Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Another Myth Bites the Dust....part 2

Please meet my Great, Great Grandmother Fredonia Bradford Gamblin (nee Green). She was not nor will she ever be Cherokee, according to Twila who was researching her for me.
This is what she said:

"I have been looking and don't find anything on this family that would begin to suggest they have any connection to the historical Cherokee Nation. Fredonia's parents were born in Kentucky and Illinois. The Cherokees never lived in either of these places.

I know people often claim to be from Cherokees in Kentucky, but this does not "jive" with historically known facts. The Cherokees used Kentucky as hunting grounds along with many other tribes, but they never lived there. For the time frame we are looking at for Fredonia's parents, Cherokees would have been born in Georgia, Tennessee or North Carolina. I have never found a Cherokee from the time frame we are talking about born anywhere other than these places.

There are a lot of other reasons I could list that would strongly suggest that Fredonia is not Cherokee, but it would take me hours to list all the reasons. The one above is pretty strong on its own. The fact that the Cherokees were NEVER in Illinois rules out the idea that Fredonia's mother could be Cherokee. And, like I said, they never lived in Kentucky, so that pretty much takes care of her father as well.I hope this helps.

It is nearly impossible to prove a "negative" in genealogy. The best we can do is know the history of the group of people we are talking about and then evaluate the story to see if it matches with that history. In this case, it does not. I know a lot of people will argue and say there were Cherokees in Kentucky, but I don't deal in what "people" say. I deal with what I can find as factual, historical information.

Let me know if I can be of further help.Twila"

I think the stories passed on by our parent, grandparents were just that, stories. In reality I find that kind of sad, it would have been fun to find that she was Cherokee, but no.
I have come to the conclusion that our family is boring, just plain boring. No murders (well....maybe one), no bigamy, no royalty, no great statesman. Just farmers and regular church going folk.
Then again, they were the ones who opened up the west, fought the Indian, fought in the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Civil War and numerous other skirmishes along the way. They were soldiers, farmers, miners, doctors, teachers and many other professions we may never know about. Some loved their wives and stayed true to them long after they were parted by death, some....maybe not so much!
All in all I think we all have a name of which to be proud, I know I am.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Another Myth Bites the Dust!

I have an acquaintances who does research on the Cherokee and Choctaw nations. She herself is Cherokee and has quite a large data base of information. On the Dawes Rolls is a John Gamblin who I believe is descended from Sion Gamblin (Sion being the youngest son of William and Susannah).
Sion moved to Georgia in about 1820, had a son named Joseph W who in turn had a son named John Henry. I believe it is this John and his siblings who tried to say they were Choctaw Indians, although I have no proof of this......yet, I can find no other family members who fit into this scenario. Below is what Twila has found about the Gamblins on the Dawes Rolls.

"From what we can tell, the Gamblins were ONLY listed on one previous roll of the Choctaw Nation and that roll was an unapproved roll for basis as enrollment on Dawes. We will continue to look at this case, which involves a lot of people, but for now, our determination is that the Gamblins were not able to offer any proof of Indian blood other than that unapproved roll (which was taken after everyone in the country realized they would be giving out Indian land and people rushed into Indian territory claiming to be Indian).

It is always a good idea to be skeptical of people that "suddenly" became Indian when there was land or money at stake.As it stands, without an ancestor with an actual roll number (the Gamblins did not get roll numbers, only were listed on a census card with a number), none of their descendants would be able to register with the Choctaw Nation today.Also, I don't think it can be determined that the Gamblins actually had Indian blood which would make them Choctaw descendants rather than actually Choctaw since nationality is based on citizenship.

Evidence needs to be found somewhere other than just those Dawes applications before they can be said to have actually had Indian blood. Some questions to ask are -Why weren't they always living in Choctaw Nation with the rest of the main body of the nation after the Choctaw removal if they were really Choctaw?Did they only claim to be Choctaw AFTER they learned of the allotments that were going to take place?

How were they listed on all the US Censuses taken between the Choctaw removal (1833, I think) and 1900? My guess is they were always listed as white because that is what they most likely were.

I am sorry I could not be of more help or offer something that says they had Indian blood, but at this time, I just can't say they did. If you have any other evidence, I would be glad to read over it and see how it would figure into this whole question about the Gamblins."

So, basically she says what I've believed all along, there is NO Choctaw blood in this family.

The next "Indian" family lore tale she is looking into is that my Great great Grandmother Fredonia Gamblin nee Green was half Cherokee! There might be some truth to this rumour.....I will update as I get it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My Mothers Hand

We have a small cemetery here that I am working on transcribing, There less than 100 graves, but it was started nearly 100 years ago. There are probably 30- 35 older graves that are not marked and the only record of who is there, is in the Burial Registry book.

I contacted the lady who has the book the other day and she invited me over to get the names to add to Find A Grave. While I was there she mentioned that she had 2 books, an old one and one she had rewritten for herself. She asked if I wanted the old one because if anything happened to her or her house all records would be lost - I jumped at the chance to have it!

I was going through it tonight and saw that my mother had been the "recorder" for many years, something I knew but had forgotten. Some of the entries by others were hard to read, the lot and block not recorded, the dates left blank, but my mothers was neat and every i dotted and every t crossed, just like she was in real life. Sadly I noted she recorded her parents burials as well as those of her son, her granddaughter and her husband. How sad that must have been.

This is why so many of our ancestors graves have been lost, only one set of records held in one place, that place is destroyed and all is gone. If there are no headstones in the grave yard to remind us and families move, within a generation or two no one remembers. The fog of time can obliterate all traces of your past.

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Package

I received a package today, a package of genealogy stuff - the best kind of package to receive!

In 1995 a man named Albert Smith along with his wife (I believe), wrote a book called THE GAMBLIN FAMILY HISTORY Mid and Southern America. I've been on the lookout for the book for a couple of years now, but have been told it was only printed in a limited addition and is no longer available.
Lo and behold a couple of months ago whilst perusing genealogy websites, I came across a man named Dennis West who was offering to do look-ups from his copy of the book. I was so excited I emailed him and asked where I could get a copy - he said nope, no can do, I have the last copy that was printed. But, he offered to photocopy any info that was of the Gamblins (there are a few other families in the book that are the authors direct relatives) and mail it to me.
Today I received the photocopies.

There is really not a lot that I learned from it, most of the info I have already found from a dozen different sources, but it is co-ordinated. However, there are some glaring mistakes too, such as my 5x great grandfather James is listed as being the son of James Gamblin of Tennessee, he is not he is the son of Joshua of North Carolina/Kentucky. It also says he moved to Texas with his second wife and children - I don't think so. I believe he is buried in Graves Co. Kentucky with his first wife and that his 2nd wife is buried in Ripley Co. Missouri.

The really interesting part is the last few pages he photocopied for me, they are my own family research from 1981! He does mention my name as well as the name of a cousin up here and a woman named Lucille Owings. I sent Lucille a copy of the chart years ago, she must have passed it on to Albert.

Anyway I am going to photocopy the entire package and mail it on to my cousin Debbie in Chicago!