ancient history

As I mentioned before, I’ve been doing some family tree research.  I started doing this back in 1996 or so just because I wanted to.  I stopped when I had more important things to do.  (Wedding, pregnancy, parenting, etc.)  I’m doing it again now because I’ve discovered that there is a line of Lou Gehrig’s Disease, Parkinson’s, and this weird form of dementia that has both Lou Gehrig’s and Parkinson’s symptoms as well as losing words and eventually all language and, ya know, death, in my family.  There is a possibility, albeit slim, that I have inherited a 50% chance at having this, and, in turn, passing on a 50% chance of having it to my kids.  As it stands, because it is unknown if I have it, they only have, what, a 25% chance?  Anyway, that is slim.  It is more likely that I have inherited the ABILITY to get this IF I have some kind of environmental trigger.   I have to go see a genetics counselor though to find out more and obviously, I haven’t done that yet.

As part of my genealogy research, I have found some interesting things.  For one, I can trace my family back to the Hiltons of England in the 1600s.  Apparently there is a Hylton Castle in England although I have not specifically traced the family line to the people that owned the castle.  Our Hiltons in particular came to America in the colonial days to Maryland (St Mary’s, to be exact) and from what I’ve read, the Hylton Castle Hiltons came to America in New Hampshire, not Maryland.

I’ve also traced us back to the McKnats of Scotland and the Pagels of, well, the Pagels of “marry your first cousin”.  Ya, it is a little disturbing to see the SAME PERSON show up in your genealogy research more than once.  Ironically, that is NOT the line with the health issues.  The health issues are from, it seems, the Germans that lived in Russia for several generations before coming to America.  (Where they settled in Nebraska and South Dakota, of all places.  Boring, boring, boring, people.)

My son gives me grief for being so fascinated by all of this, until I tell him the stories I heard about the people and places where they lived and why they moved. 

Have any of you traced your lines back?  Where are you from?

(BTW – 162 again today.  Gross.  I went to a new club (Champlin) since I was working at a different building today and it was a really old icky club but no one counted out loud so I was happy enough.)

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5 Responses

  1. I had the luck of being handed a shit-ton of family stuff from my mother’s family. One of my relatives, as a wedding gift for his daughter (my first cousin once removed), spent months researching back in the 70s, and came up with more information than I could ever imagine.

    One branch of the family can be traced back to Amsterdam in the 1500s, but for the most part, they were English, Scottish or Irish immigrants who kept marrying Dutch women fresh off the boat. Of course, my grandmother’s entire matrilineal line is muddled, ‘cos she was French Cajun and there were not clear records kept down on the Bayou. Dad’s family was again English and Scottish, so as far as I can tell, I’m just your standard Northern European blend.

    Interestingly, despite how many Germans settled in Texas, I don’t have a lick of German ancestry. This is, of course, only more interesting because I married a German. He laughs at me when I research genealogy because he just doesn’t understand the American fascination with it. ‘Cos when he traces his stuff back it’s basically German/Dutch for as far back as you can go, and the German/Dutch dileniation is only based on the geopolitical lines drawn at the time. With the exception of him (and now his mother), his whole family forever has been born, lived and died in the Grafschaft Bentheim. Weird.

    Anyway, it’s a fun habit, no?

  2. I’ve done a bit of research too. I have a couple aunts and uncles doing research on my Dad’s side of the family. So far, I can trace the Weinzierl’s and Fick’s back to the Waconia area until the mid 1860’s and then I’m not sure if we go back to Germany or to the eastern U.S. (There was a large Weinzierl population in Pennsylvania at that time). My mom’s side of the family has a book (that they paid for) that traces them back to Ireland to the 15 or 1600’s. I haven’t seen that book in years (like 15-20) but I do remember reading through it and discovering that I actually have 1/16th Dutch in me! My mom had no idea she had any dutch in her! She thought she was 1/2 Irish and 1/2 German! That was a funny moment of realization for her! 🙂 My grandmother’s maiden name is Bailey though so we’re definitely Irish! 🙂

  3. My dad’s family (both sides) and my mom’s mom all trace back to around 1850 where they all came from Germany when they were giving away free land to farmers to populate the new state. Germany had a lot of civil wars at the time, so people were quick to leave. I have talked with a guy who runs a baking goods company in Germany who has the same original spelling as my dad’s last name and is roughly from the same area. He gave me some data back much further, but there’s no definitive proof that the two chains are linked.

    My mom’s dad traces back a little further. I don’t remember the exact date, but the oldest relative they have record of was a soldier in Napoleons’ Army. The blurb they have about him was that he fought in Russia and most of his group died in the freezing weather, but he survived because he drank a lot. So the drunk Frenchman is the last survivor we’ve found.

    John’s maternal grandmother was Morman and she did tons of genealogy on both his parents families, but I can’t get a copy of it! John’s aunt in Utah has all the files.

  4. Family research is such interesting stuff!! My Grandpop left behind a lot of stuff and so I have that in my attics waiting for when I feel I can devote a lot of time to it.

    My Uncle, on the other side of the family, has been researching that side and has gotten as far back as the 1800s the last I knew. The trouble is that it is so time consuming, even if fascinating!

  5. […] – bookmarked by 2 members originally found by ramurf on 2008-11-18 ancient history https://robynanne.wordpress.com/2008/07/08/ancient-history/ – bookmarked by 1 members originally […]

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