FindAGrave found me a cousin!

alisandeMay 7, 2013

As many of you know, I've been volunteering as a gravestone photographer for FindAGrave.com for several years. I've taken over 1,500 photos so far. One thing I have not been able to do is photograph gravestones of my own ancestors, but I added a couple of memorials for one set of great-grandparents when I learned the name of the cemetery.

Today I received a message (through FindAGrave) adding some information to one of the 1,000+ memorials that I manage. It happened to be my great-grandfather's memorial, and the person sending the message knew a couple of things about my great-grandmother's family that I didn't know.

So I wrote to thank him and to tell him of my connection to that family. It turns out that he's my 4th cousin once removed! (He told me; I could never have figured it out.) He's been working on his family tree since he was a teen, and he's in his fifties now. He lives in London and speaks a slew of languages. He has an encyclopedic knowledge of a branch of the family I know nothing about. He's excited to share, and I'm thrilled to learn!

He had questions for me that I can answer in detail--and even illustrate with photos of relatives. This will be fun. I love how the Internet connects us all.....

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marie_ndcal

Congratulations! I have been working off and on trying to identify pictures (OLD) from my mother in law's family from Beatrice NEB. She passed away in 1966 and the relative who has had these pictures and many others just gave them to me. Hard to identify after so many years with so many relatives gone.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 10:44PM
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petaloid

Alisande, that is sooo neat!

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 11:18PM
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susanjf_gw

we never found one brother of my ggrand-dad...my uncle even went to a private cemetary in il (?) looking...didn't know that private cemetaries still existed...

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 11:29PM
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jemdandy

That's great. You have bridged a gap that for many of us is a brick wall. I have traced my line back to a 420 acre plantation in Virginia before the revolutionary war. The first one of my line came to the Virginia Colony in about 1737. We have a transcription from an uncomplete journal that states our forbear came from Wales. This piece of data is not as concrete as I'd like, but its the best we have. I have not been able to connect across the ocean in British Isles. I have found the surname in England at the right time period, also variant spelling of it in Ireland, but have found no connection to anyone who shipped to the new colonies shore. The surname is not popular which helps, but on the other hand, it is easily mispelled. Two versions of the name exists side by side here in the States and I can document that two versions were used within the same family. There was doubt as to the correct spelling. I have a hunch that the surname origin is Irish.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 1:56AM
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rob333

That is so completely cool!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 8:14AM
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RuthieG__TX

That association sounds like the opening of a new chapter and lots of fun ...

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 9:55AM
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chisue

Exciting news! How fun to hit a 'goldmine' where someone has done a lot of research and is eager to *share* -- which you'd think would be part of the point of genealogy (but isn't always)!

I'm fortunate to have some 'odd' surnames to work with, but have one branch with the same confusion of Scots/Irish/English that jemdandy has mentioned. (I also have a Welsh female ancestor -- likely the source of my uppity-woman genes!)

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 10:13AM
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ghoghunter

That's wonderful news. I do genealogy too and love finding cousins no matter how distant! I think Finding family is the Best!!!
Joann

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 10:30AM
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alisande

That set of great-grandparents had 8 children, most of whom were rather spectacularly talented in music. When I followed the male line back a couple of generations, I fully expected to find more musicians. But there was not a musician in the bunch. So I suspected the musical talent (which is usually inherited) came from my great-grandmother's family instead. Her name was Phillips, and she was the one I knew nothing about.

It turns out I was right! My new cousin sent me tons of stuff overnight, including an email just about all the music talent in Esther Phillips' family. Interesting!

Oh, gosh.....I didn't need a distraction from lawn mowing, gardening, and all my inside projects. But oh, well..... ;-)

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 10:57AM
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