Heart of a Southern Woman

A snapshot of life one blog post at a time.

Mayflower Ancestors! Thomas Rogers, John Alden, William Mullins & Allied–52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, # 51

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Mayflower leaving England's shores, Mike@Mike HaywoodArt.co.uk copyrighted, used by permission

Mayflower leaving England’s shores, “A Prosperous Wind” by Mike Haywood , ©2002, Mike@Mike HaywoodArt.co.uk used by permission

 

As I worked further and further back in time in our family tree, I was amazed to realize that my family had ancestors who arrived on the Mayflower! Some people know that their whole lives, they wear it like a badge of honor–“My family arrived on the Mayflower!” As a Southerner, I never even thought about that being part of our family history. Of course, as I’ve learned, my family hails from all over the United States as well as the British Isles and Europe.  I may identify with the Southern United States, but that is only part of our rich family history! It’s so exciting! The Mayflower, Plymouth Rock! The Colony was settled mostly by  people who wanted the freedom to worship as they chose.  They were members of the English Separatist Church and felt persecuted by the Church of England. Ten years earlier a group of Separatists  had left England for Leiden, Holland, in search of religious freedom. It was William Bradford who was their leader and helped them decide to travel to Virginia where the colony of Jamestown had been settled in 1607.  At that time, Virginia reached almost all the way to the Hudson River. Some of the settlers signed  the Mayflower Compact which was an agreement that bound the signers  into  a  governing  body, establishing constitutional law and the rule by majority–an important step towards democracy. We came to call these settlers Pilgrims. They were helped to succeed in establishing their colony by a Native American of the Patuxet people named Squanto. He helped them establish a treaty with Chief Massasoit. Our tradition of celebrating a day for Thanksgiving started in Plymouth.  As I understand it, both as a way to thank the Native Americans for helping them, and as a way of setting aside a day to thank God for their very lives.

Mayflower by Mike Haywood, The Seas Were So High

“Seas So High” by Mike Haywood, ©2002, used by permission, available at Mike@MikeHaywoodArt.co.uk

Just look at this painting! Can you imagine traveling for two months with 102 other people and livestock in this 90 foot long ship! No wonder they were in such bad shape that most of them died the very first year that they lived in America. Can you imagine the courage, the commitment, the beliefs you would have to have to take such a journey to a strange and unsettled land! Now I know three of my grandparents, some cousins, and many people related to my family through marriage did exactly that! What a legacy! Their blood runs in my veins, in the veins of many of you who are reading this article, and to me that is amazing! 1620-2014, 394 years ago–do you think they dreamed their lives would undergo such scrutiny!?

Mayflower, Pilgrim's Landing, by Mike Haywood, Mike@MikeHaywoodArt.co.uk   ©2002 by permission

“Pilgrim’s Landing”, by Mike Haywood, Mike@MikeHaywoodArt.co.uk ©2002 by permission

Another reason I want you to look at these paintings closely, is that these beautiful works of art are displayed here with permission from the artist, Mike Haywood! It helps us understand the journey so strongly I believe! He sells lithographs and canvas prints on his website, I hope to get one soon. In a discussion forum in which I participate, Mike posted this comment: “Help….. I painted this canvas in 2005 as one of my series portraying the dramatic voyage of the Mayflower. Normally I keep my paintings but this one was purchased by a descendant. Because of a computer malfunction, I have lost the name and address of the purchaser, who I would now like to contact. Can any group member shed some light? It is my personal favourite of all my Mayflower paintings. The title of the canvas is “Seas so high”, a phrase extracted from William Bradford’s contemporary account of the voyage……”In many of these storms the winds were so fierce, and the seas so high, as they could not bear a knot of sail, but were forced to heave to for many days together. ……………..Conditions below decks on that cockleshell of a boat would have been ghastly for the passengers.”

If any of you know this information for Mike, please contact him directly at Mike@MikeHaywoodArt.com.uk. –or leave a message here in comments and I will be sure to get the information to him.

I’ve learned that many on that boat were related to my family, or related to us by marriage! I am still amazed.  According to the Mayflower Society,  these are the names of the passengers and crew who were on the Mayflower:

Mayflower (1620)

View the original list of passengers (PDF, 2.6Mb) from the handwritten manuscript of Gov. William Bradford, written up about 1651 (file link is to the State Library of Massachusetts).  Below is a complete list of all Mayflower passengers, along with a link to each for further information.

–source: Caleb Johnson’s Mayflower History

http://mayflowerhistory.com/mayflower-passenger-list/

As you see, Thomas Rogers and his son Joseph are listed among the passengers. Thomas is my 10th great grandfather on my mother’s side, and is my husband’s 11th great grandfather through his Mother! I had no idea my husband and I were cousins until I learned this bit of information! That makes our children and grands double descendants of Thomas Rogers. I have discovered that this is not uncommon for the Mayflower passengers! This is the way our lines look:     

Thomas, Mayflower, Rogers (1572 – 1621)

is your 11th great-grandfather

James Rogers (1615 – 1687)

son of Thomas, Mayflower, Rogers

Thomas Rogers (1639 – 1719)

son of James Rogers

James Rogers II (1668 – 1719)

son of Thomas Rogers

James Capt. Rogers III (1685 – 1755)

son of James Rogers II

James Rev. Rogers IV (1720 – 1775)

son of James Capt. Rogers III

James Rogers V (1746 – 1796)

son of James Rev. Rogers IV

John Rogers (1775 – 1846)

son of James Rogers V

John M. Rogers (1812 – 1847)

son of John Rogers

James H. Rogers (1834 – 1863)

son of John M. Rogers

Reuben Alexander Rogers (1857 – 1935)

son of James H. Rogers

Mary Lou Rogers (1880 – 1947)

daughter of Reuben Alexander Rogers

Helen Marie Wagner (1919 – 1989)

daughter of Mary Lou Rogers

Max Alexander Holshouser

You are the son of Helen Marie Wagner 

*******************************************

 

Thomas “The Pilgrim” Rogers (1572 – 1621)

is your 10th great-grandfather

John Rogers (1609 – 1630)

son of Thomas “The Pilgrim” Rogers

John Rogers (1640 – 1730)

son of John Rogers

Ann Rogers (1680 – 1705)

daughter of John Rogers

Sarah Witt (1695 – 1777)

daughter of Ann Rogers

Abner Harbour (1730 – 1778)

son of Sarah Witt

Moses Harbour (1755 – 1835)

son of Abner Harbour

Joyce Harbour (1805 – 1888)

daughter of Moses Harbour

Nancy J Houchins (1833 – )

daughter of Joyce Harbour

Walter Houchins (1854 – 1937)

son of Nancy J Houchins

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Walter Houchins

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

*********************************************

 

John Alden (1599 – 1687)

is your 10th great-grandfather

Elizabeth Alden (1624 – 1717)

daughter of John Alden

Elizabeth Pabodie (1647 – 1730)

daughter of Elizabeth AldenM

Ann Rogers (1680 – 1705)

daughter of Elizabeth Pabodie

Sarah Witt (1695 – 1777)

daughter of Ann Rogers

Abner Harbour (1730 – 1778)

son of Sarah Witt

Moses Harbour (1755 – 1835)

son of Abner Harbour

Joyce Harbour (1805 – 1888)

daughter of Moses Harbour

Nancy J Houchins (1833 – )

daughter of Joyce Harbour

Walter Houchins (1854 – 1937)

son of Nancy J Houchins

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Walter Houchins

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse –

***********************************************

William Mullins (1568 – 1621)

is your 11th great-grandfather

Priscilla Molens Mullins (1602 – 1687)

daughter of William Mullins

Elizabeth Alden (1624 – 1717)

daughter of Priscilla Molens Mullins

Elizabeth Pabodie (1647 – 1730)

daughter of Elizabeth Alden

Ann Rogers (1680 – 1705)

daughter of Elizabeth Pabodie

Sarah Witt (1695 – 1777)

daughter of Ann Rogers

Abner Harbour (1730 – 1778)

son of Sarah Witt

Moses Harbour (1755 – 1835)

son of Abner Harbour

Joyce Harbour (1805 – 1888)

daughter of Moses Harbour

Nancy J Houchins (1833 – )

daughter of Joyce Harbour

Walter Houchins (1854 – 1937)

son of Nancy J Houchins

Katherine Steptoe Houchins (1883 – 1943)

daughter of Walter Houchins

Margaret Steptoe Kerse (1918 – 1980)

daughter of Katherine Steptoe Houchins

Helen Spear Youngblood

You are the daughter of Margaret Steptoe Kerse 

 

While Thomas’s eldest son Joseph came over with him on the Mayflower, his son John, whom I descend from, and his son James, whom Max descends from came over later and became landowners in Plymouth Colony also. There is so much I’d like to tell you about the Rogers family and their rich, rich history! I think however, it will have to wait for a separate blog post. I do want to remind you that  these relationships are based on my own research, which is always a process, and have not been proven by any of the governing bodies or societies. 

Because they are ancestors of our ancestors, we are also kin to John Alden, Priscilla Mullins and her father William Mullins.  My daughters would have loved their 12th great- grandfather, William Mullins, because he was apparently a shoemaker, who reportedly took over 250 pairs of shoes and boots with him on the Mayflower! The colonists didn’t go barefooted!

John Alden and Priscilla Mullins would have made a romantic pair on the voyage as well, they apparently fell in love during the arduous trip!  From John Alden & Priscilla Mullins Biography from the website: Alden Kindred of America, we learn that: “Priscilla Mullins was the daughter of William Mullins, also a passenger on the Mayflower with his wife Alice and son Joseph.  William, Alice and Joseph all died in the terrible sickness and deprivation of the first winter in Plymouth.  Priscilla, who as probably still too young to be married, was orphaned, her only surviving kin her brother and sister in England.  Poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow celebrated the story of how Priscilla attracted the attentions of the newly widowed Captain Myles Standish, who asked his friend John Alden to propose on his behalf only to have Priscilla ask, “Why don’t you speak for yourself, John?”  Most of the world draws its image of the Pilgrim story from Longfellow’s epic narrative poem, The Courtship of Myles Standish. The basic story was apparently handed down in the Alden family and published by John and Priscilla’s great-great-grandson, Rev. Timothy Alden, in his Collection of American Epitaphs and Inscriptions in 1814 (264-271).”  The picture below of John Alden and Priscilla was found on ancestry with no reference to artist, and is part of the public domain. 

John Alden and wife Priscilla Mullins, Mayflower pilgrims,

We are kin, as cousins to John and Edward Tilley and therefore to their families who came with them aboard the Mayflower as well. John came with his wife Joan Hurst Tilley and their daughter Elizabeth who married John Howland in Plymouth. Edward’s wife, Agnes Cooper might be kin to us separately as well, only more research will tell. Their niece and nephew who came on the Mayflower with them, Humility Cooper and Henry Sampson are also connected to the family.   Because he is my cousin’s grandfather, I am kin to Edward Fuller and his son Samuel, through marriage, thanks to Kay Youngblood Fuller and her husband Jim Fuller. We have a family connection to the Hopkins as well that may turn into direct kinship once thoroughly researched. That is at least 18 of the 102 people aboard the Mayflower that we are related to or connected to by family! That is hard for me to believe, and quite eye-opening! Sometimes I just stand awestruck by history and finally the understanding that historical events were about family, not just events! Those were our ancestors being tossed around on those waves, and our ancestors putting their pen to paper to agree to make their own laws! Good for independent spirits, I’m so proud to be related!

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PTSD? Waiting for Hurricane Arthur to Hit Us, Brings up Memories of Family Tragedy of 1989 and Hurricane Hugo-52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks #27

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Tonight, July 3, 2014, while part of my family is on a beach on the North Carolina coast with Hurricane Arthur approaching, I am sitting here praying for their safety as I recall the tragic aftermath  of Hurricane Hugo for our own family.  The Category 5 hurricane Hugo hit Sept 21-22 during the night. The huge storm surge lifted 3 to 4 blocks of houses right off their foundations, squashed them together like a stack of pancakes, and shoved them all back from the ocean about a quarter to a half mile! I had never seen anything like it, until I went down three  months after the storm and saw the destruction with my own eyes! You see, my husband’s family lived there, just  a few blocks off the beach in Garden City, SC., just south of Myrtle Beach, and just north of Charleston.

Interview with Charleston Mayor Joe Riley

Joe Riley, the Mayor of Charleston, shared his memories of Hugo along with some lessons that were learned from the storm. He also has some good reminders about being prepared for the next storm! Check out the full interview here.

Summary

Hurricane Hugo was a Cape Verde hurricane that became a Category 5 (on the Saffir-Simpson Scale) storm in the Atlantic, then raked the northeast Caribbean as a Category 4 storm before turning northwest between an upper-level high pressure system to the north and upper-level low pressure system to the south. Hugo made landfall just north of Charleston, South Carolina at Sullivan’s Island around midnight September 22, 1989 as a Category 4 storm with estimated maximum sustained winds of 135-140 mph and a minimum central pressure of 934 mb (27.58 inches of Hg). Hugo produced tremendous wind and storm surge damage along the coast and even produced hurricane force wind gusts all the way into western North Carolina. In fact, Hugo produced the highest storm tide heights ever recorded along the U.S. East Coast.

Hurricane Hugo track - credit: NOAA's National Hurricane Center Upper-level weather pattern during Hugo - image courtesy of Dr. Jon Nese at Penn State University
Hurricane Hugo’s Track Upper-level Air Patterns
(credit: NOAA’s National Hurricane Center) (credit: Jon Nese at Penn State University)

At the time, Hurricane Hugo was the strongest storm to strike the United States in the previous 20-year period. The hurricane was also the nation’s costliest in terms of monetary losses with damage estimates standing at $7 billion. It is estimated that there were 49 deaths directly related to the storm, 26 of which occurred in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

http://www.erh.noaa.gov/chs/events/hugo.shtml

 

 

My husband Max’s  sister Brenda, her husband Curt, and their three daughters had moved to the beach from western NC sometime in the seventies. Max and I married in 1971, and his Dad, Henry, who  had recently been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, quickly became wheelchair bound. Within three years, his Mom, Helen, had a brain aneurysm to leak,which brain surgery was able to repair, rare in the 1970’s.  Brenda had a lovely two-story home about four blocks off the beach, and very close by was a mobile home retirement park, very popular in South Carolina. It provided an apartment-like living facility , very convenient to stores and their family. At first it seemed stress free and ideal. Fast forward 10 to 14 years, and they had grown older and less healthy. then Hugo threatened. They were forced to evacuate, and while Brenda and her family stayed not far inland with friends, Henry and Helen at first headed to refuge with Henry’s sister and her husband near Charlotte, NC. We soon learned that the storm was headed that way, and begged them to come instead to our house in Raleigh, NC. At that time we were a family of four, with daughters ages 7 and 15, living in a cozy 1250 sq. ft house! We gave Max’s parents,  our bedroom and bath, and we took the pull out sofa in the study. It was obvious that the stress had taken a toll on both of Max’s parent’s health. His Dad seemed the worst, and indeed, he ended up in the hospital  having bypass surgery within three weeks!  His Mom was so busy taking care of her husband  and worrying about  things back home and all her family, that her diabetes got out of control as well as her problematic blood pressure. She steadfastly refused to see a doctor however, preferring to wait until she went “home”  to SC to see her own. We tried to prepare her for what she might see when she returned. Brenda’s home was still standing, but it had flooded severely. You could see the high water marks just below the ceiling on their first floor! While they had moved some antiques and family heirlooms upstairs, they lost most of what was downstairs and in their shop out back, including a mahogany executive desk handmade by my husband Max while at NC State! It had been ruined in the storm. Amazingly, Max’s parents mobile home was intact, but other homes had been swept into it, and refrigerators, cars, and boats were scattered everywhere! They never found some of their possessions, whether swept away in the storm or looted, we will never know. This was the scene we witnessed when at last we had the chance to take Max’s parents home, in early December, 1989, just before Max’s Mothers’s 70th birthday! After our brief visit, Henry and Helen  stayed with Brenda and Curt while we returned home . Within a week,  Max’s mother had a stroke and died! What a tragedy! There is no doubt in my mind that her death is one not counted as a death from Hurricane Hugo, but it was, nonetheless. The domino effect of the storm, evacuation, her husband’s surgery, and the devastation she witnessed upon returning aligned with her own poor health and just took her away. All of us were left with guilty feelings of course–if only we had kept her in Raleigh, if only we had insisted she see a doctor, if only we hadn’t taken her back to SC until Spring when things would have been cleaned up a bit more, if only, if only ,if only! So tonight, I sit and wait, wait until morning when I will have news that my family on the beach is all just fine.    

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Charles Wesley Wagner, 98 years in North Carolina! –52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge

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Charlie Wagner was 91 when I met him–my husband’s adored Granddaddy! I only had the privilege of knowing him 7 years before his death at age 98, but was always amazed by him! When I knew him, Charlie was a walker! He would walk all over the rural community in which they lived– Richfield, NC , about an hour north of Charlotte, NC.  He walked to church, walked all over his 150 acre farm, and to his daughters’ and grandchildren’s houses nearby! Most of that area had once been owned by him as he gave land for his children to build their homes upon. By the time I joined the family in 1971, there was a small community of relatives there. Until I began working on our family trees, I didn’t even realize that Charlie had grown up just a mile or so down the road! You can see his parents, William Alexander Wagner and Martha Scronia Culp  and their eight children in the picture below, as well as the lovely frame home that Charlie  lived in as a child.  When he married and raised his own family, he built the charming rock house there on his farm.  I have also included his pedigree family tree, and his family page for your information.  You can see that he came from a long line of North Carolinians–some of whom fought in the Civil War and the Revolutionary War! The Wagners originally came to America from Germany, but I have not yet found their actual immigration information. You might like to know that while this family spelled their name Wagner, it can be found in general and in other family members spelled Wagoner, Waggoner, and other variations, often the same family.

Charlie openly loved and adored his first wife Mary Lou Rogers, with whom he had six children, five living to maturity. Of those five, only two were living at his death! Growing old is a blessing for sure, but outliving most of your children and your wife, …that’s a lot of sadness to bear.  Mary Lou Rogers died in 1947, at the age of  67, a long life for many of us. Still, her husband lived for 30 more years! Sometime in his early 80’s, Charlie remarried!  He married a  woman his age named Juanita Hough, called Nita, and they took a train trip to Las Vegas for their honeymoon! I always thought that was awesome and so adventurous! I don’t think you can imagine a friendlier man than Charlie Wagner. He always had a kind word for everyone, and knew the names of all the adults and children in his community. Since his church, New Mt.Tabor United Methodist, where my husband grew up attending also, was only a quarter to half mile down the road, Charlie could often be seen heading that way for one reason to serve, or another.

Screenshot 2014-02-23 11.27.49    Screenshot 2014-02-23 11.29.04

Charlie’s father was a farmer, and so was Charlie most of his young life. One of his  grandsons, Wayne Fraley remembers watching him plow and drill the fields for long hours with two mules! He says Charlie mainly grew corn, and small grains–oats and wheat. He remembers seeing Charlie walking behind the two mules pulling the reaper also! Talk about hard work! They’d cut and bale the hay, separating the seeds from the straw. In his later  years, Charlie liked to haul the product to market himself. Wayne sometimes rode with him to deliver grain to the Davis Milling Company in Highpoint, NC  Wayne says they always stopped in Charlie’s favorite place to take a break and every time, Charlie would buy a Dr.Pepper to drink, along with a bag of peanuts, which he placed into the Dr.Pepper. Charlie said that was his favorite drink!

Fraley , Wayne

Wayne Fraley

Wayne Fraley relates a story that tells us a lot about Charlie Wagner’s character: “When I was in 8th or 9th grade, a buddy of mine said come on with me and we’ll go down in the woods and smoke one of these, my Daddy’s  cigarettes! First I said no…but then I tagged along with him down to where a big old tree had fallen over.  We climbed up into the very top of that old tree,, leaned back against a limb, and both of us started to smoke!  I leaned over to  flick my ashes off, looked down, and there stood Mother! (His Mother was Charlie’s daughter Onnie. Tragically, Wayne’s father had died  when Wayne was only one years old. ) Wayne remembers that she whipped him all the way home! Then however, she brought out the big guns by saying–‘I’m going to tell Granddaddy.’ Oh, I was upset! I didn’t want her to do that! Granddaddy had a way of talking to you that was worse than a whippin’! Charlie waited two days.  I was dying! Finally, he called me over and said he wanted to talk with me. I hung my head in shame as we talked. Finally he said, ‘I want you to wait until you are 21 years old before you ever smoke again, then you can smoke as much as you want to!’  Why 21? I asked.  ‘I figure by the time you are 21, you’ll know right from wrong, and then you can make your own choices.’ This from a man who hadn’t even finished highschool. He was very wise. ”

Max Holshouser, 2013

Max Holshouser

Charlie was also an artisan and handed down his woodworking talents to his grandson Max Holshouser (Son of Charlie’s daughter -Helen Wagner Holshouser, and my husband). They are both extraordinary woodworkers! We still use a cedar armoire and dresser made by Charlie Wagner about 1910, or earlier, at least over 100 years old! We are currently using it for clothes again, but it has served us well in  our kitchen, family room and bedrooms over  the 42 years we’ve been married! There is a dresser that goes with it, and a cedar chest that matches it,made by Max’s Dad. One of  Max’s greatest treasures is the tool box he owns which used to belong to his granddaddy.  I’ve included some pictures below. Another time, I’ll write a blog post and show you some of the extraordinary things Max has made. It’s in the DNA I tell you!

Hope you have an wonderful week and have fun  finding your own family stories! Helen

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