Sunday, January 16, 2011

Winter's a long time going!

A line from of one of my favorite movies; Jeremiah Johnson.  Over a fire, a rabbit roasts! Johnson ( Robert Redford) asked Bear Claw (Will Geer) what month it was down below. Bear Claw seeing the wear on Jeremiah's face says; Winter's a long time going!  Right now, I am feeling a bit like Jeremiah, with this winter slowly waining away.  Winter has come early to this area and has stayed much too long, hovering zero for what seems like months, driving us all indoor.  So, indoor winter time activities fills our days and night this time of year.  For me this year it has been blogging, photography, raising chickens, movie watching and searching for ancestors.

Recently, I've connected with long lost family members of the east coast clan.  Though time and distance our paths have moved apart, gaping over the years.  Now, the threads have started growing again and with time will solidify.

I've been working a bit over ten years seeking out my ancestors, collecting data such as; where did they come from, where did the go, and who did the marry?   Though I've not found anything that would be called exciting, but I have from that many of my ancestors come from a little island in the North Altantic called; Ireland.   I've found out the my grandfather, on my motherside, likes to write stories.  I've found that many on the men in my tree spend time in the military, serving their country and others worked in the coal and gold mines of Nova Scotia.  I've found that many of children had short lives and many others were long in the tooth. I've found that some didn't know when or where they were born, some didn't know their own age. I've found some with different spellings of the same name, though lack of literacy, thick accents or poor communication skills, Walter, became Waters and/or Watters.  I've heard stories the we were related to an important Penacook chief and President that kept Cuba at bay, but none of this has come to pass.  Stories are just stories unless solidified with the glue of facts.  All in all, we just another family making its way through the small amount of time we have to spend on earth.

This morning, as I was going through old letters from my grandmother Grace to my parents, I found the following passage.  "I thought of a small fact in regards to your family tree. The only grandfather I ever knew was August Fenske, who is a step grand father as my grandmother married a second time after Otto Grothmann died of T.B..  So, while August Fenske has no real connection, he was a member of the family.  He was very German, never could read English.  He had a son Harry and a daughter who live on that island off south France, where he went after my grand mother died in 1915, I think it was."

All the data I have found about the Grothmann family, was Otto was the son not the father.  His name was Louis or Lewis depending on the census record you read.  I can find August with Rosalie (ggrandmother) in Wisconsin up to 1910, but then gone.  So, if Rosalie did died in 1915 and August took off for the island, that would explain the lack of data... another project for another day.

I also like to photo Mother Nature in all her glory, so will all the projects... winter will pass in good time and we can again spend time swatting skeeters.

I will leave you with a picture of my other winter projects, the Blue Jay.  I hope you enjoy.  The following links will take you to my flickr account with many more photos.



  1. Wonderful post chuck full of interesting discoveries and thoughtful reflections, not to mention a great bird photo! :)

  2. I can totally relate to the feeling of your post. I love Jan, Feb and March for these very reasons. To hibernate is to dig into things the nice weather keeps me away from. Guess that is why I love the four seasons.