Top family posts of the year
Here we are, in the last days of 2018, and The Legal Genealogist is once again taking just a moment to think back and reflect.
It’s Saturday… the day I usually focus on my family here in the blog. And it’s almost Christmas Eve … a day when most of us try very hard to keep the focus on our families.
So here on this Saturday, I’m taking a moment to look back on a year’s worth of once-a-week blog posts about my family… the blog posts that mean the most to me individually — and that often resonate the most deeply with readers.
Sometimes, a family post will break into the top posts overall for the blog for the year — but more often they’re simply the ones nearest and dearest to me.
And so I take this opportunity, on this last Saturday before Christmas 2018, to share with you the top family-related posts of the year. Without further ado…
• For the record… (January 13)
“This is what my family looks like. We are precisely what “chain migration” really looks like. And we’re damned proud of it.”
• A heartfelt thank-you (April 14)
“At a Lutheran church on the far south side of Chicago at 11 o’clock this morning, she will be eulogized by those who knew her best. And by those who loved her best. And by those who — like The Legal Genealogist — owe her a deep debt of gratitude for what she has done for us.”
• Finding Aunt Samantha (May 19)
“She appears on the 1850 census of Cherokee County, Alabama, as Samantha Battles. Second in a list of seven children in the household of William and Ann (Jacobs) Battles. Age 18. Born in Alabama. And then, it seemed, she disappeared.”
• Is one clue too much to ask? (October 14)
“… I keep hoping that DNA testing is going to eventually turn up that one cousin with just those records to help fill in that hole in the family history. Case in point: Ann Jacobs, second wife of William Battles of Cherokee County, Alabama. Yet another of the “who the heck are the parents of…” open questions in our family tree.”
• Marie’s memory (January 20)
“The first-born child of Hugo Ernst and Marie Margarethe (Nuckel) Geissler, Marie Emma Geissler should have provided The Legal Genealogist with all the cover for mischief that only an aunt can provide. She should have provided me with stories about all the mean things her little brother, my father, did to her while they were kids.”
• Of all the things… (February 17)
“This past Wednesday — Valentine’s Day 2018 — marked the 100th anniversary of the marriage of two people. The Legal Genealogist‘s paternal grandparents, Hugo Ernst Geissler and Marie Margarethe Nuckel, were married at St. Jakobi Church in Bremen, Germany, after a civil ceremony at the City Registrar’s Office. Their marriage and their later decision to emigrate to the United States — bringing my then three-year-old father along — certainly changed the course of my personal history in a big way. But the reality of their lives also leaves a very big gap in my personal history.”
• Another kind of news (June 9)
“By the time he came along, the older siblings in The Legal Genealogist‘s family were used to the phone call. You know. The phone call. The one from the hospital. The one that gave us the news that the family was just a tad larger than it had been a few hours earlier. ‘It’s a boy,’ we’d be told. Or ‘it’s a girl.’”
• Cousins! (May 13)
“It seems a little odd to The Legal Genealogist not to be looking at the distaff side of DNA results on this Mother’s Day 2018. Especially when I think about cousins, my mother’s side generally comes into play no matter what: she was one of 12 children, 10 of whom lived to adulthood. Between her siblings — my aunts and uncles — and my maternal grandparents’ many siblings, I’ve been supplied with what seems at times like an unending array of cousins — first, second, third and more. But the DNA results that came in this week have me riveted on the other side of the family.”
• Consumed by consumption (April 21)
“What I do know is that my family — like so many others — knew only too well the scourge of tuberculosis, a killer in the early years of the 20th century often called consumption. At least three of my close relatives suffered from tuberculosis in those terrible times before antibiotics brought the disease under control…”
• All there is (June 17)
“It’s a sad state of affairs, for sure, this Father’s Day in the United States, when so many people are celebrating their YDNA forebears. And The Legal Genealogist uses that term “affair” with deliberation since it clearly was an affair that’s to blame here.”
On to 2019… with the usual additional sidetracks into other top-post lists for this year…