Family History Background

My love for family history began at a very young age.  Our bookshelf full of photo albums always captured my attention — I still love those photos, even though I’ve seen them a million times by now.  I clearly remember poring over the pages of a cousin’s 1984 publication, “Lots of Laughter, Lots of Love”, a brainchild of my paternal grandfather and some of his cousins while at a family reunion in Clyde, Texas.  I soaked up every chart & anecdote it provided, especially a transcribed 1863 letter from my 4th great-grandmother to her husband, a confederate Civil War surgeon stationed in Mobile, Alabama.

I have several family historians in my own tree.  My maternal Great Aunt Alma wrote a lovely memoir about her mother, Effie Thomas Petty.  Papa, my paternal grandfather, wrote extensively about growing up in Clyde, Texas, in the 1910s and 1920s.  Papa’s maternal great-grandfather, George B. Ely, migrated from Arkansas to Texas in 1846, spent time as a Texas Ranger, and wrote about his experiences on the Texas frontier, as did his younger sister, Barbara Ely.

My interest has evolved from a pastime on a Saturday afternoon to a disciplined area of research.  Earning a Bachelor of Science in History with an emphasis in 19th century America laid a solid foundation in both understanding the historical context of an individual’s life as well as appreciating the value of quality research.

Expertise & Training

  • BS (History), The University of Texas at Tyler, magna cum laude.
  • 2014 Forensic Genealogy Institute, Foundations.

Professional Memberships

  • Member, Texas State Genealogical Society.
  • Member, National Genealogical Society.
  • Member, National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Cross Timbers Chapter.

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