Saturday, 12 June 2010

Climbing The Family Tree!

That's what my Beloved Geek Boy and I have been doing today. Have you ever tried to trace your family tree? I love to find out who came before me, the links, the tangles, the stories ... the family history. Once upon a time, this would have been handed down from one generation to the next as stories. You know ... "Your great, great, great grandfather Ferdinand had too much to drink one night and bet a mate he could swim the English Channel. He lost the bet, your great, great, great Grandmother remarried and moved to Scotland." :0) I suppose, too, that in that same once upon a time, family members really didn't settle too far from the rest of their family group, or in the case of my very Scottish family, clan. Now that the world is a smaller place thanks to improved transport, most of our families scatter to the four winds and those family stories and lineages aren't passed on by word of mouth and it isn't until someone is keen enough to tackle some research, that the family tree branches begin to grow.

GB started to track both our family trees about 10 years ago, but the information superhighway was still being paved and little information was available unless you did a lot of legwork. After his Aunty Annette phoned with a little bit of information she had dug up and re-infected him with the family tree bug, GB has been climbing all over the family trees again ... and it is SOOOOOOO interesting!

As well as the KNOWN ...


Charles William Kippen (my Pop)


Muriel Isobel Kippen - nee. Swan (my Nan)


James Menzies Kippen and William Ronald Kippen
(My uncle Jim who drowned at age 19 after suffering a huge heart attack while swimming in a race across a dam during a Scout camp, and my Dad)


Russell, Gregory, Kerry and Beverley Anne Paten
(My Mum on the right and her siblings)

And we also found some of the UNKNOWN. In amongst some keepsakes I received when my Pop passed away, were two small photos that looked like they had been cut out to put into a locket or something similar, complete with glass circles to protect them ...


This one is a bit damaged and has a crease in it, but don't you just love the floofy hair and the big hat! :0) And I'm seeing the same chipmunk cheeks that I look at each day (and curse!!) in the mirror, so I'm guessing she's a great, great aunty or something similar. Then there's this handsome chap ...


Take away the moustache and it could be my brother Paul!! Bit scary, really!! In fact, the family resemblance in so many of the photos was a bit disconcerting. I realise I take after my Dad's side of the family, but to see my own facial features in literally generations of family members is a bit strange ... but also comforting, I guess, as I see where I've come from and that I belong.

And my Beloved GB has managed to ferret out some really interesting links, too. I've always known Dad's family with the Kippen, Menzies, Duncan and McLean branches were very Scottish, but Scott has since discovered a few more Scottish links, like McDonald, Campbell and McGregor. If you scratch me, I think I'll bleed tartan! :0) Apparently, the Kippens 'hid' the McGregors when they were declared outlaws in Scotland after numerous rebellions and run-ins with the English. Oh dear ... I think I'm now seeing where my rebellion against authority comes from! Tee! Hee! Hee!

While GB has been researching and recording (something my non-linear logic cannot cope with at all!!!) I've been going through some of the old family photos and scanning them in to add to the digital family tree. So, although we may not have had the stories of our families handed down by word of mouth and we're having to go searching for them, it's nice to know that technology will allow us to keep permanent records of what we find, making the stories once more accessible, making a nice circle.

The only drawback to this interesting pastime is that it is VERY time consuming ... and addictive! :0) Somehow, the day has whizzed by and I have only crossed a couple of the chores off my list. Oh dear! Ah well ... tomorrow is another day and since it's a three day long weekend, I guess the list will just overflow and still be waiting when I get around to it! :0)

Whatever you're up to this weekend, I hope you're enjoying it and managing to spend some time with the people you love. Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!
CHEERS!
KRIS

7 comments:

clare's craftroom said...

I have been doing my family tree off and on for a couple of years . You are so right it is very time consuming but so addictive and fun ! It's like solving your own mystery .

Love Bears All Things said...

Only someone who is into the whole genealogy thing can understand...It is so addictive...I've been at it off and on for more years than I care to tell...my siblings and children were never interested until now...they've begun to ask for what I have...so I have begun to write my story and I should just take a week and do nothing else so I can get it done...I think it is most important to get this information recorded for future generations so it is alright if chores fall by the wayside...Laundry, after all, is a repetition every week and we never really finish and the house will be here to clean when we're finished...But we do need to take a break now and then...My story has been on my list of goals for the year many times now.
This was an interesting post.
Mama Bear

Judy S. said...

Fun post, Kris. You're right about the time consuming part of genealogy. Have you discovered the Family Treemaker computer program? It's really helpful. Thanks, too, for the reminder to get busy and label photos!

Busty LaRue said...

we've been using ancestry.com to track our family tree. When I was little, we had stories told to us like "your great-great-great-(insert random number here)-grandfather was a signer of the Declaration of Independence," etc. Come to find out they were just stories. My fam was still in England at the time! It's been quite interesting, and time consuming, but well worth it. Thanks for reminding me to get back on top of it :)

Shiree said...

yes it is so so addictive, but so worth knowing where you come form and how every member fits into the family, and such a fun way to spend the day. The chores will still be there tomorrow...

Bronwyn Hayes said...

Hi Kris-
I can see a whole clan of McBears coming off the drawing board from this genealogy thing! The McGregor Bear, the Campbell Bear, the Duncan Bear etc. All with the relevant tartan Kilts and sporrans of course!
McCheers-
Bronwyn ...
Red Brolly

Kerryanne English said...

Kris & GB, I have been working on family trees for both Mark and myself (on and off) for about 10 years or so and know just how amazing and addictive it is. Beware, every family has skeletons in the closet. I've been amazed & shocked on more than a few occasions!!
Great way to spend a winter's day.
Hugs ~ Kerryanne

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...