Our special guest, Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow, had a breakthrough after attempting to find out more about her 4th great-grandfather Albert Goins. She knew about the FAN Principle from Elizabeth Shown Mills’s work. F.A.N. = Friends & Family, Associates and Neighbors.

From a census record, Tierra learned her ancestor Albert Goins was a free person of color living in Isaac Garrison’s household. Isaac was a slave holder and at the time owned Albert’s future wife Diana Dickerson.

So Isaac Garrison is in Albert Goins’s FAN club. Failing to find Albert in the 1860 US federal agricultural schedule index in digital format on Ancestry.com, Tierra did find Albert’s FAN club person, Isaac Garrison, listed in the index. When she turned to the original, as all genealogy researchers worth their salt will do, Tierra made an enlightening discovery.

Find out more by watching this episode of WACKY Wednesday.

In our scholarly genealogical journals, such as the National Genealogical Society’s Quarterly, we see the proof arguments or results of reasonably exhaustive research, where the author faithfully follows the GPS (Genealogical Proof Standard). After perhaps years of research, the author composes an article reflecting his current thinking based on evidence collected from a variety of documents.

Seldom do we see another genealogist’s years of research, analysis, and correlation of info items found among multiple, sometimes conflicting documents. Seldom do we witness the painful agony of disproved hypotheses, nor do we learn how frequently the researcher must regroup, and look at the problem from a different angle. We seldom observe another researcher finding unusual, ill-defined relationships in surviving documents and witness the variety of hypotheses that emerge.

Tonight’s webinar is just that opportunity.

We are struck by the conundrum where no single, currently discovered document directly states the relationship between Isaac Garrison the slave holder, and Albert Goins, a free person of color living under one roof. We consider the historical context of pre-Civil War attitude toward Blacks in Virginia. Tierra expresses several possibilities – her current thinking. It’s far too early in the research process to reach definitive conclusions until other record sets like wills and probate are thoroughly studied.

Was Albert previously a slave of perhaps an older Garrison slave holder whose will states he grants freedom to his slave for years of faithful service?

How is it that Albert Goins was able to amass the number of swine, and multiple bushels of feed corn and oats?

Tierra knows she has many additional record sets in this locale and adjoining communities to consider.

It will be interesting to follow Tierra’s progress as this ancestral mystery unfolds.



18:50:34 From Lisa Gorrell to All panelists : I can only stay until 6:45–Have a board meeting to attend, but wanted to see Tierra!
18:55:37 From Melissa Barker : Hello Everyone!
19:03:16 From Cousin Russ : ESM’s QuickLessons Study Group – Syllabus: Elizabeth Shown Mills, “QuickLesson 11: Identity Problems & the FAN Principle,” Evidence Explained: Historical Analysis, Citation & Source Usage (https://www.evidenceexplained.com/content/quicklesson-11-identity-problems-fan-principle : accessed 13 Feb 2019).

19:03:38 From Cousin Russ: “FAN + GPS + DNA: The Problem-Solver’s Great Trifecta” by Elizabeth Shown Mills, CG, CGL. This first aired at Legacy Family Tree Webinars in Oct 2017 and is now available in the members-only area at: https://familytreewebinars.com/download.php?webinar_id=501

19:03:59 From Cousin Russ: DearMYRTLE’S WACKY Wednesday FAN +GPS +DNA. Panelists reviewed “FAN + GPS + DNA: The Problem-Solver’s Great Trifecta” by Elizabeth Shown Mills, CG, CGL. This is recording of the panelists’ take on Elizabeth’s presentation. https://youtu.be/CdauYHpIh6A

19:04:00 From Dustin Austin : Love this webinar by Elizabeth!!
19:04:40 From Melissa Barker : Hello Dustin!
19:04:56 From Renate Sanders to All panelists : Good evening, everyone. Hey there, Tierra!
19:05:03 From Dustin Austin : Hello everyone
19:05:10 From Cousin Russ to All panelists : If you want to join the Panel, please raise your name
19:05:26 From Cousin Russ to All panelists : raise your hand. … sorry
19:05:45 From Renate Sanders : Try that, again… Good evening, everyone! Hey there, Tierra! 🙂
19:09:20 From Melissa Barker : Hello Renate!
19:09:53 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Hi Renate 🙂
19:10:15 From Renate Sanders : Hi, Melissa! 🙂
19:10:28 From Angela Choates Brown : I am so proud of my daughter Tierra Kellow ❤️
19:10:49 From nadine guilbault to All panelists : Hi Melissa and everyone.
19:10:56 From Cousin Russ to All panelists : Angela — Welcome
19:12:47 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Hi Mom 🙂
19:14:37 From Renate Sanders : Tierra are you using the records from Virginia Untold?
19:15:56 From Renate Sanders : There are lots of possibilities. He could be a paid house servant or driver, etc. He could be a relative or even a former slave who’d been freed. Lots more possibilities…

19:16:14 From Renate Sanders : Butler
19:16:24 From Cousin Russ : http://www.virginiamemory.com/collections/aan/
19:17:13 From Dave Robison  : Were manumission records kept in any court house or town hall?
19:17:15 From Renate Sanders : Ah… yes.
19:18:00 From Renate Sanders : Can we see the full record?
19:18:22 From Renate Sanders : Yes… after 21, I believe
19:18:42 From Renate Sanders : I think
19:21:10 From Renate Sanders : The register is supposed to state whether the person was emancipated or born free.
19:21:44 From Shelley Murphy : Evening folks!
19:21:55 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Hi Shelley
19:22:11 From Renate Sanders : Hey there, Shelley! Virginia expert in the house! 🙂
19:22:32 From Shelley Murphy : what does the note say?
19:23:21 From Renate Sanders : It’s okay… I didn’t realize it was an agricultural census. I must’ve missed that at the beginning when I was multi-multi-multi tasking lol
19:23:43 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : lol
19:27:46 From Shelley Murphy : Hey there Renate…just another VA researcher!! I see they are looking at the Agri census.
19:28:18 From Shelley Murphy : I count the columns to see which one it is.

19:28:28 From Cousin Russ : 1860 US Census Agricultural Form https://www.archives.gov/files/research/genealogy/charts-forms/1860-agricultural.pdf
19:29:28 From Shelley Murphy : and its in Dollars
19:29:47 From Shelley Murphy : cattle
19:30:17 From Shelley Murphy : swine
19:33:20 From Renate Sanders : Where were they missed?
19:33:50 From Renate Sanders : Oh… in the index?
19:33:53 From Lisa Gorrell : Were Albert and Wm in the pop schedule.
19:35:09 From Shelley Murphy : Some could of been skipped on purpose
19:38:56 From Lisa Gorrell : It’s the same form for the whole U.S. Some columns won’t be filled out in certain areas.
19:39:34 From Shelley Murphy : didn’t know about syrup in VA. Only know my Michigan syrup
19:40:46 From Lisa Gorrell : Have to run. It’s been fun!
19:41:02 From Shelley Murphy : look at all, no more 10 front and back, do all.
19:42:12 From Renate Sanders : Has Tierra already seen the Find a Grave listing? Am I allowed to post a link?
19:42:33 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : I have seen it
19:42:33 From Cousin Russ : please do
19:42:38 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : It’s extensive!
19:42:39 From Renate Sanders : https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/139034370/albert-goins
19:43:21 From Shelley Murphy : when you are researching Goins, you have to be aware that there are several spelling of the name and even seen as Gaines
19:43:40 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Gorris as well
19:44:04 From Shelley Murphy : good reason to research the whole county
19:44:06 From Dave Robison to All panelists : Hi Shelley…You’re right…look at the description at Find A Grave that Pat has up on the screen now!
19:44:31 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Dave – I believe that Albert Garrison was found under Albert Gorris in 1860 U.S.
19:44:37 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Sorry – Albert Goins
19:45:03 From Renate Sanders : This is from the FaG link I just posted. There is a pretty long write-up by the poster and it includes this: ” I suspect Albert Goins worked for the Garrisons in order to eventually set his wife, Dianah, and their children free. This was the custom of the day. And I believe this was the case with Albert Goins. There is, however, some controversy as to the real status of Dianah Dickerson Goins. Was she “free” or was she a “slave”? The short answer is: yes, she was a slave, but the public record before 1840 also suggests that Dianah Goins may have once been considered free by the Garrisons–for whatever reason. ”
19:45:28 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : She was found in different census records under free as well as enslaved
19:45:46 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Michael and I (the other poster) have had many long conversations about this 🙂
19:45:59 From Dave Robison to All panelists : That description at Find A Grave is revealing
19:46:00 From Renate Sanders : Oh… thanks for posting it Russ. 🙂
19:46:02 From Shelley Murphy : Grayson is a border county also, so please check to N Carolina as well, lots of Goins in that area.
19:46:40 From Renate Sanders : That’s it right there, Pat
19:46:40 From Shelley Murphy : That’s my line ….yes the free
19:46:42 From Renate Sanders : Heinegg
19:46:48 From Shelley Murphy : Paul Heinegg
19:46:53 From Renate Sanders : Yes
19:46:57 From Renate Sanders : That’s it
19:47:11 From Shelley Murphy : originally back in the 90’s
19:47:32 From Shelley Murphy : DAR awarded him last year
19:47:51 From Renate Sanders : It is one of the most valuable resources for researching free people of color
19:48:05 From Renate Sanders : There are some found errors, but it’s invaluable.
19:48:27 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : I agree… it’s great to have a direction to go in…

19:48:49 From Cousin Russ : http://www.freeafricanamericans.com
19:49:19 From Renate Sanders : Exactly.
19:49:20 From Shelley Murphy : agree Renate, it is the best out there, my line is in there….beginning with Mihil Gowen, 1635
19:49:32 From Shelley Murphy : Any errors please share, Paul would love them,
19:49:49 From Renate Sanders : He has them. They aren’t from me.
19:50:12 From Renate Sanders : He updates the site, often.
19:50:18 From Shelley Murphy : chasing my tail! lol
19:51:31 From Dave Robison to All panelists : I’m curious to know what Albert may have done between 1861-1865 if he was still living. Would he have served in the Confederacy as he was living in Virginia?
19:51:32 From Shelley Murphy : What was Albert’s occupation?
19:54:04 From Renate Sanders : Is Tierra getting any Garrison related DNA matches?
19:55:08 From Shelley Murphy : you need to start another book on the paternal side…lol.
19:56:15 From Shelley Murphy : Tierra, please hit me up so I can put you in the DNA study group, if you are not in, with Stacy Webb.
19:56:25 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Will do
19:57:26 From Renate Sanders : Aw, how sweet!
19:57:30 From Shelley Murphy : Hi Mom!!! cuz…
19:57:36 From Angela Choates Brown to All panelists : Hello Everyone……
19:58:16 From marva choates: hi Tierra grandmom is on line too
19:58:47 From Renate Sanders : Oh my gosh! 🙂 LOVE IT!
19:58:48 From Shelley Murphy : Grandma….hello
19:59:11 From Angela Choates Brown to All panelists : We’re a proud FAMILY ❤️
20:00:18 From Susan Bleimehl : Wonderful discussion!!!!
20:00:32 From Sincere King to All panelists : i love this discussion
20:01:00 From Pat Kuhn : Hi Susan
20:01:01 From Renate Sanders : Great segment! Goodnight everyone. 🙂
20:01:15 From Shelley Murphy : Thanks all….
20:01:21 From Tierra L. Cotton-Kellow to All panelists : Thank you all 🙂
20:01:26 From Susan Bleimehl : Hi Pat.
20:01:58 From marva choates to All panelists : great job!!❤️❤️

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