(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.

Amanuensis & Mappy Monday: Hope Cemetery Map And My Ancestors Buried There: Part #1

     I prepared a year before taking my trip to Worcester, MA, as I went for the specific purpose of researching and walking in the spirit of my ancestors.  I was pleased with my results even though my research in the cemetery is not complete.  

     The first thing I did was to print out this really cool map of Hope Cemetery and get the address.  On the Hope Cemetery website, I made inquiries to the Friends of  Hope Cemetery as to specific family members that were possibly buried there.  They do an initial search without a fee.
The Hope Cemetery Map helped me locate the gravesites
of my Ancestors once I arrived on the premises.
119 Webster Street, Worcester, MA
(508) 799-1531

 
      It was a very cold and rainy day when my daughter and I went to the Hope Cemetery the first day.  We drove around looking for the basic area of where my ancestors were buried.  We were able to find My Great Grandmother Nora Ann (Gilliam) Cully and her son William E. Cully as their tombstone inscriptions were both written behind the other.  We were unable to locate Nora’s husbands headstone Ambrose E. Cully.  At this point, I figured it might have sunk.  A few feet away, I located Jane B Collins headstone with her husbands name inscribed on the back.  I took some photos but most were accidently lost.

Ancestors Headstones
The first two in the front and across from each other.

 
  On the second day to the cemetery, I went to the cemetery office and inquired about family burial records.  I gave the names of Hannah Gilliam, Jane B. Collins, Ambrose E. Cully, Nora A. Cully and two  male stillborn babies that my Great Grandmother Nora had given birth to.


     Below are the documents that were given to me.  There were other names on the record cards that I had not researched before the trip. 

Section 6767-76
Owner of the Plot: Ambrose E. Cully
Area 108, Paid Nov. 11, 1911 $35
William E. Cully was buried on Sep. 17, 1912 in grave (R F 3).  Nora Ann Cully was buried on Nov. 11, 1911 in grave (R F 2).  Ambrose E. Cully (according to this record was 53.  Not the correct age was buried on May 11, 1925 in Grave (R F 1).

Bottom writing of top card
If you can help with what it says, let me know.

     I tried to interpret what the wording says above.  What I have: F? of L?  B? W? from east side Marker & number on south side

Section 5817-76
Owner: Gilliam, Hannah D. wid Daniel
Perpetual Care: $50
Date May 8, 1905, Price $25


Hannah Gilliam (75) was buried on Feb. 25, 1914, in grave (R F 2).  Sarah A. Moore (60) was buried on Nov. 3, 1909  in grave (R F 1).  Jane Foreman (29) (daughter of Hannah Gilliam) was buried on April 26, 1905 in grave (L F 2)

The last names of the two stillborn infants (Scully) were mis-spelled, should be Cully.  Their grave was a mass grave for babies at the time and it was the generous contribution of a donor that paid for the burials. (Info given by the Hope Cemetery office clerk).
Section  5395-74 P.C. $50 Area 31 1/2
Owner $6  #6909  Paid July 9, 1902
The father of the stillborns were Ambrose E. Cully.  On May 25, 1910 Infant Cully was buried and on July 8, 1902 Infant Cully was buried.  The mother was Nora Ann Cully.  I did not get the opportunity to see the gravesite as I got this information on my second visit, which was a Sunday and did not have time to locate it.

Section 6772-76  Area 117
Owner: Collins, Jane B. widow of Jos. A
Paid $30 on Dec 12, 1911.
Representative: Osborne A. Cully, 504 Wilson Street, Clinton, Mass 1936
Joseph A. Collins (80) was buried on Nov 27 1911 in grave (R F 1). Jane B. Collins (85) was buried on Sep. 14, 1925 in grave (R F 2).  Nora, Cully* (24) was buried on April 1, 1936 in Grave (L F 2).


Note: Reserve L F 1 for Floyd O Cully on order of Osborne Cully.  Notify him of any other burial.


This last card answered some questions for me.  I did not have a death record for Osborne Cully but knew he died young.  I know for sure that he died after April 1936 since his sister Nora Cully died on April 1, 1936.  *Nora Cully was named after her mother Nora as her mother died after giving birth to Nora Jr.  Another interesting fact in this last card is that Floyd O. Cully is not buried at Hope Cemetery in Worcester but a cemetery in Lynn, MA, as he died in later years, and much after his Uncle Osborne Cully.  Floyd O. Cully was Nora A. Cully Jr.’s son.


My relations to each of these ancestors below:


Buried @ Hope Cemetery


Ambrose E. Cully: Great Grandfather
Nora A. Cully: Great Grandmother
William E. Cully: Grand Uncle
Joseph A. Collins: 2nd Great Grand Uncle
Jane B. Collins: 2nd Great Grand Aunt
Nora Cully, Jr.: Grand Aunt
Hannah  D. Gilliam: 2nd Great Grandmother
Sarah A. Moore: No relation documented
Jane B. Foreman: Great Grand Aunt
Cully, Infant #1: Grand Uncle
Cully, Infant #2: Grand Uncle


Mentioned on Burial Cards:


Osborne A. Cully: Grand Uncle
Floyd O. Cully: 1st Cousin 1x Removed
Daniel Gilliam: 2nd Great Grandfather


Hannah D. Gilliam and Jane B. Collins are sisters.
Hannah’s children are: Nora A. Cully, Sr. and Jane B. Foreman


I will be researching the relationship of Sarah A. Moore.  

Copyright
The material, both written and photographic on these pages is the copyright of Yvette Porter Moore unless stated. Material on this site may be used for personal reference only. If you wish to use any of the material on this site for other means, please seek the written permission of Yvette Porter Moore
© 2010-2011


Older African American Neighborhood in Worcester, Massachusetts: Mappy Monday

     Researching the neighborhood my Cully, Gilliam, and Collins families resided, I came across a website “Homes and Housing Patterns of People of Color in Worcester 1888,”  with research by Kathryn Mahoney and Jacqui McEttrick who presented the neighborhood map of the Older African American Community during that time.  The two street names that popped out at me were John and Bowdoin Streets.  During a research trip to Worcester, MA public library in January 2011, I went through every city directory (1879-1932) of Worcester and documented that my family had resided in homes on John and Bowdoin Street.
     On this map there is a listing of head of households, their occupation and their address.  My Great Great Grandmother Hannah Gilliam is listed as (Hannah Gillum) as a laundress and residing at 66 John Street.

     I love it when I find information on the World Wide Web that helps to confirm and document information that I have discovered.  This information is also very important to me as I also want to know more about Hannah’s neighbors.

© Yvette Porter Moore-All Rights Reserved

First Fruits of Freedom: Index #1

     One of the first things I do before reading a non-fiction book (for research purposes), is to glance at the table of contents, as it gives a general idea of the subject matter to be covered and it is a road map as to where the book will lead.  

     Secondly, I page through the index, looking to see if  there is familiarity with the names, places, ideas and subject matter that will be read in the book. If I find anything in the index that peaks my interest as it relates to the research, I will go directly to that page and read a paragraph or two.  Reading ahead allows me the opportunity to familiarize myself with the subject matter, and it tends to help me with my overall reading. 
     
     My interest in reading First Fruits of Freedom, by Janette Thomas Greenwood as stated on the back cover of the book:

“It offers a rare glimpse into the lives of African American men, women, and children on the cusp of freedom.  First Fruits of Freedom chronicles one of the first collective migrations of blacks from the South to the North during and after the Civil War.

     First Fruits of Freedom breathes life into the migration of African Americans leaving Eastern North Carolina for Worcester, Massachusetts through a series of networks.  By reading this book, I figured I could put flesh on the bones of my ancestors.
     
     It was told to me that my Great Grandfather Ambrose Cully (a single man) was sent by his father to Worcester so he could get away from the race issues in North Carolina. So, naturally my focus was on Ambrose.  
     
     My theory is that Ambrose met my Great Grandmother Nora A. Gilliam in Worcester, got married and started a family.  (This theory may or may not be so.)  Maybe their families knew each other in North Carolina, and they left at the same time to start a new life. (It is possible the families knew each other, but I discovered Ambrose’s in-laws were in Worcester by 1880 or the later part of the 1870’s).  Maybe Ambrose’s father knew the leaders within the network and insisted that his son leave with them. (Very Possible.)

     I am realizing that looking at the women in the family (in-laws of Ambrose) is very important to my study.  I have gathered information via U.S. Census reports, newspapers, documents, etc., but I had not analyzed the material with my varying theories. (At least not until, I began reading First Fruits)
     
     The next post: Index #2, I will share one of the names that popped out at me,  so I can begin to answer my questions.   
     

Copyright
The material, both written and photographic on these pages is the copyright of Yvette Porter Moore unless stated. Material on this site may be used for personal reference only. If you wish to use any of the material on this site for other means, please seek the written permission of Yvette Porter Moore
© 2010-2011

Sympathy Saturday: Jane “Gilliam” Foreman

     Jane “Gilliam” Foreman was born in October of 1876 to my Great Great Grand-Parents Daniel & Hannah “Nelson” Gilliam in New Bern, North Carolina.  When Jane was approximately 2 years old the Gilliam family moved to Worcester, Massachusetts.  Her regular occupation was that of a servant for the Raymond family.
     Jane died of Fibroma of the Uterus (tumors) with Peritonitis at Worcester City Hospital.  John H. Foreman was her husband.  They had only been married since October 22, 1902 (2 1/2yrs).  They had no children.  The informant was her sister Mrs. A. Cully [Nora Ann Cully] who was my Great Grand Mother which would make Jane My Great Grand Aunt.
     Wow!  Jane died at the young age of 28 1/2 years.  I think about my Aunt Jane, and it saddens me to think that she did not get to live a full life.  She had no children and she had no decedents to carry her direct line.  The cause of death was a medical condition that many people today will not die from.  The medical field has come a long way, and I am so glad that we live in this time in history.
Jane Gilliam Foreman
Commonwealth of Massachusetts DC
FamilySearch.org