Monday, December 30, 2013

Another Bit of Family History--From the Revolutionary War

My grandmother, Rhoda Hamilton Mackey, was descended on her mother's side from the Ownbeys. The line the following article is about goes:

Rhoda Rachel Hamilton (1886-1974)
Nancy (Ownbey) Hamilton (wife of Joel Mackey Hamilton) (1861-1906)
James C. Ownbey (1828-1906)
Madison Ownbey (1801-1868)
James Ownbey (1761-1850)
John Ownbey (1735-1824)

The article is about the Revolutionary War service of James Ownbey. It is interesting to see how that hodgepodge army was put together with very short term enlistments. James Ownbey served six enlistments, some of them as a replacement for someone else. My understanding is that this was a fairly commonplace event--if you didn't want to serve and could afford it, you could pay someone to go in your place. He was 17 when he first went as a substitute for another man, and he was in and out of service for the next five years.

Gravestone donated by the DAR as described in the article.
It is amazing, the things that can be found on the Internet!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Lost in Bookland

For the past several days I have been lost. . .

lost in a world not quite like my everyday world.

It is part of the wonder of reading that ink on paper, or electronically produced words on a small device, can pull a person into a place that becomes very real and vivid in the mind.

Movies are great, and the technology that produces amazing special effects is mind-boggling. Most of the world seems to be hooked up to some sort of digital entertainment these days.

And I don't dislike these modern developments; I appreciate many of them a great deal.

But, for me, they cannot beat falling into the world a good writer creates with words--words that create brilliant mental landscapes. Words that make the world of the book more real than the mundane surroundings of reality.

I come from a reading family. My parents were readers, all six of their children have been readers, and the reading gene has gone through most of their numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

And just because it is one of my all-time favorite photos, I will share this one with you.

Jerry reading to Megan when she was about four. They are at Grandma Rose's.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

1914 Was a Difficult Year for the Mackeys

1914 saw the deaths of two people who were very important to Will and Rhoda Mackey (my grandparents). Will's father, Joel Elliott Mackey, the family patriarch (and confederate cavalry veteran) died on June 10th, at the age of 87. Less than three months later tragedy struck the family when Burtie Mackey, Will and Rhoda's first child, died on September 2nd, aged eight and a half.
Joel Elliott Mackey

Joel Elliot Mackey Death Certificate
Joel E. Mackey's Tombstone

Death Certificate of Burtie Mackey

Burtie's death certificate (where his name is misspelled "Bertie") states that he died of Gastric Fever, with the contributory condition of Paralysis. (I wonder--was this referring to his cerebral palsy, or was it an additional paralysis such as would be caused by polio?) What "Gastric Fever" really was in today's medical knowledge, we'll never know, but it proved fatal for Burtie.

Two years later Will and Rhoda, with their children Vera, Boyce, and Rose, emigrated to Wyoming as homesteaders.

I don't remember Grandma Mackey ever mentioning her firstborn and his loss. Evidently she just couldn't talk about it. I did hear Vera's story about how Burtie (who today would be diagnosed as having cerebral palsy), would think up mischief and have his little sister Vera carry it out.

Burtie Mackey
Burtie's full name was Burton Clarence Mackey. He was born March 16, 1906, in Idaho. He died and is buried in North Carolina. (His parents lived in Idaho for a time when they were first married, and one of the things Will did during that time was drive a stagecoach.)

Sunday, December 8, 2013

In the Little Things

Today our pastor gave a message about seeing Jesus in the little things. He used a number of Scriptures and examples, but here's what stuck with me.

A friend of the pastor's is a man from Africa named David. He had told how it was once very difficult for him to speak of his Christian faith to his people, because they see Christianity as a white man's religion. Then a little thing jumped out for him from the Scriptures. It was the story of how Joseph took Mary and the young Jesus to Egypt to escape Herod. Jesus had lived in Africa! He can now explain to his fellow Africans that Jesus is not just for the white people. Jesus knows and experienced life in Africa. He is for Africans.

In speaking of God being in the little things, we were reminded of the importance of little things that are happening while we may be hoping for some big miracle, some extraordinary event.

Thinking of little things, I wonder how many I have overlooked as being a touch of God. An amusing event or a funny story in a blog that gives me a moment of laughter to lighten my day. An appreciative comment after I've taught a class that encourages me to continue doing it. A hug from my granddaughter. A book that takes me to places I'll never actually go to. A phone call from my elderly aunt with words of appreciation and encouragement. Those are just a few "little things" that were in my life in the past few days. If I keep thinking about it, I'm sure many more will come to mind.

At the close of the message this morning, everyone in the congregation received a gift. The gift was one white baby sock. It is to remind us to see God in the little things. I'm going to hang mine on the Christmas tree. Every time I notice that little white sock, my mind will turn to the little things that bless my life.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Chad, The Dog Whisperer

In our family we call Chad "The Dog Whisperer." Dogs just love him. Even dogs that belong to other people will gravitate to Chad.

Yesterday, after Thanksgiving dinner, we moved to the living room to visit and watch a fun movie. When the movie was over Chad went downstairs for a short time and came back with two of their Chihuahuas, Pip and Sassy. Pip played for a while, then visited different people for a cuddle. Sassy was delighted to have Chad to herself. When Chad is around no one else exists for Sassy.

Anne Marie and Megan began calling to Sassy, trying to get her attention. This is the response they got:

Thursday, November 28, 2013

In All Things. . .

The Bible tells us to be thankful in all things. We could probably have a pretty good debate about what that means and how in the world we can be thankful when times are hard or painful or full of grief.

We can, of course, "put on a happy face" and mouth platitudes when we feel ill, in pain, fearful, or filled with grief. But that is hypocrisy, something that is decidedly displeasing to God. And fake emotions will eventually be recognized by the people around us.

So, what do we do when we feel desperate for help, but are being told that as God's people we must be thankful?

Faking it is not the right option, so what is?

I truly do not know, but here are a few of my thoughts about it.

The psalms may give us some help with this. Many of the psalms are hymns of praise and thanksgiving. But many are songs that bare the deepest emotions of the heart--not just praise and thankfulness, but dire need, fear, grief, distress, and the questioning of why God is not helping. But even in these there is almost always a kernel of recognition of the greatness, power, and care of the Lord.

Perhaps being thankful in all things is simply to recognize that which is good in our lives, despite our current circumstances, and to acknowledge that God is and always will be. This quality of acceptance doesn't require faking emotions. It does lift our minds and hearts at least a little way out of ourselves and our troubles.

I know that I do not like to be instructed to be thankful for my pain, sorrow, or other distress. There may come a time when I can see some good come out of those bad things. There also may not come such a time in this life. Suffering is real. To try to negate it by saying we must be thankful even for the suffering does not ring true to me. It may be possible in hindsight, but not while it is happening. Unlike the Apostle Paul, I don't glory in suffering!

Does this make me a lesser Christian? I don't know. I do know that I should be honest with God. He can take it. And, yes, the Psalms prove that point again and again.

Now, please don't think I wrote this because I am suffering something terrible right now. I am not. I am actually feeling very blessed in many, many ways.

No, this came out of thinking how hard it is for those who are suffering today to feel like celebrating a day of thankfulness when they are so full of pain and distress.

I don't want to preach at them to be grateful at this moment.

Perhaps the wisest word I could say about this is simply to refer to the Psalms--you will find there an expression of just about everything you may be experiencing, from joy to repentance to physical pain to grief to questioning God with your "whys". And you may be reassured that it is all right to feel these things. God will not reject you for it.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

A Little Story from 1945

I worked yesterday just a little on my slow-moving re-do-the-old-album project. One of the things I did was scan and enlarge two of the old, tiny photos--1.5 x 2.25 inches. I definitely need them to be larger for my own viewing.

When I started this project, I removed the photos from the old book in order to scan the ones that needed enlarged and to reorganize them in a new album. Most of the photos have no date on them. A few do, and a few have writing on the back.
These had no date, but Mother had written on the back, which gave me the clues to when and why they were taken.

Take One: Edna Prochaska and Rose McLaughlin
Take One says: "I was instructing Eugene as to how to take the picture and he up and took it just as I started over to him."

Take Two

Take Two says: " Second trial."

The background in the photos plus the notes tell me that they were taken early in 1945, before the porch vine had leaves, and that they were sent to our father while he was in army basic training. This was during WWII.

Mother's cousin Edna was visiting with her two boys, Eugene and Harry. These other photos were taken the same day. Edna's husband, Joe Prochaska, doesn't appear in any of them, so I assume he was not there. I don't know if he was in the service. I did not turn four until July of that year, so I don't remember everything from that time!

Harry Prochaska and Michelle McLaughlin

Don't know if the original was blurry or if its just a bad scan!
Apparently, after the war the photos came home with Daddy and were added to the photo album.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Those Silly, Sappy Christmas Movies!

All right, I confess, I am once again watching Christmas movies on TV to get in the Christmas spirit.

And, I'll admit, I do love a happy ending.

I do wish, however, that the writers/directors/producers of these seasonal stories that so often are set in small towns (do they think only small town people get carried away by Christmas?) had some clue as to what small towns--and small town people--are really like. Hollywood has a very distorted view of the rest of the country! They only know California and New York.

And I wish they would write for a little--just a little would be nice--higher IQ viewer. I watched one yesterday that was set in the mountains of northeastern U.S. The exact state was not named, but the town was formerly a ski resort. But they had no snow (global warming, ya' know) so were looking for some other source of income. Of course, the no-snow plot was a cover for the fact that the film was made in the summer. Now, even if no snow had fallen by Thanksgiving, they would have had fall. But, the trees were in full leaf, flower gardens were blooming, and the grass was bright green. They didn't even try to take shots that did not show that it was summer! Maybe I'm just being picky.

And while I'm being picky. . .most of these movies have a love story in them. And I am very weary of the post-2000 movies always showing courting couples already living together. Another movie I watched yesterday in the Christmas-genre was about a couple who had planned their wonderful Christmas wedding down to the minutest detail in the year since they had gotten engaged the Christmas before. Of course they were living together the whole time. It is just assumed that any couple that is even dating is automatically living together. It is a circular thing--some couples just live together so it gradually becomes acceptable and becomes the norm in entertainment media which feed the mindset that this is the norm so more couples think dating means living together and more people simply accept this as morally okay.

Those are my gripes. I rather expect I'll continue to watch Christmas-themed movies, though I wish for higher quality. Sometimes I'm just in the mood for sweet, sappy, happy ending stories.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Christmas Came Early

Yes, I know we haven't even had Thanksgiving yet, but yesterday was a Christmas day.

First, Anne Marie and I went shopping for gifts to fill our Christmas Child Shoeboxes, a project of Samaritan's Purse to provide Christmas gifts for underprivileged children around the world. Sharing these gifts is a way of demonstrating the love of Jesus. It is always fun to see just how much we can get in the shoebox! (We don't send junky stuff.)

I was having one of those days where I just felt completely wiped out, and would have just gone home and crashed for the rest of the day, but. . .Anne Marie reminded me that the Mannheim Steamroller concert was that evening. Our tickets had been ordered weeks ago. I was almost sorry I had a ticket. I was too weary to feel like going anywhere.

However, the tickets weren't cheap--how could I waste mine? I have loved the Mannheim Steamroller music for many years and have all their Christmas albums. I play those CDs over and over again every December. I could not miss the opportunity to hear that wonderful music live!

The concert was being presented twice and both events were sold out. Our tickets were for the five o'clock concert. When Anne Marie ordered our tickets she was able to get four seats together, and they were the first four seats from the aisle. This was important for her claustrophobic mother (that's me, unfortunately). We arrived shortly after 4:30; we had time to settle in and read the program before the concert began.

My writing skills are simply inadequate to express how wonderful the music was.

The lights went down. The brief introduction was given. Hark the Herald Angels poured from the orchestra. From the first beautiful notes a bubble swelled in me that felt like I would burst. It was pure joy. I must have smiled through the whole concert, and my hands were tender from applauding at the end of each number. It was one of those experiences where I wish life had a rewind button so I could live it all again.

Yes, there were interesting effects with lights (including making it look like it was snowing), a little fog from the fog machine, and videos of various types accompanying each piece on a big screen behind the orchestra. Those added to the concert, but just the music would have been enough. It was that good. The volume was just right--clear and strong without being deafening. I felt surrounded by music, not battered by it.

During the intermission Chad bought us copies of the new Mannheim Steamroller CD. It is a remix of some of their Christmas classics with Steamroller and some of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Chad said, "Here's an early Christmas present." And, of course, I played it before I went to bed and am listening to it again as I write.

A day that started off with my feeling weary, draggy, and just wanting to stay in my house and read a book, ended with off-the-scale enjoyment. Music is such a gift. It is no wonder that the Scriptures describe the presence of God as being filled with music.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Crawling in a Hole

There's a saying I've heard a lot in my family. It goes pretty much like this: "I'm so [fill in the blank yourself] that I'd just like to crawl in a hole and pull the hole in after me."

It usually means being frazzled to the point of desperately needing some alone/quiet time. I think introverts, of which there are many in my family, reach this point more easily and often than extroverts do. Too many people, too much activity, too many responsibilities and our nervous systems become frayed and we just need to get away to regenerate. I even react to things like shopping in WalMart, where I get sensory overload.

Sometimes it's not an excess of people and activity. It's a mood that falls upon me that shuts off the desire for company, activity, or even outside news.  That's where I have been the past few days, despite the fact that I spent a day traveling to Rapid City with my daughter and granddaughter for medical appointments on Thursday, I went to the movie Thor with the Birdies on Friday, Megan spent part of the weekend with me and we enjoyed a meal out together on Saturday, and on Sunday I taught a Bible class. I always appreciate the time spent with my family and teaching the two classes I do each week are important to me.

But after each of these things I am content to climb into my hole. While I am often a dedicated follower of the news, I have given myself a vacation from most news coverage for the last few weeks. I check it from time to time, but am enjoying ignoring things I can do nothing about.

I won't stay in my hole permanently or exclusively. That is not good for anyone, not even an extreme introvert. But I will always treasure time with books and doing my own thing. That is one thing that aging and retirement have given me plenty of. I try to guard against retreating too far, however!

Excuse me now--I feel my hole calling me.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Mugs and Memories

When I open my cupboard to take out a mug for my morning coffee, this is what I see.
Every mug in the cupboard has some special connection to events in my life. When I use a mug for coffee, tea, or cocoa, I remember these things. Of course, I have my favorites--perhaps the color or decoration on the mug; perhaps the way it fits and feels in my hand; and perhaps the memories attached to a particular mug.
I don't remember when we got them, but these were the mugs Jerry used every morning for his coffee. When Megan was little and spent the night with us, she would have coffee-milk with Grandpa in the matching mug.

This was one of the gifts we were given by the Black Hawk Community Church when we moved back to Gillette. We loved that congregation and it was very hard to leave.

These mugs all come from trips to Yellowstone National Park. Using one of them takes my mind to Yellowstone.

This mug and Terry Redlin art print remind me of a trip to Watertown, SD, for a board meeting of the foundation I worked for. The mayor was one of the board members and gave us each these gifts. We visited the Terry Redlin art museum as part of our free time activities.

These mugs I received over a span of quite a few years of my working life. They came as gifts with flowers in them.

When Megan was very young, the Birdies gave me this mug and a matching Grandpa one for Jerry.
This mug is a memento of a visit to the Nicolaysen Art Museum in Casper. I enjoyed the art a great deal and then my attention was captured by a display of handmade pottery dishes in the museum gift shop. I treated myself to this mug with some birthday money I had not yet spent. It pleases my eye as well as my hand and drinking from it gives me pleasure.

Some of the mugs I keep for sentimental reasons are not used very often, but I like them as mementos.

These mugs were given to us at different Christmases by Jerry's sister Jean. The photo is rather faded, but is of the four Russell siblings.

This mug was from the 40th Anniversary of Platte Valley Bible College celebration. Jerry and I enjoyed the gathering and saw many old friends. Jerry's mom, Emma, was also there.

These character mugs, The Easter Bunny, a Mustached Gentleman, and Santa Claus, were painted by Jerry's mom during her ceramics period. They are over 50 years old, so I don't actually use them for anything other than decoration.

My sister Brownie painted this tin mug and gave it to me many years ago. I am very fond of it and keep it on my living room bookshelves. It also makes a handy holder for a fat candle.

My collection of mugs also includes soup mugs. I really like soup mugs and find them useful for other things besides just soup. These particular mugs are special to me because they used to live in my mother's cupboard. During the house clean out I rescued them after everyone else had chosen what they wanted from Mother's house. I use them and I think of Mother and her home, which was the family center for so many years.

I have other mugs that are put away. They were gifts that were given to Jerry, such as his Grandpa cup, his Denver Broncos cup, and the cup that has clever remarks about golfing written on it. I can't use them, and I can't give them away, so they sit in the small cupboard over the kitchen sink.

In general, I enjoy using objects that touch a memory. They make even the most commonplace, everyday things just a little special.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Undefeated by the Romans

A few months ago I posted a blog that mentioned I was reading The Romans for Dummies book (here). It has taken a long time, but I have finally finished it.

Sometimes I start a book that I think will be really interesting, but bog down partway through. I hate to be defeated by a book! So I often keep plugging on, trying to get it done. If desperate, I'll start skipping and scanning, just to get the gist of it without suffering through every word.

Occasionally, I'll find a book so boring that I decide it really has no worth for me and it is silly to spend any more time on it.

There have been a few times I have found a book so disgusting I have thrown it in the trash. I don't want to pass it on and pollute other minds!

But the Romans book seemed worthwhile to read. I've long been interested in the times of the Roman empire. There are a lot of fascinating characters, events, and accomplishments that took place under the Romans. Their influence on subsequent history is enormous.

So why did it take me so many months to finish this book?

I'm sorry to have to say it, but I was mostly just bored, bored, bored by it. But I wanted the information. So I read it a bit at a time over many weeks. The problem, it seems to me, is that the author tried to cover around 2,000 years of history in slightly less than 500 pages. Given that task, there wasn't space to spend developing the really interesting stories about people and events. Instead, you get bits and pieces in very condensed form. There are lots of names and dates I'm never going to remember. Neither will I really remember how the political structure of Rome was organized in different stages of the development from a village to an empire. And there were battles galore, but I'll only remember the general tenor of those times, rather than what general met what tribe in what battle in which country.

I come away from this book with a general overview of the entire span of the Roman Empire, from before it was an empire until its ultimate collapse. There were lots of villains and a few heroes, but only some of their names will stick with me.

Rather than being a fun and interesting read, this was more like a textbook (and why can't they be written in a lively and interesting manner?) that needed to be studied, with note-taking and exams to make the information stick.

I'm sorry I can't give a more positive review of the book. Someone else might come away from it with an entirely different view.

In the meantime, if you like history, I would highly recommend a slim volume by Will Cuppy titled The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody. It is copyrighted 1950, but I recently found a used copy through Amazon to replace my old paperback that I have worn out. I have laughed so hard reading this book (many times over the years) that my eyes teared up and I could no longer see the page. Jerry used to look at me like I was nuts when I was reading Cuppy's take on various historical personages. His history is generally accurate, but his viewpoint and the way he tells it are hilarious.

Friday, October 11, 2013

A Short, Sweet Visit

Today my sister Grace's daughter, granddaughter, and great-granddaughters came to town for a quick visit. My daughter Anne Marie and I went to Grace's to spend a little time with them.

Anne Marie came prepared with storybooks.
The little girls, Cordelia and Elise, have the best documented childhoods ever, due to their mother and grandmother both being bloggers. But I still took my own photos of them!

It was a short visit, as the girls (they'll always be girls to me) had to head home. They live a little over two hours away. A two-hour trip across Wyoming plains is a much greater distance than a two-hour trip in a heavily populated area.

Niece Tina entertained Elise with rides in the electric wheelchair.

Sue and Grace

Trying to get a photo of Elise was a challenge--a moving target.
While Elise socialized, Cordelia was mostly content to cuddle with Anne Marie--she was running a little fever and not feeling very well.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Petunias Are Tough

Most years I can count on my flowers staying beautiful until the end of October.

This year we had our first big snowstorm the last week of September. The flowers survived it. A week later we had an even bigger snowstorm, one that has been written about in several blogs--and it was definitely a newsworthy event.

The zinnias did not make it this time.

The weight of over fourteen inches of heavy, wet snow mashed the plants, damaging their beauty, but those tough petunias are still keeping on! With the colder nights we are now having that won't last much longer, but the durability of these plants that look so fragile amazes me.

In full summer bloom.
Last Friday
On Sunday, after the thaw was well underway, I took some photos of my deck "people" emerging from the snow.
The guardian angel--still on the job.
The little girl with the watering can--I think she can put it away for the winter!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Bible 101

Two Sundays ago I started teaching an adult Sunday School class called Bible 101, which is a curriculum I developed a number of years ago when we lived in South Dakota.
Bible 101 Binder Cover

Tuesday I went to a morning ladies' Bible Study with my sister Grace. The group was ready to start a new study and Grace had suggested Bible 101. I did a "Show and Tell" for the group to introduce the material to them, which included doing one of the Pop Quizzes that we use in the class (they tend to be both fun and educational). Over the course of the study we will be building a notebook resource of introductions to every book in the Bible, with Pop Quizzes, Maps, Charts, devotionals, and other interesting material.

The group decided they would like to start the Bible 101 study.

So. . .I'm teaching the same class on both Sundays and Tuesdays, but with the classes not started at the same time. The church class will meet three times per month (one Sunday all classes meet together for a breakfast). I think I may have a bit of a challenge keeping my head straight as to where I am and what we have covered in each class! It would be easier if they were in sync, but I'm sure I can work it out.

I'll be getting out of the house and spending time with other people, which will be good for me. I'll feel like I'm at least doing a little something useful. I hope we will all benefit from the time spent with the Bible.

God has opened these doors for me; I hope I will do justice to the opportunities.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

More Ancestors

From time to time I explore around on, working on my family trees. It is amazing what you can find out about your family roots in this way. Since with each generation the number of direct ancestors doubles, it can quickly become very confusing.

On my mother's side of the family a good deal of interesting information can be found through stories and photos posted by other descendants of these people. Today I am going to share the story of Sheriff Robert Hamilton and his wife Rhoda, as written by G.M. Patton, a descendant of theirs.
Sheriff Robert Hamilton

Rhoda Ardella Neill Hamilton, Robert's wife and helper in his clandestine war work.
Joel Mackey Hamilton, son of Rhoda and Robert; he was named after family friend, Joel Elliot Mackey, who gave the family the gift of a calf upon the birth of this son.

Robert Hamilton lived in Transylvania County, North Carolina, engaging in dangerous work for the four years of the Civil War. A Unionist at heart, he had viewed the coming Civil War with dismay. Transylvania County was formed around the same time the war started, and Robert was elected its first sheriff. Throughout the war, Robert operated a kind of Underground Railroad to help escaped slaves, Confederate deserters, and Union soldiers who had escaped Confederate captivity make their way through the steep mountains of western North Carolina to the Union lines in East Tennessee. His home was a large mountain cabin. He also owned a smaller cabin, used as a way station, called “Pennsylvania House” because it was used by officers of the 101st Pennsylvania who had escaped from a Confederate prison and were groping their way through treacherous Confederate-held territory into East Tennessee (Knoxville area).
As the 101st Pennsylvania’s officers slowly made their way through the dark mountains, they were directed to Sheriff Robert Hamilton’s house where they were taken in, fed and sent on their way with guides through the mountains. Robert said that in daytime, he had to pretend to be a Confederate sympathizer, even going on patrols to search for enemies of the Confederate government. In one case, he and the home guard went to a house looking for a deserter. He found the man hiding under a bed and went outside and told the others that he found no one in the house. Robert has been quoted as saying, “I never met a Yankee I didn’t like.” His clandestine work put Robert and his family in extreme danger. In Western North Carolina, men were killed and their homes burned for the activities Robert Hamilton engaged in regularly. His wife, Ardella Neill Hamilton and children were with him in this subterfuge and miraculously, Robert survived four years of this double life.
  Although Robert Hamilton operated a clandestine pro-Union operation in Transylvania County, NC during the Civil War, he was also sheriff of the county, and as such, was considered pro-Confederate. After the war, many who had served the Confederacy in any capacity were forbidden to vote, hold office, etc. The action described below relieved Robert and several other citizens of "disabilities" imposed due to their assumed pro-Confederate sympathies.
Journal of the Constitutional Convention of the State of North-Carolina, at Its Session 1868:
North Carolina. Constitutional Convention (1868)
North Carolina. Constitutional Convention (1868) REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON RELIEF FROM
POLITICAL DISABILITY.        We, the undersigned Committee on Relief from Political Disability, having investigated the claims of those presented for our consideration:From Transylvania County:   Jeremiah Osborne, Wm. R. Galloway J. C. Duckworth, Perry Orr, J. W. Clayton, Samuel Reed, Isaac A. Harris, Robert Hamilton, R. P. Kilpatrick, G. C. Neil  most respectfully submit the following report:        WHEREAS, The persons  named are disqualified to hold office, by the fourteenth Article of the Constitution of the United States, known as the Howard amendment; and whereas, they have evidenced that they are in hearty accord with the Reconstruction measures of Congress: Therefore,        Resolved, That we petition the Congress of the United States to remove their disabilities in accordance with the provisions of the aforementioned Article of the Constitution.
R. W. KINGJournal of the Constitutional Convention of the State of North-Carolina, at Its Session 1868 North Carolina. Constitutional Convention (1868) 488, [1] p.RALEIGH: JOSEPH W. HOLDEN, CONVENTION PRINTER 1868. 

(The Clayton, Osborne, Hamilton, Neil, and Orr families are all in our family tree.)

(Joel Mackey Hamilton, one of Robert and Rhoda Ardella's sons, was the father of Rhoda Rachel Hamilton, who married William Porter Mackey, the son of Joel Elliott Mackey. Thus, Rose Mackey McLaughlin's grandfathers were Joel Elliot Mackey and Joel Mackey Hamilton. Her great-grandfather was Sheriff Robert Hamilton. Although the families were friends, records show that Joel Elliot Mackey served in the Confederate cavalry. Unfortunately, none of these great stories about Mother's great-grandfather Hamilton came down to us. I had to find out about it online.)