It's time to meet another one of our Wonderful WikiTreers. This week's member is Denise Jarrett.
Denise became a Wiki Genealogist in February of this year. She's been a great addition to our US Black Heritage project.
What are some of the surnames you are researching?
I am researching my ancestral lines (Harden, Hunter, Winston, Butler), as well as the ancestral lines of my husband’s family (Jarrett, Reese, McDonald).
What are some of the locations you are researching?
My paternal grandparents were born in Caddo Parish, Louisiana. My maternal grandparents were born in Columbiana County, Alabama. My husband’s paternal grandparents were born in White County, Georgia and his maternal grandparents were born in in Lincoln County and Moore County, Tennessee.
When and how did you get interested in family history?
My father was my inspiration for researching our family history. His father died when he was only 5 years old in Pulaski, County, Arkansas. He never got to know his father’s side of the family growing up and when he became a truck driver hauling steel from coast to coast, he would occasionally pass through Caddo Parish and stop at the truck stop on highway 79. He would always chat with the waiters and waitresses in the restaurant and ask them if they knew any Hardens in Caddo Parish. Finally, in 1985, he met someone who knew two of his father’s sisters and as it turns out, was a descendant of one of the aunts. She took him to meet more of his cousins. I’ll never forget his excitement when he got home and said, “I’ve found some of my father’s people,” and shared pictures. One of the polaroid pics was of him with his newly found cousin, who just happened to be the mother of “Mr. Cub”, Ernie Banks!
In 1986, we attended our first family reunion and I met dozens and dozens of cousins.
Tell us about a brick wall you hope to bust through.
My current brick wall is finding parents or at least the slave owners of my paternal great grandparents, Jordan Harden and Lydia Ann Price, whose birthplace is reported on the 1870 as Mississippi.
What are some of your interests outside of genealogy?
Outside of genealogy, I am a member of a Toastmasters International club, I love logic problems and jigsaw puzzles.
[Interview continues below.]