Friday, July 20, 2012

My Genealogy Guru is Under the Weather... Bums Me Out

Mom had a nasty fall in her home two weeks ago today. She's on the mend, with a couple of side tracks due to meds and such. I talked to her today and she sounded so much better my heart was warmed. She's turned a corner for the better. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayer, will you? After all she's going to be 94 on the 29th of this month!

We chat just about every morning and catch up on what we've been working on, genealogy-wise. She hasn't spent time at the computer because of the injury to her back and the added strain of sitting. But she'll be back soon.

Meanwhile the wind has gone out of my "ancestor search" sails. I left off sorting out the Wooden/Wooten, Waggoner, Yeast/Yost mess up in Grantsville, Maryland. Sarah Wooden/Wooten is my 3rd GGM and Mom's 2nd GGM. Her daughter, Sarah Waggoner might have been illegitimate but I'm not so sure. Seems that Sarah Wooden might or might not have married a Mr. Waggoner but Mom hasn't found record of that marriage. She did go on to marry Peter Yeast, a very prosperous innkeeper. Together they had six children: William, John, Alfred, F. F., Elizabeth, and James, as listed on the 1850 US Census.

So the two Sarahs, mother and daughter, are confusing enough to me. Add on two surnames that sound similar - Wooden and Waggoner (if that's how they were spelled at various times) - and it's all a muddle for me. Mom has it sorted but it falls out of my head whenever I think about it such that I have to resort to notes. See why I'm bummed out that Mom is under the weather... she keeps me organized and on the right track!

I have a copy of a letter from mother Sarah to daughter Sarah written March 5, 1869 which I'll transcribe here later. Mom has the original and I copied it last time I was visiting her. It's a lovely old thing and a tender picture of a family. In it mother Sarah asks daughter Sarah when she's coming for a visit. They only lived about 12 miles apart, mother in Grantsville, Maryland and daughter in Frostburg where, incidentally, Mom lives. Today it's a short drive but then the roads were difficult and prone to washing out. See photos below for a picture of how the road looked about 40 years later. (For more pictures of the National Road see the album via the tab at the top of this page.)

The most charming part of the letter to me is mother Sarah recapping the comings and goings of Sarah daughter's step-brothers and sisters, where they are living and what they are doing. It is difficult to read in some sections. And there is mention of Major and Sergeant. Don't know who they are and now in rereading the letter they might just be horses;)

I got curious about the Yeast brothers especially as this letter was written not too long after the Civil War. As best I can tell, William and James both served in the Union Army and survived. James was a private in the Second Potomac Home Brigade. I still don't have William's records sorted out properly but it looks to me as though he might have served in the 6th Calvary in West Virginia. Possible as West Virginia was "just over the hill", as Mom would say:) If so he was a POW at Andersonville... but I could be very wrong.

I did use the new search function at Fold3... and I love it! If I dreamed of the near-perfect search function, this would be it. I just searched on Union Army and Yeast and there all of the Yeasts were! Coulnd't be simpler.

So please wish Mom a hearty "get well soon"... and beg her to come back and keep me organized!

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