Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Volunteer Trails To The Past (TTTP)

I enjoy volunteering to help others with their research even though I often have little time.  Right now my efforts are going toward the Trails To The Past.  It's a genealogical/historical network that is still very young. 

The Trails to the Past is an organization of volunteers dedicated to providing non-commercial, free genealogical data to researchers.  We want to provide not only birth, death and marriage records; census, bible records, books and cemetery records, but that unusual data that often provides not just facts, but a window on the life of your ancestors. 

Each district, state and county will have a site devoted to that place.  There are a number of  "Special Projects" already available to peruse or donate data to. 

"Oh", you say, "It sounds like the GenWeb".  I can only say that it is similar, but different in some very important ways.  First of all is the work environment.  The TTTP is focused on making the volunteers work environment nice, uncomplicated and friendly.  There will be no 'behind the scenes' struggles for power.  We will all avail ourselves to helping you to get started.  We want to invite creativity in your site design and data presentation.  We also wish to offer more history.  Genealogy is not just names and dates.  Knowing the history of the time period your ancestor lived in and the environment he had to survive is just as important when it comes time to "flesh out the bones" as they say.

We are in need of volunteers to join us.  There are states and counties needing adoption.  On the main page of the TTTP National site it reads:

"If you are interested please email the administrator of the state or district you are interested in  and send us a resume of your qualifications using FTP and writing HTML along with any sites you might have on the Internet."

It also states:

"If you adopt a state or a county, the web space that you get from Rootsweb is your website. You have the passwords to the site and you maintain what goes on the site. You own the copyright to any information you add to the site and your submitters own the copyright for whatever they add to the site. Trails to the Past only hold the copyright on what we put on our National pages."

If you do not feel you can adopt a county or state, you still can volunteer!  You have data about your own ancestors.  I know that I have collected many bits and pieces over the years to many databases.  Put together a lot of little bits and you have a complete database.  Any little bit is much appreciated.  There are grave photos, photographs of your ancestors, transcriptions of data and so many other things that you can submit to a site. Not only does this help other researchers, but you just might make that all important connection that aids you as well.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Simpson Reece Morgan - A TwigTale

Simpson Reece Morgan
 Reece Morgan was born in Monroe County, Tennessee on December 25, 1856.  He was my gr-gr-grandfather.   His parents were William M. Morgan and Sarah Serena Tallent.  I have followed the Morgans back to William Morgan born 1774 in Virginia.  The Tallent family goes back to about 1728 in the Carolina area.

Around 1878 in Tennesse, Reece married Matilda Marie White, aka. "Tilda".  During their life they produced 10 children; Rufus M. born 1879, Minnie Ellen born 1880, James Frank born 1883, Jessie Adeline (my great-grandmother) born 1884, Robert Benjamin born 1887, Kitty O. born 1889, Callie Miranda born 1892, Grace B. born 1893, Edgar L. born 1902 and Talmidge Digger Morgan born about  1904.  I have little information on Talmidge Digger who died in 1977 in Yakima, Washington.  All the others I have information on.

In 1908 they left Monroe County, Tennessee and moved to the Marshall/DeKalb County area of Alabama.

Edgar was only 16 when he died.
Photo by: Tina Brock Smith
Reece died January 10, 1942 in Collinsville, Alabama.  He was 86 years old.  He was buried in Copeland's
Bridge Cemetery in DeKalb County, Alabama. 
Reece Morgan's grave - Photo by: Tina Brock Smith

Monday, April 4, 2011

Tolliver White - A TwigTale

I've come to a brick wall with this man.  His name is Tolliver/Toliver White, and he was born about 1817 in Tennessee.  I've read many messages on boards that he had a trading post.  I've found no proof of that as of yet.

Marriage number one is to a Mary "Polly" Hicks sometime before 1837 in Tennessee.   Polly was born on May 8, 1818 in Tennessee and died around 1850.  She and Tolliver had 5 children that I can find; Sarah Ann, [Judith] Caroline, George [Washington], Mary Jane and Harriet.  Her parents were Isaac Hicks and Sarah Long Walker. 

In the 1850 Monroe County, Tennessee census,  Tolliver (farmer) and Polly are listed as 31 years old with the children; Sarah 13, Caroline 10, George 6, Mary 3 and Harriett, 4 months old.  Sarah Hicks, 57 years old, lived next door to Tolliver and Polly, so Isaac was most likely gone by then.  Sarah has listed in her household, Sarah 30, William 18, Jane 16, Caroline 5 and Margaret 2. 

Tolliver was supposed to have married a native American woman after Polly died.  They produced one child that I know of, my gr-gr-grandmother Matilda Marie White.  I have found many messages that state this is so with no hint of any source.  There is also an account that Matilda Marie, better known as Tilda, said she was raised by an indian woman, again with no name.  I believe they wrote that her mother died in childbirth.   Tilda was born in October of 1854.  She died in 1925 in Calhoun County, Alabama and is buried in Lloyd's Chapel Cemetery.  She married Reese Simpson Morgan, son of William M. and Sarah Serena Tallent Morgan.

Tolliver was not done with marriage.  His third marriage was to a woman named Nancy Carolyn LNU.  In the 1860 census for Monroe County Tennessee Tolliver is 43 and still listed as a farmer.  His wife, Nancy White is 26 and lists her birthplace as North Carolina.  They have 6 children in the household; G.K. 15, Jane 12, Harriet 10, S.E. 8, Matilda 6 and Adaline 7 months old.  (G.K. is male and most likely George Washington;  Jane is Mary Jane.) 

Nancy and Tolliver were said to have a Margaret I. in 1862 and Martha C. White in 1863.  I cannot place the S. E. female yet. 

I have been unable to find the family of Tolliver.  I would love to put a name to Matilda's mother.  My thoughts about that are mixed.  The more I look at the family, the more I feel there was no 2nd wife.  If Polly died giving birth to S.E. White in 1852 or most likely Matilda in 1854,  the story would still fit.  Tolliver would marry Nancy Caroline before 1858.  I have wondered if Nancy Caroline could be Polly's sister, Caroline Hicks, listed in the 1850 census with her mother, Sarah, even though the age is wrong.  I know that it is said that the Hicks line is Cherokee.  This would clear up many things.  I need to find the proof.

I've also read that Tolliver was murdered in 1867, and the only witness to that horrible act was my gr-gr-grandmother Tilda.  I would love to know more about this.


Friday, April 1, 2011

A New Toolbox Need

(I've been away for a while.  Life interrupted me.  I am back.  I know it is April 1st, but this is no April Fool's gag!)

I've finally given up on Picasa.  It is the ornery-ist thing I've tried to work with.  So I threw it out.  I wish I could have wadded it up and tossed it, but I had to be happy just to empty my recycle bin.    I really needed to hear crunching or a bang. 

Now I am on the look out for a program that is simple and free.  I need to organize more than anything else.  I don't want it to hold all my many gigs of photos.  I like that I could uninstall Picasa without any worry about any loss of my photos.  I don't really need the program to do much of anything else.  I have PSP 8 and Photoshop Elements 9 to "work" on any that needs fixing.  But the basics like red-eye removal and straightening up a photo is nice to have handy. 

I have downloaded and have been looking at FastStone Image Viewer, but I don't think that it is quite what I had in mind.  Also have been reading about Zoner Photo Studio Free.  It has a free version, but is it worth it? 

I know PSE9 can organize your photos into albums.  What I don't know is if my photos are deleted with the program if it is uninstalled.  There are also photos that I have within folders that go with my RootsMagic that I don't want touched at all.  Can I stop that?  How hard is PSE9 to work with?  I just started working with this program a couple of months ago, so I am a big-time NEWBIE!

If anyone has any opinions they would share about this, I would appreciate hearing them.  What is the most used photo organizing program used by everyone?


A Sort Of Rant.

There must be a better way to communicate. Particularly in the genealogy community. It's been a long time since I've had a really...