Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Carnival of Genealogy--The Good Earth: Family Ties to the Land—Sampson Smith Frum

The topic for the 73rd edition of the Carnival of Genealogy will be: The Good Earth. Were your ancestors sharecroppers or land barons? Perhaps an ancestor was a logger or a miner. Do you have stories of homesteading? Is there a master gardener in your tree? If your ancestors lived in the city did they keep a square foot garden or escape the city to a favorite park? Tell us about your family's ties to the land! Apple will host the next edition of the COG on Apple's Tree.

My paternal gggg grandfather, Sampson Smith Frum, was, at his death, the largest land owner in Monongalia County, West Virginia. Sampson was the son of William Frum and it is believed his mother was Anna Smith (I have also seen her listed as Mary Ann Smith on He was born on January 27, 1790 in Frederick County, Virginia in the Back Creek area.1

To date no records have been found to prove the name of his mother. The dilemma stems from the records in Frederick County, Virginia of the Jeremiah Smith II family. There is no record of the marriage of William Frum to a Smith woman. There is a will belonging to Samuel Smith, the son of Jeremiah II. Samuel mentions all of William Frum’s children in the will. The son’s are bequeathed sizeable tracts of land and in 1803 my ancestor, Sampson Smith Frum, was given the 200 acre farm of Samuel Smith.2 Other brothers, sisters, nieces and nephews are also listed in the will giving rise to the feeling that the Frum children were also relations.

Several years ago someone sent me a rather interesting website that has a memoir entitled,
Notebook of Aristotle Smith, Eden, West Virginia, that puts forth the story that Samson (Sam’s son) Frum was actually the son of the bachelor, Samuel Smith and Anna Frum.3 Oddly, the Frum’s had two sons with similar names: Samuel Samson Frum and Sampson Smith Frum. The recollection of Aristotle Smith is that Samson Frum removed to Taylor County, West Virginia. In actual fact, the Frum son that lived in Taylor County was Solomon Frum. It’s difficult to know just how much credibility to give to the story; however it does provide a new slant to the Frum/Smith mystery.

During the War of 1812, Sampson was a Lieutenant from Monongalia County, (West) Virginia. He resigned the position in 1817.4. At one time there must have been a marker on or near his gravesite with the 1812 listing. When I visited the cemetery, there was no indication of his service. Fortunately, there was a cemetery reading back in the 1940’s, long before the cemetery was partially destroyed.
He married Elizabeth VanGilder, daughter of Jacob and Anna Margaret Gibler (Kibler) VanGilder in Monongalia County, Virginia on June 11, 1815.5 To this union, six children were born: Anne Louise (my ggg grandmother), Matilda, Sampson S., Margaret, Alpheus and Elizabeth Jane.

At an early age, Sampson realized the value of land and began purchasing parcels in and around Morgantown, often with his father. From 1817 until 1853, Sampson Smith Frum purchased 1279 acres of land primarily in Monongalia County, (West) Virginia. He owned the largest acreage of any single individual in the county at his death in 1862.6

3 farms in Uffington--283 acres
1 farm on Cobun's Creek--85 acres
4 farms on Aaron Creek--551 acres
2 houses on 2 lots in Morgantown
360 acres in Frederick County, Virginia

According to research done by a relation of mine, Dr. Robert Poole Wilkins, livestock and farming were Sampson’s primary interests. “He found little market for his cattle in Morgantown, so he moved them east to Baltimore. The cattle were driven by foot with the resting place on his farm near Winchester, Virginia, before moving on to Baltimore and many being exported to Europe."7

In Sampson's will the following property was disposed of:8

Alpheus Frum--143 acres on Aaron Creek
Ann Pool--210 acres on Aaron and Booth Creeks (my line)
Margaret Beall--148 1/2 acres of two parcels
Sampson, Jr.--153 acres
Elizabeth J. Kinsey--145 acres
Matilda Fleming--98 1/2 acres and two houses and lots

Sampson, Elizabeth and some of their children and descendants are buried on a hillside overlooking Aaron Creek on land that once belonged to Sampson. His wife, Elizabeth was the first to be interred in The Old Frum Cemetery. Sampson Smith Frum died on his farm on November 13, 1862 at the age of 72 years, 10 months and 16 days.9 A listing of those buried in this small family graveyard is on


1. Cemetery Readings in West Virginia: Monongalia County, 1940

2. Will of Samuel Smith, Frederick County, Virginia, 1803, Probate September 29, 1803 at Superior Court, Will Book SC 2, page 10.

3. Wilson, M. Blaire, Notebook of Aristotle Smith, Eden, West Virginia, Internet.

4. Zinn, Melba Pender, Monongalia County, (West) Virginia Records and the District, Superior and County Courts Volume 10: 1815-1819, (Heritage Books, 2000), 168, 251-1817, Monongalia County Court.

5. Monongalia County, West Virginia Marriage Records, Volume 1 Page 725.

6. Robert Poole Wilkins, Research done at West Virginia University Genealogical Library.

7. Robert Poole Wilkins, Frum Genealogy: A Manuscript.

8. Grantee Index to Deeds, Monongalia County, West Virginia, Volume 4, page 151-155.

9. Cemetery Readings in West Virginia: Monongalia County, 1940.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Grave Yard Rabbit Carnival--Memorial Day

In honor of Memorial Day, the topic for the June 2009 edition of the Grave Yard Rabbit Carnival is Veteran's Memorials. Share your photos and/or stories related to all-things veteran's in honor of our fallen heroes.

For this carnival I decided to list those from my family who have served our country and England during the various wars.


My Father’s Branch

John Ferguson—6th Great Grandfather
Private, 7th Maryland Regiment under Col. John Gunby

Sampson Smith Frum—4th Great Grandfather
WAR OF 1812

William Frum/From—5th Great Grandfather
Volunteer from Frederick County, Maryland under Captain Valentine Creager’s Company

Joseph Davidson Hill—3rd Great Grandfather
WAR OF 1812
Private, Captain Samuel G. Wilson’s Company, Virginia Militia

Robert Hill—4th Great Grandfather
Private, Captain Benjamin Casey’s Company, 12th Virginia Regiment

Robert H. Houston—5th Great Grandfather
Patriotic Service in Sussex County, Delaware

Purnell Houston—4th Great Grandfather
Private and Saddler, Delaware and Pennsylvania Troops
Fought in the Battle of Trenton and the Battle of Princeton

George Henry Hughes--Grandfather
Sergeant, Canadian Expeditionary Force
Served in Canada and Sibera

George VanGilder Hughes—My Dad
Captain, United States Army Medical Corps
Battalion Surgeon with the 2nd Infantry Division at Pork Chop Hill
Also stationed at the 121 Evacuation Hospital, Seoul, Korea
Awarded--Combat Medical Badge and Bronze Star

William Lanham—5th Great Grandfather
Private, Maryland Militia

Thomas McElroy—4th Great Grandfather
Wagonner, Maryland Militia

Sampson Frum Pool—2nd Great Grandfather
Private, Captain L.S. Hayes B Company, 14th West Virginia Militia

William Lanham Pool—3rd Great Grandfather
Corporal, Company I, 14th West Virginia Infantry

Jacob VanGilder—4th Great Grandfather
Pennsylvania Line and Maryland Line

John Oliphant VanGilder—2nd Great Grandfather
Captain, Company 4, 76th Regiment Virginia Militia later West Virginia Militia

My Mother’s Branch

Urban Betz—4th Great Grandfather
Private in Captain Samuel Patton's Cumberland County militia, Col. Culbertson's 4th Battalion, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania Militia

William Fife—5th Great Grandfather
Captain, 4th Company, 2nd Battalion, Washington County, Pennsylvania Militia

John Fife—5th Great Grandfather
Private, Captain William Fife's Company, 4th Co 2nd Battalion, Washington County, Pennsylvania Militia
Private, Captain Robert Johnston's Company, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania

Nicholas Frederick—4th Great Grandfather
Private, Captain John Hamilton's Company, 5th Company, 4th Battalion, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania Militia

Lindsey Cannon—3rd Great Grandfather
WAR OF 1812
Lieutenant, Captain John Ramsey’s Company from Columbiana County, Ohio

Charles Stark—Great Grandfather
Private, Company H 6th Regiment West Virginia Calvary

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday--Andrew Johnson

I found this tombstone in a cemetery on Route 119 outside Morgantown, West Virginia. There was no name posted for the cemetery. Andrew Johnson is no relation....I just found the information on the marker of interest.

Andrew was the son of Samuel J. and Mary J. Johnson. He was born in Virginia, probably West Virginia about 1832. He married Rachel Eaglan, who is buried beside him. Andrew farmed in the Eastern District of Monongalia County, outside Morgantown, West Virginia.

Andrew and Rachel were the parents of George W., James S., Mary H. and Ephraim F. Johnson.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A Festival of Postcards--Wheels

Evelyn over at A Canadian Family Acadian and French-Canadian Genealogy is sponsoring a new carnival--A Festival of Postcards and this month's topic is wheels.

I am a collector of numerous items, however, postcards is not one of them. I am thrilled to have found a postcard photo of my Dad when he was about 2 years old, probably taken on the front porch of his grandparents house in Woodlawn, Pennsylvania. The date would be circa 1923 and there is my Dad, George VanGilder Hughes, driving his first set of wheels and from the smile on his precious little face, loving every minute of it. TOO CUTE!!

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Civil War Letter

Today my son received a civil war letter from a Gettysburg tour guide. Several weekends ago he and a group of family and friends hired this fellow to show them around the town of Gettysburg and hear history from a man who has lived his life in his family home in town. Apparently the tour guide told a compelling tale of the civil war letter written to his family telling where their relative was buried. The soldier, from the north, was buried beside a confederate. A map was included. Once the winter snow had melted, the family made the trip to remove the body and bring it back to Gettysburg for burial.

My son was so thrilled to get a copy of the letter and the map. It was real documentation from another century. Of course I found it interesting, but hanging on the wall of our living room is OUR family’s civil war letter. Talk about real documentation! The letter was written for my paternal great great grandfather, Sampson Frum Pool while he was stationed in Martinsburg, Berkeley County, (West) Virginia, May 23, 1863.

The letter came to me by a very circuitous route. I think I first heard of it at a family reunion around 1998. My Aunt Faith, who seems to have the bulk of her mother’s family, related items. Over the years she has slowly released them, primarily to me. Faith recalled that she had a civil war letter and had sent it to one of my cousins. It was to be part of a history report.

You know how tenacious we genealogists can be… about a dog with a bone! I probably drove two of my cousins crazy over the years with my pleas to locate that letter—to no avail.

About three years ago, my cousin Phyllis and her new husband, moved from Kalamazoo to South Lyon, Michigan. One night around 9:00 the phone rang. It was Phil. I knew immediately when I heard her voice what she was going to say. She had found the civil war letter while she was unpacking a box from the recent move.

I was so excited to have confirmation of the news and anxiously awaited the daily mail. Finally it was delivered. When I lifted the manila envelope from the mail box, I was heartsick to see that the flap was not sealed. With some fear and trepidation I looked inside. There was a handwritten note from Phil and thankfully, the civil war letter. How it made it to my mailbox is a mystery. Anywhere along the way from South Lyon to North Olmsted it could have fallen out of the envelope and been lost forever. We were definitely meant to have this treasured piece of our family history.

The letter was written for my great great grandfather by another soldier, John W. Hall and addressed to his mother, my ggg grandmother, Ann Louise Frum Pool. It is interesting to read that Sampson was receiving mail from home and from his father, William Lanham Pool, who was also serving with a different company in the war. Although stationed in Martinsburg, Sampson’s detail was traveling by train between Hagerstown, Maryland and Winchester, Virginia. He lists the train as Charles M. Addison’s, who is perhaps the officer in charge or another soldier from Morgantown that the family knows. Sampson was in the "thick of the war".

Great great grandfather is most concerned that his brother, Bill (William Asby Pool) purchase some farm equipment well before harvest or it will be sold out. He gives the following instructions for the care of his colt while he is away--The colt is to be put out in Dr. Camel’s pasture and not to be ridden.

It is apparently difficult to get paper and envelopes for letter writing. I find his closing line so compassionate. “I send my love to all my inquiring friends and receive a good share for yourselves.”

Perhaps our civil war letter does not have the intrigue of the Gettysburg tour guide, but it does give a snapshot into our great great grandfather’s service in the civil war and his home life. From my perspective….that’s compelling.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Wordless Wednesday--Visitor to the Bleeding Heart plant

If you have time, click on the photo to see a close up and personal view of this little fellow

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday--Walter William Frederick

Unfortunately little is known about my maternal grand uncle, Walter Frederick. He was born on October 2, 1871 in Franklin Square, Columbiana County, Ohio, the son of Alfred Frederick and Lucinda B. Orr. The only photograph I have is from the group shot of the Frederick children taken about 1885.

An obituary printed in an Garrett, Indiana newspaper, gives some insight into his character. He was a friendly and outgoing young man and extremely close to his family. This obit was sent to me years back by another Frederick researcher who is related to one of the cousin’s mentioned in the article. It was a lucky find for me.

Walter died at age 27, in Youngstown, Mahoning County, Ohio from what was called in the obituary a sudden onset virulent typhoid fever. I have not been able to locate his death certificate even using the online Ohio death certificate website. He is buried in the town of Columbiana, Columbiana County, Ohio in the Firestone Cemetery slightly in front of his parents

Monday, May 11, 2009

Monday Moaning--The PA Turnpike=Highway Robbery!

This is one of those—I have to get this off my chest blogs. I beg your understanding ;- )

Today was the day I spent 10 hours doing what I lovingly ? call the Breezewood Transfer. Whenever my oldest son, who due to health reasons no longer drives, is coming from or going to visit his fiancée in the Maryland/DC area, we meet at the Breezewood exit of the PA turnpike.

I haven’t been on the pike since January, so I was absolutely shocked when I had to shell out an additional 75 cents when I made the drive from the Ohio line to the first exit at Cranberry. Then imagine my horror when I saw that they had also added an additional 2 dollars to the fare from that exit to Breezewood, making the roundtrip toll $23.75. The toll from Cleveland to the PA line is only $3.50 on a road that is almost three lanes the entire way.

Granted the mileage is around 85 miles in Ohio as opposed to 161 from the PA border to Breezewood, however figuring out the cost and mileage, Ohio is still the better bargain! Especially when you consider the shape of the PA pike. The majority of the road is a travesty--poor road conditions, twisting and turning lanes, tunnels with tiles falling off on the inside, etc. etc. They have added an additional lane at the Ohio line, but even though the lane has been completed for months, it is never open. Heading eastward, it seemed like every 20 miles we were squeezed down to one lane by orange cones only to come out of the one lane miles down the pike seeing NO road work in the coned lanes. Most disturbing.

Breezewood, PA--Crossroads of North and South on the Old Lincoln Highway

Fortunately, today should be the final Breezewood Transfer since financee, J-9, will be moving back to Cleveland in June. I think the better and cheaper method of heading down to the DC area from now on will be traveling on FREE interstates.

And now for the cup half full and genealogy related portion of this ridiculous blog.

While I was sitting in my car, waiting for my son in the parking lot of the Shell station in Breezewood, I thought I spied an old cemetery hidden on the hill in front of me. Once we had the cars unpacked and packed, I asked my son’s indulgence and we headed up the hill and down a short gravel road. There it was, a small, pioneer cemetery. No name was posted, but the tombstones were older and many had the “tree of life” carved on them. Unfortunately, I did not have my camera with me, so long story short….I just might have to shell out the money for a final trip down the pike to Breezewood, just to get photos of that cemetery, but the return trip will be by interstate.

Addendum: After checking out findagrave, I found out that the name of the cemetery is Ray's Hill Cemetery (old).

Friday, May 8, 2009

Carnival of Genealogy 72nd Edition--Mothers

The topic for the next edition of the Carnival of Genealogy will be: Mothers! Mother’s Day is right around the corner and this is the perfect time to honor your mother, grandmother, godmother, step mother, den mother, aunt, neighbor, or friend who happens to be a mother. If you’ve written about your own mother for the COG before, consider writing about another mom on your family tree. Let’s make all our moms famous! Creative Gene is hosting this edition.


This will mark the 10th missed Mother’s Day with my own dear Mom. It is difficult to believe that it has been a decade since she slipped from our grasp. My Mom and I, like all parent to child relationships, had our ups and downs, our ins and outs, but as we got old (or older) together we became more like friends than parent and child.

Folks tell me that I remind them of her. That is truly a special compliment.

Mom passed from cancer on Christmas Eve, 1999. She fought a valiant battle with the dreaded disease and was courageous until the end. She set the bar for us when it comes to facing disease and death with dignity.

When I was cleaning out her condo, attached to a drawing of a cat, was a little typed piece of paper. Even ten years later, just reading it brings tears to my eyes.

"In one of the stars I shall be living

In one of them I shall be laughing

And so it will be as if all the stars

Were laughing when you look at the sky at night."

Antoine de Saint-Expery

On many a starry night, while sitting on my deck, with my usual glass of chardonnay, I look up and lift a glass to Mom. I know she looks down and wishes she was on the deck joining me in the wine, laughter and life.

Here’s to you Mom!

The glasses of wine are on the table in front of us!

Jeff and Mom at our first not so annual Christmas Carol singing

Other blogs about my Mom on Flipside:

Bound for Mom: Milepost # 1—A Journey of Firsts

Bound for Mom: Milepost #2—Roadside Café

Bound for Mom: Milepost #4—The World is Not Flat

Thursday, May 7, 2009

The One Lovely Blog Award--I'm awestruck! Or maybe aw shucks!

This has been quite a week for me. Three honors in two days have been a bit overwhelming. Maybe turning 62 last Friday was the charm!

THANK YOU to Cheryl over at Heritage Happens for bestowing The One Lovely Blog Award on my blog.

I also want to publicly send THANKS to Greta over at Greta’s Genealogy Bog for her listing of Flipside on her Showcase--Part 1 list. I want you to know Greta that I copied your kind words and hung it on my refrigerator!

And, earlier in the week, Lori over at Family Trees May Contain Nuts, sent me the Friendly Blogger award.

It is indeed heartwarming to know first, that someone out there is actually reading the blog and second, that they feel it deserves a shout out.

Cheryl and Greta are also members of Genabloggers. It is truly a warm and welcoming group and I am proud to be counted among the 400+ and growing club.

Now I have to figure out how to display the kudos on the side of my blog!

Passing along this award to seven other bloggers is always difficult. The ones I have chosen, who have not already received it are:

Exploring Almost Forgotten Gravesites in Ohio

Creating Pictures in My Mind

Grandma’s Stitches

Lineage Keeper

Ohio’s Yesterdays

Root Seek

Still Digging for Roots

Smile for the Camera--The Dog That Swam the Pond, maybe

The 13th edition of Smile for the Camera features all creatures great and small. Now Smile for the Camera is definitely throwing me a bone.

     I come from an animal family. Dogs and cats have been photographed, in abundance, since before I was born. There are so many photos of family pets that to choose one would be impossible.

     I decided to spotlight a dog that I have never met and have no idea what his/her name is. This pooch appears in photos taken in West Hartlepool, England and seemingly made it across the pond to Woodlawn, Pennsylvania. Did dogs immigrate or is this just an American, English dog wanna-be? If this canine boarded a ship, he would have come in 1907 or in 1921…which begs (no pun intended!) the question, was he too old to make the trip? Perhaps the Hughes/Olesen team just liked this breed of pup.

     Photos that I have found picture the dog with my paternal gg grandmother Ferdinanda Weiss Olesen and my paternal great grandmother Elizabeth Olesen Hughes.

Great Great Grandma Olesen
A photo postcard taken in
Hartlepool, England circa 1890's

Great Grandma Hughes
a photo postcard taken in West Hartlepool, England
circa 1890's

     Great Grandma Hughes in a rare photograph taken in, and I am venturing a guess here, Woodlawn, Pennsylvania. That would make it circa 1913-1921. If the photo was taken when my Great Grandparents came over and were living on the South Side of Pittsburgh, then we are talking 1907-1913.

Also o Flipside

-OLESEN, FERDINANDE WEISS--Crossing the Pond 1920

-OLESEN, FERDINANDE WEISS--Festival of Postcards

-OLESEN, FERDINANDE WEISS Psalms Bible--Treasure Chest Thursday


Updated October 2022

I WOULD LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU. All comments are welcome; however, if they are inappropriate, they will not be published.    PLEASE post your e-mail in the comment section if you would like to network about a particular surname or topic. I will capture it for my use only and not include it when I publish your comment.
© 2009 copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Wordless Wednesday--Virginia Bluebells

Unbelieveable--An Award!!!

What a surprise! After googling last night to see who is up for the Daytime Emmy Awards, I open my blog and find out that my B.C. (British Columbia) friend, Lori, has given me the Friendly Blogger 2009 award. To use a UK expression….I’m absolutely gobsmacked!!!


Check out her blog at Family Trees May Contain Nuts. Lori writes about everything and with a humorous slant. I check out her blog daily just to put a smile on my face or have a good chuckle.

And now to pass the award along. I have so many blogs I follow but there are 5 that consistently leave me encouraging comments. I am a newbie to this blogging business and can use all the positive comments that I can muster.

And, now the envelope, please…..

There is Lori, but I can’t give the award back to her ;- )

Anne, my college roommate over at Tastes of Henry. Anne combines touching family and friends stories with a delicious recipe. She was also the one who pushed my buttons to begin blogging in the first place. When I first saw her blog, I said, “Linda, you can do that, too!”

Greta at Greta’s Genealogy Bog is a prolific and creative writer. She currently is blogging about her childhood school experiences along with other genealogy related topics. Her topics are filled with interesting research AND she has a cute little cat named pipsqueak!

Terri over at The Ties that Bind is another gifted writer and it is amazing what she can do with an old black and white photo! Terri colorizes old photos and gives life to the portrait. Terri blogs lately have stretched over several days--blogging in parts. Going Home--The Unexpected was a moving account of her father and uncle and currently her topic is Quest of a Gena-Holic .

Cheri blogs at Still Digging for Roots. She is one of my distant relatives and always keeps me in the loop with her latest research. Unfortunately, Cheri has been “out of commission” of late due to a new job. Her genealogy blogs are consistently well researched and full of photos.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday--Elizabeth Ann Pool McClure

Elizabeth Ann is my paternal great great grand aunt. She was born May 24, 1840 on a farm on Aarons Creek near the Dorsey Settlement, in Monongalia County, (West) Virginia, the oldest child of William Lanham Pool and Anne Louise Frum1.

Elizabeth attended a subscription school taught by the Scottish master, Christopher Nicholson, near the family farm2.

On October 05, 1865 she married William Steele McClure in Monongalia County, West Virginia3.

The McClure’s raised nine children on their farm in the Morgan District, Monongalia County, West Virginia. They are: John Frum McClure, Oliver Lanham McClure, Martha Ann McClure, Mary Matilda McClure, Virginia Belle McClure, George Jerome McClure, James Sampson McClure, William Asby McClure, and Edson Woodville McClure4.

Elizabeth, known to family as Sis and Aunt Sis, was a devote member of the Rock Forge Methodist Church in Rock Forge, Monongalia County, West Virginia5.

She died at age 87 years 11 months on April 24, 1928 at Aaron’s Creek in the Morgan District, Monongalia County, West Virginia6. She is buried beside her husband of 54 years at East Oak Grove Cemetery in Morgantown, West Virginia7.


1. West Virginia Certificate of Death, (West Virginia Department of Health), Monongalia County #6757.

2. Robert Poole Wilkins, The Poole Family of Hampshire and Monongalia Counties, West Virginia, Grand Forks, North Dakota, 1988, page 31.

3. The New Dominion, Morgantown, West Virginia, Tuesday Morning, April 24, `928, page 12.

4. Wilkins, page 31-32.

5. Wilkins, photograph identification.

6. West Virginia Certificate of Death

7. East Oak Grove Cemetery, Morgantown, West Virginia, personal visit.