If You Let Everybody Know Your Business....

July 08, 2018  •  4 Comments

When you choose to marry a Southern man who was raised in rural Georgia, you could get a guy who has a great work ethic, clever hands, piles of stories that would make any preacher jealous, and some mighty good sayings which make great points in few words. The kind of sayings that stick with you like Bible verses.  You can’t shake them off.

It is part of my story is that I was lucky enough to marry such a man.  His name is John Cox.

John and Gail's Wedding 1982John and Gail's Wedding 1982

John and Gail's Wedding 1982

One of Johnny's favorite sayings is, "You let everybody know your business you ain't got no business." Which simply means some stuff in your life isn't meant to be blabbed about all over creation.

Despite that piece of good wisdom, we live in the days of instant communication where, at times, many of  us probably overshare.  For example, I have a small group of facebook friends and I let all of them know what terrific human beings my grandkids are; along with what the sky looks like when we take a walk on our beach.  In turn, I love reading similar posts from family and friends about the enjoyment and happiness they are getting out of the things and people that fill their lives.  This helps balance out the overwhelming contention and downright nastiness of almost all our political leaders; not to mention the "talking heads" on media competing with each other to tell us what they think we should believe. 

Always keeping Johnny’s saying in mind, along with the known pitfalls of all this communication, why on earth would I choose to write a blog?

The answer to that question lies in a pile of letters my great grandfather and his family wrote to each other. Through those handwritten letters I have learned about their lives; what was hard, sad, ordinary and joyful to them. Because of these letters those ancestors now feel like real people not just names on tombstones or in census reports. I want to try and leave that kind of digital and printed record for the generations following us.  So great grandchildren or great nieces and nephews have a sense of the people we were, and what it was like to grow up in the middle of the last century.  I want to look at why my family with its deep strong roots firmly anchored in Pennsylvania and New York since before the revolution; have in just one generation, scattered across a host of other states and two countries. 


Letter to Daniel Bush  December 1844

I'm also spurred on to write a blog because looking up through the branches of my family tree there are just five living people now older than myself.  That is both shocking and scary.  Many days I feel like a thirty year old trapped in a seventy-two year old body who has just realized that the end is closer than I ever thought it would be. 

I have many questions I delayed asking my parents or grandparents because imagining a life where they wouldn't always be there to answer did not seem conceivable. But despite some lack of information and detail, I want to tell what I know of their stories. I'm going to attempt to write chapters which hopefully will be more in depth than a facebook post. I plan to share a family recipe or memories brought back by watching the ocean at sunrise. I want to tell of  how my beliefs today inform my life; or how it felt to downsize and dispose of  just about everything we had accumulated over a lifetime to move away to a tiny home. I'll certainly share some of the genealogical research so it doesn’t get lost. Seventy plus decades of living life ought to give me plenty of good material to muse about.  (I love that word "muse".  It is a good 19th century word and gives a sense of actually thinking about what is being said.)

Being honest, I write because I enjoy writing and it gives me time with my mostly happy memories.  It is the privilege of advanced age to reminisce and it is privilege I’m going to gladly embrace.  I hope you'll drop in on regular visits.

Coming up...  Why weren't we Methodist, Lutheran or Quaker? 



Another Bush family member married into my family. Big coincodence(non-registered)
<My family lived in Bronx ny My father whose great grandmother was Catherine Bush Sherbaugh from Middle Smithfield Pa. Dad moved to NYC after WWII from E. Stroudsburg Pa where the families of bush sherbaugh and hoffman lived for over 200 years. Dad married my mom in 1946 and she had 2 children from her first marriage Mike and Cathy who were 10 and 8 years older than me. In 1957 Mike got a basketball scholarship to the Univ. of North Carolina. He started dating the football coaches daughter Carole the next year and they married in 1959. I never knew too much about her family except that her mother and grandmother were from Ohio. Back in 2007 I joined DAR under my ancestor Henry Bush. Then I looked up to see who else had joined under his name, and low and behold my sister in laws mother Ethel Clark Holbrook had joined under him from Shelby Co Ohio in 1927. So my sister in law is also my 5th cousin. Smail world huh
Cindi Goodall(non-registered)
Gail this wonderfully written and so looking forward to reading what you write.

What a grand idea.

You are 30 in a 72 body - just find the person who switched bodies with you and yours back!

Seems like life has been on fast forward the last 20 years to find ourselves in our 70's with no grandparents or parents left is just weird. Thank you for recording our history - for keeping the 'Home fires' burning and for stepping forth to share 'your business'. You can't beat a John Cox saying! :-) I'm all teary eyed as i just watched your video of the lunch towers being blown up to be replaced by something new and sleeker, I imagine. I hate to see history being treated so roughly because there were heroes that flew from those lunch pads and some never returned home to their families. In the 60's everyone knew them - and they were Stars - now so many wouldn't be able to name the 7 original ones. We were so privileged to live right in the front row of it's beginnings - to meet them - talk to them. And then 'poof' they are gone - their history is taken down. Makes me as sad as when Fat Boys was turned into something other than Fat Boys. That building should have been kept intact for future generations to visit so as to see first hand men, women and names of that day that made the Cape the place to be for everyone who loved the idea of going into space. So thankful you were there to record the end of a great era.
JOANNE FARRELL(non-registered)
Hi Gail how are we connected to William Im connected to Henry Busch/Eliz Hoffman thru son John C Bush, daughter Catherine/Michael Shearbaugh, son John B Sherbaugh, daughter Bertha/Raymond FUsselman to father Leonard FUsselman me dad was born in E Stroudsburg pa because after Catherine and michael moved to sidney ohio they both died in 184 1 and leaving three daughters and son John B Sherbaugh orphans, family brought tthem back to middle smithfield pa to live with their Grandparents John c bush and hannah arndt to their "Liberty House"hotel. John joined the 3rd artillery pa and was stationed at Ft Monroe during civil war and married Julia Thompkins from va and had 7 children she died in 1870s and he married in 1879 my great grandmother Sarah L Sommers from Moutainhome pa in 1879 and had my grandmother Bertha Sharbaugh in 1895 his 15th child. she married Raymond Fusselma(campbell) campbell his orig father my father was born to them in 1918 and bertha died from miscarriage complications in 1919 from 5th child grandpa raymond moved family to NYC and became NYC subway conductor in 1930s and dad was sgt in ww2 and nyc policeman for 32 years.
Love it! Thank you Aunt G.
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