Monday, August 30, 2010


One of the great things about being a genealogy blogger is that by
posting stories about my ancestors and my research on them, I've been
contacted by folks who share my ancestry. Recently I made the
acquaintance of  Evelyn Swain Webb from Texas, who is a fellow
descendant of Jeremiah Swain. Last year I wrote a fourteen part
series of posts about Jeremiah and his part in the New England Indian
Wars which was how Evelyn found me.

Today Evelyn sent me some fascinating photographs along with the story
behind them. They show a quarterstaff that was owned by Jeremiah:

This is part of the information Evelyn also sent along:
"When Jeremiah came from England he brought with him this 
Walking Stick of Quarterstaff, some times known as a cudgel. The 
wood is yew, or orange, and the head is ivory.  It appears to be 
about 4 ft. in length. Possibly, for unknown generations preceding 
Jeremiah the Quarterstaff  was held by a male member of the family, 
usually descending from father to eldest son  Through the years this
cane came down through Colonel John Farrar Swain, a brother to
Dr. Marcus Swain.  At the death of Col. John, the cane passed to his 
son Elmer Perry Swain, who died in 1913. It passed to his eldest son,
Lloyd E. Swain and thence to his nephew, Robert F. Swain.  Robert 
Swain was in the service in WW2, and it seemed that the dangers
attendant with participation in the war might disturb the traditional
line of descension.  Therefore, in 1944, it was donated by Lloyd N. 
Swain to the Nebraska State Historical Society, 1500 R. St. Lincoln,
NE 68501

The pictures were obtained by Oliver D. Swain on 28 Nov., 1989, 

from the Nebraska Historical Society.  This article was also written
by Oliver D. Swain, copied by Dona Evelyn Swain Webb, 2/20/00."

Now Jeremiah Swain died in 1710. So for 300 years, and probably
even longer than that since before Jeremiah, the quarterstaff was handed
down from father to son! That's amazing!

Thank you Evelyn for sending this along to me, and for allowing me to
share it here on my blog. Perhaps another of Jeremiah's descendants   
will find it here someday!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is really neat! Thank you so much for sharing. One of my great-great (etc.) grandfathers was Marcus Swain. My brother still has Swain military records and other assorted family papers stored away in an attic somewhere.