Sunday, February 4, 2007

The Email Miracle

Adventures in Genealogy: The Email Miracle
Rednecks, Computer Mail and Long Distance Cuzzies

I don't know if yall have had this experience yet, But I had an Email Miracle this Month. When I got home from my Vacation (Yes we went to Paris -------------Texas), I had over 1000 emails waiting for me on my various screen names. This is of course a result of my forgetting to temporarily Unsubscribe to the 6 Genealogical Lists I belong to. (Just in case you’re curious, Alabama, East Texas, Tuscaloosa County ALA, Wilson County NC,Staffordshire {England} and the Black Sheep List). So I got to work reading, deleting and all those other fun things we do with email. Just a side thought here if you don't like the subject being discussed - Delete the email there really is no need to flame the people on the list. After 4 hours of constant work I came up with about 25 emails that I felt the need to respond to. Some just to pass on suggestions or info on where folks could find stuff (Yes I know I am a busybody on the lists too), some to ask questions about something said (I aint the smartest Redneck in the world) and ONE From a person who asked about my main Genealogical Line. After a series of emails with this lady it turns out that we are cousins, she was the Great Great Grand Daughter of my Great Grand Fathers brother. (BOUNCE BOUNCE a Real Life BINGO). Well of course we exchanged information on our lines (I didn't have nothing at all on hers). I sat back and thought well that was sweater than Grandma's Corn Cob Jelly.

A couple of days later on one of the lists I belong to (BlackSheep) one of the Old Members returned after a lengthy absence. Well being the serious- minded person I am, I couldn't resist throwing a couple of jokes at him about the fact that this Old Timer was One of the Youngest Genealogists on the list. We exchanged a couple of emails and then I sent him a link to My Main Page, the Adventures in Genealogy. Well he wrote to the whole list and suggested they check out my page and listed my real name. Now I don't make any effort to hide my real name but I do write under the name UncleHiram, and all of my email from my columns go to Well to make a long story short (I think it's a little late for that), one of the other members of the list sent me an email asking about her ancestor with the same surname. Turns out she was also a distant cousin and again on my main line. I couldn't believe it. Not only did I have her Ancestor in my Data Base but I had her in my material. I sent her an Ancestor printout for her Grandfather and she updated all the info I had on her immediate family.

Well to put it mildly this has been one of the Red-letter Weeks for my research and its only Wednesday.

Well once again we come to the end of one of our little Misadventures and we have learned a little. 1) Subscribe to the Lists that pertain to the area your Ancestors lived in. You can find a complete list of the Lists available at 2) You really should UNSUBSCRIBE to a list if you are going to be on vacation for a while. Either that or prepare to listen to your Blonde make jokes about you while you weed through a ton of email. 3) The More you get your SURNAMES out there the better your chances for finding a new cousin.

NOTE: Hard as it may be to believe this one is completely true. Sometimes you just get lucky.

2007 Update

I no longer use the email address mentioned in this column. There are still genealogical mailing lists out there. You can find them at

Cyndi's List Mailing Lists

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