Sunday, July 25, 2010

Who I Am and Where I Come From

“In all of us there is a hunger, marrow-deep, to know our heritage—to know who we are and where we have come from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hollow yearning. No matter what our attainments in life, there is still a vacuum, an emptiness, and the most disquieting loneliness.”

~ Alex Haley

These are the faces of my great-great-great-great grandparents James McDonald and Sarah Ferguson. And thankfully they are just not names and faces. They are real people that lived a long time ago did a great deal of good in this world. The more I learn of their lives, their successes and struggles, the more I start to know who they are and who I am.

Their story is one of faith, courage, hardship and love.

And perhaps someday I'll share that story.
But today I am off to meet some new, future relatives, and I am very excited!

Let me just share one more thought about seeking out your ancestors:

“Who among us wants to throw stones at their own ancestors? I, for one, am intrigued by their battles—their victories as well as their defeats. … I am fascinated by what may seem the most commonplace of lives, because I have come to realize the excitement that is concealed in the commonplace.”

~ Arthur Bassett


Lara said...

Very cool. I love learning about my pioneer ancestors! And yours, too. ;)

Chanelle said...

Thank you for posting these! I'm proud to be from them too ~ they hold my deepest admiration.

It's funny, but just this morning I received the history of their son's father in law through email. Which I love because in it was a letter written by William, their son, my great+ grandfather. In it he talks about his father (Our James) dying on the plains (this is taken from his own writing ~ you can almost hear the Irish accent :) ) This is it:

My Father Helped to Buiry a Man one Morning and took Sick after the train Started and Died that Night. We Came to the Plat River that Day in the Afternoon and Part of the Train Had crosed the River. Father being very Bad We asked Him if We shoud Cross the River With Him. He Said yes So He Died that Night on this Side of the Plat River. That Was the Gratest triel We Ever Had in Our Family ... So Sudent on the Dreary Plains of America and Burried without a coffin. But We Had Sum Large Boxis along Whiche We Broke up and Dug a Deep grave With a volt at the Bottom Large enouf for the Body and Covered it Securley With the lumber of Those Boxes Whitch We thought Would Prevent Wolves from Diging up the Body For We Had Passed Sum graves that Had Been Buried in Hast that the Wolves Had Dug up.

Love ya, cuz!

JDaniel4's Mom said...

I learn so much of who I am by learning about those who came before me.

Fresh Mommy said...

Oh wow, this is so incredible! That first quote is wonderful and I love the photos you have of them. I don't know that much about my family history, but this inspires me to learn more! :) Thanks for that!


cheraf said...

Love it! I just recently had some very strong feelings that I should start doing some genealogy here and I just have to learn how to do it!