Friday, November 21, 2008

Nuggets from the verticle files

I went to the Alexandria-Monroe Public Library on Wednesday during my lunch hour and did a quickie search for more family information. My main focus was to look for the 1901 atlas of Madison County, Indiana because I had seen some of its' color plat maps of the various townships.

I quickly found maps showing the locations of family farms in Monroe and Pipe Creek townships. Will have to return to this atlas for copies of the maps and co-ordinate that will research at the recorder's office. It was very interesting to see how different the towns such as Alexandria, Orestes, Frankton, etc. appeared in 1901 versus today. At that time, there was a boom due to the discovery of natural gas and many factories in the towns.

I also took a peek at the vertical files in the library - and they are a treasure trove of unpublished information. Buried among the photos and newspaper clippings were some handwritten and typewritten histories of the town of Alexandria and the people who built it. Fascinating stuff that I will have to come back to again to dig into.

One interesting item I found was a 1964-65 typewritten directory of the First Christian Church. In it I found my grandfather, William Wright, listed as an elder and my grandmother listed as a deaconess. Now I knew that my grandmother had been in the choir, etc., but I was under the impression that my grandfather was not active in the church. When I mentioned this to my mother, the paper brought up memories of the pastor at the time, and she stated that her dad did serve as an elder - it was a rotating position. She also mentioned that the whole family was baptized in 1960, right before her brother had gone off to college, and that my grandmother had moved her membership from a church in Elwood. Mom thought grandma's church in Elwood may have been a Baptist or a E.U.B. church, she wasn't sure. I knew that the Wright's had been involved in this church for awhile, but this was about the most insight my mother has ever mentioned about her faith experience. She quickly changed the subject to other things. Will have to explore this area of research another day.

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