A Rain of Tears

So anyone who knows me knows that I wear my heart on my sleeves, which is probably the reason why I can’t stop crying right now. No! Nothing is wrong, I’m just so happy… For those who prayed for a fast response along with me; please know that you and I have had our prayers answered…. (Side note to self: I wonder if there is a genealogy prayer group somewhere lol)

So let me get to the good stuff…. On Monday of last week I posted about the packet that I received on January 3, 2014 from a distant relative covering his research done of the family. I briefly mentioned that I had found that a lot of the information came from a quite a few books one of which that is sold on Amazon. On January 16th, I attempted to get in touch with the Allegheny North Carolina Historical Society to tell me more, (special thanks to Luckie Daniels for sparking that idea) although I had no luck I had no luck getting through to them I had already gone too far to turn back so I got in touch with the book in questions distributer. A local book store about two doors down from the historical society. I spoke with a lovely employee named Claire who was able to confirm over the phone the name of one of the books that I needed to order. I was happy enough with that and could have probably gone on the rest of my journey just purchasing that book. But wait… there was more… Claire apparently had my ancestors pushing on her brain as well because she came up with the brillaint idea for me to send her some photos of the scans so that she could see if she could tell where they came from for me.  (PAUSE: I’d like to take this time to thank Claire Halsey for not only taking the time out to speak with me but for offering such an amazing assistance to me). I sent the email and went about my business…

Here is a copy of the email…

“Hello Clara,

Thank you so much for taking the time out to speak with me yesterday. Your help so far has been amazing and it is truly appreciated. I’m seeking out information about the Choates and Edwards families of Sparta N,C. My family members seem to intertwine in between the Edwards and Choates family owners vs their slaves and I feel like I’m so close to finding the exact connections that I’m looking for. I have enclosed a few (hopefully not too many) of the scans from the packet that I received from my great aunts research on the Edwards side both black and white. I am trying to locate the exact reference book if it still exists so that I can have it for my own and to be able to see the photos better. Another thing that I am looking at finding, I’m not even sure if it was published or not are the Diaries and Will of Morgan Edwards. Any help that you are able to offer is greatly appreciated, even if nothing is found you have already done me a great help in directing me to the Allegheny County Heritage book.


Tierra L. Choates-Kellow”

(If you notice, in most of my emails, I will hyphenate and use the maiden name of either myself “Cotton” or my mother “Choates” depending on which line I’m talking about, it helps keep me on track)

Oh yeah, I completely forgot to mention that there was a page from a will and a few diary excerpts in that packet… (DUN DUN DUNNNN….. “Dramatic Music” lol) The diary detailed days of a family member, Morgan Edwards (an owner) but I’m not sure EXACTLY where he plays his part in my families lineage which is the reason why I haven’t stressed it as of yet. Don’t worry – there WILL (no pun intended) be a blog for that…

So Yesterday January 21st I got a little impatient and I called Claire; not expecting anything but I wanted to at least make sure she hadn’t forgotten about me. And how you ask did I do that?? By calling to make sure that she got my email of course lol. She got it, and informed me that she had planned on emailing me her finding later on that day. (so much for the element of surprise on my part). I said okay great, I thanked her and went about my day. I waited ALL DAY and ALL NIGHT for that email, and it never came… Sigh…. I guess the element of surprise is back because i had no idea when it was coming. (I don’t know about you but I’m not the type that likes to stalk her own email) Then it happened, that famous apple computer “ding” that you hear when you get new mail. Honestly I figured it was another sales promotion or regular junk mail so I almost didn’t look until I saw that the email went to my address. (Yes, I made an email address just for genealogy’s sake. – I’d advise that to anyone because then you can email your findings to yourself and not have to worry about looking for it later). Please take the time to grab some tissue and or take a few deep breaths and brace yourself for what you are about to read….

This was the email response I received an hour ago…

“Hi Tierra,

I had a chance to look at the pages and it looks like:

5 pages of what you sent are from “The Chalice and the Covenant, a History of the New Covenant Baptist Association 1868-1973,” by Mark Sexton. (The pages from this book are the ones with the page number in the center at the bottom of the page, and italicized captions on the photos.) White Plains Baptist Church has copies of “The Chalice and the Covenant” available for just $5.

1 page, with the pictures of Letcher Bryan and Willie Nevil and Cola Ellen Carter, is from “Alleghany County Heritage.”

2 pages are from “History of Alleghany County” – the picture of Center and Jane Edwards, and the page with Clyde Bryan Eldridge in the upper left.

I looked at the genealogical resources at the library and it looks like the others are from “The Edwards Family” by Clifton Rector and “The Diary of Morgan Edwards.” It was transcribed by Lou Reid Landreth. Clifton Rector and Lou Reid Landreth have both passed away, and I don’t know the copyright status of either of these books.

At our business, we sell the two Alleghany County history books online (, and to purchase copies of “The Chalice and the Covenant” from White Plains Baptist Church, contact Ryan Lane at 336-200-2426

I hope this helps!
Claire Halsey”

So now I’m sure you can understand why I’m still crying… I have so many things to wrap my head around and so many books to buy! (Side note to self: I may have to start taking donations soon – time to call a friends & family meeting) I’m off to the next part of the journey… First, emailing Claire back to thank her for all of her help, (I think I need to send her an edible arrangement or something!) Second, emailing Ryan Lane to get a copy of “The Chalice and the Covenant” and third, finding out information on the transcripts of the will and Edwards family history books. Safe to say I have work cut out for me, I’ll have to stop crying first before I can do anything else.

*I appreciate you all for reading and following along in my journey*


2 thoughts on “A Rain of Tears”

  1. That’s GREAT Tierra your Blog Post are always so Light and Understanding and I can feel you through the Pages! We Rejoice with you. I do wonder if there is some Genealogy Prayer Warriors out there? LoL. Keeping you in Prayer! Thank You Claire! and Yeah, Go Cry! it’s a Good Thing!

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