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Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Talent Tuesday - Horseback Riding

Talented Tuesday is a daily blogging prompt used by many genealogy bloggers to help them post content on their sites. Got ancestors who had a special talent? Be it musical, comical, or any manner of skill, we post at our genealogy blog through words and pictures.  Here is my story today.

My sisters, Elaine and Melinda, were wonderful horsewomen. From an early age they loved horses and horseback riding. My parents were able to give them horseback riding lessons very early and they had horses most of their lives up until about 8-10 years ago when age and Fibromyalgia (we all three have it) forced them off their horses. Before we could no longer ride, Melinda taught me to ride and I was able to ride one of her horses for about 3 years before I had to give it up. They continued to ride for awhile. Since I'm the oldest, by the time they reached my age, they also had to give it up. But I can say I was able to keep up with them on a lot of trail rides. I especially enjoyed the mountain trail rides we got to do especially the last one which was arranged for my birthday. It was unforgettable because we had a good ride up and a wonderful picnic lunch. But a thunderstorm came up on us and we had a hell of a ride back down in the pouring rain and thunderous lightening. It's something we laugh about even today!

There is a story about one of our Great Grandmothers, Noda Vesta Miller Lamb. She was supposedly a good horsewoman. They lived in the western NC mountains when it was a very poor area. For her to have her own saddlehorse says something about her horse skills and her husband's ability and desire to give her a horse.

Noda Vest Miller was born 11/6/1887 in Madison County, NC to Anderson Miller and Cynthia Ann Hickam. She got pregnant at the age of 18 yrs old and had a daughter named Pearl Juanita. She married John Edward Lamb, aka Ed Lamb, on 10/9/1904 in Madison County, NC. He raised Pearl as his own daughter. He must have really loved Noda. Noda and Ed added 4 more girls to their growing family: Sueda Lamb (DOB: 10/23/1906 in Madison County, NC; DOD: 8/1918 in Madison County, NC of the Spanish Flu Epidemic); Artie Mae Lamb (DOB: 4/3/1908 in Madison County, NC; DOD: 12/28/1999 in Blount County, TN; married Clyde Bovy Johnson); Fannie Marie Lamb (DOB: 2/2/1911 in Madison County, NC; DOD: 12/29/1988 in Greenville County, SC; married Conrad Cutlass Copeland); and my Grandmother, Geneva Margaret Lamb (DOB: 2/14/1915 in Cocke County, TN; DOD: 7/23/1984 in Spartanburg County, SC; married Wilford William Reese).

Noda's daughter, Pearl, married her first husband, Dewey Roberts, in May, 1916 in Cocke County, TN. She and her husband had a daughter named Edna Roberts about 1918. The story goes that there was some heavy rain and Noda worried about Pearl and Edna being caught in a flash flood. She saddled her horse and rode down to their house and rushed in and told them to leave immediately. Pearl had just bought a new Easter hat. She grabbed the baby and the new hat and they made it out of the house just before the water came and, sure enough, flooded the house. They would have drowned if not for Noda.

Noda was possibly newly pregnant with another little girl when this happened. This little girl would be her namesake.

As we know, the Spanish Flu Pandemic hit the world in 1918 and it hit little Madison County, NC too. In August of 1918, their daughter, Sueda, died of the flu. She wasn't yet 12 yrs old. In January, 1919, Noda also came down with the Spanish Flu. She gave birth but only lived 4 days after her baby girl was delivered. She died on 1/26/1919 in Madison County, NC. Little Noda Vesta Lamb didn't live a full 2 months before following her mother and older sister in death. The 3 of them are buried in the Old Antioch Cemetery (it's been virtually abandoned now for the newer Antioch Cemetery). There are 2 headstones but the last time I visited their graves, the tombstones are barely legible.

Ed moved his remaining 3 girls, Pearl, Dewey, Edna and his widowed mother-in-law down to Laurens, Laurens County, SC to work as a carpenter for one of the mills there. They are found there in the 1920 U.S. Census. Eventually he put the girl's in a girl's boarding school back in Madison County, NC. But they thought it was an orphanage and they were terrified that they would be adopted seperately and would never see each other again. They thought my little Grandmother was so pretty that she would go first so whenever someone would travel by the school, they would grab little Geneva and run to the fields where they would hide in the grass. Eventually Ed remarried to a neighbor woman that he knew (she and her family had lived near them). Bess' husband had died a couple of months before Noda had and she had 4 children too. The marriage was not a good one but back then you just lived with it. Ed and Bess had a son named Daniel Lamb. Ed Lamb died 2/27/1939 in McDowell County, NC. Bess Freshour Harkelroad Lamb died 7/31/1958 in McDowell County, NC.

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