A Glimpse of 2019

I was rather disappointed in Gramps and his squash on free speech…


While looking over my discoveries from 2019, I reviewed some of my favorite tales. One favorite family story was about my Allen Clan that traveled from Ohio to Colorado in the spring of 1885. While I thought I knew most of the story, I decided to do some final research before I wrote my tale, and I am so thankful that I did! In addition to the added details from a favorite cousin, Nina Campbell, I also found a narrative written by another family member. I loved the extra information about their adventure.

Another interesting discovery came from my 8x great grandfather, Simon Bradstreet. He was the last governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, leaving the office on May 14, 1692. This family legend began with the first newspaper circulated in the colonies in 1690. Unfortunately, the journalist did not clear matters with government officials, and to make matters worse for his newspaper venture, he printed risqué gossip and condemned the treatment of French captives. My grandfather proved to be a stick in the mud, and he and his council stopped the newspaper in its tracks, and it became the first paper banned in this country. For sure, I was rather disappointed in gramps and his squash on free speech, but in his defense, our country was still in its infancy, and we were still apart of jolly old England.

Several surprises took place when I discovered that I was related to two early pioneers of the Quebec Colonies in New France. My grandfather was a master apothecary and studied medicine and science. My grandmother helped others and taught children to read. At the beginning of the seventeenth century, Louis Gaston Hébert and his wife, Marie Rollet moved their family to the wilderness frontier in the New World. Exploring my French-Canadian roots has been so rewarding!

Église Saint-Eustache à Paris
Pavel Krok

One accomplishment that I enjoyed was writing another fictional short story based on an ancestor. Last year, I wrote about my 9x great grandmother Madeleine Chretien. My grandmother left her home in Paris to travel to New France as a fille du roi. She arrived in this new land in 1670, and she married Pierre Chicoine; they settled in Ville-Maria (Montreal). 

In addition, I wrote a tale based on a story that my mom shared with me. It is about a time when she was on her horse, and a red racer chased the pair.

An exciting surprise I discovered was finding that some early ancestors were loyalists to the crown during the Revolutionary War. My 7x great grandfather, Lawrence Marr, and his son even worked with Benedict Arnold!

Although the origins of my DNA slightly changed, I was not surprised. For over the years, I have learned that our ethnicity tests are not an exact science. What I did find were more familial DNA matches, which may lead to some exciting new ancestor discoveries. Still, I wondered over some names that Ancestry shared with me years ago. I saved the information just in case I ever find them in my tree.

One elusive ancestor I found was my 4x great grandfather, Asa Starkweather. For the longest time, I could not find a reliable source to connect the family ties. Finally, I found his will, which listed the family names.

At the same time, I have started adding family stories about my grandchildren, my siblings, and my friends. One account was about my grandson, Connor, and the other was about my youngest brother One tale shared is about another brother, Dave. I also wrote about the summer dare that my granddaughter, Kylie, threw my way. Another narrative featured a high school friend, Debbie, that died after battling cancer for several months. These stories should be preserved and shared with others.

Last year my writing was sporadic at best, and I did not pen as often as I would have liked. I formulated a plan that I hope will remedy this problem. For starters, this new year, I started waking up with the chickens, and I begin journaling before I go to work. Although I tend to be a night owl, I have enjoyed my early mornings, and I wake up ready to go! Since my job keeps me on my toes, writing at night was not the best option, for I am usually mentally worn out by the end of the day, so I like to scribe in the mornings while I still have brain cells left!

Well, one more year for the books, or should I say the family blog. Here’s to a New Year with many new discoveries and stories!


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