The chronicle of this woman's perpetual game of hide-and-seek with her ancestors
Day three started out better than day two. First, I didn’t feel as tired when I woke up (even though I originally woke up at 4:30 a.m. – this has GOT to stop – but I went back to bed and got up at a more reasonable 6:45 a.m. Second, my first two classes of the day were with John Colletta. More about that in a minute.
Breakfast was about the same as yesterday – still no bacon. BUT I did manage to do a little bit of networking, which will pay off after I get home! I sat with a couple of folks from Course 2 and we started talking about my French Canadian ancestors and, as it turns out, the nicest lady – Jan – also has French Canadian roots. She gave me several tips on places to look and books to get in order to get some answers. Needless to say my to-do list is getting rather lengthy. So you see, there is learning to be had even outside the classroom!
Our first class this morning was Passenger Arrival Records with John Colletta. I can’t think of a better way to start the day. I got several very good leads on how to find my ancestors on passenger lists and departure lists, and even what to do if I still can’t find them!
After a short break, our second class was also with John Colletta. This time, Naturalization Records. This was especially pertinent for me because I have not been able to locate my great great grandfather’s Petition or Certificate of Naturalization, even though I have his first papers (or Declaration of Intent). Now I know that he might never have completed the process (even though census records reflect otherwise), but I know he purchased federal land under the Homestead Act. So I have some work to do there.
I had a boxed lunch again, but we chose to eat inside today because it was 238 degrees with 1,987% humidity. After lunch, I went out to the designated smoking area before our next class started. That’s when I found this sweet kitty. According to one of the gentlemen who works for the university, she has lived on campus for about 2-1/2 years (since she was a kitten) and has her own little house on the loading dock.
Our next class was Military and Pension Records with Lloyd Bockstruck, which lasted the rest of the day because it is a pretty hefty topic. A lot of the information didn’t apply to me (as far as I know) because nearly all of my ancestors arrived in America after the Civil War. But I’m pretty sure that I have at least one ancestor from each branch of my tree that served in the military in one conflict or another since that time.
We decided to forego the evening session and avoid the chaos that promised to be present again in the cafeteria for dinner and have dinner out. We went to a place called Landry’s Seafood. There was shrimp, pasta, salad, wine, and a crème brûlée (which was fantastic!). The meal (and the wine) was well deserved. My brain definitely welcomed the break.
Now I just have to keep my eyes open late enough so I don’t wake up before dawn tomorrow. Catch you on the flip side!
Do we share any ancestors?