I love puzzles. As a child, teen, and even as adult you would find my nose in a book doing crossword puzzles, logic problems, and MENSA tests. Dolls were not for me as I like to solve problems and even to this day “I am known for solving problems.” (For OTHER people!) When I was dating Bob and computers were starting to become popular (yes… THAT long ago), I even had puzzles and games on my computer.
For some reason my brain is addicted to puzzles and for me family history is one HUGE puzzle. And, for the past 30+ years (cough… cough…) I have been addicted to family history.
I “blame” my fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Duke, who gave us an assignment to create a family tree, which I think was five generations back. From there… I was hooked! Five generations was not enough for me since I had five generations alive and knew them. From there, the search started and has never ended (but it will never end… right?!).
My family was “easy” since there were a lot of relatives who did family history as a hobby and gave me their research. Wanting to “confirm” their research I tried to get my hands on as many records as I could but it was hard during my 20’s when I lived overseas. Before the time of “the internet” and when I lived in Turkey for 10 years I ordered every transcription of census and cemetery records that I could find that was relevant to my family research. I still have all the books and materials – enough to make a local library jealous!
With “the age of the internet” records are now available in electronic format so I don’t have to go dig at the local courthouses and stomp through cemeteries. While sitting on the couch or lounging outside, I can easily find my family members at the click of a mouse. With all this information I plan to:
- Go through both sides of the family and clean up our family trees with tying to records to ensure my findings are more accurate.
- Visit various cities to see where our ancestors lived and create a pictorial document for generations to come.
- Experience the countries and foods of our ancestors and bring these experiences back home to share with everyone.
Overview of our roots as we know them:
His mom was Norwegian parents and she was born in the United States. Our travels will take us to Wisconsin and one day Norway.
His dad was born in Canada and his grandfather was born in Bath, England. This line will take us to Toronto, Canada and back to Bath, England. His surname is of his great grandmother and the name of his great grandfather is unknown. I am hoping the Ancestry DNA kits will help us fill this this hole. NOTE: We have 4 generations of his family born in 4 different countries! England -> Canada -> United States -> Turkey.
My mother’s side of the family has been in the United States for over 300 years and really never moved. Seriously… my mom is the first generation to leave “home” in all those generations. Her line has so many potential applicants for Daughters of the American Revolution that I just gave up trying to apply for them all.
My biological father’s side has a Mayflower connection and more Revolutionary War lines. We have yet to visit Plymouth Rock so a trip to Massachusetts will be on our future.
During my “new search” I will show you how to use online resources, apply for DAR / SAR, and lots of other really fun family history tips.
One part of this journey that I cannot wait to see the results for is the Ancestry DNA kits. Like I stated above, I hope they will help us fill that huge hole in Bob’s family tree. Also, it will be interesting to see whose side of the family Spencer REALLY takes after. For those who don’t know us personally: Bob has black hair and blue eyes, I am dark brown and green eyes, we are both 5’8″ tall… and our son is 6’1″ with BLONDE hair and blue eyes. Genetics are funny that way and I can’t wait to see what ours look like!
Have you researched your family tree? Interested and not sure where to start? Comment below and let me know – here to help you get started!