Well girls, something happened today which caused me to worry—just for a brief time—that I might need to turn in my genealogy-stalking badge. But I am happy to report that it I need not relinquish it. In fact, I am renewing it for another ten years and getting the platinum card this time.
Here is the story:
Last night, Aunt Ar asked me about a particular leaf on our family tree—one of Grandma’s first cousins. Grandma had told Aunt Ar that she was thinking about her long-lost cousin and wanted to send him a Christmas card. So I told her I was on the case.
Using my superior genealogy skills, I checked the tree, determined that he would be only 75 years old if still living, and set off on the hunt. Within a short time I learned that while he had at one time lived in Wildwood, he then later moved to Indiana. This was based on a search using switchboard.com.
Next, I moved onto a second site, intelius.com, which provided the names of four towns where my subject had lived, and having tested this search with our name, I concluded that the first city in the list of four was Grandma’s cousin’s current city. Intelius.com also provides associated relatives, so I then proceeded to plop them into Facebook.
And snap, I got a hit—a woman I believed to be his spouse. After observing the spouse having many Facebook friends from the New Jersey area, with one of the towns matching one of the four towns from my intelius.com search, I concluded with a high level of accuracy that I had located Grandma’s cousin.
So I sent her a Facebook message, and then later, someone posted on the alleged spouse’s wall with a public posting, which allowed me to write a note there. Within an hour, I was talking to a woman who I believed to be the daughter, who was off to see her father that day!
I provided a few pertinent facts such as grandma’s maiden name and the town she grew up in, and the daughter confirmed what I then knew—I had succeeded in finding Grandma’s cousin. I proceeded to send her photos of her father as a little boy—some with his sister, some alone, and one with Grandma.
His daughter told me that he was “sitting there crying with emotion.” I worried that I was upsetting him, but his daughter said he gets emotional sometimes and was just touched that someone had remembered him.
So we all had a good day. Grandma had a thought, and I was able to help her carry out her mission of being able to send a card to a cousin of whom she had lost touch with many years ago. And now I will wait for my platinum ancestry-stalking card!