Friday, 26 April 2013

Map 4 - W VA

Here is Map 4 complete.
This map is a section of West Virginia in America. I have ignored North- South direction altogether on this one. If you want to skip the story and go to the making, just scroll down to the ******!

The year I turned 21, I came to England in the summer. On my return, I went to live with my grandparents in Belington, West Virginia. While there helping them out, I also had a job helping in the Primary grades in a private Christian school in Elkins.

The rest of the story of this map is about family history.

In the past few years I have been doing some research of ancestors. I have actually found it easier to discover info on my dad's people because they are from the same area in West Virginia, and West Virginia gives a bit more open access to records online.

Another reason is that one of my 2nd cousins (or something) has researched my grandmother's side - her grandfather was my grandmother's brother, and much of her research is found online. We also had a 'great' uncle who was a local historian and who had a column in several local papers. Some of his stories come up when you do a search, so there is information available beyond when West Virginia became a state. (They split from Virginia over the slavery issue, choosing to be a Free State.)
In fact, I have been able to go right back to when members of both my dad's father's people and my dad's mother's people were part of the same group who came together from the 'crowded' part of Virginia to settle the areas around Elkins. (Or as one record put it, "they needed elbow room after the Revolutionary War was over". And as each of them had around 10 children at least, it didn't take long for them to fill out the steep sides of the mountains there!)

So, the map has notation of Flanagan Hill near to Blackwater Falls; Middle Mountain where others started; Dry Forks/Red Creek where Wyatts, Wolfords, Flanagans, Carrs, Smiths, Raines, and other families all were part of the same community; and Bowden where my dad was born.

I have also noted Droop Mountain, where Thomas R Williams, my dad's Great Grandfather, was wounded in the last major skirmish of the Civil War - and Beverly next to Elkins, where the wounded from that battle were brought. And from where at some point, he met Sarah Curtis, clerk in a shop, and stayed in West Virginia! Thomas Williams had left Alabama to go to Ohio and join up under the newly formed 2nd West Virginia Regiment. I can't be sure, but to me this would imply he, too, was anti-slavery and that his beliefs ultimately brought him to 'join the family'.


And so about the making.
I traced the roads onto freezer paper using a large marker. Then ironed onto fused green fabric that looks a bit like what can be seen from Google maps.

I wanted the roads to show through the green bits. So I cut out each section of the green fabric.

Then I trimmed the 'road' from it.

I positioned the pieces next to each other a bit like a jigsaw.

And when complete, it was fused in place to the yellow fabric. I used 'balance marks' to allow me to line up the pieces properly.

Then I stitched the roads. and round the edges of each shape, removing the paper one piece at a time.

After I sorted the border, I wrote the names of the places which are of importance in my family history. And stitched a small button to mark the position of the different places.

Along with the making of the map, I feel I have developed a way to work which I can translate to some of the other things I am working on, like the Cloud Puppy. I have a good idea how to stitch him now.

I am linking to Nina-Marie's Off the Wall Friday.

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