Image by jimmywayne via Flickr
When I was a child I would attend certain functions with my parents. They were obligatory. They were Family Reunions. At the time they were just social parties that occurred once a year and usually in the Fall. I remember one reunion that was in either the Spring or Summer. I cannot remember which one. It occurred at Wayside Park outside of Altavista, Virginia. There were so many people there and I only wished that I had paid attention to the stories told on those occasions. Now most of those people are no longer here and the wonderful opportunity to share their family stories have ended.
It would certainly help in my search today. If you are a beginning genealogist, your older relatives are a great source of information.
Tips for the Beginning Genealogist:
If you are interested in your family history, then the first stop should be your older relative's house. They can provide you with so much information. I love hearing about what they use to do as children and I know they would enjoy the visit.
1. Where did they live? You can really founder in your project, if you do not know what state to start your search and if you know what state, you have to know what county.
For instance, I am working on my Grandmother's grandfather's family Winchester Dalton.
I know that he lived in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. But where did his family live, Pittsylvania, Lunenberg, Halifax?
Go visit and talk to your relatives. They may have treasure at their fingertips-Family pictures, locations of old family homes and cemeteries.
Ask them what stories were told to them of the past. Sometimes stories can lead you to where their parents lived or maybe your great grandparents moved to the West, but came back home. That would explain their disappearance from a census. My advice is to take a video camera. This way you have a wonderful memory to cherish in the later years and something to share with your family plus so much information.
So to wrap up.
Take time to visit or call relatives.
Listen carefully to their stories. There are hidden tips and sometimes secrets that we miss by dismissing a story that seems innocuous at the time, but has information galore.
If visiting, take a camera.
I have begun my search and I hope to find some information. I have found the Bond posted for Charles Walden and Elizabeth Wall. It was recorded in Campbell County. I found it in Marriages of Campbell County, Virginia, 1782-1810.
Walden, Charles and Elizabeth Wall, bond 30 November 1782. Charles Walden b and Thomas Leftwich b
I have checked the list of pensioners in the website southerncampain.org/pen and I did not find Charles Walden's name nor did I find him in J.T. McAllister's book Virginia Militia in the Revolutionary War.
The History of Pittsylvania County, Virginia
Photo Mountain view, Chatham vic., Pittsylvania County, Virginia 1930
Pittsylvania County Virginia USGS Topographic Maps on CD
Accounts Current Book 4, Pittsylvania County, Virginia, 1805-1812Accounts Current Book 4, Pittsylvania County, Virginia, 1805-1812Pittsylvania County, Virginia, Deed Books 1,2,&3, 1765-1774
Abstracts of Pittsylvania County Virginia Wills 1767-1820Abstracts of Pittsylvania County Virginia Wills 1767-1820Abstracts of Pittsylvania County Virginia Wills 1767-1820
An intimate history of the American Revolution in Pittsylvania County, Virginia