Wednesday, June 3, 2009

You Asked For More...

Thanks to the family tree website one of my uncles built, I have been able to pull a large number of family photos for my own records. I'm actually shocked that there are so many surviving photos and apparently a lot of other documentation as well.

I have a feeling that my great-grandfather was enamored of the finer things in life. He always rode fancy horses, fitted with fancy tack and was one of the first in our area to buy a car.
He certainly liked to have his portrait taken...
I think he looks quite dashing. But he was definitely a hard worker and very industrious. He was the one who put our ranch together and at one time it was nearly 10,000 acres. But as was common at the time, it was divided amongst his 11 children and then when my grandfather died, it was divided even more, so we are left with a mere 1,500 acres. But we did keep the homestead!

This is my great-GREAT grandfather, Jule(Juel)...
This is the only known surviving photo of John's father. It is said he immagrated here in the mid-1800's from France. He may have immigrated from France, but our family name is Scottish. Jule and Mary were living around Ft. Laramie when he left on a trip(horse trading or fur trading) and was never heard from again. No one ever really knew if he was killed by Indians, died on the prairie or simply just never came back???

Jule's wife, Mary Bear Vest...
Whose Indian name was, Comes In The Day Light. Interestingly enough, Mary's mother's name was also Mary Bear Vest and her father's name was simply Bear Vest. I guess he was never christined.

John's first wife, Amelia Bernard died at the age of 30(in child birth, I think). She and John had many children together, but only 2 survived to adulthood. In fact, the majority of the tombstones in our family cemetary are of John and Amelia's children. Rather sad really.

John then married Charlotte Giroux...
My father spoke of her in revered tones. Apparently she was a lady who commanded respect, but had a fondness for animals...particularly prairie wolves. I know that somewhere there is a picture of her with a pair of true prairie wolves that she raised from cubs. Of course, prairie wolves are extinct now. I'm not sure if they were a true subtype of the wolf family, but they did not look like timber wolves. They were longer-legged and did not have quite the same fur/colorings.

Her father was Louis Giroux...


And her mother, Emily Giroux...
I hope to find out more about these two, as I did not even know their names prior to finding them on the family tree.

Talk about changing times though. There is a picture of Emily and Charlotte, both are holding babies and both are quite pregnant. I just can't even imagine!

13 comments:

Paint Girl said...

These photos of yours are so amazing! There is nothing quite like family history! Thanks for sharing!

City girl turned Country Girl said...

Wow again!! That is very interesting about your great great grandfather...Such a dynamic family history!!

Leah Fry said...

I envy all the photos and history you have. Both sides of my family were non photo takers, and tended to stick to themselves. Nobody got along with anybody else, so there were never large family gatherings. Unfortunately, it's carried over into my generation. Everybody gets along well enough, but we're not what you could call close.

Laura said...

Very cool indeed! 10,000 acres? Wow. Is 1,500 acres an average size for a ranch these days? (I'm from the land of 100 acre farms, so I have no idea). Is it all pastures,etc. and can you ride out on it? (Sorry 'bout the questions, lol)

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

Leah-From my grandfather's generation this family has been at odds over this and that. Most of the differences came about over the split in heritage. Those that lived at white people had very little to do with those that chose to live on the reservation as Indians. It sounds a bit ridiculous by today's standards, but back then it was a very big deal. To this day, my part of the family has very little to do with the "native" part of the family. But you can be sure that if someone carries the last name-we are related-LOL.

Laura-1,500 acres is very small for this area. Basically a "hobby ranch". The ranch can support itself by us taking on cattle in the summer, but cannot support a family-which is why everyone works other jobs. There are ranches as big as 18,000 acres in this county, but the majority of the places are about 3,000 acres or so and then everyone leases Indian land for additional acreage. All the cropland here is dryland farming(no irrigation) and it just really depends on where your ranch is located as to whether you farm much or not.

Laura said...

Interesting - I'm fascinated with acreage and other numbers like that these days...

Stephanie said...

Hmmm...you're great great grandfather definitely has a European look to him. If you hadn't said Scottish - I would've thought French.

But I can see the Scot in his eyebrow set...(ignore me I'm retarded I sometime just think I see those things)...

What a cool story about the prairie wolves!

Melanie said...

These are really neat and informative posts. Thanks for sharing your families heritage with us. :)
Your father and grandfather were very handsome men, and how neat is it that your grandmother (?) was a prairie wolf advocate????

My biological father's family came over from Ireland, but my mother's family heritage is more mixed up. My great-grandmother was American Indian (removed from her tribe and raised in one of the infamous "orphanages")and I always say that is why I am so fair skinned (the Irish side) yet I turn dark brown in the sun (the American Indian side). LOL!!!

More to come????

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

Stephanie-It was always thought that Jule was french. But when I lived in AZ, a manager at the bank I worked at came up to me and commented on my last name being his middle name and that it was a good Scottish name. I was a little surprised at that. Then when my nephew was on tour overseas, he went to Scotland and found the family coat of arms. I have asked him and asked him to send me a copy-but he's young and doesn't really seem to get how much I would like to have that.

Melanie-LOL-you have a "mutt" background just like me-hehe. I am actually more German than anything. One of my brothers shows every inch of his German blood and can't tan for nothing-he goes from white to lobster red, then back to white.

Yes-I'll do more along the way. Heck, there's nearly 150 years of family history wrapped up in this area and that is just my dad's side of the family-LOL. My mom comes from some pretty interesting stock too. I got slammed with a double dose of the "horse addiction".

Callie said...

Gets more and more interesting. Keepit comin'! Love to read about it! And the photos are awesome!

Andrea said...

What great pictures!! I could not imagine being prego with all those layers on and holding a baby, and having to wear that hat!! LOL!! Crazy!! Those woman back then were tough.

Adventures of a Horse Crazed Mind said...

Just wanted to say again how much I enjoyed seeing your old family photos. They are SO neat! What a colored and unique family history you have! I am a totally nut about that stuff and actually was the only one in my family that really cared about such things...so it was me who collected all the old photos my Poppie had and forced him sit for hours a few months before he passed to go through each picture and tell me who each person was so that I could write their names on the backs. I knew that if I didnt get it done then their names would be lost forever. It is one of those things that often gets left until it is too late and so I was happy to see that another family history has not become lost as ours could have been. Today's generation doesnt seem to care as much about the old stories and I worry that they will be lost...

C-ingspots said...

Loved this post! It's so interesting learning about family history. Yours is quite well documented, which is a great thing. 1500 acres seems like a huge operation to me, but then again without irrigation, what can be grown? Is it mostly pastureland then? That much land in this part of the country would be worth a vast fortune. Our little 5 acre piece is valued around $450,000. I just can't even imagine, but then again maybe the mortgage slump will greatly affect the land values around here. They are out of control.
Keep bringing us the history stories, we love them!!