I grew up in a small village called Motley, Virginia. It doesn't have a post office or a zip code. Everyone knew everyone and their families. It was not unusual for families to know about your grandparents and their grandparents and where they had lived for a century.
My parents would take us on Sunday afternoon trips which they called “grave hopping.” This is before all the genealogy craze began. We would visit the Ward cemetery which was on the edge of Leesville Lake, Brights, Virginia and back then, it was overgrown and lost to the world except for us that knew. There, alone, surrounded by ancient trees and cow pastures, we would trek through the field to stand silently and stare down at these people that were a part of us. At the time, I didn't appreciate the significance of their contribution to my way of life or to just, maybe, my personality. Did their voices sound like mine, did they have my eyes? Were their bodies built like mine? For many of these people we will never know, but maybe with a little research we can understand the life they led and their motivations behind their actions.
I had worked on an ancestry tree and I showed it to one of my family. They stared at the chain with the names and dates. Then after a moment, they looked up at me and said, "This is interesting, but what does that tell me?" And I realized that the people that were are more than a birthday and a spouse, or a child. They were living, breathing people. They were a part of my human experience because they were a part of me. No, they weren’t kings or witches, but the greatest heroes of their time. The Ordinary American which isn’t so ordinary at all.
I will begin by sharing as much information as I have available. I will give reference material and documents that I discovered.
I will also be willing to go courthouses in North Carolina to discover information for other people. Of course, there will be a charge to cover my time and expense.
I hope to find documents and make photos available on this blog.
Please keep coming back because I will, hopefully, be posting additional information frequently.