A Tiny Charge of Genetic Material

"Not one of your pertinent ancestors was squashed, devoured, drowned, starved, stranded, stuck fast, untimely wounded, or otherwise deflected from its life's quest of delivering a tiny charge of genetic material to the right partner at the right moment in order to perpetuate the only possible sequence of hereditary combinations that could result -- eventually, astoundingly, and all too briefly -- in you."

--Bill Bryson

*Genealogy Quotes

Surname Saturday - Eads

This week's Surname Saturday post puts the spotlight on one of my paternal surnames: Eads. According to the House of Names website, "the surname Eads originally derived from the Old English word Eade which referred to abundant riches. However, another reference claims that the name was derived from the Middle English name Edwy and the Old English word Eadwig which are composed of the elements ead meaning prosperity and wig which meant war." 

Ancestry.com says that the Eads family name was found in the USA, the UK, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920, and that the most Eads families were found in the US in 1880. And in 1840 there were 16 Eads families living in Indiana, which was 20% of all the recorded Eads's in the US.

So far, I've traced my Eads family back to just my 4th great grandfather, William Eads. The earliest documentation for him is a record of his marriage to my 4th great grandmother, Margaret Weaver, in 1842. They were both living in Osage County, Missouri at that time. By 1850, according to the Census, they are living in Jefferson, Osage County, Missouri with three children: William Henry, Elbert, and Martha. On that Census, William's birthplace is listed as Tennessee. I have no trace of William after 1850, other than I know that his daughter, Louisa was born in October of 1852, so he was alive at least that year. His wife, Margaret remarried at some point, because she is living as Margaret Galien on the 1860 Census, along with her children Elbert, Martha, and Louisa.

William and Margaret's son, William Henry Eads was my 3rd great grandfather. 

William Henry Eads Ancestry Chick

He was born on July 16, 1845 in Newton County, Missouri. He was a Civil War Veteran and a member of the G.A.R. He would marry Mary Jane Tipton in 1868. After Mary died in 1894, William remarried and eventually settled in Labette County, Kansas, where many of their descendants would live and die. William Henry Eads would also died in Labette County on June 19, 1923 at the age of 77. 

Wednesday's Child - John Chester Kephart

This week's Wednesday Child is my maternal great uncle, John Chester Kephart. 

John Chester Kephart Wednesday's Child

John was born on May 7, 1914 in Wellston, Oklahoma, to my great grandparents Della Mae (Swinford) Kephart and John Arthur Kephart. Sadly, John lived a very short life. He became quite ill in early February of 1915, though I don't know what his affliction was.

Rememberings of Rusha Cordelia Kephart

Rusha Cordelia Kephart was born in Ida Grove, Iowa on October 17, 1891 to my second great grandparents, Alexis and Susan (Templeton) Kephart. Rusha was the baby of the family, and one of two girls in the family, and by all accounts she was very close to her mother. I believe it's likely that Rusha was named after her maternal grandmother, Jerusha (Sutton) Templeton. Rusha may have been short for Jerusha, or just derived from it. 

Rusha Cordelia Kephart Ancestry Chick

Wendesday's Child - Leonard Freemont Testorff

Just recently my father sent me a video that shows my grandfather, Leonard Freemont Testorff, playing his fiddle. This was a great passion of his, as he had taught himself to play in the family barn and continued to play well into his golden years. It was so great to see him again, laughing and smiling and doing something he loved so much. It brought a few tears to my eyes! So, since he's been on my mind this week, I thought it only appropriate to make my Grandpa Testorff this week's Wednesday's Child.

Leonard Freemont Testoff Wednesday's Child

He sure was a cute baby, don't you think? You can read more about my awesome grandpa and hear some of his fiddle playing by visiting my previous blog post: Forget Me Not Friday - Leonard Freemont Testorff