Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Old Wills provide strange information

I've got to tell you something!
I recently scanned an old North Carolina last will and testament in Buncombe County, and upon reading it discovered that it listed the names and birth dates of the children!  How wonderful is that? There are simply too many goodies about the families and their lifestyles in the old wills and estates to ignore them.








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BARGAIN! Subscribe to 8 genealogy websites! Easy entry using same password. Where to find images of last wills and testaments online.
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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Genealogy is History !


History has more to do with genealogical research than most persons realize.  We tend to think only of those persons found in traditional history books.  But is is bigger than that.  While our forefathers were drafting the Constitution of the United States, they were surrounded by family, friends, neighbors expressing their own opinions.  All of these opinions notwithstanding, the feelings and ideas of every voice helped frame the Constitution.  Were these people any less than George Washington, Thomas Jefferson or John Hancock?  Someone influences. Others act.  But everyone does not make the history books.  Whatever was occurring at any given time in history, our ancestors were involved with the business of trying to resolve their problems, whether in peace or war.  We are a record keeping people.  Thus, there is tons of information in the records to assist us in discovering the names of our own people.  You might say "My ancestor must not have done anything special, because I cannot find him inn the records". Oh, but you can!  Even if he did not sign a deed or last will and testament, his neighbors did and frequently included his name as a neighbor or someone who married into the family.  One simply has to dig deeper than he ever dreamed he'd have to.  Old wills and estates are like gold.  If you find one with your ancestor's name on it, you have hit the motherlode of information!  Granted, the old wills are bulky, mostly over 50 pages long.  This is because their lifestyles were businesses.  Every item purchased, seeds planted and crops harvested was written down somewhere.  Frequently, these items are in the inventories and sales of estates.  One has to pay attention to the names of the purchases, then examine the marriage records to learn whether or not it was a family member, like a son-in-law.  North Carolina Pioneers is in the process of digitizing all of the Wills and Estates (also some deed records) for the State of North Carolina.  Combing through 400 years of documents, page by page, is a bit much, however, the work is ongoing.  Even though most of these names are not my personal ancestors, this process alone has provided me with an interesting historical and geographical education on times past.  As the names are gathered, the puzzle comes together as to the hearts and minds of the first settlers.  The old wills (alone) provide more historical insight than any history book ever will.  One simply has to settle down comfortably in a chair and read the documents to get the flavor, and, particularly, answers.  The first settlers left no bone unturned.  Our ancestors detailed their lives all in the old Wills, down to naming distant relatives in foreign countries.  As one reads, studies and remembers, the puzzle works itself together.  The census records are fine, but before 1790, one must get down to business.  And business is researching the county records (and adjoining counties) where the ancestor resided. You are invited to become a member and enjoy the fruits Subscribe to 8 Genealogy Websites

 

Saturday, May 24, 2014

The Cape Fear River

Cape Fear River in North Carolina
The first known European explorer of the Cape Fear region was Giovanni da Verrazano of  Spain who had an interest in acquiring this land for Spain. In October 1662, the English explorer, William Hilton, Jr., sent by the Massachusetts Bay Colony,  first visited the lower reaches of the Cape Fear River.
"ye [├że] 4th Octob. we weighed, and went into ye Haven, where was 5.6.7.8 fathoms water, and in a weeks time, spent with ye indians, and in sounding ye River and ye ship turning up alway against ye wind, we gott up 15. or 16. leagues into ye river; and after in our long boate, half of us went 15. leagues further, till at ye head of ye river we could not tell, which of ye many rivers to take, and so returned to our ship, and as we went and came, we found many faire and deep rivers, all ye way running into this Charles River."  (Charles River named after Charles I)  Pictured is what is called the muscle of the river.

Sir Robert Heath, attorney-general of Charles I, was granted the Cape Fear area, which was incorporated in 1629 as the Province of Carolina.  Heath wanted to settle French Huguenots on the land, when Charles forbade the use of the land to any who were not of the Church of England, Heath assigned his grant to George, Lord Berkeley.

John Vassall led some adventurers from Barbados in 1664 to the Lower Cape Fear whereupon they created the county of Clarendon, founding Charles Towne located about 20 miles upstream near the mouth of what later was known as Town Creek.  This settlement advanced to about 800 persons but began to dwindle after negotiations with the Lords Proprietors failed. The Lords Proprietors then appointed Sir John Yeamans as the governor of Clarendon County who selected a site further South of the Cape Fear, thus discouring colonization on the river. This caused the settlers to abandon the region and by 1667 the native Indians occupied it.

About 1726 , after Governor George Burrington spent the winter exploring the Capt Fear and issued grants of 9,000 acres, Maurice Moore occupied the land on the South side of the river and laid off the town of Brunswick. The Moore families and their relatives acquired more than 100,000 acres of land. During the 1730s, the town of Wilmington was established by another group of settlers.


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Monday, April 28, 2014

Some Good Genealogy Tips


Find your Ancestors before 1790


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Sunday, April 6, 2014

Flying High (video)

Flying High



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Saturday, March 8, 2014

Free Help Finding your Ancestors

eyesHow would you like to have your own personal professional genealogist helping you with a difficult lineage? Come and join our community of friends who are researching family ties. Once you become a member, you are entitled to free genealogical assistance on one of your ancestors (sometimes includes more than one ancestor).  The results of the free research are posted on "Working Ancestral Files" and is shared with the other members.  The actual research request includes details about the lost ancestor and responses during the research process along with links to the source (proving) information. The community consists of 8 genealogy websites which contain digital images of old wills, marriages, traced families, obituaries, cemetery records, etc. Essentially, information not found on any other website, which equates to $18.75 per year for each website!  Unheard of prices.  A great deal for any genealogist to take advantage of.

This membership is priced very low for what you get. $150 per year.  BARGAIN! Subscribe to 8 genealogy websites! Easy entry using same password. Where to find families online. Virginia Pioneers South Carolina Pioneers North Carolina Pioneers Kentucky Pioneers Southeastern Genealogy
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Friday, March 7, 2014

Need some more Tips on Finding your Ancestors. Here they are!

Where are those ancestors?
Genealogy Tacts that Work


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BARGAIN! Subscribe to 8 genealogy websites! Easy entry using same password. Where to find images of last wills and testaments online.
Virginia Pioneers South Carolina Pioneers North Carolina Pioneers Kentucky Pioneers Southeastern Genealogy