This marks my inaugural post in this year’s 52 Ancestors prompt series, as devised by Amy Johnson Crow. I’m a bit late in starting, but that’s not going to stop me!
This prompt – Favorite Discovery – struck a chord with me as I have had a few solid discoveries that have had me sitting back in my chair. After all, I’ve been doing this for over 25 years – it’d worry me if I hadn’t!
My mother has very fond memories of her great-grandmother, Harriet Hurcombe (nee Robins), and they were very close. It was Harriet and her husband, Alfred William Hurcombe (grandson of the infamous Ann Halliday), who moved the family from Leighterton in Gloucestershire to the area around Devizes in Wiltshire in the late 1920s/early 1930s.
Early in my research I came across a puzzle in Harriet’s tree – and it remains only half solved!
So continuing on from my initial introduction of Charlotte Kew and the location of her baptism, what else did the records have in store for me? And what of the mentions of her in the various local court records? What could that tell me of Charlotte?
A long, long time ago (or at least that’s what it seems like to me) I mentioned in passing one George Marsh Halliday, the (half) brother of my 3 x great-grandfather, Thomas Halliday Hurcombe. I know I’ve talked about Thomas and George’s mother, Ann Adams otherwise Hurcombe formerly Halliday before now (on more than one occasion, I’m sure!), but George has remained a footnote … until now …
About a week ago, the lovely Alex over at Root To Tip blogged about the results of her DNA test performed via Ancestry, and it got me thinking as earlier in the year at the end of last year I also spat in a tube and sent it back to Utah (all via a family member in the States as Ancestry had not yet started testing via the UK), but had never publicised the results. (In case you’re worried I’m going to get all science-y and talk about haplogroups, haplotypes, single nucleotide polymorphism or allele frequencies – I’m not.)
I thought I’d follow up last week’s ‘Ancestor Of The Week’ with another that was inspired by his hair (although I have to say that although he isn’t an ancestor – he’s my 2 x great-uncle – the photo beautifully illustrates the power of genetics).
Alex’s Root to Tip post that I shared a few days ago (what do you mean you missed it? The original is here…) has had me thinking about gateway ancestors.
A ‘gateway ancestor’ is one that links your family to one that is ennobled in some way – landed gentry, some level of aristocracy or – gasp – royalty itself. One perks of finding one of these links (or so you may think) is that these families will have been investigated and documented and pedigree’d many times in the past thus saving you effort and money. Obviously another perk is the added … cachet of having a ‘royal connection’. You can see how this fits in with Alex’s article on mistakes caused by ‘wishful thinking’ – if you had a choice would you prefer to be descended from Boleyn the fish gutter of Stockport or that other Boleyn family of some repute?