I concluded my WWII research in May, finding some closure to the search for my lost father. However, I have been bitten by the ancestry bug. My husband did quite a bit on his family trees and made a start of mine. Since he can no longer use a computer, I decided to have a go. So engrossing! And thrilling when a connection is made, a long lost relative is found, and the chain linking the past to the present begins to take shape.
The great news is that the link to Ireland has appeared and been verified. My father’s grandfather and grandmother (paternal) were born in the United States. Now I have found the brave souls who survived the Great Famine in Ireland and sailed on “coffin ships” to America. I now know their names, birth dates, where they came from, and where they died! The names echo throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. William, Catherine, Thomas repeat in a generational melody. This new knowledge is wonderful because these ancestors were Irish peasants who were known only to their families and co-workers. Unlike the nobility of Great Britain or the descendants of the Mayflower arrivals, these Barrys and Gilheneys were unimportant. The generation before me had lost these stories and the connection to their immigrant past.
When these men, women, and children sailed for the New World,they never looked back. Hell was where they came from and nothing in the future could be worse.