Sunday, June 28, 2009

Evinced her interest

"evinced her interest"

I saw this on the tombstone of Rosanna Glenn, my wife's ancestor in a rural cemetery in Newberry County South Carolina.

I have to admit it, I'm sure to the chagrin of my daughter Kristen and Uncle Bob that I had never heard of this word and had no idea what it meant. I had to Google it.

Rosanna Glenn was born in 1753 and died in 1825. She was the widow of Col. David Glenn.

The full inscription on her tombstone is below:

"Sacred to the Memory of Mrs. Rosanna Glenn who departed this life after many years infirmity on the 10th of Feb. 1825 in the 72 year of her age. In early life she embraced the Religion of Jesus and by her ardent piety and Christian example evinced her interest in that unfading crown of glory which awaits the Saints beyond the grave"

Friday, June 26, 2009

Marriage at Sea

Getting married aboard a ship has always been popular. There are romantic notions of a ship's captain performing the ceremony.

For Susanna Jane Lundy, the sister of my great great grandfather, the wedding aboard ship was probably not what they advertise in Modern Bride.

On June 26, 1864, one hundred forty five years ago today, Susanna and her beau, Daniel Green Woods were married aboard the USS Adalea, a blockader off the coast of St. Vincent's Island, Florida. The Union Navy kept ships there to block Confederate ships from having access to the Apalachicola river. This is just a couple miles from St. George Island were we like to vacation and Apalachicola, where my daughter was married in 2007.

The wedding was performed by Lt William Budd of the USS Steamer Somerset. Daniel Woods had enlisted in the Confederate Army in 1862 but by 1864 he had left and joined the Union side, as part of the Florida 2nd Calvary. Both he and Susanna were from Perry, Florida. There were a number men from the area who enlisted in the CSA became disillusioned with the war and left. Once they got back home they joined the Union army or one of the groups of Union sympathizers.

The men of the Florida 2nd Calvary were considered deserters by the Confederate army and were subject to being shot if captured. They moved their families to St. Vincent's Island since it was controlled by the Union Navy. At the time St. Vincent's was more developed than the surrounding area. Today, no one lives on the island and it is a National Wildlife Refuge.

I came across the account of their wedding in a transcript of USS Adela's log book in 2007.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

I gave this cup to my Dad for Father's Day about 45 years ago. I don't remember which year it was but it had to be prior to my teen years since I didn't give him anything memorable once I hit 13. I'm not sure if he ever used it for coffee. I just remember it being kept on a shelf or display case.

He was a pretty good father but a much better grandfather. I guess that is how it is supposed to work. I am planning to follow the same path.

So for my Dad, and all the other fathers in my family lineage, this day is for you.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Two wives could be expensive

George Washington White and Martha Cleopatra Rawls were the great great grandparents of my wife. They were married in Smith County Tennessee in March 1867. At the time the groom was required to file a bond for $1,250. George Washington White and his brother Lafayette White both signed the bond.

A $1,250 bond in 1867 would cost over $37,000 in today's dollars.

The bond had to be obtained in the county where the bride lived to guarantee there was no moral or legal reason they couldn't get married.

So if the groom already had a wife who showed up before the wedding day he could risk owing the $1,250 penalty to the county.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Safe passage

My great great grandfather on my Dad's side was Joseph Rowell. He enlisted in the CSA, Florida's 2nd Infantry in July of 1861 and served for 14 months before being discharged due to his age. He was 37 years old at the time.

Six months later, with the South needing men, he enlisted again. This time he served until the end of the war.

On April 10, 1865 at Appomattox Court House, Virginia as part of Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia who had surrendered, he was given a paper to allow him safe passage back to his home in Florida.

On March 22, 1889 when he filed for a Florida Confederate service pension, due to old age and disability he submitted his pass as proof of his military service.

For over 100 years it has remained in the pension file in Tallahassee, Florida. I've written to the Florida Secretary of State requesting return of the family property. So far they haven't responded but I'm not giving up.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Kids playing with Jefferson Davis logs?

Do you know who is buried in Lincoln's tomb?

Ok, so it's not his tomb but it is his memorial. The one in Kentucky not DC. I was up there on business and stopped by Lincoln's birthplace. It's a national park and was bought in 1894 by a businessman who wanted to make money putting Abe's log cabin on display.
The interesting part of the visit was finding out that the Lincoln log cabin really wasn't Abe's. In fact it was one that also traveled the country as part a commemoration for Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederate States of America.
So the guy made money charging people to view it and it was marketed as both Lincoln's birthplace and that of Jefferson Davis.
When the country decided to create a memorial for
Lincoln's birthplace they needed a log cabin. The publisher of Collier's Weekly and Mark Twain along with several other prominent people decided to buy the property and the cabin in 1905. They raised money all across the county with over 100,000 people making contributions.
There wasn't a log cabin on the property so they bought this one that had traveled as part of the show.
It was installed in the memorial building and for over 80 years was thought to be Abe's. In 2004 testing was done on it by the University of Tennessee that proved it was not old enough to be Lincoln's or Davis's. The testing showed the wood to be from the 1840s.