Reply To: An Icebreaker

 Roz McCutcheon

Like Ellen, I was always fascinated by family stories, but I started genealogy in earnest when I was 15. A distant cousin of my mother’s had died & left a tiny estate which, nevertheless, needed to be finalised. The family solicitor contacted Mum, as one of his only known relatives, asking how we were related. Mum immediately exclaimed that she’d be no good with paperwork, but that one of her daughters was “bookish”. That was 1962, when my only tools were notepaper & stamps, but I did eventually succeed in the task. Two very surprised ladies, one in Chile & the other in South Africa, received cheques in due course. No money came to my family, but I had caught the bug. While I was at the task, my mother said, “And while you’re at that, you could also find out what happened to to my great-grandparents in 1847. They disappeared & left two small bewildered boys to be brought up by relatives, one in Alabama & the other in Co Wexford.” I did find out, but only in 2008, some 46 years later, and was able to recount the whole story to my mother some months before she died. Roz


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