Last night, the episode of "Who Do You Think You Are" featured Reba McEntire and her connection to the Brasfield family of Monroe County, Mississippi.
It appears that my great-grandfather's half-brother T. R. "Bud" Thornton and Reba's grandmother Reba Brasfield may have been neighbors for awhile. I discovered in the 1920 census for Monroe County, Mississippi that Reba (Brasfield) and her mother Susie J. (Raper) Brasfield are residing with Susie's brother William Raper in the house adjacent to Bud and Harriet.*
I remembered the Rapers being next door, and I remember having looked into that Brasfield family before. It wasn't in my online database, however, so I wasn't sure why I had researched them. It turns out that it was because I was researching the neighbors! It's nice to know that my family knew Reba's family.
The Thorntons had actually gone to the part of Oklahoma in which Reba's family ended up residing earlier in the 20th century. They didn't stay. I can't help but wonder if the stories that Bud's brother John may have told about their adventures in Indian Territory may have influenced the Brasfield family's move to Oklahoma.
* 1920 U.S. Federal Census, Monroe County, Mississippi, Hatley Pct., Beat 1, s.d. 1, e.d. 26, p. 216B (stamped); NARA microfilm publication T625, roll 886; digital image, Ancestry.com, accessed 3 Mar 2012; NOTE: William Raper household is dwelling 250, family 255, lines 68-76; Tom Thornton household is dwelling 249, family 254, lines 60-67.