Saturday, July 6, 2013

Every Once In A While I Have A N.S. Moment

Art by Bill Stroble

I have been trying for days to think of a good quote to use this week that sums up an unexpected moment. Finally, early this afternoon it struck me when I found myself saying “No S**t!” when my wife and I were browsing in a small gift shop in Kutztown (more about our trip tomorrow). Like my selected quote, this post will be quite short this week but it really was a cool moment in the day.

I found myself uttering those aforementioned eloquent words in a haze of disbelief when I came across the postcard scanned above. To many it is nothing special, maybe an interesting picture and record of many of the American Indian tribes across North America. But it was a completely different experience for me.

Usually, I wouldn’t pay too much attention to such an illustration but, for some reason, I decided to pick it up and take a closer look. What I found had been rare in my genealogical research experience thus far… I found the Monacan name on a map. Even upon a second and third look the name was still there.

As I mentioned in my Sons of the American Revolution post earlier in the week, one of my many ancestral lines is that of a Monacan Indian (possibly Chief) by the name of John Redcross. Not much is written or generally known about this Amherst County, Virginia Nation but, slowly, the name and the history is beginning to gain acceptance. Even with my limited knowledge about this particular part of my heritage, I still felt a certain amount of pride when my eyes fell upon those letters.

It’s hard to explain but it was an amazing experience to find that one word on a small little souvenir at a tourist stop in Southeastern Pennsylvania. One word with a lot of weight. One Nation scribed in ink. One people recognized in a small but significant way.