Friday, March 10, 2017

Friday Faces from the Past: Moorefield

I am perusing through old photographs from my paternal grandparents side these days. In essence, I have been visiting Kentucky although really only in my mind. Things like this come and go in spurts. I have not looked at the research I have done on these lines in a number of years but every now and them something draws me back.

What pulled me this time was an email from a gentleman who saw a photograph on my blog that was taken by Randolph in Cadiz, Kentucky (see the photo here). This gentleman informed me that he and another local historian were doing research on this photographer who did work in Cadiz from about 1893 to 1913. He wanted to know if I would share an electronic copy of the photograph and also asked if I had anymore photographs taken by Randolph.

I hunted around and found one more. This is a photograph identified by my grandfather as "My daddy's first cousin [John Willis Watts], Otis Moorefield."

Otis Moorefield (1875-1958)
Until I put the two together, it never occurred to me that the young girl in the first photograph might have been a Moorefield. Over the years I have asked a number of my older Watts kin if they knew who this young girl might be, but I have not been successful in identifying her. I most often put her in the Sizemore files, but she could just have well come from the Moorefield line which ties into my Watts family. My great-great grandmother, Emily Jane Chaffin Watts, had two sisters who married two Moorefield brothers.

I am hopeful that by sharing the photograph of this girl with these researchers, someone yet might be able to identify her. Interestingly enough, the other researcher, Kim, shared that there is a connection between this Moorefield family and the photographer, whose name is Mamie Randolph. Mamie had a son named Jack who married Bessie Bagby. According to Kim, Bessie's mother was Fannie Moorefield Bagby, one of Otis Moorefield's sisters. Fannie would have also been my great-grandfather's first cousins. How ironic! It makes me think more than ever that the girl may have also been Moorefield kin.

A day or two later, I realized that I just might have more photographs taken by Mrs. Randolph. You might recall that a couple of years ago, I came into possession of a photo album once owned by my grandfather's sister, Ivy Watts Diuguid (see original post here). I looked through my original scans of the photos from that album and identified four more that has Mrs. Randolph's imprint as well.  I plan to scan them again at a higher resolution and share them with those researchers. I am delighted to be able to help someone with a local history project such as this and is one of the reasons for sharing this on my blog.

(l to r) Howard Marshall Freeman (born 1904) and Levingston Lindsey Freeman (born 1902)
sons of Levingston Lindsey and Elsie Diuguid Freeman;
Cabinet card photo taken by Randolph, Cadiz, KY 1906

possibly Willie (b. 1893) or Robert (b. 1891) Diuguid;
sons of George Marshall & Henry Ada (Quisenberry) Diuguid
Cabinet card photo taken by
Mrs. Randolph, Cadiz, Kentucky

Unknown group of women; Cabinet card photo taken by
Mrs. Randolph, Cadiz, Kentucky

Jessie Martin Freeman b. 15 June 1906;
3rd child of Livingston Lindsey & Elsie (Diuguid) Freeman
Cabinet card photo taken by
Mrs. Randolph, Cadiz, Kentucky


  1. Hi! I'm researching the Moorefield family as well---my grandmother was Lucille Moorefield Brown (1917-2010) and I also have Chaffins in my family!

    Laura Hromyak Hendrix (Frankfort KY)

    1. We just might be related, Laura! Both the Moorefield family and the Chaffin family came to Kentucky from Halifax County, Virginia. Have you done research there? What Chaffin connection do you have?