In December of 2014, my mother and I returned to Arkansas to clean out my grandfather's house. While we were there, my mother's maternal cousin brought over 3 boxes of family files that had come from my great-grandmother Louise Lasiter's house.
|Louise Lasiter, 1955|
When my great-grandmother died, I was away at college. There had just been a big Christmas celebration and then she passed shortly after on the 27th of December. After her death, her estate was divided between her three children, her personal belongings distributed or sold, and the house was sold and the profits also distributed between the three children. When my grandmother died in 2003, I helped my mother clean out her house. Surprisingly I did not find anything from her mother, my great-grandmother's house. I assumed at the time that my grandmother had simply thrown everything out.
I did not become interested in genealogy until many years later. Then my mother showed me a couple of boxes of family photos that she had retrieved from my great-grandmother's house. She gave them to me in 2009. I inventoried and scanned all the contents and was able to extend the Lasiter tree out one more generation based on some writing on the back of a photo. But there were things missing. These boxes contained photos of my grandmother when she was young and of my mother and I throughout the years, and a few of my great-grandmother and her siblings, but nothing more from her Benson side of the family. I knew if my great-grandmother had kept any keepsakes from her childhood or from her parents, then they had to be in the boxes that were distributed to the other two children. And I was pretty darn sure my great-grandmother had kept some keepsakes. She kept everything and she wrote on everything!
Well you better believe that I sent letters to the children of my grandmother's oldest sister, Barbara. But they went unanswered. I queried her brother, but he too, said he didn't have anything. Now they are both gone. But his son surprised me. And guess what? His son is now interested in genealogy. Yep, he got the bug now too! And he decided to help me out.
I had found the genealogy gold mine!
I found room for 2 bankers sized boxes (they were bigger back then, by the way) and one small box that has two drawers in it on the trailer for the drive back to Georgia and then to North Carolina. I opened the boxes and you wouldn't believe what I found!
Photos of course!
School Report Cards!
Three Boxes of Photos, Letters, and Family Memorabilia
from my great-grandmother's house.
Photo taken by Ginger R. Smith, 17 January 2015.
All posts relating to my great-grandmother's materials will be labeled with "Louise's Lost Files" followed by a brief description of their contents. I am estimating this project will take the better part of a year to complete. So stay tuned for more details!