Sunday, May 26, 2013

Military Monday- Memorial Day 2013: WILLIAM THURMOND, REVOLUTIONARY WAR

Copyright 2013, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

For Military Monday- Memorial Day 2013, I have selected to blog about William Thurmond, 1745- 1800, Revolutionary War Veteran, who was my 4x-great-grandfather on the maternal side of my family tree.  He was married to Maccarina "Mackie" Norvell in 1766 in Goochland County, Virginia. The National Archives file on William Thurmond indicates that he was born in Virginia, and  enlisted as Private in the 3rd Virginia Regiment, Continental Line, American Revolutionary  War. His DAR Ancestor National # is 103874. He was promoted to Sergeant Major. Additional sources of documentation on this William Thurmond is the Douglas Register, page 307, and his Will filed in St. Anne's Parish, Albemarle County, Virginia in 1800. He received a military pension, and his heirs were granted Land Bounty Warrants in 1831 in Amherst County, Virginia on his Revolutionary War service record. 

Following are copies of documentation from his National Archives file:

Following is information from the publication: "The Thurmonds: A Study In The Genealogy and History of Philip Thurmond of Amherst County, Virginia and His Descendants". Repository: . (Philip Thurmond was a son of William Thurmond). 

Following is a copy of a page purported to be the Will of William Thurmond, filed in Albemarle County, Virginia in 1800. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Wednesday's Child: Beulah A. Giesler 1884 - 1885

Copyright 2013, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

For the Geneabloggers weekly writing prompt topic "Wednesday's Child", I am posting this photo  of the gravestone of Beulah A. Giesler, born 15 Feb 1884 and died 12 Dec 1885. She was the daughter of Hugh E Giesler (1851- 1920) and Sarah Thomas Giesler (1853- 1894).  She is buried near several other members of the extended Giesler family, at Morning View Cemetery in Bluff City, Sullivan County, Tennessee.  Her siblings included Charlie M. Giesler (1874- 1898), Walter C. Gielser (1878- 1904), and Noah Hayes Giesler (1886- 1957).  I don't know the story of baby Beulah's short life, or what caused her untimely passing at only 10 months of age.  Rest in peace, little angel Beulah, you will not be forgotten.

This precious baby Beulah, and these Gieslers, are distant cousins who connect to my family tree through Sarah Eliza Harrison born about 1819, sister of my great-great-grandfather William Harrison born 1807.  Sarah Eliza Harrison married Noah Giesler who was born in 1818 in Piney Flats, Sullivan County, Tennessee. Both the Harrison family and a branch of the Giesler family moved to Missouri circa 1825-1830. Noah is a name that repeats often in this Giesler line through several generations. The marriage of Sarah Eliza Harrison and Noah Giesler is recorded in Crawford County, Missouri in 1839.  It appears that Noah and Sarah Eliza met after their families moved to Missouri, however there is a possibility that my Harrisons and these Gieslers were neighbors in Tennessee prior to Missouri.  The Harrison surname is prominent in Sullivan County, Tennessee in the early and mid 1800's. Two of the brothers of my ancestor William Harrison (Lewis and Tyree) stated on census records that they were born in Tennessee.  My ancestor is recorded as being born in North Carolina.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Travel Tuesday: The FRISCO Railway and my Missouri ancestors

Copyright 2013, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

My Harrison ancestors in Missouri had a long association with the FRISCO Railway in the late 1800's through the mid 1900's.   My paternal grandfather, John P. Harrison, had a lengthy career with the FRISCO, many of which were spent in the capacity of Engineer driving steam locomotives prior to his retirement in 1935 at age 70. He drove long-distance passenger trains on cross county routes to and from Missouri. He was very proud of his job, and wrote about it in his journal. What fun he must have had,  watching the scenery go by from his engineer's station in the cab of the locomotives.  I have written about my grandfather previously in this Blog- see

John had many other relatives who were employed in some capacity by the railroads in Missouri.  The railroad was in their blood.  John's own father, John Milton Harrison, had harvested trees and sold lumber from his own farm to make railroad ties for the FRISCO. John P.'s eldest son, David Essex Harrison, married the daughter of a FRISCO executive.  At least 2 of his daughters married men who worked for the railroad in St. Louis at the time of their marriages.   Many of John's nephews also had railroad jobs in various parts of Missouri.  John's youngest son, Marvin Milton Harrison (my father) worked for the railroad too for a few years, until the advent of diesel engines made the job he had been trained for (fireman on steam engines) obsolete and forced a career change and a relocation to California in the mid 1950's.  The FRISCO is no longer in existence today, having merged with another rail line after my grandfather''s retirement.

To this day, railroads are in my blood too.   From the time I was a little girl, train trips were a welcome adventure.  I have re-discovered train travel in my own "early golden" years.  One of my favorite adventures today is to hop a ride on a cross-country Superliner train, which today consists of Amtrak trains that are now government-regulated.   One of my favorite trains which services the area I live, is the Sunset Limited which travels east and west between Los Angeles and Chicago.  Another favorite is the Coast Starlight, which travels north and south along the coast between San Diego, California and Portland, Oregon.   I love nothing better than riding a long distance train, sitting in the sightseeing lounge watching the scenery go by.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tombstone Tuesday: Lucy "Fannie" Clark Allen 1860-1939

My maternal great-grandmother was Lucy Frances "Fannie" Clark Allen, who was born 24 June 1860 in Fulton County, Kentucky and died 24 Feb 1939. She is buried in Fairview Cemetery, Fulton County, KY; and has a memorial page that I posted for her on the Find A Grave website at memorial # 58405248. Rest in Peace, Fannie.
Fannie passed away several years before I was born. Her Kentucky Death Certificate is # 03730. She was married in 1877 to Thomas Calvin Allen, a Confederate Veteran of the Civil War. Their marriage took place in Troy, Obion County, Tennessee (which was the groom's home state) according to Lucy's deposition in her Widow's Pension application in 1912; but it was recorded in Fulton County, Kentucky (which was the bride's home state). It was the groom's 2nd marriage, but the bride's 1st marriage. Fannie was the daughter of William Calvin Clark (also a Confederate Civil War Veteran) and Harriet Angeline Gray.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Military Monday: Corporal George Helm Sr and Captain Leonard Helm, REVOLUTIONARY WAR, Father and Son.

              Copyright 2013, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

My 4th great-grandfather George Helm Sr, and his father Leonard Helm (my 5th great-grandfather) both served as officers in the Revolutionary War from Virginia. They both relocated to Kentucky after the war.  They are ancestors on the paternal side of my family tree.
George Helm Sr. was born 22 August 1747 in Virginia, the son of Leonard Helm and Elizabeth "Betty" Calmes .  He married 1st wife Mary Frances Calmes about 1767 in Virginia,  who appears to have been a relative of his mother's (possibly his cousin). After Mary Frances died in 1783, he married 2nd wife Frances "Frankie" Coppedge (who was the sister of his daughter's husband Travis Coppedge). George was a Corporal under Captain Dunmore in the Revolutionary War. He enlisted under Captain Abe Shepherd in Colonel Rawlings Rifle Regiment from Virginia.  While living in Kentucky after the war, he served in Whitaker's Battalion, Mounted Volunteers. There is also a George Helm listed as having served in the War of 1812.  His Revolutionary War pension was approved in 1826, while he was living in Tennessee. He then returned to Lincoln County, Kentucky, where he died about 1831.  The Abstract of Graves of Revolutionary Patriots indicates he is buried at McCormack Cemetery in Lincoln Co, KY. He has a memorial page posted on the Find A grave website under memorial # 11519529.

Copyright 2013, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

Leonard Helm Sr. was born about 1720 in Stafford, Virginia and died in June 1782 "of consumption or bad medicine" at Beargrass Creek near Louisville, Kentucky.  Leonard married Elizabeth "Betty" Calmes in 1746 in Frederick, Virginia. He served as a Captain in the Virginia State Line in the Revolutionary War under General George Rogers Clarke. A land bounty claim filed by his heirs 52 years after his death, was approved and concluded that he was "the only Leonard Helm on record" as having served in the Revolutionary War (file #S38021).  In 1779 he had received a commission as an Indian Agent from the State of Virginia. An article on his life and exploits was published by Fauquier Historical Society of Virginia, and is available online at   In it, Leonard Helm was described as "somewhat rugged, outspoken, abounding in wit and fun, fearless, intelligent, level-headed and trustworthy". Conversely, he was also described as "an intemperant man" who ran up large tavern bills and liked his whiskey.  Leonard died poor, and had not received payment, land or pension for his military services at the time of his death in 1782.  He died while on a trail in Kentucky, apparently acting in his capacity as Indian Agent. At the time, it had been thought that he had just vanished and was probably killed by Indians.   His widow applied for but was denied a Widow's Pension (file number R14982) because Leonard had not served until the end of the Revolutionary War (as rules for a pension required) but had accepted a commission as Indian Agent instead prior to the close of the war.  A sworn deposition of Edward Parker dated 5 Feb 1833 confirmed that Captain Leonard Helm had actually died in 1782 "of consumption or some other bilgious disease. John Jones, a nephew of Leonard's daughter Sara, confirmed this story and indicated that "bad medicine" might have contributed to Leonard's death. His burial place is unknown.  Following are pages from the Veteran's Land Bounty and Widow's Pension Application files verifying the service of Captain Leonard Helm.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Obituary Sunday: Frances "Fanny" Hudgens 1811- 1879

            Copyright 2013, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

Following is the obituary and headstone photo of my paternal 2nd-great-grandmother, Frances Hudgens (Wilson Allen Malone), who was born 6 Dec 1811 in Washington County, Kentucky and died 11 May 1879 in Phelps County, Missouri.  She is buried at Allen Cemetery in Phelps County, Missouri.  Her nicknames were "Fanny" and "Aunt Frankey". She had at least 3 husbands as she kept outliving the men she married.

Transcript of the Obituary of Mrs. Frances Malone-Source: Courtesy of Phelps County Genealogical Society, Rolla, Missouri- July 1995 Quarterly "The Rolla Herald, 15 May 1879""Frances Hudges Wilson Allen Malone, died at her residence on Little Piney, May 11th 1879. Frances, widow of the late George Malone, aged about 68 years. Mrs. Malone was married three times. The late Napoleon Wilson was her oldest son by her first marriage. Her second husband was father of V. Allen Esq., who was her only child by her second marriage. Mrs. Malone was mother on nine children, the most of whom survive her. She was the daughter of William and Susannah Hudgens, the eldest of twelve children, four of whome survived her, namely: Mrs. Nancy Bond, Mrs. Matilda Woolsey, Mrs. Martha Huskey, and Mrs. Mary A. Paulsell. It is a meloncholy pleasure to surviving friends in some way to give expression to their deep sorrow, and to pay some tribute of respect when one, who by familiar intercourse and intimate acquaintance for years, they had learned to love for her many virtues, kindly deeds and uncomplaining faithful discharge of life's duties, has passed away from earth away. Such a one in the feelings and estimation of the writer and many friends in Phelps County, was Aunt Frankie Malone. A number of years ago she embraced the Christian religion and at her death was a member of the Free Will Baptist Church. Her end was peace, and it is confidently beleived her future will be glorious. She was buried on Monday the 12th inst., near the residence of her son Esq. Allen. The regious services were conducted by the writer, J. J. Watts. " She is buried at Allen Cemetery, Phelps County, Missouri.  Source:genie-in-az (#46847723).

Mrs. Frances Malone, born in Washington Co, Ky, Dec 6th 1811, died on Little Piney, Phelps Co., May 11, 1879 aged 67 years 6 ms. and 5 ds."- Rev JJ Watts Journals. Frances Hudgens was the daughter of William Hudgens and Susannah Tucker. She was born in Kentucky but resided most of her adult life in Phelps County, Missouri. Frances was married 3 times: 1st husband Valentine Wilson, 2nd husband Samuel T Allen, 3rd husband George W Malone. Frances Hudgens Wilson Allen Malone had several children born of her three marriages. Among her children were "Bushwacker" Bill Wilson, infamous Missouri desperado during the Civil War years. Clint Eastwood portrayed the title character in a film entitled "Outlaw Josey Wales" based loosely on the life and times of Bill Wilson. Another of Frances' son's was Valentine Allen, half- brother to Bill Wilson. Frances' father, William Hudgens, was born in McMinn, Tennessee. Her mother, Susannah Tucker, was born in Ambrose, Virginia in 1792; the daughter of William Wofford Tucker and Nancy Lee. The Tucker ancestors arrived in Virginia, America in the late 1600's from Kent, England. The Lee family arrived in Virginia in the early 1600's from Worcestshire, England. Frances was also a descendant of the Penn family of Virginia; Frances' maternal great-grandmother was Frances Penn married to Ambrose Lee. Frances' ancestor George Penn was born in Sussex, England in 1571 and came to the Plymouth Colony, Massachusetts, America in the early 1600's. The Penn ancestry was originally in Gloucester, England in the 1500's.

Saturday, May 4, 2013


Copyright 2011, The Hopelessly Hooked Genealogist (B. Harrison)

Fall weather brings with it sights and sounds that I enjoy, including Oktoberfest ethnic festivals to celebrate our Germanic heritage and share it with others. On my list for “fun” activities in the coming month will be to attend at least one local Oktoberfest in my area.  I’m looking forward to sampling some grilled bratwurst with mustard and kraut, munching on a huge soft pretzel washed down with a german beer, and listening to some lively folk music while watching the colorfully costumed dancers perform the polka.

Meantime, on this Wonderful Wistful Wednesday morning, September 28, 2011, I am going to write about my maternal Kreider ancestors from Germany and Switzerland.


My maternal 5th-great-grandfather John Michael Kreider was born in Germany about 1715, and immigrated to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on the ship “Samuel” in 1732. He was about age 17 when he arrived in Philadelphia.   He came with other members of his extended family, possibly traveling with an uncle while his parents remained in Germany for a few more years.  The Kreiders came from the area known as the Pallatine Province in Germany. John Michael Kreider is the progenitor immigrant ancestor of this family lineage in America, who came to Pennsylvania to begin a new life before the American Revolution.  He is the first in my line of Keriders to produce heirs born in the land that would become the independent nation of America.  His descendants participated in the Revolutionary War to help create the America that we all know and love today.

John Michael Kreider married Catherine Truseyen.  John, or “Johann” as his name appears in some records, became a Blacksmith and owner of a Grist Mill as a young man in Philadelphia.  In 1753 his name appears in land records as having purchased 100 acres in Upper Salford, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania. That same year, his name appears in church records at Indian Field Lutheran Church, having attended a church supper with 2 female servants in his employ. In 1758 he is listed in records as a Road Overseer on a jury to help lay out a road in Philadelphia starting near Bucks County line and Brenner’s Plantation. His WILL was signed on July 7, 1761 in Hatfield Township, Philadelphia, PA. The Will was proved on Aug 1, 1761; naming his “loving wife Catherine” and children John, Jacob, Abraham, Daniel, Catherine, Magdelena, and David. Son Jacob was mentioned as "absconded, but if happens to return will receive 50 pounds, daughters Catherine and Magdalena and youngest son David to receive 100 pounds after they attain the age of 18".


My 6th-great-grandfather was Hans Jacob Kreider, father of the above John Michael Kreider.   He was born about 1695 in Germany. He settled in Strasser, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania circa 1740-1750.  He married Mary Barbara Christen, and died in Lancaster County, PA in 1768 at age 73. Some descendants of this line of Kreiders remained in the Lancaster County area for several more generations, while other moved to Virginia and then farther westward in the 1800’s. 

JACOB KREIDER circa 1667- 1745

My 7th-great-grandfather, father of the above Hans Jacob Kreider,  was Jacob Kreider, born about 1667 in Bern, Switzerland. He married Barbara Schenk about 1690 In Baden-W├╝rttemberg, Germany, where he died in 1745 at about age 78. This branch of the family that remained in Germany while the sons and grandsons immigrated to Pennsylvania in America.

HANS KREIDER  1630-1705

My 8th great-grandfather, father of the above Jacob Kreider,  was Hans Greider (Kreider) who was born in Germany about 1630 and died in Switzerland about 1705.  He was married to Anna Schudin.

I will write future blog entries going into a little more biographical and historical detail about some of my Kreider ancestors, as I continue my research on them to learn a little more about their lives and experiences.  I am proud to include my German and Swiss roots into my typically American melting-pot genetic heritage. 

For further background information on the Germanic cultures and the origins of the polka dance, various online sources are available including Wikipedia. According to Wikipedia, at, the polka dance originated in Bohemia as a dance performed by farm peasants.  It gained popularity as a ballroom dance in Prague in 1835, and was called the “Pulka” quick step. From there is spread across Europe, and was noted in Vienna by 1839 and to Paris by 1840.  Immigrants seeking a new life in America brought their homeland customs and traditions, including the Polka dance, with them to their new homes. In North American the "Polish-style polka," has roots Chicago, while the "Dutchmen-style" has roots in the American Midwest. “Conjunto-style" polkas have roots in northern Mexico and Texas, and are also called "Norteno".

Wikipedia defines the term Germanic, as being applicable to ethnic populations with roots in North Western Europe: including the Scandanavians (Danes, Swedes, Norweigians, Icelanders, and Faroe Islanders), Germans, Austrians, Swiss, Dutch, Flemish, and English).