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Tuesday, January 2, 2018

No Stone Unturned #georgiapioneers #georgiaancestorsandgenealogies

With No Stone Unturned

barnGenealogical research is far more intensive than anything written in history books. That is because the family historian possesses a strong desire to preserve the actual history and times of his ancestors, and that it not be lost. After the death of a person, a typical practice is to throw "out the unwanted trash" That includes old bibles (where family members were recorded), newspaper articles, and sweet memories kept by the deceased. Frequently, there exists a lifetime of possessions to be disposed of. If we see it in the modern age, doubtless such disposals were common since the beginning of civilization. Local garbage dumps probably own a vast collection of our history. In fact the garbage dump is where excavationists discover many relics. One could visit the countryside of fallen houses and sunken wells and discover relics and old coins buried in the yard and sealed behind walls and floorboards. Remember, coins were a heavy purse to tote. Hence, there is good reason to search for and find the old homeplace and its surrounding community for sunken graves. A slate tombstone eventually broke into and fell to the ground. When a farm is deserted, the land takes over. That means that woods and vines grow over the graves. Old deeds can be used to help find the home place. The tax office has maps of districts, sections and lots. Initially, when an area was settled, the deeds mentioned creeks, rivers and other land features, but tracing the deeds forward (as the tract was bought and sold), one acquires more details. Then, there are the tax digests which provide the amount of acreage, waterways and adjoining neighbors. Frequently, a close examination of the lay of the land with its adjoining creeks, soil impressions, and evidence of building structures, will disclose a picture of boundaries, fields and such. The old wills and estates bequeathe specific tracts (usually denoting the acreage and a location) and personal items being passed down to family members. To locate a plantation, one has to examine its clues. Planters named each plantation. Initially, the first immigrants to America named their plantations after a family estate in England, or other country. They carried the family pride and tradition in their hearts. This should be considered while attempting to locate the old family seat. Next, as acreage was acquired and the plantation or farm was constructed, the old "Smith Place" could mean the person from whom they purchased the land. Thus, this is a clue for a search in the deed records. As planters remarried after the death of their first wife, they assumed possession and control of the widow's properties. For this reason, one should search the deed and marriage records for a Marriage Agreement which will provide more detail. When one visits the court house, no stone should be left unturned. Every possible conceivable record should be examined with curiosity and written down. The court house is where families recorded their daily lives, viz: marriages, land transactions, wills, estates, sales, inventories, receipts. 


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