I wanted to take a moment to say that I am, in fact, still alive and working on research. Two things have kept me from updating and they may not be what you think. First of all, the more I learn, the more I feel like I don’t know anything. Anything. One of my favorite posts is about how the Beckwith family came to Orangeburg after the Battle of Trevilian Station found my ancestor bringing the body of his fallen compatriot home to family. It is wrong and it is wrong because I made assumptions instead of just documenting. It is wrong because I think everything needs to be a story. In truth, the Beckwith family had connections to Orangeburg through a maternal line at least two generations previous to this grand melancholy event. Hopefully, I can update in the next week.

The other reason is far more complicated. Much of what I have learned in the last several years has been not directly about my ancestors, but about my larger family. It has been largely in the form of personal stories and priceless gems of unwritten history and it feels like it is not mine. I am honored and humbled to be in its presence. It is not mine to share though.

Last spring, I found myself invited into the home of a man whose family has owned and cherished the house first built for my great great great great grandfather, John Henry Moorer (1756-1800). It feels exploitative to take that conversation and post it online.

Where I think that leaves me is in a place I need to grow into. I need to become a better, more thorough and skeptical researcher with a proper allergy to speculation, but also who can ask people to go on record. These stories that aren’t mine, but they want to be told.