Annie - RESTHAVENThough the WINGFIELDS of Wilkes County, Georgia owned hundreds of my Ancestors, to my knowledge I’ve only seen one image of an emancipated WINGFIELD – Newby WINGFIELD, the husband of Creecy COHEN.

I’ve never seen the face of James, my 4th Grandfather owned by James Nelson and Susan WINGFIELD. I have several pages of Ancestor names captured from Samuel WINGFIELD’S Plantation Ledger and numerous names grouped into lots across various WINGFIELD estate inventories, wills and division of slaves probate records, but not one, single face.

Tonight a random GOOGLE search for WINGFIELD sightings landed me here – Tombstone Tuesday: Annie, Resthaven Cemetery, Washington, Wilkes Co., GA via Digging in the Roots, and though I tried, I couldn’t shake the heaviness of this very brief blog post nor the weight of ANNIE’s headstone.

I left the blog. Returned. Bookmarked the post. Left [again]. Returned [again] and finally decided to leave this comment:

“My Ancestors were owned by Thomas WINGFIELD who migrated to Wilkes County from Hanover, VA in 1783. The WINGFIELDS were prominent planters. Every African-American WINGFIELD in Washington-Wilkes descends from the first 23 slaves who arrived with Thomas WINGFIELD. Many, if not most of the white WINGFIELDS are buried at Resthaven, and when I stumbled upon your post tonight, a heaviness I can’t quite explain settled in the middle of my chest. I don’t know if “Annie” belongs to my family line or not, there’s a very good chance she could. Nevertheless, I’ll claim her as mine and bid her peace and ease.”.

According to Dawn of Digging in the Roots, Annie’s marker reads Annie Died 7 February 1856 Aged 37 Years. That would put Annie’s birth about 1819. Is Annie family? I don’t know. The familiar nagging prompting me to leave and return a few times warrants a serious pause though.

James and Susan GORDON WINGFIELD, owners of my James are there. Also at Resthaven, Archibald Simpson WINGFIELD. He outlived most of his relatives, and as the Executor of their estates, eventually came to own many of my Ancestors.

I’m just realizing in all my days visiting and living in Washington-Wilkes, I’ve never walked Resthaven Cemetery. I’ve never seen what I believe are the graves of my Ancestors, resting not far from the WINGFIELDS who once owned them.

I’ll search for Annie (b. 1819) among my WINGFIELD names and then soon, I’ll walk Resthaven Cemetery.

I believe Annie and my other Ancestors have something to show me. I’ve come to recognize their call.

Slave Cemetery - RESTHAVEN

Peace and ease to us all.


Image Source: Resthaven Cemetery, Wilkes County, Georgia via Digging in the Roots.
Resthaven Cemetery WINGFIELD Data: Wilkes County, Georgia – Resthaven Cemetery R-Z