Hopefully they look like actual shields, but of course they’re just composites of tons of separate photographic elements. Hover the cursor over each one to see its caption.
They’re chronologically organized, roughly. And in this first batch, the first three (going left to right) form pairs with the ones they’re above: ie, Sir Arthur Cambel’s arms evolved into the arms of Strachur; Sir Colin Mor’s into those of Loch Awe; Sir Donald’s into Loudoun. The last two on the right of this batch are just among the earliest cadet branches with attested arms, Craignish and Inverawe. Enjoy!
Sir Arthur Cambel
Sir Colin Mor Cambel
Sir Donald Cambel
Craignish Old (SPEC)
of Loch Awe
Among the sources I used to learn and/or confirm these designs were the various descriptions provided in the legit, straight from the source rolls from Scotland.
Here’s a little bit of the context for when some of these armorial bearings branched off the “main” line, the Argyll line that has been the chiefly line since the 13- or 1400s, and thus at what point they were differenced with the various marks of cadency.
This follow-up post presents the historical imaging I’ve done focused on maps and location. Actually, I’d say that it’s most correct to say that this is imagery driven not by simply the “location”, but by the agenda of attempting to locate a thing; to impart a sense of how and where the thing in question is located–oriented–to the viewer.
To locate a thing so that it fits with the audience’s world.
It turns out (of course) that usually at least some sort of context is necessary. For images of a place (whether from a map, an aerial photograph or other rendering, crude diagram in the sand…whatever!), for it to mean a ding dang thing, your intended audience much of the time needs to have at least some basic geographical knowledge.
But that said, it’s a very interesting and multi-faceted challenge to try and make an image conveying a sense of place if you consider your audience consisting of people who don’t know…don’t really care. lol
When & Where… & when, again?
Basic “when & where” map for an individual or family
Tighter focus on the “where” (central Massachusetts in this case; a father and son located)
Placing the very specific in the macro
Farmstead of 4x-great-grandad that served as homebase for 3 generations
City unfamiliar to coast-dwelling types
When the exact part of a foreign place is important (for some reason)
Using cool maps cooly. For this one, the only context necessary is that this is the east coast of Ireland, just south of Dublin and that north is to the right.
Tighter focus–after you’ve given some context
Tober Townland was directly referenced on the map above, so now you can zoom in there to see detail. The inset maintains the tether to the broad knowledge base you’re attempting to access.
southwestern Wisconsin, a couple miles off the Mississippi River & 5 or 7 miles from Illinois, showcasing an original land grantee whose descendants carried on in the location; 4x-great-grandkids remain in 2017.
Various specific spots within a larger, but still relatively small (and not commonly nown) location, the Dordogne in southwestern France. In the upper right of this one is Jumilhac, the castle seen in the last post.
one place, Haverhill, Massachusetts and vicinity…
… variations on perspective
One place in detail: Foley, Minnesota
Foley sits nearly smack dab in the middle of the state, among the flat, flat fields 15 miles east-northeast of the mini urban hub of St. Cloud and the bend over which it presides of the still quite wide Mississippi River. The tiny hamlet of Foley has given the world doctors, lawyers, Indy 500 participants, lumber, all-night jazz dances in barns once upon a time, and been home to retired farmers, aspiring capitalist fashionistas, former religious zealots & their kids, descendants of royalty and lots and lots of regular people who very well might’ve been born in other countries or been the kids of those who were.
Rockefeller had a gas station here (like 10s of thousands of of other places in these United States); women turned out nearly to a 100% here in 1924 the first occasion they were permitted to help choose the President. Foley is a stand-in for whatever your little town is, or was. Our Town is the most performed play (or close to it) in America because 100s of millions of us came from our towns like this. “I didn’t, but my mom did”,–we’re all from it together.
These small towns, whose children and grandchildren have flocked and flown out to the gothams and metropolitanias were in their way, factories of the ever-new, ever-renewing people, of us all–factories of Americans.
The sprawling and ever interconnected suburbs and ex-urbs where so many millions of us now reside and have for some time–they are built by the developers and they are inhabited by the dwellers on the model of the myriad iterations of “Small Town America” like Foley, Minnesota. It was in these places that generations of people learned and were taught how to be Americans. Despite the regional differences that might inculcate one attitude or another toward or about other people, the style of day-to-day interaction and pacing and level of attentiveness to the people around you, it’s all very similar in this small town substrate of our collective sense of ourselves and how and who we are.
It is from this America that in many critical ways we came. And it seems to me worth knowing in order to figure out into what America we are, might, or can decide to be going.
Showcasing images I’ve created, composited and/or altered in order to make historical situations, places or circumstances more readily accessible to as many people as possible.
This grew out of my effort–shared with anyone who gets intricately lost in making family trees–of trying to find relevant imagery to use for people of whom no pictures exist (e.g., anyone who lived before the 1840s). But not just relevant, you really want to push it further and find images that are interesting, too. Or at least I do. And accurate, for instance, to the time when a particular ancestor or historical personage might have actually lived or been at a given location. So from these endeavors, the following sampling of images.
This is Château de Jumilhac, a castle south of Limoges in southwestern France. In the course of working on a friend’s family tree, I learned some of his ancestors had been involved in actually building it back in the 1200s. (!!) They’d been among its lords, too, for 150 years or so. After first thinking, aha! whatta sweet image to use for that string of ancestors, I learned as I read more about them and it, that the conical rooftops (that will surely strike Americans as quintessentially “fairy-tale”) were added hundreds of years after his family had been on the scene in the depths of the actual Middle Ages. Well I couldn’t use a historically inaccurate image, so I did something about it.
This is much closer to what it would have looked like to the de Bruchard family as they knew it.
An older photograph also lent itself to easy changing:
So the examples here are each within a category:
People & Location
Now to Then
SketchUp 4 Teaching History
Now to Then 2 (showing elements)
People & Location
Swedish origin spot of my great-grandmother and 3 generations of her people
South-central Sweden, Vastragotaland.
2. Recent Dukes of Argyll at their seat, Inverary Castle, Scotland
Now to Then
View from the Mayflower
View closer to 1620
2. Castle Hornby
Castle Hornby c.1900
Castle Hornby c.1520
On the left, as seen around 1900 (& today); on the right, as it was when my ancestor lived there (incidentally, just about the last–my most recent–ancestor to reside in a castle…500 years ago!)
SketchUp 4 Teaching History
Construction of the White House (the Executive’s Mansion) in the 1790s in Washington, D.C.
These are views of a multi-layered SketchUp model I’ve built of various stages of the White House’s construction. Here we see the foundation as it was originally laid down in 1791-2. The layers reflect the actual materials, orientation and configuration learned from researching primary source material (such as reports of the crew who laid the new foundations in the 1950s as to what they found as well as reports of Thomas jeffereson, architect Benjamin Latrobe and others involved in the early days of the building). The close-up is the northwest corner, seen from just a few feet south and west of it.
Here’s the southern facade, seen from the southeast, depicted as the Limestone facing began to be mounted on the brick walls.
And the same face seen from the southwest, a little further along in the process:
And here’s the north (properly, the front) as it neared completion. (The portico that we know today was not added until the 1820s).
Now to Then 2 (showing elements)
Here you can see various elements that went in to the image at the very top of the page (the black & white 1800s looking street).
That’s Liverpool, England. Specifically, Vauxhall Road, looking across it from near where my gr-gr-grandad, a guy named Edward Dunn, had a business in the 1870s, to the intersection with Blacklock Street, toward the site of Vauxhall Gardens, a housing project that was destroyed in WWII during the Blitz just before Xmas 1940.
Composite of contemporary shot (made B&W) with old shot.
Composite of two images; the corner building has been added to the street shot. I then added this with the B&W version of the current corner seen in the shot above this to get the image seen at the very top of the page.
This is the current shot, unaltered.
And the combo with the building destroyed by Nazi bombs in WWII is below again for easy comparison.
Gracing the top of the page today are renditions I made of three of the oldest arms from some men of the early history and branches of Clan Campbell.
Top left are the arms of none other than Cailean Mór Cambel himself–Colin, as it’s rendered in English–the man considered the projenitor of the majority of Campbells, including the line that came to be senior, thus the line which gives the clan its chief. In 1280 CE King of Scots Alexander III knighted Cailean, and the next reigning king appointed him chief (Baile) of Loch Awe, the highland area Cailean’s dad or grandad had first established themselves in around 1220. And as every good pupil of Campbell-ania knows, in the First War for Scottish Independence he sided with the Bruce (Robert, Earl of Carrick) in Robert’s ultimately successful push to be King of Scots. And though he died 10 or so years before it all worked out for Robert, Cailean’s son Nial (Neil) maintained the support his father had spearheaded, and these combined efforts certainly helped secure this branch of the family’s fortunes. Neil was the first to bear the patronymic, “Son of Great Colin”, or Mac Cailean Mór, the title borne down to the present day by the eldest male line descendant, Chief of Clan Campbell, the 13th Duke of Argyll. It was these original arms of Colin’s that later got “differenced” into the form most Campbells & those who love us recognize, and which is seen as part of the arms that appear above, top right.
These are the arms of one of the Lords of Craignish, and strictly speaking–as it’s seen there–it wasn’t contemporaneous with the other two. More on that later, but the reason it’s up there is because it’s the oldest branch of the clan, or “cadet”. A certain Dougal was the younger son of an early Gillespic; Dougal’s older brother was Duncan, father of the man who gained the nickname which named the family. On this page further below you’ll find a map putting Craignish in context (hint: it’s west of Loch Awe, sort of nestled in the ragged western coast of Argyll).
The middle shield up top holds particular intrigue and unknowns. The man who bore these arms was Sir Arthur Cambel, Captain of Dunstaffnage Castle. He was 1st cousin to Sir Colin who bore–at the same time–the arms up top left. The 1st cousin from Colin’s older uncle. Sir Arthur and his line enjoyed the seniority accorded these days to Colin’s male-line descendants, the House of Argyll. Arthur’s line does survive today, though. How the junior line came to be in the position of dominance doesn’t seem to be known too well, or discernble from the extant documents or other evidence. But from what can be gathered from the fantastic, exhaustive and very well-written, witty and enjoyable History of the Clan Campbell, by Alistair Campbell of Airds, it seems like it could have been more situational and emergent than the result of devious acts, or ruthless glory hunting and ambition.
A New Chart of Early Campbells
Immediately below this paragraph is a chart I’ve done of these earliest attested fellows who came to be called Cambels…and later Campbells. (That first link in the last sentence, by the way, goes to a page that has a hi-res image and transcription of the actual first record of a Campbell: father of the above-mentioned Colin, it is Gillascoppe Cambell in 1263). On the chart below I’ve put maps I made in Google Earth for some of the people showing their stomping grounds, and some of these are highlighted separately below the charts. And as always, remember to click the chart and then click it again in the new tab so as to see it large in all its glory.
(If you’d like this one or any of them printed, please contact me for info; you’ll get free shipping on most.)
2. A more typical or traditionally style chart, with boxes around each person.
2a. What the above chart would look like in a fancy old frame, printed on parchment colored paper. (Available, btw, as any of the charts here can be; frame not inlcuded; if you’re interested in getting one the charts, contact me.)
“Out of the mists…”
Earliest arms for Loch Awe
Sir Colin’s arms
Early arms for Strachur
Arms of Sir Arthur, whose line became known as “of Strachur”; the senior line, acknowledged as such in ~1290, but whose fortunes …changed.
Early arms for Craignish
And the arms of the Campbell Lords of Craignish, the 1st cadet branch of Clan Campbell to sprout, back in the 1200s.
Ella (1910-2006) compiled and wrote the book (linked above), comprised mostly of letters from and to her mother Lulu (1882-1965), chronicling her life from leaving her mother, also known as Ella (1856-1898), eldest child of Thomas B. (1830-1907), himself the eldest child of his parents, and several letters from whom are included in the book, letters to his granddaughters, Lulu (primary subject of the book) and her sisters Florence and Nettie. (FYI, Florence married but had no kids, Nettie had a few whose descendants today live between Iowa and Florida.)
With humble and due respect to those loved ones and others who live Back East–-and grateful acknowledgment of the power and glory and seasons and winters and cold and Body-n-Soul warming companies like L.L. Bean and everything else about the Eastern Seaboard–-I must bask in not a little bit of California Pride.
The graphic you see above is a slice of a bigger picture I made in response to a school assignment brought home by my son consisting of nine interview questions about when people in his family came to California. Hot diggity! At last! Something that all my time in hallowed and local research institutions and this stuff is actually directly intended to amplify, afford revealing views into, and otherwise make for at least a little fun in discovering. Perhaps even in allowing the people to whom it’s presented to see for themselves the actual nuts ‘n’ bolts and very fibers of connections between people, ideas and events that are the real fruit of the quests genealogickal and historickal.
Thanks to my ex’s great-grandparents–-Giovanni Mazzoni, from Como, Italy, and Gemma La Franchi, from Coglio, Switzerland coming to California, meeting and having a family among whom was their daughter Eva born here in 1906–my kids are 4th generation Californians. Interestingly, through me–-thanks to my dad having been born in England–-they also fit into a demographic category known as 3rd generation immigrant.
Anyway, I checked out my son’s questions for the school assignment–-things like, when did they arrive? how? when? from where? and a little about what things were like when they got here. I drew out by hand the tree, indicating by circling or such who what etc. Then I realized this could be a lot better NOT in my handwriting, u-hem, and so went to town doing the above graphic.
I started with getting a 3D family tree using MacFamily Tree. (Which, btw, if you’re on a Mac, it’s the ONLY family tree program that needs to be discussed; if you’re on a PC, welp, if you’re as into genealogy as I am, then you need to become a Mac person so you can use this program. If you’re on a PC and are going to stay that way, that’s fine, cuz eventually the PC programs always end up incorporating/copying the graphically friendly and usable aspects of Mac programs that remain the defining feature of the Mac and its software. Anyhoo…maybe I’m just a softy for 3D stuff, but the 3D view of one’s family tree is so so SO cool; it brings it to life.) So I started with spinning the tree I’d made to an angle I thought would be appropriate to convey the generations (all the names, I realized, weren’t going to be necessary, but being able to visually differentiate the generations and such would be).
Then I went online and found some of the elements, others I had already, and there ya have it.
Up top is, as I said, a slice. The whole thing is below.
Genealogy — family history — is ever but a small rear-view mirror on the collective history that brought us all here, now. Like the small mirrors on the sides of cars, the objects reflected to us through the “mirror” of Fam-tracking may indeed be closer to us (in time and importance, in this case) than they might appear, or seem to be, given their being framed, not only as “the past”, but even more so, as our personal and individual(ized) *family* history. I think most people perceive the pursuit of family history (genealogy) as quite self-absorbed, and it’s perfectly self-evident and not at all shocking why and that they would. But even though it might be admitted that by 15 to 20 generations back, one’s ancestors are entirely no longer merely one’s own, but shared with 100s of millions of others (and thus genealogy skeptics might admit that studying them pretty much equals studying history), because of the characteristic tight focus on individual lives it’s easy to forget that everyone — parents, grandparents and our grandparents’ grandparents — was and in their lives’ doings enacted events, trends, material culture and more that define and describe the history that gets studied and continually rewritten in the halls and annals of academe.
And so this post begins a bit of a summary of the movements around America of my surname-sake 3X-grandparents and their kids. They launched from southwestern Pennsylvania in 1830 (two years after Andrew Jackson was elected 7th US President), crept across the Midwest and landed in southwestern Wisconsin 14 years later, (two years before Abe Lincoln was elected to the US House of Representatives). As these two parents’ choices to change life & work venues correlate to A, B & C aspects of widespread goings-on in America, so, too do the subsequent movements of their sons. Two of the five relevant kids left to California at first opportunity, starting in 1851, and the three others all ended up leaving the family’s landing spot in southwestern Wisconsin after making hay for as long as they each could, departing in 1869, 1879 and 1880, to California, Colorado and northern Wisconsin, respectively. (A previous post details the one and only reuniting of those three in Colorado in 1905.)
Again, the facts tracing these isolated individuals turn out to be illustrative of qualitatively and usually comparatively quantitatively similar facts and characteristics of altogether larger and generally widespread trends. So even though there are perhaps only 500 to 600 or so people alive today descended from this particular guy and his particular wife, (Geo Campbell & Rachel Bilderback) there were about 194,000 other people who moved from some place in America to the same place they did — Wisconsin — at the same time.
I’m a very poor mathematician, and thus no statistician, but going on very rough guesstimates, if we assume about half of those 194 thousand (domestically born) people added to Wisconsin’s population from 1830 to 1850 were kids, that’s about 97,000 adults. And dividing that # in half to account (very roughly) for married couples, we come up with about 48,000. (Which turns out to be incredibly close to the actual figure of 44,190 males of voting age and right in 1850 in Wisconsin. What ever accuracy my guesswork held would be a function of my having spent far too many hours with this kind of material over the years…so that you don’t have to! lol )
So even though only 500 to 600 or so people are descended from the man and woman in question, somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 to 25 million living Americans are descended from the people who were doing the same thing in the same place at the same time. And since it also turns out that this story correlates to the populations of Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois at least, we’re talking about the lives of more like 215,000 people back then that share general reflection with these particular gr-gr-gr-grandparents of mine.
In other words, their story is relevant to roughly 107 million living Americans, or about a third of our country.
So just *listen*! 😉
It’s the story, after all, of how we got here, now, all of us. Cuz even those also here, now, who come from people who came here later and/or differently, they arrived in to circumstances resulting from what was engendered in America by the grandkids etc of the people I’m talking about. We are all connected.
Ok, the historico-demographic rant is over, now on to the meat!
George and Rachel, as reflected in previous posts, are a pet project within my wider and general genealogical interest. They’re the source of my last name, they’re the 1st ones I sorta knew about, so I feel some weird, semi-arbitrary affinity for them and their goings-on.
We don’t know the details yet of George’s origins. But a meticulously kept and copied “family record” consistently shows him having been born just after xmas, 1800 in Pennsylvania. A bio of one of his sons in one of those late-19th century county boosterism books relates that George’s dad immigrated from Londonderry, Northern Ireland, and this is corroborated in a hand-written note from another of George’s sons.
We know more about his wife. In the same “family record”, Rachel’s related to have been born in mid November in 1812 in Washington County, Pennsylvania. And indeed there’s a lovely record of her dad getting a 250 acre plot there in 1809. They appear to have married on Aug 16, 1829, and about 10 months later become parents to a baby boy in the same location. And indeed, the 1830 census shows them living as the next family after Rachel’s dad, Thomas Bilderback (and after whom that 1st baby boy was named). I think it’s safe to assume that they were on his property. And this assumption comes after having had the chance to briefly visit the area, and w/ the later help (admittedly) of GoogleEarth, to note that there are only a certain number of places anyone can have a house or farm, cuz the area is really hilly and wooded.
The next kid’s born Feb 2, 1833 only about 10 miles away, but we haven’t isolated the location in or near Wellsville, Ohio, yet.
However, thanks to the availability of records from the General Land Office, we have (I believe) accurately located their next homestead in Indiana where their next two sons were born, George P.B. and Columbus (1835 & 1838).