Saturday, January 28, 2017

It's More Than a Slip

It all began the Christmas of 1964 when I was pregnant with my son.  That year my Aunt Kathy gave me the Christening gown. It was an entire set, slip, dress, coat, and bonnet. It was pure white nylon with white satin embroidery and delicate lace edging at the neck and sleeves. In early May of 1965, my son was wearing the outfit for his Baptism. Later, it was washed, dried and carefully folded into it's original box. To be saved. For later.

In September of 1968, it was taken out of the box once again for my daughter's Baptism.  As it was being prepared for storage once again, a tradition was born. Since I am the oldest of nine children, and it was hoped that the gown would be used by all of my parents grandchildren, we decided to record those Baptisms by embroidering the names of the children who wore the gown on the slip.  All of the girls names would be in pink and all of the boys in blue. 

Recognizing that other families might have a similar gown tradition, we decided if a child wore any part of the outfit, their name would be included on the slip. For instance, my own grandchildren wore a gown made from their mother and grandmother's wedding gowns but they all wore the slip.

And so it began: David, Laura, Kurt, Erik, Nicole, Stacey, Sarah, Toby, Andrew, Brent, Nicholas, Adam, Keith, Jason, Jenna, Leslie, Michael, Gregory, and Brian.  The gown was shipped from family to family and state to state.  Illinois to California to Florida back to Illinois and back to Florida.  As each grandchild used the gown, a name was added to the slip.

In the mid 1990s, the next generation began to make its appearance and once again the gown began its travels.  The pink and blue embroidery changed to Apricot and Mint. The gown traveled to New York, Germany, Florida, Maryland to Illinois and back to Florida. Those original 19 babies who wore the gown added the names of their children to the slip.  Not all of my parents great-grandchildren have worn the gown but at least nine of them have worn it. 

Most recently, the gown was used in 2015 by my brother's granddaughter who was photographed with my son (the original wearer of the gown). Sometimes I need to send a query to my nieces and nephews regarding the current residence of the gown, but I am very satisfied to let it keep traveling.  Wonder what colors will be chosen for the next generation.Fifty years and still in use. It is looking pretty good for 50 don't you think.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Amanuensis Monday- Last Will and Testament of John Ferguson 1755 - 1842

Last Will and Testament of John Fargerson

The last Will & Testament of John Fargerson of Sugar River Township, Boone County, Indiana.  In the name of God, I John Fargerson considering the uncertainty of this mortal life & being of sound mind & memory(Blessed be almighty God for the same) do make & publish this my Last will and Testament, in manner and form following (that is tve and o say)  First I give and bequeath my wife Bethany Fargerson the sum of one dollar to be paid out of my personal property, also the one third of all my Real Estate (in Lieu of Dower) Item I give & Bequeath to my Daughter Mary Chinnault the sum of one dollar.  Item, I give & bequeath my Daughter Martha Knott the sum of one dollar. I give & Bequeath to my Daughter Rebecca Knott the sum of one dollar. Item, I give & Bequeath to my son William Fargerson the sum of one dollar. Item, I give & Bequeath to the heirs of my son David Fargerson the sum of one dollar.  Item, I give & Bequeath to my son John Fargerson the sum of one dollar. Item. I give & Bequeath to my Daughter Elizabeth Young the sum of one dollar.  Item, I give & bequeath to my son Joseph the sum of one dollar. Item, I give & bequeath to my son Benjamin Fargerson the sum of one dollar. Item, I  give & bequeath to my Daughter Hannah Green the sum of one dollar. Item, I give & bequeath to my son Moses Fargerson the sum of one dollar. Item, I give & bequeath to my Daughter Sarah Hill the sum of one dollar.  And all of the Balance of my property after paying the above specified funds, my Funeal expenses & all my just Debts I give & bequeath to my son Jonathan J Fargerson & my Daughter Bethany Fargerson to be equally divided between them at the time that Bethany is 18 years old.I do hereby appoint James L McConnell the county and state aforesaid my sole executator of this my last will and Testament hereby revoking all former wills by me made.  In Witness whereof I hereunto set my hand and seal, This Twenty fifth day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and Forty.
                                                                                John   X    Fargeson                 
Signed Sealed published and delivered declared by the above named John Fargerson said to be his last Will and Testament in the presence of us who have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses in the presence of  the Testator Wm P Davis.
State of Indiana/ss:                                                                         Samuel R Boyd
Boone County                                                                             Cornelius Westfall

                                                 Personally appeared before me the undersigned Clerk of the Probate Court of said county William P Davis & Samuel R Boyd two of the subscribing witnesses to the foregoing Last Will & Testament of John Fargerson Decd & being duly sworn upon this solomn oath that they saw the said Farguson sign seal & acknowledge the forgoing Last Will & Testament & that he requested them to sign the same in his presence & believe that he wat he was at the time of signing the same of sound mind & memory further saith not.  
                                                                                              Wm P Davis
                                                                                             Saml R Boyd
Subscribed & sworn to before me June 27th 1842  SS Brown clerk. !

John Ferguson was a Revolutionary War Soldier for the State of Virginia. In his will he named all fourteen of his children, including the married names of his daughters. He was my husband's 5th GreatGrandfather. His son Benjamin is Dave's 4th GrearGrandfather.

1 Indiana, Wills and Probate Records, 1798 - 1999 online images
Vol A, 1833-1853
Page 29-30, image 24
accessed 9 Jan 2017

image from Find a Grave

Monday, January 2, 2017

2017 Genealogy Goals

With the beginning of the new year, it's time to check-up on how well I did with my 2016 genealogy goals and establish the goals for 2017.

I am still working on the Do-over and will continue in the coming years.  I want my tree to be as accurate as possible.  As I re-evaluate information I continue to find new information.  I will also continue to maintain my online trees as cousin bait.  Last year they provided contacts in both Norway and Germany.

I will once again participate in the Family History Writing group sponsored by Lynn Palermo in February.  Last year I got off to a pretty good start, but found some additional research was needed to continue the story.  I have done the research and so I will resurrect the story and hope to finish it and publish it here.

On the DNA front, I am currently the manager of 5 kits and have had some minor success in connecting my brother and a known first cousin to another branch of my grandfather's family.  The most common recent ancestor was my grandfather's grandfather.  He was born in Norway in 1817.  I will be watching and re-watching DNA seminars this year and I now have Blaine Bettinger's book "Guide to DNA  Testing and Genetic Genealogy" so maybe this year I will become more comfortable with DNA analysis.

I am making tentative plans to go back to the Family History Library in April and the SCGS Jamboree in June.  My trip to Salt Lake was a wonderful adventure and as is typical, I made substantial progress on a brick wall on Saturday afternoon! (my last day)  I hope to go to Jamboree for both its educational opportunities and fellowship.  I may also see my cousin while in California.

My greatest fail this year was with blogging.  Far from the weekly posts I had hoped to do, I only managed a total of nineteen blog posts.  I don''t knoe if I need different ideas or just more determination.  I guess I better figure it out.

One last goal is to finally finish my daughter's application to join the DRA.  There is one loose end to connect in the 1810-1830  time period.  That will probably require land and tax records.

Surely these things will keep me busy and out of trouble. Here's to 2017!!