Sunday, May 17, 2009

green thumb descendant

Once upon a time, before I was born, but after my father was grown up, he drove my grandmother over to visit the graves of her great-great-grandparents. Around their graves grow boxwoods that came from the twig her great-great-grandmother carried across the mountains from Virginia. It was a hot August day, and my grandmother broke off a sprig and used it as a fan on the way home. Getting out of the car, she stuck it in the ground at knee level where the root cellar was. Without any more intention than that, it rooted. 
After my parents built their new house my father rooted some cuttings from that bush. From those he rooted many more that he gave away, two of which I took to North Carolina and planted in places I lived there, taking them back across the mountains. Now that we've sold that house, I've had one of the cuttings moved here. It was growing against the corner of the house there, and seems to be a little off balance here, but I hope it will straighten up when it's been in its new home more than four days. There isn't anything to show the scale, but it's about four feet tall.


  1. Holy catfish - your family has been in America a long time!!
    Where are your grandmothers' great-great-grandparents buried? Have you visited their graves?
    Genealogy is one of my passions. Unfortunately, I don't know where my grandmother's great-great-grandparents are buried. Well, I sorta kinda do, but I will probably never get to see their graves. They are in Ohio or Maine (and England on her father's side).....

    And that is so cool that you have a boxwood from the twig your grandmothers' great-great-grandmother brought across the mountains from Virginia.
    I loved this story!
    So cool.
    Okay, I'm going now.....

  2. What a great story! Live long and grow, boxwood!

  3. BL, we got out while the getting was good. Times of crisis: England via Amsterdam in the 1690s, England and Scotland in the 1750s and 1770s, and Ireland in the 1840s. Those were good times to be elsewhere. If I had to do the genealogy work myself, I wouldn't know all this, but it's been done before my time.
    The graves (I think I counted the greats right) are near the house they built when they arrived in Kentucky sometime around 1800. (One child with place of birth Virginia before 1800; several children with no place of birth listed; one child born in Kentucky 1810.) That house was owned by my grandmother's aunts when she was a child and was sent there to stay and learn her letters. When my father was a child the aunts still owned it and it was the family holiday gathering place. It's still owned by that branch of the family, not lived in, but we have family reunions there. It's about twenty miles from here, and about twenty miles from where my father grew up, a lengthy day-trip with horse and buggy.
    Daryl, I'll tell the bush your good wishes.

  4. Wow! It's great that you know so much of your history...just have bits and pieces myself. I believe my family also moved here to escape various disasters and crises.

  5. Love the story of the tree , and your grandparents! We just visited my grandparents and parents graves the other day. My grandfather made the cross that is on grandma's grave. It's really neat made out of cement, but, it started to crumble last year, so, we had it revamped. It's great that you know your history so many years back. Thanks for sharing! Lovely story!

  6. I know these things (in a completely disorganized way) because we're all story tellers, the whole family. My cousins and I always preferred to sit around listening to the grown-ups talk after family dinners, rather than going outside to play, because it was more interesting. If you here it often enough, it sticks.

  7. Wow, so much history and family connection in that little boxwood! A great "family tree".

    Unfortunately, I can never keep family history details straight. I can hear over and over again about previous generations, and I find it fascinating, but I'll have all the same questions a week later because it doesn't stick in my tiny little brain.