Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - A tale of two Helens...

I've run into an issue when researching my grandmother.  See if you can figure it out from these pics:

The Helen Meadows on the first stone is my grandmother.  The Helen Meadows on the second stone is the lady my grandfather married after my grandmother passed.  Needless to say, it's thrown a wrench into my research.  For example, I can't find my grandmother's death record.  The "other Helen" keeps popping up.  It looks like I need to roll up my sleeves, get out my magnifying glass and do some digging!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Those Places Thursday - Baltimore, Maryland

I've always associated my father's side of the family with the state of Virginia.  It never occurred to me that my family might have been in Maryland before I was born.  Funny enough, according to my father's birth certificate, he was born in Baltimore, and upon further investigating, my great-grandfather's draft registration card for World War II had his address as Baltimore.

I've been going through old pictures and keep going back to one of my grandparents and my father when he was a toddler.  They are standing on a sidewalk, my father barely as tall as my grandfather's knee, and there are "row homes" behind them.  I wasn't sure where the picture was taken, if it was their home or a relative's, and if they were standing in front of the house or in the backyard.

A couple of weeks ago, my brain finally put the two pieces together.  I did a search for the address on my great-grandfather's draft card and was lucky enough to find a map where I could zoom in and look at the street view of the houses.  When I rotated the street view to the houses on the opposite side of the street, my heart stopped.  There were the houses that were in the background of my picture.  They've been updated, but the main structures still look the same.  My grandparents had been visiting my great-grandfather that day, with my father.  I'm left wondering who took the picture; was it my great-grandfather?

So now I'm left readjusting my mindset.  My father's family weren't just in Virginia, they were in Maryland way before I was born.