Friday, October 24, 2014

Visit to Washington DC Oct 2014 Library of Congress - Chase Family Archives - Visits to Home of Frederick Douglass - Anacostia and nearby Congressional Cemetery

 Looking for the Chase Family Archives in DC.
  My Mom, Peg Weaver, looking about 8 years of age, visiting with her grandpa, JZ Chase in Findlay. As a boy, never heard much about the Chase family lineage, other than they were early farmers.
When my mom, published her memoir in 1994 "My information about the Glessner family history, having been researched by my Aunt Mary, was more abundant than for my Chase ancestors. Some of the Glessner family chart data was first compiled by Tom, based on information from Aunt Mary. In January 1992, a letter out of the blue from Oscar Beasley, Iowa City, sent some much appreciated Chase family history."  Building on the research of Oscar, a distant cousin in the Justus Chase, lineage, descending from Elizabeth Alice Chase who married a Porter.  JZ was the younger brother of Elizabeth Alice Chase (Porter)

I arrived at National Airport on Wednesday night, greeted by Paige who picked me up in their trusty van at terminal A, where Sun Country lands.  Thursday morning I took the Metro into Union Station and walked to the Jefferson Building Library of Congress (pictured here) where I found out about what I can take into the reading rooms and what I need to leave in the cloak rooms.  An Adventure in learning.   I was able to call up volumes by submitting a request on a computer near the MMR, Main Reading Room on the first floor of the Jefferson Building.  They did not allow photos in the room, and it is a very famous image with a 160 is a link for on line viewers.

I learned early, the due to budget cuts the Genealogy collection that used to be supported by 5 librarians and had its own room, was moved back into the stacks by the MMR.  Here is the old card catalog where I found references to the Chase Family that I found again on the computer that now has to be used to call for a book. When I learned the system, I had a small stack of books on the Chases in no time!   I also learned that the records of employees, like my friends the Silvis's were in a special facility in St Louis MO and researchers needed to prove there direct relationship by blood to get information. 
View of the Supreme Court Building in the light of the setting sun, as I walk back to Union Station in the late afternoon on Thursday. 

East Side of the Capitol Building Thursday Evening

Fun modern art "sculpture" in the upper floor of the old Portrait Gallery on the east side.  TV screens are in each state that show iconic images of action from each.
  I worked from the basement of the Jefferson Library and Main Reading Room to copy from a  variety of books, to document the Chase Family history, including Nathan Chase from New York who fought in the Revolutionary War from Hoosick Falls and his ancestor William Chase who emigrated from Chesham England with the Winthrop Expedition to Massachusetts Colony in 1630.   Later Chase relatives lived in Tiverton first of Massachusetts, and later as Rhode Island, as the colony boundaries changes.  Fun to get more confirmation about the roots of the Chase family from Inez Chase my red headed grandma, through JZ Chase and Justus, and George David Chase from New York.

Over the weekend, I drove with David Frye, pictured here to Pikesville near Baltimore to attend a Mankind Project LKS meeting Saturday morning, and then he and I on Sunday had brunch in Georgetown with Robert Powell, Chair of the US MKP Organization to learn about changes in the structure of this evolving organization we each have been part of for over 20 years.  Here is David at a sculpture at the Congressional Cemetery East of the Capital in DC with tree plantings as well to honor those who died and were affected by the 911 attacks to NYC, PA and the Pentagon in VA nearby.

J Edgar Hoover's grave with his family at the Congressional Cemetery.  He is the iconic head of the FBI for years and allegedly was a closeted gay man.
from Wiki
Since the 1940s, rumors had circulated that Hoover was homosexual.[55] The historians John Stuart Cox and Athan G. Theoharis speculated that Clyde Tolson, who became an associate director of the FBI and Hoover's primary heir, may have been his lover.[56]
Hoover hunted down and threatened anyone who made insinuations about his sexuality.[57][better source needed] He also spread unsubstantiated rumors that Adlai Stevenson was gay to damage the liberal governor's 1952 presidential campaign.[57][better source needed] His extensive secret files contained surveillance material on Eleanor Roosevelt's alleged lesbian lovers, which some speculate was for the purpose of blackmail—as well as material on presidents' liaisons, including those of John F. Kennedy"   (Clyde Tolson is buried nearby :-) 
Grave of Leonard Matlovich  with the pink triangles, at the Congressional Cemetery near J Edgar Hoover's family gravesite.
Technical Sergeant Leonard P. Matlovich (July 6, 1943 – June 22, 1988)[1] was a Vietnam War veteran, race relations instructor, and recipient of the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star.[2]
Matlovich was the first gay service member to purposely out himself to the military to fight their ban on gays, and perhaps the best-known gay man in America in the 1970s next to Harvey Milk. His fight to stay in the United States Air Force after coming out of the closet became a cause célèbre around which the gay community rallied. His case resulted in articles in newspapers and magazines throughout the country, numerous television interviews, and a television movie on NBC. His photograph appeared on the cover of the September 8, 1975, issue of Time magazine, making him a symbol for thousands of gay and lesbian servicemembers and gay people generally.[3][4][5][6] Matlovich was the first openly gay person to appear on the cover of a U.S. newsmagazine.[7] According to author Randy Shilts, "It marked the first time the young gay movement had made the cover of a major newsweekly. To a movement still struggling for legitimacy, the event was a major turning point." [8] In October 2006, Matlovich was honored by LGBT History Month as a leader in the history of the LGBT community."

Prior to visited the National Cemetery, David, Paige and I drove to Anacostia from downtown DC, across the Anacostic River to Fredrick Douglass Home that has an amazing view of DC.  What an important figure in American History as a freed slave and then an international orator!  An icon of civil rights history in our nation.  Here is the view of downtown DC from his home on Cedar Hill. 

For more info see

One of my big interests in visiting the Library of Congress is to see the genealogy collection specifically to learn more about the CHASE Family.   My mom, Peg Weaver, did not have much support in finding the Chase lineage, rather her aunt Mary Glessner had become a DAR tracing her COWLES line back to Josiah Cowles in CT, and also the BIXBY line to Moses Bixby in MA. 

Here are the JZ Chase family about 1896, taken in Findlay Ohio, with Zed, AKA JZ Chase, Inez, Mintie Henry, Charlie and Roy.  

Chase Family Crest with Three Crosses on a leather bound Rare Book 
Chase Family Origins in Chesham England. From Thomas, William and Aquila Chase are early emigrants to Mass Colony.  William arrived in 1630 with the Winthrop Expedition. 
Rare Book was brought in from Maryland to have me look at it in the Rare Book Reading Room

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