Ever work in a retail shop during its year-end inventory process? Perhaps right in the chaos of a huge sale, those barcode readers are beeping incessantly—or counting and tabulating by whatever next generation of computerized methods are now available.
Somewhere in the back of my mind, something like that is beeping and tabulating all those as-yet incomplete genealogy research projects still sitting in my files. At the end of this year, that unfinished business has found its voice and is calling out to me. Loudly.
Part of the reason, I suppose, is that I’ve still left that important D.A.R. application undone. Once, I thought it would be a neat idea to stake my claim in the founding moments of our nation. Now, I have a push and a shove from fellow relatives who would also love to get in on the action. If I do the paperwork, I become the
research pioneer upon whose shoulders those other applicants may stand.
More than that, though, is the fact that this D.A.R. line is the very line—well, up to a point, at least—from which my newly-discovered mystery cousin also descends. To help unravel that adoptee’s puzzle a little further, I’ve just taken advantage of Family Tree DNA’s winter sale on the “Family Finder” DNA test. I may as well finish up the paperwork on all my known lines and their descendants while I await those DNA test results.
While I have much more to catalog on my discoveries from our recent trip to Ireland, most of those notes are what might be called “raw data”—possibly vital clues, but buried in a terribly boring setting. It will take more work to extract and polish any discoveries mined from those findings. While I’m feeling the strong urge to re-direct, these notes can wait. A fresh start in the new year will be just the thing to insert some new vigor into that search.
Meanwhile, we’re now in the month that closes out the year of 2014 for us. I feel that strong call coming back at me again to finish up old projects. I may as well yield to it. Nothing feels quite so good as crossing something off that research list.
So, where to, now? Since just finding that stash of documents and records that I had—meaning well—set aside from my aunt’s papers, I may as well pick up the paper chase with those. In particular, we’ll re-enter the fray with an unsourced, undated set of news clippings pasted onto a page including a brief note handwritten by my grandmother—the one whose unofficial name change has given me grief of the D.A.R. application kind. We’ll talk about her note later, but for now, let’s take a look at the first of three newspaper clippings accompanying that note.
That first piece of newsprint happens to contain an obituary for my maternal grandmother’s mother. The D.A.R. line upon which I intend to base my application connects with Sarah Ann Broyles McClellan’s father’s line. It’s important—but, up until now, difficult—to demonstrate that my great-grandmother, Sarah Ann, was mother of my grandmother, the one who was born Rubie Broyles McClellan, but died Ruth B. Davis.
For now, let’s just record what that obituary reported, and move on from there with the next of the other news clippings tomorrow.
Death Claims Mrs. M’ClellanMrs. Sarah Ann Broyles McClellan, 76, of 2804 Jefferson St., widow of the late Dr. R. C. McClellan, dentist and former mayor of Fort Meade, died Saturday night in a Tampa hospital. She was a native of Tennessee and moved to Tampa in 1919.A member of the Tampa Heights Methodist Church, she is survived by a daughter, Mrs. J. R. Davis, Columbus, Ohio; two sons, Charles T. McClellan, San Carlos, Calif., and William H. McClellan, Tampa; one sister, Mrs. Nellie B. Jones, Johnson City, Tenn., and five grandchildren. The Wilson Sammon Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.