Sentimental Sunday: Four Generations of Springsteens

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Four Generations of Springsteens: Jefferson Springsteen, seated, with his great-grandson William Helbling. Standing on left is Jefferson's daughter Anna Missouri (Springsteen) Beerbower, and her daughter, Anna May (Beerbower) Helbling, mother of little William.
Four Generations of Springsteens: Jefferson Springsteen, seated, with his great-grandson William Francis Helbling. Standing on left is Jefferson’s daughter Anna Missouri (Springsteen) Beerbower, and her daughter, Anna May (Beerbower) Helbling, mother of little William. Taken November, 1906.

Helbling Family, Springsteen Family (Click for Family Tree)

Jefferson Springsteen (1820-1909), married Anna Connor (1824-1887).

Anna Missouri Springsteen (1854-1939) married Edgar Peter Beerbower (1849-1916).

Anna May Beerbower (1881-1954) married William Gerard Helbling (1882-1971).

William Francis Helbling (1906-1907) died at age 15 and one-half months.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest of photos, provided by a dear cousin- thank you!

 

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Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted.
 
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Wedding Wednesday: Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart Marriage License

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Marriage License Request- Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 24 February 1800. From a cousin many years ago, unknown source- likely Clark County, Kentucky Records.
Marriage License Request- Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 24 February 1800. Received from a cousin many years ago, unknown source- likely Clark County, Kentucky Records.

Roberts Family (Click for Family Tree)

We posted the marriage bond of Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart (“Robbards” and “Steward” in most documents) on Monday in “Amanuensis Monday: Marriage Bond for Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 1800.” Sorting through my Roberts files, I realized I had a copy of their request for a marriage license. Charles Stewart signed the document, and Rosy Stewart made her mark. This document appears to have been transcribed from the original, or written up by a clerk, as it appears the handwriting is the same throughout. This note was then to be given to Mr. Bullock, the first county clerk of Clark County, Kentucky.

Transcription:

February 24th- 1800 Clarke Countye

Sir/ please to give out mareg lisens for
Edward Robbards and Rosey Steward and
you will oblige your and so forth

Charles Steward & Rosey Steward
+ her mark

To Mr bullock-Clarck

This document was dated 24 February 1800. Charles Stewart may have been Rosy’s father, but maybe not- he could have been a brother, uncle, etc. When he and Rosy requested the marriage license, it is likely that they were told a marriage bond was required before the ceremony could take place. So on 25 February 1800, a marriage bond was signed by Edward Robbards (Roberts), the groom, and Charles Stewart, as Rosy’s representative. The couple was legally married on 27 February 1800.

This document gives us two other facts: Charles Stewart could at least write his name, but Rosy could not.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. “Amanuensis Monday: Marriage Bond for Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 1800”- http://heritageramblings.net/2016/04/11/amanuensis-monday-marriage-bond-for-edward-roberts-and-rosy-stewart-1800
  2. “Kentucky Marriages, 1802-1850” by Jordan Dodd, Ancestry.com Operations Inc., Publisher, 1997.

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted.
 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 
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Amanuensis Monday: Marriage Bond for Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 1800

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Marriage Bond for Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 1800.
Marriage Bond for Edward Roberts and Rosy Stewart, 25 February 1800, Clark County, Kentucky. (Click to enlarge.)

Roberts Family (Click for Family Tree)

In the early days of our country, communities policed themselves by making the whole group responsible for keeping everyone legal. Marriage, of course, was one of the most important legal events- paternity and inheritance were very much affected by a marriage, thus there were certain rules for a betrothed couple to follow.

Generally, ‘marriage banns’ were read and/or posted at the church or meeting house each week for three successive weeks. By announcing their intention to marry, the couple was open to community scrutiny. Anyone could come forward and declare some legal reason they should not be married. (“Speak now or forever hold your peace.”) These reasons included that the prospective bride, groom, or both, were either:

a) already married to someone else

b) too young to marry, and/or

c) too closely related, such as first cousins

If a couple planned to be married in a place where one or both were not well known, or if the marriage was to take place quickly, they would provide a marriage bond instead of banns. Since our ancestors Edward Roberts and Rosey Stewart lived out on the frontier of our country (Kentucky in 1800), there might not have been a church or minister nearby to read or publish banns. Marriage bonds were also a southern custom, and common in the mid-Atlantic states as well. (The Roberts family may have lived in the mid-Atlantic states prior to Kentucky, but that’s another post.)

The marriage bond would stipulate that if there was later found some legal reason that the couple should not have been married, the bondsman would pay the Governor of the state an agreed-upon sum of money as a penalty. The groom would sign, and the bride would be represented by a male usually of her family, since women had few legal rights. Her representative was the bondsman, and often her father, but could be another male such as a brother, guardian, uncle, family friend, etc., or even (!) her mother if no other male was available.

Contrary to popular belief today, a marriage bond was NOT a guarantee that a marriage would take place. If the couple did not follow through with the marriage, the bond did not have to be paid at all. It would only be paid after the marriage and only if the union was found to have been illegal, such as the bride being underage.

Outer paper of Stewart-Roberts File. Note spelling of names.
Outer paper of Stewart-Roberts File. Note spelling of names. (Click to enlarge.)

It is amazing to be able to see this marriage bond that was written 216 years ago! It was signed on 25 February 1800, and Edward and Rosey were married two days later in Clark County, Kentucky. A Charles Stewart signed the bond to represent Rosey, and many researchers (myself included) have thought that meant he was her father. He might be, but he could also have been the only relative she had in Kentucky at that time. So we do need more research to prove her father.

Following is my transcription of the document. Some of the words are hard to make out, so please let us know if you think there should be some changes to the transcription.

Know all men by these presents
that we Edward Robbards & Chas. Steward are held
and firmly bound unto James Garrard, Esq’r Governor
of this commonwealth & his successors in the sum
of Fifty pounds to which payment well & tru-
ly to be made to the Said Governor & his successors we
bind ourselves our heirs Exers [Executors] & AD’mos (Administrators) jointly Severa-
ly firmly by these presents Sealed and Dated this
25th Day of Feby   1800

The Condition of the above
is such that whereas there is a marriage
Shortly intended to be had & Solemized between
the above bound Edwd Robbards & Rosey
Steward if therefore there be no lawful
cause to obstruct the same then this obligation
to be void else to remain in full force

Sealed & Delivered                          Edward Robbards [seal]
in presents [large mark- X]            Charles Steward [seal]

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. An ‘amanuensis’ (ə-măn′yo͞o-ĕn′sĭs) is a person who takes dictation or who copies a literary work. It is Latin for “slave at handwriting.” It is also used for someone who transcribes.
  2. Marriage bond from Clark County, Kentucky, possibly county clerk’s office. Received from a cousin many, many years ago.
  3. Dodd, Jordan. Kentucky Marriages, 1802-1850 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 1997. Ancestry.com, accessed 04/08/2016.
  4. “United States Marriage Records, 3.2 Marriage Bonds”, FamilySearch Wiki,  https://familysearch.org/wiki/en/United_States_Marriage_Records. Accessed 04/08/16
  5. “Bonds That Bind: What’s a Marriage Bond – and Why?” by Richard Pence.   http://www.pipeline.com/~richardpence/bonds2.htm. Accessed 04/08/16.
  6. “The Ties that Bond” by Judy Russell, The Legal Genealogist, http://www.legalgenealogist.com/blog/2012/01/25/the-ties-that-bond/. Accessed 04/08/16.

 

Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images. Click to enlarge images.

We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2015 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted.
 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 
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Farming Friday: The Murrell Farm in 1850s Virginia

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"Tippecanoe Waltz" sheet music. Cornell University Collection of Political Americana, with kind permission of Cornell University Library; no restrictions.
“Tippecanoe Waltz” sheet music, 1840. Cornell University Collection of Political Americana, with kind permission of Cornell University Library; no restrictions. (Click to enlarge.)

Roberts Family (Click for Family Tree)

Since farming has been such an important part of the American economy, especially for most of our ancestors, we are starting a new type of post called, “Farming Friday,” that will tell us a bit more about the places so many of our ancestors called “home.”

Farms varied greatly, and that plot of land wasn’t just “home” either. It was the family’s livelihood and place of business, whether that meant tilling the soil or churning butter and manufacturing cheese to sell to neighbors or in town. It was a place for social activity- barn raisings come to mind, but of course, there was all sorts of visiting between farms on an individual and small group basis, in addition to parties and special events like weddings. Even more special events took place on the farm too- quite a lot of our ancestors were born right in the bed they probably were conceived in, and may have later inherited for the circle to continue with their children.

Many of our ancestors held ‘unimproved land’ that most likely was wooded; the wood from these trees was an energy source for the fireplace for warmth, the cookstove for food, and even a place to hunt to provide meat to be cooked on that wood-fired stove or even earlier, in the fireplace. The woods were also a fun place for farm kids to hang out away from the prying eyes of adults, climb trees, and play tag. There was likely a bit of courting that went on in the woods, too, and maybe even a stolen kiss.

Agricultural schedules were taken along with the population census in the years 1850-1880, plus some states conducted an 1885 census that also enumerated farmers and their acreage, livestock, and products. Not all of these can be found today, as with most records, but we will tell the story of our family’s farms as we can with those schedules that have survived. Tax records and deeds also sometimes tell the story of a farm, so we will share those as well.

We have already told the story of Robert Woodson Daniel (1843-1922) and his wife Margaret Ann Hemphill (1839-1915) in an earlier post- see Those Places Thursday: Robert Woodson Daniel’s Iowa Farm in 1879. Today we will start our official new topic with the farm of Wiley Anderson Murrell (1806-1885) and his wife Mary Magdalen Hontz (1806-1887). The Daniel, Murrell, and Roberts families lived in Warren County, Illinois, at the same time, and we know that they knew each other. They may have migrated together, or encouraged each other to move after one family had made the trek to Jasper County, Iowa. The Murrells married into the Roberts family, as did the next generation of Daniels and Roberts.

If we look at the US Federal Population Schedule, it tells us that Wiley, age 41, and Mary, age 44 (ages were not always correct, whether on purpose or just ‘misremembered’), were living on their farm in District 8, Botetourt County, Virginia. Their daughter Elizabeth Ann Murrell (the maternal grandmother of our Edith (Roberts) [McMurray] Luck) was 15 and the oldest. She was probably often in charge of her brother John Henry Murrell, 13, William Murrell, age 9, James E. Murrell who was 8, and little Ann Elisy Murrell, then just 5. Wiley was listed as a farmer, but it was also noted that he could not read nor write. The whole family was born in Virginia, and none attended school within the year per the 1850 US Federal Census.

1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 1. Ancestry.com
1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 1. Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)
1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 2. Ancestry.com
1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 2. Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)

Although a small farm, the whole family would have been needed to make their living from it. The farm schedule was completed on 7 October 1850, and indicated that the Murrells had 45 acres of improved land to farm, and 85 acres unimproved. The entire cash value of the farm was $800- it was one of the smallest in the area. The farm implements and machinery were worth about $75- even adjusting for inflation, today’s farmers would scoff. Wiley’s implements and machinery would have be valued at about $2,240 in today’s money, which might not even buy a tire for one of the big tractors or combines used today.

Livestock was a mainstay on our ancestor’s farms- they did not have the ‘luxury’ of factory farming and concentrating on just one species of animal or one type of grain. They had to supply much of what the family needed, plus have a little surplus to sell for the necessities that they could not make on their own, such as cloth or sugar. So Wiley and Mary had 2 horses- likely draft horses for pulling a plow and a buggy or wagon; 1 ‘milch’ cow for making butter (the ladies manufactured at least 50 pounds) plus milk for baking and drinking. They also had 2 other types of cattle, possibly for beef. They did not list any oxen, which is why we think the horses would have been the sturdier work horses.

The Murrells also had 7 sheep, and they produced 17 pounds of wool in the previous 12 months. Mary and Elizabeth may have spent some of their evenings spinning the wool into yarn. They might have had their own loom, or provided the yarn to a neighbor who did have one, and then the neighbor would make the cloth and keep some of the yarn for herself in payment. Instead, they could have just sold the wool outright.

The total value of “home manufactures” was $30 per the 1850 Agricultural Schedule.

1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 3. Ancestry.com
1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 3. Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)
1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 4. Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)
1850 Agriculture Schedule for Wiley A. Murrell, part 4. Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)

Pork has always been a staple in the American diet as pigs reproduce and grow quickly and without much fuss- one can even let them loose in the unimproved parts of the property to graze on acorns, etc., and fatten up. “Slopping the pigs” meant all the leftovers from mealtime, which some of us today would compost, went into a bucket and the contents were thrown out in the pig pen, to be biologically recycled into tasty bacon and ham. The Murrells owned 7 swine in October of 1850. The total value of all their livestock was about $165. They slaughtered animals worth $48 the previous year, and those may have been for home consumption and/or sale in town.

Mary and Elizabeth also probably had chickens and a large home garden with vegetables, herbs, and maybe some fruit trees. Of course, this was a part of “women’s work” so would not have been listed on the Agricultural Schedule. It probably is what helped keep the family alive, however, and women often sold eggs, cakes, etc. in town for a little extra money for the family.

Of course, one has to feed the livestock, and provide grain for the family, a little extra to pay the miller, and hopefully have some good seed for the next year. To that end, the Murrells harvested 91 bushels of wheat, 300 bushels of ‘Indian corn,’ and 33 bushels of oats, which would have been used as feed. If thefamily was of Scots-Irish descent (which we do not yet know), they may have also made porridge from some of the oats for many of their meals.

The family also produced 200 pounds of flax, which was a fiber used to make linen, cording, etc. Linen was used as sheets and clothing until cotton became more available and less expensive. Wiley and family also produced 1 bushel of flaxseed, which could have been pressed for use as an oil and lubricant, or saved or sold as seed for the next year’s crop.

 

Wow, we have time-travelled through a farm year with Wiley and Mary Murrell in Botetourt County, Virginia. Looking at the population census and the agriculture schedule for the same year gives us great insight into what life was like for the family.

I am tired just writing about it. They must have quickly fallen asleep each night after such hard work, day after day. Gives one a new respect for our forebears, and makes one realize that the “good ole days”  were maybe not that great after all.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. See also Robert Woodson Daniel  http://heritageramblings.net/2015/04/30/those-places-thursday-robert-woodson-daniels-iowa-farm-in-1879
  2. 1850 Population schedule for Wiley A. Murrell & family. Census Place: District 8, Botetourt, Virginia; Roll: M432_936; Page: 156; Image: 547. 1850 United States Federal Census, Ancestry.com, online publication – Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2005. Original data – United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Seventh Census of the United States, 1850. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1850. M432.
  3. 1850 Non-Population schedule for Wiley A. Murrell & family. Census Year: 1850; Census Place: District 8, Botetourt, Virginia, “Selected U.S. Federal Census Non-Population Schedules, 1850-1880,” Ancestry.com online publication – Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.
  4. Inflation calculator- http://www.in2013dollars.com (but it does go to 2016).
    5. This post will be published on Murrell Family Genealogy: A One-Name Study blog under another name.

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.

Treasure Chest Thursday: The Marriage Certificate of Nellie Call and William Wheeler

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William Wheeler residence, Norwich Township, Huron County, Ohio, c1896. Perhaps those are the two oldest girls on the left?
William Wheeler residence, Norwich Township, Huron County, Ohio, c1896. Unknown children-see note 1.

Yesterday we looked at the beautiful record of the marriage of William Wheeler and Nellie Call- antique shops can be such a treasure chest! Today let’s look at their family, and lives after their marriage.

The children of William and Nellie (Call) Wheeler were:

Kent C.E. Wheeler, b. 5 Nov 1891in Ohio.

Achsah M. Wheeler, b. 4 Oct. 1893 and d. 4 Feb 1894; presumably named after her paternal grandmother.

Elizabeth Call Wheeler, b. 13 Dec. 1894 in Cleveland, Ohio, d. 10 November 1959.

Chrystal Grace Wheeler, b. 26 Nov. 1897 in Alabama.

Willie Nell Wheeler, b. 22 April 1905 in Alabama, d. 15 July 1969.

Mae Irene Wheeler, b. 5 May 1907 in Montgomery, Alabama, d. 25 June 1970 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Some of this information is from Ancestry trees and I have not yet heard back from those tree owners, so please do verify the above information before adding it to your tree.

We do know that the family moved from Ohio to Montgomery, Alabama before the birth of their daughter Chrystal in 1897.

William apparently was an electrical engineer. Interestingly, his headstone states, “He died at the post of duty.” Sounded like a story there. He died 1 July 1921, and Nellie lived 27 years longer, until 8 August 1948.

William M. Wheeler’s final resting place is in Greenwood Cemetery, Montgomery, Alabama; see Find A Grave Memorial #63284383. Nellie G. Wheeler (possibly her middle name was Grace, as she gave that name to a daughter? Or was the “C” for “Call” accidentally changed to a “G”?) may be alongside him in Greenwood Cemetery- their stones look similar but there is no plot information; see Find A Grave Memorial #90289114.  The image of her headstone on FAG is sweet- a little plastic/magnetic guardian angel like what used to be on people’s dashboards, and possibly an urn holder, engraved “Mama.”

Addendum: OK, could not resist the genealogical muse… I had to find out about “He died at the post of duty.” GenealogyBank.com came to the rescue with a Montgomery, Alabama newspaper.

William Wheeler had worked for the Montgomery Light and Water Power Company for 25 years, 10 of them as Chief Engineer. (So he would have started about 1896, when electricity was still a fairly new source of power.) Apparently there was a short circuit in some wires which caught a switch box on fire. William was notified by the night watchman, and arrived at the plant soon after. He determined where the problem was, and attempted pulling out the switch. Unfortunately two of the terminals in the box came into contact with each other as he pulled, and this caused a short, which then caused a burst of flame which ignited William’s clothes. By the time help arrived to put out the flames, William was already severely burned over his entire upper body. He was coherent enough to explain the accident when he got to the hospital, but he unfortunately died at 4:20 that afternoon.

William was dealing with quite a lot of electricity- the switch was connected to one of the three main lines that powered the city. In fact, William’s funeral notice stated it was “an explosion,” not just a ‘flame.’ The “entire city was put into darkness for a period of about two hours” in order to repair the line. William saved the plant from being severely damaged and compromising the distribution of power to the entire city of Montgomery, Alabama.

The news story gives us a bit more information about the family, too. His wife Nell was still living and they were married, son Kent was living in Galveston, Texas, and daughters Nell and Mae were still single and living in Montgomery. The other two daughters were married, and, if they were listed in birth order, Elizabeth was married to Herbert Keister and living in Houston, Texas, and Chrystal was married to S. D. Connor and living in Montgomery. (If not in birth order, as is customary in obituaries, the spouses would be reversed.)

It must have been comforting to Nell to have three daughters close by when this terrible accident happened. And now we know that William Wheeler was a brave man, who truly  “… died at the post of duty.”

Is this your family? If so, please leave us a comment or use our ‘Contact us’ form.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Leading image, “William Wheeler Residence, Norwich Twp., Huron Co. Ohio” from Picturesque Huron or Huron County Ohio as seen thru a camera. 1896, GoogleBooks. If this book was published in 1896, Kent would have been 5 years old and Elizabeth 1; the other children were not born. So who are the children in the picture? Is William Wheeler on the right?
  2. The genealogical and encyclopedic history of the Wheeler family in America. Compiled by the American College of Genealogy under the direction of Albert Gallatin Wheeler, Jr, Volume 2, pp906-7. https://archive.org/stream/genealogicalency02whee#page/906/mode/2up/search/call
  3. Find A Grave- see above links to memorials.
  4. “William H. Wheeler Dies Friday From Injuries at Power Plant.” Montgomery Advertiser (Montgomery, Alabama), Vol. XCII, No. 183, Page 1, Saturday, 2 July 1921, via GenealogyBank.com.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

1)

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2015 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted.
 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 
Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright of our blog material.