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We all start out at some point, and more often than not, end up at some other point. That’s called “migration” and even the buffalo herds knew that well upon the Great Plains. They meandered around, searching for foliage, and to see what the world was all about, I’d surmise.

Well, homo sapiens are like that, too. Born in one place, and while young and adventurous, tend to stray and meander, expectant of new enterprise and tantalizing visions of greater achievements. The more meek would remain with the main herd, of course, while the bold would seek fame and fortune beyond the family fort.

Sure! This could be likened to our own colonial ancestors, no question. Europe was a festering pot of humanity before this United States of America was ever in one’s wildest dreams! People back then, I understand, for the most part believed that the world was indeed a “square” place, and if one sailed long enough in a boat, it would go right over the edge! That really scared simple thinking people. Then adventurers like Magellan and Columbus are mentioned in schools of learning about how they developed other avenues of thought about that.

For some really unexplained reason, groups of people always seem to strive for a fight. I mean, we all love “peace,” yet groups of us always end up going to war, one century after another. A constant, fervent mish-mash of battle. Be that as it may, that’s what started mass migrations of Europeans over to this “new world,” once it was partially discovered. Somebody got the idea that governments of note should start keeping track of those mass migrations, and so records were kept of the shipping lists. Not everybody shipping over, “made” it over, tho’! Some died enroute on the harsh Atlantic seas. But many brave and courageous adventurers did make it across, to start checking in at various ports of entry. The bolder ones ventured into the vast wilderness areas, to co-exist with the Indians already here. And from this large melting pot of displaced Europeans came our former colonial ancestors. They thence made their trails upon this country with their imprints, and those hiking trails are the ones we must try to pick up the traces on, if indeed we, individually, want to comprehend our genealogical pasts!

S.E. Missouri became a “gathering place” of a whole new set of pioneers, driving in by wagon trains coming from the east coast areas. Some rode individual horses, or in many cases, just walked, in order to save weary oxen from exhaustion in pulling heavily laden wagons. Family stories are replete about some of these happenings. And sadly, some not so lucky had to be buried by the trail side, marked only by a creek rock. Well, they were my Hovises, your Cloningers, your Whiteners, etc., your Tripps, etc., your Browns, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera! Do we present beings pick up the traces, or do we let the events drift on by? It is our call, as life goes on. New things, new ways, and yet reminiscing about times of bygone eras!

Bob Hovis, signing off at the old campfire gathering place, out on the western slope!

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