Sunday, January 16, 2011

Kanawha Salt Business Found in Oldest Existing 1848 Daguerreotype Photo

I'm so excited about this find I had to post this. The best find to start of good in a not so good 2011 year. Historically, this is important to me because I'm piecing together a puzzle within my family tree. This is on my mom's side of the family. It goes back in the Hall family a century ago. In the family history line the Halls moved from Franklin Co., VA to Kanawha Co., VA. The progenitor of the family Thomas P. Hall was a farmer who also worked in the Kanawha Salines, where he lived with his wife, Malinda (Henley) Hall and their 16 children.

This brought me to an article I found in regards to the oldest existing daguerreotype photo in 1848. It had two views of the photos with a zoomify capability so you can tour through the amazing photo from antiquity. While move around in the the image I stumbled upon the sign on one of the buildings. It read Kanawha Salt from the front and on the right hand side of the building. What an amazing surprise! I said, "Lord, can it be true?" There it was. The photo (shown)  is from the actual 1848 daguerreotype.  The photo was taken by Charles Fontayne and William Porter in Cincinnati, Ohio on Sunday, September 24, 1848. If you like to see the entire original daguerreotype go to NPR website by clicking on the link here. The following year after this photo was taken, 1849, there was a cholera outbreak. The Embassy steamboat that appears in the photo that transported passengers from Pittsburgh to St. Louis collapsed two flues at Three Mile Island, June 9, 1849. Ten persons were killed and twenty-five wounded.

In the early 1800's the salt industry was important for Kanawha County, Virginia. It thrived in Malden, western Virginia and was the principle source of alt for the pork packers of Cincinnati. Salt was first known to the buffalo and other game at the mouth of Campbell's Creek and the Indians who pursued the game became known to whites in 1755 when the Shawnees put white captives to work boiling brine dipped from the salt springs into dry salt. Systematic salt production started with Elisha Brooks in 1797 in what was Kanawha Salines, now Malden. Joseph Ruffner, a farmer from Shenandoah Valley bought a tract of land and began salt making by crude process of dipping brine from the springs and boiling it in kettles. In 1803, the Ruffner family built the first grist mill. It was called the Ruffner Salt Works, in present Port Amherst and began large scale salt production in 1808. In 1831, Malden was laid out by the Ruffners as a subdivision and called it "Saltborough" with streets and alleys on a New England pattern. The riverfront was dedicated to the common recreational use of the residents of Saltborough. The town is located west of the Dickinson property and east of the Ruffner Salt Works at the mouth of Campbell's Creek where Port Amherst in located. By 1846, from Malden to Point Pleasant on the Ohio River telegraph wire is hung along poles. The famine in Ireland created America's first mass migration with 1.8 million Irish coming to America, a few of them to the Kanawha Salines. During this time Zachary Taylor, then Millard Fillmore were presidents. The California Gold Rush began in 1849. By 1850, Cicinnnati's pork packing industry was the center of the United States. Chicago had a population of 30,000 mostly immigrants including Irish, German, and Poles.

Stealey, John E. III. The Antebellum Kanawha Salt Business and Western Markets
Cohen, Stan. Kanawha County Images
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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Obituary: Aaron Blair Hopkins

Mose and Aaron in the desert when the Israelit...Image via WikipediaThe day that my cousin passed away unexpectedly. I was reading a study about the Aaronic priesthood in relation to Jesus Christ our Lord. It brought to my mind the name Aaron the brother of Moses, prophet of Yahweh YHVH. If only his family brought him up the way he should have gone his death wouldn't have been so premature. But, life doesn't seem to work that way. Not many will enter in the Kingdom of God. I received a message from a lady who was told by the LORD that not many will enter in. It's was very sobering. Not many are following the ways of the LORD. It's a warning to get right or get left.

My hope for my mom's sister's family is to prepare. If you happen to read this it's time to prepare to meet the LORD. Judgment Day is coming and we have to put away our differences forever. The LORD says forgive and be forgiven. My aunt Hazel Frances Hall married James George Hopkins. They lived at Cline Hollow long time ago and raise their family of 4 children, 2 boys and 2 girls, Mildred, Ethel, Arthur, and Richard. After the kids were grown and married some of them moved to Roanoke, Virginia. There George got a job there with the Board of Education. After George's retirement. He passed away and his body was brought back to Cline Hollow to be buried in the Hopkins family cemetery.

Aaron Blair Hopkins, 29, of Roanoke, Va., passed away unexpectedly on December 16, 2010. He was an electrician's helper.

Surviving are his parents, Tonda and Rick Hopkins of Copper Hill, VA; daughter, Kaylee Hopkins, and son, Adam Hopkins, both of Roanoke, VA; sister, Erikka Hopkins; two grandmothers, Emma Stone Johnson of Charleston and Hazel Hopkins of Roanoke, VA; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins and a host of friends.

Funeral service was held at 3 p.m. Saturday, December 18, 2010 at Oakey's South Chapel, Roanoke, VA, with the Rev. Greg Fleshman officiating. Burial will be in Copper Hill Cemetery at a later date due to the inclement weather.
Fidler and Frame Funeral Home, Belle, WV submitted this obituary.
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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Northwest Ordinance

Daguerreotype of William Henry Harrison, 9th P...Image via Wikipedia

The Northwest Ordinance was passed by the United States Congress on July 13, 1787, was one of the most important laws ever adopted. The ordinance provided for the government of the region north of the Ohio River and west of Pennsylvania, then called the Northwest Territory. It was a model for all territories that later entered the Union as states. These territories formed into five complete states, which are Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and part of Minnesota east of the Mississippi River. The ordinance was largely the work of General Nathan Dane, Rufus King, and Manasseh Cutler.

Under the terms of the ordinance, the territories could achieve equality with older states by passing through three steps leading to full self-government. (1) Congress, which governed the territory, appointed a governor, a secretary and three judges. (2) When the territory, or any division of it, attained an adult male population of 5,000, they could choose a legislature and send to Congress a delegate who could speak but not vote. (3) When the total population reached 60,000, the territory could apply for admission into the Union on terms of full equality with the older states. The ordinance removed the danger of colonial rebellion, because it assured the territories of participation in the national government.

The Northwest Ordinance contained more than a plan of government. It laid the groundwork for social and political democracy in the West. It forbade slavery. This prohibition of slavery strengthened the ranks of antislavery states in the Union. All persons were guaranteed trail by jury and freedom of religious worship. The Ordinance guaranteed fair treatment and just dealings with the Indians, and laid the basis for the support of schools that declared, “means of education shall forever be encouraged.”

The terms of the ordinance were so attractive that pioneers poured into the new territory. In 1788, one of the first groups of settlers founded the town of Marietta, Ohio. Thousands of families followed the first settlers in the westward movement. The territory then formed into the five states—Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin including what is now part of Minnesota east of the Mississippi River.

In the earlier history of the Northwest Territory the French first occupied the region had established posts by the early 1700s. Competition between French traders operating from these posts and English trappers from Pennsylvania helped start the French and Indian War (1754-1783). The war ended with the cession of the area to victorious England.

During the Revolutionary War (1775-1783) violent fighting took place in the Northwest between the settlers and the British and their Indian allies. The campaign of George Rogers Clark against British-held posts helped win the territory for the United States. The region was ceded after the war. Before the government could out the region to settlement, it had to deal with the claims of Massachusetts, Connecticut, Virginia, and New York. These states insisted that their colonial charters extended their boundaries into the area. The states ceded their claims to Congress between 1781 and 1785, because Maryland refused to approve the Articles of Confederation until it received assurance that the other states would yield their claims.

The land then became a territory of the United States. Congress, eager for revenue from the sale of lands there, adopted the Ordinance of 1785. This law provided for orderly rectangular surveys into mile-square units called sections. These were sold at auction at a minimum price of $1 an acre. Congress also struggled with the problem of a government for the territory. Thomas Jefferson in 1784 had drafted a plan that would have divided the Northwest Territory into 14 units. These could become states when the population of the smallest state in the Union. The Eastern States rejected this proposal, because they feared that the many Western States would dominate Congress. Instead, Congress adopted the Northwest Ordinance, or Ordinance of 1787. This provide for the division of the region into from three to five states, and the establishment of a membership in the Union.

Settlement began at once. The first arrivals were sent out by a New England speculating group called the Ohio Company. The official name was the Ohio Company of Associates. They founded the town of Marietta at the mouth of the Muskingum River in Ohio. Other interests soon established rival settlements at such villages as Gallipolis and Cincinnati. To the north, colonists clustered about Cleveland in the “Western Reserve” area retained by Connecticut when it ceded its lands to Congress. Arthur St. Clair became the first governor of first territorial government on July 15, 1788.

The population grew slowly at first because of the continual Indian attacks. President George Washington sent three expeditions to fight the Indians, but the first two met with disaster. The territory became more peaceful after General Anthony Wayne defeated the Indians in the Battle of Fallen Timbers in 1794.  In 1796, Wayne forced the Treaty of Greenville on the defeated Indians. In this treaty, they ceded most of the lands of southern Ohio and parts of eastern Indiana to the United States. Other land cessions followed during the early 1800s.

As more settlers moved into the region, the Northwest Territory was divided. In 1800, the western part of the region became the Territory of Indiana, with William Henry Harrison as governor. The Michigan Territory was created in 1805, and the Illinois Territory in 1809. Ohio became a state in 1803, Indiana in 1816, Illinois in 1818, Michigan in 1837, and Wisconsin in 1848.

The Ohio Company, or Ohio Company of Associates was organized at the Bunch of Grapes Tavern in Boston on March 1, 1786. Eleven delegates, elected by persons interested in the venture, set up the company. They planned to raise $1,000,000 in $1,000 shares, which was payable in almost worthless Continental paper money. Within a year the company distributed 250 shares. The company appointed Manasseh Cutler, Rufus Putnam, and Samuel Parsons to petition the Continental Congress to sell it a tract beyond the Ohio River. Congress approved, and later passed the Northwest Ordinance of 1787.

At first the Ohio Company contracted to buy 1,500,000 acres at 66-2/3 cents an acre. But because of financial difficulties, these terms were never fully carried out. Congress finally granted title to 750,000 acres of the land that is now part of southeastern Ohio. The agreement provided that 214,285 acres could be bought with army warrants, and that 100,000 acres were to be offered free to settlers. One section of each township was reserved for schools, one for religion, and three sections for future disposal by Congress. This last term was designed to keep land speculators from monopolizing the territory. Two townships of 46,080 aces were set aside “for the support of an institution of higher learning.” This institution was founded at Athens, Ohio, in 1804, and became Ohio University.

The Ohio Company appointed Rufus Putnam as its superintendent. He led an advance party of 47 surveyors, carpenters, boat-builders, blacksmiths, and laborers to lay out a town where the Muskingum and Ohio Rivers joined. The group arrived at the mouth of the Muskingum on April 7, 1788. It founded there the first settlement under the Northwest Ordinance, and named it Marietta in honor of Queen Marie Antoinette of France. The settlers also built a fort called Campus Martius to protect their village. By April 1789, three new settlements had been established. On July 15, Governor Arthur St. Clair established the first capital of the Northwest Territory at Marietta. The Ohio Company completed its land operations by 1797. It divided its assets among the shareholders, but did not go out of business until about 1832.
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Saturday, November 28, 2009

Obituary: Violet Evelyn Walton

Flag United States West VirginiaImage by erjkprunczyk via Flickr
From a Funeral Card:


Viloet Evelyn Walton

Saturday, August 39, 1925

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Curry Funeral Home
Saturday, November 28, 2009
At 2:00 PM

Rev. Walter Means

Fox Hill Cemetery
Spring Hill, West Virginia


A Mother's Tribute

Our mother is still with us
She never left our side
She still is close about us
Her spirit is our guide
For the blessed memory of her
Will lead us through each day
And the tender thoughts we have of her
Are in our hearts to stay
Forever and for always

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Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Genesis Chart

The Middle East through the eyes of the Ancien...Image via WikipediaThe Genesis Chart
by Teresa Carr
I put together this chart a couple of years ago. It is a genealogy chart that comes from the Bible. I'm fascinated by the Bible, ancient history, and genealogy. This is a never ending project to link descendants to their ancient ancestors. I don't know if anyone has ever gotten that far, but our link is to the past from the beginning of time and through Noah and his three sons and their wives. It is through Noah's three sons is where mankind on earth derived from. This chart is from the beginning of creation from Adam to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Happy Hunting!
Key Reference: I Chronicles 1:1-31
Beginning with Adam, Seth, Enosh, Cainan, Mahalalel, Jared, Enoch (walked with God and was not because God took him, also mentioned in the Book of Jude in the New Testament), Methuselah, Lamech, and Noah.
These are the generations of Noah and his three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Japheth, son of Noah and ancestor of the European nations and Asia Minor (Indo-European), sons: Gomer (Germany, some authorities say Turkey), Magog (Prince of Rosh, Russia), Madai (Medes, Media an ancient kingdom between the Tigris and the Caspian seas. These are the present day Kurds.), Javan (islands of Crete and lands surrounding the Mediterranean around Ionian or Greece), Tubal (Russia), Meshech (Russia), Tiras (Tiracians, people of Tiras, recording their name as the Tursha or Tarusha. Herodotus, 425 BC Greek historian, wrote of the Thracian people, and referred to as Trajans by the historian Dio Cassius. Thracian lands stretched from southwestern Europe to Asia Minor, a vast area historically known as Thracia.The historical Thracian genealogical tree counts over 200 tribes which had several names, according to their specific regions.  Some of their tribal names were Trajans, Etruscans, Dacians, Luwians, Ramantes, Pelasgians, Besins, Odrisi, Serdoi, Maidoi and Dentheletoi.  The Trajans (Trojans) founded the city of Troy which existed approximately 2400 years (about 1900 BC to 500 AD), which was destroyed and rebuilt several times.  Thousands of Trojan warriors left the city of Troy during the 11th century BC.  They came north and captured land along the banks of the river Don (southwestern Russia), a major trade route.  The locals named the Trojan conquerors the "Aes," meaning "Iron People," for their superior weaponry.  The tribes of Trojan Aes would eventually move north, settling in present-day Scandinavia.  The Aes or Aesar (plural), subsequently became known as the Svear, and then Swedes.  Historians refer to the Aes people as "Thraco-Cimmerians" due to their Trojan ancestry.  Other tribes of Thracians remained a culture in Asia Minor and southern Europe until the 5th century AD.  Many present-day Bulgarians claim to be direct descendants of ancient Thracians, different from the Slavs who arrived that region in the 6th century AD. The name Tiras perpetuated through different languages, as in this list of names from Noah to the present-day Swedes over a period of 4,000 years.).(see Ezekiel 38, KJV)
Sons of Gomer (continued through the names of Gamir, Gimmer, Gomeria, Gotarna and Goth. The Assyrians in the 7th century referred to them as the Gimirraya.  Other names used throughout history include Gimmerai, Crimea, Chomari, Cimmer, Cimmerian.  Cimmerians populated areas of the north of the Caucasus & Black Sea in southern Russia.): Ashkenaz (Turkic-Mongol, where the name Ashkenazi Jews, Aryan Turkish tribes, were taken and the name Nazi is derived from. This was where the Khazars descended from this line. This war-like tribe founded the Khazarian Empire became the major power in ancient Eastern Europe and converted to Judaism in 740 A.D. In World War II during Hitler’s regime, some of his Nazi officers were of Jewish descent. Hitler referred to the Germanic people as the Aryan race.), Diphath (Riphath, father of the Paphlagonians, which were anciently called Riphataei, the Arimphaei of Pliny, and the Riphaeans of Mela, who inhabited near the Riphaean mountains), Togarmah (Turkey, north of Judea, see Ezekiel 38:6 his posterity are the Phrygians, according to Josephus; but some place them in Galatia and Cappadocia; and Strabo makes mention of a people called Trocmi, on the borders of Pontus and Cappadocia; and Cicero of the Trogmi or Trogini, who may have their name from hence; for the Greek interpreters always call him Torgama or Thorgana. The Jews make the Turks to be the posterity of Togarmah.).
Sons of Javan: Elishah, Tarshishah (referred to a coastal city of Spain, a destination of the prophet Jonah, Jonah 1:3, also, mentions the lions of Tarshish referring to Great Britain, and later the United States of America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, Ezekiel 38), Kittim (Cyprus), Rodanim.
Ham, son of Noah and ancestor of the African nations and Middle East, sons: Cush (Ethiopia), Mizraim (Egypt), Put (Libya & Algeria), and Canaan (Canaanites-present day Israel).
Sons of Cush: Seba, Havilah (Ethiopia), Sabta, Raama, Sabtecha.
Sons of Raama: Sheba (place of the Sabeans in S.W. Arabia, in present Yemen, also, the ancestor of the Queen of Sheba, mentions in I Kings 10 and her connect with King Solomon. Job’s livestock was stolen by Sabeans, Job 1:13-15) and Dedan.
Cush begot Nimrod, and Nimrod was a hunter and became mighty on the earth. He went to the land of Shinar and had built the Tower of Babel. Babylon rises to a world power and false religion, which is an influence still today (Iraq).
Sons of Mizraim: Ludim (Egypt), Anamin, Lehabim, Naphtuhim, Pathrusim, Casluhim (from which came the Philistines and the Caphtorim).
Canaan begot Sidon (1st born, Canaanite city was north of Tyre, present Lebanon. Canaanites are later to be known as the Phoenicians), Heth (Hethites later became the Hittites), the Jebusite, the Amorite, the Girgashite, the Hivite, the Arkite, the Sinite, the Arvodite, the Zemarite, and the Hamathite.
Shem, son of Noah and ancestor of the line of the Semitic races, Jews, Arameans, Persians, Assyrians, and Arabians. The line of Abraham the Covenant nation of God (Yahweh), sons: Elam (Elamites), Asshur (Assyria), Arphaxah (Jews, the line of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), Lud, Aram (Syria), Uz (southern Edom west of Arabian desert-Job lived there, see Job 1:1), Hul, Gether, Meshech.
Arphaxah begot Shelah. Shelah begot Eber. Eber had two sons, Peleg (in his days the earth was divided) and Joktan (several tribes of the Arabian desert).
Sons of Joktan (Arabian): Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, Ebal, Abimaal, Sheba, Ophir (Arabia, gold producing region visited by ships of Solomon and the Phoenicians, I Kings 9:26-28), Havilah, Jobab.
Sons of Peleg: Reu
Reu begot Serug. Serug begot Nahor. Nahor begot Terah. Terah begot Abram (who is Abraham). Abraham went from Haran in Mesopotamia to the land of Canaan (Israel), promised by the Lord God. (His wife Sarah and his nephew Lot went with him.)
Sons of Abraham: Ishmael (by Hagar) and Isaac (by Sarah). Abraham begot other sons by his other wives. Her name is Keturah (Gen. 25). She bares him Zimran, Jokshan (sons, Sheba and Dedan), Medan, Midian (ancestor of the Midianites, Jethro priest of Midian was father-in-law to Moses; sons, Ephah, Epher, Henoch, Abida, and Eldaah), Ishbak, and Shuah. From Ishmael (son of Abraham and Hagar the Egyptian) came the Arab nations. Ishmael’s sons; Nebaioth, Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, Mishma, Dumah, Massa, Hadad, Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. Ishmael’s daughter was Basemath, the wife of Esau, the son of Isaac. Basemath bare Reuel.
Isaac married Rebecca and begot: Esau and Jacob (Genesis 46:1-27; Revelation 7:5-8, 14:1-5) The 12 Tribes of Israel. The 144,000 of the 12 tribes, there will be 12,000 sealed in each tribe.
Sons of Jacob (Israel) by Leah (Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah), Zilphah (maidservant of Leah), Bilhah (maidservant of Rachel), and Rachel (Joseph and Benjamin):
From the 12 tribes come,
1. Reuben (the 1st born) and sons of Reuben, Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron, Carmi.
2. Simeon (2nd born) and sons of Simeon, Jemuel, Jamin, Ohad, Jachin, Zohar, Shaul (son of a Canaanite woman).
3. Levi (3rd born) and sons of Levi, Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.
4. Judah (4th born) and sons of Judah, Er, Onan, Shelah, Pharez and Zerah (Er and Onan died in the land of Canaan). Jesus Christ (Lion of Judah) is from this tribe through Pharez. Sons of Pharez: Hezron and Hamal. It’s from Hezron who begot Ram. Ram begat Amminadah. Amminadah begat Nahshon. Nahshon begat Salmon. Salmon begat Boaz of Rahab (Judges 2:1). Boaz begat Obed of Ruth the Moabite (Gentile). Obed begat Jesse, and Jesse begat David the king (Ruth 4:17-22).
5. Dan (Manasses, 5th born) and sons of Dan, Hushim.
6. Naphtali (6th born) and sons of Naphtali, Jahzeel, Guni, Jezer, and Shillem (Shallum). (Barak, son of Abinoam from Kedesh in Naphtali- Judges 4:6).
7. Gad (7th born) and sons of Gad, Ziphion, Haggi, Shuni, Ezbon, Eri, Arodi, Areli.
8. Asher (8th born) and sons of Asher, Jimnah, Ishuah, Isui, Beriah and Serah (sister). Sons of Beriah: Heber and Malchiel.
9. Issachar (9th born) and sons of Issachar, Tola, Puvah (Puah), Job (Jashub), and Shimron.
10. Zebulun (10th born) and sons of Zebulun, Sered, Elon, Jahleel.
11. Joseph (by Rachel), and the sons of Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim by Asenath, an Egyptian.
12. Benjamin (by Rachel), and the sons of Benjamin, Belah, Becher, Ashbel, Gera, Naaman, Ehi, Rosh, Muppim, Huppim, Ard. (Apostle Paul is from this tribe)
13. Leah’s daughter, Dinah is sister of the 12 brothers.
The families of Esau, the brother of Jacob, son of Isaac, son of Abraham.
The chiefs of Edom, the Arab nations (Genesis 36:1-14; I Chronicles 1:34-37)
Esau took the daughters of Canaan for wives.
Adah, the daughter of Elon the Hittite, sons Eliphaz. Eliphaz sons; Teman, Omar, Zephi, Gatam, Kenaz, Timna, and Amalek.
Ahalibamah, the daughter of Anah, sons, Jeush, Jaalam, Korah (Canaan) the daughter of Zibeon the Hivite.
Basemath, Ishmael’s daughter, sister of Nebajoth, son, Reuel. Reuel sons; Nahath, Zerah, Shammah, and Mizzah.
Joseph’s 12 brothers sold him into slavery. Joseph is taken to Egypt. In obedience to his Lord, Joseph rises to greatness next to Pharaoh. A famine smites the land of Canaan. Egypt is spared by the dream revealed by God to Pharaoh that Joseph interpreted. Joseph’s brothers come to Egypt looking for food. Joseph tests his brothers and gets them to bring the younger brother Benjamin to Egypt. Joseph later reveals his identity to his brothers. All of Jacob’s family is united in Egypt where they live and the generations of the 12 tribes thrive until another Pharaoh rises up that did not know Joseph. The children of Israel are sed as slaves by the Egyptians for over 400 years. God rises up a prophet and deliverer called Moses. He brings them out of Egypt after God sends the plagues upon Egypt to set the people free. The people wander in the wilderness for 40 years before entering into the Promised Land of Canaan. Because of their disobedience the older generations die in the wilderness, only their children under the age of 20 could enter into the Promised Land. The ones to enter first into the land were Joshua and Caleb.
There was no king to rule Israel at this time so the Judges judged Israel these were Deborah and Barak, Gideon, Jephthah, Samson, Micah, and Benjamin. The last judge and prophet was Samuel. God commanded Samuel to anoint Saul as first king of Israel. Because of Saul’s sin and disobedience God commanded Samuel to anoint another king. God instructs Samuel to go to Jesse and select the future king from Jesse’s sons. Samuel anoints young David to be the future king to replace King Saul. David serves under Saul and Saul plots to kill David. David aids Saul’s army to defeat the Philistines and their champion, the giant, Goliath of Gath. David marries Saul’s daughter Michal. Later King Saul and his sons die in battle. David becomes king of Israel. It’s through his son Nathan continues the royal line to Jesus Christ.
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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

America's Lost Colony 1587

Engraved portrait of Raleigh.Image via Wikipedia

The following was related from the historical account of Ivor Noel Hume. One hundred and seventeen colonists vanish in America's oldest mystery. America's oldest stories is a detective story. In 1584, in an effort to compete with Spain for New World gold, English explorers pointed their ships towards America, headed for a small island off the coast of North Carolina. Three years later, in 1587, an entire colony vanished from that island, leaving just one clue to their disappearance.

Those unlucky settlers have come to be known as the Lost Colony. Historian and archaeologist Ivor Noel Hume is one of the foremost researchers of the site today, and this is what he has to say about what happened on Roanoke Island.

It began in 1584 when two ships were sent over by Sir Walter Raleigh and Captains Amedus and Barlowe. They landed on the Outer Banks, and they met an Indian named Manteo, who they actually took back to England. They went back and they said that this country is really rich for the taking. Now, they didn’t really know what that meant, but they thought perhaps that the Indians were wearing gold in their headdresses and so on.

And so, in 1585, Raleigh financed an expedition to make a settlement, and it was led by Sir Richard Greenville, who was a very forceful, almost privateering sort of guy. He took with him a man called Ralph Lane, who was to be governor of whatever it is they established. They also took a guy called John White, and John White was an artist, and he drew everything that he saw while he was there. Those drawings eventually went back to England and provided really all we know about the physical appearance of the Indians at the time.

But, the English fell out with the various tribes that were around Roanoke Island. When you cut off other guys’ heads and things like that, then the other guys try to starve you out. So after six or eight months, the English had decided they wanted to go home. They had no food, the Indians weren’t helping them, they were in a confrontational relationship with the Indians. So they simply said they’d had enough.

After the English left -- under Lane – Greenville returns to bring supplies. Finds them gone, finds one white guy hanging, and one Indian. And there was nobody else around.

That was the end of the first attempt, yes. But when Greenville is back there in August, I guess it was July, of ’86, he left a small number of soldiers – some say 13, some say 16 – to hold onto the settlement, keep their foot in the door. Those were attacked by the Indians. Their storehouse was burnt down, they fled to their boats and were never seen again. Such information we have comes actually from Manteo. So much of what he said was a result of gossip.

Raleigh tries again in 1587. This is the Lost Colony. They come over. This time, it’s under John White, John White the artist, the illustrator from the first voyage. He is a somewhat indecisive leader. Once they’ve arrived, his council suggests it would be a good idea for him to go back and get some more supplies. This seemed a little strange. They’ve only just arrived, and they’re sending the leader – your boss – back. And the boss agreeing to go.

After he has left the colonists, and we don’t know what they were doing while they were there, presumably, but they did rebuild a fort. But it was a different sort of fort to the first one.

After he went back in ’87, England was tied up with the expected Spanish invasion – the Armada of 1588. Everything ground to a halt at that point. Nobody was in the mood to do anything about the Lost Colony people. Of course, they didn’t know they were lost at that point. They just were over there, out of mind.

And, White then endeavored to raise money to go back to reinforce the colony. Nobody was interested. So he finally got a passage aboard a privateer called ‘The Moonlight” which was going down into the Caribbean, to see if he could knock off some Spaniards, or rather, their gold. Finally, very reluctantly, they brought him up to Roanoke Island. There he found them gone. They found nobody.

All that White finds is a carving on a tree, that says “Cro.” Then, when he goes to the fort gate, he finds the word “croatoan” spelled out on the fort gate. White had told them, when he went back to England, if they had got into trouble, they were to write where they had gone, and to put a cross under it to indicate if there was trouble. So when he comes back, he finds “cro” and then he finds the full name written out on the fort gate. But there’s no cross. So, that’s the end of that story as far as we know.

This is the last fact that is known about the Lost Colony: when White came back, 117 men, women, and children had vanished. They left two clues, or maybe just the same clue, twice: the word Croatan.

Croatan was the island where the colonist's old friend Manteo was from, but no one knows if that's where the colonists went, since they were never seen again, and no archaeological evidence of them was found there. Some suspect that the colonists were assimilated into local tribes.

In the centuries since, archaeologists both amateur and professional have explored Roanoke island in search of the remains of the settlement, and they've found some evidence of those first English inhabitants. But on a coastal island of shifting dunes and tides, no trace of a fort has ever been found, and likely never will be.

My interest in this story was Ralph Lane because I'm descended from a Lane family from Montgomery Co., VA. My great great great grandmother Lou Emma Lane came with her parents John and Mary Lane to Kanawha Co., VA (now West Virginia). Could there be a connection?

To hear a podcast of this story go to:

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Sunday, September 20, 2009

Obituary: Euldine Dean McSurley

Euldine Dean McSurley, 79, passed away September 18, 2009 after a long illness.

Born June 23, 1930, she was one of seven children of the late Wesley H. and Gladys M. (Vandall) Carr. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Ross McSurley; and a brother, Darrell Carr.

Surviving are her daughter, Karen Mullins; brothers, George Carr, Garland Carr, and James Wesley Carr; sisters, Nancy Patton, and Hattie Mae Miller; grandchildren, Ketta Hanson and Buffy Bonwell; great-grandchildren, Zoey, Oscar, Grace, Max, and Flechyr.

Graveside service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, September 22, 2009, at Graceland Memorial Park, South Charleston, West Virginia.

In keeping with Euldine's wishes there will be no visitation.

Fidler and Frame Funeral Home, Belle, is in charge of the arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made to the Alzheimer's Association, 1111 E. Lee Street, Charleston, WV 25311.

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