DNA, Maternal Kin, Virginia

DNA Definites, no. 21: Randolph.

I came back from vacation to find a nice new match at Ancestry.com. R.M. and I are double eighth cousins, as I am descended from two children of Isham and Jane Rogers RandolphThomas I. Randolph (1722-1788), who married Jane Cary (1751-1774), and Susannah Randolph, who married Carter Henry Harrison (1736-1793). (Thomas Randolph, Susannah Randolph Harrison, and Bettie Randolph Railey’s sister Jane Randolph married Peter Jefferson and gave birth to Thomas Jefferson.)

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Ancestry estimates our relationship as 5th-8th cousins and rates the match as “Good,” meaning that we share 6-12 cM. (Which is quite high for 8th cousins, but is attributable to (1) our double lineage and (2) luck.) That’s lower than I’d ordinarily pursue, but I’ll take it.

Births Deaths Marriages, Maternal Kin, Oral History, Virginia

Kin to Thomas Jefferson.

My mother told me this long ago, and today she repeated it: “I don’t know where this came from, but they always used to say that Papa was kin to Thomas Jefferson.”

Thomas Jefferson’s mother was Jane Randolph Jefferson. Jane had a sister, Susannah Randolph, who married Carter Henry Harrison. Carter and Susannah had a son named Randolph Harrison, who had a son, Thomas Randolph Harrison; who had a son, William Mortimer Harrison; who had a son, Edward Cunningham Harrison.

“Papa” was John C. Allen Jr.  Papa was Edward C. Harrison’s son.  And so, as Thomas Jefferson’s first cousin five times removed, Papa was kin indeed.

I’ve always wondered if John Allen knew who his birth father was. This bit of family lore suggests that he did.

Births Deaths Marriages, Migration, North Carolina, Paternal Kin, Photographs

Funeral Program Friday: Fannie Aldridge Randolph.

FP Fannie Randolph Phila PA 1_Page_1

FP Fannie Randolph Phila PA 1_Page_2

For reasons that aren’t clear to me, the Aldridges that my grandmother was closest to in her adult life were two of her father’s first cousins, daughters of  Matthew W. Aldridge, Fannie Aldridge Randolph and Mamie Aldridge Abrams Rochelle. They grew up in Goldsboro, not Dudley, and both migrated North before 1930, so I am guessing that she met them after she moved to Philadelphia in 1958.

I wish I’d probed these relationships more. Mother Dear and Cousin Fannie lived a short bus ride apart in West Philadelphia and saw each often enough that I recall visiting her house on Filbert Street and seeing her at my grandmother’s on Wyalusing during our short summer stays. I never met Cousin Mamie, but know that my grandmother visited her in Union, South Carolina, and took at least one sightseeing trip (“excursion,” as she called them) with her.

Fannie B. Aldridge left Goldsboro for Philadelphia shortly after the 1910 census was recorded. In 1913, she married Virginia-born Elisha Randolph (1875-1940) and, by 1917, when he registered for the draft, had settled into the rowhouse in the 5800 block of Filbert Street in which she would remain the rest of her life.

Here is a bad partial copy of a photograph of Matthew Aldridge’s daughters. Fannie is at right, standing behind one of her nieces.  The boy in the middle, I believe, was Elijah Randolph, her only child. Her sisters Daisy Aldridge Williams and Mamie are left and center.

Daisy Mamie Fannie Aldridge & children

And here’s Cousin Fannie as I vaguely remember her. This Polaroid dates from about 1973 and was taken in my grandmother’s kitchen. (That’s Mother Dear at right.)

Fannie Aldridge Randolph & Hattie Ricks