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Keeping current in wellness, in and out of the water

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William Ellison Taylor, Great-Grandfather

August 15, 2017 1 Comment

William and Lucinda

William and Lucinda

My maternal great-grandfather fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War. I have a copy of the military records and pension applications for my maternal  great-grandfather, William Ellison Taylor. He enlisted in the Civil War on April 26, 1861, Company C, 4th Regiment, Alabama Regiment of Volunteers, under the command of Captain N.H.R. Dawson. He was injured at the Battle of First Manassas, Virginia, on July 21, 1861. He was discharged October 22, 1861.  His great-grandfather, Jonathan Aaron Taylor, fought in the Revolutionary War in South Carolina. After the Civil war William and his wife’s family moved to East Texas and bought land. He became a preacher.

William Ellison Taylor

William Ellison Taylor

The following is from Gospel Preachers Who Blazed the Trail by C. R. Nichol, 1911.

William Ellyson Taylor was born in Alabama, November 22, 1839, and was reared in that state. His education was received in the common schools. When the war broke out between the states he enlisted in the 4th Alabama Regiment and went to Virginia. In the battle of Manassas. July 21, 1861, he was wounded, which made him a cripple for life.

Dec. 27. 1864, he was married to Lucinda Armer, who has been his faithful help-meet, and to the present shares his joys and sorrows. To this union six boys and two girl have been born.

November, 1869, he moved to Texas. In August, 1874, Dr. W. L. Harrison preached the first sermon he ever heard. Afterward and and David Pennington became a Christian. In 1877 he began preaching and though he works on the farm, he has preached as he found opportunity. Entering the firgin field he has established congregations in Montgomery, San Jacinto and Walker counties and is now preaching monthly for congregations at Willis, Bethan and Ne Bethel, Montgomery County. When confined for nearly two years through sickness his brethren administer to his every need. All who know Bro. Taylor love him for his intrinsic worth and work in the Lord.

Gospel Preachers Who Blazed the Trail by C. R. Nichol, 1911.

William Ellison Taylor (1839 – 1918)
great-grandfather
George Harvey Taylor (1884 – 1941)
son of William Ellison Taylor
Ruby Lee Taylor (1922 – 2008)
daughter of George Harvey Taylor
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Ruby Lee Taylor
Ruby Lee was named after Robert E Lee.  She changed the spelling to Lea later in her life. My father’s ancestors fought for the Union army and worked on the underground railroad.

Alexios I Emperor of the Byzantine Empire Comnenus

June 5, 2017 1 Comment

Alexios I

Alexios I

Alexios I Komnenos, or Comnenus (Greek: Αλέξιος Α’ Κομνηνός) (1048 – August 15, 1118), Byzantine emperor (1081–1118), was the son of John Comnenus and Anna Dalassena and the nephew of Isaac I Comnenus (emperor 1057–1059). The military, financial and territorial recovery of the Byzantine Empire began in his reign.
Life
Alexius’ father declined the throne on the abdication of Isaac, who was accordingly succeeded by four emperors of other families between 1059 and 1081. Under one of these emperors, Romanus IV Diogenes (1067–1071), he served with distinction against the Seljuk Turks. Under Michael VII Ducas Parapinaces (1071–1078) and Nicephorus III Botaneiates (1078–1081), he was also employed, along with his elder brother Isaac, against rebels in Asia Minor, Thrace and in Epirus.
Alexius’ mother wielded great influence during his reign, and he is described by his daughter, the historian Anna Comnena, as running next to the imperial chariot that she drove. In 1074, the rebel mercenaries in Asia Minor were successfully subdued, and, in 1078, he was appointed commander of the field army in the West by Nicephorus III. In this capacity, Alexius defeated the rebellions of two successive governors of Dyrrhachium, Nicephorus Bryennius (whose son or grandson later married Alexius’ daughter Anna) and Nicephorus Basilakes. Alexius was ordered to march against his brother-in-law Nicephorus Melissenus in Asia Minor but refused to fight his kinsman. This did not, however, lead to a demotion, as Alexius was needed to counter the expected Norman invasion led by Robert Guiscard near Dyrrhachium.
While the Byzantine troops were assembling for the expedition, Alexius was approached by the Ducas faction at court, who convinced him to join a conspiracy against Nicephorus III. Alexius was duly proclaimed emperor by his troops and marched on Constantinople. Bribing the western mercenaries guarding the city, the rebels entered Constantinople in triumph, meeting little resistance on April 1, 1081. Nicephorus III was forced to abdicate and retire to a monastery, and Patriarch Cosmas I crowned Alexius I emperor on April 4.
During this time, Alexius was rumored to be the lover of Empress Maria of Alania, the daughter of King Bagrat IV of Georgia, who had been successively married to Michael VII Ducas and his successor Nicephorus III Botaneiates, and was renowned for her beauty. Alexius arranged for Maria to stay on the palace grounds. It was also thought that Alexius may have been considering marrying the erstwhile empress. However, his mother consolidated the Ducas family connection by arranging the Emperor’s marriage to Irene Ducaena, granddaughter of the Caesar John Ducas, the uncle of Michael VII, who would not have supported Alexius otherwise. As a measure intended to keep the support of the Ducae, Alexius restored Constantine Ducas, the young son of Michael VII and Maria, as co-emperor and a little later betrothed him to his own first-born daughter Anna, who moved into the Mangana Palace with her fiancé and his mother.
However, this situation changed drastically when Alexius’ first son John II Comnenus was born in 1087: Anna’s engagement to Constantine was dissolved, and she was moved to the main Palace to live with her mother and grandmother. Alexius became estranged from Maria, who was stripped of her imperial title and retired to a monastery, and Constantine Ducas was deprived of his status as co-emperor. Nevertheless, he remained in good relations with the imperial family and succumbed to his weak constitution soon afterwards.
This coin was struck by Alexius during his war against Robert Guiscard.
Byzantine-Norman Wars
Alexius’ long reign of nearly thirty-seven years was full of struggle. At the very outset, he had to meet the formidable attack of the Normans (led by Robert Guiscard and his son Bohemund), who took Dyrrhachium and Corfu, and laid siege to Larissa in Thessaly (see Battle of Dyrrhachium). Alexius suffered several defeats before being able to strike back with success. He enhanced this by bribing the German king Henry IV with 360,000 gold pieces to attack the Normans in Italy, which forced the Normans to concentrate on their defenses at home in 1083–1084. He also secured the alliance of Henry, Count of Monte Sant’Angelo, who controlled the Gargano Peninsula and dated his charters by Alexius’ reign. Henry’s allegiance was to be the last example of Byzantine political control on peninsular Italy. The Norman danger ended for the time being with Robert Guiscard’s death in 1085, and the Byzantines recovered most of their losses.
Alexius had next to deal with disturbances in Thrace, where the heretical sects of the Bogomils and the Paulicians revolted and made common cause with the Pechenegs from beyond the Danube. Paulician soldiers in imperial service likewise deserted during Alexius’ battles with the Normans. As soon as the Norman threat had passed, Alexius set out to punish the rebels and deserters, confiscating their lands. This led to a further revolt near Philippopolis, and the commander of the field army in the west, Gregory Pakourianos, was defeated and killed in the ensuing battle. In 1087 the Pechenegs raided into Thrace and Alexius crossed into Moesia to retaliate but failed to take Dorostolon (Silistra). During his retreat, the emperor was surrounded and worn down by the Pechenegs, who forced him to sign a truce and pay protection money. In 1090 the Pechenegs invaded Thrace again, while the brother-in-law of the Sultan of Rum launched a fleet and attempted to arrange a joing siege of Constantinople with the Pechenegs. Alexius overcame this crisis by entering into an alliance with a horde of 40,000 Cumans, with whose help he crushed the Pechenegs at Levounion in Thrace on April 29, 1091.
The Byzantine Empire at the accession of Alexius I Comnenus, c. 1081
This put an end to the Pecheneg threat, but in 1094 the Cumans began to raid the imperial territories in the Balkans. Led by a pretender claiming to be Constantine Diogenes, a long-dead son of the Emperor Romanos IV, the Cumans crossed the mountains and raided into eastern Thrace until their leader was eliminated at Adrianople. With the Balkans more or less pacified, Alexius could now turn his attention to Asia Minor, which had been almost completely overrun by the Seljuk Turks.
Byzantine-Seljuk Wars
As early as 1090, Alexius had taken reconciliatory measures towards the Papacy, with the intention of seeking western support against the Seljuks. In 1095 his ambassadors appeared before Pope Urban II at the Council of Piacenza. The help which he wanted from the West was simply mercenary forces and not the immense hosts which arrived, to his consternation and embarrassment, after the pope preached the First Crusade at the Council of Clermont later that same year. Not quite ready to supply this number of people as they traversed his territories, the emperor saw his Balkan possessions subjected to further pillage at the hands of his own allies. Alexius dealt with the first disorganized group of crusaders, led by the preacher Peter the Hermit, by sending them on to Asia Minor, where they were massacred by the Turks in 1096.
The second and much more formidable host of crusaders gradually made its way to Constantinople, led in sections by Godfrey of Bouillon, Bohemund of Taranto, Raymond IV of Toulouse and other important members of the western nobility. Alexius used the opportunity of meeting the crusader leaders separately as they arrived and extracting from them oaths of homage and the promise to turn over conquered lands to the Byzantine Empire. Transferring each contingent into Asia, Alexius promised to supply them with provisions in return for their oaths of homage. The crusade was a notable success for Byzantium, as Alexius now recovered for the Byzantine Empire a number of important cities and islands. The crusader siege of Nicaea forced the city to surrender to the emperor in 1097, and the subsequent crusader victory at Dorylaion allowed the Byzantine forces to recover much of western Asia Minor. Here Byzantine rule was reestablished in Chios, Rhodes, Smyrna, Ephesus, Sardis, and Philadelphia in 1097–1099. This success is ascribed by his daughter Anna to his policy and diplomacy, but by the Latin historians of the crusade to his treachery and falseness. In 1099, a Byzantine fleet of 10 ships were sent to assist the Crusaders in capturing Laodicea and other coastal towns as far as Tripoli. The crusaders believed their oaths were made invalid when the Byzantine contingent under Tatikios failed to help them during the siege of Antioch; Bohemund, who had set himself up as Prince of Antioch, briefly went to war with Alexius in the Balkans, but was blockaded by the Byzantine forces and agreed to become Alexius’ vassal by the Treaty of Devol in 1108.
Personal life
During the last twenty years of his life Alexius lost much of his popularity. The years were marked by persecution of the followers of the Paulician and Bogomil heresies—one of his last acts was to publicly burn on the stake Basil, a Bogomil leader, with whom he had engaged in a theological dispute. In spite of the success of the crusade, Alexius also had to repel numerous attempts on his territory by the Seljuks in 1110–1117.
Alexius was for many years under the strong influence of an eminence grise, his mother Anna Dalassena, a wise and immensely able politician whom, in a uniquely irregular fashion, he had crowned as Augusta instead of the rightful claimant to the title, his wife Irene Ducaena. Dalassena was the effective administrator of the Empire during Alexius’ long absences in military campaigns: she was constantly at odds with her daughter-in-law and had assumed total responsibility for the upbringing and education of her granddaughter Anna Comnena.
Succession
Alexius’ last years were also troubled by anxieties over the succession. Although he had crowned his son John II Comnenus co-emperor at the age of five in 1092, John’s mother Irene Doukaina wished to alter the succession in favor of her daughter Anna and Anna’s husband, Nicephorus Bryennius. Bryennios had been made kaisar (Caesar) and received the newly-created title of panhypersebastos (“honoured above all”), and remained loyal to both Alexius and John. Nevertheless, the intrigues of Irene and Anna disturbed even Alexius’ dying hours.
Legacy
Alexius I had stabilized the Byzantine Empire and overcome a dangerous crisis, inaugurating a century of imperial prosperity and success. He had also profoundly altered the nature of the Byzantine government. By seeking close alliances with powerful noble families, Alexius put an end to the tradition of imperial exclusivity and coopted most of the nobility into his extended family and, through it, his government. This measure, which was intended to diminish opposition, was paralleled by the introduction of new courtly dignities, like that of panhypersebastos given to Nicephorus Bryennius, or that of sebastokrator given to the emperor’s brother Isaac Comnenus. Although this policy met with initial success, it gradually undermined the relative effectiveness of imperial bureaucracy by placing family connections over merit. Alexius’ policy of integration of the nobility bore the fruit of continuity: every Byzantine emperor who reigned after Alexius I Comnenus was related to him by either descent or marriage.
Family
By his marriage with Irene Ducaena, Alexius I had the following children:
Anna Komnene, who married the Caesar Nicephorus Bryennius.
Maria Komnene, who married (1) Gregory Gabras and (2) Nicephorus Euphorbenos Katakalon.
John II Komnenos, who succeeded as emperor.
Andronikos Comnenus, sebastokratōr.
Isaac Comnenus, sebastokratōr.
Eudocia Komnene, who married Michael Iasites.
Theodora Komnene, who married (1) Constantine Kourtikes and (2) Constantine Angelos. By him she was the grandmother of Emperors Isaac II Angelos and Alexios III Angelos.
Manuel Komnenos.
Zoe Komnene.

Alexios I Emperor of the Byzantine Empire Comnenus(1048 – 1118)
28th great-grandfather
Theodora Comnena (1096 – 1139)
daughter of Alexios I Emperor of the Byzantine Empire Comnenus
Andronikos Dukas Angelos (1122 – 1185)
son of Theodora Comnena
Alexios Emperor Byzantine Empire (1153 – 1204)
son of Andronikos Dukas Angelos
Empress Anna Komnene Angelina Nicaea (1176 – 1212)
daughter of Alexios Emperor Byzantine Empire
MARIA Laskarina (1206 – 1270)
daughter of Empress Anna Komnene Angelina Nicaea
King of Hungary Stephen V (1240 – 1277)
son of MARIA Laskarina
Marie DeHungary (1257 – 1323)
daughter of King of Hungary Stephen V
Marguerite Sicily Naples (1273 – 1299)
daughter of Marie DeHungary
Jeanne DeVALOIS (1294 – 1342)
daughter of Marguerite Sicily Naples
Philippa deHainault (1311 – 1369)
daughter of Jeanne DeVALOIS
John of Gaunt – Duke of Lancaster – Plantagenet (1340 – 1399)
son of Philippa deHainault
Elizabeth Plantagenet (1363 – 1425)
daughter of John of Gaunt – Duke of Lancaster – Plantagenet
John Holland (1395 – 1447)
son of Elizabeth Plantagenet
Henry Holland (1430 – 1475)
son of John Holland
Henry Holland (1485 – 1561)
son of Henry Holland
Henry Holland (1527 – 1561)
son of Henry Holland
John Holland (1556 – 1628)
son of Henry Holland
Gabriell Francis Holland (1596 – 1660)
son of John Holland
John Holland (1628 – 1710)
son of Gabriell Francis Holland
Mary Elizabeth Holland (1620 – 1681)
daughter of John Holland
Richard Dearden (1645 – 1747)
son of Mary Elizabeth Holland
George Dearden (1705 – 1749)
son of Richard Dearden
George Darden (1734 – 1807)
son of George Dearden
David Darden (1770 – 1820)
son of George Darden
Minerva Truly Darden (1806 – 1837)
daughter of David Darden
Sarah E Hughes (1829 – 1911)
daughter of Minerva Truly Darden
Lucinda Jane Armer (1847 – 1939)
daughter of Sarah E Hughes
George Harvey Taylor (1884 – 1941)
son of Lucinda Jane Armer
Ruby Lee Taylor (1922 – 2008)
daughter of George Harvey Taylor
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Ruby Lee Taylor
Council of the Crusaders

Council of the Crusaders

Elizabeth Cheney, 17th Great-Grandmother

May 5, 2017 2 Comments

St Augustine, Broxbourne, Herts

St Augustine, Broxbourne, Herts

Elizabeth Cheney (1420 – 1473)
17th great-grandmother
Elizabeth Tilney (1450 – 1497)
daughter of Elizabeth Cheney
Lord Thomas Howard (1473 – 1554)
son of Elizabeth Tilney
Lady Katherine Howard Duchess Bridgewater (1495 – 1554)
daughter of Lord Thomas Howard
William ApRhys (1522 – 1588)
son of Lady Katherine Howard Duchess Bridgewater
Henry Rice (1555 – 1621)
son of William ApRhys
Edmund Rice (1594 – 1663)
son of Henry Rice
Edward Rice (1622 – 1712)
son of Edmund Rice
Lydia Rice (1649 – 1723)
daughter of Edward Rice
Lydia Woods (1672 – 1738)
daughter of Lydia Rice
Lydia Eager (1696 – 1735)
daughter of Lydia Woods
Mary Thomas (1729 – 1801)
daughter of Lydia Eager
Joseph Morse III (1756 – 1835)
son of Mary Thomas
John Henry Morse (1775 – 1864)
son of Joseph Morse III
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of John Henry Morse
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

Elizabeth Cheney (April 1422 – 25 September 1473) was an English aristocrat, who, by dint of her two marriages, was the great-grandmother of Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour, and Catherine Howard, three of the wives of King Henry VIII of England, thus making her great-great-grandmother to King Edward VI, the son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, and Elizabeth I, the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. Her first husband was SirFrederick Tilney, and her second husband was Sir John Say, Speaker of the House of Commons. She produced a total of nine children from both marriages.
Born in Fen Ditton, Cambridgeshire in April 1422, she was the eldest child of Laurence or Lawrence Cheney or Cheyne, Esq. (c. 1396 – 1461), High Sheriff of Cambridgeshire and Elizabeth Cokayn or Cokayne[1] She had three younger sisters, Anne, wife of John Appleyard; Mary, wife of John Allington; Catherine, wife of Henry Barley, and one brother, Sir John Cheney who married Elizabeth Rempston, by whom he had issue. Sir John Cheney and his wife are ancestors of U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney. She had two half-brothers by her mother’s first marriage to Sir Philip Butler.

Her paternal grandparents were Sir William Cheney and Katherine Pabenham, and her maternal grandparents were Sir John Cockayne, Chief Baron of the Exchequer and Ida de Grey, the daughter of Reginald Grey, 2nd Baron Grey de Ruthyn and Eleanor Le Strange of Blackmere.[2]

Anne Boleyn, granddaughter of Elizabeth Tilney, eldest daughter of Elizabeth Cheney

On an unknown date, Elizabeth Cheney married her first husband Sir Frederick Tilney, of Ashwellthorpe, Norfolk, and Boston, Lincolnshire. He was the son of Sir Philip Tilney and Isabel Thorpe. They made their principal residence at Ashwellthorpe Manor. The couple had one daughter:

Elizabeth Tilney (before 1445 – 4 April 1497), married firstly in about 1466, Sir Humphrey Bourchier, by whom she had three children; and secondly on 30 April 1472, Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey, who later became the 2nd Duke of Norfolk, by whom she had nine children. These children included Thomas Howard, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, Elizabeth Howard, mother of Anne Boleyn, and Lord Edmund Howard, father of Catherine Howard.
Sir Frederick Tilney died in 1445, leaving their young daughter Elizabeth as heiress to his estates. Shortly before 1 December 1446, Elizabeth Cheney married secondly Sir John Say, of Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, Speaker of the House of Commons, and a member of the household of King Henry VI. He was a member of the embassy, led by William de la Pole, which was sent to France in 1444 to negotiate with King Charles VII for the marriage between King Henry and Margaret of Anjou.[3] Her father settled land worth fifty marks clear per annum upon the couple and their issue before Candlemas, 1453. They made their home at Broxbourne, Hertfordshire.

Sir John Say and Elizabeth had three sons and four daughters:

Sir William Say (1452- 1529), of Baas (in Broxbourne), Bedwell (in Essendon), Bennington, Little Berkhampstead, and Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire, Lawford, Essex, Market Overton, Rutland, etc., Burgess (M.P.) for Plympton, Knight of the Shire for Hertfordshire, Sheriff of Somerset and Dorset, 1478–9, Sheriff of Essex and Hertfordshire, 1482–3, Justice of the Peace for Hertfordshire, 1486–1506, and, in right of his 1st wife, of East Lydford, Radstock, Spaxton, Wellesleigh, and Wheathill, Somerset, and, in right of his 2nd wife, of Wormingford Hall (in Wormingford), Essex, Great Munden, Hertfordshire, etc. He married (1st) before 18 November 1472 (date of letters of attorney) Genevieve Hill, daughter/heiress of John Hill, of Spaxton, Somerset. She was still alive in 1478. He married (2nd) shortly after 18 April 1480 Elizabeth Fray, widow of Sir Thomas Waldegrave, by whom he had two daughters, Mary Say and Elizabeth Say.
Mary, the eldest daughter married Henry Bourchier, 1st Earl of Essex and 6th Baron Bourchier, by whom she had one daughter, Anne Bourchier, 7th Baroness Bourchier.

Thomas Say, of Liston Hall, Essex.
Leonard Say, clerk, Rector of Spaxton, Somerset. See Testamenta Eboracensia, 4 (Surtees Soc. 53) (1869): 86–88 (will of Leonard Say, clerk).
Anne Say (died 1478/1494), married Henry Wentworth, K.B., of Nettlestead, Suffolk, Goxhill, Lincolnshire, Parlington and Pontefract, Yorkshire, and of London, Esquire of the Household, Knight of the Body, Sheriff of Norfolk and Suffolk, 1481–82, Sheriff of Yorkshire, 1489–90, 1492, Knight of the Shire for Yorkshire, 1491–92, by whom she had issue, including Margery Wentworth, mother of Jane Seymour.
Mary Say, married Sir Philip Calthorpe, Knt., by whom she had issue.
Margaret Say, married Thomas Sampson, Esq.
Katherine Say, married Thomas Bassingbourne.

Fen Ditton from River Cam

Fen Ditton from River Cam

#WritePhoto Enigmatic Ending #NaPoWriMo

April 13, 2017 9 Comments

enigma

enigma

Druid stoners on equinox standing out in a field
Worshiped the earth and stars in mystic trances
A circle of magical intensity designed to conceal
The secrets of the forefathers who designed the dances
Bringing forth life, then harvesting it defined the seasons
Survival depended on the inherited wisdom and reason
The ancients passed down in ceremony, song, and fable
These figures stand to represent all of our history we know
Our ancestors who haunt this hill held ceremonies long ago

This enigmatic photo comes from Sue Vincent’s Echo, where each Thursday she holds a #writephoto party for anyone who wants to interpret the picture of the week.  It is also #NaPoWriMo all month in April.  You may find some mighty fine poets at the National Poetry Writing Month site. Enjoy following these hashtags all month and see where it leads you.

#WritePhoto Stone History #NaPoWriMo

April 6, 2017 6 Comments

stone arch

stone arch

When we find the arch of stones standing alone
In the ruins of a once grand castle of a once grand duke
We can feel the hours spent preening to make an entrance
Through the elegant opening that framed the costume
The servants scurried to please His Lordship and his guests
With musical serenades, crumpets, and a silver tea service
No expense nor effort was spared to create the illusion
Of grandeur and pomp, great excess and special privilege
Nothing remains of the era they thought would never end
This pile of stones can’t tell us now if history is foe or friend

#writephoto

#writephoto

Please join a talented group of writers who are inspired each week by Sue Vincent’s photo prompts.    Visit Sue’s Daily Echo to read, write, or comment on the posts. It is fun to read all the variation on the same photo inspiration.

#NaPoWriMo2017

#NaPoWriMo2017

April is National Poetry Writing Month.  Please bust a rhyme yourself, or enjoy reading some poetry at the #NaPoWriMo site here.  There are poets contributing for all over the globe, so this year this had been acknowledged by using the #GloPoWriMo hashtag.  Both can be followed on twitter or Facebook for more poetic material.

#GloPoWriMo

#GloPoWriMo

Say It In Latin, Fiat Justitia

February 22, 2017 4 Comments

The term fiat justitia (et ruat caelum) means let justice be done (though the heavens fall).  In other words, justice is the most important of all things to be done.  In our society justice has been left to wither and die.  Social injustice has overcome the masses and the inequity of income inequality is taken for granted.  The vast majority of the American population has little knowledge of finances or government.  They have no political will, so to speak, because the lack the education to discern right from wrong and lawful from criminal. They have been trampled by unjust and corrupt institutions that no longer have legitimate authority.  We are in a crisis of ignorance. This volatile time in history will certainly change the world. The question is, will we wake up in time to make a change for the better?

We have been hypnotized to believe that justice is no longer possible.  I like what this trippy Irish guy has to say about this.  We are our own judges, gentle readers.

Robert the Bruce, 21st Great-Grandfather

February 21, 2017 14 Comments

birthplace, Turnberry Castle

birthplace, Turnberry Castle

This is one of the ways I descend from the famous badass, Robert the Bruce:

Robert Bruce (1274 – 1329)
21st great-grandfather
Marjorie Bruce (1297 – 1316)
daughter of Robert Bruce
Robert II, King of Scotland, Stewart (1316 – 1390)
son of Marjorie Bruce
Robert Scotland Stewart (1337 – 1406)
son of Robert II, King of Scotland, Stewart
James I Scotland Stewart (1394 – 1434)
son of Robert Scotland Stewart
Joan Stewart (1428 – 1486)
daughter of James I Scotland Stewart
John Gordon (1450 – 1517)
son of Joan Stewart
Robert Lord Gordon (1475 – 1525)
son of John Gordon
Catherine Gordon (1497 – 1537)
daughter of Robert Lord Gordon
Lady Elizabeth Ashton (1524 – 1588)
daughter of Catherine Gordon
Capt Roger Dudley (1535 – 1585)
son of Lady Elizabeth Ashton
Gov Thomas Dudley (1576 – 1653)
son of Capt Roger Dudley
Anne Dudley (1612 – 1672)
daughter of Gov Thomas Dudley
John Bradstreet (1652 – 1718)
son of Anne Dudley
Mercy Bradstreet (1689 – 1725)
daughter of John Bradstreet
Caleb Hazen (1720 – 1777)
son of Mercy Bradstreet
Mercy Hazen (1747 – 1819)
daughter of Caleb Hazen
Martha Mead (1784 – 1860)
daughter of Mercy Hazen
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of Martha Mead
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

Robert The Bruce was born on 11 July 1274, probably in Turnberry Castle. He was descended from Scots, Gaelic and English nobility. His mother, Countess Marjorie of Carrick, was heir to a Gaelic earldom.

Robert’s grandfather, Robert Bruce ‘The Competitor’, was one of the claimants to the Scots throne. Bruce’s father, Robert de Brus of Annandale, fought in Wales for Edward I, was made governor of Carlisle Castle and fought on Edward’s side at the Battle of Dunbar in 1296. The Bruces refused to support John Balliol’s kingship and stayed close to Edward I. Balliol gave Bruce lands to the Comyns.

In 1298 Robert the Bruce became a guardian of Scotland alongside his great rival John ‘Red’ Comyn of Badenoch, and William Lamberton, Bishop of St Andrews. When Bruce and Comyn quarrelled Bruce resigned as guardian. In 1302 Bruce submitted to Edward I and returned ‘to the King’s peace’. Bruce married Elizabeth de Burgh.

Robert the Bruce’s father died in 1304. Bruce now had a viable claim to the throne. On 10 February 1306 Bruce met John Comyn of Badenoch at Greyfriars Kirk in Dumfries. A fight broke out, daggers were drawn and Bruce killed Red Comyn by the altar. The Pope excommunicated Bruce but Robert Wishart, Bishop of Glasgow, absolved him and made plans for Bruce to quickly take the throne. On 27 March 1306, Isobel of Fife, Countess of Buchan, crowned Bruce at Scone. His inauguration was small and hastily arranged but Robert Bruce was now King of Scots.

To Edward I the usurper King Robert was a rebel to be crushed. Edward’s reprisals were swift and brutal. Bruce was defeated at Methven. His wife, daughter and sisters were captured and imprisoned in England. Countess Isobel was locked in an iron cage at Berwick while Bruce’s brothers were hanged, drawn and beheaded. Bruce fled Edward’s wrath and spent a long winter hiding on the islands off the west coast and Ireland.

Bruce began a guerrilla war and struck at his enemies. His forces defeated Edward’s men at Glen Trool and Loudon Hill, then Edward I finally died in July 1307 – Bruce now faced Longshanks’ son, Edward II.

Bruce attacked his Scots enemies – destroying Comyn strongholds along the Great Glen and harrowing Buchan and the north east. His men cut a bloody swathe through Galloway and the south west.

One by one Scotland’s castles fell to Bruce and his supporters. Bruce had the castles ‘slighted’ – walls were torn down and defences were raised to the ground – the fortresses were made useless to an invading English army. As more castles fell more nobles pledged support to Bruce.

In 1314 Bruce watched Edward II’s army march toward Stirling Castle. Edward II had been given a year to relieve the besieged English force at Stirling or surrender the castle. Their forces met at the Battle of Bannockburn on 23 and 24 June 1314. Thousands died as the Scots defeated Edward’s army. The river was choked with the dead as Edward II fled the field and returned to England.

Bannockburn was not the end of Bruce’s struggle but it was a turning point. Captured English nobles were traded for his family and King Robert I gained international recognition. The Scots took the final English stronghold at Berwick in 1318 but Edward II still claimed overlordship of Scotland. Two years later the Scots sent a letter to the Pope – the Declaration of Arbroath – as part of an ongoing battle of words.

In 1327 Edward II was deposed by his Queen, Isabella. He was murdered in captivity. The English made peace with the Scots and renounced their claim of overlordship. The Black Rood, taken by Edward I, was returned to the Scots. It seemed that Bruce had finally won.

Robert the Bruce retired to Cardross near Dumbarton on the Firth of Clyde. He lived peacefully in a comfortable mansion house until his death on 7 June 1329. He asked that James Douglas take his heart on crusade. Bruce’s body was buried at Dunfermline Abbey, by his wife Elizabeth’s side, beneath an alabaster tomb. Bruce’s heart was finally buried at Melrose Abbey.

In the 1370s the Scots poet John Barbour wrote of Bruce, the hero-king, in ‘The Brus’.

Robert I, known as Robert the Bruce, was the king of the Scots who secured Scotland’s independence from England.

Here is another lineage:

Robert I “The Bruce” Bruce, King of Scotland (1274 – 1329)
21st great-grandfather
Margaret Bruce (1307 – 1346)
daughter of Robert I “The Bruce” Bruce, King of Scotland
John Glen (1349 – 1419)
son of Margaret Bruce
Isabel Glen (1380 – 1421)
daughter of John Glen
Isabel Ogilvie (1406 – 1484)
daughter of Isabel Glen
Elizabeth Kennedy (1434 – 1475)
daughter of Isabel Ogilvie
Isabella Vaus (1451 – 1510)
daughter of Elizabeth Kennedy
Marion Accarson (1478 – 1538)
daughter of Isabella Vaus
Catherine Gordon (1497 – 1537)
daughter of Marion Accarson
Lady Elizabeth Ashton (1524 – 1588)
daughter of Catherine Gordon
Capt Roger Dudley (1535 – 1585)
son of Lady Elizabeth Ashton
Gov Thomas Dudley (1576 – 1653)
son of Capt Roger Dudley
Anne Dudley (1612 – 1672)
daughter of Gov Thomas Dudley
John Bradstreet (1652 – 1718)
son of Anne Dudley
Mercy Bradstreet (1689 – 1725)
daughter of John Bradstreet
Caleb Hazen (1720 – 1777)
son of Mercy Bradstreet
Mercy Hazen (1747 – 1819)
daughter of Caleb Hazen
Martha Mead (1784 – 1860)
daughter of Mercy Hazen
Abner Morse (1808 – 1838)
son of Martha Mead
Daniel Rowland Morse (1838 – 1910)
son of Abner Morse
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
son of Daniel Rowland Morse
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
son of Jason A Morse
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
son of Ernest Abner Morse
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden Morse

Both connect with Anne Dudley, my famous poet ancestor. One went through the Gordons for many generations, and the other went though the Kennedy family.

Robert's grave

Robert’s grave

Robert was born on 11 July 1274 into an aristocratic Scottish family. Through his father he was distantly related to the Scottish royal family. His mother had Gaelic antecedents. Bruce’s grandfather was one of the claimants to the Scottish throne during a succession dispute in 1290 – 1292. The English king, Edward I, was asked to arbitrate and chose John Balliol to be king. Both Bruce and his father refused to back Balliol and supported Edward I’s invasion of Scotland in 1296 to force Balliol to abdicate. Edward then ruled Scotland as a province of England.

Bruce then supported William Wallace’s uprising against the English. After Wallace was defeated, Bruce’s lands were not confiscated and in 1298, Bruce became a guardian of Scotland, with John Comyn, Balliol’s nephew and Bruce’s greatest rival for the Scottish throne In 1306, Bruce quarrelled with Comyn and stabbed him in a church in Dumfries. He was outlawed by Edward and excommunicated by the pope. Bruce now proclaimed his right to the throne and on 27 March was crowned king at Scone. The following year, Bruce was deposed by Edward’s army and forced to flee. His wife and daughters were imprisoned and three of his brothers executed. Robert spent the winter on the island off the coast of Antrim (Northern Ireland).

Returning to Scotland, Robert waged a highly successful guerrilla war against the English. At the Battle of Bannockburn in June 1314, he defeated a much larger English army under Edward II, confirming the re-establishment of an independent Scottish monarchy. Two years later, his brother Edward Bruce was inaugurated as high king of Ireland but was killed in battle in 1318. Even after Bannockburn and the Scottish capture of Berwick in 1318, Edward II refused to give up his claim to the overlordship of Scotland. In 1320, the Scottish earls, barons and the ‘community of the realm’ sent a letter to Pope John XXII declaring that Robert was their rightful monarch. This was the ‘Declaration of Arbroath’ and it asserted the antiquity of the Scottish people and their monarchy.

Four years later, Robert received papal recognition as king of an independent Scotland. The Franco-Scottish alliance was renewed in the Treaty of Corbeil, by which the Scots were obliged to make war on England should hostilities break out between England and France. In 1327, the English deposed Edward II in favour of his son and peace was made with Scotland. This included a total renunciation of all English claims to superiority over Scotland. Robert died on 7 June 1329. He was buried at Dunfermline. He requested that his heart be taken to the Holy Land, but it only got as far as Spain. It was returned to Scotland and buried in Melrose Abbey.

Swiss Humor

February 3, 2017 4 Comments

Europe is having more fun at President Trump’s expense. After a spoof of Trump’s “America First” slogan from the Netherlands went viral, the Swiss comedy show Deville Late Night made the case for “Switzerland Second.” The bit begins by burning the Dutch—”they so flat, total disaster”—before taking aim at Trump on issues like women’s rights,…

via Switzerland Parodies President Trump’s ‘America First’ — TIME

Lawrence Washington, 11th Great-Grandfather

January 31, 2017 1 Comment

When Lawrence Washington and his twin brother Robert were born in 1568 in Sulgrave, Northamptonshire, England, their father, Robert, was 24, and their mother, Elizabeth, was 21. He married Lady Margaret Butler on August 3, 1588. Lady Margaret was heiress to a wool fortune.  Her father helped Lawrence prosper in the wool trade and become a prominent citizen.  He was mayor of Northhampton from 1532-1545, and acquired a manor house known as Sulgrave.   Lawrence and Margaret has 17 children, 8 sons and 9 daughters.  They married well and created an illustrious lineage, that includes George Washington, the first US president….and me. Lawrence died on December 13, 1616, at the age of 48.  He is buried at St Mary the Virgin with St John Churchyard, Great Brington, Daventry District, Northamptonshire, England  His plot: Grave is below a stone slab in the chancel of the church.

Lawrence Washington (1568 – 1616)
11th great-grandfather
Richard Washington (1592 – 1642)
son of Lawrence Washington
John Washington (1632 – 1677)
son of Richard Washington
Richard Washington (1660 – 1725)
son of John Washington
Elizabeth Washington (1689 – 1773)
daughter of Richard Washington
Elizabeth Lanier (1719 – 1795)
daughter of Elizabeth Washington
Martha Burch (1743 – 1803)
daughter of Elizabeth Lanier
David Darden (1770 – 1820)
son of Martha Burch
Minerva Truly Darden (1806 – 1837)
daughter of David Darden
Sarah E Hughes (1829 – 1911)
daughter of Minerva Truly Darden
Lucinda Jane Armer (1847 – 1939)
daughter of Sarah E Hughes
George Harvey Taylor (1884 – 1941)
son of Lucinda Jane Armer
Ruby Lee Taylor (1922 – 2008)
daughter of George Harvey Taylor
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Ruby Lee Taylor

Sulgrave Manor

Sulgrave Manor

#WritePhoto, Half Shining Armor

January 26, 2017 11 Comments

waiting

waiting

Beneath the staircase of the palace, lurking silently in the dark
The master’s old Tudor dynasty armor stands guard as if alive
Little has changed in the basement rooms since jousting was the sport
The aristocrat concerns himself with wealth and status in the court
Royal drifters follow in the entourage of holy soldiers and servant slaves
In service of some magic majesty that never showed up when expected
We thought time would both heal wounds and protect us from the ravages of injustice

The clock of destiny has not been kind to the greedy crusaders

Marking time with the shattered bones of their broken glory

There are no knights left to tell the end of this frightening story

Their legacy has been buried, lost all meaning of chivalry and grace

The names fade fast in history’s book, vanishing without a trace

Don’t trust armor from an ancient time to protect you from the storm

It may be impenetrable and conductive, but it is anything but warm

The photo prompt comes from Sue Vincent’s blog and is used as inspiration for writing short fiction and poetry.  Try your own hand if you like.  Please visit Sue, or use the hashtag #writephoto on twitter to find other interpretations of this image.  Thanks for visiting, gentle reader.

#writephoto

#writephoto

 

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