Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The Library is Open

by Glenn N. Holliman

Does one call it a virtual archive, a library with a card catalog or your uncle's attic?  Whatever the name, one will find at www.bholliman.com  a growing assembly of manuscripts, biographies, family histories, family and government records, email collections, letters and even some photographs.

My research and writing has diminished at this site as I have been struggling to learn how to upload and save various documents. I am not of a generation for whom technology comes easy.  My tech savvy ended in the 1950s turning focus knobs on the family's 17 inch Motorola black and white television.

So for a while, I am an archivist.  Almost 500 documents now available to the extended families, most relating to Hollimans, Hollymans, Holleman or however your ancestors spelled our surname.

Let me recognize a few who are now storing documents.  First there is Joseph Parker of Texas.  At our gathering in Smithfield, Virginia in early April, he bestowed on me a large 4 inch notebook binder full of notes and information he has collected and stored through the decades.

 Right, Joe Parker and Lynn Holliman, good friends and relatives who wrestle together with lineages, share a laugh.

I have scanned his pages on Holleman marriages and his numerous notes.  Go to the web site, click on Records.  Go to the Surname Search section and type in Joseph Parker.  

His documents, now saved for the future, will come up.  Click on a document of your choice and allow some time for it to upload, and there you have Joe's research.

The same can be said for his distant cousin and good friend, Lynn Holliman, also of Texas.  Lynn has specialized in David Holliman and his families in Georgia and James Grantson Holliman of North Carolina.  The manuscript Lynn distributed at the April Hollyman Gathering on his research is available at the archive.  Follow the same procedure as detailed above, and you will have a number of items with Lynn listed as the author.

Since our Gathering, another ace researcher, Bob Hollyman-Mawson, an Englishman who lives in Wales, has passed along a cascade of Hollyman lists (various spellings) from the many shires in England where American Hollimans have distant cousins, descendants of those who did not immigrate as did Christopher Hollyman in 1650 from Bedfordshire.  

Again type in Bob's name in the Surname Search section of the Records page, and an amazing catalog of names and locations will appear. If you are an English Holliman descendant you definitely will want to review Bob's massive collection of names, dates and towns.

Above, Bob as a sailor in Her Majesty's Royal Navy in 1963. Right, a recent Remembrance Day, 11 November, with Bob sporting his medals and a red poppy, and looking every bit the quintessential Englishman!  

Bob is no stranger to many of you.  He has emailed with many Hollimans in the USA and has contributed numerous articles in this space.  Bob has been the conduit from which American Hollimans have learned much about our English heritage.

As with Joe and Lynn, we owe Bob a debt of gratitude for sharing his research and manuscripts.

There are more contributors, both living and passed, whose work I have and will continue to upload.  The children of Walter O. Holliman and Rhodes B. Holliman have left me boxes and boxes of papers.  All I am carefully reading, scanning and if the Creator gives me enough time, will add to the www.bholliman.com archive.

When my DNA is rotated, my son and nephew will take over stewardship of this archive.  So if you have something to share with the generations to come, let me know.

More later at this blog spot, as I find time to write between scanning and archiving.  Thanks for reading and your many emails. - GNH


Thursday, April 28, 2016

Christopher Hollyman's Plantation - 332 Years On

by Glenn N. Holliman

Cousin Joe Barlow, whose mother Gladys Holleman Barlow was born at the 1830 Holleman House on the site of Christopher Hollyman's 1684 plantation, kindly has sent me this clipping from the April 13, 2016 edition of the Smithfield Times.  His sister, Sarah Barlow Wright shares information on the home.

Christopher Hollyman (1618-1691) first settled along the Cypress River in Isle of Wight County, Virginia in 1661 according to early deeds.  As an older man of age 66, he patented the 1,020 acres along Mill Swamp bordering Surrey County and built a home and tobacco barns.  He left the land and improvements to his four sons.

Below a photograph of Gladys Holleman Barlow and her 1996 obituary sharing information on her life in Isle of Wight County, Virginia.  Picture and obituary courtesy of the Barlow family.

For additional information on the Holleman House, Gladys Holleman Barlow and Isle of Wight Hollemans, please review my postings of autumn of 2013.  

Again our thanks to Billy Joe Holleman, his wife and son and all the Barlows for their many kindnesses during the early April 2016 Gathering of Hollymans from all over the United States.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Going Forward

by Glenn N. Holliman

Thoughts to Share and Feedback Welcome

Our first national gathering of the Christopher Hollyman Families Society was held March 31 - April 2, 2016 in Smithfield, Virginia.  Judging from the comments and photographs posted on Face Book, it proved to be the grand experience the organizers hoped it would be.  Allen Holleman and I met with Sarah Barlow Wright, Joe Barlow and Billy Joe Holleman in October 2015 to carve the outlines of a three day event.  Allen kindly took on the job of coordinating meeting and residence space and registration.

Left, part of the group at our gathering space for our meetings, Billy Joe Holleman in the blue shirt and Brenda Holloman, right, in white.

The Smithfield Inn, where we had dinner on March 31st, had the only private room in town with a restaurant attached (or the other way around).  We originally thought the service and space would be fine for say 25 or so who might attend, even believing the rooms available at the Smithfield Inn would be sufficient for out-of-towners.

Wow, did you surprise us!  Almost sixty persons registered (some could not make it at the last minute) pleasantly forcing Allen to reach out to the Hampton Inn for lodging, meeting space and to bring in a food truck for meals.  And he did all this from Raleigh, North Carolina, a lot of work for which we are all grateful.  

Right, Mike Holliman, Jimmy Holliman, Norman Holliman and Becky Holliman Payne, all with Alabama roots.

And Billy Joe and wife went over the top, not only escorting us around the Holleman House, providing a hay ride to the possible resting place of Christopher Hollyman and other descendants, but then feeding us Smithfield Ham, cookies and hot and cold drinks at the Mill Swamp Baptist Church.  That church is the first Baptist Church planted in Virginia and was founded in part by the Hollemans.  The land for the cemetery adjacent to the church was donated by Hollemans from Christopher's original 1,020 acres.

Joe Parker, center in the light blue shirt, helped 'supervise' the generous ham sandwich snack at Mill Swamp.   

Besides the emotional experience of standing on historic Hollyman ground and the delightful opportunity to meet so many new cousins, the conference provided education on mutual family history and discussion on formalizing a Hollyman society.  Some of these outcomes I reported in the recent April  5, 2016 post.  

One thought in particular was the desire to meet again, to hold another Gathering, perhaps in two years, and perhaps even in England, the ancestral European home of Christopher's descendants. 

So the purpose of this blog is really a questionnaire asking for your feed back.  May I ask you to send your comments to glennhistory@gmail.com please.  Whether you attended earlier this month or not, we would welcome your opinion as we go forward in planning.

1. If and when another Gathering is held, where should it be?

2. Should we meet at a conference hotel with an in-house restaurant, meeting rooms and an indoor pool for children who might attend with parents and/or grandparents?  

3. Or should we hold the Gathering at a less expensive conference center in the woods, perhaps a bit more rustic setting and facilities but at a lower cost?  And such might not be near an Interstate Highway or airport.

4. Should it be held at or near a historic Holliman landmark, such as Samuel Holliman's 1741 restored home in Edgecombe County, North Carolina?  Or should we stay in the Jamestown/Richmond, Virginia area, our common American ancestral home?

5. Would one have an interest in holding a Gathering in Buckinghamshire, England and visit historic sites in High Wycombe, Cuddington, Dinton, Sherington and Bedford, Bedfordshire?  Obviously this would require a lot of planning and appropriate expense.

Below in 2014, Carolyn Stonham, owner of the 1699 Holyman House in Cuddington, Buckingshire, England with cousins Lindsay Holliman of England and Glenn Holliman of Pennsylvania, USA.  This thatch cottage would be an important stop on a Hollyman ancestral tour of England.

In my next post, I will get into agenda building.  As one plans a conference, one wants to offer subject matter that is meaningful to as many as possible.  That is why we met in Isle of Wight County, Virginia and began our program with the latest research on our English roots. Everyone there had that interest in common.  

So more thoughts and opinion seeking in the next blog.  Enough for now.  Please take a moment to respond to the above questions.  

Again, just write me at glennhistory@gmail.com or leave a comment below. I will 'combine' thoughts and share the findings.