Monday, March 10, 2014

Researching My Ancestors

I have thought about joining for many years. When my husband, Larry, and I decided to take a thirteen-day tour of Scotland, England, Wales and Ireland in late June, I began to think about my family tree in a new way. I needed to know if there were going to be a town along the way that one of my ancestors were born in because I really want to visit if we can arrange it. Also, I turn sixty-five this year. At every major age-phase of my life, I reflect upon it and everything about it.

At this time, I decided I need to be in Ireland on my birthday. It's time to get in touch with my "Peeps" across the pond. In the mid-1970's, one of my housemates introduced me to traditional Irish music. I have been a fan ever since. And, I have fantasized about playing the bodhran, but now my carpal-tunnel wrists couldn't take it.

While searching my ancestry on the web site, I discovered that my father's father was born in Skibbereen in County Cork. Our bus tour looks like it would come close enough that I may be able to ask Globus, our touring company, if Larry and I can take a private excursion to visit Skibbereen. Why not ask, right?

While completing my family tree on, I wanted to confirm birth dates for my grandmother's family. So, on a cold, crisp, sunny winter's day, I drove an hour plus to St. Mary's Cemetary in Needham, MA to visit our family plots. I took pictures of all the head stones I could find, then visited my sister, Margie, who still works at Mary Immaculate of Lourdes Catholic Church in Newton Upper Falls, to check the records of St. Mary's for any family I may have missed. I got who all is there, and made a note to visit Calgary Cemetary in Waltham for my grandfather's family. I know his father is buried there.

My sister, Jeanne, told me that one has to pay extra to for international records. They only provide U.S. information. I noticed the latter, but not the former. So, I will get back on the site and check that. I'd really like to have all the information. I'm using a fourteen-day free trial right now, but I may pay to continue.

Larry has gotten on board with this ancestry search too, and we've added his tree to mine. He took pictures of his family head stones, and we'll enter those dates as well. I am finding this tree searching to be a very interesting project. It would be great if I could find out what my ancestors did for a living in Ireland. I know my grandmother's father was a machinist, but that's about all I found out so far.