Saturday, August 24, 2019

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Ancestor with Most Unusual Occupation

From Randy over at Genea-Musings: 

it's Saturday Night - 
time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

 Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)   Which of your ancestors had an unusual occupation?

2)  Tell us in a blog post of your own, in a comment on this blog, or in a Facebook post.

Here's mine:

I think my ancestor with the most unusual occupation is my 9th great-grandfather, George Hubbard, Sr. (1601-1684/85).  

According to the book "1000 Years of Hubbard History, 866-1895," Edward Warren Day, Harlan Page Hubbard, New York, 1895:

"About 1650, or when he left Hartford, he carried with him a commission from the Colonial Government as 'Indian Agent and Trader for the Mattabesett District.'"  

(He had sold his land in Hartford, Connecticut and moved with about 15 other families to Mattabesett, which later became Middletown.)

"One record of him says that he was "highly respected, and of marked integrity and fairness."... "He must have been a man of "marked integrity and fairness" to have been selected by the colony as its Indian Trader.  Much judgment had to be used by this representative of the colony in these dealings.  Promiscuous trading by any one was forbidden, as fire-arms and fire-water were frequently bartered by indiscreet persons, which produced direful results.  This resulted in the selection of one man to do the trading for all.  On his judgment and prudence much depended.  He must have erred, however, at one time for the Colonial Court fined him... for exchanging a gun with an Indian."

I should note that this indiscretion and fine occurred in 1649, either right before or right about the time he was chosen as Indian Trader.

I personally like to think that because he was a man of marked integrity and fairness, he got along well with the Native Americans and treated them fairly.  

This is definitely a job I had never heard of before!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Bennett Wesley Tapley, Jr. 1950-2019

"Mr. Bennett Wesley Tapley, Jr., 69, of Kite passed away Monday, August 5, 2019 at Fairview Hospital in Dublin following an extended illness.
 Mr. Tapley was born May 8, 1950 in Sandersville to the late Bennett Wesley Tapley, Sr. and Mary Kathryn Johnson Tapley.  He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Diane Browning Tapley.  Mr. Tapley loved to go hunting and fishing.  He was a self-taught diesel mechanic and a welder which he passed on to his nephew.   Mr. Tapley was a very intelligent person with an excellent memory. Even though he sacrificed his education, he excelled in his trade.  Mr. Tapley was a member of Powell’s Chapel Methodist Church.
Survivors include his brothers, Randall Tapley, Wayne (Pam) Tapley, Oliver Tapley, all of Kite; sisters, Teresa (Duncan) McEachern, Pam (Bill) Mathis, both of Dublin; several nieces, nephews and many friends.
Graveside Services will be Wednesday, August 7, 2019 11 a.m. at Powell’s Chapel United Methodist Church Cemetery with Reverend Allen Meeks officiating.
The family will receive friends from 10 a.m. till time of service at Powell's chapel United Methodist Church Cemetery.
Condolences may be expressed at
Chapman Funeral Home of Swainsboro is in charge of the arrangements for Mr. Bennett Wesley Tapley, Jr., 69, of Kite."  Obituary courtesy of
My cousin passed away last week.  We were close.  We shared a love of family history.  We shared family.  As his obituary so aptly read, "Mr. Tapley was a very intelligent person with an excellent memory."  That was so true.  Even after his stroke a few years ago, he still remembered anyone or any place I mentioned to him.  He wasn't able to get the words out, but I could see in his eyes that he knew exactly who or what I was talking about.  
Our grandfathers, Bennett Olin Tapley and Lucian Keman Tapley were brothers.  Our fathers, Bennett Wesley Tapley, Sr. and Gilbert Tapley were first cousins.  We visited their house often when I was a child.  Wesley Jr. would be working on a truck (diesel engine, I imagine) in the back yard under the trees and there was a semi-circle of chairs there, and our fathers would sit there and shoot the breeze while Wesley Jr. worked and I played with Pam, his youngest sister.  I like to think that Wesley Jr. just soaked up all the stories his father told out there.  And he never forgot a one of them.  
Wesley Jr was almost grown by the time I came along, so those times I would be there playing, he was in his 20's.  But I remember he was always nice to me.  Spoke to me.  Didn't just ignore me cause I was a kid.  I thought he was cool, like a lot of my older cousins.  
Of course, I grew up, moved away, was busy living my life same as he was living his.  We didn't keep in contact.  For about 25-30 years.  Then my uncle passed away in 2007, and I attended the funeral at Powell's Chapel.  Wesley Jr was there but I didn't recognize him.  Had no idea who he was.  I had to ask my mother.  When she told me it was Wesley Jr., I went right over to him, and it was like no time had passed.  At this point, I was very much into genealogy research, and he was a wealth of information.  Like his father, he told great stories, which just happened to be true stories about our family.  So every time I visited the area, I would visit him.  Even after I moved to North Carolina, I still tried to see him at least once a year when I was down visiting my mother.  He was always welcoming.  Ready with stories, pictures, or artifacts from our family's history. 
When I needed to contact him, I would call him at his "office" - the Penny Saver in Kite.  He was there every morning, drinking coffee, and shooting the breeze.  They would call him to the phone, and I could let him know when I would be in town or who had passed away in the family or whatever information I needed to relay.  
These pictures were taken at his "office" in 2012:

In 2014, his wife passed away, and soon after, he suffered a debilitating stroke.  He could no longer live alone and had to go into a nursing home.  I visited him in Dublin.  Then he got moved to Metter.  Mom and I went to seem him there, for what turned out to be the last time, about a year ago.  He recently was moved to Wrightsville and closer to home.  I was excited and planning to visit him next month.  But I didn't get the chance.  Due to distance and other variables, I was unable to attend his funeral.  My heart has another crack.  

Wesley, I am sorry I wasn't there enough the last 5 years.  I am sorry I wasn't there at all the last year.  I'm terribly sorry I wasn't there to tell you goodbye.  I hope you know my heart and know that I loved you, respected you, enjoyed my time with you, and I look forward to seeing you again and hearing just one more family story.  

You are reunited with your beloved Diane, your parents, Wesley and Kathryn, and your grandparents, who I am sure doted on you.  You can speak, walk, or even jog if you wish.  You are no longer sitting bored and lonely in a nursing home.  You feel warmth and light all the time.  I so want to believe you are happy.  I can see your smile in my mind's eye, and I hope you're wearing a big and magical one.

Wesley Jr and Bennett Olin Tapley, circa 1954

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Where was I in 2000?

From Randy over at Genea-Musings: 

it's Saturday Night - 
time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

 Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  Do you recall what you were doing in 2000?  Family, school, work, hobbies, technology, genealogy, vacations, etc?  If this doesn't work for you, what about your parents?

2)  Tell us in a blog post of your own, in a comment on this blog, or in a Facebook post.

Here's mine:

Because the memory is the first thing to go, the only way I could remember what went on in my life in the year 2000, was to go back and look at pictures.  Seems it was a year of change for me...

I turned 33 in June of that year.  We had just went through the whole Y2K hoopla.  I remember as a kid, figuring out how old I would be in the year 2000 and thinking 33 was soooo old.  How little did I know?!

In 2000, I was married to Tracy, and we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary in April...  hmmmm, the seven year itch?  I don't remember it.  We lived in Oxford, Georgia, right outside of Covington.  I was working as a recruiter at Rockdale Hospital... and I HATED it.  

I had just started scrapbooking the year before, so I attended and hosted several crops for my friends throughout the year.  I had a good husband who would cook for us when we cropped at our house.  

There was an ice storm in January that year.  That's what Georgia gets.  Not snow.  Ice.  Which is why we can't drive in it, and we're stuck in our houses.  It must have been some kind of cold cause our pool had ice on the surface!

Tracy and I liked to travel when we could so we went to north Georgia and hiked to Amicalola Falls in February.  Jekyll and Sapelo Islands in April.  Visited all the lighthouses along the North Carolina coast in May and June.  And spent July 4th on Lake Hartwell!  Those were the 

We loved to have pool parties in those days, too.  Several throughout the summer.  We had a 4th of July blast this year.  

I would travel on my own, too.  I went to Alabama to see my best friend, Karen, and her new home. 

We had to stop traveling so much though... cause the biggest change that year was that we opened a scrapbook store!  Say Cheese of Conyers was a franchise store.  I had trained under the owner in Augusta.  We sold supplies and taught classes.  Our grand opening was in August of 2000.  I still have friends that I met through my store.  It was so much work, but it was also a lot of fun.  

I haven't scanned the pictures after October of 2000.  But I am sure it was time filled with Mexican dinners with Tracy's parents, Thanksgiving and Christmas with my parents in Augusta, and lots of scrapping and rearranging the store in between!

That was fun to take a walk down memory lane.  Years tend to blend together as we get older, but it was nice to be reminded of when certain events took place.  It was also fun to see how young and SKINNY I was!  

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Liz's Surname Table

So I came across a pin on Pinterest about creating a Surname Table.  The article stated this table would be a big help in finding common surnames among DNA matches.  I can see some use in basic genealogy research also, such as seeing the "holes" in your research and trying to remember all the surnames.  As for myself, I get so focused on certain surnames, I forget about some of others!  This helps me see at a glance what surnames are in my tree so hopefully I won't overlook a mention of one of them on my next research trip.

This was a little tricky for me, especially the 4th great-grandparent area.  Maybe it's because there are so many I don't know or that it was hard to find a format in FTM 2017 that made me see the names easily.  Either way, hopefully, it is correct now. 

My great-grandmother, Bessie Alice Carter Ranney was adopted.  So the cells with the * indicates her adopted line so I don't need to research those surnames. 

My father's paternal line and my mother's paternal line overlap.  So the ### in a cell indicates a repeat surname. 

You will see a couple of names mentioned twice.  This is because they are in different lines, and I am not sure yet if they are the same family. 

And of course, empty (blank) cells indicate I have some more research to do!

The article I got the idea from is located here:  our-surname-tables-for-dna-research.  I was confused by her video (because I don't have that cool fan tree she used!), but it gave me the general idea, and I figured it out from there.  The order of the columns are Paternal Father, Paternal Mother, Maternal Father, and Maternal Mother.

Try it out.  Add a tool to your genealogy toolbox.  Let me know if you have questions, and I'll try my best to help. 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

10,000 and growing...

Yesterday, I entered the 10,000th family member into my family tree software.  Wow!  I can't imagine 10,000 people in one place. 

I had neglected my genealogy for a few years.  Back in April/May, I had some time, "met" a couple of new cousins online, and got back to researching.  At that time I had about 7,500 people in my database.  So I have entered about 2,500 people since then.  I've been busy.  The dust in my house would attest to that! 

I have tracked cousins to Kentucky, Missouri, Texas, Indiana, Michigan... and now back to my current home, North Carolina.  And when I say my current home, I mean right down to the town I live in - Durham.  I have found an arm of the Tapley family who settled in the Durham area, Roxboro in Person County, and Granville County, North Carolina (neighboring counties to Durham).  When it warms back up, I have several cemeteries to visit!

Unfortunately, I do not know much about the 10,000th person I entered into FTM 2017 last night.  Just the basics I found on and  (My favorite places to search, by the way.)

Sherman Lewis Hunt was born October 15, 1909 in Granville County, North Carolina to Melvin and Eliza Hunt.  In 1910 and 1920, the family lived in Tally Ho, Granville County.  (I have not heard of this community!). 

Sherman married my 7th cousin, Nina Ozelle Davis, on August 17, 1929 in Halifax, Virginia.  Hmmm... I wonder why they went to Virginia to get married.  Could it have something to do with the fact that Nina was only 16 years old?

[My relationship calculator to Nina:

  Our nearest common relatives are Hosea Tapley and Sarah Moore.  Nina was descended from Hosea and Sarah's oldest son, Hosea Jr., whereas I was descended from their 3rd child and Hosea Jr.'s brother, Joel. 

Want the full breakdown to see if you recognize any of the names?  Sure!  Let's find a connection!

  Nina's line:

    Hosea Tapley Jr and Sarah Green
    Hosea Tapley III and Lucy Pryor
    Sarah Moore Tapley and Daniel Farmer
    Sarah Mary Farmer and Thomas William Blackard
    Sarah Jane Blackard and  William H Wade
    John Pumfrey Wade and Peloponnesia P Lunsford
    Lula Jane Wade and William Ruffin Davis
    Nina Ozelle Davis

My line:

    Joel Tapley and Mary Avent
    Newhampton Tapley and Unknown
    Sarah Tapley and Canneth Swain
    George Washington Tapley and Elizabeth MNU
    James Madison Tapley and Elizabeth Rebecca "Becky" Page
    Lusion Keman Tapley and Nealie Vermell Drake
    Gilbert Earl Tapley and Linda Irene Tapley
    Mary Elizabeth Tapley (that's me!)

  Whew!  That's a long way apart.  A good distance.  Does that still make us cousins?  We all have our own opinion on that.  While I know that we most likely do not share any DNA that far out, I still consider us cousins.  We still come from the same family tree.]

Now back to Sherman.  According to the 1930 census, Sherman and Nina were living in Dutchville in Granville County in their own place.

He and Nina had 5 children that I know of:

  Ozell, born about 1931.  (I only found one reference to this child - on the 1940 census.)
  Pella Jane, born October 20, 1931 there in Granville County.  She married Johnnie Wesley Clayton and passed away January 23, 2013 in Durham.
  Lois, born about 1934
  Bobby Lewis, born September 26, 1936 in Granville County.  He married Iva Mae King and passed away June 28, 2006 in Chapel Hill.
 Josephine, born around the 1st of April 1940.  She passed away on the 14th of April from a congenital heart defect.  Bless her heart - she lived just long enough to be counted on the 1940 census. 

Speaking of the 1940 census... I found that Sherman and his entire family (him, his wife, and their 5 children) were living with Sherman's parents.  I wonder why?

Sherman lived his entire life in Granville County.  He passed away in Oxford on December 1, 1984.  He, along with Nina, are buried at Meadowview Memorial Park in Oxford. 

So there's the sum total of my knowledge about my 10,000th family member, Sherman Lewis Hunt.  To be honest, I was a little disappointed that this milestone person turned out not be a "blood" relative but rather a relative by marriage.  That's OK.  Welcome to the family. Thank you for joining us.  I'm glad you did. 

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Ancestors Geneameme

From Randy over at Genea-Musings: 

it's Saturday Night - 
time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

 Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  Jill Ball created a 40 question "Ancestors Geneameme" in 2011, and Linda Stufflebean recently expanded it to 70 questions on her Empty Branches on the Family Tree blog.  

2)  Let's do Linda's expanded list this week for SNGF.

3)  Copy and paste the list of questions below and replace my answers with your own.

4)  Share your answers as a comment on this blog post, in your own blog post, or on Facebook or Google+.   Please leave a comment and link to your answer in a comment on this blog post.

Here's mine:

  1. Can name my 16 great-great grandparents.   YES and NO - I know all given names - I do not know one maiden name.
  2. Can name my 32 great great great grandparents   NO
  3. Can name over 50 direct ancestors  YES
  4. Have photos or portraits of my 8 great grandparents  NO
  5. Have an ancestor who was married more than three times YES
  6. Have an ancestor who was a bigamist   NO (not that I know of)
  7. Met all four of my grandparents  NO (not my paternal grandfather)
  8. Met one or more of my great grandparents  NO
  9. Bear an ancestor’s given name/s  YES
  10. Named a child after an ancestor  NO
  11. Have an ancestor from Great Britain or Ireland  YES
  12. Have an ancestor from Asia  NO
  13. Have an ancestor from continental Europe   YES
  14. Have an ancestor from Africa  NO
  15. Have an ancestor who was an agricultural laborer  YES
  16. Have an ancestor who had large land holdings   YES
  17. Have an ancestor who was a holy man – minister, priest, rabbi   YES
  18. Have an ancestor who was a midwife  NO (not that I know of)
  19. Have an ancestor who was an author    NO
  20. Have an ancestor with the surname Wong, Kim, Suzuki or Ng    NO
  21. Have an ancestor with the surname Smith, Murphy or Jones   NO
  22. Have an ancestor with a surname beginning with X  NO
  23. Have an ancestor with a forename beginning with Z  NO
  24. Have an ancestor born on 25th December  NO
  25. Have an ancestor born on New Year’s Day   YES
  26. Have an ancestor who shares your day and month of birth  NO
  27. Have blue blood in your family lines  NO
  28. Have a parent who was born in a country different from my country of birth    NO
  29. Have a grandparent who was born in a country different from my country of birth  NO
  30. Can trace a direct family line back to the 18th century  YES
  31. Can trace a direct family line back to the 17th century  YES
  32. Can trace a direct family line back to the 16th century  NO
  33. Have seen signatures of some of my great grandparents  YES
  34. Have ancestors who signed with an X (or other mark)  YES
  35. Have a grandparent or earlier ancestor who went to university   NO 
  36. Have an ancestor convicted of a criminal offense    NO
  37. Have an ancestor who was a victim of crime  YES
  38. Have shared an ancestor’s story online or in a magazine/periodical  YES
  39. Have published a family history online or in print  NO
  40. Have visited an ancestor’s home from the 19th or earlier centuries  YES
  41. Have a family Bible from the 19th century  NO
  42. Have a family Bible from the 18th century or earlier  NO
  43. Have an ancestor who was part of a multiple birth (twins, etc.)  YES
  44. Have a family member who closely resembles an ancestor  YES
  45. Have an ancestor who owned their own business  YES
  46. Have an ancestor who belonged to a trade guild  NO
  47. Have an ancestor who moved more than 100 miles away from his/her birth home, EXCLUDING emigration to another country  YES
  48. Have an ancestor who gave birth to twelve or more children  YES
  49. Have an ancestor with a rare/unusual/uncommon forename  YES
  50. Have an ancestral family who changed their surname  YES
  51. Have a passenger list or travel manifest for an ancestor  NO
  52. Have an ancestor who was adopted  YES
  53. Have an ancestor who adopted a child   NO
  54. Have a naturalization record for an ancestor  NO
  55. Have an ancestor who received a military pension  YES
  56. Have a school record or school census for an ancestor  YES
  57. Have an ancestor with a gravestone still in existence from the 18th century  YES
  58. Have an ancestor with a gravestone still in existence from the 17th century or earlier  YES
  59. Have an ancestor who had only one child who survived to adulthood  YES
  60. Are descended twice from one couple  NO
  61. Are descended three times or more from one couple  NO
  62. Are descended from an American president or other political figure  YES (if you count local offices)
  63. Are descended from a person famous in history, other than in politics  NO
  64. Have an ancestor with a rare/unusual/unique surname  YES 
  65. Have an ancestor who you have found mentioned in a pre-1870 newspaper  YES
  66. Can name the ship on which at least one ancestor emigrated  NO
  67. Have a female ancestor who worked outside the home pre-World War II  NO
  68. Know of at least one ancestor who returned to the ancestral home after emigration  NO
  69. Know of at least one ancestor who permanently returned to the ancestral home after emigration   NO
  70. Have an ancestor who was survived by 50 or more grandchildren  NO
So I have 31 (and 1/2) YES out of 70.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - 100 word Genealogy Challenge

From Randy over at Genea-Musings: 

it's Saturday Night - 
time for more Genealogy Fun!!!

 Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  This SNGF is based on the 100 Word Challenge ( that school children are participating in around the world.  They are given a word or phrase to write a story about in one hundred words.

1)  Write a short 100 word story using the phrase ",,,the most interesting ancestor I have..." in 100 words.  [Hint:  If you write it in a word processor, you can use Tools > Word Count (or similar) to count words]

2)  Share the story with all of us by writing your own blog post, writing a comment on this blog post, or put it in a Google Plus Stream or Facebook Status or Note.  Please leave a comment on this post so others can find it.

Here's mine:

My uncle, John Russell Tapley, is my most interesting ancestor.  He was born 05 Jul 1917 in rural Johnson County, Georgia.  He was 18 when his father died, and while he loved his mother and was the “glue” that held the family together, he was also known to be quite mischievous.  He served in Europe in World War II and came home with PTSD.  He was a joker, had a fiery temper, and loved his family fiercely.  He never had children, but many nieces and nephews loved him like a father.  He died of a heart attack at age 50.