Several years ago, a cousin generously sent me a copy of an amazing story that had been passed down through her family. Her father had received it in 1955 from his grandmother (my great-grandmother) Flora (Epperson) Short, as part of a collection of family documents. The story is intriguingly titled “The Stolen Boy” and bears the date 18 Feb 1881. The author identifies himself only as Old Abe.
Although the story is written in third person, the details it contains indicate that it is actually an autobiography written by my 3X great-grandfather, Ambrose Bowen Epperson. If you have read my previous blogs, you might recognize that name as the young man who was part of a riotous group that gathered “to disturb the peace…armed with divers sticks, stones and other offensive weapons.” Fortunately, Ambrose eventually matured into a respected family man, with a wife and six children. He and his family joined the westward migration in the mid-19th century. They were early settlers in Kansas Territory and had front row seats to the conflicts of the Bleeding Kansas era leading up to the Civil War. The story, written when Ambrose was 63, chronicles his early life in Indiana and Kentucky, as well as his pioneer experiences.
“The Stolen Boy” story contains so much information of genealogical and historical interest that I plan to devote a series of blog posts to it in the coming days. As we work our way through the narrative, I will “set the scene” by providing background information on the places and historical events mentioned in that section of the story. I will also compare the details of the story to what is known of Ambrose’s life from other sources.
Check back tomorrow for the first installment of “The Stolen Boy.” If you want to know when a new installment is posted, there is an RSS Feed button on the right hand side of the page. You can also receive notifications through Facebook by "liking" the KinSeeker Genealogy Facebook page.
Teresa is the the owner of KinSeeker Genealogy Services. She has a Ph.D. in Biology and a lifelong fascination with genealogy. She been researching her own family history for over 20 years and loves helping others "find their stories."
Please visit the KinSeeker Genealogy Services Facebook page
This blog is owned by Teresa Shippy. Content may not be copied without permission.
©2016, copyright Teresa Shippy