What with needing a large family for the purposes of effectively managing the family farm and living in the approximated 100 years before the pill, my great grandfather, George Alex Lineberry, and his wife, Rhoda Harmon Lineberry, continued the expanding number of Lineberry family members in the Blue Ridge Mountain region of Carroll County, Virginia. My daughter and I found the picture below of George and Rhoda on a visit to the Harmon Museum in Woodlawn, Virginia.
George and Rhoda married February 26, 1867 in Sulphur Springs, Carroll County, Virginia. Their first child was born January 15, 1868 but only lived a brief 16 days, dying on January 31, 1868. They had ten children with eight of them living to adulthood. Those eight children brought 51 grandchildren into the family. George remarried after Rhoda’s death and had another five children, whom we have not tracked beyond their names.
Another photo Kay and I found at the Harmon Museum is of a family reunion that took place in about 1905 and gives a visual impression of what a portion of the family increase looked like. My great-grandfather is in the center of the back row next to my grandfather (my greatgrandmother was already deceased) and though George was remarried, the family photo seemed to be for the original family, possibly due to the reunion likely being held as a response to Jacob’s only visit back to Virginia after he left for Missouri in 1894.
The complexity of tracking 51 families from one family line plus another likely 50 from the other half of that family, another approximated 100 families through my patrilineal line (that’s now 200 approximated families); add to that the probable 200 families from my daughter’s adopted grandparent’s line and the 200 families from her husband’s family and you can see that 600 family lines is beyond the scope of time to manage. We do have some of the spouses and children of those 51 grandchildren listed, but our major focus has been getting informtion on our direct line through George and Rhoda’s third child, Jacob Wesley Lineberry and his wife, Eva Keithley.
Jacob and Eva contributed 7 of those 51 grandchildren; their first and sixth children (William Seibert and George) never married and died in their 30s. The remaining five children provided 12 great grandchildren. Nine of those great grandchildren provided 20 known great-great-grandchildren (two of the children presumably had children but were of a marriage that ended in divorce – they moved to another state and took the name of their stepfather; another great greatchild died at birth).
That means Jacob and Eva contributed 39 children to the family’s increase. If each of the eight children of George and Rhoda had a similar increase, the total by the 4th generation would have been an increase of approximately 340.
Both my grandparents, greatgrandparents and one uncle died many years before I was born. Most of my aunts, uncles and cousins lived in the same town with me as a I grew up so I was able to interact with all of them. One uncle, aunt and two cousins lived in Virginia and I only saw them on their occasional visits to Oklahoma City.
I was taken to Virginia for a visit in about 1945 and though I have no specific memory of any of those extended family members, I likely met the three great aunts and uncles who were still living as well as many of my mother’s cousins. Because my mother and her brothers lived with their aunts and uncles from 1922 until 1929 and had a close connection to all of them, mother would have had a strong desire to see everyone of them on her visit.