 30 years of research I've done organized. One of these days I hope to hand all this off to  someone and I would like for them to be able to figure out what I've done.
  • Plan a trip to the NC State Archives, which is another one of those you would think that I would have done a trip there by now but I haven't.
  • Plan a family reunion for the descendants of Peter and Eadie Everett (great grandparents).
  • If time and funds allow, attend a genealogical conference, seminar, or class.
  • And most importantly, because life is so fragile and so short, do a better job of staying in touch with my family. 

I'm really looking forward to 2015 and hope that you are, too.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wordy Wednesday - Aunt Martha's House

Picture of Aunt Martha's house is from 
the personal collection of the owner of this blog.

This is my Aunt Martha's house. Until this summer,  I never really thought I had a sentimental attachment to this house. But  this summer, the memories have come flooding back and it's been tough.

My Aunt Martha died in 2001. In her will she left the house to her younger brother, my daddy, and her younger sister, Aunt Emmanuline. Dad bought out Aunt Emmanuline's share of the house, so, when daddy died, the house passed on to me.

It was never my intentions to sale Aunt Martha's house. Since, I always wanted to have my own business, I started out thinking that I could be a landlord and it would be the perfect setup since the house was paid off and I wouldn't have to worry about making a mortgage payment. But even while daddy was still living, I came to the conclusion that being a landlord was not for me. That being said, I still couldn't motivate to do anything about the house. Well, that is until this year.

One day, back in the spring, I woke up and decided that I was tired of dealing with the insurance company that covers the house, decided I was tired of people calling me about the house, and decided that I was just tired of dealing with it period. So, I've been spending the summer trying to get the house cleared out, so that I can put it on the market. When this started, I didn't think it would take as long as it has taken. After all, some of this was done  while daddy was still living. Little did I realize, how much was still in the house.

So, this summer, I've been spending many weekends over in the hometown trying to get the house cleared out. This has taken longer than I had expected, and no, as of this post, I've still not competed the task but I'm pretty close.

Most of the summer my mother had been helping me try to complete the task, so I guess I didn't have time to think about things that much. But Labor Day Weekend was a different story.

I had contacted the Hospice Store in my hometown to come pick up most of the larger items on the Friday before Labor Day. My mother wasn't with me that day, so after the Hospice crew left and with the bulk of the house now emptied, the memories came flooding back and would not ease up. As I went through each room to compile a list of what still needed to be done, the memories rolled. I pictured my Aunt Martha talking to clients of the now defunct Cleveland County Teacher's Credit Union, my grandmomma in what was her bedroom, and the biggest one of all, the summers when my aunts, uncles and cousins would come back to North Carolina and descend on my Aunt's house for a few weeks. I truly miss those summers from that bygone era.

As much as I miss those times and as much as I would like to hang on to the house, I also realize that time marches on. I really don't have time to deal with the house. So, I'll spend the last few weeks of this summer and first weeks of the fall, completing the task of clearing out the house and finally putting it up for sale. And yes, I find myself explaining to my Aunt Martha, who loved this house, why it must be this way. And I hope that the next person or family that buys the house will be able to build their own memories.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Madness Monday - Getting Ready for a Research Trip

This week, I'll be going on my second research trip, ever. And it looks like I will not be any better prepared for this research trip than I was for the first one I did a few years ago. But the ancestors are telling me that I need to go and who am I to argue with the ancestors.

So, before going, I'm trying to make a quick check list of things I want to do and hope to get accomplished. One thing that makes this trip different from my first research trip is my trusty side kick, mom, won't be going with me. Instead, my second cousin, Clifford, will be going with me on this trip. While I'm glad to have the company, part of me wants to go it alone since I feel like we will have different goals, which will ultimately hinder both of us.

So for me here are some things I hope to do during my one day trip to ancestral home county.

  1. Pick up a clearer copy of the Probate Proceedings for my Great Grandfather's, Peter T. Everett, estate. A few years ago, I had written the Register of Deeds for Martin County, NC to see if there was a will for my Great Grandfather, and there wasn't one. This past week while putzing around on Family Search, I came across the probate proceedings for my Great Grandfather, who died without a will. However, I wasn't able to print out a clear copy, so I wrote down all the details, in order that I can pick up a clearer copy while there.
  2. I would also like to try to locate my Great Grandfather's grave. I have a copy of his death certificate which seems to indicate he may be interred in Everetts Cemetery in Everetts, NC. This is one area where my cousin should be able to collaborate with each other. Cousin Clifford wants  to see his Uncle Buddy's grave. His uncle / my cousin appears to be be buried in the same cemetery as great granddad. After all these years, I still haven't figured out who operates this cemetery. I would like to write ahead of time to find out the exact location of the graves.
I'm sure I'll be adding to this list between now and Friday.

Checklist of things I know I will need to take with me.

  1. Camera
  2. Portable Scanner
  3. Notebook
  4. Pens and Pencils
  5. Kindle and / or Laptop
  6. Water and Snacks
The other thing I need to do is get prepared for the conversation that I'm sure will come up with Clifford about me converting to a vegetarian / vegan diet. Cousin Clifford is a doctor and I've already noticed that he and I don't always see eye to eye on some things.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sentimental Sunday - Happy Birthday Daddy!

Daddy, today, if you were still living, you would have been 86. In the 3 years, 5 months, and 12 days since your journey here on earth ended, life has continued. There have been good days and bad days and a lot that were in between the two.

Sometimes it feels like your death happened yesterday and at other times it feels like it's been years.

There are still special times of the year, like your birthday, where  days and weeks before, the tears start flowing again. I often don't realize why I'm so emotional until I look at the calendar and realize what time of the year it is. And then there are the times that for no reason at all you just pop into my head and I'm missing all the special times.

So on this day I just want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADDY! You are still loved and missed so very much.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Motivation Monday - September 2014 Goals

Since my father died in 2011, I've really struggled to get back to the research and the blogging. In the past 3+ years, I've declared on several occasions that I was ready to get back to the research / blogging only to disappear, again. I won't make any promises that this time will be different but I do find myself doing things that hopefully mean I'm finally finding my way back.

So, once again, I find myself writing a list of monthly goals to get me started. Since my research trip to my paternal ancestors home county is coming up next week (no I'm not ready), I'm thinking I'll get a few of these goals accomplished and hopefully before the trip. So here goes


  1. Write a minimum of 2 posts for the month of September. I hope to be able to do more than that but I'm also trying to be a bit realistic also.

  1. Most of the goals in this area are the same as those found on Georgia Black Crackers. The only additional goal is before the research trip to make sure the information I have for paternal grandmother's side of the family is organized and properly cited.

  1. Make a list of the goals I hope to accomplish during my research trip and what records I plan to view in an attempt to reach the goal. Goal Date: September 6, 2014