Friday, February 17, 2012

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 7

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 7

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy 2012 prompts suggested by Amy Coffin; thanks, Amy!

    •    Week 7 – Historical Documents: Which historical document in your possession are you happy to have? How did you acquire this item? What does it reveal about your ancestors?

This week’s prompt runs from Sunday, February 12 through Saturday, February 18, 2012.

After a lot of thought, I keep coming back to the divorce papers from Montana Territory for my Great-Grandfather and mother wherein he grants her full custody of the four children, even though they have been living with him during the one year of separation that he used as the specific cause to file the divorce papers. She had returned to "the states" in Ohio to her parents home with an illness, but had not returned. Her father insisted that she move instead to Iowa where her brother was a local banker. Her father bought four one hundred and sixty acres farms in the name of each of her children, if they were allowed to come live with her; the farms to be in escrow at the bank providing her an income and eventually would go to the children when they became of age. Was it blackmail or extortion? Probably. But, he let the children go to Iowa to be raised. The youngest, my grandmother, of course, met and married my grandfather after a few years in Iowa. I would not exist if that set of transactions did not go as they did. How tenuous are the strands that bind us to our ancestors???  ;-)

I obtained the set of papers, including school documents he had signed in his wife's absence, from a local paid researcher in Deer Lodge, Montana. The papers also included numerous clippings about the family there, in the 1870-1880s period, including birth announcements of each of the four children. Such precious stuff!  ;-)

Families are Forever!  ;-)

1 comment:

  1. I think it's interesting that people talk a lot about the importance of birth and death certificates, but forget about the valuable information in marriage and death certificates!