Monday, February 4, 2008

There are all kinds of love affairs

My love affair with genealogy has been an off and on thing. Not that I ever give up on it. But sometimes I get so exhausted that I have to take a long vacation from it. I was in the middle of a long, long break when a new-found cousin wrote me last year and now the affair is back on.

With some distance from my last stint, I've been going over notes and details with a different perspective. It's exciting because I am seeing things I overlooked before. For example, with my fresh outlook a new theory is evolving about my great-great-great grandmother. We have been trying forever to figure out who she was. All we have to go by is the name Amy and that she may have been related to the Winstons. That's it. She disappears from our story immediately after the Civil War. We assumed she died.

Solomon had at least six children by her. The oldest daughter was Mosella born around 1849. The youngest son was Mose born around 1865. It struck me that both children were obviously named after Mose. Could Mose be a real person and important to the family in some way?

On the 1870 Tennessee census there is a Moses and Amy Nunn living next door to Mosella. Two doors down is Solomon with his wife Cherry and a centenarian named Ann Nunn. Is this just a coincidence?

All ex-slaves did not stay together as a family after emancipation. Some families were forced during slavery, only cohabitating together because the the slave master wanted them to reproduce. Some had two families having been sold away to other farms. Once they were free, some went looking for those family members they had been separated from during slavery. Some went looking for separated loves too. Could this be the case in my family?

Right now, I am surfing message boards to see if anyone knows about Mose or Amy Nunn. I am also going to go back and ask older relatives if they ever heard about the possibility of this. It is during times like this, I wish my aunt Adrene was alive so we could figure this out together.

This will not be a popular theory. It would mean Amy gave up her younger children voluntarily. It will also be a very difficult theory to prove. Ah, a challenge.

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