A few months ago, I discovered a family record in an old desk drawer. It takes my surname back five generations, beginning with John Linton Lunsford, born in Virginia about 1820. After doing research on Ancestry, I can confirm this, and all the listed children, marriages, deaths, etc. What I can't do is move past John Linton, to his parents.
So far, I've discovered a marriage certificate that lists the father of the bride, but the father of the groom is blank. There is no death certificate that I can find, although I did find a newspaper record showing he died in Waco Texas on October 8th, 1891 leaving survivors, etc. No father listed. Since the state only offers records beginning in 1910, I have posted in the Waco, TX forum a lookup request for the certificate.
It appears he had a sister "SF" and a brother "Charles W" born 1823 and 1829 respectively. I've done all the same research on the siblings and find even less information. Scanning all Lunsfords in the 1840 census in Virginia turns up a few possibilities, but nothing certain, and most of it you have to squint a little to make the three fit in the same household. No marriage, christenings, births, or anything else I can think of is turning up.
Ancestry.com doesn't appear to have anyone else doing research on him, or his siblings. The four or five references I did find were on the edge of others' family research.
Best someone new to this can do, I scanned through probate records in Virginia for anything that might jump out, but have found nothing of interest. It was a rather broad search, and I really have no idea what county he's from because the first record I can find for him is in Mississippi in 1850. Then in Norfolk in 1860. I don't know if he's from Norfolk that moved back, or a brand new arrival.
I've reached out to living relatives looking for old family documents, etc, but nothing so far goes back as far as John Linton.
I'm really stumped here and have no idea where to go or what to do next. Any insights or help would be greatly appreciated.