Saturday, August 31, 2019

so, upon publishing puritan leveretts, i got started on the next phase, which i tentatively call pioneer leveretts, although in fact i'm finding they aren't quite all pioneers, and i can't always even figure out who they were, half the time. so i've got my head in old genealogy, trying to figure out who's who, and i'm totally absorbed in this stuff, and all kinds of things are happening in the fam. and then, there's another big shooting, and also, a menacing hurricane off the coast of florida.

so these old leveretts, one appears out of nowhere, and then the deacon's daughter is pregnant, and he whisks her off to needham (from chelsea) and they start having babies. but he goes off and fights in the revolution, which nobody ever knew before. that's because he was in a late-formed regiment, or something. but he was in the battle of monmouth, and the battle of rhode island too. so he got around.

but needham? turns out that was the address for natick, and natick was the biggest of the praying towns. now those towns were decimated, ruined, destroyed, in philip's war. but needham was a nothing connected to a nothing left. makes me wonder if he didn't maybe know somebody in that praying town, or have a reason to go back there. he's raising his kids there in needham, or at least they call it needham, before they call it natick. but it could have been natick too.

big old mass killing, and that's what happens these days, you just reach out, grab some military hardware, and let them have it. everyone. made us nervous, because we're just up the road, though we're in another state. lots of our tourists are from midland-odessa. texans all over the place.

but back to this revolution guy. he had a son, and that son fell in with the baptists. well, maybe his wife lydia wasn't a baptist, but her sister sarah had definitely married one, or at least his mother was one, and they were setting out to convert everyone, because maybe it was the great awakening or something. he had a couple of twins by lydia and then a girl, and then joseph, and we're talking 1803 here, and then a couple more twins, warren and washington.

but this leverett dies, maybe he can't handle the conversions going on. turns out his oldest son will become a baptist minister. so will his brother-in-law's brother, and eventually that brother will convert warren and washington, and there will be baptists all over the place. but in the meantime, lydia is having trouble. she has five kids, and her husband has died. she agrees to send young joseph, who is now seven, to maine.

what i've read says he goes to live with aunt walker, who would be her father's sister. but it also says aunt walker is his mother's side aunt, so there's a missing connection there. the way i find all these baptists, is by looking for an aunt walker on his mother lydia's side. on lydia's side all i find is sarah fullur, and joseph griggs, and the baptists, joseph's mother, and joseph's brother. it does appear that these griggs might have gone up to maine. and it's also possible that they, or at least some of them, ended up in illinois.

so there are two epic trips. one is in 1810, or thereabouts, when joseph is seven, and he gets a ride up to maine but has to walk the last few miles to the aunt's house, alone. and he does. and he grows up in maine, does some service and gets married. second epic trip: he takes a wagon, and goes 1600 miles, and ends up in quincy illinois, where apparently some of these relatives have come, from maine, to start all over. now in quincy, they land in 1863, and the mormons arrive in 1869, and get booted out of nauvoo in 1876, or some such thing, but my ancestors are farmers. they are inland from the river about twenty miles, and they are building a house, and a school, and growing stuff, and not paying much attention to the mormons. that's the pioneers i like.

well it turns out that maybe sarah and joseph griggs went out there too, and samuel for sure, he was a baptist minister by now. and samuel, by the way, joseph's brother, was up in vermont, being a baptist, when lydia sent the young twins, warren and washington, up to vermont at about the age of 14. they went on to academic success and ended up in southern illinois too, in alton, in shurtlieff college. so out in southern illinois you have warren, washington, joseph leverett and family, and possibly some of these griggs, like joseph and sarah, and possibly james a. walker and katharine leverett walker as well, his aunt walker. and some of these, i'm thinking the walkers, might have come along on the epic 1600-mile trip.

hurricane, by the way, just stalling out there in bermuda, or the bahamas, or wherever, fixin' to hit florida or whatever. and, killers, shooting up west texas.

so, anyway, all that is yet to come. back in brookline, or roxbury, poor lydia had a couple more kids, these being griggs, because she did as her sister did, marry a griggs, after old man leverett was gone. and of the five leveretts she had, the oldest, william, became reverend william of brookline, a baptist minister. sarah, i'm not sure, but joseph, he was the pioneer, and then there was warren and wahington and the two griggs. so she had her hands full, and never quite left boston. she ended up dying in her oldest son's place.

the great awakening really messed with our family, i guess. it seems that one thing that happened was everyone started talking about how great everyone was, when in fact, they were kind of living in squalor, which became obvious when the civil war became documented. by the time of the civil war, all these ancestors were out in illinois, or even further, and the war looked different out there than it does back in brookline. but i'm marching slowly, surely, through american history, and it looks like i'm leaving the boston area, finally, and going out to the prairie where i'm more comfortable.

the thing is, these little towns around boston didn't keep very good records. and althogh there was tons about those early puritans, now that i'm in the dark corners of the 1700's, i've got two problems: much less on the web, and, small towns. needham, woburn, chelsea, medford, some of these weren't even towns as we know them today. and these guys were slipping in and out of them like, well, if they said they were from woburn, what did anyone know? they were kind of like from all of them, or any of them, it didn't matter. now boston kept track. you get born in boston, someone will know. but these other towns, maybe not. and maine? well, maine's doing the best it can, i can tell you that.

hurricane brewing, a cool night in the rainy season out on the porch; it rained earlier. i gave my wife a head start, trying to get to sleep. hopefully we'll all sleep a bit. anything can happen tomorrow, anything.


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