Note to Self: Cemeteries are your genealogical friend.
With the holidays and all the family gatherings, I couldn’t help but think of all the folks that have passed and weren’t with us this holiday season.
It also reminded me of how I first really got the ‘genealogy’ bug, years ago…
As I was just starting out and putting together my initial information, I called an older cousin to see what she knew about the family. To my disappointment, she told me she didn’t remember much – she wasn’t all that interested in that stuff growing up. I wasn’t going to be brushed off – I continued to talk. At one point I asked her if she knew where any of our family was buried. “All I know is that Charlie Humphreys is buried down in Cotton Hill.”
I researched and I found that there was indeed a Cotton cemetery about an hour and a half away. I recruited my mother. Off we went on a Saturday morning, Gazetteer and camera in hand. We found the cemetery, which had been neglected a bit and was in a residential area. It is a fairly small cemetery; maybe the size of two house lots.
My mother gets out of the car and starts with the first stone: “Costigan. Ann Costigan.” “What are you doing?” I asked her. “That’s going to take forever! You don’t know how to do this.” I was now acting cocky and taunting her. I then told her to watch me; I’ll show her how it’s done.
“Char-lie!!! Char-lie!!! Where are yooooooou?” I began yelling as I started running all over this small cemetery. I must have looked like I was having a fit of some sort. My mother tried to hush me so that the neighbors wouldn’t be scared and call the police.
I finally stopped, looked down, and had a heart attack, for Charlie heard my call.
I found 14 ancestors in that little cemetery that day. What an emotional high!
And so the passion began.