With Thanksgiving a few days away, many are thinking about their family members (both past and present). On Facebook this week, someone (sorry I do not remember who it was) asked ‘which ancestor would you invite to Thanksgiving dinner?’ Great question, I could probably pick someone from each family line that I would love to share a meal with.
For the sake of the question at hand, I decided I would pick my one ancestor:
Denis Connell / O’Connell
Denis and his son John are the immigrant ancestors in my paternal, Irish line. Though I have been able to successfully research most of John’s life here in the US. I would love to know more about his time in Ireland beyond where he lived when he was baptized and what Catholic Church the family attended.
I know that I should truly be pleased to have that little bit of information. I have spent plenty of time volunteering at my local Irish Center trying to aide others in their research and telling them it is possible the search could take years. My full disclosure is this, it took my 12 years to make the Ireland connection (and I was at least the third person to start researching the family).
Not only do I want to add to John’s information, but I truly want to complete Denis’ story. In 1840 he married Ellen Fehine (who has also been transcribed as Helen Teahan), you get the picture. The information I have on Denis is minimal (and I could swear he has visited me a few times to urge me to continue me research into his life).
What would I ask?
This is the easy question.
[mini_icon icon=”question-sign”] When were you born?
[mini_icon icon=”question-sign”]When you left Ireland, did you go to Canada or the US?
[mini_icon icon=”question-sign”]What ship were you on?
[mini_icon icon=”question-sign”]Were your children with you when you left Ireland?
[mini_icon icon=”question-sign”]What happened to Ellen (there is no mention of her in any of the US records)?
[mini_icon icon=”question-sign”]Where were you when you died (cannot seem to answer this question either)?
These are the questions I have without even thinking. Not to mention the million others that would come up during the conversation.