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Family History. The Question Is Not ...

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Henry1865 | 15:58 Thu 18th Jan 2024 | History
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... 'how far have you got back to', but 'have you found anyone interesting?'

Starting in 1963 when I married and my wife showed me her dog's pedigree I've researched all of my lines. Many were humble people whose only trace is, at best, a baptism, a marriage and burial. Mostly, nothing else has been recorded.

However I have one family of whose six sons, five were British army officers ejected along with their resourceful mother from America after the Revolution of 1776. Being middle-class they left a trail of paper and some fascinating stories.

But they are no more important to me than the others.

PS. In England at the time, the 'romantic' word revolution wasn't used. It was a rebellion. 



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My family are almost exclusively from a humble background too, generations of cotton weavers in Lancashire and fisherpeople in Scotland.  However, through my great-grandmothers family I found out that we are direct descendents of Robert the Bruce.  The only other distant connection (although it's through marriage) to anyone remotely noteworthy was my wife's family who are connected to Isambard Kingdom Brunel.

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Over the years. many interesting tales have come to light and two I only sketchily recall now were.

1. A farm labourer whose wife had beautiful handwriting and was discovered to have been a princess.

2 A lady who invesigated an ancestor who turned out to be the man who arranged for a contest between a paddle steamer and a vessel driven by a screw. They were chained end to end together and both went full ahead. The screw driven one won, leading to the demise of paddle steamers.

A relative started the California Gold Rush.

We've found one or 2 interesting ones (but they are all interesting in themselves).  One (a dentist) was the first in  the N. of England to buy and use  an electric drill!  I'm sure that was welcome news.  We've traced an ancestor b. in 1650 in Yorkshire,  so confirmation that we've been here a while.  :)

Got someone in our family (by marriage)who helped to clone Dolly the sheep

I suppose it depends on whether you thought the were revolting or rebelling.

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