Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Work In Progress

For those who expect blogs to be authored solely by experts and geniuses, well…you’ve come to the wrong place. Part of the reason I started writing here was not only to document and organize the many collections of photos and letters I’ve been given or loaned by family members, but to create exactly the kind of place the term “weblog” originally envisioned: a log, online, of my activities as I continue my family history research.

Right now, I’m at a steep spot in my learning curve. I’ve done lots of research in the United States, but I know next to nothing about searching for family roots in Ireland. So yesterday, I took the hint and signed up to participate in the online Ireland site I mentioned last week: Ireland Reaching Out. I gathered up all I know, so far, about the Irish county and civil parish of Agnes Tully Stevens’ grandmother, Anna Flanagan Malloy, and Anna’s brother William, and logged in as a member of Ireland Reaching Out to post my search request.

The site is still in its beta stage, so not all counties are accounted for—let alone representation for every parish. Considering that, I might find myself in the same interminable waiting stage as I’ve found myself in for those long-awaited military personnel records for my father-in-law’s service years. Remember that nice bot I met after sending my request to the Saint Louis National Personnel Records Center? Haven’t heard from him since the second week of February. And he sounded so nice to promise an “average response time” of “three to four weeks.” Ah, now that was music to my ears! But look at him, now. The silent treatment for nearly six weeks.

Sometimes it’s the wait that gets to me. I sure don’t want re-runs on that scenario now that I’ve started closing in on possible connections for our Irish family. Oh, to wish for a Blog Fairy to alight on my shoulder, wave her wand and—violà!—produce those coveted records from across the seas.

Above right: Woman Writing A Letter, oil on panel by Gerard ter Borch the Younger; in the public domain


  1. First, you are too modest. Your efforts are the results of great skill and considerable verification.

    Second, you are now going into "the land beyond" - I have contented myself with doing my family tree with one criteria - going back each branch until the time they arrived in the USA. I've some Irish ancesters from up Antrim way and have been so intimidated by lack of knowing "how do I do this?" that I stuck to my rule. I've a lot more to do in this country before I "run out" - but will likely be looking forward to increased on-line availability "over there" in a few years. :)

    I wish you the best of luck - and hope you find what you seek.

  2. You are determined and I am sure you will find something sooner or later:)


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