I've been trying to get back to my beloved genealogy research.
I say trying, because it really is difficult to sit in front of the computer for any length of time.
It's actually difficult to sit anywhere for any length of time.
I have to constantly change position, change activity, change focal point ... you get the picture.
But a couple of weeks ago, I got side-tracked as a result of an e-mail from a new-found distant cousin:
"Hello BonnieThis is just to say a very big thank you for all the Cherryholme genealogy that you have placed on the internet.My great great grandmother was Hannah Cherryholme (such a pretty name) who married a John McKenny.She was born in about 1841 and is sister to your John Cherryholme born in 1836.So through your research I have got back another 3 generations to John who married Jane Hill.I was absolutely delighted to discover this info and thank you again for sharing it.With all best wishes, ..."
Of course, that e-mail resulted in an exchange that caused me to go digging again.
And every time I dig anew, I find fresh information for my tree. Holes that I had tried for years to plug are slowly being filled in. Right now, I'm waiting for seven certificates to arrive from England (sure hope they get here before the strike hits!): birth certificates for three of my great-grandmother's siblings; a death certificate for another great grandmother's sister; the marriage and death certificates for my great grandfather's sister; and a death certificate for another great grandmother's brother.
Each of those certificates should provide new information that will lead me to more paths to follow.
You see, I'm such a purist at this game that I want all the information.
Not just my direct line -- I want all their siblings too; that means birth, marriage and death (BMDs) of each member of each family for each generation.
My binders are many as I wade my way through the generations, collecting documentation.
Why do I do this? Why is it so important to collect BMDs for each member of each family?
Because often, that is the only way one can prove relationship to someone.
For instance, had I not collected the marriage info for each of my 2nd great grandfather (John Cherryhome)'s siblings, I would not have known, immediately that the above e-mail landed in my inbox, that the writer was indeed related to me.
How did I know definitively that the writer was my fourth cousin?
Because he's descended from Hannah Cherryholme McKenny and I knew that my 2nd great grandaunt, Hannah Cherryholme, had married John McKenny.
My new cousin was delighted when I sent him copies of Hannah's birth, marriage, and death certificates.
"Thanks once again for all the amazing info. that you have passed on to me. You really have done a staggering amount of work !!
In contrast I am a mere beginner."
His research is just beginning and I hope that I've been able to spark a light that will hold him in good stead as he continues on this ever fascinating journey.
Thank YOU cousin, for steering me back to what I so enjoy doing.