Posts tagged ‘Ledford family’

March 15, 2012

Treasure Chest Thursday: Grampa Anderson’s Chest of Drawers

One summer many moons ago, my grandmother Maw-Maw and I were cleaning out her attic. (This was my maternal grandmother, Ruth Anderson Ledford.) Over in one corner, hidden behind the detritis of several generations, was a chest of drawers. As best as I can remember, it had four drawers and was made entirely of wood, except perhaps for the drawer pulls. It was even held together by wooden pins rather than iron nails.

What was so remarkable about this piece of furniture was not its craftsmanship but the identity of its maker: My grandmother’s paternal grandfather, Robert Alexander Anderson (1857 – 1928). Maw-Maw was not quite seven years old when R. A. died, so this piece was a treasure to her, a reminder of a man she had barely known.

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March 14, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: Ruth Anderson Ledford

My mother’s mother, Maw-Maw, as a young woman.

October 27, 2011

Maw-Maw’s Gingerbread

Gingerbread was one of my mother’s favorite holiday treats, although she seldom cooked it. I think it reminded her too much of her mother, whose recipe this was. I remember my grandmother cooking gingerbread during the winter, but for some reason, I always recall her serving it with a lemon sauce instead of whipped cream. That could be my own addition to the recipe.

Gingerbread
from Ruth (Anderson) Ledford

2 1/2 c. sifted all-purpose flour
1 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. ginger
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. salt
1 c. butter, softened
1 c. sugar (white, granulated)
3 eggs
1 c. light molasses
3/4 c. hot water
Sweetened whipped cream

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease well a 13 x 9 1/2 x 2″ pan. Sift flour with soda, salt, and spices; set aside. In a large bowl, mix the butter, sugar, and eggs for five minutes with an electric mixer. At low speed, beat in the molasses and hot water. Add the flour mix, beating just until smooth. Turn batter into pan. Bake on the middle rack for 35 to 40 minutes. Cool partially before serving with whipped cream.

February 23, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: James Wesley Ledford, 1847 – 1940

James Wesley Ledford
May 6, 1847
May 3, 1940
We will meet again

James Wesley Ledford was my mother’s great-grandfather. He was buried in Coweeta Baptist Church Cemetery, Macon Co., NC, near his wife, Martha (Carpenter) Ledford, and her parents.

October 21, 2009

Linda Ledford Watson, 1948 – 2009

On Saturday, October 10, 2009, Linda Ledford Watson, 61, of Rabun Gap, GA, died quietly in her sleep of complications from Crohn’s disease. She was born June 25, 1948 in Macon Co., NC, to the late Lake Randolph and Ruth Virginia Anderson Ledford. She was preceded in death by her parents; a brother, Johnny Ledford; and a cousin who was raised by Linda’s parents, Virginia Anderson Thompson Stevenson.

Linda was a woman of few flaws and many virtues. Her heart was open to anyone in need, and her home often overflowed with family and friends alike. She was active in her church and in the community, and heavily involved in the lives of her large, extended family.

She was an accomplished seamstress and quilter. She often sewed clothing for her family, especially in the early years when her children were young. Over the years, many a young bride came to Linda for help with her wedding dress, and often for help managing the wedding itself. Linda also completed several quilts for her family and others. Her latest projects included sewing wall hangings for the youngest of her parents’ great-grandchildren. She was also working on a memory quilt for her eldest grandchild.

Linda loved the holidays, but she also had a way of making each day into a special occasion. Some days might be marked by an arrangement of freshly cut flowers straight from her yard, and others by a favorite family meal, but each day was precious to her, no matter how it was passed.

To her husband, she was wife, companion, and partner, having worked with him for many years at the Rabun County Farm Bureau. They were active in Valley Fun and Recreation (both being avid card players), and travelled together to many memorable locations.

To her children, she was SuperMom. She was the Mom who baked goodies or picked up a child when another parent was running late. She was the Mom who was always willing to volunteer, whether for chaperoning a bus or sewing costumes. In fact, many of those costumes were ones she made and wore herself, just to make an event memorable for her children and their friends. During her children’s school days, she was active in the Band Boosters, the Athletic Boosters, and the PTA. She was the score keeper, and the team mascot, and the loudest one cheering on every child, no matter which side they played for. She never turned down an opportunity to pitch in if she could help it.

To her grandchildren, she was Me-Mom. When PBJs were needed for a bus ride to a football game, she delivered them to the school freshly made, and then followed the bus to the game just to cheer the team on. She never missed an event in her grandchildren’s lives, nor did she ever miss an opportunity to spend time with them.

She was a stalwart friend and a devoted sister. Two weeks before her death, she helped cook a special meal for the senior members of her church. The week before her death, she spent much time consoling the family of her two nieces, whose father, Linda’s former brother-in-law, had just been killed. She spent many days making the family rounds, or helping others in whatever way she could.

Many other platitudes could be expressed about Linda, but the final one should be this, that she was quietly devout in everything she did. She held a firm, unwavering belief in God, and there is no doubt that she has joined Him in a better place.

Linda is survived by her husband of 41 years, Varney Watson, of the home; daughter Dawn Watson and son David Watson, both of Rabun Gap; daughter Dee Dillard and son-in-law Claude Dillard, of Dillard, GA; grandchildren Bryce and Bailey Dillard, of Dillard, and Caleb Watson, of Rabun Gap; sisters Jean Ledford VanHook, Liz Ledford Ledford, and Debi Ledford Watts Nylund, all of Franklin, NC; sister Sylvia Ledford Spell of Aiken, SC; sister Bonnie Ledford Shirley of Clayton, GA; brothers Wayne Ledford, Jim Ledford, Benny Ledford, David Ledford, and Joey Ledford, all of Franklin; Timothy Thompson of Rabun Gap; Kieva Stevenson of Clayton, GA; and many beloved brothers- and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, and friends.

Visitation was held Sunday, October 11, 2009 at Beck’s Funeral Home in Clayton, GA. A memorial service was held Monday, October 12, 2009 at the Head of Tennessee Baptist Church in Dillard, GA, officiated by the Reverand Doug Porter. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation.

September 5, 2009

Junior and Senior in Records

I recently had the opportunity to work on the Ledford family of Clay County, North Carolina, while reconstructing land records for a client.1 One of the problems I encountered was the fact that every family unit seemed to have at least one male named Jason. In an eight-tract (i.e. land lot) area over about twenty years, I handled records for at least four different Jason Ledfords: Jason D. Ledford, “Big Jason” Ledford, and two distinctly different Jason W. Ledfords (who lived on adjacent tracts).2

Sorting through these Jasons is problematic, but it also brings up an interesting point. When this land was first granted by the state of North Carolina in Cherokee County, North Carolina (from which Clay County was formed in 1861), the two eldest Jason Ledfords were designated in the deed index as Jason Ledford, Jr. (later known as “Big Jason” Ledford) and Jason Ledford, Sr. (who later went by Jason D. Ledford).

These two men were not father and son. Instead, they were designated as “Jr.” (meaning younger) and “Sr.” (meaning elder) by the recording clerk to differentiate between them in the records each created. We only know this because we verified this information against other records. If we hadn’t studied land records over a large span of time and correlated them with federal census records, then we might have assumed that the Jr. and Sr. designations meant father and son.

Assumptions of this sort can be dangerous when reconstructing a lineage. People often assign relationships to others in legal documents that had different meanings in the past than they do today. The term brother could refer to an actual brother, or it could be a brother-in-law or a spiritual brother (one who professes the same faith as the party in question). A son-in-law named as such could actually be a daughter’s husband, or it could be a stepson or grandchild. Efforts should always be made to determine the legal and biological relationships of the people involved before definitively applying a modern relationship indicator.

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1. This research was performed at the request of Bobby E. Ledford, whose ancestors resided in Clay Co., NC.
2. There were other Jason Ledfords in the area at the same time, at least some of whom were directly related to the four Jason Ledfords mentioned. The narrow focus of the described research largely eliminated these other Jason Ledfords from the study’s purvue.

August 24, 2009

MawMaw’s Zucchini Bread

We’ve had a bumper crop of zucchini this year, so naturally we’ve been making lots and lots of zucchini bread. The recipe we use was handed down by my maternal grandmother, Ruth (Anderson) Ledford, who was a superb cook. (Ah, Sunday dinners!) This recipe can easily be divided in half for those who only want a little bread.

Zucchini Bread

4 cups coarsely shredded zucchini
3 cups self-rising flour
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped nuts (we like pecans)

Blend all ingredients together in a large bowl until all ingredients are incorporated. Pour into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for about 50 minutes or until the loaves test done in the center.

Enjoy warm with butter or cream cheese, or wrap and store for a later treat.

June 30, 2009

The Crew of the Little Lulu

This post was written for the 75th edition of the Carnival of Genealogy, “Justice and Independence”.

I was fortunate enough to have three grandfathers, and all three served in World War II. My mother’s father, Lake Ledford, served in the US Navy. My father’s stepfather, Ned Burrell, was in the Army. And my father’s father, Thad J. Watson, Sr., served in the Army Air Corps.

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April 12, 2009

Priority Surnames

I recently bought several back issues of the NGS NewsMagazine from a fellow researcher, and have been diligently combing through them for research and record tips. I’ve run across some really good finds, too, but the topic of today’s post comes from the article “Charting Your Priorities” by Susan Zacharias (January/February/March 2007, pp. 54 – 56). In short, Zacharias offers a method of prioritizing research by listing end-of-lines (that is, the earliest known generation in every direct line) in various fonts according to their place on the pedigree chart. Your largest font size (Zacharias recommends 18 point) would correspond to your most recent (chronologically) dead end, with each step down in fonts corresponding to one generation further back in time.

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