Friday, February 26, 2010

William C. Cornelius

William C. Cornelius is my 5th great grandfather. He was born circa 1732 in Spotsylvania County, Virginia. William and his wife (it’s not clear about her identity) had nine children although there is a possibility that he may have had additional children. William’s 7th known child was my 4th great grandfather, John Cornelius. William died in 1801 in Lincoln County, North Carolina.

In re-reading a portion of my Uncle Jay’s Cornelius Roots and Shoots book, I found some disturbing information about William’s final resting place:

It is known that there was a small, old Cornelius family cemetery located near the old home place along the Catawba River. When a dam was being constructed to form Lake Norman on the Catawba, it became necessary that this old cemetery be moved to higher ground. It is reported that the remains of only those that were located and identified by headstones were disinterred and moved to the Rehobeth Methodist Church Cemetery in Catawba County, a few miles away. The others, unknown and unmarked, were left and soon covered by the waters of Lake Norman. William and his wife and perhaps others were apparently in unmarked graves at the time and so it must be assumed they are still there under about 100 feet of water.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Japanese General Masaharu Homma

Picture that my dad apparently took of Japanese General Masaharu Homma. The back of the picture says: “Jap General Homma and aides taken Naha Air Field.” Another similar photo continues with: “...on way to Manila to be tried for war crimes.”

According to Wikipedia, Gen. Homma was military commander of the Philippines. During the Japanese occupation, the Bataan Death March occurred and civilians were brutalized. The Japanese military, however, thought he was too cautious and too lenient with Philippine civilians and forced him into retirement in August 1943.

After the war ended, he was captured and transferred to Manila to stand trial for war crimes. He was convicted and executed on April 3, 1946.

This photo was apparently taken during a layover in Okinawa on the way to Manila. Since he was retired, that would explain why he is not wearing a military uniform.

Also according to Wikipedia, there is a film adaption in the works about the general called Beast of Bataan. Actor Hayden Christensen is attached to the project.