Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Watermelon Time


Wordless Wednesday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers that asks family historians to create a post in which the main focus is a photograph or image.


Helen Killeen Parker Portsmouth, VA about 1920
Helen Killeen Parker about 1920


Beneath this photo my great-aunt Helen Killeen Parker wrote this caption:  Watermelon Time.

Yep, it sure is!


Friday, July 26, 2013

Sepia Saturday: Yours Till

Sepia Saturday challenges bloggers to share family history through old photographs.




This week’s Sepia Saturday prompt is every family historian’s dream:  the family bible.  That record of births and deaths has been at the core of many a fight when dividing the family treasures.  My sister and I didn’t have that worry because there was no family bible to fight over.  

We eyed a different object of desire – an autograph book.  

Autograph Book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-1941
Autograph book belonging to Mary Eleanor Davis Slade
entries dated 1940-1941


One day while Momma was undergoing chemo treatments, my sister and I sprawled out across the bed with her and pulled out the autograph book.  Unlike most things that were packed away, the autograph book was always nearby in a valet on the dresser.  We had read it numerous times.  Oh, there are no famous signatures, just silly poems written by Momma’s friends back in 1940 and 1941 when she was about 11-12 years old.  Yet we always laughed hysterically as if reading them for the first time. 

That day Momma said, “All the nice things in this house and you’ll probably fight over who gets the autograph book.”

Hmm, wuddayaknow, look who has it.

Silly poems, bad spelling, and promises of devotion penciled on faded pastel pages of pink, yellow, and green reflect the innocence of the pre-teen years and the emerging interest in BOYS.  I don’t know if the autograph book stands on its own or if it’s one of those “you had to be there” to appreciate it.  So at the risk of failing to amuse, I am sharing some of my favorite entries. 

Anne Staples in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Dec. 25, 1940
Shenandoah

Dear Mary,
When you get married and live on a hill send me a kiss by the whipperwhill.  [sic]
Anne Staples
[a friend who lived one street away]





Iris Budd in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

May 29, 1941
When you get married and move down South remember me and my big mouth
When you get married and married [sic] and have twins.  Don’t come to me for safty [sic] pins.
Three little words
Forget me not
Your Frined [sic]
Iris Budd
[a neighborhood friend in Cradock]


Margaret Jennings in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Dec. 25, 1940
Shenandoah VA

Dear Mary,
Do as your mother bids you, and do it with grace.  And when the boys try to kiss you slap them in the face.
Yours till the Mississippi River runs dry.
Margaret Jennings
[a friend who lived next door]




Marjorie Runyon in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Dear Mary Eleanor,
Don’t kiss a boy with the eyes of blue
He’ll kiss you once and ask for 2
Don’t kiss a boy with the eyes of gray
He’ll kiss you once and turn you away
Don’t kiss a boy with the eyes of black
He’ll kiss you once and turn his back
Don’t kiss a boy with the eyes of brown
He’ll kiss you once and turn you down
Your truley [sic]
Marjorie Sue Runyon
[a school friend in Portsmouth]






Mary Jane Via in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Dear Mary Eleanor
Your heart is not a play thing
Your heart is not a toy
But if you want it broken,
Just give it to a boy.

Yours until the Statue of Liberty trucks down Broadway
Love, Mary Jane
PS Forget me not
[Mary Jane Via, a friend from school in Portsmouth]


Mary Lee Hodges in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Dear Mary,
I love you, I love you
I love you so well
If I had a peanut
I’d give you the shell.

Yours until the ocean wears pants to keep its bottom dry.
Love, Mary Lee Hodges
[I think this is actually Grandma’s friend]




Joanne Palmer Stainback in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41
Dear Mary Eleanor,
First comes love, then comes marriage,
Then comes Mary Eleanor with a baby carriage.

If [name has been erased] lived across the sea
What a good swimmer Mary Eleanor would be.

When you get married and move to France
Save me a piece of lace off your wedding pants.



Joanne Palmer Stainback in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41Down in the valley stands a big, big rock
With 3 little words forget me not.

A box of candy, a couple of kisses
Will change your name from Miss to Mrs.

You may fall from tops of buildings
You may fall from far above
But when you fall the hardest
Is when you fall in love.

Love, Joanne
[a life-long friend Joanne Palmer Stainback]

I saved the best for last:

Betsy Ward in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Dearest Mary Eleanor,
I know you like Pearce
But who could help it,
With his eyes that are so fearce [sic];
His black wavy hair
Makes your heart jump in the air.
You have all the boys on a string
But when you get ready to sing





Betsy Ward in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41

Well, we won’t say what happens.
There was a boy named Billy
But he was so silly.
With those blue eyes of yours
You knock the boys out of doors.
Then there’s David





Betsy Ward in autograph book belonging to Mary Davis Slade 1940-41



When he looks at you with his brown eyes
You go to him and confess your lies.

This is all s - - -
But who gives a d - - -
I DON’T!
Love (Mike)
(Worm)
Yours till this all comes true.




“Mike” was really Momma’s BFF, Betsy Ward.  

Even as I write this, I’m laughing about “Pearce … with eyes that are so fearce.”  What imagery!  What spelling!  But at least it’s original. 

Now I've been inspired to leave you with my own original poem:

When you get married and start a blog,
Don’t ask me to walk your dog.

Yours till Sepia Saturday turns blue.


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Rice Flakes?


Wordless Wednesday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers that asks family historians to create a post in which the main focus is a photograph or image.


Heinz Rice Flakes salesman in Davis collection Shenandoah, Page Co, VA 1930s


This photo was among pictures belonging to SOMEBODY on my mother’s side of the family.  Could this be a salesman from the Heinz company calling on the Davis Store on Sixth Street in Shenandoah, Virginia?

Heinz Rice Flakes, sponsor of the “Tarzan” radio show in the 1930s, was advertised as “the cereal that is different” because it was “the cereal with a vegetable effect.”  Mmmm yummy. 



Monday, July 22, 2013

Mystery Monday: Forum Brings Hope

Mystery Monday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers encouraging bloggers to share mystery ancestors or mystery records – anything which is currently unsolved.  With any luck fellow genealogy bloggers will lend their eyes to what has been found so far and possibly help solve the mystery.


Following the suggestion of fellow-blogger Jacqi Stevens, I recently posted a query in the Lingle Genforum and in the Rockingham County, Virginia forum on Rootsweb.  I stated that I am trying to confirm John and Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout as parents of Mary Ann Armentrout, my 3G grandmother who was married to Fielding Jollett.  I referenced Martin and Anna Maria Lingle Schneider/Snyder as sponsors at the baptism of “Maria Armentrout.” 

Within an hour of posting on Rootsweb, I heard from Jan Hensley, a dedicated researcher of families in Rockingham County, with whom I have collaborated from time to time on Jollett and Sampson research.  She provided a couple more pieces to the puzzle.

First of all, Jan told me about a chancery cause in Rockingham County between Emanuel Hansberger and Charles Yancey (1835-002) that lists the descendants of Jacob Lingle, the first.  Elizabeth is listed as the daughter of Jacob Lingle, the second.  It states further that she “married John Armentrout of Rockingham, the said John is dead but the said Elizabeth is still living.”

Why I like this clue:  even though it does not list Elizabeth’s children, John’s being dead before 1835 is consistent with the fact that in 1837 Mary Ann and Fielding sold the land she had inherited from her father “John Armentrout, deceased.”

Second, Jan added that also listed among the children of Jacob Lingle, the second, is Elizabeth’s sister Mary who married Martin Snyder.  From the chancery cause, “Martin Snyder and Mary his wife are both dead leaving children and heirs Barbara Snyder who has since intermarried with a certain Philip Parrat of Rockingham, Elizabeth who married a certain Christian Sellers and removed to the state of Indiana, Mathias Snyder of Rockingham, and Catherine who married a certain Jacob Freeze of Rockingham….”

Why I like this clue:  For the first time, I see “Anna Maria Schneider” Anglicized as “Mary.”  Keeping my fingers crossed that the German custom of naming a child for the sponsor at baptism has held true in the case of my Mary Ann.

And finally, in subsequent emails, Jan encouraged me to “follow the land,” to pin down any clues that might be in deeds.  When I casually added that I would also follow up on the sale of Mary Ann’s inherited land to Henry Kisling, Jan told me this:  that Christina Lingle, the sister of Jacob Lingle, the second, married Christopher Kisling and that Henry was their son. 

Why I like this clue:  Isn’t it obvious?  Fielding and Mary Ann Armentrout Jollett must have sold the land to her COUSIN.  The Armentrout-Snyder-Lingle-and now Kisling connection gets stronger and stronger.  

Yes, it’s circumstantial.  But in the court of law, enough circumstantial evidence is enough to convict. But in the world of genealogy, the jury is still out.


Friday, July 19, 2013

Sepia Saturday: The Neptune Party


Sepia Saturday challenges bloggers to share family history through old photographs.




This week’s Sepia Saturday prompt featuring a costumed woman warrior reminded me of a puzzling collection of photos that had belonged to my maternal grandmother’s brother Ray Rucker.  Every time one of them came into my field of vision, I wondered what these sailors in the most powerful Navy in the world -- the defenders of freedom -- were doing in those crazy costumes.

Line Crossing Ceremony Ray Rucker 1920s
Neptune Party:  The Royal Family
Click to enlarge

So, it turns out these were some of the main characters in a naval tradition that dates back over 400 years in the western seafaring world:  the line crossing ceremony.  Which line?  Why, the equator, of course.

Whether a test of a sailor’s ability to withstand a long and rough voyage or merely a way to boost morale, the tradition of the Neptune Party has been a rite of passage for many a sailor transforming from a “Slimy Pollywog” (a sailor who has never crossed the equator) to a “Trusty” or “Honorable” Shellback. 

Ray was a sailor onboard the USS Colorado when this particular ceremony took place, but his photos do not clearly reveal whether he was among the experienced Shellbacks or if he was being initiated into the “mysteries of the deep.”

The festivities varied from ship to ship, but no doubt Ray experienced the standard features of the Order of Neptune.

1.  Typically the ceremony began with King Neptune, the mythical god of the sea, coming aboard to exercise his authority over the seas and the ship.  With a trident in hand, he served as judge ruling on charges that the Pollywogs were not real sailors at all, and that furthermore they had not shown proper respect to the god of the sea.  King Neptune was often portrayed by the ship’s commander or other high ranking officer.

Line Crossing Ceremony Ray Rucker 1920s
The Royal Police
Click to enlarge

The most experienced Shellbacks dressed in costume as members of King Neptune’s Royal Court.  Usually the characters included King Neptune, Amphitrite (Neptune’s wife), Davey Jones (Neptune's scribe), the Royal Baby, and the Royal Barber.  

Other appropriate characters could be included as well, and  some Trusty Shellbacks might have dressed as pirates as part of the Royal Police.


2.  Pollywogs entertained the Royal Court with a talent show or even a beauty contest with sailors dressed as women. 

3.  Davey Jones presented subpoenas to the Pollywogs to appear before the Royal Court and answer charges lodged by the Shellbacks.

4.  Court was held after breakfast which had been rendered inedible by the addition of hot sauce or other spices.  King Neptune assigned punishments that included wearing clothes inside out or backwards, crawling on hands and knees through garbage, being swatted with pieces of fire hose, being pelted with rotting fruit, and being treated with “truth serum” (hot sauce rubbed on the face following a shave).  The Royal Barber used hand clippers to cut the Pollywogs’ hair in various directions – never intending the results to be worthy of a tip.


The Royal Baby of the Neptune Party Ray Rucker 1920s
The Royal Baby
Click to enlarge
5.  Next the Pollywogs knelt before King Neptune to kiss the Royal Baby’s belly which was covered with grease.  Often the Baby grabbed the Pollywog’s hair and rubbed his face all over his belly to make sure the sailor was duly covered.  In some cases, the Baby flung mustard in the Pollywog’s face.  The “honor” of being the Royal Baby was usually given to the ugliest guy on the ship.  Some honor!


6.  The final step in the transformation to Shellback was a royal bath in sea water often contained in a canvas pool on deck, a “baptism” of sorts.  The new Shellbacks received a certificate, and the event was recognized in their service records with date, time, latitude, and longitude.

Line Crossing Ceremony Ray Rucker 1920s
Pollywogs go head-first into the Royal Bath.
The caption on the photo is difficult to read, but it says:
USS Colorado Neptune Party



Line Crossing Ceremony Ray Rucker 1920s
The latest crop of Shellbacks in the "royal bath"


The Neptune Party was a fun time, according to many sailors.  In recent years, however, there have been reports of unspeakable abuse during the line crossing ceremony.  In the early 1920s when Ray was a Pollywog, the ceremony likely was a highlight in a sailor’s memories of life at sea.

Sources:
“Line-Crossing Ceremony.”  Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 2013. Web. 9 July 2013.

Moore, David.  “Pollywog or Shellback: The Navy’s Line Crossing Ceremony Revealed.”  Veterans United Network.  Veteransunited.com.  2013.  Web.  9 July 2013. http://www.veteransunited.com/network/the-navys-line-crossing-ceremony-revealed/

“Pollywog to Shellback.” Destroyer Escort Sailors Association.  DESA.org. 2011. Web. 9 July 2013.  http://www.desausa.org/pollywog_to_shellback.htm

For more stories and photos of costumes, warriors, and theatrics, head on over to Sepia Saturday.  I promise you won’t have to kiss any bellies. 


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: A Boy and Baby


Wordless Wednesday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers that asks family historians to create a post in which the main focus is a photograph or image.


Unidentified boy and baby in album of Mary Frances Jollett Davis, Page County, Virginia


This faded photo was among several pictures of children in the photo album belonging to my great grandmother Mary Frances Jollett Davis. As I’ve come to expect and accept, these children are not identified.  They must be relatives, but who?


Monday, July 15, 2013

Mystery Monday: A Stumble in the Search for Mary Ann

Mystery Monday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers encouraging bloggers to share mystery ancestors or mystery records – anything which is currently unsolved.  With any luck fellow genealogy bloggers will lend their eyes to what has been found so far and possibly help solve the mystery.


My study of the 1810 Rockingham County, Virginia census thrilled me with the possibility of finally discovering the parents of Mary Ann Armentrout, second wife of my 3G grandfather Fielding Jollett.  I had hoped the 1820 census would add weight to my theory.  However, it does nothing for it although it doesn’t hurt either.

1820 Rockingham County, VA Census with John Armentrout































Why?  Because somebody had the bright idea to alphabetize the census rather than list residents geographically which would have preserved the neighbor connection that is so useful in finding relatives, particularly women whose names just disappeared upon marriage.

But on the plus side, John is still there (with his last name spelled “Armentrought”), with a household that resembles the one from 1810, only 10 years older.


1810
1820
Males under 10
-
1 – possibly John Jr. (1816)
Males 10 - 16
-
-
Males 16 - 18
-
-
Males 16 - 26
-
-
Males 26 - 45
-
-
Males over 45
1 – John Armentrout
1 – John Armentrout
Females under 10
1 – possibly Linda (1805)
-
Females 10 - 16
1 – possibly Elizabeth (1798)
1 – possibly Linda (1805)
Females 16 - 26
1 – possibly Maria (1795)
2 – possibly Elizabeth (1798)
and possibly Maria (1795)
Females 26 - 45
-
-
Females over 45
1 – Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout
1 – Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout

The 1830 census shows no John Armentrout in Rockingham County.  It’s possible he had moved to a different county, he was living in someone else’s household - maybe one of his children’s, or he had died.  At any rate, in 1837, Mary Ann Armentrout and Fielding Jollett sold some land she had inherited from her late father John.

Feeling that my leads had dried up, I recalled a recent blogpost by Jacqi Stevens at A Family Tapestry.  In her series on using social media in genealogy, she reminded me that even the old stand-bys like Rootsweb and Genforum are a form of social media, albeit “low-tech.”  So off to Genforum and Rootsweb I went in search of surname forums and information on the Lingles, my most likely candidate for a mother for Mary Ann. 

Fortunately there had been an inquiry related to Jacob Lingle, Elizabeth’s father.  UNfortunately, the thread was old – like 2001 old.  Still I dashed off an email to 2 of the respondents on the thread.  The AOL email bounced back.  The email to the Juno account is still out there.  Juno!!  Juno??  Who uses that anymore?  Is it even still around?  Hmm – that might come back too.

But in that dusty thread was a shiny nugget.  The original poster said her ancestor was Barbara Snyder, daughter of Martin Snyder/Schneider and Anna Maria LINGLE.  This is the same couple that served as sponsors at the baptism of Maria Armentrout, the one I HOPE was later known as Mary Ann.  The Schneiders were not doing just a neighborly favor for John and Elizabeth Armentrout; there was a family bond.

I admit it’s just another little tidbit that amounts to nothing in the quest to pin down Mary Ann’s parents.  Maybe it’s time I try to revive that Lingle surname forum with a little inquiry of my own.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Sepia Saturday: Son of a Beach


Sepia Saturday challenges bloggers to share family history through old photographs.




This week’s Sepia Saturday photo prompt is a familiar rainy-day scene featuring an umbrella. But umbrellas are not just handy in rain as this old family photo suggests.

John Jr. and poodle at New York beach about 1921 from album of Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh
John Jr. and poodle, maybe named "Cutey"
Click to enlarge

The pint-size umbrella probably afforded little protection from the sun.  Honestly, it might have been more at home in a Banana Daiquiri or Mai Tai.

John Jr and Bob at New York beach about 1921 from album of Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh
John Jr., poodle, and Bob
(Yes, I know - it looks like a girl.  But it's Bob.)
Click to enlarge.



These children are John Jr. and Bob.  John and Bob Who?  That’s what I want to know.  














Photos spanning the years 1917-1921 are glued into a small green soft-cover album that probably belonged to my great-grandmother Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh.


Photo album of Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh 1917-1921








John Jr. and Bob are the only people identified.  










John Jr, Bob, and woman at New York beach about 1921 from album of Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh
John Jr, Bob, poodle, and maybe Mary Theresa's sister
Click to enlarge

The adults are unknown to me, but occasionally there is an air of familiarity – the shape of a woman’s face, the body-type.  Intuition says it is one of Mary Theresa’s sisters and that the pictures are of either Sarah or Josephine and grandchildren.  It certainly can't be Delia because her children were only slightly older than these in the photos.

The little I know – or THINK I know – is that Mary Theresa often visited relatives in New York, her sisters I suppose and maybe a brother.  This beach could have been Coney Island.  It could have been Brighton Beach.  It could have been Rockaway Beach.  Since Rockaway was known as the “Irish Riviera” because of the large Irish population there in Queens, it was likely the destination of my distant relatives, whoever they were.   Some of the photos are labeled “Richmond Hill,” a neighborhood in Queens.  However, others are labeled “Bronx,” so I can’t be sure what beach drew them there that day.

Regardless of where they were, they had a grand time it seems.  Even their pet poodle enjoyed a romp in the surf.  


Poodle at New York beach about 1921 from album of Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh


Which brings me back to the topic of umbrellas and this old saying:

It’s raining cats and dogs.  Don’t step in a poodle!


Rain or shine, there’s something good happening at Sepia Saturday.


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: 2 More Boys

Wordless Wednesday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers that asks family historians to create a post in which the main focus is a photograph or image.

Unknown boys in collection of Helen Killeen Parker photographed by Campbell Studios in Norfolk, Virginia


Here is another set of boys, this time from my dad’s side of the family.  It was among photos belonging to my great-grandmother Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh or her daughter Helen Killeen Parker.  There is no identification - surprise surprise.  The picture was taken at the Campbell Studio in Norfolk, Virginia.  Because Mary Theresa had only one boy, I suspect the picture might be her nephews Matthew and John Glynn, sons of John Joseph and Bridget Killeen Glynn. 

Matthew was born in 1891 and John in 1893.  Would you date this photo around 1899? 

Of course, I could be totally wrong about the family.  It's possible that the photo is from Helen's husband's side.  Maybe one of the boys is Herbert Parker himself.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Mystery Monday: One Step Closer in the Search for Mary Ann

Mystery Monday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers encouraging bloggers to share mystery ancestors or mystery records – anything which is currently unsolved.  With any luck fellow genealogy bloggers will lend their eyes to what has been found so far and possibly help solve the mystery.
As soon as I saw John and Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout with 4 children (including Maria) listed in the “Miscellaneous” chapter of the Armentrout Family History by Russell S. Armentrout, I went to work.

1810 Rockingham County, Virginia Federal Census
Click to enlarge

In studying the 1810 Rockingham County, Virginia Census, I noticed John Armantrout (Ermentraudt/Armentrout) was a neighbor of George Armantrout and near neighbor of Augustine Armantrout, both known sons of Johan Friederich Ermentraudt, the most likely candidate for father of “my” John Armentrout.

Since they were close in age, they look like brothers:


John
George
Augustine
Males under 10
-
1
3
10 – 16
-
-
-
16 - 26
-
-
1
26 - 45
-
-
-
Over 45
1
1
1
Females under 10
1
2
-
10 - 16
1
-
1
16 - 26
1
-
-
26 - 45
-
1
1
Over 45
1
-
-


The ages of the girls line up with the names identified with this John Armentrout family:

  • 16-26 - Maria born 1795
  • 10-16 - Elizabeth born 1798
  • Under 10 - Linda born 1805
  • Over 45 – John’s wife Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout
The fact that there were no male children makes sense since young John was not born until 1816.

Likewise, the ages match what is known of George’s family:

  • Male under 10 – Michael born 1807
  • Females under 10 – Barbara born 1806, and Magdalena born 1809
  • Female 26-45 – George’s wife Elizabeth Michael Armentrout

And Augustine’s family:

  • Males under 10 – Emanual born 1801, Charles born 1805, and Frederick born 1808
  • 16-26 – John George born 1793
  • Female 10-16 - ? Magdalena would have been about 19 but she also was married before 1810 and likely out of the house.  Possibly this is another child for whom other records have not been found.
  • Female 26-45 – Augustine’s wife Margaret Schneider Armentrout.

What makes all this even more compelling are the other near neighbors.  These names appear together on the SAME page of a 31-page census recorded by Daniel Bryan for Rockingham County. 

  • Jacob Lingle
  • Jacob Lingle (senior)
  • Martin Snyder/Schneider
  • Jacob Stoutemire

Using the theory that people dated and married within a three-mile radius, I conclude that the two Jacob Lingles must be the father and brother of Elizabeth Lingle who married John Armentrout.  Is it possible?  Let’s see:



John
Jacob
Jacob Sr.
Males under 10
-
2
-
10 – 16
-
1
-
16 - 26
-
-
-
26 - 45
-
1
-
Over 45
1
-
1
Females under 10
1
3
-
10 - 16
1
-
-
16 - 26
1
-
-
26 - 45
-
1
-
Over 45
1
-
1

Obviously John and younger Jacob are of the same generation with children of similar age while Jacob Sr. and his wife are empty-nesters.  Of course, without DNA or at least a marriage record or other document, this is conjecture, but a pretty strong one anyway.

Like a good neighbor, Martin Snyder/Schneider and his wife were the sponsors at the baptism of John and Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout’s daughter Maria, the one I hope was the woman later known as Mary Ann. 

So what about Jacob Stoutemire?  What does he contribute to the solution to the mystery?  The answer reads like the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon game, so pay attention:

  • Jacob Stoutemire was the father of Ann Stoutemire.
  • Ann Stoutemire married Fielding Jollett in 1822, but she died before 1828.
  • In 1828 Fielding married his second wife, Mary Ann Armentrout.
  • Mary Ann was the daughter of a John Armentrout. 

This scenario satisfies my curiosity about how Fielding might have met Mary Ann when his farm, which bordered the Stoutemire line, was in Naked Creek while Mary Ann’s family seemed to be closer to McGaheysville.  The theory of the 3-mile dating circle is also reinforced if it turns out that Maria and Mary Ann are the same person and that John and Elizabeth Lingle Armentrout are my 4G grandparents.

Theories!  Everybody has one.  The trick is to make this circumstantial evidence stick, and that will mean proving Maria and Mary Ann are the same person.  Or that possibly Mary Ann is another daughter.  After all, there is a sizeable gap between the births of Elizabeth and Linda and between Linda and John. 

Just for once it would be nice if my family would be predictable:  follow tradition, stay close to one another, leave a trail.  Is that too much to ask?