Gutsy Bonnet Wearin' Texas Gals

If you have been following along with my Ancestor Based Posts for the last couple of months, you won't be surprised to see ANOTHER HAT!

It seems the ladies in my family have had a thing for hats!  I've had a thing for hats forever, and never much cared if they were in fashion or not.  Of course in the 50's and 60s hats were popular especially at Easter and any Sunday.  Then they went out of style for awhile, and everybody that loved wearing hats would say, "I wish hats would come back in style".

Shoot!!! I say to heck with that In or Out of Style business!  When you live in Texas where the blisterin' sun beats down on your head you had better wear a hat! Like I always say, "If you gotta em...wear em"!!!
My Great Grandmother Martha Jane wore a Pilgrim/Pioneer/Sunbonnet Sue Bonnet.
 I just love it that I was named for a Hat.

Martha Jane wasn't a Pilgrim but a Texas Pioneer who earned her Bonnet Wearin' Status by drivin' a team of horses pullin a Covered Wagon across the Plains of West Texas.  She was a 'Gutsy Gal' who raised four children as a young widow in the early 1900's.  One of those four children was my Grandmother Effie Estell who was a Bonnet Wearin' Calf Birthn' Gutsy Gal!  You can read that story HERE

Speakin' of Pilgrims...I found some! Yep, I've been De-Clutterin' the Closets and
 Clutterin'Up my 'Junktique Booth'. 
Spent a couple of Sweatin' in the Booth days getting ready for fall! 
I'm sooooo ready for Fall!!!
How about Ya'll???


Bonafide Southern Baptist Preacher Man

bo·na fide: adj \ˈbō-nə-ˌfīd,\made in good faith without fraud or deceit

As it happens, there was a couple of Southern Baptist Preacher men in my Family Tree.
Now mind you, I had to go Waaaaayyyy Back to find them....all they way back to 1776.
Yep, that's right....during the American Revolutionary War period.
It seems my 5thGreat Grand Uncle James, was thrown in jail for preaching in his home.
[History of the Rise and Progress of Baptists in Virginia by Robert B. Semple] 

Now I know that you know that photography in the 1700's was not...let's say...there!  So the photo above is from my Vintage Collection and used herin for interest only (keepin' it bonafide and all)....still I think 5thGreat Uncle James could have had a mucho mustache and I know he had those eyebrows...they are just like mine before the invention of the tweezers.

So now, we come to the Bonafide Baptist Part of this Post!
My 5thGreat Granddaddy John...good Biblical name...his wife...Mary...another good Biblical name...and their TEN children moved from Virginia to Georgia to escape Religious Retrictions placed on Baptist activities.   They joined the Colony of Baptist headed by the celebrated Reverend Daniel Marshall whom they met at church in Virginia.  The Colony settled in Georgia on Kiokee Creek, St. Pauls Parish which later became Columbia County.  The church established by Reverend Marshall was the first Baptist Church in Georgia of which 5thGreatGdaddy was a founding member.

The drawings shown above are of Reverend Marshall and the Kiokee Baptist Church
Reverend Marshall went on to establish other Baptist Churches in Georgia...many still in existence today.  His life and contributions to the Baptist faith are well documented...you can visit the Marshall Monument in Elijah Clark Memorial State Park in Lincolnton, Georgia HERE. (at bottom of page)

One of John and Mary's sons, John Ichabod...my future 4thGreatGdaddy...married Reverend Marshalls daughter Lucy Eunice. 

And that's how I came to be a Southern Baptist and have Bushy Eyebrows!

And I guess 'A's in Math ... good a reason as any!


Golden Moments In The Stream of Life

The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone. ~George Elliot

I liken this quote to the time I've spent in the last few months researching and documenting my Family Tree.  I invite you to view my collection of Vintage Photos and read the 'Stories' I've posted here on CollectInTexas Gal and on My Family Heritage Blog...Tracks of My Texas Ancestors. 

From my Collection of Vintage Photos, I've been drawn to the portraits of children.  Studying them in detail reveals much about their place in the family like this big sister with the big bows tied kind of cockeyed around her braids.
I imagine her Mama fixed them all straight and spiffy before the picture was taken, but back then getting your picture taken was like going to church...puttin' on your Sunday Best and Sittin' Still through lots of 'Hellfire's and Damnations' when you didn't know what that meant except that it was Hottern'Hell in all those SundayBestin's!

And then there's the 'Camera Contraption'!  Can you just imagine what Big Sister was thinkin' about the Camera Creature who spoke from under the Three Legged OneEyed Smoke Belchin' Contraption?  No wonder she's reaching for baby's hand!  "It's all right baby.  I'm your Guardian Angel."
Just look at this 'Sweet Angel' in the 'PinTuck Ruffled and Laced' Dress.
Now, one of the things I've discovered in studying 19th Century photos is that just because the child is wearing a dress doesn't necessarily mean it's a Girl Child!

For instance...in this Family Portrait of my Great Grandparents taken about 1899...
you'll notice that four of the five family members are wearing dresses.
I'll start on the left with names: 
Great Uncle Meritt Douglas, Great Uncle Othello Elisha, Great Granddaddy Steven Bennett, my Grandmother Effie Estella and Great Grandmother Martha Jane.
(Boy Howdy, did I come from a bunch of  'Off The Wall Named' folks wearin' dresses)

Several years later...beginning of the 20th Century...there's one more child in the Great's Family Portrait.
And Yep, it's a Girl Child named Mary Ella wearin' a dress. 
Standing next to her is my Grandmother Effie Estella wearin' a dress.
And those guys in Knickers?
Yep, it's Merritt Douglas and Othello Elisha!
Don't you know from the look on their faces they are thinkin'...
"Our Mama MADE us wear these 'SissyShirts'!!!

So here we are in the middle of the 20th Century where parents sat their kids down on the ground on an old blanket from the trunk of their '1950 Pink Nash Rambler' and said 'Say Cheese'!
So I did with my whole face.
 My brother Tommy thought he said, 'Freeze', and baby sister Sonja, well, her first word was...Cheese'!

Well, Ya'll that's my 'Bit of Pinkness' for this weeks Pink Saturday!
Be sure and stop by Beverly's at How Sweet The Sound and honk at the rest of the Pinkies!
You can take the Nash...the horn works!
And As Always...Thanks Beverly for Making Saturday's Pink!!!


Savannah...The Person...Not the Place!

Savannah! Who names their children after a town? 
Apparently my Great Great Grandparents!
Of course when you have fourteen or fifteen kids and the first ten or so have already been named after grandma, grandpa, aunts, uncles and all the famous folks of the time, it comes down to getting tagged with Elevenna or Fifteena or a Place.  I'm pretty sure that's how the name Savannah got it's place on a branch of the Family Tree.  Bless her heart, Savannah G. was the last child of Rene Marion and Mary Ann, my 2XGreat Grandparents from Cobb County Georgia. 
Surely that 'G' was for Grace!
Believe it or not there's a  couple of 'Good Things' about being 'Fifteena Caboosla'!
First...since your Ma was in the 'Family Way' every year since gettin' hitched, that meant that 'HandMeDowns' weren't full of holes.  Now the length may not have been just right...especially if older sisters were taller...of course then there's no worries about showing too much ankle...just trippin' and fallin' on your Caboosla!
Secondly...having a slew of olders sisters meant 'Older Beaus'.  However, from the looks of things, one Beau to Five Sisters was pretty slim pickins back then.  Course, gettin' to 'DressUp' and go strollin' in the woods should count for somethin'.
And lastly....The HATS!!!! 
I'm not sure what Savannah would say back in the 1870's, but in 2011 we'd say,
"OMG, that hat's to die for...it's DaBomb".

Savannah lived her whole life in Georgia.  Her middle initial was B not G.  It stood for Bartow...apparently another Family Name of significance which I haven't found...yet!  I thought G for Georgia would have been appropriate.

Her famously named sibling was my Great Granddaddy, George Washington Pittman (you can read his story HERE).  Her sisters were Mary Eugenia,  Fannie Margaret, Elizabeth Lizzy and Emma.  Other brothers were William Howell, Albert Singleton,  James Allison and Isacc Marion. 

Savannah married Hiram Brown on December 16, 1895.  So far in her Tree Branch I have found three sons with fairly common names:  William M., Paul R. and Silas P.  I can hardly wait to find out what their middle initial stands for.  I'm thinkin' M for Moreofus,  R for Righton, and P for Pausin....just thinkin' there will be more LilBrown's to come...maybe a Fifteena Caboosla!


The Number TwoHundred

Nothing is more BlogBoring than a Post with a bunch of NUMBERS....
...unless you are a Numbers Person.  I'm not a Numbers Person...even though I did make A's in Arthmetic in the First Grade...proof...A Is For A's In Arthmetic and Agave.  Now, I certainly don't want to BlogBore Ya'll with 'ABunch of Numbers'....just one...make that a Two...okay...a Two and Two Zeros.
TwoHundred years ago in 1811 my 3XGreat Grandfather John Ichabod was 59 years old, and his wife Lucy Eunice was 51 years old.  They lived in Georgia and having a Texan as a decendant in TwoHundred years probably never crossed their minds.  Don't you just love that hat?

Here's some TwoHundred FYI's....I'm workin' on being a better Numbers Person.
~200 is the smallest base 10 unprimeable number-it can not be turned into a prime number by changing just one of it's digits to any other digit.  (whatever)
~200 is a common ISO-standard film speed for photographic films. However, 200 speed film is being phased out in consumer films in favor of faster films. (thanks technology)
~200 is a denomination of the euro note. (good to know if you are messing in the EuroMarket)
~200 is the sum of dollars given in the classical Monopoly game to a player passing Go. (I never got to pass Go...I played with cheaters who knew I was terrible with numbers)
~ A cholesterol level of 200 and below is considered "Desirable level corresponding to lower risk for heart disease" (and they said 200 wasn't a Prime Number)
~200 is An HTTP status code indicating a successful connection. (thanks to Bubba Rathbone...C Is For Computerin' In Texas)

Are Ya Bored Yet?  No?  Good cause here's my Big Number TwoHundred Special Announcement!! 
Just look at 'All Ya'll !!!
Thanks for Following CollectInTexas Gal !!!!
Ya'll are 'The Best'!!!


Bouquet de 'Pink' Corsage

Corsage Collecting!!! 
One might think that an unsual thing to collect, but I bet just about every girl had a
 'Corsage Collection' at one time or another. 
Mine decorated the curtains in my bedroom. 
By the end of my senior year, the 'Carnation Corsage Collection' was a reminder of .....

.....the first formal dance....thank goodness for Brothers!

And the memories of an Iowa Farm Girl at her first Texas Dance.
(My Mama's BFF Phyl in 1945)

If you look at portraits from history, you may see single flowers worn in a woman's hair or a crown of flowers for both men and women. Portraits also show women wearing large bouquets of flowers off the shoulder or on a gown.

 A corsage originally referred to the bodice of a woman's dress. Since a bouquet of flowers was often worn in the center of the bodice, the flowers took on the name "corsage." Our modern sense of the corsage comes from the French "bouquet de corsage," meaning "a bouquet of the bodice." Although the placement of the flowers might have changed, the name stuck and is still used to refer to any small bouquet of flowers worn on the body.
Corsages are made from a small bunch of flowers or a single bloom. The corsage was originally worn at the waist or the bodice of a dress. Later, it became common to pin flowers to the shoulder or on a handbag. Corsages today may even be tied around a wrist, neck, ankle or worn in the hair.

Read more: History of Corsages | Garden Guides

 The wearing of a corsage at weddings dates to the time of the ancient Greeks, who believed that the fragrances of flowers and herbs warded off evil spirits. Not only the bride but other females at the wedding held flower bouquets or attached them to their clothing.

Corsage Etiquette & Tips...FYI
Wedding Corsages:  It is common to give a corsage to the mothers and grandmothers of the bride and groom. Smaller corsages may also be given to godmothers or other females who are important to the participants. A corsage is traditionally worn on the left, since it is closest to the heart.
Dance Corsages:  In the 20th century, it became common for escorts to present their dates with corsages, particularly for formal  dances and proms. As women's dresses have changed to styles with spaghetti straps or no straps, it has become more common for women to wear the flowers on the wrist.
Mothers Day Corsages:  Anna Jarvis spearheaded the development of an annual Mother's Day celebration in 1907. Since her mother's favorite flower was the carnation, it has become traditional to wear a carnation corsage on that day. According to FlowershopNetwork.com, florists promoted and made popular the custom of wearing a red carnation if one's mother was living, and a white carnation if one's mother had passed away.
Happy Birthday Corsages:  HappyBirthday.com recalls the "candy corsage," a popular tradition of the 1950s and '60s. A young girl might receive a "candy corsage" from her friends on her birthday. Decorated with candy such as lollipops, gum drops, tootsie rolls, bubble gum or lemon drops, such corsages were inexpensive to make and were held together with curly ribbon.
Happy Pink Saturday!!!

And As Always....Thank-you Beverly for making Saturdays Pink!!!

PS...The summer after my Senior Year, my Sisters moved into my Bedroom.
 Mama thought it best to get new curtains.


The Women In My Family Tree

Weddin' pictures sure have changed over the years.  Like this photo of my Great Great Uncle and his 'WideEyed Bride'.

 Back in the day when saying 'I Do' really meant 'I Do Forever and Through Whatever',  would make any Bride and Groom look 'Scared Straight'. 

I wonder how the newspaper worked in that part about 'The Happy Couple' when both of them look like the camera was a Gaitlin Gun.

Who knows...maybe her Daddy was standing behind the curtain with a Shot Gun.

After studying this photo I've decided that they were a willing and loving couple.  Notice his left arm and hand touching her just above the waist under her left arm.  Back in the day that might have been considered a bit improper.  Maybe that's why she looks so 'Wide Eyed'.
Here they are a few years later with my Great Great Aunt and her husband. 
 Everyone looks pretty settled into married life. 
It appears that even though the guys are wearin' the pants, that the gals have everything under control. 
 Afterall, look whose sittin' and whose standin'!
Yep, the Women in my Family Tree stand strong and determined.
Thanks Aunts!


Who Knew???

Great Granddaddy had a Second Wife!!!
Forever more!!!!
A Family Tree Secret!!! 
Well, at least it was NewNews to me and I bet it would have been to my Family Genealogist Aunt Irene.  In all of her notes, letters and Family Tree Group Logs there was nary a hint that our Father of Our Country Named, Confederate, West Texas Pioneer, Ancestor had another wife. 

I guess I'd better clarify Father of Our Country Named, huh?  He was named George Washington Pittman.  Now that sure outta get me some extra attention on Ancestry.com's Famous Family Member Status.  And if that doesn't do it, maybe my Granddaddy's name will hit the Top Ten Famous List.

I think he might look a bit like that guy that discovered America and Texas....ya know...Columbus!  Yep, George Washington kept the famous names going when he and his First Wife Betsey named their son Chapel Columbus.

It seems George Washington was alot about gathering 'Famous Named Folks'.  Wife Betsey...OMGosh do you think it's possible...after all I do sew and fly TheFlag on my front porch EveryDay!  Anyway, George and Betsey stuck some pretty unusual names on their kids.  For instance my Great Aunt Beaulah Magnolia...eyes rolling. 

Do ya think they might have some Southern Roots?  Course I already mentioned George DubYa...had to get another Presidental Plug in...was in the Confederacy.  Those Southern Roots were deep in that Georgia dirt and besides Beaulah Magnolia...gosh I hope they called her Maggie....there was also a Great Great Aunt Savannah and a Great Uncle Othello.
   I know what you are thinking, and I already checked it out. The Family Tree does go back to England, and I'm waiting on the Shakespearian Connection confirmation.

Aunt Irene did make a note about Great Great Aunt Savannah that I thought might turn into a 'FlutteringLeaf' hint on  Ancestry.com.  "George W. had three sisters Jenny, Lizzie and Savannah....she married a 'Rich Old Man'."  Unfortunately there was no Hint, but the 'Rich Old Man from Georgia' turned up some pretty interesting names...a couple that had Presidential possiblities.  Oh Boy!  More Fame!

In case you are curious about how all these Georgian's came to be my Texas Ancestors, I guess now is a good time to tell you that George Washington...granddaddy not President....sailed across the Potomac River Mississippi River in a Covered Wagon and landed on the Pecos River.  That's right ya'll....The One and Only Judge Roy Bean West of the Pecos River.  I know what you're thinkin'....I'm checkin' that out now...will let you know later about my Great Great Aunt Lily Langtry Pittman.
I guess I've gotten a bit carried away with the 'Famous Family Names' and nearly forgot about George's Second Wife...the other woman.  Bless her Heart she didn't have a famous name like his First Wife.  Her name was Nancy Anne.  Now, I don't know much about Nancy Anne except she was married before, too.  So it seems my Widower Great Granddaddy married Widow Woman Nancy Anne on January 1, 1899.  They were married nineteen years until her death in 1918 in Pecos County, Texas. 

Now, I know what you are thinkin'...I'm going to check it out some more, but the possibility of The Law West of The Pecos/Lily Langtry/Judge Roy Bean Connection is definately in the 'Big Picture'.  Course a 'Judge' is sure a step down from a 'President'... but a 'Hangin' Judge...now that's gonna be one for the 'Top Ten Famous Family Member' List.

You know, it seems my Ancestors had a tradition about naming their kids after famous people and family members.  It makes me wonder why my Mamma and Daddy didn't name me after one of my Grandmothers or Aunts.  I wouldn't have minded being Maggie Sue or Savannah Sue, but I definately am glad not to be Beaulah Sue.

 I get enough grief with all my BS writing without confirming it by signing my name B.S. Pittman


A Sister is A Sister Forever

These last few weeks have been spent reading and sorting through 'Family Group Records' passed to me from my Aunt Irene. She's the one who wrote the 'Time Capsule' letters I told you about in the post 'She's A Keeper...I'm A Keeper...We Are Keepers'.   Along with the 'Records' came an Album of Photos from the mid-eighteen hundreds. 

Have I mentioned that those photos are of Family Members going as far back as my Great Great Grandparents?  It has been literally a 'Blast from the Past' identifying and perserving these Records and Photographs. 

 I've been a 'Collector of Vintage Photographs' for quite sometime, and these Vintage Family Photos fit seamlessly into the Collection.  So much so that all the 'Vintage Photo Collection' have become my family, and they all have a story to tell.

Through the photos in this post, I'd like to share a 'Sister Story and Poem' about  my two Aunts....Vera Irene and Ruth Beatrice.

Irene and Bea were born fifteen months apart.  That pretty much says it all about how my grandmother must have felt during those months.  It certainly set a pattern for many of life's events for the two sisters. 

Together they helped raise their younger sister and three brothers after their mother and father diviorced.  An almost unheard event in the 1930's, but still a fact of life that these two sisters faced while trying to keep their family together and growing into young women without their mother's guidance.

The 'Close Encounters' continued when Irene married at age seventeen and Bea married fifteen months later at age eighteen.  And though they lived the rest of their lives many miles apart, they remained the truest of sisters until their deaths....five months apart.

Vera Irene
6-9-1917 ~ 4-22-2000

Ruth Beatrice
10-5-1918 ~ 8-14-2000

A sister's a sister forever,
A bond that diminishes never,
A friend who is kindly and caring,
A sibling God chooses for sharing.

Few ties as deep and profound
And with so much affection abound
Though some thoughts are seldom expressed
Love endures and survives every test.

Of the constants that rest in the heart,
A sister's a primary part.
She'll always be there when you need her-
You listen, you value, you heed her.

As growth, independence you ponder,
Your feelings grow deeper and fonder;
And life tells you one thing thats true:
A sister's a large part of you.

Dedicated to My Beautiful and Treasured Sister!
I love you, Connie Marie!