Fearless Females Blog Post-March 5-How They Met

I am participating in the Fearless Female Blog Posts for Women’s History Month, where we post about the females in our family.  The questions

March 5 — How did they meet? You’ve documented marriages, now, go back a bit. Do you know the story of how your parents met? Your grandparents?

Yvonne Greene (Godmother), Agnes Cully Peters (Grandmother), Betty Mae Peters Porter, Walter J. Porter, Helen Bunn Thompson (Grandmother)

My parents Betty and Walter Porter met through mutual friends.  I don’t know the complete detail of their introduction to one another, but I remember my mother telling me that he was a gentleman.  She stated that she could have chosen anyone, but there was something special about my father.  She called him a social genius and was full of potential.  All I know is those two together would really make you bust a gut. They were so fun together.  My father would have a joke and my mother would be right there with him, and laying one on the line.

The group of  friends my parents met through remained forever friends for over sixty years.  Some have passed on and some are still living and residing in different parts of the United States.

Fearless Females Blog Post-March 4-Marriage Records

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month. March 4 — Do you have marriage records for your grandparents or great-grandparents? Write a post about where they were married and when. Any family stories about the wedding day? Post a photo too if you have one. I have not gone beyond finding marriage indexes of my grandparents and great-grandparents. I haven’t had much success with online searches as I believe I will need to order the certificates. I have no wedding photo’s of any grandparent ancestors. I am surprised that there are no wedding photo’s in my possession as my Grandmother Agnes in later years made wedding dresses for many of the who’s who.  What I do have is an insert of my mom’s journal discussing her parent’s union.
The Union of Agnes Mae Cully and Charles Irving Peters

Agnes and Charles fell in love and decided to marry. Mother had a dear friend who lived in Brooklyn, New York.  Her name was Louise Bryant.  Her husband was a composer, Fred Bryant.  They lived in a beautiful brownstone house in Brooklyn. (My father’s home state was West Virginia, so they were both in Florida temporarily.)  When they decided to wed, they agreed they wished to leave the South.  Mother had promised “Aunt” Louise that no matter where she was when she found her true love, she would be married in Louise’s house in Brooklyn, as Mother and Dad bid farewell to people and places in Florida, took the train to Brooklyn and were married in a beautiful ceremony in this lovely, beautifully appointed house. When I was growing up, one didn’t call older people by their first names, so close adult friends became “Aunts and uncles”, as a result, there were quite a few adults whom I addressed and spoke of in this manner, although they were actually not relatives. My mother said her first “inkling” that she was going to have trouble with Daddy was when he took her to Atlantic City for their honeymoon.  Evidently, he put her up in a fine hotel.  It was very romantic for her!  However, when the bill came due, Daddy didn’t have the money to pay it.  In Mother’s fury, she tore the wedding ring off her finger and threw it out the window.  She threw her clothes into her bags and went to the train station, but it was too late to get a train leaving the city.  Feeling totally stranded, she returned to the hotel.The next day, after they made-up, she crawled around in the grass and hunted until she finally found her wedding ring! As punishment for not paying the bill, Mother and Dad had to work out their indebtedness at the hotel.  I don’t know what he did, but she made the beds!

(Copyright 1970-2012 by Yvette Porter Moore, No form of publication without permission given.)

Fearless Females Blog Post-March 3-Name and Naming Patterns

March 3 — Do you share a first name with one of your female ancestors? Perhaps you were named for your great-grandmother, or your name follows a particular naming pattern. If not, then list the most unique or unusual female first name you’ve come across in your family tree.

Now most people know me as Yvette Marie (Porter) Moore.  This was the name given to me by my parents when they adopted me.  When I turned 18 years old, I was curious about my birth family, so I contacted the adoption agency requesting non-identifying information.  When I received the papers in the mail, to my surprise, the worker wrote my birth “Given” name in the information.

I was named “Victoria.”  Later on when I did the research of my name through the birth index, I discovered that my name was Victoria Ann Espinoza-Mitchell.  I really liked my birth name, but not enough to change back as I have grown accustomed to who I am.

Because I thought my name was pretty and being sentimental and in a spiritual sense, I decided to name my second and last daughter after me.  She carries my name Victoria Ann Porter.

When I met my birth mother, I learned that my Great Grandmother was named Victoria Ann, and that it was a family tradition.

What a wonderful thing to be able to do…Share my name with my youngest.  What was taken, now is given.

Fearless Females Blog Post: March 2-Photograph

This is one of my favorite older photo’s of my Great Aunt, Hannah Sidney (Cully) Brown. She was born on December 10, 1891 in Worcester, MA. She was a pianist and Jazz singer. She was the second to the oldest child of the Ambrose & Nora Cully Clan.

I chose Hannah’s photo today because I have always been drawn to her, and my mother always talked about her Aunt Hannah, as she was with her when she died. Hannah died on November 25, 1932 in Jacksonville, Duval, Florida of Breast Cancer and I want to remind all women that we must get our yearly mammograms, and do our monthly self-exams to ensure we are taking the right preventions against Breast Cancer!

Hannah and her sister Zara (who played on the “Jeffersons” the tv sitcom) both married Brown brothers. Hannah was married to Elvin Wesley Brown, who my mother called “Unkie”.

(Fearless Females Blog Post) March 1-Favorite Female Ancestor

Today begins the 1st Day of Women’s History Month!  A month to celebrate the women in our life and those that made a difference in history past and present.

Once again, in honor of National Women’s History Month, Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month.

I have decided to participate in the Prompts:  So here we go!

March 1 — Do you have a favorite female ancestor? One you are drawn to or want to learn more about? Write down some key facts you have already learned or what you would like to learn and outline your goals and potential sources you plan to check.

Possibly Jane B. Collins Courtesy of Gail Cully Middleton

I have been passing this photo off as my Great Great Grandmother Hannah D. Nelson Gilliam as I just assumed this was her instead of my Great Great Aunt Jane B. Collins, who is Hannah’s older sister.  This picture came from my cousin Gail’s old photo collection, whose father, Raymond Mansfield Cully Sr. was raised by Jane beginning in 1911 when his mother Nora A. Cully died leaving 10 children behind.

My assumption was because Hannah lived in the Cully home and took care of the children until her daughter died, it had to be her.   The grandmother Hannah died in 1912.  Raymond most likely had in his possession a photo of his Aunt Jane since he spent most of his childhood in her home and cared for her in her elderly years. So, I now believe that this might actually be a picture of Jane B. (Nelson) Collins.  My goal is to research and find out if this is a photo of Jane or Hannah.

My favorite Woman Ancestor that I want to learn more about is Jane B. Collins.  Her slave names were (“Nelson & Ellis”).  Jane was born approximately January 1840 in North Carolina.    Jane was co-habitating with John A. Collins in 1860, and married him officially August 20, 1866 in New Bern, North Carolina.  In the late 1870’s, Jane migrated with her husband, immediate family, extended family, and other migrants from New Bern  to Worcester, MA in the  late 1870’s.

I found Jane listed in the book, “First Fruits of Freedom” (pg. 152) by Janette Thomas Greenwood.  A book about the migration of former slaves and their search for equality in Worcester, Massachusetts, 1862-1900.   She was one of twelve women from the AME Zion Church that organized “The Woman’s Progressive Club, of Worcester, Mass.”  She was active in the political and women movement of that day and a leader in the Black Community of Worcester.

I have found her mentioned in a few news articles coordinating events at the AME Zion Church through the Woman’s Progressive Club.  I would like to know more about her and what impact she had in the migration movement helping and supporting newcomers into Worcester, MA.

I am not sure of how many children Jane had if any.  Her sister’s children are shown as residing in Jane’s home in 1870, with Hannah absent.  I would like to find out her descendant family line if possible.  I would also like to do further document research on Jane by making another trip to Worcester, MA to see if I can confirm that this is a picture of her, and to possibly find her in a directory or newspaper article with her photo.

Jane B. Collins died in September of 1925.  My goal is to order her death certificate so that I have an exact date of death.  I have made a trip to the Hope Cemetery in Worcester and found her headstone along with her husband Joseph.

I am so intrigued by this mulatto, who was born a slave and despite her circumstances became a leader in her church and community.