What have you learned that has stuck with you by researcing your family history?
I have not learned too much as of yet as I have not been actively researching but other than quite a few had many children.
I had one family member that had 21 kids, 2 had died so back in the day -- it was the norm I am sure to have kids ( hopefully boys ) to help with the farming.
"Michelle Duggar" was rampant for a few members in my family! It was not a big deal back in the day like it is now having so many kids.
What have I learned while doing genealogy? I have learned that I am not related to anyone famous or part of a royal family. But I have found ancestors who took part in events I can read about in the history books. I have many ancestors who fought in the American revolution. I have 1 who was at Yorktown when Cornwallis surrendered and another was a Hessian soldier who stayed here after the war. I have a couple fight in the US Civil War. 1 who served until close to the end and died, another who refused to sign back up for a longer term and lived a nomadic life, and a step Uncle who died at Andersonville. I also had a distant cousin who hung out with some of the famous of this time period. She also sculpted the statue of Lincoln that is in the Capital.
Mostly I have found simple folk who did the best they could for themselves and their families. There were happy times and sad times. I started out collecting names and dates and have found myself more imersed in their lives. Wondering how different events affected them and their families and possibly altering the course of their lives.
My third great grandfather's family was wealthy until his father died and the administrator of the estate defrauded the family and left them in poverty. After he married, he moved to Texas and fought in the Texas Revolution. He was secretary of the meeting the wrote the first Declaration of Independence of Texas, which was intercepted and destroyed by Mexicans.
the drama!! I had one ancestor that died in the civil war. his son in law wrote the war department claiming to be the first in line for the pension, trying to undercut the man's actual son. I saw the hand-written letters.
A lot! I learned that my family on both sides has been in this country since the 1600s. Most of them were either Scots-Irish, Irish or English, with one Dutchman in there! I had many ancestors who fought in the American Revolution. I am a southerner, descended from mostly southerners, and I learned that some of them fought for the Union during the Civil War, and one was even died in a Confederate prison for refusing to take the oath to the Confederacy. Conversely, I've learned that many of my ancestors were slave holders. Some of them moved west on the wilderness trail. They were largely farmers in the Appalachias and the Ozarks. Pretty simple people who had farms and were probably, for the most part, poor and illiterate. I've learned so much, and the more I find, the more I want to find! It never ends!
I do have a great great great? Grandfather that fought in the civil war. My family has his discharge papers and also his gun that was issued to him. The bayonette was lost years ago but one thing I can say is HOW they carried those around I do not know. It was HEAVY! Amazing how a 5 foot 6 tall man could carry that, even with the strap.
That my dad's family was weird....lol And that my mom's family had people who came over on the Mayflower :) Pretty exciting stuff.
I personally love going letters and photos more than anything.
Was very surprising when I learned that one of my ancestors was hung as witch during the Salem Witch Trials. When the movie The Crusibles staring Wynona Ryder andDaniel Day Lewis came out about the Salem Witch trials it was filmed on the Island that my ancestors owned for 250 years. And when they showed the Dr. House in the movie it is the house that my ancestors built in the early 1700,s and over 90 of my ancestors were born in the same home. WE got to tour the island and go in the house now owned by the state of Masachusetts several years ago. How humbling to walk the grounds and know that 100 or more of your ancestors had walked the ground, farmed and played on the land. ONly ancestors of the Chaote family are allowed in the home which is in original condition. Sure wish I could live in it .
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