Some time last year when Mr GeniAus tracked down the contact details of his father's first cousin he immediately contacted her by 'phone and asked would she mind if we visited some time. Then life got in the way.
Finally on Sunday we made our way up the motorway to the Port Stephens region where the cousin resides. We had armed ourselves with some ancestor charts, a narrative on some of her Ball ancestors, copies of photos and some chocolate biscuits. Can you believe I left my camera behind in our accommodation in Newcastle? Luckily Mr GeniAus and I both had our mobile 'phones. I had my laptop in the car but didn't take it into the house initially as I didn't want to overwhelm this octogenerian.
|Mr GeniAus' Grandfather - there is a strong family resemblance|
We organised our arrival for 10:00 am so the cousin wouldn't feel obligated to feed us. Of course we stayed longer and enjoyed lunch with the cousin and her husband. The cousin was most interested in her family history but didn't have any certificates or documents to share. She corroborated stories we had heard and gave us some names and dates that provided enough clues to track down references for some BDMs and burials. She was able to help us identify some family members in our photos and we set her straight on one she had mislabelled.
It was a Win-Win day - we came away with images of two studio photographs of Mr GeniAus' Great-grandmother one of which was with his Grandfather. This was so special because the only photos we have of these two are a couple of blurry amateur images. The cousin was delighted because of the documents we had prepared for her.
The icing on the cake was when I fetched my computer from the car and read the cousin an account of her parents' wedding I had found on Trove. When we got home Mr G printed off a hard copy and have mailed it to her with a copy of her Grandmother's will.
I had a fun day today going through the notes and finding references including articles from Trove to add to my database.