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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cousins, Classes, Clouds & Civil War

In the last blog I mentioned that we had "severe weather alerts" for our area -- it was true. Just after finishing our sliders on Saturday night my wife and I heard a heavy thump outside and we passed it off as a car door slamming somewhere.  It wasn't until the next afternoon that my wife called me to the backyard . . . several pieces of tree limb were found on the ground any one of which could have accounted for the "thump" -- my sense is that it was one large limb when it hit the ground and then broke into pieces. We deem ourselves very lucky from the standpoint that neither us nor the house was hit by these falling timbers. In town we saw several more trees down . . . and this week has thoroughly saturated the earth and we sleep a little less soundly amid the many Oaks in our yard . . .

Besides the weather though, it has been a full and rewarding week. I heard from several cousins during the week -- this has always been fun. Thank you Bruce for sharing your photos of the many bird feeders that you have in your yard -- how do you keep them stocked . . .

It looks to me like a full time job not to mention a seed truck.

Bruce Hiles is a second cousin that I met because of this genealogy hobby. Another cousin that I heard from this week was surprising -- a first cousin that I had no contact with for about 60 years -- it is too bad the way our families are sometimes. But Ruth Clifton Landers, a daughter of my father's sister, Muriel,  connected with me due to both of us having information on the same genealogy site. She brough me up to date with some of her branch of the family -- very nice!

Now -- this is the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War and recently I had paid tribute to one veteran of that war from my Mother's side of the family. Today I want to share a tribute to two from my direct paternal line.

John Hiles (Jr) I call him,  is my third great grandfather.  John Jr we think was born about 1789. He was married twice. His first wife was Charity Reed and after she died about 1837 he married his second wife, Nancy Crosby.  With his first wife they had at least 10 children and with his second wife they had three.

With Charity, one of the sons was also a John, and we call him John III.  This John was born about 1816 and he eventually married Margaret Householder (just shortly before his father was to marry Nancy Crosby) in 1836. John III and Margaret had ten children.

In his mid 40s he joined Company "A", 71st Ohio  Infantry Volunteers as a private, this was about the 9th of November 1861. In less than a year, late August of 1862 he would die from a bacterial infection caused by the sanitary conditions of the war.

His infantry unit gave him a furlough because he was so ill and he succumbed at home. He is buried in the Petrie Cemetery in Celina, Mercer County, Ohio.

After John Jr married Nancy Crosby they had three children. One of those was George W Hiles. He was born about 1841.

On about the 24th of October 1862 when George was about 21 years of age he enlisted as a private in Company "I", 114th Ohio Infantry Regiment.  A little over 8 months later he would die -- 3rd of July 1863 -- of the same type of bacterial infection that had claimed his half-brother. So sad  . . . his Regiment was active,  and George must have been there, in the battle of Vicksburg. Vicksburg was won by the Union Army and was a deciding factor in winning the war. Vicksburg gave the Union Army a vantage point to control the Mississippi River.

George had married in 1861 to Martha Lacey and apparently they had a couple of children who did not survive infancy. George is buried in Mississippi at the Vicksburg National Military Park:

And so John Jr had a least two sons die as a result of the Civil War, there may be others from his family to also have suffered that fate -- we are researching them as well.

Lastly, this week was the start of an online class for me -- "Social Networking for the Wise Genealogist" and it is interesting and fun because it encourages going outside the "tree" so to speak.
I will give more on the course in subsequent posts.

And since it is Saturday there will be sliders in our future dining . . . see you next week.

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