Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Uncle Fed

OK, I admit it. I have a bit of a crush on 3rd great grand uncle Frederick "Fed" Moser. Maybe because he is the only one in the family I've been able to find information on because, well, he made some bad decisions. But I am still convinced he was a good man. He was the younger brother of my not so good 3rd great grandfather James P. Moser.

Fed was born in Chesterfield County, SC circa 1840 and raised in Lancaster County, SC, moving to Pickens, SC with his entire family around 1865. Some say he was never married but we know better. Some say he was a trouble maker but I think he was what we would call today a "free spirit". The last known existence I have of Fed is in 1884 when he was stabbed and hopefully survived. I am in touch with a descendant of the Moser Family in Pickens and in her family records it says Fed died in an abandoned house sitting by a fire to keep warm and his feet caught on fire. My poor Fed. It also says he was never married but we have a marriage record of Frederick to Ellen Adenie Ayers in Franklin County, GA, which is near upstate SC. He is also on the 1880 census with Ellen. And I met another cousin whose 2nd great grandmother was fathered by Fed and she believes they were married round 1869 but we have no proof. But her 2nd great grandmother knew who her father was, and her children did, as well. And this cousin connected to the family through DNA.


The family said he would steal to help the poor

Catherine Howard was not connected to Fed, just part of the news

 We do know the family was very poor, that few of them could read or write. We know they left Lancaster, SC, due to some trouble with a brother. I believe this was William Postell Moser and that he was hanged in Lancaster in the mid 1860's for horse thievery. Fed was a wanderer that could not seem to settle down. He was a thinker. He had three brothers that served as Confederates in the war, but there is no record of Fed in the war even though he was of age. 

Did Fed survive the stabbing? Did he die when his feet caught on fire? We may never know. The 1890 census was destroyed but apparently Fed didn't make it to the 1900.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Twelve Confederate Grandfathers and a Union Sympathizer

My Southern roots go deep. All of my ancestors that I am aware of (there are a couple brick walls) have been here since the revolution. I have been able to document 12 grandfathers that served in the Civil War. Only two of them lost their lives, both killed in action.


 
Paternal 3rd Great Grandfather Confederate Soldiers



·                     James P. Moser
     Apr 1833 - Jun 1910
     Lancaster County, SC Confederate - Enlisted as Private Feb 23, 1861 Co C 1st SC Regulars and Co.G De Saussure Light Artillery. Served four years until surrender. Pension application records for James and widow in my possession.

·                     Samuel Montgomery Small
     15 Feb 1839 - 13 May 1906
     Lancaster County,SC Enlisted as Private in Company C, Hampton Legion Infantry Regiment South Carolina. Surrendered Company C, Hampton Legion Infantry Regiment South Carolina on 9 Apr 1865 at Appomattox, VA.

·                     Levi P. Whitaker
     1918 - Oct 1901
     Lancaster County,SC Enlisted as Private at Wild Cat, February 3, 1863, on muster roll of December 31, 1864. Co. C Butler's 1st Regulars SC Infantry. Died at the Old Soldiers' Home on Sullivans Island, SC. Buried with CSA Headstone Union Baptist Church Cemetery, Lancaster, Taxihaw, SC. Headstone application in my possession.

·                     Peter Washington Plyler (out of wedlock)
     28 May 1835 - 13 Dec 1862 Fredericksburg, VA
     Enlisted as Sergeant 15 March 1862 in Union County, NC Co. E 48th Infantry
     Promoted to Full Lieutenant on 26 Nov 1862. Shot and killed instantly on 13 Dec 1862.  Battle at Fredericksburg, VA. Body was brought home to be buried with family. Widow pension application record on file.

Thought to be Peter Plyler
 
·                     James Alexander Pate Sr.
     born abt 1810 - survived war
     Enlisted as Private 1st Regiment NC Infantry Co. B.

·                     John Ellison Deas
     26 Sep 1825 - 3 Dec 1880
     Enlisted as a Corporal. Enlisted in Company C, Chesterfield, SC Light Artillery Regiment or as Private 48th Regiment NC Infantry Co. E      

·                     Alfred Jesse Algerton
     22 Apr 1811 - 22 Jan 1906
     No record-Lost two sons in the war. Filed with the US Southern Claims Commission in 1876 and commission was granted: 
     The main stipulations for qualifying to receive a reimbursement were that: the claimant had to prove loss of property, that he had supported the Union during the war and that he not provided any assistance to the Confederates. Nearly 22,300 cases were filed by individuals and families, as well as businesses, institutions,churches, and other organizations. Not only do the names and locations of the claimants provide background information about the Civil War, but each claimant was required to provide witnesses. The witnesses had to answer the same 80+ questions that the claimant had to answer. Many of these witnesses were former slaves whose names rarely appear on any other legal document from the Civil War era. They also    provided names and dates for family members who often lived on other plantations.
         
·                     John Pleasant Dees
     1822 - 1895
     Enlisted as Corporal, Captain Kelly's Company, Chesterfield,SC, Light Artillery

·                     William Thomas Rorie (step-great grandfather)
     30 Sep 1845 - 13 Jul 1924
     Anson County,NC Enlisted in Company A, North Carolina 23rd Infantry Regiment on 22 May 1861. POW Captured by General Sheridan's forces, 19 September 1864, at Winchester, Virginia.
    
WT Rorie front center sitting


Maternal 3rd Great Grandfather Confederate Soldiers

·                     John Elliott
     Feb 1827 - 15 May 1915
     Enlisted as Private Mar 19, 1862 Catawba County, NC. Enlisted in Company I, 49th Infantry Regiment North Carolina on 16 Apr 1862.

John Elliott early 1900s with great grandchildren


·                     Jesse Barkley
     21 Aug 1826 - 16 Oct 1894
     There is a J.R. and a J.M. Barkley for Iredell, NC, but I do not have his middle initial. He was taxed $1 for a buggy in 1865.

·                     George Washington Lafayette Belk
     16 Mar 1829 - 14 Oct 1863 Battle of Bristoe Station, VA
     Enlisted as Private, Union County, NC 15 Mar 1862. Enlisted in Company E, North Carolina 48th Infantry Regiment on 19 Apr 1862. Killed in Action 14 Oct 1863 at Bristoe Station, VA. Memorial gravestone New Hope United Methodist Cemetery, Union County, NC with wife and her second husband Charles Fisher Helms. Do not know if body was returned for burial.



·                     Charles Fisher Helms (step-3rd great grandfather)
     21 Jan 1842 - 29 Jun 1918
     Enlisted as Private in Company B, North Carolina 26th Infantry Regiment on 09 Aug 1861.
    
     Tuesday, June 23, 1903, THE MONROE JOURNAL (Union County, N.C.)
     “I guess we old soldiers won’t get a great many more dinners and reunions,” said Mr.     Fisher Helms, an old soldier.  Mr. Helms was a member of the famous 26th North   Carolina Regiment, and was in a few yards of the gallant young Col. Burgwyn when the latter was killed, and himself was shot on the same field.  He was wounded five times    during the war and yet carried a ball in his body.  “Yes,” he continued, “I hope all      the boys come to Monroe on the Fourth.  I want to come to accept the invitation of the people of Monroe, and to see as many as possible of the old soldiers again.”

·                     James Mason Richardson
     Sep 1840 - 8 Feb 1904
     Enlisted as Private 2 Dec 1862, Camp Mangum, NC. Enlisted in Company B, North Carolina 26th Infantry Regiment on 29 Dec 1862

Mr. J. Mace RICHARDSON, who formerly lived in Buford township and long enjoyed the reputation of a fighting man, died on Monday of last week of dropsy, in Lancaster county. He moved to that locality about four years ago from Rock Hill. A wife and six children survive him. The body was taken to Rock Hill and buried beside one of his sons. 

Mr. J. M. Richardson, of the Creek section, died Monday from an abesess on the lung, caused it is supposed from injuries receieved by being thrown from his wagon by a runnaway team about two years ago. He was about 63 years of age and leaves a wife and six children. He had been confined to his home for several months. His remains were taken to Rock Hill yesterday for interment.


·                     Nathaniel "Nathan" Abernathy - no record found
     1814 - 1870

·                     ? Tolbert ? Talbert ? - name unknown

·                     Ezekiel Collett - No Record Found (Ezekiel Collett record is his nephew)
     1813 - died aft 1880 Zion, Greensville, VA

·                     Jacob William Correll - No Record Found
     27 Sep 1827 - 7 Apr 1899

Jacob William Correll
    







 

William Atlas Belk - Knocker Up

I recently found out from my great aunt, age 95, that my great grandfather William Atlas "Buck" Belk was a Knocker Up for the Alcoa Mill in Badin, NC. Great Grandpa was a painter by trade, but in the early 1020s when times were hard he took the job with Alcoa. A "Knocker Up" was in charge of making sure everyone got up in the morning to go to work. He would go knock on doors and windows, getting people out of bed and on their way to the mill. My great grandfather died four years before I was born but I've always heard he was an early riser and always happy, not to mention a big flirt. I can just imagine him getting a sneak peak of a lady in her shift and going on about it. I guess present day Southerners would describe him as a "mess".

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Ancestor Namesakes

Figuring out who my ancestors are named after has always been a fun past time for me. The best one yet is the family of my great great grandparents Allen and Cornelia "Neely" Correll Collett. 

Their first child was Lillian Fostina and I have not been able to figure out where that name came from.

Their second child was Jacob Edward. Neely's  father was Jacob, as was her brother,  and her brother Charles' middle name was Edward.

The next son was Joseph Allen, named for his father. I do not know his father Allen's middle name but I do know it starts with a J. Could be Joseph? 

Daughter Harriett was born next, named after her grandmother, Neely's mother. 

The third and last son was Charles Fisher. Fisher was the middle name of Neely's brother and the name he went by. And Charles was the name of her brother whose middle named was used for Jacob. I think she used her two favorite brothers names but mixed them up. Jacob Edward was named for Jacob Fisher and Charles Edward, and Charles Fisher was named for the same two. Are you with me?

Next was my dear great grandmother Annie. She was named after her great grandmother Annie Groner, mother of Harriett.

The last born child was Molly who is still a mystery. Maybe they thought it was a cute name.

Jacob 'Fisher" Correll

Charles Edward Correll


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Maternal Grandfather Avery Lee Abernathy

My maternal grandfather Avery Lee Abernathy was was born in Newton, NC, on June 15, 1909, to Bertis Abernathy and Prudie Elliott. According to his birth certificate, he was delivered at home by midwife Lucy Ramseur. The family eventually moved to Rowan County, where they all worked at Cannon Mills.

Prudie Elliott Abernathy


Bert Abernathy




Avery and his wife Vera Belk Abernathy worked at Cannon Mills in China Grove their whole lives. I remember visiting as a child, waiting for the midnight whistle to go off so we could run to meet Grandpa at the gate. He'd be carrying his large metal lunch pail, and when we got back to the house we'd sit on the front porch and play with his tools. I still have a scar on my finger from the time he told me to stop playing with that pocket knife or I was going to cut myself!

Grandpa liked swinging in his porch swing, reading comic books and watching Days Of Our Lives. He was also known for his "Red Eye Gravy" and we had a little tune for it, "Want some red eye gravy? Get the recipe from Avery!" One of the funniest stories about him was told to me recently by his youngest living son, Clinton Abernathy. Uncle Clinton told me that when they were boys Grandpa would come home from the mill everyday and sit in his swing reading his comic books. I guess this was his way to unwind when working 1st shift. One day his two oldest sons, Buddy and Charles, took a string and tied it to the swing, ran it across the street and tied it to the screen door of a cranky neighbor. Everyone remembers how those old wooden screen doors bang? Every time Grandpa would swing forward that door would open and slam shut. The boys were hiding under the porch watching, and surely laughing their stinking little heads off. Cranky neighbor man came out to investigate, grabbed the string, and followed it all the way to Grandpa's swing.  I fell certain he knew it was those rotten Abernathy boys (there were FOUR of them and one sweet daughter, my mom) and not my Grandpa.

Harold "Buddy" Abernathy
Charles Abernathy



Grandpa's parents Bert and Prudie are buried at West Lawn Cemetery in China Grove, Bert is marked but Prudie isn't. Two of their daughters are also buried there and not marked. Sad. Grandpa had five brothers and three sisters. One of his brothers, Baby Ervin, died as an infant and is buried at Chestnut Hill Cemetery in Salisbury. Grandpa, a soft heart, would always tear up when he spoke of his baby brother. The other brothers are Fred Monroe, Ernest Edward, Everett Lewis and Carl Hampton. The sisters were Jessie, Annie Belle and Margaret "Odessa". The only sibling I knew was Odessa, and she was loved by all of us.

Fred Monroe Abernathy
Odessa on right with sister-in-law Vera

I have not been able to locate Bert's parents or a death date on them. Their names are Mitchell Abernathy and Nancy Jane Talbert or Tolbert. She went by Nancy or Jane and has been hard to trace. They lived in Gastonia and Mitchell disappears off the census after 1900. In 1913 there is a Jane Abernathy, widow of Mitchell A. living in Salisbury (according to the US City Directory). That is the last record I have found on who I believe to be my 2nd great grandmother Nancy Jane Abernathy. My guess is after Mitchell died she moved to Salisbury to be close to her daughter Fanny, who is also in the city directory. I hope to visit the city cemetery in Salisbury soon to see if they have records. I do know that neither of them is buried where their son Manuel Alvin Abernathy in Gastonia was buried.

Here is Avery, a very sweet man, wonderful father, member of South China Grove Baptist Church where he sang in the choir, lifetime cotton mill worker, surf fisher, lover of animals and children, and a horrendous snorer.

Avery Lee Abernathy loved the beach

One of my favorites - how I remember him

A young Avery with wife Vera Belk Abernathy

Avery and Vera

South China Grove Baptist Church Choir - Avery back row left

Charles, Buddy, Avery, Vera, David, Ann, Clinton

The author on right with little sister, Mimi the dog and my grandparents

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Met a new (to me) cousin!

A couple years ago I started corresponding with a distant cousin named Jim Mosier. His great grandfather and my great, great grandfather were brothers. Jim saw some of my memorials on find-a-grave and contacted me, and we've been cousins ever since. Last month he drove down from VA to visit me in NC and we spent two days traveling around SC to graveyards and visiting family members.





Our grandfathers are buried at this cemetery, Union Baptist Church Cemetery, in Lancaster, SC. They were raised adjacent to the church at the old Tom Small Farm, until their mother died and they were separated to live with relatives.




Jim's great grandfather Thomas Milburn Calvin Mosier had a farm in Cassatt, SC, where some of his descendants still live. After leaving Lancaster we drove to Cassatt to look up Jim's family. We met his cousin Jack, and Jack's wife Jan and son Kyle. Jack had to go to work but Jan and Kyle were so warm and welcoming to us. They let us walk all over the old farm land, take photos and then invited into the home to look through 100's of photos. 

We also stopped at the Cassatt County Store. Jim's Uncle Charley Mosier used to own it but he was robbed and murdered at his house in the early 1970's after leaving the store one night. It has been told that before he died he said they didn't get his money, which he was known to carry a lot of. We met a man in the store who told us a very heart warming memory about Uncle Charley.

It was a great visit, and Jim and I are definitely cousins for life now!

.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Lost Ancestors

One of my favorite past times is visiting antique stores. I always feel sorry for all the "lost ancestors" wishing I could find a way to get them back to their family. I also like to purchase old frames for my own photos. If I find a photo that is labeled with a name, for a reasonable price, I will buy it and try to research the person to find a descendant. 

The photo below is labeled "David Wesley Bryant was born the 19th of October 1905. This is the 27th of April 1906. He weighs now 24 lbs. I found several people on ancestry.com tracing this family and sent them messages but never heard back from them. I am not looking to get paid, I get satisfaction from getting these photos back where they belong - with family!






Last week I found a frame that I really liked. There was a Mecklenburg County Reading Certificate in it:



Behind the certificate was this photo of an old service station. I was able to see the date of 1928 on the plate of the old car, and could read the name of the service station so I did some research. It turns out the reader above was the niece of the owner of the service station, Springs McCoy. I did locate the daughter of a Springs McCoy but it was the wrong one. But I do have a new 86 year old friend now!


Below are three photos I recently found in old frames I bought at an antique store in Albemarle, North Carolina. They are not marked. The photos of the man and woman were in similar frames bought from the same dealer so I am guessing they may be related. The woman's photo was taped to the frame with 1923 Christmas stamps (you can see them behind the edge of the photo). The baby was from a different dealer.