.

Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Monday, May 31, 2010

John Dennis and Isabella McCrillus, Our Great Great Grandparents and Their Hardships.

John Dennis and Isabella McCrillus, Our Great Great Grandparents.

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Family,
And what a find Memorial Day it is. This is the day we remember our dead and therefore a fitting day to write another post honoring the memory of our ancestors that went before us. Today I'd like to tell you more about our Great Great Grandparents John Dennis and Isabelle McCrillus. Today I'd like to share information taken from the Hot Springs Star about the Dennis family.
We begin as always with the Relationship Chart. Below you'll find two charts. The first is for John Dennis' first marriage to Julia Mary Spurlock.

The second chart below is the Relationship Chart for his second wife, our Great Great Grandmother Isabella McCrillus.

The following information is taken directly as written from the local newspaper in Hot Springs, The Hot Springs Star. The dates are given. This reads as a string of tragedies. Put yourself into the mind of our Great Great Grandparents as you read about the last six years of their lives in Hot Springs South Dakota.

September 18, 1891.
Edward, the three year old child of John and Bella Dennis near Cascade, drowned Friday. La Fluche and Colvert, the undertakers, have charge. Burial at Evergreen Cemetery.
The three year old child of John and Bella Dennis, who reside on a ranch south of Cascade, near the Cheyenne River, fell into the river and was drowned on Friday. Full particulars have not been learned, but it is supposed that while playing near it, and before help could arrive, the little one was at last overcome in the water of the Cheyenne. Mr. and Mrs. Dennis had had his heart full of sorrow the past few months we understand, having had sickness in the family for several weeks.
The funeral of the Edward Dennis occurred today from their home at Cascade and was attended by a large number of friends. The remains were interred in the Hot Springs Cemetery.
October 16, 1891
Died in this city on Wednesday, October 14, Mrs. Annie Powell, wife of A.A. Powell. Annie was the daughter of John Dennis and his first wife Julia Spurlock and was born on September 21, 1867. Married 1884. 3 children, 2 of whom have died and a baby of 3 months survives. Funeral was from residence of George Turner. She has been seriously sick for about two weeks.
January 29, 1892.
Died. Infant son of A.A. Powell and Grandson of John Dennis, Wednesday.
February 19, 1891
Died on Saturday, February 14, 1891 at residence of G.A.Turner, Johnny. 2nd son of Mr. and Mrs. Dennis. Age 5 years, 8 months and 23 days.
February 23, 1891
Mrs.Sarah Bingham, mother of John Dennis, aged about 75 died at the residents of Charles E Roe whose wife is her granddaughter. Buried the 23rd. Died of pneumonia, Born near Knoxville, Tennessee in 1816. In 1842 married Levi Dennis. Two boys John and Edward were born. In 1846 immigrated to Sullivan Co. Mo. Levi Dennis died three weeks after arrival. There she married Samuel Bingham - 2 girls and 3 boys were born. In 1864 they went to Utah and back to Colorado. Then to Hot Springs in 1880. Mr. Dennis’ family has been singularly afflicted this year, he having lost his mother, Mr. Bingham; his daughter, Mrs. Powell; two younger children and now his grandchild, son of his late daughter who died four months earlier.
January 26, 1896
The wife of John Dennis, Isabel Deanora Helgerson McCrillus dies in Hot Springs.
September 18, 1896
John Dennis, one of Cascade’s most energetic and successful grangers, spent a few days in Hot Springs during the past weeks. Mr. Dennis is suffering considerably from bronchial afflictions and expected to spend the winter in the south for the benefit of his health. The Star sincerely hopes that he will secure relief.
February 19, 1897
Dr. Holmes was called to Cascade Tuesday to attend John Dennis who is seriously ill with pneumonia.

April 16, 1897
Charley Roe came in from Cascade Wednesday for a closed carriage in which to bring John Dennis to Hot Springs in order that he may be nearer his physician. He is suffering from pleurisy and lung affliction and is in a critical condition.
April 28, 1897
John Dennis died in Hot Springs.

Nancy Jane Dennis Roe

After the death of her parents, our Great Grandmother Vesta (then 5 years old) and her 14 year old brother James L. Dennis moved into the home of her 1/2 sister Nancy Jane Dennis and her husband Charles Roe. They lived near Hot Springs along the Cheyenne River in South Dakota.

Vesta Dennis Age 3. Taken at Hot Springs South Dakota in 1895.
Her mother died one year later. Her father died two years after this picture was taken.

Her full brother Joseph L. Dennis appears in the 1920 census living in San Francisco California, living in a lodging house, age 36 and single.

I’m still looking for more information Great Grandmother Vesta’s siblings and their descendants.

Simply,
Victor





Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Hunt for our Great Great Uncles and Aunts. Williamson Line.


From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Williamsons,
Once again I'm on the hunt for the families of my Great Great Aunts and Uncles, the brothers and sisters of our common ancestor William Jonathan Williamson. Today I focused on our Great Great Aunt Bertha May Williamson.

Click to Enlarge

This is what I know so far:

Bertha May Williamson
Born May 13, 1875. Adams Iowa
Death July 18, 1959. Lead, South Dakota

Married Joseph Price Hines in 1897.

Children of Bertha Williamson and Joseph Hines:

1. Lula Hines: Born abt. 1899
2. Ralph Hines:
  • Born Sept. 22, 1900 Rapid City SD.
  • Died: March 28, 1966 Lead SD.
  • Married: Irene Gertrude Hawken on March 25, 1897 in Sundance Wyo.
  • Children: 1 known. Patricia Maud Hines b. July 3, 1923 in Gillette Wyo.
3. Jenn Hines: Born abt. 1901
4. Glenn Hines:
  • Born abt. 1903
  • Married: Hazel Marie Mills, 1923 in SD.
  • Children: Jean Hines. South Dakota. Died 1984.
5. Dorris Hines:
  • Born January 8, 1904. Nemo SD.
  • Died: October 25, 2000 in Clarkson Mtn. View Rapid City. SD. Buried
  • Black Hills National Cemetary. Sturgis SD.
  • Married: Albert Herman “Snoozer” Hausle on July 6, 1926 in Deadwood SD.
  • Children: Earl A. Hausle. Born. January 1, 1927. Died abt. 1945.
6. Charles Hines: Born abt. 1905
7. Chelsie Hines: Born abt. 1907
8. Hazel Hines: Born abt. 1908
9. Donald Hines: Born abt. 1909

Of course this means we have cousins living in the Black Hills descended from Bertha with the last names of Hines and Hausle. Does anyone know of them? Perhaps some of you in South Dakota might have some time to try to track some of them down (phone book etc). All help in locating this family line would be appreciated!

Simply,
Victor

Comment from Lee Madison:
Hello again Victor
I just read your blog and remembered my Father Gene Madison worked at Moskee Wyo. in the Homestake lumber camp in the lates thirties. I kept an old newspaper article from the Rapid City Journal from some years back and found a picture of my father with several other lumber jacks. Two of these lumber jacks in the picture were Chelsey and Glenn (Bozy) Hines. It's a small world for this picture was taken in 1938 before my Father met my Mother. My Mother Teresa Martin never mentioned she was related to the Hines boys but often mentioned them in conversations. Lee

A Collection From the Mattson Albums.

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

It's a quiet Sunday on the hillside. Bright skies will bring warmer temperatures and the first hint of summer's heat arrives at the end of this week.

The school year is over. It's sobering to think of the number of years I've spent in school. I started Kindergarten in September 1963. That means I've spent 45 years of my life in some form of school from elementary to junior and senior high to university right into teaching (minus two years of missionary service). The rhythm of the school year is firmly rooted into my psyche. There is a beginning to every year and an end. It is my cycle of life - always beginning and always ending. At the end students leave and at the beginning students arrive. The realization of this cycle strikes unexpectedly at the start of the school year when one of your new boys or girls walks up to you and says, "You were my mom's teacher!"
That's when you ask for a chair and a cold glass of water.

Today for our virtual family gathering I'd like to show you several pictures of Grandma Violet and her family. Each picture reminds me of how lucky we are to have what we have. Each picture shows how quickly life passes, which is a reminder to us all to enjoy every moment we have with friends and loved ones.

This is one of my favorite pictures of Grandma Violet taken in 1933. She is fifteen years old . So many of Grandma's physical traits can be seen in the faces of her descendants. Think of everyone you know in the extended family that resembles her in some way.

Walter and Violet's wedding picture taken on June 12, 1938 in Pomona, California. Walter was 26 years old. Violet was 20. This marriage was lucky to have happened at all. Walter was schedule to travel to South America to work, but discovered the ship was gone when he arrived in San Diego. With no plans, Walter headed north for Montana with plans to make a quick stop in LA to visit his friend Walter, Violet's brother. And as they say, the rest is history and here we all are.

A young couple enjoying an afternoon together. I'm guessing this was taken in California around the time of their wedding.

The young Mattson family sat for their first family portrait in Belle Fourche in 1939. My mother Luella, was their fist child born on January 14, 1939. This was originally a black and white picture until Violet colored it by hand, something she enjoyed doing as a hobby. This picture was taken at the start of World War II, shortly after Germany's invasion of Poland.

Luella is older now. This picture was taken around 1942.

A picture of Violet taken in May, 1938 in Ganesha Park, Pomona CA.
And another picture of Violet in her fairly skimpy summer wear! This was taken on the Montana ranch. It must have been a good day to catch a bit of sun. Nice pose Grandma. I'm wondering if you were going for the "Calendar Girl" look common from the magazines of the day. This is the kind of picture I think Grandpa would have carried around in his wallet and produced with pride whenever the boys would get together for a drink and someone would ask to see a picture of his wife.
"Wow, what a looker!" I'm sure he heard many times.

Luella's school pictures. First or second grade I think. The picture on the right is my favorite. It gives mom that dignified, well refined appearance befitting a Montana princess.

OK, compare the earlier picture of Luella with this one above. What happened to the well bred Montana Princess? I'm guessing the reality of ranch life got the best of her. Luella is standing on the left with her younger sister Linda. Can you see and hear them running and jumping across those dusty Montana fields in the heat of the summer's day. It must have been a magical place to grow up.

The Mattson children on what appears to be an early version of a 4 wheeler. From left to right we have Linda, John, Marvin and Luella in the driver's seat.

Another shot of the Mattson children on the ranch. The seasons changed and now its the dead of winter. This is their detached garage. You can see the car behind that towering snow drift. I'm thinking that digging the car out of the garage was the plan, right after the picture was taken of course.

Two pictures of Luella taken in 1950. She's only 11 years old. Mom always said she was the tallest in her class. Kind of strange to think of mom on a horse, isn't it?

Grandma Violet in September 1960 sitting in her brother's living room in San Bernardino, CA. The bird belong to her brother Walter. She was vising from South Dakota. She was visiting when Diane had surgery to remove a ruptured kidney.

Grandma is older now. In this photograph we see her with her mother Vesta and brother, Walter. On her right is Diane's Uncle Forrest. Violet and her mother are holding hands. It's a touching reminder of the loving bond shared between a mother and her only daughter. The photo was taken in the Mondier home in Riverside, CA. It was taken following the funeral of Grandma Vesta's 3rd husband, Jim Logan on May 4, 1968.

Grandma spent much of her last years living alone in a trailer park in Rapid City. She visited us often at 2214 38th Street and we included her in our family activities. Grandpa Walter died some years earlier leaving Grandma little money except a small pension from social security. She watched her money closely and had Uncle John there to help whenever she got into a pinch.

The trailer was a good place for her. It was affordable and she didn't have stairs to navigate. This picture shows her in her trailer's kitchen. She was a great cook. Her fried chicken and gravy was to die for.

I was happy when she was accepted into an assisted living apartment building closer to our home on Jackson Blvd. She had others her age to associate with and there were care givers in the facility that came whenever she pushed the "Call" button near her front door. She still had her independence and car so she could visited her family and friends.

Grandma died shortly after the above photo was taken. She'd returned from buying groceries at Safeway and put the unemptied bags on the kitchen counter to sit down in her chair for a moment to "catch her breath" as she always said. That's where they found her the next morning, grocery bags still full on the counter.

Simply,
Victor



Thursday, May 27, 2010

Another Great Grandfather Who Lost His Head! Sir Henry Pole (Lord Montagu), Our 14th Great Grandfather, (Mattson Line)


Sir Henry Pole (Lord Montagu), Our 14th Great Grandfather,
as played by actor Jake Maskall
in the Showtime Televison Series "The Tudors"


From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello to the Mattson Side of our Family!
Tonight we are running a special overnight camp for a small school in Idaho. I'll start the camp at 7:00 P.M. but until then, I've got a few minutes to post more on the ancestors in our family.

Tonight I'd like to introduce you to our 14th Great Grandfather, Henry Pole (Baron Montagu by Title) who married Jane Neville. Grandpa Henry was a close friend of King Henry VIII. He had one major flaw, he was a staunch Roman Catholic and you remember how Henry VIII grew to dispise the Catholic religion after the Pope refused to annul his married to Katheryn of Aragon so he could marry Anne Boleyn.

Henry was the son of Sir Richard Pole and Margaret Plantagenet, Countess of Salisbury . He was Knighted by Henry VIII in 1513 during Henry 's French campaign and given the title of Baron Montague. He was referred to as Lord Montague in official documents and was a witness to the great peace Treaty of London in 1518. He was a member of the royal household and was allowed his own livery. In 1520, he attended Henry VIII at the Field of the Cloth of Gold . He was one of the members of the jury who convicted Anne Boleyn and had her beheaded at the Tower of London.

Henry married Jane, daughter of George Neville, Lord Abergavenny, in 1513. They had three children.

As a Roman Catholic, Henry did not approve of the King's destroying Church property and the anti-Catholic feeling in England. Henry was fully aware of Montague's feelings. His brother Geoffrey Pole was arrested by the King and tortured on the rack. During the torture he gave evidence of Henry's feelings against the King's decisions. Henry VIII ordered Henry's arrest and put in the Tower of London. Late in Nov 1539 Montague and Henry Courtenay, Marquis of Exeter were tried before Lord Chancellor Audley, the Lord High Steward and a jury of peers found them guilty of treason. A week later, on 9 Dec, both lords were beheaded on Tower Hill.

A Beheading at the Tower of London

The Actual Block from the Tower. The Last Resting Place for our 14th Great Grandfather's Head
(and many other heads belonging to our ancestors).


Henry left a son and two daughters. Henry son was also arrested.
It was expected he would be beheaded with other members of the family but Henry VIII did not want to risk unfavorable public opinion. Instead he was deprived of a tutor and remained imprisoned in the Tower until his death, possibly by starvation, in 1542 or later. Henry's daughter, Catherine, married Francis, Lord Hastings, later Earl of Huntingdon, and her sister, Winifred, married first a brother of Catherine's husband and later a member of the Barrington family. The girls were restored to full honours and property at the accession of Queen Mary.

Simply,
Victor

Family Relationship Chart

Sir Henry Pole (Baron Montagu) married Jane Neville
Our 14th Great Grandparents
to
Catherine Pole married Francis Hastings Earl of Huntingdon
to
George Hastings Earl of Huntington married Dorothy Port
to
Henry Hastings and Dorothy Willoughby
to
John Hastings married ?
to
John Seaborn Hastings married Lydia Champney
to
Joseph Hastings married Elizabeth Edwards
to
Matthew Hastings mararied Mary Battelle
to
Hannah Hastings married Nathaniel Evans
to
Nathanial Evans Jr. married Mary Toothaker
to
John K. McCrillis married Hannah Evans
to
Joseph E McCrillis married Almira
to
John Mayberry Dennis married Isabel Deanora Helgerson McCrilles
to
Walter Edward Pierce married Vesta Althea Dennis
to
Walter Edward Mattson married Violet Pierce
to
Luella Mattson married Charles Williamson
to
Kim, Me, Kevin, Janice, Jon, Lisa and Annette

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Our Great Grandfather Alaric. The Barbarian Who Sacked Rome (Williamson and Mattson Lines)

Alaric, Taking the City of Rome

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Dear Williamsons and Mattsons,
Tonight we discuss our 50th Great Grandfather on the Williamson Line and 54th Great Grandfather on the Mattson Line. His name was Alaric, King of the Visigoths. Yes, he was the Barbarian King that sacked the city of Rome in August of 410 A.D. The relationship comes through the Williamson Line, through our 14th Great Grandmother Anges, Duchness of Norfolk (in last night's post) then through the Willis line to the Williamson line. On the Mattson line we
pass through the McCrillis family. Both family lines are illustrated below:

Relationship Chart (Williamson Line)

50th Great Grandfather and Grandmother
Alaric, King of the Visigoths
married De Wisigothie

to
Athaulf de la Visgoths married Ivoire verch Liancelod
to
Hrothildis Von Westogoten married Gundercaire, King of the Burgundy
to
Gunderic King of Burgundy married ?
to
Chilperic de Burgogne married Agrippine de Bourgogne
to
Theodelinde des Burgondes married Riparian King of Cologne Siebert
to
Cloderic King of Cologne married Queen Clotilde de Burgogne
to
Berthe Queen of Kent married Ausbert of the Moselle
to
Arnoldus of Saxony married Oda De Savoy
to
Ansigisen Mayor of the Palace of Austriasia married Beggue (St. Beggue) of Landen
to
Canbert Lyon married Bertrada de Austrasia
to
Berthe Countess of Laon married Pepin, King of France
to
Charlemagne, Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire married Hildegard
to
Louis I Holy Roman Emperor married Emengarde Princess of Hesbave
to
Louis II Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire married Engelberga, Empress of Germany
to
Emengarde Princess of the HRE. married Dux Boso de Provence
to
Kunigunde, Princess of Provence married Sigebert De Verdun
to
Wigerich Count of Trier and Ardennes married Kunigunde, Countess.
to
Ralph Comte de Bayeux married Hedwig Von Nordgau
to
Frederic I, Count of Luxemburg married Miss Gleiberg
to
Ogive of Luxembourg married Baldwin IV Count of Flanders
to
Baudouin V Count of Flanders married Adaele Princess of France
to
Matilda married to William the Conqueror of England
to
Henry I King of England married Sibylia Corbet
to
Princess of England Elizabeth Beauclerc married Lord Fergus Galloway
to
Uchtred of Galloway married Gunhild De Dunbar
to
Alan Lord of Galloway married Helen de I’Lsle
to
Helen McDonald of Galloway married Roger de Quincy
to
Elizabeth de Quincy married Alexander Comyn, Earl of Bucan
to
Elizabeth Comyn married G Umfreville Earl of Angus
to
Robert De Umfreville married Lucy De Kyme
to
Eleanor De Umfaville married Gilbert Boroughdon
to
Baroness Eleanor Boroughdon married Henry Talboys
to
Sir Wlater Talboys, Sheriff of Lincolnshire married Margaret Deincourt
to
Lord Waiter Tailboys married Alice Stafford
to
Dorothy Tailboys married Sir Hugh Tylney
to
Our 14th Great Grandmother
Anges, Duchess of Norfolk married Sir Thomas Howard
to
Dorothy Howard married Edward Stanley, Earl of Derby
to
Jane Stanley married Edward Sutton, Baron of Dudley
to
Edward Sutton married Elizabeth Tomlinson
to
Ann Sutton married John Bagley
to
Edward Bagley married Ann Gregorie
to
Ann Bagley married William Brinton
to
John Willis married Ester Brinton
to
Henry Willis married Mary Rachel Underwood
to
John Willis - Phebe Bennett
to
Bennett Willis - Katherine Nosseman
to
Jonathan Willis - Anabella Phlegar
to
Margaret Ann Willis - George Matthew Williamson
to
William J. Williamson - Effie Helen Victor
to
Vennie, Ima Della, Inez, Lillie Ethel, Josie, Emmett, Walt, Charles, Maurice.
to
Charles Williamson married Luella Mattson
to

Me


Relationship Chart (Mattson Line)

54th Great Grandfather and Grandmother
Alaric, King of the Visigoths
married De Wisigothie

to
Athaulf de la Visgoths married Ivoire verch Liancelod
to
Hrothildis Von Westogoten married Gundercaire, King of the Burgundy
to
Gunderic King of Burgundy married ?
to
Chilperic de Burgogne married Agrippine de Bourgogne
to
Theodelinde des Burgondes married Riparian King of Cologne Siebert
to
Cloderic King of Cologne married Queen Clotilde de Burgogne
to
Berthe Queen of Kent married Ausbert of the Moselle
to
Arnoldus of Saxony married Oda De Savoy
to
Ansigisen Mayor of the Palace of Austriasia married Beggue (St. Beggue) of Landen
to
Canbert Lyon married Bertrada de Austrasia
to
Berthe Countess of Laon married Pepin, King of France
to
Charlemagne Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire
to
Pbepin King of Italy
to
Benard King of Italy and Lombardy
to
Pbepin li Quentin Count
to
Herbert I Count of Vermandois
to
Herbert II Count of Vermandoie
to
Robert De Vermandois Count of Vermandois
to
Adelaid De Vermandos
to
Comte Hugues I d’Autun Bishop of Auxerre Ct of Chalon
to
Ementrude Chalons Countess
to
King Alfonso VI “The Valiant” de Castile y Leon King
to
Urraca Alfonsez Queen of Castile
to
Alfonso VII King of Castille
to
Alfonso VIII King of Castille
to
Blanca A De Castile
to
Philip “The Bold” III King of France
to
England, Marguerite Princess of France
to
Thomas Earl of Brotherton
to
Sir Edward Woodhouse
to
John Wodehouse
to
John Wodehouse
to
John De Wodehouse
to
Sir Edward Woodhouse
to
Thomas Woodhouse
to
Ann Woodhouse
to
Robert Coke or Cooke
to
Alice Cook
to
William Sr. Pond
to
Robert Pond Sr.
to
William Pond
to
Abigail Pond
to
Abigail Clapp
to
William Clapp
to
Elizabeth Clapp
to
Joseph Blake
to
Zipporah Blake
to
Nathaniel Evans
to
Nathaniel Evans Jr.
to
Hannah Betsy Evans
to
Joseph E. McCrillis
to
Isabel Deanora Helgerson McCrillies
to
Vesta Althea Dennis
to
Violet Mae Pierce
to
Luella, John, Linda, Marvin
to
Me


ALARIC THE VISIGOTH KING FROM 394-410 A.D.

LONG before the beginning of the period known as the Middle Ages a tribe of barbarians called the Goths lived north of the River Danube in the country which is now known as Roumania. It was then a part of the great Roman Empire, which at that time had two capitals, Constantinople--the new city of Constantine--and Rome. The Goths had come from the shores of the Baltic Sea and settled on this Roman territory, and the Romans had not driven them back.

During the reign of the Roman Emperor Valens some of the Goths joined a conspiracy against him. Valens punished them for this by crossing the Danube and laying waste their country. At last the Goths had to beg for mercy. The Gothic chief was afraid to set foot on Roman soil, so he and Valens met on their boats in the middle of the Danube and made a treaty of peace.

For a long time the Goths were at war with another tribe of barbarians called Huns. Sometimes the Huns defeated the Goths and drove them to their camps in the mountains. Sometimes the Goths came down to the plains again and defeated the Huns.

At last the Goths grew tired of such constant fighting and thought they would look for new settlements. They sent some of their leading men to the Emperor Valens to ask permission to settle in some country belonging to Rome. The messengers said to the emperor:

"If you will allow us to make homes in the country south of the Danube we will be friends of Rome and fight for her when she needs our help."The emperor at once granted this request. He said to the Gothic chiefs: "Rome always needs good soldiers. Your people may cross the Danube and settle on our land. As long as you remain true to Rome we will protect you against your enemies."

These Goths were known as Visigoths, or Western Goths. Other tribes of Goths who had settled in southern Russia, were called Ostrogoths, or Eastern Goths. After getting permission from the Emperor Valens a large number of the Visigoths crossed the Danube with their families and their cattle and settled in the country now called Bulgaria.

In course of time they became a very powerful nation, and in the year 394 they chose as their king one of the chiefs named Alaric. He was a brave man and a great soldier. Even when a child he took delight in war, and at the age of sixteen he fought as bravely as the older soldiers.

One night, not long after he became king, Alaric had a very strange dream. He thought he was driving in a golden chariot through the streets of Rome amid the shouts of the people, who hailed him as emperor. This dream made a deep impression on his mind. He was always thinking of it, and at last he began to have the idea that he could make the dream come true.

"To be master of the Roman Empire," he said to himself, "that is indeed worth trying for; and why should I not try? With my brave soldiers I can conquer Rome, and I shall make the attempt."

So Alaric called his chiefs together and told them what he had made up his mind to do.

The chiefs gave a cry of delight for they approved of the king's proposal. In those days fighting was almost the only business of chiefs, and they were always glad to be at war, especially when there was hope of getting rich spoils. And so the Visigoth chiefs rejoiced at the idea of war against Rome, for they knew that if they were victorious they would have the wealth of the richest city of the world to divide among themselves.

Soon they got ready a great army. With Alaric in command, they marched through Thrace and Macedonia and before long reached Athens. There were now no great warriors in Athens, and the city surrendered to Alaric. The Goths plundered the homes and temples of the Athenians and then marched to the state of Elis, in the southwestern part of Greece. Here a famous Roman general named Stilicho besieged them in their camp. Alaric managed to force his way through the lines of the Romans and escaped. He marched to Epirus. This was a province of Greece that lay on the east side of the Ionian Sea. Arcadius, the Emperor of the East, now made Alaric governor of this district and a large region lying near it. The whole territory was called Eastern Illyricum and formed part of the Eastern Empire.

ALARIC now set out to make an attack on Rome, the capital of the Western Empire. As soon as Honorius, Emperor of the West, learned that Alaric was approaching, he fled to a strong fortress among the mountains of North Italy. His great general Stilicho came to his rescue and defeated Alaric near Verona. But even after this Honorius was so afraid of Alaric that he made him governor of a part of his empire called Western Illyricum and gave him a large yearly income.

Honorius, however, did not keep certain of his promises to Alaric, who consequently, in the year 408, marched to Rome and besieged it. The cowardly emperor fled to Ravenna, leaving his generals to make terms with Alaric. It was agreed that Alaric should withdraw from Rome upon the payment of 5,000 pounds of gold and 30,000 pounds of silver.

When Honorius read the treaty he refused to sign it. Alaric then demanded that the city be surrendered to him, and the people, terrified, opened their gates and even agreed that Alaric should appoint another emperor in place of Honorius.

This new emperor, however, ruled so badly that Alaric thought it best to restore Honorius. Then Honorius, when just about to be treated so honorably, allowed a barbarian chief who was an ally of his to make an attack upon Alaric. The attack was unsuccessful, and Alaric immediately laid siege to Rome for the third time. The city was taken and Alaric's dream came true. In a grand procession he rode at the head of his army through the streets of the great capital.

Then began the work of destruction. The Goths ran in crowds through the city, wrecked private houses and public buildings and seized everything of value they could find. Alaric gave orders that no injury should be done to the Christian churches, but other splendid buildings of the great city were stripped of the beautiful and costly articles that they contained, and all the gold and silver was carried away from the public treasury.

In the midst of the pillage Alaric dressed himself in splendid robes and sat upon the throne of the emperor, with a golden crown upon his head.

While Alaric was sitting on the throne thousands of Romans were compelled to kneel down on the ground before him and shout out his name as conqueror and emperor. Then the theaters and circuses were opened, and Roman athletes and gladiators had to give performances for the amusement of the conquerors. After six days of pillage and pleasure Alaric and his army marched through the gates, carrying with them the riches of Rome.

Alaric died on his way to Sicily, which he had thought to conquer also. He felt his death coming and ordered his men to bury him in the bed of the river Busento and to put into his grave the richest treasures that he had taken from Rome.

This order was carried out. A large number of Roman slaves were set to work to dig a channel and turn the water of the Busento into it. They made the grave in the bed of the river, put Alaric's body into and closed it up. Then the river was turned back to its old channel. As soon as the grave was covered up, and the water flowed over it, the slaves who had done the work were put to death by the Visigoth chiefs.


Monday, May 24, 2010

Anges, Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard. The Story of our 14th Great Grandmother (Williamson Line).

Our 14th Great Grandmother, Anges Howard,
Duchess of Norfolk

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Tonight we gather for our virtual family reunion around our digital fire to talk about a grandmother who lived in turbulent times. Her name was Anges Howard, Duchess of Norfolk. She was born in 1477 and died in 1545. She lived during the reign of Henry VIII of England. Yes, I thought that would get your attention. We are talking Henry VIII and his six wives. Before I tell this tale let me fist show you the family line:

Our 14th Great Grandmother
Anges, Duchess of Norfolk married Sir Thomas Howard

to
Dorothy Howard married Edward Stanley, Earl of Derby
to
Jane Stanley married Edward Sutton, Baron of Dudley
to
Edward Sutton married Elizabeth Tomlinson
to
Ann Sutton married John Bagley
to
Edward Bagley married Ann Gregorie
to
Ann Bagley married William Brinton
to
John Willis married Ester Brinton
to
Henry Willis married Mary Rachel Underwood
to
John Willis - Phebe Bennett
to
Bennett Willis - Katherine Nosseman
to
Jonathan Willis - Anabella Phlegar
to
Margaret Ann Willis - George Matthew Williamson
to
William J. Williamson - Effie Helen Victor
to
Vennie, Ima Della, Inez, Lillie Ethel, Josie, Emmett, Walt, Charles, Maurice.
to
Charles Williamson married Luella Mattson to Me


Now, I know there is much to read in this Post but I encourage you to read on. You'll find the life of our 14th Great Grandmother very interesting because she was at the very center of the story of Henry VIII and two of his wives.

Henry VIII of England

Agnes was the second wife of Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk, the step-grandmother of Anne Boleyn, second wife and queen consort of Henry VIII, and step-grandmother of Catherine Howard, fifth wife and queen consort, of Henry VIII of England. Agnes was thus also step-great-grandmother of Queen Elizabeth I of England.

In 1509, King Henry VII died and was succeeded by his son, Henry VIII. Our Grandmother's Agnes greatest fortune was the defeat of the Scots by her husband Thomas at Flodden Field in 1513. Henry VIII rewarded Thomas by resurrecting the title of Duke of Norfolk in 1514.

Agnes enjoyed the role of leading hostess in high society, and her place at court reflected her husband's success. She was godmother to Henry VIII's eldest daughter, Princess Mary, and was trusted enough for Wolsey to accept her recipes for medicines after he contracted sweating sickness. She was soon first lady of the Queen's household after the King's sister, Mary.

In 1527, the King began to look for ways to get an annulment of his first marriage to Catherine of Aragon, on the grounds of her failure to produce a male heir. Although initially disapproving of the plan, Agnes, now three years widowed, found strength in the fact that the new queen was a family relative -- Anne Boleyn. Anne was the daughter of Agnes' stepdaughter, Elizabeth Boleyn

Anne Boleyn

Our Grandmother Agnes bore Anne Boleyn's train at her coronation, and held Anne's infant daughter with the king—the future Queen Elizabeth I—at her baptism. Anne Boleyn failed to produce a male heir. That tarnished the Howard family at Court.

Of course, Anne failed to produce a male heir. Later it was said she has sexual relations with her brother. This was not true but gave Henry VIII a reason to have her executed. She was beheaded at the Tower of London. Her daughter Elizabeth became the future Queen Elizabeth I.
Our Great Grandmother lost her step granddaughter.

Rise and Fall of a Queen

In 1540, Henry married his fourth wife Anne of Cleves, a daughter of a German Protestant duke. Among the ladies in waiting appointed to attend the new queen was Catherine Howard, the daughter of one of Agnes' younger stepsons. Henry was greatly disappointed with his new wife's looks, calling her a "Flanders Mare". Soon he began looking for another wife and took an early shine to Catherine. Henry sought an annulment from Anne Cleves on the grounds of non-consummation. However, Anne's lawyers made it difficult to achieve this easily, and the annulment was only given by Anne's willingness to accept an annulment and become the King's honorary sister, retiring to her estates at Hever Castle, the former Boleyn family home, and Richmond Palace. This left Henry free to marry, and after a short courtship, Catherine accepted Henry's proposal under the advice of Agnes and her stepson the Duke of Norfolk. Henry affectionately referred to her as a "rose without a thorn".

Catherine Howard

The Death of Catherine Howard

Soon after Catherine's marriage, her past life came to light. Agnes was preoccupied with the running of her two households and had little time to notice the sexual affairs that went on behind her back.

Catherine had an affair with Francis Dereham. It's possible that Agnes herself had him promoted to the position of secretary to keep him quiet about the past and not tell King Henry. Agnes searched his room and belongings and destroyed any incriminating evidence against her step granddaughter. However a former attendant brought Catherine's past to the attention of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Catherine was not helped by the fact that she had a lover while married to the King -- Thomas Culpepper, one of the King's most trusted servants. When this came to light, and the queen confessed, her queenship was over. Henry ordered that she be sentenced to death by Act of Attainder, allowing his seal to be fixed in absentia, and she was executed in February 1542, at the Tower of London.

Agnes' Later life

Because of Agnes role in the two failed marriages of her two step granddaughters, Henry VIII had her arrested and taken to the Tower of London, along with other Howard family members. Eventually, Grandmother Agnes was released in 1543, but her stepson the Duke was never returned to favor.

Agnes Howard, The Duchess of Norfolk, died in May 1545, and on the 31st was buried at Thetford Priory. In November, in accordance with her own wishes, her remains were re-interred at Lambeth.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Williamson Line. Charlemagne - Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. A Great Grandfather.

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Williamsons,
Well, today's four hours of research proved interesting. Today I'm please to present our 31st Great Grandfather, Charlemagne, Holy Roman Emperor. We find him also on the Mattson line meaning we are related through both parents.
Here he is, perhaps one of our greatest ancestors. The relation comes through the Williamson line to Margaret Ann Willis and then to the Brintons. The full line is presented below:

Relationship Chart

Charlemagne, Holy Roman Emperor. Married Hildegard
to
Adelheid, Princess of the Holy Roman Empire married Robert the Strong Duke of France

to
Richende Blois married Count of Chartres and Bourges Thibaut De Troyes
to
Gerlette De Blois married Rollo Thurston Rollosson

to
Toussaint De Bertrand married Juliane De Murdac
to
Thurston Haldub married Emma
to
Viscount Eudo de Capello married Muriel Conteville
to
Muriel Chappell married Roger de Busli

to
William de Busli married Hawise de Espec

to
Roger De Busli married ?
to
Robert “de Busli” Gresbroke married Miss Paynell

to
Bartholomew De Gresbroc married Edith De Grendon
to
Robert de Gresebroke married ?
to
Robert de Gresebrooke married ?
to
William de Gresbrooke married ?

to
John de Gresbroke Married?

to

John de Gresebroke married ?
to
John Gresbrooke married Isabel
to
John Gresbrooke married Elizabeth Rugeley

to
Alverey Greysbrooke married Margaret Keene
to
Elizabeth Glazebrook married Thomas Mason
to
Elin Mason married Thomas Brinton

to
Thomas Brinton married Anne Biddle
to
William Brinton married Ann Bagley
to
Ester Brinton married John Willis
to
Henry Willis married Mary Rachel Underwood
to
John Willis married Phebe Bennett
to
Bennett Willis married Katherine Nosseman
to
Jonathan Willis married Anabelle Phlegar
to
Margaret Ann Willis married George Matthew Williamson

to

William J. Williamson married Effie Helen Victor

to
Vennie, Ima Della, Inez, Lillie Ethel, Josie, Emmett, Walt, Charles, Maurice.
to
My Dad Charles married Luella
to

Us


Of course everyone that studies history knows Charlemagne, but just in case your history is a bit rough, here are the basics on our most famous of Grandfathers.

Here is a written description of Charlemagne from one of his associates.
He was heavily built, sturdy, and of considerable stature, although not exceptionally so, since his height was seven times the length of his own foot. He had a round head, large and lively eyes, a slightly larger nose than usual, white but still attractive hair, a bright and cheerful expression, a short and fat neck, and a slightly protruding stomach. His voice was clear, but a little higher than one would have expected for a man of his build. He enjoyed good health, except for the fevers that affected him in the last few years of his life. Toward the end he dragged one leg. Even then, he stubbornly did what he wanted and refused to listen to doctors, indeed he detested them, because they wanted to persuade him to stop eating roast meat, as was his wont, and to be content with boiled meat.
Einhard provides us with a close-up of Charlemagne.
He was large and strong, and of lofty stature, though not disproportionately tall (seven-feet tall). His head was round and well-formed, his eyes very large and vivacious, his nose a little long, his hair white, and his face jovial. His appearance was always stately and very dignified, whether he was standing or sitting. His gait was firm, his whole carriage manly, and his voice clear.
This heroic figure was possessed of a joyful spirit. The Monk of St. Gall recounts that whoever came before Charlemagne sad and disturbed would leave him serene, just by the effect of his presence and some few words. The freshness and honesty of his nature strengthened all those who were associated with him. His majesty did not have a rigid arrogance, nor a suspicious reserve; rather the tranquil grandeur of his personality dominated everything around him, and, notwithstanding, was unpretentious and self-contained.

Statue of Charlemagne at Norte Dame Cathedral in Paris

The terrifying impression he caused in the hearts of his enemies as a warrior leading his army is described by the Monk of St. Gall:
Then, one could see the Charlemagne of iron, with his head covered by a iron helmet, his arms bearing iron protectors; in his left hand he carried an iron lance, and in the right his always victorious steel sword. His muscles were covered with iron plates, and his shield made of pure iron. "When he appeared, the inhabitants of Pavia cried out with fear: O, the Iron Man! O, the Iron Man!
This Iron Man had a profoundly sensitive heart. Charlemagne wept like a boy at the death of a friend. The victor of 100 battles showed a paternal care for the poor. The man whose steps caused all of Europe to tremble and by whose grand campaigns a million men were conquered was the most tender of fathers, who never could dine without the presence of one of his children.

It was his Religion that gave the noblest impulse to his strong and fecund spirit and that conferred glory to his power. And under its protection he placed the peoples that his sword had conquered.

Charlemagne was also called Charles I, Charles the Great (in French, Charlemagne; in German, Karl der Grosse; in Latin, Carolus Magnus) was King of the Franks, King of the Lombards, and is generally considered the first Holy Roman Emperor. Charlemagne consolidated a large portion of Europe under his rule, promoted learning, and instituted innovative administrative concepts.



Charlemagne was the son of Pippin III (the Short), who officially put an end to the Merovingian line of kings when he negotiated with the pope to be crowned King of the Franks. When Pippin died, the kingdom of Francia was divided between Charlemagne and his brother Carloman. Charles proved himself a capable leader from early on, but his brother was less so, and their relationship was tense until Carloman's death in 771.

Once Charlemagne had sole rule of the government of Francia, he expanded his territory through conquest. He conquered the Lombards in northern Italy, acquired Bavaria, and campaigned in Spain and Hungary. Charles used harsh measures in subduing the Saxons and virtually exterminating the Avars of presnt-day Austria and Hungary. Though he had essentially amassed an empire, Charlemagne did not style himself "emperor," but called himself the King of the Franks and Lombards.


Charles was an able administrator who delegated authority over his conquered provinces to Frankish nobles. At the same time, he recognized the diverse ethnic groups he'd brought together, and allowed each to retain its own local laws. To ensure justice, Charlemagne had these laws set down in writing and strictly enforced. He issued capitularies that applied to all citizens, and kept an eye on events in his empire through the use of missi dominici, representatives who acted with his authority.

Though never able to master writing himself, Charlemagne was an enthusiastic patron of learning. He attracted noted scholars to his court, including Alcuin, who became his private tutor, and Einhard, who was his biographer. Charles was responsible for reforming the palace school and setting up monastic schools throughout the empire. The monasteries he sponsored preserved and copied ancient books. The flowering of learning under his patronage has come to be known as the "Carolingian Renaissance."

Charlemagne took his role as a Christian seriously, and in 800, he came to the aid of Pope Leo III, who had been attacked in the streets of Rome. Charlemagne went to Rome to restore order and, after Leo purged himself of the charges against him, the pope unexpectedly crowned him emperor.

According to his biographer Einhard, Charlemagne wasn't pleased with this development, because it established the precedent of papal ascendancy over secular leadership; but though he still often referred to himself as a king he now also styled himself "Emperor," as well.
Charlemagne died in January, 814. His achievements stand among the most significant of the early Middle Ages, and although the empire he built (called "the Carolingian Empire" after him) would not long outlast his son Louis, his consolidation of lands marked a watershed in the development of Europe.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Our Life on 38th Street Continues

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Everyone,
I'm back from another camp. I have a couple minutes and thought I'd post a few more pictures from this mountain of photographs containing images of people we are related to from as far back as Noah. If I don't start working my way though them I'll never finish this blog, and finish one day I shall.

One day in the future my telling of our family's story will be written on these digital pages and I'll call this blog "Complete". The Story of a Dakota family will be tucked snugly into bed and the lights turned out. Time will continue to pass, Children will be born and those past their sell by dates will pass away hoping that something of themselves will be remembered.

Tonight we step into the Way Back Machine and land in Rapid City South Dakota in the mid 1970's. We're interested in observing a strange family of Mormons living at 2214 38th Street. They appear to be your typical average, lower middle class family. Two parents and eight children. They are the abnormality on the block and spoken of frequently for good and bad around many a dinner table from Evergreen Lane to Jackson Blvd. The oldest Kim is a bit of a rebel. The second born Victor is the only normal one of the bunch, intelligent beyond his years.
The rest of them just blend together into this mental quivering mass of flesh and bones (mostly bones). Let's see if we can put faces with names.......

This is Charles and his second to the youngest daughter Lisa. I'm guessing the slide must be nearly 200 degrees in the hot summer sun and Lisa doesn't seem too excited about going down. It doesn't matter, Dad is determined she will go down. I can hear him now.....
"Why in my day slides got a lot hotter than they do now and we went down them. Got some good second and third degree burns on my legs to prove it. You kids today are too soft, so DOWN YOU GO !"

Here we are on a family outing with the James Matthews family. Jon and Janice are pictured trying to coax a prairie dog out of its hole. If my memory is correct, this was one of our "Picnic off the Land" outings. It wasn't always easy for us to live on the salary of a Highway Department employee, so if we wanted fresh meat for a picnic barbecue we needed to catch it ourselves, which is what Jon and Janice are doing in the picture above. Kevin is standing nearby pointing to the plump rodent he wants for his lunch. Jon and Jan are inches away from a successful capture. Intense isn't it?
Jon and Jan were excellent at "bringing home the bacon". We were never without fresh meat, be it chicken, pork, prairie dog or cat.

And here we are enjoying our picnic with the Matthews. The prairie dog grilled nicely and was delicious when smothered in ketchup. We washed our meal down with that tasty Cragmont Soda, Safeway's own brand. None of that expensive brand name stuff for us Williamsons. Mother is serving, as usual. That's Grandma Elda first on the left. Strange I wasn't the center of attention. They all seem focused on Jim Matthews and not on my pending snapshot using my Instamatic Polaroid Camera. High tech for its time (two decades before this picture was taken!).

Ahhh, and what could be nicer than a birthday celebration with our Mattson first cousins. There were so many of us it seemed like every day was someone's birthday. Just to be safe, Mom always had a birthday cake in the freezer ready to go.

Pictured above is Joe Mattson with his finger up his nose. Behind Joe you see Kirk, Gina, Lisa and Angie seated. Standing in the back are Kevin, Janice, Jilane and Jon. Notice the fine picnic table. That piece of patio furniture was always good for a laugh. It was so old and decrepit you never knew when it would crack, sending everyone on the bench crashing to the patio below. And if the bench didn't collapse from there was always the problem of nasty infections from the slivers you were bound to get from sitting on it!

This picture was taken in our living room. Kim is visiting with her first husband Mike and her two sons, Forrest and Brandon (Forrest is sitting on Mike's lap and Brandon on Janice's). Janice and Kevin are sitting on the couch with Mike. Below from left to right we see Kim, Nettie, Jilane, Lisa and Jon (who once again was confused by two commands, me saying smile and Mother telling him to look at the camera). Lisa's eating again. I can't tell you how many meals the seven of us sacrificed while we were growing up so she could always have enough on her plate!

So, there you have it. A nice walk down my somewhat faulty memory lane for your Saturday evening. Hope your Sunday is peaceful and content.

Simply,
Victor

Oops. Error's Corrected........ :(

Our Ancestors Aren't Happy.
I've Got To Get It Right

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

May I start by saying that nobody is perfect. I'm doing my best with our family history but on occasion I make mistakes. Some errors in the blog are the cause of other people's incorrect family line research. This is understandable in this field of study. One new fact may shift relationships or sever them completely.

Then there are the errors of misunderstanding. I plead guilty (Please remember, I've only been at this since January and it is strictly a hobby). Throughout this blog I was using an incorrect accounting for cousin relationships. I've since been instructed on the correct method and stand before you a better educated person.

I've gone through all the posts in this blog and recalculated our relationship to every cousin mentioned on all family lines.

Now, as far as I understand, this blog is accurate. Shall we move on to meet others who's blood we share?

Simply,
Victor

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Our Cousin Elizabeth (Mattson Line)

Queen Elizabeth II
Our Cuz
Don't be cheeky about it if you want to keep Your Head


From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Family!
Tonight we take an imaginary journey to England to visit our 13th cousin twice removed. I think you know her. She goes by the name Elizabeth II from the House of Windsor. We are related through James IV of Scotland.

Shall we begin with our direct line to James IV?

King James IV of Scotland (14th Great Grandfather)
to
John Drummond of Lennox
(by Jame’s mistress HRH Margaret Drummond Queen of Scotland)
to
John Stewart
to
Archibald Stewart
to
John Stewart of Blackhall, the Younger
to
Marie Lady Stewart
to
Elizabeth Cunningham
to
John Hunter
to
Martha Hunter
to
Nancy Ann Williams
to
Martha Cantwell
to
Frances George
to
Eldora Elizabeth Fiddler
to
Walter Edwin Pierce
to
Violet Mae Pierce (Grandma)
to
Luella, John, Linda, Marvin
to
Us

James IV of Scotland is from the House of Stewart. He is our 14th Great Grandfather. He is Queen Elizabeth’s 12th Great Grandfather. That makes us 13th cousins twice removed (if my counting is correct).


Feeling a little royal are you? Well, now you can have a good reason for feeling the way you do. And if you ever get a chance to visit London, be sure to tell the palace guards that you are the Queen’s cousin and therefore demand to be put up for the night at Buckingham Palace. I mean, its the least one would do for one’s cousin.

British Royal Standard (The Queen's Flag)

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll have a nice cup of tea and a biscuit and watch a bit of tele - BBC America of course. What's on tonight? Well a bit of Scotland I think to honor our proud Stewart heritage.



Simply,
Victor

More Detective Work on the Williamson Line. Samuel Grant Williamson. Great Great Uncle.

Great Great Uncle Samuel Grant Williamson and his wife Celia Dora DeWeese

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Williamsons!
It's an early morning post. You know how it is, you wake up early, can't get back to sleep so might as well get something useful done. Last night I spent an hour or so in my search for information on my generation's Great Great Uncles and Aunts, the brothers and sisters of Great Grandfather William Jonathan Williamson. The task has proven difficult. I thought I was on to sound information on Ralph Williamson but nothing much to write about. I did however find information on George and Margaret's fifth child Samuel. What I discovered is below. Please click on the picture to enlarge.

Simply,
Victor