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Trip Report
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Wed Jun 1
Pictures

1:00p Nancy Pauls at Mennonite Library and Archives at Bethel


Anna Mears Found. Yesterday I forgot to record the locations of those 1871 burials, so this morning, it's back to Prairie Lawn, where I made an amazing discovery. Overnight the marker for Anna Mears, the earliest burial, magically has appeared! She is the third name on a single marker headed by two of her sisters, Laura and Lottie. Lottie also is an 1871 death, and I had looked at the information for both Laura and Lottie yesterday. Anna is on the same marker, but below them. Good grief!

Maybe the morning light helped make Anna more visible. A different angle of the sun can make an old marker significantly more or less readable, but there also is another important lesson here.

We see with our mind. Our eyes are just the lenses through which light passes on its way to the brain. Our mind sometimes sees what it expects to see, or wants to see, rather than what our eyes are telling it. That happens when eyewitnesses give two different accounts of the same event, and it happened to me yesterday when I looked at the Mears marker.

I have seen many markers with two names side by side and then other information below that. This is the first marker I ever have seen where that information was for a third person. As a professional scientist, supposedly well trained in making accurate observations, I can only blush. What a botch!

At any rate, I am now happy to know that Anna Mears, the earliest known burial at Prairie Lawn has a marker, rather than an unmarked grave. Another detail pinned down.

Nancy Pauls. At 1pm I have a date with Nancy Pauls, again at Bethel, to see if we can use Ancestry.com to help her find a couple of the possible Revolutionary War guys she is looking for. That project was a total loss. I couldn't make heads or tails out of what Ancestry had, and nothing else we tried helped either. I'm not sure where to go next on this one.

Paul F. Good. I hang out at Bethel until closing time at 5pm, and then decide to make a run down to Benton to photograph the grave of my Aunt Grace Good Wright. I find her without too much trouble, and then I meet Paul Good, son of Frederick J. and Minnie Bell Good, of the family of Catholic Goods. This requires a trip back to Newton to fill in my cousin John, because according to John, his dad Sam had a real prejudice against Catholics. John's mouth fell open about as far as mine did when I told him.

Sam's sister Grace, however, apparently did not share his prejudice. Frederick, Minnie Bell and Grace all lived in Benton, and when I return to Peabody, Chuck tells me that these Goods all used to socialize regularly.

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