2017 · Saturday Night Genealogy Fun

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Your Best Find of 2016, and Research Challenge for 2017

Please click the happy little guy to join Mr. Seaver and the others for Saturday Night Genealogy Fun!


Here are this week’s questions:

1)  What was your best research achievement in 2016?  Tell us – show us a document, or tell us a story, or display a photograph.  Brag a bit!  You’ve earned it!

2)  We all have elusive ancestors.  What research problem do you want to work on in 2017?  Tell us where you want to research and what you hope to find.

Here are my responses:

One of the best things that happened to me in regards to research in 2016 was discovering Newspapers.com!  That site is great! I have found all sorts of bits and pieces of my family’s story through those old newspapers.

I found the announcement of my mother’s birth. I originally posted it here: Wednesday Hodgepodge.


I learned details about a duel in David’s family history. Click here to read the original post and see one of the family’s plantation houses:  Paydirt!

Here is the article about the duel:


I also found out that my 3rd great-grandfather Berry Madison Pressley received a Cross of Honor for his service to the Confederate States of America in the War Between the States. You can see the original post here: Happy Dance!

There are several research problems that I want to work on in 2017. There are 6 people who I wish to learn more about and finding information about them has been a test of my endurance for years now.  Those people are:

Johnnie Cooper Roberts, one of David’s great-grandmothers.  She died due to complications of childbirth approximately 8 months after the birth of her son, David’s maternal grandpa. Though I have a copy of her wedding picture and a picture of her tombstone, I can’t find diddly about her otherwise.  It is like she died and everything done during her “dash” was erased from the planet!  No wedding announcement, no obituary, nothing.

Oliphant A. Williams, my 2nd great-grandfather, and his daughter Emma Williams, who was the twin sister of my great-grandmother Carrie Williams Pressley, and two other Williams children.  Grandpa Williams died supposedly in 1900 and does not appear in the census of that year. I want to know what killed him. He was only in his 30s.  Grandma Carrie and Emma and their sisters Sallie and Mattie are listed in the 1900 census with their widowed mother. The census says Granny Maggie Williams was the mother of 6 children, with 4 living.  I only ever heard of Emma in passing as a child, hearing that my great-grandma Carrie had a twin. That is all that I ever heard about Emma. I didn’t even know her name back then. I knew of Aunt Sallie and Aunt Mattie.  I have nothing to go on at all for these other two unknown children, no names, no genders, no birth/death dates, absolutely nothing.  The 1890 census was destroyed and it would answer several questions for me.  Were these two children on that census? I don’t know.  Was Grandma Carried born in 1889 or 1891? I don’t know.  Aunt Emma doesn’t show up with the family in the 1910 census, but she would have been old enough to be married at that point because Grandma Carrie was already married and a mother by the 1910 census. I do not know if Aunt Emma died or if she got married, so would have a different surname than Williams.

Unknown Child: his one has had me puzzled since about 1992.  I was given this picture the day that my paternal grandpa, William Howard Taft Spence, died. This little girl was in my Grandma Spence’s photo album along with some other pictures on cards kind of like postcards, but not exactly. The other photos had dates in the 1930s. Grandma couldn’t tell me who the little girl was due to her battle with Alzheimer’s. Grandpa couldn’t tell me for obvious reasons. So, my next step was to my Aunt Mary’s house. She was my grandpa’s baby sister.  She said that the little girl looked like a Pressley child to her. My Grandma Spence was a Pressley before she married my grandpa and she couldn’t answer the question.  So, I’m left with a picture of a beautiful little girl that I may never know the identity of.  If this photo was taken in the 1930s like the others like it were marked, then she is too young to have been my grandma or her sisters and too old to have been my mama or her sisters.

Isn’t she adorable?  I don’t want her to be an unknown forever and forgotten.  I want folks to know who she is!


There are many more happy and elusive moments in my genealogy adventure, but that is all that comes to mind at the moment.

Have a blessed week, y’all!

Notice: None of these links are affiliate links.  I promote Newspapers.com because I absolutely love their service. However, they will not allow me to be an affiliate for them because I use Blogger and WordPress.com to host my blogs.


2 thoughts on “Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Your Best Find of 2016, and Research Challenge for 2017

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