Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Ancestors.

I have been working on and off on a thorough genealogy of all the bloodlines that have led down to my children.  So far I have only looked at my contribution.  It's a huge task documenting the family genome though it is made easier by belonging to ancestry.com. It's expensive but saves money and time.    The official archives; 10 year census snapshots, repeated petitions for naturalization, ship manifests, documentations of birth, marriage and death tell a big part of the story but not the whole story. The subjects sometimes like hunted fugitives try to throw us off the trail, names change, first the proper names like Jaraslav, Alois, Pavlina, become Jerry, Louis, and Pauline.  The family names next; Cernovsky, Hermanakova, become Smith, or Schmidt.  The greatest regrets are that I wasn't collecting data when many of my ancestors were still alive, grandparents, aunts, uncles who had much of the evidence. They didn't seem interesting back then but now that I am about to become just another link in the long genetic chain I want to know them.  Their testimony would have been helpful, their pictures and their family stories would have put flesh on the bones of data.  So far I have found a few pioneers, homesteaders who carved out a life in South Dakota,  Coal Miners in Lancashire, huddled masses in steerage leaving Europe and it's dieing monarchies.  My family line was more downstairs then upstairs and most of them left Europe looking for something better but there is not a lot of evidence that they found it. I have even found a second cousin who has a face book page our grandparents were siblings seperated when very young by the death of their parents.  They found each other eventually and put together one last reunion 50 years after their seperation. I want to document as many of them as I can an create a record so they won't be forgotten.  Remember that I was. 

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