My focus recently has been on my grandfathers and great grandfathers. With Mothers Day coming on the 12th of May I thought it time to share their stories.
Today we explore my paternal great grandmother Rausannah Brulla Underwood. Known within the family as Rausa, she is the daughter of Sally Underwood and an unknown father. There are clues to her father in the works of Edgar M Egner. Based on interviews with relatives from the Underwood's, Egner's, Carr's, and Kerr's he published his findings in 1973. The story goes that Rausa's father was a member of a neighboring Carr family. To date there is no documentation, but the fact that Rausa took her grandfather's surname of Underwood, and was raised by her grand parents seems to add a bit of truth to the family stories.
The same publication has the following marriage information:
Rausannah Brulla (Rausa) Underwood married Joseph Lincoln Karr at the
Widow Betty Underwood's house on March 2, 1871. The wedding was
performed by W. G. Sawyers in the presence of Speed Hill and John Egner.
This marriage produced 4 children. Three of which were living at the time of the 1900 census. Sarah Jane Karr, Andrew Jesse Karr, and Joseph Lee Karr. Sarah Jane used the name Carr on her marriage documents and Joseph Lee used Kerr in his work documents.
Typical of those living in the hills and hollars of Whitley County Kentucky the family were farmers. Tobacco being their main money crop plus other staples such as corn, varieties of vegetables for canning. Pigs, chickens and the family milk cow sustained them during the hard times following the Civil War. All indications are that Rausa was this typical farmers wife. Taking care of her aging mother in the 1880's and then her family following her husbands death in 1891.
On the 1900 census, she is living as a widow with her 21 year old son Andrew on the family farm. Neighbors are members of the extended Underwood family and a few of the Egner's and Karr's. She lived out her life in this close knit family supported environment.