Monday, September 26, 2011

Amanuensis Monday: Verba Fulkerson's 83rd Birthday

Amanuensis: A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another.

I continue my project to transcribe family letters, journals, newspaper articles, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts. Not only do the documents contain genealogical information, the words breathe life into kin - some I never met - others I see a time in their life before I knew them.

I began this project back in February of 2009, and since then, many others have joined in on the meme.  Why do we transcribe? I provide my three reasons in the linked post. You may find others. If you participate, feel free to leave a link to your post in the comments.


This week, in a first, I transcribe a document relating to the ancestry of my fiancée. This is a newspaper article from The Sikeston Herald noting the 83rd birthday of her 2nd great grandmother, Verba Blackman Fulkerson (1857-1947). [The article was found at NewspaperArchive.]

Sikeston Herald – December 12, 1940 – Page 4


Mrs. Verba Fulkerson, who resides with her daughter, Mrs. Robert Gober, and family, near Vanduser, observed her 83d birth anniversary on Sunday, Dec. 8.

Sixty-two children and grandchildren were present to enjoy the sumptuous dinner served and the the delightful social afternoon which followed.

Mrs. Fulkerson assisted in preparing the dinner. For one of her years she is most active and requires no personal attention. Among the many pretty and useful gifts received was a box of face powder and a jar of cleansing cream which Mrs. Fulkerson uses daily to keep “her school girl complexion.”


1) I like the phrase, 'birth anniversary.'  It should be used more often.

2) Most of my great great grandparents didn't have that many offspring.  I may try to see how many of Verba's descendants we can identify when the 1940 census is released next year.

3) The photograph of Verba to the left was found in a Public Member Tree at, and comes from the collection of Alix Reichert, who blogs at Hard Act to Follow. It is shared with Alix's permission.

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