Hoyle History

"There is a history in all men's lives." – Shakespeare

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Bad news – Mom said we’re not related

Posted on June 15th, 2008

I loved school and always scored excellent grades in History classes. I didn’t care if it was American or World History, I loved anything to do with famous people and events from the past.

During my studies I always had a nagging curiosity about where my ancestors would have been and what they were doing during major historic events. Were some of my ancestors famous knights going on the Crusades? Were others soldiers during the Napoleonic wars? Were any involved in the American Revolution or the Civil War? If so, who’s side were they on? Were they “johnny rebs” or did they wear Union blue? Did any of my family meet George Washington or Robert E. Lee in person? Read the rest of this entry »

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Watching an old movie with Mom

Posted on June 15th, 2008

One of the joys of growing up was staying home from school and watching afternoon TV with Mom. For me this was the case no matter the reason I was out of school or for how long. I must admit that sometimes I would just need a day off and would feign illness (like the “berri-berri disease” i.e., “I’m berri berri sick and I don’t want to go to school today” disease).

In the 1950s afternoon TV was made up of soap operas (some like “General Hospital” are still on the air), cheapy game shows like “Queen for a Day,” Liberace’s daily show, and lots of old black and white movies from the 1930s and 1940s.

One day a movie came on called “According to Mrs. Hoyle” starring Spring Byington (”December Bride”). Read the rest of this entry »

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Grandmother hands down a keepsake

Posted on June 15th, 2008

When I was about ten years old, my grandmother, Hersa Mae [Dodson] Hoyle, decided to go through some of her old photos and keepsakes. As she showed me her collection of old sepia toned photographs, she came across a rather battered old piece of parchment document that listed in very fancy German BlackLetter text a listing of my family’s history in America from “German Peter Hoyle” down to a “John Hoyle” who died just before the American Civil War in 1857. 

She explained to me that those were my ancestors – people who had lived, as she put it, “In the olden days.”  She coudn’t tell me much because it wasn’t her side of the family, but she pointed out that the names “Peter” and “John” seemed to be repeated each generation. Read the rest of this entry »

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