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Old 08-02-2013, 07:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TracySam View Post
Or she's a typical mother like mine who just makes up her own facts. Austrian is the same as Dutch. Joseph was Otto and died in the flu pandemic...
Is there a difference between the two?
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Old 08-03-2013, 01:09 PM
bjh
Status: "Peace." (set 4 hours ago)
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TracySam View Post
By the way, does anyone think it's hilarious that the mods changed the title of my thread? I had originally said that sometimes parents are "full of sh*t" about family history. It's so funny that some people get away with saying really egregious things on this site, but my little use of an altered s-word gets changed as if people will be harmed by it.

The change to "are not knowledgeable" really takes the bite out of my original intention of my post. Couldn't you at least make it "full of crap about family history"?
I noticed that and thought maybe you'd asked them to change it.
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Old 08-03-2013, 01:14 PM
bjh
Status: "Peace." (set 4 hours ago)
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sally_Sparrow View Post
Our German is a decent chunk, but I have no affinity for anything "German" -- the food, music, history, nope.... not really. The more I think of it though, the more I realize how my Grandmother's speech was peppered with German words and phrases and this is something I don't think SHE even realized she was doing, and something that didn't even click with me as German stuff until recently, looking back.

I feel more of a "connection", for lack of a better term, with my Scottish ancestry, oddly enough.
I'm something like 90% British, but I like German foods. But I am a foodie. Not so much German music. Germans are foreign to me, whereas I identify more with British culture. I've found it challenging to communicate with Germans, and I do speak the lingo. I've had to learn how to communicate with them in more than one sense because they have vastly different communication styles than what I'm used to. German speakers focus on facts more than feelings. I've learned to appreciate Germans as no-nonsense speakers, usually smart, though they can be blunt.

Last edited by bjh; 08-03-2013 at 02:30 PM.. Reason: clarity
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Old 08-03-2013, 02:53 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gardener34 View Post
Of course back then, women would go to great lengths to cover up an unwanted pregnancy. Mostly, the Mom claimed the child to be hers when in fact it was her teenage daughters child.
This happened to the movie actor, Jack Nicholson. He was raised to believe that his real mother was instead his older sister.
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Old 08-03-2013, 04:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by slowlane3 View Post
This happened to the movie actor, Jack Nicholson. He was raised to believe that his real mother was instead his older sister.
Also happened to Bobby Darin.
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Old 08-04-2013, 01:37 PM
bjh
Status: "Peace." (set 4 hours ago)
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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Originally Posted by ReturningWest View Post
I have the reverse. Growing up (50's and 60's PNW) I was often "mistaken" for NDN and I'd ask and was told NO your "French"...LOL. Even though I just "knew" besides looking in the mirror. After decades of searching by myself and my LDS cousins I had a DNA test done and yup, I am and have a very large % and would be eligible to be a member in about any tribe. Only in the last several months did I find out that my fathers generation KNEW they were NDN, they are now all gone and the one x-wife who heard the info from my father's little sister isn't talking to us any more...sigh.

Keep in mind that NDN's were not considered citizens until 1924 and my gr grand parents must have hid during removal and raised their children NOT to say anything as they were not citizens and had few rights if any living outside the reservation system. They didn't trust the Gov't nor has anyone on that side of the family. They have refused any info. I can't imagine the fear they lived with throughout their lives of being discovered.

Two of the key elements virtually disappear off census records from 1860-1900 and several others from 1830 onward. I'm sure there were name changes in order to hide.

I continue my searching knowing that someone might have a key to help me unravel this mystery. I would love to know my tribal heritage before I go, I'm now 62 and will be 63 soon it's like a hole in the soul.

Have you done 23andMe? It may get you in touch DNA cousins. That could unravel the mystery for you.
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Old 08-25-2013, 06:15 AM
 
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Overall, I don't do a lot of genealogy research, but I imagine the family lore stories can be incorrect, especially if such stories have been passed down for 2 generations or so. And some parents would just embellish their own stories to make them sound more "entertaining" to others.

It sort of reminds me of the activity you do in elementary school. Your class sits in a circle and the teacher whispers in the ear of the first student a sentence or fact. Then that second student whispers the sentence to the next student and so on until it is told to each student by whispering in the ear. At the end of the exercise, you see how wrong the original sentence is compared to the one told by the student who received the information last.

Yes, I was told some things as a kid that seemed to be somewhat erroneous.

I finally went to the 1940 census to pull up some information about my fraternal grandparents who had died in the mid-1940s. What I was told as a kid was wrong, about how many children they had and their ages. There were 6 children listed and all I had known is his 2 siblings had died a while back. I had been told that my father had one brother and one sister. The interesting part is these other children listed in the census would have been my aunts and uncles and it would seem they have been passed away for years now. I'm not sure what happened to them, but may do more research from what I found out.

My father was not yet even born at the time of the census, so yes, finding something out that was different that what you originally knew to be can make you wonder about what else you have been told. The story being is that I believe my father had been told wrong information on the onset and it was because he had been adopted by other family members who did not like to talk about the "past."

On a positive note, the good thing about this is maybe I can trace the family back now that I have names and approximate ages of my grandparents confirmed.
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Old 08-25-2013, 10:32 AM
 
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this is just my opinion, but i notice in real life and it show up on this forum and many other forum, that people want to have native american blood or viking blood. Its like they go out looking for it, they get all giggly over it. i seen it growing up some neighborhood kid tells every body that grandpas was cherokee, choctaw, or blackfoot, never a minor peaceful tribe. same with viking. Now the past eight years, everybody wants afrikan american blood.

I just don't understand, i would not want none of them, and if i had some, i wouldnt tell anybody. like the viking they only goal was to rape pillage, enslave, steal, so why would anybody want to be related to a thug
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:05 PM
bjh
Status: "Peace." (set 4 hours ago)
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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^
Genealogy isn't what you want. It's whatever and whomever you find.

People who "find" according to pre-arranged goals are not doing genealogy.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:03 PM
Status: "Even better than okay" (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TracySam View Post
So I had this brick wall in one part of my genealogy, and it's totally my mom's fault!

My mom's biological father went out of her life when she was young, and I never met him (my grandmom's second husband was my "Pop pop.") What she had told me all my life was that her father's parents came to Philadelphia from Germany in the early 1900s, had her father and his siblings, and then they both died in the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. She was certain her paternal grandfather's name was Otto K____.

Ab-so-freaking-lutley certain. Otto. Definitely Otto. And her father's parents were definitely German immigrants. Yep, right off the "boot."

So a few years ago when I got onto Ancestry.com, I entered in Otto K___ where he belonged and though I search and searched, I could find no records on him. Mom suddenly remembered that his wife must have been Elizabeth, because her father's only sister was Elizabeth, and mom spontaneously remembered that her aunt Elizabeth was named after her mother. She still swore up and down that her grandfather was Otto K___ and that he and Elizabeth died in the flu pandemic of 1918.

Years go by and I'm hating that K___ branch of my family. They were this annoying German brick wall. How dare they leave no traces of their existence? I have my other branches traced back to before 1800.

So out of frustration, yesterday I started re-checking Philadelphia census records from 1920. I found a couple John K____s about 8 years old in Philly who could have been my grandfather. But none seemed to be orphans not living with either a mother or father, and none of the fathers were Otto. Then I noticed one of the 8 year old Johns had siblings that looked like the names of my grandfather's siblings--one was the same and one was a diminutive. But this John lived with his mom, who was a widow. But her name was Mary K___, not Elizabeth. And she was born in the USA, not Germany. I remember seeing this item a few years ago and deciding it couldn't be my family for those reasons. On a whim I followed this Mary back to 1910 and saw her married to not Otto K___ but Joseph K___. But her brothers were living with the couple, so now I had Mary's maiden name. Clicked around and found the marriage of Mary and Joseph K___. Mary and Joseph were both born in the US, and they may have never even touched a boat. Both of their parents were from Germany.
So today I uncovered TONS of info on Joseph K___'s father--his arrival in the elusive boat (sorry, boot), his naturalization papers, his work as a shoemaker, and all kinds of other info. Then I found lots of info on Mary, her German immigrant parents, and the rest of their family. Lots of documentation. These are my actual great-grandparents and great-great-grandparents.

So I called my mom. Hey mom, there's no Otto, your father's parents were US natives, you're not second generation as you claim, but third. So you can stop with making all that sauerkraut and knockwurst. Oh, and neither of your paternal grandparents died in the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918. Joseph died a year after the flu blew through Philly in Fall of 1918, and Mary died in 1925, when your father was 13. Thanks for messing up my research for 5 years (oh and for force-feeding me all that sauerkraut all those years).

I deliberately left out Joseph's middle name, knowing how my Mom operates. She said "Oh, he went by Otto, but it was his middle name!" I came back with, "No, sorry mom, it's Frederick! Joseph Frederick K___.

My mom has a knack of "remembering things wrong" (as in "I didn't lie; I remembered it wrong"). Then she digs in here heels and rabidly defends her incorrect info. she also fills in the unknowns with colorful things to make any story more interesting. Telling us that her grandparents were right off the boat from Germany and that they died in the largest mass death since the Great Plague made her history more colorful. I also grew up believing all kinds of stuff about her maternal family history, which included a signer of the Declaration of Independence, but none of that proved true either.


Has anyone else believed in false family lore, only to have it create unnecessary brick-walls in your family tree research? Do you sometimes want to strangle your family members as a result?
Yes. We got thrown way off in a couple of instances. I had a great-aunt born in 1900 who died in 2000, a few months short of 100. When she was in her 80s, another family member died and my mother was going to the funeral parlor. I asked her to grab Aunt Alice and find out what she knew about that side of the family, whom we knew had come from England. This was before there was an Internet, so we were going by her memory.

My mother came back from seeing Aunt Alice with the information that her grandparents had come from Manchester to Hartford, Connecticut, in the 1883. Her father was an infant. Then the mother died, the father remarried, the new wife didn't like her little stepson and treated him badly, so the boy's uncle in Paterson, NJ, went and got him and that's how they ended up in North Jersey. For years we believed this story. There's even an exit off the Interstate in Hartford with a street with our last name (but we have a fairly common English last name).

Turns out this wasn't even close. My sister dug and dug and finally found out that my great-great-grandparents and their baby son came from England in 1863, 20 years earlier than we'd been told. They were cotton-mill workers in Manchester, and because of the Yankee blockage preventing southern cotton from going to England, the mills were closing. They moved directly to Paterson, NJ (never to Connecticut) because there was work in the silk mills. She's found their travel records, their names in the censuses, everything. Aunt Alice's memory was messed up, and we have NO idea where she got the poor little abused stepson story from. That great-great-grandmother DID die first, and the gggrandfather remarried, but quite a few years later.

That story threw my sister off the track for the longest time.

There are also the cases where someone conveniently forgot to mention something. My maternal great-grandfather's first wife died when his three daughters were teenagers. He then married an 18-year-old, so his new wife was a couple of years older than his oldest daughter. Then they moved from The Netherlands to New Jersey. My sister found the records of the new wife and the three teenage daughters on the ship that brought them here, but our great-grandfather wasn't listed anywhere. Through this search she came into contact with a distant cousin in Holland who is also doing research. The cousin said, "Oh, look for his passage records the following year. Isn't he the one who went to jail for nearly beating to death a man he worked with?" Sure enough, great-grandpa didn't come to the US with his wife and daughters because he was in a Dutch prison. Nobody had ever mentioned THAT.
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