52 Ancestors Week 32: Small

+12 votes

Time for the next 52 Ancestors challenge...

52 Photos and 52 Ancestors sharing bacgesPlease share with us a profile of an ancestor or relative who matches this week's theme:


Share below.

You don't need to share every week to participate, but those who do will earn badges. If this is your first time participating and you don't have the participation badge, or if you pass a milestone (13 shared profiles in 13 weeks, 26 in 26, or 52 in 52) let us know here. For more about the challenge, click here.

in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (2.0m points)

33 Answers

+11 votes

Introducing my ancestor Tamar Little, daughter of Amos Little, Little-6374.  Let's hear it for pioneer ancestors and all who fit this week's theme!
by Janine Barber G2G6 Pilot (200k points)
+19 votes

My grand aunt Ruth Long was the smallest of the six Long sisters. Her family did not have money for photography, and she was the only one that they took to town to have a baby photo of. Her father gave her the nickname "Little Tootsie".  As an adult, she told me that she always weighed less than 90 lbs. She never had children, but she and her husband had a great life together, and even though she was small--she had a big heart and did a great deal for others.

by Alexis Nelson G2G6 Pilot (662k points)

Lovely photo and story heart

Thank you SJ for your wonderful comment.
Alexia gorgeous photo of your aunt a Ruth thank you for sharing this wonderful photo
Thank you Susan. She and her husband were very interested in genealogy, but that was fifty years ago.  They would have loved working on WikITree.
Great photo!   Actually, you post many great photos indeed.
Thank you Peggy for your very nice comment.
Love that although she was small, her last name was “Long”; just the kind of contradiction that makes life interesting!
Thank you Alexandra for your great comment. I never thought of the comparison of the Long family being “short” in stature. My grandmother was 5’ 2”, and that was about the average height for the women.
+11 votes
Whilst my immediate family is rather large (with my father having 5 siblings and paternal grandfather having 2 sisters and 2 half-brothers), my direct paternal Dowding family is actually incredibly small due to a lot of child deaths.

My 2x great-grandfather was Horace Dowding and Horace's branch is the only surviving Dowding branch. Horace's aunt Minnie Dowding's branch also survived but her married name was Brooks so it isn't a "Dowding branch" as such. There are also multiple surviving branches for the Wells family (Horace's maternal family) but in this instance I am only referring to the direct paternal line.

Horace's siblings all died as children, with the exception of two: Sidney and Alice Minnie. Sidney died in WWI aged 19 and Alice Minnie died aged 67, unmarried and no children. There's also George William, the eldest sibling and a complete mystery after the 1911 census, but he generally isn't believed to have children and is believed to have died young.

Horace's father Sidney had a number of siblings who all (off memory) reached adulthood. Going off memory, a female Dowding married but didn't have children, one male married and had only one child that died in WWII without children, one male married and had two children (I think a grandchild as well, but things eventually died out as far as I know) and the final sibling was the already mentioned Minnie.

Their father was also called Sidney, and Sidney had a brother George. George had 3 daughters (the name's already lost), 2 unmarried without children and one married with 2 children. One of those 2 children was a child death and the other didn't have any children. Things don't go any further back than their father James.
by Anonymous Dowding G2G6 Mach 3 (31.8k points)
reshown by Anonymous Dowding
+13 votes

My 3rd Great Grandfather had a small family compared to my other ancestors at the same time. He and his wife only had 2 kids.

Norman Haney

by Chandra Garrow G2G6 Mach 6 (62.6k points)
+15 votes

A Small Distinction

We have all had those small distinctions which make a big difference in our research. Perhaps only a middle initial distinguishes two people with nearly the same name. In this story, the letter A was misread as W, and that led me to the Yukon Gold Rush


My grandfather's uncle, Henry Cartier, had once been a gold miner. He told my father, "I won and lost two fortunes." When I entered his information in FamilySearch, the helpful computer suggested a possible source: the 1901 Canada Census. The original image was not available, only the summary:   Place: Unorganized Territories, Canada    Household: Robert Peterson, head/ Henry Cartier, wife

Uncle Henry was a wife?? I kept thinking of the scene in Paint Your  Wagon where the miners, for lack of any women,  are dancing with each other. I really needed to see the original image for this one. I went to the library and consulted Ancestry.com. The summary there also told me that he was a wife, but at least I could look at the original image. And now I see that the W which indicates "relation to head of household" is actually an A. I still don't know what A is, but certainly not Wife.

I nearly overlooked another small symbol. An arrow pointing right took me to the next page, full of interesting information about Henry and his fellow miners. Henry was between fortunes in 1901; all he owns is $25 of personal possessions. Other men own more: a cabin ($25), a claim ($10,000), 2 dogs, 2/3 of a horse (yes!). Nobody has a cow. Unlike the census taker in the city, who went systematically from house to house, this census taker must have interviewed people as he met them. A separate column gives their residence: Yukon Hotel, Adams Hill, #1 Mine Field, Island #2.

A left-pointing arrow took me back through several other interesting images. Someone owns 1-1/2 dogs., but there are still no cows. Almost everyone is a White Male. The one Black Male is Walter Crindon, from Virginia. The one Yellow Male is Shi Kobaria, from Japan. And, yes, finally, I found a woman! 18-year-old Ane Swandsen, from Denmark, is the wife of 39-year-old Lars Swandsen, also from Denmark. Lars has been in the Yukon for 11 years. Ane has been there ONE DAY!

I discovered this trove of interesting information only because a transcriber had interpreted the letter A as W. What, I wondered, did A stand for? Wilbur Ellis, listed just below Henry, is an A; when I asked Ancestry for his record, I was told that Wilbur Ellis was an Aunt.


by Joyce Vander Bogart G2G6 Pilot (185k points)
edited by Joyce Vander Bogart
You did it!! :)
+11 votes
When I hear the word "small" I must think about myself. My parents have four children. I am the eldest but the "smallest" with 1,83 m; my two brothers are 1,88 m and 1,93 m and even my sister (the youngest of us) is 1,84 m tall.
by Dieter Lewerenz G2G Astronaut (2.5m points)
+11 votes
I guess you can say that I am the "smallest" aka the shortest, in my small family.

When I was married I was shorter than my husband and obviously taller than my son. When my son turned 10 years old, he was 5 feet 3 inches. By the time he turned 11 he was 5 feet 5 inches. I am 5 feet 4 inches.

So for the last 8 years I have been the shortest person in my family.

We are also a small family since there are only 3 of us -  2 parents and 1 child.

At 18 years old - my son is now 6 feet  tall. My husband is 6 feet 1.

My husband is on wikitree but he is unlisted.

My son is not on wikitree. He doesn't need to have a profile at this time.
by Robynne Lozier G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
+14 votes

It's really very simple in my family. Whenever genes for small and genes for tall fight it out in my family, it seems that small beats tall every time.

My mother was 5'2" and her mother was shorter still. What hope was there for me?

by Bill Vincent G2G6 Pilot (157k points)
+13 votes

What we have here is a small profile! People have been looking for Abigail for many years. I started looking for her in 1967. Great Cousin Melville started before that!  Abigail Mills is one of the banes of my genealogical existence. (second only to my plethora of John Drivers previously mentioned)  She was married to, you guessed it, John Driver. There is only one scrap of information on her and that is her marriage to John. AND, there are two versions of it! Where oh where did you come from Abigail????

by Lyn Sara Gulbransen G2G6 Mach 4 (44.4k points)
I just looked at Abigail's page and noticed a "small" discrepancy which makes a big difference. You give the second date as 1925. I assume you meant 1825. As to the difference between August 29 and September 1: one is the date on which the marriage actually occurred and the other is the date (before the wedding) which the marriage intention/ marriage license was filed, or the date (after the wedding) on which the marriage was registered.
Thanks Joyce! And I see you got your wish for a "small" challenge! :)
+15 votes
The French word for small is petit(e).  One of my 4th great-grandmothers was named Marie Petitjean, who came to the United States from Moselle in 1840.  More than two hundred years earlier, another of my ancestors, Suzanne Petit, married Isaac Babault, probably in Gien.
by K. Anonymous G2G6 Pilot (137k points)
These questions are so much fun! Everyone has a different way to fit a piece of family information into the theme of the week. Perhaps your ancestors ate petits pois? Or petit fours?
I agree, it's always fun to see how people interpret the questions.  That's the beauty of single word/short prompts.
+13 votes
My dad was from a small family of only four people. My Cousins 1xr is really small at less then five feet tall.
by Jennifer Robins G2G6 Pilot (164k points)
+14 votes

My ancestor Thomas Little is the closest I can get to this topic: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Little-230  Nothing is known of his parentage. Little is known of his place of origin, although it may have started with a D. Little is known of his life before he showed up in Plymouth MA in 1633.  What little we do know of him, is because he married Anna, the daughter of Mayflower passenger, Richard Warren in 1635.  While some records exist for his land transactions, little is known of his whereabouts in the 1650s, when it is noted he is no longer in Plymouth.  We know a little more about him from 1662, when he moved to Marshfield and became a constable.  He was the father of nine Little children.

by Carolyn Adams G2G6 Mach 8 (82.6k points)
"His place of origin may have started with a D." That is certainly a small clue!
+11 votes

2G Grandfather Captain William Carswell is not buried with a small headstone.  He's buried under a large obelisk in Jeffersonville Cemetery, in Jeffersonville, GA.  

by Dorothy O'Hare G2G6 Mach 7 (73.5k points)
+13 votes
My maternal grandmother's maiden aunt, Irene Lane (Lane-14762), was affectionately nicknamed Aunt Wee by the family because of her small stature. I remember a visit with her at Toronto's Windsor Arms Hotel, where she lived in her later years. My great-great-aunt lived to be 95.
by Richard Hill G2G6 Mach 5 (57.3k points)
+11 votes
I am making a small impact in my area. My hobby is gaining permission and repairing the smaller defunct cemeteries so that those stones are not forgotten. I know some would say it is a bigger impact BUT in the grand scheme of just one county of 217 cemeteries it is a drop in the bucket. Maybe one day I can get more folks interested and be able to put this work into the large scale of answers.
by Christine Preston G2G6 Mach 5 (55.9k points)
Thank you for your efforts.
+10 votes
"Small" is a tough one ... I wrestled with how to respond ... then I recalled my mother, Ruth Ann Rammel-Sims (1918-2006) said something at a family reunion in 2004 ... there were about 20 or so family members present.

She said that the group would have been much "smaller", or most likely non-existence, if it wasn't for her mother, Oma M Allison-Rammel (1895-1995).

All of Oma's brothers had no children ... so any reunion they may have held would have been very small ... in fact they would be all alone.

Thanks to my grandma!!!!
by Bill Sims G2G6 Pilot (120k points)
+9 votes
For the 'Small' theme this week, I must use the word 'petite.' My maternal grandmother and several of her sisters were very 'petite', barely 5 feet tall. Despite their diminutive sizes, these women were powerhouses and did things in a big way. My grandmother, in particular, one of the eldest of 13 children, helped her mother deliver some of her younger siblings. Both sets of her parents migrated from Poland to the United States in the 1880s, so my 'petite' grandmother was 1st generation. She had all of a 3rd grade education, yet completed her cosmetology training in the 1920s, started her own successful catering business in the 1940s and started her own very successful drapery/upholstery business in the 1950s, which she continued until her death in 1989! 'Small' yet 'big' in so many other ways! I still miss her.
by Carol Baldwin G2G6 Pilot (731k points)
+10 votes

I'm stumped.  Can't think of anything small in my family save for the size of my grandfather's family - he was an only child.

Paul Edward Ranck (1911 - 1995)

by SJ Baty G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)

Great answer SJ, and he lived in Lusk, a small town. I have made the drive many a time from Cheyenne to Lusk to Newcastle, Wyoming, where my only two first cousins lived.heart

+7 votes

Small Italian towns can yield big results in genealogy: https://allroadhaverhill.blogspot.com/2020/08/52-ancestors-week-32-small.html

by Chris Ferraiolo G2G6 Pilot (591k points)
+7 votes
No Smalls in my collection of surnames. I chose a Littlejohn family to work on.  I added Milla Jane Littlejohn Kenoyer https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Littlejohn-1063 and for good measure her daughter Centennial May Kenoyer Martin, named in honor of the United States centennial of 1876, the year of her birth.
by Margaret Summitt G2G6 Pilot (226k points)
What a great name! My son was born in 1976 but I never thought to name him Bicentennial.

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