I Went Searching For an Indian and Found I Was a Dutchman

I Went Searching for an Indian and Found I Was a Dutchman.
I've always been interested in history so when my Uncle Wayne gave me some information about our family roots I had to begin changing the way I've always thought about where I came from. We had always been told, "there's Indian blood in our ancestry, we just haven't been able to prove it". I have been surprised to learn that while searching for an Indian link, I found a Dutchman. Now I'm not saying there may not be some Indian blood somewhere but the prospect looks dimmer the more I find out.
I also have had some general prejudices about folks back east, especially areas like Ohio (I grew up in the Woody Hayes era and couldn't stand Ohio State). What a surprise (and God ordained I believe) to find we arrived in Ohio in the early 1800s, my ancestor fought in an Ohio Regiment in the Civil War, and came to Kansas afterwards. That, and some visits to Ohio, has adjusted my thinking.
And the other reason why-to keep communication between the far flung members of my family and encourage them to drop a note so we can keep in touch with the details of their lives. We miss too much by not being there in the day to day workings of life. So, leave a post for all of us.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Disappearing Indian in our Past

From when I was a little boy, the story has swirled around our family that we had some Indian blood in our lineage.  If you look at a picture of Grandpa Earl or Grandpa George, you would think so. Usually the story revolves around the fact that Grandpa George's wife, Lousippi (Steele) was the source of such blood.   I've been asked many times by members of the family if I've found the link yet and I'm afraid I might have.  There is none.
I know, I know, how could that be wrong?  There is a possibility (although slight) that there is some Indian blood but it would be very difficult to prove and of such a small percentage as to be insignificant.  Grandma Lousippi cam from the union of Thomas A. Steele and Emmaline Anderson.  Her father Thomas was born Chester County, Pennsylvania and his father was born in Pennsylvania as well (I've found no record of his mother's birthplace).   Emmaline was born in Greene County Pennsylvania and her parents were born in Pennsylvania and Virginia. Lousippi and all of her siblings were born in Illinois and Iowa and all died in Oklahoma.  It's obvious from the data that they migrated from the east along a similar but slightly more northern course than did George's family.
Earl Bartlow

It is POSSIBLE (but very slight) that someone intermarried with a person of Indian blood but from the birth history and names (Anderson, Steele, Brown, Wells, and so forth) it appears not.  One must remember that many of the Indian tribes we think of as inhabitants of Kansas and Oklahoma were once inhabitants of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia and so forth.  So it's possible.  I think the possibility of us being of Cherokee or any of the tribes from the south is almost nil.
Well, not to bust your bubble, and I hope not too disappointing, but history is what it is and we are what we are.  Above all though, we can be sure of one thing: We can all be children of the King through the shed blood of His Son, our Saviour, who we celebrate this month.
Merry Christmas to you all, Indians and Dutchmen alike.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Where do I start?

Ok, I never thought I'd have a blog.  What do you say on a continuing basis?  Something witty or interesting enough for anyone to even go check it out in our data-enriched media environment.  But then I was reading the magazine insert in our local newspaper, the Valley Falls Vindicator, and it told about a lady who kept up with extended family and the task ended up with them all having a family reunion every two years.
Given that our family meets EVERY year (see invite to the left) I thought this might help us to keep up with one another during the year and allow me an opportunity to add my musings as I learn things of our family history.
One of my regrets as I was growing up and which has always been a source of melancholy, is the fact that I've missed out on the intricate day-to-day happenings of my extended family.  Now due to the fact that, given we live in a space-time constrained environment (that is, we can only be in one place at a time), it is virtually impossible to be part of everyone's lives you love all the time.  Whenever I hear my family tell of good times they've had with other family, or the events of their lives of which I have not been part, it makes me sad that I wasn't there.  I'm hoping the opportunity of this new-fangled technology will fill that gap.
National Flag of the Netherlands
Another challenge I came to is what to name this thing.  Ask my wife, Kathi, how long I stared at the page that tells you to enter your blog title.  Some that I considered: "They told me we had Indian blood",  "Lubberdinks", "Wooden Shoes West", "Down off of Missionary Ridge", "Life after Limestone Landing", and so forth.  I think what I came up with expresses where we came from and the surprise to find we're from Holland.  I would have never thought that was the case.
If you'll check in from time to time, I'll try to post something interesting enough to make it worth your while.  And while you're here, leave a story of your own.
Soli Deo Gloria