Saturday, November 20, 2010

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - "What Are You Thankful For?"

Randy Seaver has issued us a new challenge:

"Hey Genea-Musings readers, it's Saturday Night (again) -- time for more Genealogy Fun (again!).

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  Make a list of Genealogy-oriented people or things that you are thankful for.  Any number -- 1, 10, 100, whatever.

2)  Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment on this post, or in a Facebook comment or Note.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!"

I feel like Thanksgiving is a time for reflection as well as looking forward, and being thankful for all.

This year, I'd like to point out one individual who truly inspired me to study and work in genealogy, by bringing my own family history to light.

Fannie Margaret Bell was born 14 Dec. 1920 in St. Albans, Kanawha, West Virginia to Romie Clair Bell and Ida Lilly Russell. On 22 Oct 1939 she married James Edward Beane [1914-1993]. James was my 3rd cousin.

Fannie and James had two sons, Philip and Ron.

James and Fannie worked diligently over the years to construct the Beane family history. They traveled extensively across the United States to gather and garner every scrap of information they could find. Years before the advent of the personal computer, Fannie's files on the family were considered legendary!

In 2001 I got to meet Fannie face to face for the first time. This diminutive woman had already suffered a stroke and was in a wheelchair at that time. But she was so kind and gracious to me. And I immediately had a new hero!

Fannie shared many long letters answering my multitudes of questions. And she gave me some of her treasured files when I got stuck. She was always there with her smiles and answers. And she gave me much, much encouragement, just when I needed it most.

Sadly... we lost Fannie on the 16th of May this year.

Fannie was truly an inspiration. She was my genealogy hero. And this Thanksgiving I will give thanks for all she gave to me and shared with me. A special candle will be lit in honor of her.

Fannie, your light continues to shine brilliantly! And it will for generations to come!

Fannie Bell Beane
[Fannie receiving an appreciation award at our Family Reunion in 2007.]

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