A Travellerspoint blog

Visiting the Living

My Oklahoma Family

Of course, the best part of any trip are the people we meet along the way. Oklahoma was no different.

We first went to my mom’s first cousin, Bill. Bill is the son of my grandmother’s younger brother. Bill offered for us to stay at his house and we accepted that offer. Bill and his wife were waiting for us. We relaxed a bit and a cousin of Bel’s came around to meet his Cali cousin.

Bill: I’ve known Bill since I was little. He was always the one to take us around the area. This time was no different as he was generous enough to take all of us to the Boggy Depot area. Bill took us, also to see the old home place and the school mentioned in the previous blog.
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Another cousin, Barbra also met us at Boggy and told lots of stories. Her mother was a sister to my grandmother. Barbra: I met when I was in Okla. about 5 years ago, maybe we met before but I don’t remember. We didn’t really talk much that first time but then we started corresponding via email then facebook. Barbra has told me on several occasions that she travels vicariously thru my blogs and photos. Such an honor to be thought of so highly. I’ve been able to talk with Barbra via fb about troubling times and she has given good advice. She has serious health issues but is always there for others.
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Another cousin joined us at the old school site, Royaline. Royaline: I met Royaline over 40 years ago at a family reunion that we attended at Boggy Depot. We corresponded a bit; it is likely that I did not write more than once knowing me. A couple of years ago Royaline found me on facebook. She and her husband made the trip all the way down from their home just to see me again. What an honor that someone would do that. We had so much to catch up on!
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At the site of the school, Bel and Wes explored the storm cellar still standing and the ruins. Great photo opts there.IMG_0839.jpg

On Sat Barbra asked if we would spend the night at her house so we could visit some more. I hated to impose as she was really not feeling well but couldn’t say no. Barbra had food for us, and gave us her bed to sleep in. We stayed up talking until nearly 2am.

What a family!

Posted by Miss Chris 12.04.2014 20:26 Archived in USA Tagged family cousins family_travel atoka_okla Comments (0)

More Ancestors

Visiting Chinn's Chapel and then on to Boggy Depot

We got an early start as we wanted to stop at Chinn’s Chapel Cemetery once more before heading to Oklahoma. This time we went into the chapel and opened the two doors and windows. We let in light and fresh air as they would have for my great grandparents wedding and my great grandmother’s funeral. IMG_0808.jpg

I thought about my great grandmother; she was about 29 years old and had just given birth to her 4th child. The other 3 children were 4 and under with my grandmother being 1 year old. I have to wonder how horrible it was for her, to think that she might be dying with these 4 little kids around.
There is a sign printed on a cardboard in the church. The average age of death in the 1800’s was about 25 years old for that area. Wow! That is so young. I must remember to be thankful for modern medicine.IMG_20140411_132817_934.jpg

Bel and I took our photos, paid our respects and went on to Tishomingo where family was waiting to see us.

After arriving in Tish our relatives took us out to Boggy Depot Cemetery in Atoka, where my great grandfather settled after remarrying. We also got to find the foundation walls of the local school where my grandmother and her friends would go to shoot photos. And yes my grandmother had a little Brownie Hawkeye and used it. I’d brought my tripod just for this: I set up the tripod, set the camera on timer and took a photo of all of us on the steps of the school!

We ate some soul food: fried catfish and BBQ ribs at Fish Tales! I was lucky because the owner of the place fried catfish especially for me using cornmeal. This restaurant is only open on weekends and is packed. We’d eaten there on our trip 5 years ago and I was anxious to get back for their food! We were not disappointed.

Posted by Miss Chris 11.04.2014 13:54 Archived in USA Tagged cemetery eating ancestors family_travel grandparents chinn's_chapel chinn's_cemerery denton_tx boggy_depot Comments (0)

Introducing a Granddaughter to her Ancestors

Visiting the ancestors

I had a conference in Dallas to attend as I needed to obtain some yearly certifications. I thought it might be good to take a couple of extra days and go to see some family stuff.

My maternal grandmother was born in Denton, TX but her mother died the following year from, what we believe, were childbirth complications. My great grandparents were married in Denton in the little log frame Chinn’s Chapel, still standing. My great grandmother’s memorial service would have taken place in that chapel and her father married his next wife in that little chapel. IMG_20140328_160216_853.jpg

My mother and I found her grandmother’s grave several years ago but she was only putting together the information on her mother at that time. This trip I took my 13 year old granddaughter as it seemed a good time to show her some of her family history.

After the conference ended we went to Denton and found Chinns Chapel using Google maps. Chinn’s Chapel Road was a wagon road before being paved. According to the sign post, the cemetery was not easy for people to get to.

We found my great grandmothers grave but as I looked at the stone I realized that the dates were wrong: 1800-1902. She did die in 1902 but my grandmother was only 1 year old so her mother could hardly be 102 years old at her time of death.

This time we looked carefully at the graves beside my great grandmother and found one named Lance. My granddaughter kept going back to Lance “I like Lance” she said several times. My granddaughter decided to leave a trinket shed just purchased at his headstone, poking it into the ground. She also had picked some wildflowers to leave on her Great, Great grandmothers grave.IMG_20140328_160357_862.jpg

I also knew that there was a baby Robert who died only a few months after my great-grandmother, but, we could not find his grave.
We returned to our hotel and while my granddaughter was busy I looked up my great-grandmother linking into Ancestors.com. I found that not only was the date on my great grandmother’s stone was wrong, but also found Lance to be her father. It was so fun to find that Lance was actually my granddaughter’s real great, great, great, great grandfather. He would have loved her!

As I forgot my big camera we decided to go back the following morning on our way to Tishomingo.

Posted by Miss Chris 10.04.2014 15:50 Archived in USA Tagged cemetery family outdoors ancestors family_travel grandkids_travel chinn's_chapel chinn's_cemerery denton_texas Comments (0)

Moving Right Along Now

Preparing for our Upcoming European Trip

We are getting our act together for our Europe trip. Finally!!!

I bought airplane tickets for Dale and our grandson. They will fly out on a Tuesday arriving in Brussels on Wed a.m., the same day that our granddaughter and I fly to Brussels from Rome. I wish we could arrive in Brussels close to the same time but I doubt that it will happen that way. I haven’t even looked at tickets for our flight. Guess I should do that.

Our younger granddaughter is planning to go with Dale but has decided not to go to Finland. Since her dates of departure are not known yet we will get her tickets maybe next week.

I did look and see that the Mozart Requiem is still being performed on Saturdays in Vienna at the St Charles Church. We will buy tickets for that as soon as we know how many will be in our party.

Fortunately, concerts in Prague are not posted yet as we want to buy the best tickets possible and can’t today.

We are at least on the right track.

Posted by Miss Chris 06.03.2014 17:24 Archived in USA Tagged travel cathedral music europe airplane mozart estates_theater mozart_requiem tom_sawyer_island grandkids_travel Comments (0)

New and Improved Europe

New Day and New Plans for Europe

Just when I started planning our Europe trip, again, I was called away but fortunately for claims nearby. Finally I’m done and back to our lives as they were months ago, at least for today.

We’ve been planning a trip to Europe for this summer, specifically to Poland and South Russia to visit the lands of Dale’s great-grandparents. We were planning to meet up with some friends in both Poland and South Russia during this trip. Alas, as life goes, our friends’ plans changed and they will not be in Europe during our dates.

I went back to our plans and we found that we’d lost interest in Poland, it doesn’t seem to be an easy country to visit and transportation isn’t easy. As for Russia, we are not thrilled with the government, visas are expensive and we must have guides. I have not had any time to research the family connections further. It has all gotten to be more effort than either of us wants to put out for a vacation so we have dumped that plan.
Back in October our granddaughter asked if I might consider going to Italy with her on a school trip thru EF. I’ve wanted to go to Italy and thought that this might be a great opportunity for the 2 of us so we signed up. I called EF and asked if we could change the dates of our travel and they said yes so our summer plans will start with Italy.

Dale and I talked and we agreed that he would join us after Italy and that we should stay in Europe until the end of July. We’d wanted to live in Europe for 4 months so this would be a good start. 2 other grandkids want to join us as well.

I had the brilliant idea that we could go to Finland and Iceland from Italy; our oldest grandson really wants to go to Finland and it was a trip we had to put off from a couple of years ago. All great plans until this week when I looked at a map. Iceland is only over 1,000 miles from Finland and a $500+ airplane ticket each. So much for Iceland!

It is time to revamp our trip.

Posted by Miss Chris 05.02.2014 14:19 Archived in USA Tagged travel italy summer europe belgium brussels family_travel grandkids grandkids_travel Comments (0)

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