I recently spent a wonderful couple of days with my three brothers and two of my sisters. We sat around and talked about days of “yesteryear.” I learned things about my parents that were both amazing and heartwarming, things I’d never heard before. My brothers talked about the scrapes they had been in as kids. They shared military stories, girlfriend adventures, and just everyday events at home on the farm. Some of them were pretty wild and crazy, and the details varied a little depending on who was narrating, but all were fun to hear.
My oldest brother, Don, told us how daddy would stay up at night and stir the fire in the wood stove on many long, cold winter nights. Don told us that with the first four or five siblings he didn’t know our mother was pregnant because no one talked about it. He knew she was “sick” and there would be a lot of commotion for a few days and suddenly he had a new brother or sister. Our mother was a little round and he never noticed any difference.
We not only got to hear stories about their adventures but also stories that had been passed down from our parents and grandparents. If you ever get a chance to meet with elder family members and hear stories of yesteryear, take advantage of it. What a wonderful thing to hear the tales that have been passed on from one generation to another. Do you have a family tale to tell? Please share.
Have you researched your genealogy? It can be great fun. I started the process about ten years ago, or more. I was able to research my mother’s side of the family back to the twelve hundreds. I found some very interesting stories along the way. I also met a group of relatives that I would’ve never met if I hadn’t been looking for information.
I returned to Fertile, MN and discovered a graveyard from the 1800’s that belonged entirely to our clan except for about six graves that were from one other family. The graveyard was off the beaten path in the woods hidden from the public. It contained the graves of my great grandparents, and my great, great grandparents and gaggles of great aunts and uncles. All those original “Fertile families” were “gi-normous.” My great-grandfather was one of eighteen. His folks came from Canada to the valley along with three other families nearly as large. They arrived there too late to get their homes built before winter settled in, so that first winter they had to dig holes in the hills and live underground until the snows passed. They initially called the area Godfrey Township. It was sometime later when my brilliant ancestors changed the name to Fertile.
I also discovered other interesting things, like the first cousins that married each other, making some parts of my family tree a “pole” instead of a tree.
Have you researched your genealogy? Any interesting stories you’d care to share?