Sunday, July 24, 2011

Another Civil War Veteran!

Photo by terryballard

While blogging last week about my 16 great great grandparents I realized that one of my 2nd great grandfathers in my maternal grandfather's line, of which I haven't researched much, died in 1862 in Fredericksburg.  I'm not a Civil War buff but because my husband is, I remembered visiting the Fredericksburg Battlefield about 15 years ago.  I remembered posing for a family photo in front of the wall in the photo above.  (I also remember being bored to tears but that's another story for a different day)  Could this ancestor of mine actually have died there?  Time to research!

Burnside Bridge, Antietam Battlefield
Photo by Galileo55

And research I did.  I learned that William J. Brooks served as Private, Company G, 3 South Carolina Regiment, CSA.  His service began in July, 1862 and his regiment particpated in the Battle of Antietam (or Sharpsburg, as it was known in the south) on September 17, 1862.  This was the bloodiest single-day battle in American history with about 23,000 casualties.  I remember visiting this battlefield with a book in hand that compared the location in 1862 with present day.  It was quite humbling to stand on the same land that our ancestors fought on.  As we walked across the Burnside Bridge, we thought about the lives that were lost that day.

Photo by Jackie
Findagrave #8222614
 I've also learned that William J. Brooks did, in fact, die at the battle at Fredericksburg on December 13, 1862, mid way through the 5 day battle (December 11-15, 1862).  I don't know specifics about his death but I know that he left a wife, Sarah Jane Miller, and four young children, one of which was my great grandmother, Frances Maria Brooks.  William is buried in Dials Cemetery in Laurens County, South Carolina.

I've also learned that after William's death in 1862, Sarah married John Hayward Anderson in 1868 and together they had more children.  At some point after their marriage (I'm still researching), they moved across the country from South Carolina to Fresno. 

There is so much to learn about Sarah.  Two of her great grandfathers were Revolutionary War patriots and her father was a slave owner.  While I know this is a sensitive part of our nation's history, I'm excited to learn more about this.

But the best part about researching William and Sarah is that I found a new cousin!  My new cousin (2nd cousin, once removed) is a descendant of Sarah Miller and John Anderson and we're currently in the process of exchanging information and learning more about our common ancestors.  She not only lives near my childhood home where my mother still lives, but we discovered today that my mother actually attended the wedding of her parents as a young child.  Proof positive how small this world really is!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - My 16 Great Grandparents

Photo by Tomorrow Never Knows

Thank you, thank you, thank you to Randy Seaver at genea-musings for the Saturday night challenge of listing our 16 great great grandparents.  I've been in a "blog fog" (where I can't think of anything to write about) for the last few weeks and now I have something to blog about.  I will admit it is Sunday night and I'm 24 hours late but I've been out of town this weekend so I get a free pass :-)

The challenge was:

1)  List your 16 great-great-grandparents with their birth, death and marriage data (dates and places).  [Hint - you might use an Ancestral Name List from your software for this.]

2)  Determine the countries (or states) that these ancestors lived in at their birth and at their death.

3)  For extra credit, go make a "Heritage Pie" chart for the country of origin (birth place) for these 16 ancestors. [Hint: you could use the  chart generator from Kid Zone for this.] [Note: Thank you to Sheri Fenley for the "Heritage Pie" chart idea.]

I'm not going for extra credit as I'm too tired and too technically challenged but here goes:

1.  William Warren McAboyBorn 12 December, 1842 in DeWitt County, Illinois.  Died 12 January, 1925 in Santa Cruz, California.  Married 10 January 1864 in DeWitt County, Illinois to....

2.  Rebecca Moriah Waller:  Born 7 February, 1845 in Warren County, Ohio.  Died 23 October 1928 in Fresno, California.

3.  Matthew Fitzgerald:  Born 10 September 1850 in Ireland.  Died 24 August 1905 in Fresno, California.  Married June 1869 in Derryleagh, Cork, Ireland to....

4.  Julia Horgan:  Born 1849 in Derryleagh, Cork, Ireland.  Died 4 August 1886 in Black, Yolo County, California.

5.  Lewis Saxon Martin:  Born 9 April 1820 in South Carolina.  Died 19 July 1903 in Laurens County, South Carolina.  Married 12 April 1848 in Laurens County, South Carolina (second marriage) to....

6.  Millicent Moore:  Born 6 October 1827 in South Carolina.  Died 3 January 1884 in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina.

7.  William J. Brooks:  Born 1835 in South Carolina.  Died 1862 in Fredericksburg, Virgina.  (I need to research this - I just realized he must have died at the battle of Fredericksburg).  Married to.....

8.  Sarah Jane Miller:  Born November 1836 in South Carolina.  Died 30 April 1923 in Fresno, California.

9.  Louis Schwartz:  Born 28 December 1834 in Shildberg, Prussia.  Died 23 May 1893 in Byron Springs, Contra Costa County, California.  Married 15 October 1865 in California to....

10.  Rebecca SteenBorn 8 February 1848 in Poland.  Died 7 January 1918 in Oakland, California.

11.  Ferdinand GunzendorferBorn 1 August 1838 in Adelsdorf, Bavaria.  Died 20 October 1907 in Montery, California.  Married in 1863 in California to....

12.  Fannie Goldstein:  Born 6 March 1848 in Poland.  Died 22 July 1910 in San Francisco, California.

13.  Benjamin Benas:  Born 26? December, 1826 in Posen, Germany.  Died 17 April 1892 in Vallejo, California.  Married before 1870 in California to....

14.  Fredericka Wilzinski:  Born 20 April 1840 in Prussia or Germany.  Died 14 October 1915 in San Francisco, California.

And that's all I've got.  I do not know the parents of my paternal great grandfather, Herman Levy.  I've hit a bit of a brick wall so I've put them aside.  For now.