Pat

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Pat
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Parenting & Family > Discovering My Heritage
 

Discovering My Heritage




This is a long weekend in my part of Canada.
A few years back, the government decided that we needed a special occasion to celebrate in order for us to have a long weekend in February.
It’s a long haul from New Year’s to the March break.
Therefore, today, February 20th, we celebrate “Family Day.”
The occasion is self-explanatory.
Last Thursday I heard on the television that www.ancestry.ca was offering free access to all Canadian birth, marriage and death registrations.
I had always had an interest in my ancestors and had gone so far as to accumulate a wealth of written information concerning my paternal grandparents – but done nothing with it.
What a great chance to do some digging! And most timely too!
So, since Saturday I have been taking advantage of this free offer (which expires today) and in doing so, have started not one but four Family Trees! – one for each of my grandparents.
My maternal grandfather, whom I only met once when a child, would be the most troublesome since I only had his first and last name – no middle initial.
However, in my rooting around, I found the marriage certificate of he and my grandmother, learning his second name and where he hailed from.
Well, that opened doors that I thought would be closed to me. Thinking he would be the most difficult to trace, turns out that I have more information on him than all the other grandparents.
You just never know what you’ll find until you start looking.
The commercials on tv are right!
But what a juggling act.
Tracing back four family trees might sound tedious but take it from me – although it can be frustrating, it’s more fun, interesting and exciting!
I’d also like to add, that Registrars and County Clerks back in the day, should have had courses in penmanship. The writing on most of the documents that I’ve found is sometimes illegible and very hard to read.
Also, I’ve found that transcriptions from records to documents have spelling mistakes, which can really throw a monkey wrench into the mix.
Then you have things happen such as; your great, great grandfather marries someone not of the family religion and is disinherited for it so he changes the spelling of his last name to separate himself from the rest of the family! Oh dear.
The free access to all these records expires today and frankly, I’m slightly exhausted from working the past few days on this so avidly.
But the day isn’t over yet and who knows? I just might jump back into it and see what else I can uncover.
I’ve thought about signing up with Ancestry for 3 months and paying but I’m more inclined to make separate file folders for hard copy documents I’ve acquired and organize all the information that I now have then go to our Public Library where they offer free access.
The four Family Trees that I’ve created on the website will be waiting for me.
And the beat goes on . . . .




posted on Feb 20, 2012 6:05 AM ()

Comments:

I am working on researching my family and Slickster's. It is indeed interesting. There are dead ends. And then of course, the Federal Law protecting privacy for 72 years puts a real wrench in the monkey! They have just released the 1940 census. I need some information much more recent than that too. *SIGH*
comment by dakmom on May 19, 2012 1:33 PM ()
It is a lot of fun and after doing my maternal grandmother's research I was
amazed to find that her French Hugenot ancestor who came here in l650
left French words in our vocabulary clear to my great grandfather's
generation. We have his letters.
comment by elderjane on Feb 23, 2012 7:29 AM ()
Only Alberta, Ontario and Saskatchewan celebrate Family Day. There's no February long weekend in BC.
comment by nittineedles on Feb 22, 2012 1:49 AM ()
I stand corrected. Thanks for letting me know - too bad for you though
reply by blogsterella on Feb 22, 2012 5:36 AM ()
A few years ago I had a subscription to Ancestry.com and bought the Family Tree Maker software that works with it. I got a lot done then, and now I keep saying when things settle down here so I know I will have time to devote to it, I'm going to get a 3-month subscription and fill in some blanks. But things never seem to settle down enough; I'm afraid I'll pay and then get distracted and forget to use it.
comment by troutbend on Feb 21, 2012 10:08 AM ()
Join the club! I'm the first in my family to research our heritage. I've been doing it for years. Some sides dead end. Others go back to the 14th century! Amazing stuff out there and fun to make discoveries. Good luck!
comment by solitaire on Feb 21, 2012 6:30 AM ()
My brother who is really into genealogy traced my family back to my Irish ancestors who came to the states in 1700's. We always thought my husbands name (CASTO) was a shortened Spanish name but when my brother traced my husbands family he discovered they came from Wales. To make his family more confusing, when his great grandfathers wife died he married her twin sister. The research is fascinating but will take over your life if you are not careful.
comment by gapeach on Feb 20, 2012 7:41 PM ()
I can see how "addictive" this research could be. I spent 2 entire days on the creation of my 4 family trees. However, one of the reasons that I was so intent on getting as much info as quickly as possible was due to the "free access" I had on the website. I had to take a break from it yesterday and figure out my next plan of attack. It's a case of too much or not enough info X's 4!! And, I'm of a mind these days that if it isn't fun anymore, I'm outta here . . .
reply by blogsterella on Feb 21, 2012 6:02 AM ()
I just finished taking advantage of the free Ancestry.com search weekend myself. It's a cool website, and I'll be continuing my searching. Got some good records, too.
comment by marta on Feb 20, 2012 8:55 AM ()

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