For the last few weeks, I have been working on Miles Bembry's FAN club in an attempt to finally topple that Bembry brickwall. I've gathered a ton of information! But I am starting to confuse myself by now, and so I think I need to take a step back to properly organize and summarize it … Continue reading Nansemond Connections
A couple of weeks ago I started on another pandemic-inspired genealogy project. While it didn't lead to a fully conclusive result, I did learn some interesting things along the way. I have always wondered whether the black Bembrys who come out of eastern North Carolina are connected to "my" Bembrys. As Bembry is such a … Continue reading Looking into North Carolina Bembrys
I haven't posted much recently due to having gone down the DNA rabbit hole! The "higher math" of DNA comparison and triangulation still eludes me. Maybe that will be a good project for retirement. But, I am pretty good at conventional research, and am able to use DNA cousins to either support or disprove my … Continue reading DNA Discoveries
The Reverend John McKenzie of Suffolk Parish, Nansemond County, Virginia wrote a will in 1754 in which he named his children; John II, Kenneth, Janet, Anne, and William McKenzie. The Reverend gave various tracts of land in Tyrrell and Bertie counties, North Carolina to his sons, and also specified that "my Negroes shall not be … Continue reading So Many Questions
My DNA profile is mostly predictable. I am 99 percent European. But there were two little surprises in the mix. According to 23andMe, I have .06 percent South Asian (India, Pakistan, etc.) DNA, and .04 percent West African DNA. My parents recently tested as well, offering a great opportunity to sort out what came from … Continue reading The Other One Percent
The story of the only Bembry to wear Union blue.
John Bembry, oldest son of Miles Bembry, was a colorful character. In 1831 he stabbed a cousin, Littleton Bryan, to death, apparently over some kind of property dispute. Wanted notices were were posted all over Georgia and Florida by Littleton's father, Moses Bryan, who offered a substantial reward for his capture. However, there is no … Continue reading John Bembry: the Plot Thickens
Recently, I wrote about how Kenneth apprenticed a free boy of color named William Williams. Well, of course I had to find out more about his mother, Fanny Williams! Which led me into an entirely new (for me) area of genealogy: that of "free people of color" in the antebellum South. Fanny Williams deeded her … Continue reading Kenneth Bembry’s “Colored” Children?
Fanny Williams, a "free woman of color," indentures her eight year old son to Kenneth Bembry.