The Book of Me – Written by You is a weekly blog prompt created by Julie Goucher of the blog Angler’s Rest. This is a fifteen month writing project to highlight my life so that I will have something to leave behind for my descendants. Week fourteen’s prompt is also Special People and is a continuation of the last prompt.
If you had to hold a dinner party and could invite a maximum of 12 special people who would you invite?
You CAN include family this time. Perhaps they are ancestors you have never met or people that you know/knew.
What meals would you serve and why?
Perhaps include the recipe or a photo if you decided to actually cook the items.
My dinner party would include family members who have all passed on at this point. Most of them I have never known. I have lots of questions for them because they didn’t write anything down or leave much for me to discover about their lives.
Alfred M. Dicks and his first wife Ruth Reynolds: They were Quakers. Their families were part of the Quaker migration to North Carolina in the mid 1700s. After staying in the south for several generations, the Quakers began migrating north again. Slavery was a huge issue in the early 1800s. Some remained in the south but many moved in the decades before the Civil War. Some of the North Carolina monthly meetings were decimated by migration. Ruth’s parents migrated a few years before she was born. Alfred traveled as a young man in the 1830s, sometime after the death of his father in 1833. Ruth died young after bearing six children in the 1850s. I know very little about her. Her name appears in very few documents. When she and Alfred married in 1840, their marriage was a civil one which got them disowned from the local Quaker Monthly Meeting. I suspect the meeting was too far away which made it difficult to attend regularly. Also there were lots of strong political feelings and divisions between the monthly meetings in eastern Illinois and western Indiana at that time. I have lots of questions for Alfred, too. He managed to avoid the census takers in 1860. I do not know exactly when Alfred or Ruth died or where they are buried.
John Alden and Priscilla Mullins: I have always known I was a Mayflower descendant. The lineage of John and Priscilla was the first that my grandmother proved. We “know” so much about their fabled courtship and little else. John’s parentage is unknown. We have very few dates for this couple, including when they married, the births of the children, and when Priscilla died. Hearing about their daily struggles to create a new life in this country would be fascinating.
George Rea and Sarah Ann Jewell: George Rea was an Irishman by birth. He journeyed to America and settled in Greene County, Indiana. So far I have uncovered little information about George’s life in Ireland. He was a presumably successful farmer who owned a sizeable acreage of land in Indiana. George was about 20 years older than his wife Sarah but she died first, perhaps in childbirth. I am currently trying to prove Sarah’s lineage. There was only one Jewell family in Greene County and I think I know how she fits but I have no direct evidence. Again, I have lots of questions for this couple.
David Yegerlehner and Magdalena Strahm: The patriarch of the Yegerlehner family in America and his wife left their homeland to settle in America in 1851. Why? Where & when did Magdalena die? David was a carpet weaver. I would have enjoyed watching him weave. Perhaps they could teach me Swiss or share stories of their life in the Alps.
Michael Schiele and Elizabeth Krieble: I think I have enough questions about Michael and his German ancestry to warrant an invitation to this dinner. Elizabeth’s daughter Nancy raises lots of interesting questions as well. Nancy’s descendents would certainly like some answers about her father.
Roscoe S. Yegerlehner and Gladys Foster: Now that I am old enough to ask the hard family questions, my grandparents have long been gone. Since starting this project, the number of questions that I would have liked to ask my grandparents has increased exponentially. Even sitting with my grandmother for a few hours and having her identify people in the sea of photographs would be a treat.
I would like to have a potluck picnic like I remember from all the family reunions of my childhood. Every summer we traveled to Indiana to visit my grandparents. Generally, at some point, a family reunion would be held during our visit. A few times, the reunion was held at my aunt and uncle’s house. At that time, their house was on the outskirts of Centerville. The house was surrounded by corn fields on the two sides, the road to the front, and a wooded area to the back. All my mom’s cousins would come over and all the second cousins would run around for hours. Everyone brought some kind of dish to share.
Since my family does not have a tradition of family recipes being passed down, I would like each of my ancestral couples to bring a family dish that was special for their family and time period. One dish sticks out from my childhood. It appeared on the table for most picnics or special occasions. I am not sure which side of the family the recipe came from. Since my own children have an aversion to food with “sauces,” the tradition hasn’t been continued.
The recipe –
Five Cup Salad:
1 cup crushed pineapple
1 cup mandarin oranges
1 cup of shredded coconut
1 cup of mini marshmallows
1 cup of sour cream
Throw all the ingredients in a bowl and mix together.
©2013 copyright owned and written by Deborah Sweeney
Post originally found at: http://genealogylady.net/2013/12/06/book-of-me-pro…special-people/