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11 July 2019

Our Library Collections: Tennessee

King Mule (no relation) and his Queen,
Mule Day, Columbia, TN,1949 from
the Fodor's travel book.
One in a series by CGS member Chris Pattillo highlighting some of our holdings at the Library in Oakland. For a fuller listing of books, journals, and more, consult the CGS Library catalog in WorldCat.

Tennessee is another state packed with my ancestors so I am very happy to find that we not only have copies of Ansearchin’ News, the journal of the Memphis Genealogical Society, starting in 1957 right through the current issue – we even have an empty box labeled 2019-2021 waiting on the shelf. This is the first time I’ve seen an empty box ready to receive future publications. The most current edition is sixty-two pages and packed with well-written and illustrated articles.  

A couple of books caught my eye because they are somewhat unusual. The first is a Fodor’s travel book published in 2006. We don’t have many travel books in our collection but of course, they are very handy for providing maps and background information needed when researching on site. It includes a chapter on the history and culture of Tennessee and separate chapters that cover each of the areas within the state.

The other somewhat unusual book is Tennessee Divorces 1797–1858 by Gale W. Bamman and Debbie W. Spero. This seems like an odd topic to decide to devote an entire book to but for some I am confident you will find this to be a great reference.

One of the somewhat unusual books in our
Tennessee collection
I also found Bible Records and Marriage Bonds compiled by Jeannette Tillotson Acklen, President of the Nashville Chapter, Colonial Dames of America, published 1933. This book mentions my third and fourth great grandfathers in the wills of Isaac and Mary Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln’s grandparents. It also contains several Drakes in the index that I need to follow up on later.

I know I am biased but I really think our Tennessee collection has several exceptional and unusual books. For example, Nineteenth Century Tennessee Adoptions, Legitimations, and Name Changes by Alan N. Miller. This is not the sort of book that I’ve seen for many other states–I guess people from Tennessee are just exceptional.

We have Genealogical Abstracts from Tennessee Newspapers 1803-1812 by Sherida K. Eddlemon – a Heritage Books publication, 1989. The index lists several entries for Drake so I will have to come back to this book as well.
Fodor's travel guide for Tennessee has
lots of helpful information
Finally, we have History of Tennessee, Containing Historical and Biographical Sketches of Thirty East Tennessee Counties, published in 1887. This book focuses on the places where my Stover-Drake-Ward ancestors are from …. And I’ve never looked at it before. Keep in mind that I’ve traveled to Tennessee twice and have looked at practically every book I came across but I have never seen any of the books mentioned in this blog post. It just goes to show that our library is a tremendous resource. If you have any doubts about my claim you should come down and see for yourself.

Copyright © 2019 by California Genealogical Society

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