Monday, January 27, 2014

+William Thomas Banks Jr.

       William Thomas Banks Jr, b: Sept 27, 1924, Chattanooga, TN
                                              d: Oct 20, 2007, Vallejo, CA.
His parents were, William Thomas Banks Sr and Lena M. Key- Banks.
He grew up in Chattanooga, most likely attended Howard High School in Chattanooga. He either joined or was drafted into the Navy, as of this post I don't know when he joined or when he got out of the military. All I have are two photos of him in uniform.

William Thomas Banks Jr.
William Thomas Banks Jr.

 I'm hoping that his family eventually will read this post and share more information about his military years and any photos and stories they might have about him.

Uncle Billy married Aurelia White in 1945 in California, and they had one daughter born 1950 most likely still living. He also has two grand daughters.

Aurelia and William on left and Aurelia White 

Uncle Billy was into photography, I remember my mother telling me that she use to work for him in his studio in Chattanooga, she would develop the pictures, and also she learned how to colorize the photos for him, he apparently taught her how to do all of it.  
Aunt Butch ( Aurelia) I thought was nice, she was the only wife of Uncle Billy's that I met.
Uncle Billy and Aurelia divorced, and around 1969 Uncle Billy married Rozelma H. Jeffery in Vallejo, California.

Rozelma  and William Banks

They were married for 21 years then Rozelma died October 14, 1990.

William married again to Verlady D. Gray on September 26, 1991 in Washoe County, Nevada. They remained married until William's death in 2007.

What I need is information about William's military, school, occupation, and where he's buried. 
After posting this a friend Bernita Allen from the AAGSAR group found my uncle Billy's obituary, here is what she found listed below:

William T. Banks JR.: Newspaper and Death Notice

Times-Herald ( Vallejo, CA) - Thursday, October 25, 2007
Deceased Name:  William T. Banks Jr.
CA United States
Sept. 27, 1924 - Oct 20, 2007 William " Bill" Thomas Banks Jr., a longtime resident of Vallejo, was summoned by His Heavenly Father on Saturday.  Bill served in the U.S. Navy during W.W 11 and was honorably discharged in 1946.  He worked as a Federal Civil Servant at the Benicia Arsenal and Concord Naval Weapons Station for a total of thirty six years.. He was  Past Master of Firma Lodge No 27, F&AM (Vallejo), a Freemason for more than 50 years, and was a member of various Masonic and social organizations.  Bill is greatly missed by his loving wife of 16 years, Verlady: daughter, Rosalind Banks; five stepdaughters; a sister and a brother -in-law; 11 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.  Visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. with a quiet hour from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Stewart Rose Manor Funeral Service, 3331 MacDonald Ave., Richmond.  Funeral service will be held 11 am, Saturday, at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church, 1905 Florida St., Vallejo.  Burial to follow at Rolling Hills Memorial Park, Richmond.  Arrangements made under the care of Stewart Rose Manor, ( 510) 235-9143.

Thank you Bernita this is very much appreciated.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

+Smith Moore and his Family

    Smith Moore my 2nd great grandfather was born January about 1825 in Alabama, in 1818 seven years before Smith was born, Lauderdale County was established, and in 1819 Alabama became a state. On May 10th 1865 the Civil War ends and Smith marries Julia Wells on August 9, 1865 in Giles, Tennessee.
I haven't found any other information about Smith other than the census records. He and Julia have five children listed in the 1870 census:

Henderson Moore b: abt. 1852 Al
Julia Moore          b: abt. 1854 Al
Mollie Moore         b: abt  1855 Al
Harrison Moore     b: abt  1857 Al
Elvira Moore         b: abt  1861 Al

Smith's occupation is listed as a farmer, left blank are able to read or write.

The next census 1880 shows Smith Moore age 55 years of age, still living in Florence, Lauderdale, Alabama with his wife Julia and some new information, Smith's parents are listed as being born in Virginia. Smith is still a farmer, and he has a nephew David Kelley 4 years old born 1876 Alabama, mulatto, and another nephew Andrew Brayn born 1875 age 5, mulatto.

Since I don't know much about Smith's life before 1870 I did a little research to see what the area was like during his life time in Florence.  The first courthouse was built in 1822 and was used by the county until 1899 when it was remodeled and enlarged.  A number of important industries were in use in Lauderdale County because of the abundant water supply, there were cotton and cloth mills. One being used before and after the Civil War.  There was another mill that made cloth for the Confederate Army Uniforms and another for guns for the Southern Cause.  Union soldiers destroyed  both, and one was destroyed by the creek flooding.   
   By the 1900 Census, Smith Moore age 75 is still living in Florence, Lauderdale Co. Alabama and is widowed.  He has:
 Ella Moore age 8 born Feb 1891 Al. black, relation to Smith, stepdaughter. 
Allen Moore age 7,  born Feb 1893 Al, black, stepson.
Arthur Moore age 2, born April 1898 Al, black, stepson.
Samuel Moore age 3, born Nov, 1897 Al, black, stepson.
Smith's occupation Farm laborer, cannot read, cannot write, can speak English and he's renting a house.

I did a little research on Smith and Julia's children.
Henderson is working on a farm in 1870 and single, I haven't found any more about him so far.  
Julia no new information on her yet.
Mollie, married Henry Bell Key on Aug 12, 1877 in Lauderdale Co, Mississippi. Mollie is my gr grandmother.
Harrison Moore married Josephine James in 1884.  Josephine was born about 1859 Alabama.  They had eleven children.
Elvira Moore unknown so far.
I haven't been able to find out when Smith Moore or Julia died, or where they are buried ,but I am still researching all the family for cemetery records, birth records, marriages, and more.  This at least gives me a picture into the life of Smith Moore and his family.
My dream is that someone related to Smith Moore and Julia will read this and share information, photos and stories.


1870 Census Ancestry. com
1880 Census
1900 Census

Thursday, January 16, 2014

+Georgia Lee Louanda Edingburg Zuber

When I think of my grandmother the first thing that happens is a smile comes to my lips.  She was the sweetest grandmother anyone could have had.  Georgia Lee Louanda Edingburg was born February 24, 1892 in Chattanooga, Hamilton County, Tennessee the seventh child of Daniel Trigg Edingburg Sr. and Minnie M. McKeldin-Edingburg. 

Georgia L.L. Edingburg-Zuber 1892-1971

I called my grandmother Grandy, I don't know how that name got started, probably from me trying to pronounce Granny or something and the name stuck. All her grandchildren called her that from then on.

She lived with her parents, and siblings while teaching school. Since a lot of the 1890 census was destroyed in a fire I didn't find anything about her from what was salvaged in that year, I did find her in the 1900 census.
1900 Census

She married Shantung Taylor Zuber August 8, 1922 at age 30 in Chattanooga, TN. They had two sons Shantung Edingburg Zuber b: 1923 and Theodric Edingburg Zuber b: 1926. Grandpa Shantung had already joined the army and was only in a short time before he was sent home according to the story with shell shock. By 1930 Grandpa Shantung was already admitted into the Veterans Hospital in Tuskegee, Alabama. 
Grandpa Shantung 1896-1975

This photo of my grandparents was taken at the Veterans hospital in Tuskegee, Alabama.  When I was born the family was still living in Chattanooga, we would go visit my grandfather at the hospital so my grandmother could see him but he didn't know me, he kept calling me Little Shantung, he thought I was his son. 
So my grandmother went with us after we moved from Chattanooga, and I had the good fortune to get to know her and hear some of her stories.  She took care of me and my brother while my parents worked.  Her siblings always said that she was a fantastic cook, people from all over Chattanooga that knew her or about her wanted to come eat at her house.  She made the best biscuits too.   Grandy also sang had a beautiful voice, she knew Lena Horne and had the opportunity to sing with her and another friend of theirs named Roberta but I don't remember her last name. 

When I was three years old she started teaching me how to read and write. By the time I got to kindergarten she had taught me to spell encyclopedia, Constantinople which I immediately told the teacher I could spell and my grandmother was smiling from ear to ear.  She loved to read and write letters so of course I picked up that as well.  Then she would put on the music and we would dance around the house, she would sing while she was cooking.  We had a great time together.  
When I started piano lessons at six she would always encourage me to practice, her favorite saying was "practice makes perfect", she could play the piano also.  She taught me how to cook and bake, I made my first peach pie when I was seven years old, she made such a big to do over that pie, I wanted to cook every day, I'd hurry up and get home from school just so I could make sure I didn't miss anything in the kitchen, I'm sure that's why I love to cook today.  In the evenings she would crochet these coasters to use for the glasses,they went up the sides of the glasses, so you would set the glass down in the coaster then  set it on the table. She also did tatting.  I still have some of her crochet needles.  Grandy's hair was so long it dragged the floor, she never cut it, and as she got older it got to be a chore so my dad and I would wash her hair for her and dry it and then my dad would always keep it trimmed so she didn't trip over it.  She hardly ever wore it down and not one picture was taken of her with her hair down that I know of, I don't know why none of us thought to take a picture of her beautiful hair. I remember brushing her hair, it felt like a horses tail to me it was coarse but soft too and big waves.
As she got older she got this white streak that started from the front scalp and went straight down like a skunk. I use to tell her she had skunk hair, she'd tell me I smelled like a  she was funny.
Georgia ( Grandy)

Grandy had one thing that use to annoy me though, she loved to tickle me, I am extremely ticklish and she would always grab me and tickle me or if my feet were sticking out of the cover she would tickle my feet. I would have to think ahead of her and make sure she didn't get my feet. She thought the whole thing was funny, I didn't think so. 
  She loved to go places, all you had to so was say want to go for a ride, she'd go get her purse, hat and gloves and she was ready to go, you didn't have to wait on her at all.  We would go on vacations, take her to see her sister in Chicago, or  back to Tennessee to see my grandfather and her other siblings, and to to California to see her youngest son Theodric and all you had to do was say we're going on vacation on what ever day it was, and she would be ready to go waiting on us.  I took that after her also, I can be ready in 10 minutes.
Theodric and Grandy

This is a picture of Grandy with her youngest son Theodric. I loveeee my uncle, that's a post I'll do later.  My uncle sent her a painting that he did and we hung it in the living room, she told everyone that came over who painted it even my friends.  Of course everyone loved the painting, I still have it.

Grandy loved everything flowers,animals, birds, she could make bird calls and she would sound just like the bird, she would go to the window and talk to the birds, I just knew that the birds were understanding her it sounded like they were talking back to her. She tried to teach me how to make the bird calls but I still can't even whistle well.
I was always telling her that I was waiting for the aliens to come get me and take me back to my planet, I started telling her that about when I was four, I never stopped telling her that and she never stopped telling me that she would miss me if i went.  I'm still waiting, I guess they forgot about me.  
I could probably write two more posts just on my grandmother. She died in November 1971 in New Jersey. 
I've had lots of best friends that are family, Grandy was one of them, she loved everyone and everyone loved her.  I sure miss her to this day. She has a special place in my heart.  I'm so happy I had a grandmother to grow up with. 

1900 United States Federal Census ( data base on-line Provo, UT, USA, Operations Inc. 2004.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

A Friend of Friends : Lessons From The Underground Railroad # Taliaferro

The following post is Reblogged from The Taliaferro Project

By sjtaliaferro

One night during the holidays I watched one of my favorite movies, Roots: The Gift. The movie stars LeVar Burton and Louis Gossett, Jr., in their roles as Kunta Kinte and Fiddler from the television series Roots. In this movie, Kunta and Fiddler accompany their owner to another plantation at Christmas time for a party, and become involved in a plan to help some runaway slaves escape via the Underground Railroad to freedom. A simple, yet powerful story. There are many messages and lessons to be learned from Roots: The Gift.

In one of my favorite scenes, Fiddler and Kunta are helping the group of runaway slaves get to the river where they are to meet a boat that will take them further on their journey to freedom. Along the way they make a stop to pick up other “passengers” on the Underground Railroad. When they come to a farmhouse, Kunta approaches and knocks. The man asks…”who goes”? Kunta responds “Friend of Friends”…in acknowledgment, the man replies “Friend of Friends”. A group of “passengers” exit the house. Kunta, Fiddler, and the group continue their journey.

This year, I was particularly moved by the Underground Railroad scene, and even more so by the phrase uttered by Kunta- Friend of Friends. The phrase, and variations of it, was used along the Underground Railroad as a password or signal to those assisting runaway slaves on their journey North…to freedom. The traditional response to the “who goes there” password is said to have been “A Friend of a Friend”.

A Friend of Friends. Say it… A Friend of Friends, again…A Friend of Friends. It evokes such a comforting, welcoming feeling. A feeling of trust, of sharing, of caring, of kindness, and of friendship, however brief. At the same time, it is transient…adjusting and changing with the circumstances. I’m A Friend of Friends….you don’t know me, but I require assistance…I need your help, and guidance…some information to aid me on my journey…then I’ll be moving on…to the next stop along the way.

The phrase, and the underlying concept, seems particularly appropriate and relevant for those of us in the genealogy community; aren’t we all on some level really just A Friend of Friends? Strangers helping strangers. Friends of friends with a common bond that ties us all together….the desire to know our ancestors, and to tell their stories. A common goal, with different methods, different paths that cross and intersect along the journey. As we travel this road to uncovering our ancestors and their stories we should all embrace the concept…we should be A Friend of Friends. Don’t be afraid or reluctant to share, to care, to guide, or to assist your fellow researcher along their journey.

As an African American researcher my task is two-fold; I research my family, but inevitably I must also research the family of my ancestor’s slave holders if I want to know more about my roots. Often we must seek information (assistance) from those that we do not know to aid us on our journey. It is an unavoidable truth – the descendants of our ancestor’s slave holding families may hold the key to our enslaved ancestor’s past. Slavery is an ugly truth of our shared history. I am not angry with you because your ancestor held my ancestor as a slave; don’t be angry with me because I seek those records that may shed more light on the lives of my people, and help me to tell their story more completely. Some who were members of slave holding families assisted passengers along the Underground Railroad. I challenge you to be A Friend of Friends.

We, as researchers of our African American ancestry, must also remember to share, to care, to guide, and to assist our fellow researchers; reach out, take time….no, make time. Can you request and expect the assistance of others, yet not expect the same of yourself? I urge you to stop being selfish with your research. Don’t miss out on a connection or a long lost cousin because of fear or uncertainty. Post It, Blog It, Share It, and Publish It. Many who were passengers along the Underground Railroad returned to assist others on their journey to freedom. I challenge you to be A Friend of Friends.

True genealogists know all of this, and understand the necessity of it. Indeed, the concept is nothing new in the genealogy community. Random, and not so random, acts of kindness occur every day. So, consider this a wake-up call, my challenge to you. When a fellow researcher comes calling…for info…for guidance…for knowledge…for support – be there – to share, to care, to guide, and to assist.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

+Shantung Edingburg Zuber " My Dad, the Artist"

My dad, Shantung Edingburg Zuber was born Nov. 23, 1923 by Dr E.R Wheeler at 1:00pm at Walden Hospital, Chattanooga, Tennessee to Georgia Lee Louanda Edingburg-Zuber and Shantung Zuber.
Shantung and Georgia

 I'm going to save the story of him growing up and military life for another post. I want to share this post for  his art work.  I  know from what my mom told me that when my mom was in Howard High School the school principal asked him if he would paint something on one of the large walls in the high school entryway. My mom said that it was so beautiful, and it stayed there for many years. I wish someone would have thought to take a picture of it.  My dad attended Ozenfont School of Fine Arts in New York. Here is a link about the school. 

He was commissioned to paint this owl for a man who loved owls and other birds,  I didn't want him to sell it I thought it was so pretty as I love owls also.  He told me that he would paint an owl just for me, which he did and I still have it hanging in my home. 
After this painting another man asked him to paint a picture of his wife that had died, he wanted to put the painting over the fireplace in his home, so he gave my dad some photos of his deceased wife and my dad started that one.  This is when my interest in oil painting started when I saw the portrait and I knew right then that I wanted to paint portraits.

My dad painted almost every day, he said it was his relaxation and it took him to another reality.  If he wasn't painting he was lighting weights or reading. His other great talent was carpenter work, he could build anything that you asked him, but then carpenters run in the family so that's not surprising.
Some time in the 1980's he was asked if he would teach art in one of the local colleges at first for a night school class, which he did and eventually that turned into a regular class after he had so many people signing up for the courses.

Our recreational room downstairs became the hang out for the family, my mother brought her sewing downstairs, my brother brought his Kung Fu equipment down and my dad already had his art studio and work out room there, so we all would hang out there and really watch him paint.   Sometimes it seemed like he took forever just to paint one grape or one apple but when it was finished it looked like you could take it off of the painting and eat it. The dog painting was also purchased by the same man that wanted a painting of his deceased wife. 

The yellow roses were a special gift to me.  My dad painted two yellow roses for a woman and he asked her that if anything happened to her since she didn't have any family would she return it to him either to buy back or in a will..she agreed and here they are in my dining room.
It seemed like every painting that he did I wanted it. It was wonderful that other people wanted his work I was proud of his work but I wanted to make sure that I had some of his work also. 
I just had these framed not to long ago. Another tidbit of info on my dad, when I was in grammar school, we had to do an art project so I decided to do a Bust of a mans head.  I twisted up some coat hangers into the shape of a head and stuffed news paper into the hanger wires and started putting the clay over it,  my dad  saw what i was doing and got it all stabilized for me and I made this Bust, he helped me by telling me what to do but he didn't do anything himself on it for me. I got an A on that project.  I wish there was a photo of it. I was proud of that Bust.

The Bird painting is one that my mom had also in her home, when she came to live with us she brought all of my father's paintings with her that she had and of course I was thrilled to have them as well.
Shantung my dad 1923-1983

My dad was my best friend, my mom use to call us ducks if my dad got up and left the room, I followed him as did my brother. We'd hear my mom say, "There go the Ducks" .
My father died, July 28, 1983 at his home, in Parlin, New Jersey

My cousin Darryl L. Zuber took the DNA Paternal Y test back in 2009 it shows the Haplogroup as R1b for the Zuber line.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

+Ruby Red Charm, The Red Square Dishes Story

   My childhood days living in Chattanooga was short but I have vivid memories of those first few years of my life there.  My mom was amazed that I held on to those memories so well, even she didn't remember some of the things until I would mention them to her.  This is the only full picture I have of our house in Chattanooga, which my gr grandfather Daniel Edingburg built himself.
J. Bliss White had this photo of my gr grandfather's home plus a photo of Daniel and an article about Daniel in his book "1904 Biography and Achievements of the Colored Citizens of Chattanooga".  The woman in the photo might be Minnie Edingburg but since they don't mention who she is I'm not sure.

I loved living in this house, my uncle Will lived in a small cabin behind the house which you can see a little of it in the photo to the right in the back of the house.  He was a single man by the time I was born.  My mom said that he use to keep money stashed between the floor boards, or hide it in the walls of the cabin.  He use to come get me after breakfast to walk around the outside, I would always head to the grape orchard and start eating, mom would get after Uncle Will for letting me eat grapes until I was either all stained up or ate too many, but the next time he would just do it again and I was always happy to eat grapes.
  There was a bird bath out in the front yard, the fence in the photo on the side of the house was taken down when the property next door was purchased by our family, and the bird bath sat on that side of the property. We had ducks that roamed around freely, Uncle Will, (who is actually my great uncle), would come get me again and we would go feed the ducks and I loved to play in the bird bath just splashing the water around. Uncle Will was my best buddy.  
At lunch time we would go in and my favorite memory about eating was using those square red plates, saucers and square cups. Even though I was very young I remembered those plates forever.  I wanted everything served on those plates.  I have no idea why those particular plates stuck in my mind.
When we moved away, I didn't think about the plates until I was an adult, then I asked my  mother what happened to those red plates, she couldn't believe that I remembered them, she said that they threw them out when we moved away.  I was just shocked that they would throw away such beautiful plates and cups.

Right then I started on a mission to find some red square plates, I first tried antique shops, no one had any idea what I was talking about. My search went into years, then one day I went into this antique shop and asked if she knew anything about some very dark red square plates and cups and saucers to match.  She says yes but you probably won't find them up in this area, you would need to go to the southern states to find that particular color, she said that color wasn't popular in the Midwest mostly the green and pink were popular up this way.
She did tell me that they were named "Red Charm".  So I went to the internet and started my search..I found not only the plates but a butter dish. I ordered a set of four plus the butter dish.

I was so excited when my dishes arrived, even though they weren't the original red dishes from my family I was just so happy.  I figured I could start my own red dish tradition and new memories.  When I use my red dishes I think back to all those wonderful memories of living in my gr grandfather's home and sharing meals with my great aunts , grandmother and parents.  I was two years old when I first saw those dishes and we moved away about a year or two later.

I know one thing my Ancestors were preparing me at a very young age to record to memory everything they had in mind, for later use, because I can remember things from when I was younger than two years old.  

Saturday, January 4, 2014

+Sallie McKeldin my 2nd Great Grandmother

   Sallie McKeldin  b: Aug abt 1825/1833 McMinn Co, TN
                                   d: Dec 13, 1917 , McMinn Co, TN.

   My research on Sallie has been on hold for a long time, I haven't been able to locate any information about her husband as of yet.   Sallie had six children:
Mary McKeldin b: 1851-?  
George McKeldin b: 1853- 1933  
Minnie-b: 1855-1940  
Ellen-b: 1862-1935
Hattie-b: 1865-1925
David-b: 1869-?

Sallie is in the 1870 census as head of household, widowed, and all her children are living with her. In the 1880 Census Sallie is 49 years old, listed as mulatto, occupation servant and no children living with her. By the 1900 census, Sallie is 70 years old listed as head of household, Black and she now has two of her children back living with her and two grand children.

  I've have suspicions that Sallie's children were actually fathered by Andrew W. McKeldin.  Sallie has worked for the McKeldin family as a servant, two of her daughters have also worked in the McKeldin household. During my search for information about Sallie, I found a person on that lists Andrew W. McKeldin as Sallie's husband.  I question that bit of information.  Later I found a death record for Ellen that had her father as : Sandie McCammis.  I  did research on Sandie but came up with nothing.

About two years ago I found a McKeldin that had Hattie McKeldin in his family tree, I sent him a message and asked if he was related to Sallie, he wrote back saying that he didn't know who Sallie was but that he didn't know very much about the family.  He sent me what he did know and also said that his family has been having a family reunion about every other year. I wrote and asked him where and when but never heard anything back.
Just a few months ago I got an email from the same man wanting me to write him, he sent two email addresses, and two phone numbers and asked me to either call or write as soon as possible..Wow I thought I had finally lucked upon some information. It wasn't what I expected, he said that they were having a family reunion July 25 and 26 ,2014 in Georgia. 
I called him and we talked about the family, He didn't know about Sallie, nor did he know about my great grandmother Minnie McKeldin-Edingburg, I sent him pictures of Minnie and all the information I have so far to date.  I did look into the 1850 and 1860 slave schedules for Andrew McKeldin and found a mulatto woman that would have been the correct age as Sallie but of course no name was listed for the woman. My next project will be to check out the probate records, wills, land records to see if Sallie or her children are mentioned in any of Andrew's documents.

Since I'm not one to give up easily, I will continue to search through records, when we go to the reunion this summer I will look through all the records I can and hopefully I will find something more about Sallie.

Sallie is buried in Hammond Cemetery, Athens, McMinn Co. Tennessee as is most of her family.

Sallie was born on this plantation
Sallie's Obituary

General Brazelton Sallie's first slave owner

General Brazelton older age.


We've Moved

We've moved   

 Welcome to our new home come in and sit a spell, I'll tell you stories, share photos, and humor about my ancestors.  Grab a cup of coffee or tea and start the journey.