South Slope. Asheville.

Monday, October 28, 2013

All Things Carroll

Family Crest (scanned by Judy Faye West)
In the five plus years I've had this blog, on occasion, some special things have happened.  A pretty big one was receiving an e-mail this summer from a cousin I had never heard of.  Luckily for me, and truly anyone interested in any aspect of the Carroll family, he's an incredible resource.

Charles Loeffler
my cousin from Texas

July 8 

Hi, I ran across your blog a few weeks ago using Google and entering James Carroll and Rhoda Stephenson, just to see what might come up.  You have done a lot of good work on your family history.  Good for you.

I am a descendant of an older sister of your Major Carroll, born 1851.  My great-grandmother was Sarah Carroll (1844-1917) married to Henry Zachariah Parker (1828-1900).  They are buried in Ozark.  I have no photo of Sarah and only one of Henry.

My name is Charles Emil Loeffler, born 1938 in Texas.  My mother was Kate Ellen Lewis Loeffler, born in Dothan.  (1910-1995) Buried in Junction, TX.  My grandmother was Della Parker Lewis (1881-1927), buried in Cottonwood, AL.

I see that I am a little older than your parents.  I am sorry that you lost them already.

I have collected a good bit of information on my mother's family, etc. over the years and I have put a lot of it in Family Tree Maker.  I don't mind sharing with you what I have found on the family of Major Carroll and Sarah Branch.  Be glad to send you a report from my FTM program.

I found the information you put on your blog, about  your Uncle Watty to be fascinating.  I will look for it again as I have time.

Thanks for your interest in the Carroll family.

Cousin Charles Loeffler
Junction, TX
Aug 13  

Allen, here goes on answering your questions.  Sorry that I have no videos or any old photos.

I got interested in researching my mother's family about 25 years ago.  I always enjoyed looking at her family photos from Alabama and asking about the people in the photos.  My grandmother that is  the Carroll descendant died way before I was born.  Della Parker was born in 1881 in Dale County and died in 1927 when my mother was a senior in high school.  Some years later my grandfather Lewis married again and she was the step-grandmother that I knew.  We used to go visit them when they lived in Ponce de Leon and in Cottondale, Florida.  My grandfather died in 1954 when I was age 13. His was the first funeral that I ever attended.  He was buried in Cottonwood, Houston County, AL beside his first wife, Della Parker.  Della's mother was Sarah Carroll (1944-1917).  Sarah died when my mother was age 7.  I never heard my mother or any of her three siblings mention Sarah.  I did hear one of my aunts mention their grandfather, Henry Zachariah Parker, and said that he was well-to-do.  Henry died in 1900 before my grandparents married in 1903.

I have a nice write-up on the Parker side done by a cousin of my mother that was written in probably the 1950's.  I have a Parker cousin that recently did a large book about this family.  I helped her with a good bit of it.  When I first started off, I wrote to some of my mother's cousins still living in Alabama and they sent a lot of information on my Lewis ancestors.  I have also learned a lot about my Metcalf, Windham, Talbot, Ashburn, etc. lines.  And the line we have in common, the Carrolls.

When I got started on this, the internet had not kicked off.  In about 1990 my wife and I made a trip to SE Alabama.  We also went to the Masters Golf Tournament in Augusta on that trip.  I went to the Library in Ozark and found a lot of information and went to as many cemeteries as I could to look for family headstones.  On this trip I found the headstones of Major James Carroll and Penelope and also my Parker/Carroll great-grandparents in Ozark.  We went again to Alabama about five years later and I found more tombstones of other ancestors, some in cemeteries that were very difficult to find.  I found a tombstone of a great great grandmother that was way off the road lost in the woods that had died in 1856.  I found the old Windham graveyard in Dale County where there were many burials as recorded in about 1900, but only two gravestones remained in the 1995 timeframe.

One of the key books showing Carroll info is "Dale County Kin" by Lydia Hughes Grimes in 1984.  I am about a triple cousin to Lydia.  She descends from David Carroll, brother of Major James Carroll.  I bought the books, Heritage of Dale County, Alabama and Heritage of Houston County, Alabama, as well as the book, Cemeteries of Dale County, Alabama.  I have portions of other books which mention the Carrolls.  I have done some research in the DAR Library in Washington, DC.  I have corresponded with a good many Carroll cousins over the years and still do so from time to time.

Another valuable resource is Mark Valsame, archivist at the North Carolina State archives.  He has  been helpful to me.  I have a copy of most of the pages of his book published in 1991.  He is the one who debunked the Carroll "old-wives tales" about Duncan McCarroll or O'Carroll and James Carroll being born in Ireland.  Mark descends from both the Stephenson and Carroll lines in North Carolina.  His Carroll ancestor is Margaret Carroll, daughter of James Carroll and Rhoda Stephenson.

When I first got started on this I made my own genealogy charts on my first computer, but soon found that I needed a software program to keep everything straight.  I use Family Tree Maker.  I usually put info that I want to keep in my FTM program when I first get it and don't save paper any longer unless it is something like a will or something equally important.  You can get an idea of what I save from my file on Major Carroll that I sent you.

I found you a month or two ago by entering James Carroll and Rhoda Stephenson into Google and your blog came up.
If you want me to elaborate more, I can.  I am going to send you some of my notes on Major James Carroll and on James Carroll next.

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