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Funeral Service of Alberta Williams

Among my family papers file I have several items about people that I do not know, but who were known by my family members. I am sure many of us have such files too. I was looking through my files this evening and found an obituary for Alberta LaSaine Williams. Alberta was a member of my grandmother’s church in New York, the First Church of God in Christ. The officiating pastor at her funeral was Bishop F. Clemmons, co-pastor was Ithiel Clemmons. I’ve posted about Ithiel before.

alberta

Alberta lived from May 26, 1914 – March 12, 1970.  She was the daughter of Katie Lino and James LaSaine of Georgetown, Georgetown County,  South Carolina.  Alberta moved to New York in 1936 and moved to Winston Salem in 1940 where she married Herbert L. Williams and would have five children.   She moved back to New York in 1951 and joined my grandmother’s church in January of 1964.   Alberta is buried at Bethel A.M.E. Cemetery in Georgetown, SC.   There is a transcription of the cemetery on the Georgetown SCGenWeb page, but Alberta is not listed.

In typical fashion of my grandmother, her funeral program is marked up, but I share it here [click here for the full program] in case it is ever of help to potential family members.

Some background on the LaSaine family:

– in 1910, her parents James & Katie are newlyweds, having gotten married about 1909, and they have their first child, James Jr.  They live on Meeting Street.

– in 1920, Alberta is enumerated with her parents in Georgetown, SC, and siblings James Jr., Brock (??), Thaddeus, and Lydia.  Her father’s occupation is as a chauffer to a private family. They lived on  Meeting Street.

– by 1930, father James has passed, and widow Katie and kids (including Alberta) lives with son James Jr., still on Meeting Street.

It appears Alberta’s sister may still be alive, so I think I will send this to her (or maybe her family that may be living there) for them in case they would like to have the copy.   And, though this is not a Music Monday post, my grandmother noted on the program that the solo sung during her service was hymn “When They Ring These Golden Belles for You & Me.”   And though she didn’t sing it for Alberta, here is Loretta Lynn singing it

Update: I asked my mother about her and she VERY much remembers Sister Williams. She said the whole projects knew her!

Rest in Peace Aunt Lossie

One of my ancestors, my 2nd great-grandfather Andrew D. McNair, had two sets of children.  With his first wife, Gracy Bullock, he had 5 children between 1894-1906.  Gracy died between 1906-1910 and Andrew remarried to a woman named Bennie Slade.  With Bennie he would have 5 more children between 1915-1923.   Lossie Viola McNair Mason was Andrew’s youngest child, born in November of 1923 and I learned from a family member last week that she passed shortly before Christmas. 

I never met Lossie, but I am sad to learn of her passing and plan to reach out to her family sometime over the next few weeks.

My Week

This week I have not been very involved with my own family genealogy.  I started classes again this week, so during the week I am very busy with them.  However, this weekend, I did spend some time working on various genealogy related projects. 

On Saturday, I worked some more on a resource I’m putting together on historical newspapers. Since it is slow going, there’s not much to say about it at this point except that I’m trying to figure out the best approach.  I will share more as I get my ideas more fully developed because I would love input form everyone. 

Last night I worked on the Vanderbilt family genealogy some for my Vanderiblt Family Genealogy site.  They are always interesting. 

Earlier this week, I went to a local used bookstore and while there picked up a couple of good gems I think.  One of them was a book from the Images of America series about Chattanooga.  I love these books, but I lament the fact that they don’t have indexes.  For the ones that I have so far, they have been indexed by Google, so I can just search them. However, this one on Chattanooga is not included in Google, so today I created an index.  In light of this, I went ahead and created a Special Projects tab on my blog to house things such as this that I work on.  I am using Scribd to house a PDF version of the index and I plan to share it with the Hamilton County TNGenWeb coordinator and on the listserv. I hope Chattanooga area researchers will find it of use. 

Oh, and thanks to Denise’ s post on Jing, I downloaded that today and tried it out some. I like it so far and it meets a need I have sometimes for easy ways to highlight screenshots. Thanks Denise.

That’s been my week.  Now, one of my cousins will be in town this week, so I will see her and maybe we can talk genealogy more and talk about family history!

Music Mondays: For the Beauty of the Earth

I’m starting a new blog meme for myself – Music Mondays.  Music is very important for me, so I thought it would be interesting to document various songs and their association with various events in the family through music. 

For my first music monday post, I’d like to share a song that was sung at my maternal grandmother’s high school graduation.  She graduated from the Plymouth Colored High School in Plymouth, NC in May of 1944.  I am fortunate to have her graduation program and listed on the program the song For the Beauty of the Earth.  I found this YouTube video of it being sung by children. It’s a pretty song.

Happy New Year

Happy New Year everyone!

Oriental Beauty: Grace With a new year comes a new theme for my blog.  Here’s one of my cross-stitch projects to go along with the new theme.  I finished this back in 2003.  If you are reading this via a feed reader, come visit and take a look 🙂   

 

I’ve also moved my main blog from blogger to our domain name – visit us there too at http://www.taneya-kalonji.com.

Death of Innocence

deathofinnocence Today I picked up the book, The Death of Innocence: The Story of the Hate Crime That Changed America by Mamie Till-Mobley. Mamie is the mother of Emmett Till. I’ve blogged previously about a connection I share with Emmett Till – one of my maternal grandmother’s brothers married into the family of Moses Wright – Emmett’s great-uncle from whose home he was taken. I’m looking forward to reading Mamie’s book and learning more about the events of what happened.

USGenWeb 2.0

With great help from the NC GenWeb state coordinators, I was able to convert the Martin County, NC site into a WordPress site today.  I became county coordinator in October and while I started with a blog, I knew I wanted to do more with the site. I love the power and flexibility of WordPress and using it will make it easier to administer the site.  I needed to do this because though I know HTML and well, working with it was becoming too much of a time consumer for me.  This way, I don’t have to worry about the HTML nearly as much and I can add content to the site more rapidly.

martinco

You can check out the site at http://www.ncgenweb.us/martin.  Please let me know what you think!  Personally, I woud love to see more USGenWeb sites use content management systems (CMS).  The common vertical display of links that I usually see is becoming more and more difficult for me to navigate.   This is my second USGenWeb site that I am coordinator for now and these sites are great resources and I would love to see them further enhanced.

Some other USGenWeb sites that are good examples of more “modern” formats include:

These are just some I’ve come across, do you have others?  In addition, there are a few counties that have corresponding blogs as I’ve done for my two counties.  Genealogue.com recently added a category for UsGenWeb blogs and I would love to see this category grow.  Currently, there are only three others listed in addition to my two.

I get a fair amount of communication from researchers through my blogs and try to help as much as I can. Partnerships between county coordinators and local genealogical socities would undoubtedlby even further increase user engagement.

Follow-up for Lorenza

My last post on my mother’s uncle Lorenza was very well received by my family members.  Two cousins as well as Lorenza’s aunt Martha (who is 80+ years old and sends email and is online!) also commented.  Everyone seemed to really appreciate it. 

After that post, I digiscrapped a layout for him.  The layout uses a Quick Page design by Meryl Barthos.

From Kaleya — Year 2

Our Family and WWII

This is a post I’ve been wanting to write for a couple of years now as it was one of the most interesting history lessons I had early on when I started doing my genealogy in 2006.

December 7th marks the anniversary of Pearl Harbor and my great-uncle,  Lorenza McNair (1921-2005), was in the military during this time of war.  I’d always heard from my mother that after he returned, he told the family that if they had any questions about what happened, they’d better ask then because he was never going to talk about it again.  To the best of my mother’ s knowledge, he never did.

Lorenza McNair

Lorenza’ s military records show that he was a crew member on the USS Neosho when it was attacked during the Battle at the Coral Sea on May 7, 1942.   This is the last picture taken of it after it was bombed; 80% of the crew were killed during the attack and my uncle was one of 123 people rescued when the ship was found 4 days later; he was wounded in action.   This picture comes from a very thorough account of the ship and it’s activities from a man named Del whose uncle was also one of the rescued.

You can read more about the intense action of that day on Del’s website. He also has a video interview of his father and his uncle with his uncle describing some of what happened that day. This was very moving for me to watch as my own uncle was part of it too.   There’s been a book written about the USS Enterprise that I should read – The Big “E” by Edward Stafford.

Lorenza’s next military service was then on the USS Enterprise, which he joined in October 1942.  The USS Enterprise was the US ship with the most battle stars during WWII.  While he was on the USS Enterprise he was also involved in several more battles:

In November 1943, Lorenza then transferred to the USS Hornet. The Hornet deployed in 1944 and began it’s career with a series of raids against Japanese bases in the Caroline islands; Lorenza’s records show he was on the ship during this time.

According to my grandmother,  her brother was the 1st black man from Plymouth to join the Navy.  There was a newspaper write-up about him that I have, but it does not have the date on it.  One of my future research tasks is to see if I can find out when this was published.  However, the article gets the order of his ship service wrong, having him listed as being on the Hornet first and then the Enterprise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After I learned all of this, I realize it is no wonder Lorenza did not want to talk about his service.  This was certainly a traumatic experience.  I think our family was truly lucky that he did return home after the war.

I’ve added information about Lorenza to his Footnote Page.

Number 1000

On Saturday night, Randy shared on his blog his experience trying to locate the 1,000th person in his database, and invited us all to do the same. Well, I thought, this should be easy enough. Well, I found them, but it was not as straightfoward as I thought!  I use TNG: The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding as my software.  I have more than 3300 people in the gedcom associated with my name (i have several other gedcoms too for different research projects)

Attempt #1

TNG has a number of web-based forms that are used for data entry and reports. So, I went first to the webform for the administration of people.  The form has a field to enter search criteria, and beneath that is a table of results.

I use this form all the time. But, just now realized that the column headers are not sortable and the order which people are listed by default is not by ID, it is by name.

Attempt #2

Given the database backend of the software, the ID number of each person is included in the URL for that person’s page. For example, my great-grandfather, Barfield Koonce has a URL of http://www.taneya-kalonji.com/family/getperson.php?personID=I26&tree=1.  You see in the URL that personID=I26 refers to his ID number in the database. So, I thought, let me just change that to personID=1000 and after doing so I got a broken URL message.  Hmm… what’s up with that?

Attempt #3

Since TNG does use a database, I then decided to go look at the database tables themselves. I use phpMyAdmin to administer my MySQL databases on my website, so I have a lot of flexibility for querying fields, running SQL queries and sorting data.

I went specifically to the table of people, limited the results to those in my main gedcom (tree=1) and then sorted by ID number. This is when I realized that the personID numbers skip around, there is no personID=1000. It goes from 973 to 1003. I’m not sure why, but let’s try something else. Let’s look at the 1,000th record in the list, regardless of perosnID.

That person is Vincent Hutchinson. Vincent is my 2nd cousin and is related to me on my maternal grandfather’s side. I’ve never met him, but I do have a picture of him.  I don’t even have his birthdate/year. Looks like I need to contact his father again :-).  Last time I spoke to his father was about two years ago.

That was certainly an exercise.