Welcome ! Come join me and find out what we may have in common

Picture a welcoming place to sit, a warm, friendly enviroment,

maybe a steaming cup of coffee or tea and a smiling face that is intereted in sharing many thoughts....I have a curious mind and if you are reading this my guess is you do too...let's share a few minutes and some conversation as friends old and new.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pondering ...things friends and family might remember

Genealogy can be alot of birth dates, death dates and marriage dates but when you are able to find
some personal information....ahhh, THAT'S a real treasure! It is then you can get a glimpse of what your ancestors were like and what their everyday life was like. How exciting to find a newspaper clipping or an entry in a town history and find your direct line ancestor was actively involved in the life of the community or military or in business. Often you will read he ( not as much about she) was a respected
honorable member of a certain town, and it gives you pride to know others thought well of him.

What do you supposed they will look back and say about you? I think about that when I read about
Anne Dyer or Anne Hutchinson or Dr. John Greene, or John Sanford. I would like to think that some of their qualities were passed down through the generations but I also feel "No matter how tall your grandfather was you still have your own growing to do"

I think what I am trying to get across is genealogy has made me think about my own contributions to the betterment of our town, country and the world for today we have more of an impact on people and places in the world than those who came before us......in my view a GREATER responsibility to leave
this place better than we found it. I think of doctors without boarders, hungry children, people who have lost everything due to natural disasters,war, and other unfortunate events. Will my grandchildren say I was respected, honorable, some one they respect? Genealogy makes me think. Not only do I want my family to know their ancestors, but I want to leave this earthy life knowing they will carry a very positive memory of their grandmother to share with their children and grandchildren. I want to be on that list of ancestors you would love to have a conversation with in the great beyond. So, I will try everyday to put into practice those qualities that I respect so much in the ancestors I have gotten to know. They were not perfect but it is clear to me they had high standards and worked to reach higher goals.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Two Lessons Learned

It seems like this was a week I was to learn some lessons from Genealogy!

Someone I have known for many years called me and wanted to know "what it would take to do his genealogy"  I said don't worry about it as I remember many years ago he did something very nice for my then husband. I ask some initial questions and told him we would talk as needed. My husband loves genealogy as much as me, so we divided family lines and went to work. It was a very interesting family
but involved more French and Dutch names than I have done in the past so I found many new challenges awaiting me. I knew he had some knowledge of a couple of his lines so I conscentrated on lines I was fairly sure he knew nothing about. We worked steadily for two plus weeks and when I phoned to say I not only found lines we shared but many other interesting things he cut the conversation short by telling me he was going out to dinner with his wife and never returned the call. I later emailed him to ask for a time we could go over his genealogy and that email was ignored as well. It was almost as if he had a bright idea one day and called then sat back to await the results. A few weeks went by, I bought a 3"
notebook and found a picture to put on the front ...still no contact from my "cousin".
Finally I boxed it up, included a note that was civil but express my disappointment that he was so aloof
after asking me to do this project, and sent it to him. To date no response! There is a prayer I say that
is helpful in times such as these. it include "I will not dwell on the unpleasant things of life....I will be a happy and joyful being"....Lesson # 1

Lesson #2... I bought a very interesting book recently with alot of background on the people, conditions, and background of the people involved in the Salem Witch Trials. people, just ordinary people, and how disagreements over property, money, etc. expanded and how a small matter became a town hysteria involving innocent people who were hung...only to realize later they were not witches at all. My ancestors were a big part of the Salem Witch Trials. The Putnams, Susanna North, and Mary Leach Ireson to name a few. I hope the lesson I learned was not to "judge" someone else but to try calmly to sort out a problem before it becomes a big one. I like what Dr. Suess said..." I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind, Some come from ahead and some come from behind. But I've bought a big bat. I'm ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have trouble with me!  On to other things!!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Trip to Maine

I wish I could report it is ME traveling to Maine but alas not this year. My daughter however decided to go to Eliot, Maine to Green Acre ( a Bahai School) and left early to give herself a couple of days before she needs to check in at the school . She is staying in Portland. We went there years ago with the children and she has fond memories and wanted to visit some of the places we went to as an adult. I am so excited for her. I belong to The First Families of Maine and have a deep love for the Portland area. Maine has a lovely Travel guide and map and with her GPS she is discovering Maine for herself. The Muddy Rudder, Portland Lighthouse, downtown Portland, homemade ice cream, seafood,  L.L.Bean and the sights and sounds of the sea....who wouldn't just LOVE IT!!! Oh yes, and the clam festival in Yarmouth...so many places I hope she enjoys.
 We are talking about renting a cottage next year for a couple of weeks and on this trip leave genealogy behind to just enjoy seeing one of the most beautiful parts of our country and it's people.
My thoughts each day dwell on Maine and what she will see and do....next year....it's my turn!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Isles of Shoal

Hi Friends,

I have been traveling so genealogy has not been my top priority ( that is until this past week)
Periodically I go over my research and look again at brick wall or dates, or add information on
individuals as do most people who enjoy genealogy. Well, this week opened up a very interesting
hole in which I learned about some colorful ancestors that lived on the Isle of Shoals, Me
I found out Nathaniel Foss from Rye, Rockingham, NH was married to Mary ( Molly) Tucker.
Following her line lead me to the Tuckers and Olivers of the Isle of Shoals about  6-10 miles off the coast
of New Hampshire and boarder of Maine. This was a rough place and the people who lived there were fishermen.
It is said Blackbeard honeymooned there and the men and women there were as salty as the surrounding sea.
Well, first I had to look up and read about these Islands and as the day wore on I found myself completely immursed in the Isle of Shoals and my new found ancestors. I know many people are delighted when they learn one or more of their ancestors had some wealth or prestige ( I have some of those) but these people were the foundation of a very interesting story!! What must have it been like to live off the mainland so isolated and exposed to the whims of weather, pirates, and well, my immagination was in full gear!
It is stories like this that make genealogy so much fun!
Friends sometimes you think there is nothing else you can "find" but if you are persistant...well who knows what you might uncover...another family another story it's all such a wonderful learning experience!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Surprised at Ancestry

I LOVE genealogy and enjoy teaching others to find their family roots. My husband ( who is also a genealogist) and I encourage our class to tune in "Who Do you think you are?" to see how they might expand their own
hunt for their ancestors. I so enjoyed season 2010 and was looking forward to another interesting season.

Last night we watched Steve Buscemi episode and were shocked  and disappointed at the HUGE gaffs in research and presentation. No genealogist amateur or professional would have let this air without some BIG changes.Please read the review by Janice M. Sellers "Ancestral Discoveries". She hit the nail on the head pointing out step by step where mistakes were made.

This does not help Ancestry's credibility to let such poorly presented episodes be aired. There were assumptions made and conclusions reached that went beyond reasonable documention.

I know they were hoping to draw in a new audience and make it as fascinating as possible but this ( in my humble opinion) was "rubbish"!!!
I hope other will express their disappointment to Ancestry and ask that future programs be more in line with the programs in 2010.
No one could be happier with a company that incourages it's audience to look into their family's roots and be a part of preserving history but this program will have a short live span if it continues to do such shoddy work.
PLEASE...ANCESTRY... get it together and give us programs that keep us clammering for more!
I am taking Janice's review to my class this next week to demonstrate POOR DOCTUMENTATION!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Help me, I'm New

My husband and I have been involved in Genealogy for (me 11years) for him alot longer.
At first, I was very involved in my own family roots and was ordering books and joining NEHGS
and family organizations totally involved in " the hunt"...how exciting! Next step... I joined DAR and became the registrar...helping other get their papers in order to join. Then a couple of my DAR sisters asked me to help them join other organizations and I joined the Mayflower Society. My learning curve expanded as I got involved in family
history in the south. I learned about migration routes and got familiar with ports of entry in the south. Then a school friend asked if I would trace her family lines...and still another good friend with an emphasis on the mid west. This probably sounds familiar to some of you.:) I went to a summer neighborhood gathering and a neighbor told me she has wanted to join DAR all her life...so, guess who got involved!

I am fortunate to be retired and love to research because more and more people are interested in genealogy and
once they find out about your interest...it becomes so easy to jump right in. I did some research with Afro-American genealogy....which was quite interesting! The "Who Do You Think You Are?" Ancestry program has inspired many to start the search so a hobby that is already #2 ( I think) is fast becoming even MORE popular.

The senior center asked us teach a genealogy class and we set a goal that no one in our class would leave without a fresh piece of information about their family. Our goal has taken us in directions we would not have thought. I have thought about taking a course to be a certified genealogist but I am concerned it would take
some of the enjoyment I have experienced away...and it might feel like a school project instead of the joy I have felt in learning on my own.

This week we start another four week class...I know as we sit around a table someone will say..."I have always wanted to know( fill in the blank) but I need help..you see I'm new! ( and we will be off and running again)
Has this been your experience too??

Friday, February 11, 2011

Hearts and Flowers

I LOVE Genealogy...I have learned so much about history,patterns of early migration, my ancestors (the good and not so good)and met online some wonderful generous people (some of which turned out to be related)

Valentine's Day brings forth thoughts of all the people in my heritage, and how much I enjoy spending time learning about them. It like a special love note when I send for some information and it arrives in the mail.
Unfortunately I do not have as many pictures of my ancetors as others have but I do have a picture of their character. It was through my grandparents (mainly paternal) interest in following their roots that gave me a head start in my quest to trace family roots. Today, with all the online help (Ancestry, NEHGS, Rootsweb,family Surname queries and books, etc) expanding the work my grandparents did has been a bit easier than spending time in drafty courthouses pouring over records and stomping through cemeteries trying to find and read tombstones. How I wish my grandparents could see just how expansive and fascinating their heritage is...but
then they may have met them on another heavenly plain.

I want to give a computer flower (got to learn how to make them) to all those kind and thoughful people who
 take/send pictures of gravestones, who do look ups, who check and photo copy records, who plan and are responsible for family reunions, record in book form family information, maintain cemeteries, keep up with decendants through Family Societies and keep history alive and available for all of us to enjoy.

Like many of you...I look forward to each week when "Who Do You Think You Are?" is on TV and you
learn about someone else's quest for family information. We appreciate the considerable work behind
the scenes and all the people involved to make each week look as easy as it appears.
I am delighted it has brought a greater interest to finding and preserving family histories.

I am feeling sentimental today...and would love to give a HUG to each of you who read blogs
and take the time to comment....how much richer I am for the input you are kind enough to give.
Hearts and flowers go out to YOU!!! Happy Valentines Day !!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Oh, the weather outside is frightful...

I am not complaining but it HAS been a severe winter for North Georgia and it's only January!
I always have my eyes on the Northeast as I have so many ties to that area...I am sure a real Mainer
would laugh hearing me say it has been a rough winter...but in New England there is a whole different standard.

On Christmas we got 6inches and this past week Georgia got slammed with another storm and this time there was ice with  it. We got 8-10inches and that is a big deal !!!

Several years ago I took an Amtrack train from Chicago to the west coast. I remember looking out the window across the vast plains and thinking "what do these people do in the winter" you might not see your closest neighbor for months!! I tried to imagine what that would be like and how I might adapt to living in such an isolated
enviroment. I live in city limits where everything I need is a stones throw away....how must people in the plain states prepare for a winter that is severe?

Then my mind drifted back to my many Yankee ancestors ...ancestors that I never knew but are so familiar to me
since I have been doing genealogy. How did they with even less resources than the homes I saw on the Amtrack train ( no refrigeration, no big farm plow, no computer, no telephone, and even the clothing was not on a par with the warm clothes we have today....how did they fare?

Now, I have not always lived within a stone's throw of a grocery store. When my children were young we
bought a home over 100yrs old. It had three rooms 17x17 and they had fireplaces plus a loft room and was most likely the parents room up the narrow stairs and two very small bathrooms that were added in later years.
We were young and this old home was a romantic idea ( you know baking my own bread, having some chickens
and goats and an old barn and some gorgeous old pecan and a ceder tree to enjoy)...LOL..I shudder thinking of it now. The first winter I wore my coat inside the house. Water would freeze INSIDE the house.The romance was short lived,  as we tried to figure out how to keep warm. Some wood burning stoves definitely helped the situation but I can still hear my daughter saying "why can't we live like normal people?"
Remember those TV shows that had a family live like they colonials did? Eat the same food and wear the same clothes? Well, my 100+yr old farm house was fairly close to that experience.
NO, you won't hear me complain...I have a nice gas fireplace and other house heat. I appreciate living in a city where they plow the streets and sand them when a storm arrives and I store enough food so we can be very comfortable in a January cold week. I am older and wiser now....but glad I had the experience years ago.
No you will NOT hear me complain!!!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

There's a time to say "goodbye"

I got that phone call from my sister ....the one I was sort of expecting but when it comes you realize you are not as prepared as you thought. "He passed away this morning" she said... cancer had claimed another life.

Being involved in genealogy, I am used to death dates, sending for death records, walking cemeteries, and
realizing some die too young. Death does not scare me...I am a cancer survivor and I am comfortable with my
beliefs about death. My sister however, was married 47yrs ( her first serious boyfriend) and so much of her life, her interests, her daily life was entwined with his...would she be alright?
I told her I would make arrangements and be with her for the funeral. We had been together for our parents' funerals and supported each other in the aftermath, but when I left this time she would experience being alone
for the first time in many many years. I am the older sister and I wanted to protect her.

During the trip to her home I thought about the women in my family (our ancestors) ...many of them had little time to grieve..there were children to raise, chores to be done, and times were difficult. Women were not trained to take over the financial responsibilities or make decisions about buying and selling properties. Fortunately some were left in comfort but others did not live close to family and had to manage with help from church members or neighbors.

I was pleased to see the support my sister received. Her neighbors insisted on preparing all the food  as friends stopped by after the funeral. Flowers, cards and so many offers of support from so many sources. I really had nothing to worry about. She had friends from her volunteer work, her two  social clubs , her church,
and the neighbors (many of them widows too) were so willing to be of assistance. Her sons live in her area
so I drove home thinking her life although changed will never the less be full of people who will help her heal.
We all came to say "goodbye" but life goes on and a new chapter has opened. It will be interesting to see her
make friends, adjust a different lifestyle and grow as a person.
I will be her main cheer leader! We never know what we might have to adjust to in this life but she has strong heritage, so I expect she will meet the day with the strength her forebearers did and be a good example for me to follow.