Dear Family and Friends,
In Elder David A. Bednar’s Saturday morning conference talk he said to the youth,”The Lord has made available in our day remarkable resources that enable you to learn about and love this work that is sparked by the Spirit of Elijah. It is no coincidence that FamilySearch and other tools have come forth at a time when young people are so familiar with a wide range of information and communication technologies. Your fingers have been trained to text and tweet to accelerate and advance the work of the Lord—not just to communicate quickly with your friends. The skills and aptitude evident among many young people today are a preparation to contribute to the work of salvation.”
I saw this at work, first hand, when a grandmother and her 2 granddaughters came into our Centre last week. It was fall break in England for the school children just like it was for our grandchildren in Utah. This grandmother had brought her 13 and 10 year old granddaughters to The National Archives to introduce them to family history work. They sat at two of our computers and after a little instruction the girls were finding their family on census records and parish records. They turned out to be the teachers in showing their grandmother how to use the computer to find the documents they were searching for. They stayed for several hours and thoroughly enjoyed working together.
This is probably not going to hold interest to many people beyond myself, my children and cousin, Lynn, but I have to write about an experience I have been having sorting our a ‘mystery’ in our family. I have a third great grandmother, Arrilla Brown Hewitt who lived in a Huston, Clearfield, Pennsylvania in the 1800’s.
Over the years there had been many spellings of Arrilla’s name and there are different variations of the spelling in other generations of the family. At first glance you would put this down to the fact that many people in older times were not literate and it is common to find variations in spellings on censuses and all sorts of documents. I thought this was the case until I was looking closely at an 1860 federal census for Pennsylvania.
The 1850 and 1870 censuses show exactly the same thing. There is another person named Arvilla, likely a widow, and her son, living with John and Arrilla. It turns out that Arrilla and Arvilla were twins and the story becomes even more complicated when Arrilla died in 1870 and Arvilla married her sister’s husband. I found photos of their headstones in the Hewitt Cemetery.
Arrilla’s daughter Martha Arvilla is shown in the photo below with her husband John Philip Hevener and their three children. The little girl is Martha Arvilla Hevener, my great grandmother.
In the photo below, Martha Arvilla Hevener Lucore, the youngest child in the photo above, is the mother and the youngest child is my Grandma Rose Lucore Bennett.
I love the connections we form with our ancestors. Even thought I never met Arrilla or Arvilla Brown, Martha Arvilla Hewitt or Martha Arvilla Hevener, I feel like I almost know them. In the course of my search I have been in contact with my cousin, Lynn and two distant cousins who also come from these lines. It’s been excited to compare stories and help each other in this wonderful work.
Halloween in England
I put up Halloween decorations a couple of weeks ago. I found a garland and bought a small pumpkin for £2.50.
Our family loves Halloween and Kelly and Curtis always host an annual family Halloween party. Our invitation is on the mirror over the fireplace but of course we didn’t attend this year. For the benefit of our little ghosts, vampires, greasers, hippies and other cute and scary trick-or-treaters, here are a few facts about Halloween in England.
It’s thought that Halloween likely had it’s origins in the pagan festivals held around the end of October in the British Isles. In the year 835 AD the Catholic Church made November 1, a church holiday to honor all the saints. Although it was a joyous holiday it was also the eve of All Souls Day, so in Medieval times it became the custom to pray for the dead on this date.
Another name for All Saints Day is 'All Hallows' (hallow is an the old English word for 'saint'). The festival began on All Hallows Eve, the last night of October.
According to an Irish legend, jack-o-lanterns were named after a man named Jack who couldn’t enter heaven because he was a miser. He couldn’t enter hell either because he played jokes on the devil. So he could only walk the earth with his jack-o-lantern until judgment day.
In England and Ireland lanterns were traditionally carved from turnips. In Scotland the thick stem of the cabbage plant was used.
The wearing of costumes originates in Celtic tradition. People thought that when they left their homes on Halloween night they would come across ghosts so they worn costumes to avoid being recognized by those ghosts. Halloween used to be a time for making mischief in parts of England so it was called Mischief Night.
Because I was talking about the twin sisters who were my ancestors I have to include a picture of our own twin granddaughters in their Halloween costumes.
Emily and Elizabeth were Thing 1 and Thing 2 from the Cat in the Hat- blue hair and all.
News From Home
We are so proud of our grandson Joseph who just completed his Eagle Scout project. Joseph collected 166 new stuffed animals for the Christmas Box House, a short-term crisis shelter and assessment center for children. A stuffed animal is offered to each child as soon as they enter the house as a source of comfort to them. You are awesome Joseph!
We are also very proud of our grandson Drew, who will be celebrating his 8th birthday, November 5. Happy Birthday Drew!
Love to all!
Love, Elder and Sister Fugal (aka Cheryl and Ken, Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa)
PS We are anxiously awaiting the birth of our newest grandson, Landon Robins.
He is expected to make his appearance this Friday, 28 October 2011!
Oops, correction! Landon arrived Tuesday evening, 25 October 2011, at 6 PM Utah time. His was 6 pounds 8 ounces- a beautiful baby!