We Might as Well Die Here

We Might as Well Die Here

I feel like I've been on a roll with Civil War ancestors lately--sorry, not sorry. For the longest time, I had no connections to the Civil War, and my only knowledge of the years between 1861 and 1865 came from high school--and later, college--history textbooks. But then I started this blog--forcing me to comb through [...]

From Mother

From Mother

Betsy Maria (Penfield) Cook Last month, I shared a letter penned by Betsy Maria (Penfield) Cook to her son, Arthur, during the American Civil War; in it, she worries about Arthur's safety and laments the death of her son, Wesley, only a few months before. It's an emotional and touching letter (one of my favorite lines [...]

You Boys Have Been My Life’s Work

You Boys Have Been My Life’s Work

Betsy Maria Penfield, my 4th great-grandmother, was born on December 29, 1809 in Connecticut to William Penfield and Betsy Lydia Blish. Her father was a local preacher in the Methodist Episcopal Church--as well as a shoemaker by trade--and she joined the church herself at the age of 16 in Rome, New York. Betsy married Joseph [...]