Notes from the past…


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52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy Week #5: Life Experiences

Sometimes the challenges in life provide the best learning experiences. Can you find an example of this in your own family tree? Which brick wall ancestor are you most thankful for, and how did that person shape your family history experience?

“Challenges in life”…hummm…

“Which brick wall ancestor are you most thankful for”…wait, I know!

One incident comes to mind, for had it not occurred I wouldn’t be sitting here typing away:

My second great-grandfather Miles Francis Stanley was a County Commissioner in Hill County, Texas at the turn of the century. As you would expect, he was a frequent visitor to the Hill County courthouse in Hillsboro. One day in about 1897, he stopped by the courthouse, only to find 2 small children sitting alone on the courthouse steps. The two boys, aged about 3 and 5, had been abandoned by their parents. The older child stated that their names where Henry and John Thomas, and that their parents were no longer able to care for them. Miles, with no children of his own, took the boys home to wife Trilla Maryland. The Stanleys cared for the two orphans and searched in vain for their parents.

When it became apparent that Henry and John’s parents was long gone, Miles and Trilla adopted John and Trilla’s sister and next-door-neighbor Martha and her husband John Fair adopted Henry.

Two would-be homeless orphans were brought into two separate, yet forever linked families and raised with love and kindness. Both young men grew up to be productive citizens, married and had families of their own… and one of those one-time abandoned boys became my great-grandfather!

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52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.