July 31, 2008

Which Winright Adkins did what?

You would think that a name like 'Winright' would not be all that common. If you ran across a reference to Winright Adkins in Pike County, KY in about 1880, why that must surely be the Winright that is Jennie's G-G-Grandfather.  How many Winrights could there be?
Well after a little digging, it appears there were at least seven or eight Winright Adkins living just in Pike County around the turn of the century.  The naming conventions that families followed in the 1800's, and the fact that families often had 15 to 20 children meant a lot of grandsons got named Winright.  It takes a program to keep them all straight. 
Three of the Winrights are significant in our family tree.  Winright Adkins who was born in 1775 was among the first settlers in Pike County.   His son Henry had a son born in 1825 whom he dutifully named Winright.  This Winright was Jennie's G-G-Grandfather.   Another of pioneer Winright's sons, Winston, had a son in 1837 whom he also named Winright.  This one was Randy Ratliff's G-G-Grandfather. 
This diagram might make that a little clearer...

In order to keep them straight I will try to include their birth year when referring to them.  Winright Adkins 1775 is the pioneer, Winright Adkins 1825 is Jennie's ancestor and Winright Adkins 1837 is Randy's.   Maybe that way it won't get so confusing when we talk about Winright Adkins 1825 killing Zachariah Phillips who was married to his first cousin Clarinda, a sister of Winright Adkins 1837.

July 15, 2008

An Uncle I Didn't Know About

While searching through the genealogy information available on the Internet recently, I ran across this document...

The database that led me to it listed the name as "Harsed Stalker" and I can see how the handwritten name could be interpreted that way.  This was, of course, a name I had never heard before.  The names of the father and mother were familiar to me though, Grandpa John Stalker and Grandma Angeline Bailey.  That made Harsed a brother to Dad and my uncle.

Looking at the document a little closer, it tells a sad story.  John and Angeline's third baby boy was born February 19, 1927 and died a few days later on February 28th.  That's nine days the way I count them but the certificate lists his age as 11 days.  Doc Deskins from Elkhorn City (Praise at that time) recorded 'Pneumonia' as the cause and didn't elaborate farther.  I can't help but wonder if the cold February weather wasn't a contributing factor.

Dad had just turned two years old at this time and I wasn't sure he would know or remember anything about it.  As we drove to Prestonsburg the other day I asked him if he knew anything about Grandpa John and Grandma Angeline losing a baby that was just a few days old.

"Oh yeah, that was Harold", he replied. "When he died that made me the baby again.  Maggie and Homer used to say I was spoiled 'cause I was the baby twice.  He's buried up there on the Wilson Cemetery right near old man George Stalker."

Dad indicated he had thought about having a headstone made but he wasn't sure which of the several rocks that marked burial sites of Stalker children there was the one for baby Harold, so he never had.