December 20, 2014

Genealogy Tracking: Wilkersons, Whitmores and L. Frank Boyd – Part 2

Genealogy Tracking: Wilkersons, Whitmores and L. Frank Boyd – Part 2
Part 2: (continued from Part 1 )

When we left Iowa in 1995 it would be two years before we would return again. In the mean time though, I got right on the trail of John Whitmore since Mr. Stucker had given us a copy of a letter from the Medal of Honor Society. The contact information on the letter was somewhat out of date, but I was able to get in touch with the then current representative for the society. Their reason for wanting to contact living family members was to get permission to put a new government supplied headstone on John Whitmore’s grave denoting his status as a Medal of Honor recipient.

Medal of Honor circa 1860’s era

After some false starts (the original stone was broken during shipping) we had our ceremony planned for May of 1997. As it turned out, the family members were there, along with a re-enactment group from Burlington, Iowa, and the local historical society representatives, but the actual stone (again) was delayed in transit and so we had a mockup of what the stone would say. I did not attend the ceremony, so it wasn’t until later that I noticed that the MOH Society man I had been working with had put the wrong death date on John’s marker. His read 1918, when it should have been 1913. Not like you can “white out” anything on a headstone!

John W. Whitmore, headstone at Pleasant Grove, IA

It was during the planning stages of John’s MOH ceremony that our family genealogy quest put us in touch with another cousin who had a letter written to John Whitmore in 1914, that led us to L. Frank Boyd, another illustrious member of the family. (to be continued)

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