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Tom Gray, Guilford Town Historian received the certificate at the APHNYS Conference this weekend proclaiming him as now a New York State Registered Historian. The application for this is very involved and it took him a few weeks to gather the information together including his many years experience.
Our member Claire Britton Warren and the Jenny Lind Gang have done it. We are so proud here in Guilford, NY…3000 miles apart..it was a glorious day on April 13th, 2000.
We have great individuals in our historical society that take on projects that sometimes could only be dreamed of. For instance a school house that was pretty much a disaster that is now almost completely restored…mostly by Ken and Doug…thanks guys :-). There were other members who offered their services as well, because this has been an on going project..and thanks to those members too!!
Others have also volunteered for local cemetery clean up and we had covered Victor Sibley previously…Thank you Victor. Speaking of cemeteries, here’s a story that ya’all might find of interest. Way back a lady posted her family tree on Ancestry. She was unaware of the death of one of our Guilford men and how he died. Long story short..I replied to her and as a result the story of the disaster of the Jenny Lind steamboat boiler explosion has been researched including the people of the times and how they were connected to Guilford. John Bradbury and Caleb Winsor went to San Francisco back in 1853 to seek their fortune. They may not have been “gold diggers” as there were expanding businesses and money to be made when employed by them. The two men were on that ship and killed. Their bodies were buried there but, a widow lady of Guilford wanted her husbands body returned to Guilford…Ben Twitchell was shot in a land dispute..(that’s another story). She paid to have all 3 bodies returned to Guilford, according to a newspaper clipping. So there you have the background in a very short version.
This is where they were removed from in California:
Had a wonderful 3 day vacation attending the Association of Public Historians of NY State conference in Elmira. Tom was recognized by the many historians of different counties and townships of the state for his work on projects and publications. So the Guilford Township Historian was surprised with the award and thanks to APHNYS and the hosts in Elmira for a great 3 days.
|David Ebenezer Sibley|
|Possibly Reverend Charles Sibley|
Sometimes there are mysteries that one is doing everything, including a blog, to solve. I could also do Facebook but, this is better and we’re linked anyway. The Sibley family in Guilford begins with David Ebenezer Sibley who lived in Rockdale, Town of Guilford. He was born in Jamaica, W.I. His father was Charles Sibley born in England. He went to Jamaica and became a preacher. Reverend Charles Sibley was married three times and had 2 children by the first wife and had 9 by the second and 7 by the third. He outlived the first two wives. The older children were David E., Robert and Agnes. Charles also had a son William Peto Sibley. Also his children were Mrs.Barron (Emma Isabel), and Mrs Hannah Elizabeth Turner. He had a sister that was the first wife of Rev. George Richard Henderson (Emma Elizabeth Sibley). Charles went with them to Jamaica. His son William Peto was also a minister and died in Jamaica. Is there anyone out there that may have more information on the Sibley families? We now have some of the answers to some questions written above. Who were the parents of Charles has been answered (Robert and Elizabeth Sibley)but what was Elizabeth’s maiden name?. They were still in England. Maybe this blog will reach Jamaica and England and someone there has the answers. By the way, they were Baptists and I know from “The Annual Report of the Jamaican Baptist Union for 1901” that the Reverend Charles Sibley died in Jamaica April 11th, 1901 leaving a wife and 6 little children.
The Civil War
Everyone has a story, so they say. We know you have one too! I have the GHS stories here for you to read and it is linked to Facebook so you get a shot one way or another. What I am wondering is, don’t any of you have a comment to add? It would be nice to know if you are enjoying what you read and maybe you have some suggestions of what you would like to see on the blog. You may even have something to share that I can put on here. “This blog’s for you”. Just click on the comment box at the bottom of each article and a box will open for you to type in. It’s free and easy.
Family history has it rewards, not only the research one does that brings to light an ancestor of your own, but helping someone else find theirs is just as rewarding. I recently had the experience of helping a family find a fellow who had been killed in an explosion of a steam boat, Jenny Lind, in California in 1853. His body had been returned to Guilford a few years later. John Bradbury, Caleb Winsor and Benjamin Twitchell were all out there and had been buried out there. Ben’s wife Sophia decided she wanted her husband returned home for burial and paid to have all three brought back. Newspaper articles were a great source of this information. The researcher, I’ll call her Claire, of the Bradbury family had no idea that John had died in that explosion. I just had to let her know and tell her where he ended up. Since then so much more has happened as a result. Claire finds more information everyday as to where they were interred in San Francisco and more articles that describe the explosion. Now one good turn…well Claire was in touch with a Becky. Becky had purchased a musketball 10 years ago on ebay. The musketball had the following attached inscription:
“This iron ball within must be very old – Charlton and a carpenter found it embeded into a timber when they were working on the Mickle farm house (upon the hill) from Mt. Upton. They found it years ago.”
Claire gave Becky our email and Becky donated it to the historical society. If this ball could only talk!!
Here is the certificate. It took over 3 years to get all the research done. Many hours at the county office building researching deeds but look what has happened. The first historic district for the Town of Guilford. Congratulations to GHS and the Town!!!
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We are anxious to gain friends and members. Help us to gain 250 members by the end of the year.
Just print and fill out the attached membership form and mail to Guilford Historical Society