View Full Version : Favourite ancestor

23-07-15, 16:07
Was just thinking today, do you have a favourite ancestor or plural? Why are they your favourite? my favourites are either the first i learned about, or ones who are so difficult you practically know everything about them.....except for the reason they are your brickwall!!

Anne in Carlisle
23-07-15, 16:33
Ha ha! The lost sheep syndrome. They always take so much more work and the reward is great when/if you get there. My favourite is Joseph Hoyland who died about a week before the 1861 census. The 1851 census for his area did not exist due to damage so
I didn't know where he was born. There were not many but they were all born around the same time! To cut a long story short I eventually found his will, proved 15 years after his death, naming two of his brothers. Yay!! They were from a Dade parish with huge amounts of extra detail. Result!

Janet in Yorkshire
23-07-15, 17:10
My 3xgt grandfather John Kirk. Illegitimate, step-son of an ag lab, he worked his way up the ladder to become a farmer and also had shares in coastal fishing boats. He could read and write, as could all his many children, who all had a trade or profession, including master mariner, school master, a couple of governesses, a shop keeper and an importer of and dealer in coal. He died in 1861 and I have a copy of an image of him, with mutton chops and a wing collar coat. I am proud to share his blood.
I am very fond of one of John's grand-daughters, who seems to have gone off the rails and been a bit of a lass, and also of another female "cousin" on another line, who led a very colourful life, including spending time in a house of correction in her formative years for stealing from her father, and later had two (childless) marriages with possibly a gentleman friend in between the two husbands.


23-07-15, 18:12
My favourite is my Irish Great Grandmother. All I knew were the details from the Army marriage certificate. Father's name and occupation and rough age. Wasn't until the 1891 census was made available that I found where she was born and an approximate date. Still took me several years of Irish research to track down her parents and siblings. Not easy when so little Irish research was available online then. Now I have traced her parents familes back several decades.

Chris in Sussex
23-07-15, 18:22
My 4xGGrandfather Scipio Robinson (Paternal line).
Firstly because he wasn't a William or John;D
He stole a pig in 1813 and spent 2 months in Newgate but went on to head a successful dynasty of pork butchers. His grandchildren didn't do too badly either, one was a Lord Mayor of London. Shame my line down didn't do quite so well:(


Ann Bentley
24-07-15, 01:48
My favourite is my great uncle, Thomas Gillan! I already had him on my tree, married with two sons, when I discovered that he came to Australia. Well! That got my attention straight away, as I had no idea that any of my family had come here before we did. I checked for his death, to be sure that it wasn't just a visit, and sure enough, he died in Sydney in 1914. The Aussie death information was very thorough - it had his parent's names, so I knew it was the right bloke, but then I looked a bit further down the form. The wife and children were different!!! On making further enquiries (I had to to by now!) and getting another marriage certificate for him, I discovered that he had committed bigamy. He had married for a second time while his first wife was still alive and living with another bloke. (According to the census, she was his 'housekeeper' !) I had to follow him and discovered that he and his second 'wife' stayed together until he died. Whether they were ever able to marry legally or not, I will probably never know, but he is by far my favourite !

24-07-15, 06:17
Just one? And does it have to be a blood relative?

My g'grandfather's stepmother, Eliza Mitchell, must have been a resilient woman. She was my g'g'grandfather's 2nd wife, and became the step mother of three children. Soon started having her own. Packed up the step children and two of her own and took them from Cornwall to a mining town in Wisconsin, and where she had two more children before her husband died. In the next census, she and her underage step children are living with her new husband, and the child she had with him. Husband #2 died. She remarried again, lived to a goodly age. Her obit seems to indicate that her families loved her and she was active in her community. Wow.

And then there's Edward Coverly. I found a lot of information about him, but I couldn't prove the relationship with it! Finally proved it with genetic links.

24-07-15, 08:44
My favourite is my great grandmother. I vaguely remember her, she died when I was 6. She had a mentally disabled daughter who out lived her, her husband was in the RN and was away lots of the time, had 4 children, one son died at the battle of Jutland, was a widow for 24 years, read the funeral notices each morning in her old age and if she vaguely new the person would attend the funeral, mowed the lawn with a push mower and cleaned out the gutter till she died at the age of 81 when she was run over by a run away van. She was a lady who just got on with life.


Olde Crone Holden
24-07-15, 09:51
I can tell you who my most UNfavourite is - my illegitimate (in more ways than one) 2 x GGF, James Holden. In over 40 years researching him I have managed to uncover just four measly appearances - 1861,71,81 and his death in 1898. He spent the rest of his life on Mars.


Anne in Carlisle
24-07-15, 10:03
OC .. its incredible how some people can just not leave any traces. If you can't find him I don't think anyone could!