I was going through some old papers recently, and I uncovered a forgotten treasure. It appears that at some point in the past, I made an attempt to sketch out my family tree. Judging from the scattered notes, my best guess is that I got hopelessly confused from the sheer amount of data that I was given. As a dyslexic, I have difficulty with numbers, and with words that are unfamiliar to me, such as surnames. It looks like I scrawled down some notes, and then put them away, to be completed at a future date, when I figured I would have more time to devote to genealogy.
These hastily scribbled notes are what is left of my first attempt at genealogy. I didn’t even realize that I’d put these notes away, for the “Future Me”, (the one who was expected to have much more free time than “Past Me”), to find. Yet, here they are. I’m not sure how accurate these notes are, but I think there is enough information here to allow me to get a good start on my family research, should I choose to continue it.
Many genealogists blog about their “first time” doing genealogy research. They blog what sparked their first interest in doing genealogy, or tell an interesting story about what they uncovered when they first began putting together their family tree. If you have a keen interest in genealogy, it can be fun to read about how other people got started in this hobby.
As for me, I’m not sure there is much of a story to tell. I recall feeling the need to write this cryptic form of a family tree shortly after my grandmother died. She was the matriarch of the family, and taught all of us about the importance of celebrating people while they were still alive. She insisted that after she died, she wanted the entire family to get together, and have a party, and remember the happy times. And so we did. It was shortly after this emotional family get together that I felt compelled to create a written record of who I was related to.
These notes say that my grandmother had 13 siblings. It also says that my mother’s father’s grandfather had 13 siblings. There are notes indicating that a few ancestors had mental health issues, and some notes indicating that there are suspicions that some ancestors had Alzheimer’s. One of the people I was supposed to ask for more family information is now deceased. There is a note in the corner of a page that says that one of my relative’s surnames was actually a shortened version of the original surname. My past self has left quite a tangled web of mystery for my current self to unscramble.
Image by Martin K on Flickr