Meet our Members: Denise Jarrett

+20 votes

Hi everyone!

imageIt'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.]

WikiTree profile: Denise Jarrett
in Policy and Style by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.6m points)

How long have you been on WikiTree and what do you spend the most time doing?

I joined WikiTree in Feb, 2020. I am currently spending most of my time creating and connecting profiles of the family members from my family and my husband’s family.

I am currently a member of the US Black Heritage project. I plan to soon join the Louisiana Families project, which are both in line with the profiles I have been adding on my paternal ancestors and cousins.

I also participated in my first Source-A-Thon in October, which has helped me improve my skill for finding sources through multiple sites, like Family Search, not just Ancestry.

What brought you to WikiTree?

I discovered WikiTree quite by accident while surfing YouTube and found a RootTech video. 

What is your favorite thing about WikiTree?

I love having the ability to collaborate with other family members. I love the Connection Finder and the projects.

If you could improve one thing about WikiTree, what would it be?

Hmmm, I'm still new to the tool and I am learning something new everyday, so I can’t think of improvements just yet.

What is an example of how WikiTree has helped you with your genealogy or how you’ve helped genealogy with WikiTree?

WikiTree has helped me understand the importance of sourcing. Information I have gathered from other family members has traditionally not been sourced when I entered it in Ancestry. Now I find myself gathering those sources for profiles I’m adding to WikiTree and going back to Ancestry and adding the sources there as well.

I now schedule ZOOM meetings with family members to collaborate and have managed to get a few cousins to collaborate with me on WikiTree.

Any tips for someone just starting out on WikiTree?

Remember you are not alone in the search! You are now a member of a global genealogy collaboration team who is willing and able to help you with any questions or challenges you may have.

Hi Denise,

I would really like to figure out how we can connect since we are 20 degrees from each other. My parents are from the same neck of the woods as your grandparents. My father from Moore County, Tennessee and my mom is from Winchester, Franklin County, Tennessee. 

A lot of my relatives are from Lincoln County, Tennessee 

My 85 year old mom tested her DNA and I was so thrilled. 

Here is moms link:


5 Answers

+6 votes
Best answer

Hello lovely lady! How wonderful to get to know more about you. I didn't know you were related to Ernie Banks! How cool. I see we also share a love for logic puzzles. I used to do those a lot as a kid, but now solve genealogy puzzles instead. You are a great addition to WikiTree and I'm so glad I've gotten to know you through project work and Team Rosessmiley

by Emma MacBeath G2G6 Pilot (695k points)
selected by Pip Sheppard
+8 votes
You are  a great inspiration to other wikitreers.
by David Hughey G2G Astronaut (1.3m points)
+7 votes
Hiya Denise! I really loved the story of how your father approached genealogy! Also the way you found WikiTree.
by Lucy Selvaggio-Diaz G2G6 Pilot (481k points)
+3 votes
Denise, your father's search for relatives is inspirational. Thanks for sharing this!
by Pip Sheppard G2G Astronaut (2.0m points)
+2 votes
Hello Denise, I'm Cheryl.

It's nice to get to know you, good to have you introduced in this way.  I hope you continue to enjoy WikiTree.
by Cheryl Skordahl G2G6 Pilot (217k points)

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