by Rocky Macy
As mentioned time and again in this space, Rootbound loves the flea markets! Even the quickest of passes through one of these treasure houses will produce armloads of misplaced family history. How unfortunate it is that these old photos, documents, and other records are seldom reunited with the proper kin.
Rootbound has been privileged on several occasions to assist in the return of family memorabilia that had surfaced in area flea markets. Chubby CHAPMAN's autograph book and the WEEMS family Bible were memorable successes, as was the collection of personal papers that had once belonged to Henry H. and Susie (REBER) STRONG of Granby.
It was the STRONG family papers, in fact, that served as the genesis of an article, Flea Market Genealogy, written by this columnist and appearing in the current issue of Heritage Quest magazine. That essay looks at methods for connecting strayed family artifacts with their owners or heirs, and it offers some advice aimed at keeping contemporary records in the family and away from the flea markets.
Locating the owner or heir of an item is the most difficult phase of flea market genealogy. It involves looking for clues, making an identification of the subject, and establishing contact with that person or their descendant. This will often involve advertising, and could, under certain conditions, prove to be expensive.
The second phase, keeping cherished items out of flea markets, is much simpler. Organize and label everything, especially photos. Labels and file folders turn "clutter: into "record," something that is much less likely to be pitched or sold in a box of junk at an estate sale. And if labeled items do wind up in flea markets, the chances are much greater that they will eventually find their way back into the hands of those who care.
Rootbound is always pleased to showcase flea market finds that have an Ozarks connection. There is no charge - just send a description of the item to Rootbound in the Hills in care of this newspaper. And now, after publishing Flea Market Genealogy, Heritage Quest has announced that they will provide a free national forum for the same service. Address correspondence to: HQ Flea Market, C/O Heritage Quest, P.O. Box 40, Orting, WA 98360-0040. And when you write to those good folks at HQ, remember to let them know that you heard about their new magazine feature through Rootbound!
Evelyn E. PRICE (439 Stambaugh Street, Redwood City, CA 94063) is seeking information on William W. GOODBREAD and his wife, Harriet E. PHELPS, who moved to Pettigrew, Madison County, AR, in the early 1890s. Their daughter, Rebecca "Annie" GOODBREAD, married Rufus H. GUTHRIE in Pettigrew in 1899. both families then moved to Grand Tower, Jackson County, IL, the original home of the GOODBREADs. William Francis GUTHRIE was born in Grand Tower on 1 July 1900.
Rufus GUTHRIE (above) died or left the family shortly after the birth of his son. Annie remarried and died in Guthrie, Logan County, OK, in 1902. What happened to Rufus? Evelyn RICE wants to know!
Researching in southeast Missouri? Rootbound's good friend, Thelma S. McMANUS (507 Vine Street, Doniphan, MO 63935) writes the popular genealogy column, Kissin' Kin, each Sunday for the Daily American Republic of Poplar Bluff, MO. Thelma reports that her column covers anything east of Springfield and south of St. Louis. That's a big piece of real estate - and one that was undoubtedly crossed by many of our ancestors as they headed for the Ozarks!
Until next week...happy hunting!