Category Archives: Missouri

Mondays for Me #57 ~ In the Garden

When we moved from the desert of Arizona to the lush, green State of Missouri, I was what could be called “gardening ignorant”. It was difficult to learn much about growing fruits or vegetables in the extreme heat of the Southwestern summers. I was 12 years old and I had never grown anything except cactus.

My parents bought a small house in Independence that had ½ an acre for the backyard. To me it was enormous! My Dad was so excited to plant a garden, and I was anxious to help. That first summer it was a “small” garden, at least by my Dad’s perspective. He and I dug up the ground and made the rows for the various vegetables that we were going to plant. We sowed carrot, cucumber, lettuce, radish, peas, corn, and green bean seeds. We made a trip to the nursery, and we came back with tomato plants and some blackberry bushes. I really had fun with the entire process.

Over the summer I helped to hoe the garden and tie up the tomato, peas, and green bean plants. I can still remember how excited I was when I saw the first little vegetable growing on the vine. I was a little confused when my Dad took me to the grocery store and told me we needed to find a bag of potatoes with lots of “eyes” on them. We had always avoided that type before. When we got home he showed me how to cut the “eyes” off and plant them in the ground, and he told me we were going to grow new potatoes. Yeah, right! We also had three large, well established peach trees standing side by side in the yard. I was fascinated with their bright pink blooms that smelled so good. Everything was coming to life with very minimal effort. In Arizona my Dad planted two peach trees and one apricot tree. During the summer they had to be watered every day and fertilized often. In the twelve years we lived there, we only got six peaches and one apricot from the trees.

June came and the backyard was full of things to eat. The first things to ripen were the peaches! Each tree was hanging low with fruit in different stages of ripeness. We picked so many for us, and I probably ate the majority of them. I just loved them. We soon had some of our relatives come over and pick as many as they wanted. Then my Aunt Margaret came and helped me pick enough to can. I had never done this before so it was a treat. Finally, my Dad put a notice in the newspaper for “free peaches”, and after several people came and picked what they wanted, we still had fruit on the trees!

We also had an abundance of other vegetables that could be canned. Again, my aunt came and taught me about each requirement for the various ones. We spent several days canning and talking. It was a very special time. It also felt good to have contributed to food stored up for the winter.

The potatoes where the last crop we dealt with. I was amazed at how many had grown from those little “eyes”. It was fun to dig in the dirt and not get yelled at! My Dad loaded the potatoes into the bed of the truck, and we drove them into Kansas City to my aunts home, and we stored them in her basement covered in lye. We all had potatoes for the next 9 months. This was a good experience for me. I learned a lot about how to plant and grow anything I wanted and I learned both patience and hard work.

When Autumn came and the temperature got colder, I missed the excitement of gardening. One day I was waling in the yard and I noticed a lot of hard round balls laying under a very tall tree on the south side of our house. I really never paid attention to it, it was only a tree! I picked one up and brought it to my Dad. He told me the tree was a black walnut tree. He and I then went outside and picked up a few of the balls, and we used a knife to open the outer casing of the nut. Once that was done, we had a walnut in a shell like I had seen in the grocery stores. To be honest, I didn’t like the process. It seemed like too much trouble, especially since walnuts were not my favorite nut at the time. My Dad did enjoy sitting in his chair and coaxing the nut to come out!

The next year we did the same, only this time the blackberry bushes gave us an abundance of fruit. Because of this, and the above mentioned peaches, these two became my two favorite fruits.

When we had to sell our home and move to California I felt so bad for my Dad. He seemed to thrive in this environment and I knew he would miss it. When we left Missouri, we were able to leave a lot of the produce with our relatives. This two and a half years were some of the best of my childhood!

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Childhood, Family History, Family Search, Farming, Gardening, Genealogy, Independence, Missouri, Missouri, Monday's For Me, My Stories, Personal Stories, Uncategorized

Picture Perfect Saturday #36 ~ 4 Generations ~ Greenbury White

I am currently working on my Family Genealogy Group page for Facebook. In doing so I realized I have a tremendous amount of photos. I decided to feature one a week. No, not everyone is “perfect” however, they are to me!

This week I am showcasing this photo of my maternal 2x Great Uncle Greenbury White. It has him, his daughter Martha Ellen White Burton, grandson George William Burton and great granddaughter Marjorie Burton. The photo was taken about 1925. They look like they just got home from church, all dressed in their Sunday finest. I wonder who or what little Marjorie is looking at. She is adorable, just standing on that chair so she is tall enough to fit in the photo. I love the bonnet she has on, it is bigger than her head.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Missouri, Photos, Picture Perfect, Picture Perfect Saturday, Uncategorized

Hometown Tuesday #41 ~ Moberly, Randolph County, Missouri

Moberly lies in a glacial plains area in a county organized in 1829, and named for John Randolph of Roanoke, Virginia in Missouri’s Little Dixie Region. It was first settled by William Holman in 1818. William Fort boiled salt at a spring near Huntsville in the 1820s. The Bee Trace, a pioneer trail, ran along the Grand Divide (the high point in The Grand Prairie) between the Missouri and Mississippi through the county. The Iowa, Sac, and Fox tribes gave up claims to the region, 1824.

Moberly, the “Magic City”, grew from the town platted by the North Missouri Railroad (Wabash) in 1866, it was built to connect to a transportation center with a 6,070 population by 1880. The North Missouri acquired the site when it took over the Chariton and Randolph Railroad after the Civil War. In 1860, the C.& R. had planned to build a road westward to Brunswick from this point on the North Missouri then turning north reaching toward Iowa.

The Chariton and Randolph Railroad named its proposed junction for William Moberly, head of the railroad, and offered free land to residents of once nearby town if Allen to settle here. Patrick Lynch, was the only one to accept this offer, and he was given two lots by the North Missouri after the Civil War for holding the site without “the loss of a life or a house.” On September 27, 1866, the first lots were sold for what would become Moberly. Moberly at this time was a very rough railroad town, considered course with too many taverns and brothels. Moberly in only five years had as many murders as the entire county had in its previous 20 years of history. In light of its mud streets and rough and tumble ways, the St. Louis papers regularly ridiculed the town in light of the more attractive, cultured, and older Huntsville. Despite this, Moberly continued to grow.

Moberly had been a division point since 1867 when the North Missouri (Wabash) reached Brunswick. In 1872 many businesses like the huge railroad repair shops, one of the earliest railroad plants west of the Mississippi, were opened. In 1873 the Missouri, Kansas, & Texas Railroad formed a junction here. Transportation facilities brought industrial growth and the development of the soil, fire clay, and coal resources of the area.

My paternal Great Uncle, Greenbury White was born in Moberly in 1844, the youngest of 4 children of Augustine White (1798-1876) and Margaret McClain (1798-1880). He fought for the Union Army, joining when he was 21 years old. He married Mary Jamison on December 31, 1866, they had 9 children, 5 sons and 4 daughters. He owned his own farm and lived in Moberly his entire life. He died on March 15, 1930, at the age of 86.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Civil War, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Home Town Tuesday, Hometown Tuesday, Missouri, Uncategorized, Uncle, Union Soldiers

Unusual Source ~ 52 Ancestors #7

10 years ago my husband and I took a Genealogy research trip to Missouri. My plan was to visit as many courthouses and cemeteries as we could. I also wanted to visit the Midwest Genealogy Center in Independence. I had contacted some cousins, and we made plans to get together with them. Our 10-day visit to the State was full.

We spent a full day at the Center, three days at some courthouses and a couple of days getting together with cousins. These were a lot of fun, however, as odd as it may seem, I enjoyed visiting the cemeteries the most. I grew up “visiting” people at the cemetery, and my mother always packed a lunch and we would eat lunch there. I have never had a fear of them.

On the next to our last day of being in Missouri, we visited the 2 cemeteries in the town I was born in. My Dad, several aunts and uncles, cousins, and my maternal Great Grandparents are buried there. I also got to meet a previously unknown cousin at one of them. When we left Lexington, we made our way to Buckner where my maternal Grandparents are. We attempted to find the Page Family Cemetery in Page City but the town no longer exists and the Cemetery was on private property.

Our last stop was the Dover Cemetery where my paternal Great Grandparents and 2x Great Grandparents are resting. I also found several other relatives graves there as well. We were heading back to our car when a much older gentleman in overalls approached us. He said he noticed our Arizona license plate, and he just wanted to know who we were visiting. I mentioned the names and his eyes lit up! He told us his Grandma was a Register. I asked what her name was, and he responded “Grandma”. I wasn’t sure if he was teasing me or what so I asked him what her first name was. It turned out that it was my Great Grandmother.


Robert, Elvira, Charles Register

We offered to buy him lunch, and we meet him at a small diner in town. We spent about 3 hours talking with him. He struggled at times to remember some details, but once he got started he told us so many stories and gave me verifiable facts that I didn’t already have. He even called his Granddaughter and had her bring a photo of his Grandma, and he gave it to me. So I now possess a photo that I never would have known existed if it hadn’t been for this encounter, and this unusual source.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under #52ancestors, 52 Ancestors 52 Weeks, Ancestry, Cemetery, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Machpelah Cemetery, Memories, Missouri, Register Family, Research, Uncategorized

Picture Perfect Saturday #34 ~ The Hayes Sisters ~ Rachel, Ida, Sadie, & Rosie

I am currently working on my Family Genealogy Group page for Facebook. In doing so I realized I have a tremendous amount of photos. I decided to feature one a week. No, not everyone is “perfect” however, they are to me!

This week I am showcasing 4 of my paternal Great Aunts. Left to Right – Back Row: Rachel Minerva Hayes Relaford, Ida May Hayes Willard Front Row: Sadie L. Hayes Hughes, Rosa Lucille Hayes. The oldest is Ida (1884-1973), then Rachel (1889-1967), then Sadie (1891-1967), and last is Rosa (1901-1988).

These four women were very close and you can tell they are sisters at first glance. They had 21 children total with Rosa never getting married nor having any children. They were hard-working women, the 3 married ones were farmers wives and Rosa was a nurse. I love their floral dresses and their hairstyles. To me, they all look like they were the kind of women you would want to be friends with.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Hayes Family, Missouri, Photos, Picture Perfect, Picture Perfect Saturday, Rosa Lucille Hayes

Thursday at the Cemetery #52 – Maple Grove Cemetery, Sylvania, Missouri ~ Finale

This week I am once again honoring some of my ancestors who are buried in a small rural cemetery in Missouri. These are from my maternal side, and once again have quite a few “Divine” names. This cemetery is located in the Southwestern section of the State between Springfield and Joplin. There are 387 known graves there with the oldest one being in 1882.

There are a few of my ancestors buried here. This is the last of them buried in this cemetery.


There was no headstone found for James nor Orlena Divine

James Monroe Divine, my maternal 2nd cousin 3 times removed, was born on February 6, 1848, in Madison, Monroe County, Tennessee. He was the third of fifteen children born to William Riley Divine Sr. (1819-1875) and Amelia “Milly” Webb (1823-1897). When he was 8 years old he moved with his parents to Jasper, Dade County, Missouri. He grew up working on the family farm. He married Orlena Jane Clayton (1850-1905) in 1868, and they had 8 children, 6 sons, and 2 daughters. They had a farm outside of Dadeville, Missouri. After the death of his wife in 1905, James started working as a coal miner. James died on January 12, 1925, in Golden City, Barton County, Missouri at the age of 76. He died from Lobar Pneumonia. No headstone has been found for him.

Orlena Jane Clayton, wife of my maternal 2nd cousin 3 times removed, was born in June, 1850, in Dade County, Missouri. She was the daughter of John and Lucinda Clayton. She married James Monroe Divine (1848-1925) in 1868, and they had 8 children, 6 sons, and 2 daughters. They had a farm outside of Dadeville, Missouri. Orlena died in 1905, in Dade County, Missouri at the age of 55. No headstone has been found for her.


Double headstone for Zora Divine and John Bishop

Zora Cornelia Divine, my maternal 3rd cousin 2 times removed, was born on October 3, 1870, in Dade County, Missouri. She was the oldest of 8 children born to James Monroe Divine (1848-1925) and Orlena Jane Clayton (1850-1905). She married John Granville Bishop (1862-1945) on November 20, 1890, in Sylvania, Dade County, Missouri. They had 4 children, 3 sons, and 1 daughter. They bought a farm in Golden City, Missouri, and they grew sweet corn. She died of pancreatic cancer on December 19, 1945 at the age of 75.

John Granville Bishop, husband of my maternal 3rd cousin 2 times removed, was born on September 30, 1862, in Dade County, Missouri. He was the son of John Bishop and Martha Hanlon. He married Zora Cornelia Divine (1870-1945) on November 20, 1890, in Sylvania, Dade County, Missouri. They had 4 children, 3 sons, and 1 daughter. They bought a farm in Golden City, Missouri, and they grew sweet corn. He also began working in the coal mines with his father-in-law in 1905. He died of a ruptured gall bladder on September 22, 1945, at the age of 82.

James J. Divine, my maternal 1st cousin 4 times removed, was born on March 3, 1818, in Greenville, South Carolina. He was the son of James Marshall Divine Sr (1793-1872} and Nancy Calloway (1796-1872). He moved with his family to Tennessee when he was 5 years old. He married Mary “Polly” Elizabeth Clayton (1820-1892) on November 2, 1843, in Monroe County, Tennessee. They had 7 children, 5 sons, and 2 daughters. They moved to Dade County, Missouri in 1860, and they bought 80 acres of land. He enlisted in the Missouri State Militia on July 1, 1863, fighting on the Confederate side. He mustered out at the end of the war. He died on January 1, 1904, at the age of 85.

Mary “Polly” Elizabeth Clayton, wife of my maternal 1st cousin 4 times removed, was born on September 10, 1820, in Monroe County, Tennessee. She was the daughter of William Clayton (1800-1820} and Elizabeth Bruton (1798-1820). She married James J. Divine (1818-1904) on November 2, 1843, in Monroe County, Tennessee. They had 7 children, 5 sons, and 2 daughters. They moved to Dade County, Missouri in 1860, and they bought 80 acres of land. She died on January 9, 1892, at the age of 71.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Cemetery, Divine Family, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Graves, Headstones, Markers, Missouri, Tennessee, Thursday at the Cemetery, Uncategorized

Thursday at the Cemetery #51 – Maple Grove Cemetery, Sylvania, Missouri

This week I am once again honoring some of my ancestors who are buried in a small rural cemetery in Missouri. These are from my maternal side, and once again have quite a few “Divine” names. This cemetery is located in the Southwestern section of the State between Springfield and Joplin. There are 387 known graves there with the oldest one being in 1882.

Since there are several of my ancestors buried here, I will be posting about this cemetery for a couple of weeks.

Edward Walter Divine, my maternal 3rd cousin 2 times removed, was born on April 20. 1883, in Dade County, Missouri. He was the 3rd of 8 children born to William Riley Divine (1857-1943) and Rebecca Jane Spurgeon (1857-1943). He married his cousin Rebecca Elizabeth Divine (1894-1979) in 1919. They had one son. They owned and operated a farm where they grew Indian Corn and had a Jonathan Apple Orchard. Edward died on October 20, 1974, in Lockwood, Dade County, Missouri, at the age of 89.

Rebecca Elizabeth Divine, wife of my maternal 3rd cousin 2 times removed, was born on August 22 20. 1894, in Dade County, Missouri. She was the youngest of 5 children born to James M. Divine and Rebecca C. Johnson. She married her cousin Edward Walter Divine (1883-1974) in 1919. They had one son. They owned and operated a farm where they grew Indian Corn and had a Jonathan Apple Orchard. Rebecca died on August 14, 1979, in Lockwood, Dade County, Missouri, at the age of 85.

Howard Edward Divine, my maternal 4th cousin 1 time removed, was born on March 23, 1920, in Anderson, Dade County, Missouri. He was the only child born to Edward Walter Divine (1883-1974) and Rebecca Elizabeth Divine (1894-1979). He was raised on the family farm in Lamar and graduated from High School in 1939. He enlisted in the Army on January 9, 1945 in the 131st Combat Engineers Unit, and he was honorably discharged on May 14, 1946. He then moved to California where he married Jane H. Osthagon on December 6, 1949. Here he worked for the California Milling Corporation as a buyer. After divorcing Jane, he moved back to Missouri. Here he bought his own farm and began farming, and he married a woman named Rosalie, last name unknown. He never had any children. He died in Lamar, Missouri on August 4, 1961, at the age of 41. His death certificate states he died from a coronary occlusion brought on by heat stroke. It gives the secondary factor as several years of alcoholism.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Cemetery, Divine Family, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Graves, Headstones, Missouri, Thursday at the Cemetery, Uncategorized

Thursday at the Cemetery #50- Maple Grove Cemetery, Sylvania, Missouri

This week I am once again honoring some of my ancestors who are buried in a small rural cemetery in Missouri. These are from my maternal side, and once again have quite a few “Divine” names. This cemetery is located in the Southwestern section of the State between Springfield and Joplin. There are 387 known graves there with the oldest one being in 1882.

Since there are several of my ancestors buried here I will be posting about this cemetery for a couple of weeks.

William Riley Divine, my 2nd cousin 3 times removed, was born on November 11. 1857, in Monroe County, Tennessee. He was the sixth of seven children born to James J. Divine (1818-1908) and Mary Elizabeth Clayton (1820-1892). He moved with his parents and siblings to Dade County, Missouri in 1863. He was a farmer, owning his own land, and he married Rebecca Jane Spurgeon (1857-1943) on November 20, 1877. They had 8 children, six sons and 2 daughters. According to his death certificate he was killed after stopping on the train tracks of the Missouri Pacific Railroad Crossing on Highway 160 in Lamar, Missouri on February 2, 1945,at the age of 85.

Rebecca Jane Spurgeon, wife of my 2nd cousin 3 times removed, was born on October 10. 1857, in Pana, Christian County, Illinois. She was the daughter of Moses (1823-1896) and Angeline (1828-1864) Spurgeon. She moved with her parents to Dade County, Missouri in 1860. She married William Riley Divine (1857-1945) on November 20, 1877. They had 8 children, six sons and 2 daughters. She died on October 19, 1943, in Golden City, at the age of 86.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Cemetery, Divine Family, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Graves, Headstones, Missouri, Thursday at the Cemetery, Uncategorized

The Overall Gang #7 ~ Benjamin Douglas Hughes

A lot of time while writing about our ancestors, we focus on those who would be considered successful by current standards. After all, there is usually far more documentation and sources that we can draw from that makes developing the story of their lives much easier. Looking through photos I made a discovery! I have quite a few pictures of my ancestors wearing farmers overalls. The majority of my ancestors spent their whole lives making a home and raising a family on a farm. To them, wearing overalls was a sign of honor, and they were proud of what they did. So to honor these hard-working men I will highlight the life of one of the “overall gang” each week, including the photo and a brief biography of the legacy they left behind.

This week I am featuring my beloved Dad. He only used the name Benjamin for “legal” things. He was always called Doug or Dougie. He was born in Hughesville, Pettis County, Missouri, on August 18, 1915. He was raised on farms until he was 20 years old, first in Hughesville then outside of Lexington, Lafayette County, Missouri. Not only did he work in all aspects of farming, he was also a horse trainer. He proudly wore overalls every day until he joined the Civil Conservation Corps in 1935. He was in the CCC for about a year, returning to farming in Missouri and his overalls.

He worked many other jobs while helping out at his parents farm. He was a coal miner, and a laborer on the railroad. He continued to wear his overalls in both of these jobs. He eventually moved into construction, using the skills he had learned in the CCC and in Missouri there was no problem with him wearing overalls to work. After he married my mother and my sister and I were born, we moved to Arizona. Here the temperatures were too hot to work outside in the heavy overalls, so he was forced to switch to jeans. However, he still wore his overalls when he worked in the yard on the weekends, even if that meant getting outside by 5am.

At his funeral, my Aunt made sure he had on a pair of overalls instead of the clothes my mother had sent along when she shipped him back to Missouri for burial. I was able to talk to several family members, and they told me that they couldn’t remember a time when he wore anything else.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing I Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Douglas Hughes, Family History, Family Search, Farming, Genealogy, Hughes, Missouri, The Overall Gang

Picture Perfect Saturday #28 ~ Clarence and William Ogan

I am currently working on my Family Genealogy Group page for Facebook. In doing so I realized I have a tremendous amount of photos. I decided to feature one a week. No, not everyone is “perfect” however, they are to me!

This week I am showcasing a pair of brothers, Clarence Newall (1879-1961) and William Harrison Ogan (1888-1968), They were born to Clayton Taylor Ogan (1850-1922) and Mary Elizabeth Teters (1852-1937) in Winsor, Henry County, Missouri. In 1889, the brothers moved with their parents and their five siblings to the Indian Territory in Oklahoma. They lived on the Osage/Kaw Indian Reservation where they were given land to farm on. Their mother was Cherokee. This photo was taken in about 1905. Clarence is on the left and William is on the right. It looks like they are hauling some lumber and a chair. I love everything about this photo.

I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have written two books “Your Family History: Doing I Right the First Time” and “Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip”, both available on Amazon. You can also connect with me on Facebook and Twitter @VHughesAuthor.

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Filed under Ancestry, Family History, Family Search, Genealogy, Missouri, Ogan Family, Oklahoma, Photos, Picture Perfect, Picture Perfect Saturday, Uncategorized