|Jo'elle and Baylee|
We've all heard the someone say, " a picture is worth a thousand words" at one time or another. My maternal first cousin Monteral Harrell inherit a family photograph collection after her father passed away. She understands the true value of the family photographs collections. It's the Harrell family treasure that holds images of our beautiful family. The collection consist of original black and white photographs and some metal printed photographs. The tintype dates back to the period during the 1860s and 1870 and persisted into the early 20th century.
"My daddy made sure I sit down and listen to him talk about the people he recognized in the image. Daddy would be so happy when he shared the family oral history through the photographs." He was proud of his family photograph collection," said his daughter. I had to put them up to keep people from taking them becuase some are missing she said.
Every genealogist wants to find family photographs while conducting their family research. The images tell stories and give clues. Just recently Monteral was going through her mother's photo albums when she came across a picture of my mother. She posted the images on Facebook and some people started commenting on the images.
Courtesy: Monteral Harrell
Mom often talks about the Stewart family in Arcola, Louisiana. She recalled during an incident at the funeral of her father Jasper; there were two ladies sitting on one of the front roll pews that were destinated for the immediate family and the usher asked them to please reserve the seats for the family. "One of the ladies said we are his sisters, that how close we are!"
At this point, the story is getting better. My granddaughter asked me could she have a sleepover with her friend Baylee who is her classmate. Baylee mom called me to confirm that it was alright. In the meantime, Beverly and I are communicating on Facebook and Baylee mother who is also a Stewart are talking by phone. I'm asking both of them questions at the same time. I found out that Beverly is Baylee great aunt and Baylee's grandfather is Beverly's brothers. I was so amazed that I couldn't sleep and I call another cousin and genealogist Karran Royal Harper with the news. Karran was excited to find a new Harrell branch.
My head is spinning with so many questions because I have been trying to make the connection between a woman named Corrine Harrell who is buried at Big Zion Cemetery in the same section of my branch of Harrell. It turned out to be that Corrine Harrell and Rowena were sisters. I knew that my maternal great-grandfather Alexander had other children. No one ever said how many children he had or if it was males of females.
|Beverly Stewart Lewis|
Corinne was born in 1890 in Tangipahoa and her sister Rowena was born in 1892 to Elsie Williams. Corinne and Rowena were the daughters of Alexander Harrell. Rowena married Lance Brown and they became the parents of; Excel, Miller, Clarice, Ora Lee, Lancine, Marlan, Maceen and, Clara Brown.
Baylee is the great-granddaughter of Clarice and the 4th great-granddaughter of Alexander. My granddaughter Jo'elle is the 5th great-granddaughter of Alexander. The little girls who thought that they were just good friends found out during the sleepover that they are actually cousins who share 4th and 5th great-grandfather. That connection that brought them together as friends have now brought them together as cousins. They kept looking at each other smiling and giggling like girls do. The girls are calling each other cousins. They started face timing their other friends to tell them. Baylee called other family members her age and introduce Jo'elle to them as their cousin.
Because Monteral posted a photograph of my mother, we have now found a branch of our Harrell family tree. Yes, pictures can tell a story and often times give us a clue. In this case, a picture introduced me to new family members. We all can find ways to share family photographs with others in the family. It's one sure way to make sure the photograph will never be lost.