February 2014

#DangerousBlackKids & Why I ♥ Black Twitter!:)

By |February 19th, 2014

The Future Leaders Crew - #DangerousBlackKids

The “Future Leaders Crew” reppin’ the South side! Those darn gang members! #DangerousBlackKids

When the #DangerousBlackKids Viral Revolution sparked by our Dream Defenders fades from our socially-conscious side-eye, I want to remember we were there to engage and partake of its relevance and ABSOLUTE beauty!

Parents, Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins and Friends took to Twitter in mass on February 16-17 following the Jordan Davis/Michael Dunn Trial verdict to show America just who our brown and black children REALLY are!

And let me tell you, NEVER has the Twittersphere — black or white — been in such silent-awe and NEVER have our kids shined brighter!:)

Justis - #DangerousBlackKids

Be careful. Justis might use his graphing calculator to formulate you to death. #DangerousBlackKids

No need for me even to attempt to define Black Twitter, when Soraya Nadia McDonald of the Washington Post did it so splendidly!:

Black Twitter is part cultural force, cudgel, entertainment and refuge. It is its own society within Twitter, replete with inside jokes, slang and rules, centered on the interests of young blacks online — almost a quarter of all black Internet users are on […]

BEAUTY IN TRUTH: The Nature of This Flower Is To Bloom…

By |February 15th, 2014

Alice Walker - Beauty In TruthThough not the case, it feels like I waited a really long time for Beauty in Truth, Pratibha Parmar’s (Kali Films) documentary about Author, Poet, Advocate, Womanist Alice Walker.

Beauty in Truth premiered in London on March 10, 2013. I viewed it by the grace of PBS American Masters series this past Thursday — twice.

So worth the short wait. What a gift to me and Alice’s multitude of admirers. Thank you Pratibha!:)

There were many sweet moments throughout the piece that gave me pause, choked me up, made me laugh aloud. To ‘meet’ the human Alice Walker, apart from the author whose words 25+ years ago gave me release to be me, was surreal. Having context to the life experiences shaping her work? Hearing the narratives of my other sheroes Sonia Sanchez, Jewelle Gomez, Sapphire, Evelyn C. White and Beverly Guy-Sheftall? Man… priceless!

“When I couldn’t deal with reality around me, I would create something.” – Alice Walker

I knew Beauty in Truth would immediately prompt me to write. Alice’s writing has been liberating my inner-voice for a very, very long time!:)

At some point my 14 year old son, Justis joined me to take it all in; he’s grown up in a house filled with Alice’s books — some […]

Justis’ Turn To Fight #4GERRIE! Our 2014 Walk To End Alzheimer’s Is ON!

By |February 9th, 2014

Justis & CHMS #ENDALZ 2014Justis was a full-term baby born floppy, which is a less clinical way of saying he was oxygen deprived and not breathing. We’ve never really understood why but I remember him being silent and blue, and me being in complete shock, watching my OB-GYN begin chest compressions.

Mom and my Great Aunt Mitzi (Nan) were right beside me, and rather than joining me in silent shock, they immediately began to pray — LOUDLY. It was 30-35 seconds that felt like a lifetime, but as soon as the prayers began, Justis started breathing!

For years, we each told the story of how Mama and Nan prayed Justis back to life. They fought for him when I could not.

Now, almost 15 years later, Mama’s taken rest from the torment of Alzheimer’s Disease, and her Justis is fighting #4GERRIE, #4NAY (our BELL Cousin) and the 5.4 Million people living with Alzheimer’s today.

On Friday 2/7, Justis and his Community House Middle School #ENDALZ Warriors hit the halls with a common mission — $1 for 1 Krispy Kreme doughnut!

900 doughnuts and 25 minutes later, our CHMS Student Supporters had helped the DANIELS family give Alzheimer’s its first kick in the butt for 2014! Focused and impeccably-coordinated, I’ve never seen a fundraiser so successful, flawless and FUN!

Students were happy for the afternoon sugar fix, and open to learning about Alzheimer’s Disease and our mission to find a cure. Several students understood […]

WINGFIELD Slave Manifests From a Ship Named The FLORIDA 1856 & 1859

By |February 5th, 2014

The-FLORIDA-Slave-Manifest---WINGFIELD-1856---Various

Plantation musings have been ROUGH! When my soul’s Teflon coating has regenerated, I plan to invest time researching these WINGFIELD Slave Manifests discovered via Ancestry’s U.S., Southeast Coastwise Inward and Outward Slave Manifests, 1790-1860.

By my estimates my 6th and/or 7th generation Ancestors could have been Africa-born and survived The Middle Passage.

Inspired by AAGSAR Member Cecilia of Cecilia’s Dig and her 3rd Great Grandfather Mr. Major PERRY, I took a chance locating slave ship manifests for my WINGFIELD and CODY Ancestors of Georgia, and ended up finding several.

For tonight, I’m posting two (2) WINGFIELD manifests from the slave vessel THE FLORIDA — arrival ports Mobile, Alabama (1856) and Savannah, Georgia (1859).

The unknown Ancestors on the slave manifests were owned by WINGFIELDS of Georgia. Given the years of the purchases, I’ll start looking at records for Archibald Simpson WINGFIELD I (b. 1801 – d. 1861). The son of Samuel WINGFIELD, Archibald outlived many of his relatives. In addition to his slave inheritance, as a practicing lawyer he was often named executor of and/or witness to their estates. Archibald, Charles and Garland WINGFIELD owned the majority of my Washington-Wilkes Ancestors in 1860:

  • WINGFIELD, A. S., 66 slaves, page 478B
  • WINGFIELD, C. for self and 2 others, 57 slaves, page 479B
  • WINGFIELD, G., 83 slaves, […]

Finding NO Peace In PEACEWOOD: My WINGFIELD Ancestors Plantation Home

By |February 2nd, 2014

Peacewood I - WINGFIELD Wilkes County GAWINGFIELD-CADE-SAUNDERS House (PEACEWOOD) circa 1936

When I really peer beneath the surface of our country’s damaged history, and how human transgressions have been processed by the descendants inheriting it, I’m challenged to find our cultural silver lining.

I believe the healing salve for historic ignorance and human cruelty lies within our yet to be lived future; to be championed by the untainted souls of descendants far removed from the slave legacy I inherited.

Am I saying Generations X, Baby Boomers and beyond are hopeless? Sadly, yes.

The longer I live, I find it harder to vest in the goodness of mankind when he’s still very much covered in his Ancestors history-stamped residue.

For example, while scanning this 2010 Tours of Home blog post regarding PEACEWOOD, the plantation my WINGFIELD Ancestors built and sustained while enslaved by Thomas WINGFIELD and his descendants, I immediately became angry reading this narrative:

This beautiful old plantation home is a significant and interesting example of a house assembled from different periods and made into a columned plantation seat in the 1840s and 1850s during the period of prosperity before the Civil War.

Beautiful?! William Johnson is referring to the time period when MY ANCESTORS were bought, sold, raped, bred, tormented, overworked and subjugated to the discretion of his or her WINGFIELD owner. A period when their free labor was exploited, bartered […]

If Eyes Could Talk: Unidentified African American Woman 1860-1870

By |February 1st, 2014

Unidentified-African-American-womanUnidentified African American Woman 1860-1870
The Liljenquist Collection – Library of Congress

January 2014

U.S. COLORED TROOPS: WINGFIELD Union Soldiers of the Civil War

By |January 28th, 2014

Company B 103 Regiment - Unidentified Civil War UNION SoldierEarlier tonight Bernita ALLEN (Air Force SME) of AAGSAR (African American Genealogy and Slave Ancestry Research) shared an awesome site to research your Civil War Ancestors, the National Park Service: Soldiers and Sailors Database.

I’ve already identified 8 WINGFIELD Civil War Soldiers I need to research further to determine if a family connection exists!

Albeit connected by SURNAME, blood and/or plight, I honor these WINGFIELD men of service. I’ll keep you posted on connections too! AMAZING!:)

Luckie

*****************

Wingfield, Albert

  • Regiment Name: 13th Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union

Wingfield, Alexander

  • Regiment Name: 115th Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union

Wingfield, Charles

  • Regiment Name: 95th Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union

Wingfield, Charles

  • Regiment Name: 97th Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union

Wingfield, John

  • Regiment Name: 95th Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union
  • Alternate Name: John/Winfield

Wingfield, John

  • Regiment Name: 97th Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union
  • Alternate Name: John/Winfield

Wingfield, John

  • Regiment Name: 103rd Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union
  • Alternate Name: John/Wingfield

Wingfield, William

  • Regiment Name: 1st Regiment, United States Colored Infantry
  • Side: Union

USCT Recruitment Poster

NOTE: NPS Soldiers and Sailors database results returned 222 WINGFIELD Confederate Soliders. I also plan to research my Confederate Ancestors of military service

REFERENCES:

A Tale of Many Elberts ~ CODY, DORSEY, DAWSON, WINGFIELD & STRINGER

By |January 26th, 2014

Elbert STRINGERNeedless to say, I probably should have documented our family Elberts long ago! Truth is, I’m really just now beginning to get a handle on them myself!:)

Cousin Elbert STRINGER (pictured left) is the reason we have Our Georgia Roots. His razor-sharp memory provided all the early “nuggets” that laid the foundation for what was to come. Elbert passed in 1999 and I miss him dearly. He was a sweet, sharp-as-a-tack, family loving man!:)

All our Elberts descend from the Warren County Georgia CODY and DORSEY family lines.

I believe my 4th Great Grandfather Elbert CODY I had children with two sisters – Ailey I (my 4th Great Grandmother) and Dicey (my 4th Great Aunt; Mother to Pierce CODY and siblings).

So in addition to Elbert CODY I having at least 1 son who was his namesake,  he also had several children and grandchildren gift him the same honor!

The result? Elberts many times over!:)

Below is my first attempt at making sense of the Tale of Many Elberts. Naming patterns is a gift to the descendant researcher of slave ancestry. The naming nuances shed light on family clusters and relationships in the absence of verifiable documentation.

I suspect this post will updated in the days ahead, given my Elbert names and family cluster details are always becoming clearer.

Elbert CODY:

  • Elbert CODY I – b. 1820 and identified in the 1832 estate and will of Michael CODY. 4th Great Grandfather. Father of […]

U.S. Army Sgt. Pierce DORSEY (b. 1891) ~ WWI Veteran of Athens, Georgia

By |January 25th, 2014

It really just dawned on me this morning how I spend more time writing about Ancestors I have no memories or inherited history of, than those familiar to me. Seems these Ancestors fight hardest to be seen and heard, which does make sense. It’s the Ancestors we don’t know or remember that have the greatest possibility of being omitted from future narratives of our family’s history.

I’m thankful I got my descendant’s head on straight by taking time to share Great Uncle Pierce CODY’s life narrative. I should’ve never been so busy tracing the clues he deposited in his WPA Slave Narrative that I neglected to add more texture to the story of his 90+ year life. Forgive me Uncle Pierce!:)

And just as Ancestors work, as I was pulling together the story of Pierce , I discovered more than I ever knew about one of his namesakes, 1st cousin Pierce DORSEY, his sister Ailey and Elbert’s son!:)

Pierce DORSEY - Lists of Men Ordered to Report to Local Board for Military Duty, 1917–1918Pierce DORSEY (b. 1891) was inducted into the U.S. Army on August 22, 1918 in Athens, Georgia. His training was conducted at […]

Pierce CODY of Macon Georgia, Much More Than a Slave Narrative

By |January 23rd, 2014

Pierce Cody - Macon GA City Directory 1924Born about 1850, Pierce CODY is my 3rd great grand uncle; brother-cousin to my 3rd great Grandmother Catie WINGFIELD-DORSEY and Aunt Ailey II CODY DORSEY.

Born into slavery in Warrenton, WARREN County Georgia, Pierce’s parents were Elbert, my 4th Great Grandfather and Dicey (Dorothy) CODY. I believe even before he was emancipated Pierce took Fannie (b. about 1851) as his wife and they had at least two (2) children, Sarah (b. 1872) and Harry (b. 1880).

Pierce’s 1937 WPA Slave Narrative came to me early in my research (1999) and I knew immediately he belonged to me.

Reflections of life on Bob CODY’s place, mirrored Catie’s WARREN County plantation memories of “Master CODY” and her sister, Ailey. Learning Pierce’s father carried the name Elbert shed light on the origin of a long-standing family name!

Catie named a son Elbert WINGFIELD, and her grandson cousin Elbert STRINGER’s ability to remember our family’s oral history is the reason we have Our Georgia Roots today!:)

I’m thankful for the gift Pierce’s WPA Narrative has been, but my uncle lived nearly 90 years! Slavery and his reflections of it were but a small portion of a full life. I’d be remiss to allow that narrative to be the only one reflective of his […]