Shared Photo: Reamer and Ralph Underwood, his 90th Birthday

+7 votes


I wanted to share this family photo of my grandparents with the community. Location: Paw Creek, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. Date: 23 Apr 1987.

If you've read my bio or my posts here, you've frequently heard me mention my grandparents, Ralph and Reamer Neal Underwood, and I just wanted to share one of their pics and about their influence on my taking up the hobby of genealogy.

These were the two people most responsible for my interest in genealogy. I grew up across the pasture from them in Paw Creek, and my earliest memories include them. From my childhood, they told me the stories of their ancestors and relatives and took me to many of the cemeteries where their folks were buried. As we cared for the gravestones, they told me about all the folks buried nearby, pointing out how they were related to this person or that person, and what they remembered about them (or what they were told). 

They also shared stories behind items they owned, many of which I own, including Civil War letters which Grandpa inherited from his mother. I have Granny's father's pocket watch. I was given all the family Bibles on both sides, one belonging to Grandpa's grandfather, William A. Lawing, published in 1820.

The house in the background was built in 1901 by Granny's father, George James Luther Neal, with the help of his cousin, Jacob Sidney Underwod, Grandpa's father. The house still stands, one of the few old houses left in the neighborhood, and as Charlotte expands it may not last much longer.

The occasion of this pic was my Grandpa's 90th birthday celebration. He lived nearly another seven years. Granny lived another nine.

I've not finished Grandpa's bio yet, but getting there. Granny's is next.

Most beloved of my ancestors, Granny and Grandpa!
Click here for the image details page or here for the full-sized version (2082 x 1482).


WikiTree profile: Ralph Underwood
in The Tree House by Pip Sheppard G2G Astronaut (2.5m points)
This is a beautiful picture.  Is Underwood a common name?  I am working on a genealogy present for my mother in laws birthday in July.  I am working her family line of Cox further and at the same time trying to work on the children of her ancestors.

Ralph Underwood's stopped me as one of the children is named "EDWARD ERSKINE UNDERWOOD" He was born in 1851, Chelsea London. His father is Oswald Augustus Underwood and his mother was Phebe G. Underwood.  Is he in your Underwood line.  The reason I have him at all is because at some point someone in the Underwood family married into the Cox family in England.

Just curious is he is related to you?


Hi, Taylor. It’s always a possibility, but Underwood is a rather common name. My Underwoods settled in what is now Maryland in the middle 1600s. I’ve seen two origins, one directly from Dorset and another from London, so maybe we do connect somewhere.

Let me tell you a story about my Underwood origins. The oral history sent me down a rabbit hole. I was visiting beautiful Yorkshire in 1980 and stopped by a library. I asked the lady at the desk if that library had genealogical information. (Yes) The answer to my next question dashed my hopes. “Do you know what parish your ancestors were from? Around here, Underwood is not an uncommon name.”

Well, I had no idea, so I left empty handed. Of course, I would have anyway as the oral history was wrong on several points, though here were kernels of truth there. It wasn’t until last year that another cousin broke through next the brick wall. No where near Yorkshire. 

So, who knows? I guess we could claim kinship for the sake of a possible future connection. smiley

I wish you the best is your research! 


That was a great story.  The Underwood's intermarried with the Cox's which is why I was asking about the Underwood's.  I had not previously come across the surname before.

Knowing what church your ancestors went to is a tough question.  You may know what church they were married in or had their children baptized in and just pray that is their normal church!


3 Answers

+7 votes
Best answer
What a beautiful couple Pip, your grandparents really look so very kind.

I can certainly understand why you like to share them they sound like a amazing couple.

How sweet you are having granddads pocket watch that means every time you look at it you will be thinking of him.

What a fantastic gift they have given you, that make you start genealogy

What I can se of the house it look like it is made of tree, it is a great house, also even more interesting because it was built of your granny father.

How wonderful your granddad got to so high a ages

Thank you so much for sharing this amazing story and told the story about your grandparents what a treat to read
by Susan Laursen G2G Astronaut (2.9m points)
selected by Pip Sheppard
+5 votes
Thank you Pip for sharing this wonderful Photo of your Grandparents an their house. Your Grandparents look very happy and in good health. How lucky you are for all the knowledge end encouragement with regard to Genealogy, The graves and info on the various people and all the documents and photo's  and Bibles left to you. What a treasure!
by Shaun Doust G2G6 Pilot (345k points)
+3 votes
Pip, thank you for sharing this picture of your grandparents. They look like very lovely people to me.

Pip, they look like the kind of grandparents that would be very loving and caring, and I can tell from the way that you wrote about them that they not only look the part, but they were actually that way.

They remind me of my grandparents, and I am very glad that you had all of those experiences with them while you were growing up.

Thank you for sharing.
by Cheryl Hess G2G Astronaut (1.7m points)

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