Sunday, 18 March 2007

Geoffs Genealogy Update 18 March 2007

Here we are again, another Sunday evening - the end of the weekend. Another working week beckons, but first I need to spend a few minutes updating this blog.

I have one or two items to mention re this week's developments.

Firstly. I was delighted to hear from my distant cousin - Joao in Brazil. He is descended from James Frederick Holliday (1853-1938). James emigrated to Brazil in 1880, and generally speaking the Holliday clan prospered in their new homeland.

I have had some problems communicating with Joao over the past year. His emails to me arrive fine all the time; mine to him always fail to reach him. I have no idea why. I seem able to email all my other correspondents successfully, but not Joao. Anyway, Joao has contacted me by using a different email address and I have successfully reached him with my reply. This may seem a very small thing to you, but to me it is great. I can now resume contact with my South American cousins and hopefully learn more about them!

Joao sent me some lovely portrait photos that were among his grandfather's possessions. They presumably portray family members, but he has no idea who they were. What a shame! I think that all family historians know the feeling of frustration that comes from unattributed family photos. I really must take the time to annotate my photo collection, in case any of my descendants is interested in my family history in the future.

My other bit of news also concerns a photograph. My contact in Canada, who is descended from Robert Hanham Collyer (RHC), phrenologist and showman etc, has sent me a photo of his great grandmother - Emily Jeans Clements (b 1847) - who was one of the wives of RHC. RHC married her when she was just seventeen years old and he was fifty. The marriage ended in the divorce courts in 1874.

The photo shows Emily as a young woman, and is really lovely. How wonderful to be able to look at somebody who until yesterday was just a name on the Bankes Pedigree. Photos add a new dimension to our family trees, and we should never waste an opportunity to get hold on them.

Have a good week.

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