Right in Front of My Face

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It is always interesting getting information from my husband’s family. All you need to do is get his mother’s sisters together and the three of them start firing off names faster than you can type them in. They also change tree limbs without signaling. I type as fast as possible, committing to slipping memory as much as I can for the next entry and pleading with my husband to make them slow down or at least catch anything important that I may have missed.


The names would fly, Delcie, Luther, Walter, William, Tiny (yes, this was a real name), Minnie Belle and Etta. There were halves, wholes, steps and who knows what included. Both parents having been married before in many cases more than once, it was verbal spaghetti.


It was probably that Thanksgiving that I sat at his aunt’s table, borrowing internet from the next door neighbor’s wireless that the mistake happened. It wasn’t a major mistake and not a real mistake at all but it halted my continuing down one branch of the family tree, sort of. Because I was following several lines back from all of the names collected, I already had the information I need, it was just misspelled from what I had gathered and I had the wrong last name in another place from what I had been given. Her name was America Stringer, she was born about 1848 and lived her entire life in Lawrence county Arkansas. I had her name as America Stell married to William Foley and that is where the research on her ended.


I had found another research site and joined it for free for a week. The advertisement was better than the research I was finding on it and noticed that it didn’t cover the areas where most of my research takes place for my family line. As long as I had it I typed in information from my husband’s family line because it did cover areas in Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee and Arkansas. I typed in the information on America Stell and up popped her marriage information to John D Still with her maiden name of Stringer. The dates lined up for her birth and I went back to see what I had for her marriage to William Foley. It was all working out.


My next move was to take a look for her in the Census before she was married and she showed up, misspelled as Amerita. I started adding in all of her information until some of it started to sound too familiar. I also had her in my own data base as Amerita because her sister had married Scarlett Foley, the brother of William. It had been right in front of my face all along. It took a bit of combining individuals to clean up my mess so that the research on her line no longer ends abruptly.


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