Genealogy Education Plan

With traveling and focusing on training to improve my genealogy research and writing skills, I haven’t posted on the blog for awhile.

In April, I finished the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Genealogy Education Programs (GEP I, II and III). The on-line courses covered DAR applications, plus information useful for other genealogical research. Topics in the twenty-seven lessons included vital records, evaluation of evidence, federal, state, and local records, finding alternative sources, using indirect evidence, creating an analysis, and resolving complex service problems. The last two lessons required submitting an written analysis. I’m now a DAR Genealogy Consultant and feel better prepared to research Revolutionary War patriots for myself and others in our local chapter.

The National Genealogical Society Family History Conference was held in Richmond, Virginia, 7-10 May 2014. I flew in for pre-conference workshops on the probate process and on writing. From Wednesday through Saturday, attendees could choose from dozens of lectures from 8:30 AM to 8:30 PM. When not attending lectures, I was in the Library of Virginia pulling records on Holders and Piggs from Pittsylvania County, perhaps the native home of my Virginia-borne Holder ancestors.

After a week back home, my husband and I flew to Scotland for a tour with a group from our Presbyterian church. Visits to Iona, Stirling Castle of Braveheart fame, Edinburgh, Holy Island-site of the first Viking landing, Rosslyn Chapel-featured in the Da Vinci Code, Cambridge, and several places in and around London were included. During twelve days in Scotland and England, I saw many family surnames-the tomb of Archbishop Musgrave at York Minister, very near where our possible Musgrave ancestors lived; Medcalf in northern England; Knox, Craig, McIntyre and other familiar surnames in Scotland; Archbishop Davidson in southern England and many more. I wish I had ancestors traced back across the pond-maybe a later trip. A wonderful experience, with great scenery and traveling companions.  In the meantime, 500 pictures are awaiting processing.

A week after the overseas trip, I headed to Birmingham, Alabama, for the week-long Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University. I was one of twenty five people taking the Writing and Publishing Course taught by Thomas Jones, PhD, one of the most highly regarded genealogy authors and editors in the field and editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ). In addition to pre-work, homework was assigned most nights. On Monday night, after attending an optional evening lecture, I finished my homework at midnight. No more evening lectures for me. During our lunch breaks and long afternoon break, I was in the library researching Alabama ancestors, including Isaac Oaks, a Revolutionary War soldier who fought in Virginia, moved to Georgia, then onto Alabama where he is buried. If I can document this lineage, Isaac Oaks will be my first DAR patriot in our Holder line. A highlight of this trip was meeting a Vickers cousin; we connected through my blog post on Daisy McIntire Vickers.

A genealogy education goal is to participate in a study group based on Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers and Librarians, edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills, the previous editor of NGSQ. The twenty nine chapters of ProGen, as it is called, cover Ethical Standards, Problem Analysis and Research Plans, Evidence Analysis and more. ProGen study groups work together on-line over about eighteen months covering the 600+ page book. Successful completion of ProGen is sometimes a precursor of genealogy certification. After Richmond, I applied for an upcoming ProGen class. I hoped for a fall class, but knew some people where waitlisted up to a year. While in Scotland, the ProGen coordinator sent me an email about an open spot for a study group starting June 1st. So in the week between the Scotland/England trip and IGHR, I finished my IGHR pre-work and did the reading for my first ProGen study group session held that same week.

Over the next eighteen months, my time will be balanced between genealogy research and training, focusing on the ProGen study group while still allowing time for an on-line NGSQ study group, which reviews one article from that periodical each month. For more details on NGSQ study groups, see Michele Simmons Lewis’s excellent description on her Ancestoring blog.  I’ve followed Michele’s blog and was especially pleased to meet her in the IGHR writing class.

With any luck, I’ll get back on track with weekly blogs, probably not posting 52 ancestors this year, but posting a few more as my research allows.

 Copyright © 2014 Andrea Musgrove Perisho

Land Records

Yesterday, I listened to a recorded webinar on Using the Bureau of Land Management Tract Books by Michael John Neill. [Read this only if you need instructions on how to get to the sites. To go to website, right click on underlined link and select open link in a new tab. Look at the top of your computer screen to see the new tab. Click on it. When you are on his site, on the right, see all the webinars he has available. If you are interested in buying some of his webinars, join his blog site and wait for the frequent sales.]

I’ve spent all my spare time since then on the Bureau of Land Management site. I’ve found what may have been my great great grandfather’s, Charles Wilson Buckmaster, original homestead in Oklahoma in 1903. (Or maybe not since it’s in Washita County, in western Oklahoma. However, that could have been the only available land and he rented it out. More research is needed to figure out if he’s our Charles Wilson Buckmaster.)

I found lots of Arkansas records on the Eoffs, Holders, Tylers, McIntires and Mays, with several Holder men who may be contemporaries of Spencer and Joseph. Maybe further research of these lines will help break down that Holder brick wall. 

The Bureau of Land Management has over 5 million Federal land title records issued since 1820, but not every state has been micofilmed. Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas and Missouri look pretty complete. In Texas, only two counties are on the website. That was disappointing. Kentucky and Tennessee don’t have many records on the site, either. From the header on the site home page, it looks like Nebraska records will be available soon.

If you, like me, have Scots Irish and other ancestors who were farmers moving west with the frontier, this free site is worth checking out. If you get bogged down on the site, it’s worth spending the $6 or so for Mr. Neill’s webinar.

Genealogy Bank is a new site with millions of available newspaper clippings. I joined after hearing great reviews. I found no newspaper clippings from my Oklahoma, Texas or Arkansas relatives on that site. So if your ancestors are from the rural areas of those states, wait a little while and check on their coverage before spending your dollars on this site. 

Good luck seeking your own roots.

Copyright © 2013 Andrea Musgrove Perisho


“He’s Mine” – A Valentine Story

NaDean Holder
NaDean Holder

NaDean was in the 5th grade. School had just started. NaDean and her friends, Velma and Mary, welcomed some new students – Mary Mae, Clorene and Inez. The three sisters spoke fondly of their older brother, Sonny Boy.

Sonny Boy or William, as he was later called, was 12 years old and would not be going to school that year. His daddy had broken his foot and would not be able to farm. Young William would be staying out of school to put in the crops. He used a mule and a plow to put in, as he later described, the crookedest corn rows ever, since he wasn’t big enough to keep the mule in a straight line.

Mary Mae’s stories of William intrigued the 10-year-old NaDean, who had never laid eyes on him. She turned to her friends and declared, “He’s mine.”

William Andrew Musgrove
William Andrew Musgrove

After she actually met William, NaDean stayed sweet on him all through school. When she was 15, William would ride his horse, Dixie, the five miles down to her house. They would sit on the front porch and talk, with her little brother making faces at them through the screened window. Sometimes, on Sunday afternoons they, with other friends, would ride double on horses two miles further south to swim in the Red River.

After finishing high school, William graduating the year after NaDean, they married in 1952, ten years after NaDean told her friends, “He’s mine.”

In 2012, they celebrated 60 years of marriage, along with their 5 children, 5 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.

Family Reunion
Family Reunion

William and NaDean are my parents, but I never heard this charming story growing up. After I became interested in genealogy, all the books recommended conducting family interviews. While I couldn’t imagine learning any new family stories, I’m the kind of person that follows the rules. So I gathered some sample questions from a popular genealogy book, bought a tape recorder and scheduled an interview.

This story is just one reason I’m still conducting family interviews.

Like most things, preparing for your family interviews creates better results. Decide your focus; realizing most interviews should last no longer than an hour. Interviews can be tiring for both the interviewee and for you! Think about who else you want to interview and consider starting with the least involved person. That person could give you some insights for questions for your more significant interviews, especially if you get only one chance for that significant interview.

Write out your questions ahead of time or use a script of questions from a genealogy book. The library can be a good source for genealogy books. Your topics could start with the basics asking for birth day, date of marriage and where they lived. You could then ask the same information about their children, parents and grandparents, including any death dates and locations.

Other interview topics could be questions about cultural customs like how birthdays and holidays were celebrated; what churches were attended and how often; types of clothing worn as teenagers; what did they do for fun when they were kids; describe their first job, their first memory, their first house or how they met their spouse.

As you can, see the list is endless. Limit the use of questions requiring just a “yes” or “no” answer.  You’re looking for family stories, so don’t be in a rush to finish your list of questions. If you keep the interview pleasant and under one hour, hopefully, you can schedule a second interview.

At the start of the interview, ask permission to use a digital recorder. Start the recording with the name of the person being interviewed, your name, the date and place. Just keep the recorder running, even if the person is stopping to think.  You want to focus on the interviewee, not the technology.

Remember, if you transcribe the interview, to plan on three to four hours of transcription time for every hour of interview. If anyone has any ideas on how to transcribe faster, let me know. I’ve tried some voice recognition software, but with our Southern accents, the software was not very useful.

As a result of your efforts, future generations will be introduced to the stories and the voices knowing “He (and She are) Mine.”

You can send your feedback, comments and questions via email to or on this blog site at as we seek our roots together.

Andrea Musgrove Perisho is a retired health care managing director and a member of the Lee County Genealogical Society Writer’s Group. Copyright 2013 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.


 This migration look place to the Chesapeake Bay area of Virginia and Maryland between 1642 and 1675. By now the Puritans had control in England and the Anglicans were being persecuted. Some in this migration left because of religious persecution, but there was a bigger motivation for many. Inheritance laws in England gave all real property to the oldest son. Some of those who left England were younger sons of upper class families who wanted to go to a place where they could have land of their own. Among our ancestors, the Tylers, who were Maryland planters and from our Holder family line, were probably in this migration.

About twenty-five percent of the persons in this second migration were from the English upper class, with wealth, social standing, and education in England. The plantation owners were members of the Anglican Church and were Royalist in their politics. The other seventy-five percent were from the lower classes and came as indentured servants to work on the large plantations. These were poor, illiterate and unskilled. This created a class system that could not have existed in New England. In this migration, males outnumbered women by about 4 to 1 with most between the ages of 15 and 24.

There was much emphasis on the extended family, who tended to settle together. The nuclear families lived close together and buried their dead in family plots. (Unlike New England, there were common burial grounds in each town.) Households included servants, lodgers and visitors. Virginians were not as suspicious of strangers as New Englanders were.

In Virginia, families tended to be smaller with more step-relationships, because the death rate was much higher due to disease.  Marriage was not a contract as in New England; it was a sacred knot that could not be untied. All marriages were performed in the Anglican church followed by an elaborate marriage feast. Divorce was not allowed. Love was not thought to be necessary before marriage. When it didn’t occur before, it was expected to follow. Parents had an active role in marriage decisions but didn’t force a child to marry. First cousin marriages were common, keeping the holdings in the family. Some men did not marry because there just weren’t enough women to go around. Sexual relationships were supposed to be confined to marriage, but punishments were not as severe as in New England and women were punished more severely than men.

Parents in Virginia were more indulgent than parents in New England. Children were encouraged to be self-willed, but expected to observe self-restraint. The elder patriarch idea was very strong and much ritual surrounded it also. There were few schools. Children of the elite class were educated at home and the poor remained illiterate. There were no townships as in New England. People settled on plantations and there were small market villages.


  • “Albion’s Seed, Four British Folkways in American,” David Hackett Fischer, 1989.

Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.

Peter Adams Tyler, Arkansas, Convicted for Treason against the C.S.A.

Peter Adams Tyler was the eldest son of Baker Tyler, one of the earliest settlers in Northwest Arkansas. He was born on December 22, 1823. He prospered as a farmer and citizen until his death in the Civil War. He was a Mason and served as sheriff of Searcy County, AR, from 1854 to 1858. He probably spent his entire married life farming the area in what is now known as Tyler Bend. In 1847, records show him with “one horse and one other cattle”. By 1857, he had purchased all of the 120 acres that made up his final farm holdings. By 1860 his tax base is listed as $2700.00, a tidy holding in those days. He would be considered a successful farmer for his time.

Possible Cherokee Connection

Family tradition states that he met his wife to be, Eveline Minerva Price, at a trading post on the Mississippi River. Also, Minerva was reportedly 1/2 or more Cherokee. Practicality would suggest that he met Minerva at a store or post in Northwest Arkansas. Eveline, born in North Carolina, followed the Cherokee routes to Arkansas, and Price is a prominent name among the Cherokee Nation. As yet, proof of her Cherokee heritage has not been found. Peter and Eveline married on July 4, 1845. They had nine children, including James Buchanan Tyler, Carl Lee Holder’s grandfather.

 The Searcy County Men

Searcy County had a large contingent of men who had little support for the Confederacy or the war in general. See information on the Arkansas Peace Society in another posting. In fact, both the Union and Confederate army drew troops from Searcy County.  In November, 1861, Colonel Sam Leslie, commander of the 45th Arkansas Militia, called up several companies to apprehend suspects.  Governor Henry Rector ordered Leslie to arrest all Searcy County men involved with the Arkansas Peace Society and ship them to Little Rock to be tried as traitors. On December 9, 1861, the prisoners were shackled together, marched to Little Rock, and offered the choice of enlisting in the Confederate army or standing trial for treason. Apparently, all joined the Army. The group was called “The Searcy County Men”. Charles W. Price, brother to Eveline was in the group.

Peter A. Tyler Sr. was very involved in recruiting for the peace society. He feared for his life and hid out. He was not apprehended until December 16, 1861. He testified and was convicted of treason.

 No one knows for sure where and when he died or is buried, but the evidence supports his death, due to measles or other disease, either in a prisoner of war camp or in a work camp near Bowling Green, Kentucky. In January, 1862, he wrote a letter from Bowling Green to his wife indicating epidemic illnesses – see below for a transcript of the letter.

 He was never heard from again. A letter by Daniel P. Tyler in 1936 states “Grandpa Tyler was buried at Bowling Green, Kent.” and the family bible of M. Catherine Tyler gives his death date as February, 1862.

The material below (in italics) was photocopied from a copy at the Arkansas History Commission and transcribed by Rebecca Lambert on 10 April 1999, who tried to follow Peter’s punctuation and spelling as closely as possible.

Bolling Green Kentucky
January the 17th 1862
Dear Wife & Children I once more take my pen in hand to write to you to let you know how we are and what we are doing–all of us is knocking about as yet but not all well Thomas Thompson has the meeseals broke out on him This morning And I am very unwell my self so much so that if I was at home I would be in my bed Though I hope nothing searious it is my Brest and side That gives me the undlly [?] uneasness at and pain at Present although we have verry disheartning news This morning they say hear that the Unio is a gradeel Stronger then us and that we are surrounded in all sides by them we learn heare allso that the North has taken Gallveston in Texas Though I beleave That the People in This place is not verry uneasy for They appeare to be verry busey bilding houses in Town Besides This there is great namy cars and waggons going heare This morning and no wander they have one Hundred & thirty thousdand Troops to dard them besides all This They have strong fortifications all around Town so I have give you enough of this at present more then … They are looking for a heavy batte soon if it comes on at all.
I will say to you that I want to see you all verry bad but I know that it is impossiable at present but I trust that I may see you again in life and that we may be injoying good Health for Their is nothing on Earth ould be so consoling to me then to meet you all again in Peace on Earth allthough you need not to greive nor let your mind be troubled about me for I feel like I am purficley Resigned when the Sumons comes let it come when and where it may And I would be pleased to heare and allso to know that you and the Rest of my friends could meet that Calmar Doom when asigned to you & them.
I will say to you that when I first set down To write to you I would have a good deel to write But it is not the Case about the finis of my letter. When Lindsey Price wrote in Memphis we had not heard about Charles Price & Samuel Thompson and others being their but we found out where They was and went to see them.
So I will write but a little more at present.  Though I hope that thease lines may come safe to hand and find you all well and Dooing well now we are not stationed at this place we have to leave heare This Eavening for T. C. Hindmans Leagion about 24 miles distant from this place and it may be so that I can write to you so that you can write to me and their you may now wheare to direct your letters be careful about yourself & Children so no more at presant ondley show this to all inquireing friends

So Farewell my Dear Wife Children & Friends at present
This from P.A. Tyler } To Eveline M. Tyler & Children


  • Peter A. Tyler – Family Records of James J. Johnston, Suzanne D. Rogers, and military records.
  • Edward Gerdes’ Civil War Page for more information on Arkansas Civil War activities and the Peacekeepers Society at this URL: Edward Gerdes’ Civil War Page or
  • Searcy County, Arkansas Census, p268, 1850.
  • “Searcy County My Dear, A History of Searcy County “, by McInturff, pages 37, 38,39,40,41.

Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.

DNA Testing Results – Southern European Ethnicity

As you’ve seen in a earlier post, my AncestoryDNA testing results showed 59% of my genetic ethnicity from Scandinavian, surprisingly. However, Vikings did control much of Northern Europe, so the results do make sense, as we go back in history. My next two major ethnic groups at 14% each were British Isles and Eastern European; see those earlier posts for more details. Today’s post features Southern European Ethnicity with my genetic ethnicity results in this group at 9%.  The information below is from my AncestoryDNA test results.

About Southern European Ethnicity

Modern Day Location

Italy, Spain, Portugal

Did You Know?

One of the most common Italian surnames is Russo.

About Your Region

If you had to choose one region of Europe that has wielded the most influence over the course of western history, a strong candidate would be the land of your ancestors—an area that includes modern day Italy, Spain, and Portugal.

In ancient Italy, the Romans and their empire set the stage for modern European culture. After adopting Christianity in the 4th century, the Romans spread (along with their Latin language) to all corners of their realm. Centuries later, Italy again stepped to the forefront, leading the way out of the Middle Ages as brilliant artists and philosophers like Machiavelli, Leonardo Da Vinci, and Michelangelo ushered in the Renaissance.

Spain and Portugal experienced periods of great strength and influence during the Age of Discovery. Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand II of Spain funded the voyage of Christopher Columbus to the New World in 1492, initiating an era of global colonization and great wealth and influence. Today, as a result, Spanish is the second most spoken language on Earth. Portugal kept pace with its neighbor, establishing its own colonies around the world, most notably Brazil.

In the modern era, all three counties saw tumultuous transitions from monarchies to authoritarian dictatorships to modern republics. While their modern day borders may be much smaller than in the days of their powerful empires, their legacy still reaches around the globe.

Migrations into this region

Southern Europe shares a substantial amount of genetic affinity with North Africa. This is mostly because the Iberian Peninsula was conquered by Moorish (Berber) invaders, from present-day Morocco, in about 711 C.E. Their legacy can still be seen in Spain and Portugal, ranging up to 15% in some individuals.

Migrations from this region

During the Last Glacial Period, beginning about 21,000 years ago, glaciers and windswept tundra made much of northern and central Europe uninhabitable. Populations retreated into the southern glacial refugia of Spain and Italy. Then as the climate warmed, these Mesolithic people expanded out of southern Europe to occupy the entire continent, as far north as present-day Finland. The south-to-north pattern of genetic differences in Europe is attributed to this post-glacial expansion. Additionally, Iberia was the historic source of migration into the Americas. Populations throughout the Caribbean, Latin America, southern USA and South America can trace their lineages back to Spain and Portugal, usually through their paternal side.

Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.

DNA Results Eastern European Ethnicity

While our family stories don’t include any Eastern European origins, my DNA shows 14% Eastern European ethnicity – the same percentage as my British Isles ethnicity. Below is the Eastern European information from AncestryDNA.  

Modern Day Location

Poland, Greece, Macedonia, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Romania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Belarus, Moldova, Montenegro, Bulgaria, Belgarus, Kosovo

Did You Know?

The national anthem of Greece contains 158 verses, and is probably the longest.

About Your Region

Your ethnic profile points to Eastern Europe, which is a region stretching from the Baltic Sea in the north to the Mediterranean in the south. It consists primarily of former “Eastern Bloc” nations that were either aligned with or occupied by the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The Baltic states—Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania—as well as Belarus and Ukraine were annexed directly into the USSR. While Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria were satellite states as members of the Warsaw Pact. Also part of the region are the nations of the former Yugoslavia—Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, and Macedonia. Albania and Greece sit at the southern end of the region, bordering the Mediterranean.

The area is considered by many ethnologists to be the homeland of the Slavic people. Most of the nations in the region speak a Slavic language, which spread north and east into Russia and south toward the Balkans in the 5th and 6th centuries.

Perhaps the most famous resident of the area is Greece. From the ancient Mycenaeans and the Homeric epics of the Trojan War to the famous cities of Athens and Thebes, the fearsome Spartans to Alexander the Great—Greek culture and history laid the foundation for Roman, European, and, ultimately, western culture as a whole.

In the 1400s, the Ottoman Turks conquered the remnants of the Byzantine Empire and throughout the 1500s expanded deep into Eastern Europe, occupying the entire southern region up to Hungary, Romania, and parts of Ukraine. As a result, there are scattered communities of Muslims in the southern countries, although Christianity is prevalent throughout the region.

Migrations into this region

After the Last Glacial Period 15,000 years ago, populations expanded onto the eastern European plain from the Balkans and Blacks Sea as ice and tundra retreated. These Eastern Europeans were the first of the Neolithic farming culture that entered the Balkans about 9,000 years ago from the Middle East. In fact, individuals from southeastern Europe have inherited a higher proportion of Middle Eastern ancestry than other European individuals. About 2,000-3,000 years ago, the ancestors of Magyars migrated from the Ural Mountains in Russia toward present-day Hungary. Although they contribute their unique language to the region, their genetic impact may have been small.

Migrations from this region

About 2,300 years ago, the height of the Eastern European influence may have been the rise of the Greeks and their Hellenistic empire following the death of Alexander the Great. Their empire encompassed Italy, Turkey and even stretched all the way to northern India. Among the southeastern populations, Greeks in particular share elevated ancestry with the Middle East, potentially due to relatively recent migrations.

Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.

DNA Result – British Isles Ethnicity

Almost all of our ancestors arrived in American from the British Isles. Our ancestors were mostly Puritans, Quakers,  plantation owners and their indentured servants who came to Virginia and Maryland and Scots and English, who lived on either side of the border between those two countries.

A visit our ancestral lands in the British Isles would take a complete tour of all of England, the southern part of Scotland and the northern part of Ireland, where many of the Scots Irish stopped for a generation or two before traveling on American.

Below is the AncestryDNA discussion about the British Isles Ethnicity. My test results showed 14% of my ancestors had this ethnicity. See previous and future posts to learn more about our ancestors ethnicity.   

Modern Day Location

England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales

Did You Know?

The English language, predominantly spoken in this region, is descended from German settlers.

About Your Region

You’re from North-Western Europe, an area including the modern-day United Kingdom and Ireland. It is a group of islands separated from France and the rest of continental Europe by the narrow English Channel. It is the rolling, emerald-green hills of Ireland, the craggy, weathered peaks of Wales, the rich history of the city on the Thames, and the deep, mysterious lochs of Scotland.

This is where Shakespeare wrote his plays and poems. It’s home to the legends of King Arthur and Robin Hood. It’s produced some of the world’s most adventurous explorers and greatest political and military figures—George Mallory, Winston Churchill, Admiral Horatio Nelson. Brilliant scientific minds such as Sir Isaac Newton and James Clerk Maxwell laid the foundations of modern physics. And it’s the place where a rainbow can lead to a pot of gold. Maybe.

The history of the region is one of periodic invasions and settlements by various groups including the Angles and Saxons from Germany, the Jutes from Denmark, the Vikings, the Normans from northern France and, of course, the Romans. English, a Germanic language brought by the Angles, is obviously the primary language spoken. But a few of the older languages spoken by the ancient Celts still exist—a rarity in post-Roman Europe.

The people of the region have been witness to sweeping political changes and amazing technological progress through the centuries, from the Glorious Revolution to the Industrial Revolution. But despite their penchant for reform and progress, they have always found a way to preserve the past. From royal families to prime ministers, ancient languages to international diversity, from thousand-year-old cathedrals to glass skyscrapers, their culture is a fascinating blend of old and new.

Migrations into this region

Despite being a cluster of islands separated from continental Europe, Great Britain and Ireland haven’t been insulated from outsiders. Although they weren’t the first, the Celts from central Europe spread throughout the Northwest Isles about 2500 years ago. Then, as with everywhere else, the Romans came. After the Romans withdrew from the area, tribes from northern Germany and Denmark (the Angles, Saxons and Jutes) came to conquer much of what is now England. About this same time, the mighty Vikings also left their imprint, particularly in southern Scotland, Ireland and western England.

Migrations from this region

Religious and political upheaval in 17th and 18th century England played a critical role in establishing and defining early American history. Called the Great Migration, religious dissidents including the Pilgrims, Quakers, and Puritans left England seeking religious freedom and a new way of life. Although the migration was not large in overall numbers, it laid the foundation for American culture, including the concepts of church-state separation and religious tolerance.

The Great Irish Famine, also called the Potato Famine, was triggered by an outbreak of potato blight, which destroyed potato crops across Europe in the mid 1800s. Already enduring widespread poverty and massive unemployment, Ireland was hit harder than any other nation by the disaster since potatoes were a dietary staple. Ireland lost nearly a quarter of its population. Those who could leave, fled mostly to England, Australia, Canada, and the United States, creating a world-wide Irish diaspora.

Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.


 When I first saw our family genealogy books, I was fascinated by all the names and dates, but wanted to know the stories behind the people. I didn’t take the time to start the research until last fall. This blog is a way to share the results of my work and, perhaps, work with other genealogists to build our family trees.

Included in my research is information on the social/political/economic background of the times. Researching this has been helpful to me in understanding why, such as, our ancestors moved from the British Isles on to American and then kept moving west.

I did not hear any of these stories when I was growing up and have gathered them so further generations can be aware of all our ancestors did to create this country and our families. Some of the stories are very exciting; some are heart breaking and some are shocking to us today. Our ancestors were people of their times, reflecting the customs of their current society.  We have ancestors on both sides of the Revolutionary War and on both sides of the Civil War. We have ancestors who were slave owners and, while not documented, we may well have Native American ancestors. 

The name “After Toil Comes Rest” comes from the headstone of James Monroe Elliott, Jr., the son of the Civil War soldier whose will be posted soon. James Monroe Elliott, Jr., has his own interesting stories, which I hope to research someday. 

 I do not give my permission for commercial use of this information, but feel free to use this information in your own research. 

I am fully responsible for all errors in this material. One genealogist said she now spends 40% of her time correcting her earlier research. I fully expect to have the same experience. Please let me know of any corrections or new information available, especially about our family stories.