Thursday, April 22, 2010

An Ancestor Approved Award

I was recently approved the Ancestor Approved Award, for which I am honored and grateful.  After researching for more than 20 years and only having recently joined the blogging to share my personal data, I am truly grateful and send a special thank you to Joann of J-Macs Journey. (I have taken the liberty of inserting one of my ancestor's images on the award on the right, nav. bar.)

As a recipient of this award I am happy to share 10 things that I have learned from my own journey into my past.


 1) I was surprised to learn that my ancestors were enslaved by Indians--my gr. grandparents Sam & Sallie Walton were Choctaw Freedmen, having been enslaved in Indian Territory.

2) I was surprised to find the records of Lydia Talkington a name that rested for many years in an old family Bibile and unknown to the family as to who she really was. She was my gr. gr. grandmother. Her son was Samuel Walton the first of 4 men to carry that name. 

3) I was surprised to learn about the story of Uncle Sephus, a gr. uncle whose only known reputation was to have shot a white man and fled to Texas for his life.  I learned about the family being attacked by the Klan in 1888 in Giles County TN.  He shot the Klansman who had killed his father---my gr. gr. grandfather Irving Bass.   

4) I was surprised to FIND Uncle Sephus who was indeed in Texas, and learned about his life prior to the incident in 1888.  He had served in the Civil War as a soldier in the 111th US Colored Troops.  

5) I was surprised to learn about another uncle previously unknown---a brother to Uncle Sephus and to my gr. grandfather Louis Mitchell Bass.  The brother was Braxton Bass who was a Sgt. in the 111th US Colored Infantry.

6) I was surprised to be able to research my mother's line. She was an only child, who had lost both of her parents to tuberculosis before she was 2 years old.  She was raised by her Grandmother Harriet Young Martin, and her Aunt Viola Martin.  She knew little about her ancestors other than they were from Ripley Mississippi and were slaves of a Tandy Young and her grandmother's mother's name was Amanda Young. I found Amanda Young, and was surprised to learn about her life, and to learn the name of her husband Berry, who joined the Civil War, and the names of Amanda's parents---Martha and John both from Virginia, and born in the 1790s.

7) Thanks to a fellow researcher who has also become a good and dear friend, I have learned more about my ancestors in NW Arkansas.  Through this friend, I learned where Lydia is buried and I learned more about Patrick Drennen a mulatto slave of town founder John Drennen. Thank you Tonia Holleman.

8) I have had the opportunity twice in the past 3 years to meet a direct descendant of John Drennen 3 years ago.  Although she was originally nervous at our meeting, I was pleasantly surprised to see her attend an reception for me recently in Ft. Smith Arkansas where I spoke at the first Black History conference sponsored by the University.

Caroline Drennen & Angela chatting at the Black History Conference, Feb 2010

9) I met a direct descendant of the Choctaw family that were slave owners of my gr. grandmother Sallie.  The meeting was cordial and we have remained in contact.  We now are working together to document the history of both families further and are assisting me with locating the burial site of Sallie's mother and grandmother.

10) My niece who now has young children of her own has asked me when I can start to tell her the stories of the family history.  She is the first person of the next generation to express this interest, and I am thrilled to know that at last, the family legacy will be carried forth to the next generation.

I am happy to pass this award to the next 10 bloggers to receive the Ancestor Approved Award:


J said...


Great news to hear that your niece is waiting in the wings to continue your journey with you. Your family legacy will live on and heard for years to come.

Your stories are rich in history, and I enjoy reading them.

You are blessed - Pass it on.


Angela Y. Walton-Raji said...

Thank you so much Joann! You are a dear!

Sherry - Family Tree Writer said...

I loved reading this and I want to thank you for your Ancestor Approved Award! I have yet to pass it on, but hopefully this week, time will permit me to do that. I want you to know what an honor it is to receive it!

Sherry Kline

PS I would like to connect with you on your Young family branch, just on the off-chance you are related to my daughter's husband whose family is in Oklahoma. Thank you.