Sunday, July 26, 2009

Lundy Landing

I was visiting Manatee County Florida this week. While there I decided to try to locate the spot where my great great grandfather, William Lundy settled on the Manatee river in 1890.

A Lundy cousin told me the general area but said I couldn't get to it because it was on private land and posted. I had coordinates from the plot map and drove out anyway. Using my GPS I found it pretty quickly.

The old house is long gone but was on the river at the end of 104 Avenue East on the north side of the river. 104th Avenue dead ends on the river. Apparently the neighboring property owner convinced the County to close off the road. There is a gate across it about one half mile from the river.

There were plenty of No Trespassing signs on the fence along the road but none on the dirt road itself. Since it is still public property I decided it was not illegal to walk down the road. I jumped over the gate and walked to the river. At the end of the road I could not find any sign of the house. There were some old red bricks but from the photos I've seen the house was wood frame painted white. They may have come from the chimney or maybe just trash from someone over the last 100 years.

Ponce De Leon Mineral spring was also at this point but I knew it had gone dry in the 1920s
so I didn't expect to find any sign of it and didn't.

It was getting dark and since the adjoining land was posted I decided to stay on the old road and go home. But at least I found it and can say I was there.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Pay to Play

Spurgeon Aline Fulford Lumpkin was my mother's 2nd cousin. I never met her but her daughter Rebecca sent me some of her genealogy material. Aline was a lawyer in Alabama and she was very thorough in her family history research. She had small notebooks that she kept notes in and it covered various subjects and leads she had found.

One part of the material that was interesting is her correspondence with a firm in Canterbury England, Achievements, Ltd. who she hired to locate the family of John Fulford who settled in North Carolina in the early 1600s.

Ailne and another cousin, Carolyn Fulford had contacted the company who claimed they could locate the family. Over a period of several years the two of them paid the London company a lot of money to do research. Each letter with a report on their findings implied they were close to success and just needed some more research time and money to find John Fulford's family.

Looking at it now I am probably too cynical about a UK researcher getting Americans to pay to track down their English forbears. I can't find anything in their reports that would have told Aline anything new. I know there are genealogy researchers on both sides of the pond who are less than scrupulous and I've run across a couple close to home.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

A pack of Wilsons

I've been trying to figure out where my ancestor Moses Wilson came from for several years. I've visited rural cemeteries in Alabama and Florida running down leads. I was thinking his father was the John Wilson I found in rural Montgomery County Alabama but now I'm not so sure.

Moses was born about 1810 in North Carolina and moved to Alabama around 1830 and then Florida around 1860. He had two wives and 25 children.

There were always other Wilsons living around him on census and land records, who may have been related but so far every lead has been DOA. Recently I came across Ron Head, a Wilson researcher who had taken every Wilson in Montgomery County Alabama from 1820 to 1870 and mapped where they lived.
He took the records and put them onto current maps and sprinkled in the meager will and estate records from the area.

His research has been the best lead yet and may turn out to be something that will prove for certain the parents and heritage of Moses.

Sunday, July 5, 2009


I found this old photo in my dad's stuff after he died. It's his 1928 Perry Florida High School football team. I suppose all of the people in the photo are deceased. The Taylor County Historical Society publishes a "They Were Here" book on local people and I've seen many of them in it.

Football was always his favorite sport. He enjoyed baseball until the 1994 strike and after that enjoyed telling people he was boycotting them. In later years he started watching NASCAR because his cousin Hubert Horne was a fan but football was his true love. He made sure all his grandchildren knew of his playing days and became Nole fans at an early age.
Taylor County High School Bulldogs Perry, Florida 1928-1929

From the left:
Front row: Maurice Linton, Royce Thompson, Tracy Stackhouse, George Nola, Glenn Hicks, Jack Maxwell, Benjamin Clyde Green

Second row: Harry Davis, James Rogers, Verne Davis, Herbert Woods Ernest Callicut, Hale Vickery,

Third row: A.W. Jones (Mgr), Willie Joe Moody, J. T. Platt, Herman Davis (water boy), J.D. Vereen, Cornelius Jones, C. K. McCaskill, Kenneth Warren (first Aid), Coach Neely

Verne Davis Captain
Harry Davis Alternate Captain

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Home of the 4th of July

We are spending this 4th of July in Philadelphia. Our daughter and her husband live in the city and kind of invited us to come for a visit.

My wife Mary's Longacre family settled in the Philadelphia area before the Revolutionary War. There are a couple relatives around but I doubt we will stop by to visit.

A year ago some Longacre cousins had a marker put on the grave of Israel Longacre and his wife. He lived here and served in the Revolutionary War so he had a close up view of the first 4th of July festivities.
Israel Longacre is buried at St James Church in the Kingsessing community of Philadelphia.