Archive for » November, 2009 «

This is a photo of my MIDDLEBROOKS family taken one Christmas in the mid to late 1960′s. Whenever I look at this picture it makes me smile and warms my heart. It makes me long for a FAMILY REUNION. When I was a little girl, we would go down to my mother’s hometown of Woodbury, GA in Meriwether County for Homecoming Sunday. Other than the vague memories of these events, I don’t recall attending a family reunion. One of my greatest desires is to have a TALIAFERRO family reunion. I’m talking about an “official” family reunion- meet and greet, cookout at the park, tee shirts, family worship-a weekend of family fun and fellowship. My brother and cousins tell me there has never been a TALIAFERRO Family Reunion. The idea has been bounced around, but no one has actually taken the initiative and put one together. Maybe that someone will be me.

My friend Luckie Daniels of has given me a wonderful Thanksgiving surprise. Today in my email were pictures of the Coca-Cola Cooperage Facility. This is one of those photos. Luckie has been assisting me in obtaining information on the factory where my ancestor David Toliver (aka David Taliaferro) worked as a barrel maker or “cooper” for the Coca-Cola Company here in Atlanta, GA. I don’t know what years David worked as a cooper for the Coca-Cola Company, or how long he was employed there; the 1910 census indicates that David was working for a cooperage company, and his 1951 death certificate indicates that he was a cooper for the “CoCola Co”.  I don’t know if David is among the employees pictured here. I’d like to think that he is. I hope to find more evidence to connect David with the Coca-Cola company, and his work as a cooper. In the mean time, I am blissfully happy and thankful to have these photos.

Luckie and Phil Mooney, the Director of Heritage Communications at the Coca-Cola Company, have come through big time with this one. I cannot thank them enough for this glimpse into my ancestor’s past.

[Image Source: Coca-Cola Archives; courtesy of Phil Mooney, Director of Heritage Communications; email from Luckie Daniels to Sandra Taliaferro, 25 November 2009.]

Lizzie – Mother of John Wesley Taliaferro

Every Saturday presents . The topic for Saturday, November 21, 2009, was “Who Is Your MRUA”. I’m a few days late, but here goes. The mission:

1) Who is your MRUA – your Most Recent Unknown Ancestor? This is the person with the lowest number in your Pedigree Chart or Ahnentafel List that you have not identified a last name for, or a first name if you know a surname but not a first name.
2) Have you looked at your research files for this unknown person recently? Why don’t you scan it again just to see if there’s something you have missed?
3) What online or offline resources might you search that might help identify your MRUA?
4) Tell us about him or her, and your answers to 2) and 3) above, in a blog post, in a comment to this post, or a comment on Facebook or some other social networking site.

Lizze was the mother of my great grandfather John Wesley Taliaferro. I know this because in his biography my grandfather, John Robert Taliaferro, said his grandparents were Miles and Lizzie Taliaferro; there was no surname for Lizzie. He also indicated that Miles and Lizzie were both born in Georgia. However, this may not be accurate. My research indicates that Miles was actually born in North Carolina, so it’s possible that Lizzie was born elsewhere as well. I do know that John Wesley was born in Georgia about 1844. By the 1870 census, John Wesley was married to Martha Jane Dorsey, and living right next door was his father Miles and wife “Mary” along with three children. Mary was born about 1835 in Georgia, but of course was too young to be “Lizzie” mother of John Wesley. In an 1856 Inventory and Appraisement for the Estate of Richard Taliaferro of Fulton County, Georgia, there is listed among the slaves- “Miles and son John” – there was no Lizzie.

I believe that Lizzie was probably dead by the time of this inventory. Of course, I cannot rule out the possibility that Lizzie had been sold to another owner. The thought that John Wesley could have been separated from his mother in that way makes me sad beyond words. I am still searching for any earlier Taliaferro slave records that might name Lizzie, and give some clues to her family, but so far I have not had any luck. Since I bellieve that Lizzie died (or was sold) sometime before the 1856 inventory, I need to look for records prior to that date. Prior to 1852 Fulton County was a part of Dekalb County which suffered courthouse fires in 1842 and 1898. There may be no extant records. Unfortunately, I may never find any information about Lizzie- mother of John Wesley Taliaferro.

These are photos of the cemetery at Rock Springs Baptist Church located in McDonough, Henry Co., GA. This is an active African American Church and Cemetery. Sadly, there are numerous graves marked only with stones, others with unreadable funeral home markers and, of course, many with no markers at all.

My search for the burial place of my great grandfather, John Wesley Taliaferro, has become somewhat of an obsession. I have this nagging feeling that just will not go away; I know that cemetery is out there somewhere just waiting for me to find it. My ancestors’ Taliaferro slave owners and their collateral families lived and owned land in the McDonough, Henry Co., GA area along Jonesboro Road. Some of my ancestors were born in Henry Co., and many lived on Jonesboro Road, so this cemetery was a real possibility for the burial place of my ancestors. Unfortunately, the transcription for this cemetery did not contain the names of any of my ancestors. Other than the cemetery transcription, I have not found any records on the church or cemetery. A trip to the Georgia Archives did not produce any additional information. I am searching for something to connect my Taliaferro ancestors to this church/cemetery.

In September 2009, I posted My brother Bernard and I thought we had found “the” Rock Springs Cemetery, but we were wrong. According to their death certificates, John Wesley, his brother Bob Toliver (aka Robert Taliaferro), and another relative Alex Poole (exact relationship undetermined) were buried at Rock Springs Cemetery. Recently, I discovered that several of their neighbors were also buried there; they are Ison Wilson, Robert Wilson and William Wilson. I’m not sure if my Taliaferros are related to these Wilsons, but you know I’m checking into that as well. So far I have found six people who are buried at Rock Springs Cemetery, including my ancestors.

 
 

Unintentionally, I think I have made finding this cemetery, and honoring all those who are buried there, one of my research goals. It just doesn’t seem right that these six people, and probably many others are buried in this cemetery and no one knows (or cares) where it is, or who they are. I hope to find out. Wish me luck in my quest.

I got this idea for my first SURNAME SATURDAY post from my friend Gini over at .  Gini credits Cindy of for turning her on to this fun way to display surnames.  My thanks to both of them for this great idea. I played with it for a while before I could get TALIAFERRO to show up large enough to suit me.  Turns out TALIAFERRO (my paternal surname) and  MIDDLEBROOKS (my maternal surname) ended up with each other in the bottom right hand corner. How cool is that!! Give it a try.  It’s fun!

Category: Daily Themes, Surnames  

Gini, my new genea-friend over at , recently gifted me with a Kreativ Blogger Award.  What a surprise! As newbie to the world of blogging I am truly touched, and feel honored that Gini thought of me and my blog for this award. I don’t post everyday, or even every week for that matter, so it’s nice to know that when I do someone is enjoying what I write. Gini is really great, and I appreciate this honor.  Thank you so much!!
 
The winner of the award has to list seven things about themselves and then pass the award along to seven other bloggers.

Here are seven thing about me:

1. I grew up as an only child. I was always a little jealous of my friends who had big families with lots of brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles. My family has never had a family reunion and that makes me really sad. Maybe I should take on the task of organizing our first family reunion. I keep thinking if it’s gonna happen, I’ll have to do it.

2. I did not know I had a brother until 2005. Now my brother, Bernard, is my soul mate and my best friend.

3. I love music (oldies..did someone say Motown…The Temptin’ Temptations), books, Food TV, reality shows, and animals. My dog Savannah is my baby girl.

4. My idea of a perfect day would be fishing and relaxing at a lake in the country. Yes fishing!! Yes, in the country. My brother says the “fishing” part comes natural..our daddy did, and our granny and uncle too. We’re still trying to figure out the “country” part because I’m a real city girl.

5. My life has been richly blessed with loyal and wonderful friends. I believe family and friends are two of the most important things in life.

6. I tend to be shy and alooft. People sometimes interpret that as meanness, but I really am a very nice person.

7. Researching my family history takes up most of my spare time. I can’t wait til retirement so that I can spend more time at the Georgia Archives researching.

Pass the award along to seven other bloggers.

Boy, this is a tough task. Every blogger has their own unique Kreativ style. Surely, there are many deserving bloggers out there that I have yet to discover. This time, however, I am breaking with tradition, and spreading the Kreativ Blog love to two very deserving bloggers. (Does this mean I still have five more to pass on later? Hope so.)

My selections are:

(formerly Just Thinking) – Renate

Felicia Mathis

Please visit these blogs often and enjoy the family stories and research that they share with their readers.

Category: Uncategorized    Tags: , ,

I am struggling trying to write something to post here on my blog. After only a few months since the debut of my blog, I have Blogger’s Block. I am in a writer’s rut; I am experiencing brain freeze. It is not for a lack of research problems that’s for sure. My research is surrounded by brick walls with no signs of a breakthrough. Every corner I turn is a dead end. As a blogger, I am lost in a sea of bloggers who always seem to have something to say and write about. I am inspired by their words, but can find no inspiration of my own. I am a writer with no words; an editor with nothing to edit. I am a perfectionist with nothing to perfect. I am a blogger with nothing to blog. I have Blogger’s Block.

Yesterday I read, , the discussion started by Angela Walton-Raji in African Ancestored Genealogy on Genealogy Wise. Angela urged us to network, to find mentors among ourselves, and challenged us to become experts in our own area of research. I am inspired and motivated by her words. Over at Our Georgia Roots, my friend Luckie Daniels’ latest post, , was both moving and inspirational. I am thankful to call Luckie a friend; I am always encouraged by her words and research knowledge. Felicia at is hot on the trail of something big, and I am anxiously awaiting her news. Felicia has been relentless in her search for the slave owner of her Georgia ancestors. I am inspired by her tenacity. Michael Hait has taken on the challenge of putting up at least one post a day during the month of November. Michael’s articles are always well-written and informative; his tips inspire me to become a better researcher and to view sources with a more informed and analytical eye. Renate of (formerly Just Thinking), another new kid on the blog scene, is moving to another level in her research and blogging, and thus, was inspired to give her blog a new name. All of them and many others inspire and motivate me with their words and their dedication to genealogy. I read, I learn, I absorb, and I am INSPIRED.

I know this is not a permanent state – This Too Shall Pass. My research continues- the brick walls will fall, the ideas will form, and the words will return. In the meantime, I am still here and loving every minute of the journey. I will not be defeated by Blogger’s Block.
 
 

Category: Reflections    Tags: