Monday, October 20, 2014

Learning Curve

Instruction in Genealogy

Judy G. Russell JD, CG, CGL
When I began to research my family history, my methodology was erratic and somewhat ineffective.  I basically used only family stories and the “trial and error method”. Nowadays with the Internet genealogy websites a great deal of information is available online. Some of the family tree information on the popular websites has information errors. The Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS) is not used. My personal investigative results improved when I began reading genealogy research books attend conferences and joined the local and national genealogy societies.  I learned that I did not have to recreate the wheel.  I could learn the skills of the professional and experienced researcher.   
I recently had the opportunity to attend the Tennessee Genealogy Society fall seminar on October 18, 2014. The guest speaker was Judy G. Russell JD, CG, CGL.  
Judy is a lawyer, certified genealogist and certified genealogy lecturer.  She was a dynamic speaker discussing  1) making the first trip to the courthouse 
2) laws and statues which affect records 3) records of widows and orphans 4) DNA analysis in genealogy.

I am fired up and ready to go the courthouse! I might even do mitochondrial DNA analysis sometime soon.  
                                                                                                      The Tree Gardener

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Six Degrees of Separation: Caston & Brumfield Families Part 6

The Thomas Brumfield Family

In genealogy research, it is often difficult to discern family  members who have a common name and the same name as unrelated persons.  The name Thomas or Tom is a very common name.  To find Thomas Brumfield son of  Louis Brumfield and Liddie  Brumfield Caston,  I looked at geographic location, timeframe and relationships. The major relationship is Liddie who lived Pike County, Mississippi which can be verified by the Federal Census.

I have relied heavily on census records which is not always accurate for information.

In the 1870 Federal Census for Pike County, Mississippi, Calvin and Lydia Caston are listed with Thomas Caston age 17 years old.  In the 1870 census family relationships are not identified. This Thomas Caston is probably Thomas Brumfield with a birth year of 1853.

Source Citation: Year: 1870; Census Place: Township 2 Range 9 East, Pike, Mississippi; Roll: M593_745; Page: 128B; Image: 262; Family History Library Film: 552244.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Six Degrees of Separation Caston & Brumfield Families Part 5

 Marriage Certificate of Richard Bromfield and Catherine Love

 They were married in Hinds County, Mississippi on August 26, 1875.

"Mississippi, Marriages, 1800-1911," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 22 Sep 2014), Richard Bromfield and Catherine Love, 19 Aug 1875; citing Hinds,Mississippi; FHL microfilm 885190.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Six Degrees of Separation Caston & Brumfield Families Part 4

Richard Brumfield

Richard Brumfield was a child of Liddie and Louis Brumfield. He is thought to have been born in Pike county, Mississippi between 1841 to 1843. Liddie would have been 16 0r 18 years old at his birth.  When the school census in 1878  was taken, he would have been 31 to 33 years old.  This was well beyond school age.  A black male  Richard Bromfield  27 years old  a farm hand  was enumerated August, 1870 in the  federal census for Township 2 Range 9 East Pike county, Mississippi.   Details of the meridian and the direction of the township are not listed in the census record.  In order to identify the  location where  Richard Bromfield was enumerated,  I looked on the same census page for individuals who were homesteaders.  Thomas Simmons white male 33 years old and John R. Simmons white male 55 years old both  homesteaded land at Washington meridian, Township 2 North and Range 9 East.  Because census records identifies the location where individuals lived, Richard Bromfield lived in this location.

United States Census, 1870," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 13 Jun 2014), Richard Bromfield, Mississippi, United States; citing p. 6, family 41, NARA microfilm publication M593, FHL microfilm 000552244.
Richard Bromfield name is on line 3 of the census record.

This location is significant because Calvin Caston, Edmond Downs, Jack Gatlin, Irvin (Ervine) Brumfield and Robert Brumfield,  homesteaded  land in the same Washington meridian, Township 2 North  and Range 9 East.  The compelling evidence suggests that the Richard Bromfield  listed in the 1870 census birth year is 1843 and  working in the same geographic area of  Calvin Caston is presumptively the Richard Brumfield son of Liddie.

Richard Brumfield  family is also enumerated in the 1880 Federal Census in  Byran and Terry in Hinds county. Mississippi. Richard was farm laborer at that time.

"United States Census, 1880," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 12 Jun 2014), Richmon Brumfeel, Byram And Terry, Hinds, Mississippi, United States; citing sheet 422D, NARA microfilm publication T9.


Birthplace Father
Birthplace mother
Richmon Bromfeel



He latter returned to Pike county with his family. His children  Edna 9 years old and Percy age 7 years old are listed in the 1885 Pike county, Mississippi school records.

             Child      Age      Sex       Parent
            Edna         9          F           Richard Brumfield
            Percy        7          M         "                            "                                 

   Richard Brumfield is also enumerated in latter census records which I have not included. He died February 13, 1935 from the infirmities of old age at 94 years old based on prior census information.  It is on his Mississippi death certificate, his father was Louis Brumfield at birthplace unknown and mother Litter Brumfield birthplace Pike county are identified. At the time of his death, he was thought to be 99 years old widower with his wife’s name Catherine which corresponds to the census enumeration.  The informant was his son Dudley Brumfield.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Six Degrees of Separation Caston & Brumfield families Part 3

Going to school

All forbearers have not been identified in federal census records.  Mississippi school age children were enumerated in county school records for selected years. The children are divided by race and location. The name of the parent or guardian was sometimes included. These school records were helpful in identifying children and families for non-census years. I performed an extensive but by no means exhaustive search of school records for Lincoln, Amite and Pike counties for 1878 and 1885. I was able to find to the Caston children in school records for Pike county, Holmesville precinct in 1878. The parent is not listed with the children.  The oldest Caston child listed was Isham age 19 years old and Monroe the youngest 5 years old.
Isham Caston
"Mississippi, Enumeration of Educable Children, 1850-1892; 1908-1957," images, <i>FamilySearch</i> ( : accessed 22 Feb 2014), Pike > 1878 > image 111 of 200
Name Age Sex
Caston Green 17 male
Caston Silas 14 male
Caston Isham 19 male
Caston Jesse 12 male
Caston Adeline 11 female
Caston Monroe 5 male
Monroe Caston (2)
"Mississippi, Enumeration of Educable Children, 1850-1892; 1908-1957," images, <i>FamilySearch</i> ( : accessed 22 Feb 2014), Pike > 1878 > image 112 of 200

The Caston children were also found in the 1885 Pike county school enumeration.
 Irvin& Tom Brumfield, Calvin Caston
Name Age Sex Parent
Caston Jesse 19 male Calvin Caston
Caston Adeline 17 female “                        “
Caston Monroe 12 male “                       “
"Mississippi, Enumeration of Educable Children, 1850-1892; 1908-1957," images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 03 Jun 2014), Pike > 1885 > image 7 of 178; citing Government Records, Jackson

What happened to Frank, Richard and Irving? More information to come.