This is a line from the movie National Treasure when Benjamin Gates (Nicolas Cage) has come to see his father to get some information to assist him in his hunt for the Knights Templar/Free Masons treasure. His father (Jon Voight) tries to discourage him from continuing his search, telling him all the clues were just a ruse to keep the British busy during the Revolutionary War and that there really wasn’t a treasure. Isn’t that how you feel sometimes when you are trying to track down a piece of information and you get just enough to keep you going, but never give a conclusive answer? No X marks the spot, but rather a tiny morsel of data that keeps you engaged in the hunt, but never satisfies the immense hunger.
Well, that is what it has been like lately in my search for the Hollingsworth Family. After my trip to Texas, I found a link to a family tree for Addison Hollingsworth online. It seemed to have a lot of information, but was only “moderately” sourced. I contacted the website owner who gave me the name of the author. I tracked him down in Mississippi and he said he had published a genealogy through the local genealogical society. I joined the society and purchased the Hollingsworth document. It finally arrived this last week and I have spent the morning reading it. It is a gold mine of information on direct and collateral lines, discusses historical context, it confirms the gaps I identified and it makes some leaps through indirect evidence. The author has spent decades researching and interviewing descendants. And so much of it is not cited. I hear Tom Jones and Elizabeth Shown Mills in my head – cringing. I have no doubt the author has all the documentation, but it is not included in the published material. So, these are clues that will keep me searching, finding the sources my self and documenting as I go along.
I am intrigued. The online genealogy has my great-grandmother being buried in the cemetery that I visited when I was in Texas, but I didn’t see the grave when I was there, nor was it listed on the roster I had found online. Has it deteriorated and no longer identifiable? The published genealogy has indirect evidence arguing Isaac Hollingsworth’s father was Samuel Hollingsworth III . Well, back to the primary sources, more trips to the library and maybe back to Texas.
But that will all have to wait, because I have to switch gears and start planning and strategizing my trip to Pennsylvania in July. Time to work on my Revolutionary War ancestors (McNair, Keith, McMaster, Conway) and Civil War family (Mattson)! New treasures await with more clues…….