Friday, September 16, 2016

Genealogy Jag Update

(See my April 21st posting.)

Gotta admit:  this was a whole lot more work than I expected.  I finished what I set out to do but found much more material than I wanted to deal with so didn't carry on "down the years."  Obviously, as one goes on back, it becomes less accurate, and I didn't want to spend hours accessing maybe-so/maybe-no data.  Like someone who was born, had his family, and died all within the (given) years of, say, 1504-1515.  Or the man whose dates indicated that his mother had been born several years after he had already died.  Or, for that matter, so many possible branches with more and more names and dates that it would make any reader's head spin.  Then, too, some researchers seemed so zonked out by the time they got to the 1400s that they put down 20th century dates just to liven things up.

I was hooked into one of those genealogical web-sites that gives the names of the parents of whomever one keys in.  Which would be fine but such information can go back centuries.  Then, of course, as I've already said, if the connection is spurious, why pursue it.  I got lords and ladies, sheriffs of this English county and that, three Lord Mayors of London, most of which I discarded since I had no idea if the connection was legitimate.  I traced one family through their thousand years in England to find the "first" of the family was a Tuscan who had befriended William the Conqueror. There was no way I wanted to write all their particulars down so was glad when I found a glitch that allowed me to scratch all that.  You might well say:  some researcher you are!  Right.  Too much work at this point.  But I wanted what I ended up with to be as accurate as possible.

So I stayed this side of the pond though admit that continuing on back brought up some wonderful names.  Like Fulke Le Strange, 1st Lord of Blackmere.  Such a name makes you think of a children's book about medieval knights--which I guess he was.  I also got someone akin to the Sheriff of Nottingham as a possible ancestor.  Yikes.  And after all those Robin Hood movies, too!  But then to compensate, I had a good chuckle when a Mr. Fisher married a Miss Fryer.

Then I was given the name Sallye Lnu as the 16th century Welsh mother of another possible ancestor, but the name Lnu didn't fit a Welsh lass of any century.  But there it was, written out, and repeated by other researchers. Then, of course, I realized it wasn't a name at all but the initials for Last Name Unknown.

And then records get hazy after awhile.  One poor woman was listed as having had 30 children. And there was the man who was born in The Tower of London!  Goodness, I thought, what brought that about!  But then I found it was Tower Street, London.  An important difference.

So, you see, it can be fun, it can be interesting, but there's a lot of fuzzy information.  Even a lot of un-fuzzy information which is why I decided to just list the more recent folks I was fairly sure about and suppose someone else might want to take up the banner one day and plow into the rest.

Yet ... so much for my promise to just investigate "the recent folks."  Right after saying that, I found 41 generations of one Welsh family ending in the year 500.  Afterwards, I got up from my chair feeling as if I'd been out on the high seas, I was so wobbly.