Wednesday, January 31, 2007

In Search of Aunt Thelma

Research has always been a hobby of mine. Over the years I have carried out research for historical as well as genealogical purposes. About eight years ago, I rewrote the history of a church I was attending after I had discovered that they had been misspelling their church name incorrectly for close to one hundred years. To add insult to injury, I informed them that they celebrated their one hundredth anniversary in 1983… 22 years too early! I ended up rewriting their history for them. They ended up celebrating their one hundredth once more in 2005.

Over the past 15 years, I have carried out genealogical research on family trees on both sides of my family. During this time, I have come upon many interesting facts and stories which no one alive claimed to have known.

“No, John and Charlotte were not married when they immigrated to Canada from England… She was really his housekeeper.”

…That sort of thing! We discovered photo albums dating back close to one hundred years, parchment wills dating back to the early 1700s and a family Bible dating back to multiple generations. I discovered relatives living in parts of the world where none of the family had ever been. I found locations of where family members were buried. I could go on but I will save that for later posts throughout the year.

This year, I have a new task at hand... I am attempting to find the whereabouts of my father’s sister who he lost contact with over 60 years ago. I do not know if she ever got married, I know not of her surname if she was married, I don’t even know what country she lives in. I also don’t even know if she is still alive. Nobody has seen nor heard from her in all this time. Talking to relatives is an exercise in futility since most of them are deceased.

My father is 82 and, as it often is with people approaching the end of their lives, they want to find lost loved ones in order to be with them one last time. Every day, my father prays for her discovery. Ever day he thinks of her. Every day he blames himself for losing contact with her.

So, this is my goal for 2007 – to locate my Aunt Thelma. I am not sure if I can pull off this task but I am sure going to try. Wish me luck!

One more thing… regarding Sweetie… She is still sick but she has managed to keep down the steamed rice we gave her for supper. So far so good!

20 comments:

Hammer said...

I have unknown relatives coming out of the woodwork.Problem is nobody was looking for them.

Oh well.. Good luck on finding thelma. The social security records are very handy and can be searched easily by birth date.

I'm glad to hear about sweety. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Proxima said...

Good luck on your search!

As for "Sweetie" white rice and baked or steamed chicken (no spices) is great for dogs. Cheerios also works (with chicken or rice). You really should take her to a vet though, a dog at that age should get a "Geriatric blood screen" it's about $120 around here, but it looks for anything and everything.

I wish I was there to give her a free checkup for you. I've worked in animal shelters and vet clinics for a few years. Will she let you rub her tummy? It's a good idea to run your hands over her body, especially her underside, are there any lumps or does she express discomfort when you gently press on a certain area?
How do her teeth look? She might have a cavity, sometimes the discomfort of cavity makes some dogs lethargic because they can't do anything about it.

Feel free to ask me any questions. I'm always happy to help if I can. I know a Daschund who is 22 and still remarkably healthy.
-P

East of Oregon said...

Good luck with searching for Aunt Thelma and I'm glad to hear Sweetie is holding her supper. Take care:)

Sunil Parmar said...

Good Luck tob you!:)
May you accomplish your resolution.

Have a nice time Dave.

Teri said...

Very interesting Dave. I do a lot of research in my work also. Hope you find Thelma.

Thanks for stopping by my place. I always welcome more testosterone to the conversation.

Ciao for now...

Jazz said...

Searching for Thelma... Maybe you should start with Louise?

Yes, I know, bad bad bad, but I couldn't resist.

Good luck

Becky Wolfe said...

You're a man full of interesting knowledge - which is why I enjoy your blog so much. Funny about the church history. Good luck on your search - sounds like a big task!

Yay that Sweety kept a meal down.

Beth said...

Good luck on finding aunt Thelma...my friend found my daughter I gave up for adoption so I know you can find your Aunt!!

Keep eating Sweetie!

Janice said...

I know you will have fun researching this and of course I wish you luck. My Dad is a respected historian buff in Calgary and in fact after consultation with an Earl in Scotland, a friend of some years, legislation for a road name-change was accomplished. The road is now called Marquis of Lorne Trail. It is fascinating to read the genealogy of families. Dad traced our own family history back to a small hamlet of about 5oo people in Scotland--all with the same last name! Wonder how the census handles that one! LOL

Wendz said...

I'd love to research my family tree...we come from Scotland and Germany and it fascinates me.

You have quite a task ahead of you...lots of luck with that..I hope you find her. Sad that they lost touch!

Dave said...

Hi Hammer!...You always have a way to put a funny twist to everything! LOL

The only thing regarding the records regarding Thelma is that I don't know what country she is in. Though British heritage, she was originally from India as she is Anglo-Indian.

Hi Proxima!... Thanks for the idea... I picked up a box of Cheerios today... Let's see how that goes!

Thanks for the offer and all the great advice. It is very much appreiated.

Thanks East of Oregon!... Will do! :-)

Thanks Sunil Parmar! ...

Teri... Thank you and You are very welcome! :-)

Hey Jazz! ... Good one! :-) LOL

HI Becky!... I thought it was funny... The church didn't! LOL

Hi Beth!... I can only imagine how excited you were to find your daughter! Congrats!

Hi janice!... Genealogy can be very exciting and enriching. I can only imagine myself looking and finding an entire town of family members!

Hi Wendz!... Yes it IS sad they lost contact... Hopefully I will be successful!

Keith Hollar said...

Wow, I'll bet that church deal rocked some people's worlds. Missing your 100th by 22 years! That's wild!

Good luck finding Thelma. I've never been into the family tree stuff but I'm sure the Internet is very helpful with that nowadays.

sAssY brOwn said...

What a fantastic thing to do Dave, researching & discovering history.

Josie said...

Dave, good luck on your search for Thelma. I hope you find her.

I have a second cousin who found me about five years ago. He lives in Ontario and his grandfather and my grandfather were brothers. He did a search and we found we had a HUGE (I mean huge) family. It's so interesting.

Please keep us posted.

(Glad to hear Sweetie is feeling better).

Cheers,
Josie

Dave said...

Hi Keith!... Yes, I think it did... LOL And yes, the Internet is one of the main ways genealogists carry out research nowadays.

Hi Sassy!... Yes, doing research is certainly something worthwhile! :-)

Hi Josie!... It is amazing how we come across new members simply with a little research. :-)

Cheryl said...

This was so interesting to read. How could the church not have known how old they were? Funny. How interesting that you found out so much about your family. I can't wait to hear more.

Lone Grey Squirrel said...

wow,
This is a very interesting and worthwhile project. Keep us informed on your progress. if for any reason the trail goes out to this part of the world, I'd be happy to help

Dave said...

Hi Cheryl!... Someone wrote their history incorrectly back in 1927 and nobody questioned it. Also, there was a congregation in that same church building back in the 1800s and the present day church didn't realize that it wasn't them. Go figure!

Hi LGS!... thanks for your offer. I might ask you a few questions regarding an upcoming blog of mine some time. You will know which one when you see it. And "no," it is not about grey squirrels! LOL Take care!

Robyn said...

It seems to be important to us Americans to know our roots. I wrote a post several weeks ago about my family tree, and I got a note from my second-cousin-once removed who shares a very distant relative.

Genealogy is a lot different from helping your father tie up some loose ends with a lost sister, though. A lot more important. Good luck with your search.

monsoon-dreams said...

dave,
is this the snap u wrote about in today's post?:-)