Diamond Jubilee Tour - begins

My trip to Charlotte was the first stop on my Diamond Jubilee Tour.

For the next year - my 75th year - I am traveling back through my journey to this point - collecting stories and telling tales as well.

So, before I joined the family gathering for my niece's wedding I made a personal visit to Evergreen Cemetery where my parents sleep side-by-side.

A few years ago I was startled and then touched when I read someone's observation that - " we think our story begins when we are born - but isn't our birth also the continuation of our parents' story."

That really resonated with me because I came to storytelling through genealogy - looking for a way to tell my family history stories so that my family would want to hear them.

That said, you'll understand why this jubilee journey will also include stories as I work on continuing my search for my family's history.

But this time I will not be searching my grand-mother's family history alone. Friday I met two Hall cousins for the first time and we will journey together to piece this puzzle together.

We met at the Philadelphia Presbyterian Church grave yard in Mint Hill, NC. It was wonderful. So exciting to know that we are family.

We stood together at the Thomas Milton Hall plot - Ellouise, Marilyn and Rosemary. How are we related? Thomas Milton Hall had two daughters - Cora and Ellie - Rosemary's father Fred was Cora's youngest son. Ellie's daughter Louie is my mother. Thomas had a brother Robert Amzi - who is Marilyn's great-grand father. So at Thomas and Robert's parents the line connects the three of us.

We talked and shared research and they took me to an even older cemetery to see the restored
grave-markers of our common ancestors - Jane Parks and James Young.

When time came for me to leave - I did not want to go. I will be back soon to continue the journey with my cousins.

If you have experienced finding relatives and extending your knowledge of your lines - you know how we felt. If you haven't its hard to explain.

Twenty years ago when I went to SC to meet my mother's aunt, her late father's last surviving sibling - Annie - nearly ninety - eyes filled with tears - reached across the table and squeezed my hand - "Ellouise, we have the same blood."

No comments: