Farley’s Furlough

farley-thomas-willis-1863-furloghThomas Willis Farley was born in Buckingham County, Virginia in 1841. Having three older sisters, he was the first son and youngest child when he lost his mother around six months of age. His father remarried and two more children were born to the family. He is my 2nd great grandfather. Continue reading “Farley’s Furlough”

Mystery Photo – Men In Aprons

kanawha-falls?-masons?This photo was among a dozen or so large photos of the Rigg and Farley families in the Kanawha Falls area of West Virginia that were in the possession of my grandfather, then my father, and now to me. There is no notation on the photo and thus far the date, identities and location are a complete unknown to me (hence the “mystery” tag on this story). I’ve not done any cleanup of this photo, but you can click it to see a larger version, age spots and all.

The aprons, rods, pendants and other paraphernalia suggest to me that this is a group of Freemasons. I assume there is someone from the Farley or Rigg family in this photo; my grandfather and great-grandfather were both quite committed members. As I have no photo of Thomas Willis Farley (my 2nd great-grandfather), I like to speculate that maybe he is the bearded fellow seated on the front row with the jaunty hat.

Awkward Family Photo


Is this not the scariest picture of relatives you have ever seen? The mean woman who looks like she would eat you for lunch, the old woman whose hand is turned up in a secret “save me” signal. The man kidnapping the baby! And the mustachioed man calmly ignoring the madness around him. Continue reading “Awkward Family Photo”

Grandmam’s Toffee

This recipe comes from my grandmother, Audrey Vellence Hale Farley, and I absolutely adore the result. The story below was written by one of Grandmam’s great-grandchildren for a school project several years back. The “carefully protected” comment comes from my observation of a thread on Facebook when my cousin was making this during the holidays in 2008: Continue reading “Grandmam’s Toffee”