Some Excellently Named Ancestors / by Beth Winegarner

My great-great-grandfather, Zachary Taylor Jones (third from right) with his many, many,  many  children and a few other relatives, Roswell, Georgia.

My great-great-grandfather, Zachary Taylor Jones (third from right) with his many, many, many children and a few other relatives, Roswell, Georgia.

I have been spending a lot of time on Ancestry.com lately, trying to unravel a few family mysteries and, in some cases, seeing just how far I can follow the genetic threads backward into time. There's a funny, almost spooky feeling I get when I'm tracing ancestors into the 1600s, 1500s. I imagine what their lives were like -- living in one small patch of country for most of their lives, marrying young, having lots of kids, and winking out at an age where most of us are just getting started. 

Maybe it's because I'm a writer, but I am a sucker for an excellent name. And there are some excellently named people in my lineage. Such as:

Littleberry Gann
Lady Christian Barley
Barnabas Benton
Seaborn Bourn
Orpheus "Offie" Bradley
Dorcas Buss
Russell Reno Purcell
Thomas Marston "The Seagull" Green
Asbury Coke Jones
William Grover Cleveland Jones
Ursala Puddington
Comfort Puddington
Alpha Smith
Blanche Warburton
Eura Winegarner

If these people hadn't existed, I would want to invent them.