I have a somewhat unusual maiden name, and I never met anyone with that same last name until I was an adult.The name VINING was a huge attraction to me and probably one of the main reasons I dived into my family roots.
When I moved to Georgia, I was surprised to find out there was a whole TOWN called Vinings, Ga. Years later as I started my search for ancestors, I went to the Marietta, Ga library and asked what information /history they might have on Vinings, Ga. They brought me a file of miscellaneous papers. The town was originally owned by a Mr. Pace who had a ferry. At that time Atlanta was called Marthasville and before the Civil War (War between the States) a railroad was being built between Chattanooga, Tennessee and Marthasville. The person in charge of receiving materials was Mr. Vining. It was said "Drop the material's off at Vining's station" and through the years the station got dropped and Vinings remained. Who WAS this Mr. Vining? I checked census reports and every other source to no avail.
I contacted the Vinings in the Atlanta area who were also doing genealogy and they said they had been trying to find out and had not been successful.In this process I was curious to find where the southern Vinings came from so I was detoured as I followed the trail from Salem, Massachusetts to the south through North Carolina, South Carolina,Georgia and Florida. I was invited to join the Georgia Vinings for a family reunion. It was wonderful to be around a group of people with the name I had known all my life. My Vining line was from Weymouth, Ma (very close to Salem, Ma)they later moved to Maine. Certainly we were all from the same family in England, and many were in agreement ,although we could not definately prove it.
Since that reunion I have proven to myself (although some still doubt) we did indeed come from the same family line, AND years later found the mysterious Mr. Vining an assistant civil engineer of the Vining's station.Anthony Doyle wrote a book called Vining's Revisited and in it he identifies a Mr. William Vining from New Castle Delaware as the man we had all been searching for. He was found through his payroll requests with the W&A Railroad.
Since that time we have wanted to get DNA proof of our connection but have not found a male on both sides to do the DNA test that would unite this family. Maybe one day...maybe