Sunday, February 12, 2012

Another Brick Wall Down!

I have been working on both my family tree as well as my husband's for many years. And there are a number of brick walls we have yet to break through. [DH works on his tree when the "mood" hits... and in the past few years... that's pretty seldom!]

Well, routinely I will throw out feelers in search engines and see if something will turn up that might assist us. Yesterday, I looked through online family trees to see if any one else had found some info. And... bless my soul... someone had. However, that someone did not have a single source listed... and so I discounted the info until I could find proof.

Don't ya know... after several hours, I was able to locate just the sources necessary to provide substantial proof to theory of this line?

Yep... another brick wall...

...comes tumbling down!

We knew that Emma Louise Pettie's father was Timothy Martin Pettie. This information we had obtained from the FOIA on Emma's Social Security Application [today we can't get that information!].

Emma Louise Pettie Henry's SS-5 Application

And we had found Timothy on the 1880, 1900 and 1910 Census records. But where was he before that?

From a family tree posted on we were able to get a clue as to who Timothy's father was. In searching for him, Balaam Petty, we found the missing years of Timothy's census records. These matched up to his age for each of those years, as well as other known facts about him.

In so finding, we also discovered proof of Timothy's second wife, as well as who his mother was. Searching back a bit farther, we discovered Balaam's parents, and their subsequent marriage record in Wake County, North Carolina in 1811.

Balaam Petty and his family on the 1870 Census at Ballard County, Kentucky
Timothy is listed here, as well on the Census records for 1860.

While copies of the Census records, marriage records, birth records, and burials are found, today is being spent recording all of this lovely information.

What an exciting day for us here at Mountain Genealogists to break through this brick wall, and be able to say with certainty who Texican's gr-gr-grandfather is. Even more exciting, we can say with certainty who his gr-gr-gr-grandfather is, too!

Yep... we're doing the happy dance here!

Lesson learned?

Never give up. Online sources, are of course, only a drop in the bucket to what can be found offline and on site! However, keep going back to those online sources. They are constantly being updated, and you never know when something will cause you to have a break through!

One of the reasons we had been unable to locate Timothy Petty prior to 1880, is that his name was being indexed as "Thim." I'm sure someone thought that was a good abbreviation for Timothy...but it sure wasn't coming up in indexes appropriately! But once we found his father's name...there he was! How wonderful for us!

Keep checking back periodically to those old search sites and search engines. You may find yourself suddenly.... on the other side of the brick wall!

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