My son has been helping me find information on my father, partly so I can complete a government form and partly for his own curiosity.
First, on the other side of the family, I knew my mother was born in the US, which apparently means I would have very little trouble getting American citizenship (I have no intention of so doing, not at my age), but I learned my maternal grandfather was also American.
Back to my father’s family. In the past day my son turned up my grandparents’ marriage records. They are very interesting. I discovered both grandparents were born on Cape Breton Island and that he was 12 years older than her when they married. I had known that my grandfather had worked on the building of one of the Welland Canals – I don’t know if it was the current one or the previous one. It wasn’t until I saw the papers today that I learned he had been a diver, not the labourer I had been lead to believe.
But it is some of the other information on this form that I really find fascinating. Being from Cape Breton Island, it is almost a given names are of Scottish origin, with lots of “Mc’s” and “Mac’s”. Such is the case here. What I find fascinating is that while my grandfather spelled his name “Mac”, my great-grandfather spelled his name “Mc”. Equally fascinating is that both grandparents are shown as being Catholic. Don’t know when that changed, for I am Anglican (Episcopalian in the US) and as far as I know, nobody in the family is Catholic.
According to the document, both great-grandfathers were also born in Cape Breton. The form only lists the names of my great-grandmothers, not their birthplaces. My son is going to try to trace the family back even further, so who knows what may turn up.
If you’ve watched the television show “Who do you think you are?” you are aware that sometimes things happened in the past that changed our present. That certainly seems to be the case here.
Enjoy your day and remember to hug an artist – we need love too.