52 Ancestors #32 – 32

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “32.”

For those of you don’t do genealogy, you have 2 parents, 4 grandparents, 8 great grandparents, 16 2nd great-grandparents, and 32 3rd great-grandparents. The family tree grows exponentially.

This generation of 32 people in my past have been on my mind a lot lately due to the feeding frenzy of liberals trying to erase the history of the Confederacy. Personally, I don’t have a problem with the Confederate flag, but I understand that hate groups have adopted it and it may no longer represent the South throughout the rest of the United States. Perhaps it is time for a discussion about where it should and should not be flown.

I do, however, have a problem with the hatred that these history-erasing people, including some of my very own friends, are spewing and the way vandals are destroying flags, graves, statues, and monuments. You’ll see why in a moment. I’ve decided to not write about only one of my 32 grandmas and grandpas, but all of them.

Jeremiah William Crane, born 1828 Alabama

Sarah Frances Grimes, born 1824 Alabama

Amos Windham Mercer, born 1799 South Carolina

Amanda Merron, born 1829 Florida

Archibald White, born 1808 North Carolina

Elizabeth B Farrish, born 1824 Alabama

Leonard H Morrow, born 1812 Tennessee

Silvia Truss, born 1814 North Carolina

Robert Theodore Pickett, born 1836 Mississippi

Lucy Ann Rackley, born 1834 Alabama

William Thomas Fisher, born 1819 Alabama*

Elizabeth Ann Butler, born 1834 North Carolina

Green Keene, born 1834 South Carolina

Sarah Tabitha unknown, born 1833 Alabama

William Lafayette Brown, born 1836 Mississippi*

Sarah Ann Elvira Dollar, born 1836 Alabama

Rev. Joseph M. Culpepper, born 1822 Georgia**

Nancy Yarbrough, born 1822 Georgia

William Henry Blanks II, born 1800 Georgia

Nancy Narcissus Young, born 1800 North Carolina

Rice Benjamin Carpenter, born 1828 Alabama**

Mary Ann Rodgers, born 1828 Mississippi

George Washington Spencer, born 1829 Alabama*

Nancy Virginia “Ginny” Holdcroft, born 1839 Mississippi

James C Howington, born 1823 North Carolina*

Amelia Ann Elizabeth Smith, born 1827 Alabama

Of the six missing names; two were in Dublin, Ireland, their son (my 2nd great) arrived on the shores of Florida in 1861; two were Choctaw Indians in the Choctaw Territory of Mississippi but I don’t know their names; and the final two are unaccounted for as I have not been able to trace them, but their daughter (my 2nd great), was born in Alabama in 1848, so they certainly lived in the South.

Notice anything?? Yes, 26 (28 if you count the Choctaws, 30 if you count the folks living in Alabama) of my 32 3rd great-grandparents were born in the Confederate States, and EVERY ONE of my 16 2nd greats lived there also. From the records I have: six of the men above fought with the Confederacy (noted by *) – two died in battle (noted by **). Three of my 2nd greats (sons of the above) fought with the Confederacy, not to mention the countless brothers and other sons who served and sometimes died. Mary Ann Rodgers named above lost three brothers, three brothers-in-law, and her husband.

Off the top of my head, eight to ten of these families were in America during the Revolution, fighting for freedom – the freedom to say and do as you please. You have the freedom to be “offended” by the Confederate flag. It was given to you by MY ancestors who have been struggling since the 1600s to build a great country, even before it was a country.

Here’s where I have a problem. You don’t have the freedom nor the “right” to desecrate Confederate graves, statues, monuments, Confederate cemeteries, or the flags within their boundaries, and you certainly don’t have the freedom to take away my heritage. You will never accomplish that. You will never change how I feel about the men who fought in the Confederate Army. They are AMERICAN soldiers. They will always have my deepest respect for being willing to die for what they believed in, whether you agree with their cause or not. My heritage will not be erased. It will not disappear. Do you want to know why? Because I will fight to keep it alive in my family, my community, my descendants, and my heart. I will fight with the same veracity shown by my grandparents when they fought for their freedom. After all, their blood runs in my veins, too.

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52 Ancestors – 31 Culpepper Line

52ancestors-2015

This challenge has been set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “Easy.”

Well, “easy” is easy!

I became interested in genealogy as a teenager when I found my mother’s family had been traced all the way back to John Culpepper, born 1140 in Kent, England. Since the Culpepper men were traced, it was a lot of fun to branch off into wives and siblings and cousins, and I eventually traced one of the Culpepper wives back to King Charlemagne. I’ve been hooked ever since!

Let’s see if I can put together a quick synopsis of the Culpepper men in a countdown to me.

26. John Culpepper 1140 Kent – ?

3d75316f-cd6a-4886-863b-652ad38e658925. Sir Thomas the Recognitor Culpepper 1170 Kent – Sussex His home was Bayhall Manor (photo). He was the recognitores magnae assise during the reign of King John.

24. John Spencer Culpepper, Esquire 1200 Bayhall – 1230 London

23. Sir Thomas of Brenchly and Bayhall Culpepper 1230 Kent – 1309 London

22. Sir Thomas of Bayhall in Pembury Culpepper 1260 – 1321 Sussex

21. Sir John of Hardreshull and Bayhall Culpepper 1305 Kent – 1370 Kent Sheriff during the reign of King Richard II

wigsell20. Sir Thomas of Bayhall, Hardreshull, and Exton Culpepper 1356 Warwickshire – 1428 Kent Given the home of Great Wigsell (photo) as a wedding gift from his father. (He is also an ancestor of my husbands – ugh – see the blog linked to Sir Thomas’s name.)

19. Walter of Goudhurst, Hardreshull, and Bayhall Culpepper 1398 Kent – 24 Nov 1462 Kent

18. Sir John Culpepper 1430 Kent – 22 Dec 1480 Kent

17. Walter Culpepper 1465 Kent – 1514 Sussex

16. William Culpepper 1509 Kent – 6 Dec 1559 Sussex

15. John Culpepper of Wigsell 1530 Sussex – 20 Oct 1612 Sussex

14. John Culpepper of Astwood 1565 Sussex – 20 Dec 1635 Kent

13. John Culpepper the Merchant 20 Oct 1606 Kent – ? Probably died in the Virginia Colony Subject of my Culpepper Saga book series.

12. Henry Culpepper 1630 Kent – 1675 Norfolk, Virginia

11. Robert Culpepper 1664 Virginia – 1742 Virginia

10. Joseph B Culpepper 1698 Virginia – 22 May 1745 Edgecombe, North Carolina

9. Joseph Culpepper Jr 1731 NC – 1822 Morgan, Georgia Revolutionary War soldier serving in Georgia.

8. Joseph Culpepper III 1765 NC – 5 May 1816 Jackson Co, Georgia Revolutionary War soldier, 3rd SC regiment.

7. Simon Culpepper 1794 Franklin, Georgia – 28 Apr 1851 Lauderdale Co, Mississippi

6. Rev. Joseph M Culpepper 1822 Jackson Co, Georgia – 15 Aug 1862 Columbus, Mississippi Baptist minister who served in the civil war but is said to have died in the pulpit while preaching.

culpepper Joel B Culpepper5. Joel Bluett Culpepper (photo) Jan 1845 Mississippi – 11 Jan 1911 Jefferson Davis Home for Confederate Soldiers in Biloxi, Mississippi. Joel served in the civil war Co. K 63rd Alabama infantry. He was captured and held at Fort Massachusetts on Ship Island until the end of the war. Under his rights as a Confederate veteran, he spent the last ten months of his life at Beauvoir.

 

 

culpepper Sam Culpepper4. William Samuel Culpepper (photo) 8 Jun 1873 Alabama – 10 Dec 1939 Mississippi Sam was a sawyer and followed the sawmill business, being away from home for months at a time. He loved music and was a strict but loving father.

 

 

 

 

3. Earl Wilmar Culpepper 24 Dec 1914 Mississippi – 5 Mar 1994 Mississippi Earl worked at Burnley Shirt Factory in Meridian, MS and loved music. He could play any instrument he picked up. He died of pneumonia following a stroke at the age of 79.

2. Linda Faye Culpepper 25 Aug 1944 Mississippi – 12 Jul 2001 Michigan Linda was a cardiac nurse. She died of internal injuries after falling from the balcony of her home.

1. Me!

 

 

52 Ancestors #23 Florence J Smith Howington

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “Challenging.”

john thomas howington florence j smith marriage recordThe most challenging ancestor for me to trace is not only challenging and frustrating, but darned near impossible.

Florence J Smith Howington was my 2nd great-grandmother. The only thing I know for sure is she married John Thomas Howington in Newton County, Mississippi on 1 Aug 1892. The marriage record (photo, click to enlarge) says she was sixteen years old, making her birth around 1876, although the 1900 U.S. census says she’s white and 28. The 1910 census says she’s 36. Her husband was married previously in 1880 to Ellen Raynor who died in 1891. There is no record of any children. Once John and Florence married, they had eight children between 1893 and 1910, the eldest being my great grandmother Mary Elizabeth Howington.

howington, john thomasJohn Thomas Howington died in 1913 and Florence never remarried. She died at the age of 93 in 1969. There is a blank spot in the Pine Grove Cemetery in Collinsville, Mississippi next to John’s headstone (photo). If Florence is buried there, she has no marker.

The frustrating thing about tracing her is that I was always told I had a grandmother who was of Choctaw Indian descent, and if that’s true, she has to be the one. The Choctaw were run out of Mississippi at the signing of the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek in the 1830s. They migrated to Oklahoma. The ones who stayed changed their names to assimilate into the white European culture. Of course, there would be no prior record of them, and seeing as they probably couldn’t read or write English, there wouldn’t be a record of their name change.

There are a lot of Smiths listed in the Choctaw registries in Mississippi from 1847-1933, but I haven’t been able to trace Florence without knowing at least one of her parent’s names. There are also census records of Choctaw families residing east of the Mississippi River and in the states of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama. One such record is a census called the “Cooper Roll,” made by Douglas H. Cooper, US Agent for Choctaws, in conformity with the order of  the Commissioner of Indian Affairs dated 23 May 1855.

The following is part of the Cooper Roll naming the Chunkee Clan (Chunky is the town in Newton County, Mississippi where Florence lived.) Obviously the names were spelled phonetically. I have no clue which one, if any, could be Florence’s family, but seeing that the list was made twenty years before her birth, I wonder if one of the names is her grandfather.

Alsh-fra-sa-hubbee (?)
On-tah-cha
A-no-la-honnah
Nok-ne-to-nubbee
Me-ha-tut-tubbee
File-ka-tubbee
Hit h-la-ho-ka
Oka-fa-mah
Lal-a-tubbee
In-co-chubbee
Tak-lam-bee (or Tok-lam-bee)
Me-lo-tubbee
Ho-tubbee
Lou-a-chubbee
I-ath-le-fiah
Anah-chi-hat-tah Co-chin-tubbee
Mok-ah-ho-ka
Ston-a-chubbee
Me-hah-tubbee
Co-mo-tubbee
Con-chi-ho-ka
File-kah-tubbee
Tub-bish
Me-asho-cubbee
Ish-tah-ah-ho-nah
Ho-ti-lubbee
Eah-hoka-tubbe e
Co-chubbee
Pa-la-tubbee
Emah note:..and off hunting about 20 families; and about the same number living near Harrisons who refused to give their names.

52 Ancestors #29 The Musical Earl Culpepper

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “musical.”

Being a professional musician all my life, I’ve always given thought to where my musical talents came from. My mother sang in church. I have a great grandmother and a great great grandfather (different lines) who played a pump organ. I also have a great grandfather from Ireland who played the fiddle. But the one who usually comes to mind is my maternal grandfather Earl Culpepper.

culpepper Earl Culpepper

I have many fond memories of sitting on the front porch with him as he played his guitar and sang. Sometimes he’d even pull out his harmonica and use some contraption around his neck to hold it up to his mouth. He always sang “Hey Good Lookin'” by Hank Williams and sounded a lot like him.

Earl was born in Mississippi on Christmas Eve of 1914 to Sam Culpepper and Annie Blanks. He was the eighth child of the union and a girl follow him. At age 21, he married Ina Inez Burke and they had two daughters – one being my mother. Earl worked his whole life at the Burnley Shirt Factory in Meridian. After his wife died in 1975, he married a lady from the factory who was widowed. They married in 1977. Earl died 5 Mar 1994 at the age of 79 at Anderson Hospital following respiratory failure/aspiration pneumonia following a stroke. He was buried next to Ina at Liberty Baptist Cemetery, Duffee, Newton Co, MS. MS death cert no 9405973.

RIP pawpaw and thanks for the music! ♪♫♪

52 Ancestors – #28 Elly Hays

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is Road Trip.

Marriage document James Rodgers and Elizabeth Hays GreeneCoTN1790Elly Hays was sixteen when she married James Rodgers in Tennessee on 20 Dec 1790. The document to the left is their marriage license. She birthed twelve children.

In 1811, the family packed up and moved to the eastern Mississippi Territory – a place now called Alabama, which wouldn’t become a state until 1819.

You know how difficult it is going on a road trip with little kids in the car? Imagine being on a covered wagon for two months with a dozen of the little rug rats and not a McDonalds in sight.

ban-mcdonalds

This was a time in history when the U. S. was flexing its political muscle and tensions were escalating, leading up to the War of 1812. And little did the Rodgers family know, they were moving into Creek territory. Not only were the Creek Indians fighting the U.S. Government, they had also broken into two factions and were fighting among themselves in a civil war called the Red Stick War. The Rodgers family moved into the middle of a hornet’s nest. They were harassed for years by the marauding Indians, who taunted them and stole their livestock, and the final straw, burnt down their home.

Eventually, in 1818 the family took another long road trip and moved west to Lauderdale County, Mississippi, to the land of the friendly Choctaw Indians.

James died in Mississippi eight years later, and Elly moved back to Clarke County, Alabama and probably lived with her daughter. She died in the 1830s in her 60s in Grove Hill, Alabama. The exact date of her death is unknown. Her burial place is unknown.

Her story is told in detail in my book Elly Hays available at Amazon.

52 Ancestors – #27 Joseph B Culpepper, Patriot

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is Independent.

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I guess there is no better example of Independent than one of my grandfathers who fought for American independence in the American Revolution.

Page 2Joseph B. Culpepper Jr. was a fourth generation American and the third Joseph in the line of fathers and sons. His 3rd great grandfather, John Culpepper, immigrated to America from Kent, England following the English civil war in 1650, though the man was a merchant between Virginia and England and had been to the country countless times before.

The information I have of Joseph shows him born in Anson, North Carolina around 1760-1765, and even though I’m sure that is slightly off, he was still just a kid when he enlisted in the 3rd South Carolina Regiment 03 Aug 1776. His parents were Joseph Culpepper and Piety Gibson. The records I have say that Piety died around 1764, so you can see how the dates are a little off. I bet his father must have been beside himself with worry as Joseph’s brother Benjamin Culpepper also signed up. Benjamin served as Lieutenant under Capt. Peter Burns, Col. Wade Hampton and Gen. Sumter. AA 1683A: M228, DAR SC Roster pg 223. I assume Joseph wasn’t far away, perhaps serving under the same captain. I belong to the DAR under his patriotic service. A028466.

What I find amazing about the history is that my great, great grandfather Joel B Culpepper fought in the American civil war. Joel’s great grandfather was Joseph, our patriot named above. Joseph’s great grandfather was Robert Culpepper, who is the five year old in my latest book, John Culpepper Esquire. Even though the story I wrote, taking place in the 1600s, seem so many generations away, they are really so much closer than we imagine.

Joseph died 05 May 1816. He left behind his father, his wife Nancy Pickett, four sons, and three daughters.

Rest well, soldier.

flag

52 Ancestors #26 Sir Alexander Culpepper

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “Halfway.”

This was a difficult theme, and I looked through half-Indian ancestors, halfway to the furthest ancestor, taking up half my time in research ancestors, anyone with a name that included “half,” and every other angle one could think of. I eventually came up with Sir Alexander Culpepper of Greenway Court, Knight who made it halfway through the English Civil War. The war began in 1642 and ended in 1649. Alexander died at the battle of Bridgewater in August 1645. He was my 11th great uncle.

Alexander was the youngest son of John Culpepper of Wigsell and Elizabeth Sedley, born in 1570. His brothers included Sir Thomas of Hollingbourne and Johannes of Feckenham (my 11th great grandfather). He also had a few sisters. In 1603, he married Mary Scott St Leger, the widow of Anthony St Leger. She was quite a bit older than him and was probably already done birthing children by the time they married, so Alexander never had any children of his own. He did have a step-son who was nearly his age, and the man had a daughter named Katherine whom Alexander raised, actually naming her his daughter in his will. Technically, she was his step-granddaughter.

In his will, he also left his home of Leeds Castle (photo) to his nephew’s minor son (son of the above Katherine who married said nephew. Got that?). Anyway, he did this so if the royalists lost the war, the house wouldn’t be seized by the parliamentarians. Before he died, he changed his will to say if his nephew wasn’t alive to oversee the property, the son would not get the house. It would instead go to his cousin Lord John Culpepper the first baron of Thoresway. I don’t know why he did that. Lord John wasn’t even in the country. He was in Denmark and France guarding the queen and the royal children.

Leeds-Castle

In July 1645, Alexander rode to Bridgewater to help fight against Oliver Cromwell and General Thomas Fairfax and was killed there. I wrote about the battle in my book, “John Culpepper the Merchant,” and made him out to be a war hero, but the truth is he was 75 years old at the time and it is reported that he died of illness at Bridgewater, not of battle. At least he made it halfway through the war.

52 Ancestors – #25 Ole Stennis House

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “The Old Homestead.”

There is a house in Lauderdale County, Mississippi that I would give anything to own. It was built in 1857 by sixty-one-year-old Hays Rodgers Sr (photo). According to the 1860 census, it looks like he had the help of thirteen slaves. It was the first plank house built in the area. Hays was my fourth great grandfather.

Rodgers Hays Sr

He died of typhoid December 1863, so he didn’t enjoy the house for long, and his wife died the following March. The children were grown and gone, most of the boys lost to the Civil War, so the house sat empty until well after the close of the war. In 1869 it was sold at auction on the steps of the Meridian Courthouse to Major Adam T Stennis (hence the name Ole Stennis House). It remained in the Stennis family for one hundred years but was abandoned and covered in vines toward the end of their ownership.

In 1970, the Hover family bought it and restored it. Mr. Hover told me the only thing he really needed to replace was the rotted front porch. The rest of the house was in good shape. I stopped by there in 2012 and he showed me all around. I didn’t feel comfortable taking pictures of the inside, but I snapped some photos as we left.

MS Cemetery 076

If he ever sells that house, I would love to own it.

52 Ancestors #24 The Heirloom

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small and this week’s theme is “Heirloom.”

I wish I could say I have lots of old stuff, but alas, I have nearly nothing. I have my maternal grandfather’s old cigar box, and a silver makeup compact from my paternal great grandmother, but the most prize possession is now gone. For a while I had possession of my maternal grandmother’s sewing machine, but it was lost in a move years ago. She was an amazing seamstress and worked for the Burnley Shirt Factory in Meridian, Mississippi. I’m certain she’s in this Burnley employee picture taken in 1939, but it’s so small, I haven’t been able to find her. I don’t even know that I could even recognize her in a picture from 1939.

Burnley Shirt Factory 1939

She died at the age of 59 in 1975 and is still greatly missed. This is her, holding me.

Ina Inez Burke Culpepper 1915-1975

burke ina and gdaughter lori

52 Ancestors #23 Halloween weddings

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small

This weeks prompt is “Wedding.”

The one wedding date that sticks out to me is that of my 2nd great grandparents William Henry Blanks III and Martha Lettie “Mattie” Carpenter. According to the Lauderdale County, Mississippi Marriage Brides Book 1, page 430, they married October 31, 1867. He was 21 and she was 18. He had lost both of his parents before the age of thirteen, and she had lost her father in the Civil War when she was only fourteen, so I assume they had a deep connection because of that. I wonder if their parenting style was unemotionally cold or over-protective due to their own losses. There is no way they escaped losing their own parents at such young ages without carrying deep emotional scars.

blanks william henry III and mattie carpenter blanks

The reason the date sticks out in my mind is because my trophy husband and I share the same date. After losing both my father and my great grandfather on October 31, we decided we needed some good family mojo on Halloween, so that’s the date we chose. I didn’t know until years later the date was shared. Everything I had seen on William and Mattie said their wedding date was November 1st, but when I finally saw the document, it was actually October 31. I also wonder if our picture will look as awful as their picture in another one hundred forty years. 🙂

crane lori and rob kiss