The Successful Farmer

Week 42: #52 Ancestors – Proud By Eilene Lyon The prompt brought this photo to mind almost immediately, though it seems an odd choice. No one looks particularly happy in this image of the Halse family taken about 1912 in Codington County, South Dakota. Back row: Inez, Everett (my grandfather), Hazel, Howard, LloydFront row: Mabel,... Continue Reading →

Cold Harbor Comrades

Week 41: #52 Ancestors – Newest By Eilene Lyon “Cousin Orin Rhodes was shot through the head the first battle he ever was in. George Rhodes is in hospital. No more news this time.” – George L. Carey, June 26, 1864 My newest cousin contact, thanks to this blog, sent me on a research quest... Continue Reading →

A Letter from Henry

Week 40: #52 Ancestors - Oldest By Eilene Lyon I believe the oldest document in my possession is this letter written by Henry Z. and Abigail Jenkins, dated October 19, 1855. The entire letter runs to over 1500 words, so I won't give a full transcript here - your eyes would be glazing over long... Continue Reading →

The Rise and Fall of Trenton

Week 38: #52 Ancestors – On the Map By Eilene Lyon I confess to being a bit of a map geek. I even minored in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) when I attended Fort Lewis College in 2004-7. Maps are excellent for visualizing the context of events in our family history. They can help us understand... Continue Reading →

The Cutting School

Week 37: #52 Ancestors – Back to School By Eilene Lyon Today, schools are frequently named for presidents, famous politicians or war heroes (more often than not men). Back in frontier days, naming a school was often a prosaic affair – if you built a schoolhouse on your property, it generally became known after you.... Continue Reading →

Philadelphia Firestorms

Week 33: #52 Ancestors – Troublemaker By Eilene Lyon Henry Z. Jenkins rose before dawn one morning in June 1827 in his single room in north Philadelphia’s Penn Township. His workday normally began at sunrise and ended at sundown – just like that of every other journeyman in the city. The master tradesmen dictated the... Continue Reading →

Homeland

Week 30: #52 Ancestors – The Old Country By Eilene Lyon Though I have ancestral origins in England and Wales, perhaps a touch in Ireland, an overwhelming number of forebears came from Germanic regions of Europe. I’ve traveled there several times. On one trip, we specifically visited Heidelsheim and Mainz, because I knew my Springer... Continue Reading →

A Twin For James

Week 28: #52 Ancestors – Multiple By Eilene Lyon [Note: the image above bears no relation to the story below, but it fits the theme of “Multiple”😁 Young violet-green swallows peer from their nest cavity the day before they fledged. E. Lyon 2020] This story is somewhat incomplete, because the discovery is quite fresh. It... Continue Reading →

Mid-Century Kids

Week 26: #52 Ancestors – Middle By Eilene Lyon This brief tale is about two cousins (to each other, as well as to me), who were both born in the year 1850, but whose lives turned out very differently. Both lived in the north and their early teen years were marred by the devastation of... Continue Reading →

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