Barry's Genealogy Diary

This online genealogical diary is hosted by Barry T. Self. It is primarily for information pertaining to the SELF surname, more particularly for descendants of John J. and Lydia Avaline Waters Self, who were married in Union County, GA in 1851. Barry Self is the SELF proclaimed family genealogist and historian, having spent over 20 years researching this Self line. This diary is dedicated to preserving and sharing the findings of his research.

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Location: Madisonville, Tennessee, United States

I am married to a wonderful and sweet wife, Svitlana, who is from Ukraine and we have a beautiful daughter, Lydia Elizabeth. I have worked in the funeral business since 1988 and thoroughly enjoy researching my family roots.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Thomas Celebrate 40 Years Marriage

Alvin and Peggy Cooper Thomas, of Vonore, TN, celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary on Saturday, September 26. They were also both honored for turning 60 this year. The couple have two daughters, Michelle Givens and Angela Shaffer and two grandchildren, Erika Danielle Shaffer and Aiden Thomas Givens, all of Vonore. Alvin is employed with the Town of Vonore and Peggy is retired from the Monroe County School System, after 30 years of service. (Take from The Advocate & Democrat Newspaper)

Monday, September 28, 2009


March 6, 2010 will mark the 100th anniversary of the death of our ancestor John J. Self. Plans were announced at the Self Family Reunion on September 19 to mark the anniversary with a special ceremony at the cemetery where John Self and his wife, Lydia Avaline Waters Self, are buried. The ceremony will be held at the Giles (Roberts) Cemetery at Rafter, TN, which is near Tellico Plains in Monroe County, TN.
If you would like to join us for the ceremony, please email me and I will put your name on the guest list. If you would rather call or write me, this is fine too. You will be contacted as the date draws near with more information about the particulars of the ceremony and directions where to meet. The time has not been set, but I anticipate it will be in the morning hours and we will likely gather for lunch at a local church fellowship hall or the community center after the brief ceremony.
My number is 423-420-9253; the address is 315 Oklahoma Street, Madisonville, TN 37354. Email address is: Make plans to attend this historic event.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Tuesday, September 22, 2009


These pictures were taken last Saturday at the family reunion. I did not get a picture of everyone who was there, but I did manage to get pictures of several. The other ten photos will be added tomorrow.


Wesley Dillard Self will turn 90 tomorrow. See the related blog post from September 15. I found three pictures of Dillard in the archives that I thought I would share with everyone. The first one shows (left to right) Dillard and his brothers, Arnold and Clarence Self. The second is of Dillard and his mother, Mae Self. The last one is of Dillard and his sister Reba Self Roberts.
Happy 90th Birthday Dillard!!!

Monday, September 21, 2009


The annual Self Family Reunion was held this past Saturday at Friendship Baptist Church in Maryville, TN. The attendance was very good. I did not get an exact head count, but I would estimate there were almost 100 there. We had a wonderful time. The ladies (and some gentlemen) did a superb job again this year with the food. There was an abundance of delicious food to enjoy. (We do have some great cooks in the family.) Everyone really seemed to enjoy the fellowship. We all missed Mrs. Ruth Bryant, who hosted the reunion for many years. She passed away back in July. The last time I saw her, she was looking forward to the reunion. She always loved the Self Family reunion. We will miss her at future gatherings.

It was announced at the reunion that we will NOT be able to meet at Friendship Baptist Church next year. Plans are being made to use a pavilion near Sandy Springs Park in Maryville for our reunion in September 2010. Information will be released as it becomes available.

I have several pictures from the reunion to share on this site. I will try to get them loaded tomorrow if at all possible.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Dillard Glenn Self will turn 90 years old on September 19, 2009. He was born in 1919 in Tellico Plains, Tennessee, in Monroe County, about a mile from where he now resides. Dillard is the son of the late Fred and Mary J. White Self. His father, Fred, was the son of Jobe Smith Self and Anna Margaret Stephens Self. Jobe Smith Self was the son of John Jones and Lydia Avaline Waters Self.

Dillard married Mayme Jo Witt on October 6, 1940 in Monroe County, TN. They had two daughters, Shirley N. and Margaret J. and a son who died in infancy. His wife, Mayme Jo passed away in 1991. Shirley lives next door to Dillard. Margaret lives in Athens, Georgia.

Dillard had two brothers who died at a young age. One brother was not named and the other was named Fred Self, Jr. One was older and the other was younger than Dillard.

Dillard served a couple of years in the U.S. Navy. He recalls making about 7 trips on a ship to the South Pacific, helping to deliver ammunition, jeeps and other supplies to the troops. He remembers sailing under the Golden Gate Bridge several times. He went to Detroit, Michigan around 1946, right out of the military, and worked for Ford Motor Company until approximately 1948, when he returned to Tellico Plains. He is a retired iron worker and welder and last worked at the Watts Bar Nuclear Plant near Spring City, TN.

Wesley Dillard Self will celebrate his 90th birthday on September 23. He was born in the Mt. Vernon Community of Monroe County, near Tellico Plains. He now resides on Chestnut Valley Road, Vonore, TN. This is in the Ballplay Community. Mr. Self is the son of William and Mary Mae Bryson Self. William Self was the son of Martha Lavada Self Tucker and Rev. Elisha Tucker. William had a twin, Lawson Self. Martha was the daughter of John Jones Self and Lydia Avaline Waters Self.

Wesley Dillard Self married Lillian Louise Williams. She passed away on July 15, 2008. They had one daughter, Wanda Jean Brown. She lives in Georgia. He had six siblings; three sisters and three brothers. He is the last surviving member of his immediate family.

Mr. Self worked for many years at the Everhart & Gray Lumber Company, but retired from Tellico Telephone company, both located in Tellico Plains. He is not a veteran, due to a foot injury which kept him from serving in the military.

Dillard Glenn Self and Wesley Dillard Self are second cousins.

The top picture is of Dillard Glenn Self. The bottom picture is of Wesley Dillard Self.

Monday, September 14, 2009


This past weekend, Svitlana, Lydia and I attended the 18th Century Trade Faire at Fort Loudoun State Park in Vonore. It was a very interesting event. We met "Daniel Boone" of Kentucky. Lydia learned about spinning yarn. Svitlana got some pointers from a hunter. I met a slate tombstone carver. A few pictures from our day at the faire are shown above.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009


I am getting way behind in posting news on this site. I want to announce that Kim and Joshua Wilkerson have a new baby boy. Nathanael Edward Wilkerson was born August 30, 2009. He's 7 lbs. 5 ounces and 20 inches long. You can take a look at him by visiting the following blog:

Congratulations Kim and Joshua!