Sorry for the Absence

It has been way too long since I have posted. I spent a lot of time last year solving a mystery on my father’s side of my tree with great results. Meanwhile, I moved to Portugal last Fall. It took a while to get settled in and then I have been traveling in the states since June. I will be back in Portugal in October and settled in one place starting November 1 for the next several months.

My goal is to spend my winter getting organized about tracing one lead at a time. I will also be planning two genealogy trips for next year, June 2019 I want to spend some time in Maryland following up on Nicholas Moore, born in Maryland in about 1712. I will be on a quest to trace back from Nicholas and find where in Ireland my branch of the Moore family started their migration to America.

In August and September 2019 I will be in Oklahoma for the First Families of the Cherokee Nation annual reunion (first time attending). Then to Mena, Arkansas where my great grandfather Moses Crittenden lived in the mid-1800s. Next to Guntersville, Alabama to the West side of my mother’s family.  And then to South Carolina where I hope to be able to go further back in our lineage from William L West who was born in South Carolina and migrated to Alabama in the 1800s.

Anyone with info on the Moores in Baltimore or Wests in South Carolina, please contact me.

Over the summer I did manage to do some additional research on the time spent by my grandparents James Richard West and Eliza Crittenden West in Roswell New Mexico in the early 1900s. More court documents on my grandfather. Once I have  a little more information I will post an update on the life of my very interesting grandfather!

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Newspaper Archives Great Source for Family History

In my last post I mentioned finding surprising news about my grandfather, James R West, in newspapers from New Mexico in the early 1900s.  I have done many newspaper searches before, but never using NewspaperArchive.com.

I found dozens of articles that I had not find searching other newspaper sites. Although there is a subscription fee, I am finding this source invaluable. So far, I have saved twelve articles about James West from the site with many more still to review and save.

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Interestingly, although I have never heard him referred to as Jim except by my cousin John, seeing his name as Jim West, as well as James West, in one of the articles that I found led me to start a new search under Jim West. Many more articles came up that were clearly about James. Remember to search in many ways for your ancestors in all document and newspaper searches.

Conducting more research on Newspaper Archive is my top genealogy goal at the moment. It is taking a lot of discipline to not start entering every ancestor’s name to see what I can find. However, I am determined to first pull every article about my grandfather that I can find and this in itself will take several sessions.

Happy searching!

Kathy

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James R West – Man of Many Complexities

Finding out more about James R West, my grandfather, was one of the reasons that I started my genealogy research. James married my Cherokee grandmother, Eliza Crittenden, in 1903. I knew only broad strokes about their life together.

They married in Oklahoma Indian Territory in 1903. Sometime shortly after that they moved to Roswell, New Mexico where they lived until about 1917. I knew that James left the family in 1922 and, except for a one day visit to Tulsa in 1929, he never contacted my grandmother or his children again.

James R West

James R West

Since starting my research I have found out more about their life together, but I still have so many holes in their story.

Based on some correspondence with the Dawes Commission regarding my grandmother’s land selection, I had a feeling that James was not in the household during their last years in Roswell. In October of this year,  I finally made my way to Roswell to see what I could find.

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Chaves County Court House – Roswell

I started with the Historical Society and their very helpful volunteer. Janice found a newspaper article that led me to do some research in the property file archives at the Chaves County Recorders Office. I found many land transactions in which James was involved, ending with charges being filed against him regarding some of those transactions. This mirrored activity by James that I had found several years ago in Wagoner, Oklahoma. Pages of land transactions concluding with him being sanctioned by a judge.

So, I went back to the newspaper archives. I found two more interesting articles about charges being filed against James for various crimes. My next stop would have been the court house to find out more about these charges and their resolution, but sadly I had to depart Roswell and my travel plans could not be changed. The wonderful Historical Society volunteer is going to see what she can find at the court house.

This week I decided to conduct a more intensive newspaper search and was overwhelmed by what I found, coverage of multiple charges and trials involving James R West, including horse smuggling, jury tampering, and attempted murder!

Clearly, my research will continue. I know that I will find out more facts, and hopefully find the court records regarding these cases. However, will I ever know the story surrounding the facts? What led James, who appeared to have a successful livery business at the time, to his actions? How did it impact my grandma, Eliza?

JamesRichard.4thfromleft.Roswell.NM.ca.1912 (2017_08_30 07_25_36 UTC)

James R West – second from right in black hat

Some of James’ story can be attributed to the fact that much of Oklahoma and New Mexico were still the Wild West in the early 1900s. Yet, that is not enough of an explanation for me.

I fear I will always be left wondering about so many details and nuances of my grandparents’ lives. It is the search and the uncovering of surprises that keep me going. I know that there will always be something else to find out.

This trip also reminded me that there is nothing like feet on the ground when following your family’s story in many diverse locations.

Do any of you have family that resided in New Mexico in the early 1900s? I would love to hear your stories. Who knows, maybe yours cross mine somewhere in Roswell.

 

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The West Family Cherokee Connections

When I started this blog I was aware that one of my West ancestors, Rufus Morgan West Jr (my great grandfather’s nephew), had married a Cherokee woman, Ellen Fain, and that my grandfather’s brother, David West, had married Rufus’s widow. What I found on my November 2016 trip to Guntersville, Alabama is that my West family’s Cherokee connection is deeper and more complex that I knew.

My great grandfather’s brother, Rufus Morgan West, married Nancy Merrill (interchangeably spelled as Merrell) in Alabama in 1843.

Rufus West and Nancy Merrll Licensce from Archives Office in Guntersville, Marshall County, Alabama

Rufus West and Nancy Merrell Marry in Alabama

My time in Alabama was full of discoveries, many of which I will share in future posts. The major finding was how deep my family’s Cherokee connections are in my West lineage. When I started this quest into my family’s history, I had compartmentalized my family’s Cherokee heritage on my mother’s side in her mother’s Crittenden line, not her father’s West line. But, of course, as we all know, tracing family lines is much more complex than we think when we start.

One of the most intriguing explorations for me has been studying the history of Oklahoma, Arkansas and Alabama in the 1800s and early 1900s and finding out how often my West and Crittenden families’ histories were a part of some of the key events of that time, in both pioneer and Cherokee history.

I would love to hear from any West, Ferguson, Pollston, Merrill (Merrell), Stephens or other families who were residing in Marshall County in the general Guntersville area in the 1800s.

For more information on Alabama’s Cherokee history:

http://www.encyclopediaofalabama.org/article/h-1087

History of Merrill Mountain:

history-of-merrill-mountain

 

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Descendants of Moses Crittenden -Where Are They?

Moses Crittenden, my great grandfather, had 17 children.

His children with Edith Quinton were:
James Washington Crittenden 1849–1922
Malinda Jane Crittenden 1850–1932
Clara Crittenden 1851–1881
William Crittenden 1852 –
Perry Crittenden 1854–
Martha Elizabeth Crittenden 1854–1892
Elizabeth Crittenden 1859–
Edith Elizabeth Crittenden 1861–1945

Great Aunt Edith Elizabeth Crittenden

His children with Margaret Howell were:
Mary Ann Crittenden 1868–1945
Palmira Vianna Crittenden 1871–1939
Sidney Crittenden 1873–1925
Nancy Alice Crittenden 1875–1941
Eliza Jane Crittenden 1876–1970 (my grandmother)

GrandmaElizaJaneCrittendenWest.ca.1950

Dora B Crittenden 1880–1968
Margaret Rebecca Crittenden 1882
Isaac Moses Crittenden 1888-1957

IsaacCrittenden

One child with Emily Crittenden Weaver:
Anthony Crittenden 1854-1909

I know there are hundreds of Moses Crittenden descendants. My hope is that eventually we will all  find each other online and share family stories, photos and missing genealogy facts.

Meantime, I will continue to post my discoveries about my grandparents’ ancestors; the Crittendens, the Wests, the Moores and the Cartmills.

With this post goes a big hug to all of my cousins out there, known and unknown.

 

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The Crittenden Photo Hunt Continues

Thank you to those who helped identify some of the photos that I posted last month.

Here is an update on the new information that I have.

Emily Crittenden Weaver and Joe Weaver

Emily Crittenden Weaver and Joe Weaver, her son

I am in agreement with the input that I have had from other Crittenden descendants that the woman pictured here is not Emily Crittenden. Any readers know who she might be? Joe Weaver, on the right, was Emily’s son and the father of Mary Weaver Crittenden and Lewis Weaver.

Emily Weaver Family 1.3.7.6.10.11 photos

Current consensus is that # 1 is Lewis (Bullet) Weaver. Number 3 is Anthony Crittenden, Lewis’ older brother and Moses Crittenden’s only child with Emily Crittenden. The Albertys are in photo number 7. I need to do more research on the Albertys. Number 11 may be Emily’s youngest son, Sam King who passed away at a young age.

Emily Weaver Family 8.5.9.12.4.2

Emily Weaver Crittenden and other Family Members

Top row, left to right: Rachel Woodall (one of Emily’s daughters), middle photo is an Alberty, top row right is Emily Crittenden Weaver. Bottom row, left to right: Possibly Rachel Woodall as a toddler, middle is an Alberty, on the right is Anthony Crittenden.

I will keep you posted when I get more clarification.

 

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Crittenden Weaver Photos – Need Help Identifying

I have mentioned here before what a treasure family photos are to me. I was surprised and thrilled when I received a comment in this blog from another Crittenden relative that I did not know about. Our connection is through Moses Crittenden and his relationship with Emily Crittenden Weaver.  The biggest thrill was that she had photos to share!

She was very generous in immediately sending me scans of her photos and her best guesses as to who they are. Some are scans of photos that were taken of original photographs in a photo album. There are also some scans of treasured original tin types.

I am going to attach the scans in this post with our combined best info about who is actually in the photos. I am hoping that someone who reads this will be able to provide more information and/or add to our growing collection of photos.

Charlotte and Lottie Robbins.Emily Crittenden Weaver Daughters

Photos of Charlotte and Lottie Robbins. Daughters of Emily Crittenden Weaver.

Anyone have any other photos of Charlotte and Lottie?

Emily Crittenden Weaver and Joe Weaver

Emily Crittenden Weaver and Joe Weaver, her son

Although this is identified as Emily, based on another photo that I have of her, I do not think that this is Emily Crittenden Weaver.

 

Ben and Mary Crittenden - Dave Crittenden

Ben and Mary Crittenden – Dave Crittenden

Emily Weaver Family 1.3.7.6.10.11 photos.jpg

Here are some thoughts as to who the people in these photos might be.

1.Maybe Ben Crittenden
3.Don’t know
6. David Crittenden
7. Don’t know
10. Mary and her sisters and David Crittenden
11. David Crittenden

Emily Weaver Family 8.5.9.12.4.2

More photos with needing identifying.

Top row left – Emily Crittenden Weaver possibly – I do not think so.
Top row middle – Do not know
Top row right – I have had this photo identified by two people as Emily Crittenden Weaver. If so, then I do not see the resemblance to the photo above, next to Joe Weaver, identified as Emily Weaver. I was told that might be Emily, but she looks nothing like the woman top row, right, in this photo.
Bottom row left – Possibly David Crittenden’s sister who was blinded when she was young.
Bottom row middle – Do not know
Bottom row right – Do not know

Hoping this is read by someone who can help us shed more light on these treasured photos, or add some photos of their own of anyone connected to Moses Crittenden and his descendants.

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