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Old 08-09-2013, 11:58 AM
 
9,238 posts, read 21,037,542 times
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As I do more and more family research, I've noticed that certain places, place names, and other things pop up repeatedly in different lines of my family. Have you noticed this?

Examples:

I've found Jefferson Ave or Jefferson St. to be the address of several families in my lineage. Several on my Dad's side, and one way back on my Mom's side. These are different streets, in different towns, in two different states, in two centuries, so it's not like it was one family home on the same street that got passed down. Sure, Jefferson is a common name for a street, but only one of these is a bigger street in a big city. The rest are small Jefferson Aves 2 or 4 blocks long in small towns.

I have a family back on my paternal grandmother's father's line who had a large farm for many years in the 1800s. Even back before they had addresses, the farm was known to be on "New Freedom Rd" outside of what is now Berlin NJ. A hundred years later, a family on my paternal grandfather's line lived in the same New Freedom Rd, outside of Berlin NJ. Around the same time (the 1940s) there is a newspaper article of my mother's great aunt taking her first airplane ride at around age 80, at a small airport on the same New Freedom Rd.

My maternal Grandmother's cousin served in WWII and took part in the bombing of Schweinfurt, Germany. Twenty years later, my Dad joined the Army and was stationed in the same Schweinfurt, West Germany. On my mom's side, her great grandparents came from Bavaria, which was then its own country, from towns very close to the same Schweinfurt.

Since many of my ancestors on both my mother's and father's side lived in southern NJ in the 1800s, 1900s I can't even count how many times this has happened: I find one family I'm looking for on a census record, and when (as usual) I poke ahead on the census pages a few pages forward or back, just to see who their neighbors were, I frequently find another family, from another one of my lines living very close by! These are people who were not related at the time, but would later become connected distantly by marriage, or who wouldn't have any connection at all except for being connected to me.

I've had other small things, like an ancestor's not-so-common last name being the same as the cross-street where I live, another ancestor's odd last name being the name of the person I bought my house from, finding ancestors buried right down the street (walking distance) from the office where I work, and discovering a man with the first name "Annekin" right at the time my nephew was obsessed with Darth Vader, Star Wars, and Annekin Skywalker. I had been visiting my sister and mentioned some family history research, which my nephew labeled "boring" and wanted to watch the Star Trek movies again. That night I got home and discovered my nephew had an ancestor named Annekin, and called him up to tell him (it's wasn't so "boring" after that.)

Please share your weird family history coincidences!
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Old 08-09-2013, 01:26 PM
 
865 posts, read 1,861,478 times
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Weird how it's such a small world, right?
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Old 08-09-2013, 01:43 PM
 
Location: South Portland, ME
894 posts, read 1,112,134 times
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I would like to see what my descendants think of all the "coincidences" I have had regarding names of places that I have lived.

I grew up in a town called Hillsdale and went to a school called Bailey Elementary. In college, in a town over an hour away, I lived in Bailey Hall (a dorm) and after college I lived on Hillsdale Street.

After that, I moved to another city and lived on a street which was basically my last name, only spelled slightly different (1 letter was an "o" instead of "u", everything else was the same).

It will be fun for them to discover. lol
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Little Rock AR USA
2,457 posts, read 6,790,008 times
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I have about quit working on names and now work on "things", especially since I subscribed to Fold3. At this time I'm looking at Civil War records and found that a g g grandpa and a g g uncle from another line were in the same Union 4th Arkansas Cavalry Regiment in Little Rock. They were from different parts of AR and of course didn't know each other and never met.
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Old 08-10-2013, 10:53 AM
 
Location: League City, Texas
2,920 posts, read 5,271,835 times
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I don't know if this qualifies as a coincidence, but I found that my husband & I share a 6th gf from Virginia. It was funny--this was in my paternal line (we still have the same surname) & I was researching my husband's maternal line. I started recognizing names & locations, getting this déjà vu feeling. Sure enough, this man was also my husband's direct ancestor!
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Old 08-10-2013, 12:17 PM
 
Location: near bears but at least no snakes
24,124 posts, read 23,591,816 times
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I wonder what it all means, if anything.

I have two Puritan ancestors living in MA in 1630. They diverge for 250 years and then two of their descendants get married in Canada and they are my gt grandparents. Probably not so much a coincidence as much as following one of the common migration routes in the early days. Some of them were bound to meet again.
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Old 08-10-2013, 02:38 PM
 
Location: NW Philly Burbs
2,431 posts, read 5,155,866 times
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Not place names, but something a little spooky. 3 boys, all first cousins died in 1881 (2 were infants, 1 was a 4-year old). They were all named Allison. Nobody else of any age died that year, on that side of the family.

I wondered after the first 2 died, did the mother of the 3rd one think something was going to happen to her boy?

I did notice that after that, nobody named their sons Allison.
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Old 08-10-2013, 05:15 PM
 
Location: League City, Texas
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That is eerie, Blinx.
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Old 08-11-2013, 02:54 AM
 
Location: Pacific NW
6,413 posts, read 11,217,099 times
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I found one of my ancestors living two houses from my brother-in-law's ancestor back in 1850 Illinois. She was there with her young children, as her husband was gone to the California Gold fields. Surely, a neighboring family would have been well acquainted with her, and probably helped the family out. Only to have two of their descendants marry more than a century later.

Another one is a little more off-kilter. I got into collecting postcards through genealogy. I was surprised to find a postcard I had bought was sent by, and to, the ancestor of a relative!
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Old 08-11-2013, 06:02 AM
 
2,321 posts, read 2,365,803 times
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I think this is a fascinating subject, and I'm going to study it more closely. It hasn't even occurred to me to do that, but in my own life, I once made a list of all the similarities regarding street names, neighbourhoods, house numbers, people I loved, my parents' and my name (initials), even things like places I've worked, where I went to college and what I studied, hobbies (this included, of course), job titles, and so on, and two letters keep popping up all over the PLACE. And it continues. I'm going to refresh my own list and start keeping an eye out for the ancestral place names and occurrences that I've been too busy to notice.
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