August 19, 2017

I was born about 1:10pm on a Wednesday. My mother always said, “I knew the minute you were born!” like that was unusual. I think because from her experience, women were doped up and pretty much unconscious, which is sad, to me. I was the 2nd child and my older brother 8 years older than me. Probably, I took a lot of our parents’ attention that he was used to absorbing. They tried for 2 years to get pregnant for me, & then got the other gender, so I figure I was the center of their world for awhile. Until my sister came along 2 1/2 years later. And then our younger brother 5 years after that! So I was 7 1/2 years from one brother, 8 years from the next. It was my sister & I in the middle.— My dad was a professor and he loved to take 3-4 weeks of his summer and roam around out West. We went to the Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Zion National Park, Yosemite and the Redwoods, Canada and Mexico. My birthday usually occurred on a trip. I can’t really remember hardly anything that I really wanted for my birthday, I think because it was celebrated away from home. I remember more, what I wanted for Christmas. Dolls……. Raggedy Ann, Barbie, “Miss Ideal”, Tiny Tears. Nancy Drew mysteries. A stingray bike. One thing I DO remember I really wanted was a transistor radio for my 16th birthday. My dad said they couldn’t find the one I wanted, they’d get it later. We had the birthday dinner, I went to bed, then I heard this loud rock & roll-type music playing…….. went downstairs, there was the RADIO, my radio. My dad liked to play games & tricks like that on us. He died 9 days later at the age of 50, on my mom’s birthday. I have lived 14 more years than he was able to. He never met a grandchild. I have 6. No one ever knows how long they have on this earth, to be with your loved ones. Life is a gift of God. I appreciate all the bounties I have been given to have lived this long. May I enjoy many more.


Who we are

July 25, 2017

We are flesh, and bone,

gristle and tendon,

We are blood, and muscle,

eyeball and ear,

a fragile hunk of skin over skeleton,

veins and arteries,

ligaments, hair,

and underneath, a brain that is thinking,

while magical neurons

flash signals through air,

We draw breath, take in oxygen,

exhale the carbon,

while a heart pumps blood

to our organs and toes,

We fall in love with another,

We contemplate stars,

We laugh, we create,

wonder who we are,

We are conscious beings,

use language and reason,

and at some point we know,

there are worlds beyond this one.

cfblack 07-25-2017









July 24, 2017

I am going to post some dreams, just for interest, & to see the commonalities in my dreams. If you stop and think before you are fully awake, usually you can remember the dream you were just in. For me, the meaning of the dream is emotion, how I’m feeling in the dream. Also who I’m with. Probably 90% of my dreams, I am with children.

When I awoke, I was dreaming I was with a bunch of children & we were in a desert, running to safety, running, running, with danger always nearby. There were these giant worm-like creatures, kind of like in DUNE but above the ground & they moved slowly so we could pretty easily get away from them. Small groups of children kept trying to play in these desolate areas, the danger being it was not a safe area. 7/24/2017


dream of 7/24 night: I awoke to an alarm so couldn’t remember much. The only thing I remember is that I was going to have some sort of race, a car race, with my “2 sisters”. (I only have one sister.) We were going to race our cars, and my mother — who WAS my mother in the dream — disapproved. She was afraid police would catch us. I was aware of my father in the dream also. (When I was growing up, they were together, a team, a couple, my parents). At one point we were in the gravel driveway and backyard of the house I remember most as a child, on So. 11th St. My mood in the dream was a little afraid, and laughing about the race and my mom’s opinion.


night of 8/2:  Lots of snow. Everywhere. The world I was in was in danger, and cold. My grandson Raven was prominent in this dream. I was trying to keep the family together. They were somewhat scattered in various places of safety but not all together. If they went outside into this world, outside sheltered buildings, they were in danger. I was not in great fear for them, but aware that the danger was always out there. At some point, I was riding buses near an old part of Lafayette, Market Square (probably because there is an image of that place burned into my brain with huge masses of snow drifts. They always plowed that parking lot and left mountains of snow that turned into blocks of ice over time.) Raven was with me in this dream but I don’t remember him doing anything specific, it’s just that no one else in the dream was defined as to who they were. There were lots of other people around us in the dream, in the buildings, the safe places, which were always rather dark, but safe. Kind of sci-fi-ish. I don’t remember anything in color in this dream.

A different dream shortly before I woke up was I was in a house/building with about 2 other students and one instructor, a female. I was cramming very focused for a test. Super intensely studying just before the test. I was doing really well going through the material. The instructor saw me cramming, made a point of how cramming was bad (kind of sarcastically laughing at me) at which point I lost my focus, gathered all my papers and went upstairs to get away from her. Upstairs was not my favorite place to study but if I had stayed downstairs near her I would have lost my ability to study and bombed the test.

— My dreams are usually with a lot of people in them. I think oftentimes there is danger just around the corner.–

Samuel M. Agnew, Fulton County, Cincinnati, Ohio, approximately 1778 (maybe b. PA) to sometime after 1850 —

July 23, 2017

Samuel Agnew military records 1814.jpgRecords of men enlisted in US Army, Prior to the Peace establishment, May 17, 1815

(on ancestry)

“Agnew” – Samuel Egnew, 17, Private, US Infantry. Height: 5′ 1 1/2″  OR 5′ 6″

(note: Well, which is it? Were there two of you, one 5’1 1/2. one 5’6″??)

Blue eyes, Light hair, Dark complexion.  (how dark?)

age: 17 OR 22.   (For our relative, age 17 fits.)

where born?  OHIO.

Enlistment: May 20th, 1814, Chillicothe, Ohio. (Chillicothe was the 1st capital of Ohio, is in southern Ohio near Cincinnati, and was the chief settlement for the Shawnee Chala·ka·tha division of the Shawnee nation.)

Time served: 5 years.

Notes on his record. Some are very hard to read. I don’t know what some of the abbreviations mean. These notes are handwritten all together in a few lines, in cursive:

D.R. May 22, 1814. Present. —

D.R. Captain Henry Crittendon, Co., Feb. 16.

D.R. Erie Pennsylvania, Feb.28, 1815, Present, a musician–

M.R. Capt J.T. Chunn’s Co. 3″ —

US Infantry, Fort Knox, Ind.m “Tevy” (can’t read) Dec.31, 1815,

M.R. “et” Aug.31,

SA M.R. Dec.31, 1816,

M.R. ets, Jany (Jan.) 31 & April 30, 1817

absent on furlough at Cincinnati, since April 18 or 19, 1815 (*what??*)

S.A. M.R. June 30th 1817, absent, unknown.

17 US Infantry, was made 3″ after May 17, 1815.

**So, my best guess is, maybe there were 2 Samuel Agnews who joined the Army. The main record seems to follow the one who would’ve been 17 yrs old, which matches our ancestor. He joins in Chillicothe, goes on furlough to Cincinnati and never returns to Army. This also fits our ancestor, who lives in Cincinnati, becomes a postmaster in Fulton in 1836. He had a dark complexion & joined from where a branch of the Shawnee settled. Who knows, maybe he was Shawnee. But this doesn’t show up in my DNA tests.

The initial M. comes from an 1830 census record where a Samuel M. Agnew is in Fulton OH (a part of Cincinnati). That record lists one male age 40-50 (fits him), 2 males ages 20-30 (William & James?), and also 2 females ages 15-20. No names given except head of household.


July 19, 2017

I pray that we awaken,

that we not succomb to hopelessness,

that corruption not encase us

in the inevitable Iron Cage,

I pray that we, as humanity,

not lose our unique ability

to READ and think BEYOND

the images blasted at us on TV,

———— this is a poem to be finished later………………………………………………




Creating final exams

July 16, 2017


Stay out of my way–

I am at work,

the words come slowly,

I take many breaks,

This is MY creative process,

a labor of love,

gathering lessons learned

in a semester of time,

This group will never come again,

they splinter and vanish,

in two more days,

The best result being

more questions than answers,

The answers are supplied with their response,

Their decisions, their analysis,

their actions, their future,

There is no right answer,

it is up to them,

to consider alternatives,

challenge every fact,

Think outside the box,

Re-write the question,

Because we need a better world,

and my time is limited.

Yours is the journey, now,

Your future the new path,

the challenge is the choice,

which way will you walk?

cfblack, 07-16-2017

I need to tell my brother what I saw

July 16, 2017

Poem inspired by current events, being 63, and Stephen Stills’ song, “Singin’ Call.”


(be back later!!) Ciao





“Help me sweet Jesus, I’m weary from the journey,

I need to tell my brother what I saw…”  — Stephen Stills 2, Singin’ Call.

Samuel M. Agnew not the doctor

June 26, 2017

My most distant relative found so far is Samuel M. Agnew who is sitting in the living room of James Agnew (b.1808 supposedly in PA and d. 1880 Ohio) in 1850 and is on the census that way. I have been researching these folks for about 6 years now, and haven’t gotten past them. There is another **famous** Dr. Samuel Agnew, of the “Book of the Agnews” line, who was born approximately the SAME year as OUR Samuel Agnew, 1778. However, the famous Dr. Samuel Agnew dies in 1849, so they are not the same.

No one else is EVER researching our Samuel M. Agnew of Cincinnati Ohio. No other family trees contain him, nothing. I just realized or concluded tonight that this has to mean SOMETHING. It means that either they invented themselves as Agnews in Cincinnati and they are really someone else, so there are no previous records; OR, Samuel must have immigrated (from Ireland perhaps, according to the DNA folks on FamilyTreeDNA). Something is weird. There is some reason they do not exist previous to this.

There is quite a bit of random information about Samuel in Cincinnati. For example, he is postmaster of Fulton I believe in 1936. There may be two different Samuel Agnews in the Cincinnati area because some of the info. doesn’t seem to match (go figure). There is also a Samuel Agnew who arrives in the states in 1823 but from England. The listing on ancestry is not the original & there is not enough information transcribed. I need to find the original book.

If I never resolve this mystery, I leave it to MY descendants to resolve it. I plan to figure it out but if I am unable, I hope that someone else does. There is an elaborate and detailed ancestry “tree” that y’all can work on in your spare time! The Agnew tree. I sure will be happy if I ever solve this frustrating mystery.

poem for Naylah on her 7th birthday

June 3, 2017

Happy 7th Birthday Naylah

We picked strawberries

And waited for you,


Mommy, so heavy,

So ready for you,


But you were late!

(just a little bit)


Baba wondered,

Would he have another son?

Or a BEAUTIFUL daughter



We rushed to the Birthing Center

Where you were born,

Grandma played with Zakiah

In the waiting room,


And then – there you were!

Out of Mommy you came!


Someone said, “It’s a girl!”

And Mommy cried


For Naylah



Was here,

And life was never the same.

cfblack, 06-03-2017

Naylah age 7

Scotch-Irish Agnews

May 30, 2017

According to those running a DNA test for my surname, my brother’s DNA test showed a haplogroup that tends to be Scotch-Irish, meaning, a group that originated in Scotland but immigrated to Ulster, Ireland, and then at some point to the U.S.:

ScotchIrish or ScotsIrish may refer to: The Ulster Scots people, an ethnic group in Ulster, Ireland, who trace their roots to settlers from Scotland. ScotchIrish Americans, descendants of Ulster Scots who first migrated to America in large numbers in the 18th and 19th centuries.”

The only large Scotch-Irish groups in the U.S. tend to be in the Northwest and the Southeast! Not Midwest. Also, our closest relative is descended from a man named Elijah Horn in SC. Their contact info is not posted. The reason this is all so ironic is that we moved to SC 9 years ago, for a teaching job, and no relatives whatsoever living here.

Scotch-Irish in U.S.  (Scotch-Irish info & map from Wikipedia.)