Monthly Archives: November 2017
One fateful turning point
The central, most dramatic moment in the entire Orphan George chronology concerns his tragic Atlantic Ocean crossing. Not that everyone accepts the account, as I admit in the unfolding narrative that runs through this blog.
Still, its quickly sketched record, told as widely as it was early on, brings both drama and tragedy into account. It introduces piracy – and, as I’ve pieced together possibilities – the likelihood of its ruthless, officially sanctioned version of privateers, in our case even landing in Antigua before the victims arrive in Pennsylvania. We can presume the deaths of young George’s parents and siblings were prolonged and painful.
And then, as an archivist told me, Good luck with trying to trace a 10-year-old orphan arriving in Philadelphia. If that was the gateway, in fact, by which he came into America.
From what I’ve seen, I doubt we’ll find anything to match it in the earlier Irish and English generations. And in my line, at least, nothing comes close since.
All along, I’d felt my dad’s ancestry was pretty pedestrian. Or at least that was the impression I had growing up. Having done the research, I’m of another mindset altogether.
Is there a big scene, a history-changing moment, in your own family’s past? Care to mention it? What has most changed your understanding of your genealogical legacy?