Category: Famous Family Trees

April 16th, 2013

The Myths and Mysteries of Tiger WOODS’ Ancestry Part III

Part I examined the WOODS family origins and Part II detailed what could be found on Maude CARTER who married Miles WOODS. These are Earl WOODS, Tiger’s father, parents.

In this part, we will study what can be found on Maude CARTER’s father: Lewis or Louis CARTER who married a Hattie or Harriet, who is the mother of Maude. So far the only ethnicity we are able to prove is black or African-American.

Whether Earl can claim one-quarter Native American genes, may rest on Maude’s father. There is a Lewis CARTER, age 40, on the Wallace Roll of Cherokee Freedmen, 1890-93 in Tahlequah District in Oklahoma. This Lewis is listed as an Authenticated Freedman. There is also a Louis CARTER on the Kern-Clifton Roll, age 46 in Tahlequah District in Oklahoma.

The Kern-Clifton Roll was compiled to cover omissions in the Wallace Roll. Both of these and other Indian census records can be searched at Access Genealogy (, but even this should not be assumed to be all-inclusive. I searched these and other North American Indian census records to no avail, except for some people named Lewis CARTER in the U.S. Indian Census Schedules, 1885-1940 living in Idaho, Arizona and Oklahoma. None of these match up by place born or approximate birth year  for the Lewis CARTER in question.

There are a number of indications that none of the men named in the Rolls above are Maude CARTER’s father. Even if he was, being an authenticated freedman did not mean he was part Native North American.

Maude’s father, Lewis or Louis CARTER, always gave his birthplace as Missouri and he never gave his parents’ birthplaces as Oklahoma. His father is listed as from Kentucky and his mother from North Carolina. Although we cannot establish a closer birth date than somewhere between 1848-1857, the census records from 1875-1905 give the ethnicity for Lewis as black.

Furthermore, he doesn’t appear in any other jurisdictions than Missouri where he was born, Kansas where he spent his adult life and possibly Georgia, which may be where he was imprisoned as a Union soldier. When asked on the 1875 Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925 record where he came from to Kansas (other state or country), he answered Missouri and he always gave his birth state as Missouri. His location from 1875-1905 is always Stranger, Leavenworth, Kansas. There are no entries for Lewis or Louis CARTER on Indian rolls in any states where he is shown to have lived.

For Earl to be one-quarter Native American, he would have to have a parent who was half American Indian or two parents who were each a quarter. Since nothing matches yet on the WOODS side, much rests on the CARTER side. Maude would have to be half American Indian and one of her parents would have to be 100% or each parent 50% native. Since none of Maude’s records give her ethnicity as Indian, we would have to find a declaration of this ethnicity by one or both of her parents.

There is nothing at the moment to connect Lewis CARTER to any Native North American roots. Even if he were the same Lewis CARTER who is on the Wallace Rolls as a Freedman, this does not mean an instant link to native roots.

Whites were not the only ones to have slaves. Many “Indians” had slaves as well. Some did intermarry with their slaves or have children with them, just as did Caucasians with their slaves. In the Who Do You Think You Are series featuring Emmitt Smith, he did an ethnicity DNA test and it showed he had 7% American Indian roots. The realm of possibility is there, but there is not sufficient proof to say Lewis CARTER had enough Indian genes to give Earl WOODS one-quarter American Indian ethnicity. Unless Tiger is willing to give us DNA for testing, we are not likely to find such a precise percent.

In the Table for Lewis/Louis CARTER, you will see that he is never shown as anything but black. (As for Maude’s table, please note “blank” means no answer was given, “none” means the word “none” appeared in the column and “n/a” means not asked. The entries listed as June are United States Federal Censuses and those listed as March are from the Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925.) The reason the table stops at the 1905 Kansas census is because his wife is listed as widowed on the 1910 United States Federal Census.

Although the birth year and the spelling of his first name differ from census to census, the place of birth and ethnicity is consistent. There is a white Lewis CARTER, born in Missouri, but he stayed in Missouri. The main reason the white Lewis CARTER is ruled out as Earl’s grandfather is that the Lewis CARTER who moved to Kansas and had the daughter named Maude, is the one consistently shown as black, just as his daughter is shown to be in her Table.

Some interesting facts on the census records are that his address for all the years from 1875 to1905 is Stanger, Leavenworth, Kansas. On the 1875 Kansas State Census Collection, his occupation is not shown, but he is living on a farm owned by F. B. Burrell, a farmer.  The farmer’s family and all other people on the page, except for Louis are white.

On the 1880 United States Federal Census, Lewis is shown as Servant in the column for relationship to the Head of Household, which then was William Hazelwood, but in the column for occupation, he is shown as Farm laborer. Hazelwood is listed as a farmer. Hazelwood, his family and all others on the page, except for Lewis, are white. Lewis is marked as B for black.

He is shown as married on the 1880 census, but there is no wife listed and by 1885 he is widowed. No children are found on those two census records for this first marriage.

In the 1885 Kansas census, Lewis is a laborer living with John Allen, a post master. Allan and his wife Georgia are white and have a white domestic named Jane Pearson. Interestingly, William Hazelwood and family are listed in the very next house the census taker visited. There is one other black man listed and he is a farm hand living with William Ryan and family. All others on the page are white.

You may wonder why the 1890 United States Federal Census is not shown on the table. The answer is most of it was destroyed during a 1921 fire in the basement of the Commerce Building in Washington, D.C., where the 1890 census records were held. The little that is left does not include the jurisdiction where Lewis CARTER lived at the time.

The 1895 Kansas census is the first to list Lewis as a married man with a wife listed as Mrs. H. C. and three children: Reans, age 4, Maud, age 2 and George age 9. The 1900 United States Federal Census shows the marriage year as 1890, only five years prior. So who is George and why is she listed last? Yes, George is listed as F for Female. Was this the daughter of Lewis and his first wife? If so, where she was living before is a mystery, as is the identity of her mother.

In later census records, the first child of Lewis and Hattie is Fred. Fred’s card in the World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 and his marriage confirm his name as Fred and age to be consistent with being the eldest child of Lewis and Hattie. It is a mystery then, why the first name is different on the 1895 census, but even more mysterious is why is this first child shown as female when all the rest of the census records show the first child as a male named Fred?

On the 1895 census, Lewis is shown as the head of the household, but he is still a laborer. The 1900 United States Federal Census comes with the answers to some questions and yet more mysteries. It shows Lewis as head of household and wife as Hattie, age 36. Whoever gave the information for that census did not know the age for Lewis, as unknown is written in the space. However, the wide range of dates given leads me to the conclusion that Lewis was not sure when he was born.

Why would he not know it? It could be that he was sold as a slave and separated from the rest of his family. The slave owners were probably given an approximate age at the time of the transaction and may have kept track of the ages and first names of their slaves, but they may never have bothered to inform Lewis of his age. An early separation from his parents may be the reason he is not shown with the parents other genealogists attribute to him (more on that later).

By the 1900 census, Lewis now owns the farm on which he resides and it is freehold. This was quite an accomplishment, especially if he came from slavery to farm hand and is now owner of a farm.

There is no more Reans, female, on this census. In her spot at what would be her age on this census, we see Fred K CARTER as the first child, age 9. He is followed by Maud, age 7; Mabel, age 4; Charles, age 2, and Quimbia (a son), age 4 months. The number of years married for Lewis and Hattie are 10 and Hattie is shown as the mother of five children, all of whom are living. So we know George CARTER is not one of her children. He is not on this census, so where is he now?

Wait! Another mystery! If Hattie has only had five children and they are the five listed, who is Georgie STARNS? Georgie STARNS, age 14, is listed as Lewis’ stepdaughter. Presumably, then she was the daughter of his previous wife, but where has she been for the previous years and where did she go afterwards? If we look at the 1895 Kansas record, we see George, who defaults to CARTER, since no surname appears between Lewis and George, is a female. So the Georg(ie) in 1895 at age 9 is the Georgie STARNS age 14 on the 1900 census record. In 1905 she is still with the family, but you may have a problem searching for her on because the indexer misspelled it as Gerogia STARNS. I submitted a correction to Georgie. She is 18 on the 1905 census.  There is no occupation given for her. She is not found on the 1910 census by either the name STARNS or CARTER.

In 1905, Louis is shown as a farmer who owns the farm. Hattie and all the children, including Georgie, are shown as black and born in Kansas. Maud is mistakenly identified on the census record as Martha, but the age matches here and on the other records for Maude. Fred, Maude, Mabel, Charley and Quimbia are joined by two new children for Louis and Hattie. They are Dolly, age 3, and Josephine, age 5 months.

By 1910, Louis is no longer listed, Hattie is a widow and Fred is the head of household. A new child has been added: Edith who is one year and 10 months old. Therefore, we can guess that Louis died somewhere in the 1907-1910 range. Dollie is now listed as Viola M. CARTER. All are still listed as black and born in Kansas. A clue for tracing Hattie further back is that she shows her parents as both born in Missouri.

Returning to Louis or Lewis, we know he was in the Civil War because on the 1895 Kansas collection census, under the column “number of regiment or other organization to which attached” he gave 77; under the column “arm of the service” is written I for infantry; and for “name of military prison if confined in one” there are two letters that look like Ar, Kr, Hr. or Nr.

There was a 77th Regiment of Missouri Militia with headquarters in Kansas City.  The prison camp could be Ar for Andersonville, Georgia, Confederate Prison Camp Sumter. I tried to match it up to the prisoner of war camps on The American Civil War Prisoner of War Camps page at and thought this was the closest match. If someone with more knowledge of the Civil War can suggest a better match, please let us know.

The closest corresponding entry on the U.S. Army, Register of Enlistments, 1798-1914 is the record for March 1, 1867, where there is a Lewis CARTER with the approximate birth year of 1846, born in Missouri, enlisting at Leavenworth, Kansas. His occupation was farmer. His hair was brown, eyes were brown, complexion was brown and height was 5’5″. He signed up for five years and was honourably discharged March (5?) 1872 at Fort Dill. There was a military fort named Fort Dill in Oklahoma and certainly Oklahoma shares borders with both Missouri and Kansas. There is no other indication that our Lewis lived or ever was in Oklahoma. The very next census puts him in Stranger, Leavenworth, Kansas.

Prior to 1875, the census records are not as easy to pinpoint for Lewis CARTER. All the records for him from 1875 and beyond, he is listed as black and nothing else. If we could find him with his parents or slave owners, we could perhaps match him with a parent who is some other ethnicity than black.

So the final matching and what ethnicity we can glean will be in PART IV. I promise, we are close to the end. There will not be infinite parts to this puzzle.

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February 5th, 2013

A Jolly Good Genealogical Jaunt – The Lord of the Rings Genealogy Project

If you’re familiar with the family names of Baggins, Brandybuck and Bolger, visit the Lord of the Rings Genealogy Project, where you can have fun, and demonstrate your genealogy skills at the same time!

Yes, you read correctly! There is an ongoing project to chart and discuss the genealogy of Middle Earth, the society created by J.R.R Tolkien in his Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and Silmarillion novels. As you might imagine, the project is a huge undertaking, and those involved face similar challenges to anyone compiling an actual genealogy. There are also some aspects that are unique to charting a fictitious family and world history. Perfection and innovation are important to the creator of the project Emil Johansson, who has expanded the project to include several interactive features to satisfy his creative energies.

Emil Johansson is a Chemical Engineering student who lives in Gothenberg, Sweden, and who is obviously a huge J.R.R Tolkien fan. He is also a fan of people having a creative outlet, even if it is conceives as frivolous or fanatical by others. Johansson had read all of Tolkien’s works before they were made into movies, so his conceptualization of Middle Earth is unique to him. The subjects of the genealogy however are as real and accurate as their characters in the books. In addition to the genealogy of Middle Earth, the project also charts statistics such as the world population during the times of specific novels and events, and even the make-up (male – female ratio) of that population.

The Lord of The Rings Genealogy Project is relatively young, only started in January, 2012. Since its release however, many people have contributed to the project in the form of corrections or suggestions. It has truly become a community project, not surprising with the popularity of both genealogy and Tolkien’s works. Some of the individuals who have hopped on board to help with the project are Tolkien aficionados such as Shaun Gunner, who is Deputy Chair of The Return of the Ring, an organization which in its own words is “a celebration of Tolkien in its purest sense”, and is also the administrator of Tolkien Gateway and Trustee and Publicity Officer of The Tolkien Society.

The expertise of such individuals such as Shaun Gunner definitely lends credibility to the site, and a visit to the website shows just how much work has been done already.  There are hundreds of characters already charted, though not all have information about them as yet. The website itself is a bit difficult to understand, there is no real description about how to help or contribute, except in the About section, and that is specifically about how to donate money or purchase the Android app they have developed. It was by pure luck that I found the individual family trees for dwarfs, hobbits, trolls, elves, birds and men under the More tab. If you go to another page, it is also difficult to navigate back to the page you left from.

This is not meant as a criticism, but merely a statement of fact. This project is financed almost single-handedly by Johansson, who is also a dedicated student in a very difficult field. He can’t be expected to maintain a fully functional user-friendly website; it’s a treat that he has started this project at all. Perhaps if you have IT skills you could contribute your talent and help with the website design and function. If you’d like to donate money towards the project or download the Android app you can do so from their website Here.

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