I added my 25th state when I entered West Virginia on Labor Day September 5, 2011. Granted some were brief visits like Texas because of an airplane connection. So that means I have 23 more to go. HA!
My purpose was to visit a half cousin once removed on my Spracklin side or rather my dad’s maternal side. She is a descendant of Peter George Spracklin the half-brother of my great-grandmother Amarilla Spracklin Barclay Dawes Urton. Yes those are all her last names because she married three times.
Janice, my cousin and I met on Facebook through another full cousin of mine. Our shared ancestor is Daniel D. Spracklin who married twice first to Elizabeth Keller and then after her death to Sarah Blacketer Allgood. I come down from Elizabeth while Janice comes down from Sarah. Amarilla is Elizabeth and Daniel’s youngest daughter.
Janice was born in Estherville, Iowa to Ivan and Florence Louella Nick and partially raised in Reading, Pennsylvania. I visited Pennsylvania several years back but didn’t go to Reading because I didn’t realize there were all these Spracklins living there. After a very full life Janice decided she liked the mountains of West Virginia so she set down roots. She found a house that is a work in progress but I think she is open to that challenge.
My hubby and I left Marietta around 7:50 am and headed across the bridge over the Ohio River on Interstate 77 into West Virginia. Tropical Storm Lee was reminding us of the fury of Mother Nature by dropping a ton of rain on us as we traveled to visit with Janice. Once off Interstate 77th we were on winding country two lane roads through beautiful farm land, past meandering rivers filled with stilt. I spotted several footbridges and wondered if that would be a fun adventure to cross one? The road took us onto mountains and ran along the ridges so I could look down into the convoluted valleys filled with trees. Western West Virginia is very pretty.
I told Janice we would be at her house by 9:30 am and we were there almost to the minute. Janice is even smaller than me and I gave her a hug afraid I might crush her. Her daughter Crissa and family were visiting. They had given Crissa a 50th birthday party the night before so I wished her a Happy Birthday. They were preparing to head back home. They were able to party on the new deck that surrounds Janice’s home and was built by Janice’s youngest son Bill and his friend. There was the smell of new fresh wood. Bill had to work so I was not to meet him this time. Too bad I live so far away for he does good work. The deck was beautiful.
Once the company had left, Janice and I spent the day chatting about family history and getting to know each other. Janice fed us twice and we were happy and content. She told me about her grandfather Peter George. She said he was a bit of a dreamer and wanderer and that explains why I had so much trouble tracking him. She said her father Ivan worked hard to give them a good life. Janice is very eager to meet other cousins so please contact me if you wish to share and I will get her in touch with you. It was a good day but ended too soon and there were still many questions that I wanted to ask Janice and I am sure she wanted to ask me.
My hubby and I made it back to Marietta as night began to fall. We had traveled the winding roads of West Virginia in light rain which made it easier to enjoy the lovely scenery, but by the time we were back in Marietta it was again heavy rain. It was a long but happy day keeping up with Spracklins!!
UPDATE: It is with great sadness that I report my cousin passed away earlier this year. I am very happy to have spent some time with her, August 20, 2016.