Sunday, February 26, 2017

Sentimental Sunday Maggie Mae Edwards and Cecil Brown Gill

This morning I was working on my family tree on Ancestry to make sure the data that was added to each family member was accurate and sourced. The John Houston Edwards family caught my attention. John Houston is a paternal grandfather; and my father’s biological father. He married Dollie Ophelia Lee, sister of Alice Lee, Daddy’s mother. Somehow, I overlooked adding Uncle Johnny and Aunt Dollie’s ten children to my family tree on Ancestry. So, this task took priority over the task at hand, which had lead me to logging in to Ancestry; and that was to look through the Ancestry DNA Circles.Those fascinating cousin Circles! 

I looked through the records for John Houston and Dollie and everything was in order; All available records that Ancestry offered for them was already added. Then, the next task was to add the ten children of John and Dollie starting with the oldest child Tillman Lee Edwards, Sr. All available records that Ancestry offered for Tillman, his wife Stella, and their known children were added to their family tree. The next child was Maggie Mae Edwards the oldest daughter. As I was working on her information and looking through records for her something caught my attention. This information was new to me and wasn’t a story shared by family members as I was growing up. What a sad thing for a family to have to experience! The loss of their children. 

As most of you know if you have researched for long, it is easy to get off the task at hand and get off on a "rabbit trail.” That is what happened this morning while working on the family tree on Ancestry. The rabbit trail took me through the records of the children of Aunt Maggie Mae Edwards and Uncle Cecil Brown Gill.  I recall Maggie coming to Louisiana to visit my family when I was a little girl growing up in West Carroll Parish. Maggie was tall “stocky” built, with a sturdy form,and a cheerful lady. She had brown hair and a pretty smile. She always seemed happy, as did her husband Cecil. Her husband Cecil was a nice looking older man and well dressed. They also drove a very nice car for the late 1949 and early 1950. Remember, I was a young girl of about ten or eleven years old. Little did I know that Aunt Maggie and Uncle Cecil had gone through plenty of heartbreaks before I was born. Now, I grieve for them thinking about it.

Their other son John David Gill was born 05 September 1929 and died the same day. Then, they had a third son, Cecil Brown Gill, Jr., his father's namesake, born 24 June 1924 and died 07 July 1929 in Harpersville, Shelby County, Alabama. What happened to the seven and five year old boys?  There are no older family members living to ask. I would love to know what were the circumstances of their deaths; however, the two boys deaths will remain a mystery

You can view a picture of Aunt Dollie Edwards and her daughters Maggie Mae, Odessa, and Reathey here.

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