Tag Archives: Eatonton

Winking and Fielding My Borgus and Abrams Connections: Family Family Everywhere!

Georgia On My Mind: Milledgeville’s Borgus & Lewis Family A Descendant’s Journey continues with some groundbreaking revelations. The Abrams and Borgus Family Tree Three Branches. What’s in a Name? The Meaning of It All! Those are the questions I raised with my blog dated January 23, 2014. In that blog I tracked my journey on the Borgus paternal line of my family. I came across a number of answers after my peeking around in my ancestors’ closets. I closed out the blog with two questions still looming in my Georgia On My Mind: Milledgeville’s Borgus & Lewis Family: A Descendant’s Journey ~Reeves, Duval, Jones, Arnold, Huff.

In the course of tracking the ancestral line of Borgus, I found there was another family name that I needed to review. It was with some detective work that I now have an additional name to add to my paternal line “Abrams” and as well Winkfield. I had some limited knowledge of “Winkfield” as it was noted on the Milledgeville, Baldwin County, Georgia 1930 census. It was noted as the married name of my widowed great great grandmother Jennie Borgus (Winkfield) when she lived in the household of her one and only child Corrine Borgus Lewis married to John Tom Lewis, (I came across the Winkfield link July 2009 but had been unsuccessful in finding any documentation beyond the name on the 1930 census). Ancestry.com was the online source of my research and census data.

Initially I was tracking “Winkfield” to see if I could locate the first name of Jennie’s spouse. It was initially a mystery. Because I was somewhat uncertain if “Winkfield” was blood relationship or if it was a marriage that occurred many years after great grandmother had her daughter Corrine Borgus, I did not include it.  My interest was to see if I could find the father of my great grandmother Corrine. What began to develop as noted in the previous blog was a surprise. I found out that Jennie Borgus had been married and widowed twice. The first marriage was to Isaac Abrams (aka Abrahams) on January 3, 1884. (It was through my use of familysearch.org that I found this elusive marriage documentation). As noted previously Isaac Abrams turned out to be a childhood neighbor on the 1870 census. Jennie Abrams is noted as the wife of Isaac Abrams on the 1900 BaldwinCounty, Milledgeville Georgia census page 23 of 31.Census information courtesy of Ancestry.com.

     It was in tracing the name Jennie Abrams noted to be a widow (Baldwin County, Milledgeville, Georgia 1910 census page 17 of 41) that I directed my search for Mr. Winkfield between 1910 and 1930 to look for the marriage certificate and census documentation for Jennie’s second marriage to Mr. Winkfield, first name still unknown. It was when I inputted the data of the widow Jennie Abrams married to a “Winkfield” that the information popped up. It was a February 16, 1919 marriage certificate in Baldwin County, Milledgeville, Georgia for a Randal Winkfield married to Gennie Abrams. This documented the first name of the second husband of Jennie Borgus Abrams Winkfield. “Randal” wow after all of these years and I had finally found him. It was also further documented when the Baldwin County Georgia 1920 census also noted a Randal Winfield married to Jennie Winfield. Courtesy of Ancestry.com 1920 census page 56 of 60. (Georgia Marriage Records from select Counties, years 1828-1978 for Gennie Abrams /Baldwin Marriages, White and Colored, years 1916-1920: page 188 of 313)

     It had taken me five years to finally track down the documentation. In the search for information on Corrine Borgus Lewis my paternal great grandmother, I found out that great grandmother Corrine had been born to a sixteen year old single mother. I learned of her mother’s name Jennie Borgus and her grandparents who raised her, Andrew and Missouri Borgus as noted on the 1870 and 1880 census. I also found out that Corrine’s mom was the widow, Jennie Winkfield noted on the 1930 census. I further learned that her mom Jennie Winkfield had been married previously to Isaac Abrams a childhood neighbor. They were married on January 3, 1884 three years after Corrine’s birth. It is highly suspect that Isaac Abrams was the natural birth father of Corrine Borgus. In the midst of these finds it was also noted that Isaac Abrams had a sister Martha Ann Abrams who married Henry Borgus the younger brother of Jennie. This is noted on the Putnam County, Georgia marriage license for January 22, 1897.(Courtesy Ancestry.com Georgia Marriage Record from selected counties 1828-1978 for Henry Borgus page 294 of 329).The Abrams and Borgus families were connected by the marriage their children. It was also further noted on a 1900 census that in the household of Abraham Abrams (the older brother of Isaac Abrams as noted on the 1870 and 1880 census) Abraham Abrams and his wife Fannie were raising a granddaughter named Anna B. Borgus age three… It seems that the Abrams and Borgus families are connected through at least three different relations. The various censuses, marriage certificates and even gravesites provided the answer to my question, What’s in a Name? The Meaning of It All!

As I complete the first saga I am now left with additional questions on the next generation of Borgus. The Abram and Borgus connections pose new questions. Who are the parents to the baby Anna B. Borgus noted above? With so many links, I am amazed that I am just finding out about the Abrams name in my family tree. I must add the following information. In my search for Borgus family connections, a few years ago I received a hint on my ancestry.com family tree. It led me to a group of Borgus descendants in Cape May, New Jersey. They were the descendants of Henry Borgus. Henry Borgus is the younger brother of my great -great grandmother “Jennie Borgus Abrams Winkfield.” I am still attempting to finalize a connection with the descendants of this Borgus branch. It is a work in progress.

Now for the drum role of a surprise! I received a post and an inquiry on my blog. It was from L.Abrams. He is a descendant searching for information on the Abrams family connections out of Eatonton, Putnam County, Georgia. Yes, ain’t that a peach. So I am off to a new branch. I am searching for where our connections may be linked. Now I know that the ancestors are shaking this Borgus-Abrams tree so that I can find my long lost family members. As I begin this new search in the Georgia On My Mind: Milledgeville’s Borgus & Lewis Family: A Descendant’s Journey ~Reeves, Duval, Jones, Arnold, Huff I salute my ancestors.  I say Ashe Ashe to the Borgus, Abrams (Abraham) ancestors for all of their guidance. Note I use both Abrams and Abraham as the last name “the surname” is used interchangeably on the earlier census and marriage certificates. One lesson that I found very vital is to enter with a sense of unknowing when engaging the ancestors. They will always surprise you. Included in my continued search of the Borgus Abram connection, I will extend the journey into Alabama. Andrew Borgus the father of Jennie Borgus and the grandfather of Corrine is noted on the 1920 Census Eatonton Putnam County, Georgia (page 1 of 51) as an 80 year old widower. He is living in the household of his daughter Lily Borgus Cobb and her husband George Cobb. Andrew Borgus (Sr.) notes on this census that his parents were born in Alabama. So when I return to the trail of the Borgus extended family I will be searching in the state of Alabama.

While I unravel the next set of mysteries on the Borgus and Abrams line, I will begin my next blog on my Huff ancestors before they Huff and Puff and blow my ancestral tree down. Hasn’t this been a peach of a story?

What’s in a Name? Continuation on Corrine Borgus

Well the Cobbler is hot and the tea is sweet as peaches, so let us continue with our conversation on “Mother” my great gran Corrine Borgus Lewis. As I noted in my blog of last week, Mother was an only child. I always thought that my grandfather’s (Orian Ullyses Lewis, I just love his name)relative who we called Aunt Babe was my great grandmother’s sister but it turns out that she was my grand dad’s relation on his father’s side (John Tom Lewis) we will talk about dem Lewis’ later.
Mother Corrine was an only child. She was the daughter of Jenny (aka Jane) Borgus and her father as of yet is Patria Ignatio to me. ( later in the blog I will share a funny joke re Patria Ignatio). Mother Corrine was raised by her mom’s parents. According to census records Corrine Borgus carried the name of her maternal Granddad “Andrew Borgus” and Missouri Borgus her grandmother. Why? Well it appears as if her mom Jennie Borgus was a sixteen year old mother living in her parents’ home and single when she gave birth to her one and only child Corrine Borgus on November 4, 1881. Jennie herself was born 1865 in Putnam County Georgia as noted on the 1870 and 1880 census.
Jennie Borgus was a teenage single mom. Knowing my great Grandmother Corrine and her calm and dignified manner, I wondered how did this impact her as a child and throughout her life? Now this is information I unearthed as I was sleuthing through my ancestors’ closets. My maternal grandmother(Fleta Arnold Lewis) who is the one who gave me the limited data on my Lewis/Borgus clan always alluded that her husband, my grand daddy Orian Ullyses Lewis, was closed mouth about his family matters as was his mother Great gran Corrine Borgus (Lewis).
Upon tracking down the census of 1870, 1880 and 1900 and piecing together who Mother Corrine’s people were this is how I learned Corrine’s mom’s name and her grandparents names. It was as well the source my discovery of the circumstance of my great Gran Mother being born out of wedlock. I wondered about the circumstance. Was it the result of young love or was there some other circumstance at hand. I so wanted to believe in the idea of young love and searched the neighboring households on the 1880 census for a young male close in age to Jennie Borgus. No youthful teen male in age proximity appeared in any of the neighboring homes. I began to wonder? Now I must say that there was one family name and household that I gravitated to on that 1880 census as having some potential. Now I can not explain why, I can only say that it is the uncanny energy that engulfs me when the ancestors drop cues and clues in my energy zone. More about this circumstance later.
So for quite sometime I am left pondering this information. I came across this information after my grand parents had transitioned so I had to depend on my ancestor guides. It is only recently that my aunt and a first cousin once removed have also begun to recall the very private whispers and acknowledge that there was knowledge of Mother Corrine being born out side of marriage to a sixteen year old mother. They also allude to the belief that there existed more to the story that seemed to be steeped in shame beyond a teen pregnancy. The fact that Mother was the only child of her teenage mother raised my professional obstetrical inquisitiveness as to this solitary pregnancy.
Try as I may I cannot track any information on the possible father of my great gran Corrine Borgus. Because of the absence of the 1890 census I actually lose track of Mother Corrine’s mom Jennie Borgus after 1880 census. Now I have to admit all of my information I gather from back tracking from my searching Mother Corrine on the 1930 census. On that 1930 census she is married to great gran John Tom Lewis and her mother Jennie is living in the household with them at 65 years of age. Yes! This was my first breakthrough some years back. Although the search of Jennie under her widow status of Jennie Winkfield yielded no data as to the paternity of her daughter Corrine. Even my search of the Winkfield name in Georgia was not forth coming for I did not have the first name of Jennie Borgus Winkfield’s husband…..and after all these years later searching on Ancestry.com, I still do not know but I am getting close. You see in the past few weeks after joining AAGSAR, I have been blessed by so many others sharing other resources such as familysearch.org. The first visit to this site and I am astounded to find out that Winkfield was the name of Jennie Borgus’ second husband! She was married previously and then she was widowed early in her life. Jennie never had any children out of either of these two marriages. The census notes Jennie only had one pregnancy her entire life and that was her daughter Corrine. Jennie married for the first time in 1884, three years after the birth of her one and only child. Now are you ready to know the name of her first husband well hold on to your hat. Remember earlier I noted that my intuitive sense was leading me to a particular household whenever I tried to decipher possible connections for the Teen mother Jennie. Well the household that I gravitated to was a household of Abram/Abraham yet there was not a teen male in this household….Well on January 3,2014 I find the marriage certificate for Jennie Borgus who marries a Isaac Abraham on get this JANUARY 3,1884! I locate her first marriage certificate on the exact anniversary date of her marriage 130 years to the date…And with the surname of the Abraham/Abram household I was peeking into. But there was no Isaac in that household on the 1880 census…that is okay for I am too overjoyed with these ancestral connections. Now armed with this first Marriage I will track Jennie Borgus Abram or Abraham to see if I can locate her second Marriage to the elusive Mr. Winkfield to find his first name.
Unfortunately I still have no data on the paternity of Mother Corrine’s father. I could surmise the possibility that Jennie Borgus’ first husband could have been her daughter’s father yet the fact that Corrine’s name remained Borgus, her mom’s maiden name, leads me to believe that Isaac Abraham/Abrams was not the dad. The search for these answers continue. Now I will leave you with something to ponder. Corrine was raised in her grandparents’ home for at least the first formative years of her life. Yet again the absence of the 1890 census does not allow us definitive data as to whose household Corrine was in after the marriage of Jennie Borgus to Isaac Abraham. The following is known. Corrine as a young bride to Tom Lewis lives within a few homes to her grandparents Andrew and Missouri Borgus (1900 census). Also from family information, a written journal from one of Corrine’s daughters,(Gussie Lewis Simmons) notes that Corrine was often referenced as a sister to the younger siblings of Jennie Borgus as opposed to being their niece. Well, now you have it! These are some of the details as to what’s in a name, but oh so much more to tell…..
Let me clear these empty cobbler dishes and tea cups so that I can begin the process for my peach preserves…I will be back in a moment with more exciting news about Missouri Borgus A Georgia Peach A Seed out of Africa.



BORGUS: What’s In A Name?

A New Year and a new venture. “Borgus” the ancestral name of my paternal grandfather’s mother. She carried the name of her maternal grandparents. This is the first eye opener that I experienced as I began to track the ancestors of my paternal grandfather, Orian Ullysses Lewis born February 4, 1913 in Putnam County, Eatonton, Georgia and later lived in Baldwin County ( Milledgeville).

I have always been fascinated by the names of my paternal grandfather and his siblings as well as the uncommon maiden name of my paternal great grandmother Corrine Borgus. Mother as we called her was a very refined and dignified woman. She was statuesque standing close to six feet tall which was extraordinary for a woman born November 4, 1881.

I remember Mother quite well. Let me digress for a moment. I was blessed to be born into a multigenerational family with all four of my grandparents, three great grand mothers and two great grand fathers. My great grand dads were alive for the early beginnings of my formative years, my three great grand mothers alive and well into my early adult years and my grandparents well into my middle age years.

I lived in the family home with my great grands and grand parents at various stages of my early life. I recall from my earliest memories “Mother”. She was 96 years of age when she died in August 1975 and I was called home from my first months away at College to attend her funeral services.

As an infant and a young toddler I spent many hours with Mother. I slept in the same Black Spanish Oak four poster bed with her….I always climbed into her matching rocking chair rocking myself as fast as I could. I would sit at her feet as she pinched her snuff and chewed it daily each morning…The small snuff tin with the picture of a Georgia Peach on the label. The very picture of the Peach would entice me each time to ask “Mother” if I could have some peaches…. thinking in a little child’s mind that the tobacco were peach leaves  that must certainly taste like peaches, since Mother chewed them regularly…In any event I knew and loved my great grand mother Corrine Borgus Lewis. It fascinated me even as a young child that she was born in a century other than the twentieth century or that her birth year was 1881. I would often pester her with questions, “was your mother a slave did you know your grand parents or even your great grand mother ” ….Can you tell me what it was like ….She would never answer the questions ….Her response always “Baby you do not have to concern yourself with those old ways”…. ” you keep your eyes forward do not look backward you just study do well in school advance yourself….No concern about old ways.”

It is this unknowing about my great grand mother’s life that motivated me to track her familial name to see who her people were. I had her name, her birth date, her place of birth and approximate marriage date to Grand dad John Tom Lewis… Just as closed mouth as my great grand mother was my grandfather Orian. He lived to be 92 he died May 5, 2005 and as much time as I spent with him he shed very little light on his life in Georgia or his family ancestors on either the Borgus line or the Lewis line. So it is this silence that has fueled my years of sleuthing through my ancestors closets to find out their story…..Journey with me as I share what the Ancestors revealed to me on this long long journey……5 plus decades of harvesting this Borgus Peach of A Story…Let me prepare a peach cobbler and brew a cup of peach tea and I will be back in a Moment!

I did not realize that Mother was an only child until I began to survey countless census records to gather information on the Borgus ancestors.