San Diego – Maritime Museum II

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Random Pic of the Month

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Walking trail through a forest in North Carolina.
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San Diego – Maritime Museum I

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Collins Family Genealogy II

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Update to Collins Family Genealogy I.

In an earlier post, I described my Collins line back to Hezekiah Collins and Sarah Jane Wood.
This post focuses on Sarah’s side of the family, at least in part.

Many years ago, I visited my grandmother’s cousin in Oregon. While she wasn’t able to provide me with any information further back than what I already had, she gave me a copy of a letter from someone in the family, and that was that.

At some point, I noticed the letter was from William Collins, but as he wasn’t my ancestor, I didn’t really focus on the letter much. Plus, it was all about people I didn’t know.

Flash forward an embarrassing number of years, when I was finally getting all of my paperwork into file folders, and I ran across the letter, again.

Now that I was more familiar with family members, and valued information on anything I could find, I looked at the letter, and realized who William Collins was: my 3x great-grandfather’s eldest brother, and the second child of Hezekiah and Sarah!

In fact, the letter was written to Sarah, my 4x great-grandmother, and the people mentioned whom I did not recognize were evidently family and neighbors she knew!

Hezekiah and Sarah had married in Albemarle County, Virginia in 1832. They then moved to Lewis County, Virginia (now West Virginia) and had all their children, except the last.

Apparently, Sarah not only kept in contact with the folks she left behind, but William went to visit all he could, and wrote Sarah about who he saw and who had passed.

The letter was written from Albemarle County in 1888. I have been able to track down some folks by following clues in the letter, but the handwriting and spelling leave much to interpretation, which creates its own challenge in turn.

The best I can tell is that Sarah may be a sibling to Richard Wood, Ransom Wood, and Eliza Loving. All three stayed in Albemarle County, with Eliza specifically in Scottsville. Benjamin Britt is probably a cousin, as is William Wood.

Based on this very loose evidence, I hope to soon determine who Sarah’s parents were.

I’m so grateful to have this piece of the puzzle… and to have had the opportunity to analyze it a second time!

If you are related to the Wood and/or Collins line, let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

April Fools Day

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April Fools Day used to be a day of carefully thought-out jokes or pranks.

Now, the pranks are either really lame or potentially dangerous.

Maybe we could have Court Jesters Day, instead.

Obviously, the days of the revered court jester have long since passed, unless you are a regular attendee of Renaissance Faires.

So let’s bring back the costuming, the pageantry, the bad puns, the merrymaking, the laughter, the music, and the physical humor, and this April 1st, let’s all celebrate National Court Jester Day!

Don’t forget your whistles and bells!

Texas Spring Pic

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Happy Spring, y’all.

Brick Wall of the Month: Elijah Perry

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My brick wall for the month of March is Elijah Perry.

Elijah Perry was born about 1823 in Kentucky. Probably. At least, that’s what is indicated on the 1860 US Census. Maybe he was born somewhere else, and some when else. Whoever reported the information to the census taker didn’t even report his wife’s name (Dinah). She is represented by just a squiggle.

Elijah and Dinah married in Missouri in 1851.

Shortly thereafter, he traveled overland on horseback with a few friends to California to try his hand at mining. Evidently he did okay, because he sent for Dinah and her two children (George and Delia) to join him in California, which they did, sailing from Texas around the Horn of South America to reach San Francisco.

Elijah and Dinah had three other children (Sarah, John, and Tommy) together.

Soon after the 1860 Census was taken, Elijah joined the Union Army (in 1861), traveled with his cavalry regiment to Arizona, where he died of scurvy in 1862, almost exactly a year after he joined up.

Though the history is sketchy, I do know a little of what happened to Elijah between 1851 and 1862, as described above.

But what happened before that?

Where did Elijah come from? Was it really Kentucky? If so, what county?

Who were his parents? Where were they from?

Why was he so eager to join the Army, despite a wife and five kids at home?

Had he already served during the Mexican War? He was the right age, if he was born in 1823, and there was a soldier named Elijah Perry who fought in that war. I just don’t have enough information about either Elijah to know if they are, in fact, the same person.

I welcome any ideas and thoughts about how to discover more regarding Elijah Perry!

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