King Bluetooth of Denmark

King Bluetooth of Denmark

I am about to change your life. Hence forth, every time you pair an earpiece to your cell or a Bluetooth speaker to your smart phone, you will think of your ancient Norse grandfather, Harald “Bluetooth” Gormsson. You can call him King Harald or, as many did in his time, simply, Bluetooth. Our relation to King Harald comes though the Murdock line – which flows through Ruth Althea Rowe Westover, wife to our William. King Harald was king of Denmark and Norway way back in the 10th century, some 34 generations along our family lines. He is most famous forClick to continue…

The Deacon of Killingworth

The Deacon of Killingworth

Last year I shared with you a family history connection we have with Henry Wadsworth Longfellow – great American poet and truly one of the “rock stars” of the 19th century. We share with Longfellow the common ancestors of John and Priscilla Alden. Another common ancestor we share is “The Deacon”, as Longfellow referred to him in his famous poem, The Birds of Killingworth. Cousin Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is famous for a lot of things. He was very educated. He spoke ten languages and studied dozens more. He was not only a poet but also a famous educator, teaching forClick to continue…

A Letter to my Granddaughter

A Letter to my Granddaughter

Dear Granddaughter, Here it is the night of July 4th, 2019, and outside my windows there are fireworks and explosions of my neighbors celebrating Independence Day. Unlike most years, I’m alone this 4th of July. Usually we have a gathering and all the family are here. There is food and fireworks and fun — the stuff of family. But the stuff of family also creates lonely days like this, too. I’m here alone because your Gram has gone out to Atlanta to be there for your birth. It has been 18 long months since she has seen your parents andClick to continue…

Baptist Cousins of Piscataway

Baptist Cousins of Piscataway

Today, the 9th of June, I received an email from FamilySearch.org reminding me that my 7th great grandfather, Jeremiah Drake I, would be celebrating his 312th birthday. It is not often that I cannot immediately make the connection between myself and a name on our tree. But for the life of me I couldn’t remember which line the Drakes came through. Confusing to me even more was a memory of someone telling me that we’re related to Sir Francis Drake, the famous explorer of the oceans who was knighted by Queen Elizabeth. So I had to go look, if anythingClick to continue…

The War Experience of Grandpa Carl

The War Experience of Grandpa Carl

I always try to spend a little time with my grandfather, Carl Begich, each Memorial Day. He is, to my knowledge, the only of our family to have given his life in the service of our country. Memorial Day is to honor those who paid the ultimate price. Remembering Grandpa Carl by searching anew anything I can find about him or sharing something I have not shared before on Memorial Day is my way of taking part. It would, in a perfect world, be best to visit his grave and to honor him in person. But he is buried inClick to continue…