Question of the Week: Who is one of your favorite female ancestors?

+11 votes

It's National Women's Month. Who is one of your favorite female ancestors?

Answer here, on Facebook, or use the question image to share your answer with family and friends on other social media.

in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.8m points)
edited by Eowyn Walker
Mine are the ones who carried to term all my other ancestors, but I suppose you don't mean that ... Well, there's my mother, RN and with a B.S. in Public Health Nursing (gotten while she was going through menopause and coping with me and my puberty, and if a B.S. under those conditions ain't HEROIC, I don't know what is) .... and she was a water witch (could dowse for water, successfully), and in WW II she was a riveter in the shipyards in SoCal ... there's more to her than that but she was a wonderful role model for me ...
My mother is by far my favorite female ancestor. Myrtle Letha Case Klein gave birth to 12 children in 15 years and raised us with a smile. Her husband died while 10 of us were still at home. She continued to care for us and emphasized education with most of her children going on to some post high school education.
Joan of Arc
I don't think Joan of Arc had any children, thus no descendants
You are correct I responded in a context of non ownership of ancestral trail, but she did make those Burgondeons upset.
Timothy, the question, once one examines the language, is a tad confusing ... National (which nation?), ancestor (anyone's or only one's own?) and does one nominee have to be noted, a Notable, or can she be "just folks" ? .... hmm ... my own thinking was a female ancestor (American) from whom I am descended ... Joan of Arc is certainly a noted and Notable female of France -- although it is not known whether of a certainty she had no issue, none have been mentioned that I know of anyway -- but very often ancestor is used as a blanket word which includes siblings of our particular ancestor ...

My apologies if any are due ... Joan of Arc, believed to be childless and not a citizen of USA (still puzzling over which Nation) still qualifies or more accurately, given the way the question is worded, she cannot be excluded
Them too haha

24 Answers

+18 votes

My favorite female ancestor is my grand aunt Nora Long. I loved her more than I can even express in writing. She gave up her job in California and moved in my room to take care of my mother who was terminal with breast cancer, so I could stay in school. She was my mother's aunt, and my grandmother was suffering from depression and could not deal with my mother being ill. This is a photo of her with my father that was taken in 1944. It is similar to the one I used last year for week 38 Celebration. She and my father were great friends, and she refused to believe that he was killed in WWII. When I was a child, she and I would talk about him being alive on an island near Japan. Sometimes a child just needs a friend to live in a fantasy world with. She was that friend.

by Alexis Nelson G2G6 Pilot (431k points)
This moved me very much. She sounds like a wonderful person to have had in one's life.
Thank you PE for your very kind comment. You have a wonderful family ancestry and many lovely photos. I am always glad to see young people like you interested in their heritage.
+10 votes
My grandmother Bell, Sylvia Conant Hemenway. She was proud of being a descendant of Roger Conant who was baptised in East Budleigh, Devonshire, England in 1592. There is a second ancestor, Mary Clark, born about 1590 in Hingham, Norfolk, England. She most likely, has the same mtDNA as my grandmother, in haplogroup H.  

Eowyn, How would you answer your own question?
by Frank Gill G2G Astronaut (2.3m points)
edited by Frank Gill
I just had to go back through my tree because I thought I was also a descendant of Roger Conant. But it is actually a collateral line. His daughter was married to the brother of my ancestor.

Good news, Frank, we are still 9th cousins! Through our Stone connection.
Interesting. I knew of a Pete Silvaggio who played the accordion. He is no longer with us, but he used to play in Los Vegas at times when he was a member of the Ohio National Guard.

Cousin Frank
There is a possible branch of the family that lived in Ohio. I only remember that their father was named John and was around the same age as my grandfather, John, who was born in 1909. This was about 20 years or more ago and I spoke on the telephone with a woman named...Lucy Selvaggio! She was about 10 years older than me. We were not able at the time to connect our two families, but once in a while I try to.
+14 votes

I'm going to go with Clara Ream. She served as a brick wall for us (my sister and I) for a number of years, but now we know who her parents were and they are the brick walls. I chose her because she seems to be the one that started the precedent in our female line of marrying outside her culture and breaking social barriers and norms. Clara was Penna Dutch and married an English (probably Welsh) immigrant to Pennsylvania. They made an odd couple, she in her housewifey dress and apron, and he in his three-piece suit. He wore a suit everywhere, even to the beach! They always look happy in their photos.

Their son was married three times. The first wife was an elocutionist and died young from TB. They had a young son, so he married Emily Ada Betts. She was apparently a spinster and almost 30 years old. She married outside her class since her family was fairly well-to-do and had homes in both NY and CT. Their daughter was my grandmother. She married outside her religion, being a Protestant (Methodist converted to Christian Science) and Grandpa was a Catholic and half Irish and half German. My Grandmother thought she was English and used to playfully make fun of Grandpa for being German and Irish - not realizing she was German and Irish as well. Their daughter, my mother, married an Italian. Not really acceptable at the time. I married outside my race. My daughter has not married. Since we are busy breaking down social barriers, I expected her to perhaps marry an Asian man or a woman. No dice.

Runner up is my grandmother's sister, Aunt Marion. I really loved her. Come to think of it, she was also a social norm buster. She was allegedly married three times. However, it turns out her favorite husband (#2) and she were not legally married. They just lived together. She was scammed by her first husband. He served 30 years in the military - but with a stolen identity. He wound up being courts martialed eventually. 

by Lucy Selvaggio-Diaz G2G6 Pilot (540k points)
+10 votes
This is a very good question. I have a lot of favorite female ancestors. I'm not sure that I can pick just one. :)
by Greta Moody G2G6 Pilot (182k points)
+8 votes
My 6th great grandmother,Katherine Stuart Thompson Aiken Alexnder.  I do have several others, including my mom.
by David Hughey G2G Astronaut (1.6m points)
+12 votes
My favourite ancestor is easy. My mother has been the most important woman in my life. I have been married twice, and dearly love my wife Kelly. My mother is 81 now but was young when I was born and worked hard along with my father, to raise a daughter and 4 sons. We lost my sister through cancer at the age of 30 and my mother had to raise my 2 nieces as they were only teenagers when my sister died. Then when my fathers health started to fail she has been the rock right up till he died last year. Now she is all alone and in July I will be Darwin to support her when we inter my fathers ashes.
by Allan Harrison G2G Crew (880 points)
+11 votes

One of the most fascinating stories in my family history is that of my G-G-G-G-Grandmother Carrie Ann Reid.  The story goes:

"Cary lived with her husband, Reuben Patrick Barton, several miles from Weatherford, TX on a farm shared with her husband's brother James, and his family. In about 1865, while the two men were away on business, a Comanche raiding party attacked the farm. Cary dressed up as a man and stood on her porch with a shotgun to deter the intruders. James' wife grabbed her twin babies to carry them to safety at Cary and Reuben's house. Over the course of the 200 yard run between the homes, she was run down by a Comanche warrior, who carried her out of the effective range of the gun and proceeded to rape, scalp, and impale her. Once her sister-in-law was dead, Cary retrieved the body to bury and the babies who had been left by the natives lying in the field, and cared for all the children as her own."

What an incredibly tough and resourceful woman she was!

Carrie Ann Reid Barton Plumlee

by JD Ingraham G2G1 (1.2k points)
+8 votes
Though I could note a number of great-grandmothers I will focus on just one.  She is my 8th great-grandmother.  Her maiden name was Elizabeth Fones.  She came to North America in 1631.  Her uncle AND father-in-law was Governor Winthrop.  However, the Winthrop husband had died prior to her arrival with their baby so a marriage was arranged with Robert Feake of whom I am descended.  Years later she married her third husband.

There is a book written about her - "The Winthrop Woman" that really brings her to life while well following documented facts.  She was certainly a woman far ahead of her time and the very first woman to own their own piece of land (Elizabeth's Neck, NY) - long before it was legal for women to own land.  The story of her life, struggles and time are eye-openers and a real journey into those times!

She reminds me of Mary Betts who arrived in Connecticut about 1836 possibly with Hooker. Her husband is thought to have died enroute and so she arrived with 5 small children. She received a land grant in 1639/40 and started one of the first schools. She is recognized as a founder of Hartford, CT.

+11 votes

I just discovered Kerenhappuch Norman Turner , my 6x great aunt, who was a courier for the American Revolution and who rode horseback from Maryland to North Carolina to care for her injured son after the battle of Guilford Court House.   And all this while in her 60's!

+12 votes

My favorite would have to be my great-great grandmother, Sarah Ann Hembree, also known as "Sallie Love." She was a brave, unconventional woman who was strong in her beliefs. Her husband, William Todd, was a victim of the War Between the States, and she went looking for his body. What she found was a need for help among the sick and dying. So she left her small children with their grandparents (the Todds) and became a field nurse, helping where she could. She worked among the remnants of Thomas' Legion, mostly Cherokee soldiers. It is said she was proud of her own Cherokee heritage (not a popular assertion in those days) and she later married Bud Love, a man of mixed blood. Many years would pass before she was allowed to bring her family together again. My heart swells when I think of all she went through... and the legacy she leaves behind.

by Betty Norman G2G6 (9.2k points)
+9 votes
Undoubtedly my favorite female ancestor is also my longest and most stubborn blockage   for 22 years - Cordelia Strout b: 1825 in Minot, Maine (or others), d: 10 Jan 1898 in Bangor, Penobscot, Me and married 02 Oct 1844 in Dover-Foxcroft, Me to my 2nd GGF, Joseph Hazelton 1822 in Parsonsfield, Me and d: 11 Nov 1868 in Bangor, Me.

There have been innumerable 'possibilities' but sadly none verifiable. She, herself, said many times that her mother was the same name but that has also proved poorly. She is a mainstay in one of my Mayflower lines but it seems no one can really validate her in a proveable family line. It's most frustrating. I have 2 other proven MF lines so it's not a big deal in that way but it's just an affront to my skills for over 2 decades in denying her due in this family - the only one among thousands.
by Christopher Wright G2G5 (5.0k points)
edited by Christopher Wright
+9 votes
My mother, Lucille Bird Dawson Ceruti, is my favorite female ancestors, with my maternal grandmother, Bird Smith Dawson, being a close second.

My mother taught me to play the piano at age 4. She encouraged me to obtain an education and helped me with homework when I was growing up. She helped me get a good summer job, and assisted my entry into the Daughters of the American Revolution. My mother encouraged me to play sports, to include swimming, judo, karate, and riding a bicycle. Her accomplishments are too numerous to list here. I would not be nearly as successful as I am today except for the great love, diligent care, thoughtfulness, and brilliance of my mother. As documented in the Bible, God commands us to honor our father and mother, so I do.
by Marion Ceruti G2G6 Pilot (146k points)
edited by Marion Ceruti
+7 votes
Hannah Annabel, 1st girl born in Plymouth Massachusetts. She received a land grant for it.  She married Thomas Bowerman.
+7 votes
All the women who have gone before me and brought me to where I am are my favorite female ancestors! Like others, it is difficult to pinpoint one!
by Carol Baldwin G2G6 Pilot (525k points)
+9 votes

One of my favorite female ancestors is my great-great grandmother, Zyrissa Tifft Powers. Probably because she was a forgotten person in our family until about a year and a half ago. Once I found her name and began researching her, I found out she is the gateway ancestor to my Salem Witch ancestors and 4 different Mayflower passenger ancestors, as well as English aristocrats and medieval European royalty.  How could she have been forgotten?  


by PE Rosner G2G6 (6.4k points)
PE thank you for sharing your great great grandmother, Zyrissa, and her beautiful photo. That is wonderful that you were about to trace her ancestors—especially back to the Mayflower and the Witchcraft trials.
+9 votes
QUEEN Constanza (Constance) "Reine des Francs" de Castille formerly Castilla

Born 1140 in Castilla - Died 4 Oct 1160.

Thanks to Wikitree I am able to identify  Queen Castilla s my 24th G Grandmother.

More importantly (and much more exciting) is the fact that the Queen connects me to my BEST FRIEND of 25 years and his family Castilla !!!

Thank you Wikitree for this EXEMPLARY site!!!
by JIm Walker G2G4 (4.2k points)
Plenty of great answers & very touching. . . pero ésta sobre la reina Constanza de Castilla es el major.  Me encantan la historia de España y el idioma castellana.

What makes it stand out uniquely is that a few years ago while researching my family history, I already knew that I was a direct descendant of King Robert I the Bruce (& his grandson Robert II), learned in addition that via my Kings of Scots ancestors I was collaterally related to the wife of Edward I of England, Eleanor (Leonor) de Castilla, la hija de San Fernando Rey e hermana de Alfonso X el Sabio.  It did my heart good to find out I was distantly related to my favorite two kings of Castilla (also my two favorite monarchs in Spanish history).  I just wish that like you I could claim direct ancestry of a reina de Castilla.
You and I have both found excitement in Theis exemplary website!!!!!!

Thanks WIKITREE!!!!!
+8 votes
my nana,

she taught me how to cook

I like to eat well
by Eddie King G2G6 Pilot (599k points)
+5 votes

My mother is hands-down my favorite female ancestor.   Thelma Ruth SANSOM GRAHAM, the woman who delivered me into the world 66 years ago on 14 March, was a caring, intelligent, loving & beloved woman.  Since she passed (at the age of 84) the Mothers Day holiday has been a most sorrowful day of the year for me.  I sorely miss picking up the phone to call & wish her a happy mothers day.

+6 votes

My favorite female ancestor is Laurine Barsness. She seemed to have an independent mind and spirit. She weathered many homes as a child when her mother died very young and she was shifted between adults, homesteaded her brothers forty in frigid NW North Dakota at eighteen, where she also met and married her husband Henry. Together they raised six happy children and farmed the plains. I have found pictures of her and her girlfriends dressed in mens clothing which intrigues me. Was she one of the first to challenge gender nonconformity in my line of ancestors?

Incidentally, of all the female relatives I have, I look like I could have been her sister.

by Shanna Leeland G2G6 Mach 5 (57.0k points)
+3 votes
Going back beyond my mother, I have a whole batch of women ancestors whom I love & cherish.  Starting with both grandmas; who were northerners (yankees) who wed southern men (descendants of rebels).  In both families there was heartburn about this, yet both women remained wed to their men for life!   (Also, both were alive at the time that the 19th Amendment was ratified by Tennessee & made women's right to vote the law of the land.)

Related questions

+11 votes
21 answers
+29 votes
39 answers
+22 votes
33 answers
+7 votes
21 answers

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright