Tales of Two Ancestors
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Reading-- Fool Me Twice by Stephanie Black
I'm grateful for-- my gift of writing
Ok, peeps! Participating in the blog festival honoring one's ancestors has given me a wonderful genealogy bug. Have not gotten in touch with my aunt on my mother's side yet, but... *smiles* ...I did call my Texas grandparents tonight and asked them to share some of their favorite stories about our ancestors. They were more than happy to oblige! *smiles happily* Though short, a couple of the tales Nan and Paw Paw told are either a riot or very interesting.
The first is about Mose Akin, an ?nth great-grandfather of mine and Nan's on her mother's side. *grins just remembering his shenanigans*
Picture a very tall man, a big man weighing 325 lbs. A man who had the gifts of charm and oration. Mose was an Evangelist preacher from Kentucky who also... *looks from side to side in an exaggerated manner, then leans forward and continues in a mock whisper* ...made his own moonshine! One day, according to Nan, the sheriff came to arrest Mose for making the moonshine.
"C'mon Mose, I'm here to carry you to jail," the sheriff said. "Let's go."
Instead of obeying the sheriff's request, Mose lay down flat on the ground.
"What are you doing, Mose?" the sheriff asked, puzzled by the big man's behavior.
"You said you were here to 'carry me' to jail," Mose said. "So, let's go. I'm ready."
Of course, Mose Akin being the big man he was, both men knew there was nnnooo way the sheriff would be able to budge the giant of a man. So, the sheriff had to leave empty-handed. But later on, Nan says, Mose Akin turned himself in, and at his trial the jury let him go!
My second story is of an ancestor on Paw Paw's side. My 5th great-grandfather, I believe, Ephraim McLean Brank. He fought in the Battle of New Orleans, in the War of 1812, with General Andrew Jackson. Paw Paw wrote in his email:
- In [the second] war for our liberty from England...Ephraim McLean Brank fought with Gen. Andrew Jackson in the Battle of New Orleans. A British officer, who was in the front lines as the British advanced on the American[s]...guarding New Orleans, wrote a book years later. He recalled marching toward the American breastworks, made up mostly of bales of cotton. As they were about 400 yards from the Americans, the British officer saw a tall man dressed in buckskin stand up on the breastwork with the longest rifle he had ever seen (he was unfamiliar with the famous Kentucky rifle). He took aim and fired, and one of the British officers fell dead. This was repeated several times until all the Brits could think about was the man whose accuracy meant certain death with every shot. By the time the British reached the point where they could return fire (their muskets were not effective beyond 40 yards), they were totally demoralized. The officers could not effectively direct their men, and the battle was lost.
The Written Past
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