Happy New Year....
A friend asked me how many hours I put in each week. I don't know and I'm not telling. But as for results I can tell you I am meeting my KPIs. My research this year has come from writing my blogs or is it vice versa writing blogs causes more research? Expanding my data base of “people in the tree” comes from more research into elusive DNA matches.
My blog has now over 80 block postings with nearly 20 this year. The big result is the 13500 hits on the blog which nearly doubles the hits up to the end of last year. So thanks for reading and sharing along with me this year.
"I can tell you I am meeting my KPIs"
This year a number of people asked about researching their own grandparents etc. Steve and I can't help ourselves when we get a chance to start on a new family. So assistance has been given to an unrelated Gadsby family, the Hoarty family of Iluka, the McKinnons of Grafton and my friend Sue’s grandfather.
I'm still identifying unnamed photographs and have labelled even more. Take a look at the blog identifying neighbours at Park Avenue. Do Something With The Photos
|People in my tree have increased by 1300 to 7494|
I'm active in a number of genealogy Facebook pages and it's amazing the insight and help people give with your Scottish, Irish or Aussie family members. People are really generous with their assistance to struggling researchers on their DNA “L” plates.
I was despairing that I might need to cross off my Johnson and Strelley lines from my tree. DNA results were not putting up much in the way of matches despite exploring lots of avenues with these relatives who have departed the UK and Scotland for Canada America, Australia New Zealand. As you have read I had a dubious paper trail back to the Strelleys and Johnstons- two families I rather like being attached to. A concentrated effort going back over old records and channeling the relatives while writing a few blogs seemed to be enough to stir up the genie angels and duly they sent me some clues.
Anyway the clincher was a DNA match to a distant fifth cousin related to the Johnsons. If I was related to the Johnstons everyone agreed that I had to be a Strelley. But the Strelley relatives were not going to be outdone. It was sweet when a week later two matches to Strelley rellies based in British Columbia clenched that dubious paper trail and put it beyond doubt. Whatever the reasons the unmarried couples were trying to conceal their relationships or deny their children they were no match for DNA.
So out of my four grandparents Kerr, Strelley, Kelf and Gadsby only Gadsby needs confirmation. I have this year found DNA matches that stretch far and beyond the nearest grandparents not to mention some good matches on Steve’s line. Beware, some of the brick walls still stand especially on my Huguenot and Irish lines. Watch this space.
Blog tags and online ancestry services connect me with people who are researching similar people to those in my tree. One such case was that of Violet Harrison’s great niece who wrote to me and shared stories and photos of my Mum’s long lost uncle.
A Strelley relative wrote to me in amazement that she was reading all about the Strelley mysteries and myths she had grown up with. She had no clue how we were related but I had been researching in cahoots with her brother and cousin for years.
Others contacted me regarding the Allan story I wrote. 6 Degrees of Separation- It's a small world for David Allan and Sophia Johnston As a result we have a collection of people descended from Allan relatives each contributing their skills and knowledge towards connecting the very impressive family in Australia and beyond. One is writing a book and more blog stories are warranted for this fabulous family.
This blog is also dedicated to “cousins reunited”. A close relative match- Elizabeth R had only five names on her tree and barely enough time to digest her results. I immediately recognised the names. Her 2x great grandmother and my 2x great grandfather were brother and sister. Not only that she had previously I had previously corresponded with her long lost cousin. A swap of email addresses and cousins were you reunited between Scotland and Canada. I got photos of my grandfather’s cousin so I'm happy.
|Maggie Revington Tinman and William Burbidge|
A second new good news story brought tears to my eyes. After discovering earlier this year that Steve’s grandfather’s brother Archibald have not died at sea but married and had 5 daughters (4 still living in their 80s and 90s) I was set to rewrite the Ford stories. A week or two later a fellow contacted Steve through his DNA match he mentioned his grandfather's name Archibald. Mark comes from a second cousin DNA match with my husband. Within hours we were able to put him in touch with cousins he had never met. He didn't waste any time in gaining a passport and meeting his aunts and cousins across the pond and then didn’t waste any time travelling to southern parts of the USA to meet other cousins. Now I have more photos to rewrite the true and correct part of Archibald Ford’s story.
|Archibald Ford 1956|
Finally I scored a bingo when I discovered that my uncle’s step son is related to him via the Johnston (Allan) family and so I’m related to my step cousin too. This restored some of my credibility in the family. Look where the paper trail leads to...
Tip of the Year: Next year I hope to break through the brick wall of my McLaughlin great grandmother. I received the smallest of hints from a professional genealogist- use the wild card search. When I used a very wild WILD CARD search on Scotlands’ People Yay! A small hole developed. Believe me I had tried all sorts of permutations before and for many years. Finally, I found one mention of my grandmother (using a different name) on a census and her mother with her. At last an age and a place of birth for Mary McLaughlin. I now love the asterisk * and use it all the time. #*** #usethewildcard
Technology Tip of the Year: I must say I love the “snipping tool”. Just download it to your tool bar, use it to cut down screen documents, draw, highlight, edit, print and save. I use it every day. #lovingthesnippingtool
Happy New Year to all my readers, my collaborators, my Blogging buddies and my long suffering, eye rolling relatives.
May your trees grow and your mysteries resolve.
I hope 2018 lets all your wishes come true.