genealogy

Pack rat in your family

As I have been going through my boxes of inherited treasures, I found my grandmother saved everything. Thank goodness she was a touch of a pack rat! Pamphlets and programs and newspaper articles. One thing I have to share was the guest book from her wedding in 1946. The amazing part is the small pamphlet has signatures of my great great grandparents! A signature really humanizes these people to me. I think of how they too touched this piece of paper I now hold in my hands.

Wedding guest book

Wedding guest book

I noticed my great great grandfather signed Grand Pa Yuill! It is a clue to what name he went in the family. I have also found in other papers that my great grandmother went by the name Grammy. It is these little pieces of history that really are exciting. Happy Wednesday to you all!

 

Advertisements

Daddy’s Little Girl

There is something special about the relationship between Dads and their little girls. My father and I had a very close relationship and when he died a part of me died too.  I cannot imagine the pain of the loss of your little girl. That is what happened to my great grandfather and the great aunt I never knew about until a few years ago.

I always believed my grandmother was the oldest daughter of three girls until I found a baby picture of my grandmother with an older  girl.

Evelyn and Gertrude Yuill 1923

Evelyn and Gertrude Yuill 1923

I asked my uncle who was this older girl in the picture with Grandma? Her name was Evelyn and she was the older sister of my grandmother . The girls were less than 12 months apart in age. Evelyn was the first born and the apple of her father’s eye.

William Yuill with his daughters in 1922

William Yuill with his daughters in 1922

However tragedy was soon to hit in 1923 and Evelyn died of polio. My grandmother was now the oldest daughter. My great grandparents went on to have two more beautiful daughters but Evelyn was never forgotten. When William Yuill died thirty years later in 1953, his daughter Evelyn was re-interred with him in Oceanview Cemetery in Staten Island, NY. William Yuill was reunited with his little girl.

Tart Pans

I have been so preoccupied with my treasure of family pictures that I have not posted in a few days. Well, not only were there pictures but I also received a few dozen tart pans. According to family history, the pans were made by an ancestor with the surname Hancock in Lincolnshire, England about 1810. My great great grandmother brought them over to the United States when the family immigrated. The tins must have been very special to pack them up to bring to a new life in America.

Hancock Family tart pans circa 1810 England

Hancock Family tart pans circa 1810 England

My uncle told me that these were used when he was growing up for mincemeat tarts at Christmas. I cannot wait to try making those and carrying on the family tradition this year for Christmas. And I need to do some more research into the Hancock name.

Happy Birthday to my Great Grandfather!

Today is the birthday of my great grandfather William Kennedy Yuill. He was born February 22, 1891 to Jessie Kennedy and Alexander Yuill in Brooklyn, New York. He was their only child and born 7 months after their wedding date. I wonder if it was a shotgun wedding and also if Jessie had issues with his birth as he was an only child. Both Jessie and Alexander came from very large Scottish families.

William Kennedy Yuill

William Kennedy Yuill

Man’s Best Friend

I had to share one of my favorite pictures of my Grandfather, Robert J. Schwarz. This was taken before he served in World War II as a medic.  After the war, my grandparents married and went to college to become teachers on the GI bill. Grandpa was an English teacher and Grandma was a librarian. I love how distinguished my grandfather looks with his pipe in one hand and a family dog.

Grandpa Schwarz

Grandpa Schwarz (1918-1977)