The Washerwoman’s Genes

About: Musings on Ancestry

In the summer of 2005, I contracted “genealogists’ pox.” Ancestry.com, which I’d subscribed to for a while, alerted me to a few “hits” on my list of ancestors. And the hits were real: I found my dad’s family in 1920, living in Brooklyn. I found them again, in 1910: My grandmother, with her new married name, still in the household of her widowed mother, and her uncle Willie in residence too. I was hooked.

For various reasons, I have decided to focus on my father’s maternal line. That it shows up in the records, frankly, is one major reason. These are people who opened the door when the census taker came around. Also, there is an extant family tree of my mother’s maternal line. And my grand-paternal lines are hard to trace: both men were seemingly loners, and their tracks quickly go back to Ireland.

So following the Davises keeps the research in the U.S. It also reveals so much that was hidden: the upstate NY origins, the antiquity of this line in the U.S., and the Dutch and German folk in the mix (a joke on me, who thought I was 90% Irish and a come-lately American).

So far, there are three types of posts:

Story: A finished piece of musing

Washboard: Processing the data

Clothesline: Current questions on the research

As February, 2006, ends, I’ve added new categories. One steps away from ancestry to a wider world of musing; the other will allow me to reflect on and keep some general notes about the reading inspired by my family research:

Archetypes: Washerwoman Art and Lore

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