Tuesday, April 9, 2013

A to Z April Challenge: H is for Helena


This is Day 8 of the A to Z April Challenge.  My theme is women with unusual names although I must cheat now and then or I’ll have a name and no story.

is for Helena “Ellen” Foland.

Helena Foland is my 3G grandmother.  She was born in Virginia in 1818, the daughter of Jacob Foland and Mary Elizabeth Hinkle; the granddaughter of Johann Valentine and Anna Christina Schuckmaeninn Foland and George and Susannah Goetzinger Hinkle; the great-granddaughter of Jacob and Anna Zufelt Foland, Fernandus and Neeltje Schuckmaeninn, and George and Barbara Rowland Henckel.  

With all that German influence, you’d think I would love knockwurst and bratwurst, but I don’t.  I do, however, really like sauerkraut.

Anyway, back to Helena. Her ancestors were among those many Germans and Swiss who escaped religious persecution by immigrating to Pennsylvania in the early 1700s.  From there many of the German families continued south into Maryland and then into the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia.
The Folands, Schuckmaeninns, and Henckel/Hinkles were among those early settlers.

In 1835, Helena married William Eppard, whose family migration story reads much like that of Helena’s.  They settled in the Naked Creek area of Rockingham County.  They farmed and raised 4 children.

Meanwhile Helena’s parents and most of their children kept moving westward into Tennessee.  Helena was separated from her family not only by miles but also by politics.  The Civil War.  Tennessee was Union.  Virginia was Confederacy.  While Helena’s own son fought for the South, her brothers were fighting for the North. 

A house divided.


Hop on over to the A to Z April Challenge for Hundreds and Hundreds of posts on the letter H.




© 2014, Wendy Mathias.  All rights reserved.

21 comments:

  1. A house divided: I can't even imagine how hard that must have been on the families...

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    1. It was fairly common but I have found only a couple cases in my own family, this being one.

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  2. I can't imagine what the separation was like in those days. We complain these days with planes, e-mail, skype, telephones but they had nothing.

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    1. Excellent point. When part of a family moved westward, it was a given that they'd probably never see family left behind again.

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  3. Her son and her brothers fighting against each other, it doesn't bear thinking about.

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  4. Great information, great research miss girl.

    Gesundheit,
    Jollette

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  5. How terrible for those families being on opposite sides of the war fighting against each other.

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  6. That's so tragic uncles against nephew.

    I must say I just love all your researched stories. :)

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    1. Thanks for the kind words, Claire.

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  7. I had family fighting on both sides too.

    Lee
    A Faraway View
    An A to Z Co-host blog

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    1. Thanks for commenting Lee. It's good to see you!

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  8. I am sure there were many, many people in the same situation...you had to fight for where you lived. Way back in my husband's family, there were 7 brothers. Each time one came of age to fight the family sent them off to Utah as it was not yet a state. I have a photo of the 7 Mormon boys hanging in my living room.
    Happy H day!

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    1. That sounds like the forerunner of boys going to Canada in the Vietnam days.

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  9. Have you been able to research the family back in Germany?

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    1. Quite honestly, I have not even tried. I have so little information, not even specific dates, so I'm reluctant to even begin. It would be interesting, I'm sure.

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  10. That's interesting. I can't imagine fighting opposite my relatives in a war...

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