I have one of those ancestors. And it’s a big one. He’s my Great Great Great Grandfather, on my father’s side. And to be honest, it feels as if he is standing in my way – physically preventing me from progressing further back in the Morgan history.
Now his wife, Margaret Trainor, and her family, well I can go back for ages (or so it seems). They show up in all sorts of helpful places. And consistently.
But not my John Morgan. His birthdate isn’t even nailed down. He is the perfect example of being able to gather 50 years worth of original records only to find that NOT A SINGLE ONE gives the same birthdate. NOT. ONE.
Result? He has that awful birth entry in the family file of “Between 1810 and 1820.” I hate entries like that. It makes me feel like there is a thread hanging off my sweater and I HAVE TO PULL IT.
I’ve felt in my gut for ages now that he likely wasn’t born in the same Parish, or even County, as my Great Great Great Grandmother. And now I find myself in that odd limbo of having just enough information to feel that my gut instinct was correct, but not enough to be able to get anywhere with it until I hear back from the local Diocese. And let’s just say they are not quick on hitting the “reply” button on their emails.
But this has happened before, on my Mother’s side. And until about two months ago, we really didn’t know anything other than my Great Great Grandfather’s name. Bizarrely, I’ve finally been able to collect his breadcrumbs backwards from Massachusetts to Montreal to Luçon, but I still don’t know when or how or where he died.
But, given that I survived 24 years of regularly checking and rechecking and rechecking again to find more info on the maternal missing link, we DID eventually find it, and it cleared up his past.
So, although I have a small fear that the archivist in the Diocese where my paternal Great Great Great Grandparents were married might just put me on a stalker list, I will continue, however doggedly, to check and recheck and recheck again.
It’s the only way I’ll ever knock a brick out of the wall, even if it does feel futile.
So, keep on keeping on – you’ll get there too!