Monday, November 20, 2006

Anchoring your road trips - Graveyards

What do you do when you land, with car, off a ferry in a totally unknown place. We aim immediately out of the town, to anywhere for coffee, a look at the guidebook, and any place names from family - graveyards. See Geneologies: Graveyards and marriage/ death records. See for Orkney records.

We were looking for distant relatives who lived here in the 19th Century for a time. We found them later at Sanday, but spent enjoyable hours in churchyards, up and down roads. There is a calming effect of graveyards.

Dr. James McConaghy:  We were looking for family here, who moved from Scotland's in the 1800, the husband (a doctor), died, and the wife and children went to Australia. Trail then lost. We had not done any Orkney family-tracking source-work before leaving the US, however, because we never dreamed we'd end up here. So we did what we could by car, trooping around the graveyards and hoping to get lucky, rather than stay a day in records offices.

That was excellent. Graveyard wandering is pensive and the clues to life and death are like our own. Looking for names gave us exercise and gave us an anchor for stopping at every church yard we could - and strolling or running wildly through (if noone was around) to spot the names. One thing about driving yourself is this: you need to get up and run around.

No comments:

Post a Comment