The Intimate Connections Between South Alabama and Northwest Florida

When I was growing up, I would occasionally hear the following observations: 1) Central and South Florida are suburbs of New York (and sometimes Cuba), and 2) the Florida panhandle is lower Alabama (L.A.). Usually, it was folks from the opposite area taking a pot shot at the other part. Folks in the panhandle, to … Continue reading The Intimate Connections Between South Alabama and Northwest Florida

Questions of Honor and Courage: Individual Decisions During the Civil War

Many of us with ancestors in the Florida panhandle know there was a Union regiment of Southern men that served during the Civil War at Ft. Barrancas. Many of us have ancestors who served with that regiment and we have family stories or reasons that they served that we hold to be true. But most … Continue reading Questions of Honor and Courage: Individual Decisions During the Civil War

Randal Fulford of Holmes County and his Experience in the 4th Florida Infantry

Randal Fulford of Holmes County was a young man when the Civil War started.  I believe he had been orphaned as a young boy and raised by his mother and stepfather.  He could read and write and did well on his farm and in raising children that were active participants in Holmes County.  His life … Continue reading Randal Fulford of Holmes County and his Experience in the 4th Florida Infantry

Researching Civil War Ancestors in the Northwest Florida Panhandle, Pt 2

In the last post we laid out a basic plan for getting to one man in one or more Confederate (and/or Union) military units.  Now comes the work to figure out what he likely experienced as the war progressed.  A word of caution: this set of two blogs is only a tiny part of understanding … Continue reading Researching Civil War Ancestors in the Northwest Florida Panhandle, Pt 2

Researching Civil War Ancestors in the Northwest Florida Panhandle, Pt 1

When I’m out talking about my book, The 1st Florida Cavalry Union Volunteers in the Civil War, I am often asked how someone should go about doing research on an ancestor that may have served in the Civil War. Sometimes that comes up because folks have conflicting or misinterpreted information they have found online (such … Continue reading Researching Civil War Ancestors in the Northwest Florida Panhandle, Pt 1

Approaching the Coming Crisis: 1840-1860 in the NW Florida community of Oak Grove

Our little side journey meeting some of my ancestors has for the moment ended. Let’s return to Oak Grove, Okaloosa Co, FL in the decades of the 1840s and 1850s. In the last post on Oak Grove we left the area with the 1840 census. I listed 51 households from the 1840 census that I … Continue reading Approaching the Coming Crisis: 1840-1860 in the NW Florida community of Oak Grove

Big Fish in a Small Northwest Florida Pond: William Franklin and Mary Ann Malissa Hart King

The Kings were latecomers to the Oak Grove area, arriving sometime between 1880 and 1885. It isn’t known what motivated them to move west from Walton County and settle in the small, rural community of Oak Grove. But they are there by the 1885 Florida census and William Franklin is teaching, running a general store … Continue reading Big Fish in a Small Northwest Florida Pond: William Franklin and Mary Ann Malissa Hart King