John Nation’s Journey to America

John Nation’s Journey to America

According to family legend, the first Nation ancestor to settle in America--John Nation of Rowan County, North Carolina, my 8th great-grandfather--was kidnapped as a young boy in England and brought to New Jersey as an indentured servant. It is much more likely, though, that John Nation entered into indenture in exchange for passage to the [...]

Coroner Gritton Summoned By Death

Coroner Gritton Summoned By Death

Of all my ancestors, George Amos Gritton took the eeriest photos. It's in his eyes: he had a bone-chilling, otherworldly stare that evokes all things midnight and graves and weirdness. This is not to say that Amos wasn't a good man; in fact, he devoted the latter half of his life to public service, and [...]

Civil War Veteran Joins Vigilance Committee

Civil War Veteran Joins Vigilance Committee

Nation Family Farm, 1880 This week's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks theme is "nonpopulation," referring to a series of agricultural, manufacturing and business schedules largely conducted in the 1800s. Agricultural schedules, in particular, provide information on the farm owner, the cash value of the farm, farming machinery, the acreage used for each kind of crop [...]