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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

My Ballard Family History


Some of you (if you have read my blogs for the past 3 yrs.) know that I LOVE working on Family History. I've always had an interest in details---so when I started seaching for family information, I just became addicted to it. First I worked on my mother's mother's side of the family (the Bruce's). I had much more information on that family. Then (in 2006-07) I started doing genealogy on my mother's father's side of the family, the Ballards.
I worked and worked and worked ----and could only find enough information that took me back to my Great Great Great Grandfather John Ballard (1772-1850). I ran into a brick wall trying to go any further... WELL---guess what???? I met a new cousin who found me due to some blogs I had written about the Ballards. Cousin Sue lives in Illinois ----and she and I are First Cousins Once Removed!!!! Our Grandfathers are brothers ---and we share the same Great Grandfather (William Alexander Ballard).
Isn't blogging just wonderful???? I would never have met Sue --except through the internet and my blogging. And here's the good news. Sue (through her research) helped me solve my mystery and crash my brick wall!!!!! Because of Sue, I now can take my Ballard Family history back to our 8 Great Grandfather, Thomas Ballard, who was born in 1630 in England. Is that not the neatest thing?????? I have been so excited.
The Ballards settled in and around Yorktown and Williamsburg, VA. I am learning more and more every single day about this neat family and its history. Above is a picture I featured in another blog when talking about the Ballards. I wanted you to see this picture again since the picture is of the Ballard Brothers. My grandfather (James Franklin Ballard) is the first one on the left. Sue's grandfather (Bland Eugene Ballard) is the 3rd one from the left. Below are more pictures with Ballard connections.




This is Bruton Parish Episcopal Church in Williamsburg, VA. Our 8 Great Grandfather Thomas Ballard is buried there ---and there's a bronze tablet in the interior of the church with his name, and his name is on the name plate of a pew. Isn't that special? I was in W'burg in 2007---and I saw this church, but at the time I didn't know Thomas was my direct line relative. Now I need to go back!!!!




This was taken inside Bruton Parish Episcopal Church, an active parish since 1715. Note the high pulpit.




This bronze lectern was given in 1907 by Pres. Theodore Roosevelt.




Here is a close-up of part of this bronze lectern. The American eagle is on one side, and the British lion is on the other.




The inside of the church; the altar and communion rail are of black walnut.




I am standing in one of the ‘high box pews’--where President Thomas Jefferson sat. I didn't realize at the time that Thomas Ballard had a pew marked with his name... Darn!!!!




The pews--with doors--were designed to give warmth in the unheated church. My George is standing at George Washington's pew.




Here's one more picture of Bruton Parish Church. Today there are over 1400 members. Bruton Parish gets its name from an English parish on the River Brue in Somerset, England.




In Yorktown, we found a Ballard Street and this house, The Ballard House. This house belonged to my 6Great Grandfather, John Ballard. John was married to Elizabeth Bland, who was the daughter of Rev. William Bland. Captain John Ballard was a merchant in Yorktown and a Captain of the Militia.





This is the Ballard girl standing outside of her 6 Great Grandfather's home in Yorktown, VA. When I was there, I was only wondering if this could be a relative... And now---I know it is!!!!!! Do I feel special????? Yes-Sir-Ree- Bob!!!!
Sue, thanks so much for contacting me. I hope we will meet someday.. Right now though---here's to the Ballard cousins!!!!! Yeah Rah!
Hugs,