Sunday, 30 January 2011

Searching for family tree gems.

Over the last six years or so I have been researching into my family tree. I go back and forth to it at intervals, using the Ancestry website and every time I think I have reached the end of the line I get a surprise. Today I found a relation whom we had only been able to guess about before.

The family myth had said that my Great Uncle was a good footballer, but nobody had any proof. Everyone who had known him had passed away. Today I discovered not only who he played for in the 1920's, but also his stats and a photo of him. How cool is that?!

He even looks a bit like my brother!
I just wish that I had been interested in this sort of thing when my grandparents were alive. I would have loved to be able to talk to them about their parents and grandparents. As it is I only have myth and rumour to work with.

The great thing about the Ancestry web site is that you can link with other people working on their family trees too. I am not going to link to them, but I do recommend them.I have birth certificates, addresses, marriage certificates...

And do you know the weirdest thing? I now live in a place that is only 20 minutes drive from where my family first came from. I always thought that we came from the coast - Lowestoft, but it turns out that they lived in a tiny village near here. It was pure chance that I moved here to live and even now as I drive around the countryside near their village I imagine my great grandfather, my great great grandfather riding down the same lanes.

I love finding new relations and imagining what their lives might have been like. I do not come from royalty - we are peasant stock, but that is not important. They were real people, working the land and finding out about them is brilliant!!


Urban Cynic said...

I know exactly how you feel - I dip in & out of my family tree & even went down to visit where my family lived (they owned that house in The Edwardian Farm) & I find myself thinking about them quite often.

I marvel at how they would have given their right arms for hairdryers, irons, vacuums, dishwashers, bra's & central heating! I also with I had been more interested when my grandparents were alive - I was lucky that my great-grandmother wrote most of it all down though. That helped me get quite far back very quickly. Ancestry is such an incredible website - I'd love a subscription!

Caz said...

It is fun doing a bit of detective work on family history and sometimes surprising. A year ago I found a half brother I never knew I had! He lives in England and is the spitting image of my Dad. Hopefully there aren't too many more surprises out there for me!! Have fun with it.

Inkling said...

My husband thought his family tree was small and knew only his siblings. But then a cousin of his found us, and through her work with that website, we discovered a whole huge beautiful family and an incredible sense of belonging. It was such a gift, so I know what you mean about how helpful that site and the whole pursuing your roots thing can be.

By the way, my own little blog hadn't been notifying me of comments and I just assumed I wasn't getting any since I write so infrequently, so I'm so sorry that it looked instead like I was ignoring you. I wasn't! And I can't believe you stuck with me through all of the ups and downs and quiet moments on my blog. But thank you. You are so totally kind.

Studentmum said...

I looked into my Father's family tree, he was a different generation to my mother & a real mystery. He died young, when I was 13 and at that age you don't ask, and he never told, not even my mother. I found a large extended Welsh family, Austrailian relatives, french ancestry & actually managed to get hold of his army records from WW2. Which made fascinating, if difficult reading. There are still large gaps, post war until he met my mother in 1959, but one day I will try & uncover more secrets, bad or, maybe some good. One kindly warning, sometimes we may not like what we find, but it's all historically interesting.