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Thursday, 31 May 2012

A is for Adventure, Alice and Archives - Family History through the Alphabet

Having enjoyed a quick sprint through one A-Z challenge from Ros at http://genwestuk.blogspot.com/, I could not resist joining in a further one from Aona at Genealogy & History News with  her Family History through the Alphabet Challenge at

Enjoy reading!.

A is for:
My great grandmother Maria Danson, nee
Rawcliffe with her grandaughter Annie Maria
Adventure - when I started toying with the idea of tracing my family history, how little did I know on what a journey of adventure it would be - finding my way through the resources; alighting on surprising coincidences such as my great grandmother Maria Rawcliffe (born the same day as my daughter 114 years later; discovering I had American connections, hitting obstacles, with the birth of my grandmother and the name of her mother remaining my major brickwall; being at times astonished, puzzled and moved by what I am finding. The Adventure continues...

Alice Mason nee Rawcliffe
with husband James
and 3 of their large family

Alice is the sister of my great grandmother Maria (above) and her story of Adventure particularly fascinates me as she emigrated from rural Lancashire with six children under 11 (plus 2 pieces of baggage) to join her husband, John Mason in the teeming tenments of Brooklyn, New York in 1887. They had a further five children including Arthur Valentine, born appropriately 14th February 1888. To add to the story, after many many years, I have recently had contact from Alice's descendants in America (thanks to this blog) and am looking forward to discovering more about my American connections.

Archives - I had to include this under A,   as I used to work in the Heritage Hub, Hawick, home of the Scottish Borders Archive Service. Again it is a story of Adventure exploring the unique records and touching pages that record details of our ancestor in their own lifetime, whether it be a poor law entry, a school record, or a will.  
Reproduced  with kind permission of the Hreitage Hub - www.heartofhawick.co.uk/heritagehub

Copyright © 2012 · Susan Donaldson. All Rights Reserved


  1. Susan, thanks for joining in - and welcome to the Alphabet Challenge. And "adventure" ... oh so very, very true!!

  2. Adventure and Archives...what a great combo. We really don't know what a ride we're about to embark on when we set forth. Love it!


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