Monday, December 20, 2010

Mysterious Monday - A Yarborough Ancestor?

On a recent trip to Louisburg, NC, I was given the opportunity to begin looking through some of the belongings of my deceased cousin, Geral Yarborough Sargent, the same cousin whom I wrote about in a previous post. My cousin Geral was a "double Yarborough", in that her mother was a Yarborough, and so was her father (though they were not related).  The Yarborough name is very common in and around Franklin County, in both the Black and White communities. The Caucasian Yarboroughs were a wealthy family of slave-owners, thus leaving a plethora of freedmen who chose to adopt the YARBOROUGH/YARBORO surname after 1865.  Cousin Geral's father, Hillard, was from one set of these Y's, and Cousin Geral's mother, Mattie Yarborough, was the daughter of my formerly enslaved great-grandparents, Calvin and Priscilla.
On the day of my visit, I found several photographs of people who may possibly have been my ancestors.  Most, I'll likely never know the identity of, but hopefully, my cousin Geral's "adopted daughter", Madie, will be able to help me with a few.  But, for this Mysterious Monday, I'd like to post what appears to be the oldest of the photographs.  I have no idea who this woman is/was.  She has some features that lead me to believe that she was probably an ancestor of Geral's, but on which side?  For all I know, I could be looking into the eyes of my own great-grandmother, Pricilla, but I think it may be more likely that this could be Cousin Geral's paternal grandmother, Matilda (Hill) Yarboro.  Matilda was born on January 1, 1844, and died 98 years later, on her birthday, in 1942.


  1. Isn't it frustrating when you find old pictures and you so badly want to know the identity of the person in the picture and know that you will likely never come to know who it is.

    Glad you were able to find some treasures in his belongings.

  2. Renate, what a great photo.

    Compare the eyes. Sometimes the eyes will give it away.

    Good luck on finding out who she is.

  3. beautiful photo. My grandfather cleage's sister married a Cleage who wasn't related but the parents came off the same Cleage plantation in mcminn cty TN. people will introduce themselves as my cousins cousins, on the other cleage side.