Saturday, June 23, 2012

Gussie's Peony


Today, June 23, 2012, is the one year anniversary of my mother's death.  Our friends, Jack & Sandee Buss, gave me the peony plant last year when I returned from her funeral. Jerry planted it in the strip along the driveway in front our home.  On Wednesday, the single flower on the plant opened and it is still open and in good shape.  What a beautiful way to honor my mother's passing and I hope next year that there are more blossoms.  Mom would loved flowers and would have been especially attracted to this beauty.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom 1750-1925

I have had this book for years and did not know that my ancestors were included until a couple of weeks ago. As you can see, it is a used book that I purchased from Half Price Books in Berkeley, California. I bought it as a reference on plantation life for an article I was writing.

On May 31, 2012, I received an email from my cousin, Michael Willis, that had been written by Shawn Taylor, another cousin. Shawn related that excerpts from The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom 1725-1925 by Herbert G. Gutman contained the names and birth dates of our Morgan family.   This is what I learned from Shawn's email and the book:
  • My ancestors resided on the Stirling Plantation in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. The owner of the plantation was Lewis Stirling.
  • My second great grandparents are George Morgan and Linda Weathers. George was also known as Long George. Linda's name was spelled Linder.
  • George and Linda had ten childen. Their names and births were listed in a registry. They are George 9 Dec 1836, Lewis 1838, David 1840, Roseale 1842(deceased), Luke 1844, Ann 1845, Jim 1847, Wilson 1849, Martha, my great grandmother, 8 July 1851, and Roseale 1855.
  • Leven and Judy Weathers are Linda's parents and my third great grandparents.
The following chidren were listed on the registry as children of George and Linda  but in other places in the book, they are identified as Linda's children and no father was listed:
  • Cecile, daughter of Linder & Long George, born the 17th of Jan 1833.
  • Primus, son of Linder and & Long George, born 21 August, 1834.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


I have been searching for grandfather, Theodore Bayonne, since 1999 and was finally successful a couple of weeks ago.  I have the following documents for him in my files:  baptismal record, 1900 census,  reconstructed service record for WWI and a death certificate. 

Every now and then, I  search for my ancestors who lack adequate documentation.  Carrie Taylor, my grandmother and wife of Theodore, is one them.  I looked for Carrie that night and found her in a post of the 1949 City Directory for New Orleans. There he was, listed not as Theodore Bayonne, but as Ferguson F. Bayonne. He was using his middle name! I found six more listings in the New Orleans City Directories ranging from 1916 to 1956, five for Ferguson and one for Theo F.

When I was a little girl, Grandma Carrie told me that my grandfather did not like Noel, his given name, and he never used it. Many years later after I got hooked on genealogy, I found his baptismal entry in the Diocese of Baton Rouge Catholic Church Records, 1886-1888, Volume 17, page 46. Man, as we called him, was  recorded as Noel Ferjus Theodore Bayonne. We knew him as Theodore but most people knew him as Ferguson. Theodore Bayonne is the name on his 1918 draft record and his death certificate.  He is identified as Faragard on the 1900 census, apparently a nickame which I concluded because he was born in December.

No other census records were found for Theodore, so the search goes on.