Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Meggs to Meigs and Back Again-Same but Different #52Ancestors

Wikipedia, public domain, Snowflakes

I recently had a fourth cousin once removed contact me through my blog. I was glad to meet my cousin Wendell Meggs. He is 91 years young, and he allowed me to share this story:

     That "second name change", as I call it - after Vincent or John first changed from Meggs to Meigs back in about 1644, when they moved from Mass. to CT.
     My Grandfather, James Anderson Meggs, 1872, told me this story:  Stephen C Meggs, (great grandson of John T)  born 1868 in Bibb Co., AL, left to go to medical school when he was old enough. He did become a DR. While away he met some people whose name sounded like his surname, only they spelled it Meigs. He became convinced that the original spelling was Meigs. When he got back to AL from his studies, he began persuading as many as possible to change the spelling of their surname from Meggs to Meigs.
     My Grandfather was the first born in the family of Stephen Strider Meggs in Sep. 1872. After Dr. Stephen began his effort to change names, my great grandfather Stephen S Meggs b 1846, did change to Meigs. 8 of his 12 children changed as well. My grandfather and 3 other siblings did not change. I met my grandfather's brother Walter one time in the 1960s and he was a Meigs.
     James Elijah Meggs, who wrote the book about the descendants of John T, said that the name was always spelled MEGGS in England, which, of course, is the origin of our name.
    I'm glad to share that story. In the time that I knew him, starting in 1925 when he and the remaining family moved to Nashville, where we were living at that time, he was always a stubborn man, and my Dad and a couple of his brothers were just as stubborn. So it is no wonder to me that he refused to change the spelling of his name.
     Certainly you may use that story on your blog. As you, no doubt know, some of the websites don't like to use undocumented stories as part of their records.
     That story about the name change has a bearing on John T as well. He started life as a Meggs, but then long after he was dead some began to use the Meigs for his name. That plus the fact that so many say that John T's father was Stephen Strider Meigs (Jr), who was in the French and Indian War (1756-1763) and may well have been in the Northwest corner of Virginia, where there was fierce fighting during the period of John T's birth.
     If you find any other information about John T, I would really like to hear it. I am hoping I can the complete story about John T and Polly before I get completely unable to keep searching.

Best regards, Wendell Meggs

My reply:
Hi Wendell,
I'll be more than happy to share any stories you would like to tell...
I think it's important to record them. Unless you've written a book, you may be the only one that would know them.
I consider it to be documented as long as I can document where I got the story :--)

I, like Wendell, would love to hear any info you have on John T Meggs and family. Hopefully Wendell has more stories he would like to tell.