Owen Tucker: First Landowner of My Childhood Home

This entry is part of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks series.  This week’s prompt is FIRST.  To see other posts in this series, view my 52 Ancestors in 2019 index


I grew up in the small community of Liddieville in rural Franklin Parish, Louisiana.  My father bought a little wood-frame house on an acre of land in 1969.  He and my mother married the next year, and they worked throughout their marriage remodeling, adding on, and improving the property to make it their home.  They purchased the adjoining three acres in 1978, and started a Christmas tree farm.  My dad eventually replaced the Christmas trees with a pecan orchard, and we now enjoy the fruits of his labor with pecan pies every Thanksgiving and Christmas.

As my childhood home, this property is tied to all my important memories, but our family wasn’t the first to live there.  I searched for the property in the First Landowners Project database at HistoryGeo when it was a new offering at my local genealogy library.  I learned a man named Owen Tucker was the original patent holder, so I took a screenshot, emailed it to my dad, and filed it away as an interesting tidbit.

About two years later, I stumbled across the name Owen Tucker again — this time in my maternal line research.  Owen Tucker is actually my 4x-great-grandfather, an ancestor of my grandmother Dorothy Hendry.  I lived on his property the first 22 years of my life and didn’t even realize it!  Any stories of Owen Tucker have faded from our family’s collective memory, but I have managed to learn a few things about Owen’s life from records. Continue reading Owen Tucker: First Landowner of My Childhood Home

17 Jan 1845: Alexander Hendry Writes to Cousin Ellen Harper

It’s a cold and wet new year as I write from Liddieville, perhaps similar to the weather my 4x-great-grandfather Alexander Hendry experienced as he wrote his cousin Ellen Harper on January 17, 1845. I’m still excited about finding this letter on eBay, and I spent the last few weeks of 2018 mining it for information and pursuing leads about its recipient. Continue reading 17 Jan 1845: Alexander Hendry Writes to Cousin Ellen Harper

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: 2019 Index

I’ve joined genealogist Amy Johnson Crow’s 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge.  Each week in 2019, I’ll share a story, photo, or finding about one of my ancestors, inspired by a prompt.  I can interpret the prompt in any way I wish — which is likely to lead to some interesting stories as the year progresses!

Here’s an index of my posts in this series and the ancestors featured:

Family Artifacts on eBay: My First Find

Have you considered eBay as a genealogical resource?  Even though I’d read articles and listened to podcast episodes about others’ successes, I never imagined I’d find anything about my tiny hometown, much less my own family, on eBay.

Then I actually searched — and did! Continue reading Family Artifacts on eBay: My First Find

9 Nov 1863: McKaskle Brothers “Left Sick” at Camp in Monroe, Louisiana

Was any American family untouched by the Civil War?  No, most likely.  Among my ancestors, my McKaskle family was especially affected, the oldest four sons of George Washington McKaskle, Sr., and his wife Mary Jane serving on the Confederate, Union — and sometimes both — sides.  On November 9, 1863, two of my McKaskle fourth great-uncles were left sick at camp near Monroe, Louisiana, by their their Confederate unit.  It’s a fascinating story, rediscovered through military records and studies of their unit, the 28th (Gray’s) Regiment, Louisiana Infantry. Continue reading 9 Nov 1863: McKaskle Brothers “Left Sick” at Camp in Monroe, Louisiana