LETTERS TO AUNT AMANDA Mar 5, 2006 3:05:20 GMT -5
Post by benotforgot on Mar 5, 2006 3:05:20 GMT -5
This particular trail of discovery began late in 1998 for me when I first started corresponding with LaVerne (Adams) and Bill Dixon. LaVerne and I share a common ancestor in Richard West, Sr. He was the father of ... Mathilda (West) Valentine, LaVerne's g-g-grandmother ... and of Richard West, Jr., my g-g-g-grandfather.
In talking with the Dixons, I learned of the existence of some 19th century letters regarding some of the people who came to Texas c. 1869 from Oktibbeha County, Mississippi. Bill and LaVerne told me that this was a series of letters from various people in Burleson/Lee County, Texas written back home to a Miss Amanda Boyd in Starkville, Mississippi.
If I remember correctly, the Dixon's were able to obtain photocopies of handwritten transcriptions of some of these letters which had been made by Ascenia (Peebles) Underwood. My understanding is that Mrs. Underwood had years ago visited a lady somewhere in Texas who allowed her to hand copy the original letters.
The Dixons were kind enough to send me typed copies of a total of twenty letters. The dates on these letters range from December 1869 to February 1892. They all had a return address of post offices in Lexington and Tanglewood, Texas.
Since setting up this US MISSISSIPPIANS site, I have been blessed to make contact with all you wonderful kith and kin with links back to Oktibbeha County.
The late Jim Vick of Italy kindly introduced me to his Texian cousin, Norene (Vick) Weigl. In an e-mail dated 17 Feb 2000, Norene mentioned that she had "a copy of the Vick early letters written by Vicks who came to Lee Co., Texas back to relatives who remained in Mississippi." When I questioned her about the letters she had, she told me she received her copies from Dora (Smith) Pendley of Mesquite, Texas.
Norene was kind enough to contact Dora's husband (Dora doesn't do e-mail) and he in turn contacted me. Dr. Pendley told me that ... Dora got the copies from Ila Vick years ago ... She was a daughter of Lum Vick. She was living in Rotan, TX when we visited her. She is a sister to Boyd Vick who lives in Lubbock.
I drove to Mesquite Tuesday morning (29 Feb 2000) and spent a perfectly delightful couple of hours visiting with Dr. and Mrs. Pendley in their home. When I got there, Mrs. Pendley had already made copies of the letters for me.
I was delighted to see not only what appear to be copies of the originals of some of the typed letters I previously received from the Dixons, but also some letters I had not known about before.
One of those new letters was an undated six-page letter addressed to a Mrs. Frances Henderson in Breckenridge, Texas. That letter was from a Homer C. Richey who was trying to locate all heirs of a "Miss Ida Seale, a cousin of the Vicks (who) died last summer." Mr. Richey was expressing a keen interest in buying 440 acres of land in Mississippi which belonged to Miss Seale's estate. That letter is added as a COMMENT to this message.
These letters are posted on the appropriate dates on the CALENDAR at this UM site. This enables us to re-read these letters throughout the year as we receive automatic reminders on the anniversary dates of when those letters were originally written. I have also adding historical notes of interest to some of the letters.
I now tend to believe that there are probably various collections of these letters scattered around out there somewhere. If y'all hear of ANYBODY that has copies of the letters to Aunt Amanda, please follow up on it. I was VERY pleasantly surprised to find that the Pendley's collection differed somewhat from the Dixon's collection!