Friday, April 20, 2012

New Cousins


One good thing about doing research on your family in the various genealogy websites is that you periodically find cousins.  People who share one of your ancestors often post their family trees on these site, and a feature of the sites is usually that they can connect you with them.

Recently, I connected with a cousin in England who provided new information on the ancestors of my father's father.  Next fall, I'll be traveling to England to see if I can continue the research.  It also spurred my energy to check on what the website had on several other grandparents and great grandparents where my information was incomplete.  As a result, I found three new cousins who share connections with me on my mother's father's line.

But even if you find that someone's family tree contains the same great grandfather, privacy controls in these online family tree websites usually prevent you from knowing much about them, and require them to respond to a website inquiry in order to connect.  That's the case with these three cousins: Daniel and Chris Holton, Mommebird, and Debrob22 (known only to me by their user names), who share with me a family line which finds its way to Samuel S. Watson, Lucy Ellen Watson, or Joseph Lary.  I've sent messages to each to see it they're interested in sharing information.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

New England Ancestors


My ancestors, the Larys, Watsons, Cobbs, Anthoines, Hawkes, Cushmans, and Allertons have lived in New England for almost 400 years.  In Massachusetts for most of that time, they settled in the coastal towns of Barnstable, Scituate, and Lynn.  The first, Isaac Allerton, his wife Mary, and their 3 yr-old daughter Mary, arrived on the Mayflower.  The younger Mary was the last surviving passenger when she died in 1689.

Another set of ancestors arrived in the 1650's, and spent most of the next 300 years in New Hampshire and Maine.  I've recently found a key cousin who wrote a great narrative about the Larys, and have the possibility of expanding my contact with cousins in the line of my ancestors.

This fall, Pat and I will be traveling through both New England and the Lake district of England to visit the places of these ancestors.  Hopefully, the research will be useful to more than just us, and I'll be trying to solicit ideas about what key information in our shared histories needs our time and efforts.

If your ancestors are from these areas, and these family names ring a bell, contact me and keep an eye on this blog (and our travel blog -



Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Five Great Women


My great-great-grandmother, Lucy Ellen Watson, had an amazing life in the mid-1800s in Maine and New Hampshire.  She also had two amazing great-great-grandmothers, in the 1700's in Massachusetts and Maine (Elizabeth Phinney and Rachel Hawkes).  They had two amazing great-great grandmothers (Mary Allerton and Patience Hurst), who arrived in Massachusetts in the 1600s aboard the Mayflower and a sister ship ten years later.

All five women led extraordinary lives, and I'll be writing their stories in the near future.