Arguably the jewel of his work, a five-volume set focused on the descendants of Oxford founder Richard Thompson, has recently been published by the society.
Oickle passed away in 2015 at the age of 52. Marney Gilroy, treasurer of the society, remembers him as a young man in the Little River area.
“I remember him going around the community at the age of 10, speaking with the locals and asking them about growing up in the community, their relatives, etc.,” said Gilroy. “He kept extensive notes on his research.”
That might be an understatement. Oickle conducted countless interviews, sending letters as far away as the Church of Latter Day Saints in Utah to confirm information. The volumes are filled with history, especially from the area of Oxford, Westchester and Collingwood, and everything is sourced and indexed. In fact, the entire fifth volume of the set is the index.
“He did up a form that he would send with his letter, and people would just fill in the form to save them from having to write more,” said Gilroy. “That’s why he was so successful in getting a lot of responses… This man was intelligent. He was a genius.”
We Rise Again is a detailed document covering Thompson’s descendants from 1791 to 2015, an excellent resource for anyone searching for a Cumberland County descendant.
“It’s become something I use as a go-to tool for research since it’s become part of our collection, because there are so many names in it,” said society board director Barb Reid. “It’s such a valuable tool, I can’t imagine anyone related to Thompsons or Cumberland County names would not want to go through it.”
We Rise Again is available for purchase, as a set or as single volumes, from the Cumberland County Genealogical Society.