For researchers, marriage records are sometimes elusive

Many of our ancestors eloped. They ran away from home to marry, sometimes in secret, then returned to announce the data.

In my hometown throughout the 1960s, some would say they married on the seaside, nevertheless really had run solely as far as Chattahoochee County, south of Columbus. It was a way of romanticizing their tales, instead of claiming that they’d gone to the closest, most receptive probate select, an individual who not typically turned anyone away. Historically, there are many euphemisms for runaway marriage spots, Gretna Green being a few of the well-known. It refers to an exact place merely over the border from England, in Scotland. A change throughout the laws in 1754 seems to have made it a haven, talked about even in Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice.”

In Columbus, moreover could cross the state line and go to Phenix City, Ala., to get hitched.

Why level out all this? Because it’s essential to suppose exterior of the sector in case you’re having hassle discovering records of an ancestor’s marriage. A pal of mine was simply currently searching for a Chattanooga area marriage and was instructed by the clerk in Ringgold that they should moreover study adjoining Walker County, as a marriage may be recorded in each county, it does not matter what the couple may have acknowledged.

South Carolina didn’t have civil marriages until 1911. So there are no “marriage books” throughout the courthouses sooner than then. Researchers ought to look to church records, newspapers, a family Bible or totally different sources. So in case you’ll be able to’t uncover a marriage, study for spots shut by the place went to elope, or enhance your search solely a county or two away.

Genealogy interviews in EMC’s Georgia Magazine

Professional genealogist Elizabeth Olson and this columnist had been interviewed ultimate fall about how we acquired into household tree and some of our family tales. These interviews, along with family photos and web pages, are throughout the February scenario of “Georgia Magazine,” printed by the Georgia EMC (Electric Membership Corporation). It’s on-line at Many all through the state get this journal, so it was an effective way to promote household tree.

Are cemetery and graveyard interchangeable?

Recently, reporter Tim Chitwood of The Ledger-Enquirer in Columbus acknowledged a reader commented on his article the place he had interchangeably used the phrases cemetery and graveyard. The reader acknowledged he was instructed a graveyard was on a regular basis associated to a church, whereas a cemetery stood alone, harking back to city-owned Oakland Cemetery. Some phrases have older associations than we often contemplate at current. An on-line search turns up loads of dialogue on these phrases.

Contact Kenneth H. Thomas Jr., P. O. Box 901, Decatur, GA 30031 or

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