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Becoming a History Detective
   Story-telling (incl. funny, sad,
    exciting, & implausible stories that
    have been passed down through
    the generations)
   Trips to visit relatives
   Curiosity…Are all those stories
    really true?
   Desire to get to know these people,
    whose voices are “in my blood”
   I remember Mother telling us about
    Mary Draper Ingles….I was about
    seven years old, and we were sitting in
    our pajamas beside the fireplace, in
    Erie Pennsylvania.



   My dad told us some of his childhood
    memories of wintertime trips to the
    North Country to stay with his Uncle
    John - about skate-sailing, ice-fishing,
    and skating on black ice…
   We loved to go to Lake George (in the
    Adirondack Mountains) to visit our
    great-uncle John
   It was a child’s paradise… with
    swimming, fishing, hiking, berry
    picking, canoeing, and, in the winter,
    lots of snow on the frozen lake…
   Even after moving far away, to
    Charlotte, NC, we made long trips
    back to the lake each summer (driving
    about 800 miles each way)
Mother loved to bring us to Ingles
   Ferry to visit her aunts (Minnie
   and Mary)

We stayed in a wonderful old
    Victorian house there (built by
    my great-grandfather Andrew
    Lewis Ingles), snooped around
    in the old tavern (built in 1772
    by William Ingles), and got a
    taste of rural farm life

Minnie taught me how to milk a
   cow. (My dad used to say that
   Minnie had the greenest thumb
   of anyone he had known!)
When I had children of my own, I began
feeling a sort of responsibility to learn about
the people in all the old photographs.
One day I decided to examine a trunk full of
Uncle John (Apperson)’s papers and found a
document that caught my attention…
A bill from Ellis Hospital – confirmed the
   family legend (about how Uncle John was
   hospitalized with the flu, but decided to
   check out and go camping. He said he’d
   rather die in the woods than in a hospital)

The letters in that trunk introduced me to
    several generations of my father’s kin .
    However, I was missing some key
    information. For example, I wondered
    what happened to my great grandmother,
    Ellen Victoria Hull Apperson, who died at
    age 48.
I found the answer to that question on a visit
    to my cousins in Richmond. It has become
    my “cigar box” story…
I enrolled in a graduate liberal
    arts program at UNC-
    Asheville, in North Carolina

For every assignment , I kept
   writing history papers .

In lieu of a thesis, I produced an
     exhibition telling about my
     uncle’s work as a citizen
     conservationist.
I came to Blacksburg in the
    summer of 2001, enrolling
    as a graduate student in
    history, and started writing
    research papers about Mary
    Draper Ingles

After finishing the course
   work, I worked at Glencoe
   Museum and absorbed
   more of the regional history

My next move was to Patrick
  County - to the Reynolds
  Homestead, the birthplace
  of R.J. Reynolds
In the summer of
2008, at the annual
Harvey picnic, I made
a rash promise…to
update the family tree
(poster)
   Nathaniel Burwell
    Harvey and Elrica Rorer
    had eleven children
   Two of the Harvey
    siblings married Ingles
    siblings, making their
    children double first
    cousins.
   Two other Harvey
    siblings married
    Trolinger siblings,
    making their children
    double first cousins, too
Grove Hill (home of
   Nathaniel Burwell
   Harvey) burned in 1906
Ingleside still stands (current
   home of Bud and Ann
   Jeffries)
Harvey House and La Rivière
   (the Castle), built by
   Captain Bill Ingles are
   now owned by A.C.
   Wilson
Ingleheim (and the historic
   tavern) are a well kept
   secret…on the Pulaski
   side of the river
Mary Barton Bullard – growing
   up on a farm that is now
   submersed under Claytor
   Lake


“Reekie” Young – oldest living
   cousin in her generation
   (Her father, Moore, was
   one of the Grove Hill
   Eleven)

George Harvey – he and his
    wife, Juanita, loaned me a
    treasure trove of research
    collected by his son, Ken
    Harvey, in the seventh
    grade
My grandmother, Katharine
   McClanahan Ingles, married
   William Palmer Hill, in 1912,
   and moved to Richmond. I
   had never taken the time to
   read through the letters in her
   trunk, but what a treasure!
   The collection includes letters
   from:
Margaret Trolinger, 1st cousin, a
   freshman at Hollins
The Rev. I. W. Irwin – the
   minister at the Radford
   Presbyterian Church…he was
   courting her!
This is a photograph
    with three Ingles
    brothers (Elijah,
    William and
    Andrew) but I didn’t
    know what the
    connection was with
    the fourth man
    identified as Jim
    Micou


As it turned out, his
    mother was a
    McClanahan, and he
    was raised by his
    aunt and uncle,
    Katherine
    (McClanahan) and
    Thomas Ingles
I’ve worked on several projects
    for “outside clients,” doing
    some research on line, and
    transcribing some old diaries
    and letters
For one friend, I’ve transcribed
    two journals left by her
    grandparents. In the first ,
    we were touched to learn that
    her grandfather worked as a
    clerk in the 1880s, making a
    salary of $100 (a year!!!)
Years later, her grandfather was
    diagnosed with TB and took a
    long train ride to Lake
    Saranac, NY to stay at the
    famous Trudeau Hospital
Now I’m hooked on Ancestry.com (it is definitely addictive!)
I’ve found names and dates for grandparents going back about 15
      generations.




Last year I could only name about 15 grandparents, but now I have located
     hundreds more, not to mention hundreds of aunts, uncles and cousins,
     with names tracing back to Wales, Cornwall, Alsace Lorraine, England,
     Scotland, Ireland…..
Census Records, plus deaths,
   births, marriages, military
   records, & Family Trees

Accuracy issues – same as
   with traditional
   methods…requires a
   combination of skepticism
   and hard work, but the
   search really brings
   history to life
   It is becoming much easier to
    track down ancestors, and also
    much easier to print out data in
    useful formats
   The work can be done from a
    laptop computer, or a library,
    and it is no longer necessary to
    travel great distances to spend
    extended hours in dusty
    archives
   Many archives are providing
    transcribed and scanned
    documents over the internet, in
    digital form
We could get organized… and get busy: researching,
  scanning, transcribing and donating copies of
  family information to local libraries and museums
We could offer assistance (as volunteers) to local
  libraries and museums.
We could create (or expand) a local family archive,
  gathering together scattered information about key
  families
We could hold workshops, attracting interested
    people to learn some of the finer points of research
    and genealogy

We could develop some sort of club (called History
  Detectives, or Ancestry Club) that could go through
  training (similar to Master Naturalists and Master
  Gardeners), with a curriculum and a series of classes,
  and eventually start offering helpful services to the
  local community…

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Becoming a History Detective: Uncovering Your Family's Past

  • 1. Becoming a History Detective
  • 2. Story-telling (incl. funny, sad, exciting, & implausible stories that have been passed down through the generations)  Trips to visit relatives  Curiosity…Are all those stories really true?  Desire to get to know these people, whose voices are “in my blood”
  • 3. I remember Mother telling us about Mary Draper Ingles….I was about seven years old, and we were sitting in our pajamas beside the fireplace, in Erie Pennsylvania.  My dad told us some of his childhood memories of wintertime trips to the North Country to stay with his Uncle John - about skate-sailing, ice-fishing, and skating on black ice…
  • 4. We loved to go to Lake George (in the Adirondack Mountains) to visit our great-uncle John  It was a child’s paradise… with swimming, fishing, hiking, berry picking, canoeing, and, in the winter, lots of snow on the frozen lake…  Even after moving far away, to Charlotte, NC, we made long trips back to the lake each summer (driving about 800 miles each way)
  • 5. Mother loved to bring us to Ingles Ferry to visit her aunts (Minnie and Mary) We stayed in a wonderful old Victorian house there (built by my great-grandfather Andrew Lewis Ingles), snooped around in the old tavern (built in 1772 by William Ingles), and got a taste of rural farm life Minnie taught me how to milk a cow. (My dad used to say that Minnie had the greenest thumb of anyone he had known!)
  • 6. When I had children of my own, I began feeling a sort of responsibility to learn about the people in all the old photographs. One day I decided to examine a trunk full of Uncle John (Apperson)’s papers and found a document that caught my attention…
  • 7. A bill from Ellis Hospital – confirmed the family legend (about how Uncle John was hospitalized with the flu, but decided to check out and go camping. He said he’d rather die in the woods than in a hospital) The letters in that trunk introduced me to several generations of my father’s kin . However, I was missing some key information. For example, I wondered what happened to my great grandmother, Ellen Victoria Hull Apperson, who died at age 48. I found the answer to that question on a visit to my cousins in Richmond. It has become my “cigar box” story…
  • 8. I enrolled in a graduate liberal arts program at UNC- Asheville, in North Carolina For every assignment , I kept writing history papers . In lieu of a thesis, I produced an exhibition telling about my uncle’s work as a citizen conservationist.
  • 9. I came to Blacksburg in the summer of 2001, enrolling as a graduate student in history, and started writing research papers about Mary Draper Ingles After finishing the course work, I worked at Glencoe Museum and absorbed more of the regional history My next move was to Patrick County - to the Reynolds Homestead, the birthplace of R.J. Reynolds
  • 10. In the summer of 2008, at the annual Harvey picnic, I made a rash promise…to update the family tree (poster)
  • 11. Nathaniel Burwell Harvey and Elrica Rorer had eleven children  Two of the Harvey siblings married Ingles siblings, making their children double first cousins.  Two other Harvey siblings married Trolinger siblings, making their children double first cousins, too
  • 12. Grove Hill (home of Nathaniel Burwell Harvey) burned in 1906 Ingleside still stands (current home of Bud and Ann Jeffries) Harvey House and La Rivière (the Castle), built by Captain Bill Ingles are now owned by A.C. Wilson Ingleheim (and the historic tavern) are a well kept secret…on the Pulaski side of the river
  • 13. Mary Barton Bullard – growing up on a farm that is now submersed under Claytor Lake “Reekie” Young – oldest living cousin in her generation (Her father, Moore, was one of the Grove Hill Eleven) George Harvey – he and his wife, Juanita, loaned me a treasure trove of research collected by his son, Ken Harvey, in the seventh grade
  • 14. My grandmother, Katharine McClanahan Ingles, married William Palmer Hill, in 1912, and moved to Richmond. I had never taken the time to read through the letters in her trunk, but what a treasure! The collection includes letters from: Margaret Trolinger, 1st cousin, a freshman at Hollins The Rev. I. W. Irwin – the minister at the Radford Presbyterian Church…he was courting her!
  • 15. This is a photograph with three Ingles brothers (Elijah, William and Andrew) but I didn’t know what the connection was with the fourth man identified as Jim Micou As it turned out, his mother was a McClanahan, and he was raised by his aunt and uncle, Katherine (McClanahan) and Thomas Ingles
  • 16. I’ve worked on several projects for “outside clients,” doing some research on line, and transcribing some old diaries and letters For one friend, I’ve transcribed two journals left by her grandparents. In the first , we were touched to learn that her grandfather worked as a clerk in the 1880s, making a salary of $100 (a year!!!) Years later, her grandfather was diagnosed with TB and took a long train ride to Lake Saranac, NY to stay at the famous Trudeau Hospital
  • 17. Now I’m hooked on Ancestry.com (it is definitely addictive!) I’ve found names and dates for grandparents going back about 15 generations. Last year I could only name about 15 grandparents, but now I have located hundreds more, not to mention hundreds of aunts, uncles and cousins, with names tracing back to Wales, Cornwall, Alsace Lorraine, England, Scotland, Ireland…..
  • 18. Census Records, plus deaths, births, marriages, military records, & Family Trees Accuracy issues – same as with traditional methods…requires a combination of skepticism and hard work, but the search really brings history to life
  • 19. It is becoming much easier to track down ancestors, and also much easier to print out data in useful formats  The work can be done from a laptop computer, or a library, and it is no longer necessary to travel great distances to spend extended hours in dusty archives  Many archives are providing transcribed and scanned documents over the internet, in digital form
  • 20. We could get organized… and get busy: researching, scanning, transcribing and donating copies of family information to local libraries and museums We could offer assistance (as volunteers) to local libraries and museums. We could create (or expand) a local family archive, gathering together scattered information about key families
  • 21. We could hold workshops, attracting interested people to learn some of the finer points of research and genealogy We could develop some sort of club (called History Detectives, or Ancestry Club) that could go through training (similar to Master Naturalists and Master Gardeners), with a curriculum and a series of classes, and eventually start offering helpful services to the local community…