AfriGeneas Genealogy and History Forum
Documenting Family Members
I'm sorry this is so long and I don't mean to sound trivial when asking for help, but I would appreciate some advice.
I have put this off for the past 15 years or so because I'm not sure how to place family members on my family tree maker genealogy program.
My maternal grandmother (Willie Dee Duckett) was born to a woman named Penny Martin. I have information on Penny's parents--Henry Martin of Tennessee and Mattie Harpool of Arkansas.
Oral history claims Willie Dee's father was either, William Thomas of Arkansas or Harrison Duckett. The death certificate states William Thomas.
Willie Dee was raised by her maternal grand aunt Elizabeth Harpool-Duckett (and husband Harrison Duckett--mentioned above).
The Harpoole side of this family is very ambiguous. I have positive information from the 1900 and 1880 census Howard County, AR; sketchy information from the 1870 Arkansas census. Death certificates that are available provide some information that correlates with the oral history and the census records while yeilding new information.
Problem: all of the Harpoole women ( and one male that took a different surname) were reportedly sisters (and one brother) and raised by Rueben "Rube"or "Ben" Harpool born circa 1834 in AR and Mariah "Big Sis" Harpool born circa 1838 in AR. On the 1880 Howard County, AR census their were three children listed as adopted in their household--Eveline Harpoole; Mattie Harpoole--my line born circa 1868; and Tilmon Harpoole--later changed his surname to Mercer. Next door to Rueben and Mariah was Mollie Harpoole born circa 1852 and her three children Birdie Harpoole (married a Hopson) Elizabeth Harpoole (married Harrison Duckett); and Mariah Harpoole.
When trying to verify the oral history regarding Elizabeth Harpool-Duckett being the maternal grand aunt of my grandmother proved to be a challenge. Simply put, she and my great great grandmother Mattie Harpoole-Martin were supposed to have been sisters--however, there's not enough information to support the oral history. Also when I asked my mother and her siblings about this, they can only remember bits and pieces, because in their words "we didn't know to ask momma--Elizabeth Harpoole-Duckett, any questions about family history". My mom says that they referred to their grandmother as "momma" and they called their mother, Willie Dee--"mother". My grandmother always referred to her biological mother as Penny.
Any recommendations on filling in this portion of a family tree connecting Mattie Harpool-Martin and Elizabeth Harpool-Duckett are greatly appreciated.
*no other death certificates found at this time. By the way, the dna line for this Harpool family (mitochondria) is the Bamileke of Cameroon.