You’ve Broken Down a Brick Wall–Now What?

Hint: You’re Not Going to Disneyland!

Next in a multi-part series

As with a physical barrier, breaking through a genealogical “brick wall” may expose an entirely new landscape.  The new landscape must be explored, analyzed, and documented.  In other words, once the barrier is breached, the real work begins.  If one realizes this fact early, the new territory can be tackled in an organized fashion.  On the other hand, if one is not prepared for this, it may seem like a dike has been cracked and one will be overwhelmed at the tasks!

In the case we’ve been considering, I found that I have  several hundred new potential documented ancestors and collateral relatives that I need to vet for possible addition to my files.  I also have a number of new researcher contacts with whom I may exchange information.  A brick wall is a barrier on two sides!

I’ve got some new locations to explore as well.   And I’ve been introduced to some new aspects of history, too.

Every advance leads to another challenge.  But each advance also supplies the tools for the next challenge.

My advance was in discovering George Guion as the father of my great-grandfather, Richard Gines.  Some of the information that I see across the divide includes the following:

  • A very well-known Louisiana family was headed by one George Seth Guion (1806-1861).   He was a native of Natchez, Mississippi, and a descendant of the French Huguenot founders of New Rochelle, New York.   A prominent sugar planter, he had about 90 slaves in 1860 at Bayou Lafourche, near Thibadoux, Louisiana.
  • George Seth Guion was a lawyer, and later, a judge.  He was the son of a judge.  One of his sons went on to become governor of Mississippi, and another became a U.S. Senator.
  • The Guions were part of the Adams County, Miss.-Eastern Louisiana planter community.
  • The Guion family included males named George, Isaac, and Elijah, which names later turn up among the Gines/Guion families.

So was there a connection between the slave-owner Guions and the black Guion/Gines family?  Questions like this come up once a barrier breached.  Fortunately, I’ve now been exposed to much new (to me) research in Southern libraries and elsewhere that will help answer that specific question.


One Response to “You’ve Broken Down a Brick Wall–Now What?”

August 2009
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