Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wordless Wednesday- Bessie Ellenburg

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This is my great-grandmother, Bessie Ellenburg of Rabun County, Georgia. She was born on 4 March 1897 and died on 23 March 1919 in Jackson County, Georgia.
Her son Roy is my paternal grandfather.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Do you know these women?

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This cabinet card shows a photograph of four young women taken at Fisher's Studio in Demorest, Habersham County, Georgia.  I believe this was taken around 1900 but know that Fisher's Studio was in business until at least 1910.  "Fisher's Studio" appears to be written in pencil on the front of the cabinet card.

This photograph belonged to my great-grandparents, Tina and Will Chandler of Baldwin, Habersham County, Georgia.  Please let me know if you have any idea who these women might be.

Tombstone Tuesday for Inez and Billy Chandler

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This is my second Tombstone Tuesday and am covering the tombstone and markers of my maternal grandparents buried in Baldwin Cemetery, Baldwin, Habersham County, Georgia, USA.

My grandmother, Lottie Inez Buffington Chandler is the second child of Ruth and Frank Buffington of Gillsville, Hall County, Georgia. She was born on 12 September 1920 in Hall County.

My grandfather, William Pinckney “Billy” Chandler is the second child of Tina and Will Chandler of Baldwin, Habersham County, Georgia. He was born on 29 April 1914 in Habersham County.

Billy and Inez got married on 12 January 1941 in South Carolina and lived together happily for over 55 years until Billy died on 1 July 1996. He was 82 years old. Inez lived 11 more years, dying on 21 April 2007, several months before turning 87 years old. We miss them both very much.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Transcribing Help for a busy Genealogist

I am so excited to find this transcription program! I first heard about it when listening to a “Family History: Genealogy Made Easy” Podcast: Episode 40: Why You Need to Blog and How To Do It Part 1

The Transcript software mentioned by Denise Levenick can be found at

I downloaded the free program yesterday and am amazed at how much easier this is. I am currently working on a land deed for my Willis C. Chandler in Greenville County, South Carolina from 7 January 1845 and have been able to transcribe it in about a fourth of the time it would have typically taken me. Now if I had only listened to my father and taken typing in high school- I’d really be able to get these out fast!

The land deeds I am transcribing can be found online at

Friday, September 25, 2009

Desperately Seeking Willis

I am searching for any information that could help me shed light on the parents of Willis C. Chandler born 28 December 1807. South Carolina Census records say that he was born in South Carolina. The first record that I have found shows Willis signing as a witness to a Codicil added to the will of William Devenport (also an ancestor of mine) between January 1840 and July 1842. The Codicil states that Devenport purchased a tract of land from John Kirby and his children were to divide said land equaling among themselves. The 3 witnesses were listed as Lewis H. Shumate, Nimrod Donaldson and Willis Chandler.

On 12 October 1845, he and his wife Leanna Campbell Chandler joined the Fork Shoals Baptist Church in Greenville County, SC. They are listed as “RWD” in the church minutes, which means “received without detail.” No children are mentioned in the church minutes. Leanna Campbell is the daughter of John Richard Campbell and Virginia Jane Barnett.

Willis and Leanna had 3 children. Mary Jane (26 April 1837- 19 May 1884) married Mark L. Davis. Sarah Ann “Annie” (23 April 1841- 1 April 1874) married Frank M. Austin and is buried at Fork Shoals Baptist Church. My great-great-grandfather, Pinckney Lafayette Chandler was born in 29 December 1842 and married Susan Elliotte Vance (granddaughter of the William Devenport I mentioned earlier). Pinckney died on Christmas Day 1868. His only child, my great-grandfather William Vance Chandler was 17 months old.

Willis remained in Greenville County until his death 13 February 1887. He and his wife Leanna are buried at Fork Shoals Baptist Church. She died 15 January 1876. He was active in the church and served a many committees. He appeared as head of household in the 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 South Carolina censuses (in the Oaklawn Township) as well as the 1860 Slave Schedule. His name appears in the Greenville County newspaper “The Southern Enterprise” on 8 September 1869 when serving on the grand jury. He appears in the 1843-1844 Greenville City Directory, as a land owner in the Fork Shoals area.

I have been unable to find him in the 1840 census or at any time before witnessing Devenport’s will between 1840 and 1842. I have been in contact with a few of his daughters’ descendants and they have no information on his parents. I have been told that he may be the son (along with Allen, Josiah and sister Rachel) of Henry Chandler, grandson of William Hampton Chandler of Greenville County, SC but have found no proof for my Willis or the others. I have long suspected that he and Allen Chandler may be brothers or first cousins but have no definite proof of that either.  ***I finally found the proof that Willis & Allen are brothers.  A family member had a letter that identifies them as such!  1Oct2014

I would appreciate any suggestions you may have in determining a family for my Willis. Thank you in advance for your help.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Bertha Lee Cox at age 16

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This photograph says "Bertha Lee Cox, age 16" on the back.  I'm so excited to have it labeled but am unsure about who Miss Cox is and how she relates to my family.  She possibly lived in or had family in Habersham County, Georgia, Hall County, Georgia or Greenville County, South Carolina.  If you have any idea, please let me know!

Do you know Mr. Paul Watts?

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This photograph of Paul Watts was in my grandfather's family pictures.  I have not been able to find out any information about Mr. Watts.  Based on where the rest of our family lived around 1900, I would guess that he was either from Habersham County, Georgia,  Hall County, Georgia or from Greenville County, South Carolina.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Do you recognize me?

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These children were playing with my Grandfather, Billy Chandler, of Baldwin, Habersham County, Georgia.  He was born in 1914 and is the older boy on the front row.  I think this picture was probably taken about 1924 because he appears to be about 10 years old.  Do you have any idea who the other children might be?

Do you recognize me?

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This photo is of a young girl that attended Baldwin School in Baldwin, Habersham County, Georgia and graduated around 1931. She was born around 1914. Do you have any idea who she may be? Please contact me if you do!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The 1st Thompson Reunion; 7 August 1938

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This is a list of people that attended the first Thompson Family Reunion held at the home of Mr. Roy Thompson at Rabun County, Georgia on August 7, 1938. I was told this reunion was held in honor of Sidney E. Thompson, as he was getting older and wanted everyone to get together when he visited Persimmon Valley. He was living in Marble, North Carolina at the time.

He attended this reunion and then died before the second reunion was held the following year. Thank you to Jimmy Thompson for sharing this wonderful list with me.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Gillsville Society Section; The Gainesville Eagle, 6 Oct. 1932

The Gainesville Eagle
Gainesville, Hall County, GA
Thursday, Oct. 6, 1932
Section: Down the Valleys of Hall

Gillsville Route 2

Mr. and Mrs. Ollin Johnson of Columbia, SC visited Mr. and Mrs. Royce Griffin last week.

Mrs. O.D. Buffington returned Saturday after visiting in Atlanta.

Mrs. J.B. Buffington is visiting her daughter, Mrs. George Martin in Gainesville.

Miss Mary Griffin visited Miss Sara Griffin last week.

Mr. and Mrs. Noah Martin spent Wednesday here with home-folks.

Mrs. Payton Tanner visited Mrs. Frank Buffington last week.

There will be prayer services at the home of Mr. Johnie Buffington’s Saturday night, October 8.

Source: The Gainesville Eagle is on microfilm at Hall County Library, Gainesville, GA

Obituary of William Berrien Buffington, Hall County, Georgia

The Gainesville News
Gainesville, Hall County, GA
Wednesday, March 11, 1931Front Page

W.B. Buffington, 84, Former Tax Receiver, Rests at Timber Ridge

In the death of Mr. William Berrien Buffington, 84, prominent Hall county citizen and former tax receiver, which occurred at 2 o’clock Monday afternoon at his home between Gillsville and Lula, the county loses a valuable citizen and his church a devoted member.

Funeral services, largely attended, were held at Timber Ridge Baptist Church this afternoon at 2 o’clock, conducted by Rev. H.C. Martin, and interment was in the church yard there.

Mr. Buffington had made his home in Hall county practically all his life, and had been a very successful farmer. He was a devoted member of the Baptist church since youth, and had served on the board of deacons of that church for a long time. He had also served with distinction in the Civil war, and in the realm of politics had been successful in a number of campaigns for tax collector of this county, in which he sustained his reputation for integrity and fair dealing. Possessed of a pleasant disposition and genial personality, Mr. Buffington had endeared himself to a host of friends in this section who received the news of his death with sincere regret.

His widow preceded him to the grave several years. He is survived by twelve children, Mrs. J.D. Hawkins, Mrs. C.M. Bolding, Mrs. E.D. Hawkins, Mrs. O.D. Buffington, Mrs. N.A. Martin and J.B. Buffington of this city; Mrs. J.D. Martin, W.J., C.E. and H.E. Buffington of Atlanta, L.A. Buffington of Cedartown, and Mrs. E.S. Buffington of Mitchell, Ga. Fifty-eight grandchildren and 44 great-grandchildren also survive him.

Source: The Gainesville News on microfilm at Hall County Library, Gainesville, GA