Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Daddy Long Legs



There are no short legs in the Tipton men of my family.  We have average to long legs, no shorties.  

I'm 6'4" (or was before I shrunk).  My younger brothers are taller than I am at 6'5" and 6'6".  All of my Tipton uncles were all over 6 feet.  
My father Isaac was the tallest Tipton brother at 6"5" (he is in the back row on the right)

Growing up, I was 6 foot before I entered high school (middle school now).  I was always embarrassed by my height, feeling like the ugly duckling among my short legged classmates.  


I remember asking my Mother "why am I so tall?" She told me "You inherited that gene from your grandmother."  The grandmother she was referring to was my father's mother, Hester Lewis.  


My paternal grandmother Hester Lewis Tipton with 10 of her 11 sons - May 1939
I don't remember my grandmother.  She died in 1944, when I was only two years old.  My memory doesn't go back that far.


Hester Lewis Tipton on her wedding day July 18, 1908
All that I heard about my grandmother was that she chewed tobacco and had an Indian in her ancestry.  

When I discovered Ancestry.com I began my search for that Indian in her ancestry.  I found the Indian.  Her name was "Indian P. Keziah" and she was my 5th great grandmother and Hester's 3rd great grandmother.  


Thus, I was able to bring fact to a family legend.  Yes, we have an Indian ancestor but very distant.  "Indian Keziah" was born in 1770 and was married to my 5th great grandfather John Hughes. 



Last night, while I was updating my family tree I had a pleasant surprise.  One of my fellow genealogy chroniclers had posted a photo of my 2nd great grandfather, Sidney Erwin Hughes.



Guess what?  I found the source of the Tipton men's long legs!  


Sidney Erwin Hughes with his wife Nancy Miller circa 1880 North Carolina
Now folks them are some long legs!  Mystery solved.  

My hubby Bill told me that one of the first things that attracted him to me was my long legs.  


Me, August 1986
That's right folks, it wasn't my scintillating wit or my drop dead good looks that attracted Bill but my LONG LEGS.  Wow.  Oh well, whatever it takes to lure that man.


Here I am on on of those mountain tops in North Carolina researching my family roots - 1994
As ashamed as I was to have those long legs and height when I was young, these days I'm proud of my long legs and height.  Given a choice I would much rather be a "Daddy Long Legs" than one of these short, stubby legged guys.


Me with a typical short legged hillbilly during our 2010 trip south to research my family roots.  
Before I started to shrink, my inseam was 36 inches (it's now 34 inches).  Just to give you some perspective, I am the same height as that doofus Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, 6'4".  However his inseam is 32" compared to my 36".  He's all torso (great for swimming obviously) while I'm all legs.  
Phelps on the right
Folks, I love researching my history and discovering fascinating facts like this.  And I am especially glad that I don't have to go through life with short legs.  




18 comments:

  1. Holy smokes!!!

    Ol' Sidney looks like he might have been a 7-footer!

    :-)

    -Andy

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  2. I think you're right Andy!

    Ron

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  3. Sylvia1:20 PM

    I think it is so charming that Bill told you that he was attracted to your long legs. You just never know what makes two people "click" with each other.

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    1. Sylvia,
      I was a little put out when Bill first told me that. I thought "My long legs? Really? That's what attracted you?" And here I grew up hating the fact that I was so tall, especially at a young age. Turns out that's how I snagged Mr. Right. You just never know.

      Ron

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  4. So Bill is a leg man.......son of a gun. ;-)

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    1. Denise,

      Yes, Bill is a leg man. I've heard him talk about other's legs. Me? I'm a buttocks man.

      Ron

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  5. I like tall men with long legs, but short men can be so darn charming too! I didn't like at all being tall when I was a kid but I changed my mind later on.

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    1. Nadege,
      You're absolutely right, some short men are charming too. I'm normally attracted to a guy who is around 5'8". Too tall or too short usually doesn't get my attention. Of course the personality of the man is the deciding factor, short or tall.

      Ron

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  6. Ron

    Somewhere down the road there's going to be members of your family so grateful you've done all this research. It's amazing too how some genes survive generation after generation.

    Pat

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    1. Pat,
      I hope some in my family appreciates all the research I've done for the family. None has shown any interest so far. But by putting my information on Ancestry.com, I hope after I'm long gone, and some of my family members get away from their day to day focus, they will appreciate all the work I've done to preserve our common family history. If they don't, well, it's their loss.
      Ron

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  7. oh my. but we "short people" have a lot to offer! ;-)

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    1. Anne Marie,

      Remember the song "Short People?" So true!

      Ron

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  8. Pretty cool, Ron! Love this post! A very unusual ancestry post. I loved it.
    I was sure it was going to be all about your morbid fear of daddy longlegs spiders or something equally benign!

    Peace <3
    Jay

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    1. Jay,
      I love these gems I often discover when researching my family tree. I'm glad you enjoy them too.

      Ron

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  9. Ron, I'm a leg man myself as well. The 70s and 80s where a great time for me to look. :-) If you're a butt man I'll have to double my efforts and work out my glutes. I was only 6 ft by the time I reached 16yrs, been there ever since. See you all in March. Randy.

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    1. Randy,

      You understand being a "daddy long legs" yourself. Isn't it better than being one of those short legs? Bill and I often joke about the "short legs", especially all the Guatemalans we have around here in southern Delaware. I've never seen one over 5'5''. Damn, I would hate to go through life looking up all the time but I guess they get used to it.

      Ron

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  10. I am one of those short legged variety but Lea thinks I have great athletic legs so I'm happy. Often wonder though what it would be like to be a tad taller than my 5' 6" stature!

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    1. Paul,
      When I was young, in school, I wanted so bad to be like the rest of my short legged classmates rather than the long legged oddball that I was. I was so tired of hearing "Do you play basketball?" "How's the weather up there?" But now, I'm glad I am tall. I'm glad I'm not looking up all the time. Those rare times when I do meet someone taller than me, it seems so strange to bend my neck to look up. I would hate to go through life looking up all the time. But I having nothing against short guys, I just wouldn't want to be one of them.
      Ron

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