The topic for the Carnival of Genealogy is:
Women’s History! The COG traditionally honors women in March each year in conjunction with National Women’s History Month. This is the perfect opportunity to write a biography about a woman on your family tree, research an aspect of history that relates to women, or create a collage of photos featuring the women in your family.
I’ve decided it would be nice to try to start writing for the COG again. For this edition, I would like to feature some of the women who helped me out tremendously in getting started in my genealogy. These women not only answered my questions the best they could but they also found others who could help me out also. I am so thankful for their help!
First off, my mother would definitely have to be in this list. Who’s the first person you go to? Granted, Mom didn’t know that much because her mother died just before Mom’s 6th birthday. Still, she gave me what info she could and pointed me in the right direction to find more.
One of the most influential women in getting my research kick-started was my Aunt Rae! I used to look so forward to driving down to Tyler, Texas on the weekends and seeing her. She would tell me stories of how it was growing up in the Blackjack community. I remember one story of her sister, my Aunt Ellen, scolding the “revenoors” to leave Uncle Bill’s still alone or he was going to get them!
Aunt Rae eventually contacted Sylvia Bishop, her first cousin, and was able to get some information that really help me get going. Although the information proved to be half-true, it was enough to get me going.
That leads me to Debbie Mills. Debbie Mills is my 4th-cousin. She lives in Wisconsin and is a descendant of my 2nd-great-grandfather’s brother. Whew, that was a mouthful! …. I was searching for the information that my Aunt Rae had given me and came upon a post by Debbie that mentioned Forbes who moved from New York to Wisconsin. I shot her a message and she was kind enough to reply and let me know that I was indeed on the right track. Her info allowed me to go back to 1726 on my Forbes line.
My Aunt Juanita was also very helpful in getting me information in my research. She was one of the few who basically opened her house unto me. I could visit any time and she would talk about anything I wanted to talk about. She allowed me to look at her pictures and would go to the local printer and make copies of pictures so she could send them to me. She invited people she knew on the Stevenson side to come to the reunion so that they could tell me more about my Stevenson relatives. She would always offer to help me financially so that I could continue to search and I was very appreciative of that. Her zeal and enthusiasm helped to keep me going in those times when I was so down about everything not working out! I miss her so much!
I must also give thanks to my cousin, Dorothy Landers Fisher, for her help in what she has shared with me on my paternal side. She has done a vast amount of research over the years and willingly shared a lot of information with me. Using her information and building upon it, I have been able to learn so much more about my Dad’s side of the family!
Another instrumental woman in my research was Sylvia Maxine Cantrell. Sylvia is my second-cousin, the granddaughter of my great-aunt, Harriet Forbes. She had done extended research on the Forbes side and had enough info that she was able to join the DAR by proving our line back to the Revolutionary War. I was able to meet up with her a few years in to my research and she gave me so much info to help me confirm a lot of what I wasn’t sure about.
One last woman to give thanks to, Charlotte Geier, my 4th-cousin on my Stevenson side. I struggled for quite a while trying to figure out how to get started on my Stevenson side. I had my great-grandparents on this side but couldn’t get any further. One day I happened upon a post that listed Emmit Stevenson as the son of Elbert Stevenson. I began to search this out and ran across a tree from Charlotte that was posted on Rootsweb. She was able to give me quite a bit of information about the Stevensons and I will be forever grateful for her help in getting me started on this side of the family!
There are so many more who have helped me out tremendously in my endeavors, both male and female, but today I would like to honor those women who helped me to get things going in my research. I will be forever indebted to them for their generosity!