Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Women's History Month

Climbing My Family Tree: Myrtie Mabel Wilcox 1899
Myrtie Mabel Wilcox, 1899
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March is Women’s History month. It is designed to recognize and honor women’s participation and accomplishments in history. One of my goals in research my family’s history has been to tell the women’s stories too. And I have discovered that I have some fascinating forebears --- about half a dozen blogs last week were adamant the “ancestors” only refers to direct blood line; what is the word for previous generation collateral family members? I haven’t figured it out. But they’re all family, and they all have stories. Some of the most interesting stories come from women in my family. So I thought I’d point out some of my favorites in this post to give some of my newer readers an opportunity to get to know them.

Myrtle Belle Bailey (1880-1970), my great-grand-aunt, on my Mom’s side, lived a fascinating life and never married. She was a missionary to China from 1917 – 1954. She lived through two revolutions, the Japanese invasion and occupation of Hong Kong and the Asama Maru – Gripsholm prisoner of war exchange. And thankfully, her local newspaper loved to write about and interview her! 

Mariah/Maria Williams Bailey Huber (abt 1815-after 1900) , my 3rd great grandmother, on my Mom’s side, was twice widowed, and lost one son in the Civil War. She drew a Mother’s pension based on his service.

Myrtie Mabel Wilcox (1879-1953), my paternal great-grandmother, a Michigan farmer’s wife in the late 19th and early 20th century. And due to her daughter Lucille Henn Robson’s book Members of the Flock, I can describe her life in those times surprisingly well (and found old advertizing pictures to illustrate them) and am so glad I didn’t live then!

Generosa/Rosa Henn Strauss (1836-1908), my  2nd great – grand aunt. She was born in Germany and emigrated to the US with the rest of the family. Her life was fairly normal until she married. Thereafter, tragedy followed tragedy until she was adjudged insane and committed (and much of this made the local papers).

I actually think all of my historical family members are fascinating, however, I decided to keep my list today down to a non-overwhelming number. I hope you enjoy reading about them! 

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