Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Family Wanderings

What can I say, unless you really want to talk about how I locked myself out of my bedroom and even the random Marine who was randomly at our house at the time couldn't open it, and because I love 'Merica, I didn't say, see Marines can't do everything, but I really wanted to, well then, music is about all there is to talk about in these parts. 

My great great grandfather is somewhat of a family legend. A legend, not necessarily because of the great things he did, but because we know so little about him. We have no idea where or when he was born.  We don't know when or how or why he showed up in the Utah Territory. We have nothing to indicate that he was one of those pioneers.  But there he married my great great grandmother and fathered a son by her, and then he disappeared again. We have one letter from him during this roaming time from South Dakota, then nothing. We are assuming he died at some point, but again we don't have any idea, when or where or how or why. I'm guessing, not of natural causes, he had a (loud) mouth on him, or say they say.  We have no pictures, no copies of his signature on anything. We can't find his name, or variations of his name in any type of official records (census, birth certificate, etc), any where. Nothing. This also means that we can't trace our family line (the line of my last name), any further back.  But this hasn't stopped me from trying to piece together the man out of whatever little bits and pieces we do have, and dreaming up stories of his adventures to fill in the gaps. I have also convinced that one of my Scottish forefathers was a pirate. Family history is so much fun inside my head. 

One of the bits of (unverified) family folklore about dear old great great grandpa Justus (yes, that is real name, or the name he went by) is that he may have come from Virginia. When I heard Old Crow Medicine Show new song "Take Me Back To Virginia,"  I instantly thought of my wandering kin:   
Old Crow Medicine Show new album, Carry Me Back, was released yesterday and they will be playing two nights here in DC in August. Both nights sold out long ago, we may be city folk, but don't underestimate our love for some good fiddle playing. Full tour details here.

1 comment :

  1. Sounds like our family. I spent two weeks traipsing around England searching for evidence of my Grandpa Henry(and the family has spent years and thousands of dollars for professional genealogists to do the same thing!) It makes for great stories though, maybe some of them will even turn out to be true!