Friday, November 11, 2016

Day 10 Genealogy Challenge - Streets of Yesterday

  The challenge is to use yesterday's location and describe your ancestor's walk down the street. Invent a destination and use a city directory and imagination to describe who or what he might have seen on the way. So, today we are back in Nashville, Tennessee in 1880. The day is May 20, and it is a Thursday. We are talking with Samuel Wray age 51, my 4X great grandfather who is out for a walk today with his wife Mary Ann and fifteen year old son Joseph.

Today is going to be a great day! We are heading down Cherry Street towards Broadway and the Capitol building which you can see in the distance. On our way we passed Market Square where there are many vendors selling their wares.  
Normally, I would be working at my job as a shoemaker, but most of Nashville is not working  because it is a very special day for our city. Our neighborhood consists mostly of family homes or rentals. We do own our home which is a real blessing. We moved here after the Civil War from Paducah, Kentucky. I actually fought on the Union Side.
The sun is shining brightly and there are horses and carriages and people walking briskly toward the Capitol. We also have the Centennial Exhibition going on, so the city is more busy than usual. Our plan is to meet our daughter Annie and her husband George Bailey as well as our son William and his wife Mary Hurt. The plan is to meet at 10 am and spend the day at the Exposition after the unveiling. Unveiling of what you ask? Well, they are putting a statue of Andrew Jackson in front of the Capitol! Most of our neighbors are heading down Broadway now as well. There is a real push to find a place to sit or stand to watch and I see some men and boys are actually climbing on top of the Capitol building to get a better view! Can you see them in the photo above? The plaque, I have heard, says "Commander of Victorious Forces at Battle of New Orleans January 8, 1815."
 We decide to stop at a street vendor for a cool glass of lemonade before we find a place for ourselves on the lawn. I am excited to have my children here so they can understand what an incredible man Andrew Jackson was - he was a great soldier , a great statesman and a good president. All should be honored to be here for this day.
At the exposition afterward, they will have an orator give an account of the Battle of New Orleans which should be very stirring to the soul.

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