There was probably much activity around the house between the parents and their children. On the 1870 census, there were seventeen people living at the same address at one time. I cannot imagine my house being so full; I value my space (would make a sacrifice to move others in if necessary). Seventeen is a lot of activity!As many women were probably listed, Mary Jane, was listed as a housekeeper; a role that is important to the family as my great-great-grandfather, Ditt, worked at farming. I would think that the hard work of farming was passed on to his children; hard work was preparing the children for their future independence. The many children, as reflected on the various census, were coming (being born) and going (by the next census was old enough to be out of parents’ home into their own).
Most of my great-great-grandparents’ children were part of the first “Great Migration” from 1910 to 1930. Many of my great aunts and uncles left Powhatan County for Cincinnati, OH and Suffolk, MA. The one son, Jordan Summons, with his wife Jennie Ross, of Kentucky, moved to Cincinnati, Hamilton, OH a little before 1910. Some of the other children, Mary J., James, Jr., and a few others moved to Suffolk, MA. The rest stayed close to home with Ditt and Mary Jane. Mary Jane outlived Ditt; she was eighty years old by the 1910 census and still living with a few of her kids.
My father’s grandfather, Monroe B. Summons and his brothers Augustus Summons, and William Summons lived in either Powhatan County or Richmond, VA. That FULL house becomes an empty house, and might I add an empty state.