Tuesday, July 16, 2019

52 Ancestors - CHALLENGING: Those Pesky Slades

Slade Research, Why do I hate thee?

Let me count the ways:

1. The Slades of Georgia and Florida did not leave much of a paper trail. No death records. Certainly no birth records. Even a professional genealogist that I hired in Florida found precious little.

2. The Stephen Slade households of 1850, 1860 and 1870 are a mess making it nearly impossible to trace forward.

  • Only Stephen and supposed daughter Julia remain consistent.
  • Are Mary and Margaret the same person? Surely Margaret and Peggy are, despite the illogical difference in age from one census to the next.
  • Were James and Mary Stephen’s children or perhaps his siblings or other relation? Mary was too young to be their mother, that is, if her age was recorded correctly.
  • Peter and Pilester? Male OR female? Same? Different? I can find NO Peter Slade OR Pilester after their initial appearances. And what kind of name is Pilester, anyway?
  • Cabel was possibly Louiza and back to Cabel, from Male to Female and back to Male. However, there is a marriage record for Cabel Slade and Charles Ross, suggesting she was female all along. Then there is the sale of land by Julia Slade and Emma C. Ross. Emma Cabel Slade Ross? Emma Cabel Louiza Slade Ross? What the heck???
  • And what happened to the others? I don’t see them after the initial entry either.

3. My recent Slades are not SLADE at all. Three PERFECT matches and one genetic distance of 1 say they are CALHOUN. I never know where to put my research time. Should I concentrate on the Slades?  They were the legal family after all. Besides, it’s possible the oops-gotcha son might never have known the truth. Or should I concentrate on the Calhouns since that is where the DNA came from? If so, where do I begin since none of my matches seem to know which Slade woman and which Calhoun man (although I THINK I know).

Amy Johnson Crow continues to challenge genealogy bloggers and non-bloggers alike to think about our ancestors and share a story or photo about them. The challenge is “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks.

© 2019, Wendy Mathias. All rights reserved.


  1. Its a mystery for sure! I like how they aged differently over the 10 year span. Maybe spend so much time on the Slades and some much time on the Calhouns? Its interesting that the professional genealogist got few leads too. They really did live under the radar!


  2. That is a tricky one. I'd keep picking away at the names and hope for a breakthough. Newspapers.com has helped me with some family puzzles like this. Good luck.

  3. Hi! I enjoyed your page. I recently started a genealogy blog so I enjoy looking at other peoples blogs as well.

  4. Hahahaha! I read the title "Those Pesky SHADES" and I wondered what kind of photos you were going to show of people with shades on.