Serendipity...genealogical discoveries with a little help from above.

Stuck in an Envelope

by Sandy

My e-mail address is
and I live in Washington.

This really happened to me

In researching my family history, I always set aside my mother's paternal line for later, as it was just impossible to trace.

Once having great luck at genealogy and reading the book "In Search of our Ancestors 101 inspiring stories of serendipity" I decided to write my dead grandfather, John Atteberry, a letter pleading for his guidance in finding his first family. I put the letter in the book and forgot about it.

John ATTEBERRY, who abandoned my grandmother Lenore and their children when my mother was just a small baby and grandma was pregnant with their 3rd and last child, Clyde abt. 1932. They were originally "married" in Clackamas County, OR Sep 1929. They were living in Portland, Oregon when he left to never be seen or heard again. Shortly after John left, Lenore went to the courthouse to file for divorce and the clerk told her it wasen't necessary, because the marriage was never legal. She said John was already married and oddly enough he was just paroled only a year before their marriage for the charges of Polygamy.

Just last year my cousin in Alabama, son of Clyde, sent me court documents which he obtained from the State of Oregon from polygamy charges. I had these papers....the only proof that John ever existed. What really bothered me and I posted many messages boards, was that I knew that from John's first marriage there were children. He actually states "I have a wife and children". Knowing the decendants were out there somewhere, I was waiting for clues.

Well just a few months ago, decendants of Henry Lee Atteberry decided to search for their long lost great grandfather John Atteberry and came across messages on and contacted my cousin in Alabama. At first we weren't sure if we really had a "true" connection, even knowing that their "John Atteberry" had abandoned his wife, May Blaylock Atteberry and children in Oregon.

Here is me...very into my genealogy, I was determined to find out if these were our long lost cousins.

One thing genealogist ALWAYS need to remember look over documents which they may have stuck in an envelope for later. Sure enough, I pulled out the court papers I had for John Atteberry and right there in Black and white number one witness, B F BLAYLOCK. After MUCH research we did find that B F BLAYLOCK was Benjamin Franklin Blaylock, May's father. BOOM! Proof we needed.

Now the BLAYLOCK/ATTEBERRY descendants are having better luck than I ever did and they are helping me to learn more about my grandfather. We are becoming very close as if we knew we were family all along. Please check out my website DEDICATED to the mystery and search of JOHN ATTEBERRY. Searching for the Ancestry of John Atteberry

Submitted:  May 9 2002

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