Thursday, February 16, 2017

Road Trip - Fun in North Carolina!

I don’t know why I never thought of this, before, but since magical things seem to happen every time I go to North Carolina, I am going to start a little series that I’ll just call, “Road Trip”. (Hee hee) J I’ve just returned home from an 11-hour day of travel to NC and back, and I’d like to share some of my experiences.

My first destination was to Tarboro, NC to meet my 89 year-old cousin, Jessie YARBOROUGH Clemmons and her son, Rev. Samuel Clemmons, Jr. I also had the pleasure of meeting Sam’s wife, Rosa. The purpose of this visit was not only for me to meet my cousins, but also to obtain a saliva sample from Cousin Jessie to be sent off to FTDNA for autosomal testing.  I was so glad that Jessie seemed to understand what I was asking of her, and she willingly allowed her son to do the first cheek scraping, and me to do the second!

My beautiful cousin, Jessie YARBOROUGH Clemmons
Sam gets the first swab

In addition to the success of obtaining the DNA sample, I’d also brought along a photo album, which had belonged to my aunt, Susie YARBOROUGH Hawkins (1920-2013), of Louisburg. The album is filled with photos of family members, but several have subjects I haven’t been able to identify. Before Sam and Rosa arrived, I’d already shown Jessie a few of the pictures. She recognized my dad (Arthur), his sister, Susie, and brother, Calvin III and also our cousin, Geral YARBORO Sargent. All of these were Jessie’s first cousins, and I knew them all. Unfortunately, she didn’t seem to recognize any of the “unknown” people, even the one that I thought may have been her, when she was younger. But, when Sam and his wife came, they were actually able to identify the folks in many of the photos, and, without me saying anything at all, Sam exclaimed that the photo I’d suspected may have been Jessie was her!
As soon as Cousin Sam saw this photo, exclaimed, "That looks like my mama!" And after looking at it, again, he added, "She looks just like my sister, Eunice!" 

Sam and Rosa identified several of the other photos as being pictures of Jessie’s siblings, so now I’ve been able to label those, and decrease the number of “mystery photos” in this album!
Before I knew it,  my visit was approaching the two-hour mark, and it was time for me to head to my next destination – Louisburg – where I had an appointment with a contractor. The timing was good though, because Cousin Jessie was getting hungry, and the dining room (where we were) at her facility was beginning to fill with residents ready for lunch. We said our goodbyes, and off I went to my next destination, which was exactly one hour away. I loved meeting my cousins! :)

As most of my readers know, I now own our ancestral home in Louisburg, North Carolina. Some months ago, I had some work done on the property, and I was not satisfied with the workmanship, at all. I’ve been trying to get the contractor to revisit his work, and complete it, according to contract, as well as to put a more professional touch on the work that he did do. Although I’ve sent photos and emails, expressing my concerns, this contractor, Freddie White, insisted that I come and meet with him, in person, to discuss it. So, that is why I went to Louisburg, today.  There is no need to dwell on this part of my trip, but suffice it to say that I did not leave this meeting satisfied, and will never use Mr. White’s services, nor recommend him to anyone, again. He tried to deny that he’d even done some of the work, and refused to take responsibility to the shabby job he did do. He was defensive and argumentative, and was being totally unreasonable.  I have seen his work, elsewhere, and know he could have and should have done a better job than what he did for me, but I chose not to stand in the cold and argue with him for longer than the 30 minutes already wasted, so that was that.

On the upside, though, my visit to Louisburg was not in vain! First of all, while at the house, before the contractor came, I was (of course) continuing my work of going ever-so-carefully through the things left behind from all who’ve lived there. Today, I went back to a particular bookshelf I’ve been working on, which is filled mostly with church-related papers, magazines, bulletins, and books. It is my habit to flip through the pages of every single thing, because I learned, early on, that there could be treasures found between the leaves. I pick up every item, flip through it two or three times, and examine anything that’s found between the leaves. Well, today I didn’t find anything of sentimental value inside of anything, but I DID find great treasure, in the form of a manila envelope, stuck between a set of Sunday School booklets from the 1980s.  Here’s what I saw on the outside of the envelope.
This list served as an exact "table of contents" for what was in the envelope!  Check out this video: 

Well, that was exciting (at least for me)! And, now, I have a new mystery on my hands. Who was "Aunt Rose"?  You KNOW I'm going to find out! :)

Anyway, I actually found the envelope just before the arrival of the contractor, but before that, I'd realized something. I'm a dues-paying member of the Heritage Society of Franklin County, but because they meet on Thursdays at 1:00 (when I'm usually at work), I've never attended a meeting, except for the one where I was their featured speaker in July of 2014. What I realized was that I was actually in Louisburg on the day and at the time of the Society's monthly meeting! Therefore, the second I was finished with the contractor fiasco, I rushed right over to Johnny Bull's to try to catch the end of the meeting, and that I did!

It was so great to see my Heritage Society friends, and they seemed to be happy to see me, also!  I was fortunate to arrive in time to hear Diane Taylor Torrent finishing up a talk about the Louisburg Dispensary. She also shared a newspaper article (from the Charlotte, NC newspaper) about a huge fire that took place in Louisburg in the early 1900's, which started at the C.B. Cheatham Tobacco Warehouse, and burned all the way down to the Edgerton home on "Happy Hill".

Diane Taylor Torrent presenting at the meeting

Here's an article from the Franklin Times about the fire:

Found on Newspapers.com powered by Newspapers.com

After a few minutes of fellowship, it was time for me to get on the road to head back to Virginia. It was so great to end my visit to Louisburg this way. Even though I am not a local person, this group has accepted me with open arms, and I feel a true bond with them. Oh! And, I even got to meet a new online friend (and possible Hawkins kin), Jackie McNamara! That just put the icing on the cake!

So, until my next (genealogy related) road trip.... 

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