Well, now that I am back into digging around my family tree, I discovered that a family photo may not be who we always thought it was. There used to be two portraits hanging in the living room of my Grandpa & Grandma Vaughn's house.
I was always fascinated by these two old tintypes even though they were
dark and faded and the people looked a tad scary to me as a child.
The gentlemen's name was Lindsey J. Gray and the lady was his wife, Elizabeth Waller Gray. My grandmother noticed my fascination with those two portraits, and she knew how much I loved family history, so she told me that when I grew up, she would let me have them. Unfortunately, as things often happen when statements like that are made and deaths occur, things are given or taken by others that didn't know about the original promises. It is all good though, because I was finally able to get copies of those two portraits, which is the reason that I can post them above. As long as the originals are cherished, protected, and do not end up in an antique store somewhere, I am happy.
Facts about Lindsey & Elizabeth:
Lindsey J. Gray was born about 1835 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
He was the son of Jeremiah & Elizabeth Gray.
He was listed as a farmer in census records.
He married Elizabeth Waller on November 16, 1868.
Elizabeth was born about 1845 in Patrick County, Virginia.
She was the daughter of Edmund Waller & Mary Ann McKinney.
She is buried in the Dobyns Church Cemetery in Patrick County.
Lindsey and Elizabeth had seven children:
John W., Edmond, Jeremiah, Mary Elizabeth, George, Casey, and Alexander.
Their daughter, Mary Elizabeth (b. October 24, 1874), was my great grandmother. She died when I was four years old. I can remember her being at my grandparent's house, but I cannot remember too much about her, except that she was very nice to me. Mary Elizabeth was married to William Hardin Dollarhite on July 11, 1894.
Back to the mystery that I mentioned at the beginning of this post. The whole family has always referred to her as Elizabeth Waller. This past week, I really started digging through census records, birth, marriage, and death records. I CANNOT find an Elizabeth Waller. However, I CAN find Sallie Ann Waller. Sallie Ann is the same age as Elizabeth. She was married to Lindsey J. Gray. She died in the same year that Elizabeth supposedly did. She even had children by the same names! Because of all of that, I have to think that the lady in the above portrait is actually Sallie. (Walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, its probably a duck!) Oh, and I also found reference to a Sarah Ann married to Lindsay J. Gray that fits just like Sallie Ann does. Sallie is a common nickname for Sarah, so that is not really surprising.
So, did we just have the name completely wrong since an Elizabeth does not appear anywhere? Was her real name Sarah? Sallie? Elizabeth? Sarah Elizabeth? Elizabeth Sarah? Why did my grandparents say that her name was Elizabeth? There is some indication that this lady's MOTHER'S name was Elizabeth. Is that where the confusion comes in? This is still a mystery that I am working on. My cousin, Jeff is checking with some other relatives to see what they know.
To be continued . . .
Copyright 2012--All Rights Reserved--The Wheel & Distaff by Kimberly Burnette-Dean.