Happy 81st Birthday in Heaven! <3 I wish I could have known you. You were taken away from us too soon.
I know you’d be so happy that I caught the genealogy bug from you. You’d be amazed at all the technology, and the discoveries I’ve made about my ancestors. I think you would have loved being part of the online genealogy community, but you would still have used your traditional methods ^_^ How I would have loved to go to court houses, churches, cemeteries and Civil War Battlegrounds with you. We would have had so much fun together, especially with all the genealogy happy dancing I’ve been doing lately!
For most of my life I knew you through a small number of photographs and stories. Then came June of 2011. That was the first time I ever saw video footage of you. No words. Silence. It didn’t need words. I saw you moving, walking and smiling. I don’t think anyone in my family really knows just how happy I was, seeing the videos of you.
This year, in October, Aunty sent Mum some old letters that you had written to my Great Grandparents in the 1960s. For the first time, I was reading things you had written. For the first time, I was reading what you were thinking. Your thoughts. That’s something I never thought I’d get to discover.
I love you.
Nancy Robinson Born: 3 Dec 1932, Texas, USA. Died: May 1980, New Mexico, USA.
I’ve been reading these interviews for a few months, and they’re always a great insight into what technology other genealogists use.
Who was interviewed this week? Me! I never thought I’d be asked to feature in one. It came as a total surprise when Thomas contacted me back in late September. I actually had a massive assignment due that day, so trying to contain my excitement and focus on my assignment was a challenge, lol. This is another wonderful opportunity the genealogy world has given me! :D Wooo!
The first in a series of photos which I received the other day. This one is of my Great Great Aunt, Isabella Gow.
She was born in 1859, at Cairn Farm, Muthill, Perthshire, Scotland. As you can see above, the photo was taken when she was 10 years old in 1869. In 1878, she married John Reddoch. They had 9 children, and a couple of miscarriages & stillbirths. Isabella died in 1897 in Kinross at the very young age of 38, as a result of complications during childbirth, in which the child was stillborn.
As a result of Scotlands People publishing my article about my Great Great Aunt Jeannie Gow, I’ve received many messages from others asking if their Gow’s are related to my Gow’s. Two people even recognized the handwriting in the photo. The handwriting is that of my second cousin once removed, Betsy, who lives in New Zealand. Betsy is a descendant of my Great Grandfather William’s brother John. I’ve never met Betsy, but she was in close contact with my Grandfather in the 70’s & 80’s. In the late 80’s, they even travelled to Scotland together. They lost contact during the 90’s, and my Grandfather passed away in 2003.
Before I go any further, here’s a quick back story: My Great Grandfather William Gow was the youngest of 5 – John, Robert, Isabella, Jeannie & William. John immigrated to Ireland, Robert & William to Sydney, and the girls remained in Scotland.
When I started delving into the family history a few years ago, my Aunt always said that we must get in contact with Betsy, but we never succeeded in doing so. About 2 years ago, another distant cousin, John, who lives in Canada (also a descendant of John), put me in contact with many descendants of Robert. One of my new found distant cousins, Heather, who also lives in New Zealand, had an address for Betsy. When I solved the mystery of Jeannie, I posted a copy of the documents to Betsy, but never received a response.
Now, a few weeks ago, I had an email from Carole. Carole’s husband is related to Betsy on the non-Gow side. I was so excited!
I learned that Betsy is 85, and living in a nursing home with early stages of dementia. Hence, she hasn’t delved into the family history for a while. Carole took Betsy a copy of my Scotlands People article which she read, and also helped Betsy with establishing where I fit in her family tree. Betsy had only completed up to my Dad. Betsy gave Carole her genealogy folder full of information on our Gow family for her to scan and send to me.
Yesterday, I received a few e-mails from Carole, and it was not at all what I was expecting. The first contained photos of my Great Grandfather William when he was a teenager. These photos I had not seen before, so I was quite excited. However, my excitement shot through the roof when I discovered that Carole had sent me photos of Isabella, Jeannie & Robert too!!! I had never ever ever seen photos of Isabella, Jeannie or Robert before! I was massively happy dancing!! A little later last night, I realized that I now have photos of all 5 siblings!! And of course, I had my own dance party in my room.
I felt like this moment deserved fireworks. Sadly no fireworks could occur in my room for safety reasons.
I shall be posting these new photos over the next couple of days, so do keep your eyes peeled.
Two weeks ago I posted a map on my Facebook page. This map showed the location of my Grandparent’s house in 1966, when they lived in Anchorage, Alaska, compared to the location of the Latter Day Saints Family History Centre.
It wasn’t until after I had posted it & shown my Mum that I realized I’d gotten it wrong. I had retrieved the Anchorage address off a few old letters written from my Grandma to my Great Grandparents that year. I thought the address said ‘Arctic Circle.’ Nope. It said ‘Arctic Boulevard.’ How my brain decided to read Boulevard as Circle beats me. It was then that I discovered that Arctic Circle & Arctic Boulevard are two very different streets.
I made a mistake. I was wrong, and I’m not afraid to admit it either. It’s easy to make mistakes in genealogy, especially when you’re just starting out. But sometimes, it’s not easy to admit that we were wrong.
Well folks, it’s okay to be wrong!
I’d been thinking about correcting the map for a few days when on Friday, my partner in blogging Heather, posted something on our Young & Savvy Genealogists blog. The post is titled ‘Learning: How To Be Wrong’ and can be found here. When I saw the title, I thought it couldn’t have come at a more perfect time! Everyone should go read it. It hits the nail on the head. A hole in one really.
“The person who is working on his or her family history fits the description of one who is fulfilling his or her duty. I know the effort, I know the expense. I know the difficulties through which one may go to uncover one name. I know our Heavenly Father is aware of these efforts. And those for whom we perform sacred ordinances are aware of our efforts. Oftentimes, in a miraculous way, there shall appear before us a clear pathway through a field of turbulence.”—Thomas S. Monson (via return-to-virtue)
This is my response to Week 5’s prompt ‘Your Childhood Home.’ More details about the prompt can be found on Julie’s blog here.
In my 23 years of existence so far, I have lived in not one, not two, but six houses.
House 1: 1990 – 1991 House 2: 1991 – 1992 House 1 (again): 1992 – 1993 House 3: 1993 – 2007 House 4: 2007 – 2010 House 5: 2010 House 6: 2010 – current.
All houses were in Brisbane, Australia, except for House 2, when we lived in Virginia, USA. The houses I have lived in in Brisbane have even been in the same suburb! Yep, you read correctly. Except for living in the USA, I have lived in the same suburb my entire life! We refer to House 1 as the Yellow House, because it was yellow. I have no memory of living there though, or the house in the USA.
This is a photo of the yellow house, which I have cropped from Google Maps Street View.
House 3 was definitely my childhood home, and I lived there for my entire schooling life. It was a 2 & a half story house. The bottom level was the rumpus room. This had 2 guest bedrooms, and a general entertaining area. The only guests we ever really had were my grandparents from both sides, and family friends from overseas. I do remember having sleepovers with my friends down there though. Other than that, I don’t remember it being used much, and it did get quite dirty. It had this weird linoleum floor too. The rumpus room also led outside to our pool. Gosh, that pool brings back so many memories. I really miss having a pool because it can get so hot in summer here.
The middle floor consisted of the kitchen, living room, bathroom, laundry, and also led onto a small balcony. The kitchen and living room had white walls, but the bench tops and cupboards were brown. I remember a lot of brown, white & this weird patterned floor below. My mum absolutely hated it.
Actually, now that I think about it, my mum described the brown as ‘mission brown’ which was apparently quite popular in the 70’s & 80’s. In the living room, there was a long wall which had doors that led out onto the balcony. This wall also had black louvers along the bottom. When I was young, I was sitting at a table next to the wall; I fell off the chair and hit my head on the edge of the louvers. I don’t really remember it. I think I went to hospital, but I’m not sure. I do remember wearing something on my head for a couple of day’s though maybe?
Here’s a photo of me in the living room when I was little.
The top floor, the half level, had the lounge room, study, entry way, and three bedrooms – parents, brother’s and mine. The lounge room had white woolly carpet, a very high ceiling, and lights that seemed like the size of planets when I was young. We didn’t really use this room except for special occasions such as Christmas. The study & my brother’s room had white carpet. I’m not too sure what the carpet in my parents’ bedroom was but I think it was a mixture of white and brown.
What color carpet did I have in my room? GREEN. GREEN GREEN GREEN. You know, the colour of grass. I loved my room, and I went through many phases with different posters and whatnot.
When I was 3 or 4, I was still wearing nappies sometimes for reasons I don’t remember. What I do remember though, is mum opening the closet and pulling the nappy out. I was all ready to plonk my naked butt down on that nappy when mum folded it out…there was a giant Daddy Long Legs spider just chillin’ in the nappy. Thankfully I did not plonk my naked butt down on the spider. That would have been fun.
I would post photos of the house, but I don’t have any on my computer. They’re all in boxes with the rest of mums photos.
Towards the end of 2005, our house was starting to get quite old, and the balcony was not safe anymore. My parents began consulting with builders because they wanted to demolish & have a new house built. At the end of 2007, on my second last day of high school, we moved to our first rental house (House 4) which was on the other side of the suburb. Our house was demolished at the end of 2007, or early 2008. I don’t remember exactly. At the beginning of 2010, we moved to our second rental property, House 5, which was on the same road as House 4, just further up. Construction of our house began sometime in 2009, and was finished at the end of 2010. Here’s a picture of it during the construction process.
Our original house was situated on two blocks of land. When we rebuilt, we built on one side, and sold the land on the other. At the end of 2010, our house was finally finished, and we moved in. So yes, House 6 is where House 3 was.
I still live at home with my parents. Most kids in Australia don’t usually move out until they have finished Uni, or close to it. I’d like to move out next year or in 2015 at the latest, but we’ll see what happens.
To finish, I’d like to leave you with the image of our house on Google Maps Street View. When did Google Maps decide to take this photo? Not before our house was demolished, not after our house was finished being built, but at the beginning of the building process. I think Google might need to do some updating…
The Funeral Notices for Margaret Dalgleish nee Learmond. She was my boyfriend’s Great Great Grandmother.
She was born in about 1860 in Roxburgh, Scotland to parents George Learmond & Elizabeth Brock. In 1879, she married Jasper Dalgleish, also in Roxburgh. They arrived in Brisbane on September 14th, 1883 after travelling on the ship Nowshera. They had 11 children together. Margaret died on 7 December, 1910. She is buried in South Brisbane Cemetery with her son John Francis Dalgleish, my boyfriend’s Great Grandfather. Her husband Jasper died in 1942, his grave is unmarked, but he is either buried with her, or next to her.
South Brisbane Cemetery is actually within walking distance of where I live. I went there for the first time a few weeks ago for a Ghost Tour. I definitely plan on going again soon to check out all of my boyfriend’s ancestors’ graves.
This is my response to Week 4’s prompt ‘Favorite Season’. More details about the prompt & the 15 month challenge can be found from the creator Julie here.
For a long time my favorite season was Spring. This was due to the fact that my birthday is in Spring. Yep, I’m a Spring baby. Oh, and just so you know, my birthday is less than 2 months away. If anyone’s a bit confused reading this, Australia’s seasons are opposite to the USA & England. It’s Autumn there right now, Spring here.
I hate hot weather, and recently, Spring has become quite hot. The past few days in Brisbane have been very hot. Yesterday (Thursday) was 33 degrees Celsius (91.4 F)!! Hotter than usual for September I think. Do you know how annoying it is when it’s already 26 degrees & you need to have a coffee & you’re already sweating like hell from walking to the bus stop and it’s not even 9am yet? And don’t even get me started on straightening my hair in hot weather. Well, this is turning into all the reasons I don’t like hot weather. Oops.
Winter has been my favorite season for a couple of years now. Give me cold weather, a hot chocolate, hoodie, jeans and a scarf any day. I love cold weather. I feel happier in winter too. One thing I don’t like about winter in Brisbane though is that it does not snow. I have seen snow twice in my life – when I was a baby in Virginia, which I have no memory of, and Christmas 2010 in Texas. That’s my happy memory which I associate with winter. Christmas 2010 was the first time I really saw snow. I was at my cousin’s house. She was early 30’s and I was 20. I was so excited. She was excited for me. I was asking her silly questions like ‘what is sleet?’ I made my first snow angel with her. I made my first snow man with her. Oh gosh, it was amazing. Here’s a photo of us below.
My snow angel.
Playing in the park with my brother & cousins.
There’s another reason I love winter. Scarves. I am obsessed with them. I’m always buying them, even in summer! I hate not being able to wear scarves in summer. I mean, I totally would if it didn’t get so hot! You’re probably wondering how many scarves I own (if you weren’t, you are now!). I counted 24. And I want more.
This is my response to Week 3’s prompt ‘Describe Your Physical Self’. More details about the prompt & the 15 month challenge can be found from the creator Julie here.
“Describe your physical self.” Well, where do I start?
According to my Drivers License, I’m 164cm tall. That’s about 5’5”. I’m taller than my Mum, but shorter than my Dad & younger brother. My weight has been a bit of an issue for me. I’m not at all skinny. I was skinny when I was a kid, and I had dance classes every week. Since I finished high school & stopped dancing, I’ve put a bit of weight on. I wouldn’t mind losing a few kilos, but I’m happy with my weight & body.
My natural hair colour is a blondish brown. Sometimes it gets long enough that it reaches my bra strap. Right now it’s halfway between my neck & bra strap. Currently my hair colour is light brown with blonde highlights. It’s been blonde & dark brown in the past. My eyes are brown too. I often get compliments on my eyes, which makes me quite happy. What else do I see when I look in the mirror? No make up. I rarely wear make up. I had to wear it for dance concerts & special occasions, but otherwise, I don’t wear it. I’ve never really liked it I guess. Only recently have I started using blush & mascara voluntarily.
I don’t have any scars…that I know of. Haha. I do have a birth mark though. It’s right on the edge of my belly button, and about one centimetre long. In regards to piercings and tattoos, I only have my ears pierced. I got my ears pierced quite late in life compared to most – I was 18. I don’t have any tattoos, although I would like one.
I’m always wearing jewellery. I have a watch on my right wrist as I’m left handed. I wear a ring on each of my middle fingers. They’re usually ones that my boyfriend has given me. I do change it up a bit every now and then though.
Wanna know something else about my hands? I’m double jointed and damn proud of it! It’s not something I can stop. It’s just the way I am, & I love it.
Here’s a picture of my left hand as normal & then with my double jointed-ness.
It either freaks people out or they find it wickedly cool. Another thing that goes with my double jointed-ness, is that I can bend by knees backwards weirdly. Kind of like a reflex angle, but that’s another picture for another day. So for now, I will end this with my fingerprints, which I did using light purple stamp ink.
It’s a tad bit late, but here’s Week 2 of The Book of Me, Written by You. This weeks prompt was ‘Your Birth.’ You can find more details about this weeks prompt & the 15 month challenge from the creator Julie here.
I am my parents’ first child. I was the first grandchild for my paternal grandparents, but the fourth for my maternal grandparents. My due date was sometime in early December, however, my mum was having issues with high blood pressure. So, in November, the doctor decided it was time for me make an entrance. My entrance into the world occurred in Brisbane, Queensland. I was born 2 weeks early via a caesarean on Friday, the 23rd of November, 1990, around 3pm. I was a tiny baby, weighing only 5 pounds & 1 or 2 ounces. When I went home, I was just under 4 pounds. A week later, I was 6 pounds. My Dad fondly & often remembers that I fit nicely on his forearm. I had a little hair when I was born, but I’m actually not sure what my eye colour was. My eyes are brown, so I’ve always assumed they were brown when I was born.
I have plenty of photos of me as a baby! I think my parents went a bit crazy with the camera, but hey, I was their first child. Sorry bro! Haha.
This is one of my favourite photos of me as a baby.
I’m watching my first State of Origin game with my Dad in 1991. For those of you that don’t know what State of Origin is, it’s an epic three Rugby League games between Queensland & New South Wales. Whoever wins at least 2 out of 3 wins State of Origin for the year. Currently, Queensland has won 8 years in a row. My Dad is from Sydney so he barracks for New South Wales, and that’s what he’s taught my brother & I to do. New South Wales are known as the Blues, hence the blue suit I’m wearing.
In late 1991/early 1992 we moved to Virginia, USA for about a year. I had always thought that I learned to walk in Brisbane or Sydney. Wrong. I learned to walk in Virginia! I’m half American, so part of me feels quite proud that I took my first steps on US ground. Well, it was probably carpet. This carpet below in fact. Here I am playing with my Mum’s makeup.
I’m not a twin, but sometimes I wished I had a twin when I was little. I do have a younger brother though. He was born 3 years & 6 weeks later in January 1994. When he was born, I had recently turned 3. My Dad took me to the hospital to see Mum & my new baby brother. After a few hours, it was time for Dad & I to go home. Mum and bro had to stay in hospital for a couple more days. I was NOT happy about this! I threw quite a tantrum, stating that “I want to take my baby brudder home!” (My th’s were d’s then). I cried & cried all while Dad carried me through the hospital, to the car, and all the way home.
Well, I wasn’t expecting this to be so long, and it’s not entirely all about my birth. Ah well :)
It’s a Federal Election here in Australia today. I haven’t been able to discover much about my ancestors’ political views, nor do I know of any who were in political parties, except one guy, my Great Grandmother’s cousin Donald Walter Croal. He was born in 1886, Sydney, New South Wales, to parents Alexander Croal & Margaret Munro.
In 1919, he ran as an Independent Candidate in the by-election for the New South Wales state seat of Petersham. He did not win, as you can see below. He received only 2.91% of votes.
In 1925, he decided to try his luck at the Federal level. Things didn’t really go to plan. His nomination for the Federal seat of Parkes was rejected by Commonwealth House of Representatives. Why? Because he refused to pay the fee required when he submitted his nomination papers.
Below is a letter Donald wrote to the House of Representatives regarding this matter.
And this is the response he received -
The last paragraph: “The Chief Electoral Officer reports that although you tendered a nomination you declined to comply with the requirements of the Electoral Act by furnishing the required deposit. In the circumstances there was no alternative to rejecting your nomination.”
Here’s some more information below which includes the relevant piece of legislation mentioned above.
So, he refused to pay the nomination fee! With that, Donald returned to try things at the State level again. In 1927 he ran for the New South Wales seat of Dulwich Hill as an Independent. He did not win this one also, as shown below, with 0.88% of votes.
I have decided to participate in the new blogging prompt ‘The Book of Me, Written by You’ which was created by Julie Goucher from Anglers Rest. Over the next 15 months weekly prompts will be delivered by Thomas MacEntee at Geneabloggers. If I feel it is to private, I won’t post it here, but we’ll see :)
Prompt 1: Who are you?
Ask yourself 20 times “Who are you?” Each time you should give yourself a different answer. – Geneabloggers.
2. Do you have a wonderful “Cousin Bait” blog story? A link to a previous blog post might answer this question.
In July, someone contacted me after seeing a post about my Great Great Great Grandparents Daniel Guyton Smith & Louisa Clementine Brister. She googled their names and my post came up. Turns out she’s also a descendant! Woo! Now we talk via twitter, e-mail and Facebook! :-D
3. Why did you start blogging? Is there someone who inspired you to start blogging?
I’m Gen Y, and growing up I have always had various personal blogs especially when I was in high school. I’ve had my personal Tumblr since 2009ish. Last year I just randomly decided I wanted to blog about my genealogy too.
4. How did you decide on your blog/s title/s?
I knew I wanted it to have genealogy somewhere in the title, but I also wanted it to be clever & different. I was going back and forth with my boyfriend & in my head tossing up ideas. Somehow I thought of Genealogically Speaking & I absolutely love it!
5. Do you ever blog from mobile devices? What are they?
I’m yet to blog on Genealogically Speaking from a mobile device, but I probably will as I’ve recently acquired a new phone, a Samsung Note 2. The note taking facility on it is wicked, and I’ve also created a genealogy section on my phone.
6. How do you let others know when you have published a new post?
I’m a bit on the slow side with my blog reading especially when I’m really busy at Uni, but I’ve added the blogs I read a lot to my favorites. This new Paper.Li thing is really cool too!
12. What platform do you use for publishing your blog/s?
Tumblr. I did create a WordPress, but I found it too confusing, lol.
13. What new features would you like to see in your blogging software?
I’m actually not sure!
14. Which of your posts has been the most popular with readers?
The one I mentioned above – the photo of my Great Great Great Great Grandparents graves.
15. Are you a sole blogger or do you contribute to a shared blog?
Sole blogger, though I’d love to contribute to a shared blog one day!
16. How do you compose your blog posts?
If it’s a long one, I’ll write it in Word first, and then copy & paste, and add the pictures etc. Otherwise, I’ll create it straight from Tumblr.
17. Do you have any blogs that are not genealogy related? If you wish please share their titles and URLs.
I do have my personal blog, but as it is more geared toward my generation, I will keep it to myself for now ;)
18. Have you listed your blog/s at Geneabloggers?
19. Which resources have helped you with your blogging?
Geneabloggers definitely! They’re amazing. And of course those who read my blog, and share it on twitter – y’all rock! I just love being part of the genealogy blogging community! Oh, and I can’t forget the NextGen Genealogy Network. Their support is wonderful too!
20. What advice would you give to a new Geneablogger?
Definitely find a platform you feel comfortable using. You don’t have to be all fancy schmancy, and you don’t want to use anything too challenging – at least not straight away! Find your feet, just start blogging, and have fun!
I’m hoping that over the coming years, I can influence more young people into the world of genealogy! You’re never too young to start :)
“To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain perpetually a child. For what is the worth of a human life unless it is woven into the life of our ancestors by the records of history?”—Marcus Tullius Cicero, 106-43 B.C.
Hey guys! I’ve created a Facebook page that you all can ‘like’! So please like it :) My blog posts & videos will be posted there as well. Also thought it would be another good way to interact with you all :)