Thursday, April 4, 2013

A to Z April Challenge: D is for Drada

This is Day 4 of the A to Z April Challenge.  My theme is women with unusual names.

is for Drada.  It’s such an unusual name that there is no explanation for its meaning in any of the online baby name sites.

Sister to my 3G grandfather Fielding Jollett, Drada (also known as Drady) was born about 1798 in Orange County, Virginia, the seventh of ten children born to James and Nancy Walker Jollett.  In 1819 she married George Sampson.

I know little of Drada until 1850 when women were finally listed by name in the census records.  That year she was the wife of a teacher and mother to the two youngest girls still living at home. 

1850 Monroe County, Virginia (now West Virginia)

But marriage and death records of other children tell the story of a much larger family: 5 girls and 2 boys.  Shortly after Drada and George married, they moved to Rockingham County, Virginia, just across the mountain from her homeplace.  All of the children were born there.
  • Lucretia 15 May 1820- 16 Jun 1820
  • Julia Ann 20 Feb 1822 – 23 Dec 1867
  • Nancy Ann 11 Jul 1824 – after 1880
  • James William 7 Oct 1826 – 17 Feb 1900
  • Benjamin Franklin 10 Apr 1830 – 4 May 1871
  • Elizabeth Jane 13 Oct 1832 –
  • Frances Virginia 19 Feb 1842 – 8 Nov 1930

I cannot pinpoint Drada and family in the 1860 census, but it might be because of the Civil War.  I suspect they were in Greenbrier County by then, in the southwestern tip of Virginia.  That county became part of West Virginia after the war.  A death date generally accepted for her is 1867, which makes sense considering George was living with his daughter Jane in 1870 and son James in 1880.

Do take a minute to Discover other Delights at the A to Z April Challenge.


23 comments:

  1. What a great name, bizarrely it sounds quite modern.

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    1. As they say, what's old is new again. Maybe "Drada" will pop up in future Baby Name books.

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  2. This is the first time I've ever heard that name—and I thought that as a former teacher I'd heard them all!

    Have a happy Thursday. ☺

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    1. A first for me too! And I've had my share of students with unusual names.

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  3. That is an interesting name for sure. My father-in-law was named Elson, and that is the first and only I have ever heard that one, but there are other oddities in my husband's family as well. Happy D day!
    tm

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    1. That is an interesting name - derivative of Nelson, maybe? Was it a surname?

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  4. Interesting name...I wonder where they came up with it from? Maybe you will unravel that mystery. Happy A to Z!

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  5. Hello, Wendy! This is a fascinating post. What an unusual name! You should make up a meaning for it.

    Happy A to Z-ing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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    1. Maybe the family was sitting around singing the Dreidel song. Oh, but they weren't Jewish. Eh, I give up!

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  6. My daughter reads baby name books for fun. Had since she was a little girl. She loves discovering the meaning behind names.

    Dropping in from A to Z. This is my first year. I love it.

    Brett Minor
    Transformed Nonconformist

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    1. I go through phases of wanting to know the meaning behind names too. Doing family history, I often wonder where those names came from, so I'll Google to see if anything sounds reasonable.

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  7. You've certainly pulled a most unusual name out of your Family Data/Cenus Files. Many times uncommon names are combinations of two members of the family's names. Maybe her grandmothers were Drula and Ada. I've always been thankful not to have been named after my grandmothers Minnie and Effie. Can you imagine going through life as Mineffie. On the other hand, like Drada, I might have a better chance of getting noticed and published.

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    1. The connection to Ada is good, but Drula?? Have you been snortin' calico again? HA

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    2. It was the only 'Dr' I could think of. Funny, my husband asks me that all the time.

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  8. I wonder how Drada was pronounced? Interesting name, that's for sure.

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    1. I always say "DRA-duh." Descendents call her "Drady" which is how her name appears in the one census record that I can find.

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  9. Very exotic name. I'm always moved by the children who died so young, like little Lucretia, the firstborn who died after only 1 month if I read the dates correctly. My mother-in-law has a whole slew of siblings who died young--2 separate fires and 1 snake bite took 3 of them way too early.

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    1. I have a house fire that took 2 little ones too. I also have multiple deaths within months of each other, probably disease. Those are always so sad.

      Thanks for visiting.

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  10. Drada sounds like a surname? As does Fielding?

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    1. I had not thought about surnames. Fielding does indeed, but apparently it was a popular name at the time. I wondered if Henry Fielding's writings were popular, but Fielding's parents were not educated, so it's safe to assume they didn't get the idea from any of Fielding's books. They must have just heard the name.

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  11. Love the name Drada, but it does make me think of the Dreidel song.
    =)

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    1. Drada Drada Drada - I made her out of clay ....

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