20 April 2013

A to Z Blogging Challenge 2013: R is for Reaching Back

If you're working on your family history, how far back have you been able to trace?

I have gone back as far as the 1200s on some of my lines. I have found artisans, statesmen, military leaders, and even some unsavory folks that could have stayed hidden. :)  However, these are not verified relationships. It is my intention to verify relationships as far back as I can. These lists of possible relatives and their vital dates gives me a good starting place for the verification process. Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org have been a big help in my research.

If you aren't into genealogy, who is the oldest relative that you have known? What was the oldest generation alive in your family when you were born? Were there great-grandparents still alive or further back still? 

When I was born, all of my grandparents and two great-grandmothers were living. They were my mama's grandmas, Carrie Williams Pressley and Lula Carter Spence. I missed meeting Big Mama - Annie Black Gunter, the one this blog is named for - by about five years. I wish that I could have met her and Callie James Fowler, too.

Please put your answers down in the comment section or leave a link to your blog so that we can read about your families, too!


  1. interesting answers and thanks for the links. I knew all my grandparents and our family has been traced to 1624 when they arrived in the USA from Ireland.

    1. Thank you, and you're welcome. The majority of our family's roots are in Ireland, too. :)

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Have a great weekend!

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you! I hope that you have a great weekend. :)

  3. This is a good subject for me, you see my Great Grandmother on my maternal side had the same maiden name as my married name, I traced her father and mother but couldn't get any further because Lewis in the area my great,great grandfather was born was a common name as was his christian name, I would love to go back further.
    I did well on my father's side though.
    Thanks for doing this for R post.

    1. Thank you for reading my R post. :)

      I am glad that you were able to go far on your daddy's side and hope that somehow you'll be able to unlock some more on your mama's side, too. It does make it difficult when it seems an entire community shares a surname, or when those with the same surname give all of their children the same first names. If you've ever seen the movie "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" you know what I mean. All of the children on that movie were named Anita, Dianne, and Nick. Couple that with a common surname, and it might never get sorted out.

      I am up against that somewhat with my paternal-maternal line and my husband's paternal-maternal line. Both of our grandmothers had the maiden name Fowler, both born in Anderson County, SC. They have to be connected somehow, but I haven't found that connection yet.

      Best wishes to you as you try to knock another brick or two from your brick wall. Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. Have a great week!

  4. Just three grandparents. My dad was adopted, so it seems strange to follow that line. My maternal grandfather's ancestors came to the U.S. a very long time -- not long after the pilgrims. I also know that I'm a mix of many different nationalities. But that's about it. :)

    #atozchallenge, Kristen's blog: kristenhead.blogspot.com

    1. Kristen, is there any way to get the adoption records for your daddy or were they sealed? Were your adoptive grandparents able to share any information with you regarding how they came about getting your daddy? Maybe there is some clue, even a tiny one (like the name/place of the adoption agency they used), that could set you on course to finding your daddy's biological roots.

      I think that it is great that your family has been in the US since before it was officially the US. We were, too. Some of our people were there to greet the Pilgrims as they came over. Does studying your family history make this country's history even more exciting to you? It does for me.

      Thank you for stopping by and commenting. Have a great week!


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