This Week’s Genealogy Find: Another Cousin

My cousin, Renee Smith in New York City last fall.

The foundation of my research on my paternal ancestors comes from documents donated by my distant cousin, Renee Smith.  Renee gave her information on our family, including the amazing photo of my great, great-grandmother, Temple Burton with her former owners, the Stuarts to Ray Bellande, a historian in Ocean Springs, Mississippi where our family is from.  He in turn gave the documents to the McCain Library and Archives at the University of Southern Mississippi.  Ever since I came across Ray’s website several years ago, I’ve been trying to find my long-lost cousin, Renee.  On Good Friday she showed up – in my email box of all places.  It was a Good Friday indeed.

Here’s how Renee and I are related:  Renee is the great-granddaughter of Mme Tempy Stuart-Smith, a piano teacher in Ocean Springs. Her son, the late John Baptist Smith was Renee’s grandfather.  John Smith passed away at the age of 93 in 2004.  Tempy Stuart-Smith’s father was Alfred Burton  Stuart.  Alfred was the child of Tempy Burton and Col. W.R. Stuart like my great-grandmother, Josephine Burton Ford.  Renee’s great, great-grandfather, Alfred and my great-grandmother, Josephine were brother and sister.   That makes Renee and I third cousins, once removed. (Don’t think for a minute I figured that out on my own.  I used a handy-dandy cousin calculator!)

In our emails, I learned that Renee lives in Australia with her husband, a Scotsman (like our ancestor, Col. W.R. Stuart) and she has an 11 year-old niece named Monique Smith (the namesake of our cousin and genealogy buddy).

I so look forward to meeting Renee and echo her sentiments at the end of her email –  “God Bless Our Family always.”

Is it just me, or are all of my cousins exceedingly beautiful?

My cousin, Monique Smith Anderson and family on Thanksgiving, 2009.



Filed under ancestry, family history, geneology, Multiracial families

13 responses to “This Week’s Genealogy Find: Another Cousin

  1. It’s not you, Dionne, ALL of your family are exceedingly beautiful! Glad you found Renee – how wonderful that she lives in Australia – and very very excited about that cousin calculator!

  2. Deb

    All of your research is tempting me to begin some inquiries into my own relatives. One interesting thing I recently found out is that my maiden name, Rosenberg, was originally Majufes. Don’t even ask. I’m still puzzling that one.

    • Itzik Ma-Yafit

      I found your words by chance after inserting “MAJUFES” to GOOGLE.
      I don’t know if and when you will read these words, but in case you will, you’re invited to contact me since I’m an Israeli MAJUFES. My last name, as you can see above is the Hebrew pronunciation of the name. My father arrived here in 1947 from Poland under the name of MAJUFES. I’ll be happy to assist you with the history of this large family (in a matter of fuct, spreded all over the glob).

      • Deb

        hi – I was prompted by the author of this blog to your comment. The little that I know is that my family came from Lithuania/Poland (the borders were always changing) sometime in the early 1900’s. The name was Rosenberg. A cousin of mine found out somehow that the name was originally Majufes. Maybe we can combine our family trees and see where we’re connected along the way!

  3. Very nice! Thanks for sharing!

    May you keep sharing your ancestor stories!

    Bill 😉
    Author of “Back to the Homeplace”

  4. Absolutely perfect bone structure, all of you! On another note, your friend Diane contacted me to see if we might be related. My father is coincidentally going to Poland to visit where his father lived as a child and had been doing a lot of research on Herbsts. We probably aren’t related, but you really are inspiring a lot of people to look into their ancestry and to look for the connections between us all.

  5. Gorgeous family and congrats on the great find.

  6. Mrs. Paulette Carter


    My name is Paulette Carter, (I live in Queens, New York) granddaughter of John Baptist Smith. John B. Smith had 8 daughters and 2 sons. Renee’s father and my mother are brother and sister. There are still some of John Baptist Smith children still alive. My mother Ellen Smith Commodore was deceased in 1996. I am on facebook under Paulette Commodore Carter and my email is There are many of the Smith cousins that are in touch with me on facebook. I too have tried many times to make connections with my family only to be ignored but I thank God I found this place

  7. Mrs. Veronica E Camp

    My name is Mrs. Veronica E Camp. My mother’s name is Mrs. Snowfox (Geraldine Smith) Lawrence. She is the daughter of John Baptist Smith. This is a great find regarding our family. Looking forward to hearing from you. There is more family here in Philadelphia and our cousin Paulette in New York.

  8. Mrs. Veronica E. Camp

    I forgot to include:
    I am on facebook and so are my children

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