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Just Ask…

One of the hardest parts about research is not the research itself, but it is knowing who to ask about a source, and, what to ask for.

Yesterday, I ‘met’ (online) the manager of the Jackson County (Florida) Genealogical Society group on Facebook. I introduced myself, vetted myself (i.e., mentioned that I knew a few local historians and genealogists she might now), and boom, I’m in.

And I’m so glad I did. The very first thing I read in the JCGS discussion thread was that one of the team had a lot of copies of death certificates scanned in for review.

OMG (I said in my head, because I’m trying to quit swearing for Lent), could it be possible there’s something about Emmett’s brother, Cephas, in there?

So, I asked. And, bada-boom:

Source: The most awesome Jackson County Genealogical Society.

Source: The most awesome Jackson County Genealogical Society.

Here it is! I guess you cannot tell how thrilled I am via this entry, but rest assured, I am bubbling over with excitement!

There’s nothing in here mentioning the descendants I’m looking for, but man, is it full of information.

So, Ceph died in 1923. If you notice, there’s a lot of different handwriting samples on this form. His father, Dr. F.C. Wilson (line 10) died in 1920, so, he didn’t have any input on this form. His mother wasn’t “Virgin Maxwell,” Elizabeth Virginia Maxwell. Interesting that the informant for this form was D.P. Daniel of Marianna, and not Lula (the correct spelling of her name was “Lula”). Maybe she wasn’t there when Cephas died.

Cause of death: Arteriosclerosis. I wonder how it was determined, specifically, if he didn’t have any symptoms leading up to the day he died? Probably it was a heart attack; death was estimated at 6 a.m. According to a family history shared with me by a relative of Lula’s, “The Wiselogel Genealogy Book,” the entry about Cephas says that his demise came  about “by a strange and inexorable fate…” as he was in line to be promoted to the Florida Supreme Court when he died.

That may explain why he had no will, despite being a lawyer: i.e., he didn’t expect to go at any time, and, may have been feeling just fine right up to the end.



Here’s to my colleagues at the Jackson County (Florida) Genealogical Society! Sometimes, it all just comes down to finding the right person, and asking the right question.


Categories: Book Family Florida History Research Status The Writing Life

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