Copyright © Janice Tracy, Mississippi Memories

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Surname Saturday

Surnames I am researching, along with geographic areas of interest, are the following:
Baldridge - Ireland>PA>NC>SC>TN>MS
Branch - VA>NC>TN>MS
Coggins - NC>SC>GA>AL>MC
Fenner - RI>NC>GA>AL>MS
Gibson - VA>NC>SC>TN>MS
Merriwether (Meriwether/Merriweather) - VA>KY>SC>GA>AL>TN>MS
Motte - Dublin, Ireland>West Indies>SC>AL>MS Territory
Netherland (Neatherlin/Netherlin/Neatherland) - VA>KY>TN>GA>AL>MS
Pettus - VA>KY>TN>GA>AL>MS
Porter - PA>VA>NC>SC>AL>MS
If your ancestors share these surnames, I would love to hear from you.  Who knows...we may be cousins!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Fortner-Porter Cemetery, Hinds County, Mississippi

It all started in February 2011 when I contacted an individual named Carol Hughes about her post on an message board.  According to the post, Carol and I were researching the same individual, Anastacia Porter Lawson Porter. Known as "Gracy" to family members, Anastacia was the second wife of William Porter, who died in Hinds County, Mississippi in the 1800s. According to most accounts, William Porter was the son of Landlot Porter and Winnie Palmer Porter. More about the Porter family of Hinds County, Mississippi can be read here

Shortly before reading Carol's post on the message board, I had read about a small family cemetery near Raymond, Mississippi that allegedly contained the graves of Gracy, her husband, William, his father, Landlot Porter, and other Porter and Fortner family members. I shared this information in an email to Carol, and was struck with amazement when I received her reply telling me that she lived within a few miles of the cemetery's  location.  Although she had no previous knowledge of the cemetery's existence, Carol readily volunteered to locate it and kindly offered to photograph whatever headstones she might find. As most of us know, family obligations, weather, and life in general often take precedence over family research activities, and almost a year went by before Carol was able to make the trip to the cemetery. Although Carol had actually located the cemetery this past January, she discovered it was located on private property and permission to access the property was needed from the owner. 

But Carol was persistent, and on February 20, 2011, her visit to the cemetery became a reality, albeit a bittersweet one. Although the cemetery is located on privately owned property, it has been vandalized and some of the heavier stones and monuments have been toppled.  Gracy Porter's stone was one of those that had been overturned. Landlot Porter's grave marker is still standing, and with Carol's permission, I have posted a photo of it here today.  

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Mocavo Plus - A Review

Several weeks ago, I was contacted by Katelyn Lazor, Marketing Associate for  As part of her community outreach efforts to promote the site, Katelyn offered me a subscription in exchange for writing a review on this blog about my experience in using Mocavo Plus. Although it has taken me a few weeks to write this review, I was not a total stranger to the site before Katelyn and I communicated.  I began following Mocavo on Twitter almost a year ago and had visited the site a number of times during its early development.   My recent visits to the site do allow me to make a positive observation that Mocavo Plus is an excellent place for linking researchers and for sharing information. And it is free. But the Advanced Search function, which seems to be the hallmark of Mocavo Plus, is limited in that a researcher must know the exact date of the life event(s) entered. While my own use of the Advanced Search feature was successful, the resulting information consisted primarily of links to my own blog posts. Overall, the site is a great resource for novice family researchers.  But more experienced researchers who need actual documentation, whether it is census record information or birth, marriage, military or death records, likely will use the site as simply a stepping stone on their genealogical journey.