Don't try to view this in Internet Explorer or Opera -- Change to another browser.

2012 Greetings - Wilkins Family Reunion, June

from  Nancy & John Hultquist, Ellensburg, WA



A little repeat here from the main page (with added history); as mentioned, on the previous lead in page, Medvode is a town in Slovenia.  The Sava & Sora rivers join there, from which the town's name is derived.  The significance is that's where my grandmother, Alouisa Petash Wilkins, grew up within view of Mary's Mountain.  She always said she was from Austria and yet her paperwork says born April 3, 1886 in Potsdam, Germany.  According to a story written up by Susan Wilkins Sykes, Granny's mother died, and her father moved to Ljubljana, Austria. 

Apparently, she did not get along with her stepmother and moved in with her grandfather there. This region historically reflected changing country borders, changing from Austria, to Yugoslavia.  That explains why Granny always said she was from Austria.  I visited the area in 1965 while it was still Yugoslavia, and now the region has been subdivided further into Slovenia and Croatia.  While there I
documented some of the landscape Granny had described to me.  I was able to share photos with her when I returned.  Features such as Mary's Mountain, the two rivers, an old vertical hay mow with a roof, and a couple of farm pictures took her back in time.  I was on a Geography Field trip, and our bus drove south from Klagenfurt, Austria, to Kranj, through Ljubljana, to Medvode, Yugoslavia (then).  She had given me all the names of those cities to check out, so I stood in the front of the bus, down on the stairs, taking pictures all the way through the region.  We stopped in the rural areas for me to take photos, and I took pictures of the rivers, the karst topography, the agriculture, and some residential/farm structures.  Those are now buried in my files as slides, which I hope to locate some day, to transfer to digital images.

History of Granny's travels.  She left Europe when she was 16, to accompany a young girl, being adopted by a family in Ohio, arriving at the port of Philadelphia, PA in 1902.  Granny worked on the ocean liner for money, and the family picked them up, taking Granny home to live with them for two years.  She told my hubby John that she first worked in Ohio to pay back her uncle for covering her transport here.  She worked in northern Ohio bagging salt from mines in the area.  She was paid 5 cents/bag.  At some point she got enough money to move west.  Perhaps via San Francisco, she somehow got to Vancouver, BC (or Seattle)--stories vary, and was working in a boarding house for construction workers.  There she met our grandfather, John Benjamin Wilkins, a carpenter and builder from south Georgia, while he was boarding there.  A cute story, which I also remember Granny telling me, and Susan documents, is that our grandfather asked for another piece of pie and Granny retrieved it for him. We assume he was involved with rebuilding after a fire in Vancouver, B.C. in the early 1900s. 
We know they married in 1910 and moved to Seattle for him to work, possibly on construction associated with the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition, which was a world's fair type event held in Seattle in 1909, for publicizing the development of the Pacific Northwest.  We know our grandfather also worked on the Smith Tower, an early high-rise building in Seattle that still stands today (see description below). 

Granny, Louise (Alouisa) Petash Wilkins, in 1908, and Louise and John B. Wilkins in 1910, the year they married.
Thanks, Susan Wilkins Sykes, for taking them on your phone from family records and emailing to me.

 Granny-LouiseWilkins1908  Louise&JohnB.Wilkins1910yrMarried
Personally, I see strong resemblances to many of their children and grandchildren.

Their first 3 children were born in Seattle; my mom Frances was 3rd, after Alice and Jack (John L.).  They moved back to south GA to the old Wilkins farm outside Guyton, GA around 1915.  The farm is named Hickory Hill after the trees there (See more about that below in the family reunion write-up.)  While in Seattle, my grandfather built a house on the corner of SW44th Avenue and SW102nd Street.  It is still there, and what's more interesting is that when our Granny, Louise Wilkins was still alive, John and I had moved to Idaho, in 1974, and we invited her for a visit in 1976.  We flew her into Seattle and met her there, spent the night in a motel, and drove her all around town and to the neighborhood where we FOUND the house, and she identified it.  The way there was amazing.  We were driving in SW Seattle along the old route for a electric trolley she rode home from work as a domestic on Queen Anne Hill.  We got to the hill at the end of the line ("bus stop"), which is near the current Fauntleroy ferry terminal.  Note, it is really now the site of a cafe called Endolyne Joe's (after the end of the old trolley line, and the favorite conductor, Joe).  She looked at the area and hill, and said, "This is the end of the line, and I used to walk up that hill to get home."  We drove a block or so east until we found a road to go south up the hill and search for the house.  We found it.  Below is a picture of it with Granny in front (and me next to her in the other picture).

Granny Wilkins & Seattle House in
        the mid 1970s  Granny and Nancy
        (Brannen) Hultquist
Granny Wilkins in 1976 in front of the old Seattle home our grandfather built;  Granny and Nancy there, photographed by John.

44th Ave Front
                  looking S to Fauntleroy Terminal  1900s FauntleroyTrolleyBelowGranny'sHouse
1976 photo north (downhill) on 44th Ave from front of house, toward Fauntleroy bus stop; above a 1900s shot of old Fauntleroy Electric Trolley

                          FrontageTodayOn44th  Granny'sHouseFromGoogleEarth
An attempt from Google Earth to replicate the same picture on the left directly above taken in 1976, showing the new house on the right, on which, when Granny and John B. Wilkins owned the land, was part of a larger lot, subdivided after 1976, and a house now built next door (in view better on the right photo).  The hedge to the right is in front of the old house now; it used to extend around the property.  The right image above is the street view of the old lot, from the street 44th Ave. in the left photo above, looking north.  It was obtained from the street view option of Google Earth.  The picture of the house on the right looks east, and the house faces west.

Three of the pictures above were scanned from a color printout, Susan Wilkins Sykes, my cousin, made for me from a scrapbook her mom had of pictures I had apparently sent my mom.  I'm sure I sent copies to Granny, but we're not sure where those ended up.  Somewhere, I have the original slides, and I would have made prints from them to send back to GA.  We took another shot on the side of the house (below), and one down the street in front of the house toward the ferry terminal (above) on our 1976 trip with Granny.  Granny died in 1982 on Christmas day.

Back in 1976, I went to the door to see if I could find anyone home.  A little old lady came to the door, I explained who I was and pointed to my grandmother in the front yard, and asked if she would let my grandmother see the inside of the house she helped build.  She let us in, and the three of us enjoyed looking at the kitchen cabinets (and onion/potato bins; I'm sure Granny told us she kept flour in one) in the pantry, and it was neat hearing Granny talk about the door bell.  (See discussion about the door bell below.)

We saw the stained glass windows from the inside one on each side of the living room (front of house and side of house), but then we didn't take any photos inside the house with her.  I'm not even sure we had a flash attachment for that camera so we only have memories of the bins in the kitchen pantry.

Subsequently, Uncle Henry and Aunt Marise Wilkins (Susan's parents), visited Seattle and we met and drove them by the house.  I don't remember what year that was.  I do recall they took us to a fantastic dinner at the top of the Space Needle, and they were traveling with friends from their past, the Elkins.  Also, I am fairly sure there was a new house built north of Granny's old house then, because the new owners had subdivided the lot.  We didn't take any pictures that trip.  Lots of years went by and Susan and John Sykes decided this summer to look for the house when they were in Seattle on business.  I searched and found the house on Google Earth in 2012 (not sure when the street view photo above on the right above was taken).

I also obtained access to the King County Assessor's Records and found these old pictures from their files:

OldestInKingCountyAssessorFilesNoDate Floor Plan 2004 Garage Added

No date on left photo in Assessor's records, floor plan for first floor, garage added in 2004, old one was torn down and used as footprint.
 (Note the diamond-shaped window conforming to the main house design.).

The nicest thing was I was able to find from the records was the owners' names.  I located their address and phone number (different place in Seattle) and reached them by phone.  Their son (a contract carpenter) is living in the old house, and has done an excellent job of preservation.  When I asked if they were willing to meet Susan and John and take them through the house, they agreed.  The pictures below are a few of the ones they took while there this July, 2012.

Granny's House in 2012 NE Corner of house on the
        SW 44th&102nd Granny's
        House from 102nd Street
     Granny's old house in 2012 from SW 44th Avenue                   and                                          this view is  from  SW 102nd Street

old door bell  Stained Glass in
        Living Room  Other Stained Glass
        in shade
The electric door bell our grandfather installed; stained glass in upper parts of two different living room windows (one in sun; other shade)

pantry with cabinets Bins Built By Grandfather
        John Close-up Cabinet Above Bins
        & Counter
The pantry our grandfather John built, with the bins for flour or potatoes, and a small cabinet (probably for cooling) on counter on top of bins, near the window.  Susan says the owners told her it might have been used for cooling, because of an opening outside the cabinet wall; the door has a catch.

Entrance to Cellar  Workshop in Cellar
                             Outside entrance to cellar                          Cellar workshop probably used by granddad    

Wooden Built In Closet Bedroom  BathroomDoor  Clawfoot Bathtub
Built-in bedroom closet; bathroom door off bedroom (original glass knob); old claw foot bathtub.

Granny on 102nd Side in 1976  House 102nd side in
Granny beside the 102nd Street side of house in 1976; behind fence, the same side of house in 2012 taken by Susan Sykes.

Susan says:  "Changes have been made to the house.  They've added front stairs and a door leading into a small room (which may have been a baby's room) before entering into the living room with the stained glass windows (it's the largest of all the rooms).  There was one bedroom off the living room which had the big closet built into the wall and the bathroom enters from the bedroom.  The claw foot tub was original.  Next to the bedroom and off the living room was the kitchen.  The bins which were under the counter and, I thought large, were in a pantry off of the kitchen.  The doorbell was at the door entering into the kitchen from the backyard and the door leading to the basement was to the left of this.  There was a room in the basement that I felt may have been where Granny and Grand Dad Wilkins slept in the summer when upstairs got full of children."

DOOR BELL observations by John Hultquist, written January, 2013, about his recent findings and his memories of Granny's excitement at seeing and telling us in 1976 about the door bell.

When we took Granny to the house in West Seattle she directed us to various aspects about which Susan recently documented with photos.  One thing Granny very much wanted us to notice was the door bell.  So we did and never thought much more about it, until recently.  John was helping with photo copying Susan's pictures and making adjustments on a full desk top computer running side-by-side monitors.

One monitor showed the photos.  The other showed various reports John would read while there were pauses in Nancy’s directions or expressions of “can you do this or that” sort of thing.  An article by an economist was about past “game changing” activities.  Several “sparks” or things that got the industrial revolution started included the steam engine and the successful Edison light bulb.  The date for the first was given as 1776.  For the incandescent bulb the date is 1879.  The light was primitive, burning for 13 hours.

It struck John that if lights in houses did not exist prior to the 1880s, then electric door bells didn’t either.  The earliest patent was obtained in 1881, by a man from Indiana (Edwin Swan).  Musical chimes for door bells began about 1930 and not much is known (apparently) about the years before.  One might suppose that the idea proceeded slowly at first and then finally caught on.  The history is known as companies began to innovate and sell nationwide.

So, here is our idea.  Granny was immensely pleased to point out to Nancy and John that her new house had an electric door bell.  Why?  Because not many folks at that time had them.  She was a young mother from another country.  Her speech would let others know she was not a native.  She worked as a domestic helper in a fancy part of the City (Queen Anne's Hill).  Yet she had an electric doorbell.  John grew up in a house built about the same time, but in western Pennsylvania.  It still did not have a doorbell in 1980, and may yet not have one.  If you grew up in an old house with a doorbell, see if you can find out when it was built or the doorbell installed.

We think Granny had a right to be pleased with that doorbell.  And she remembered that feeling many years later.  Would you not also?

John B. Wilkins wouldn't have had electricity in the Guyton house until much later.  Nancy remembers going there as a kid and seeing gas lights.

Granny'sHouseCloserTo1910 Msg from Frances Wilkins
        Brannen Clark
Finally, left photo above is thought to be taken ~1910 or 1915, found in scrapbook with note in my mom's handwriting.

Smith Tower in Seattle  (on which our grandfather worked)

Smith Tower and Flatiron Bldg  Smith Tower Seattle in 1913 

In 1913 the Smith Tower was under construction.  On the left it is show with a flatiron building in the foreground.  It was
 completed in 1914 and was 500' tall, the highest structure in Seattle until 1962 when the 605' Space Needle was built.  It
remained the tallest building west of the Mississippi River for many years, and was the tallest building in
Seattle until a 609' skyscraper was built in 1969 on Fourth Avenue.   Below are some recent skyline shots:

Current Skyline Seattle Seattle Skyline Longer
Note the Smith Tower is on the far right in both photos.

I hope to add a few photos of the Smith Tower from Kerri McGinty's trip to Seattle to this site, but for now, see the craftsmanship inside--


2012 Wilkins Reunion, Guyton, GA

The Wilkins family reunion is held in the southeast "coastal plain" of Georgia every two years on the weekend after Father's Day.  This year was the first since the late 1990s that I was able to attend.  It was very important to me to make it there this year.  I was delighted to be able to stay with my Aunt Marise, my mom's youngest brother Henry's wife.  Sadly, Henry died in 2003.  His family has always been very special to my family and John, and in 1969, Henry "gave me away" at our wedding in Atlanta, GA, and their daughter Susan (now Sykes) was a bride's maid in the wedding.  For the first time in recent years, the 2012 reunion was held in Guyton, GA and not at Tybee Island, GA.

This year's location was at the Woodlawn Plantation, now in the family owned by Warren Ratchford, my second cousin.  I now have determined with help from a relative on my father's side of the family, who's into genealogy, the meaning of the various cousin designations.  As second cousins, Warren and I and Susan share great grandparents (Theodore and Alice Lee Wilkins), but we do not have the same grandparents (John B. and Louise Wilkins are ours; his are different).  Warren is the grandson of our grandfather's sister, our "great" aunt Nilla Belle Wilkins Ratchford.  Warren bought this place (more details below) and named it after his grandmother's first house on the outskirts of Guyton.  Aunt Marise drove me by there and I took a photograph but have since found out from Warren, it was not the correct house.  The one I took the picture of was Aunt Gertrude's.  I hope to get a copy of the correct one from Mary Ratchford Davis.  The first Wilkins family reunion was held there in 1933. 

Great Grandparents Theodore and Alice Lee
                          Wilkins Theodore Wilkins Tombstone Confeder
                    States Army Marker for Vets
Theodore and Alice Lee Wilkins;  Theodore was a Confederate soldier (CSA) - tombstone in Guyton Cemetery - Grave marker honoring vets.

My mom insisted we were kin to Robert E. Lee through our great grandmother (someone told me once he was my great grandmother's uncle's relative) -- my middle name is Lee and my mom said Aunt Katie was Catherine Lee Wilkins; however, the marker on her (I assume) grave says Katie Leola Wilkins.  I remember her as living up a long flight of stairs in Savannah, and she had a large lobster in a glass cabinet, and told stories of spending time on the Isle of Guernsey (British, Channel Islands).  I found out from Ham Arden that Katie worked as a secretary for the Rabeys (sp.), and went with them there. Another Lee family name is Martin Lee Wilkins.  Is wonder if Marise or Martin will know the origin, or the connection.

Robt E Lee from Effingham Museum
Portrait Robert E. Lee from Effingham Museum (I took 6/2012)


First Woodlawn (Nilla Belle Ratchford's), in Guyton was supposed to be on the left above, but Warren told me the house I photographed was not the correct one, but belonged to a sister.  Right is the "new"  Woodlawn Plantation; location of old CFA Camp Davis, Effingham County.                                               

  Woodlawn Trees Grounds & Center

Woodlawn Entrance - Grounds, complete with antiques, view from the gardens of the a/c Gazebo for activities. will give you a fuller description if you want to have your wedding there.

The current owner, as mentioned above, is Warren Ratchford.  Some photos are included below with Warren, his brother Joseph, and sister, Sue Nell.  Their dad is Neil Ratchford, also seen below in several pictures.  The rest of this report includes a few pictures of the Wilkins family present at this year's reunion.

The next Wilkins family reunion will be held in 2014 and is always on the weekend following Father's Day.

This year we had a two-day extravaganza, Saturday and Sunday, June 23 - 24, 2012

bean bag horse shoes Scuppernong Grapes
Saturday - horse shoe type game with bean bags to get into the slanting hole    -    played between rows of Scuppernong native grapes

Boiled Peanuts & Fan  cotton in effingham museum Crepe Myrtle w/ Spanish Moss
Other southern favorites:  Boiled peanuts and cotton balls. Effingham County is known for those crops (& timber).  Crepe myrtle tree with Spanish moss


  Louise & John B. Wilkins -- their children's offspring attending  2012

Alice Louise Wilkins Arden (no family attending this year)

Some memories I have of Alice's family.
First is the connection with my cousin, Hamie, her only child.  His full name is Hamilton Griner Arden, Jr.    He was always willing to entertain me when I visited; he shared his love of stamp collecting and gave me my first US stamp album that I still have.   I was quite young at the time.  His mom, Alice, was a principal in an elementary school for years, and she was my biggest supporter through all my education.  I went to the Wilkins reunion in 1996 from Idaho to visit with her and tell her how much she meant to me through the years.  I was able to visit with others there who are no longer with us, so it was a good choice to go that year.   It was the last year I'd been until 2012.  There are many, many of my relatives I had never met.  On my tour of Guyton, with Marise leading, I took the pictures of the old Arden house there, and my favorite big Live Oak tree near their house.  I learned from his beautiful red-haired wife, Celeta, that the house was something Hamie (called Ham now) always wanted to drive by when in Guyton.  Here are some memories for him.  They live in Florida and were unable to make the 2012 reunion. 

Arden house Guyton, GA  Live Oak at Arden House Guyton, GA
               Old Arden house in Guyton, GA                                      Arden house with beautiful Live Oak tree

Ham and Celeta Arden are son and daughter-in-law of Alice.  They have two children who have their own children.  Daughter Kelly Friedman wrote me and said they were sorry not to have been able to attend, but sent a photo of their family.  I'm putting it below, and have requested a family photo of her brother, Derek's family, and also of her parents. 
Kelly and Jonathan Friedman live in Atlanta, GA with 2 children, Amelia Arden Friedman (5) and Carter Reade Friedman (8).

Kelly,Jonathan,Carter &
                Amelia Friedman
Carter, Kelly, Jonathan & Amelia Friedman

  Jack (John L.) Wilkins family  (many there)

Check below in my memories of Guyton, GA for my memories of Sullivan's Island with Jack's family.

Mandy Hawver - Jack & Dean's granddaughter mandy-and dean Cindy
        Wilkins as a child
Jack's daughter, Cindy Wilkins' daughter, Mandy Hydrick Hawver w/son, Dean.  On right, my memory of Cindy, during summers on Sullivan's Island.
Around the table, Marion to Bobby sarah I
              think is Gal facing me?
Jack's son
, Marion, Rosalyn, Jack's grandchild Lauren (Wilkins)/Randy Beauchamp (w/twins), Bobby Wilkins & daughter, Sara

Lauren,Caroline(Twin), Randy Beauchamp Lauren&RandyBeauchamp's
        twins Sarah, Bobby Wilkins'
Mom Lauren, Caroline, and Dad, Randy              Twins: Caroline & Hunter
Bobby and Sara

black== Kerri Jo McGinty & her husband John
Marion Wilkins, Kerri Jo Wilkins McGinty & husband John, Tessa, Martin, Patrick Wilkins

Frances Mary Wilkins (Brannen) Clark family (only I am left)

John was unable to come with me because of tending all the animals and chores in Washington State; however, for history, I included below some with him (and Granny & my mom in it), for some of your memories.  I took pictures of old photos from Marise's scrapbooks while I was staying at her home during at the reunion.

Nancy playing Sunday morning Nancy with Trey, Martin and
        Barrie ^ Bobby Wilkins Marise, Susan, Nancy
Nancy Lee Brannen Hultquist playing Andrew's violin;    Sunday morning gospel music w/Tre', Martin, Barrie, Bobby;              Marise, Susan, Nancy

john & nancy 2011  Nancy & Mary I'll Fly Away Nancy & others Sunday
        AM Nancy John 2012
   John & Nancy 2011 - Nancy & Mary Ratchford Davis playing I'll Fly Away - Nancy and others back hymns - Nancy & John 2012

FrancesCalphreyGrannyAtWedding1969  NancyJohnFrances-1969
        wedding  Nancy Brittany Wisty
        Granny John
Mom, Frances Wilkins, stepdad, Calphrey Clark, Granny 1963--Nancy, John, mom, 1969 wedding Atlanta, GA--Nancy, Brittany Wisty, Granny, John (1970)

Lucille Wilkins Ard family (a few there) 

Anne Ard Redding Ann Ard Redding Lucille's
        daughter  Angie & Bruce
Anne Ard Redding (more below), and her children Angie & Bruce Parker

Edgar Leroy Wilkins family (no family attending)

Charles James Wilkins family (many there)

Little Charlie (Jr) Trey on Trumpet Jenny Wilkins Trey's Wife,
        Izzy's mom Izzy singing Jesus Loves
"Little Charlie" (Charles, Jr.)               Charlie III (Tre')                Jenny Wilkins, Tre's wife            Their daughter Izzy singing Jesus Loves Me

Uncle Charlie's son Charlie Jr. (Little Charlie), Tre', and there is a IV.   Maybe that's the blonde boy below ?

Little Charlie Izzy (Charlie's
        Granddaughter) w/ pig Who is the little boy ?
Charlie, Jr.         "Little" Charlie's granddaughter, Izzy  (with side kick we ate)              Is this Charlie, IV?
D'Ve, Tasha Stenzel (carmen & charlie's
            daughter) Chad Stenzel who are adult gals ?  
    D'Ve Wilkins, Tasha Wilkins Stenzel, and Charles IV ??   -    Chad Stenzel  - Sue Nell w/Hunter, Jenny & Tre', Izzy, Tasha's husband, Chad, Caroline

Tasha (Wilkins, sister to Tre') & Chad Stenzel have two children: Jackson & Julia  -- need to find pictures of their children to add here. 

Henry Joseph Wilkins family  (most family members were there)

Henry Wilkins Grave
        with Flowers/Flag for Reunion Henry's Honorary Military
Nice flowers and flag on Henry's gravestone, with his military distinction marker at the foot of the plot.                  

Marise with some Family D'Vee Mary Beth Harrison (Nilla great great?) Barrie
Marise's children and grandchildren in the parlor with piano Sunday a.m.                  D'Ve Wilkins, Mary Beth Harrison, Barrie Wilkins        

Marise, Susan, Bobby, and left Robert
        Ratchford musical group 2, mostly
        marise's Martin Wilkins on Trumpet
 Kenneth, Joseph Ratchford, Marise Wilkins, Susan Sykes, Bobby Wilkins;    musical group. Barrie, saxophone     Minister & trumpeter Martin Wilkins

group church service martin 
Morning church service with Martin Wilkins opening with a prayer and sharing a message

Remy & Bean Bags  Team Henry  John Sykes and Susan
        Wilkins Sykes

Remy & Bean Bags                       "Team Henry" members (our team won)!                                      John and Susan Sykes   

Remy & Michael  Michael & Martin
Remy & his dad, Michael Wilkins                                        Michael and Martin Wilkins, brothers             

D'Ve Assisting Family Tree Research
        Database Lunch Barrie & D'Ve
                D'Ve Wilkins helping with family tree data base                                 At lunch Saturday with Barrie & D'Ve Wilkins

Susan & John Sykes / Marise
        Wilkins John B Wilkins Pipe
                                  Susan and John Sykes and Marise Wilkins                            From Marise's collection of family memorabilia - Grand-dad died in 1937

 Mary Wilkins Thompson family (a small part there)

Jimmy Thompson  mary thompson and
        nancy  TomJimmySteveJohnnyMaryThompson
       Jim Thompson - his mom Mary Frances Wilkins Thompson holding young Nancy Brannen Hultquist - old family photo-Tom,Jim,Steve,John,Mary

Jim 4  jimmy 3  Jim Thompson
Jimmy (James) was the only one of the three boys able to make it this year. 

My cousin John(nny) Thompson and his wife Betty are in Kazakhstan and were unable to attend, but at my request, sent me the following information on his family.  I hope others in all families will do the same.  I'm trying to get more information about our family in one place and in my mind as well.   I also have requested to be on a few Facebook accounts which I have found.  Mine is listed with a Rudolph Reindeer profile picture under Nancy B. Hultquist.  My identity with John's and my picture was stolen Dec of 2012 and it has been tough getting rid of it.  If you get on to "friend me" please realize it is the photo of Rudolph not the other.  The Fake account comes back every couple of weeks, regardless of my trying to get rid of it.  Whoever took it must be making money on the scams they send out in our name for UN donations, or others. 

Here are John's additions for his family, followed by James', and Stephen's:

John Robert Thompson (last child of Curtis C. Thompson, Jr. and Mary Frances Wilkins Thompson, last child of John and Louise Wilkins)
            Betty Elaine Melton Thompson -- wife of John
                            John Bradford "Brad" Thompson -- son of John and Betty
                                         Amanda Gayle Welch Thompson -- wife of Brad
                                                     Teya Haylee "Haylee" Thompson -- child of Brad and Amanda       Age 6 in 2012
                                                     Connor William Thompson
-- child of Brad and Amanda                 Age 2 in 2012
                             John Curtis "Curtis" Thompson -- son of John and Betty

James Michael Thompson (middle child of Curtis C. Thompson, Jr. and Mary Frances Wilkins Thompson, last child of John and Louise Wilkins)
            Janet Clair Persons
Thompson -- wife of James
                              Bethany Lynn Thompson Profaizer - daughter of James and Janet - b. July 25, 1983, married Steven Profaizer
                              David Curtis Thompson - son of James and Janet - b. December 5, 1984
                              John Matthew Thompson - son of James and Janet - b. November 21, 1993

Stephen Thompson (first child of Curtis C. Thompson, Jr. and Mary Frances Wilkins Thompson, last child of John and Louise Wilkins)
              Patricia (Patti) Aneta Orman Whitt Thompson - b. November, 1955, wife of Stephen
                              Diandrea Kelly Thompson - b. April 16, 1985, daughter of Stephen and Linda Carolyn Spann Thompson (Stephen's first wife)                                                  

                                                     Angel Kaitlyn Greer -- b. Feb. 26, 2004, daughter of Diandrea and Jonathon Alan Greer
Zoey Madison Greer -- b. Nov. 08, 2007, daughter of Diandrea and Jonathon Alan Greer                                                                                                                          Cayla Margaret Thompson - b. Oct. 29, 1987 (adopted by Stephen, 1989), his daughter with Peggy Lynn Dykes Hernandez Thompson (Stephen's 2nd wife).

Nancy's request:  Please, everyone, consider sending me the same type of info, but include actual birth dates (month, day, and year).

And, look below at my surprise in email from Jim Thompson of the 3 brothers.  

John, Stphen, Jim Thompson
John, Stephen & James Thompson, December 29, 2007, Tupelo, Mississippi at Goodlett Manor

Ratchfords - Nilla Belle Wilkins' Offspring
Neil Ratchford and sister, Mary Ratchford

Neil Ratchford and Mary Ratchford Davis, son & daughter of Nilla Belle Wilkins, John B. Wilkins' sister;  3 other siblings in family:  Robert, Kathryn, & Gertrude

Neil Ratchford  Mary Ratchford Davis, pianist
Neil Ratchford                                                                                                   Pianist Mary Ratchford Davis

Neil's children, grandchildren, and relatives

Warren Welcoming Us Scott Hinson-Kenneth
        Ratchford Sue Nell Telling history sue nell
  Warren Ratchford (Neil's son) - Kenneth Ratchford (Neil's brother Robert's son), Scott Hinson, married Sue Nell (above),Warren & Joseph's sister 
  warren and food Warren Anne Bruce kitchen
Warren at the buffet and earlier in the kitchen with Anne Redding and Bruce Parker

Mona & Joseph Ratchford ryan and john ratchford
Mona and Joseph Ratchford (Warren & Sue Nell's brother)          Their children, Ryan and John

warren in orange shirt Warren Contemplating  
                  Our Host Warren on Saturday     ---    Contemplative Warren on Sunday

cameras cameras everywhere
Camera, camera, who's got the camera 

Angie-Bruce-Tamara and WHO ELSE

Anne Ard Redding's Angie & Bruce Parker  -Izzy - Tamara Harrison - Ryan & John Ratchford (Joseph's)

 Mary Ratchford Davis' children, grandchildren, and relatives

Mary Beth Harrison-TamaraDavis H-Mary R.D. Mary R. Davis at
Mary Beth and Tamara Davis Harrison, and mom, Mary                        Mary Ratchford Davis 

                         Reunion Tee Shirts  Tee Shirt Choice
            - Tam, Angie, Patrick
                          Demo of the back of the tee shirts, by Mary      Tamara (responsible for tee shirts, thanks), with Angie & Patrick Wilkins

I got a nice brown one with white lettering, but am not wearing it in any of my pictures.  Maybe someone has a Saturday one ?


Roasted Pig Warren's Plate of pork, beans, slaw
Roasted pig at start                              Warren's plate of pork / beans / slaw

Skinned Pig Pig in Process
                   After skinning                                                            and once after much devoured

   Food - beans
               Bobby Wilkins taking a leftover pork rib                                         beans to accompany                                          

Food buffet more food Saturdaydessert table dessert-2
More food on the reunion tables              --             last, but not least, many more desserts than pictured here 


Saturday afternoon we went cemetery hopping, but not as far as the Catholic Cemetery in Savannah, where several family members are buried, including:  John Benjamin Wilkins, Louise Petash Wilkins, Louise Wilkins Ard, James Donald Ard, and baby Joseph Wilkins. 

Many of the older Wilkins are outside of Guyton in the Old Providence Cemetery:  John Wilkins (Big John, with straggly beard), Mary Catherine Gnann, John E. Wilkins,
Thaddeus M. Wilkins, and Charles S. Wilkins. 

Sunday, Marise took me to both cemeteries in Effingham County.  Remy took photos for me using my camera on Saturday, and I took more on Monday.  It was a good experience.  I honestly do not recall being in either place as a younger person.  I'm sure I was, but maybe not.

Back on the left are the Wilkins  Close-up Old Providence Cemetery Sign 
The Wilkins plot is back to the left of this photo; John Hultquist brightened the photo of the sign.  In one history book, it's named the
Providence Baptist Cemetery.  I find that interesting, because I believe I was the only one in the family brought up Baptist.

Wilkins part of Providence  CharlesSWilkings1810-64
Marion and Martin Wilkins on Saturday June 23 visiting.  Warren had arranged to clean up the grounds.  It looked nice.


Old Wilkins Home at Hickory Hill, Guyton, GA (no date on photo) with an old map of the river running through the acreage.
who are people at old hickory hill house   Historic Map
        Ogeechee River on the property
      I NEED HELP:  Who are these people?  My mom Frances, Granny, who's in front, Mary or Louise? Donald & Lucille or Tom and Mary ?
This house was built 1926 and the old one torn down.  The first floor was poured concrete and the top floor was wooden. 
I have not been able to find out what year it got electricity, nor what year it burned to the ground (an electrical fire). 
The map is from a family history book.  It would have been of higher quality if I had scanned it.  As it was, the page was at an angle.  

Looking back further, through Marise's genealogical research, I captured this photo of John Wilkins (no middle name in the will materials she has and nothing on his tombstone either).  He is affectionately called "Big John" by family members.  He is the one responsible for buying the property known as Hickory Hill.  He married Mary Catherine Gnann (one of 11 children). 

"Big" John Wilkins bought the Hickory
          Hill property   AsliceLeeWithKatieCharlie&granddad John B.
           Great Great GF John Wilkins - 1808 - 1886      Great Grandmother Alice Lee Wilkins with Katie, Charles, and Granddad John B.
          Nilla Belle was born 8 years later.
Hickory Hill Front actually side yard.
Current Hickory Hill Home Marise and Henry built in 1970, moving in when he retired from Hunter AFB in Savannah; front and side

back swing tree back yard 2  
Back yard of the Hickory Hill house, with barn in the distance, new porch addition on the right


As well as visiting the Ards on Barnard St. (Savannah) across from the fire station, and Granny on 766 East Duffy Street,  I spent a lot of time on Sullivan's Island with Jack and Dean's family.  We used to ride bikes all over the island, go running on the rocks at the breakers behind Fort Moultrie, go Flounder fishing at the beach, surfboarding (pulled behind a boat) on the Intracoastal waterway, drive to Blackshear, GA to visit other family (probably on Dean's side), and we also water skied on a lake somewhere down there that had alligators.  True.

At some time (I don't have the chronology correct), I visited Aunt Nilla Belle in her large "rooming house" in Guyton, GA.  She fixed the best meals, and had a small church pump organ I got to play church hymns on.  Also she had chickens for me to pick up eggs daily.  I remember walking down to the corner drug store to buy a handful of peanut butter "bars", at two for a penny.  I would get there from Atlanta (or to Savannah) on the Nancy Hanks train (the old Central of GA [COG] railroad line).  Marise took me this summer to Guyton and around town to soothe my memories.  Below are a couple of photos I took in Guyton on my tour 2012 with Marise.  Not only did we go to both Guyton cemeteries, we also went through the Effingham County Museum.  We went to Springfield, all around "Hickory Hill" through the woods and the property, and by the old structure where she and Henry raised pigs.  John and I carried our canoe down to the Ogeechee River once back in 1970, carried it down through the woods, paddled upstream, and floated back down with the current.  We saw some river wildlife, including a water snake and a mink (or something similar); at that time the water was crystal clear.  Not so today; it is toxic from something released into the river.

Old Railroad Bed of Nancy Hanks
            Train & others Guyton Old Drug Store
       Old COG train tracks right-of-way and caboose; now a rails-to-trail location.  Old building where I walked to the drug store.

Old Rural Store - leftright of old store
Old General Store in Guyton

My favorite memory there is of bales of straw, pine straw (pine needles baled as hay)

This is foreign to anyone out West; the only thing pine needles are used for here are the southeastern ones because of their length and used in pine basket weaving.  As an only child in Atlanta, I was expected to remove the "pine straw" from the gutters on our house, from on the roof, not from a ladder, because we didn't have one long enough to reach the back side.

UPDATES to this page.  Please, if anyone in the family desires to add information, photos, make changes to names and relationships, or ask for more information about someone, then notify Nancy at one of the emails below.  This page was originally started to include in our 2012 annual greetings from John and me in WA state.  I'm perfectly willing to take my personal references out and redo the page for the whole family -- adding whatever you can help me with for the record.  I can continue to keep it out there for additions (or deletions).  More than ever, after compiling this, I realize there were a lot of questions I should have asked while my relatives were alive, or thank yous I should have shared.  Now we should add as much as possible to the record of our backgrounds, particularly for the interest in backgrounds of our remaining families.

Susan Sykes is also creating a data base with medical issues which might be of interest to people.  What ailments or illnesses did people have during their life and what was the cause of death?  Please share that with her or me. 

Again, if you have photos from the reunion this year that I missed, any historical or current ones, send them. 

This page was started by Nancy Brannen Hultquist - Dec 2012; the text is from the shared writing of John & Nancy Hultquist
(and Susan Wilkins Sykes, my cousin); photos likewise.  Comments to (the only account John reads)
or or
   Cedaridge is our "Brittany" kennel name.

Return to the main web page of our 2012 Greetings newsletter, with this link:    or backspace