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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

2012 And A new Year........

The legacy of our grandfathers and grandmothers follows us today. If they could jump through time and space and see us now, what would they say is the most important task? Could it be to pass along all the admirable traits from them and drop all the destructive ones?
Did you learn kindness from your grandmother? Pass it on. Did you learn determination from a great uncle? Pass it on.
Did you learn to believe in God from your Papa? Please pass it on.
Now what about the rest? Take, envy, greed, or slothfulness and drop them.
Make your generation the best ever. Leave your grandchildren truth, love,and hope.
You can't do better than that.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Colonial Holidays...........

The Virginia observation of Christmas tended towards good fellowship and good eating. The Virginia Almanac for 1772 carried these sentiments on a December page:

This Month much Meat will be roasted in rich Mens Kitchens, the Cooks sweating in making of minced Pies and other Christmas Cheer, and whole Rivers of Punch, Toddy, Wine, Beer, and Cider consumed with drinking. Cards and Dice will be greatly used, to drive away the Tediousness of the long cold Nights; and much Money will be lost at Whist Cribbage and All fours.

In England the custom was for an apprentice to visit each of his master's clients to collect tips for his services throughout the year, the custom apparently was followed in Virginia.

Soon after the Revolution, St. George Tucker of Williamsburg wrote "Christmas Verses for the Printer's Devil":

Now the season for mirth and good eating advances,
Plays, oysters and sheldrakes, balls, mince pies and dances;
Fat pullets, fat turkeys, and fat geese to feed on,
Fat mutton and beef; more by half than you've need on;
Fat pigs and fat hogs, fat cooks and fat venison,
Fat aldermen ready the haunch to lay hands on;
Fat wives and fat daughters, fat husbands and sons,
Fat doctors and parsons, fat lawyers and duns;
What a dancing and fiddling, and gobbling and grunting,
As if Nimrod himself had just come in from hunting!
These all are your comforts—while mine are so small,
I may truly be said to have nothing at all.
I'm a Devil you know, and can't live without fire,
From your doors I can see it, but I dare not come nigher;
Now if you refuse me some wood, or some coal,
I must e'en go and warm, in old Beelzebub's hole;
Next, tho' I'm a devil, I drink and I eat,
Therefore stand in need of some rum, wine and meat;
Some clothes too I want—for I'm blacker than soot,
And a hat, and some shoes, for my horns and my foot;
To supply all these wants, pray good people be civil
And give a few pence to a poor printer's devil.

In 1772, the Virginia Gazette published a letter from “An Old Fellow,” who lived in England. He complained about the “Decay of English Customs and Manners.” After describing the old English Christmas when the kitchen was “the Palace of Plenty, Jollity, and good Eating,” he wrote:

Now mark the Picture of the present Time: Instead of that firm Roast Beef, that fragrant Pudding, our Tables groan with the Luxuries of France and India. Here a lean Fricassee rises in the Room of our majestick Ribs, and there a Scoundrel Syllabub occupies the Place of our well-beloved Home-brewed. The solid Meal gives Way to the slight Repast; and, forgetting that good Eating and good Porter are two great Supporters of Magna Charta and the British Constitution, we open our Hearts and our Mouths to new Fashions in Cookery, which will one Day lead us to Ruin."

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Being Thankful....

Make a list of what you are thankful for and you will quickly feel better. First I'm thankful I live in the United States of America. Is our country perfect? Of course not, but I wouldn't live anywhere else.
I'm thankful I live in this time in history. I don't think I would have done very well in the Bronze Age.
I'm thankful I have the choice to worship where I want and the freedom not to.
I choose to worship the creator of our universe and all others (if there are any), the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob,the God of Israel, the Messiah, Jesus the Christ.
He's the only one that makes any sense. He has it all together. (Some of His followers don't, but He does)
Looking back I can see that my life has been a tapestry of starts and stops, and I'm finally starting to see a pattern. When ever I've trusted God, he's never let me down. When I tried to fix things or be in control, things didn't turn out well. I am beginning to understand "The just shall live by Faith"
I am thankful that I am finally learning how to love unconditionally without judgement or criticism. I know my friends and family are very thankful for that.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Time Stood Still....11-12-11

Time stood still as around 100 descendants of Zachariah Butler  stopped to pay respects to him and his son Patrick in a small grove of tall poplars and oaks in Elbert County Georgia Saturday, November 12, 2011. As the Georgia SAR Color Guard marched in slow cadence to face the graves of these two Patriots, I marvelled at the meaning of it all.
Just as if on cue from a Hollywood director, a shower of brown leaves from the water oaks in the small circular cemetery began to twirl down around us.
The horses in the pasture just beyond the graves ran back and forth after the 21 gun musket salute, their graceful running breaking the silence.
This beautiful day, I will remember the rest of my life.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Zachariah Butler's land In Elbert Co Ga....

Next Saturday I will be standing on the very land that my colonial grandfather received for his service in the American Revolution. I found a copy of the plat. Located in Elbert County Georgia,  the boundary is marked by the trees along its border. Hickory, pine, dogwood, and oak trees towered above the Butler family when they reached Georgia in 1785. Along the banks of Wachatchee Creek, a branch of the Broad River, they set up camp that summer and started to erect a shelter before the Fall.
I've tried to think what they ate that first year. Living off the land until the first crops could be harvested, they had fish, deer, raccoon, possum, turkey, rabbit, squirrel,and bear for meat. Acorns, muscadines, blackberries, mulberries, paw paws,wild persimmon,wild blueberries,and many other wild vegetation that I don't even know are edible. If they had some chickens and a cow, they had milk and eggs. I don't think a cow could walk all the way to Georgia from Virginia, so maybe they bought or traded for one when they reached Petersburg, Georgia. Petersburg was a settlement that thrived during the 1700's when people were pouring into the state. This settlement is now covered by Clark Hill Reservoir.

 Patrick Butler's Plat

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Freedom .........

Connection between Zachariah Butler, James Butler and Patrick Henry

Our Colonial grandfathers were neighbors of Patrick Henry. Zachariah was the same age and born in the same county (HANOVER) in Va.
 I received an e-mail from Rev Thomas Maxwell of Anderson S.C.
His ancestor Rev Thomas Maxwell of Culpepper VA was defended by Patrick Henry after being arrested and thrown in jail for preaching without a license.  He then came to Elbert Co Ga. With other Va. settlers. Falling Creek Baptist Church was founded by Rev. Maxwell. Some of the Butler family were members there.

 This was the reason the founding fathers included the separation of Church and State in the Constitution. It was to insure the Freedom to worship NOT the Freedom from worship. The State can not tell us which church to belong to. The State can not sponsor a denomination to the exclusion of others. I wonder what Patrick Henry would think about the notion that the State has excluded all worship and discussions of faith from the public square. This seems to me to be an perversion of the original intent of the founding fathers. What if we could freely discuss and learn about all denominations, faiths and religions?  Then each citizen could learn and compare and freely choose what they believed. Instead of expanding our freedoms it seems to me that we have lost some.

Dear Lydia,

You are correct, He started a few others, The cases of the preachers that Patrick Henry and James Madison defended were used to establish religious freedom in Va. 

One of the daughters did marry into the Henry family. The grave of  Rev. Maxwell is about 150 feet from twin line dairy just off old Maxwell farm road. The acts of our elders proved what some men with convictions for God can do. 


Dr. T

On Mon, Oct 17, 2011 at 6:15 PM, Lydia Anderson,> wrote:

Dear Dr.T.,

My son and his family live in Westminster on Lake Hartwell. They are members of Foothills Community Church in Seneca.

Patrick Henry defended other pastors as well as Rev. Maxwell. .my Colonial grandfather Zachariah Butler was born the same year and in the same county as Patrick Henry…they were neighbors.

After the Revolutionary War, Rev Maxwell must have come to Ga. with other Va. Settlers. .and Falling Creek was not the only church he started.
I seem to recall he founded other churches in Ga. and Tenn.
Some of his daughters married men with the last name Henry.. but I don’t know if there is a connection to Patrick Henry or not.. that would be interesting for you.

God Bless,
Lydia Butler Anderson

Friday, October 21, 2011

Why Search Into the past?

Why did I start my long investigation into my Butler family tree? It started with a simple question to my father.."What were Papa Butler's grandparents names?" My dad didn't know, and I thought to myself then "I want to find out". Trips to the Atlanta Archives started and many hours of looking at microfilm records. This was before the Internet and just finding a census record was time consuming. The records were hard to find and even harder to read. One good thing about that time was that original records were used to verify information. When you find "facts" on your family tree, make sure there is an original document to back it up. The oldest member of your family is the place to begin. Asking these older family members about your family tree can give you great information that can be lost after they are gone.

After finding everything you can from an older relative you may want to start with census records. The census records give evidence of where families lived and how they migrated. Look for different spellings of both first and last names. I found that census takers sometimes spelled phonetically, so spelling can vary greatly from one census to the next.
Just these two sources will give you a lot of insight into your famly and yourself. Get started and have fun along the way.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Time Change......

The memorial ceremony for Zachariah Butler and his son Patrick Butler is now scheduled for 11:00 am November 12, 2011.

Make plans to attend.

From Elberton GA - on the SE side of Elberton, Go SE on Hwy 72/17 : ......... Hwy 72 and Hwy 17 fork - take the right fork down Hwy 17 and go 7.0 miles from the fork. Just past a large Baptist Church on the left is Dr. George Ward Rd. There is also a CITGO gas station at the intersection. Go left ( East ) on George Ward Rd and drive 2.1 miles and make a left on Bakers Ferry Rd. Go about 200 yards and park.

Off to the West ( 150 yards ) is a large clump of trees in an open field. The Butler graves are in that group of trees.

GPS coordinates are N 34.02630 W 82.75385

Sunday, October 2, 2011

More Information On Zachariah Butler.....

On the Thomas Partridge Store records in Hanover Co Va in 1756 Christopher Butler is named as settling the account of son Zachariah, b.1736. Zachariah is well documented, but Christopher Butler had other children of all ages by these store accounts. While many records from Hanover are missing, Christopher is listed in deed records in 1734-35. While some have tried to say that this Christopher is a son of Joshua Butler and Grace Page the DNA of this group is no where close to the DNA of Zachariah's descendants.
Because of DNA matching we may suspect that James Butler, c1740 who married Winifred Brooks of Hanover and Mecklenburg, may be a brother of Zachariah. James went to Edgefield County SC before the Revolutionary War. The father of Christopher may have been James who immigrated from Ireland in 1703. James came over on the same ship with the same merchant as Edmund Butler in 1706. Edmund's family is well documented and the DNA of Christopher's descendants is a near match for Edmund's, suggesting they may have been brothers or cousins.
The mystery continues and gets better with time.....

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Some Faces of Our Past..........

If you have some pictures that you would like posted on this Blog site please e-mail me at

I will post them and any other information about them that you would like to add.

I have thought and wondered many times what I would say to my gggrandparents if I could go back in time and speak to them. Every time I find a picture from the past I try to see some of myself.
 Frances Hogue Butler 1815-1900

 Nathan Butler 1815-1875

Parents of James Marion Butler1838-1896 and Napoleon B. Butler. James fought for the Confederates, Nathan and Napoleon with the Union.
They all survived the war.  Nathan's father Daniel b1794-1878 was my gggrandfather Patrick's brother. Patrick b1799-1880 lost two sons in the of them was my ggrandfather William. b1827-1861

James Marion Butler named one of his sons after his father and grandfather.

                              Nathan Daniel Butler b1872-1960
                              Kate Beard Butler b1873-1953
                              Daughters- Matie, Meryl, Mamie
 Wedding Day

Nathan & Kate with Grandson Jewel Franks

Thursday, August 25, 2011

November 12 2011 -----SAR Morning Ceremony

If you are a descendant of Zachariah Butler or his son Patrick Butler..veterans of the American Revolution, make plans to attend a memorial ceremony by the Samuel Elbert Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution.

The memorial will be at the Butler Cemetery at the grave site, November 12, 2011 in the morning at 11:00 am.

From Elberton GA - on the SE side of Elberton, Go SE on Hwy 72/17 : ......... Hwy 72 and Hwy 17 fork - take the right fork down Hwy 17 and go 7.0 miles from the fork. Just past a large Baptist Church on the left is Dr. George Ward Rd. There is also a CITGO gas station at the intersection. Go left ( East ) on George Ward Rd and drive 2.1 miles and make a left on Bakers Ferry Rd. Go about 200 yards and park.

Off to the West ( 150 yards ) is a large clump of trees in an open field. The Butler graves are in that group of trees.

GPS coordinates are N 34.02630 W 82.75385

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Peter Patrick Butler & Hannah Snellings

 Patrick Butler and Elizabeth Fannin Butler's son, Peter Patrick Butler was born March 3, 1789 in Elbert Co Ga. With his father and two grandfathers Revolutionary War Veterans, Peter Patrick no doubt grew up hearing about their experiences in the conflict.
Zachariah Butler and Laughlin Fannin were both residents of Mecklenburg Co. Va. Oct 12, 1778 Laughlin Fannin took his oath to become a militia officer in the Va. Milita. In 1780 Ensign Laughlin Fannin was present when Joseph Butler enlisted.
Patrick married Laughlin's daughter Elizabeth and both families relocated to Elbert Co Ga after the war to settle their land awarded for their service. Peter Patrick Butler married Hannah Snellings B1788.
George Snellings Butler, son of Peter Patrick was born in 1803 in Elbert Co Ga. He married Catherine Booth Feb 17,1830. their children were William Sanford b 1831, Harriet A. b 1834, Samuel b 1836, and GeorgeW. b 1839.

George Snellings Butler

After Catherine's death in 1850, George Snellings Butler married Mary Ann Richards Dec. 15,1856. They had 12 children. David Ned b 1857, Elizabeth Jane b 1858, Patrick Henry b 1859, Ellen Augusta(Gussie) b 1861, James Thomas b 1862, Simon Clayton b 1863, Joseph Warren b 1866, Martha Ann b 1867, Benjamin F. b 1868, Susan F. (Susie) b 1870, Willis Jackson b 1871, Charles Walton b1875.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Images Of That Great War........

This July is the 150 anniversary of my gggrandfather William H. Butler leaving his home in Walton Co Ga and heading to Virginia to join thousand of others at the start of the Civil War. Their train was delayed so the Walton Volunteer Home Guard missed the First Battle of Manassas. The July sun and heat made dead on the battlefield fill the air with death.This confederate victory gave everyone pause and realize that this would not be a quick victory or a bloodless one. Drinking water was soon contaminated and sickness went through the ranks. William was soon sick with typhoid fever and was sent to a hospital in Richmond where he was discharged disabled August 10, 1861. His discharge papers were signed by General J. H. Winder. Across the top of the discharge is written, "Transportation Furnished". The train ride home was long and with a fever I don't know how he made it. Just the thought of making it home was probably what kept him going. And thankfully he did make it home. He died in his own bed September 18.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Happy Birthday America!

Our  Butler Colonial grandfathers gave us the gift of Freedom in 1776.  Zachariah Butler, and his sons Patrick, and James were part of a revolution that changed the course of history.
Do we take it for granted today..sometimes I think we do.

The courage to come to America and the courage to rebel against England is in our DNA.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Fathers Are Forever......

Our fathers play a very important part in all of our lives. They have an influence that lasts forever even to  future generations. From our Colonial grandfather Zachariah Butler to our fathers that raised us we carry them in our hearts and minds.
I know my branch of the Butler family is influenced by the death of William H. Butler in the Civil War. Orphaned at age 9, Nathan Patrick Butler my great grandfather, the oldest of William's four children, had to grow up very fast and be responsible for too much too soon.
To all the Butler fathers out there....take the good you have received from your fathers and pass it down.
Happy Fathers Day.

Some Butler fathers.......

Monday, May 30, 2011

We Remember...Memorial Day 2011

From the American Revolution to the War On Terror our Butler Family has contributed to the cause of Liberty. Patrick Henry who was a neighbor of our Colonial Grandfather Zachariah Butler said ---

"Should I keep back my opinions at such a time,through fear of giving offence, I should consider myself as guilty of treason toward my country ,and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings."

We remember you all---