Sunday, July 24, 2016

Sunday Search: Documentation For My Supplemental Application

Ever since I received the letter from the Sons of the American Revolution saying that my application was accepted (actually, our applications), I have been working on my first supplemental application. As I have previously outlined, the first application was tracing back the Redcross line on my dad’s side of the family and now I am weaving my way through my mom’s side. It should be no surprise that the line that I am using for this application is tracing back to John Noblit.  

In addition to the previous difficulties tracing what was a line unbeknownst to us until recently, there was also the task of pulling together some of the documentation for recent generations. Surprisingly, there has been a lot of material uncovered and some tremendous recourses discovered which leaves little doubt about the family line prior to the 1940’s. Not including myself, the recent work has been in pulling together the documentation for the recent generations. Just last weekend, I finally got those last few items that I need to complete my second mountain of paperwork.

I have known about my grandfather’s Masonic Bible for most of my life and I knew that my grandmother would pull it out every once in a while not necessarily for what was written on the pages but to remember the family members represented by the scraps of paper between the pages. That being said, I had never taken the opportunity to sit down with my grandmother or my mom to really see what was contained within the blue covers. When my mom gave the Bible to me last weekend, I couldn’t help by start paging through the chapters and examining the documents that continue to buckle the cover.

There were certainly some interesting pieces of paper floating loosely between the pages containing names, marriages, birth and death dates, and some clippings from others moments in my grandmothers life including a photo from the local paper and a small clipping announcing a party for my grandparents’ 25th wedding anniversary. Of course, bound deep within the pages of the book is something that I had been looking for… my grandparents’ wedding certificate from 1940. In the subsequent pages I found not only the births of my mom and her siblings in my grandmother’s handwriting but also some of the deaths in the family from the time they were married through the passing of my uncles.

It is a unique opportunity to use this family record in my most recent SAR application and it is also an honor to be entrusted with the history contained in its pages. It is not only a connection to my family history as a whole but a real, tactile, connection to my grandmother and my grandfather. In both regards, I consider myself a caretaker of the family history and I hope to preserve not just the pages that have been passed down but also the documents that have been discovered over the years so that we are never again in a position to forget.