52 Ancestors Week 4: I'd Like to Meet

+19 votes

imageReady for Week 4 of the 52 Ancestors challenge?

You're encouraged to share a profile of an ancestor or relative who matches the week's theme. This week's sharing prompt:


From Amy Johnson Crow:

Which ancestor would you like to meet? I have a whole list, but I'd have to include the woman pictured here, my great-great-grandmother Susan Tucker Kelley, so I could ask if she remembers anything about her parents!

Share below!

Participants who share every week can earn badges. Click here for more about the challenge and how to participate.

If this is your first time participating, or you don't have the participation badge, please post here.

in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.7m points)
edited by Eowyn Walker
I have participated in all four weeks now and the sticker in my profile says that I have participated in 1 week.  Did I participate the wrong way? Don't tell anyone but Monday is my birthday and it would be nice to have it fixed all nice before then :oP if possible. Thanks in advance.
Hi Jerry! The sticker you'll need to update each week yourself :)

I believe I would love to sit down with my 2nd Great-grandmother, [[Shelton-4148|Lucinda Shelton]] .

She has been so difficult to track down. Us cousins who find her extremely interesting have located 5 children in the census records with her but never a husband and she is never listed as married or widowed. We have no clue if she ever married and we cannot locate a death record or burial site for her. She was born in 1834 in North Carolina and travelled to Kentucky with her family where her children were born. She had 3 girls and 2 boys. We've tested the yDNA on both of the male lines and they do not match so we know there were at least 2 fathers. I want to ask her "what happened to you!". Where did she disappear to?

Great prompt this week!

89 Answers

+18 votes

This is actually a pretty easy one for me. While I would like to meet many of them the one I would like to the most is my 2nd Great Grandmother Lydia (Killips) Porter. It was wanting to get to know more about my Great Grandmother's side that got me into genealogy. I wanted to connect the Porter's but more importantly I wanted to know about the mother she didn't really get to know and remember and her family. While I have found out more bits about Lydia she is still a mystery but I have a better grasp on who her family and ancestors were (still stuck in the US with the Killips though). I only wish my Great Grandmother was also alive so I could share all this amazing stuff I found out about her mother's family.

by Amanda Frank G2G6 Mach 5 (51.1k points)
+19 votes

I have a couple, or so.  Firstly allow me to present my 4Xgreat grandmother Tempest Margaret Paul née Hughes.  She was musically inclined (as were her children, especially her daughter), was social and became a "person of note" in colonial Sydney.  She was willing to travel from England to Australia in the early 1820s for her husband's (emotional/mental) health.  (He became quite depressed when his 15 year old daughter died.)  She was willing to get "stuck in" and do whatever it took to get by (ran a boarding house at one stage).  She "hobnobbed" with Lords and nobility, while not being noble, and didn't let it affect her.  She had enough stamina to weather the trip between Australia and England more than once.  She has the most wonderful name that got passed down on seemingly every branch but mine.  (If I could name her unnamed, stillborn, great-granddaughter, I'd name her Tempest.)

Then there's my 3Xgreat grandfather James McCrea.  I'd ask him "where were you?" and "what happened to you?" and "where did you come from?" and "where and when and how did you die?" as he is one of my pod people.  I KNOW he existed, or I wouldn't be here, but I don't have a birth record; I don't have a death record (except two possibles).  I don't have an immigration record, or a conviction even (although everything from the family that knew his daughter says he was a free settler).

Then there's another of my pod people.  Another 3Xgreat grandfather, and I'd ask him the same questions as I'd ask gr-grand James.  He and his son-in-law only exist on marriage registrations and the registrations of their children's births.  gr-grand doesn't even show on the census!  (I have more information about some second cousins by marriage than I have on these guys!)  Meet Wallace Gordon (I personally term him "the elder" as he had a son named Wallace.)

(This is my 4th week participating.)

by Melanie Paul G2G6 Pilot (268k points)
+19 votes

I never had a chance to meet my father's mother, Ora Mae Sturm. She and my grandfather separated when my father was 9 years old, and she was never in his life after that, and she died when I was five years old.

by Rick San Soucie G2G6 Mach 2 (27.1k points)
+17 votes

I would like to meet my mother's father, R. Dean Miell, who died before I was born. I'd like to meet the man my mother speaks about with such fondness.

by Traci Thiessen G2G6 Pilot (158k points)
edited by Traci Thiessen
+19 votes

There are several ancestors I want to meet. But, I think the first and most important one is my own grandfather, Marco Ferraiolo.

Marco died when I was just four years old and the only picture I have with him was when I was a baby, I was on my grandmother's lap and my grandfather was rocking that late 1970s look.

 I want to meet him because I honestly have no memory of him. I can't remember what he sounded like. My mom tells me that he sounded like my dad. Very deep voice. It's sad that I don't have a memory of him. All of my knowledge of the Ferraiolo side of the family came from his sister, my great-aunt.

 Over the years she sent me many, many pictures of Marco. I still wish I could have met him or remembered him a little bit. It's tough because when I was growing up my grandmother (His wife, Olympia) would tell me stories about him. Even my other grandparents would talk about him quite a bit.

 Apparently he was funny, into science fiction and liked to paint or draw. I'm also into science fiction and though I can't draw as well as I'd like to, I make up for it in other creative ways as I love to write. (As evidenced by this long, long post.)

 He and my dad even built a great many things including the house I grew up in and the dental practice my dad still runs.

 My other grandfather always called him "A great man" and I know he always did his best to do double grandpa duty for my brother and I. It was nice to hear stories about him.

 I think it would be great to talk to him about Italy and his home town. I've heard about it from my great-aunt, sure. But, maybe it would have meant more coming from him.

 He was also apparently the linchpin which kept everyone close and talking to one another. When I saw my DNA matches for the first time, my parents were over my shoulder saying "Oh, that's so and so's granddaughter in your third cousin bracket. Her father was at our wedding!"

 I was like "Wait, What?!" I checked out my parents wedding invitation list and I saw many people whose descendants were DNA matches on my list. Marco apparently wanted to make sure all the Italians in Haverhill, Woburn and everywhere else were invited. Likewise, my grandfather on my mom's side did the same thing.

 Really funny how that worked out. Then he passed away in 1983 and the families split off in different directions. Thankfully with the advent of the Internet, I'm back in touch with many of those families who have done DNA testing. Still, it would have been nice to meet him and talk about the family.

 Addendum: This just in. I spoke with my dad and he said he'd like to meet his grandmother, Maria Tedesco since she passed away four years before he was born. Oof. The feels! I talked with my mom and she said she'd like to meet Napoleon. Sarcasm. Lots of sarcasm. I think she wants to meet the Revolutionary war soldiers. Right after I get her one of those tri cornered hats!!!!!

Wow, this post is long. Hope you enjoyed it! Ciao!

by Chris Ferraiolo G2G6 Pilot (402k points)
+17 votes

One of the most colorful characters in my family is actually my husband's paternal grandfather, William Arthur Shaules.  Not only did he serve in both the Spanish American War and WWI, but he was also involved in real estate development in Montana -- helping to start the town of Kendall where gold was mined. He built a modern (for the early 1900s) hotel there, and then went on to develop an area of San Diego that was remote at the time, but is now part of central San Diego.  But the most interesting parts of William Arthur's life show up in the undocumented stories handed down through the family -- his days as a runaway from Detroit, then becoming a cowboy, a sheriff in Alaska, being "shot up" at least twice, and other "wild west" stories.  It would be quite an opportunity to be able to sit down with him and hear about his life.

by Robin Shaules G2G6 Pilot (893k points)
+19 votes

I think that most of the community here at WikiTree will have good answers to this question.  I would pick my mother's father Geoffrey Churchill after whom I was named and who died when I was a few months old (and technically I did meet him then).  I'd love to hear about what it was like growing up in China and serving in the Indian Army during the Second World War.  And perhaps he would be able to tell me exactly when and where his mother was born.

by Geoffrey Crofton G2G6 (6.8k points)
+16 votes

This is a trick question...I've often had the thought of meeting brick wall ancestors and asking them who their parents were. smiley

I think I need a little time to think about the serious answer, as there are too many I'd like to meet.

by K. Anonymous G2G6 Pilot (125k points)
Ditto!! Especially some of the females, they are so hard to trace :)
Ditto to K. Anonymous and Robin.
Ditto to K. Anonymous, Robin, and Linda!
+17 votes

There are a few people I'd love to meet, but at the top of the list would be Robert Baxter. My 2x great grandfather. He's my biggest brick wall and I have so many questions for him. I especially want to know what happened to him, where did he go after his kids were placed in the children's home? I liken him to Scotch mist - ever elusive. Oh Robert...the conversations we could have...*sigh*

by Toni Andrews G2G6 (6.7k points)
+17 votes
There are so many I'd like to meet! Foremost, I suppose is my maternal grandfather, Richard Wilkinson. He died before my Mom and Dad were even married. I'd like him to tell me the Wilkinson story, himself. My Mom, bless her, worshiped the ground he walked on, and hung on his every word. Unfortunately, I've found out that most of what Mom told me are the remembrances of a doting young child, and she had the story so muddled! I want to know about Grandpa's father, also Richard, about my GGrandmother Mary Ann, and exactly how many children she had in all - and why Mom always told me Grandpa hated his stepfather.

I'd like to meet Grandpa Charlie, my Scottish GGrandfather, and Grace Hood, his wife. I want to tell GGrandma Grace I still make her shortbread every Christmas, and we all still love it!

We lost 2 - 3rd cousins, both Canadian sailors during the War - one on HMCS  Skeena, and another on HMCS Regina. I'd love to meet them both, and thank them for their service - and tell them I was the first, so far the only, female in the family to join the Canadian Navy!
+15 votes
My grandfather, Harold "Hal" Knott Rammel (1892-1930) would be my choice.  He died at a young age, so I never had the pleasure of knowing him.

From all the family stories about Hal, he must have been a very interesting guy.  He was an editor of a newspaper in Escanaba, Michigan.  

He had a regular column with funny stories about his family.  His pen name was "Abner Bangs, Esq".  He had just signed a contract to have his column be syndicated on a national level when his time to leave this earth came too soon.

He also wrote a couple of hundred short stories published in several magazines, including a few in the old "Colliers".  He wrote a few poems and a couple of plays.  He was also somewhat of an artist, since also drew cartoons for the newspaper.

He was also a professional magician.  His stage name was a version of his real name ... "Ra Mel".

Bill Sims -- Sims-2606
by Bill Sims G2G6 Mach 9 (95.5k points)
+15 votes

My Great-Grandpa [[Fuller-9230|Clifford Fuller]]. He died when my dad was eleven. My dad adored him. It would be great to meet him.

by Thomas Fuller G2G6 Mach 7 (79.1k points)
+16 votes

Would love to meet my Granfather Alfred Ernest Colwell. He died when I was only 1 year old so I don't remember him.

Have heard that he served with the British Army in India (although I still have to find the records) and had a few tales to tell.

Can't ask my father or his siblings about it as they have all passed away now. I Remember Alfreds sister Mabel and often used to visit her. She was a great character. 

by Chris Colwell G2G6 Mach 2 (22.3k points)
+16 votes
I wrote about my great grandmother Alice Robertson Crawford, who left her home in Scotland at 16 to work as a lady's maid in London.

by Janelle Weir G2G6 Mach 4 (45.4k points)
+15 votes

Oh, my goodness, it's hard to pick just one. I'd love to meet them all! But at the top of my list would be my great-grandmother, Epsie Ann Anderson Gilchrist. She is the only one of my great-grandparents of whom I do not have a photograph. She died young, at age 36, of pellagra.


by Nelda Spires G2G6 Pilot (285k points)
+17 votes

The first ancestor who came to mind was Métis chief and buffalo hunt leader Jean Baptiste Wilkie (1803 - 1884). Much info about him can be found here. There would be so much to learn from him about our family, and also history in general. Although a drawing exists of him, it would be nice to see his face in real life!

by Adam Gaucher G2G1 (1.2k points)
+14 votes

Its hard to pick just one, I have so many questions for so many ancestors, particularly for the unknown and unnamed women, who each have a story I would love to hear.  

But I have had a surprise every time I find a new fact about my great-grandfather, William Reid Robinson, and I would love to meet him for myself. 

He married into a family of high achievers, and was maligned for his failure to earn enough money. I grew up with the distinct impression he wasn't competent, perhaps an alcoholic, who embarrassed the family on the waterfront of St. John, New Brunswick. When I approached the Baptist archives, I actually asked them for help finding a defrocked minister. The archivist looked at me strangely and quietly showed me his obituary.  

As I gather the bits of his puzzle and fit them together, I can see why she frowned. It seems he turned away from a cushy career in academia to work on the gritty causes of the poor. I read that New Brunswick was one of the first jurisdictions with child protection legislation, and he was one of the forces behind it. He was also active in the Temperance movement, and no alcoholic. And the family who maligned his career choices?  They turned to him individually - I have found his signature on literally hundreds of death reacords during the twenty short years of his ministry, including every member of the family and extended family, across the length and breadth of New Brunswick and into New York State.

It seems to me that a meeting would help me to reconcile the man with the myth. 

by Laurie Giffin G2G6 Mach 8 (83.1k points)
+16 votes

I would like to have dinner with my 7x great grandmother Waite Sherman Lee.  She was the wife of Capt. Thomas Lee who served in the American revolution.  She had 10 children and lived to be ninety years old.

I would love to ask her about her life during the war.  Did she visit Thomas at camp at Fishkill?  How did she manage to run the farm and her raise her six young children on her own?  How often did she see Thomas since 3 of their children were born during the war?  

So many questions that I would love to ask about all that she experienced and witnessed in her ninety years of living.

by Caryl Ruckert G2G6 Pilot (190k points)
10 kids & a war, I'm sure she has stories!
+16 votes
I would so like to meet my ggg grandfather Jacob Eshelman. https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/eshelman-246
I would love the chance to ask "Who's your daddy?".
by Sue Eshelman G2G6 (6.6k points)
+15 votes
I'd like to meet my Great Grandmother Rosa Maria Offredo who immigrated to the US to escape the poverty/lack of work in Southern Italy. I was told she grew up in a one-room house in Barille, Italy with several siblings.

Like others, there are many more I could add to this list--but the strong matriarchs are always at the top.
by Shanna Leeland G2G6 Mach 5 (54.6k points)

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