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Research Ramblings – brick by brick and brick walls

28 Feb

Been busy with field research continuing at MaeMae Cemetery in Puunui. Nearly finished with photographing all the headstones and still have to transcribe to my spreadsheet. Then to compare to the items found in digital archives of other known burials to the site. Still need to map the stones and reach out to Kaumakapili Church to see what records and information they might have as well as sharing my research with them.

I’m also spending much time in Facebook Groups – like Helu Papa Kūʻauhau and also the Native Hawaiian Genealogy Society (NHGSoc) page. Another useful resource has been the group Portuguese Hawaiian Genealogy. The camaraderie of the groups is infectious and there are many ‘ohana connections.

Spent some time learning more of my North Carolina roots – and learned that some of my ancestors and family were brick makers and instrumental in building and supplying the brick for buildings like the Mills River Chapel Methodist church. The Chapel is one of a few antebellum churches in Henderson County and the only one used for worship since its construction. The King family farm passed this craft down through generations. Building more family history – brick by brick.

Looking forward to the Akana ‘Ohana reunion coming up in mid-July and will be returning to Hilo where my Great-Great-Grandparents Wong Sing Akana and Kaili Kaapuiki made their home. My Great-Grandmother Ami Akana Lee was the eldest child. It will be exciting to meet many distant cousins in person for the first time after months of corresponding online.

Finally a brick wall has been busted — and I’ll post a more detailed article about this find. In September, I discovered that Virginia K. Ayres – my husband’s great-grandmother – had a blood connection to the name KAMA. It turns out her birth father was known as Kama. Well I ran the search again on Chronicling America and a new article came up this time “Missing Girl has been found” … with his first name and the brother’s first name. Very exciting and now some concrete material to continue the search to find her blood kin and perhaps more of her story.

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