Right around the corner from home

So I’ve started the story of my maternal grandmother, know I’d like to introduce my paternal grandfather, Gilbert McClung Gillespie.  That’s him on the back row on the left.

The family of Wyatt Paul and Laura Cecile Donald Gillespie

I remember him well, visiting him and my grandmother “Judy” in Rabun Gap, Georgia.  He’d take me, my sister and two cousins to the local convenience store and give us two dollars or two minutes depending on his mood no doubt and let us fill a bag with candy.  🙂  I’m sure our parents did not love that.

I don’t have a birth certificate for him, or a marriage certificate.  It’s funny, those we know the best we don’t document at all.  I guess those need to go on the to-do list.

When 1940 came out on April 2nd, I got up early that morning and went to look for his family.  There were three enumeration districts to choose from,  and I picked one.  I looked at the first page and there they were. What are the odds?  This is the first time he is living with my grandmother and my Aunt Madeline  is on it as well.  It’s not shown, of course, but my dad Gilbert, Jr. was born that September.

Gilbert Gillespie in the 1940 Census

He and Ann Irene “Judy” Feazell Gillespie are living on 10 Taylor Street, Lexington Virginia.  My grandmother reported the information, and it is beyond me why he was listed as George. George?  I never heard him called that and no one who might know is alive. He had 4 years of high school, I presume that he graduated.  My grandmother had 3 years.  It was always important to her that her granddaughters go to college; I bet it had to do with the fact that she didn’t even finish high school.    They were renting the house, for $15 a month.  I wonder how much he made as a Weaver in the Rug Factory.  Another thing to go look up.  I do notice that he was suppose to be a supplemental question, but that is X’ed out and it is marked on Line 38. 1

His parents Wyatt and Laura, they are in the front row of the picture, live at 108 Houston Street, Lexington, Virginia.

Wyatt, or Roy as he is listed here, I have no idea why, is living with his wife Laura and 3 daughters, Minnie, Eva, and Helen.  Wyatt is 75, and he dies a year later in 1941.  My great grandmother Laura lives until 1964.  My Great Aunt Minnie is working in a dry goods store and my Great Aunt Eva is a public school teacher.  She was very proud of being a teacher. 2

You can see that the two families lived right around the corner from each other.

523 Taylor Street and 108 Houston Street, Lexington, Virginia
523 Taylor Street (B) and 108 Houston Street (A), Lexington, Virginia. Map is from http://maps.google.com. The original house at 108 Houston Street was sold and moved; there is a doctor’s office there now.

My dad, his sisters Madeline and Martha and his brother Paul were all born in Stonewall Jackson Hospital.  Family legend is that the land that is build on used to be owned by the family.  My dad and his sister Madeline, Wyatt and Laura and various other ancestors of mine are buried in Stonewall Jackson Memorial Cemetery.

To say the least, I have only begun to uncover the story of this family.

Footnotes
1. 1940 U.S. census, Rockbridge County, Virginia, population schedule, Lexington, p. 100 (stamped), enumeration district(ED) 82-8, sheet 1A, family 10, George M Gillespie; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 8 June 2012); citing NARA microfilm publication T627.
2. 1940 U.S. census, Rockbridge County, Virginia, population schedule, Lexington, p. 107,108 (stamped), enumeration district(ED) 82-8, sheet 3B , 4A, family 72, Roy Gillespie; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 8 June 2012); citing NARA microfilm publication T627.

Comments

One comment on “Right around the corner from home”
  1. Jana Last says:

    Great post. The 1940 Census is so full of fun and informative info about our ancestors! I love that. I’m looking forward to having the states where my ancestors lived fully searchable. I’ve already found my dad and his family living in California though. And I’ve already blogged about that fun find. Oh, and I love how you mapped out how these two families lived right around the corner from each other.

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