“A Journey of Voices – Chasing the Frontier”

by Diane Gladow on February 11, 2010

Old, yellowed, mouse-chewed letters can be fascinating reading as they open the door to the past, to a time which can usually only be visited in the history books. A Journey of Voices: Chasing the Frontier is the end product of a fifteen-year search to find any existing information about the Jordan family and to tell their story through their written letters. The Jordan family immigrated from North Carolina to Georgia to Mississippi to Louisiana in the early 1800s, fought their way through the Civil War and Reconstruction, and immigrated once again to Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. The story of their journey and the voices in their letters combine to form a rich microcosm of American history. For readers, and especially those interested in the ordinary people who lived American history, this book provides a way to see and hear about the momentous events of the past in a unique way. Come, take a journey and meet the Jordans, people of courage, humor, and indomitable spirit.

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Cait May 12, 2010 at 6:57 pm

I can’t wait to read this!

Joan Singletary July 4, 2010 at 6:15 pm

I got a copy of your book which I enjoyed very much. I especially liked your use of maps so I knew where I was at all times. Maps have always been a love of mine. Having grown up in Anderson County, Texas, and visited a great deal in both Cherokee and Navarro counties, your stories touched my nostalgia button. Navarro was mentioned as being much drier than Anderson and this is correct. When I think of Navarro, the first word that comes to mind is “flat.” Of course it is in the black land prairie, and I can understand William Jordan complaining to Margaret Jane about the mud. Black gumbo has to be experienced to be appreciated! I have a question – was anything ever mentioned further about the lady who swallowed the bean and it was sprouting in her stomach? Mother used to terrify me with tales of watermelon seed sprouting if I swallowed one. Poor lady. The letters from the young men in the book concerning the girls were delightful. You did a great job with your book! I will be placing a copy in our library here in Brandon, Mississippi. Best wishes.

Nancy Methvin July 18, 2010 at 12:17 am

I LOVED your book! I have actually re-read parts of it late at night after things calm down, so I could think about the movements through various states. I especially like the way you wove you and your mom’s conversations into the narrative, which helped personalize the characters in the letters. You do an excellent job of making the characters real through their imaginary conversations also. I greatly enjoyed the whole thing. I also think the whole book is really easy to read, as well as interesting (which is the downfall of many histories. They are dull, dull, dull!) I know I will read this book over again from time to time. It actually reminds me of much of my family’s history. Even though we don’t have the letters, I have heard many similar stories handed down. Actually, this is part of the appeal of the book – it has a universal application for many families who had southern ancestors who fought in the war.

Barbara July 22, 2010 at 1:08 am

This is the type of book one reads a dozen times and a dozen more – time allowing.

Keith September 18, 2010 at 10:38 pm

Great Book, enjoyed reading all the stuff. I like the way you handled all the “stories” especially the Perry Jordan death. It could have been this or this or this – nice. Hard to say at this point.

Krys Conley September 25, 2010 at 2:41 pm

I am a descendant of Gray’s brother Hardy. I can’t wait to read this book and I am buying a copy for my Mother… who is a Jordan. Thanks so much for writing this book.!!!

Lora Toles September 25, 2010 at 5:18 pm

I am a descendent of the Jordan family. Where can I buy this book? Thank you, Lora Lester Toles

Diane Gladow September 27, 2010 at 12:46 am

Lora -
You can buy the book at the site http://www.dianegladow.com or from the publisher virtualbookworm.com or from amazon.com or barnesandnoble.com or any bookstore can order it for you. If you live close to Palestine, Texas, you can buy it at Mary’s Books. I hope you get a copy and enjoy it. Feel welcome to send me your thoughts if you do. Which branch of the Jordan family do you descend from? Diane

Diane Gladow September 27, 2010 at 12:55 am

Your welcome! I enjoyed researching and writing the book very much. I am still researching the Jordans in North Carolina trying to fit that family together. Do you have any evidence that Hardy and Gray were brothers? Although Hardy, Gray, Greenbury, and Hudson were all together in Lawrence Co., Miss. in 1820, I have no real evidence that they were brothers. They could have been cousins. I feel they were related though. I had to dance around that issue in the book, but I wanted to publish what I had to get some information on the Jordans out to the public, especially all Jordans in this line. I have done a lot of research on Hardy in Louisiana and have a fairly complete picture of him except for his son Allen – would love to know what happened to him after 1850. Write me if you want more. Diane

Krys Conley September 30, 2010 at 12:35 pm

His son Allen is who we believe to be the father to my Jordan’s. The 1850 census has All J with his wife Francis Chandler and their children Wm (William Edward), Elizabeth, Washington (Allen Washington) and James Jordan. In 1852, My Samuel H Jordan was added to the family. It’s unclear what happened to Allen J but he doesn’t appear again with the family. Allen Washington went by the name of Doc also. Samuel had 4 wives at different times. My line comes through Jane Leggett. She is the sister to Allen Washington’s wife Elizabeth. The family continued to move throughout Louisiana, Texas and my line continued to Colorado. Me and Lora are from the same line. I posted information about your book on my facebook page. It arrived yesterday and I just started it. I am so happy to have this sneak peak into the families lives. Thank you so much.

John Smith September 22, 2011 at 8:12 pm

Being a genealogist myself for over thirty years, I have come in contact with innumerable family histories, etc., but I can truly say yours stands out at the very top of a much crowded field. I love the way you write making it very personal instead of so statistical as most genealogies are. Let me say your book was excellent in every aspect. It should be on the reading list of all universities offering graduate programs in American or Southern history. Also, as I lived in Dallas for many years, all the Texas place names in your book brought back many memories.

Kerry Worgan May 9, 2016 at 4:40 pm

Hi Diane, I came across your website while researching the Crume family tree, my wife Lisa Crume is related thru Silas Moses Crume and James Richard Crume from Texas. We look forward to reading your book to learn more about the Crume family line.

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