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View Diary: GFHC Open Thread: The Story of Jacob and Elisabeth: Part 2 (79 comments)

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  •  So excited. I'm getting all the photos (7+ / 0-)

    I took of the book at Newberry put in order and cropped, resized, enhanced, etc. Takes a good bit of time.

    I was especially excited, though, because I had gotten an email from a woman who had Googled "Wooten Harris" in an attempt to find information about her 3xGreat Grandpa, an apparent friend or family circle member of Wooten's.

    Anyway, Google led her to my diaries here and she tracked me down. Today, the first page I opened to in the Hurricane Church book had a little story noting the passing of the very man she was looking for, Lodawick Harrison, who when he died at age 94, said he could shoot a squirrel as good now as he could when a boy. It was a great little piece. I've sent it off to her and hope she will be as excited as I was. If she hasn't already seen it, I know she will be jumping for joy!

    Isn't genealogy and family history wonderful!!!  I have learned so much general history and even more today.

    Happy 2013, everybody!! I'm sure hoping today's find is an omen for my coming searches and for yours, too!

    Inspiration is hard to come by. You have to take it where you find it. --- Bob Dylan.

    by figbash on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 02:29:22 PM PST

    •  great way to start the year! (5+ / 0-)
    •  There's a Hurricane Road and and burying ground (4+ / 0-)

      part way up the hill her in NH.

      The road was renamed after the 1938 hurricane that did so much damage in New England. Even though the road is almost 100 miles inland, nearly all of the trees in the region were lost that September.

      The burying ground is a small, family cemetery now. Nobody seems to belong in my family tree, though. But it's a picture-perfect New England burying ground.

      When I read in your diary about the Hurricane Church I wondered how and why it got the name. It's not exactly located in a part of the country known for hurricanes. I know that hurricanes can still do a lot of damage even hundreds of miles inland. Been there, done that.

      Just curious. Sometimes the littlest things can lead you to a story.

      "Never wrestle with a pig: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it"

      by GrumpyOldGeek on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:03:03 AM PST

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      •  I've often wondered the same thing (4+ / 0-)

        but haven't found any answers nor have I even formed a theory, something I'm quite fond of doing.

        I did read in the book yesterday that most of the first settlers who came there were from Warren Co KY. I don't think they have much experience with hurricanes there either but there are in Fayette Co. IL not one but two Hurricane Townships, North and South.

        Now, see what you've done.... set me off on another mystery. There has to be a reason.

        Inspiration is hard to come by. You have to take it where you find it. --- Bob Dylan.

        by figbash on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 08:04:57 AM PST

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        •  It dawned on me that language and words change (4+ / 0-)

          usage and definitions over time.

          I don't recall any use of the word, tornado in any of the town histories and genealogies I've read that were written prior to the early 20th century. I'm thinking that the term wasn't in common use in those days.

          I've read some of the early 17th century histories that describe tornadoes but call them "great cyclones" or "great winds". In contrast, a hurricane at sea was often called a cylone and was called a hurricane at landfall and inland.

          So maybe tornadoes were called hurricanes because of the common terminology of the cyclone or cyclonic winds. Makes sense to me.

          Fayette County, Illinois was established in 1821 according to the Wikithingy, so that's definitely in the timeframe where the older terms were in common use.

          It's not that Fayette County isn't located right smack in the middle of Tornado Alley, or anything :).

          You're not alone in the quest to solve those little mysteries.

          "Never wrestle with a pig: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it"

          by GrumpyOldGeek on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 05:53:02 PM PST

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          •  Thanks, O Grumpy One. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Jim H, GrumpyOldGeek, edwardssl

            I just came to your comment from Googling around looking for answers to this very question. I wondered if maybe there weren't many or several devastating hurricanes in the Gulf that struck New Orleans since this area of Illinois was so dependent upon the Mississippi.

            I came upon this site timeline of us hurricanes thru 1800s.  WARNING: It's run by a right wing group called PoetPatriot or somesuch so I didn't look around too much. Just at the timeline. There were quite a few in the last decades of the 1700s.

            I like your idea better, tho, of the possible change in language but as I toss it around in my feeble brain, I think maybe we are both missing it.  As I looked at a survey included in the church book there are several references to "Hurrican" River and "Hurrican" lands. Here's a link to my Flickr photo of the page. It's a good general historical read. There is also a mention "Nov grounds shook springs roiled." A minor earthquake, I reckon. This is very close to New Madrid fault line.

            My bottom line at the moment: Hurrican was the name given by the indigenous people who then lived on these lands.

            Thanks for the conversation, GOG. I really enjoy your follow-though and knowledge. Now to go prove my latest theory wrong....

            Inspiration is hard to come by. You have to take it where you find it. --- Bob Dylan.

            by figbash on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 08:56:50 AM PST

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            •  This was the BIG New Madrid earthquake (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Jim H, edwardssl, figbash

              The survey started in 1809 and lasted for at least a couple of years. So they were there on Dec 16, 1811 when the big New Madrid earthquakes hit.

              Once again, history crashes right into current events in the form of federal disaster relief funds as documented in this USGS summary of the New Madrid quakes.

              The earthquake made previously rich prairie land unfit for farming because of deep fissures, land subsidence which converted good fields to swamps, and numerous sand blows which covered the ground with sand and mud. The heavy damage inflicted on the land by these earthquakes led Congress to pass in 1815 the first disaster relief act providing the landowners of ravaged ground with an equal amount of land in unaffected regions.
              The 37 morans who voted against the Sandy relief act are lying when they claim that Congress never provided disaster relief before Katrina. They're off by almost 200 years.

              Anyway, this event has little to do with how the river and the settlement got its name other than verifying that the name was known before 1809. And that spelling was optional in so many of those old documents.

              They were very concerned about the "savages", obviously. These people would have spoken a Miami-Illinois dialect of the broader Algonquian language families. This particular dialect is well-documented, but the etymology of the word tells me it's probably not from an Illini tribe dialect.

              The Google machine found this about the etymology of hurricane. Apparently, it's an English word shared with the same Spanish word which originated from an indigenous people in the Caribbean, not speaking an Algonquian language (I think). What a mess.

              The idea that it's a tornado synonym is is reach. The possibility that it's an Algonquian term is unlikely.

              Which brings us full circle. Why is this called Hurricane? It's the English word.

              One would think that the origin is written down somewhere. Maybe.

              It sure is fun to try to unravel the puzzle, isn't it? It's the historical context that our ancestors lived through that's addictive for me. And it's great fun. Did I mention that this is fun?

              "Never wrestle with a pig: you get dirty and the pig enjoys it"

              by GrumpyOldGeek on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 03:14:22 PM PST

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              •  Wow. Thanks. I'm glad you think this is fun (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Jim H, edwardssl

                because SO DO I.

                Fun, exciting and, at times, deeply frustrating. You get something in your head like this and it takes up residence like a non-paying boarder.

                After reading your comment late last night, it occurred to me that the name that was translated finally to Hurricane was probably the English translation of the French "ouragan" (there were French traders there and had been for some time). Ouragan was the French translation for the native's name for it.

                The river called "Ocar" would appear to be the way the surveyors wrote out "Okaw" an alternate of the Kaskaskia into which the Hurricane flowed. From wikipedia:

                "Cascasquia" is an alternative, supposedly more French, spelling of "Kaskaskia" that is sometimes encountered.[citation needed] It was named after a clan of the Illiniwek encountered by the early French Jesuits and other settlers. "Okaw River" was an alternative name for the Kaskaskia that persists in place names along the river, including Okawville, and in a major tributary, the West Okaw River.
                Or maybe they just liked the sound of Er-uh-cun" which was probably the way they pronounced it.

                Thanks for engaging with me. I know Illinois isn't your area of interest but you are so knowledgeable! I really appreciate it.  See you 'round the bend.

                Inspiration is hard to come by. You have to take it where you find it. --- Bob Dylan.

                by figbash on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 08:03:15 AM PST

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