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When Genealogy Points to a Study of Religion
Few passenger lists of the early German settlers from the lower Palatine regions of Germany into Philadelphia survived. They were probably the largest concentration of immigrants who came to America. However, we have to remember that the Palatines spoke German and for this reason established their own communities. From about 1735 to 1752 most of these people were Germans from the Palatines and Switzerland and they were usually acccompanied by their ministers. Take special note of the names of the ministers and search for possible church records or log books. Their religion was being reformed into Presbyterian and Lutheran. In addition to the large Palatine movement coming to America during the 18th century, the Scotch-Irish were also landing in Philadelphia, taking the Wagon Road into Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. The reason that we cannot find records is because they spoke German and Gaelic. In many instances, they were so poor that they could not read nor write. Thus, as pioneers clanned together in the back woods, they lived amongst their own kind. Church records kept by the ministers was probably the only public data concerning their marriages, births and deaths. If you can find it. The South Carolina Gazette sometimes published information concerning the arrivals from foreign shores which provided the arrival date in South Carolina, and place. These are the sort of things to become familiar with.
Give the Children Memories
From the instance of birth, little children reach out to us. The tiny flailing hands seem so eager to touch someone. It is almost as though the tiny creation from its home in heaven has found a strangely foreign abode and is asking: "Who am I? What is my place here?" Although these such reflexes diminish over the years, there exists a natural yearning to belong. That is why family is so important. We have to assist these little creatures discover the wonders of life and help them along the path of identification. The home, dinner table, pets and even the family car suggest a certain security. Yet, it is the family members themselves who connect to security. Yet always, deep down inside of us, exists the need to know more about our ourselves, our own identify. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why tracing ancestors is not only popular in America, but a powerfully cohesive tool in binding the family together. As we learn who these relatives were and the reason for the choices which they made on their path of life, we begin to understand ourselves and our own well-defined bloodline. After finding the names and dates to complete the pedigree chart, should we learn more about our kin and the battles which they fought? After the American Revolutionary War, many of our ancestors did not live long enough to realize the fruits of their bravery. This is because the decision to fight was painful and the struggle for freedom was long-suffering. The founders lost everything they owned. Surely, for years into the future the whole of the thirteen colonies paid a very dear price for freedom. A price which they held dear to their hearts. And, we should tell our children all the stories and particulars. The direct pedigree produces four more names (families) to search with each passing generation. There are certainly enough fathers, grandfathers, great-grandfathers, uncles, great-uncles, etc. to produce some great stories of your revolutionary war soldiers and to relate them to the children. Because, you see, whether of English, German, Scottish or Irish descent, there is at least one great story to be discovered in each family. Our children crave to know these stories. It nourishes self-confidence and a love for history. Thus, learning the past is the key know ourselves. We are not alone!
How Family Legends are MisLeading
Sometimes we just need to forget the family legends describing how our ancestors arrived in America and instead, search passenger lists and other records. While these tales are fun, they are misleading. For one thing, imperfect memories churn up events which may or may not have occurred in specific time-spans. We can test ourselves, by attempting to pinpoint the date of a special event. Did we get it right? If it were not for public records which require dates, places and witnesses, past events would be imaginatory. I once attempted to confirm a family story where it was said that a certain ancestor was illegitimate. Not true, however, after tracing back 400 years, but I did find one in 1440!
Throughout history, statues, plaques and other memorials were erected concerning people and events. Lest we forget. Because we will forget. Time will swoosh past the generations and deliver the next set of faces upon the landscape every 33 1/3rd years. The monuments serve to fill in the gaps which schooling neglects and help the new faces to explore somewhat into how things were. Because a true study of history reveals that "nothing is new under the sun." Everybody tried it. Everybody did it. In order to keep from wasting our time and not bring upon ourselves trouble, we need to know the results of what was tried before.
Transcribed Genealogy Records are nice, however ....
If ever we are to find the ancestors, we must examine original documents. Errors are made in transcriptions which could throw us off for years. The census is an example of faded pages and misspelled names. In the old days when microfilm readers were the only hope, it was extremely difficult to discern ages and places of birth. However, the new scan pro readers on the market today (available in regional libraries) use Windows 10. This means that the IT of our own computers are now reading previously indistinguishable records!
Fannin County, Georgia Estates and Wills
Fannin County was created from Gilmer and Union counties on Jan. 21, 1854 by an act of the General Assembly. Early settlers include: J. W. Anderson, James A. Bruce, David Baugh, J. R. Barker, John B. Dickey, Joseph Dyer, James Cole, William Craig, L. G. Cutcher, Joseph Clemmons Elijah Ellis, William Franklin, John W. Gray, J. D. Galloway, E. J. Henry, John Hickey, W. G. Johnson, H. S. Kyle, R. J. McClure, Amos Owenby, Elijah Petty, Jesse Roper, David Shuler, H. B. Thomas, L. A. Vaughn and Jacob Weaver.
Online Fannin County Probate Records Available to Members of Georgia Pioneers
Online Images of Wills and Estates 1854-1865Testators: Addington, James;Beard, James;Berry, Jesse;Carter, Nelson;Casada, John;Chastain (bond);Chastain, Rainey;Chastain, James;Churchill, H. T.; Colton orphans;Cox, Tilmon;Crumley, John;Davis, Elias;Denton, William; Dillbeck, David;Douthit, John;Douthit, Warren;Dunn orphans;Ellis, Elijah;Ellis, J. N.;Freeman, Beverly;Garland, William;Grady, Samuel; Griffin, Stephen;Griffith, John;Heaton, John;Henry, John;Hill, Harber; Hise estate;Huckabee orphans;Jay orphans;Kindall, James;Legg, James; Legg, Joel;Legg, Seaten;Levaskin, Jesse;Lusk, William;Marshall orphans; McKiney, Didemia;McLeod, William;Melton, Elisha;Merrell, William; Oliver, Thomas;Patterson, John;Powell, John;Robertson orphans; Rogers orphans;Rogers, Anne;Rogers, Hugh;Rogers, Robert;Smith, John; Stanbury, Solomon;Stanton, William;Steele, W. J.;Summers, Samuel; Summers, Thomas;Thomas, William;Trammell, James;Trammell, Robert; Treadaway, Thomas;Webster, William;Wethers, Braselton
Indexes to Probate Records
- Wills and Estates 1854-1865.
- Inventories, Appraisements and Miscellaneous Estates 1865-1903.
- Wills 1868-1929.
- Annual Returns and Vouchers 1866-1893.
- Annual Returns, Administrators, Guardians 1893-1916.